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Nimrud

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Kalhu (also known as Caleh, Calah, and Nimrud, in modern-day northern Iraq) was a city in ancient Mesopotamia that became the capital of the Assyrian Empire under Ashurnasirpal II (reigned 884-859 BCE) who moved the central government there from the traditional capital of Ashur. The city existed as an important trade center from at least the 1st millennium BCE. It was located directly on a prosperous route just north of Ashur and south of Nineveh. The city had been built on the location of an earlier business community under the reign of Shalmaneser I (1274-1245 BCE) but had become dilapidated over the centuries. Ashurnasirpal II ordered the debris removed from the crumbling towers and walls and decreed a completely new city should be built, which would include a royal residence greater than that of any previous king. The Assyrian Empire was ruled from Kalhu from 879-706 BCE, when Sargon II (reigned 722-705 BCE) moved the capital to his new city of Dur-Sharrukin.


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