Nightbringer | The Arthurian Online Encyclopedia


Nineve, Nineveh, Ninus

The city of Niniveh, located in ancient Assyria, was one of the most significant and powerful cities in the ancient world. It was situated on the eastern bank of the Tigris River in what is now modern-day Iraq.

It was the ancestral homeland of the brothers Pompeius and Ipomidon of Babylon – having been founded by their ancestor Ninus – but was seized by the Baruc of Baghdad. In response, the brothers invaded the Baruc’s land. Perceval’s father, Gahmuret, serving the Baruc, was involved in the ensuing war.

Niniveh | History

Nineveh was the capital of the Assyrian Empire, one of the major Mesopotamian empires in antiquity. The city played a pivotal role in the history of the ancient Near East and was known for its wealth, power, and cultural achievements.

The exact date of Nineveh’s foundation is not well-documented, but it is believed to have been established in antiquity. It grew in prominence during the Middle Assyrian period (fourteenth to eleventh centuries BC) and reached its zenith during the Neo-Assyrian Empire (ninth to seventh centuries BC).

Sennacherib’s Reign
One of the most famous rulers associated with Nineveh is King Sennacherib, who reigned from 705 to 681 BC. Sennacherib made significant improvements to the city, including the construction of a massive palace and an elaborate system of aqueducts and canals.

Assyrian Conquests
The Neo-Assyrian Empire, with Nineveh as its capital, embarked on extensive military campaigns and territorial expansions. The empire controlled vast territories, including parts of modern-day Iraq, Iran, Syria, and Turkey.

Cultural Achievements
Nineveh was not only a center of political and military power but also a hub of cultural and intellectual activity. The city was known for its impressive libraries, including the Library of Ashurbanipal, which contained a vast collection of cuneiform tablets and texts.

Despite its grandeur, Nineveh met a dramatic and destructive end. In 612 BC, a coalition of Babylonian and Median forces sacked the city, leading to its downfall. The destruction of Nineveh marked the end of the Neo-Assyrian Empire.

Biblical References
Nineveh is mentioned in the Bible, particularly in the Book of Jonah, where the prophet Jonah is sent to the city to deliver a message of repentance. The story of Jonah and the whale is set in Nineveh.

Archaeological Discoveries
Nineveh’s ruins remained largely forgotten until the 19th century when archaeological excavations uncovered the ancient city’s remains. These discoveries shed light on the city’s history and the achievements of the Assyrian Empire.

Parzival | Wolfram von Eschenbach, 1200–1210