Map of Assyria

Map of the Major Cities of Assyria in the Ancient Near East

About the time of King David and Solomon the Assyrians began to move northward and westward in their military expansions. They were searching for booty such as metals like gold, iron and bronze, and horses. Under King Ashurnasirpal II (885-860 BC) the Assyrian capital was moved to Nimrud (Kalhu) and the next set of kings expanded the kingdom of Assyria to beyond the Euphrates River Euphrates. When Tiglath-Pileser III came to power in 747 BC, he conquered nations to form an empire and deported the people of those nations throughout the Assyrian Empire. For the next 100 years the Assyrian kings build new capitals: Sargon built his palace at Khorsabad, and Sennacherib built Nineveh and Esarhaddon not only expanded these new capitals but expanded the empire until Assyrian dominance reached from Persia to the Mediterranean Sea. Ashurbanipal (668-626 BC) fought many wars with Egypt, and Babylonia and Elam were crushed. In 616 BC the new king of Babylon, Nabopolassar joined with the Medes and attacked Assyria. The mighty Empire of Assyria finally fell in 612 BC and Nineveh was destroyed. The Assyrian royalty fled to the city of Haran and the Babylonians came and destroyed them in 609 BC.

Assyria on the Northern Tigris River

See Map of the Fertile Crescent

See Map of Israel

See Map of Assyria

The kings of later Assyria reigned from the 9th century BC until the fall of Assyria in 612 BC.

Later kings of Assyria (885-607 B.C.)

Assur-nasirpal II (885-860 B.C.)

Shalmaneser II (860-825 B.C.)

Shansi-adad (825-808 B.C.)

Adad-nirari (808-783 B.C.)

Shalmaneser III (783-771 B.C.)

Assur-dayan (771-753 B.C.)

Assur-lush (753-747 B.C.)

Tiglath-pileser III (Pul) (747-727 B.C.)

Shalmaneser IV (727-722 B.C.)

Sargon II (722-705 B.C.)

Sennacherib (705-681 B.C.)

Esar-haddon (681-668 B.C.)

Assur-banipal (668-626 B.C.)

Assur-etil-ilani (626-607 B.C.)

Assyrian annals mention contacts with some nine Hebrew kings: Omri, Ahab, Jehu, Menahem, Pekah, Uzziah, Ahaz, Hezekiah, and Manasseh.

In the reign of Hoshea, king of Israel, Shalmaneser, king of Assyria, twice invaded (2 Kings 17:3,5) the kingdom that remained, and his successor Sargon II took Samaria in 722 BC, carrying away 27,290 of the population as he tells in his Khorsabad Annals. Later Assyrian kings, notably Esarhaddon (681 BC - 668 BC), completed the task.