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Digital Model of Babylon

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Olof Pedersén

A digital model of Babylon is under development. Both archaeological material and ancient texts are used on a detailed level for the reconstruction of this famous ancient city. Architectural computer programs are used for building the model, which is placed in environmental and historical contexts. An integrated GIS analysis is used for the city’s relation to the surroundings on different scales. The model will be used for developing and testing alternative reconstructions, creating new questions and providing answers. The development of the city is shown on different historical levels. Maps and other drawings are exported from the model.

Downloads of preliminary material are available here.

Model of Babylon during the final part of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar II. Processional Way in front of the Ishtar Gate of glazed bricks. Street covered with limestone and breccia stones.

The ArchiCAD program is used for the model and the Artlantis program for the renderings. The preliminary work has been part both of the Urban Mind Project at Uppsala University and the Excellence Cluster Topoi at Freie Universität Berlin. Inspection on site has been facilitated by Word Monuments Fund and State Board of Antiquities and Heritage. The project is associated with the Babylon project at Vorderasiatisches Museum in Berlin, where a reworking of the findings of Koldewey’s famous excavation 1899-1917 is in preparation.

It is the intention in the coming years to use the model for detailed interpretations of the different periods of the city’s history thereby including both the large numbers of contemporary ancient texts and the archaeological material. The large-scale excavations with registration of find spots of huge numbers of objects combined with the use of modern technology allow for promising advances in the interpretation of Babylon.

 


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