The structure of the Neo-Assyrian empire
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The structure of the Neo-Assyrian empire book
Despite being a wealthy and populated land, the territory of Assyria was fairly limited in size. It therefore encountered some organisational and demographic problems when ruling over a large portion of the Near East. In this phase, the heart of Assyria reached the peak of its expansion. This development was not entirely due to a demographic growth in the countryside, but rather to the presence of a network of considerably large cities located a few kilometres away from one another. Despite the construction of its ‘new city’ and a marked increase in sacred buildings, Ashur did not reach the fifty hectares mark, thus remaining in the class of Bronze Age cities. The city was located in a relatively isolated area and was not a privileged commercial junction anymore. Therefore, it now became a prestigious sacred city in constant need of special treatments and exemptions.