The ancient Near East refers to early civilizations in a region roughly corresponding to the modern Middle East: Mesopotamia (modern Iraq and Syria), Anatolia (modern Turkey), the Levant (modern Syria, Lebanon, Israel, Palestine, and Jordan), as well as Persia (modern Iran), and Ancient Egypt, from the beginnings of Sumer in the 6th millennium BCE until the region's conquest by Alexander the Great in the 4th century BCE.
Aramaic, the language of Jesus of Nazareth, was the lingua franca of the Middle East for over a thousand years before Arabic became widespread. During the time of the Achaemenid Persian Empire it became the official language of the state, and was in use from Afghanistan to western Iran to the Mediterranean and down to the south of Egypt. This volume tells the story of the transition of Aramaic from its humble beginnings in the first millennium B.C. to its height as a truly international language. Includes both color and black and white illustrations.
Gorgias Press is an independent academic publisher specializing in the history and religion of the Middle East and the larger pre-modern world. We are run by scholars, for scholars, who believe strongly in "Publishing for the Sake of Knowledge."