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State Correspondence in the Ancient WorldFrom New Kingdom Egypt to the Roman Empire$
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Karen Radner

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199354771

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199354771.001.0001

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An Imperial Communication Network

An Imperial Communication Network

The State Correspondence of the Neo-Assyrian Empire

(p.64) Chapter 3 An Imperial Communication Network
State Correspondence in the Ancient World

Karen Radner

Oxford University Press

This chapter focuses on the Assyrian Empire which from the 9th to the late 7th century BC dominated the political history of the Middle East and the Eastern Mediterranean. The creation of an innovative relay postal service covering the expanse of the empire was instrumental in guaranteeing cohesion and its infrastructure proved one of Assyria’s most lasting heritage. The 1,200 letters-strong state correspondence of King Sargon II (r. 721–705 BC) allows a close study of the mechanisms of state communication.

Keywords:   Relay postal service, State cohesion, State communication, Long-distance communication, Messenger, Envoy, Cuneiform tablet, Aramaic, Assyrian Empire, Mesopotamia

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