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The Silent Fall of an Empire in 1200 BCE

Lorenzo d'Alfonso

ISAW


The events causing the end of the Hittite empire at the end of the Late Bronze Age in the eastern Mediterranean are still unknown, but while its causes have been widely discussed, little to no attention has been devoted to the lack of memory of it, as well as the lack of a clear attempt by later polities to claim the legacy of the Great Kings of Hatti. The talk will focus on the perceptions of the fall of the empire, and the non-uniform trajectories of its aftermath. The lack of central power allowed local groups to develop several political experiments. By the 9th century these were transformed into regional monarchies. Phrygia and Urartu are widely known to the great public. The talk will present evidence in support of the existence of a third one: the Land of Tuali.

Lorenzo d'Alfonso is Associate Professor of Western Asian Archaeology and History at ISAW. He receieved his MA in Ancient Civilizations from the University of Pavia (1997) and his PhD in Ancient Anatolian and Aegean Studies from the University of Florence (2002). Since then he has worked as a post-doctoral fellow and adjunct professor at the Universities of Mainz, Konstanz, and Pavia.

His main research interests concern the social, juridical, and political history of Syria and Anatolia under the Hittite Empire and during its aftermath (16th-7th centuries BC). On these themes he has published a monograph on the judicial procedures of the Hittite administration in Syria (2005), a website of textual references (The Emar Online Database), more than 30 articles in volumes and journals, and co-edited two volumes.

From 2006 to 2009 he was the director of an archaeological survey in Southern Cappadocia, and since 2010 he has concentrated his efforts on the site of Kinik Höyük (Niğde, Turkey).

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Event Details

  • 12/07/2017
  • 06:00 PM
  • ISAW Lecture Hall

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