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745-727 BCE

Mesopotamia / Kings /
Assyria / Neo period / Kings /
Tiglath-Pileser 3
Akkadian: Tukulti-apil-esharra
Also called: Tilgath-Pilneser; Pul; Pulu

Tiglath-Pileser 3 of Assyria.
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Assyria of Tiglath-Pileser 3

King of Assyria 745-727 BCE, the founder of the Neo-Assyrian Empire.
With his many military successes, he is considered one of the great generals of ancient times. He built a standing army of highly trained soldiers, different from the average army of peasants that waged war on occasion. The cavalry was enhanced.
He was also a great state builder. He ordered the establishment of system of messengers to conncet all corners of his empire.
He came to control all of Mesopotamia, after conquering Babylonia. He also conquered the western belt of modern Iran, and made Syria, Philistia (Lebanon) and Israel his vassals.
Assuming power in a time of unrest, among his foremost tasks was to control unruly regions. Before his reign, local officials had acted very independently from the king, some as if they themselves were independent kings. Tiglath-Pileser had the empire divided into small provinces, headed by officials appointed directly by the king. Many governors were eunuchs, thereby preventing potential family dynasties.
Provinces were subject to providing him with tax revenues and soldiers, and with the conscripts from non-Assyrian lands he formed a larger army than earlier rulers, also making the empire less related to Assyrian identity. The opposition from subjected peoples was still very much of a challenge, in several cases he forcibly moved large people groups to foreign lands. This affected several hundred thousand.
Inscriptions on gold vessels have revealed the name of his queen: Yabaya.

There is no historical data to his birth, but considering his position on assuming power, it is likely that he was born between 790 and 770 BCE; i.e. that he was between 25 and 45. His original name was Pulu.
745: Takes the throne of Assyria, during a time of civil war, and has the royal family slaughtered. He takes the royal name of Tiglath-Pileser. He immediately launches a campaign, taking control over most of Babylonia.
743: Has Urartu, the great power in the north, defeated in a battle. Although not annexing Urartu, this has Urartu strongly weakened.
740: Succeeds a campaign into Syria and Palestine, making this region effectively vassal kingdoms.
738: A coalition of kingdoms in the west, headed by Hamash, campaigns against Assyria, but is defeated and the lands are forced to pay tribute to Assyria.
736: Conquers lands of modern western Iran.
734: King Sanipu of Ammon becomes vassal of Tiglath-Pileser 3.
733: Has Israel largely destroyed.
732: Completes a second campaign into Syria, Philistia and Israel. Many locals here are taken captive, enslaved and brought back to Assyria. The strongest of kingdoms, Aram Damascus is conquered and razed, and its king killed. An Assyrian governor is installed.
729: Last territory of Babylonia is conquered, the king is captured, and he has himself crowned as king Pulu of Babylonia.
727: Dies and is succeeded by his son, Ululayu, who would take as his royal name, Shalmaneser 5.

By Tore Kjeilen