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In Our Time: History

The Hittites

Description

Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the empire that flourished in the Late Bronze Age in what is now Turkey, and which, like others at that time, mysteriously collapsed. For the next three thousand years these people of the Land of Hatti, as they called themselves, were known only by small references to their Iron Age descendants in the Old Testament and by unexplained remains in their former territory. Discoveries in their capital of Hattusa just over a century ago brought them back to prominence, including cuneiform tablets such as one (pictured above) which relates to an agreement with their rivals, the Egyptians. This agreement has since become popularly known as the Treaty of Kadesh and described as the oldest recorded peace treaty that survives to this day, said to have followed a great chariot battle with Egypt in 1274 BC near the Orontes River in northern Syria.

With

Claudia Glatz
Professor of Archaeology at the University of Glasgow

Ilgi Gercek
Assistant Professor of Ancient Near Eastern Languages and History at Bilkent University

And

Christoph Bachhuber
Lecturer in Archaeology at St John’s College, University of Oxford


Producer: Simon Tillotson

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