Adams, Robert McCormick, 1926-. Heartland of cities: surveys of ancient settlement and land use on the central floodplain of the Euphrates

Table of Contents

Publication Information

1 Water, Land, And Life

River And Alluvium

Local Climate And Vegetation

An Overview Of Major Watercourse Succession Patterns

Effects Of Human Agencies

Features Of A Premodern Euphrates Landscape

2 The Recovery Of Ancient Settlement And Irrigation Patterns

Maps, Air Photographs, And Their Interpretation

Boundaries Of Survey Coverage

Reconnaissance Sequence, Procedures, And Effectiveness

Site Survey, Collections, And Dating

Reinterpretation Of Lower Diyala Canal Patterns

Major Limitations Of This Survey As A Source For Settlement History

3 Urban Origins (ubaid-early Dynastic I Periods)

Onset Of Alluvial Settlement

Mass Appearance Of Sedentary Cultivators Around Regionally Differentiated Hierarchies Of Urban Centers

The First Urban Climax

Appendix A The Survey Data Base: Uruk-early Dynastic I Sites, Collections, And Chronological Indicators

Ubaid And Pre-ubaid Periods

Uruk Period

Jemdet Nasr Period

Early Dynastic I Period

Appendix B A Growth-simulation Program

Technical Aspects

The Problem

The Algorithm

The Results

4 Integration And Fragmentation Under Successive, Contending Dynasties (early Dynastic Ii-middle Babylonian Periods)

Urban Hierarchies And Continuity

Upper And Lower Limits Of Settlement, And Associated Patterns Of Land Use

The Shifting Network Of Watercourses And Settlements

Appendix The Survey Data Base: Late Early Dynastic-middle Babylonian Sites And Chronological Indicators

Late Early Dynastic Period (early Dynastic Ii–iii)

Akkadian Period

Ur Iii-isin-larsa Period

Old Babylonian Period

Cassite Period

Middle Babylonian Period

5 Culmination And Collapse Of An Agrarian Base And Urban Superstructure (neo-babylonian-late Islamic Periods)

An Overview Of Local Demographic And Settlement Trends

Changing Agricultural And Fiscal Management

The Neo-babylonian And Achaemenian Periods (ca. 700–330 B.c.)

The Seleucid-parthian Period (ca. 330 B.c.–a.d. 226)

The Sasanian Period (a.d. 226–637 )

The Islamic Period (post –a.d. 637)

Appendix The Survey Data Base: Neo-babylonian-late Islamic Sites And Chronological Indicators

Neo-babylonian, Achaemenian And Seleucid-parthian Periods

Sasanian Period

Islamic Period


Ancient Mesopotamia As An Irrigation Society

Ancient Mesopotamia As An Urban Society

7 General Site Catalog

Other Relevant Sites In The Region

Publication Information

Paragraph Subjects (OCM)

Publication Information


Title: Heartland of cities: surveys of ancient settlement and land use on the central floodplain of the Euphrates

Published By: Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1981. xx, 1-294, 346-362 p. [incomplete]: ill., map

By line: Robert McC. Adams

HRAF Publication Information: New Haven, Conn.: HRAF, 2003. Computer File

Culture: Early Dynastic Mesopotamia (MH64)

Subjects: Identification (101); Topography and geology (133); Water supply (312); Settlement patterns (361); Urban and rural life (369); Chronologies and culture sequences (911); Archaeological inventories (915);

Abstract: Adams describes the Mesopotamian environment, his surface survey, and its results in this pivitol study on the settlement patterns in Mesopotamia and the Diyala region. Adams' book describes settlements and traces some of the ancient canals and river courses from the Ubaid Period up through the Late Islamic Periods. However, only materials that pertain to the Early Dynastic Period were indexed for Outline of Cultural Materials (OCM) codes. Adams' survey results help to show the urbanization of the area during the Early Dynastic Period, settlement hierarchies, other settlement shifts and land use patterns. He also explores the reasons for the instability of irrigation agriculture in this area; such as the need for a stable central government (an idea that some other authors would dispute - see 3: D´iakonov) and the problems with salinization of the soil. Adams' book also includes a general site catalog. It provides information on the size of the site, the kind of artifacts found at the sites and the sites' probable time period(s).

Document Number: 1

Document ID: mh64-001

Document Type: Component part(s), monograph

Language: English

Note: Includes bibliographical references (p. 353-360) and index Appendix, pages 295-345, will be found in 11:Wright.

Field Date: mainly Nov. 1968 to Dec 1975; also 1956-1957, the early 1960's, and a little in 1967

Evaluation: Archaeologist-4, 5

Analyst: Sarah Berry ; 2001

Coverage Date: 4900 B.P.-4334 B.P. (2900 B.C.-2334 B.C.)

Coverage Place: Mesopotamia; Iraq

LCSH: Iraq--Civilization--To 634


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