The site of Tell Beydar is located in Upper Mesopotamia and more precisely in the Upper Syrian Jezirah, a region called “Khabur Triangle”, a sort of delta without sea, formed by the tributaries of the Euphrates main affluents.

Upper Mesopotamia is not an alluvium land and the environment is very different from Lower Mesopotamia, the historical Land of Sumer. There artificial irrigation is a basic need for agriculture, which is developed on very large, flat surfaces, lacking of any geographical and topographical marks.

In Upper Mesopotamia the rate of the annual rainfall is high enough to allow for a rain-fed agriculture, which is practiced on a large scale in the plains extending from the Euphrates to the Tigris.

We are in the period when the Sumerian city-states flourish in the South, about one hundred years before being conquered by king Sargon of Akkad and being finally included in his empire (c. 2330 BC). From the chronological point of view, we are therefore slightly later than the construction of the pyramids of Gizeh, in Egypt. However, in spite of the well established contacts between Egypt and the Levant, cultural and political links between Egypt and Mesopotamia are still very few at that time.

This period also corresponds to the first golden age of Ebla, a period documented by the archives of kings Igrish-halab, Irkab-damu and Ishar-damu. It is also the time of king Iblul-il of Mari and his direct successors.

Haut Khabur

Location and map of the Syrian Jezirah (from Martin Sauvage)