265 BABYLONIA- PEOPLE AND CITIES.
possible that the means of ascent were contrived within rather than without the temple.
Many of these things, however, have been left to conjecture and to such dim reasoning as
the data will support. It is a disputed point, even, whether the approach to the Tower was
simply a plain ascent, or whether there was an elaborate vestibule which has gone to dust
with the centuries. The latter view is sustained to a certain extent by the existence in
front of the north-east slope of an irregular mass of ruins, which seem to indicate some
kind of raised or columnar approach to the main edifice.
The city of BORSIPPA, near which the great Birs still stands, was among the most important
of Babylonia. It was one of the ancient and venerated towns of Chaldaea. In the primitive
ages, before the Assyrian Empire had arisen or Media had an existence, Borsippa was
already a flourishing mart, adorned with temples and other public buildings.
After Borsippa may be mentioned the town of OPIS. It was situated on the eastern bank of
the Tigris, just below the confluence of the .Gyndes. The ancient name of this city was
Hupiya. The site is now marked by the ruins of Khafaji. In the days of its importance Opis
was a large and flourishing emporium, receiving commerce from both the rivers which washed
its walls. A short distance to the south, and on the same side of the Tigris, was another
considerable town called SITACE, which gave its name to the province in which it lay.
Further down, on the shore of the Persian Gulf, was TEREDON, founded by Nebuchadnezzar,
and containing in the palmy days of the Empire many
thousand inhabitants. The site has not been identified, owing to the fact that the shore
line of the Gulf has receded and the whole district been covered with deposits. It is
thought, however, that Teredon was located in the neighborhood of the modern town of
Passing into the Provinces of the Empire the most notable city was SUSA, the capital of
Susiana. In the times of Babylonian greatness it was second only to Babylon. It lay, as
already stated, between the two branches of the river Chaospes, on a beautiful plain,
relieved, at the distance of twenty-five miles, with a background of mountains. It was
one of the most healthful and attractive regions within the dominions of Nebuchadnezzar.
Here was situated the ancient palace of the old native kings. It was reared upon a great
mound, after the style of the Babylonian and Assyrian temples. The ancient city lay on the
eastern side of the palace. Here, according to Herodotus, lived in primitive days KING
MEMNON, who led an army to Troy to defend the city against the Greeks. Such was the beauty
and salubrity of Susa and her environs that the place was regarded as a sort of second
capital of the Empire. Several of the Babylonian monarchs here maintained summer
residences, and the court of Susa, thronged with princes and native and foreign noblemen,
almost rivaled the splendors of Babylon. On the Upper Euphrates was CARCHE-