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Naplanum,
King of Larsa (c.2025-c.2005 B.C.)

Larsa (modern Tall Sankarah) was one of the ancient capital cities of Mesopotamia. Located 20 miles (32 kilometers) southeast of Uruk (Erech; Arabic Tall el-Warla'), in southern Iraq, the city was founded in the prehistoric period. Larsa's most prosperous period started with the dynasty founded there by Naplanum, an Amorite sheikh.

In 2025 B.C., taking advantage of the struggles between Elam and the Third Dynasty of Ur, Naplanum captured Larsa and declared its independence from Ur. Apparently, the prince then became a vassal of Ishbi-Irra, king of Isin, who had also recently thrown off the yoke of king Ibi-Sin. This was not to last for long, for Larsa's power quickly grew to rival that of Isin, Assur and Eshnunna.

At the end of his reign, Naplanum captured the Elamite garrison of Ur. He was succeeded by a line of 13 kings, many of whom exercised a great deal of influence throughout Mesopotamia. His son, Shu-ilishu is said to have looted the temple of the moon god Nanna in Ur, bringing the spoils (including the statue of the Elamite god, himself) back to Larsa. This new dynasty represented the new hegemony of Semitic Akkadians over the indigenous Sumerians.

The ancient peoples of the Fertile Crescent were masterful record keepers. Thousands of clay tablets bearing their business and religious records have been recovered. A surprising number of these extant records (found at Drehem) contain the name of Naplanum, who is seen trading in cattle and bringing sheep to the temples as offerings.

{Kings of Sumeria}

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