YEAR NAMES
   During the Akkadian Dynasty, a system of dating was introduced in which years were named in hindsight after a sig- nificant event, such as the appointment of a senior official or priest, a military campaign, or the inauguration of an important building. The current year, as well as those in which nothing special occurred, were called “year after happened.” Lists of year names were collected and collated with the regnal years of kings. This system was used throughout southern Mesopotamia for centuries but not in Assyria, where they used the eponym dating. The lists of year names, as well as year names recorded in administrative records, are an important source of historical information, especially for those pe- riods in which written documentation is sparse.
   See also HISTORIOGRAPHY.

Historical Dictionary of Mesopotamia. . 2012.

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