- In Assyria, since the Old Assyrian period, there was a dating system in which years were named after an important official (Assyrian limmu). Lists were then kept that enumerated the sequence of eponyms (see EPONYM CHRONICLES). In the Middle Assyrian period, kings held the office in their second regnal year; it then passed on to senior officials of state in a regular pattern, including provincial governors. After a reign of 30 years, the king became eligible once again, and the cycle began a second time. While this sequence was fixed, individual candidates still had to be chosen. Apparently this was done through some random decision-making process, such as the rolling of dice.
Historical Dictionary of Mesopotamia. EdwART. 2012.
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