Third Dynasty of Ur (Ur III)


Jan van der Crabben
by Trustees of the British Museum
published on 09 January 2012

Following the collapse of the Agade empire, the centre of power in southern Mesopotamia shifted to the cities of Uruk and Ur. The governor of Ur, Ur-Nammu, established a dynasty which came to dominate the other cities of the region, and whose territory stretched east into Iran. Under his successor, Shulgi, the empire was consolidated and centralised.

Shulgi was named as a god in many ancient documents. This gave him great power and followed a tradition established by the earlier rulers of Agade. He was succeeded by Amar-Sin and Shu-Sin, under whom many of the communication and supply routes across the empire were disrupted by groups of pastoralists (Amorites). This situation reached crisis point under the next ruler, Ibbi-Sin. With reduced supplies the empire was unable to effectively confront an attack by the Elamites from the east; Ur was destroyed and Ibbi-Sin was taken into exile.

Remove Ads

Did you like this article?
Editorial Review This article has been reviewed by our editorial team before publication to ensure accuracy, reliability and adherence to academic standards in accordance with our editorial policy.
Remove Ads



We want people all over the world to learn about history. Help us and translate this article into another language!

Free for the World, Supported by You

World History Encyclopedia is a non-profit organization. For only $5 per month you can become a member and support our mission to engage people with cultural heritage and to improve history education worldwide.

Become a Member  

Recommended Books

World History Encyclopedia is an Amazon Associate and earns a commission on qualifying book purchases.

Cite This Work

APA Style

Museum, T. o. t. B. (2012, January 09). Third Dynasty of Ur (Ur III). World History Encyclopedia. Retrieved from

Chicago Style

Museum, Trustees of the British. "Third Dynasty of Ur (Ur III)." World History Encyclopedia. Last modified January 09, 2012.

MLA Style

Museum, Trustees of the British. "Third Dynasty of Ur (Ur III)." World History Encyclopedia. World History Encyclopedia, 09 Jan 2012. Web. 26 May 2024.