Suppiluliuma I


Suppiluliuma I (1344-1322 BCE) is considered the most powerful and impressive king of the Hittite Empire. He was the son of Tudhaliya II (also known as Tudhaliya III) and is credited with founding the New Kingdom of the Hittites (also called the Hittite Empire). His dates are disputed owing to the manner in which the Hittites recorded their history. The scholar Marc van die Mieroop writes, “The Hittites did not leave us king lists with the lengths of reigns, thus even for the creator of the New Kingdom state, Suppiluliuma I, we have different suggestions for his years of rule, varying from twenty-two to forty years…While in practice we assign absolute dates to the individual rulers, these are always approximate” (156). What is clear is that the Old Kingdom of the Hittites had fractured and fallen, and that Suppiluliuma I reformed the flaws in governmental policy which caused the decline, re-conquered the lost territories, and expanded his reign across Anatolia, north toward Mesopotamia, and down to the borders of Egypt.

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