You are here

Junior Research Fellow writes play on the last great king of Assyria

6 February 2019

Warrior. Scholar. Empire builder. King slayer. Lion hunter. Librarian.

King Ashurbanipal of Assyria (r. 669–c. 631 BC) was the most powerful man on earth. He described himself in inscriptions as ‘king of the world’, and his reign from the city of Nineveh (now in northern Iraq) marked the high point of the Assyrian empire, which stretched from the shores of the eastern Mediterranean to the mountains of western Iran.

Junior Research Fellow Dr Selena Wisnom has written a series of plays set in ancient Assyria, one of which is about King Ashurbanipal, who is also currently the subject of a major British Museum exhibition.

If you’re a fan of immersive theatre, feel fascinated by Shakespeare’s betrayal-filled histories, or can’t wait to binge-watch the next season of Game of Thrones, you won't want to miss this.

Something is rotten in Ashurbanipal’s court. A civil war rages: brother against brother, Assyria against Babylon. The king’s ministers plot to control his decisions, while the royal family unravels from the inside.

Who will emerge from the chaos to control the greatest empire the region has ever known? And can we ever know the full story? Book your tickets here.

Ancient Assyrian stone-carving