Mesopotamian culture developed in the region between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, which the Greeks named Mesopotamia. A variety of peoples settled in the region and formed one of the world's oldest and most innovative civilizations.
Millennia after its destruction, the city of Babylon remains a symbol of extravagance and wealth. Its most celebrated feature was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. The so-called Hanging Gardens of Babylon astounded and perplexed observers. How could such elaborate gardens possibly have been irrigated? Ancient sources describe a mysterious, hidden system of irrigation which carried water to the summit. So what was this system and how did it work? Without any archaeological evidence for the gardens surviving, this question becomes even more difficult to answer.
Literally "the land between the rivers," Mesopotamia was host to some of the world's earliest and most powerful civilizations. Shot on location, this program seeks to understand how the Sumerian city-states, cradled by the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers, built a vibrant agricultural economy—and why, after centuries, the wheat crop suddenly failed. Commentary by Asli Ozdogan, of Istanbul University, and Kazuya Maekawa, of Kyoto University; discussion of cuneiform, the Code of Hammurabi, and the Epic of Gilgamesh; and a remarkable 3-D computer re-creation of a peopled street scene offer a glimpse of life in Lower Mesopotamia.