History Files


Middle East Kingdoms

Ancient Mesopotamia




Hurrian Kingdom of Arrapha / Arrapkha

From the beginning of the second millennium BC, Hurrians settled as a majority population in formerly Assyrian Arrapha, which is now known as Kirkuk (itself a derivative of the Assyrian name). This is located in northern Iraq, about 250 kilometres north of Baghdad, near the foot of the Zagros Mountains in Kurdistan.

Not long after the first Hurrian cities were founded at Urkesh and Nawar in the Khabur Valley, Arrapha was founded in circa 2000 BC beside the River Hasa, in a region with archaeological remains dating back another thousand years. For a time it was subject to Mitanni overlordship, but the city reached its greatest prominence in the tenth and eleventh centuries BC, returned to Assyrian rule. Unfortunately, as for most things concerning the earlier Hurrians, not much is known about them except through archaeology.

c.2000 BC

The recently-arrived Hurrians form the small state of Arrapha in northern Mesopotamia. This state also includes the nearby city of Nuzi, which is governed by a mayor who is dependent on Arrapha.

Nuzi map
A map of the city of Nuzi, based on archaeological research



c.1450 BC

Barattarna of Mitanni makes Arrapha a vassal state by this date.

c.1350 BC

Arrapha is destroyed by the Assyrians as they conquer the region from Mitanni.