Babylon was the capital city of Babylonia, a kingdom in ancient Mesopotamia, between the 18th and 6th centuries BC. It was built along the left and right banks of the Euphrates river with steep embankments to contain the river's seasonal floods. Babylon was a small Akkadian town dating from the period of the Akkadian Empire c. 2300 BC. The town became part of a small independent city-state with the rise of the First Babylonian dynasty in the 19th century BC; the Amorite king Hammurabi created a short-lived empire in the 18th century BC. He declared himself its king. Southern Mesopotamia became known as Babylon eclipsed Nippur as its holy city; the empire waned under Hammurabi's son Samsu-iluna and Babylon spent long periods under Assyrian and Elamite domination. After being destroyed and rebuilt by the Assyrians, Babylon became the capital of the short-lived Neo-Babylonian Empire from 609 to 539 BC; the Hanging Gardens of Babylon were one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. After the fall of the Neo-Babylonian Empire, the city came under the rule of the Achaemenid, Parthian and Sassanid empires.

It has been estimated that Babylon was the largest city in the world c. 1770 – c. 1670 BC, again c. 612 – c. 320 BC. It was the first city to reach a population above 200,000. Estimates for the maximum extent of its area range from 890 to 900 hectares; the remains of the city are in present-day Hillah, Babil Governorate, about 85 kilometres south of Baghdad, comprising a large tell of broken mud-brick buildings and debris. The main sources of information about Babylon—excavation of the site itself, references in cuneiform texts found elsewhere in Mesopotamia, references in the Bible, descriptions in classical writing, second-hand descriptions —present an incomplete and sometimes contradictory picture of the ancient city at its peak in the sixth century BC; the spelling Babylon is the Latin representation of Greek Babulṓn, derived from the native Bābilim, meaning "gate of the god". The cuneiform spelling was KA2. DIG̃IR. RAKI; this would correspond to the Sumerian phrase kan diĝirak "gate of the god".

The KA2 is the ideograph for "gate", DIG̃IR is "god", the ra is phonetic. The final KI is the determiner for a place name. Archibald Sayce, writing in the 1870s, postulated that the Semitic name was a loan-translation of the original Sumerian name. However, the "gate of god" interpretation is viewed as a Semitic folk etymology to explain an unknown original non-Semitic placename. I. J. Gelb in 1955 argued that the original name was Babil or Babilla, of unknown meaning and origin, as there were other similarly-named places in Sumer, there are no other examples of Sumerian place-names being replaced with Akkadian translations, he deduced that it transformed into Akkadian Bāb-ili. The Sumerian name Ka-dig̃irra was loan translation of the Semitic folk etymology, not the original name; the re-translation of the Semitic name into Sumerian would have taken place at the time of the "Neo-Sumerian" Third Dynasty of Ur.. In the Hebrew Bible, the name appears as Babel, interpreted in the Book of Genesis to mean "confusion", from the verb bilbél.

The modern English verb, to babble, is popularly thought to derive from this name, but there is no direct connection. Ancient records in some situations use "Babylon" as a name for other cities, including cities like Borsippa within Babylon's sphere of influence, Nineveh for a short period after the Assyrian sack of Babylon; the remains of the city are in present-day Hillah, Babil Governorate, about 85 kilometers south of Baghdad, comprising a large tell of broken mud-brick buildings and debris. The site at Babylon consists of a number of mounds covering an area of about 2 by 1 kilometer, oriented north to south, along the Euphrates to the west; the river bisected the city, but the course of the river has since shifted so that most of the remains of the former western part of the city are now inundated. Some portions of the city wall to the west of the river remain. Only a small portion of the ancient city has been excavated. Known remains include: Kasr – called Palace or Castle, it is the location of the Neo-Babylonian ziggurat Etemenanki and lies in the center of the site.

Amran Ibn Ali – the highest of the mounds at 25 meters to the south. It is the site of Esagila, a temple of Marduk which contained shrines to Ea and Nabu. Homera – a reddish-colored mound on the west side. Most of the Hellenistic remains are here. Babil – a mound about 22 meters high at the northern end of the site, its bricks have been subject to looting since ancient times. It held a palace built by Nebuchadnezzar. Archaeologists have recovered few artifacts predating the Neo-Babylonian period; the water table in the region has risen over the centuries, artifacts from the time before the Neo-Babylonian Empire are unavailable to current standard archaeological methods. Additionally, the Neo-Babylonians conducted significant rebuilding projects in the city, which destroyed or obscured much of the earlier record. Babylon was pillaged numerous times after revolting against foreign rule, most notably by the Hittites and Elamites in the 2nd millennium by the Neo-Assyrian Empire and the Achaemenid Empire in t

Karsten Forsterling

Karsten Forsterling is an Australian rower. He is world champion, a dual Olympian and Olympic medal winner, he represented Australia at eight senior world rowing championships between 2002 and 2019 in both sculling and sweep oared boats. Born in Newcastle, New South Wales, Forsterling was schooled at St Vincent's Primary in the ACT and took up rowing in high school at the Melbourne Grammar School, he graduated from Monash University in Melbourne with a B. Engineering in 2001, works for the multinational consulting firm AECOM. Forsterling rows from the Melbourne University Boat Club with whom he has had a long association. On eleven occasions during the fifteen-year period from 2001 to 2015 Forsterling was seated in Victorian men's eights which contested the King's Cup at the Australian Rowing Championships. In those crews Fosterling saw five times placed second. In 2011 and 2016 he was Victoria's selectee to contest the interstate men's Single scull – the President's Cup, he placed second on both occasions.

In 2011 he won he Australian national quad scull title in an Australian selection composite crew. At the 2010 World Rowing Championships in Karapiro he finished 3rd in the men's quadruple sculls event, in a crew with David Crawshay, James McRae, Daniel Noonan. At the 2011 World Rowing Championships in an upset, Forsterling rowing in the Australian men's quad defeated the German crew to take gold. Following a costly mistake in the German boat, the Australian crew took the lead in the final metres and won the race by 0.25secs. At the 2012 London Olympics, Forsterling won bronze in the Men's quadruple scull in a time of 5:45.22 in a crew with Chris Morgan, James McRae and Daniel Noonan. At the 2015 World Rowing Championships on Lac d'Aiguebelette, Aiguebelette in France he finished 2nd in the men's quadruple sculls event, rowing with David Crawshay, Cameron Girdlestone and David Watts. In 2016 along with James McRae, Cameron Girdlestone and Alexander Belonogoff, Forsterling won the silver medal in the Australian quad at the Rio 2016 Olympics.

In 2019 after a three year absence from the Australian senior squad, an injury to James Medway following the World Rowing Cup III in Rotterdam saw Fosterling called back into the Australian eight for the 2019 World Rowing Championships in Linz, Austria. The Australian eight had made the A finals at both World Rowing Cups of 2019 and were looking for a top five finish at the 2019 World Championships to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics; the eight placed second in their heat and fourth in the final and qualified for Tokyo 2020. Karsten Forsterling at FISA

The Thirteen Chairs

The Thirteen Chairs is a 1969 comedy film directed by Nicolas Gessner and Luciano Lucignani and starring Sharon Tate, Vittorio Gassman, Orson Welles, Vittorio De Sica, Tim Brooke-Taylor. It was based on the 1928 satirical novel The Twelve Chairs by Soviet authors Ilf and Petrov, adapted many times. Mario Beretti is a young Italian-American barber, he runs a barber shop located near a construction site. His life reaches a turning point when he is notified of the death of his aunt living in England, who named him her sole heir. Mario learns that his inheritance consists of not much, he sells them in order to cover his transportation costs, but soon learns from his aunt Laura's last message that inside one of the chairs is a fortune in jewels. He is unsuccessful in doing so. With the help of lovely American antiques dealer Pat, working in the antiques shop in front of Aunt Laura's house, where he sold the chairs, the two set out on a bizarre quest to track down the chairs that takes them from London to Paris and to Rome.

Along the way, they meet a bunch of bizarre characters, including the driver of a furniture moving van named Albert. The bizarre chase ends in Rome, where the chair containing the jewels finds its way into a truck and is collected by nuns who auction it off to charity. With nothing much left to do as a result of the failure of his quest, Mario travels back to New York City by ship as Pat sees him off and waves goodbye to him; the film ends with Mario returning to his barber shop. His friends over at the other shop join him, as do two construction workers and his last customer Randomhouse, it is there that Mario makes a strange discovery: shortly before his departure for Europe, he invented a way to make hair regrow miraculously. He laughs ecstatically over his discovery. Sharon Tate as Pat Vittorio Gassman as Mario Beretti Orson Welles as Maurice Markau Vittorio De Sica as Carlo Di Seta – The Commendatore Tim Brooke-Taylor as Jackie Terry-Thomas as Albert Mylène Demongeot as Judy Ottavia Piccolo as Stefanella Di Seta Claude Berthy as Francois Catana Cayetano as Veronique Grégoire Aslan as Psychiatrist John Steiner as Stanley Duncan William Rushton as Lionel Bennett Lionel Jeffries as Randomhouse Marzio Margine as Pasqualino Alfred Thomas as Mbama Antonio Altoviti as Greenwood Michele Borelli as Rosy The Thirteen Chairs was filmed from February–May 1969.

Orson Welles and Tim Brooke-Taylor had their scenes filmed during a break from shooting Welles' comedic film One Man Band. Brooke-Taylor recalled, Because the script for Sharon Tate's scenes called for several semi-nude scenes, the director arranged to film those scenes first; as filming progressed, the director obscured Tate's stomach with large scarves. This is most apparent in the scene following her ride in the furniture mover's van; the Thirteen Chairs was Sharon Tate's final film, with many people saying that she had a knack for comedy and were excited for her next film contract. The film was released through rental only by Force Video in 1986 under the Thirteen Chairs name, again a year by Continental Video, under the original 12 + 1 name. On 12 March 2008 the film was released on DVD in Italy by 01 Distribution; this version is in Italian, lacks English subtitles, doesn't include an English audio track. The Thirteen Chairs on IMDb The Thirteen Chairs at AllMovie The Thirteen Chairs at Rotten Tomatoes