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From about 2,000 BC until the early Hellenistic Period (ca. early third century BC), Babylon was one of the greatest cities in the ancient world. It was marked by political stability and military power under three of the most powerful political dynasties of the ancient Near East: the First Dynasty of Babylon (ca. 1894-1595 BC); the Kassite Dynasty (ca. 1374-1155 BC); and the Neo-Babylonian Dynasty (626-539 BC). These powerful dynasties often conquered their weaker neighbors and traded with the stronger ones, but they also nurtured scientific thought, some of which is still used today while other ideas have been discarded or changed dramatically.
Ancient Babylonian thinkers were
especially excellent mathematicians, as they were the first people to use fractions, which they used to build advanced siege weaponry and to parcel out the limited farmable land in their kingdom. The Babylonians were also among the earliest people to develop the study of astronomy and along with it astrology, which was considerably different for them than it is today. The ancient Babylonians were indeed a people who understood scientific thinking, but their concept of science differed dramatically from the modern view, or even that of the Greeks, because all of their science was used for practical applications – there was no such thing as abstract science in ancient Babylonia.
====Early Babylonian Culture====