Semiramis

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For the ancient Greeks[1] Semiramis was one of several legendary Assyrian queens. The earliest being the basis for Ishtar, the most recent being Semiramis the second for whom the hanging gardens of Babylon were built.[2]

Many legends have accumulated around her bold personality. Various efforts have been made to identify her with real persons. She is sometimes identified with the real Shammuramat (in Greek, Semiramis), the Assyrian wife of Shamshi-Adad V (ruled 824 BC–811 BC), King of Assyria [1].

The legends narrated by Diodorus Siculus, Justin and others from Ctesias of Cnidus make a picture of her and her relationship to King Ninus.

The name of Semiramis came to be applied to various monuments in Western Asia, the origin of which was forgotten or unknown.[3] Ultimately every stupendous work of antiquity by the Euphrates or in Iran seems to have been ascribed to her, even the Behistun Inscription of Darius.[4] Herodotus ascribes to her the artificial banks that confined the Euphrates [5] and knows her name as borne by a gate of Babylon.[6] The Hanging Gardens of Babylon, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World are also known as the Hanging Gardens of Semiramis.

Various places in Assyria, Mesopotamia and Medea bore the name of Semiramis, but slightly changed, even in the Middle Ages, and an old name of the city of Van was Shamiramagerd. Assyrians still name female children Semiramis to this day.

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