Who Were the Kings of Ancient Mesopotamia?

A Timeline of the Kings of Ancient Mesopotamia and Their Dynasties

Figure of a Sumerian, Mesopotamian art
Figure of a Sumerian, Mesopotamian art. Getty Images/Peter Willi

Mesopotamia, the Land Between Two Rivers, was located in present-day Iraq and Syria and was home to one of the most ancient civilizations: the Sumerians. Between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, Sumerian cities such as Ur, Uruk, and Lagash provide some of the earliest evidence of human societies, along with the laws, writing, and agriculture that made them function. Sumeria in southern Mesopotamia was countered by Akkad (as well as Babylonia and Assyria) in the north.

Rival dynasties would shift the center of power from one city to another over thousands of years; the Akkadian ruler Sargon united the two societies during his reign (2334-2279 B.C.) The fall of Babylon to the Persians in 539 B.C. saw the end of indigenous rule in Mesopotamia, and the land was marked by further conquests by Alexander the Great, the Romans, and before coming under Muslim rule in the 7th Century.

This list of ancient Mesopotamian kings comes from John E. Morby. Notes based on Marc Van De Mieroop's.

Sumerian Timelines

First Dynasty of Ur c. 2563-2387 B.C.

2563-2524... Mesannepadda

2523-2484... A'annepadda

2483-2448... Meskiagnunna

2447-2423... Elulu

2422-2387... Balulu

Dynasty of Lagash c. 2494-2342 B.C.

2494-2465... Ur-Nanshe

2464-2455... Akurgal

2454-2425... Ennatum

2424-2405... Enannatum I

2402-2375... Entemena

2374-2365... Enannatum II

2364-2359... Enentarzi

2358-2352... Lugal-anda

2351-2342...

Uru-inim-gina

Dynasty of Uruk c. 2340-2316 B.C.

2340-2316... Lugal-zaggesi

Dynasty of Akkad c. 2334-2154 B.C.

2334-2279... Sargon

2278-2270... Rimush

2269-2255... Manishtushu

2254-2218... Naram-Suen

2217-2193... Shar-kali-sharri

2192-2190... anarchy

2189-2169... Dudu

2168-2154... Shu-Turul

Third Dynasty of Ur c. 2112-2004 B.C.

2112-2095...

Ur-Nammu

2094-2047... Shulgi

2046-2038... Amar-Suena

2037-2029... Shu-Suen

2028-2004... Ibbi-Suen (The last king of Ur. One of his generals, Ishbi-Erra, established a dynasty in Isin.)

Dynasty of Isin c. 2017-1794 B.C.

2017-1985... Ishbi-Erra

1984-1975... Shu-ilishu

1974-1954... Iddin-Dagan

1953-1935... Ishme-Dagan

1934-1924... Lipit-Ishtar

1923-1896... Ur-Ninurta

1895-1875... Bur-Sin

1874-1870... Lipit-Enlil

1869-1863... Erra-imitti

1862-1839... Enlil-bani

1838-1836... Zambiya

1835-1832... Iter-pisha

1831-1828... Ur-dukuga

1827-1817... Sin-magir

1816-1794... Damiq-ilishu

Dynasty of Larsa c. 2026-1763 B.C.

2026-2006... Naplanum

2005-1978... Emisum

1977-1943... Samium

1942-1934... Zabaya

1933-1907... Gunnunum

1906-1896... Abi-sare

1895-1867... Sumu-el

1866-1851... Nur-Adad

1850-1844... Sin-iddinam

1843-1842... Sin-eribam

1841-1837... Sin-iqisham

1836... Silli-Adad

1835-1823... Warad-Sin

1822-1763... Rim-Sin (probably an Elamite. He defeated a coalition from Uruk, Isin, and Babylon and destroyed Uruk in 1800.)