Chaldean Towns of Northern Mesopotamia
Karamles is located less than 18 miles south east of Nineveh (Mosul). It's
surrounded with many hills, that
along with it made the historical Assyrian city of Kar-Mullissi which meant
in Akkadian the City of
Mullisi. Karamles also had many other names for it was called "Er-Elo-Bano"
i.e. the City of the God
Bano which is believed it was used during the reign of the Assyrian King
Belo-Bano. During the reign of
the Sumerian dynasty of Ur around 3000 BC, Karamles was called Kar-Denkir-Neen-Leel
i.e. the City of
the Goddess Neen-Leel (the wife of God En-Leel and the mother of Sumerian
Karamles is a very old town and is believed to be among the first human
colonies, hence, it was
Karamles is a very old town and is believed to be among the first human colonies, hence, it wasvisited by almost all Mesopotamian archeologists who were searching for the ruins of old Assyria and Babylonia. The first who started those archeological works in the hills of Karamles was the famous Englishman Austin Henry Layard in 1846 who noted that "..based on the Assyrian remains discovered in Karamles, it's believed that this Assyrian city was as great during its time as that of Khorsabad.." Many relief sculptures which contained cuneiform scripts were found in Tel Ghanim and Tel Barbara (two of the hill surrounding Karamles). In them were found the names of Assyrian Kings of Sargon and Shalmensar. Also, was found in Tel Barbara the remains of an Assyrian temple while at Tel Ghanim was found the remains of an Assyrian palace.
Karamles lost its important stature during the era of Shalmensser III (858-824 BC) whose son Assur-Daneen-Ablo led a rebellion against his father along with another 27 cities. His father empowered his other brother Shamshi-Adad, the Governor of Kaleh (Namrod). This civil war lasted for four years 827-824 BC with the destruction of the rebellion, however, Karamles being close to Kaleh did not survive the ravages of the war. Karamles was so impacted by that rebellion that its people left it and was given the name of "Oro-Karmash" meaning "The Ruined City". Actually, and till today Karamles is referred to by its Assyrian neighbors as "Karmash". However, Karamles was reinvograted during the reigns of Kings Shalmensser V (726-722 BC) and Sargon II (721-705 BC) who used it as his temporary capital.
The Battle of Karamles 331
Karamles as Center for the
Patriarchy of The Church of the East
The oldest Christian building in Karamles is Mar Gewargis Church which was built during the sixth century. Also, was built around the beginning of the seveth century Mar Yonan Monastery.
As to the Mart (Saint) Maryam Daughters' Monastery, which was built next to Mar (Saint) Gewargis Church, this Monastery suffered tremendously at the hands of Mongol in the 13th century and in the 18th century at the hands of Ismail Pasha of Rawandows. Also, in Karamles is the Church of the Forty Martyrs (Beth Sahda) built in the 13th century.
The current fame of Karamles is due to its Church of St. Barbara which was built on the ruins of an Assyrian temple for the God Bano. Barbara is the daughter of the pagan Governor of Karamles in the first century who professed her Christianity followed by her servant Yolena which forced the Governor to imprison both of them. His pleas with his daughter to repent went unheeded which forced him to satisfy the priests of the Zoroastian temple and executed her in one of the rooms of that temple which became the grounds for the Church named after her and which still contain her remains and that of her servant. During the raid of Nader Shah in 1734 this church suffered tremendous damages, however, the people of Karamles rebuilt the church in 1798.
There are two more churches in Karamles, Church of the Virgin which was built in 1887 and Mar Addi Church, the newest of Karamles' churches which was completed in 1963.a
Karamles as Center of Principality
The Destruction of Nader Shah
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