I was impressed by the sheer size of such artifacts from foreign lands that Berlin held in Pergamon Museum. The Museum was literally custom made to fit them. These artifacts, beginning with the collection of “Ancient Near East,” founded in 1899, had been brought here mostly around in the early part of the next century following German archeological expeditions in the ancient cities of Babylon, Assur, Uruk, Habuba Kabira in Mesopotamia, and Miletus and Bergama in today’s Turkey. So much is due to the last site that the Museum is named after it. Its centerpiece is a reconstructed Pergamon Altar dating from the Hellenistic era nearly 2180 years ago. I climbed up the many steep twenty-meter wide steps...

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