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Al Hillah

Administration
Full nameAl-Hillah
Official nameAl-Hillah
Native name 
CountryIraq
ProvinceBabylon
Demography
Total Population364700 (1998 Est)

     Home | City | Hilla



Al-Hillah ( ; BGN: Al Ḩillah; also spelled Hillah or Hilla) is a city in central Iraq on the Hilla branch of the Euphrates River, 100 km (62.1 mi) south of Baghdad. The population is estimated at 364,700 in 1998. It is the capital of Babil province and is located near the ancient cities of Babylon, Borsippa and Kish. It is situated in a predominantly agricultural region which is extensively irrigated with water provided by the Hilla canal, producing a wide range of cereals, fruit and textiles.

The city was once a major center of Islamic scholarship and education. The tomb of the Jewish prophet Ezekiel is reputed to be located in a nearby village. The city was established in 1101. It was established by the powerful Arab tribe of Bani Assad. It was commanded and founded by Ali bin Mazyid Al-Asadi of Bani Assad, the founder of the Mazayid State.

It became a major administrative centre during the rule of the Ottoman and British Empires. In the 19th century, the Hilla branch of the Euphrates started to silt up and much agricultural land was lost to drought, but this process was reversed by the construction of the Hindiya Barrage in 1911 1913, which diverted water from the deeper Hindiya branch of the Euphrates into the Hilla canal. It saw heavy fighting in 1920 during an uprising against the British, when 300 men of the Manchester Regiment were apparently defeated in the city. It is said to be where the Hanging Gardens of Babylon once were.


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