The Shanghai World Expo with the theme "Better City, Better Life", not only displays advanced ideas for urban life, but some old ideas as well, including some from mankind's oldest city Babylon. The ancient urban center, which had its heyday about 4,000 years ago, is also exhibited at the Babylon's city gate serves as the entrance of the City Origin hall of the Urban Footprints Pavilion.
Visitors stand in awe of the ancient Babylon city in miniature. The city thrived during king Hammurabi's rule in 18th century BC, and Nebuchadnezzar the second's reign around 6th century BC.
Wei Shaonong, Chairman, Design Dept., East China Normal University, said, "Babylon is famous for its hanging garden, one of the seven wonders of the world, and the legendary Tower of Babel described in the Bible."
Ishtar Gate, the biggest of Babylon's eight gates, is displayed here with models and real relics.
These glazed ceramics are the genuine pieces decorating Ishtar Gate. The divine animals, molded some three thousand years ago, are still in good condition. This figure, with a snake's head, goat's horn and eagle's claw represents such an early combination of such animals that it even surprised the experts.
Wei Shaonong said, "Combining features from different animals to create a godly creature, making it boast all the energy the animals have, this showcases the wild imagination of Babylon citizens."
Dozens of relics are exhibited to inform visitors of ancient Babylonian culture, from their ancient epigraphs, to an engraved stone indicating ownership of land.