Ishme-Dagan I was the son of the Amorite king of Assyria Shamshi-Adad I, who put him on the throne of Ekallatum after a successful military attack. Ishme-Dagan ruled the area of the upper Tigris, including the city-state of Assur. Following Shamshi-Adad's death (in the 17th year of Hammurabi of Babylon), Ishme-Dagan I managed to rule Assyria until himself being ousted by Hammurabi. The much later Assyrian kinglist credited Ishme-Dagan with 40 years, but it is now known, from a recently (2003) discovered limmu-list of eponyms unearthed at Kanesh, that his reign in Assur lasted 11 years. His brother, Yasmah-Adad, ruled around the same time in the city of Mari, where the correspondence between the father and two sons was found by archaeologists.
- Jean-Marie Durand, Documents Epistolaires du Palais de Mari, Collection « Littérature Ancienne du Proche-Orient » N° 16. (1997); (2002) ISBN 2-204-05685-5
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