Ishtar Gate, Babylon
But then in the 600s BC a new empire started up, centered on the old Mesopotamian capital at Babylon. Under King Nebuchadnezzar (neh-buk-kad-NEZ-arr), the Babylonians reconquered most of the old Assyrian empire. The Babylonians conquered Israel, and took many of the Jewish leaders and their families back to Babylon with them to keep them from revolting again. People call this the Babylonian Captivity.
The Babylonians also did a lot of new building in Babylon during their time in power. But it didn't last very long. In 539 BC, the Persians, under their King Cyrus, conquered Babylon and ended the Babylonian Empire.
To find out more about the Neo-Babylonians, check out these books from Amazon.com or from your library:
Find Out About Mesopotamia: What Life Was Like in Ancient Sumer, Babylon and Assyria, by Lorna Oakes (2004).
The Babylonians: An Introduction, by Gwendolyn Leick (2002). Covers the whole history of the city of Babylon, from Hammurabi down to Alexander.
Babylon, by Joan Oates (1986).
Ancient Near Eastern History and Culture, by William H. Stiebing (2002). Expensive, and hard to read, but it's a good up to date account.
Third Intermediate Period Egypt
West Asian history
Ancient West Asia