(Heb. Akkad',אִבִּד, fortress; or, according to Simonis Onomast. p. 276, bond, i.e. of conquered nations; Sept. Α᾿ρχάδ [prob. by resolution of the Dagesh, like דִּרמֶשֶׂק for דִּמֶּשֶׂק], Vulg. Achad), one of the four cities in "the land of Shinar," or Babylonia, which are said to have been built by Nimrod, or, rather, to have been "the beginning of his kingdom" (Ge 10:10). AElian (De Animal. 16, 42) mentions that in the district of Sittacene was a river called Argades (Α᾿ργάδης), which is so near the name Archad which the Sept. give to this city, that Bochart was induced to fix Accad upon that river (Phaleg, 4:17). Mr. Loftus (Trav. in Chald. and Susiana, p. 96) compares the name of a Hamitic tribe emigrating to the plains of Mesopotamia from the shores of the Red Sea, and which he says the cuneiform inscriptions call Akkadin; but all this appears to be little more than conjecture. In the inscriptions of Sargon the name of Akkad is applied to the Armenian mountains instead of the vernacular title of Ararat (Rawlinson, in Herodotus' 1, 247, note). The name of the city is believed to have been discovered in the inscriptions under the form Kinzi Akkad (ib. 357). It seems that several of the ancient translators found in their Heb. MSS. Accar (אִכִּר) instead of Accad (Ephrem Syrus, Pseudo-Jonathan, Targum Hieros., Jerome, Abulfaragi, etc.). Achar was the ancient name of Nisibis (see Michaelis, Spicileg. 1, 226); and hence the Targumists give Nisibis or Nisibin (נציבין) for Accad, and they continued to be identified by the Jewish literati in the times of Jerome (Onomast. s.v. Acad). But Nisibis is unquestionably too remote northward to be associated with Babel, Erech, and Calneh, "in the land of
Shinar," which could not have been far distant from each other. On the supposition that the original name was Akar, Colonel Taylor suggests its identification with the remarkable pile of ancient buildings called Akker-kuf, in Sittacene, and which the Turks know as Akker-i-Nimrud and Akker-i- Babil (Chesney's Survey of the Euphrates, 1, 117). The Babylonian Talmud might be expected to mention the site, and it occurs accordingly under the name of Aggada. It occurs also in Maimonides (Jud. Chaz. Tract. Madee, fol. 25, as quoted by Hyde). Akker-kuf is a ruin, consisting of a mass of sun-dried bricks, in the midst of a marsh, situated to the west of the Tigris, about five miles from Bagdad (Layard's Babylon, 2d ser. p. 407). The most conspicuous part of this primitive monument is still called by the natives Tel Nimrud, and Nimrud Tepasse, both designations signifying the hill of Nimrod (see Ker Porter's Travels, 2, 275). It consists of a mound, surmounted by a mass of building which looks like a tower, or an irregular pyramid, according to the point from which it is viewed, it is about 400 feet in circumference at the bottom, and rises to the height of 125 feet above the elevation on which it stands (Ainsworth's Researches in Assyria, p. 175). The mound which seems to form the foundation of the pile is a mass of rubbish, accumulated from the decay of the superincumbent structure (Bonomi's Nineveh, p. 41). In the ruin itself, the layers of sun-dried bricks can be traced very distinctly. They are cemented together by lime or bitumen, and are divided into courses varying from 12 to 20 feet in height, and are separated by layers of reeds, as is usual in the more ancient remains of this primitive region (Buckingham, Mesopotamia, 2, 217 sq.). Travellers have been perplexed to make out the use of this remarkable monument, and various strange conjectures have been hazarded. The embankments of canals and reservoirs, and the remnants of brick-work and pottery occupying the place all around, evince that the Tel stood in an important city; and, as its construction announces it to be a Babylonian relic, the greater probability is that it was one of those pyramidal structures erected upon high places, which were consecrated to the heavenly bodies, and served at once as the temples and the observatories of those remote times. Such buildings were common to all Babylonian towns; and those which remain appear to have been constructed more or less on the model of that in the metropolitan city of Babylon. SEE BABEL.