According to ancient inscriptions found at other archaeological sites, Kush leaders once ruled Egypt. The latest inscriptions detailed that Esarhaddon defeated the Kush rulers and chose new rulers to govern the nation.

Another inscription found under the Tomb of Jonah says that Esarhaddon “reconstructed the temple of the god Aššur [the chief god of the Assyrians],” rebuilt the ancient cities of Babylon and Esagil, and “renewed the statues of the great gods.”

The inscriptions reveals some  of Esarhaddon’s family history, saying that he is the son of Sennacherib [reign 704–681 B.C.] and a descendant of Sargon II (reign 721–705 B.C.), who was also “king of the world, king of Assyria.”

The inscriptions below the tomb. Credit: Steven Beverly/Livescience

The inscriptions are not the only discovery that ISIS inadvertently led researchers to beneath the tomb. Last year, as archaeologists assessed the extensive damage caused by the militants, they found a vast 600BC palace.

“I’ve never seen something like this in stone at this large size,” Prof Eleanor Robson, chair of the British Institute for the Study of Iraq, told the Telegraph at the time. “The objects don’t match descriptions of what we thought was down there, so Isil’s destruction has actually led us to a fantastic find.”

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The destroyed Al Nouri Mosque, which contained the tomb of Jonah. Credit: Wikipedia.

“There’s a huge amount of history down there, not just ornamental stones. It is an opportunity to finally map the treasure-house of the world’s first great empire, from the period of its greatest success.”

Former curator of the Mosul museum, Ms Salih, who supervised a five-man team carrying out the work, said she believes ISIS looted hundreds of objects from the depths of the tomb before authorities recaptured that part of Nineveh.

“I can only imagine how much Daesh discovered down there before we got here,” she told the Telegraph by phone from Mosul. “We believe they took many of the artefacts, such as pottery and smaller pieces, away to sell. But what they left will be studied and will add a lot to our knowledge of the period.”

(H/T: LiveScience)