The Amorites were an ancient people from Syria who used to speak Semitic languages. They also occupied large parts of southern Mesopotamia from the 21st century BC to the end of the 17th century BC. They established several famous city states like Babylon. Babylon was raised from a small town to an independent state and a major city. The term Amurru in Akkadian and Sumerian texts refers to both them and to their main god. They are also mentioned in Bible as resident of Canaan.