Arbil (also written Erbil, or Irbil) ) is the fourth largest city in Iraq after Baghdad, Basra and Mosul. The city lies eighty kilometres (fifty miles) east of Mosul, and is the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan.
Urban life at Arbil can be dated back to at least 6000 BC, and it is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the world. At the heart of the city is the ancient Citadel of Arbil. The city has been under the rule of many regional powers since that time, including the Assyrians, Babylonians, Persians, Arabs, and Ottomans. The city's archaeological museum houses a large collection of pre-Islamicartifacts, and is a center for archaeological projects in the area.