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was murdered by his nurse's four sons, and the eldest of them governed twelve years in his place: and after him came Astartus, the son of Delaeastartus, who lived sixty years, and reigned twelve. After him came his brother Aserymus, who lived fifty-four years, and reigned nine, and was murdered by his brother Phelles, who took the government upon him in the fiftieth year of his age; and, after a reign of eight months, was slain by one Ithobalus, a priest of the goddess A.starte, who lived to the age of sixty-eight years, and ruled thirty-two. His son Badezor succeeded him, who lived forty-five years, and reigned six: and then his son Matgenus lived two and thirty years, and reigned nine. The next was Pygmalion, who lived fifty-six years, and governed forty. It was in the seventh year of his reign, that his sister Dido built Carthage, in Africa. So that from the time of Hiram to the erecting of Carthage, we account a hundred aml fifty-five years and eight months. Taking for granted that the temple of Jerusalem was built in the twelfth year of king Hiram, it makes a hundred and forty-three years and eight months, from, the raising of the temple to the building of Carthage."
Nothing can tend more to confirmation than this testimony of the Phoenicians: for our ancestors certainly came into Judea long before the building of the temple; nor did they build that temple till they had obtained possession of the country by dint of arms, as I have clearly proved from the sacred writings in my Antiquities.
We will now proceed to show how far the Chaldean records agree with others concerning our history, and begin with Berosus, by birth a Chaldean, well known by the learned from his publication of the Chaldean treatises on astronomy and philosophy among the Greeks. Berosus following the most ancient records, gives us a history of the deluge, and the destruction of mankind thereby, exactly consonant with the description of Moses; as also of the ark, and the preservation of Noah in it, when it was brought to the highest part of the Armenian mountains. He gives us a catalogue of the posterity of Noah, and adds the years of their chronology, from Noah himself to NabuJassar, king of the Babylonians and Chaldeans, with an account of this king's
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exploits. He tells us that he sent his son Nabuchodonosor with a mighty army into Egypt and Judea, where, upon his being informed of a revolt, he reduced the people to subjection, set fire to our temple at Jerusalem, and carried off our whole nation in captivity to Babylon. After this our city lay desolate during an interval of seventy years, till the days of Cyrus, king of Persia. He then says that this Babylonian king conquered Egypt, Syria, Phoenicia, and Arabia, and exceeded in his exploits all his predecessors. But to quote his own words.
"Nabulassar, the father, understanding that his deputy in Egypt, Ccelesyria, and Phoenicia, was up in arms, being old himself, and past the fatigues of war, he sent his son Nabuchodonosor (in the vigour of his youth,) at the head of a strong army to bring him to reason. This prince encountered the rebel, defeated him, and recovered all the provinces that were engaged in the revolt.
"It happened, at the same time, that Nabulassar fell sick at Babylon", and died, after a reign of nine and twenty years. It was not long before the son had notice of his father's death; whereupon he immediately settled his affairs in Egypt, and the rest of the provinces; and committing the captive Jews, Phoenicians, and Syrians, that had been in Egypt, to the care of some particular confidants, to see them brought up to Babylon, together with the army and the baggage, he himself, with a small retinue, took his journey for Babylon by the way of the desert. Upon his arrival, he found all things disposed to his wish; the Chaldeans, and all the great men, declaring themselves in his interest, and for his establishment upon the throne of his father.
"In this interim, while the prisoners were upon the way, he ordered them the most commodious lodgings of the city for their quarters, and all accommodations to be provided for them. The spoils of the war were applied with wonderful munificence, to the enriching and adorning of the temples; as that of Bell and others. He caused to be erected a new town, as an addition to the old one: and to prevent the turning of the river the city stood upon, from the place, in cast of a siege, they ran up a triple wall, part of it brick, and the rest of brick and bitumen, about the whole. After nil these fortifications, he made such gates as might have become the dignity of a temple. He built likewise a glorious palace, near that of his father, but incomparably beyoud it, both for extent and expense. The description of it would be too tedious; but it must be observed that this admirable piece was the work of only fifteen days.
"There were in it also several artificial rocks, that had the resemblance of mountains; with nurseries of all sorts of plants, and a kind of hanging garden suspended in the air by a most admirable contrivance. This was to gratify his wife, who, being brought op in Media, among the hills, and in the fresh air, found relief from such a prospect."
Thus writes Berosus respecting the king: and there are other circumstances worthy of remark in his Chaldean antiquities, and more particularly where he censures the Greeks for affirming that Babylon was founded by Semiramis, queen of Assyria. Moreover, we meet with a confirmation of what Berosus relates, in the records of the Phoenicians, concerning the king of Babylon, and his conquering all Syria and Phoenicia. Philostratus agrees with him in his history of the siege of Tyre; as does Megasthenes, in the fourth book of his Indian History, wherein he pretends to prove that this king of Babylon was superior to Hercules in strength and prowess, adding, that he had the greatest part of Lybia and Iberia at his devotion. With respect to the temple of Jerusalem, we have the authority of Berosus, that it was laid in ashes by the Babylonians; and that Cyrus, when he had reduced Asia, began to rebuild it. That historian thus writes in his third book.
"When Nabuchodonosor was just entered upon the third wall, in the forty-third year of his reign, he fell sick and died. EvilMerodach, his son, succeeded him; but having rendered himself odious to the highest degree, by his exorbitant oppressions, he was cut off by the treacherous practice of Niriglissoror, his sister's husband, in the second year of his reign. After his death, the traitor advanced himself to the crown, and kept it four years. His son Laborosardochus came very young to the government, and continued in it only nine months, being destroyed by the treachery even of his very friends, who looked upon him as a youth of vicious and dangerous inclinations, and therefore removed him. He was no sooner despatched than the conspirators met, and consulting together, chose one Nabonidus for their king, being both a Babylonian, and of the same family. The walls about the river of Babylon were finished by this prince.
"In the seventeenth year of this king's reign, Cyrus, with a mighty army out of Persia, overran all Asia, and marched directly for Babylon. Nabonidus fairly met him in the field, fought him, and lost the battle: only himself, and some few of his people, got into the town of Borsippe. Cyrus was now before Babylon, making no doubt but, upon forcing the first wall, he might carry the place. But, upon second thoughts, he quitted the siege, and went back to Borsippe, with a design to attack the place. Nabonidus chose rather to cast himself upon Cyrus's mercy, than to stand the shock; so that, upon his humiliation, Cyrus banished him out of Babylon, and gave him quiet possession of Caramauia, where he ended his life in a private station."
These accounts of Berosus exactly correspond with our sacred books, in which it is related that Nabuchodonosor, in the eighteenth year of his reign, destroyed our temple, and that it lay desolate for fifty years. But that, in the second year of the reign of Cyrus, its foundation was laid; and it was finished again in the second year of Darius. I shall now add the records of the Phoenicians, as too many proofs cannot be adduced, provided they agree in point of chronology. The computation stands thus:—
Nabuchodonosor besieged Tyre for thirteen years, in the reign of king Ithobal. After him reigned Baal ten years. After him Judges were appointed, of whom Ecnibalus, the son of Baslec, judged the people two months. Chelbis, the son of Abdaeus, ten months. Abbar, the high priest, three months. Mytgonus and Gerassus Betus, the sons of Abdelimus, six years. After them Balatorus, one year. Upon his death they sent for Merbalus from Babylon, who governed four years, and was succeeded by his brother Hiram, who ruled twenty years, during which Cyrus obtained the empire of Persia. The whole interval amounts to fifty-four years and three months; for, in the seventh year of the reign of Nabuchodonosor, he began to besiege Tyre; and Cyrus entered upon his reign over the kingdom of Persia in the fourteenth year of Hiram. So that the records of the Chaldeans and T/rians agree with our writings concerning this temple; and the testimonies here produced are an indisputable attestation to the antiquity of our nation.
But it is now expedient to satisfy those who disbelieve the records of Barbarians, and think those of the Greeks only worthy of credit, by producing many of those very Greeks who were acquainted with our nation, and setting before them such as, upon occasion, have made mention of us in their own writings.
Pythagoras, of Samos, lived in very ancient times, and was esteemed superior to all philosophers in piety and wisdom. It is evident that this great man was not only versed in our laws, but, In many instances, an admirer and observer of them. This is not inferred from any thing that he ever wrote, but from what others knew and reported concerning him. Hermippus, a historian of credit, in his first book concerning Pythagoras, informs us, "that, upon the death of Calliphon, of Croton, one of his associates, the philosopher affirmed, that the soul of this man conversed with him night and day, and enjoined him not to pass over a place where his ass had stumbled, to drink only of clear fountain water, and to speak ill of no man. This he did in imitation of the Jews and Thracians, with an application to himself." And it was truly said; for Pythagoras incorporated divers customs of the Jews into his own philosophy.
Nor was our nation unknown of old to several of the Grecian cities, or, indeed, thought unworthy of imitation by some of them, as appears from Theophrastus, in his book of laws, where he speaks of the Tyrian law against swearing by any strange god, naming the Corban, amongst other oaths prohibited, that is to say, in Hebrew, the gift of God; ami this oath was only to be found amongst the Jews.
Herodotus, of Halicarnassus, was no stranger to our nation ; for he makes some mention of us in his second book, where, speaking of the people of Colchos, he has these words: " With respect to circumcision, I find only the Colchians, the Egyptians, and the Ethiopians, to have used it of old. But the Phoenicians and the Syrians in Palestine, confess that they derived it from the Egyptians. The Syrians that border upon the rivers Thermodou and Parthenius, and their neighbours the Macrotuans, are reputtd to