Sennacherib's younger son, Sargon's grandson (2 Kings 19:37). frontASSYRIA.) After the murder of his father by his two sons, Esarhaddon the oldest surviving son succeeded, 680 B.C. The Assyrian inscriptions state that for some months after his accession he warred with his half brothers (Rawlinson, Ant. Monarchies, 2:186). The Greek Abydenus states the same. The Scripture is thus confirmed; for naturally Esarhaddon would seek to avenge his father's murder, and they would seek the throne. The Armenian records state that the two assassins, having escaped from the scene of conflict, took refuge in Armenia, where the king gave them lands which long continued in possession of their posterity (Mos. Choren., Hist. Arm., 1:22). Esarhaddon is famed for his expedition into Arabia. an undertaking with few parallels in history; for few conquerors have ventured to pass the barrier of Arabian deserts.
Esarhaddon was perhaps the most potent of the Assyrian kings, warring in the far East, according to the monuments, with Median tribes "of which his father had never heard the name"; extending his power W. to Cilicia and Cyprus, ten kings of which submitted to him. Southward he claimed authority over Egypt and Ethiopia; having driven the Ethiopian Tirhakah out of Egypt. Having conquered Merodach Baladan's sons, Esarhaddon made Babylon directly subject to the Assyrian crown, instead of being governed by viceroys, and as king of each of the two empires resided by turns at Nineveh and Babylon. He is the only Assyrian king who reigned at Babylon; the bricks of the palace he built there still bearing his name. A tablet also bears the date of his reign. Manasseh king of Judah is mentioned among his tributaries. Scripture by a striking minute coincidence with truth represents Manasseh as carried to Babylon, not to the Assyrian capital Nineveh; which would seem inexplicable but for the above fact, revealed by the monuments.
Esarhaddon's Babylonian reign lasted from 680 to 667 B.C., the very period when Manasseh was brought up by the Assyrian king's captains to Babylon on a charge of rebellion (2 Chronicles 33:11-19). By an unusual clemency on the part of an oriental king, Manasseh was restored to his throne, a marvelous proof of the power of prayer. The monuments tell us of a similar act of Esarhaddon whereby he gave a territory on the Persian gulf to Merodach Baladan's son, on his submission as a refugee at his court. Esarhaddon built three other palaces and 30 temples," shining with silver and gold," in different parts of his dominions. His S.W. palace at Nimrud, excavated by Layard, corresponds in plan to Solomon's temple but is larger, namely, the hall being 220 by 100 ft. and the antechamber 160 by 60. Unfortunately the sculptured stones and alabaster have been materially injured by fire.
He boasts of his S.W. palace of Nimrud that it was a building "such as the kings his fathers before him had never made." Ptolemy's canon shows he reigned 13 years in Babylon, and probably reigned in all 20 years, dying about 660 B.C. Assur-bani-pal, or Sardanapalus II, for whom Esarhaddon built a palace, succeeded, and caused the tablets to be collected which furnish us with such information; comparative vocabularies, lists of deities, records of astronomical observations, histories, scientific works. Saracus his son was attacked by the Scythians, then by the Medes and Cyaxares, and Nabopolassar his own general. Saracus burnt himself in his palace, and Nineveh was taken. frontASSYRIA.)
Esarhaddon (as G. Smith reads an inscription) about 672 B.C., marching from Asshur (Kileh Sherghat) to Tyre, besieged Bahal its king who was in league with Tirhakah, thence he marched to Aphek at the foot of Lebanon, then to Raphia S.W. of Judah, thence from Lower Egypt which was in his hands to Miruha or Meroe. Though distressed on the way by want of water, he at last drove Tirhakah out of Egypt.
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