chapter  XII
BABYLON AND THE MEDES AND PERSIANS
Pages 54

B A B Y L O N A N D T H E M E D E S A N D P E R S IA N S : FROM T H E F A L L O F N IN E V E H T O T H E

D E F E A T O F X E R X E S

(606-479 B.C.)

I. Babylon and Egypt

Necho seizes Palestine (608)— Battle of Carchemish (604)—Babylonian conquest of Palestine-Nebuchadrezzar takes Jerusalem (596)—Necho’s work in Egypt-Psamatik II in Nubia-The inscription of Abu Simbel-The “ Asmak”— Uahabra (Apries) interferes in Palestine, occupying Phoenicia (588)—Nebuchadrezzar advances into Syria (587)— Fall of Jerusalem and captivity of the Jews (586)—Jeremiah at Tahpanhes (Daphnai)—Siege of Tyre (586-573)— Uahabra defeated by the Cyrenaeans-Amasis (569-526)—Apries revolts (566)— Battle of Momemphis-Death of Apries-Supposed Babylonian invasion of Egypt not proved-Death of Nebuchadrezzar (562)—Nabonidus (556-539)—Nebuchadrezzar’s buildings at Babylon-Antiquarian tastes of N abonidus-Belshazzar

A F T E R the fall of Nineveh, the Assyrian claims to empire in Syria and the West naturally fell to Babylon, while the Medes took the Ninevite territory and the lands north and east of Tigris. Southern Assyria and

Northern Mesopotamia were occupied by Nabopolassar, who ruled unchallenged to the bend of the Euphrates. Beyond the river, however, Pharaoh Necho, easily destroying Josiah and his army in the historic field of Megiddo, had seized the whole of Syria and Palestine,1 and a conflict was inevitable if Babylon intended to make good her claims to the inheritance of Asshur. Two years after the fall of Nineveh the collision between Egypt and Babylon took place, at Carchemish, and the motley host of Necho, composed of all the strange African subjects of Egypt

1 2 Kings xxiii. 29; Hd t . ii. 159. It is significant of the grateful attitude of the Egyptian kings towards the mercenaries who gained them their victories that when Necho took Gaza he dedicated some of its spoil to Apollo at Branchidai.