SPECIAL TOPIC: MEDO-PERSIAN EMPIRE: SURVEY OF THE RISE OF CYRUS II
(Isa. 41:2,25; 44:28-45:7; 46:11; 48:15)
A. 625-585 – Cyaxares was the king of Media that helped Babylon defeat Assyria.
B. 585-550 – Astyages was king of Media, Ecbatana was the capital). Cyrus II was his grandson by Cambyses I (600-559, Persian) and Mandane (daughter of Astyages, Median).
C. 550-530 – Cyrus II of Ansham (eastern Elam) was a vassal king who revolted:
1. Nabonidus, the Babylonian king, supported Cyrus.
2. Astyages' General Harpagus led his army to join Cyrus' revolt.
3. Cyrus II dethroned Astyages.
4. Nabonidus, in order to restore a balance of power, made an alliance with:
b. Croesus, King of Lydia (Asia Minor)
5. 547 – Cyrus II marched against Sardis (capital of Lydia) and it fell in 546 b.c.
6. 539 – In mid-October the generals Ugbaru and Gobryas, both of Gutium, with Cyrus' army took Babylon without resistance. Ugbaru was made governor, but died of war wounds within weeks, then Gobryas was made governor of Babylon.
7. 539 – In late October Cyrus II "the Great" personally entered as liberator. His policy of kindness to national groups reversed years of deportation as a national policy.
8. 538 – Jews and others of the Cyrus Cylinder were allowed to return home and rebuild their native temples (cf. 2 Chr. 36:22,23; Ezra 1:1-4). He also restored the vessels from YHWH's temple which Nebuchadnezzar had taken to Marduk's temple in Babylon (cf. Ezra 1:7-11; 6:5).
9. 530 – Cyrus' son, Cambyses II, succeeded him briefly as co-regent, but later the same year Cyrus died while on a military campaign.
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