Taylor & Chicago Prisms of Sennacherib from Mosul: 691 BC

Sennacherib, King of Assyria 704-681 BC

Sennacherib attacks Hezekiah in Jerusalem in 701 BC.

Hezekiah’s alliance with Tirhakah, king of Egypt.

2 Kings 18:13-19:37; Isaiah 36-37



Taylor and Chicago Prisms of Sennacherib

Date of inscription

Taylor Prism: 691 BC, Sennacherib's 14th regnal year

Chicago Prism: 689 BC, Sennacherib's 16th regnal year

The Original text is on the “Taylor Prism” in British museum that dates to 691 BC.

The duplicate text is on the “Chicago Prism” in Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago that dates to 689 BC

Annal years

Regnal years 3-11: Eight campaigns starting in 703-696 BC

701 BC = 3rd annual campaign in regnal year 5

Glyptic object

Akkadian Inscription on hexagonal clay prism


Colonel J. Taylor in Nebi Yunus, Mosul, 1830 AD (Unprovenanced)

Current location

British Museum # 91032

Bible names

Hezekiah, Sennacherib, Egypt, Ekron, Timnah, Ashkelon, Gaza, Tyre, Sidon, Acco, Byblos (Gebalites), Moab, Edom

Bible texts

2 Kings 18:13-19:37; Isaiah 36-37

Historic events

Sennacherib attacks Hezekiah in Jerusalem in 701 BC. Hezekiah’s alliance with Tirhakah, king of Egypt.


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Digging up Bible stories!

“On my third campaign (701 BC), I marched to the land of Hatti. Fear of my lordly brilliance overwhelmed … As for Hezekiah, I confined him inside the city Jerusalem, his royal city, like a bird in a cage. I set up blockades against him and (iii 30) made him dread exiting his city gate. I detached from his land the cities of his that I had plundered (Lines iii 27b-37a)


“What you read in the book you find in the ground”



1.          Importance of the Taylor Prism: “What you read in the book you find in the ground!”

a.             The annals record 8 annual campaigns of Sennacherib, but the third campaign records the conquest Canaan and the siege of Jerusalem in 701 BC where Hezekiah “confined inside the city Jerusalem, his royal city, like a bird in a cage.”

b.             The Prism also records the allegiance between Egypt and Judah in a failed attempt to defeat Sennacherib.

c.              The Prism mentions many bible names and places including: Hezekiah, Sennacherib, Egypt, Ekron, Timnah, Ashkelon, Gaza, Tyre, Sidon, Acco, Byblos (Gebalites), Moab, Edom.

d.             All these stunning details on the Taylor Prism are also recorded in scripture: 2 Kings 18:13-19:37; Isaiah 36-37

e.             "In 701 b.c., when Sennacherib punished Hezekiah for rebellion, Aiarammu of Edom, together with the kings of Moab, Beth-Ammon, Ashdod, Byblos, Arvad, Sidon, and Samsimuruna, hastened to bring tribute (ANET, 287)." (ABD, Edom)

2.          The Taylor Prism is one of several copies of the annals of the campaigns of Sennacherib. The original is the Taylor Prism and copy was made called the Chicago Prism.

3.          Sources:

a.             D. D. Luckenbill, The Annals of Sennacherib. Translation: ibid., and Luckenbill, AR, II, §§233 ff., col. ii 37–iii 49, 1924 AD

b.             The Royal inscriptions of Sennacherib. Neo-Assyrian period Vol. 3/1, A. Kirk Grayson, #22, p167, 2012 AD


I. Chronology of Hezekiah, Manasseh, Josiah, Tirhakah, Sennacherib, Esarhaddon, Ashurbanipal:

1.         701 BC: Chicago/Taylor Prisms of Sennacherib described the alliance of Hezekiah with Pharaoh Tirhakah to defend against Sennacherib’s (704-681 BC) siege of Jerusalem in Hezekiah 14th regnal year. The Chicago Prism/Taylor Prisms recorded that Hezekiah was like a “bird in a cage”. Tirhakah was only king of Upper Egypt (Kush/Ethiopia) and did not become Pharaoh of both Upper and Lower Egypt until 690 BC.

a.         See: Chicago/Taylor Prisms of Sennacherib (689/691 BC) described the alliance of Hezekiah with Pharaoh Tirhakah in repelling the attack of Sennacherib’s siege of Jerusalem in 701 BC.

b.        “This, in turn, settles another old problem. In 701, during his Palestinian campaign, Sennacherib is said to have had to watch out for "Tirhaqa, king of Kush" (2 Kings 19:9; Isaiah 37:9). Kush, may I emphasize, NOT Egypt! Which is how almost all commentators have stubbornly misunderstood it (myself included). In 701, Shebitku ruled Egypt, and Taharqa was his Nubian lieutenant, precisely as Shebitku himself had been for Shabako. There was thus a clear, practical Kushite policy for ruling their vast twin realm effectively - and that twice over, on Assyrian and West-Semitic data that are together consistent.” (The strengths and weaknesses of Egyptian chronology — A Reconsideration, Kenneth A. Kitchen, Egypt and the Levant, Vol. 16, p294, 2006 AD)

c.         “A Serapeum stela linking Psammetichus I to Taharqa and other dated sources yield 690 BC as the latter’s [Taharqa] year 1. Dated documents of Taharqa’s predecessor Shebitku are few, but according to the Tang-i Var inscription, regnal year 1 of Shebitku corresponded to 706 BC at the latest. His predecessor Shabaka ruled at least into a year 15; at the beginning of his reign, he defeated Bocchoris of Memphis. Using dead reckoning 723/22 BC is the latest possible date for year 6 of Bocchoris.” (Ancient Egyptian Chronology, Erik Hornung, Rolf Krauss, and David A. Warburton, p473, 2006 AD)

2.         685 BC: Manasseh executed Isaiah the prophet by sawing him into two in a tree trunk: Heb 11:37

a.         This was recorded in Hebrews: "They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were tempted, they were put to death with the sword; they went about in sheepskins, in goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, ill-treated" (Hebrews 11:37)

b.        “And they seized Isaiah the son of Amoz and sawed him in half with a wood saw. 12 And Manasseh, and Belkira, and the false prophets, and the princes, and the people, and all stood by looking on. 13 And to the prophets who (were) with him he said before he was sawed in half, “Go to the district of Tyre and Sidon, because for me alone the LORD has mixed the cup.” 14 And while Isaiah was being sawed in half, he did not cry out, or weep, but his mouth spoke with the Holy Spirit until he was sawed in two. 15 Beliar did this to Isaiah through Belkira and through Manasseh, for Sammael was very angry with Isaiah from the days of Hezekiah, king of Judah, because of the things which he had seen concerning the Beloved, 16 and because of the destruction of Sammael which he had seen through the LORD, while Hezekiah his father was king. And he did as Satan wished.” (Ascension of Isaiah 5:11-16, 200 BC – 400 AD)

c.         “Because of these visions and prophecies Sammael Satan sawed Isaiah the son of Amoz, the prophet, in half by the hand of Manasseh. 42 And Hezekiah gave all these things to Manasseh in the twenty-sixth year of his reign. 43 But Manasseh did not remember these things, nor place them in his heart, but he became the servant of Satan and was destroyed.” (Ascension of Isaiah 11:41, 200 BC – 400 AD)

d.        “When Manasseh arose, he pursued Isaiah, wanting to kill him. Isaiah fled from him. He escaped to a cedar, which swallowed him up, except for the show fringes of his cloak, which revealed where he was. They came and told him. He said to them, “Go and cut the cedar down.” They cut the cedar down, and blood showed [indicating that Isaiah had been sawed also.] (Jerusalem Talmud Sanh.10:2, III.1.OO–PP, 400 AD)

3.         681 BC: Esarhaddon and his brothers assassinated their father Sennacherib and fight for succession rights for a year. Esarhaddon was victorious and became king then and began a 3-year siege of Sidon.

4.         677 BC: Esarhaddon defeated and beheaded Abdi-Milkuti, the king Sidon and rebuilt Sidon as the “Port of Esarhaddon”.

5.         676 BC: Prism A of Esarhaddon described how 22 vassal kings, including Manasseh of Judah, contributed building materials for the palace of Esarhaddon at Nineveh. See: Prism A of Esarhaddon

6.         673 BC, 5th Adar: Esarhaddon’s failed first campaign against Egypt. Tirhakah and Neco I (673-664 BC) were principles in the successful rebellion.

a.         “The seventh year [of Esarhaddon]: On the fifth day of the month Adar the army of Assyria was defeated in Egypt.” (Assyrian and Babylonian Chronicles, A. Kirk Grayson, Babylonian Chronicle 1.iv.16, p84, 2000 AD)

b.        “ln the winter of 673 B.C., at the end of Esarhaddon's seventh year, the Assyrian army set out to conquer Egypt. The campaign ended in what was probably one of Assyria's worst defeats. A few months later, Esarhaddon went to war against Shubria, a small kingdom at the foot of the Taurus Mountains, east of the upper Tigris and west of Lake Van.” (Esarhaddon, Egypt, and Shubria: Politics and Propaganda, Israel Eph’al, Journal of Cuneiform Studies, vol 57, p99, 2005 AD)

7.         672 BC: Tirhakah’s defeat of Esarhaddon prompted Manasseh, king of Judah, to join with Egypt in rebellion against Assyria.

8.         671 BC, Nisan-Tammuz/Tishri: Victory Stele of Esarhaddon pictured the defeat of Egypt. Esarhaddon defeated Pharaoh Tirhakah at Memphis, but he escaped. Neco I was appointed a vassal Pharaoh at Sais. Esarhaddon appointed new governors of Egypt and deported Tirhakah’s son Usanahuru (crown prince), and Manasseh, king of Judah to Assyria. The Victory Stele of Esarhaddon showed him holding ropes attached to nose rings of Egypt’s crown prince Usanahuru and Manasseh. Notice that the crown of Manasseh (king of Judah) in the victory Stele is the same as the crown of Jehu (king of Israel) in the Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser III in 841 BC.

a.         “Second Chronicles 33:11–16 indicates that he [Manasseh] was taken as a prisoner of war to Babylon, that he genuinely repented there, that God restored him as king, and that he tried to abolish his former pagan practices and to restore proper worship of God alone. Skepticism about this account is not warranted, even though unparalleled in 2 Kings. Surviving Assyrian records twice mention Manasseh, saying that he faithfully provided men to transport timber from Lebanon to Nineveh for the Assyrian king Esar-haddon (681–669 BC) and that he paid tribute to King Ashurbanipal (669–627 BC) after an Assyrian military campaign in Egypt in 667 BC.” (Tyndale Bible dictionary, Manasseh)

9.         669 BC, 10th Marcheshvan: Esarhaddon’s health problems worsened which likely prompted Pharaoh Tirhakah to rebel again against Assyria. This prompted a third attack on Egypt. However, Esarhaddon died in November (10th Marcheshvan) at Harran while marching to Egypt during the third Egyptian campaign. About this time, Manasseh’s penitent prayer to God resulted in him being restored as a vassal king in Judah. It is likely that Manasseh accompanied Esarhaddon’s army as a token of the alliance against Egypt and was finally released at Harran after the king died.

a.         “In 669, tensions in Egypt had flared up. Esarhaddon was en route to invade the country for a third time when he fell ill and died. Because Ashurbanipal was involved in matters closer to home, Taharqa and his supporters took the opportunity to consolidate their autonomy over Egypt. The Kushite pharaoh marched to Memphis, entered the city, and began ridding Egypt of Assyria and its influence, starting with the garrisons stationed there by Esarhaddon. Upon hearing the news, Ashurbanipal dispatched a large army to Egypt. Along the way, numerous western vassals paid tribute and sent troops and equipment (including boats) to aid in the fight. Assyrian and Egyptian forces clashed at the city Kar-Banitu. Assyria won the day and, when news of this reached Memphis, Taharqa and his supporters fled to Thebes and then further south, beyond the reach of Ashurbanipal's army. The Assyrians once again occupied Memphis and dealt appropriately with anti-Assyrian conspirators. Afterwards, some of the local rulers who had supported or conspired with Taharqa, Necho and sarru-lu-dari in particular, were taken to Assyria. In the Assyrian capital, Ashurbanipal made Necho swear a new oath of fealty before he was permitted to return to his post. When the exiled Taharqa died [664 BC], his nephew Tanutamon, the son of Shabako, proclaimed himself pharaoh, secured Thebes and Heliopolis, and marched to Memphis. When news of the attack reached Nineveh, Ashurbanipal dispatched his army to Memphis. As soon as the Assyrians set foot on Egyptian soil, Tanutamon is reported to have fled south, first to Thebes, then to Kipkipi. The former city, a bustling metropolis and major religious center, was captured and plundered; in addition to an abundance of gold and silver, two metal obelisks were sent to Nineveh as part of the vast spoils of war. Psammetichus I (Nabu-sezibanni) was installed as ruler in Sais and Memphis; Tanutamon, however, remained the ruler of Kush and ruled from the south. After the sack of Thebes, Assyrian sources are silent on events in Egypt, apart from the fact that at some point Psammetichus had severed ties with Assyria and that the Lydian king Gyges had sent him troops.” (The Royal Inscriptions of Ashurbanipal (668-631 BC), Part I, Jamie Novotny, Joshua Jeffers, p17, 2018 AD)

10.     667 BC Prism A (Rassam) and Prism C of Ashurbanipal: Vassal Pharaoh Necho I (Neco) rebelled, triggering Ashurbanipal’s first campaign against Egypt in an alliance of 22 kings, including Manasseh king of Judah, resulted in the defeat of Pharaoh Tirhakah first at Memphis, then at Thebes. Tirhakah escaped and fled south into Nubia. Ashurbanipal reappointed Necho I and others as vassal rulers. Manasseh founded a Jewish military outpost at Elephantine in 667 BC as a function of his alliance with Ashurbanipal in defeating Tirhakah. In 536-526 BC, the Jews built a temple at Elephantine within ten years of the decree of Cyrus in 536 BC that predated Ezra’s Jerusalem temple by at least 10 years (515 BC). Heroditus (Hist. 2.29.2–30.5) noted a military outpost in the days of Psammetichus I and the Aramaic Elephantine Papyri remarked that when Cambyses, the king of Persian who succeeded Cyrus the Great, conquered Egypt in 525 BC, that he saw the Jewish temple standing at Elephantine. The Hebrew sacrifice of rams in their Elephantine temple was an open point of conflict with the Egyptians who worshipped the ram god Khnum at their nearby temple. The “Razing of Temple and Petition for Aid” Elephantine Papyri dated to 410 BC and indicates that it was these Egyptian priests who burned the Hebrew Temple.

11.     664 BC: Ashurbanipal’s second campaign against Egypt. After Tirhakah died in exile, his nephew, Tanutamon, recaptured Memphis and Thebes, killing Neco I. Psammetichus I (Psamtik I), the son of Neco I, fled to Assyria. Assyrian armies of Ashurbanipal and the armies of Psamtik I join forces and travel from Assyria to attack Egypt. When Ashurbanipal defeated Tanutamon at Memphis he fled south Thebes, then further south to Kipkipi where he continued to rule until being defeated by Psamtik I (Psammetichus I) in 656 BC. In 664 BC, Ashurbanipal appointed Psammetichus I as vassal Pharaoh at Sais (located 60 km south of Rosetta on the Canopic Branch of the Nile Delta) and Memphis. See the Prism A (Rassam) and Prism C of Ashurbanipal

12.     664-656 BC: Manasseh and Gyges sent troops to Psamtik I to help defeat Nubia. Psamtik I and Manasseh form an alliance and rebel against Assyria which is growing weaker with the rising Babylonian empire.

a.         Manasseh declared independence from Ashurbanipal and helped Psamtik I (Psammetichus I) defeat Nubia by sending troops. See: Letter of Aristeas 13, 250 BC. Gyges, king of Lydia sent troops to Psamtik I in assistance see  Prism A (Rassam) and Prism C of Ashurbanipal.

b.        “Already in earlier times as well a fair number had entered the country with the Persian, and before them other confederate troops (i.e of Manasseh) had been dispatched to fight with Psammitichus against the king of the Ethiopians, but they were not so many in number as those brought over by Ptolemy the son of Lagos.” (Letter of Aristeas 13, 250 BC)

c.         “664-663 BC: Gyges contacts Assyria; somewhat after that, a Cimmerian invasion of Lydia is defeated. 662-658 BC: Gyges sends mercenaries to Psammetichus [I]; Sais begins to expand in the Delta. 657 BC: Second wave of Cimmerians attack Lydia; last year of the Kushite domination of Thebes; Psammetichus rules over the entire Delta. 656 BC: Egypt unified under Sais.” (Date of the Death of Gyges and Its Historical Implications, Anthony J. Spalinger, Journal of the American Oriental Society, vol 98, no. 4, p405, 1978 AD)

13.     650 BC: Elephantine expanded by Manasseh. Although Elephantine was founded by Manasseh in 667 BC as a military outpost when he sent troops to help defend against Ashurbanipal I (Assyria), it was greatly expanded by Manasseh in 655 BC when Manasseh joined Pharaoh Psammetichus I and Gyges, king of Lydia where Nubia was defeated, and Egypt and Judea declared independence from Assyria.

14.     642 BC: Manasseh died, and Amon became king of Judah (642-640 BC).

15.     641 BC: Psammetichus I begins the 29-year siege of Ashdod which fell around 612 BC. 

16.     640 BC: Amon died, and Josiah became king of Judah 640-609 BC. Josiah vacillated between alliances with Egypt and Assyria:

a.       "Also the men of Memphis and Tahpanhes Have shaved the crown of your head." (Jeremiah 2:16)

b.       “But now what are you doing on the road to Egypt, To drink the waters of the Nile? Or what are you doing on the road to Assyria, To drink the waters of the Euphrates?" (Jeremiah 2:18)

c.       “Why do you go around so much Changing your way? Also, you will be put to shame by Egypt As you were put to shame by Assyria." (Jeremiah 2:36)

17.     612 BC: Fall of Assyria to Babylonians, and Ashdod is captured by Psamtik I after 29-year siege.

a.         Nabopolassar captured Nineveh in alliance with the Medes.

b.        In 605 BC, Jeremiah noted that Ashdod had recently been destroyed: “remnant of Ashdod” (Jer 25:20)

18.     610 BC: Psamtik I died, and Neco II becomes king who killed Josiah in 609 BC.

19.     609 BC: Neco II killed Josiah and appointed Jehoiakim king and pays tribute.

20.     608 BC: Jehoiakim submits to Nabopolassar in 608 BC when he conquered Neco II in Egypt


II. About the Taylor Prism of Sennacherib

“Two complete hexagonal clay prisms and several fragments of prisms from Nineveh are inscribed with a text describing eight of Sennacherib's military campaigns and the construction of a new armory. This inscription contains material from texts written earlier in the king's reign (especially those written in 694-692) and material composed anew for this text and other inscriptions written in 691 (Sennacherib's 14th regnal year). Like text no. 18 and text no. 23, the military narration of this edition of Sennacherib's res gestae includes accounts of eight campaigns: (1) against Marduk-apla-iddina II (biblical Merodach-baladan: Isaiah 39:1) and his Chaldean and Elamite allies in Babylonia; (2) against the Kassites and Yasubigallians, and the land Ellipi; (3) to the Levant, against an Egyptian-led coalition that had been organized by the nobles and citizens of the city Ekron, and against the Judean king Hezekiah; (4) against Bit-Yakin; (5) to Mount Nipur and against Maniye, the king of the city Ukku; (6) against the Chaldeans living in Elam and against Suzubu (Nergal-Usezib), the king of Babylon; (7) against Elam; and (8) the battle of Halule, where Assyrian forces battled Babylonian and Elamite forces led by Suzubu (Musezib-Marduk), the king of Babylon, and Ummban-menanu (Humban-menanu), the king of Elam. Accounts of the events of the king's 9th and 10th regnal years (696 and 695), the campaigns undertaken by his officials to Hilakku (Cilicia) and the city Til-Garimme, however, are not included among the king's victories on the battlefield. In the building report, Sennacherib says that after he had completed the "Palace Without a Rival" (the South-West Palace) he started work on an armory, which he refers to as the ekal kutalli (the "Rear Palace"). He tore down the former palace, which he complains was too small, poorly constructed, and dilapidated. On a high terrace built upon a new plot of land (the Nineveh mound now called Nebi Yunus), Sennacherib constructed a new palace consisting of two wings, one in the Syrian style and one in the Assyrian style, and a large outer courtyard. He decorated the building in a fitting fashion, which included large limestone bull colossi stationed in its gateways. The two complete exemplars preserve a date. One (ex. 2) was inscribed in the eponymy of Bel-emuranni, governor of the city Carchemish (691), and the other (ex. 1) was inscribed in the eponymy of Gahilu, governor of the city Hatarikka (689). The inscription is commonly referred to as the "Chicago Prism" or "Taylor Prism" (or "Taylor Cylinder" in earlier literature). Ex. 1 is named after the city in which it now resides (Chicago, in the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago); ex. 2 is named alter Col. J. Taylor, who first acquired the object. The text has also been wrongly called by B.B. Luckenbill (and other scholars) the "Final Edition of the Annals."” (The Royal inscriptions of Sennacherib. Neo-Assyrian period Vol. 3/1, A. Kirk Grayson, #22, p167, 2012 AD)


III. Translations of the Taylor Prism

A. Translation #1 by Kirk Grayson in 2012 AD of the 3rd campaign:

1.       (Lines ii 37-46) On my third campaign (701 BC), I marched to the land of Hatti. Fear of my lordly brilliance overwhelmed Luli, the king of the city Sidon, and (ii 40) he Tfled afar into the midst of the sea and disappeared. The awesome terror of the weapon of the god Assur, my lord, overwhelmed the cities Great Sidon, Lesser Sidon, Bit-Zitti, Sarepta, Mahalliba Usu, Akzibu, (and) Acco, his fortified cities (and) fortresses, an area of pasture(s) (ii 45) and water-place(s), resources upon which he relied, and they bowed down at my feet.

2.       (Lines ii 47-49) I placed Tu-Ba'lu on the royal throne over them and imposed upon him tribute (and) payment (in recognition) of my overlordship (to be delivered) yearly (and) without interruption.

3.       (Lines ii 50-60a) As for Min(u)himmu of the city Samsimuruna, Tu-Ba'lu of the city Sidon, Abdi-Li'ti of the city Arwad, Uru-Milki of the city Byblos, Mitinti of the city Ashdod, (ii 55) Bacilli of the land Bit-Ammon, Kammasu-nadbi of the land Moab, Aya-ramu of the land Edom, all of the kings of the land Amurru, they brought extensive gifts, four times (the normal amount), as their substantial audience gift before me and kissed my feet.

4.       (Lines ii 60b-64) Moreover, (as for) Sidqa, the king of the city Ashkelon who had not bowed down to my yoke, I forcibly removed the gods of his father's house, himself, his wife, his sons, his daughters, his brothers, (and other) offspring of his father's house and took him to Assyria.

5.       (Lines ii 65-68a) I set Sarru-lu-dari, son of Rukibtu, their former king, over the people of the city Ashkelon and imposed upon him the payment of tribute (and) gifts (in recognition) of my overlordship so that he (now) pulls my yoke.

6.       (Lines ii 68b-72) In the course of my campaign, I surrounded, conquered, (and) plundered the cities Bit-Daganna, Joppa, (ii 70) Banayabarqa, (and) Azuru, the cities of Sidqa that had not submitted to me quickly.

7.       (Lines ii 73-81) (As for) the governors, the nobles, and the people of the city Ekron who had thrown Padi, their king who was bound by treaty and oaths (ii 75) to Assyria, into iron fetters and who had handed him over to Hezekiah of the land Judah in a hostile manner, they became frightened on account of the villainous acts they had committed. They formed a confederation with the kings (Tirhakah) of Egypt (and) the archers, chariots, (and) horses (ii 80) of the king of the land Meluhha, forces without number, and they came to their aid.

8.       (Lines ii 82-iii 6a) In the plain of the city Eltekeh, they sharpened their weapons while drawing up in battleline before me. (iii 1) With the support of the god Assur, my lord, I fought with them and defeated them. In the thick of battle, I captured alive the Egyptian charioteers and princes (lit. "the sons of the king"), together with the charioteers of the king of the land Meluhha.

9.       (Lines iii 6b-14a) I surrounded, conquered, (and) plundered the cities Eltekeh (and) Tamna (Timnah). I approached the city Ekron and I killed the governors (and) nobles who had committed crime(s) and (iii 10) hung their corpses on towers around the city; I counted the citizens who had committed the criminal acts as booty; (and) I commanded that the rest of them, (those) who were not guilty of crimes or wrongdoing, (to) whom no penalty was due, be allowed to go free.

10.   (Lines iii 14b-17) I brought out Padi, their king, from the city Jerusalem and placed (him) on the lordly throne over them, then I imposed upon him payment (in recognition) of my overlordship.

11.   (Lines iii 18-27a) Moreover, (as for) Hezekiah of the land Judah, who had not submitted to my yoke, I surrounded (and) conquered forty-six of his fortified cities, (iii 20) fortresses, and small(er) settlements in their environs, which were without number, by having ramps trodden down and battering rams brought up, the assault of foot soldiers, sapping, breaching, and siege engines. I brought out of them 200,150 people, young (and) old, male and female, (iii 25) horses, mules, donkeys, camels, oxen, and sheep and goats, which were without number, and I counted (them) as booty.

12.   (Lines iii 27b-37a) As for him (Hezekiah), I confined him inside the city Jerusalem, his royal city, like a bird in a cage. I set up blockades against him and (iii 30) made him dread exiting his city gate. I detached from his land the cities of his that I had plundered and I gave (them) to Mitinti, the king of the city Ashdod, Padi, the king of the city Ekron, and the king of the city Gaza, and (thereby) made his land smaller. (iii 35) To the former tribute, their annual giving, I added the payment (of) gifts (in recognition) of my overlordship and imposed (it) upon them (text: "him").

13.   (Lines iii 37b-49) As for him, Hezekiah, fear of my lordly brilliance overwhelmed him and, after my (departure), he had the auxiliary forces and his elite troops whom (iii 40) he had brought inside to strengthen the city Jerusalem, his royal city, and who had provided support, along with 30 talents of gold, 800 talents of silver, choice antimony, large blocks of ..., ivory beds, armchairs of ivory, elephant hide(s), elephant ivory, (iii 45) ebony, boxwood, every kind of valuable treasure, as well as his daughters, his palace women, male singers, (and) female singers brought into Nineveh, my capital city, and he sent a mounted messenger of his to me to deliver (this) payment and to do obeisance.” (The Royal inscriptions of Sennacherib. Neo-Assyrian period Vol. 3/1, A. Kirk Grayson, #22, p175-177, 2012 AD)


B. Translation #2 by D. D. Luckenbill in 1924 AD:

"In my third campaign (701 BC) I marched against Hatti. Luli, king of Sidon, whom the terror-inspiring glamor of my lordship had overwhelmed, fled far overseas and perished. … I besieged Abdili’ti from Arvad, Urumilki from Byblos, Mitinti from Ashdod, Buduili from Beth-Ammon, Kammusun-adbi from Moab (and) Aiarammu from Edom, they brought sumptuous gifts (igisû) and—fourfold—their heavy tâmartu -presents to me and kissed my feet. Sidqia, however, the king of Ashkelon, who did not bow to my yoke, I deported and sent to Assyria… Joppa, Ekron … and had handed him over to Hezekiah, the Jew (Ha-za-qi-(i)a-ú amelIa-ú-da-ai)—(and) he (Hezekiah) held him in prison, … Timnah (Ta-am-na-a), … Ekron and killed the officials and hung their bodies on poles surrounding the city. … I made Padi, their king, come from Jerusalem (Ur-sa-li-im-mu) and set him as their lord on the throne, imposing upon him the tribute (due) to me (as) overlord. As to Hezekiah, the Jew, he did not submit to my yoke, I laid siege to 46 of his strong cities, walled forts and to the countless small villages in their vicinity, and conquered (them) by means of well-stamped (earth-) ramps, and battering-rams brought (thus) near (to the walls) (combined with) the attack by foot soldiers, (using) mines, breeches as well as sapper work. I drove out (of them) 200,150 people, young and old, male and female, horses, mules, donkeys, camels, big and small cattle beyond counting, and considered (them) booty. Himself I made a prisoner in Jerusalem, his royal residence, like a bird in a cage. I surrounded him with earthwork in order to molest those who were leaving his city’s gate. His towns which I had plundered, I took away from his country and gave them (over) to Mitinti, king of Ashdod, Padi, king of Ekron, and Sillibel, king of Gaza. Thus I reduced his country, but I still increased the tribute and the katrû-presents (due) to me (as his) overlord which I imposed (later) upon him beyond the former tribute, to be delivered annually. Hezekiah himself, whom the terror-inspiring splendor of my lordship had overwhelmed and whose irregular and elite troops which he had brought into Jerusalem, his royal residence, in order to strengthen (it), had deserted him, did send me, later, to Nineveh, my lordly city, together with 30 talents of gold, 800 talents of silver, precious stones, antimony,5 large cuts of red stone, couches (inlaid) with ivory, nîmedu -chairs (inlaid) with ivory, elephant-hides, ebony-wood, boxwood (and) all kinds of valuable treasures, his (own) daughters, concubines, male and female musicians. In order to deliver the tribute and to do obeisance as a slave he sent his (personal) messenger." (D. D. Luckenbill, The Annals of Sennacherib. Translation: Luckenbill, AR, II, §§233 ff., col. ii 37–iii 49, 1924 AD)



1.       The Taylor Prism and its copy, the Chicago Prism are stunning a confirmation that the Bible is a reliable record of true historical events.

2.       What you read in the book you find in the ground! Find me a church to attend in my hometown this Sunday!


By Steve Rudd: Contact the author for comments, input or corrections.


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