I know most of you already understand this but I was hoping this might make sense to others.
Babylonian Chronology from the Watchtowers & Insight Book
W68 8/15 The Book of Truthful Historical Dates: THE ABSOLUTE DATE OF 539 B.C.E.
12 One such fixed or absolute date is in connection with the events recorded in the fifth chapter of Daniel, verses one to thirty-one. That was concerning the time when the Medes and Persians under Cyrus the Great broke up Belshazzar’s notorious carousal, captured the city of
13 The fixing of 539 B.C.E. as the year when this historical event occurred is based on a stone document known as the Nabonidus (Nabunaid) Chronicle . This important find was discovered in ruins near the city of in 1879, and it is now preserved in the .
Insight Vol.2 p.457 Nabonidus
NABONIDUS (Nab·o·ni´dus) [from Babylonian meaning “Nebo [a Babylonian god] Is Exalted”].
Last supreme monarch of the Babylonian Empire; father of Belshazzar. On the basis of cuneiform texts he is believed to have ruled some 17 years (556-539 B.C.E.). He was given to literature, art, and religion.
In his own inscriptions Nabonidus claims to be of noble descent. A tablet found near ancient gives evidence that Nabonidus’ mother or grandmother was a devotee of the moon-god Sin. (Ancient Near Eastern Texts, edited by J. Pritchard, 1974, pp. 311, 312) As king, Nabonidus showed great devotion to the worship of the moon-god, both at and at , where this god occupied a dominant position.—PICTURE, Vol. 2, p. 324.
Nabonidus’ ascension to the throne followed the assassination of Labashi-Marduk. Yet, the fact that in one of his inscriptions Nabonidus refers to himself as the “mighty delegate” of Nebuchadnezzar and Neriglissar indicates that he claimed that he gained the throne by legitimate means and was not a usurper
Watchtower 1968 August 15 pp.491-492
16 “Nabunaid (Nabonidus) shared the kingship with his own oldest son Belshazzar. Belshazzar is named as the crown prince in Babylonian inscriptions. . . . Since, therefore, Belshazzar actually exercised the coregency at and may well have continued to do so unto the end, the book of Daniel (5:30) is not wrong in representing him as the last king of . In the seventeenth year of King Nabunaid, fell to Cyrus the Persian. The Nabunaid chronicle gives exact dates. In the month of Tashritu on the fourteenth day, October 10, 539 B.C., the Persian forces took ; on the sixteenth day, October 12, ‘the army of Cyrus entered without battle’; and in the month of Arahsamnu, on the third day, October 29, Cyrus himself came into the city.”
Watchtower 1965 January 1 p.29 The Rejoicing of the Wicked Is Short-lived:
Evil-merodach reigned two years and was murdered by his brother-in-law Neriglissar, who reigned for four years, which time he spent mainly in building operations. His underage son Labashi-Marduk, a vicious boy, succeeded him, and was assassinated within nine months. Nabonidus, who had served as governor of and who had been Nebuchadnezzar’s favorite son-in-law, took the throne and had a fairly glorious reign until fell in 539 B.C.E. He devoted his time to literature, art and religion. He is reported to have been the son of a priestess of the moon at Harran (), which fact had endeared him to Nebuchadnezzar. Says The Encyclopedia Americana, Volume 2, page 441
Insight Volume 1 p.453 Chronology
For Awil-Marduk (Evil-merodach, 2Ki 25:27, 28), tablets dated up to his second year of rule have been found. For Neriglissar, considered to be the successor of Awil-Marduk, contract tablets are known dated to his fourth year.
A Babylonian clay tablet is helpful for connecting Babylonian chronology with Biblical chronology. This tablet contains the following astronomical information for the seventh year of Cambyses II son of Cyrus II: “Year 7, Tammuz, night of the 14th, 1 2/3 double hours [three hours and twenty minutes] after night came, a lunar eclipse; visible in its full course; it reached over the northern half disc [of the moon]. Tebet, night of the 14th, two and a half double hours [five hours] at night before morning [in the latter part of the night], the disc of the moon was eclipsed; the whole course visible; over the southern and northern part the eclipse reached.” (Inschriften von Cambyses, König von Babylon, by J. N. Strassmaier, Leipzig, 1890, No. 400, lines 45-48; Sternkunde und Sterndienst in Babel, by F. X. Kugler, Münster, 1907, Vol. I, pp. 70, 71) These two lunar eclipses can evidently be identified with the lunar eclipses that were visible at Babylon on July 16, 523 B.C.E., and on January 10, 522 B.C.E. (Oppolzer’s Canon of Eclipses, translated by O. Gingerich, 1962, p. 335) Thus, this tablet establishes the seventh year of Cambyses II as beginning in the spring of 523 B.C.E. This is an astronomically confirmed date.
Insight Volume 1 pp.238-239 :
One cuneiform tablet has been found referring to a campaign against in Nebuchadnezzar’s 37th year (588 B.C.E.). This may be the occasion when mighty Egypt was brought under Babylonian control, as foretold by the prophet Ezekiel evidently in the year 591 B.C.E. (Eze 29:17-19) Finally, after a 43-year reign, which included both conquest of many nations and a grand building program in Babylonia itself, Nebuchadnezzar II died in October of 582 B.C.E. and was succeeded by Awil-Marduk (Evil-merodach). This new ruler showed kindness to captive King Jehoiachin. (2Ki 25:27-30) Little is known about the reigns of Neriglissar, evidently the successor of Evil-merodach, and of Labashi-Marduk
Insight Volume 2 pp. 480 NEBUCHADNEZZAR:
Finally, in 607 B.C.E., on Tammuz (June-July) 9 in the 11th year of Zedekiah’s reign (Nebuchadnezzar’s 19th year if counting from his accession year or his 18th regnal year), a breach was made in ’s wall
There Years as the articles mention:
Nabonidus: (17 Years)
(Insight Vol.2 p.457 & 458)
Labashi-Marduk: (9 Months) Succeeded by Nabonidus
(Insight Vol.2 p.458 Nabonidus; Watchtower 1965 January 1 p.29)
Neriglissar: (4 Years) Succeeded by Labashi-Marduk
(Insight Volume 1 p.453 Chronology; Watchtower 1965 January 1 p.29)
Awil-Marduk (Evil-merodach): (2 Years) Succeeded by Neriglissar
(Insight Volume 1 p.453 Chronolog; Watchtower 1965 January 1 p.29)
Nebuchadnezzar: (43 Years) Succeeded by Awil-Marduk (Evil-merodach)
(Insight Volume 1 pp.238-239 )
Working your way back through time from the Articles Mentioned:
Fall of : 539 BCE
(W68 8/15 The Book of Truthful Historical Dates)
Nabonidus: 539 BCE—556 BCE (17 Years)
Labashi-Marduk: 556 BCE (9 Months)
Neriglissar: 556 BCE—560 BCE (4 Years)
Evil-merodach: 560 BCE—562 BCE (2 Years)
Nebuchadnezzar: 562 BCE—604/605 BCE (43 Years)
Nebuchadnezzar’s 18 regnal year is the Destruction Of (605/604 -18) =587586 BCE
(Insight Volume 2 pp. 480 NEBUCHADNEZZAR—18 th regnal year)