Anything written by Org. that has Nabonidus' years of rule.

by ellderwho 31 Replies latest watchtower bible

  • ellderwho

    Been studying this for a while I think this is a good leverage point if theirs anything written.

    Ive checked usual spots GTR, babylon the great, Insight, any help much appreciated.

  • cruzanheart

    I looked him up in the old "Aid" book, and it says:

    On the basis of cuneiform texts he is believed to have ruled some seventeen years (556-539 B.C.E.).


  • scholar


    Yes, accurate and reliable chronology gives the reign of Nabonidus from 556-539 BCE of some seventeen years. Interestlingly, Carl Jonsson in his GTR, 1998, p.91, ftn.1. gives a reign of 16 years from 555-539 BCE.


    BA MA Studies in Religion

  • ellderwho

    Thank you both,

    In Babylon the great has fallen, Im trying to reconcile the years given as Nebs rule begins in 624 followed by evil-merodach 2yrs,neriglassar 4 yrs, labashi-marduk 9mon, now 17 years for Nabonidus according to The WTBS. 624-43=582-2=580-4=576-9mon=575-17=559/558 Thanks again,


  • City Fan
    City Fan


    or you can backtrack from 539 BCE using the lengths of reigns given by the society to get to 604 BCE for Nebuchadnezzar's first year. There was an excellent thread by Alleymom a while back on this subject.

  • ellderwho


    my point, if you back track the years given by the society you can not reach 624 the year society gives as the starting year for King Neb.


  • Alleymom

    Elderwho --

    Yes, that is the point I made recently in the first two messages of

    I included quotes from WT literature for the lengths of reigns of all the neo-Babylonian kings. If you start with the WT's favorite date of 539 and count backwards through all the kings, you do NOT arrive at 607 for the fall of Jerusalem. See the first two messages of the thread, I explained it in more detail.

    *** w68 8/15 p. 491 The Book of Truthful Historical Dates *** 17 Other investigators say this: "The Nabunaid Chronicle . . . states that Sippar fell to Persian forces VII/14/17* (Oct. 10, 539), that Babylon fell VII/16/17 (Oct. 12), and that Cyrus entered Babylon VIII/3/17 (Oct. 29). This fixes the end of Nabunaid’s reign and the beginning of the reign of Cyrus. Interestingly enough, the last tablet dated to Nabunaid from Uruk is dated the day after Babylon fell to Cyrus. News of its capture had not yet reached the southern city some 125 miles distant."—Brown University Studies, Vol. XIX, Babylonian Chronology 626 B.C.—A.D. 75, Parker and Dubberstein, 1956, p. 13. Footnote" VII/14/17 ": The 7th Hebrew month Tishri, 14th day, 17th year of Nabonidus’ reign.


  • ellderwho

    Thanks Alleymom,


    would love to elaborate, no time, leaving for the shore, I have to hurry the wife will have a fit if Im posting with everything to do still, I guess Im hooked here(addicted)

    talk ina week


  • Alleymom

    Scholar ---

    What do you think of the information in the 1/1/1965 WT? It says Evil-merodach reigned 2 years, Neriglissar reigned 4 years, and Labashi-Marduk was assassinated within 9 months. Is the information in that article trustworthy, in your opinion?

    Marjorie Alley

  • Alleymom
    Scholar said: Interestlingly, Carl Jonsson in his GTR, 1998, p.91, ftn.1. gives a reign of 16 years from 555-539 BCE.

    Scholar --

    You have made a mistake and I hope you will retract it.

    Carl Olof Jonsson does NOT say that Nabonidus reigned only 16 years. Throughout his book The Gentile Times Reconsidered, he says over and over again that Nabonidus reigned 17 years. There is not one place in the entire book where he says Nabonidus reigned "16" or "sixteen" years. You made that up yourself by taking two of his numbers and subtracting them, without understanding whether COJ was using inclusive or exclusive reckoning. You then attributed the results of your own erroneous calculation to COJ and put words in his mouth.

    First of all, please note that you made an error in your citation. You refer to footnote 1 on page 91. That is a mistake. The footnote is on page 90.

    Next, please note that COJ did NOT say anything at all about Nabonidus reigning "16" or "sixteen" years. That is your own INTERPRETATION of his numbers. You are putting words into his mouth AND you are ignoring the numerous other instances in the book where he says very clearly that Nabonidus reigned 17 years.

    Let us look at the exact wording of the footnote:

    The term "neo-Babylonian" usually refers to the period that began with the reign of Nabopolassar (dated to 625-605 B.C.E.) and ended with Nabonidus (555 - 539 B.C.E.).

    Scholar, do you see the number "16" anywhere? No!

    You calculated 555 - 539 = 16 and decided that means Nabonidus reigned 16 years. It SEEMS right, doesn't it? Likewise, you could take the first two numbers in the footnote and calculate 625-605 = 20, and say Nabopolassar reigned 20 years. But that would be wrong.

    Why? Bear with me for a minute, and let's work this through step by step.

    First, please turn to page 121 in the 1998 edition of Carl Olof Jonsson's The Gentile Times Reconsidered. Look at Table 4, which gives "The Neo-Babylonian Chronology According to the Economic-Administrative and Legal Documents."

    Let's look at the kings, the lengths of their reigns, and the years of their reigns, as given in Table 4.

    Nabopolassar, 21 years, (625-605 BCE)
    Nebuchadnezzar, 43 years, (604-562 BCE)
    Awel-Marduk, 2 years (561 - 560 BCE)
    Neriglissar, 4 years, (559-556 BCE)
    Labashi-Marduk, 2-3 months (556 BCE)
    Nabonidus, 17 years (555 - 539 BCE)

    Let's repeat the kind of calculation you did when you said that COJ only gives Nabonidus 16 years instead of 17 years.

    Start with Nabopolassar. 625-605 = 20, right? But the table says he reigned 21 years.

    Nebuchadnezzar. 604-562 = 42. But the table says he reigned 43 years.

    Awel-Marduk. 561-560 = 1. But the table says he reigned 2 years.

    Neriglissar. 559-556 = 3 years. But the table says he reigned 4 years.

    Labashi-Marduk. 556. Less than 1 year.

    Nabonidus. 555-539 = 16 years. But the table says 17 years!

    Scholar, do you see that something is wrong? Every single time you subtract the two numbers, you get a result that is off by one year, according to COJ's table. How can that be when, obviously, your arithmetic skills are satisfactory?

    Sometimes the best way to show what numbers mean is to look at a picture or a chart. I suggest that you look at the appendix on pp. 350-351. There is a chart which shows all of the years of Nabonidus's reign. Start with the second chart on p. 350. You will see that the rectangle representing Year 1 of Nabonidus is placed over the rectangle for 555 BCE. Follow along, block by block, through every year of Nabonidus's reign, and you will see that YEAR 17 is placed over the rectangle for 539 BCE.

    I would also suggest that you look at the table I prepared in message #1 of the KISS thread,

    It is essential to understand that the accession year comes BEFORE "year 1". It is as if there is a "year 0". The accession year is part of the reign.

    When people talk about dates and lengths of reign, there can be confusion because of the accession year, the first year, and inclusive reckoning. In order to understand very clearly what anyone is saying, you have to be very sure you understand how they are listing the regnal years. People list the "first year" differently, depending on what they mean by "year 1".

    It is obvious from Table 4 on p. 121 and from the charts in the appendix on pp. 350-351 that you have misunderstood COJ's figures.

    You performed an arithmetic operation, arrived at "16" and then declared that COJ only gives Nabonidus 16 years rather than 17.

    You never bothered to check the rest of the book, which would have revealed your error.

    Anyone who wants to verify that COJ says Nabonidus reigned 17 years should check the following pages, which are listed in the index: 75, 80, 90, 102-104, 110, 119-121, 124, 135-139, 327-329.

    Let me give one quote from the book so that anyone who does not own the book can see that Scholar has misrepresented COJ's position:

    "...the Society correctly dates this battle in 550 B.C.E., thereby indicating Nabonidus' reign of seventeen years to be correct, as is held by all authorities and classical authors." GTR, 1998, p. 104.

    This can all be very confusing, and I can understand how you may have misinterpreted COJ. But since he very clearly and plainly says throughout the book that Nabonidus reigned 17 years, you should have realized you were making an error in your calculations.

    Marjorie Alley

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