[b-hebrew] Daniel

Shoshanna Walker rosewalk at concentric.net
Sun Sep 3 23:02:08 EDT 2006

Dear Harold:

 From my sources (Artscroll, Judaica Press, Rashi, etc.)

The beginning of Achashverosh's reign was 3393.

Achashverosh was the successor to Cyrus, toward the end of the 70 
years of the Babylonian Exile (4 Century BCE) - Rashi.

Ibn Ezra also says that Achashverosh reigned after Cyrus during the 
time of the Second Temple, but the Temple was still not built during 
his reign, as is related in the book of Ezra (4:6).  Ibn Ezra 
identifies Achashverosh with Artaxerxes, during whose reign the 
construction of the Temple was suspended.  This follows the view of 
the Sages, that this Achashverosh was the second monarch over the 
united Persian Empire (ie; from the time that Persia united with 
Media, which is from the death of Darius the Mede, who also reigned 
over the Babylonian Empire).  According to them, the first king was 
Cyrus, who sanctioned the rebuilding of the Second Temple, and he was 
succeeded by this Achashverosh, who suspended its construction.

Ibn Ezra also conjectures that there was another Achashverosh among 
the ancient kings of Persia who also reigned over Persia and Media. 
However, he did not reign over other countries as did Achashverosh 
II, the main character of the Book of Esther.  Therefore Scripture 
states:  He was the Achashverosh who reigned, etc., one hundred 
twenty-seven provinces.

The dates I have are from the creation of the world, year 1.  We are 
now in the year 5766, so you can subtract.

Dear Shoshanna,

>The dates I have are from the creation of the world:
>Nevuchadnezar led the Jews into exile in three stages over an 18 year
>period (3320, 3327, 3338).  Among the exiles were Ezekiel, Daniel,
>In 3390 Cyrus granted the Jews permission to return to Israel and
>re-establish the Temple.
>Esther was chosen queen in 3400.  During Pesach 3404 she appeared
>before the king to plead to nullify Haman's decree.  On 13-14 Adar,
>3405, the miracle became a reality.
>In 3407 Achashverosh was succeeded by his son, Darius II.  In 3408,
>Darius authorized the completion of the second temple.  It was
>completed in 3412.
>I meant to say that Mordechai was already an old man during the
>events of Purim.

HH: Here is material from an article on Mordecai in the International
Standard Bible Encyclopedia:

The date of the story [of Esther] hinges on the identification of
Ahasuerus, since no other person mentioned is known from extrabiblical
documents. Few today doubt that Ahasuerus is to be identified with
Xerxes I, 486-465 B.C., although the matter is complicated somewhat by
the consistent LXX rendering Artaxerxes. A fact favoring the
identification with Xerxes I is that his Greek campaign can explain the
chronological gap of four years between 1:3 and 2:16.

Harold Holmyard
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