Notes & Commentary:
Now, refers to the internal purpose of the author. (St. Gregory, hom 2. in Ezechiel.) (Worthington) Many of the books
begin with And; shewing their connection. This work formed a part of the general history. The building of Ecbatana
likewise took place soon after the destruction of Ninive, mentioned in the preceding book. --- Arphaxad. He was probably
the same as is called Dejoces by Herodotus; to whom he attributes the building of Ecbatana, the capital city of Media;
(Challoner) or rather Arphaxad, more resembles both in name and actions the second king Phraortes or Apharaartas, (Montfaucon
and Houbigant) who fortified and embellished the city. (Calmet) --- Ecbatana, or Agbata, which in Arabic signifies
"variegated;" (Bochart) as the seven walls, rising one higher than another round it, were marked with one white, two black,
three red, four blue, five dark red, six silver, seven gold. (Herodotus i. 98.) (Calmet) See Tobias iii. 7.
Hewed. Greek adds, "three cubits broad and six long." The ancients aimed at solidity in their architecture, as appears
from their ruins. (Calmet) --- High. Salien (the year of the world 3345) thinks there is a transposition, and that
the walls were 70 cubits high. (Menochius) --- What need was there of such a breadth? Greek allows 70 in height, and 50 in
breadth, which seems more proportionate. Old Vulgate has 60 cubits high, and 50 broad. On the walls of Ninive, three chariots
might fight abreast, (Calmet) and six on those of Babylon. (Ctesias.) --- Feet. Projecting from the wall, to remove
an enemy. (Menochius) --- Greek, "and the towers thereof he placed above the gates 100 cubits, and the foundation was 60 cubits
broad. And he made the gates to rise 70 cubits, being 40 cubits in breadth, to send out the armies of his mighty men, and
to draw up his infantry." (Haydock)
Gloried. Fool, this night wilt thou perish, Luke xii. 20. (Worthington)
Nabuchodonosor. Not the king of Babylon, who took and destroyed Jerusalem, but another of the same name, who reigned
in Nivine; and is called by profane historians Saosduchin. He succeeded Asarhaddon in the kingdom of the Assyrians,
and was contemporary with Manasses, king of Juda. (Challoner) --- He might be the same with Asarhaddon, who resided at Ninive
in the 20th year of his reign. After the defeat at Bethulia, the Medes recovered part of their power, under Cyaxares I., who
was succeeded by Astyages and Cyaxares II., with whom Cyrus was associated in the empire. (Xenophon) --- Asarhaddon spent
the latter years of his life at Babylon, of which he had made himself master. (Houbigant) --- The Jews frequently give names
to foreign princes different from those by which they are known in profane history. See Tobias ultra. (Haydock) --- Him.
Greek afterwards (ver. 15) insinuates, that he prevented any from mounting the throne of Media, till this work was written,
"he transfixed him with his darts, and destroyed him till this day." (Houbigant)
Ragau, near Rages. (Tobias i. 16.) (Menochius) --- Syriac, "Dura," mentioned [in] Daniel iii. 1. (Calmet) --- Jadason,
or Mount Jason, above the Caspian gates; (Strabo xi.) unless it may be the city Jassu, in Armenia. Greek has "the Hydaspes,"
a river of India, though Curtius (v.) places it near Susa; confounding it with the Choaspes. --- Elicians. Greek, "Elymeans,"
perhaps the same with Pontus. Hebrew Ellasar, Genesis xiv. 9. Various battles were fought during this war, which the
Greek intimates lasted seven years. (Calmet) --- That version also would represent these and various other nations coming
to meet Nabuchodonosor, who hereupon sent his ambassadors to all in Persia, and westward to Cilicia, &c. As they were
treated contemptuously, he swore that he would revenge himself. But first he attacked Arphaxad, took and sacked Ninive, slew
the king, and then abandoned himself with his army to pleasure in the conquered city, "120 days." (Haydock)
Esdrelon. Syriac, "Jezrael," which is the usual name in Scripture, Josue xvii. 16.
Jesse, or Gessen, where Joseph placed his brethren, Genesis xlvi. 34.
Refused. Greek adds, "and did not come to help him in the war, because they feared him not, (Haydock; supposing
he would have enough to do with Arphaxad) as he was but like their equal, or as one man. (Calmet)
Countries. Those who were subject to him did wrong in refusing aid. But the Jews were under no such obligations; and
God espoused their cause the more, as the king set up for a deity, chap. iii. (Calmet) --- He had at first entertained thoughts
of universal dominion, (Haydock) being elated by his victory, like other conquerors. --- Auferre, trucidare, rapere falsis
nominibus imperium, atque ubi solitudinem faciunt, pacem appellant. (Tacitus, Agric.)
Bible Text & Cross-references:
Nabuchodonosor, king of the Assyrians, overcometh Arphaxad,
king of the Medes.
1 Now Arphaxad, king of the Medes, had brought many nations under his dominion,
and he built a very strong city, which he called Ecbatana,
2 Of stones squared and hewed: he made the walls thereof seventy cubits
broad, and thirty cubits high, and the towers thereof he made a hundred cubits high. But on the square of them, each side
was extended the space of twenty feet.
3 And he made the gates thereof according to the height of the towers:
4 And he gloried as a mighty one in the force of his army, and in the glory
of his chariots.
5 Now in the twelfth year* of his reign: Nabuchodonosor, king of the Assyrians,
who reigned in Ninive, the great city, fought against Arphaxad, and overcame him,
6 In the great plain which is called Ragau, about the Euphrates, and the
Tigris, and the Jadason, in the plain of Erioch, the king of the Elicians.
7 Then was the kingdom of Nabuchodonosor exalted, and his heart was elevated:
and he sent to all that dwelt in Cilicia, and Damascus, and Libanus,
8 And to the nations that are in Carmelus, and Cedar, and to the inhabitants
of Galilee, in the great plain of Esdrelon,
9 And to all that were in Samaria, and beyond the river Jordan, even to
Jerusalem, and all the land of Jesse, till you come to the borders of Ethiopia.
10 To all these, Nabuchodonosor, king of the Assyrians, sent messengers:
11 But they all, with one mind, refused, and sent them back empty, and
rejected them without honour.
12 Then king Nabuchodonosor being angry against all that land, swore by
his throne and kingdom, that he would revenge himself of all those countries.
5: Year of the World 3347, Year before Christ 657.