Nebuchadnezzar II was a famous king of Mesopotamia. Nebuchadnezzar was the ruler of the Neo-Babylonian Empire. Under his rule, much of the damaged city of Babylon was rebuilt. He is known as the greatest king of the Neo-Babylonian Empire. Nebuchadnezzar was born in 634 BC, as the son of the King of Babylon.
While Nebuchadnezzar was still a boy, his father was at war with the Assyrian people. When he grew up, he became general of his father’s army, and won glory by defeating the Assyrians in battle. Nebuchadnezzar’s most famous battle was the Battle of Carchemish, which crushed the final vestiges of resistance to Babylonian rule in Mesopotamia.
You might also know Nebuchadnezzar’s name from its appearance in the Bible. Nebuchadnezzar was an important character of the Old Testament, where he is punished by God for his crimes and stricken with insanity for being too prideful.
Though historians dispute the validity of these stories, Nebuchadnezzar plays a key role in the Book of Daniel and Jeremiah, where his conquests of regions surrounding Mesopotamia is explored in detail.
Nebuchadnezzar is famous for both his appearance in the Bible and his role as King of Babylon. In the Bible, Nebuchadnezzar’s conquering of Judah and his poor treatment of the Jews are described in depth. The Jewish people were treated very badly in Nebuchadnezzar’s Babylon, and were greatly oppressed.
Nebuchadnezzar is known as the “Builder King” of Babylon because of how he emphasized the building of great temples in his home city of Babylon. When Nebuchadnezzar came to power, Babylon had been greatly damaged by its years spent at war; under his rule, new homes, temples and entire districts were built to restore the city’s architecture. Nebuchadnezzar also allegedly oversaw the construction of the Hanging Gardens of Babylon.
The Hanging Gardens of Babylon are regarded as one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, although historians aren’t sure whether they really existed or not.
Stories say that Nebuchadnezzar built the Gardens for his homesick wife, and they were referenced often in stories and poems from the era, but there is no evidence to suggest that they really existed outside of that. Because of that, it’s possible that Nebuchadnezzar’s most famous work was just a myth.
However, there were other positive aspects of Nebuchadnezzar’s rule for which he was acclaimed. Though the Biblical stories from the era paint him in a negative light, Nebuchadnezzar is renowned for his restoration of Babylon.
He turned it from a city of war into a city of light, where art and education flourished. Women enjoyed more equal rights in Nebuchadnezzar’s Babylon, and children were well educated in literacy, mathematics, science, and architecture. At the time, Babylon was regarded as a center of the world, and Nebuchadnezzar ensured that it deserved the title during his time in power.
Nebuchadnezzar’s reign ended in 562 BC, having lasted 43 years. Nebuchadnezzar died peacefully, in his sleep. Nebuchadnezzar is regarded as the last Great King of Babylon because the city itself fell just 23 years after his death, when the Persians invaded in 539 BC. Though later leaders attempted to restore Babylon to its previous glory, it never again reached the heights it attained under Nebuchadnezzar’s rule.
Nebuchadnezzar’s greatest accomplishments were the restoration of Babylon, the consolidation of his empire’s power (by defeating the Assyrians and Egyptians), the construction of the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, and his work to improve the social status of women/education system in his empire.
– 634 BC.
– 605-562 BC.
– The battle of Carchemish.
– The Hanging Gardens of Babylon.
– 539 BC, when the Persian Empire invaded.