These judges constituted by Jehoshaphat were a kind of Jerusalem Sanhedrim, out of the priests, the Levites, and the principal of the people, both here and 2 Chronicles 19:8; much like the old Christian judicatures of the bishop, the presbyters, the deacons, and the people.
 Concerning this precious balsam, see the note on Atiq. B. VIII. ch.6. sect.6.
 What are here Pontus and Thrace, as the places whither Jehoshaphat's fleet sailed, are in our other copies Ophir and Tarshish, and the place whence it sailed is in them Eziongeber, which lay on the Red Sea, whence it was impossible for any ships to sail to Pontus or Thrace; so that Josephus's copy differed from our other copies, as is further plain from his own words, which render what we read, that "the ships were broken at Eziongeber, from their unwieldy greatness." But so far we may conclude, that Josephus thought one Ophir to be some where in the Mediterranean, and not in the South Sea, though perhaps there might be another Ophir in that South Sea also, and that fleets might then sail both from Phoenicia and from the Red Sea to fetch the gold of Ophir.
 This god of flies seems to have been so called, as was the like god among the Greeks, from his supposed power over flies, in driving them away from the flesh of their sacrifices, which otherwise would have been very troublesome to them.
 It is commonly esteemed a very cruel action of Elijah, when he called for fire from heaven, and consumed no fewer than two captains and a hundred soldiers, and this for no other crime than obeying the orders of their king, in attempting to seize him; and it is owned by our Savior, that it was an instance of greater severity than the spirit of the New Testament allows, Luke 9:54. But then we must consider that it is not unlikely that these captains and soldiers believed that they were sent to fetch the prophet, that he might be put to death for foretelling the death of the king, and this while they knew him to be the prophet of the true God, the supreme King of Israel, [for they were still under the theocracy,] which was no less than impiety, rebellion, and treason, in the highest degree: nor would the command of a subaltern, or inferior captain, contradicting the commands of the general, when the captain and the soldiers both knew it to be so, as I suppose, justify or excuse such gross rebellion and disobedience in soldiers at this day. Accordingly, when Saul commanded his guards to slay Ahimelech and the priests at Nob, they knew it to be an unlawful command, and would not obey it, 1 Samuel 22:17. From which cases both officers and soldiers may learn, that the commands of their leaders or kings cannot justify or excuse them in doing what is wicked in the sight of God, or in fighting in an unjust cause, when they know it so to be.
 This practice of cutting down, or plucking up by the roots, the fruit trees was forbidden, even in ordinary wars, by the law of Moses, Deuteronomy 20:19, 20, and only allowed by God in this particular case, when the Moabites were to be punished and cut off in an extraordinary manner for their wickedness See Jeremiah 48:11-13, and many the like prophecies against them. Nothing could therefore justify this practice but a particular commission from God by his prophet, as in the present case, which was ever a sufficient warrant for breaking any such ritual or ceremonial law whatsoever.
 That this woman who cried to Elisha, and who in our Bible is styled "the wife of one of the sons of the prophets," 2 Kings 4:1, was no other than the widow of Obadiah, the good steward of Ahab, is confirmed by the Chaldee paraphrast, and by the Rabbins and others. Nor is that unlikely which Josephus here adds, that these debts were contracted by her husband for the support of those "hundred of the Lord's prophets, whom he maintained by fifty in a cave," in the days of Ahab and Jezebel, 1 Kings 18:4; which circumstance rendered it highly fit that the prophet Elisha should provide her a remedy, and enable her to redeem herself and her sons from the fear of that slavery which insolvent debtors were liable to by the law of Moses, Leviticus 25:39; Matthew 18:25; which he did accordingly, with God's help, at the expense of a miracle.
 Dr. Hudson, with very good reason, suspects that there is no small defect in our present copies of Josephus, just before the beginning of this section, and that chiefly as to that distinct account which he had given us reason to expect in the first section, and to which he seems to refer, ch.8. sect.6. concerning the glorious miracles which Elisha wrought, which indeed in our Bibles are not a few, 2 Kings 6-9., but of which we have several omitted in Josephus's present copies. One of those histories, omitted at present, was evidently in his Bible, I mean that of the curing of Nanman's leprosy, 2 Kings 5.; for he plainly alludes to it, B. III. ch.11. sect.4, where he observes, that "there were lepers in many nations who yet have been in honor, and not only free from reproach and avoidance, but who have been great captains of armies, and been intrusted with high offices in the commonwealth, and have had the privilege of entering into holy places and temples." But what makes me most regret the want of that history in our present copies of Josephus is this, that we have here, as it is commonly understood, one of the greatest difficulties in all the Bible, that in 2 Kings 5:18, 19, where Naaman, after he had been miraculously cured by a prophet of the true God, and had thereupon promised [ver.17] that "he would henceforth offer neither burnt-offering nor sacrifice unto other gods, but unto the Lord," adds, "In this thing the Lord pardon thy servant, that when my master goeth into the house of Rimnu to worship there, and he leaneth on my hands, and I bow myself in the house of Rimmort; when I bow down myself in the house of Rimmort, the Lord pardon thy servant in this thing. And Elisha said, Go in peace." This looks like a prophet's permission for being partaker in idolatry itself, out of compliance with an idolatrous court.
 Upon occasion of this stratagem of Elisha, in Josephus, we may take notice, that although Josephus was one of the greatest lovers of truth in the world, yet in a just war he seems to have had no manner of scruple upon him by all such stratagems possible to deceive public enemies. See this Josephus's account of Jeremiah's imposition on the great men of the Jews in somewhat like case, Antiq. B. X. ch.7. sect.6; 2 Samuel 16:16, &c.
 This son of a murderer was Joram, the son of Ahab, which Ahab slew, or permitted his wife Jezebel to slay, the Lord's prophets, and Naboth, 1 Kings 18:4; 21:19; and he is here called by this name, I suppose, because he had now also himself sent an officer to murder him; yet is Josephus's account of Joram's coming himself at last as repenting of his intended cruelty, much more probable than that in our copies, 2 Kings 6:33, which rather implies the contrary.
 This law of the Jews, for the exclusion of lepers out of the camp in the wilderness, and out of the cities in Judea, is a known one, Leviticus 13:46; Numbers 5:14.
 Since Elijah did not live to anoint Hazael king of Syria himself, as he was empowered to do, 1 Kings 19:15, it was most probably now done, in his name, by his servant and successor Elisha. Nor does it seem to me otherwise but that Benhadad immediately recovered of his disease, as the prophet foretold; and that Hazael, upon his being anointed to succeed him though he ought to have staid till he died by the course of nature, or some other way of Divine punishment, as did David for many years in the like case, was too impatient, and the very next day smothered or strangled him, in order to come directly to the succession.
 What Mr. Le Clerc pretends here, that it is more probable that Hazael and his son were worshipped by the Syrians and people of Damascus till the days of Josephus, than Benhadad and Hazael, because under Benhadad they had greatly suffered, and because it is almost incredible that both a king and that king's murderer should be worshipped by the same Syrians, is of little force against those records, out of which Josephus drew this history, especially when it is likely that they thought Benhadad died of the distemper he labored under, and not by Hazael's treachery. Besides, the reason that Josephus gives for this adoration, that these two kings had been great benefactors to the inhabitants of Damascus, and had built them temples, is too remote from the political suspicions of Le Clerc; nor ought such weak suspicions to be deemed of any force against authentic testimonies of antiquity.
 This epistle, in some copies of Josephus, is said to come to Jotare from Elijah, with this addition," for he was yet upon earth," which could not be true of Elijah, who, as all agree, was gone from the earth about four years before, and could only be true of Elisha; nor perhaps is there any more mystery here, than that the name of Elijah has very anciently crept into the text instead of Elisha, by the copiers, there being nothing in any copy of that epistle peculiar to Elijah.
 Spanheim here notes, that this putting off men's garments, and strewing them under a king, was an Eastern custom, which he had elsewhere explained.
 Our copies say that this "driving of the chariots was like the driving of Jehu the son of Nimshi; for he driveth furiously," 2 Kings 9:20; whereas Josephus's copy, as he understood it, was this, that, on the contrary, Jehu marched slowly, and in good order. Nor can it be denied, that since there was interval enough for king Joram to send out two horsemen, one after another, to Jehu, and at length to go out with king Ahaziah to meet him, and all this after he was come within sight of the watchman, and before he was come to Jezreel, the probability is greatly on the side of Josephus's copy or interpretation.
 This character of Joash, the son of Jehoahaz, that "he was a good man, and in his disposition not at all like to his father," seems a direct contradiction to our ordinary copies, which say [2 Kings 13:11] that "he did evil in the sight of the Lord; and that he departed not from all the sins of Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin: he walked therein." Which copies are here the truest it is hard positively to determine. If Josephus's be true, this Joash is the single instance of a good king over the ten tribes; if the other be true, we have not one such example. The account that follows, in all copies, of Elisha the prophet's concern for him, and his concern for Elisha, greatly favors Josephus's copies, and supposes this king to have been then a good man, and no idolater, with whom God's prophets used not to be so familiar. Upon the whole, since it appears, even by Josephus's own account, that Amaziah, the good king of Judah, while he was a good king, was forbidden to make use of the hundred thousand auxiliaries he had hired of this Joash, the king of Israel, as if he and they were then idolaters, 2 Chronicles 25:6-9, it is most likely that these different characters of Joash suited the different parts of his reign, and that, according to our common copies, he was at first a wicked king, and afterwards was reclaimed, and became a good one, according to Josephus.
 What I have above noted concerning Jehoash, seems to me to have been true also concerning his son Jeroboam II., viz. that although he began wickedly, as Josephus agrees with our other copies, and, as he adds, "was the cause of a vast number of misfortunes to the Israelites" in those his first years, [the particulars of which are unhappily wanting both in Josephus and in all our copies,] so does it seem to me that he was afterwards reclaimed, and became a good king, and so was encouraged by the prophet Jonah, and had great successes afterward, when "God had saved the Israelites by the hand of Jeroboam, the son of Joash," 2 Kings 14:27; which encouragement by Jonah, and great successes, are equally observable in Josephus, and in the other copies.
 When Jonah is said in our Bibles to have gone to Tarshish, Jonah 1:3, Josephus understood it that he went to Tarsus in Cilicia, or to the Mediterranean Sea, upon which Tarsus lay; so that he does not appear to have read the text, 1 Kings 22:48, as our copies do, that ships of Tarshish could lie at Ezion-geber, upon the Red Sea. But as to Josephus's assertion, that Jonah's fish was carried by the strength of the current, upon a nean, it is by no means an improbable determination in Josephus.
 This ancient piece of religion, of supposing there was great sin where there was great misery, and of casting lots to discover great sinners, not only among the Israelites, but among these heathen mariners, seems a remarkable remains of the ancient tradition which prevailed of old over all mankind, that I Providence used to interpose visibly in all human affairs, and storm, as far as the Euxine Sea, it is no way impossible; and since the storm might have driven the ship, while Jonah was in it never to bring, or at least not long to continue, notorious judge, near to that Euxine Sea, and since in three more days, while but for notorious sins, which the most ancient Book of he was in the fish's belly, that current might bring him to the Job shows to have been the state of mankind for about the Assyrian coast, and since withal that coast could bring him former three thousand years of the world, till the days of Job nearer to Nineveh than could any coast of the Mediterranian and Moses.
 This account of an earthquake at Jerusalem at the very same time when Uzziah usurped the priest's office, and went into the sanctuary to burn incense, and of the consequences of the earthquake, is entirely wanting in our other copies, though it be exceeding like to a prophecy of Jeremiah, now in Zechariah 14:4, 5; in which prophecy mention is made of "fleeing from that earthquake, as they fled from this earthquake in the days of Uzziah king of Judah;" so that there seems to have been some considerable resemblance between these historical and prophetical earthquakes.
 Dr. Wall, in his critical notes on 2 Kings 15:20, observes, "that when this Menahem is said to have exacted the money of Israel of all the mighty men of wealth, of each man fifty shekels of silver, to give Pul, the king of Assyria, a thousand talents, this is the first public money raised by any [Israelite] king by tax on the people; that they used before to raise it out of the treasures of the house of the Lord, or of their own house; that it was a poll-money on the rich men, [and them only,] to raise oe353,000, or, as others count a talent, oe400,000, at the rate of oe6 or oe7 per head; and that God commanded, by Ezekiel, ch.45:8; 46:18, that no such thing should be done [at the Jews' restoration], but the king should have land of his own."
 This passage is taken out of the prophet Nahum, ch.2:8-13, and is the principal, or rather the only, one that is given us almost verbatim, but a little abridged, in all Josephus's known writings: by which quotation we learn what he himself always asserts, viz. that he made use of the Hebrew original and not of the Greek version]; as also we learn, that his Hebrew copy considerably differed from ours. See all three texts particularly set down and compared together in the Essay on the Old Testament, page 187.
 This siege of Samaria, though not given a particular account of, either in our Hebrew or Greek Bibles, or in Josephus, was so very long, no less than three years, that it was no way improbable but that parents, and particularly mothers, might therein be reduced to eat their own children, as the law of Moses had threatened upon their disobedience, Leviticus 26;29; Deuteronomy 28:53-57; and as was accomplished in the other shorter sieges of both the capital cities, Jerusalem and Samaria; the former mentioned Jeremiah 19:9; Antiq. B. IX. ch.4. sect.4, and the latter, 2 Kings 6:26-29.
BOOK 10 FOOTNOTES
 This title of great king, both in our Bibles, 2 Kings 18:19; Isaiah 36:4, and here in Josephus, is the very same that Herodotus gives this Sennacherib, as Spanheim takes notice on this place.
 What Josephus says here, how Isaiah the prophet assured Hezekiah that "at this time he should not be besieged by the king of Assyria; that for the future he might be secure of being not at all disturbed by him; and that [afterward] the people might go on peaceably, and without fear, with their husbandry and other affairs," is more distinct in our other copies, both of the Kings and of Isaiah, and deserves very great consideration. The words are these: "This shall be a sign unto thee, Ye shall eat this year such as groweth of itself, and the second year that which springeth of the same; and in the third year sow ye, and reap, and plant vineyards, and eat the fruit thereof," 2 Kings 19:29; Isaiah 37:30; which seem to me plainly to design a Sabbatic year, a year of jubilee next after it, and the succeeding usual labors and fruits of them on the third and following years.
 That this terrible calamity of the slaughter of the 185,000 Assyrians is here delivered in the words of Berosus the Chaldean, and that it was certainly and frequently foretold by the Jewish prophets, and that it was certainly and undeniably accomplished, see Authent. Rec. part II. p.858.
 We are here to take notice, that these two sons of Sennacherib, that ran away into Armenia, became the heads of two famous families there, the Arzerunii and the Genunii; of which see the particular histories in Moses Chorenensis, p.60.
 Josephus, and all our copies, place the sickness of Hezekiah after the destruction of Sennacherib's army, because it appears to have been after his first assault, as he was going into Arabia and Egypt, where he pushed his conquests as far as they would go, and in order to despatch his story altogether; yet does no copy but this of Josephus say it was after that destruction, but only that it happened in those days, or about that time of Hezekiah's life. Nor will the fifteen years' prolongation of his life after his sickness, allow that sickness to have been later than the former part of the fifteenth year of his reign, since chronology does not allow him in all above twenty-nine years and a few months; whereas the first assault of Sennacherib was on the fourteenth year of Hezekiah, but the destruction of Sennacherib's army was not till his eighteenth year.
 As to this regress of the shadow, either upon a sun-dial, or the steps of the royal palace built by Ahaz, whether it were physically done by the real miraculous revolution of the earth in its diurnal motion backward from east to west for a while, and its return again to its old natural revolution from west to east; or whether it were not apparent only, and performed by an aerial phosphorus, which imitated the sun's motion backward, while a cloud hid the real sun; cannot now be determined. Philosophers and astronomers will naturally incline to the latter hypothesis. However, it must be noted, that Josephus seems to have understood it otherwise than we generally do, that the shadow was accelerated as much at first forward as it was made to go backward afterward, and so the day was neither longer nor shorter than usual; which, it must be confessed agrees best of all to astronomy, whose eclipses, older than the time were observed at the same times of the day as if this miracle had never happened. After all, this wonderful signal was not, it seems, peculiar to Judea, but either seen, or at least heard of, at Babylon also, as appears by 2 Chronicles 32:31, where we learn that the Babylonian ambassadors were sent to Hezekiah, among other things, to inquire of the wonder that was done in the land.
 This expression of Josephus, that the Medes, upon this destruction of the Assyrian army, "overthrew" the Assyrian empire, seems to be too strong; for although they immediately cast off the Assrian yoke, and set up Deioces, a king of their own, yet it was some time before the Medes and Babylonians overthrew Nineveh, and some generations ere the Medes and Persians under Cyaxares and Cyrus overthrew the Assyrian or Babylonian empire, and took Babylon.
 It is hard to reconcile the account in the Second Book of Kings [ch.23:11] with this account in Josephus, and to translate this passage truly in Josephus, whose copies are supposed to be here imperfect. However, the general sense of both seems to be this: That there were certain chariots, with their horses, dedicated to the idol of the sun, or to Moloch; which idol might be carried about in procession, and worshipped by the people; which chariots were now "taken away," as Josephus says, or, as the Book of Kings says, "burnt with fire, by Josiah."
 This is a remarkable passage of chronology in Josephus, that about the latter end of the reign of Josiah, the Medes and Babylonians overthrew the empire of the Assyrians; or, in the words of Tobit's continuator, that "before Tobias died, he heard of the destruction of Nineveh, which was taken by Nebuchodonosor the Babylonian, and Assuerus the Mede," Tob.14:15. See Dean Prideaux's Connexion, at the year 612.  This battle is justly esteemed the very same that Herodotus [B. II. sect.156] mentions, when he says, that "Necao joined battle with the Syrians [or Jews] at Magdolum, [Megiddo,] and beat them," as Dr. Hudson here observes.
 Whether Josephus, from 2 Chronicles 35:25, here means the book of the Lamentations of Jeremiah, still extant, which chiefly belongs to the destruction of Jerusalem under Nebuchadnezzar, or to any other like melancholy poem now lost, but extant in the days of Josephus, belonging peculiarly to Josiah, cannot now be determined.
 This ancient city Hamath, which is joined with Arpad, or Aradus, and with Damascus, 2 Kings 18:34; Isaiah 36:19; Jeremiah 49:23, cities of Syria and Phoenicia, near the borders of Judea, was also itself evidently near the same borders, though long ago utterly destroyed.
 Josephus says here that Jeremiah prophesied not only of the return of the Jews from the Babylonian captivity, and this under the Persians and Medes, as in our other copies; but of cause they did not both say the same thing as to this circumstance, he disbelieved what they both appeared to agree in, and condemned them as not speaking truth therein, although all the things foretold him did come to pass according to their prophecies, as we shall show upon a fitter opportunity their rebuilding the temple, and even the city Jerusalem, which do not appear in our copies under his name. See the note on Antiq. B. XI. ch.1. sect.3.  This observation of Josephus about the seeming disagreement of Jeremiah, ch.32:4, and 34:3, and Ezekiel 12:13, but real agreement at last, concerning the fate of Zedekiah, is very true and very remarkable. See ch.7. sect.2. Nor is it at all unlikely that the courtiers and false prophets might make use of this seeming contradiction to dissuade Zedekiah from believing either of those prophets, as Josephus here intimates he was dissuaded thereby.
 I have here inserted in brackets this high priest Azarias, though he be omitted in all Josephus's copies, out of the Jewish chronicle, Seder Olam, of how little authority soever I generally esteem such late Rabbinical historians, because we know from Josephus himself, that the number of the high priests belonging to this interval was eighteen, Antiq. B. XX. ch.10., whereas his copies have here but seventeen. Of this character of Baruch, the son of Neriah, and the genuineness of his book, that stands now in our Apocrypha, and that it is really a canonical book, and an appendix to Jeremiah, see Authent. Rec. Part I. p.1 -- 11.
 Herodotus says, this king of Egypt [Pharaoh Hophra, or Apries] was slain by the Egyptians, as Jeremiah foretold his slaughter by his enemies, Jeremiah 44:29, 30, and that as a sign of the destruction of Egypt [by Nebuchadnezzar]. Josephus says, this king was slain by Nebuchadnezzar himself.
 We see here that Judea was left in a manner desolate after the captivity of the two tribes and was not I with foreign colonies, perhaps as an indication of Providence that the Jews were to repeople it without opposition themselves. I also esteem the latter and present desolate condition of the same country, without being repeopled by foreign colonies, to be a like indication, that the same Jews are hereafter to repeople it again themselves, at their so long expected future restoration.
 That Daniel was made one of these eunuchs of which Isaiah prophesied, Isaiah 39:7, and the three children his companions also, seems to me plain, both here in Josephus, and in our copies of Daniel, Daniel 1:3, 6-11, 18, although it must be granted that some married persons, that had children, were sometimes called eunuchs, in a general acceptation for courtiers, on account that so many of the ancient courtiers were real eunuchs. See Genesis 39:1.
 Of this most remarkable passage in Josephus concerning the "stone cut out of the mountain, and destroying the image," which he would not explain, but intimated to be a prophecy of futurity, and probably not safe for him to explain, as belonging to the destruction of the Roman empire by Jesus Christ, the true Messiah of the Jews, take the words of Hayercamp, ch.10. sect.4: "Nor is this to be wondered at, that he would not now meddle with things future, for he had no mind to provoke the Romans, by speaking of the destruction of that city which they called the Eternal City."
 Since Josephus here explains the seven prophetic times which were to pass over Nebuchadnezzar [Daniel 4:16] to be seven years, we thence learn how he most probably must have understood those other parallel phrases, of "a time, times, and a half," Antiq. B. VII. ch.25., of so many prophetic years also, though he withal lets us know, by his hint at the interpretation of the seventy weeks, as belonging to the fourth monarchy, and the destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans in the days of Josephus, ch.2. sect.7, that he did not think those years to be bare years, but rather days for years; by which reckoning, and by which alone, could seventy weeks, or four hundred and ninety days, reach to the age of Josephus. But as to the truth of those seven years' banishment of Nebuchadnezzar from men, and his living so long among the beasts, the very small remains we have any where else of this Nebuchadnezzar prevent our expectation of any other full account of it. So far we knew by Ptolemy's canon, a contemporary record, as well as by Josephus presently, that he reigned in all forty-three years, that is, eight years after we meet with any account of his actions; one of the last of which was the thirteen years' siege of Tyre, Antiq. B. XI. ch.11., where yet the Old Latin has but three years and ten months: yet were his actions before so remarkable, both in sacred and profane authors, that a vacuity of eight years at the least, at the latter end of his reign, must be allowed to agree very well with Daniel's accounts; that after a seven years' brutal life, he might return to his reason, and to the exercise of his royal authority, for one whole year at least before his death.
 These forty-three years for the duration of the reign of Nebuchadnezzar are, as I have just now observed, the very same number in Ptolemy's canon. Moses Chorenensis does also confirm this captivity of the Jews under Nebuchadnezzar, and adds, what is very remarkable, that sale of those Jews that were carried by him into captivity got away into Armenia, and raised the great family of the Bagratide there.
 These twenty-one years here ascribed to one named Naboulassar, in the first book against Apion, or to Nabopollassar, the father of the great Nebuchadnezzar, are also the very same with those given him in Ptolemy's canon. And note here, that what Dr. Prideaux says, at the year, that Nebuchadnezzar must have been a common name of other kings of Babylon, besides the great Nebuchadnezzar himself is a groundless mistake of some modern chronologers rely, and destitute of all proper original authority.
 These fifteen days for finishing such vast buildings at Babylon, in Josephus's copy of Berosus, would seem too absurd to be supposed to be the true number, were it not for the same testimony extant also in the first book against Apion, sect.19, with the same number. It thence indeed appears that Josephus's copy of Berosus had this small number, but that it is the true number I still doubt. Josephus assures us, that the walls of so much a smaller city as Jerusalem were two years and four months in building by Nehemiah, who yet hastened the work all he could, Antiq. B. XI. ch.5. sect.8. I should think one hundred and fifteen days, or a year and fifteen days, much more proportionable to so great a work.
 It is here remarkable that Josephus, without the knowledge of Ptolemy's canon, should call the same king whom he himself here [Bar. i.11, and Daniel 5:1, 2, 9, 12, 22, 29, 39] styles Beltazar, or Belshazzar, from the Babylonian god Bel, Naboandelus also; and in the first book against Apion, sect.19, vol. iii., from the same citation out of Berosus, Nabonnedon, from the Babylonian god Nabo or Nebo. This last is not remote from the original pronunciation itself in Ptolemy's canon, Nabonadius; for both the place of this king in that canon, as the last of the Assyrian or Babylonian kings, and the number of years of his reign, seventeen, the same in both demonstrate that it is one and the same king that is meant by them all. It is also worth noting, that Josephus knew that Darius, the partner of Cyrus, was the son of Astyages, and was called by another name among the Greeks, though it does not appear he knew what that name was, as having never seen the best history of this period, which is Xenophon's. But then what Josephus's present copies say presently, sect.4, that it was only within no long time after the hand-writing on the wall that Baltasar was slain, does not so well agree with our copies of Daniel, which say it was the same night, Daniel 5:30.
 This grandmother, or mother of Baltasar, the queen dowager of Babylon, [for she is distinguished from his queen, Daniel 5:10, 13,] seems to have been the famous Nitocris, who fortified Babylon against the Medes and Persians, and, in all probability governed under Baltasar, who seems to be a weak and effeminate prince.
 It is no way improbable that Daniel's enemies might suggest this reason to the king why the lions did not meddle with him and that they might suspect the king's kindness to Daniel had procured these lions to be so filled beforehand, and that thence it was that he encouraged Daniel to submit to this experiment, in hopes of coming off safe; and that this was the true reason of making so terrible an experiment upon those his enemies, and all their families, Daniel 6:21, though our other copies do not directly take notice of it.
 What Josephus here says, that the stones of the sepulchers of the kings of Persia at this tower, or those perhaps of the same sort that are now commonly called the ruins of Persepolis, continued so entire and unaltered in his days, as if they were lately put there, "I [says Reland] here can show to be true, as to those stones of the Persian mansoleum, which Com. Brunius brake off and gave me." He ascribed this to the hardness of the stones, which scarcely yields to iron tools, and proves frequently too hard for cutting by the chisel, but oftentimes breaks it to pieces.