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Ancient Lachish (Tell Lakhish)

2 Kings 18:13-14 (King Janes Version) [Bible Study Tools]
Listen to 2 Kings 18:13-14 With Real Player

13 Now in the fourteenth year of King Hezekiah did Sennacherib king of Assyria come up against all the fenced cities of Judah and took them

14 And Hezekiah King of Judah sent to the King of Assyria to Lachish, saying, I have offended; return from me: that which thou puttest on me will I bear. And the King of Assyria appointed unto Hezekiah King of Judah three hundred talents of silver and thirty talents of gold

The city of Lachish was an impressive fortress. It was double walled with a four entry gate that is larger than any other gate complex yet found in Syria-Palestine. It had a Palace Fort in the center which is also the largest of it kind ever discovered in Israel. The walls of this fort were 30 x 30 metres square.

The city was destroyed by the Assyrian Monarch Sennacherib (reigned 705 - 681 BC) while he was on a campaign to suppress rebellion in the Assyrian client states and their allies. He beseiged it and then destroyed it, packing all the population off to Nineveh to be slaves and servants.

An account of this siege is given on some slabs found in the chambers of the Palace of Koyunjik (Nineveh) which are now in the British Museum. The inscription has been deciphered as follows:

Sennacherib, the mighty King, King of the country of Assyria, sitting on the throne of judgment before the city of Lachish: I gave permission for its slaughter .....

The History of the Ancient Near East Electronic Compendium