Nebuchadnezzar II King of Babylon 
- Born: Abt 610 B.C.
- Marriage: Amyitis 
- Died: Abt 562 B.C. about age 48
Nebuchadnezzar II (reigned 605-562 BC), greatest king of the neo-Babylonian, or Chaldean, dynasty, who conquered much of southwestern
Asia; known also for his extensive building in the major cities of Babylonia.
The eldest son of Nabopolassar, Nebuchadnezzar commanded a Babylonian army late in his father's reign and in 605 BC triumphed over
Egyptian forces at the decisive Battle of Carchemish in Syria, which made Babylonia the primary military power in the Middle East. After his
father's death, Nebuchadnezzar returned to Babylon and ascended the throne on September 7, 605 BC. During the next eight years he
campaigned extensively in the west against Syria, Palestine, and Egypt and against the Arabs. On March 16, 597 BC, he captured Jerusalem
and took Jehoiakim, king of Judah, and many of his people captive to Babylonia. He was subsequently troubled by major revolts in Babylonia
(594 BC) and in Judah (588-587 BC), which were vigorously punished; many more Jews were exiled to Babylonia. Nebuchadnezzar also
conducted a 13-year siege of the Phoenician city of Tyre and launched an invasion of Egypt in 568 BC. During the latter part of his reign, as the
empire of the Medes increased in power to the north and east, Nebuchadnezzar built a wall, known as the Median Wall, in northern Babylonia
to keep out the potential invader.
Nebuchadnezzar's conquests brought in much booty and tribute, creating an age of prosperity for Babylonia. He undertook an ambitious
construction program, rebuilding the temples in the major cult cities and refurbishing his capital at Babylon with a splendid ziggurat (pyramid
temple) as well as other shrines, palaces, fortification walls, and processional ways. Later legend credited him with building one of the Seven
Wonders of the World, the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, for his Median wife Amyitis. Nebuchadnezzar died in early October 562 BC and was
succeeded by his son Amel-Marduk (the biblical Evil-Merodach).
Babylonian Captivity or Babylonian Exile, term applied to the period between the deportation of the Jews from Palestine to Babylon by the
Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar II and their release in 538 BC by the Persian king Cyrus. Two main deportations are recorded: one in 597
BC, when Israelite nobles, warriors, and artisans were transported; and one in 586 BC when Nebuchadnezzar's army destroyed Jerusalem, and
the major part of the remaining Israelite community was taken to Babylon. At the time of the second deportation an important group of Israelites
fled to Egypt; thereafter, only the poorest peasants were allowed to remain in Palestine, and the political dissolution of independent Israel was
an accomplished fact. The majority of the Jews living in Babylon did not return to Palestine at the end of the exile period, but became a part of
the Diaspora, or body of Jews dispersed among nations outside Palestine.
Nebuchadnezzar married Amyitis  [MRIN: 551617085].