ESAIAS (e-za'yas), (Gr. 'Ilaatas, hay-sah•re'as), a common New Testament form of ISAIAH. ty-salkhad-dohn°, gift of tiro, the son of Sen nacherib. 'Flue death of Sennacherib and the accession of his son marked the opening of a new era in the history of the Assyrian empire.
(1) Sources of Information. The Biblical record (2 Kings xix :37) states that the assassins of Sennacherib "escaped into the land of Ararat, and Esar-haddon his son reigned in his stead." This two-line notice covers a multitude of events. Fortunately, we have a brief inscription in the Babylonian chronicle that gives us a fragmentary portraiture of the political situation. "In the month of Tebct (December, 68t B. C.), the loth day, Sennachcrib, king of Assyria, his son in an insurrection slew him. Twenty-three years Sen nacherib administered the kingdom of Assyria. From the twentieth day of the month Tebet until the second day of the month Adar (February, 68o), the insurrection prevailed in Assyria. In the month Sivan (May, 68o). the eighteenth day, Esar-haddon, his son, seated himself upon the throne in Assyria." The power of the insurrec tion in Nineveh was broken at the end of one month and a half.
(2) Coming to the Throne. But the new king, who was probably occupied in suppressing rebel lious subjects outside of Nineveh, was not for mally installed as king until five months after the murder of his father.
(3) Rebuilds Babylon. This new king in augurated a new policy of administration and con trol. He sought to restore to prosperity the Baby lon and Babylonia which Sennacherib had so wan tonly and cruelly laid waste and destroyed. He conciliated the population of that region by re storing to their former position the humiliated gods of Babylon. Ile lifted the royal city out of its wasteness and ruin, and made it the proud abode of Nebo and NIcrodach. 1 le declared him self ruler of Bahylon, but subordinate to those chief deities. 1iis popular policy elevated hint at once in the estimation of the people, and gave him almost undisputed command of this territory. His next move (678 13. C) was toward the West-land. Phrenicia was the first to feel his power, and readily yielded, except the island city, Tyre. No resistance of any kind seems to have interfered with his southward march until he struck the Arabian desert. Here he spent presumably two years (675-674 B. C.) in the subjugation of Arab tribes on the cast and southeast of the Gulf of Akaba, and in the Sinaitic peninsula. These con quests cut off from Egypt all supplies and allies front their eastern friends and dependencies, and made Esar-haddon master of all the eastern roads to Egypt I Prof Ira NI Price, The .1/onittnents
and the Old Testament. pp. 194-5 ) (4) Division of Egypt. Ile divided all the valley of the Nile from Thebes to the Mediter ranean into twenty satrapies. oser the less impor tant of which he set governors of native descent, while over those which were important he placed ssyrian governors. It is highly creditable to Esar-haddon that, when he found himself con queror of Egypt. he had the wisdom to act in a conciliatory manner to the vanquished.
(5) Death. In B. C. 668 Egypt revolted, and while on the march to punish it Esar-haddon fell ill and died on the loth of Nlarcheshvan (Octo ber). Ilk empire was divided between two of his sons. Samas-sum-ukin having Babylonia. while the rest of the empire passed to an older son, Assur bani-pal, whose suzerainty Samas-sum-ukin was called upon to acknowledge. A third son, Assur mukin-paliya, was raised to the priesthood, while a fourth became priest of the moon-god at Har ran. (Sayce, Hastings' Bib. Diet.) (6) Character. He had sore trials and great difficulties. He had endured grievous defeats and sustained severe losses, but he had, nevertheless, had a glorious reign. That the provinces which once paid great tribute were lost to the Indo Europeans upon the northeast and northwest was less his fault than his misfortune. No king could well have done more than he, and it is to the credit of his ability that he did not lose much more, even the whole of Mesopotamia or even Assyria, for no army, however well led, was of permanent value against a moving mass of men with unknowing and unthinking thousands press ing from the rear. These losses were far more than compensated by the gaining of the fertile and beautiful valley of the Nile. With this added, even though much was lost, Esar-haddon left the Assyrian empire larger and greater than it had ever been before. In battle and in siege, in war against the most highly civilized people and in war upon barbarians, Esar-haddon had been so successful that he must rank with Sargon and Tiglath-pileser II, and must be placed far in advance of his father, Sennacherib. In him, in spite of mercy shown a number of times, there raged a fierceness and a thirst for blood and re venge that remind us forcefully of Asshur-nazir pal. His racial inheritance had overcome his per sonal mildness.