Headline: Xerxes I, Battle of Thermopylae, Esther, Artaxerxes Decree, Ezra, Nehemiah, Delian League (480 BC – 445 BC).

Image: Xerxes I

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qV7wIvdomvQ

Date Range: 480 BC – 445 BC

People: Artaxerxes, Cimon, Esther / Hadassah, Ezra, Inaros II, Leonidas, Nehemiah, Pericles, Xerxes I, Zerubbabel

Xerxes I ascended to the throne in 486 BC after the death of his father Darius I. The famous Battle of Thermopylae occurred in 480 BC between King Xerxes I of the Achaemenid Empire and King Leonidas and the 300 Spartans. Most of the events described in the Book of Esther occurred after this Battle (479 BC – 473 BC). In 465 BC, Xerxes I was murdered, and Artaxerxes ascended to the throne. The Wars of the Delian League (477 BC – 449 BC) are a series of military campaigns between Greek (Pericles, Cimon) and Persian forces. The Battle of Papremis (460 BC) had the allied forces of Greece and Egypt (Inaros II) defeat the Persians. An important decree by Artaxerxes to allow the Israelites to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem occurred on Nisan 1 (March 14), 445 BC. On Nisan 17, 445 BC, the walls were inspected as described in Nehemiah 2.

Bible Verses: Ezra 4, Ezra 6:14, 7:1-8, 7:21, Nehemiah 2, Esther 1:1-5, Esther 9

Achaemenid Empire
Artaxerxes I
Battle of Salamis
Battle of Thermopylae
Bisitun Inscription
Bull Head from Persepolis
Chronology of Esther
First Fruits and Nisan 17
Harem Inscription
Inaros II
Thermopylae and the Book of Esther
Wars of the Delian League
Xerxes: An Archaeological Biography
Xerxes I
Xerxes (King Ahasuerus) Video

The events described in the Books of Ezra, Nehemiah, and Esther occurred during the reigns of Xerxes I and Artaxerxes. This was a time of significant conflict between the Greeks and the Persians as seen in the Battle of Thermopylae and the Wars of the Delian League. There is a significant amount of historical material from this time period.

Timeline and Chronology
445 BC, Nisan 17: Inspection of Jerusalem’s walls (Nehemiah 2).
445 BC, Nisan 1 / March 14: Artaxerxes I authorization to rebuild Jerusalem’s city walls.
460 BC: Battle of Papremis.
465 BC: Artaxerxes I became king of Achaemenid Empire.
473 BC, Adar 14: First Feast of Purim celebrated (Esther 9).
480 BC: Battle of Thermopylae.
486 BC: Xerxes I became king of Achaemenid Empire.
489 BC: Leonidas I became king of Sparta.

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