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Was the second Jerusalem temple a primarily Persian project?

Trotter, J.M. (2001) Was the second Jerusalem temple a primarily Persian project? Scandinavian Journal of the Old Testament, 15 (2). pp. 276-293.

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The construction of a second temple of Yahweh in Jerusalem during the early Achaemenid period is usually attributed to the religious fervor of ethnic Yehudite immigrants from Babylon. The general shape of reconstructions of this period most often follows the general outline of the events given in Ezra 1-6. According to this model, there were two attempts to build the temple, a first attempt in the reign of Cyrus and a second attempt in the reign of Darius. This paper proposes an alternative reconstruction, placing the entire construction project in the reign of Darius and attributing the primary motivation for the project to the needs of the Persian imperial administration rather than Yehudite religious sentiments.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Social Sciences and Humanities
Publisher: Taylor and Francis
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