(reigned 555-539 b.c.)
   The last native-born king of ancient Babylonia and the last ruler of the Neo-Babylonian dynasty. Nabonidus (or Nabu-naid) was not of royal lineage; instead, he was a courtier and the son of a prominent priestess of the moon god. The exact manner in which he acquired the throne is unknown; it seems to have involved a palace plot to depose the recently crowned king, Labashi-Marduk, who was only a child. Better documented is the fact that, once in charge, Nabonidus launched military campaigns into Anatolia and Syria and used the proceeds from the booty he collected to repair temples across Babylonia. He also invaded northern Arabia in hopes of gaining control of the lucrative incense trade. For reasons unknown, he spent ten years at the Arabian oasis of Tema, leaving his son, Bel-shar-usur, in charge back in Babylon. This proved a mistake, for Bel-shar-usur did not pay serious enough heed to the growing threat of the Persian Empire recently founded in Iran by King Cyrus II. Nabonidus returned to Babylon in 539 b.c., but it was too late. Cyrus invaded, defeated him in battle, and claimed the Babylonian throne. Nabonidus was not killed, however; Cyrus assigned him to a government post in Iran, where the former Babylonian king died peacefully.

Ancient Mesopotamia dictioary. . 2015.

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  • Nabonidus — /næbəˈnaɪdəs/ (say nabuh nuyduhs) noun Bible Belshazzar s father; king of Babylon when it fell to Cyrus, 539 BC …  

  • Nabonidus — /nab oh nuy deuhs/, n. died 539? B.C., last king of Babylonia 556 539 (father of Belshazzar) …   Useful english dictionary

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