Tattenai

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Tattenai (or Tatnai or Sisinnes) was a Biblical character and a Persian governor of the province west of the Euphrates River during the time of Zerubbabel and the reign of Darius I.[1]

He is best known for questioning King Darius in regard to the rebuilding of a temple for the Lord, God of Israel. He was generally friendly to the Jews.The rebuilding was being led by Jeshua, son of Jozadak, and Zerubbabel, son of Shealtiel, and had been issued by King Cyrus I. Tattenai wrote a letter to King Darius to ask of these statements were true, and then King Darius wrote a letter confirming that the statements were true.[2][3] In the letter, Darius asked that the people do everything they can to support this rebuilding financially, and that they do nothing to impede it lest they suffer harsh punishment.

Babylonian Cuneiform inscriptions

A number of cuneiform tablets bearing the name Tattenai have survived as part of what may have been a family archive. The tablet that links one member of this family to the Bible character is a promissory note dated to the 20th year of Darius I, 502 BC. It identifies a witness to the transaction as a servant of “Tattannu, governor of Across-the-River”.[4] The clay tablet can be dated to June 5, 502 B.C. exactly.[5]

Name

The Name Tattenai (ושתני), probably derived from the Persian name Ustanu, a word found in Zoroastrian scriptures to mean "teaching" though to the Hebrews it was indistinguishable from an expression of the verb נתן natan, meaning "to give". [6] In 1 Esdras[7][8][9] he is called Sisinnes.

Notes and references

  1. ^ "Tattenai." Encyclopædia Britannica. 2007. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. 4 Sept. 2007
  2. ^ The Bible, Book of Ezra 5:3.6
  3. ^ Bible, Book of Ezra 6:6, 13.
  4. ^ Mykytiuk, Lawrence (4 December 2017). "53 People in the Bible Confirmed Archaeologically". 
  5. ^ Mykytiuk, Lawrence, Archaeology Confirms 3 More Bible People Biblical Archaeology Review (Washington)43.3 (May/June 2017): 48.
  6. ^ 7 The name Tattenai in the Bible.
  7. ^ 1 Esdras 6:3.
  8. ^ 1 Esdras 7,27
  9. ^ 1 Esdras 7:1.
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