Babylonian God: Bel Marduk



Though Babylon remained for over two thousand years the chief city of the Euphrates valley and, indeed, of all the world, yet Babylon was not always able to impose its military power upon the other cities. More than once the metropolis was driven to struggle desperately for mere existence. On two separate occasions it had to surrender to conquerors, who carried off its chief gods and set these up in the conqueror's own capital as tokens of triumph. In this way the great god, Bel-Marduk, was held in captivity by the Elamites, a nation who lived in the mountains of Persia overlooking the Euphrates valley, and who often rushed suddenly down upon the lowlands in plundering raids.

Nebuchadnezzar I., the king of Babylon, led a great army against Elam and compelled the restoration of Bel Marduk. The home-coming of the idol was an occasion of gorgeous celebration. Human victims, the captured Elamites and others, probably in large numbers, were sacrificed to the god. The Babylonians seem to have been less cruel than most of the Semitic nations in their worship of the gods, but even in Babylon our modern sense of human brotherhood and divine love was so little felt that the people thought their god found pleasure, as they did, in every agony inflicted on their foes.






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Read about Babylonian God: Bel Marduk in the The Story of the Greatest Nations and the Worlds Famous Events Vol 1

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