The authenticity of this decree is disputed. For my view regarding its historicity, see Lisbeth S. Fried, “The Land Lay Desolate: Conquest and Restoration in the Ancient Near East,” in Oded Lipschits and Joseph Blenkinsopp, Judah and Judeans in the Neo-Babylonian Period (Winona Lake, IN: Eisenbrauns, 2003); and Lisbeth S. Fried, The Priest and the Great King: Temple-Palace Relations in the Persian Empire (Winona Lake, IN: Eisenbrauns [forthcoming]). For its date in the fall of 538, see Fried and David Noel Freedman, “Was There a Jubilee Year in Pre-Exilic Judah?” excursus in Jacob Milgrom, Leviticus 23–27, Anchor Bible series (New York: Doubleday, 2001), pp. 2257–2270.