Erich Lessing

Tiglath the Terrible. Although his predecessors made incursions into the West, Assyrian king Tiglath-pileser III (745–727), shown in this limestone bas-relief from Nimrud, decisively conquered the lands of Judah and Israel. The Bible records his important role in the politics of the ancient Near East; Second Kings 16:7, for example, notes: “Ahaz [king of Judah] sent messengers to King Tiglath-pileser of Assyria, saying, ‘I am your servant and your son. Come up, and rescue me from the hand of the king of Aram and from the hand of the king of Israel, who are attacking me.’” The prophetic Biblical Book of Hosea, which reflects Assyrian dominance and destruction, clearly belongs to the period of Tiglath-pileser III’s rule.