Israel and Judah

Israel and Judah

According to the Bible, King David reigned over a large territory and his son Solomon over an even larger one. After the death of King Solomon, the kingdom was divided in two. The southern kingdom consisted only of the tribes of Judah and Benjamin and thus became the kingdom of Judah, with Jerusalem as its capital. The northern kingdom consisted of the remaining tribes and was called Israel. After the establishment of two short-lived capitals at Shechem and Tirzah, King Omri established his capital at Samaria, where it would remain for the duration of the northern kingdom’s existence. The kingdom of Israel was larger in size and controlled more significant trade routes than did Judah. Territorial boundaries expanded and contracted over time as Israel and Judah engaged in conflict with one another and their neighbors. Evidence from outside the Bible suggests that Israel was more powerful than Judah. However, Israel was the more ephemeral kingdom of the two. Israel was destroyed by the Assyrians in 722 B.C.E., whereas Judah, though severely damaged, narrowly escaped the dreadful onslaught of the Assyrian war machine. But Judah's escape from imperial domination would be brief. Jerusalem eventually fell to the Babylonian Empire and was destroyed in 586 B.C.E. Produced by RiddleMaps.com.

People from the region of northern Mesopotamia that includes modern-day Iraq, Syria, Jordan and Lebanon.

Of or relating to ancient lower Mesopotamia and its empire centered in Babylon.

A broad, diverse group of nations ruled by the government of a single nation.

The kingdom consisting of the northern Israelites tribes, which existed separately from the southern kingdom of Judah. According to the Hebrew Bible, all the tribes were part of a unified kingdom under David and Solomon, but the northern kingdom under Jeroboam I rebelled after Solomon's death (probably sometime in the late 10th century B.C.E.), establishing their independence. The northern kingdom of Israel fell to the Neo-Assyrian Empire in 722 B.C.E.

The kingdom of Judah, according to the Hebrew Bible ruled by a king in the line of David from the 10th century B.C.E. until its destruction by the Babylonians in 586 B.C.E.

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