|Hammurabi and Zimri-Lim as Contemporaries of David and Solomon|
Zimri Lim auf Deutsch
Benjaminites and Davidites
The Kingdom of Hamath
Era of Solomon|
From Rezin to Hammurabi
Notes & References
In an article published in 1986, entitled "The Dating of Hammurabi" , its author Dean Hickman argued for an early C10th BC placement for King Hammurabi of Babylon (conventionally dated to c. C19th BC); thereby making him a contemporary of David & Solomon. Hickman went even further than this and provided an outline revision of Mesopotamian history down to the mid-C9th, which, despite certain deficiencies, rendered some very plausible synchronisms between the Mesopotamian kings and their neighbours. Surprisingly though, as far as I am aware, Hickman's article does not appear to have stimulated much interest or discussion amongst revisionists. One possible reason for this may be that he, like Velikovsky, was not able to offer a satisfactory revision of Mesopotamian history for the troublesome el Amarna [EA] period of Pharaoh Akhnaton (conventionally dated to c.1350 BC). The effect of Hickman's revision, in bringing Hammurabi and his dynasty down some 800-900 years, into and beyond the C10th, was to clutter the EA period all the more. He made no real attempt to tie up the loose kings that he had circulating around in this period. This is unfortunate in that EA, probably more than any other period, is in need of a satisfactory solution as regards Mesopotamian chronology if the revision is to be taken seriously by the experts.
I neither will be attempting here the ambitious but necessary task of solving the Mesopotamian problems of EA as I intend to tackle that in my next article. I just wish to consolidate one area only of Hickman's research: the era of Solomon. 
Now, just as Hickman began his interesting article with mention of Zimri-Lim, king of Mari - and certain events that occurred during his reign and that of his father, Iahdulim - it will be this same Zimri-Lim who will become the central character of this article. Hickman had managed to identify most of Zimri-Lim's outstanding contemporaries with major characters of the C10 world, but he did not actually link Zimri-Lim or his father with any particular persons. The identification of Zimri-Lim, king of Mari, will therefore be the special task of this article.
I believe that a very satisfactory identification can be made between Zimri-Lim and Rezin (or Rezon), Syrian adversary of King Solomon, and son of Eliada (I Kings 11:23). But other Bibles distinguish between a `Rezon' of the time of Rehoboam and a `Rezin' written about in 2.Kings 15:37; Isaiah 9:11. For now we use these 2 versions of the name for the one in the days of Rehoboam realizing that they are separated by some 260/250 years. Therefoer, they should not lead to much confusion. - It is wholly in keeping with the framework established by Hickman for the era of Hammurabi, Zimri-Lim's contemporary, and may thus serve to reinforce Hickman's thesis. Logically it must follow from this identification that Zimri-Lim's father, Iahdulim/Yahdu-Lim, be identified with Rezin's father, Eliada. The similarity in the names Iahdulim and El-iada is actually quite striking.
Benjaminites and Davidites
Hickman found what he believed to be the people of Saul and David in the names "Benjamites" (Benjaminites) and "Dawidum" (Davidum), cited in "three date formulas" of the kings of Mari . It was customary for ancient kings to date certain years of their reigns with reference to notable historical events that occurred within those years. Thus the kings of Mari recorded these years :
Hickman was quite safe, from a linguistic point of view, in associating the "Benjamites" of the Mari Letters [ML] with the biblical Benjaminites. And, since Saul belonged to the tribe of Benjamin (I Samuel 9:1-2), he was quite entitled to suggest an identification between the "Benjamites" and the peoples ruled by Saul. André Lemaire concurred with this view that the "Benjamites" of ML corresponded in name precisely to the southern tribe of Israel . More controversial, though, was Hickman's attempted revitalization of an old and not very popular theory according to which the word "dawidum" of the letters was thought to relate to David's name . According to Lemaire, the word "dawidum" was actually derived from a word "dabduum" meaning "defeat" .
Cities described as belonging to Hadadezer were Betakh, Berothai, Tibhath or Tebah, and Chun (2 Samuel 8:8 & I Chronicles 18:8). In CAH, Tebah is identified as Late Bronze Tubikhu, Chun as Late Bronze Kunu (Roman Conna), and Berothai tentatively as Bereitan, a town south of Baalbek . Hickman added that Berothai, thought to be north of Damascus, "is probably the same as Berothai of Ezekiel 47:16, between Hamath and Damascus" .
Hickman suggested that Khana may possibly refer to the city of Chun in I Chronicles 18:8; and that Shubartu may be derived either "from Zobah or from Sibraim" (Ezekiel 47:16) . Shamsi-Adad boasted that he had erected triumphal stelae in Lebanon. He was allied with princes of upper Syria, notably Carchemish and Qatna, and with Hammurabi of Babylon .
Since Shamsi-Adad's death coincided with the 12th year of Hammurabi , Zimri-Lim apparently was returning to a less hostile environment, where he ruled for at least 17 years . For most of that time he and Hammurabi were on quite friendly terms with one another; but Hammurabi eventually turned against Zimri-Lim and, in his 33rd year, he came to Mari and dismantled its walls . But this may not have been the end of Zimri-Lim because the number of years-names attested for his reign would indicate that he continued to rule Mari for some years after this event. 
When we transfer all of these events onto a revised time plane, there emerges a more precise picture. Hadadezer (Shamsi-Adad), a one-time ally of Rezin's (Zimri-Lim's) grandfather, king of Mari, quarrelled with the king of Mari. Later, Eliada (Iahdulim), Rezin's father, was assassinated by his servants - presumably at the instigation of Hadadezer - and Hadadezer's son Shobach (Iasmakh-Adad) was established as ruler of Mari. The assassination of his father, and the occupation of the city throne to which he was heir, explains why Rezin "fled from his master Hadadezer king of Zobah" (I Kings 11:23). We also now know the city to which Rezin fled, Aleppo, or Halab, in Hamath (Yamkhad).
Scripture goes on to record that "after the slaughter of David" (i.e. after David had slaughtered Hadadezer's forces), Rezin "gathered men about him and became leader of a marauding band" (I Kings 11:24). Some of his band may have been remnants of Hadadezer's decimated forces. We know from Scripture that it was just after Solomon's 20th year as king of Jerusalem that adversaries began to spring up about him. Now, since Solomon's 20th year is to be dated at approximately 950 BC , Rezin's reign probably began shortly after that date.
What follows is a quotation of what Hammurabi wrote to Zimri-Lim:
It is obvious then that the event of Zimri-lim's return from exile in the 16th year of Hammurabi is a very crucial clue for organizing a chronology of this period; especially when it is associated with Rezin's return from exile. Scripture does not say that Rezin seized Mari on his return, but Damascus, where he was made king (I Kings 11:24). We cannot determine whether he took Damascus or Mari first.
Chances are that Rezin was, as Hickman described Shamsi-Adad: "... continually on the move and did not really possess a capital". 
Below is a comparison of the two schemes, the conventional and the revised, with historical characters of the former re-identified and re-dated according to the new scheme being proposed here. I think the reader will agree that the correspondences are striking.
Cities described as belonging to Hadadezer were Betakh, Berothai, Tibhath or Tebah, and Chun (2 Samuel 8:8 & I Chronicles 18:8). In CAH, Tebah is identified as Late Bronze Tubikhu, Chun as Late Bronze Kunu (Roman Conna), and Berothai tentatively as Bereitan, a town south of Baalbek . Hickman added that Berothai, thought to be north of Damascus, "is probably the same as Berothai of Ezekiel 47:16, between Hamath and Damascus". 
In a date- formula from Eshnunna the army of Iasmakh-Adad, the son of Shamsi-Adad, is called "The host of Shubartu and Khana".
Further, in also identifying Zimri Lim as Jeroboam himself, we seem to be able to bring more order in the whole of the history of the Bible lands, especially also if we equate King Ahab with King Baasha (see reasons below).
Notes & References
 Proc. 3rd Seminar of Catastrophism & Ancient History (CAH) (Uni. of Toronto, 1985, ed. M. Luckerman), p. 13-28. With the revised dating for Hammurabi a cascade of redatings is inevitable. For this reason the `sack of Babylon' by Mursili I, and the association of astronomical observations from the so-called `Venus Tablets', which are records referring to the 6th year of a king Ammisaduqa, which is conventionally extrapolted from the Babylonian king lists to have reigned 46 years before the Hittite raid and collapse of the dynasty of Hammurapi. The `Venus Tablet' details a conjunction between the moon and Venus, which can theoretically be fixed in time by modern calculations. However, such celestial events repeat themselves over the ages many times and the task is to find the date for such a conjunction in the revised setting for Hammurapi in the 10th entury BC.[See sidebar article in BA, Jun/Sep 1989, p. 88.]
 List of Mari finds and their description: [See `BAR', Jan/Feb 2003, p40-46]
 Ibid., 13. Mari is Tell Hariri. Kings of Mari include: a) Ishtupilum, of whom an almost 4 foot tall basalt statue is shown in Alfred Hoerth, Archaeology & The Old Testament, p. 122; b) Zimri-Lim. According to BAR magazine, Avraham Malamat is the greatest authority on the Mari texts. Nevertheless, we believe new, valid ideas have been breathed into this great subject right here at CIAS as far as we know, not considered by the early explorers.; [The image of a cuneiform tablet of Iahdulim, father of Zimri-Lim, can be found in Hitti, Phillip K., `History of Syria', N.Y., 1951, p. 67; From Geuthner, Paul, `Syria', Vol. XIX, Librairie Orientaliste, Paris]
 Three basic chronologies known as Low, Middle & High, have been proposed for Hammurabi, with dates ranging from c.1860-1730 BC. His successor and last king of his Babylonian line was Shamsi-ditana when the records tell us, `Hatti came to Akkad'. However, for the newest placement and identity of Hammurabi see this latest article.
 Op. cit., ibid., p. 13. The oldest complete manuscript of the Hebrew Bible is the `Leningrad Codex' dated to around 1010 AD. Two quotations illustrate the spelling of the name `David'. [BAR, Sep/Oct 2003, p. 54, 55]
 Ibid.; Wigram, George V. `The Englishman's Greek Concordance of the New Testament' : being an attempt at a verbal connection between the Greek and the English texts, including a concordance to the proper names, with indexes, Greek-English and English-Greek, and a concordance of various readings. 9th ed., in which is added a vocabulary of New Testament Greek. London : S. Bagster, 1903. xxxv, 1020;
 Op. cit., Ibid., p. 14. The University of Chicago cuneiform website has it that a Shamshi-Adad is the son of Tiglath-[Pileser] where `Tukulti-ti' is transliterated as `Tiglath'. However, the footnote says that the text is put together from fragments of 3 clay bowls and therefore not free of guesswork.
 Biblical Archaeologist Reader (BAR2), 95; Zobah or Aram-Zobah 1.Sam. 14:47f; Psalm 60 "To the chief Musician upon Shushan-eduth, Michtam of David, to teach; when he strove with Aram-naharaim and with Aram-zobah, when Joab returned, and smote of Edom in the valley of salt twelve thousand."; 2.Sam. 10:8. For another similar sounding name click Here.
 CAH, II-2, 533ff.; Zobah/ Zoba was a portion of Syria that was a separate empire during the days of Saul, David, and Solomon, 1.Sam. 14:47; 2.Sam. 8:3; 10:6). For the name Zobah and Subatu see also the `Encyclopedia of El Amarna' under `Subartu', and `Zubaru' and similar names.
 Op. cit., 14-15. See also `The Search for Shamshi-Adad's Capital City', BA, Mar 1985, p. 27f. Suggestions made are 1. Ashur, 2. Chagar Bazar, 3. Tell Leilani. Criteria for the capital are: 1. A city large enough for troops to enter, 2. A palace that could hold at least 400 Hanean guards, and rich enough to provide food for at least 200 poor soldier guards, 3. Contain the Temple belet Apim, 4. the presence of public buildings required the installation of palm, cypress, and myrtle timbers, 5. contain Silver smith and silver workshops, 6. A separate house for Iasmakh-Adad, 7. A location possibly near a swamp or inundated land, 8. Wealthy to justify repeated sacking and looting upon the death of Shamshi-Adad, 9. It had fortifications. According to the information Shubat Enlil would be located beyond Tell Barri and Tell Brak as one passed south to north across the Habur Plains. Somewhere near Tell Brak or Tell Leilani. It appears we should keep in mind a more Syrian location like Qatna too, especially if irrigation canals were nearby.
 Ibid. 15. Following L. King, A History of Sumer and Akkad, 203, n.2, Hickman explained that the name Rimush, eg, can be rendered according to the phonetic Sumeriam "Uru-mu-ush". Similarly, Ilu-kabkabu could also be rendered Uru-kabkabu (Rekhob).
 Ibid., 15. Eshnunna was a town a little north of Baghdad.
 CAH Vol. II-1, 3. Qatna is today known as Tell Mishrife in Syria. The University of Tübingen, Germany, conducts excavations at Qatna where they discovered a library of 63 cuneiform tablets in September of 2002.
 Ibid.; - - To these, `Zimri-Lim's days', we want now to add more information to test our theory by Bible history to check if Zimri Lim and Jeroboam could be the same person, for Jeroboam, because of his Egyptian support from Thutmose III, had great influence in Syria and among the northern Ten Tribes of the 12 tribes of Israel for he was chosen of God to rule over the Ten Tribes.
 Ibid; See also: Biblical Archaeology Review, Mar/Apr 2001, `Excavating the Tribe of Reuben', pp. 36-47. See map.
 Georges Dossin published this tablet more completely in Ugaritica I (Schaeffer 1939):16, note 1) than in his preliminary article two years earlier (Dossin 1937:74) and demonstrated that the Hammurabi in question is the ruler of Aleppo - not Babylon or Kurda. Comment by CIAS: How does this affect our topic? On the other hand, is it for sure that the famous Hammurabi can be just assigned to one area over his life span? Could they rule over adjacent areas by proxy? After all they were not Europeans.
 This tablet from Zimri-Lim's archives as translated by Georges Dossin, 1937. Andre Parrot, Les fouilles de Mari, Syria 18, 1974:113 wrote: `Zimri-Lim's palace was certainly famous everywhere as one of the marvels of its time.' J. Margueron, Recherchen sur les palais mesopotamiens de l'Age du Bronze, Vol. I, 107, 1982, 380, wrote: `This building is not ... the gem of the Orient, rather one palace on a par with many others.'
 CAH Vol. II-1, 7. For your information: S. Langdon, `A Cylinder Seal of the Hammurabi Period' in PSBA, Mar 1912, p. 158-159. A difficult inscription to translate but read as: "Ibrubani son of Erikamatkum servant of the god Lugalamarda".
 Op. cit., 14. For more on Zimri-Lim see also J.M. Sasson, `Zimri-Lim Takes the Grand Tour' in BA, Vol. 47, Dec 1984, p. 246-251; includes a side article on `The Calendar at Mari'. `Every few years the Mari bureaucrats would panic at seeing their calendar falling out-of-step with the seasons.'
See also W.T. Pilter, `The Reign of Rim-Sin and the Conquest of Isin' in PSBA, Vol. XXXIV, 1912, p. 6-16, 41-51.
01. a-na nu-ri-ia....|
02.ki ..... be-.....ma
03. um-ma iluri-im- ilusin bé-li-šu
04. áššum elippê a-na ma-an-nu-um
05. na-da-nim áš-pu-ra-ak-kum
06. elippê ú-ul ta-ad-di-in
07. sabû ma-du-um i-na ..... -at
08. niši du-uk-ki i-na nâri ......
09. 10 elippê û 3600 ši ...... tú
10. ša Ma-an-nu-um-ki-ma- ilušamši
12. ú-ul ta-ad-di-in-ma
13. it-ti sabê ša i-mu-ut-tu
15. ù a-na sabê ša ma-nim-ma-an-[nu?]?
16. wa- ..... aš- ........ bu
17. 20 ka ka-ta-a Ilu-ma-ru-um. . . .
18. mu- ... ul- .... li
"To Nurija the .... say: `Thus (saith) Rim-Sin his lord. I have written thee to give ships to Mannum but thou has not given ships. Many soldiers because of the .... of people (?) have perished in the river ..... Ten ships and thirty-six-hundred .... which Mannum-kima-Šamši has demanded (?) of thee thou hast not given. With the soldiers who have died (be) thy soul! But for the soldiers as many as remain entrust 20 ka (of grain each) to the hands of Ilumarum ....."|
PSBA, Vol. XXXIII, Jan/Feb 1911, p. 222.
According to the source: Hammurabi captures Isin in his 17th year, probably the same event refered to by Rim-Sin, who also captured Isin in an unknown year of his. Samsu-iluna was opposed by Rim-Sin in his 9th year and tablets are said to exist from the 30th year of Rim-Sin after the capture of Isin.