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One of the oldest and greatest cities of Mesopotamia. Nineveh was the capital of Assyria at its height, from the time of Sennacherib, who assumed the throne in 705, to its fall in 612 BCE. The city was located on the east bank of the Tigris River opposite Mosul. The earliest biblical mention of Nineveh is in the Table of Nations (Gen 10:11), which claims Nimrod as the city’s founder. Parallel passages in (2Kgs 19:36 and Isa 37:37 mention Nineveh in conjunction with the assassination of Sennacherib by his two sons. The end of Nineveh is proclaimed by two biblical prophets, Zephaniah and Nahum. The book of Jonah, however, presents the people of Nineveh as unusually responsive to the message of God’s prophet. According to the NT, these Ninevites will arise at the last judgment to condemn the unrepentant generation of Jesus (Matt 12:41; Luke 11:30-32).

  • Powell, Mark Allan, ed. HarperCollins Bible Dictionary. Abridged Edition. Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 2009.