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ECBATANA (ĕk-băt'-ă-na, Heb. ’ahmethā’). The capital of Media and the summer residence of the Persian kings. It is found in the Behistun inscription of Darius I. It is mentioned in an inscription of Tiglath-Pileser I at a much earlier time. It was later the Parthian capital also. In Greek the name of this city became Hagbatana (Herodotus) or Ecbatana (2 Maccabees). It is mentioned in the Bible only in Ezra.6.2 (kjv Achmetha), denoting the location of the palace in which the decree of Cyrus authorizing the building of the Jewish temple was found. According to Herodotus, this city was founded by Deioces, a Median king. Cyrus captured it in 550 b.c., and Alexander the Great took it from the Persians in 330. The modern city of Hamadan is located on or near the same site. Very little remains of the ancient city.

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (1915)


(Ezr 6:2 margin).

See Achmetha.