Herodotus (490-425/420 BCE)

“In the temple of Babylon there is a second shrine lower down, in which is a great sitting figure of Bel, all of gold on a golden throne, supported on a base of gold, with a golden table standing beside it. I was told by the Chaldaeans that, to make all this, more than twenty-two tons of gold were used.”

  • From The Histories (1.182-183) by Herodotus, translated by Aubrey De Sélincourt and revised by John Marincola. He is likely describing a ziggurat in the Babylonian temple complex of Esagila. He goes on to mention two more altars outside of the temple described above; one of gold, and another of silver.


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