Babylonian Captivity

illustration by Harold Copping, 1908, of the 'Captives in Babylon'Article

The 70 years of exile (606-536 B.C.) of the inhabitants of Judea in Babylonia. Three invasions of Judea by Nabuchodonosor are recorded (4 Kings, 24 and 25; 2 Par., 36). After each of these a large portion of the population of Jerusalem and of other Judean cities was carried away to the banks of the Euphrates. There the exiles seem to have enjoyed a considerable amount of liberty. They preserved their old clan relations (1 Esdras 2); had their own judges and magistrates (Jeremiah 29; Daniel 13); and some rose to positions of honor and responsibility (Daniel 1; Jeremiah 52; Esther 2). Cyrus gave permission for the exiles to return to Palestine to rebuild Jerusalem and the Temple, and a large number (42,360 Jews and 7,357 servants) availed themselves of it (1 Esdras 2). Other expeditions followed under Esdras and Nehemias (1 Esdras 7-10; 2 Esdras 1-13).

MLA Citation

  • “Babylonian Captivity”. New Catholic Dictionary. CatholicSaints.Info. 30 August 2018. Web. 2 December 2021. <>