“O thou king! the Most High God gave Nebuchadnezzar a kingdom, and majesty, and glory, and honor. All people, nations and languages trembled and feared before him. Whom he would he slew, and whom he would he kept alive; whom he would he set up, and whom he would he put down. But when his heart was lifted up, and his mind hardened in pride, he was deposed from his kingly throne and his glory was taken from him; and he was driven from the sons of men, and his heart was made like the beasts, and his dwelling was with the wild asses. They fed him with grass like oxen, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven, till he knew that the Most High God ruleth in the kingdom of men, and that he appointeth over it whomsoever he will. And thou, O Belshazzar, hast not humbled thy heart, though thou knewest all this, but hast lifted up thyself against the Lord of heaven; and they have brought the vessels of his house before thee, and thou and thy lords, thy wives and thy concubines, have drunk wine in them; and thou hast praised the gods of silver and gold, of brass, iron, wood and stone, which see not, nor bear, nor know; and the God in whose hand thy breath is, thou hast not glorified.
“This is the interpretation of the thing. Mene—God hath numbered thy kingdom and finished it; Tekel—thou art weighed in the balances and found wanting; Peres—thy kingdom is divided and given to the Medes and Persians.”
Then commanded Belshazzar, and they clothed Daniel with scarlet, and put a chain of gold about his neck, and made a proclamation concerning him, that he should be the third ruler in the kingdom.
. . . . . . .
As soon as Cyrus saw that the ditches, which they had long worked upon, were finished, he began to plan for the execution of his vast design, which as yet he had communicated to no one. He was informed that, in the city, on a certain day, a great festival was to be celebrated, and that the Babylonians, on occasions of that solemnity, were accustomed to pass the whole night in drunkenness and debauchery. Of this impious feast we have already spoken. Thus Providence furnished him with as fit an opportunity as he could desire. He therefore posted a part of his troops on that side where the river entered the city, and another part on that side where it went out, and commanded them to enter the city that very night by marching along the channel of the river as soon as ever they found it fordable. Having given all necessary orders, he exhorted his officers to follow him—that he was under the direction of the gods. In the evening he gave orders to open the great receptacles, or ditches, on both sides of the town, above and below, that the waters of the rivers might run into them. By this means the Euphrates was quickly emptied and its channel became dry. Then the two bodies of troops, according to their orders, went into the channels, the one commanded by Gobryas and the other by Gadates, and advanced toward each other without meeting any impediment.