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Moabite Stone

A block of basalt discovered in 1869 among the ruins of Dibon. It was broken up by Arabs who hoped to make profit out of the sale of the fragments; but fortunately a copy of the inscription had already been made by M. Clermont-Ganneau. So far as possible the pieces were collected and are now in the Museum of the Louvre at Paris. It was inscribed by Mesha, king of Moab, with a record of his exploits against Ahab, king of Israel, and was put up in the high-place at Dibon as a thank-offering to Chemosh, god of the Moabites. It describes how Chemosh was angry with his people, and the land was enslaved for 40 years; then he again led them to victory, and at his command Mesha smote the cities of Israel and offered the spoil to Chemosh. The language of the inscription is practically the Hebrew of the Old Testament. The date of the stone is about 890 B.C.