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Tatnai and Shethar-boznai

Tatnai was a Persian Satrap or Governor of the Province west of the Euphrates in the time of Darius and Zerubbabel; Shethar-Boznai was an officer under his command The two united with the Apharsachites in trying to obstruct the building of the Second Temple, and in writing a letter to Darius, of which a copy is preserved in Ezra (6-17).

In this letter they reported that "the house of the great God" in Judea was being built with great stones, and that the work was going on fast, on the alleged authority of a Degree from Cyrus. They requested that search might be made in the Rolls Court whether such a Degree was ever given, and asked for the King's pleasure in the matter. The decree was found at Ecbatana, and a letter was sent to Tatnai and Shethar-Boznai from Darius, ordering them no more to obstruct, but, on the contrary, to aid the Elders of the Jews in rebuilding the Temple by supplying them both with money and with beasts, corn, salt, wine, and oil for the sacrifices. Shethar-Boznai, after the receipt of this Decree, offered no further obstruction to the Jews. Their names have been hence introduced into some of the high Degrees in Freemasonry.

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