Chedorlaomer (Hebrew: כדרלעמר, Keḏorlāʻōmer; Elamite: Kudur-lagamaru; "Name means::servant or worshipper of Lagamar") (r.2079 AM–Died::Defeated on::Killed in action::2092 AM) was a king of the northern Babylonian country of Elam in the last days of the House of Shem. Comparison of secular and Biblical history shows him to have been an ally of allied with::Hammurabi (known as Amraphel in the Bible), king of the south of Babylonia (Shinar), until his defeat at the hands of Defeated by::Abraham. Hammurabi went on to establish the first unified Babylonian Empire, until its later (temporary) conquest by the Assyrian Empire.
"Chedorlaomer" is a legitimate Elamite compound name, from kudur or khudur a servant or worshipper, and Lagamar, the name of an Elamite goddess. Beyond that, few incontrovertible secular records survive of him. The dating of his reign is from Biblical evidence only and is based on a synchrony with Abraham in the ninth year of Abraham's sojourn in Canaan.
AccessionChedorlaomer's accession date of 2079 AM refers to his conquest of the five kings of the plain country near the Dead Sea, called "Pentapolis" by James Ussher, that includes Sodom, Gomorrah, Admah, Zeboyim, and Zoar.
"Twelve years they served Chedorlaomer, and in the thirteenth year they rebelled." - Genesis 14:4
- Main Article: Fought in::War of the Ten Kings
In the fourteenth year of Chedorlaomer's reign–or at least, the fourteenth year following his conquest of the plains cities–the five kings of the plains rebelled against him. Chedorlaomer responded by going to war. The Bible says that Hammurabi (known as Amraphel), allied with::Arioch of Larsa (Ellasar), and allied with::Tidal, king of "the nations" (literally, goyim), joined forces with him in this war. At first the war went well, as they wiped out the Rephaims, the Zuzims, the Emims, and the Horites; the Bible says that Amalekites and Ammonites would come to live in that region in later years. Chedorlaomer's coalition then attacked the cities of the plains, plundered Sodom and Gomorrah, and took several hostages, including Lot and his family.
News of Lot's capture reached Abraham, who then attacked Chedorlaomer's rear with a force of 318 men of his own, plus the forces of three other confederates. Chedorlaomer lost that battle, all the plunder he had taken, and presumably his life. Ancient inscriptions suggest that Hammurabi fell out with Chedorlaomer's other allies and ousted them from all of Mesopotamia. Hammurabi then became the first ruler of a united Babylonia.
- Rogers, Robert W., Kohler, Kaufman, and Jastrow, Marcus. "Entry for Amraphel." The Jewish Encyclopedia, 2002. Accessed December 26, 2007.
- Jastrow, Morris, Jr., and Rogers, Robert W. "Entry for Chedorlaomer." The Jewish Encyclopedia, 2002. Accessed December 26, 2007.
- James Ussher, The Annals of the World, Larry Pierce, ed., Green Forest, AR: Master Books, 2003 (ISBN 0890513600), pgh. 69
- Genesis 14:1-4
- Ussher, op. cit., pgh. 77
- Entry for Chedorlaomer, Easton's Bible Dictionary. Accessed December 26, 2007.