Pul: 1. An Assyrian king. It has been a question whether he was
identical with Tiglath-pileser III. (q.v.), or was his
predecessor. The weight of evidence is certainly in favour of
their identity. Pul was the throne-name he bore in Babylonia as
king of Babylon, and Tiglath-pileser the throne-name he bore as
king of Assyria. He was the founder of what is called the second
Assyrian empire. He consolidated and organized his conquests on
a large scale. He subdued Northern Syria and Hamath, and the
kings of Syria rendered him homage and paid him tribute. His
ambition was to found in Western Asia a kingdom which should
embrace the whole civilized world, having Nineveh as its centre.
Menahem, king of Israel, gave him the enormous tribute of a
thousand talents of silver, "that his hand might be with him"
(2 Kings 15:19; 1 Chronicles 5:26) The fact that this tribute could be paid
showed the wealthy condition of the little kingdom of Israel
even in this age of disorder and misgovernment. Having reduced
Syria, he turned his arms against Babylon, which he subdued. The
Babylonian king was slain, and Babylon and other Chaldean cities
were taken, and Pul assumed the title of "King of Sumer [i.e.,
Shinar] and Accad." He was succeeded by Shalmanezer IV.