Date: 2nd Century B.C.E.

The book of Daniel, probably written in its final version in 164 BCE, is probably the latest composition of the Hebrew Bible. Its narrative, however, is set much earlier, during the reigns of the powerful kings of Babylonia, Media, and Persia in the 6th century BCE. The figure of Daniel, known from the Aqhat Epic found at Ugarit and mentioned in Ezekiel as a wise and righteous hero of the past, becomes here a new model of Jewish faithfulness to God. A member of the exile community in Babylonia, he soon rises to become an important Jewish courtier. The anonymous author thus uses the period of exile as a setting to address the challenging issues of Jews living under foreign kings.