The writing on the wall (or sometimes 'handwriting on the wall') is an expression which suggests a portent of doom or misfortune. It originates in the Biblical book of Daniel—where supernatural writing fortells the demise of the Babylonian Empire, but it has come to have a wide usage in language and literature. Etymology According to the Online Etymology Dictionary, the word bible is from Latin biblia, traced from the same word through Medieval Latin and Late Latin The Book of Daniel (דניאל, originally written in Hebrew and Aramaic, is a Book in both the Hebrew Bible ( Tanakh) and the Christian Babylonia was an Amorite state in lower Mesopotamia (modern southern Iraq) with Babylon as its capital
According to Daniel 5:1–31, during a drunken feast, King Belshazzar of Babylon takes sacred golden and silver vessels, which had been removed from the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem by his predecessor Nebuchadnezzar. Belshazzar (or Balthazar; Akkadian Bel-sarra-usur) was a prince of Babylon, the son of Nabonidus, the last king of Babylon according Babylon was a City-state of ancient Mesopotamia, the remains of which can be found in present-day Al Hillah, Babil Province, Iraq Solomon's Temple (בית המקדש transliterated Beit HaMikdash) also known as the First Temple, was according to Jerusalem (יְרוּשָׁלַיִם, he-Latn Yerushaláyim; Arabic: ar القُدس, ar-Latn al-Quds) is the Nebuchadrezzar II, more often called Nebuchadnezzar (c 630-562 BC was a ruler of Babylon in the Chaldean Dynasty, who reigned c Using these holy items, the King and his court praise 'the gods of gold and silver, bronze, iron, wood, and stone'. Immediately, the disembodied fingers of a human hand appear and write on the wall of the royal palace the words מנא ,מנא, תקל, ופרסין (Mene, Mene, Tekel u-Pharsin). Although usually left untranslated in English translations of Daniel, these words are known Aramaic names of measures of currency: MENE, a mina, TEKEL, a spelling of shekel, PERES, half a mena. Aramaic is a Semitic language with The mina (or also mine) is an ancient Greek unit of weight defined as being 50 Shekels The mina like the shekel was also a unit of Shekel also rendered sheqel, refers to one of many ancient units of Weight and Currency.
Despite various inducements, none of the royal magicians or advisors could interpret the omen. The King sends for Daniel, an exiled Jew, taken himself from Jerusalem, who had served in high office under Nebuchadnezzar. Daniel (; Persian: دانيال, Dâniyal or Danial, also Dani, داني; Arabic: دانيال The meaning that Daniel decrypts from these words is based on passive verbs corresponding to the measure names. Rejecting offers of reward, Daniel warns the King of the folly of his arrogant blasphemy before reading the text (vs 25–28).
And this is the writing that was inscribed: MENE, MENE, TEKEL, and PARSIN. This is the interpretation of the matter: MENE (literally a "monetary toll"), God has numbered the days of your kingdom and brought it to an end; TEKEL (literally a "tokenary weight"), you have been weighed on the scales and found wanting; PARSIN (literally a "division" or "portion"), your kingdom is divided and given to the Medes and Persians. The Medes were an ancient Iranian people who lived in the northwestern portions of present-day Iran. The Persian Empire was a series of Iranian empires that ruled over the Iranian plateau, the original Persian homeland and beyond in Western Asia (NRSV)
PARSIN is additionally a pun on the word for Persians. The New Revised Standard Version ( NRSV) of the Bible, released in 1989, is a thorough revision of the Revised Standard Version (RSV
That very night King Belshazzar is slain, and Darius the Mede becomes King. (This reflects the historically verifiable defeat of the Babylonian Empire by Persia). The Persian Empire was a series of Iranian empires that ruled over the Iranian plateau, the original Persian homeland and beyond in Western Asia
The phrase the writing on the wall has come to signify a portent of doom—or the end of an organization or activity. To attribute to someone the ability to "read the writing on the wall" has come to signify the ability to foresee (not necessarily supernaturally) an inevitable decline and end.
A baited banker thus desponds,
From his own hand foresees his fall,
They have his soul, who have his bonds;
'Tis like the writing on the wall. The Oxford English Dictionary ( OED) published by the Oxford University Press (OUP is a comprehensive Dictionary of the English Jonathan Swift (30 November 1667