The towns and villages had generally been laid out by contractors or locatores, men not necessarily of noble birth, who were installed as hereditary chief magistrates of the communities, and received numerous encouragements to reclaim waste lands.
(as in Haggai, promises and encouragements connected with the rebuilding of the Temple) 520 and 518; Malachi, c. 460-450; Joel, 5th century B.C.; Jonah, 4th century B.C. The latest prophecies in the book are, probably, those contained in Zech.
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