603), and it has been conjectured that the puppets were kept in these chapels until the time came for them to be cast into the river.
The Romans had no historical explanation of these curious rites, and neither the theories of their scholars nor the beliefs of the common people, who fancied that the puppets were substitutes for old men who used at one time to be sacrificed to the river, are worth serious consideration.
Both were the mere puppets of factions, who deserted them at once.
After the death of Menahem, Pekah, king of Israel, and Rezin (rather Rasun), king of Syria, allied against Assyria, invaded Judah, and laid siege to Jerusalem in the hope of setting up one of their puppets upon the throne.
They were thus mere puppets of the Divan, and could be deposed and shifted with the same facility as so many pashas - an object of Turkish policy, as each change was a pretext for a new levy of baksheesh.