(Heb. Neko', נכו, an Egyptian name; Sept. and Josephus, Νεχαώ; fully פִּרעֹה נכו, Pharaoh Necho, 2Ki 23:29,33-35, etc.; once Heb. נכֹה, Nekoh', Jer 46:2; Herodotus, Νεκώς; on the twofold appellation of this king on the monuments, see Rosellini, Monuum. Stor. 2:131 sq., tab. 9), an Egyptian king, son and successor (according to Herodotus, 2:158) of Psammetichus, and contemporary of the Jewish king Josiah (B.C. 609). The wars and successes of Pharaoh-Necho in Syria are recorded by sacred as well as profane writers, affording a striking instance of agreement between them. On coming to the throne he organized powerful fleets on the Mediterranean and the Red Sea. Having engaged some Phoenician sailors, he sent them on a voyage of discovery along the coasts of Africa. According to Herodotus (4:42, 3), they circumnavigated that continent from the Arabian Gulf by the Pillars of Hercules (Gibraltar) to Egypt, and related that in the south they had the sun on their right hand, which that historian could not believe. Most modern writers, consider this testimony sufficient, and the voyage attested (see Grote, Hist. of Greece, 3:283 sq.; Beck, Welt-Gesch. 1:595 sq.; comp. Pliny, Hist. Nat. 2:67; Arrian, Rer. Ind. ad fin.). Necho undertook to check the growth of Babylonian power, and with this view collected a powerful army, and entering Palestine, followed the route along the sea-coast of Judaea, intending to besiege the town of Carchemish on the Euphrates. But Josiah, king of Judah, offended at the passage of the Egyptian army through his territories, resolved to impede, if unable to prevent, their march. Necho sent messengers to induce him to desist, assuring him that he had no hostile intentions against Judsea, "but against the house wherewith I have war; for God commanded me to make haste." This conciliatory message was of no avail. Josiah posted himself in the valley of Megiddo, and prepared to oppose the Egyptians. Megiddo was a city in the tribe of Manasseh, between forty and fifty miles to the north of Jerusalem, and within three hours of the coast. It is apparently confounded by Herodotus with Magdolus in Egypt. In this valley the feeble forces of the Jewish king, having attacked Necho, were routed with great slaughter. Josiah being wounded in the neck with an arrow, ordered his attendants to take him from the field. Escaping from the heavy shower of arrows with which their broken ranks were overwhelmed, they removed him from the chariot in which he had been wounded, and placing him in a "second one that he had," they conveyed him to Jerusalem, where he died (2Ki 23:29-30; 2Ch 35:20 sq.). SEE JOSIAH. Necho continued his march to the Euphrates. But three months had scarcely elapsed when, returning from the capture of Carchemish and the defeat of the Chaldeans, he learned that, though Josiah had left an elder son, Jehoahaz had caused himself to be proclaimed king on the death of his father, without soliciting Necho to sanction his taking the crown. Incensed at this, he deposed Jehoahaz (apparently having summoned him to Riblah), and carried him a prisoner to Jerusalem. On arriving there, Necho made Eliakin, the eldest son, king, changing his name to Jehoiakim; and taking the silver and gold which had been levied upon the Jewish nation, he returned to Egypt with the captive Jehoahaz, who there died (2Ki 23:31 sq.; 2Ch 36:1-4). Herodotus says that Necho, after having routed the Syrians (the Jews) at Magdolus, took Cadytis, a large city of Syria, in Palestine, which, he adds, is very little less than Sardis (2:159; 3:5). By Cadytis there is scarcely a doubt he meant Jerusalem; the word is only a Greek form of the ancient, as well as the modern, name of that city. In the fourth year after this expedition Necho again marched into Syria, and advanced to the Euphrates. Here Nebuchadnezzar completely routed his army, recovered the town of Carchemish, and, pushing his conquests through Palestine, took from Necho all the territory belonging to the Pharaohs, from the Euphrates to the southern extremity of Syria (2Ki 24:7-8; Jer 46:2; 2Ch 36:9). SEE NEBUCHADNEZZAR. Necho soon after died, and was succeeded by Psammetichus II (Wilkinson's Anc. Egyptians, 1:157 sq.). SEE EGYPT. According to Manetho (Euseb. Chronicles Arzen. 1:219), Necho was the sixth king in the twenty-sixth dynasty, successor of Psammetichus, and as there had been another of the same name, he was properly Necho the Second. The period of his reign was, according to Manetho, six, according to Herodotus sixteen, vears (consult Gesenius, Jesaia, 1:596). See Larcherj Ad Herod. 2:158 sq.; 4:42; Diod. 1:33, and Wess. ad loc.; Strabo, 1:56; Heeren,
African Nat. 2:374, 389; Bunsen, Egyptens Stelle in der Welt-Geschichte, 3:141 sq; SEE PHARAOH.