A Dictionary of the Book of Mormon/Pahoran, the elder

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PAHORAN, THE ELDER. The third chief judge of the Nephite republic. He succeeded his father, Nephihah, on the judgment seat, B. C, 68, and held that exalted position until his death in B. C. 53, when he was succeeded by his son, Pahoran. The days that Pahoran judged the people were full of tumult and war. No sooner was he placed on the judgment seat than great contentions arose between the royalists and republicans. There was quite a number of the people who desired to restore the monarchy, but they were not as numerous as those who desired to maintain the existing form of government. Being outvoted, the king-men refused to take up arms against the hosts of the Lamanites under Amalickiah, who were then invading the lands of the Nephites. Full power being given to Moroni, the Nephite general, to deal with these rebels, he marched against them with his forces, and in the conflict that followed 4,000 of the royalists were slain, while many of their leaders were captured and cast into prison. The remainder submitted, joined their countrymen in opposing the Lamanite hosts, and gave full allegiance to the republican government. In the meantime, the Nephites having been weakened by their internal dissensions, Amalickiah marched triumphantly northward, capturing city after city, along the Atlantic seaboard, while his brother Ammoron conducted a victorious campaign in the southwest. The calamities brought on by this royalist defection lasted many years, for the war was not ended until B. C. 61, and for many years afterwards its evil effects, in the condition of the people, were widely manifest. Even while the war continued, a second royalist uprising occurred. Pachus, the leader, drove Pahoran from the judgment seat and obtained control in Zarahemla. The chief judge retired to Gideon. Shortly afterwards (B. C. 62), Moroni came to the assistance of Pahoran, and their united forces gave battle to the rebels, in which encounter Pachus was slain and his followers defeated. This ended the second attempt to re-establish the kingly form of government during Pahoran's judgeship. After the termination of the war with the Lamanites, every effort was put forth to counteract the demoralization which the long-continued struggle had induced. Helaman, and other leaders in the priesthood, went forth among the people preaching the word and organizing the churches; while Pahoran and his associates gave their attention to restoring civil order. A few years later (B. C. 55), the colonization of the northern continent began, which was continued with increasing numbers of emigrants during the succeeding years. In B. C. 53, dissension again had place among the Nephites, numbers went over to the Lamanites and stirred up strife. An invasion followed, which was speedily repulsed by the forces of Moronihah, the son of Moroni. The character of Pahoran is best shown in his epistle to Moroni (Alma, ch. 61). He was evidently a wise judge, a faithful servant of God, and a loyal citizen of the republic. He also seems to have possessed the characteristics of patience, mildness and forgiveness to a marked degree, but was not lacking in courage, zeal or determination.