An official lower than a satrap in the Babylonian government. The title is used at Daniel 2:48 in conjunction with “wise men of Babylon.” It seems that these “wise men” were classed as to their official functions. Daniel was appointed chief prefect over all “the wise men of Babylon.”—Da 3:2, 3, 27.
Under the rule of King Darius the Mede, the royal officials entered before Darius “as a throng,” indicating that a goodly number were involved, and said that all the officials, including the prefects, recommended the making of a law limiting petitions to the king only, for 30 days. Daniel continued to petition Jehovah, and Jehovah delivered him; the conspirators themselves suffered death in the lions’ pit.—Da 6:6, 7, 24.