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A History Of The Jewish People In The Time Of Jesus Christ: Two Divisions In Five Volumes



JOSEPHUS, Antiq. xvii. 9–11; Wars of the Jews, ii. 1–6. ZONARAS, Annales, vi. 1–2 (summary from Josephus).

NICOLAS OF DAMASCUS in Müller, Fragmenta Historicorum Graecarum, iii. 353 sq.; Feder, Excerpta Escurialensia, p. 67 sq.

EWALD, History of Israel, v. 449–457.

GEIKIE, Life and Words of Christ, 7th ed., London 1879, i. 263–272.

GRÄTZ, Geschichte der Juden, 4 Aufl. iii. pp. 246–253.

HITZIG, Geschichte des Volkes Israel, ii. 559–562.

SCHNECKENBURGER, Zeitgeschichte, pp. 200–203.

HAUSRATH, Neutestamentliche Zeitgeschichte, 2 Aufl. i. 275–283.

LEWIN, Fasti sacri ad Ann. 4.

BRANN, De Herodis qui dicitur Magni filiis patrem in imperio secutis, pars 1, 1873 (treats only of the events of B.C. 4).

MENKE, Bibelatlas, Bl. V. “Judea and neighbouring countries in the time of Christ and the Apostles.”

BY the last will of Herod, Archelaus had been named his successor on the throne. Archelaus therefore made it his first business to secure the emperor’s confirmation of his father’s arrangement, and with this end in view he resolved to make a journey to Rome. But before he could start on such an expedition, he had to stamp out a rebellion in Jerusalem. The people could not so easily forget the execution of the two rabbis, Judas and Matthias, and violently insisted that Archelaus should bring to punishment the counsellors of Herod. Archelaus endeavoured at first in a conciliatory manner to dissuade the people from their purpose. But when he could not succeed in this way, the only result of his proposals being the increase of the tumult, he resolved to crush the revolt by violence. He accordingly sent forth a detachment of soldiers against the people assembled in the temple, where the people who had flocked into Jerusalem in prospect of the approaching Passover festival were wont to gather at that season in great crowds. But the detachment sent was not strong enough to make way against the excited masses. A portion of the soldiers was stoned by the people; the rest, together with their leader, took to flight. Archelaus was now obliged to call out his whole fighting force; and only by the help of his entire army, amid great bloodshed, was he able to put down the rebellion.

After Archelaus had thus by the exercise of force secured quiet, he hastened to Rome, leaving his brother Philip to act as administrator of the kingdom. Scarcely had he gone, when Antipas also started for Rome in order to press his own claims there. He had by the third and last will of Herod received only Galilee and Perea, whereas in the second will he had been appointed successor to the throne. He therefore now wished to represent to the emperor that to him, and not to Archelaus, did the kingdom properly belong. Many other members of the Herodian family were also present in Rome at the same time as Archelaus and Antipas, and these now mostly appeared against Archelaus, and expressed a strong desire that Palestine should now be put under immediate Roman government; or if this could not be, then they would rather have Antipas than Archelaus.

Hence the sons of Herod plotted and schemed against one another in Rome. Augustus, in whose hands the decision lay, meanwhile convoked at his palace a consultative assembly, at which the opposing brothers were called upon to make a statement of their conflicting claims. A certain Antipater spoke on behalf of Antipas, while Nicolas of Damascus, formerly the minister of Herod, appeared on behalf of Archelaus. Each party sought to win over the emperor to his side, partly by advancing arguments, partly by insinuating suspicions against his opponent. When Augustus had heard both parties, he inclined more to the side of Archelaus, and made a statement to the effect that he was most fit to ascend the royal throne. Yet he did not wish immediately to decide the matter, and so dismissed the assembly without issuing a final and formal judgment.

But before the question about the succession to the throne had been decided in Rome, new troubles had broken out in Judea. Soon after the departure of Archelaus the Jews had again risen in revolt, but had been restored to quiet by Varus, the governor of Syria. Varus had then returned to Antioch. leaving behind him in Jerusalem a legion to maintain order. But scarcely had he gone when the storm broke out afresh. After Herod’s death, pending the settlement of the question of succession to the throne, the emperor had sent to Palestine a procurator, Sabinus. But he oppressed the people in every sort of way, and behaved in all directions in the most reckless manner. Hence it was that a revolt broke out again immediately after the withdrawal of Varus. It was now the season of the Passover festival, and therefore crowds of people were present in Jerusalem. They were divided into three great divisions, and attacked the Romans at the three different points: on the north of the temple, south beside the racecourse, and on the west of the city beside the royal palace. The keenest struggle took place, first of all, at the temple. The Romans pressed forward successfully into the temple court; but the Jews offered a most stubborn resistance,—mounted upon the roofs of the buildings which surround the temple court, and hurled down stones upon the soldiers. Thses were therefore obliged to have recourse to fire, set flames to the roofs, and in this way succeeded at last in reaching the temple mount. When the longed for booty of the treasury of the temple fell into their hands, Sabinus appropriated to himself 400 talents.

But this first defeat of the rebels was only the signal for the further spread of the rebellion. In Jerusalem a portion of the soldiers of Herod joined the rebels, and consequently they were able to lay siege to Sabinus and his fighting force in the palace of Herod. In the neighbourhood of Sepphoris in Galilee, Judas, the son of that Hezekiah with whom Herod had once, to the great indignation of the Sanhedrim, made so short a process (see vol. i. p. 383), gathered a number about him, gained possession of the weapons stored up in the royal arsenal, distributed these among his followers, and was able then to make all Galilee unsafe. He is even said to have aimed at obtaining the royal crown. In Perea a certain Simon, formerly a slave of Herod, collected a band, and had himself proclaimed king by his followers; but was soon afterwards conquered by a Roman detachment, and put to death. Finally, it is reported of one termed Athronges, formerly a shepherd, that he had assumed the royal crown, and for a long time, along with his four brothers, kept the country in a ferment.—It was a time of general upheaval, when every one sought to secure the greatest possible benefit for himself. On the part of the people there was agreement only on this one point, that every one wished at any cost to be freed from the power of the Romans.

When Varus was informed of these proceedings, he hastened from Antioch, with the two legions which he still had with him, in order to restore order in Palestine. On the way he also procured, in addition, Arabian auxiliary troops sent by King Aretas, as well as other auxiliaries. With this fighting force he first of all reduced Galilee. Sepphoris, where that Judas had been fermenting disorder, was consigned to the flames, and the inhabitants sold as slaves. Thence Varus proceeded to Samaria, which, however, he spared because it had not taken part in the revolt. He then directed his course toward Jerusalem, where the legion stationed there was still being besieged by the Jews in the royal palace. Varus had there an easy game to play; for when the besiegers saw the powerful Roman forces approach, they lost their courage and took to flight. In this way Varus became lord of city and country. But Sabinus, who in consequence of his robbing the temple and of other misdeeds had no good conscience, made off as quickly as possible. Varus then led his troops up and down through the country, apprehending the rebels who were now lurking here and there in small parties. He had two thousand of them crucified, while he granted pardon to the mass of the people. After he had then stamped out the rebellion, he returned to Antioch.

While these things were going on in Judea, Archelaus and Antipas were still in Rome waiting for the decision of the emperor. Before this was issued an embassy from the people of Judea appeared before the emperor, asking that none of the Herodians should be appointed king, but that they should be permitted to live in accordance with their own laws. About the same time Philip also, the last of the three brothers, to whom territories had been bequeathed by Herod, made his appearance in Rome in order to press his claims, and likewise to support those of his brother Archelaus. In regard to these conflicting claims, Augustus was obliged at last to give a decision. In an assembly which he fixed precisely for this purpose in the temple of Apollo, he heard first of all the ambassadors from the Jewish people. These reported a long list of scandalous misdeeds which Herod had allowed and sought them to buttress, their demand that none of the Herodian race should any more govern in Palestine, but that it should be granted them to live according to their own laws under Roman suzerainty. When they had ended, Nicolas of Damascus arose and spoke on behalf of his master Archelaus. When Augustus had thus heard both sides, he issued his decision after a few days. By it the will of Herod was in all essential points sustained. Archelaus obtained the territory assigned to him: Judea, Samaria, Idumea; only the cities of Gaza, Gadara, and Hippos were severed from these domains and attached to the province of Syria; and instead of the title of king, that of ethnarch was given him. Antipas obtained Galilee and Perea, with the title of tetrarch; Philip, also as tetrarch. received the districts of Batanea, Trachonitis, and Auranitis. Archelaus was to derive from his territories an income of 600 talents, Antipas 200 talents, and Philip 100 talents. Also Salome, the sister of Herod the Great, obtained the portion assigned to her, the cities of Jamnia, Azotus, Phasaelis, and 500,000 pieces of silver, in addition to the palace at Ascalon.—Salome lived in the enjoyment of these possessions for some twelve or fourteen years. She died about A.D. 10, in the time of the procurator M. Ambivius, and bequeathed her property to the Empress Livia.

What had been the empire of Herod was therefore now parted into three territories, each of which has for a while its own history.


JOSEPHUS, Antiq. xviii. 2. 1, 4. 6, 6. 10; Wars of the Jews, ii. 9. 1–6.

On the coins, see below.

EWALD, History of Israel, vi. 71–74, 347.

WESTCOTT in Smith’s Dictionary of the Bible.

WINER, Realwörterbuch, ii. 250.

LEYRER in Herzog’s Real-Encyclopaedie, 2 Aufl. xi. 618.

KEIM, Jesus of Nazara, i. 258, 274; in Schenkel’s Bibellexicon, iii. 40–42.

LEWIN, Fasti Sacri (see Index, p. 408).

BRANN, Die Söhne des Herodes, 1873 (reprint from the Monatsschrift für Geschichte und Wissenschaft des Judenthums), pp. 77–87.

THE extent of the territory which Philip received is variously stated in different places by Josephus. Putting altogether, it embraced the districts of Batanea, Trachonitis, Auranitis, Gaulanitis, Panias, and, according to Luke 3:1, also Iturea. The districts named were not ancient tribal possessions of the Jewish people, but were in great part added to the Jewish territory in later times. The population was a mixed one; and the non-Jewish, i.e. Syrian and Greek, element prevailed. Philip himself was certainly a real exception among the sons and grandsons of Herod. While all the others, copying fathers and grandfathers, were ambitious, imperious, harsh, and tyrannical toward their subjects, nothing but what is honourable is told of Philip. His reign was mild, just, and peaceful. To the traditions of his father he remained faithful only in this, that he also sought renown in the construction of great buildings. The building of two cities by him is expressly reported. The ancient Panias, at the sources of the Jordan, north of the lake of Gennezaret, he rebuilt, with larger dimensions, and gave it, in honour of the emperor, the name of Caesarea. To distinguish it from the well-known Caesarea by the sea, it was called Caesarea Philippi, under which name we are familiar with it in the Gospel history (Matt. 16:13; Mark 8:27). The other city which he rebuilt was the Bethsaida situated at the point where the Jordan enters into the lake of Gennezaret, which, in honour of the daughter of Augustus, he named Julias. Josephus tells of him, incidentally, that he first discovered and proved that the supposed sources of the Jordan at Panias obtained their water by a subterranean passage from the so-called Phiala. Philip demonstrated this by throwing in chaff into the Phiala, which came out again at Panias.

We know, however, nothing more about his reign beyond what Josephus tells us in reporting his death: “He had shown himself a person of moderation and quietness in the conduct of his life and government He constantly lived in that country which was subject to him. He used to make his progress with a few chosen friends; his tribunal, also, on which he sat in judgment, followed him in his progress; and when any one met him who wanted his assistance, he made no delay, but had his tribunal set down immediately, wheresoever he happened to be, and sat down upon it and heard his complaint; he then ordered the guilty, that were convicted, to be punished, and absolved those that were accused unjustly.”—Of his private life we know only that he was married to Salome, daughter of Herodias, and that there were no children by this marriage.—According to his political principles, he was a consistent friend of the Romans, and laid great value upon the favour of the emperor. This is shown not only in his giving to his cities the names of Caesarea and Julias, but also in his impressing upon his coins the images of Augustus and Tiberius,—this being the first instance in which any likeness was engraven on the coins of a Jewish prince.

Philip died, after a reign of thirty-seven years, in the 20th year of Tiberius, A.D. 33–34, and was buried in the tomb built by himself. His territory was then added to that of Syria, but retained the right of administering its own revenues; and was again, after a few years, made over to a prince of the Herodian family. The Emperor Caligula, immediately after his succession to the throne, in March A.D. 37, gifted the tetrarchy of Philip to Agrippa, a son of that Aristobolus who had been executed by his father Herod, and so a grandson of Herod and Mariamme.

b. HEROD ANTIPAS, B.C. 4–A.D. 39

JOSEPHUS, Antiq. xviii. 2. 1 and 3, 4. 5, 5. 1–3, 7. 1–2; Wars of the Jews, ii. 9. 1, 6.

In the New Testament: Matt. 14:1–11; Mark 6:14–28; Luke 3:19 f., 9:7–9, 13:31, 23:7–12.

On the coins, see below.

GEIKIE, Life and Words of Christ, 7th ed. London 1879, i. 298–302, 500, ii. 182.

EWALD, History of Israel, vi. 74–80, vii. 241, 242.

HAUSRATH, Neutestamentliche Zeitgeschichte, 2 Aufl. i. 284 ff., 325 ff., ii. 207 ff., 221 ff.

WINER, Realwörterbuch, i. 484.

WIESELER, Chronological Synopsis of the Four Gospels, pp. 50, 159, 216. Also in Herzog’s Real-Encyclopaedie, 2 Aufl. i. 465 f.

KEIM, Jesus of Nazara, i. 269, ii. 333, 340, 392, iv. 217, vi. 103. Also in Schenkel’s Bibellexikon, iii. 42–46.

GERLACH in the Zeitschrift für luth. Theologie, 1869, pp. 32–53.

LEWIN, Fasti Sacri (see Index, p. 408).

BRANN, Die Söhne des Herodes, 1873 (reprint from the Monatsschrift für Geschichte und Wissenschaft des Judenthums), pp. 17–76.

In the partition of their father’s possessions, a larger slice than that given to Philip fell to the lot of his half-brother Antipas, or, as he is frequently called by Josephus, on the coins, and in the New Testament, Herod, to whom, as well as to Philip, was given the title of tetrarch. His territory, embracing Galilee and Perea, was indeed broken up into two parts by the so-called Decapolis, which came in like a wedge between Galilee and Perea. But for this he was amply indemnified by the fact that the half of his domains consisted of the beautiful, fertile, and thickly-populated Galilee, with its vigorous and brave, though freedom-loving inhabitants. In point of character, Antipas was a genuine son of old Herod,—sly, ambitious, and luxurious, only not so able as his father. In regard to his slyness we have unmistakable evidence from the life of Jesus, who, on a memorable occasion, attached to him the designation of “that fox.” It was always necessary to have recourse to craft in order to keep the Galileans in order, and to guard the frontiers of Perea against the robber raids of the Arabians. For the defence of Galilee he rebuilt Sepphoris, that had been destroyed by fire by the soldiers of Varus (see above, p. 4), and surrounded it with strong walls. And for the defence of Perea he fortified Betharamphtha, and named it after the emperor’s wife Livias or Julias. He was also undoubtedly induced by political motives to marry the daughter of the Arabian king Aretas. He thought that in this way he would be better able than by all fortifications to secure the country against the inroads of the Arabians; and perhaps it was Augustus himself who persuaded him to enter on this marriage.

Like all the Herods, Herod Antipas delighted in magnificent buildings. In this direction he was particularly taken up with the idea of building a splendid capital, which he undertook during the time of Tiberius. He selected, as the site for his city, the most beautiful spot in Galilee, the western bank of the lake of Gennezaret, in the neighbourhood of the warm springs of Emmaus. The choice of this spot was in one respect not a happy one. For just on that spot on which the city was built, as became apparent from the sepulchral monuments, was an ancient burying-ground, and the inhabiting of such a place was impossible to the Jews who strictly observed the law, since every contact with a grave occasioned ceremonial impurity of seven days. Herod was therefore obliged, in order to secure inhabitants for his city, to settle there by force many foreigners, adventurers, and beggars, so that the population was of a very mixed description. But in regard to the beauty of the buildings nothing more perfect could be desired. It had, among other public structures, a δτάδιον and a royal palace, which, indeed, by its figures of animals gave offence, and during the war with the Romans was sacrificed to the fanaticism of the Jews. Also there was not wanting a Jewish προσευχή, a μέγιστον οἴκημα. The constitution of the city was wholly modelled upon the Hellenistic pattern. It had a council, βουλή, of 600 members, with an ἄρχων, and a committee of the δέκα πρῶτοι; also Hyparchs and an Agoranomos. In honour of the emperor the new capital was named Tiberias.

During the time of Pilate, A.D. 26–36, Antipas, together with his brother, successfully made complaints against Pilate on account of his having set up an offensive votive shield in the palace at Jerusalem. And as he was in this instance the representation of the Jewish claims, he also did not venture otherwise, notwithstanding his paganish buildings at Tiberias, to break away completely from the traditions of Judaism, and even in this respect showed himself a true son of Herod. From the Gospel we know that he went up to the feast at Jerusalem (Luke 23:7); and his coins, just like those of old Herod, have upon them no image.

The complaint against Pilate was probably not made before A.D. 36. Also what we otherwise known of Herod Antipas belongs to the later period, somewhere in the last ten years of his reign. During that period he was almost wholly under the influence of a woman, who occasioned to him a whole series of misfortunes. When once he made a journey to Rome, we know not for what purpose, nor exactly at what time, he started before the departure of his half-brother Herod, the son of Mariamme the high priest’s daughter, who had been designated eventual successor to the throne in the first will of Herod (see vol. i. p. 462). That Herod was married to Herodias, a daughter of Aristobulus, executed in B.C. 7. The issue of this marriage was Salome, the wife of the tetrarch Philip, who was then not the first husband, as the Gospels tell us, but the son-in-law of Herodias. When now Antipas paid a visit to the house of his brother, he was fascinated by Herodias, and made his proposals of marriage, to which the ambitious woman readily assented. It was arranged that Herod on his return from Rome should divorce his wife, the daughter of Aretas, and should be married to Herodias. With this promise he proceeded on his journey to Rome. On his return, his wife, who had meanwhile obtained information about the proposed procedure, entreated him that he would have her sent to Machärus, the strong fortress east of the Dead Sea, which then belonged to Aretas. Since Antipas did not desire that his wife should know about his secret plans, he granted her wish. But scarcely had the daughter of Aretas reached Machärus, when she fled thence to her father, and let him know what friendly intentions her husband entertained regarding her. From that moment the Arabian king took up an attitude of direct opposition to Herod Antipas. Nevertheless Antipas seems to have proceeded immediately with his marriage with Herodias.

At the time of this marriage, or soon thereafter, John the Baptist and Jesus Christ made their appearance, both of them carrying on their labours in the domains of Antipas, the Baptist in Perea, Jesus in Galilee. Of John the Baptist, Josephus gives the following account: “He was a good man, and commanded the Jews to exercise virtue, both as to righteousness towards one another and piety towards God, and so to come to baptism. For the washing would be acceptable to Him, if they made use of it, not in order to the putting away of some sins only, but for the purification of the body; supposing still that the soul was thoroughly purified beforehand by righteousness. Now, when many others came to crowd about him, for they were greatly moved by hearing his words, Herod, who feared lest the great influence John had over the people might put it into his power and inclination to raise a rebellion (for they seemed ready to do anything he should advise), thought it best by putting him to death to prevent any mischief he might cause, and not bring himself into difficulties by sparing a man who might make him repent of it when it should be too late. Accordingly he was sent a prisoner, out of Herod’s suspicious temper, to Machärus, the castle I before mentioned, and was there put to death.”—This account by Josephus, if it really belongs originally to him, and the accounts of the New Testament about the Baptist and his relation with the tetrarch Herod, mutually supplement one another. What Josephus says about the contents of the Baptist’s preaching of repentance has indeed very much of the style of the cultured Græco-Roman world. In this respect the short statements of the synoptic Gospels are truer and more reliable. On the other hand, it is highly probable that the real occasion of the imprisonment of the Baptist by Antipas was, just as Josephus states, fear of political trouble. The powerful popular preacher did undoubtedly produce a great excitement, which was indeed first of all of a religious kind, but certainly not without the mingling of a political element. For the masses of the people were not then able to keep separate their religious and political hopes. It is therefore quite credible that Antipas feared political troubles from the labours of the Baptist, and so, when he extended his activity to Perea, cast him into prison. Nevertheless the evangelists may be right (Matt. 14:3 f.; Mark 6:17; Luke 3:19 f.) when they say that he did this because John blamed him for his marriage with Herodias. The two statements are not inconsistent with one another.—The place where John was imprisoned is not named by the evangelists. From Josephus we learn that it was Machärus, the strong fortress on the east of the Dead Sea. It must then have been no longer in the possession of the Arabian king Aretas, as it was at the time of the flight of the first wife of Antipas, but in the possession of Herod Antipas himself. We do not indeed know in what way it had meanwhile come into his hands.—According to Josephus, it would seem as if the execution of the Baptist followed immediately upon his arrestment and imprisonment But from the Gospel narrative we see that Herod kept the Baptist a longer time in prison, being undecided as to what he should do with him. At last the decision was brought about by Herodias, the chief foe of the rigid preacher of repentance. When on the occasion of the celebration of Antipas’ birthday in the palace of Machärus, for there it was that the whole business was carried out, a great banquet was given, the daughter of Herodias, Salome (she was still a κοράσιον, Matt. 14:11; Mark 6:22, 28; therefore not yet married to Philip), by her dancing so delighted the tetrarch, that he promised to fulfil to her any wish she might express. At the instigation of her mother, she demanded the head of the Baptist. Herod was weak enough to gratify the wish immediately, and to give orders that the Baptist should be beheaded in the prison at Machärus.

Even before John had been removed from the scene, the “Mightier,” to whom he had pointed, had already made His appearance, and had begun to preach the gospel in Galilee. He, too, could not remain unnoticed by the nobles of the land. Yet Antipas first heard of the deeds of Jesus after the Baptist had been put to death. Hence, tormented by his evil conscience, he felt convinced that the Baptist had risen again, and was continuing his dangerous and revolutionary work. In order to make sure whether this was so, he desired to see the miracle-worker who preached in Capernaum, and attracted all the people. He meant in time to get rid of Him, not, however, by violence, but by craft. He won over to him the Pharisees, and got them to undertake the attempt to induce Jesus voluntarily to quit the country by representing to Him that Herod sought His life. The plan was indeed very craftily conceived; but it failed in execution, because Jesus saw through it. Subsequently, indeed, Jesus did quit Galilee in order to take His death journey to Jerusalem. There also Antipas, who was at that time living at Jerusalem that he might keep the Passover, had the satisfaction of meeting with his mysterious subject. Pilate sent the prisoner to him, in order that he, as ruler of the province, might pronounce the death sentence clamoured for by the Jewish hierarchy. Antipas, however, would not lend himself to this scheme, but contented himself with pouring contempt upon Jesus, and sending Him back again to Pilate.

The chronology of the public ministry of the Baptist and of Jesus Christ, which has hitherto been based for the most part on Luke 3:1 and John 2:20, has been in recent times completely turned upside down by Keim. Whereas previously almost the only subject of contention had been whether the year 30 or the year 31 was the year of Christ’s death, Keim sets down the execution of the Baptist in the end of A.D. 34 (Jesus of Nazara, vi. 226, 232), the death of Christ at Easter of A.D. 35 (Jesus of Nazara, vi. 232). His chief argument is the following. Josephus remarked (Antiq. xviii. 5. 2) that the defeat which Herod Antipas sustained in the war with the Arabian king Aretas in A.D. 36, was considered by the people as a judgment for the execution of John the Baptist. Accordingly, says Keim, the execution must be placed as near as possible to the year 36; and since, in view of the deposition of Pilate before Easter A.D. 36, Jesus must have been put to death not later than Easter A.D. 35, and the execution of the Baptist must be put down as occurring in the end of the year 34. There is also one other reason for insisting upon this late dating of these events. The attack of Aretas upon Antipas was an act of vengeance on the part of Aretas, because his daughter had been divorced by Antipas. Hence both events must have occurred very nearly about the same time. And, seeing that the execution of the Baptist could not have occurred until after the divorce of the daughter of Aretas and the marriage with Herodias, the death of the Baptist and of Christ could not for this reason have occurred in A.D. 29 and 30 respectively.

Against this theory Wieseler particularly has urged a series of arguments which indeed are not all of a convincing character. He seeks especially as the ground of Agrippa’s residence with Antipas (see under § 18) to prove that the marriage with Herodias occurred at an earlier date. When Agrippa had been appointed by Antipas agoranomos of Tiberius, Antipas was already married to Herodias. Afterwards Agrippa was sent away by Antipas, and then stayed for a long time with Flaccus, the legate of Syria, and then went to Rome, where he, or rather his freedman Eutychus, became intimate with the city prefect Piso (Antiq. xviii. 6. 2–5). Seeing then—so argues Wieseler—that Flaccus died in A.D. 33, Piso having previously died in A.D. 32, the marriage with Herodias must have taken place before A.D. 32, Wieseler thinks in A.D. 29. But we saw already that that Piso was not the man who died in A.D. 32, but a later one, and that Flaccus possibly, indeed probably, did not die till A.D. 35 (see vol. i. pp. 360–364). By these arguments, therefore, nothing can be proved.

But the rock upon which Keim’s chronology suffered shipwreck is the definite statement of Luke 3:1, that the Baptist made his appearance before the public in the fifteenth year of Tiberius, i.e. between August A.D. 28 and August A.D. 29; which statement indeed Keim rejects as unworthy of belief. The tendency now is not to overestimate the trustworthiness of Luke, and certainly in reference to the tracing of Quirinius he has erred grievously. But it is surely impossible that in this case an error of five full years should have been made. Evidently Luke took great care in examining into this particular date. We have here therefore before us, not so much his opinion, as that of the entire Christendom of his time. Can it be thought possible that all Christendom was wrong to the extent of five full years about the date of their Lord’s death? More powerful reasons must be given than those brought forward from Josephus before we can feel justified in adopting such a view.

The reasons advanced by Josephus are indeed nothing less than convincing. This is at least correct, and also generally admitted, that the defeat of Antipas in A.D. 36 took place somewhere about half a year before the death of Tiberius, in March A.D. 37. But that the people could not have regarded it as a divine judgment for the execution of the Baptist, seeing that that event was now seven years past, cannot be maintained. A couple of years more would in this matter make no difference. For Pharisaism was wont to discover such causal connections after the expiry of very long periods indeed. Further, that the divorce of the daughter of Aretas, followed by the marriage with Herodias, and the war with the Arabian king, must have followed immediately upon one another, still remains a point that cannot be proved. Josephus says expressly, that only from the divorce is to be dated the beginning of the hostility between Antipas and Aretas (Antiq. xviii. 5. 1: ὃ δὲ ἀρχὴν ἔχθρας ταύτην ποιησάμενος), and that after additional reasons arose, such as contentions about boundaries. Even Keim himself admits the possibility of setting down the marriage to A.D. 32–33 (Jesus of Nazara, ii. 397). Why then not to the year 29, if once an interval of several years has to be admitted? Hausrath, who in other respects agrees with Keim, put it back as far as the year 27, and in this way deprives himself of the main ground upon which he had supported his position (Neutestamentliche Zeitgeschichte, vol. i. p. 326, 328).

Upon the whole, therefore, we feel entitled to hold by the statements of the New Testament, and to place the death of Christ at Easter A.D. 30, that of the Baptist in A.D. 29, and the marriage of Herodias somewhat earlier, perhaps in A.D. 29, perhaps even some years earlier (Gutschmid, Literarisches Centralblatt, 1874, Sp. 523, places it about A.D. 26).

The connection with Herodias brought little good to Antipas. The Arabian king Aretas could not forget that Antipas on her account had repudiated his daughter. The feud arising from this cause was increased through boundary disputes about Galaaditis,—for so we should read the name rather than Gamalitis. Finally, in A.D. 36 the misunderstanding between the two neighbours broke out into the war which ended in the utter destruction of the army of Antipas. The conquered monarch had now no other resource but to complain of his victorious opponent to the Emperor Tiberius.

When Tiberius heard of the bold proceedings of the Arabian prince, he gave Vitellius, governor of Syria, express orders to gain possession of Aretas, dead or alive. Vitellius had indeed little heart to enter on the expedition, for he was not greatly drawn toward Antipas. But he could not oppose the imperial command, and so he prepared himself for the war against Aretas. After he had ordered his army to march round about Judea to Petra, he himself went on a visit to Jerusalem, where a feast was then being celebrated, probably that of the Passover. He waited in that city three days. On the fourth, he received news of the death of Tiberius, which had taken place on 16th March A.D. 37. He considered himself thereby released from his undertaking, and turned back with his army to Antioch. Thus the defeat of Antipas remained unavenged.

About this time we find our Jewish tetrarch present on one occasion at the Euphrates during important negotiations between Vitellius and the king of the Parthians. But it seems that the account of this affair in Josephus is not free from error. “We know, for instance, that in the years 35 and 36 the Parthian king Artabanus had to do repeatedly with the Romans. His affairs seemed to be taking a favourable turn when, by the threats of Vitellius and the revolt of his own subjects, he was obliged to betake himself to flight into the remoter provinces. In consequence of this, Vitellius, in the summer of A.D. 36, went to the Euphrates along with the pretender Tiridates, supported by the Romans, and established him as king over the Parthians. Nevertheless, before the end of that same year, Artabanus returned, drove out Tiridates, and secured the government again to himself. Subsequently Vitellius arranged a meeting with Artabanus at the Euphrates, at which Artebanus concluded a peace with the Romans, and in pledge thereof, sent his son Darius to Rome as a hostage. At this meeting, according to Josephus, Herod Antipas was also present. He entertained Vitellius and Artabanus in a magnificent tent erected upon the Euphrates bridge, and hastened, as soon as the negotiations were concluded, to communicate the favourable result to the emperor,—a piece of officiousness which annoyed Vitellius at him exceedingly, since he had thereby completely anticipated his official report.—Thus Josephus places this meeting in the time of Tiberius, and considers that the quarrel arising out of this between Vitellius and Herod Antipas was the reason why Vitellius, after the death of Tiberius, immediately abandoned the campaign against Aretas. But Suetonius and Dio Cassius say expressly, and the silence of Tacitus, in the sixth book of his Annals, indirectly proves, that the meeting between Vitellius and Artabanus took place under Caligula. Josephus therefore is certainly in one particular in error. The only question is, in what particular. If it is correct that Herod Antipas took part in the Parthian negotiations on the Euphrates in the time of Tiberius, then these must have been the negotiations between Vitellius and Tiridates in the summer of A.D. 36 (Tacitus, Annals, vi. 37). But if it is correct that he took part in the negotiations between Vitellius and Artabanus, it cannot have been before the time of Caligula. The latter supposition is most probably the true account of the matter. For in summer A.D. 36 Herod was engaged in the war against Aretas.

If Antipas had his passion for Herodias to thank as the real occasion of his defeat and damage at the hand of Aretas, the ambition of this wife of his brought about at last the loss of his government and of his freedom. One of the first acts of the new Emperor Caligula on his taking the reins of government into his hands was to assign to Agrippa, the brother of Herodias, what had been the tetrarchy of Philip, together with the title of king. Agrippa at first remained still at Rome. But in the second year of Caligula, March A.D. 38 to March A.D. 39, he went to Palestine, and made his appearance there as king. The success of the adventurer, whose fortunes had once been at so low an ebb, and who had even himself sought aid at the hand of Antipas, excited the envy of Herodias, who therefore insisted upon her husband seeking also from the emperor the royal title. Herod Antipas was not very much disposed to go forth on such an errand. At last, however, he was obliged to yield to the persistent entreaty of his wife, and proceeded to Rome, accompanied by Herodias, to prosecute his suit. But they were immediately followed by a representative of Agrippa, Fortunatus, with a document containing charges against Herod Antipas, in which he was accused of old and recent offences, of having made a compact with Sejanus (who died in A.D. 31), and with the Parthian king Artabanus. In proof of these charges, his accuser pointed to the accumulation of arms made by Antipas. Both parties came at the same time before Caligula at Baiae. When the emperor had heard the petition of Antipas and the accusations against him, he asked Antipas how it was that he had made such a collection of arms. And when Antipas could give no proper account of this, Caligula credited also the other charges, deposed Antipas from his tetrarchy, and banished him to Lyons in Gaul. He wished to allow Herodias, as the sister of Agrippa, to live on her private estate. But the proud woman scorned the imperial favour, and followed her husband into his exile. As a new proof of imperial favour, the tetrarchy was conferred upon the accuser Agrippa. Herod Antipas died in banishment. A confused statement in DioCassius seems to imply that he was put to death by Caligula.


JOSEPHUS, Antiq. xvii. 13, xviii. 1–4. 8; Wars of the Jews, ii 7–10.

PHILO, De legatione ad Cajum (Opera, ed. Mangey, ii. 545–600). On the coins, see below.

EWALD, History of Israel, v. 449–457, vii. 235–257.

GEIKIE, Life and Words of Christ, i. 263–272.

GRÄTZ, Geschichte der Juden, 4 Aufl. iii. pp. 253–271, 315–317, 341–344.

HITZIG, Geschichte des Volkes Israel, ii. 562 f., 573–583.

HAUSRATH, Zeitgeschichte, 2 Aufl. i. 287–308, ii. 199–270.

KEIM, Jesus of Nazara, i. 253–262, ii. 223, vi. 79, 183, 227; and art. “Archelaus” in Schenkel’s Bibellexikon, iii. 38–40.

GERLACH, Zeitschrift für luth. Theologie, 1869, pp. 30–32; Die römischen Statthalter in Syrien und Judäa, pp. 44–48, 53–65.

WINER, Realwörterbuch, i. 82 f. (Archelaus), and ii. 261–263 (Pilatus).

BRANN, Die Söhne des Herodes, 1873 (reprint from the Monatsschrift für Geschichte und Wissenschaft des Judenthums), pp. 1–16.

LEWIN, Fasti Sacra, ad ann., 4 B.C.–41 A.D.

MOMMSEN, Römische Geschichte, v. 508 ff.

KELLNER, Die römische Statthalter von Syrien und Judäa. 2. Art. Die kaiserlichen Procuratoren von Judäa (Zeitschrift für kathol. Theologie, 1888, p. 630 ff.).

KELLNER, Politische und administrative Zustände von Palästina zur Zeit Christi (Der Katholik, 1888, i. pp. 47–63). A summary of the history during the time of Pompey.

MENKE, Bibelatlas, Bl. V. Special map of Judea and neighbouring countries in the time of Pontius Pilate.

Judea proper with Samaria and Idumea (including the large cities of Caesarea, Samaria, Joppa, and Jerusalem, but excluding Gaza, Gadara, and Hippos) was in the partition assigned to Archelaus, the elder brother of Antipas, not indeed, as Herod had intended, with the title of king, but only with that of an ethnarch. Yet Augustus promised him the kingdom if he should prove himself to be worthy of it. Archelaus also, like Antipas, named himself on the coins and elsewhere by the family name of Herod.

Among the sons of Herod he procured for himself the worst reputation. His rule was violent and tyrannical He set up and removed the high priests at his pleasure. He gave special offence by his marriage with Glaphyra, daughter of the Cappadocian king Archelaus. She had been married first to Alexander, the half-brother of Archelaus, executed in B.C. 7. See vol. i. p. 456 of this work. After his death she was married to Juba, king of Mauritania. Upon the dissolution of this marriage, Glaphyra lived in her father’s house. There Archelaus became acquainted with her, fell in love with her, and took her to he his wife, for he divorced his own wife Mariamme. Seeing that Glaphyra had children by Alexander, the marriage was unlawful, and therefore gave great offence. The marriage was not indeed of long duration, for Glaphyra died soon after her arrival in Judea, after having had a remarkable dream, in which her first husband, Alexander, appeared to her, and made known to her her approaching death.

It will almost go without saying that Archelaus as son of Herod engaged upon great building enterprises. The palace at Jericho was restored in the most magnificent style. An aqueduct was built to lead the water necessary for the palmgroves, which he had laid out anew in the plain north of Jericho, from the village of Neara. He also founded a city, and called it in honour of himself Archelais.

But these beautiful and useful undertakings could not reconcile his subjects to his misgovernment. After tolerating his rule for more than nine years, a deputation of the Jewish and Samaritan aristocracy set out for Rome, in order to lay their complaints against him before Augustus. The points in their accusation must have been very serious; for the emperor felt himself obliged to summon Archelaus to Rome, and, after having heard him, to depose him from his government, and banish him to Vienne in Gaul in A.D. 6. To him also, as to his wife, his fate had been foretold by a remarkable dream.

The territory of Archelaus was taken under immediate Roman rule, for it was attached to the province of Syria, but received a governor of its own from the equestrian order. In consequence of this arrangement the condition of Judea became essentially changed. Herod the Great and his sons had in spite of all their friendship for the Romans considerable respect for and understanding of the national traditions and peculiarities of the Jews, so that they, apart from individual exceptions, did not wantonly wound the most sacred sensibilities of the people. Common prudence demanded in regard to such matters care and consideration. The Romans, on the other hand, had scarcely any appreciation of what was peculiar to the Jewish nationality. As the religious views of the Pharisees and the accumulation of traditions which encompassed the daily life of the people like a net were altogether unknown to the Romans, they could not at all understand how a whole people would offer the most persistent resistance even unto death, and would suffer annihilation on account of merely ceremonial rites and what seemed matters of indifference. The Jews again saw in the simplest rules of administration, such as the proposal of a census made at the very beginning, an encroachment upon the most sacred rights of the people, and from day to day the feeling more and more gained ground that the immediate government of the Romans, which at the death of Herod they had wished for, was irreconcilable with the principles of the theocracy. Thus, even had there been the best of intentions on both sides, the relations inevitably became strained and ultimately hostile. But this good-will was only partially exhibited. Those at the head of the government, with the exception of the times of Caligula, were indeed ready on their part to make concessions and to exercise forbearance in a very large measure. But their good intentions were always rendered nugatory by the perversity of the procurators, not infrequently also by gross miscarriage of justice on the part of these officials. Those subordinate officers, like all petty governors, were usually puffed up by a consciousness of their absolute authority, and by their insolent demeanour at last drove the oppressed and burdened people to such a pitch of excitement that they rushed headlong with wild fanaticism into a war that plainly involved annihilation.

Seeing that the political affairs of Judea during the period A.D. 6–41 were in all essential respects the same as those of Palestine generally during the period A.D. 44–66, in the following exposition we take the two periods together, and make use of materials from the one period as well as from the other.

Judea, and subsequently all Palestine, was not in the strict sense of the term incorporated with the province of Syria, but had a governor of its own of equestrian rank, who stood only to a certain extent in dependence upon the imperial legate of Syria. It therefore belonged to the third class of imperial provinces, according to Strabo’s classification. And this third class is to be regarded as an exception to the rule; for most of the imperial provinces were, just like the senatorial provinces, administered by men of senatorial rank; the greater provinces, like that of Syria, by men who had been consuls, the smaller ones, by those who had been praetors. Only a few particular provinces were in an exceptional manner placed under governors of equestrian rank, namely, those in which, on account of special tenacity in adhering to peculiar national customs, or on account of the rudeness and savage state of the country, the government could not be carried on by the usual methods. The best known example is that of Egypt. Elsewhere there were also territories inhabited by a still semi-barbarous people which were administered in this manner.

The usual title for such an equestrian governor was procurator, ἐπίτροπος. It seems indeed that Augustus, not only in Egypt, but elsewhere as well, preferred the title praefactus, ἔπαρχος. Very soon, however, at farthest in the time of Claudius, except in the case of Egypt, the title procurator had become the prevailing one. Josephus, as a rule, designates the governor of Judea ἐπίτροπος, sometimes ἔπαρχος or ἡγεμών. In the New Testament, ἡγεμών=praeses, is the term usually employed. That ἐπίτροπος (procurator) is the correct title may be also proved by witnesses of another kind. In general this title was used for all imperial finance officers, while praefactus was more of a military title. Such finance procurators were found also in all other provinces, in the imperial as well as the senatorial provinces. They were chosen not only from the equestrian order, but even from among the freedmen of the emperor. Those procurators, on the other hand, who had to administer a province, on account of the military command that was necessarily connected with such an appointment, were chosen exclusively from the ranks of the equestrians. It was an unheard of novelty when under Claudius the office of procurator of Judea was given to a freedman, Felix (see below under § 19).

The procurators of Judea seem to have been subordinate to the governor of Syria only to this extent, that it was the right and duty of the governor to interfere in the exercise of his supreme power in cases of necessity. Writers have indeed sometimes expressed themselves as if Judea had been incorporated into the province of Syria. But they do not continue consistent to such a view. The investing the procurator with a military command, and with independent jurisdiction, of itself conferred upon him a position, in virtue of which he was, in regard to ordinary transactions within the limits of his province, as independent as the governors of other provinces. On the other hand, the governor of Syria had the right, according to his own discretion, to interfere if he had reason to fear revolutionary uprisings or the appearance of other serious difficulties. He would then take command in Judea as the superior of the procurator. Whether this superior authority went so far that he might even call the procurator to account seems questionable, since in the two cases in which this happened, the governor concerned had been probably entrusted with a special commission.

The residence of the procurator of Judea was not at Jerusalem, but at Caesarea. Since the dwelling of the commander-in-chief or governor was called praetorium, the πραιτώριον τοῦ Ἡρώδου in Caesarea (Acts 23:35) was nothing else than a palace built by Herod, which served as a residence for the procurator.—On special occasions, especially during the chief Jewish feasts, when, on account of the crowds of people that streamed into Jerusalem, particularly careful oversight was necessary, the procurator went up to Jerusalem, and resided then in what had been the palace of Herod. The praetorium at Jerusalem, in which Pilate was staying at the time of the trial and condemnation of Jesus Christ (Matt. 27:27; Mark 15:16; John 18:28, 33, 19:9), is therefore just the well-known palace of Herod, on the west side of the city. It was not only a princely dwelling, but at the same time a strong castle, in which at times (during the rebellion in B.C. 4, and again in A.D. 66) large detachments of troops could maintain their position against the assaults of the whole mass of the people. Hence, also, during the residence there of the procurator, the detachment of troops accompanying him had their quarters within its walls (Mark 15:16).

With reference to the military arrangements, it deserves specially to be remembered that the Roman army of the days of the empire was divided into two divisions of a thoroughly distinct kind: the legions and the auxiliaries. The legions formed the proper core of the troops, and consisted only of Romau citizens, for those provincials who served in the legions had obtained citizen rights. Each legion formed a compact whole of ten cohorts, or sixty centuries, altogether embracing from 5000 to 6000 men. The auxiliary troops consisted of provincials who, at least in the early days of the empire, did not as a rule possess the right of citizenship. Their arms were lighter and less harmonious than those of the legions; often in this they were allowed to follow their own national usages. Their infantry was formed into cohorts, whose strength varied from 500 to 1000 men; the cavalry was formed into aloe, of similarly varying strength. Cohorts and alae were named after the nation from which they had been recruited.

In regard to the provinces administered by procurators, it may, as a rule, be assumed that in them, and under the command of the procurator, there would be only auxiliary troops. This rule is also confirmed by the history of Judea. There were legions only in Syria; in the time of Auguetus three, from the time of Tiberius four. But in Judea, down to the time of Vespasian, there were only auxiliary troops, and, indeed, mostly such as had been raised in the country itself. The honour and burden of this levy lay only on the non-Jewish inhabitants of Palestine. The Jews were exempted from military service. This is abundantly proved to have been the state of matters, at least, from the time of Caesar, and, from all that we positively know about the Palestinian troops down to the days of Vespasian, may also be assumed as certain throughout the imperial period. Remarkable as this unequal treatment of the population may appear to us, it is in thorough correspondence with what is otherwise known regarding the Roman procedure in the conscription. Indeed, in regard to the use made of the inhabitants and the confidence reposed in them, the provinces were treated in very diverse ways and varying measures in the matter of military service.

For the period A.D. 6–41 we are without any direct information about the troops stationed in Judea. But it is highly probable that the Sebastians, i.e. the soldiers drafted in the region of Sebaste or Samaria, whom we meet with subsequently, constituted even then a considerable portion of the garrison. In the struggles which followed the death of Herod in B.C. 4, the best equipped part of the troops of Herod fought on the side of the Romans, namely, the Σεβαστηνοὶ τρισχίλιοι, under the command of Rufus and Gratus, the former of whom commanded the cavalry, the latter the infantry. The troops thus proved would be undoubtedly retained by Archelaus, and it is highly probable that, after his deposition in A.D. 6, they would be taken over by the Romans, then, from A.D. 41 to A.D. 44, by Agrippa, and after his death again by the Romans. The following also speaks in favour of this supposition. At the death of Agrippa in A.D. 44, the troops of the king stationed in Caesarea, which were Καισαρεῖς καὶ Σεβαστηνοί, gave expression in a very unseemly manner to their joy at the death of the ruler that had shown himself friendly to the Jews. In order to show respect to the memory of Agrippa, the emperor ordered these troops, namely, τὴν ἴλην τῶν Καισαρέων καὶ τῶν Σεβαστηνῶν καὶ τὰς πέντε σπείρας (therefore an ala of cavalry and five cohorts), to be sent by way of punishment to Pontus. On their presenting a petition, however, it was agreed that they should remain in Judea, from which they were first removed by Vespasian. From this it appears that the troops of Agrippa were certainly taken over by the Romans. From this it may be inferred that in the same way they were taken over after the deposition of Archelaus. It is also somewhat remarkable that the one ala of cavalry and five cohorts of infantry, if we reckon the latter at 500 men, would make together a force of 3000 men, which is the same number as is ascribed to the Sebastian troops of B.C. 4.—During the period A.D. 44–66 these troops are often referred to. The procurator Cumanus led the ala Sebastenorum and four cohorts of infantry from Caesarea against the Jews. During the struggles between the Jewish and Gentile inhabitants of Caesarea, the latter boasted of the fact that the Roman troops in Caesarea consisted in great part of Caesareans and Sebastians. Finally, in A.D. 67, Vespasian was able to draft into his army from Caesarea five cohorts and one ala of cavalry; therefore the same detachments as were there in A.D. 44. Probably also the Sebasteni so often referred to on the inscriptions are identical with our Sebastian troops. Also the σπεῖρα Σεβαστή, which at the time of the imprisonment of Paul, about A.D. 60, lay in Caesarea (Acts 27:1), is undoubtedly one of the five cohorts which we hear about from Josephus. Many theologians, however, have erroneously come to the conclusion that the expression σπεῖρα Σεβαστή is synonymous with σπεῖρα Σεβαστηνῶν. This is not possible. Σεβαστή is rather an exact translation of Augusta, a title of honour very frequently bestowed upon auxiliary troops. The cohort in question was therefore probably called cohors Augusta Sebastenorum. In Caesarea it was called simply σπεῖρα Σεβαστή, since this sufficed to distinguish it from others.—It is, on the other hand, remarkable, after other results we have reached, that in Caesarea, about A.D. 40, a σπεῖρα Ἰταλική should have been stationed (Acts 10:1), by which probably a cohort of Roman citizens of Italy is to be understood. Such a band would naturally not have served in Caesarea during the period A.D. 41–44 under the Jewish king Agrippa. But even in reference to a later period, it is after the above made investigations not probable. The story of the centurion Cornelius lies, therefore, in this respect under suspicion, the circumstances of a later period having been transferred back to an earlier period. That at some time or other a cohors Italica was in Syria is made perfectly clear by the evidence of an inscription (see note 5

We have hitherto become acquainted only with the state of the garrison of Caesarea. In other cities and towns of Palestine there were also small garrisons. At the outbreak of the Jewish war in A.D. 66, we find, for example, a Roman garrison in the fortified castle of Jericho and in Machärus. Throughout Samaria such detachments were stationed. In the Great Plain there was a decurio; in Ascalon (which, however, did not belong to the domains of the procurator) there were a cohort and an ala. Vespasian, in the winter of A.D. 67–68, placed garrisons in all conquered villages and towns; those in the former under the command of Decurions, those in the latter under the command of Centurions. This was indeed an extraordinary proceeding, which we are not to regard as the rule in time of peace.

In Jerusalem there was stationed only one cohort. For the χιλίαρχος, so often referred to in the Acts of the Apostles (more exactly, Acts 21:31: χιλίαρχος τῆς σπείρης, “One having command of the cohort”), appears throughout as the officer holding the chief command in Jerusalem. With this also Josephus’ statement agrees, that in the fortress of Antonia a τάγμα of the Romans regularly lay, for the τάγμα there means, not as it often does, a legion, but, as in the passage quoted in note 4 a cohort. The fort of Antonia, which Josephus describes as the regular quarters of the detachment, lay to the north of the temple. At two points, stairs (καταβάσεις) led down from the fort Antonia to the court of the temple. This is just the position given it in the Acts of the Apostles. For when Paul, during the tumult in the temple, had been taken by the soldiers for his own safety and was being carried thence into the barracks (παρεμβολή), he was on account of the pressure of the crowd borne by the soldiers up the steps (τοὺς ἀναβαθμούς), and then, with the permission of the chiliarch. he made from these steps a speech to the people (Acts 21:31–40). The officer in command at fort Antonia, who is certainly identical with the chiliarch. is also called by Josephus φρούραρχος. The direct connection between the fort and the court of the temple was of importance, since the latter required to be under constant supervision. At the chief feasts, guards were stationed in the corridors which surrounded the temple.—From one passage in the Acts of the Apostles (chap. 23:23) we see that there was a detachment of cavalry along with the Jerusalem cohort, an arrangement that very frequently existed. The precise character and position of the δεξιολάβοι (from λαβή, “the grip,” therefore : “those who grasped their weapons by the right hand”), mentioned in that passage (23:23) as accompanying the regular soldiers and cavalry, are somewhat obscure. Seeing that the expression occurs elsewhere in Greek literature only twice, and even then appears without explanation, we are no longer in a position to explain it. This much only is certain, that it designated a special class of light-armed soldiers (javelin-throwers or slingers).

After the great war of A.D. 66–73 the garrison arrangements of Palestine were essentially changed. The governor was then no longer a procurator of the equestrian order, but a legate of senatorial rank (in the earlier period, one who had been praetor ; in the later period, one who had been consul). On the site of the destroyed Jerusalem a legion, the legio X. Fretensis, had its headquarters (see under § 20, toward the end). The native troops, which for decades had formed the garrison of Caesarea, were drafted by Vespasian to other provinces. In their place were put auxiliary troops of foreign origin, drawn in part from the farthest lands of the West.

Besides the troops forming the standing army, the provincial governors sometimes organized a militia, i.e. in special cases of need those of the people capable of bearing arms were drafted into military service, without being permanently organized as a part of the army. An instance of this sort occurred in the arming of the Samaritans by Cumanus on the occasion of the war against the Jews.

Like the governors of senatorial rank, the procurators also had, besides the supreme military command, supreme judicial authority within their province. This authority was exercised by the procurators of Judea only in extraordinary cases ; for the ordinary administration of the law, both in criminal and in civil matters, was left in the hands of the native and local courts (see Div. II. vol. i. 184–190).—The range of the procurator’s judicial jurisdiction extended also to the right of deciding matters of life and death, jus gladii or potestas gladii. That this also is true of the governors is proved by several inscriptions. With reference to Judea, Josephus says expressly that the procurator had μέχρι τοῦ κτείνειν ἐξουσίαν. This right of the governor over life and death down to the third century after Christ extended even to the case of Roman citizens, with this restriction, however, that such a one had the right of appealing against the sentence of the governor to the emperor In the earlier days of the empire, it would seem that a Roman citizen accused of an offence constituting a capital charge had the important privilege of appealing to the emperor, even at the beginning of the proceedings and any subsequent stage of the trial, claiming that the investigation be carried on at Rome and the judgment pronounced by the emperor himself. The governor’s absolute penal jurisdiction therefore applied only to provincials. It was a gross violation of the law when Florus in Jerusalem, in A.D. 66, had the Jews crucified who were in possession of equestrian rank. But even provincials might be sent by the governor for trial to Rome, if he wished on account of the difficulty of the case to have the decision of the emperor.—The fact known from the Gospels, that the procurator of Judea at the feast of the Passover set free a prisoner, was grounded indeed on a special authorization of the emperor; for the right of remitting a sentence was not otherwise given to the governors.

Although the governor, as sole judge, had to give the decision, he frequently availed himself of the advice of his comites. These were partly the higher officials of his court, partly the younger people, who, for the sake of their own training, accompanied the governor. They supported him, not only in administrative matters, but also assisted him in the execution of the law as consilium, συμβούλιον (Acts 25:12).

The execution of the death sentence was, as a rule, carried out by soldiers. Le Blant has, indeed, in a learned dissertation, sought to prove that those appointed to this duty were not soldiers, but belonging to the class of apparitores, i.e. the non-military servants of the governor. But the opposite opinion, at least with regard to capital sentences pronounced by the imperial governors, must be considered as absolutely certain. The imperial governors were military administrators; their judicial power therefore the outcome of their military authority. It is, however, unquestionable, and is not disputed even by Le Blant, that the death sentences on soldiers were executed by soldiers. According to Le Blant’s view, this inference should be drawn from that fact, namely, that the governor carried out the death sentences on soldiers by different parties than those employed upon civilians. This, in view of the military character of his judicial authority, is extremely improbable, and it even forms a positive proof for the opposite theory. The many executions of distinguished men and women in the times of Claudius and Nero were carried out by military men, some of them officers of high rank. Numerous examples of a similar kind might be cited from the history of the following emperors. Although these cases might not apply to ordinary courts, yet this much is clear, that the carrying out of executions by soldiers was not opposed to Roman sentiment. But further, not infrequently speculatores are spoken of as executing the condemned. These were certainly soldiers; for (1) the speculatores are frequently described as holding a military office; and (2) in several of the passages quoted the speculatores referred to are distinctly characterized as soldiers; and so those elsewhere spoken of under the same title, and as discharging the same functions, will have been also soldiers. When Le Blant expressly refers to the fact that in many passages the term speculator is interchanged with the expression lictor, and with other words which designate non-military offices, this may be said in the first place to result from a certain laxity in the use of language. On the contrary, one would be equally justified in saying that those expressions are now also used for designating military persons. In the New Testament the agents entrusted with the carrying out the sentence, both at the crucifixion of Christ and at the imprisonment of Paul, are named στρατιῶται, and are also plainly described as such.

The third chief function of the procurator-governor, in addition to the command of the troops and judicial authority, was the administration of the finance department. From this, indeed, those equestrian governors got their title; for the imperial finance officials generally were called “procurators.” Since everything that is of consequence about the different sorts of revenue and methods of taxation will be considered in the Excursus on the Census of Quirinius (§ 17, Excursus 1), it is not necessary here to say more than this, that the revenue of Judea as imperial province went, not into the treasury of the Senate, the aerarium, but into the imperial treasury, the fiscus. Judea therefore, in the strict sense of the word, paid its taxes “to Caesar” (Matt. 22:17 ff.; Mark 12:14 ff.; Luke 20:22 ff.), which could only in a certain degree be said of the senatorial provinces.—It was probably for the purposes of tax collection that Judea was divided into eleven toparchies (see Div. II. vol. i. pp. 157–161). In the gathering of the revenue the Romans seem to have made use of the Jewish courts, as was their custom in other places (see Div. II. vol. i. p. 162).—That the taxes were oppressive, is seen from the complaints made by the provinces of Syria and Judea in A.D. 17.

From the taxes in the proper sense are to be distinguished the customs, i.e. duties upon articles on their being exported from the country. These were imposed in all the provinces of the Roman empire. The great trade emporium which yielded the largest returns in this direction was Egypt. From the days of the Ptolemies it had taken advantage of its geographical position in order to secure the flourishing traffic between India and Europe. But even in Palestine they were acquainted with the “custom” as early as the Persian era (Ezra 4:13, 20, 7:24).—The range to which the “custom” applied, varied certainly according to circumstances. In general it may be assumed that every province of the Roman empire formed a customs district by itself. But also the States and Communes recognised by the Romans as autonomous, and the number of these was very large, had the right of independently levying duties within their own boundaries. To the proofs in regard to these matters already in earlier times acknowledged, there has now to be added: a long inscription in Greek and Aramaic, which contains the customs-tariff of the city of Palmyra in the time of Hadrian. From this inscription it appears that Palmyra, although it was at that time a Roman city in the same sense as many other autonomous communes within the Roman empire, administered independently its own customs, and enjoyed the revenues thereof. It is therefore perfectly evident that the kings and tetrarchs “confederate” with Rome within their own territories could levy their customs for their own behoof, only with this restriction, that the Roman citizens (Romani ac socii nominis Latini, as it is phrased by Livy) should be exempted from them. The customs raised at Capernaum, within the borders of Galilee, in the times of Christ (Matt. 9:9; Mark 2:14; Luke 5:27) went therefore, undoubtedly, not into the imperial fiscus, but into the treasury of Herod Antipas. On the other hand, in Judea at that time, the customs were raised in the interests of the imperial fiscus. We know from the Gospels that in Jericho, on the eastern borders of Judea, there was an ἀρχιτελώνης (Luke 19:1, 2). In the seaport town of Caesarea in A.D. 66, among the influential men of the Jewish community, there John, a τελώνης, is mentioned. It is stated by Pliny that the merchants who exported incense from Central Arabia through Gaza had to pay a high duty, not only to the Arabians on passing through their territory, but also to the Roman customs officers, who, it may be supposed, were stationed at Gaza.—Besides the import and export duties, it would seem as if in Judea, as well as elsewhere, indirect duties of another sort had also to be paid, e.g. a market toll in Jerusalem, introduced by Herod, but abolished in A.D. 36 by Vitellius.

The collecting of the customs was not done by officers of the State, but by lessees, the so-called publicani, who leased the customs of a particular district for a fixed annual sum; so that whatever in excess of that sum the revenue yielded was their gain; whereas, if the revenue fell below it, they had to bear the loss. This system was widely prevalent throughout ancient times, and came often to be applied, not only to the customs, but also to the taxes properly so called. Thus, e.g. during the Ptolemaic government of Palestine the taxes of each city were annually leased out to the highest bidder. In the days of the Roman empire the system of leasing was no longer applied to the taxes, i.e. the land-tax and poll-tax. These were now collected by officers of State: in senatorial provinces, by the quaestor; in imperial provinces, by an imperial procurator, assistants to the governor; in provinces like Judea, administered by an equestrian, the governor was himself at the same time procurator. The customs, on the other hand, were, even in the days of the empire, still commonly leased out to publicani. So, undoubtedly, it was in Judea. The contrary opinion of Wieseler rests manifestly on a misunderstanding. In the passage cited from Pliny, in note 10 it is expressly said, that for the incense exported from Arabia by way of Gaza a duty bad also to be paid to the Roman publicani. From the universality of the system, it may be assumed that territorial princes like Herod Antipas would also make use of it. Even city communes like Palmyra did not have their customs collected by municipal officials, but rented them out to lessees.—The lessees again, as may be readily supposed, had their subordinate officials, who would usually be chosen from the native population. But even the principal lessees were by no means necessarily Romans. The tax-gatherers of Jericho (Luke 19:1, 2) and of Caesarea—Zaccheus and John—were therefore Jews. Since they are described as well-to-do and respectable people, they certainly cannot have belonged to the lowest class of publicans.—The extent to which custom might be charged was indeed prescribed by the court; but since these tariffs, as we see from the case of Palmyra, were in early times often very indefinite, abundant room was left for the arbitrariness and rapacity of the tax-gatherer. The advantage taken of such opportunities, and the not infrequent overcharges that were made by these officials, made them as a class hated by the people. Not only in the New Testament are the terms “publican and sinner” almost synonymous, but also in rabbinical literature tax-gatherers (מוֹבְסִין) appear in an even less favourable light.—On the other hand, the people generally then, just as in the present day, were inventive of contrivances of ways and means for defrauding the revenue.

Within the limits, which were stated in the very regulations themselves, the Jewish people enjoyed even yet a very considerable measure of freedom in home affairs and self-administration.—The oath of allegiance which the people had to take to the emperor, presumably on every change of government, was, if we may judge from analogous cases, more an oath of confederates than one of subjects, such as had been given even so early as the times of Herod.—The constitution as regards home affairs, during the age of the procurators, is characterized by Josephus, in opposition to the monarchial rule of Herod and Archelaus, in the words: ἀριστοκρατία μὲν ἦν ἡ πολιτεία, τὴν δὲ προστασίαν τοῦ ἔθνους οἱ ἀρχιερεῖς ἐπεπίστευντο. He sees, therefore, in the change which took place after the deposition of Archelaus, a transition from monarchy to aristocracy, because he, and that not incorrectly, considers the Roman procurator only as an overseer, but the aristocratic Sanhedrim as the real governing body. He who held the office of high priest for the time, who also held the presidency of the Sanhedrim, is called by Josephus προστάτης τοῦ ἔθνους. Yet certainly these very high priests were set up and removed at the arbitrary pleasure of the overseer. But even in this matter the Romans restrained themselves within certain limits. Whereas during the period A.D. 6–41 the appointments had been made by the Roman governors, either the legate of Syria or the procurator of Judea, during the the period A.D. 44–66 the right of appointment was transferred to the Jewish princes, Herod of Chalcis and Agrippa II., although these did not reign in Judea. And in both periods the appointments were not made in a purely arbitrary manner, but respect was paid to the claims of certain families (Phabi, Boethos, Ananus, Kamith).

Of greater importance is the fact that the Sanhedrim exercised to a very large extent the right of legislating and of executing the law, to a larger extent indeed than on the average was the case among non-autonomous communities in the Roman empire. The state of the law was in general this, that the communities recognised by Rome as “free” or “autonomous” had expressly guaranteed to them the right of passing and executing their own laws, in fact, even over Roman citizens dwelling within their bounds. In the subject, non-autonomous communities, to which Judea belonged, the practical state of matters was very nearly the same; but with this twofold restriction: (1) That this practical state of matters was not guaranteed them; and (2) that the Roman citizens residing within their bounds had their own law and their own judicatories. The first point was of most importance. The Roman authorities could, in consequence of it, interfere at pleasure in the legislation and in the administration of the law in non-autonomous communities. In Judea this right seems to have been taken advantage only to a very limited extent It may be assumed that the administration of the civil law was wholly in the hands of the Sanhedrim and native or local magistrates: Jewish courts decided according to Jewish law. But even in the criminal law this was almost invariably the case, only with this exception, that death sentences required to be confirmed by the Roman procurator. In such case the procurator decided if he pleased according to the standard of the Jewish law, as is shown in the trial of Jesus Christ. Even Roman citizens were not wholly exempt from the requirements of the Jewish law. When, indeed, the procurator Festus proposed to judge the Apostle Paul according to Jewish law, this was frustrated by the objection of the apostle (see above, p. 59). But the Jewish law, that no Gentile should be allowed to enter the inner court of the temple, was recognised by the Roman authorities, and any one who transgressed it was punished with death, even if he were a Roman citizen. There was only one limitation to the far-reaching application of this right, and that certainly a very important one; the procurator and his agents could at any time interfere according to their own discretion.

The Jewish worship was not only tolerated, but, as the enactment just referred to with regard to the temple shows, stood under State protection. The cosmopolitan tendency, which characterized the pagan piety of the time, made it quite possible for distinguished Romans to present gifts to the Jewish temple, and even to offer sacrifices there. The oversight of the temple by the State, especially of the administration of its large finances, seems to have been carried out during the period A.D. 6–41 by means of the Roman authorities. During the period A.D. 44–66 it was transferred to the same Jewish princes who had also received the right of appointing the high priests, namely, Herod of Chalcis, and then Agrippa II. A restriction in the freedom of worship, which was in itself quite harmless, but was regarded by the Jews as oppressive, was set aside in A.D. 36. During the period A.D. 6–36 the beautiful robe of the high priest was in the keeping of the Roman commandant in the fort of Antonia and was only four times in the year, at the three chief feasts and on the Day of Atonement, brought forth for use. At the request of the Jews, in A.D. 36, Vitellius ordered that the robe should be given up. And when the procurator Cuspius Fadius, in A.D. 44, wished again to have the robe put under Roman control, a Jewish embassy went to Rome and procured a rescript from the Emperor Claudius by which the order of Vitellius was confirmed.

Great deference was shown to the religious opinions of the Jews. Whereas in all other provinces the worship of the emperor was zealously insisted upon, and was claimed as a matter of course by the emperor as a proof of respect, no demand of this sort, except in the time of Caligula, was ever made of the Jews. The authorities were satisfied with requiring that twice a day in the temple at Jerusalem a sacrifice was made “for Caesar and the Roman people.” The sacrifice for the whole day consisted in two lambs and an ox, and, according to Philo, was provided by Augustus himself, ἐκ τῶν ἰδίων προσόδων, whereas the opinion of Josephus is that it was made at the cost of the Jewish people. Also on extraordinary occasions the Jewish people evidenced their loyal sentiments by a great sacrifice in honour of the emperor. In the Diaspora the emperor was remembered in the prayers of the synagogue, which, however, cannot be proved to have been the case in Palestine. Next to the worship of the emperor, the emperor’s images on the coins and the standards of the soldiers were specially offensive to the Jews. But in these matters also they were treated with tolerance. It could not, indeed, be avoided that Roman denaria with the figure of the emperor should circulate in Judea (Matt. 22:20; Mark 12:16; Luke 20:24), for silver and gold coins were not minted in Judea. But the copper coinage restored to the country bore, even in the time of the direct Roman rule, as well as in the times of the Herodians, no human likeness, but only the name of the emperor and inoffensive emblems. The troops were required in Jerusalem to dispense with standards having on them the likeness of the emperor. The wanton attempt of Pilate to break through this custom was frustrated by the violent opposition of the people. Pilate found himself compelled to withdraw again the imperial likenesses from Jerusalem. When Vitellius, the legate of Syria, took the field against the Arabian king Aretas, at the urgent entreaty of the Jews, he so directed the course of his march that the troops carrying the likeness of the emperor on their standards should not enter Jewish territory.

So far, then, as the civil enactments and the orders of the supreme authorities were concerned, the Jews could not complain of any want of consideration being paid them. It was otherwise, however, with respect to the practical carrying out of details. The average Roman official was always disposed to disregard all such nice, delicate consideration. And the unfortunate thing was, that Judea, especially in the last decades before the war, had had more than one governor who had lost all sense of right and wrong. Besides this, notwithstanding the most painstaking efforts to show indulgence to Jewish views and feelings, the existing relations were in themselves, according to Jewish ideas, an insult to all the lofty, divine privileges of the chosen people, who, instead of paying tribute to Caesar, were called rather to rule over all nations of the world.

Their first administrative measures which they introduced there show how hard a task the incorporation of Judea into the empire proved to the Romans. Contemporaneously with the appointment of Coponius, the first procurator of Judea, the emperor had sent a new legate, Quirinius, into Syria. It was now the duty of the legate to take a census of the population of the newly-acquired territory, in order that the taxes might be appointed according to the Roman method. But no sooner had Quirinius, in A.D. 6 or A.D. 7, begun to carry out his commission, than he was met with opposition on every hand. Only the quieting representations of the high priest Joazar, who clearly perceived that open rebellion would be of no avail, led to the gradual abandonment of the opposition that had already begun, and then the people with mute resignation submitted to the inevitable, so that, at last, the census was made up. It was, however, no enduring peace, but only a truce of uncertain duration. Judas of Gamala in Gaulanitis, called the Galilean, who is certainly identical with that Judas, son of Hezekiah, of whom we have already learnt on p. 4, in company with a Pharisee of the name of Sadduc, made it his task to rouse the people into opposition, and in the name of religion to preach rebellion and revolutionary war. This movement had not, indeed, any immediate marked success. But the revolutionists got so far as to found now among the Pharisees a more strict fanatical party, that of the patriotic resolutes, or, as they called themselves, the Zealots, who wished not to remain in quiet submission till by God’s decree the Messianic hope of Israel should be fulfilled, but would rather employ the sword in hastening its realization, and would rush into conflict with the godless enemy. It is to their machinations that we are to ascribe the nursing of the fires of revolution among the smouldering ashes which sixty years later burst forth in vehement flames.

Of Coponius and some of his successors little more is known to us than their names. Altogether there were seven procurators who administered Judea during the period A.D. 6–41: (1) Coponius, probably A.D. 6–9; (2) Marcus Ambivius, probably A.D. 9–12; (3) Annius Rufus, probably A.D. 12–15; (4) Valerius Gratus, A.D. 15–26; (5) Pontius Pilatus, A.D. 26–36; (6) Marcellus, A.D. 36–37; (7) Marullus, A.D. 37–41. The long period during which Valerius Gratus and Pontius Pilate held office was owing to the general principles on which Tiberius proceeded in his appointment of governors. In the interest of the provinces he left them as long as possible at their posts, because he thought that governors acted like flies upon the body of a wounded animal; if once they were gorged, they would become more moderate in their exactions, whereas new men began their rapacious proceedings afresh.

Among those named, Pontius Pilate is of special interest to us, not only as the judge of Jesus Christ, but also because he is the only one of whom we have any detailed account in Josephus and Philo. Philo, or rather Agrippa I., in the letter which Philo communicates as written by him, describes him as of an “unbending and recklessly hard character” (τὴν φύσιν ἀκαμπὴς καὶ μετὰ τοῦ αὐθάδους ἀμείλικτος), and gives a very bad account of his official administration. “Corruptibility, violence, robberies, ill-treatment of the people, grievances, continuous executions without even the form of a trial, endless and intolerable cruelties,” are charged against him. The very first act by which Pilate introduced himself into office was characteristic of him who treated with contempt the Jewish customs and privileges. Care had constantly been taken by the earlier procurators that the troops entering Jerusalem should not carry flags having the figure of the emperor, in order that the religious feelings of the Jews should not be offended by the sight of them (see in regard to these, above, p. 78). Pilate, on the other hand, to whom such tolerance appeared unworthy weakness, caused the garrison soldiers of Jerusalem to enter the city by night with the figure of the emperor on their flags. When the news spread among the people, they flocked out in crowds to Caesarea, and besieged the procurator with entreaties for five days and nights that the offensive articles might be removed. At last, on the sixth day, Pilate admitted the people into the race-course, into which at the same time he had ordered a detachment of soldiers. When the Jews also here again repeated their complaints, he gave a signal, upon which the soldiers surrounded the people on all sides with drawn swords. But the Jews remained stedfast, bared their necks, and declared that they would rather die than submit to a breach of the law. As further opposition seemed to Pilate hazardous, he gave orders to remove the offensive images from Jerusalem.

A new storm burst forth when on one occasion he applied the rich treasures of the temple to the certainly very useful purpose of building an aqueduct to Jerusalem. Such an appropriation of the sacred treasures was no less offensive than the introduction of the figures of the emperor. When, therefore, he once went to Jerusalem while the building was being proceeded with, he was again surrounded by a complaining and shrieking crowd. But he had previously obtained information of the projected outburst, and had given orders to the soldiers to mix among the people dressed in citizen garb armed with clubs. When the multitude therefore began to make complaints and to present petitions, he gave the preconcerted signal, whereupon the soldiers drew forth their clubs which they had concealed under their upper garments, and mercilessly beat down the helpless crowds. Many lost their lives in this melee. The opposition to the useful undertaking was thus indeed crushed; but also the popular hatred against Pilate was stirred up afresh.

The New Testament also contains hints about the popular uprisings in the time of Pilate. “There were present at that season,” so runs the narrative in Luke 13:1, “some that told Jesus of the Galileans, whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices.” This statement is to be understood as indicating that Pilate had put to the sword a number of Galileans while they were engaged in the act of presenting their offerings at Jerusalem. But nothing more definite as to this incident is known. And just as little do we know about “those who had made insurrection, and had committed murder in the insurrection” (Mark 15:7; comp. Luke 23:19), to whom among others that Barabbas belonged, whose liberation the Jews demanded of Pilate.

Probably to the later days of Pilate belongs an occurrence about which we are informed in the letter of Agrippa I. to Caligula, which is communicated by Philo. Pilate had learnt from the outburst at Caesarea that the setting up of the figures of the emperor in Jerusalem could not be carried out against the stubborn resistance of the Jews. He thought he now, at least, might attempt the introduction of votive shields without figures, on which the name of the emperor was written. Such shields, richly gilt, did he set up in what had been the palace of Herod, which Pilate himself was now wont to occupy, “less for the honour of Tiberius than for the annoyance of the Jewish people.” But the people would not tolerate even this. First of all, in company with the nobles and with the four sons of Herod, who were then present in Jerusalem attending a feast, they applied to Pilate in order to induce him to remove the shields. When their prayer proved unsuccessful, the most distinguished men, among whom certainly were those four sons of Herod, addressed a petition to the emperor, asking that he should order the removal of the offensive shields. Tiberius, who plainly perceived that it was a piece of purely wanton bravado on the part of Pilate, ordered the governor on pain of his severe displeasure to remove at once the shields from Jerusalem, and to have them set up in the temple of Augustus at Caesarea. This accordingly was done. “And thus were preserved both the honour of the emperor and the ancient customs of the city.”

At last by his utter recklessness Pilate brought about his own overthrow. It was an old belief among the Samaritans that on the mountain of Gerizim the sacred utensils of the temple had been buried since Moses’ times. A Samaritan pseudo-prophet once promised in A.D. 35 to show these sacred things if the people would assemble on Mount Gerizim. The light-minded multitude gave him a hearing, and in great crowds the Samaritans gathered together armed in the village of Tirathana at the fort of Mount Gerizim, so that from thence they might ascend the mountain and behold the sacred spectacle. But before they could carry out their project, they were arrested by Pilate in the village by a strong force, a portion of them was slain, a portion hunted in flight, and again another portion cast into prison. Of those imprisoned also Pilate had the most powerful and the most distinguished put to death. But the Samaritans were convinced that no revolutionary intentions lay to the basis of their pilgrimage to Gerizim, and so they complained of Pilate to Vitellius, the legate in Syria at that time. Their complaints had actually this result, that Vitellius sent Pilate to Rome to answer for his conduct, while he made over the administration of Judea to Marcellus.

Soon thereafter, at the Passover festival of A.D. 36, Vitellius himself went to Jerusalem, and won for himself on that occasion the goodwill of the inhabitants of the capital, for he remitted the taxes on the fruits sold in the city, and gave up for free use the high priest’s robe, which since A.D. 6 had lain in the possession of the Romans.

After he had meanwhile been occupied with the Parthian expedition (see above, p. 34), the campaign against Aretas, which he had been ordered by Tiberius in the spring of A.D. 37 to undertake, led him again to Jerusalem (see above, p. 33). On this occasion also he again established a good understanding by showing consideration for Jewish sentiments. The way from Antioch to Petra had led him, together with his army, through Judea proper. But the Roman standards, as is well known, were offensive to the Jews. They therefore sent to Vitellius at Ptolemais an embassy, which entreated him with tears that he should not lead his army through the Holy Land. Vitellius was so reasonable as to perceive the grounds of their request, caused the army to march through the Great Plain, and went himself alone to Jerusalem. On the fourth day of his stay there he received tidings of Tiberius’ death, whereupon he led his whole army back to Antioch.

The reign of Caligula, A.D. 37–41, was, after the rule of Tiberius, the enemy of the human race, joyfully greeted throughout the whole empire, and especially among the Jews. Since Vitellius was residing in Jerusalem when the news of the change of government reached him, the Jews were the first of the nationalities of Syria who professed to the new emperor the oath of allegiance, and presented sacrifices for him. Also during the first eighteen months of his reign the Jews enjoyed peace and quiet. But in the autumn of A.D. 38 a bloody persecution of the Jews broke out in Alexandria, which, though apparently at the instance of the Alexandrian mob, was yet indirectly the work of the emperor. In his overweaning self-conceit, joined with a beclouded intellect, he took up the idea of his divine rank with terrible earnestness. With him the worship of the emperor was no mere form of homage which the emperors had taken over as a heritage of the Greek kings; but he actually believed in his divinity, and regarded the refusal to worship him as a proof of hostility to his person. During the second year of his reign this idea seems to have obtained a complete mastery over him, and to have become known in the provinces. The provincials developed a corresponding zeal. The Jews, who could not follow this course, fell under suspicion of hostility to Caesar. This was to the Jew hating populace of Alexandria a welcome excuse for giving free expression to their hatred of the Jews; for they might well suppose that by persecuting the Jews they would earn the favour of the emperor. The governor of Egypt at that time, A. Avillius Flaccus, was weak enough for the sake of his own interests to agree to the plans of the enemies of the Jews. He had been governor of Egypt under Tiberius for five years, A.D. 32–37, and, according to the testimony of Philo, had during that time administered his office in a faultless manner. Under Caligula he more and more lost that reputation. As an intimate friend of Tiberius, he stood, as a matter of course, in disfavour with Caligula. With the death of young Tiberius, grandson of the Emperor Tiberius, and of the praetorian prefect Macro, both of whom were compelled by Caligula to commit suicide, he completely lost every support at the court. Thenceforth he set no other end before him than this, namely, to endeavour by all means to secure the favour of the young emperor. This was the one principle that determined his proceedings toward the Jews.

The presence of the Jewish king Agrippa in Alexandria gave the ostensible occasion for the outbreak of the persecution of the Jews. He arrived in Alexandria, on his homeward journey from Rome to Palestine, in August A.D. 38. Although, as Philo has assured us, he avoided everything calculated to produce a commotion, the mere appearance of a Jewish king was an offence to the mob of Alexandria. Agrippa was first of all treated with indignity and insult in the gymnasium, and then exposed to ridicule in the performances of a pantomime. A man called Karabas, suffering from mental derangement, was decked in uniform similar to the king’s dress, and was mockingly greeted as king, the people addressing him in the Syrian as Μάριν, Lord. The mob, however, once roused to riot, was not disposed to be pacified. They now insisted upon placing statues of the emperor in the Jewish synagogues, called by Philo simply προσευχαί. Flaccus did not venture to oppose them, but rather agreed to all the demands of the enemies of the Jews. These again, the more the governor seemed disposed to yield to them, became the more extravagant in their demands. Flaccus gave permission successively to the setting up of images in the synagogues, to the pronouncing of the Jews, by an edict, no longer in the enjoyment of the rights of citizens, and, finally, he gave his sanction to a general persecution of the Jews. Dreadful sufferings were now endured by the Jewish population of Alexandria. Their houses and warehouses were plundered; the Jews were themselves maltreated, murdered, the bodies mutilated; others publicly burned; others, again, dragged alive through the streets. The synagogues were, some of them destroyed, others profaned by the setting up of the image of Caligula as a god; in the largest synagogue the image of Caligula was set up on a high damaged Quadriga, which they had dragged thither from the gymnasium. The governor Flaccus not only let all this go on without interfering, but also himself proceeded with severe measures against the Jews, for which, according to Philo, he had no other reason than the refusal of the Jews to take part in the worship of the emperor. He caused thirty-eight members of the Jewish Gerousia to be carried bound into the theatre, and there to be scourged before the eyes of their enemies, so that some of them died under the infliction of the lash, and others were thrown into long and severe illnesses. A centurion was commanded to search with a select band through the houses of the Jews for arms. Jewish women were compelled before spectators in the theatre to partake of swine’s flesh. Flaccus had even before this shown his hostility to the Jews by failing to send to the emperor, as he had promised to do, but retaining in his own possession, a petition from the Jewish community, in which an explanation was given of the attitude of the Jews in reference to the honours demanded by the emperor. This writing was first sent up by Agrippa, with a statement of the reason of the delay.

We are not in possession of any detailed information as to the circumstances of the Alexandrian community after the severe persecution of the autumn of A.D. 38 down to the death of Caligula in January A.D. 41. In autumn of A.D. 38 Flaccus was suddenly, at the command of the emperor, carried as a prisoner to Rome, and banished to the island of Andros in the Aegean Sea, where subsequently he was, together with other distinguished exiles, put to death by the orders of Caligula. Who his successor was is unknown. It may be accepted as highly probable that the Jews did not get back their synagogues during Caligula’s lifetime, and that the worship of the emperor continued a burning question, and one involving the Jews in danger. In A.D. 40, probably in spring, in consequence of the still continuing conflicts between the heathen and Jewish population of Alexandria, an embassy from both parties went to the emperor to complain against one another, and seek to win over the emperor to their side. The leader of the Jewish embassy was Philo; the leader of his opponents was the scholar Apion. The result was unfavourable to the Jews. They were ungraciously received by the emperor, and were obliged to return without having effected their object. So Josephus briefly tells the story. A few incidents connected with this embassy are also told by Philo in his work about Caligula. But it is difficult to obtain any definite information from these fragmentary notices. Without having referred to the sending of one of the two embassies, Philo first of all states that the ambassadors of the Alexandrians won over completely to their interests the slave Helicon, a favourite of Caligula. When the Jews perceived this, they made similar endeavours on their part, but in vain. They then concluded to pass on to the emperor a written statement, which contained the main points embraced in the petition shortly before sent in by King Agrippa. Caligula received the Jewish ambassadors first of all in the Campus Martius at Rome, and promised to hear them at a convenient time. The ambassadors then followed the emperor to Puteoli, where, however, they were not received. Only at a later period—we know not how much later—the promised audience took place at Rome, in the gardens of Maecenas and Lamia, at which the emperor—while he inspected the works that were going on, and gave orders regarding them—caused the Jews to keep moving on always behind him, throwing out to them now and again a contemptuous remark, amid the applause of the ambassadors of the other party, until at last he dismissed them, declaring that they were to be regarded rather as foolish than as wicked men, since they would not believe in his divinity.

Affairs at Alexandria remained in suspense down to the death of Caligula. One of the first acts of the new emperor, Claudius, was to issue an edict by which all their earlier privileges were confirmed to the Alexandrian Jews, and the unrestricted liberty to practise their own religion was anew granted them.

While the Alexandrian embassy to Rome waited for the imperial decision, a serious storm burst upon the mother country of Palestine. It had its origin in Jamnia, a town on the Philistine coast which was mainly inhabited by Jews. When the heathen inhabitants of that place, in order to show their zeal for Caesar and at the same time to aggravate the Jews, erected a rude altar to the emperor, this was immediately again destroyed by the Jews. The incident was reported by the imperial procurator of the city, Herennius Capito, to the emperor, who, in order to avenge himself upon the refractory Jews, gave orders that his statue should be set up in the temple of Jerusalem. As it was foreseen that such an attempt would call forth violent opposition, the governor of Syria, P. Petronius, received a command to have the one half of the army stationed “on the Euphrates,” i.e. in Syria, in readiness to proceed to Palestine, in order by their assistance to carry out the will of the emperor. This moderate and reasonable man obeyed the childish demand with a heavy heart during the winter of A.D. 39–40. While he was getting the statue prepared in Sidon, he gathered about him the heads of the Jewish people, and sought to persuade them to yield with a good grace; but all in vain.

Soon the news of what was proposed spread over all Palestine, and now the people assembled in great crowds at Ptolemais, where Petrouius had his headquarters. “Like a cloud the multitude of the Jews covered all Phoenicia.” Well arranged, divided into six groups—old men, able-bodied men, boys, old women, wives and maidens, the mass deputation appeared before Petronius. Their mournful complaints and groans made such an impression upon Petronius that he resolved at all hazards to make the attempt to put off the decision for a time at least. The full truth, that he really wished to have a stop put to the whole business, he dared not indeed write to the emperor. He wrote him rather that he entreated for delay, partly because time was required for the preparing of the statue, partly because the harvest was approaching, which it would be advisable to see gathered in, since otherwise the exasperated Jews might in the end destroy the whole harvest. When Caligula received that letter, he was greatly enraged at the dilatoriness of his governor. But he did not venture to give expression to his wrath, but wrote him a letter of acknowledgment in which he praised his prudence, and only advised him to proceed as quickly as possible with the preparation of the statue, since the harvest would be already about an end.

Petronius, however, did not even yet proceed with any vigour in the matter, but entered anew into negotiations with the Jews. Yea, even late in autumn, down to the season of sowing in November, we find him at Tiberias besieged for forty days by crowds of people to be numbered by thousands, who besought him with tears that he would yet save the country from the threatened horror of temple desecration. When at length Aristobulus also, the brother of King Agrippa and other relatives of his joined their prayers to those of the people, Petronius resolved to take the decisive step of asking the emperor to revoke his order. He led his army back from Ptolemais to Antioch, and set before the emperor, in a letter which he sent for this purpose to Caligula, how upon grounds of equity and prudence it would be advisable to recall the offensive edict.

Meanwhile affairs at Rome affecting matters in question had taken a more favourable turn. King Agrippa I., who in spring of the year 40 had left Palestine, met with Caligula in Rome or at Puteoli in autumn, when the emperor had just returned from his German campaign. He had as yet heard nothing of what was going on in Palestine. But the glance of the emperor’s eye assured him that he was nursing secret wrath in his heart. When he sought in vain for the cause of such feelings, the emperor observed his embarrassment, and let him know in a very ungracious tone what the cause of his displeasure was. The king on hearing this was so horror-stricken that he fell into a fainting fit, from which he did not recover till the evening of the following day. On his recovery he made it his first business to address a supplication to the emperor, in which he endeavoured to persuade him to recall his order by showing that none of his predecessors had ever attempted anything of that sort. Contrary to all expectation, the letter of Agrippa had the desired effect. Caligula caused a letter to be written to Petronius, commanding that nothing should be changed in the temple at Jerusalem. The favour was certainly not unmixed; for along with this order there was an injunction that no one who should erect a temple or altar to the emperor outside of Jerusalem should be hindered from doing so. A good part of the concession that had been made was thus again withdrawn; and it was only owing to the circumstance that no one took advantage of the right thus granted, that new disturbances did not arise out of it. The emperor, indeed, soon repented that he had made that concession. And so, as he made no further use of the statue that had been prepared at Sidon, he ordered a new one to be made in Rome which he intended himself, in his journey to Alexandria which he had in prospect, to put ashore on the coast of Palestine as he passed, and have it secretly brought to Jerusalem. Only the death of the emperor that soon followed prevented the carrying out of this enterprise.

For the person of Petronius as well as for the land of Judea the death of the emperor was a favourable occurrence. When, further, Caligula, after he himself had arranged for the stopping of proceedings, received the letter of Petronius expressing the wish referred to, he fell into a furious passion about the disobedience of this officer, and caused a command immediately to be issued, that as a punishment for that he should take away his own life. Soon thereafter, however, Caligula was murdered, 24th January A.D. 41; and Petronius received the news thereof twenty-seven days before the messengers arrived with the order for self-destruction; for these, in consequence of unfavourable weather, had been three full months upon their way. There was now just as little idea of carrying out the order for self-murder as there was of setting up the statue in the temple of Jerusalem.

The new emperor, Claudius, who had been raised to the throne by the soldiers, immediately upon his accession gifted to Agrippa, besides the dominion which he already had possession under Caligula, Judea and Samaria, so that now again all Palestine, to the same extent which it formerly had under Herod the Great, was united in the hand of a Herodian.


GRESWELL, Dissertations upon the Principles and Arrangement of a Harmony of the Gospels, 3 vols. Oxford 1830, vol. i. pp. 443–524. By the same author, Supplementary Dissertations, Oxford 1834, p. 114 sqq. These works have not been accessible to me.

FAIRBAIBN, Hermeneutical Manual, Edinburgh 1857, pp. 461–475.

HUSCHKE, Ueber den zur Zeit der Geburt Jesu Christi gehaltenen Census, 1840 (125 pp.).

HUSCHKE, Ueber den Census und die Steuerverfassung der früheren römischen Kaiserzeit, 1847 (208 pp.).

WIESELER, Chronological Synopsis of the Four Gospels, Cambridge 1864 (Original, 1843), pp. 95–135.

WINER, Bealwörterbuch, arts. “Quirinius” and “Schatzung.”

GUMPACH, “Die Schatzung” (Studien und Kritiken, 1852, pp. 663–684).

LICHTENSTEIN, Lebensgeschichte des Herrn Jesu Christi, 1856, pp. 78–90.

KÖHLER, art “Schatzung” in Herzog’s Real-Encyclopaedie, 1 Aufl. xiii. 1860, pp. 463–467.

BLEEK, Synoptische Erklärung der drei ersten Evangelien (1862), i. 66–75.

GODET, Commentary on Gospel of St. Luke, 2 vols. Edin. 1875, vol. 1. pp. 120–129.

MEYER on Luke 2:1, 2; also the revision by Weiss; and generally the Commentaries on Luke’s Gospel.

STRAUSS, Leben Jesu, 1864, pp. 336–340; Die Halben und die Ganzen, 1865, pp. 70–79.

ABERLE, “Ueber den Statthalter Quirinius” (Tüb. Theolog. Quartalscrift, 1865, pp. 103–148; 1868, pp. 29–64; 1874, pp. 663–687).

HILGENFELD, “Quirinius als Statthalter Syriens” (Zeitschrift für wissenschaftliche Theologie, 1865, pp. 408–421; 1870, pp. 151–167).

GERLACH, Die römischen Statthalter in Syrien und Judäa, 1865, pp. 22–42.

LUTTEROTH, Le récensement de Quirinius en Judée, Paris 1865 (134 pp.).

RODBERTUS, “Zur Geschichte der römischen Tributsteuern seit Augustus” (Hildebrand’s Jahrbücher für Nationalökonomie und Statistik, Bd. iv. 1865, pp. 341–427; Bd. v. 1865, pp. 135–171, 241–315; Bd. viii. 1867, pp. 81–126, 385–475. On the passage in Luke, Bd. v. 155 ff.).

EWALD, History of Israel, vi. pp. 155–157.

KEIM, Jesus of Nazara, ii. 116–123.

EBRARD, Gospel History.

WIESELER, Beiträge zur richtigen Würdigung der Evangelien, 1869, pp. 16–107. By same author, Studien und Kritiken, 1875, pp. 535–549.

FARRAR, Life of Christ, vol. i. p. 7, note; vol. ii. p. 450.

CASPARI, Chronological and Geographical Introduction to the Life of Christ, pp. 34–38.

ZUMPT, Das Geburtsjahr Christi, 1869, pp. 20–224.

WOOLSEY, “Historical Credibility of Luke ii. 1–5” (New Englander, 1869, pp. 674–723. This paper has not been accessible to me). By the same author: Review of Zumpt’s Geburtsjahr Christi in the Bibliotheca Sacra, 1870, pp. 290–336. Very carefully done.

STEINMEYER, “Die Geschichte der Geburt des Herrn und seiner ersten Schritte im Leben” (Apologetische Beiträge, iv.), Berlin 1873, pp. 29–41.

SEVIN, Chronologie des Lebens Jesu (1874), pp. 20–39.

SCHENKEL’S Bibellexikon, Bd. v. pp. 23–27, art. “Quirinius” by Weizsäcker, and pp. 398–405, art “Steuern” by Kneucker).

HEHLE, Theolog. Quartalschrift, 1875, pp. 666–684; 1876, pp. 85–101 (review of Zumpt’s Geburtsjahr Christi).

MARQUARDT, Römische Staatsverwaltung, Bd. ii. 1876, pp. 198–216 (2 Aufl. revised by Dessau und Domaszewski 1884, pp. 204–223).

KEIL (1879) and SCHANZ (1883) in their Commentaries on Luke.

BIESS, Das Geburtsjahr Christi (1880), pp. 66–78.—By the same author, Nochmals das Geburtsjahr Jesu Christi (1883), pp. 59–68.

HOFMANN (J. Chr. K. von), Die heilige Schrift Neuen Testaments zusammenhängend untersucht, Thl. viii. 1 (1878), p. 46 ff.; x. (1883) p. 64 ff.

LECOULTRE, De censu Quiriniano et anno nativitatis Christi secundum Lucam evangelistam, Lausannae 1883 (100 pp.). A review of it in Theologische Literaturzeitung, 1883, p. 481.

PÖLZL, art. “Census” in Wetzer and Weite’s Kirchenlexikon, 2 Aufl. Bd. iii. 1884, pp. 1–7.

SIEFFERT, art. “Schatzung” in Herzog’s Real-Encyclopaedie, 2 Aufl. xiii. 1884, pp. 446–455.

MOMMSEN, Res gestae divi Augusti, ed. 2, 1883, pp. 175–177.—By the same author, Römisches Staatsrecht, ii. 1 (1874), pp. 391–394.

UNGER, “De censibus provinciarum Romanarum” (Leipziger Studien zur class. Philologie, Bd. x. 1887, pp. 1–76). Mainly a collection of inscriptions in which tax-collectors are mentioned.

It has been mentioned above, at p. 79, that after the banishment of Archelaus the imperial legate, Quirinius, arrived in Judea, and there, in A.D. 6 or 7, proceeded to make a census, i.e. a list of the inhabitants, and a reckoning of their landed property, for the purpose of apportioning the taxation. The evangelist Luke, 2:1–5, makes mention of a valuation census such as that made by Quirinius; but he places it in the last days of Herod the Great, that is, somewhere about ten or twelve years earlier than that census was really made. It is a matter of debate how this story is related to the similar one recorded by Josephus; whether there were actually two different valuations in Judea conducted by Quirinius, or whether Luke has erroneously set down the valuation that was made in A.D. 7 in the last years of Herod the Great. In order that we may be in a position to form a deliberate judgment on this much-debated question, and generally on the credibility of the narrative of Luke, it is necessary first of all to understand, at least in its most general outlines, the Roman system of taxation during the days of the empire.

The original Roman census, as it was drawn up during the period of the republic, was strictly confined to the enrolment of Roman citizens. It consisted of a list of Roman citizens and their possessions, made for a double purpose: (1) The regulating of military service, and (2) the levying of the direct taxes. The party whose property had to be valued was obliged to present himself before the censor and give in a statement of his possessions; but it was the custom that the father of the family should pay taxes for himself and for the whole family. In the time of the republic there was no one regular valuation census of the subjects of the Roman nation. Valuations were indeed made here and there; but these had no intimate connection or coherence with one another nor with the census of the Roman citizens.

In the days of the empire, as even before in the days of the republic, the census of Roman citizens had completely lost its original significance; for the Roman citizens, i.e. therefore all Italy and the colonies with Italian privileges, were no longer sufficient for military service, and also no longer paid direct taxes. When therefore Augustus, Claudius, and Vespasian still made valuation rolls of Roman citizens, this was done only for statistical purposes, or on account of the religious festivities associated therewith, but not for taxation purposes. Fundamentally different was the census of the provinces, the main purpose of which was to regulate the levying of the taxes. Even in this direction there existed in the earlier days of the empire a very great diversity; but in general even then those principles had become pretty well established which in later juristic documents (Digest. L. 15: De censibus) are assumed as everywhere prevailing. From these we learn that there were for the provinces two kinds of direct taxes: (1) The property-tax on possessions in land, tributum soli or agri, and (2) The poll-tax, tributum captis. The former was paid partly in kind, partly in money. Under the latter, the tributum capitis, there seems to have been summed up various sorts of personal taxes, such as the income-tax, which varied according to the amount of the income, and the poll-tax proper, which was of equal amount for every caput. In Syria, e.g., there was raised in Appian’s time a personal tax, which amounted to one per cent. of the valuation. This was therefore properly an income-tax. When, on the other hand, Josephus reckons from the poll-tax that Egypt, with the exclusion of Alexandria, had a population of seven and a half millions, he is evidently referring to a tax of the same amount for every caput. At any rate, during the earlier days of the empire, the taxes levied were of the most diverse kinds. Women and slaves had also to pay the poll-tax. Only children and old men were exempted. In Syria, e.g., men from the age of fourteen and women from the age of twelve years, and both up to the age of sixty-five years, were obliged to pay the poll-tax. As to the valuation census of the provinces, i.e. the preparation of lists for the sake of the apportioning of the taxes, the same principles regulated procedure as in the drawing up of the census of Roman citizens. In regard to the one as well as the other, the expressions were used: edere, deferre censum, profiteri; from which it is evident that the party liable had to give in the valuation himself, and his taxes were only controlled by the officers. The taxes had to be paid in the chief towns of the particular taxation districts; and, indeed, the landed estates had to be registered for taxation in those communes in whose domain they lay. At what intervals the valuation was repeated is not with any certainty known. Huschke assumes a ten years’ period for the census, similar to the five years’ period of the earlier census of Roman citizens. Zumpt contests the correctness of this assumption, and believes that by standing taxation boards the list was kept carefully revised. Many hints favour the idea of a five years’ census period. Since the fourth century after Christ it is well known that the fifteen year indiction period became prevalent.

So much on the question of valuations and taxation in general. Now, Luke says in the passage referred to, chap. 2:1–5, that about the time of the birth of Christ, therefore certainly while Herod the Great still reigned (Luke 1:5; Matt. 2:1–22), a decree (δόγμα) went out from the Emperor Augustus requiring that “all the world should be taxed,” ἀπογράφεσθαι πᾶσαν τὴν οἰκουμένην. By “all the world,” in accordance with the well-known use of the phrase among the Romans, we can understand nothing else than the whole Roman empire, the orbis Romanus. Strictly taken, the phrase would include Italy as well as the provinces. Yet it would be a pardonable inexactness in the use of the expression, even were it found to have been employed actually to designate only a general census of the provinces. Absolutely impossible is the limitation of the phrase to Palestine sometimes favoured by earlier expositors. The verb ἀπογράφειν means first of all only “to register,” and is therefore more general than the definite ἀποτιμᾶν, “to value.” But there is no other purpose of registration that naturally suggests itself than that of forming a basis for taxation (for the Jews were exempted from military service); and certainly Luke has so understood the word, since in ver. 2 he brings this registration (“taxing”) into connection with the well-known census of Quirinius, whether to identify with that taxing or to distinguish it from it. He proceeds in ver. 2 to say: αὕτη [ἡ] ἀπογραφὴ πρώτη ἐγένετο ἡγεμονεύοντος τῆς Συρίας Κυρηνίου. Whether the article is to be inserted before ἀπογραφή or not, it is difficult to say, since important authorities may be cited in favour of both readings. At any rate the order πρώτη ἐγένετο is to be maintained over against the isolated readings ἐγένετο πρώτη (א) and ἐγένετο ἀπογραφὴ πρώτη (D). For the sense it is almost indifferent whether one insert the article or not; for in the former case it would be translated: “This taxing took place as the first;” and in the other case: “This took place as the first taxing, while Quirinius was governor of Syria. But it may now be asked, in what sense Luke uses the term “first.” Does he mean to say that it was the first general imperial valuation, or the first Roman valuation in Judea, or that it was the first among several made by Quirinius? The first of these explanations would make Luke assume a number of general imperial valuations. But if, as will appear, even the one imperial valuation census under Augustus is problematical, a frequent repetition of such a census would be yet more problematical. We shall therefore do well in not unnecessarily attributing this serious error to the evangelist. The first tenable explanation then is that mentioned above in the second place. We shall then have to stand by it, if it can be proved that Quirinius only made one valuation census for Judea, and that also Luke intended to refer to that one. Provisionally, therefore, we may assume this as the sense of the words, that the general imperial valuation census ordered by Augustus for Judea was the first which had been made there by the Romans, and that it took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria. In this case the only point that we must still, according to p. 111, leave undecided is, whether the valuation census was subsequently repeated at regular intervals of time, or was kept up to date by constant revision of the lists.—In what follows, in vv. 3–5, Luke further states that in obedience to that decree, all (in the land of Judea) went to be taxed, every one εἰς τὴν ἑαυτοῦ πόλιν, i.e. every one who was away from the native place of his family (his οἶκος), had now to go to that place in order to be taxed there. And so also Joseph went from Galilee to Bethlehem, because he was of the house of David, to be taxed with Mary his espoused wife (σὺν Μαριάμ is to be joined with ἀπογράψασθαι, not with ἀνέβη, which is much further removed from it).

This account by Luke, however, now calls forth the following considerations:—

1. Of a general imperial census in the time of Augustus, history otherwise knows nothing.

Apologetical: Huschke, Census zur Zeit des Geburt Jesu Christi, pp. 2–59; Wieseler, Chronological Synopsis of the Four Gospels, pp. 66–82; Rodbertus, Jahrbücher für Nationalökonomie und Statistik, v. 145 ff., 241 ff.; Zumpt, Geburtsjahr Christi, pp. 147–160; Marquardt, Römische Staatsverwaltung, ii. 204 ff. (2 Aufl. p. 211 ff.); Lecoultre, De censu Quiriniano, pp. 28–41.

Huschke especially has endeavoured by a series of facts to establish the position that such an imperial census actually did take place, but the want of demonstrative force in this attempt is now to some extent, at least, admitted even by the most decided upholders of the narrative of Luke. Thus Huschke refers (p. 11 ff.), and also even Wieseler, to the rationarium or breviarium totius imperii, a list of the sources of help or supply for the whole empire, which Augustus, as a good financier, drew up, so that he might be able to bring into order again the seriously disturbed financial arrangements of the empire (Suetonius, Augustus, 28, 101; Dio Cassius, liii. 30, lvi. 33; Tacitus, Annals, i. 11). But Zumpt rightly remarks that this, indeed, speaks for the orderly condition of the State administration, but does not prove an imperial census.—Still more unfortunate is Huschke’s reference (pp. 37–45) to Dio Cassius, liv. 35 and lv. 13; for in the former passage it is simply said that Augustus as a private man had undertaken a census of all his property (πάντα τὰ ὑπάρχοντά οἱ); and in the other, the reference is only to a census of Roman citizens.—Finally, the attempt of Huschke (pp. 45–53) to call the Monumentum Ancyranum (on which compare what is said in vol. i. p. 115) as a witness on behalf of the general imperial census completely breaks down; and for proof of this, it is enough to refer to Wieseler and Marquardt.

Of the numerous witnesses whom Huschke had called to prove the fact of the general imperial census, there remain, therefore, only Cassiodorus, Isidorus Hispalensis, and Suidas. They all do, undoubtedly, speak of a general imperial census in the time of Augustus. But their testimony loses very much of its value from the fact that they were all three Christians, and lived in a very late period, namely, in the sixth, seventh, and tenth centuries after Christ, which is calculated to produce an exceedingly strong suspicion that they simply drew their information from Luke. The confused rigmarole of the Spanish Isidore is not regarded even by Wieseler and Zumpt as an independent witness. As to Suidas, his dependence upon Luke is quite apparent. Finally, Cassiodorus has certainly used older sources, namely, the writings of the land measurers. But who can give us any guarantee that he did not derive his statement about the census from Luke? At any rate, it is hazardous, considering the silence of all older sources (the Monumentum Ancyranum, Dio Cassius, Suetonius), to accept as historical the isolated statement of Cassiodorus.—The “testimony” of Orosius, on which Riess again lays great stress, though it had long been given up by most, rests, undoubtedly, only upon the narrative of Luke.

Many think that they have found an indirect support for the idea of an imperial census in the times of Augustus in the so-called imperial survey of Augustus. But even this is very problematical. We know, indeed, that Agrippa, the friend of Augustus, collected material for a map of the world, and that this map of the world after his death was set up in marble in a corridor. These commentarii of Agrippa were specially valuable on account of their numerous and exact measurements. But it is very doubtful whether the measurements of Agrippa rest upon a general survey of the empire undertaken by Augustus. That such a survey was begun as early as the times of Caesar, and was completed under Augustus, is, indeed, affirmed by some late cosmographers, like Julius Honorius and Aethicus Ister. But it is questionable whether this statement is derived from ancient sources. And even if Augustus had undertaken a general imperial survey, this, evidently, had nothing to do with the census. It could only properly have to do, as all geographicalstatistical materials of the following period show, with geographical investigations, and, above all, with the measuring of roads, with a statement of distances from place to place.

But even although this much is established that, apart from Luke, there is no historical evidence of a general imperial census by Augustus, it may still certainly be regarded as a possibility that Luke alone has handed down to us information about that fact. But even this possibility again would require to be stated with very important limitations. For this reason chiefly we cannot entertain the idea of an imperial census, but at most only a census of the provinces, because in any case Italy would have to be excluded (compare p. 108). But even with respect to the provinces, there was this great difference among them, that some were administered by Augustus through his legates, others by the Senate. It is scarcely conceivable that the shrewd Augustus, careful to avoid all encroachments on the rights of the Senate, should have ordered by one and the same edict a census of the same sort for his provinces and for those of the Senate. Besides this, it is to be noted that we know definitely of some provinces that in the time of Angustus no Roman census had been made in them. The conclusion which we reach the# is simply this, that in the time of Augustus valuation censuses had been made in many provinces. And this is quite likely, since the need for such must have been keenly felt after the confusions of the civil war, and Augustus regarded it as his special task to restore matters to an orderly condition. Zumpt lays great stress also upon the fact that the juristic sources from the beginning of the third century after Christ (Digest. L. 15) already presuppose a great uniformity in reference to the matter of the valuation census. But there is nothing to justify us in carrying that unification back to Augustus.

But a further remark on the narrative of Luke is:

II. Under a Roman census, Joseph would not have been obliged to travel to Bethlehem, and Mary would not have required to accompany him thither.

Apologetical: Huschke, Census zur Zeit des Geburts Jesu Christi, pp. 116–125; Wieseler, Chronological Synopsis, pp. 92–95; Beiträge, pp. 65–69, 46–49; Zumpt, Geburtsjahr Christi, pp. 193–196, 203 f.

In a Roman census the landed property had to be registered for taxation in the commune in whose territory it lay (see above, p. 111). For the rest, the person to be taxed had to enrol his name in the census at his dwelling-place, or at the chief town of the taxation district within which he resided. When, on the other hand, Luke tells that Joseph travelled to Bethlehem, because he was of the house of David, it is assumed that the preparation of the taxation lists had been made according to tribes, generations, and families, which was by no means the Roman custom. It is therefore usually conjectured (as is done even by Wieseler and Zumpt) that in that census a concession had been made to the custom of the Jews. Now it is quite correct that the Romans in measures of that kind frequently conformed to existing institutions. But in this particular case such a concession as that referred to would have been very remarkable, since this method of conducting the census would be much more troublesome, and would lead to much greater inconvenience than the Roman plan. It is also extremely questionable whether a registration according to families and generations was any longer possible, since in regard to many it could not now be proved whether they belonged to this family or to that It is further remarkable that Luke makes it appear as if Mary had been obliged to travel with Joseph in order to be taxed (ver. 5: ἀπογράψασθαι σὺν Μαριάμ). No such requirement could have been made by a Roman census. For although women also were liable for the poll-tax (see above, p. 111), they were not accustomed to appear personally at a census, since the particulars required, as may be concluded from the analogy of the old Roman census, could have been supplied by the father of the family.

III. A Roman census could not have been made in Palestine during the time of King Herod.

Apologetical: Huschke, Census zur Zeit des Geburte Jeni Christi, pp. 99–116; Wieseler, Chronological Synopsis, pp. 82–92; Beiträge, pp. 79–94; Zumpt, Geburtsjahr Christi, pp. 178–186, 212 f.

When Quirinius in A.D. 7 undertook to make a census in Judea, this was quite in order; for Judea had then been converted into a Roman province. On the other hand, Luke would have us believe that a Roman census had been made in Palestine, at a time when Palestine, under Herod the Great, was still an independent kingdom, though under the suzerainty of Rome. After all that we have come to know about the position of the reges socii toward the Romans, and especially in regard to the position of Herod, this seems impossible. Pompey had indeed laid the land of Judea under tribute; and Caesar had rearranged the system of taxation by means of a series of edicts. Even Antony had imposed upon Herod a tribute when he appointed him king. But even granting that Herod had continued to pay this tribute under Augustus, it could not even then be supposed that a Roman valuation census should have been made in his country. Such an arrangement in regard to the internal administration might indeed have been ordered in Palestine after it had become a province, but not so long as it was the territory of a rex soeius.

In order to make the matter conceivable an attempt has been made to point out similar cases, in which presumably in the domain of a rex socius a Roman census was made Thus reference is made to a passage in Tacitus about a census undertaken among the Clitae; Tacitus, Annals, vi. 41: “Per idem tempus Clitarum natio Cappadoci Archelao subiecta, quia nostrum in modum deferre census, pati tributa adigebatur, in iuga Tauri mentis abscessit locorumque ingenio sese contra imbelles regis copias tutabatur.” But it is not here said that in the domains of King Archelaus a Roman census had been made, but only that Archelaus had wished to make a census according to the Roman custom (nostrum in modum) among the Clitae who were subject to him.—Zumpt is of opinion that in the revolt of Judas of Galilee on the occasion of the census of Quirinius in A.D. 7, he has obtained a proof that this census extended not only over the territory of Archelaus (Judea and Samaria), then made into a province, but also over Galilee, since that revolutionary chief must have received his designation from the scene of his operations. But Josephus mentions expressly only the territory of Archelaus as that to which the census applied; and the designation of Judas as the Galilean is, on the contrary, to be explained by the fact that Judas, belonging to Gamala in Gaulanitis, which may readily be reckoned to Galilee in the wider sense, organized this revolt, not in Galilee but in Judea, and was now named by the inhabitants of Judea after his native country, “the Galilean.”

In order to prove the subject position of Herod and the consequent possibility of a Roman census in his domains, it has been pointed out that he was not allowed independently to declare war; that he besought permission of the emperor for the execution of his son; that his subjects also had to take the oath of allegiance to the emperor; that his will required the emperor’s confirmation; yea, even the wrestling games in honour of Augustus and the temples erected to the emperor are requisitioned to aid the proof of the possibility of a census. As if any one ever had supposed anything else but that the Jewish vassal kings were undoubtedly dependent upon the Roman emperor. Even from the Jewish coins Wieseler thinks that he can gather material for the-vindication of Luke. In regard to this it is eminently deserving of notice that there are Palestinian coins of Augustus with the year numbers 33, 36, 39, 40, 41, which, reckoning according to the Actian era of A.U.C. 723, would belong to the age of Archelaus, therefore to the time when Judea was still under native princes. But these numbers are probably to be reckoned according to the Augustan era of 1st January A.U.C. 727, according to which the year 33 would correspond to A.U.C. 759.—It is quite irrelevant when reference is made to the fact that Augustus enrolled Herod among “the procurators of Syria, and commanded that everything should be done in accordance with his judgment;” for from this it follows, not that Herod occupied the position of a subject, but, on the contrary, one of high trust on the part of his patrons and friends. A similar explanation may also be given of the threat once uttered by Augustus under extreme provocation when he said (Antiq. xvi. 9. 3) that “whereas of old he had used him as his friend, he should now use him as his subject,” ὅτι πάλαι χρώμενος αὐτῷ φίλῳ, νῦν ὑπηκόῳ χρήσεται. Wieseler, by a rare style of reasoning, seeks to twist this also into a support for his theory. An exact definition of the position of Herod in the sight of the civil law is certainly not easily given, since Josephus, where one would naturally look for an explanation, omits all reference to the question. In A.D. 30 Herod was by a decree of the Senate anew confirmed in the possession of his kingdom. But in regard to the contents of that decree Josephus gives us no details. Even the remark of Dio Cassius, that Augustus, when, in A.D. 20, he made definite arrangements for regulating affairs in Syria, “arranged the subject domain according to the Roman method, but allowed the confederate princes to rule according to the customs of their fathers,” is too general to permit any very definite conclusion to be drawn from it. It is at least not favourable to the idea of a Roman census in the domains of Herod. The same may be said of the expressions with which Josephus describes the conversion of Judea into a province. They prove satisfactorily that, in the opinion of Josephus, Judea was then for the first time made into a Roman territory subject to the Romans.

Beyond the range of these general remarks we are carried by a consideration of the taxation system in the time of Herod, in so far as we are informed by Josephus. Here we find throughout that Herod acted independently with reference to the taxes, and there is no sign of his paying any of the dues to the Romans. Herod remits sometimes a third, sometimes a fourth of the taxes. He even frees the Jewish colony in Batanea from payment of all taxes of every kind. After his death the Jews obtain from Archelaus a reduction of the oppressive taxation, which was therefore at the disposal also of Archelaus; and the Jewish deputation at Rome complained of the burdensome taxes under Herod, in order to base upon this their request that Palastine should not again be put under the rule of a Herodian. But there is no mention of a Roman tax. We have seen then that Herod dealt quite unrestrictedly with the taxation system of Palestine. It will therefore in any case, even if Herod should have paid tribute to the Romans, be quite correct to affirm that a Roman census and a Roman system of taxation could not have been introduced in his country.

IV. Josephus knows nothing of a Roman census in Palestine in the time of Herod: speaks rather of the census of A.D. 7 as something new and previously unheard of.

Apologetical: Wieseler, Chronological Synopsis, pp. 86–92; Beiträge, pp. 94–104.

In the attempt to weaken the force of the argumentum e silentio drawn from Josephus, two different courses have been taken: some have endeavoured to discover even in Josephus traces of a Roman census in the time of Herod; others have denied that the silence of Josephus proves anything.

Wieseler is of opinion that he has found a trace of that sort in the revolt of Judas and Matthias shortly before the death of Herod, the cause of which is said to have been the taking of a census; whereas Josephus as clearly as possible assigns a cause of an altogether different kind. Another trace is supposed to be found in the detailed reports of the large amount of the revenues of Judea, Galilee, and Trachonitis, which are given by Josephus in his account of the partition of Palestine among Herod’s three sons; as if in order to know the amount of these rents it would have been necessary to have a census of the purely Roman kind. It is a fact far more worthy of consideration that on the occasion of that partition Augustus laid down the condition that the rate of taxation of the Samaritans should be reduced one-fourth, since they had not taken part in the war against Varus. This is worthy of attention, because it is the only instance of an interference on the part of the emperor in the matter of the taxation of Judea prior to its being made into a Roman province. But certainly we cannot deduce from it the conclusion which Wieseler wishes to draw, that here we have to do with a Roman tax. On the contrary, the matter treated of throughout is only the revenues of the native princes, Archelaus, Antipas, and Philip; and the mere absence of any reference in this place to a Roman tax speaks strongly in favour of the idea that no such tax was then paid.—Finally, the argumentation is particularly acute, by means of which Zumpt has discovered in Josephus the sought for census, prior to the acknowledged one of A.D. 7. He says that from the account of Josephus with reference to the census of A.D. 7, it follows “that Quirinius then only taxed the property of the Jews, therefore those who were poor and without property were not taken into consideration.” But now since the poll-tax existing in the time of Christ presupposes also a list of those without property, such a list must have been drawn up previously, even under Herod. In reference to this statement there are only three things that require to be proved: (1) that Quirinius taxed “only the property” of the Jews; (2) that in Palestine in the time of Christ a poll-tax, was in force even for those without property; and (3) that this poll-tax had been introduced as early as in the time of Herod.

In reality, then, Josephus knows nothing of a Roman census in the time of Herod. We may not indeed be inclined ordinarily to lay any weight on argumenta e silentio; but in this case the argument is of some importance. In regard to no other period is Josephus so well informed, in regard to none is his narrative so full, as in regard to the last years of Herod. It is scarcely conceivable that a measure so calculated to cut into the very marrow of the people as a Roman census of that period should have been passed over by him, while he faithfully describes the census of A.D. 7, which occurred in a period of which Josephus knew practically nothing. It ought also to be remembered that a Roman census could not have passed off without leaving any trace behind, but must have occasioned a rebellion as well as that of A.D. 7, yea, much more, because in this case the latter would have been nothing new. The latter argument, indeed, Zumpt thinks to invalidate by making the census in the time of Herod into an innocent registration (ἀπογραφή) of the people for the purpose of the poll-tax, whereas the census of A.D. 7 was a property valuation (ἀποτίμησις), and just for that reason was so offensive.—The poll-tax had to be paid as tribute to the Romans, whereas the expenses of the internal government of the country had to be met by the property-tax. But it is in contradiction of all known facts that the tribute to be paid to the Romans should have consisted simply in a poll-tax of equal amount in the case of each caput. Appian says expressly that the Syrians paid a poll-tax of one per cent. of the sum of the valuation. If, therefore, a Roman tax had been imposed throughout Palestine, it would certainly not have been a mere poll-tax. And even were this granted, it would still be a Roman tax. There must then have been a numbering of the people, who would have made the imposition of this, just as much as a valuation census of the people, the occasion of a tumult. But, finally, that distinction between the ἀπογραφή referred to by Luke 2:2 and the ἀποτίμησις of A.D. 7 completely breaks down before the fact that the latter which occasioned the revolt of Judas of Galilee is referred to by Luke in the Acts of the Apostles v. 37 in the same words as the so-called numbering of the people in the time of Herod, and the ἀπογραφή is simply mentioned as an evident proof that he means in both passages to refer to the same fact.

The most decisive argument, however, against a census in the time of Herod is this, that Josephus characterizes the census of A.D. 7 as something entirely new and previously unheard of among the Jews. When we find Zumpt attempting to represent the novelty as consisting only in the property valuation (ἀποτίμησις), and Wieseler thinks that what was new and offensive lay merely in the form of the valuation, namely, the judicial examination (ἡ ἀκρόασις) and the obligation to confirm their depositions before a heathen tribunal by means of a definitely prescribed oath, these fine distinctions, which may possibly be spun out of the story in the Antiquities, are reduced to nothing when we turn to the parallel account in Wars of the Jews, ii. 8. 1, where Josephus expressed himself as follows: ἐπὶ τούτου (under Coponius) τις ἀνὴρ Γαλιλαῖος Ἰούδας ὄνομα εἰς ἀπόστασιν ἐνῆγε τοὺς ἐπιχωρίους, κακίζων εἰ φόρον τε Ῥωμαίοις τελεῖν ὑπομενοῦσι καὶ μετὰ τὸν θεὸν οἴσουσι θνητοὺς δεσπότας. The offensive thing, therefore, was not the taxing of property, or the form in which it was carried out, but the Roman taxation as such. This is also the assumption lying at the basis of accounts elsewhere given of the rebellion. Wars of the Jews, vii. 8. 1: Ἰούδα τοῦ πείσαντος Ἰουδαίων οὐκ ὀλίγους … μὴ ποιεῖσθαι τὰς ἀπογραφάς; ii. 17. 8: Ἰουδαίους ὀνειδίσας ὅτι Ῥωμαίοις ὑπετάσσοντο μετὰ τὸν θεόν. For the Romans at all to raise a tax in Judea was a novum et inauditum. Also from the words already quoted above, with which Josephus tells of the conversion of Judea into a province, Antiq. xvii. 13. 5: τῆς δὲ Ἀρχελάου χώρας ὑποτελοῦς προσνεμηθείσης τῇ Σύρων, if we take them exactly we shall be obliged to conclude that in the time of Herod and Archelaus no taxes were paid to the Romans. For if it was only after the banishment of Archelaus that Judea was made tributary, it follows that it had not been so previously. The same conclusion may be drawn from other two passages. The tetrarchy of Philip was after his death added by Tiberius to the province of Syria, τοὺς μέντοι φόρους ἐκέλευσε συλλεγομένους ἐν τῇ τετραρχίᾳ τῇ ἐκείνου γενομένῃ κατατίθεσθαι (Antiq. xviii. 4. 6). If even after the death of Philip no taxes flowed from his tetrarchy into the Roman fiscus, much less would this have been the case during his lifetime. But of the Jewish colony at Batanea on which Herod conferred the privilege of being absolutely free from taxation Josephus reports as follows, Antiq. xvii. 2. 2: Ἐγένετο ἡ χώρα σφόδρα πολυάνθρωπος ἀδείᾳ τοῦ ἐπὶ πᾶσιν ἀτελοῦς. Ἃ παρέμεινεν αὐτοῖς Ἡρώδου ζῶντος• Φίλιππος δὲ δεύτερος ἐκείνου παραλαβὼν τὴν ἀρχὴν ὀλίγα τε καὶ ἐπʼ ὀλίγον αὐτοὺς ἐπράξατο. Ἀγρίππας μέντοι γε ὁ μέγας καὶ ὁ παῖς αὐτοῦ καὶ ὁμώνυμος καὶ πάνυ ἐξετρύχωσαν αὐτούς, οὐ μέντοι τὰ τῆς ἐλευθερίας κινεῖν ἠθέλησαν. Παρʼ ὧν Ῥωμαῖοι δεξάμενοι τὴν ἀρχὴν τοῦ μὲν ἐλευθέρου καὶ αὐτοὶ τηροῦσι τὴν ἀξίωσιν, ἐπιβολαῖς δὲ τῶν φόρων εἰς τὸ πάμπαν ἐπίεσαν αὐτούς. It is thus made quite evident that the raising of a Roman tax in that district began only when it was no longer ruled over by its own princes, whereas under Herod the Great, Philip, Agrippa I., and Agrippa II., these taxes were raised or not raised at the pleasure of the prince.

From all that we have learned, then, the conclusion is Roman taxes could not possibly have been raised in Palestine in the time of Herod, and with this result the Roman census as a matter of course falls to the ground.

But, finally, the main consideration that tells against the account of Luke is:

V. A census held under Quirinius could not have occurred in the time of Herod, for Quirinius was never governor of Syria during the lifetime of Herod.

Not only Matt. 2:1 ff., but also Luke 1:5, assumes that Jesus was born during the lifetime of Herod. He therefore undoubtedly places the census referred to by him in the period of Herod’s reign. But he also says expressly that the census had been made ἡγεμονεύοντος τῆς Συρίας Κυρηνίου, which can mean nothing else than this, that it took place “while Quirinius had the supreme command in Syria,” i.e. when he was governor of Syria. Now we know indeed that Quirinius arrived in Syria as governor in A.D. 6, and that he had been in possession of the same office even earlier, in B.C. 3–2. But in the time of Herod he cannot have been governor; for from B.C. 9–6 this office was held by Sentius Saturninus, from B.C. 6–4 by Quinctilius Varus. The latter had to suppress the revolt which broke out in Palestine after the death of Herod, and was, therefore, in Syria at least half a year after Herod’s death. But the predecessor of Saturninus was Titius. Thus during the last five or six years of Herod, and it is only in regard to them that there can be any question here, there is absolutely no room for Quirinius.

This point has caused most trouble to the vindicators of Luke; and their opinions, which hitherto have been tolerably unanimous, now go very far apart from one another. We pass over the older attempts at solution, for the most part of a most arbitrary description (some even venturing upon the boldest alterations of the text), and restrict ourselves to a statement only of those which have their representatives in the present day.

1. Lutteroth, in order thoroughly to set aside the above stated exegetical facts, has devised the following original explanation. He says: When it is said of John the Baptist in Luke 1:80, that he was in the deserts ἕως ἡμέρας ἀναδείξεως αὐτοῦ πρὸς τὸν Ἰσραήλ, by ἀνάδειξις is to be understood, not his public appearance as a preacher of repentance, but his presentation before the people as a child of twelve years, according to the custom of the law. At this point of time the following statement falls to be inserted, that ἐν ταῖς ἡμέραις ἐκείναις was issued the emperor’s edict about the taxing, which was carried out by Quirinius. It was this also that led to Joseph making his journey to Bethlehem. As a subject of Herod Antipas, he would indeed be under no obligation to do this, as the taxing applied only to Judea; but by his voluntary appearance there he would bring into view his Bethlehemite nativity. Luke, therefore, is perfectly correct in setting down the taxing of Quirinius at the time when John the Baptist was twelve years old. The conclusion of Luke 2:5 is to be translated: To be taxed with Mary, whom he had married when already she was great with child (therefore twelve years before the taxing). To this earlier time then ver. 6 again reverts: And just there, in Bethlehem, were they also when Mary (twelve years before the taxing) brought forth her first-born son, etc. The explanation belongs to the number of those which may excite admiration for their acuteness, but stand in no need of confutation.

2. Huschke, Wieseler, Ewald, Caspari assign to the superlative πρῶτος a practically or exclusively comparative significance, and translate: This taxing was made when first, or before, Quirinius was governor of Syria. Luke therefore expressly distinguishes the taxing made under Herod as an earlier one from the later one made under Quirinius. That this translation in case of need might be justifiable may be admitted (John 1:15, 30). But even then it is by no means proved that it is the correct translation. It is indeed absolutely inconceivable for what purpose Luke should have made the idle remark, that this taxing took place before Quirinius was governor of Syria. Why would he not rather name the governor under whom it did take place? It may indeed be said that he distinguishes the earlier census under Herod from the later under Quirinius. But Luke does not really even do this, according to that translation. He says not: “This taxing took place earlier than that made under Quirinius” (which would have required something like this: αὕτη ἡ ἀπογραφὴ πρώτη ἐγένετο τῆς Κυρηνίου Συρίας ἡγεμονεύοντος γενομένης); but: “This taxing took place before Quirinius was governor of Syria.” So also Wieseler translates, and the analogy of all instances adduced by him (Chronological Synopsis, pp. 102, 103; Beiträge, pp. 30–32) admits of no other translation. But no unprejudiced person will find a suitable sense in these words. And to this it should be added, that Luke must here have expressed himself in a manner as involved and as likely to lead to misunderstanding as possible, whereas elsewhere his special characteristic is just intelligibility and lucidity of expression. No one who does not seek after hazardous explanations will be able to understand πρώτη otherwise than as superlative, and ἡγεμονεύοντος τῆς Συρίας Κυρηνίου otherwise then as genitivus absolutus: as, to name only some authorities, Winer, Buttmann, Zumpt, Bleek, Meyer, etc., have declared.

3. Gumpach. Lichtenstein, Kohler, Steinmeyer, J. Chr. K. von Hofmanu, emphasize ἐγένετο, and translate: This taxing “was carried into effect” (Gumpach), or “was completed” (Kohler, Steinmeyer, Hofmann), while Quirinius was governor of Syria. Luke distinguishes the issuing of the order for the taxing under Herod, and the execution of the decree, ten or twelve years later, under Quirinius. This hypothesis, apparently the most simple, in reality indeed the weakest, comes into conflict, as we shall immediately see, with the narrative of the journey of Joseph and Mary to Bethlehem, according to which it is not only the taxation decree, but also its execution, which took place in the time of Herod. That explanation at best could have a meaning only if one were bold enough to render the simple ἐγένετο by “came to a conclusion, was carried to a close,” which, however, even the above-named expositors have not ventured to do.

Ebrard has advanced what he regards as an improved explanation when he accentuates αὐτὴ ἡ ἀπογραφή and translates: The raising of the tax itself, however, took place only when Quirinius was governor of Syria. Luke therefore does not distinguish, as those critics before named supposed, the issuing of the order for a valuation of property and the execution of it, but the valuation of property (and that not only the order for it, but also the execution of it) on the one hand, and the levying of the tax based upon that valuation on the other hand. There is thus given to the subst. ἀπογραφή a completely different meaning from that given to the verb ἀπογράφεσθαι, which, in the close coherence of the passage, is absolutely impossible. The substantive and the verb alike can mean nothing else than: enrolment, to enrol, and in the strict sense are both specially used of the valuing and enrolment of property. The affirmation that just the census of Quirinius is ordinarily designated by the term ἀπογραφή, and that in consequence thereof this word has, for that particular definite case, the meaning of the levying of a tax (pp. 136 f., 140 f.), is a purely imaginary conception, and not once has the attempt been even made to establish it; for the reference to Acts 5:37, and Josephus, Antiq. xviii. 1 ff., cannot be regarded in this light. Instead of αὐτὴ ἡ ἀπογραφή it would be necessary to read something like this: ἡ δὲ τῶν φόρων ἐκλογή or εἴσπραξις. In conclusion, that view also is in contradiction to the history; for Quirinius, in A.D. 7, levied the taxes, not merely on the ground of an earlier valuation, but first of all, and chiefly, he was then engaged in making an ἀποτίμησις.

4. Seeing then that nothing can be gained by exegetical arts, the attempt has finally been made, even without any such, to vindicate the account of Luke as historical by having recourse to historical combinations. Indeed, Hengstenberg, since the discovery of the famous inscription which afforded evidence of the twice-repeated governorship of Quirinius is Syria, thinks that every difficulty has been wholly removed. That the inscription in reality proves nothing is quite selfevident after the description we have given of it above (see vol. i. p. 353). But also with the twice-repeated governorship of Quirinius in Syria, which is quite probable even apart from the inscription, nothing is gained toward the vindication of Luke; for even the first governorship of Quirinius cannot at the earliest have begun till at least half a year after the death of Herod (see above, p. 133), whereas, according to Luke, Quirinius must have been governor in the time of Herod. Zumpt and, after him, Pölzl, relying for support on a passage in Tertullian, seek assistance by assuming that the census was begun by Sentius Saturninus, B.C. 9–6, carried on by Quinctilius Varius, B.C. 6–4, and brought to an end by Quirinius during his first governorship. From Quirinius, as the completer of the work, it has received the name; wherefore also Luke says that it was made under him. So far then as Tertullian is concerned, Zumpt himself says in another part of his work that the Church Fathers “generally are wanting in all historical sense in the stating of the Gospel narrative.” On their statements, therefore, nothing can with safety be built. But in other respects Zumpt’s theory is only a falling back upon the theory of Gumpach and others, referred to under No. 3. The matter then stands so, in Zumpt’s opinion, that either in place of ἐγένετο we must put a verb like ἐτελέσθη, or instead of Quirinius must be put the name of that governor in whose term of office the fact recorded by Luke, the journey of Joseph and Mary to Bethlehem, took place; for Luke does indeed intend by mentioning the name simply to determine the time of which he speaks. Thus, as the words imply, the representation that the birth of Jesus Christ took place in the time of Quirinius is necessarily fundamental to the hypothesis, which, however, is impossible. Above all, it is inconceivable that the ἀπογραφή, in the way in which it is represented by Zumpt, namely, as a simple enrolment of the people without a property valuation, should have taken three or four years, whereas the much more difficult ἀποτίμησις of A.D. 7, which, besides, had to encounter the opposition of the people, was completed at farthest in the course of one year.

Both difficulties might indeed be overcome were we to assume, with Gerlach and Quandt, that Quirinius had been sent to Syria along with Quinctilius Varus (B.C. 6–4) as extra-ordinary legate, and as such had undertaken the census. In its best and most precise form this theory was represented by Sanclemente, for he assumes that Quirinius had been despatched to Syria as legatus ad census accipiendos, and indeed with a higher authority than the ordinary legate of Syria of that time, Sentius Saturninus. But this expedient is absolutely inadmissible from the words of the evangelist, since ἡγεμονεύοντος τῆς Συρίας Κυρηνίου can mean nothing else than “when Cyrenius had the supreme command (or, what is the same thing, the office of governor) over Syria.” Luke therefore undoubtedly considers Quirinius as the ordinary and regular legate of Syria. But this office, as is thoroughly well established on historical grounds, was occupied in the last years of Herod, not by Quirinius, but by Sentius Saturninus, B.C. 9–6, and then by Quinctilius Varus, B.C. 6–4. The statement of Luke then can be indicated historically only if it could be proved that Quirinius had been already in the times of Herod governor of Syria. But such a proof can never be produced, since, Aberle notwithstanding, the contrary is an established fact.

All ways of escape are closed, and there remains nothing else but to acknowledge that the evangelist has made his statement trusting to imperfect information, so that it is not in accordance with the facts of history. This is the conclusion reached by Höck, Mommsen, Hase, Winer, Bleek, De Wette, Meyer, Strauss, Hilgenfeld, Keim, Weizsäcker, Sevin, Lecoultre, and in all essential respects also by Sieffert The contradiction of history is twofold: (1) Luke ascribes to Augustus the order that a census should be made throughout the whole empire. Of such an imperial census history knows nothing. It is possible that Augustus may have held censuses in many, perhaps in most, of the provinces, and that Luke had some vague information about these. But these numerous provincial censuses, diverse in respect of time and form, could not be referred back to a single edict. Luke has therefore here generalized in a manner similar to that in which he deals with the famine in the days of Claudius. Just as out of the various famines, which, in quite an unusual manner, occurred in various parts of the empire during the reign of Claudius, he makes a famine extending ἐφʼ ὅλην τὴν οἰκουμένην (Acts 11:28, see regarding it below under § 19); so also may the various provincial censuses of which he had heard have become combined in his representation into one imperial census. Should the statement about an imperial survey by Augustus be historical (see above, p. 117), even this might have contributed to the production of his mistake. (2) He knows further that a census in Judea under Quirinius had taken place somewhere about the time of the birth of Jesus Christ. By means of this census he explains the fact that the parents of Jesus travelled from Nazareth to Bethlehem, and places it therefore exactly in the time of the birth of Christ, under Herod, i.e. about ten or twelve years too soon. That Luke was indeed acquainted with this taxing, and was acquainted only with it, is established by the passage in the Acts of the Apostles (5:37), where he speaks expressly of it as “the taxing.”

Whoever thinks that such errors should not have been expected from Luke, needs only to be reminded of the fact that Justin Martyr, who belonged to the educated class, regarded King Ptolemy, at whose instance the Bible was translated into Greek, as a contemporary of King Herod (Apol. i. c. 31). Even Luke himself cannot be pronounced free from other errors; for Theudas, to whom he ascribes the work and movement of Judas of Galilee (Acts 5:36 ff.), can scarcely be any other Theudas than the well-known bearer of that name, who actually lived somewhere about forty years later (see § 19).


A list of the literature on this point is given by: Oberthür in Fabricius, Bibliotheca Graec. ed. Harles, t. v. pp. 49–56; Fürst, Bibliotheca Judaica, ii. pp. 127–132; Hase, Leben Jesu, § 9; Winer, Realwörterbuch, i. 558; Heinichen in his edition of Eusebii Scripta Historica, vol. iii. (1870) p. 623 sqq.—The older treatises are printed in Havercamp’s edition of Josephus, ii. 2, pp. 186–286.—Some controversial tracts of the time of Richard Simon are enumerated by Bernus, Notice bibliographique sur Richard Simon (Bâle 1882), n. 110, 230, 238, 239.

From a vast number of treatises and pamphlets we select the following of more recent times:—

BRETSCHNEIDER, Capita theologiae Judaeorum dogmaticae e. Flavii Josephi scriptis collecta (1812), pp. 59–66.

BÖHMERT, Ueber des Flavius Josephus Zeugniss von Christo, 1823.

SCHÖDEL, Flavius Josephus de Jesu Christo testatus, 1840.

MAYAUD, Le témoignage de Joseph, Strasb. 1858.

LANGEN, Theologische Quartalschrift, 1865, p. 51 ff.

DANKO, Historia revelationis divinae Novi Testamenti (1867), pp. 308–314.

MENSINGA, Zeitschrift für wissenschaftliche Theologie, 1889, p. 388 (genuine apart from possible modifications of the text, which, however, have not yet been proved).

GIESELER, Ecclesiastical History (Edin. 1846, 5 vols.), vol. i. p. 63.

HASE, Leben Jesu, § 9 (“wholly or at least in part non-genuine”).

EWALD, History of Israel, vi. 138–142.

PARET in Herzog’s Real-Encyclopaedie, 1 Aufl. vii. 27–29.

HEINICHEN in his edition of Eusebii Scripta Historica, vol. iii. ed. 2, 1870, pp. 623–654.

WIESELER, Des Josephus Zeugnisse über Christus und Jakobus, den Bruder des Herrn (Jahrbücher für deutsche Theologie, 1878, p. 86 ff.).

VOLKMAR, Jesus Nazarenus, 1882, pp. 335–345.

RANKE, Weltgeschichte, 3 Thl. 2 Abthlg. (1883) p. 40 f.

SCHOLTEN, Theologisch Tijdschrift, 1882, pp. 428–451 (compare the review by Van Manen in Jahrbücher für protestantische Theologie, 1883, p. 608 f.).

MENSINGA, Theologisch Tijdschrift, 1883, pp. 145–152 (Van Manen, Jahrbücher für protestantische Theologie, 1883, p. 618).

GUST. AD. MÜLLER, Christus bei Josephus Flavius, Innsbruck 1890 (53 pp.).

EDERSHEIM in art. in Smith’s Dictionary of Christian Biography “Josephus. 5. The Alleged Testimony of Josephus to Jesus Christ,” vol. iii. pp. 458–460.

EICHSTAEDT, Flaviani de Jesu Christo testimonii αὐθεντία quo jure nuper rursus defensa sit quaest. i.–vi., Jen. 1813–1841. Quaestionibus sex super Flaviano de Jesu Christo testimonio auctarium, i.–iv., Jen. 1841–1845.

LEWITZ, Quaestionum Flavianarum specimen, Regiomon. Pruss. 1835.

REUSS, Nouvelle Revue de Théologie, 1859, pp. 312–319.

ERNST GERLACH, Die Weissagungen des Alten Testamentes in den Schriften des Flavius Josephus und das angebliche Zeugniss von Christo, 1863.

KEIM, Jesus of Nazara, vol. i. pp. 16–21.

HÖHNE, Ueber das angebliche Zeugniss von Christo bei Josephus, Zwickau 1871, Gymnasial-programme.

D’AVIS, Die Zeugnisse nichtchristlicher Autoren ges ersten Jahrhunderts über Christus und das Christenthum, Sigmaringen 1873, Gymnasial-programme (p. 8: “Probably the whole passage is an interpolation, or rather, perhaps, is thoroughly corrupted by interpolations”).

LOMAN, Theologisch Tijdschrift, 1882, pp. 593–601 (p. 596: a genuine basis is possible, but “scarcely probable.” Compare the review by Van Manen, Jahrbücher für protestantische Theologie, 1883, pp. 593–595, 614).

In our manuscripts and editions of Josephus the following passage concerning Christ is found, Antiq. xviii. 3. 3:—

Τίνεται δὲ κατὰ τοῦτον τὸν χρόνον Ἰησοῦς, σοφὸς ἀνήρ, εἴ γε ἄνδρα αὐτὸν λέγειν χρή. Ἦν γὰρ παραδόξων ἔργων ποιητής, διδάσκαλος ἀνθρώπων τῶν ἡδονῇ τἀληθῆ δεχομένων• καὶ πολλοὺς μὲν Ἰουδαίους πολλοὺς δὲ καὶ τοῦ Ἑλληνικοῦ ἐπηγάγετο. Ὁ Χριστὸς οὗτος ἦν. Καὶ αὐτὸν ἐνδείξει τῶν πρώτων ἀνδρῶν παρʼ ἡμῖν σταυρῷ ἐπιτετιμηκότος Πιλάτου, οὐκ ἐπαύσαντο οἱ τὸ πρῶτον αὐτὸν ἀγαπήσαντες• ἐφάνη γὰρ αὐτοῖς τρίτην ἔχων ἡμέραν πάλιν ζῶν, τῶν θείων προφητῶν ταῦτά τε καὶ ἄλλα μυρία θαυμάσια περὶ αὐτοῦ εἰρηκότων. Εἰσέτι τε νῦν τῶν Χριστιανῶν ἀπὸ τοῦδε ὠνομασμένων οὐκ ἐπέλιπε τὸ φῦλον.

Now there was about this time, Jesus, a wise man, if it be lawful to call him a man, for he was a doer of wonderful works—a teacher of such men as receive the truth with pleasure. He drew over to him both many of the Jews and many of the Gentiles. He was the Christ; and when Pilate, At the suggestion of the principal men amongst us, had condemned him to the cross, those that loved him at the first did not forsake him, for he appeared to them alive again the third day, as the divine prophets had foretold these and ten thousand other wonderful things concerning him; and the tribe of Christians so named from him are not extinct at this day.”

From the fourth century, when this passage was quoted by Eusebius and others (Eusebius, Hist. Eccles. i. 11; Demonstratio Evangelica, iii. 3. 105–106, ed. Gaisford; Pseudo-Hegesippus, De bello Judaico, ii. 12), through the whole of the Middle Ages, the genuineness of this paragraph was never disputed. Indeed, it contributed not a little to exalt the reputation of Josephus in the Christian Church. It was eagerly seized upon as a proof of the truth of the evangelical history. It was only in the sixteenth century that criticism first moved in the matter, and since then to the present day the controversy, pro and con, has gone on uninterruptedly. We may surely be at least unanimous as to this, that the words, as we have them now, were not written by Josephus. Whatever may be advanced in their favour does not amount to much in comparison with the unquestionable indications of spuriousness. Our manuscripts, of which the oldest, the Ambrosianus F. 128 sup., do not go further back than the eleventh century (see above, vol. i. p. 103), without exception have this paragraph. But this proves only the great antiquity of the interpolation, which besides is vouched for by Eusebius. Over against the old citations since Eusebius stands the fact that it is extremely probable that Origen did not read this passage in his text of Josephus; for, just where one would have expected it, he betrays no knowledge of it. Even then, in respect of the external evidences, objections are not altogether wanting. But the objections on internal grounds are more decided. If reference be made to the genuinely Josephine style, we may for that only bestow upon the interpolator the praise of having very skilfully performed his task The similarity of style is not sufficient to outweigh the non-Josephine character of the contents. As concerns the contents then, it is clear that whoever wrote the words ὁ Χριστὸς οὗτος ἦν was distinctly a Christian; for that ἦν is not equivalent to ἐνομίζετο and cannot be rendered: He was the Christ in the popular belief. On this point it is not necessary to say more. But it is also equally certain that Josephus was not a Christian. Ergo: the passage, to say the least of it, has interpolations in it.

The point under discussion is simply this: whether there are interpolations in the passage or whether it is wholly spurious. Let us make the attempt to distinguish, and cast out what is suspicious. The words εἴ γε ἄνδρα αὐτὸν λέγειν χρή evidently presuppose belief in the divinity of Christ, and betray the Christian interpolator. The following, ἦν παραδόξων ἔργων ποιητής, might in a case of necessity have been said by Josephus, if it were not that they form the fundamental support of the non-genuine words preceding them. At any rate, the words διδάσκαλος ἀνθρώπων τῶν ἡδονῇ τἀληθῆ δεχομένων again must have come from a Christian pen. That ὁ Χριστὸς οὗτος ἦν was not written by Josephus has been already pointed out. And just as certainly he has not written: ἐφάνη αὐτοῖς τρίτην ἔχων ἡμέραν πάλιν ζῶν, τῶν θείων προφητῶν ταῦτά τε καὶ ἄλλα μυρία θαυμάσια περὶ αὐτοῦ εἰρηκότων. Finally, also, the concluding words want the necessary support so soon as the words ὁ Χριστὸς οὗτος ἦν removed from the text.

If, now, we examine the passage as thus reduced we shall find that as good as nothing remains: a couple of insignificant phrases which, in the form in which they stand after our operation has been performed, could not have been written by Josephus. If one therefore continues to maintain the theory of interpolation, it cannot at any rate be in the sense of a simple insertion of Christian additions, but, with Ewald, Paret, and others, in the sense of a complete working up in a new form of the original text of Josephus.

But if it is once admitted as an established fact, that of the present text scarcely a couple of words are from the hand of Josephus, is it not then more reasonable to recognise the utter spuriousness of the passage, and assume that Josephus has throughout been silent regarding Christ? That this hypothesis is impossible cannot be maintained. It is known that Josephus wished to represent his people in the most favourable light possible. Therefore he speaks as little as he can of the Messianic Hope, since to his cultured readers it could only have appeared as foolishness, and, besides, would have been an unwelcome subject with the favourite of the Caesars; for in it lay the power of the opposition to Rome. Josephus might casually refer to John the Baptist without making mention of the Messianic Hope; but this would have been no longer possible had he introduced Christ. He could neither represent Christ as a teacher of virtue, like the Baptist, nor describe the Christian community as a school of philosophy, like those of the Pharisees and Sadducees. Therefore he will be silent throughout about this phenomenon.

If, for proof of the contrary, we should refer to the subsequent mention of James, the brother of Jesus Christ (Antiq. xx. 9. 1: τὸν ἀδελφὸν Ἰησοῦ τοῦ λεγομένου Χριστοῦ, Ἰάκωβος ὄνομα αὐτῷ), in order to draw from it the conclusion that some previous mention of Christ must have been made, it has to be answered, that the genuineness of this passage is also very seriously disputed. Indeed, on the contrary, one must say: the very statements which we have in reference to James prove that Josephus has been interpolated by Christian hands. For Origen, in his text of Josephus, read a passage about James which is to be found in none of our manuscripts, which therefore, without doubt, was a single instance of a Christian interpolation not carried over into the vulgar text of Josephus.

We therefore, although absolute certainty on such questions cannot be attained, are inclined to prefer the theory of the utter spuriousness as simpler than that of the merely partial spuriousness of the passage.

§ 18. HEROD AGRIPPA I., A.D. 37, 40, 41–44

JOSEPHUS, Antiq. xviii. 6, xix. 5–9; Wars of the Jews, ii. 9. 1; Zonares, Annales, vi. 7–11 (an Abstract of Josephus).

In the New Testament: Acts 12.

Rabbinical Traditions in Derenbourg, pp. 205–219.

The coins are most completely given in Madden, Coins of the Jews (1881), pp. 129–139.

EWALD, History of Israel, vii. 236–247, 257–270.

GRÄTZ, Geschichte der Juden, 4 Aufl. iii. pp. 318–361.

HITZIG, Geschichte des Volkes Israel, ii. 568–571.

SCHNECKENBURGER, Zeitgeschichte, pp. 211–215.

HAUSRATH, Zeitgeschichte, 2 Aufl. ii. 212–225, 266–283.

LEWIN, Fasti sacri (1865), ad ann. 31–44. See also the Index, p. 389 sq.

WINER, Realwörterbuch, i. 484 f.

KEIM, Jesus of Nazara, i. 272–275. In Schenkel’s Bibellexikon, iii. 49–56.

HAMBURGER, Real-Encyclopaedie für Bibel und Talmud., Abthl. ii. art. “Agrippa.”

DE SAULCY, Étude chronologique de la vie et des monnaies des rois juifs Agrippa I. et Agrippa II. 1869 (see above, vol. i. p. 27).

GERLACH, Zeitschrift für lutherische Theologie, 1869, pp. 53–62.

MENKE’S Bibelatlas, Bl. v., Special Map of “Judea and Neighbouring Countries in the last years of King Agrippa I.”

WHEN Agrippa I. ascended the throne of Herod the Great, he had already passed through an eventful and adventurous career. He was born in B.C. 10, as the son of Aristobulus, who was executed in A.D. 7, and Berenice, a daughter of Salome and Costobar. Shortly before the death of his grandfather he was, while a boy of scarcely six years old, sent for his education to Rome. His mother Berenice was there treated in a friendly manner by Antonia, the widow of the elder Drusus, while the young Agrippa himself became attached to the younger Drusus, the son of the Emperor Tiberius. The influence of the Roman society seems not to have been a favourable or healthy one. He was trained up to entertain ambitious projects and in habits of extravagance, which, especially after the death of his mother, knew no measure or bounds. He soon ran through his means. His debts accumulated upon him. And when by the death of Drusus, which took place in A.D. 23, he lost support and favour at court, he found himself obliged to leave Rome and go back again to Palestine. He betook himself to Malatha, a stronghold in Idumea, and meditated committing suicide. When these tidings reached his wife Cypros, she wrote to Agrippa’s sister Herodias, who was by this time married to Antipas, and entreated her help. Herod Antipas was in this way induced to give to his distressed brother-in-law what would be at least sufficient for the support of his life, and gave him, in addition, the appointment of Agoranomos (overseer of markets) in the capital, Tiberias. This new position in life did not indeed continue long. At a banquet in tyre the two brothers-in-law once engaged in a dispute, which ended in Agrippa resigning his situation at Tiberias, and betaking himself to the Roman governor Flaccus in Antioch. But here, too, his stay was not of long duration. In a dispute which broke out on one occasion between the inhabitants of Sidon and those of Damascus, Agrippa took the side of the Damascenes, apparently in a thoroughly disinterested manner, but really in consequence of bribes which he had taken from them. When this came to the ears of Flaccus, he broke off friendly relations with him; and Agrippa found himself once again deprived of all means of subsistence. He then resolved to try his fortune again in Rome. After he had meanwhile raised a loan in Ptolemais by the assistance of a freedman of his mother Berenice, called Peter, and at Anthedon had only with difficulty escaped the hands of Capito, the procurator of Jamnia, who wished to apprehend him as a debtor of the emperor’s, and had finally in Alexandria succeeded in raising large sums on the credit of his wife, he arrived in Italy in the spring of A.D. 36, and on the island of Capri presented himself before Tiberius. The emperor entrusted him with the oversight of his grandson Tiberius. He became particularly intimate with Caius Caligula, the grandson of his patroness Antonia, who afterwards became emperor. But even now he could not keep himself out of debt. Yea, in order to appease his old creditors he was obliged always to borrow new and even larger sums. It was not therefore to be wondered at that he eagerly desired an improvement in his circumstances; but there seemed at that time no prospect of accomplishing it until the aged Tiberius should be succeeded on the throne by Caligula, whom he had befriended. Unthinkingly he once expressed his wish aloud to Caligula in the presence of his coachman Eutychus. At a later period he happened to bring a charge of theft against this same Eutychus, and had him brought before the city prefect Piso. Eutychus now made a declaration that he had an important secret to communicate to the emperor. Tiberius at first gave no heed to the matter. But when, after some time, a hearing was granted, and Tiberius came to know what Agrippa had said, he had him immediately put in fetters and cast into prison. Agrippa now continued in confinement for six months, until the death of the emperor on 16th March A.D. 37.

With the death of Tiberius and the accession of Caligula began for Agrippa the period of his good fortune. Caligula scarcely waited till the solemnities of the funeral of Tiberius were over before he had delivered his friend from his imprisonment and conferred upon him what had been the tetrarchy of Philip, and that also of Lysanias, with the title of king. To this gift the Senate further added the honorary rank of a praetor. Instead of the iron chain which he had worn, Caligula gave him a golden chain of equal weight. But Agrippa still continued to stay in Rome for a year and a half. It was not before autumn of A.D. 38 that he went back by way of Alexandria to Palestine, that he might set in order the affairs of his kingdom.

Soon afterwards, through imperial favour, he obtained yet more important territorial additions. It has been already told (above, at p. 36) how Herod Antipas in A.D. 39, by his own fault, had lost his tetrarchy, and now, probably not before A.D. 40, Caligula bestowed it also upon Agrippa.

In the autumn of that same year we find Agrippa once more at Rome or Puteoli, where he contrived by his personal intercession to prevent Caligula, at least for a long time, from persisting in his attempt to set up his statue in the temple of Jerusalem (see above, p. 102). He then remained in the company of Caligula, and was still present in Rome when his patron, on 24th January A.D. 41, was murdered by Chärea, and contributed not a little to secure the succession to the throne of the Caesars to the feeble Claudius. It may readily be supposed that he was not the man to perform such services without securing some personal advantage. The new emperor was obliged, in return, not only to confirm him in the possessions which he had previously, but also to add to these Judea and Samaria; so that Agrippa now united under his sway the whole territory of his grandfather. Besides this, he obtained consular rank. For the confirming of this grant, according to ancient custom, a solemn covenant was concluded in the Forum, but the documentary deed of gift was engraved on brazen tablets and placed in the Capitol.

The first act by which Agrippa celebrated his return to Palestine was significant of the spirit and disposition with which he was to conduct the government of his kingdom. It was an act of piety. The golden chain which Caligula had bestowed upon him on his liberation from imprisonment “he hung up within the limits of the temple, over the treasury, that it might be a memorial of the severe fate he had lain under, and a testimony of his change for the better; and that it might be a demonstration how the greatest prosperity may have a fall, and that God sometimes raises what is fallen down.” At the same time he presented a thank-offering, “because he would not neglect any precept of the law;” and bore the expenses of a large number of Nazarites, in order that they might discharge the obligation of their vow.”

With such acts the quondam adventurer began his new reign; and he maintained the same tone throughout the three years during which he was allowed to live and govern. There were again golden days for Pharisaism; a revival of the age of Alexandra. Hence Josephus and the Talmud are unanimous in sounding forth the praises of Agrippa. “He loved to live continually at Jerusalem, and was exactly careful in the observance of the laws of his country. He therefore kept himself entirely pure; nor did any day pass over his head without its appointed sacrifice.” Thus runs the eulogistic strain of Josephus; and the Talmud relates how he as a simple Israelite with his own hand presented the first-fruits in the temple. And not only at home, but also abroad, he represented the interests and claims of Judaism. When on one occasion in the Phoenician city of Dora, a mob of young people erected a statue of the emperor in the Jewish synagogue, he used his influence with the governor of Syria, P. Petronius, so that not only for the future was any such outrage strictly forbidden, but also the guilty parties were called to account for their proceedings. And when he betrothed his daughter Drusilla to Epiphanes, son of King Antiochus of Commagene, he made him promise that he would submit to be circumcised. By such displays of piety he gave abundant satisfaction to the people who were under the guidance of the Pharisees. This was shown in a very striking manner when, at the Feast of Tabernacles in A.D. 41, according to the old custom, he read the Book of Deuteronomy, and in the passage, “Thou mayest not set a stranger over thee that is not thy brother” (Deut. 17:15), he burst forth in tears, because he felt himself referred to in it. Then cried out the people to him, “Be not grieved, Agrippa! Thou art our brother! Thou art our brother!”

The careful observance of Pharisaic traditions, however does not seem to have been the only ground of his popularity. We must also allow to him a certain natural amiability. Josephus, at least, ascribes to him an amiable disposition and unbounded benevolence. That he was grateful for service that had been rendered him is proved by his appointment of Silas, a faithful companion who had shared his adventures, to the supreme command of his troops. He must, indeed, have had many unpleasant experiences with this Silas, for he was frequently reminded by him in a rude, rough way of his earlier troubles, and the service which he had rendered him. In order to rid himself of this troublesome prattler, Agrippa was obliged to cast him into prison. But it was a new proof of his goodheartedness that on the next celebration of his birthday he caused the prisoner to be called, so that he might share in the enjoyments of the banquet. This kindly offer, however, had no effect, for Silas would take nothing as a matter of favour, and so was obliged to remain in prison. Agrippa on one occasion exhibited his clemency towards Simon the Pharisee, who in the king’s absence had excited a popular tumult in Jerusalem, and had charged the king with transgression of the law. Agrippa obtained information of these proceedings at Caesarea, summoned Simon to his presence, caused him to be seated alongside of himself in the theatre, and said to him in a gentle and kindly tone: “Tell me now, what was done here contrary to the law?” Overcome with shame the learned scribe could give no answer, and was dismissed by the king with presents.

To a Pharisaic-national policy belonged also emancipation from a position of dependence upon Rome. And even in this direction Agrippa made, at least, two rather shy and timid attempts. In order to strengthen the fortifications of Jerusalem, the capital, he began to build on the north of the city a powerful new wall, which, according to Josephus’ account, would, if it had been completed, have made the city impregnable. But, unfortunately, before the work could be carried out, the emperor, at the instigation of Marsus, the governor of Syria, issued an injunction against the continuance of it. Of yet greater significance for Rome was the conference of princes assembled by Agrippa soon after this at Tiberias. No fewer than five Roman vassal kings: Antiochus of Commagene, Sampsigeram of Emesa, Cotys of Lesser Armenia, Polemon of Pontus, and Herod of Chalcis, answered the invitation of Agrippa. But this enterprise also was broken up by Marsus. The Syrian governor himself put in an appearance at Tiberias, and ordered the other guests without delay to return home.

Finally, it was a further consequence of his Jewish policy that the otherwise good-natured king should become the persecutor of the young Christian community, especially of the apostles. James the elder, son of Zebedee, was put by him to a martyr’s death; and Peter escaped his hand only by the intervention of a miracle.—Moreover, he was an enemy not of the Christians only. The heathen cities also within his territories hated him on account of his Jewish policy, as is proved by the unconcealed jubilation with which the news of his death was received by the Caesareans and Sebasteans.

That Agrippa’s Pharisaic piety was a real conviction of the heart is, in view of his earlier life, not in the least probable. He who had spent fifteen years in gaiety and debauchery is not one of whom it could be expected that in the evening of his days he should from hearty conviction assume the Pharisaic yoke. Besides this, we have the most certain proofs that the king’s Jewish piety was maintained only within the limits of the Holy Land. When he went abroad he was, like his grandfather, a liberal latitudinarian patron of Greek culture. Thus, for example, Berytus had much to tell of the pagan magnificence which he there cultivated. He had erected there at his own expense a beautiful theatre, an amphitheatre, baths, and piazzas. At the opening of the building, games and sports of all sorts were performed, and among the rest in the amphitheatre there was a gladiatorial combat, at which 1400 malefactors were made to slaughter one another. Also at Caesarea he caused games to be performed. There also statues of his daughters were erected. So, too, the coins which were stamped during Agrippa’s reign are in thorough agreement with the description of the state of matters now given. Only those stamped in Jerusalem had on them no image, while of those that were minted in other cities some had the image of Agrippa, others that of the emperor. The official title of Agrippa is the same as that of the other Roman vassal kings of that time. From an inscription we know that his family had been adopted into the gens Julia; and from another that he bore the title βασιλεὺς μέγας φιλόκαισαρ εὐσεβὴς καὶ φιλορώμαιος. From a survey of all the facts it is evident that his concessions to Pharisaism were purely matters of policy. Upon the whole he was a careful imitator of the old Herod, “only milder in disposition and somewhat more sly.” Yet even the grandfather felt himself obliged to make concessions to the Pharisees. Agrippa was in this matter only consistently following out his general lines of policy, for he very well knew that the peace which he loved could be secured in no other way.

The country did not long enjoy his rule. After he had reigned little more than three years, if we reckon from A.D. 41, he died at Caesarea very suddenly in A.D. 44. The two accounts of his death which we have, in Acts 12:19–23, and Josephus, Antiq. xix. 8. 2, with many variations, are yet in thorough and detailed agreement on the principal points. The Acts of the Apostles relates that in Caesarea, sitting on the judgment-seat (βῆμα) dressed in his royal robes, he delivered an oration to the ambassadors representing the citizens of Tyre and Sidon, with whom, we know not why, he had been displeased. While he was speaking the people called out: It is the voice of a god, and not of a man. Immediately the angel of the Lord smote him, because he gave not God the glory; and he was eaten up of worms, and gave up the ghost. According to Josephus, he was present at Caesarea while games were being celebrated there in honour of the emperor. On the second day he appeared in the theatre in a robe which was made wholly of silver. When the robe sparkled in the sun, the flatterers cried out to him declaring that he was a god (θεὸν προσαγορεύοντες), and entreating that he would have mercy upon them. The king allowed himself to be carried away by their flattery. Soon thereafter he saw an owl sitting upon a rope, which at once he accepted as a presage of a speedy death. He then knew that his hour had come. Immediately a most severe pain arose in his bowels. He had to be carried into the house, and in five days was a corpse.—It thus appears that the principal points: Caeserea as the scene of the incident, the brilliant robe, the flattering shout, the sudden death—are common to both narratives, although the details have been somewhat diversified in the course of transmission.

Agrippa left, besides his three daughters (Berenice, Mariamme, and Drusilla), only one son, then in his seventeenth year, whose name also was Agrippa. The Emperor Claudius had been disposed to give over to him the kingdom of his father; but his advisers restrained him from carrying out his intentions. And so again the whole of Palestine, as formerly Judea and Samaria had been, was taken possession of as Roman territory, and its administration given over to a procurator under the supervision of the governor of Syria. The younger Agrippa continued meanwhile to live in retirement.


JOSEPHUS, Antiq. xx. 1 and 5–11; Wars of the Jews, ii. 11–14 ZONARAS, Annales, vi. 12–17 (summary from Josephus).

EWALD, History of Israel, vii. 412–426, 479–485.

GRÄTZ, Geschichte der Juden, 4 Aufl. iii. pp. 361 ff., 426 ff., 724 ff.

HITZIG, Geschichte des Volkes Israel, ii. 588–594.

SCHNECKENBURGER, Zeitgeschichte, pp. 215–224.

HAUSRATH, Neutestamentliche Zeitgeschichte, 2 Aufl. ii. 362 ff., iii. 331–374, 423–426.

LEWIN, Fasti sacri, 1865, ad. ann. 44–46.

GERLACH, Die Römischen Statthalter in Syrien und Judäa, 1865, p. 67 ff.

GRÄTZ, “Chronologische Präcisirung der Reihenfolge der letzten römischen Landpfleger in Judäa,” etc. (Monatsschrift für Geschichte und Wissenschaft des Judenthums), 1877, pp. 401 ff., 443 ff.). Compare, Geschichte der Juden, 4 Aufl. iii. p. 724 ff., where the treatise from the Monatsschrift is almost entirely reproduced.

ROHDEN, De Palaestina et Arabia provinciis Romanis quaestiones selectae, Berol. 1885, pp. 34–36.

KELLNER, “Die römischen Statthalter von Syrien und Judäa zur Zeit Christi und der Apostel.” Zweiter Artikel. “Die kaiserlichen Procuratoren von Judäa” (Zeitschrift für katholischen Theologie, 1888, p. 630 ff.).

MENKE’S Bibelatlas, Bl. V. Special Map of “Judea and neighbouring countries in the time of Felix and Festus.”

WHEN we glance over the history of the Roman procurators, to whom once more the government of Palestine was entrusted, we might readily suppose that all of them, as if by secret arrangement, so conducted themselves as most certainly to arouse the people to revolt. Even the best among them, to say nothing at all of the others who trampled right and law under foot, had no appreciation of the fact that a people like the Jews required, in a permanent degree, consideration for their prejudices and peculiarities. Instead of exercising mildness and toleration, they had only applied themselves with inexorable strictness to suppress any movement of the popular life.—As compared with those who followed, the words of Josephus are true regarding the first two procurators, that, “making no alterations of the ancient laws and customs, they kept the nation in tranquillity.”

1. The first procurator whom Claudius sent to Palestine was Cuspius Fadus (A.D. 44–?).Immediately after he had entered upon his office he had an opportunity for affirming his determination to maintain order. When he arrived in Palestine the inhabitants of Perea were in a state of open war with the city of Philadelphia. The conflict had arisen over disputes about the boundaries of their respective territories. Inasmuch as the Pereans were the parties at fault, Fadus caused one of the three leaders of the party to be executed and the other two to be banished from the country.—But that Fadus with all his uprightness and love of justice had no appreciation of the peculiar characteristics of the Jewish people, is proved by his demand that the beautiful robe of the high priest, which in earlier times, A.D. 6–36, had laid under Roman keeping, and had been afterwards given up by Vitellius (see above, p. 88), should again be committed to the charge of the Romans. Thus, without any occasion whatever, by petty annoyances, the feelings of the people, which were most sensitive in matters of this sort, were outraged. Fortunately, Fadus and the governor of Syria, Cassius Longinus, who on account of this important affair had gone up to Jerusalem, were considerate enough as to at least allow a Jewish embassy to proceed to Rome, which by the mediation of the younger Agrippa obtained an order from Claudius that in the matter of the garments things should continue as they had been.

More serious than this conflict was one which occurred at a later period, and led to open war and shedding of blood. One who pretended to be a prophet, Theudas by name, gathered a large multitude of followers after him, with whom he marched down to the Jordan, giving them the assurance that he by his mere word would part the stream and lead them across on dry land. This, indeed, was only to be a proof of his divine mission, and what he had mainly in view, the contest with Rome, would follow. At any rate this was how the matter was regarded by Fadus. He sent a detachment of horsemen against Theudas, which completely defeated him and slew a portion of his followers or took them prisoners; and when Theudas himself had been apprehended, they struck off his head and carried it to Jerusalem as a sign of their victory.

2. The successor of Fadus was Tiberius Alexander, down to A.D. 48, descended from one of the most illustrious Jewish families of Alexandria, a son of the Alabarch Alexander, and nephew of the philosopher Philo. He had abandoned the religion of his fathers and taken service under the Romans. During the period of his government Palestine was visited by a sore famine. The one fact of any importance that is recorded about him is that he caused James and Simon, the sons of Judas of Galilee, to be crucified, ostensibly because they were entertaining schemes similar to those of their father.

Although even the days of those first procurators did not pass without troubles and upheaval, these came to be regarded as altogether insignificant in comparison with the excitement and turmoil that followed. Even under the governorship of the next procurator Cumanus popular tumults, not without faults on both sides, broke out in far more formidable proportions.

3. The first rebellion against which Ventidius Cumanus, A.D. 48–52, had to contend was occasioned by the coarse insolence of a Roman soldier. This man had the presumption at the feast of the Passover, when to maintain order and preserve the peace a detachment of soldiers was always situated in the court of the temple, to insult the festive gathering by assuming an indecent posture. The enraged multitude demanded satisfaction from the procurator. As Cumanus, however, attempted first of all to hush up the matter, he too was assailed with reproachful speeches, until at length he called for the intervention of the armed forces. The excited crowds were utterly routed; and their overthrow was so complete that, according to Josephus’ estimate, in the crush which took place in the streets in consequence of their flight, 20,000 (!) men lost their lives.

The fault in this case lay with the Romans, but in the next upheaval the occasion was given by the Jewish people themselves. An imperial official called Stephanus was attacked on a public road not far from Jerusalem, and robbed of all his belongings. As a punishment for this the villages which lay in the neighbourhood of the spot where the deed was committed were subjected to a general pillage. It was through a pure mischance that out of this pillage further mischief was very nearly occasioned; for a soldier, before the eyes of all, amid contumelious and reproachful speeches tore up a Thorah roll which he had found. In order to obtain revenge and satisfaction for such profanity, a mass deputation visited Cumanus at Caesarea, demanding the punishment of the offender. This time the procurator saw it to be advisable to give way, and so sentenced the offender to be put to death.

Far more bitter and bloody was a third collision with the people under Cumanus, which though it did not indeed cost him his life, yet led to his loss of office. Certain Galilean Jews, who on their way to the feast at Jerusalem had to pass through Samaria, had been murdered in a Samaritan village. When Cumanus, who had been bribed by the Samaritans, took no steps to secure the punishment of the guilty, the Jewish people took upon themselves the duty of revenge. Under the leadership of two Zealots, Eleasar and Alexander, a great multitude of armed men made an attack upon Samaria, hewed down old men, women, and children, and laid waste the villages. But then Cumanus with a portion of his military force fell upon the Zealots; many were slain, others were taken prisoners. Meanwhile ambassadors from the Samaritans appeared before Ummidius Quadratus, governor of Syria, and lodged a complaint with him about the robber raid of the Jews. At the same time, however, a Jewish embassy also came to Quadratus, and accused the Samaritans and Cumanus, who had accepted bribe from them. Quadratus, therefore, went himself to Samaria and made a strict investigation. All the revolutionists taken prisoners by Cumanus were crucified; five Jews, who were proved to have taken a prominent part in the struggle, were beheaded; but the ringleaders both of the Jews and of the Samaritans were sent along with Cumanus to Rome in order to answer for their conduct there. The Jews were indebted to the intercession of the younger Agrippa, who happened then to be in Rome, for their success in their securing their rights. The decision of Claudius was to this effect, that the ringleaders of the Samaritans, who had been discovered by him to be the guilty parties, should be executed, while Cumanus was to be deprived of his office and sent into banishment.

4. At the request of the high priest Jonathan, one of the Jewish aristocracy whom Quadratus had sent to Rome, the Emperor Claudius transferred the administration of Palestine to one of his favourites, the brother of the influential Pallas, whose name was Felix (A.D. 52–60). This man’s term of office constitutes probably the turning-point in the drama which had opened with A.D. 44 and reached its close in the bloody conflicts of A.D. 70. During the days of the first two procurators things had continued relatively quiet; under Cumanus, indeed, there were more serious uprisings of the people; yet even then they were only isolated and called forth by particular occurrences; under Felix rebellion became permanent.

He was, like his brother Pallas, a freedman of the imperial family,—a freedman probably of Antonia the mother of Claudius, and having therefore as his full name, Antonius Felix. The conferring of a procuratorship with military command upon a freedman was something unheard of, and is only to be accounted for by the influence which the freedmen had at the court of Claudius. As procurator of Palestine Felix proved worthy of his descent. “With all manner of cruelty and lust he exercised royal functions in the spirit of a slave;” in these words Tacitus sums up his estimate of the man.

Felix was three times married. All the three wives, of whom two are known to us, belonged to royal families. The one was a granddaughter of the triumvir Marc Antony and Cleopatra, and by this marriage Felix was brought into relationship with the Emperor Claudius. The other was the Jewish princess Drusilla, the daughter of Agrippa I. and sister of Agrippa II.; and the way in which the marriage with her was brought about serves to confirm the estimate of Tacitus quoted above. Drusilla at the time when Felix entered upon his office was fourteen years of age. Soon after this she was married by her brother Agrippa II. to Azizus, king of Emesa, after the marriage with the son of King Antiochus of Commagene, to whom she had been before betrothed, had been broken off because he refused to submit to circumcision. Soon after her marriage Felix saw the beautiful queen, became inflamed with passion, and determined to possess her. By the help of a magician of Cyprus called Simon, he prevailed on her to marry him. In defiance of the law, which strictly forbade the marriage of a Jewess with a pagan, Drusilla gave her hand to the Roman procurator.

The public career of Felix was no better than his private life. As brother of the powerful and highly favoured Pallas, “he believed that he might commit all sorts of enormities with impunity.”—It can be easily understood how under such a government as this the bitter feeling against Rome grew rapidly, and the various stages of its development were plainly carried out to the utmost extent under Felix and by his fault.

First of all, on account of his misgovernment the Zealots, who entertained so fanatical a hatred of the Romans, won more and more sympathy among the ranks of the citizens. How far Josephus had grounds for styling them simply robbers may remain undetermined. In any case, as their following from among the people shows, they were not robbers of the common sort; and their pillaging was confined wholly to the property of their political opponents. Felix, who was not very scrupulous about the means he used, contrived to get Eleasar, the head of the party, into his hands by means of treachery, and sent him, together with those of his adherents whom he had already in prison, to Rome. “But the number of the robbers whom he caused to be crucified was incalculable, as also that of the citizens whom he arrested and punished as having been in league with them.”

Such preposterous severity and cruelty only gave occasion to still further troubles. In the place of the robbers of whom Felix had rid the country, the Sicarii made their appearance, a still more fanatical faction of the patriots, who deliberately adopted as their special task the removal of their political opponents by assassination. Armed with short daggers (sicae), from which they received their name, they mixed among the crowds especially during the festival seasons, and unobserved in the press stabbed their opponents (τοὺς διαφόρους, i.e. the friends of the Romans), and feigning deep sorrow when the deed was done, succeeded in thereby drawing away suspicion from themselves. These political murders were so frequent that soon no one any longer felt safe in Jerusalem. Among others who fell victims to the daggers of the Sicarii was Jonathan the high priest, who, as a man of moderate sentiments, was hated by the Sicarii as well as by the procurator Felix, whom he often exhorted to act more worthily in the administration of his office, lest he (Jonathan) should be blamed by the people for having recommended the emperor to appoint him governor. Felix wished to have the troublesome exhorter put out of the way, and found that this could be most simply accomplished by means of assassination, to which the Sicarii, although otherwise the deadly foes of Felix, readily lent themselves.

With these political fanatics there were associated religious fanatics “not so impure in their deeds, but still more wicked in their intentions.” Advancing the claim of a divine mission, they roused the people to a wild enthusiasm, and led the credulous multitude in crowds out into the wilderness, in order that there they might show them “the tokens foreshadowing freedom” (σημεῖα ἐλευθερίας)—that freedom which consisted in casting off the Roman yoke and setting up the kingdom of God, or, to use the language of Josephus, in innovation and revolution. Since religious fanaticism is always the most powerful and the most persistent, Josephus is certainly right when he says that those fanatics and deceivers contributed no less than the “robbers” to the overthrow of the city. Felix also recognised clearly enough the dangerous tendency of the movement, and invariably broke in upon all such undertakings with the sword.—The most celebrated enterprise of this sort was the exploit of that Egyptian to whom Acts 21:38 refers. An Egyptian Jew who gave himself out for a prophet, gathered around him in the wilderness a great crowd of people, numbering, according to Acts, 4000, according to Josephus, 30,000, with whom he wished to ascend the Mount of Olives, because he promised that at his word the walls of Jerusalem would fall down and give them free entrance into the city. Then they would get the Roman garrison into their power and secure to themselves the government. Felix did not give the prophet time to perform his miracle, but attacked him with his troops, slew and scattered his followers or took them prisoners. But the Egyptian himself escaped from the slaughter and disappeared.

The result of this unfortunate undertaking was temporary strengthening of the anti-Roman party. The religious and the political fanatics (οἱ γόητες καὶ λῃστρικοί) united together for a common enterprise. “They persuaded the Jews to revolt, and exhorted them to assert their liberty, inflicting death on those that continued in obedience to the Roman government, and saying that such as willingly chose slavery ought to be forced from such their desired inclinations; for they parted themselves into different bodies, and lay in wait up and down the country, and plundered the houses of the great men, and slew the men themselves, and set the villages on fire; and this till all Judea was filled with their madness.”

Thus did the misgovernment of Felix in the end bring about this result, that a large portion of the people from this time forth became thoroughly roused, under the constant strain of this wild reign of terror, to wage war against Rome, and rested not until at last the end was reached.

Besides these wild movements of the popular agitators, internal strifes and rivalries among the priests themselves led to the increase of confusion. The high priests were at feud with the other priests, and in consequence of the illegal arrangements which prevailed in Palestine under Felix’ government, they could even go the length of sending their servants to the threshing-floor, and carrying away by force the tithes which belonged to the other priests, so that many of these unfortunate priests actually died for want.

In the last two years of Felix occurred also the imprisonment of the Apostle Paul at Caesarea, of which an account is given in Acts 23, 24. We are familiar with the story of the personal interview which the apostle had with the Roman procurator and his wife Drusilla, at which the apostle did not fail to speak to both of that which it was specially fit that they should hear: “of righteousness and of temperance, and of judgment to come.”

While Paul lay a prisoner at Caesarea, a conflict arose there between the Jewish and Syrian inhabitants of the city over the question of equality in citizen rights (ἰσοπολιτεία), The Jews laid claim to the possession of certain advantages and privileges, since Herod was the founder of the city. The Syrians were naturally unwilling that any such preference should be given to the Jews. For a long tims both parties fought with one another in riots on the public streets. At last on one occasion, when the Jews had obtained an advantage, Felix stepped in, reduced the Jews to order by military force, and gave up some of their houses to be plundered by the soldiers. But when, nevertheless, the disorders still continued, Felix sent the most prominent of both parties to Rome, in order that the question of law might be decided by the emperor. Before, however, the matter had been settled, Felix, probably in A.D. 60, was recalled by Nero.

5. As successor of Felix, Nero sent Porcius Festus, A.D. 60–62, a man who, though disposed to act righteously, found himself utterly unable to undo the mischief wrought by the misdeeds of his predecessor.

Soon after Festus’ entrance upon office the dispute between the Jewish and Syrian inhabitants of Caesarea was decided in favour of the Syrians by means of an imperial rescript. The Jewish ambassadors at Rome had not been able to press their charges against Felix, because Pallas took the side of his brother. On the other hand, the two Syrian ambassadors succeeded by bribery in winning over to their interests a certain man called Beryllus, who was Nero’s secretary for his Greek correspondence, and by this means obtained an imperial rescript, by which even that equality with the Syrians, with which before they had not been satisfied, was now taken away from the Jews, and the “Hellenes” declared to be the lords of the city. The embittered feelings excited by this decision among the Jews of Caesarea burst forth a few years later, in A.D. 66, in violent revolutionary movements, which Josephus regards as the beginning of the great war.

Festus, after repeated hearings, caused the Apostle Paul, whom Felix had left in prison (Acts 24:27), at the apostle’s own demand as a Roman citizen to be judged before the emperor, to be sent to Rome (Acts 25, 26, 27:1, 2; compare also, in addition, pp. 59, 74 of the present work).

The trouble in connection with the Sicarii continued under Festus just as great as it had been under Felix. During his government also a deceiver, so at least Josephus designates him, led the people into the wilderness, promising redemption and emancipation from all evils to those who should follow him. Festus proceeded against him with the utmost severity, but was unable to secure any lasting success.

Details in regard to a conflict between the priests and King Agrippa II., in which Festus took the side of Agrippa, will be given under the section that treats of the history of that king.

After he had held office for a period of scarcely two years, Festus died while administering his procuratorship, and two men succeeded him, one after the other, who, like genuine successors of Felix, contributed, as far as it lay in their power to intensify the bitterness of the conflict, and hurry on its final bloody conclusion.

In the interval between the death of Festus and the arrival of his successor, in A.D. 62, utter anarchy prevailed in Jerusalem, which was turned to account by the high priest Ananus, a son of that elder Ananus or Annas who is well known in connection with the history of Christ’s death, in order to secure in a tumultuous gathering the condemnation of his enemies, and to have them stoned. His arbitrary government was not indeed of long duration, for King Agrippa, even before the arrival of the new procurator, again deposed him after he had held office only for three months. James, the brother of Jesus Christ (ὁ ἀδελφὸς Ἰησοῦ τοῦ λεγομένου Χριστοῦ), is said to have been among those executed by Ananus. So at least the words run in our present text of Josephus; and the words had been read even by Eusebius in his copy of Josephus precisely as they occur in our manuscripts. There is considerable ground, however, for suspicion of Christian interpolation, especially as Origen read in Josephus another passage regarding the death of James, in which the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple is described as a divine judgment in consequence of the execution of James. This passage occurs in some of our manuscripts of Josephus, and ought therefore certainly to be regarded as a Christian interpolation which has been excluded from our common text. Also in the account given by Hegesippus of the execution of James it is brought into close connection with the destruction of Jerusalem. The year 62 cannot by any means be accepted as the date of his death.

6. The testimony of Josephus in regard to the new procurator Albinus, A.D. 62–64, is to the effect that there was no sort of wickedness that could be mentioned which he had not a hand in. The leading principle of his procedure seems however, to have been: To get money from whomsoever he might obtain it. Public as well as private treasures were subjected to his plunderings, and the whole people had to suffer oppression under his exactions. But he also found it to his advantage to seek money as bribes for his favour from both political parties in the country, from the friends of the Romans, as well as from their opponents. From the high priest Ananias, inclined to favour the Romans, as well as from his enemies, the Sicarii, he accepted presents, and then allowed both of them without restraint to do as they liked. He made, indeed, a pretence of opposing the Sicarii; but for money any one who might be taken prisoner could secure his release. “Nobody remained in prison as a malefactor, but he who gave him nothing. The Sicarii, indeed, found out another means for securing the liberation of those of their party who had been taken prisoners. They were in the habit of seizing upon adherents of the opposite party only. Then at the wish of the Roman party, by whom also he was bribed, Albinus would set free as many of the Sicarii as they would of their opponents. Once on a time the Sicarii seized the secretary of the ruler of the temple, Eleasar, a son of Ananias, and in return for the liberation of the secretary they secured the restoration of ten of their own comrades. Under such a government the anti-Roman party gained footing more and more, or, as Josephus puts it, “the boldness of those desirous of change became more and more obtrusive.” And seeing that, on the other hand, their opponents also had full scope, utter anarchy soon prevailed in Jerusalem. It was a war of all against all. Ananias, the high priest, behaved in the most outrageous manner. He allowed his servants quite openly to take away from the threshing-floors the tithes of the priests, and those who opposed them were beaten. Two noble relatives of King Agrippa, called Costobar and Saul, also tried their hand at the robber business, and with them was associated the man who had committed to him the maintaining of law and order, even the procurator Albinus himself. In such times it was indeed nothing calculated to excite surprise when on one occasion a high priest, Jesus, son of Damnäos, engaged in pitched battle in the streets with his successor, Jesus, son of Gamaliel, because he had no wish to give up to him the sacred office.

When Albinus was recalled, in order to do a pleasure to the inhabitants of the capital, and also to make the work of his successor as heavy as possible, he left all the prisons empty, having executed the ordinary malefactors, and set at liberty all the other prisoners. “Thus the prisons were left empty of prisoners, but the country full of robbers.”

7. The last procurator, Gessius Florus, A.D. 64–66, was at the same time also the worst. He belonged to Clazomenae, and had through the influence of his wife Cleopatra, who was a friend of the Empress Poppea, obtained the procuratorship of Judea. For the utter baseness which characterized his administration of his office, Josephus can scarcely find words sufficiently strong to express his feelings. In comparison with him, he thinks that even Albinus was extraordinarily law honouring (δικαιότατος). So unbounded was his tyranny, that in view of it the Jews praised Albinus as a benefactor. Whereas Albinus wrought his wickednesses at least in secret, Florus was impudent enough to parade them openly. The robbing of individuals seemed to him quite too small. He plundered whole cities, and ruined whole communities. If only the robbers would share their spoil with him, they would be allowed to carry on their operations unchecked.

By such outrages the measure which the people could endure was at last filled up to the brim. The combustible materials which had been gathering for years had now grown into a vast heap. It needed only a spark, and an explosion would follow of fearful and most destructive force.


EWALD, History of Israel, vii. 273, 421, 422, 432, and elsewhere; viii. 18.

LEWIN, Fasti sacri, ad ann. 44–69 (see in the same work, Index, p. 390).

WINER, Realwörterbuch, i. 485.

KEIM in SCHENKEL’S Bibellexikon, iii. 56–65.

DERENBOURG, Histoire de la Palestine, pp. 252–254.

HAMBURGER, Real-Encyclopaedie, Abth. ii. artikel “Agrippa.”

DE SAULCY, Etude chronologique de la vie et des monnaies des rois juifs Agrippa I. et Agrippa II. 1869 (see vol. i. of the work, p. 27).

GERLACH, Zeitschrift für lutherischen Theologie, 1869, pp. 62–68.

BRANN, “Biographie Agrippa’s II.” (Monatsschrift für Geschichte und Wissenschaft des Judenthums, xix. 1870, pp. 433–444, 529–548; xx. 1871, pp. 13–28).

BAERWALD, Josephus in Galiläa, sein Verhältniss zu den Parteien insbesondere zu Justus von Tiberias und Agrippa II., Breslau 1877.

GRÄTZ, “Das Lebensende des Königs Agrippa II.” u.s.w. (Monatsschrift, 1877, p. 337 ff.); “Agrippa II. und der Zustand Judäa’s nach dem Untergange Jerusalems” (Monatsschrift, 1881, p. 481 ff.).

The inscriptions referring to Agrippa II. are collected from Waddington in the Zeitschrift für Wissenschaftliche Theologie, 1873, pp. 248–255. On an addition to this list see vol. i. of this work, p. 30.

Agrippa II, son of Agrippa I., whose full name, as given on coins and inscriptions, was Marcus Julius Agrippa, seems like almost all the members of the Herodian family, to have been educated and brought up in Rome. There, at least, we find him at the time of his father’s death in A.D. 44, when Claudius wished to appoint him as successor to hif father. That the emperor, at the instigation of his counsellors on the plea of Agrippa’s youth, did not carry out this purpose has been already narrated above. The youth remained for a while at Rome, and found there abundant opportunities of being useful to his countrymen by making use of his influence and connections with the court. Notable instances of his successful intervention are those of the dispute about the high priest’s robe and the conflict waged during the time of Cumanus. To him also it was mainly due that Cumanus did not escape the punishment he deserved. With this last-mentioned incident we are already brought down to A.D. 52. But even before this there had been bestowed upon him by Claudius, in compensation for the loss of his father’s territories, another kingdom, though, indeed, a smaller one. After the death of his uncle, Herod of Chalcis, whose life and history are given in detail in Appendix I., he obtained, though not probably just at once, but only in A.D. 50, his kingdom in the Lebanon, and, at the same time, what that prince also had had, the oversight of the temple and the right to appoint the high priests. Of this latter right he frequently available himself by repeated depositions and nominations of high priests down to the outbreak of the war in A.D. 66. Probably after this gift had been bestowed upon him Agrippa continued still to reside for a while in Rome, where we meet with him in A.D. 52, and only after this date actually entered upon the government of his kingdom.

He can only seldom, or perhaps not even once, have revisited Palestine, when, in A.D. 53, in the thirteenth year of Claudius, in return for the relinquishment of the small kingdom of Chalcis, he received a larger territory, namely, the tetrarchy of Philip, including Batanea, Trachonitis, and Gaulanitis, and the tetrarchy of Lysanias, consisting of Abila and the domains of Varus. This territory, after the death of Claudius, was still further enlarged, through Nero’e favour for him, by the addition of important parts of Galilee and Perea, namely, the cities of Tiberias and Tarichea, together with the lands around belonging to them, and the city Julias, together with fourteen surrounding villages.

Of Agrippa’s private life there is not much that is favourable to report. His sister Berenice, who, from the time of the death of Herod of Chalcis in A.D. 48, was a widow (see under Appendix I.), lived from that date in the house of her brother, and soon had the weak man completely caught in the meshes of her net, so that regarding her, the mother of two children, the vilest stories became current. When the scandal became public, Berenice, in order to cut away occasion for all evil reports, resolved to marry Polemon of Cilicia, who, for this purpose, was obliged to submit to be circumcised. She did not, however, continue long with him, but came back again to her brother, and seems to have resumed her old relations with him. At least this somewhat later came to be the common talk of Rome.

In the matter of public policy Agrippa was obliged to give up even the little measure of independence which his father sought to secure, and had unconditionally to subordinate himself to the Roman government. He provided auxiliary troops for the Parthian campaign of A.D. 54; and when, in A.D. 60, the new procurator Festus arrived in Palestine, he hastened, along with his sister Berenice, surrounded with great pomp (μετὰ πολλῆς φαντασίας), to offer him a welcome. His capital Caesarea Philippi was named by him Neronias in honour of the emperor, and the city of Berytus, which his father had adorned with magnificent specimens of pagan art, was still further indebted to his liberality. His coins, almost without exception, bear the names and images of the reigning emperor: of Nero, Vespasian, Titus, and Domitian. Like his father, he also caused himself to be styled βασιλεὺς μέγας φιλόκαισαρ εὐσεβὴς καὶ φιλορώμαιος.

That upon the whole he was attached to the Roman rather than to the Jewish side is made very evident from an incident which, in yet another direction, is characteristic of his indolence and general feebleness. When he paid a visit to Jerusalem, he was wont to occupy the house that had formerly been the palace of the Asmoneans. This building, lofty even in its original form, he caused to be considerably heightened by the addition of a tower, in order that from it he might overlook the citadel and the temple, and to observe in his idle hours the sacred proceedings in the temple. This lazy onlooker was obnoxious to the priests, and they thwarted his scheme by building a high wall to shut off his view. Agrippa then applied for assistance to his friend, the procurator Festus, and he was very willing to give him any help he could. But a Jewish deputation, which went on its own authority about the business to Rome, managed by means of the mediation of the Empress Poppea to obtain permission to keep up the wall, so that Agrippa was obliged forthwith to abandon his favourite diversion.

Notwithstanding his unconditional submission to Rome, Agrippa yet sought also to keep on good terms with the friends of Judaism. His brothers-in-law, Azizus of Emesa and Polemon of Cilicia, were required on their marriage with his sisters to submit to circumcision. The rabbinical tradition tells of questions pertaining to the law which were put by Agrippa’s minister or by the king himself to the famous scribe Rabbi Elieser. Yea on one occasion we find even Berenice, a bigot as well as a wanton, a Nazarite in Jerusalem. Judaism was indeed as little a matter of heart conviction with Agrippa as it had been with his father. The difference was only this, that as a matter of policy the father took up decidedly the side of the Pharisees, whereas the son with less disguise exhibited his utter indifference. When it is told in the Acts of the Apostles how Agrippa and Berenice desired out of curiosity to see and hear the Apostle Paul, while the king could make no other reply to the apostle’s enthusiastic testimony on behalf of Christ than: “With little wouldest thou win me over to be a Christian,” and therewith allows the matter to pass away from his mind, we can see not only that he was free from all fanaticism, but also that he had no interest whatever in the deeper religious questions of the time.

His interest in Judaism extended only to external matters, and, indeed, only to merely trifling and insignificant points. In order to support the temple when its foundations had begun to sink, and to raise the buildings twenty cubits higher, he caused, at great expense, wood of immense size and fine quality to be imported from the Lebanon. But the wood, owing to the outbreak of the war in the meantime, was never put to that use, and subsequently served for the manufacture of engines of war. He allowed the psalm-singing Levites, when they made the request of him, to wear the linen garments which previously had been a distinctive badge of the priests. For such an offence against the law, the war, as Josephus thinks, was a just punishment. When, in the time of Albinus, the building of the temple of Herod was completed, in order to secure employment for the multitudes of builders, Agrippa had the city paved with white marble. “And thus at least as costume maker, wood-cutter, pavier, and practical inspector of the temple, did he render his services to the sinking Jerusalem.”

When, in the spring of A.D. 66, the revolution broke out, Agrippa was in Alexandria, where he had gone to pay his respects to the governor of that place, Tiberius Alexander, while his sister Berenice remained in Jerusalem in consequence of a Nazarite vow. Agrippa then immediately hasted back, and both brother and sister did all in their power to avert the threatening storm. But all in vain. Open hostilities were now begun in Jerusalem between the war and the peace parties, and the king’s troops, which he had sent to help, fought on the side of the peace party. When this latter party had been defeated, and among other buildings, the palaces of Agrippa and Berenice had fallen victims to the popular fury, he became the decided choice of that party. Unhesitatingly throughout the whole war he stood on the side of the Romans. Even when Cestius Gallus undertook his unfortunate expedition against Jerusalem, King Agrippa was found in his following with a considerable number of auxiliary troops. As the further course of the revolt proved favourable to the Jews he lost a great part of his territory. The cities Tiberias, Tarichea, and Gamala joined the revolutionary party; but the king remained unflinchingly faithful to the Roman cause. After the conquest of Jotapata, in the summer of A.D. 67, he entertained the commander-in-chief Vespasian in the most magnificent manner in his capital of Caesarea Philippi, and was able soon, after he had been slightly wounded at the siege of Gamala, to take possession again of his kingdom; for at the end of the year 67 the whole of the north of Palestine was again subject to the Romans.

When, after the death of Nero, which occurred on 9th June A.D. 68, Titus went to Rome to pay his respects to the new emperor Galba, he took Agrippa with him also for the same purpose. On the way they received tidings of Galba’s murder, which took place on 15th January A.D. 69. While Titus now returned with as great speed as possible to his father, Agrippa continued his journey to Rome, where for a time he continued to reside. But after Vespasian had been, on 30th July A.D. 69, elected emperor by the Egyptian and Syrian legions, Berenice, who had been throughout a hearty supporter of the Flavian party, urged her brother to return without delay to Palestine to take the oath of allegiance to the new emperor. From this time forward Agrippa is to be found in the company of Titus, to whom Vespasian had entrusted the continued prosecution of the war. When Titus, after the conquest of Jerusalem, gave magnificent and costly games at Caesarea Philippi, King Agrippa was undoubtedly present, and as a Roman joined in the rejoicings over the destruction of his people.

After the war had been brought to an end Agrippa, as a faithful partizan of Vespasian, was not only confirmed in the possession of the kingdom which he had previously governed, but had also considerable additions made to his territories, though we have no more detailed account of the precise boundaries of his domains. Josephus mentions only incidentally that Arcaia (Arca, at the north end of the Lebanon, north-east of Tripolis) belonged to the kingdom of Agrippa. We are therefore obliged to conclude that his new possessions stretched very far to the north. The omission on the part of Josephus in Wars of the Jews, iii. 3. 5, to refer to these northern possessions, can be accounted for only by the hypothesis that at the time of the composition of that work this extension of territory had not yet taken place. As a matter of fact, Josephus does not refer to them there, because in that passage he does not propose to describe the whole kingdom of Agrippa, but only those districts which were inhabited more or less by Jews (compare Div. II. vol. i. p. 2). Of the southern possessions certain portions seem at a later period to have been taken away from Agrippa. At least, at the time when Josephus wrote his Antiquities, i.e. in A.D. 93–94, the Jewish colony of Bathyra in Batanea no longer belonged to the territory of Agrippa.

In A.D. 75 the brother and sister, Agrippa and Berenice, arrived in Rome, and there those intimate relations begun in Palestine between Berenice and Titus were resumed, which soon became a public scandal. The Jewish queen lived with Titus on the Palatine, while her brother was raised to the rank of a praetor. It was generally expected that there would soon be a formal marriage, which it is said that Titus had indeed promised her. But the dissatisfaction over the matter in Rome was so great that Titus found himself under the necessity of sending his beloved one away. After the death of Vespasian, on 23rd June A.D. 79, she returned once more to Rome; but Titus had come to see that love intrigues were not compatible with the dignity of an emperor, and so left her unnoticed. When she found herself thus deceived she returned again to Palestine.

Of her later life, as well as of that of Agrippa, we know practically nothing. We know indeed only this, that Agrippa corresponded with Josephus about his History of the Jewish War, praised it for its accuracy and reliability, and purchased a copy of it.

Numerous coins of Agrippa confirm the idea that his reign continued to the end of that of Domitian. The many inaccuracies which are found on these coins with reference to the imperial title have caused much trouble to numismatists. Yet, in reality, these inaccuracies are in various directions highly instructive.

According to the testimony of Justus of Tiberias, Agrippa died in the third year of Trajan, in A.D. 100; and there is no reason for doubting the correctness of this statement, as Tillemont and many modern writers have done. Agrippa, it would appear, left no children. His kingdom was undoubtedly incorporated in the province of Syria.


JOSEPHUS, Wars of the Jews, ii. 14–vii.; Life, c. iv.–lxxiv. ZONARAS, Annales, vi. 18–29 (summary from Josephus).—On the so-called Hegesippus, see above, vol. i. pp. 100–102.

On the non-extant works of Vespasian, Antonius Julianus, and Justus of Tiberias, see above, vol. i. pp. 63–69.

Rabbinical traditions in DERENBOURG, pp. 255–295.

On the coins which possibly date from the period of this war, see Appendix IV.

EWALD, History of Israel, vii. 486–616.

MILMAN, History of the Jews, books xiv., xv., xvi., xvii.

GRĀTZ, Geschichte der Juden, 4 Aufl. iii. pp. 448–557.

HITZIG, Geschichte des Volkes Israel, ii. 594–629.

HAUSRATH, Neutestamentliche Zeitgeschichte, 2 Aufl. iii. 421–477.

RENAN, Antichrist.

PRESSENSÉ, The Early Years of Christianity, vol. i. pp. 399–406. London 1879.

SCHILLER, Geschichte des römischen Kaiserreiches unter der Regierung des Nero (1872), pp. 205–261.—Geschichte der römischen Kaiserzeit, Bd. i. 1883, pp. 381–400.

MOMMSEN, Römische Geschichte, Bd. v. 1885, pp. 529–540.

LEWIN, The Siege of Jerusalem by Titus. With Journal of a recent Visit to the Holy City, and a general Sketch of the Topography of Jerusalem from the earliest Times down to the Siege. London 1863.—Compare Gött. gel. Anzeiger, 1864, p. 721 ff.—Also, Lewin, Fasti sacri, London 1865, pp. 338–362.

MORRISON, The Jews under the Romans. In “History of the Nations” series. London 1890.

CHAMPAGNT, Rome et la Judée au temps de la chute de Néron (ans 66–72 après Jésus-Christ), 2 éd. Paris 1865, t. i. pp. 195–254; t. ii. pp. 55–200.

DE SAULCY, Les derniers jours de Jérusalem. Paris 1886. Compare, Gött. gel. Anzeiger, 1868, p. 899 ff.


THE ostensible occasion for the outbreak of the long threatened revolt was given by a deed of Floras which was not in itself any worse than many others committed by him, but to the people proved more intolerable because it was at the same time an outrage upon their religious sensibilities. Whereas before he had visited only the citizens with his plunderings, he now ventured to lay his hands upon the treasury of the temple, and to abstract from it seventeen talents. The people’s patience was thus tried beyond endurance. They now rose in a great tumult; a couple of sarcastic wits hit upon a plan for throwing contempt upon the greedy procurator by sending round baskets and collecting gifts for the poor and unfortunate Florus. When the governor heard of this he immediately resolved to take bloody vengeance upon those who had thus insulted him. With a detachment of soldiers he marched to Jerusalem, and in spite of the weeping entreaties of the high priests and the principal inhabitantants, he gave over a portion of the city to be plundered by his soldiers. A large number of citizens, including among them even Roman knights of Jewish descent, were seized at random, put in fetters, and then crucified. Even the humble pleadings of Queen Berenice, who happened to be present in Jerusalem at that time, had no effect in moderating the fury of the procurator and his soldiers.

This outrage was committed on the 16th Artemisios (Ijjar, May) of the year 66.

On the day following Florus expressed the wish that the citizens should go out to give a formal greeting to the two cohorts which were to enter the city from Caesarea, in order thereby to give a public proof of their submissiveness and of their penitent disposition. Although the people were not by any means inclined to do so, the high priests persuaded them to submit to this indignity lest something worse should befall them. In solemn procession the people went out to meet the two cohorts, and gave them a friendly greeting. But the soldiers, evidently guided by the instructions of Florus, refused to return their greeting. Then began the people to murmur, and to utter reproaches against Florus. The soldiers then seized their swords, and drove the people back amid incessant slaughter into the city. Then in the streets a violent conflict raged, in which the people succeeded in securing possession of the temple mount, and in cutting off the connection between it and the castle of Antonia. Florus could easily see that he was not strong enough to subdue the multitude by violence. He therefore withdrew to Caesarea, leaving behind only one cohort in Jerusalem, and announcing that he would hold the chief men of the city responsible for the quiet and order of the people.

King Agrippa was at this time in Alexandria. When he heard of the disturbances he hastened to Jerusalem, summoned the people to an assembly on the Xystus, an open space in front of the palace of the Asmoneans, in which Agrippa resided, and from his palace addressed the people in a long and impressive speech, in order to urge them to abandon the utterly hopeless, and therefore unreasonable and disastrous struggle on which they were entering. The people declared themselves ready to return to their allegiance to the emperor They began again to build up the galleries between the temple mount and the Antonia, which they had torn down, and they collected the outstanding taxes. But when Agrippa insisted that they should again yield obedience to Florus, this was more than the people could endure. His proposals were rejected with contempt and scorn, and he was obliged to withdraw without accomplishing his purpose in his kingdom.

Meanwhile the rebels had succeeded in gaining possession of the fortress of Masada. At the instigation of Eleasar, son of the high priest Ananias, it was now also resolved to discontinue the daily offering for the emperor, and no longer to admit of any offering by those who were not Jews. The refusal to offer a sacrifice for the emperor was equivalent to an open declaration of revolt against the Romans. All attempts of the principal men, among the chief priests as well as among the Pharisees, to induce the people to recall this foolhardy resolution were in vain. They firmly adhered to the decision to which they had come.

When the members of the peace party, to which, as might be expected, all discerning and judicious men belonged,—the high priests, the most distinguished of the Pharisees, those related to the house of Herod,—perceived that they were incapable of accomplishing any good, they resolved to have recourse to violent measures. They accordingly made application for assistance to King Agrippa. He sent a detachment of 3000 cavalry under the command of Darius and Philip, by whose help the peace party gained possession of the upper city, while the rebels continued to hold the temple mount and the lower city. A bitter strife now arose between the two parties; but the royal troops were not strong enough to withstand the violent rage of the multitude, and were obliged to evacuate the upper city. In order to take vengeance upon their opponents, the rebels set fire to the palaces of the high priest Ananias, of King Agrippa, and Berenice.

A few days after this, in the month Loos, that is, Ab or August, they also succeeded in storming the citadel of Antonia, and then they began to lay siege to the upper palace, that of Herod, in which the troops of the peace party had taken refuge. Here, too, it was impossible for the besieged to offer any effectual resistance. Consequently the troops of Agrippa were only too glad to submit on the condition of being allowed to pass out unhurt. The Roman cohorts had betaken themselves to the three strong towers of the palace, known respectively by the names Hippicus, Phasael, and Mariamme, while all the rest of the palace was, on 6th Gorpiaios, that is, Elul or September, set on fire by the rebels. On the following day the high priest Ananias, who had hitherto kept himself concealed, was apprehended in his hiding-place and put to death. The solitary feeble support which still remained to the peace party, was that of the Roman cohorts besieged in the three towers of the palace of Herod. These, too, were obliged at last to yield to the superior power of the people. Upon laying down their arms they were allowed to walk out uninjured. But the rebels, who were now masters of the whole city, celebrated their victory by general slaughter. The Roman soldiers were scarcely gone, leaving their weapons behind them, when they were treacherously fallen upon by the Jews, and were cut down to the last man.

While thus the triumph of the revolution in Jerusalem was decided, bloody conflicts took place also in many other cities, where Jews and Gentiles dwelt together, especially within the borders of Palestine. Wherever the Jews were in the majority, they cut down their Gentile fellow-townsmen; and where the Gentiles predominated, they fell upon the Jews. The influence of the revolt in the mother country spread even as far as Alexandria.

At last, after long delay and preparation, Cestius Gallus, the governor of Syria, entered upon negotiations for the quieting of the disturbances in Judea. With the twelfth legion, 2000 chosen men from other legions, six cohorts, and four alae of cavalry, besides numerous auxiliary troops which the friendly kings, including Agrippa, had been obliged to place at his disposal, he started from Antioch, marched through Ptolemais, Caesarea, Antipatris, Lydda, where he arrived at the time of the Feast of Tabernacles in the month Tizri or October, and finally through Beth-horon to Gabao or Gibeon, 50 stadia from Jerusalem, and there pitched his camp. A sally made by the Jews from Jerusalem put the Roman army into a position of great danger, but was at last driven back. Cestius then advanced nearer to the city, and laid siege to the so-called Scopus, 7 stadia from Jerusalem. Four days later, on the 30th Hyperberetaios, that is, Tizri or October, he took possession unopposed of the northern suburb Bezetha, and set it on fire. But when he ventured upon the bolder task of storming the temple mount his enterprise failed. He thereupon desisted from all further attempts, and began to withdraw without accomplishing his object. Josephus is unable to explain the causes of this procedure. Probably Cestius perceived that his forces were insufficient for making an attack with any hope of success upon the well fortified and courageously defended city. With what determination and with what dauntless resolution the struggle was carried forward on the part of the Jews, was now to be proved to the Roman governor on his retreat In a ravine near Beth-horon, through which he was pursuing his journey, he found himself surrounded on every side by the Jews, and attacked with such force, that his homeward march was turned into a flight. Only by leaving behind him a great part of his baggage, including much valuable war material, which subsequently proved of great service to the Jews, did he succeed in reaching Antioch with a fragment of his army. Amid great rejoicings the returning conquerors entered Jerusalem on the 8th Dios, that is, Marchesvan or November.

In presence of the excitement caused by victory which now prevailed in Jerusalem all peace counsels were forcibly silenced. After such decisive successes no proposals of compromise would be listened to. Even those inclined to oppose were driven along by the course of events. Those who were inalienably attached to the Romans left the city. All the rest were drawn into their own ranks by the rebels, partly by force, partly by persuasion (τοὺς μὲν βίᾳ τοὺς δὲ πειθοῖ). They now set about organizing the rebellion in a regular methodical fashion, and made preparations for the expected onslaught of the Romans. It is distinctively characteristic of the later period of the war that the men who now had the power in their hands belonged exclusively to the higher ranks. The chief priests, the most distinguished of the Pharisees, were those who directed the organization of the land defences. An assembly of the people, which was held in the temple, made choice of commanders for the provinces. Two men, Joseph, son of Gorion, and the high priest Ananus, were entrusted with the defence of the capital. To Idumea they sent Jesus, son of Sapphias, and Eleasar, son of Ananias, both belonging to the high priestly family. Nearly all the eleven toparchies into which Judea was divided had their own commanders. Finally, to Galilee was sent Josephus, son of Matthias, the future historian.

There is no doubt but that the youthful Josephus had thus one of the most difficult and most responsible positions assigned to him, for it was just in Galilee that the first attack of the Romans might be expected. Great results could scarcely be looked for in the conducting of warlike operations from a young man only thirty years of age; and he owed his appointment certainly less to his military capacities than to his friendship with the most distinguished personages. It was indeed a strange proceeding to send a young man, who in addition to his natural ability could at most only point to his rabbinical learning, to enlist an army with all haste from among the peaceful inhabitants of Galilee, and with it to hold his ground against the attack of veteran legions and circumvent the tactics of experienced generals! If we are to believe his own account, he set himself at least with zeal to the solving of the insoluble problem. For the governing of Galilee he appointed, in imitation of the Sanhedrim of Jerusalem, a council of seventy men, which had to decide on difficult points of law; while for less important disputes he established in every city a council of seven men. He intended to prove his zeal for the law by destroying the palace of Tiberias, which, contrary to the law, was adorned with animal images; but in this he was anticipated by the revolutionary party. The military part of his task he endeavoured to carry out specially by strengthening the fortifications of the cities. All the more important cities of Galilee, Jotapata, Tarichea, Tiberias, Sepphoris, Gischala, Mount Tabor, also Gamala in Gaulanitis, and many smaller towns were put more or less in a condition of defence. But with special pride he boasts of his labours in organizing the army, He sought to bring together no less than 100,000 men, and to have them drilled after the Roman style.

While Josephus thus prepared for war with the Romans, a violent opposition arose against him in his own province, which even went the length of openly drawing the sword upon him. The soul of this hostile movement was John of Gischala, a bold, reckless party leader, who was filled with glowing hatred toward the Romans, and had resolved to carry on the struggle against them to the uttermost. But while he had sworn death and destruction to the tyrants, he was himself no less of a tyrant within his own circle. It was intolerable to him to brook the idea of having others over him. Least of all could he yield obedience to Josephus, whose tame method of conducting the war seemed to him no better than friendship for the Romans. Hence he used every endeavour to get the man so hateful to him set aside, and to withdraw the allegiance of the people of Galilee from him. His suspicion of Josephus was indeed not altogether without foundation. Josephus knew the Romans too well to entertain the notion that the rebellion could be really and finally successful. He was therefore necessarily only half-hearted in the business which he had undertaken, and sometimes unwittingly allowed this to appear. On one occasion certain youths from the village of Dabaritta had robbed an official of King Agrippa, and taken rich spoil. Josephus caused them to hand back what they had taken, and intended, if we may believe his own account of the affair, to restore them to the king on the first favourable opportunity. When the people perceived that this was his intention, the suspicion which John of Gischala had insinuated against him was increased, and now broke out into open rebellion. In Tarichea, where Josephus had his residence, a great tumult was made. They threatened the life of the traitor. Only by the most miserable and degrading self-humiliation and the exercise of low cunning could Josephus ward off the threatened danger. Some time later at Tiberias, he escaped the assassins sent against him by John of Gischala only by precipitate flight. At last John carried matters so far that he was able to obtain in Jerusalem a resolution to recall Josephus. Four of the most distinguished men were sent for this purpose to Galilee, accompanied by a detachment of soldiers numbering 2500 men, in order to carry out this decision by force if necessary. But Josephus knew how to frustrate the execution of this decree, and the four ambassadors were again recalled. When they refused compliance with that summons, he had them apprehended and sent them back to Jerusalem. The inhabitants of Tiberias who continued in revolt were subjugated by force, and thus for the time peace was restored. When, a few days later, the inhabitants of Tiberias again rose in revolt,—now, indeed, in favour of Agrippa and the Romans,—they were overcome once more by craft.

Meanwhile in Jerusalem they were by no means inactive. There, too, they were making preparations for meeting the Romans. The walls were strengthened, war material of all sorts was collected, the youth were exercised in the use of arms.

Amid such preparations the spring of A.D. 67 came round, and with it the time when the attack of the Romans was expected, and the young republic would have to pass through its fiery ordeal.


The Emperor Nero had received in Achaia the news of the defeat of Cestius. Since the continuance of the war could not have been committed to the defeated general,—he seems indeed soon afterwards to have died,—the difficult task of putting down the Jewish rebellion was made over to the well-proved hands of Vespasian. During winter Vespasian still pushed forward the preparations for the campaign. While he himself went to Antioch and there marshalled his army, he sent his son Titus to Alexandria, in order that he might bring to him from thence the fifteenth legion. So soon as the season of the year allowed, he marched from Antioch and advanced to Ptolemais, where he meant to await the arrival of Titus. But before Titus reached that place, ambassadors from the Galilean city of Sepphoris appeared before Vespasian and besought him to give them a Roman garrison. Vespasian hasted to comply with their request. A detachment of 6000 men under the leadership of Placidus was sent as a garrison to the city. Thus were the Romans, without drawing a sword, in possession of one of the most important and one of the strongest points in Galilee. Soon after this Titus arrived with his one legion. The army now at the disposal of Vespasian consisted of 3 distinct legions, the fifth, tenth, and fifteenth, 23 auxiliary cohorts, 6 alae of cavalry, besides the auxiliary troops of King Agrippa, of King Antiochus of Commagene, of Soemus of Emesa, and of Malchus of Arabia: in all comprising somewhere about 60,000 men.

When all arrangements had been made, Vespasian advanced from Ptolemais and pitched his camp on the borders of Galilee. Josephus had before this set his camp at the village of Garis, twenty stadia from Sepphoris (Life, lxxi.), in order that he might there wait the attack of the Romans. The warlike qualities of his army were soon shown in a very doubtful light. When it became known that Vespasian was approaching, the majority of the Jewish troops became utterly dispirited, even before they had so much as come face to face with the Romans; they fled hither and thither; and Josephus found himself obliged to hasten with the remnant to Tiberias. Without drawing a sword, Vespasian had thus obtained possession of the lowlands of Galilee. Only the strongholds now remained for him to take.

Josephus soon held communication with Jerusalem, and insisted that if they wished the war to be carried on they should send an army able to cope with the Romans, a petition which now indeed came too late. The most of the army of Josephus had taken refuge in the strong fortress of Jotapata. Even he himself entered that stronghold on the 21st (?) Artemisios, that is, Ijjar or May, so as to conduct the defence in his own person. On the evening of the immediately following day, Vespasian with his army appeared before the city; and then began the celebrated siege of the certainly not unimportant stronghold, described with a self-glorifying amplitude of details by Josephus. The first attack led to no result. It was found necessary to have recourse to a regular siege. An obstinate struggle made the issue for some time doubtful. What on the one side was accomplished by art and the experience of war, was accomplished on the other by the courage of despair and the skill of the commander-in-chief. For although Josephus was indeed no general in the proper sense of the word, he was a past master in little tricks and stratagem. With profound satisfaction the vain man tells how he deceived the Roman generals as to the scarcity of water in the city by making his soldiers hang their clothes dripping with water over the battlements. He also tells how he managed to procure supplies of food by sending his men out by night clothed in the skins of beasts, so that they might pass by the Roman sentinels. He further relates how he broke the force of the battering-ram upon the wall by throwing out bags filled with chaff; how he had boiling oil thrown upon the soldiers, or boiling fenugreek poured on the boards of the scaling ladders, so that those advancing on them slipped and fell back. But neither by such arts nor by the boldness of the sallies, in one of which Vespasian himself was wounded, could the fate of the city be averted. After the besieged had endured the utmost extremity of suffering, a deserter betrayed the secret, that in consequence of fatigue the very sentinels could no longer keep themselves awake till the morning. The Romans made use of this information. With perfect stillness, Titus one morning with a small detachment scaled the wall, cut down the sleeping watch, and pressed into the city. The legions followed in his track, and the outwitted garrison were aware of the entrance of the Romans only when they no longer had power to drive them back. All without exception who fell into the hands of the Romans, armed and unarmed, men and women, were ruthlessly slain or carried off as slaves; the city and its fortifications were levelled with the dust. It was on the 1st of the month Panemos, that is, Thamuz or July, A.D. 67, when this most important fortress of Galilee fell into the hands of the Romans.

Josephus with forty companions had taken refuge in a well which discharged itself into a cave. When he was discovered there, he was willing to surrender to the Romans, but was prevented doing so by his companions. These only offered him the choice of dying along with them, either by their hand or by his own. By some sort of stratagem, having persuaded them that they should fall upon one another in the order determined by the lot, and having by the fortune of the lot been himself reserved to the last, Josephus managed to extricate himself from their hands, and having made his escape, surrendered himself to the Romans. When he was brought before Vespasian, he assumed the role of a prophet, and prophesied to the general his future elevation as emperor. This had for him at least this result, that although kept prisoner, he was dealt with in a generous manner.

On the fourth day of Panemos, Vespasian advanced from Jotapata and marched next past Ptolemais to Caesarea, where he allowed the troops some rest. While the soldiers were refreshing themselves after the exertions of the siege, the general paid a visit to the friendly King Agrippa at Caesarea Philippi, and took part there in extravagant festivities lasting for twenty days. He then sent the legions by Titus from Caesarea by the sea and marched against Tiberias, where, at the sight of the Roman army, the people of their own accord opened their gates, and for Agrippa’s sake received honourable treatment. From this point Vespasian pursued his way onward to Tarichea. By a bold stroke of Titus, this city also fell into the hands of the Romans in the beginning of the month Gorpiaios, that is, Elul or September.

In Galilee there now remained in the hands of the rebels only Gischala and Mount Tabor (Itabyrion), and in Gaulanitis the important and strongly fortified Gamala. To the last-named place Vespasian next directed his attention. The siege appeared soon to be successful. The Romans succeeded in storming the walls and forcing an entrance into the city. But there they encountered such bitter resistance that they were forced to retire with very heavy loss. The repulse was so severe that it required all Vespasian’s influence and reputation to restore again the courage of the soldiers. At last, on the 23rd Hyperberetaios, that is, Tizri or October, the Romans again forced their way into the city, and were this time successful in making themselves complete masters of the situation. During the siege of Gamala the Mount Tabor (Itabyrion) was also taken by a detachment sent thither.

Vespasian gave over the reducing of Gischala to Titus with a detachment of 1000 cavalry. He himself led the 5th and 15th legions into winter quarters at Caesarea, while he placed the 10th at Scythopolis. Titus made light work of Gischala. On the second day after his appearing before the walls of the city, the citizens of their own accord opened the gates to him, John having secretly, during the previous night, with his Zealot comrades quitted the city and fled to Jerusalem.

Thus by the end of A.D. 67 was the whole of the north of Palestine brought again into subjection to the Romans.


The unfortunate results of the first year of the war determined the fate of the leaders of the rebellion. On the part of the fanatical section of the people, and not without cause, the unfavourable turn that events had taken was attributed to the lack of energy in the mode of conducting the war hitherto. The men of the people therefore set themselves with all their might to get the reins into their own hands, and to set aside those who had been in command. And since these would not of their own accord withdraw, a fearfully bloody civil war, accompanied by acts of horrid cruelty, broke out during the winter of A.D. 67–68 in Jerusalem, which in its atrocities can only be compared to the first French revolution.

The head of the fanatical popular party, or, as they called themselves, the Zealots, was John of Gischala. After he had escaped the hands of Titus by flight, he went with his followers, in the beginning of November A.D. 67, to Jerusalem, and sought to win over the people to himself and to rekindle in their breasts a determination to continue the war in a bolder and more resolute spirit. He readily succeeded in gaining over the youth to his side. And since now on all hands the war-loving rabble from the country poured into the city, the party of the Zealots was soon in the ascendency. They next proceeded to set aside those who were suspected of friendship for the Romans. Several of the most distinguished men, among them Antipas, who belonged to the family of Herod, were put under arrest, and were murdered in prison. Their next proceeding was to choose a new high priest by lot, for those who had held the office up to this time all belonged to the aristocratic party. The newly-elected high priest, Phannias of Aphtha, was not indeed in the least degree acquainted with the duties of the high priest’s office. But he was a man of the people, and that was the main thing.

The men of order, Gorion, son of Joseph, the famous Pharisee Simon, son of Gamaliel, the two high priests, Ananus, son of Ananus, and Jesus, son of Gamaliel, sought on their part to resist the Zealots by force. They exhorted the people to put a stop to the wild schemes of that faction. A discourse which Ananus delivered with this end in view had indeed this result, that a section of the populace declared open hostilities against the Zealots. These enthusiasts were in the minority, and were obliged to retreat before the superior force of their opponents, and to take refuge in the inner court of the temple, where for a time they were carefully guarded, as the people would not violently attack the sacred gates.

In order to obtain support the Zealots secretly sent messengers to the war-loving Idumeans, and besought of them that they would form a confederacy on the pretext that the dominant party in Jerusalem had fallen away to Romans. The Idumeans appeared before the walls of the city, but were not admitted, for no one knew of their alliance with the Zealots. On the night after their arrival a terrible hurricane burst forth. The storm raged, and the rain fell in torrents. Under shelter of this storm the Zealots succeeded in secretly opening the gates to their confederates and letting them in unobserved. Scarcely had the Idumeans obtained a firm footing in the city, when they began the work of murder and robbery, in which the Zealots afforded them ready aid. The party of order was too weak to withstand the attack. The victory of the reign of terror in Jerusalem was complete. The rage of the Zealots and of the Idumeans in league with them was directly mainly against the distinguished, respectable, and well-to-do. All those who had previously been leaders of the revolution were now made away with as suspected friends of the Romans. Conspicuous above all the other victims of their murderous zeal were the high priests Ananus and Jesus. In order to lend to their wild scheme the semblance of legal sanction, the comedy of a formal process at law was on one occasion enacted. But when the court of justice convened for that purpose pronounced the accused, Zacharias, son of Baruch, innocent, he was cut down by a couple of Zealots with the scornful declaration: “Here hast thou also our voices.”

When the Idumeans had been satiated with murder, and had, besides, observed that what had been styled threatened treason was only a calumnious charge trumped up against order-loving citizens, they would have no more partnership with the Zealots, and so took their departure. All the more unrestrainedly did the Zealots now pursue their rule of terror. Gorion also now fell under their lash. The party of the well-doing and order-loving had been by this time so sadly thinned that there could no longer be any thought of resistance. John of Gischala was supreme potentate in the city.

At this period, if not even earlier than this, occurred the flight of the Christian community from Jerusalem. The Christians left the city “in consequence of a divine admonition,” and migrated to the city of Pella in Perea, which is a heathen city was undisturbed by the war.

Vespasian’s generals were of the opinion that they should take advantage of these circumstances, and that now was the time to begin the attack upon the capital. They thought that in consequence of the internal conflicts within the city the task before them would be easily accomplished. Not so Vespasian. He regarded it as more prudent to allow his enemies to waste their strength in the civil strife, and to consume one another. In order that the inhabitants of the capital might have time to carry out their work of self-destruction, he directed his attention meanwhile to Perea. Even before the favourable season had arrived, he marched from Caesarea on the 4th Dystros, that is, Adar or March, of A.D. 68, invested Gadara, in order to guard against the elements in the city hostile to the Romans, left there a garrison, and then turned back again to Caesarea. A detachment of 3000 infantry and 500 cavalry, which he left behind him under the command of Placidus, completed the subjugation of all Perea as far as Machärus. When the more suitable season came round, Vespasian advanced with the greater part of his army from Caesarea and invested Antipatris, took Lydda and Jamnia, drew up the 5th legion before Emmaus, made a successful raid through Idumea, then turned again northward upon Emmaus, pressed through Samaria to Neapolis (Shechem), and thence past Corea, where he arrived on 2 Daisios, that is Sivan or June, to Jericho. At Jericho and Adida he left Roman garrisons, while Gerasa(?) was taken and then destroyed by a detachment sent against it under Lucius Annius.

The country was now so far subdued that it only remained to begin the siege of the capital. Vespasian therefore turned back to Caesarea, and was actually busying himself with preparations for the siege of Jerusalem when the news reached him of the death of Nero, which had taken place on 9th June A.D. 68. By this event the whole situation was suddenly changed. The future of the empire as a whole was uncertain. Vespasian therefore suspended all warlike undertakings, and concluded to wait for the further development of affairs. When the news of Galba’s elevation to the throne arrived, which was not till the middle of the winter of A.D, 68–69, he sent his son Titus to Rome in order to convey his greetings to the new emperor, and to receive from him his commands. But Titus had proceeded no farther than Corinth when he received tidings of the murder of Galba, which occurred on 15th January A.D. 69, whereupon he returned to Caesarea to his father. Vespasian was now inclined to wait without committing himself to see how things would go.

Circumstances, however, soon obliged him again to take decisive action. A certain Simon Bar-Giora, that is, son of the proselyte, a man of like spirit to John of Gischala, inspired by an equally wild enthusiasm for freedom, and just as little able to brook the presence of any one over himself, had taken advantage of the cessation of hostilities to gather around himself a crowd of supporters, with which he overran the southern parts of Palestine, robbing and plundering wherever he went. Everywhere the course which he and his horde had taken was marked by devastation. Among other successes he managed to surprise Hebron, and to carry off from it abundant spoil.

Vespasian therefore found it necessary to secure possession of Judea in a more thorough manner than had hitherto been accomplished. On the 5th Daisios, that is, Sivan or June, of the year 69, after a whole year had passed without armed interference, he again advanced from Caesarea, subdued the districts of Gophna and Acrabata, the cities of Bethel and Ephraim, and arrived in the neighbourhood of Jerusalem, while his tribune Cerealis conquered and destroyed the city of Hebron, which had offered opposition. With the exception of Jerusalem and the fortresses of Herodium, Masada, and Machärus, all Palestine was now subject to the Romans.

Even before Simon found himself prevented by this expedition of Vespasian from continuing his robber raids through Idumea, the gate of the capital had been flung open to receive him. Up to the spring of A.D. 69, John of Gischala had there played the part of the omnipotent tyrant. Of the ruinous confusion and lawlessness that prevailed in Jerusalem under his rule Josephus has given a thrilling and horrible description. The inhabitants, who had long desired to be rid of his supremacy, looked with favour upon the arrival of Simon Bar-Giora as a means of freeing them from him who now acted the tyrant over them. On the suggestion of the high priest Matthias, Simon was invited to come into the city. He most readily accepted the invitation, and made his public entrance into Jerusalem in the month Xanthicus, that is, Nisan or April, of the year 69. But, although the hope had been entertained that he would free them from the tyranny of John, it was now found that they rather had two tyrants in the city who fought against one another, both regarding the resident citizens as their common enemies.

Vespasian had scarcely returned back to Caesarea when the news came that Vitellius had been raised to the throne as emperor. The idea then took possession of the legions in Egypt, Palestine, and Syria that they had as much right to nominate the emperor as had their comrades in the West, and that Vespasian was more worthy of the throne than the glutton Vitellius. On 1st July A.D. 69, Vespasian was proclaimed emperor in Egypt. A few days afterwards the Palestinian and Syrian legions made the same proclamation. Before the middle of July, Vespasian was acknowledged as emperor throughout the whole East.

He had now something else to engage his attention than the prosecution of the war against the rebellious Jews. After he had received at Berytus the embassies from various Syrian and other cities, he marched on to Antioch, and from thence sent to Rome by road Mucianus with an army. He then went himself to Alexandria. During his residence there he obtained the intelligence that his interests had prevailed in Rome, and that Vitellius had been murdered on 20th December A.D. 69. He himself still remained in Alexandria till the beginning of the summer of A.D. 70; while his son Titus, to whom he had committed the continuing of the Jewish war, marched at the head of the army to Palestine.

In Jerusalem, by this time, the internal feuds had advanced one step further. Instead of the two parties of John and Simon there were now three, for from the party of John a new section had broken off under Eleasar, son of Simon. Simon had in his power the upper city and a great part of the lower city, John held the Temple Mount, and Eleasar the inner Court of the Temple. All three continued incessantly at war with one another, so that the city from day to day presented the aspect of a battlefield. In their mutual hatred of one another they became so foolish that they destroyed by fire the immense store of grain which had been gathered up in the city, lest their rivals should profit by it, without considering that thereby they robbed themselves of the means of sustaining a siege. While thus Jerusalem was tearing its own flesh, Titus was carrying on the preparations for his attack.


The army which Titus had at his disposal consisted of four legions. Besides the three legions of his father, the 5th, 10th, and 15th, he had also the 12th, which had already been in Syria under Cestius, and had so unfortunately begun the war. In addition to these, he had also the numerous auxiliary troops of the confederate kings. The commanders of the legions were—Sextus Cerealis over the 5th legion, Larcius Lepidus over the 10th, Tittius Frugi over the 15th. The commander of the 12th legion is not named. As principal adviser, we would call him Chief of the Staff, Tiberius Alexander, afterwards procurator of Judea, accompanied Titus. While a part of the army received orders to push on to meet him before Jerusalem, Titus himself advanced with the main body of his forces from Caesarea, and a few days before the Passover, 14th Nisan or April, of A.D. 70, arrived before the walls of the Holy City.

Titus had hurried on in advance of the legions with 600 cavalry in order to obtain information about the country by spies, and had in this got so far ahead of the main body, that he exposed himself most seriously to the danger of being fallen upon by the Jews, and, indeed, owed his safety wholly to his own personal bravery. The Romans, from the moment of their arrival, had painful experience of the daring spirit of their opponents. While the 10th legion, which had advanced from Jericho to Jerusalem, was still occupied with the strengthening of its camp on the Mount of Olives, it was attacked with such violence that it had well-nigh suffered an utter defeat. Only by the personal interference of Titus was the yielding legion brought again to a stand, and enabled to ward off the attack.

The conflict of parties within the city, however, was not even yet by any means abated. Even when the Romans were lying before the gates, during the Passover festival, a carnage of one party by the other was going on within the city. The faction of Eleasar had opened the gate of the temple court for those who had gone up to attend the feast. John of Gischala took advantage of this in order to smuggle in his people with concealed weapons, and to fall on Eleasar and his followers when least expected. Those who were thus taken by surprise were not strong enough to sustain the conflict, and were obliged to admit John’s adherents into the court. From this time forward there were again two parties in Jerusalem, that of John and that of Simon.

In order to understand the siege operations that followed, it is necessary to form for oneself at least a general idea of the situation of the city, Jerusalem lay upon two hills, a higher one to the west and a smaller one to the east, which were separated by a deep ravine running from north to south, the so-called Tyropoeon. On the larger western hill lay the upper city, on the smaller eastern hill the lower city. The latter was also called Acra, because there in former days down to the times of the Maccabees the citadel or castle of Jerusalem had been placed. North of the Acra lay the site of the temple, the area of which had been considerably enlarged by Herod. Attached to the temple site on its northern side was the castle of Antonia. The temple site was surrounded on all its four sides by a strong wall, and thus even by itself n lone formed a little fortress. The upper and the lower cities were surrounded by a common wall which was attached to the western wall of the temple site ; it then ran on to the west, stretched in a great curve southward over the upper and lower cities, and finally ended at the south-eastmost corner of the temple site. But, further, the upper city must have been separated from the lower city by a wall running from north to south reaching to the Tyropoeon. For Titus was obliged, after he had gained possession of the lower city, to direct an attack against the wall of the upper city.—On the west, south, and east, the walls stood upon the edge of lofty precipices; only on the north did the ground run down tolerably low. Thus was there with a northern curve a second wall which enclosed the older suburb; and then in a still wider curve to the north, a third wall, which had been begun by Agrippa I., but was completed only when found urgently needed during the rebellion. This third wall enclosed the so-called new city or suburb of Bezetha.

As the very situation of the city demanded, Titus directed his attack against the north side, hence first of all against the third wall, or to speak from the standpoint of the besiegers, the first. It was only now, when the battering-ram began their work at three points, the civil war was stilled. Then the two factions, those of John of Gischala and of Simon Bar-Giora, banded together to make a common attack. In one of these onslaughts they fought with such success that the preservation of the engines of war were wholly due to the interference of Titus, who with his own hand cut down twelve of the enemy. After fifteen days’ work one of the most powerful of the battering-rams had made a breach in the wall, the Romans pressed in, and on the 7th Artemisios, that is, Ijjar or May, were masters of the first wall.

The attack was now directed against the second wall. Five days after the taking of the first this one also had to yield before the blow of the Roman battering-rams. Titus pressed in with a chosen band, but was driven back again by the Jews. Four days afterwards, however, he once more secured his position, and this time succeeded in maintaining it permanently.

He now raised earthworks at one and the same time against the upper city and against the Antonia, two against the one, and two against the other; each of the four legions had to build one. Simon Bar-Giora conducted the defence of the upper city; John of Gischala that of the Antonia. While the works were in progress, Josephus, apparently without success, was made to summon the city to surrender. The want of the means of support was already beginning to be felt, and in consequence of this many of the poorer inhabitants went out of the city in search of victuals. Whenever any of them fell into the hands of the Romans, he was crucified in sight of the city, in order to strike terror into the heart of the besieged, or was sent back with his members mutilated.

On the 29th Artemisios, that is, Ijjar or May, the four ramparts were completed. Simon and John had only wished their completion, in order that they might direct all their energies to destroy again the works produced by incredible exertion and wearisome toil. Those over against the Antonia were destroyed by John of Gischala in this way: he dug a subterranean passage under them, supported it with pillars and then set fire to the supports, so that the ramparts fell in and were consumed in the fire. Two days later Simon Bar-Giora destroyed by fire those directed against the upper city.

Before Titus attempted the building of a new rampart, he made use of another device. He caused the whole city to be surrounded with a continuous stone wall (τεῖχος), in order to out off all escape and to reduce the city by famine. With marvellous smartness this work was finished in three days. Numerous armed watchmen guarded it so that no one could pass it. In consequence of this the famine reached a terrible height in the city; and if even but the half is true which the inventive imagination of Josephus has recorded, it must certainly have been horrible enough. That under such circumstances John of Gischala should have applied the sacred oil and the sacred wine to profane uses, can be regarded only by a Josephus as a reproach to him.

Meanwhile Titus caused ramparts again to be built, and this time four against the Antonia. The wood used in their construction, owing to the complete devastation of all the district around, had to be carried a distance of 90 stadia (four and a half days’ journey). After twenty-one day’ work they were completed. An attempt which John of Giechals made to destroy them on 1st Panemos, that is, Thammuz or July, was unsuccessful, since it was not carried out with the earlier energy, while the Romans had redoubled their vigilance. Scarcely had the Jews retired back again, when the battering-rams began to beat against the walls. At first they had no considerable success. The walls, however, were so shattered by the blows, that soon they sank of themselves at the points where the wall-breakers had been at work. But even yet the storming of the city was a work of difficulty, since John of Gischala had already managed to erect a second behind it. After an encouraging speech of Titus on the 3rd Panemos, that is, Thammuz or July, a Syrian soldier named Sabinus, with eleven comrades, made the attempt to scale the walls, but fell in the struggle with three of his companions. Two days afterwards, on the 5th Panemos, some twenty or thirty others banded together to renew the attempt. They mounted the wall secretly by night and cut down the first sentinels. Titus pressed as quickly as possible after them, and drove the Jews back as far as the temple site. Thence the Romans were indeed beaten back again, but they held the Antonis, which was soon razed to the ground.

In spite of war and famine the daily morning and evening sacrifices had up to this time been regularly offered. On the 17th Panemos, that is, Thammuz or July, these had to be at last discontinued; but even then not so much on account of the famine, but rather “from the want of men.” Seeing that a renewed summons to surrender by Josephus proved again unsuccessfnl, and an attack by night of a select detachment of the army on the temple site proved a failure, Titus now made preparations for a regular siege so as to take the temple by storm. The temple site formed a pretty regular square, which was completely surrounded by strong walls, along which on the inside ran a series of corridors. On the inside of this great space the inner court, surrounded on all sides by strong walls, formed a second position capable of being defended, which afforded to the besieged even after the loss of the outer space a place of safety. Titus was obliged first of all to make himself master of the outer wall. Again four ramparts were erected, for which he was now obliged to carry the material from a distance of 100 stadia (five hours’ journey). While they were working at these, a number of Romans met with their death on the 27th Panemos in this way: they allowed themselves to be deceived by the withdrawal of the Jews from the heights of the western corridors into scaling those heights. But they had been beforehand filled by the Jews with inflammable materials. So soon then as the Romans had reached the top the Jews set fire to the vaults, and the fire spread with such rapidity that the soldiers could not escape, but were enveloped in the flames.

When the ramparts were completed on the 8th Loos, that is, Ab or August, the rams were again set to work, and the siege operations began. But on the immense walls they could make no impression. In order to obtain his end Titus caused fire to be placed at the gates, and so opened up the entrance to the outer temple space. On the next day, the 9th Ab, when the gates had been completely burnt down, Titus held a council of war, at which it was resolved that the temple should be spared. But when on the day following, the 10th Ab, the Jews made two onslaughts rapidly one after the other from the inner court, and on the second occasion were driven back by the soldiers who were occupied with the quenching of the flames in the corridors, a soldier cast a blazing brand into one of the chambers of the temple proper. When this was reported to Titus he hasted to the spot, followed by the generals and the legions. Titus gave orders to quench the fire; but in the wild conflict that now raged around the spot his commands were not heard, and the fire got ever a firmer hold upon the edifice. Even yet Titus hoped to save at least the inner court of the temple, and renewed his orders to quench the flames; but the soldiers in their excitement no longer listened to his commands. Instead of quenching the flames, they threw in new firebrands, and the whole noble work became a prey to the flames beyond redemption. Titus managed to inspect the inner court before the fire reached it.

While the Romans slaughtered indiscriminately all that fell into their hands, children and old men, priests and people, and intentionally fanned the terrible conflagration, so that nothing escaped the flames, John of Gischala succeeded, along with his Zealot following, to escape into the upper city. Even before the temple had been burnt down, the legions planted their standards in the temple court, and greeted their general as Imperator.

The work of the conqueror, however, was by no means completed with the overthrow of the temple. The upper city, the last refuge of the besieged, had yet to be taken. Titus once again called upon Simon and John to surrender. But the besieged wished to stipulate for liberty to go forth untouched, which would not be granted them. By order of Titus the parts of the city now in the possession of the Romans—the Ophla, the depository of the archives, the council house, the lower city down to Siloah—were set on fire, while at the same time the tyrants in the upper city continued their work of murder and plunder.

Seeing then that there was no hope of securing the voluntary surrender of the besieged, it was necessary once more to resort to the erection of ramparts. They were constructed partly at the north-western corner of the upper city near the palace of Herod, partly at the north-eastern corner, in the neighbourhood of the so-called Xystus. On the 20th Loos (Ab, August) the buildings were begun; on the 7th Gorpiaeus (Elul, September) they were finished. The battering-rams soon made a breach in the walls, through which the soldiers with little difficulty forced their way, because the besieged in their despondent condition could no longer offer a vigorous and determined opposition. One portion of them made the attempt to break away through the besiegers’ lines and to force through the cordon which surrounded them at Siloah; but they were driven back, and rushed again into their subterranean hiding-places. Meanwhile the whole of the upper city was taken possession of by the Romans. The military standards were planted and the song of victory was sung. The soldiers passed through the city murdering, burning, and plundering. After a five months’ siege, after having been obliged laboriously to press on step by step, gaining one position after another, the whole city at last, on 8th Gorpiaeus (Elul, September), fell into the hands of the conquerors.

Those of the inhabitants who had not already fallen victims to the famine or the sword were now put to death, or sent to labour in the mines, or reserved for the gladiatorial combats. The handsomest and most powerful of the men were spared to grace the triumph. Among the fugitives who were driven by hunger to go forth out of their subterranean hiding-places was John of Gischala. When he begged for mercy he was granted his life, but was sentenced to life-long confinement in prison. It was not, however, until a considerably later period that Simon Bar Giora was apprehended. He was reserved as a victim for the triumph. The city was then razed to the ground. Only the three gates of the palace of Herod—Hippicus, Phasael, and Mariamme—and a portion of the wall were left standing; the former as monuments of the original strength of the city, the latter as a protection for the garrison that was left in charge. The victory, won by hard fighting, and at the cost of many victims, was celebrated by Titus in an address of thanks to the army, the distribution of rewards to those who had distinguished themselves in battle, the presenting sacrifices of thanksgiving, and a festive banquet.


Leaving behind him the tenth legion as a garrison in Jerusalem, Titus proceeded with the rest of his army to Caesarea-on-the-Sea, where the spoil was deposited, and the prisoners consigned to safe keeping. Thence Titus marched to Caesarea Philippi, where a portion of the prisoners were forced to engage in combat with wild animals, and to take part in the gladiatorial shows. At Caesarea-on-the-Sea, to which he returned, he celebrated the birthday of his brother Domitian, 24th October, with games on a magnificent scale. At Berytua also he celebrated in a similar manner the birthday of his father Vespasian, on 17th November. After a lengthened stay in Berytus, Titus proceeded to Antioch, giving public entertainments in the cities through which he passed, at which the Jewish prisoners were set to slay one another in gladiatorial contests. After a short stay in Antioch, he passed on to Zeugma on the Euphrates; and from thence he returned again to Antioch, and from thence proceeded to Egypt. At Alexandria he disbanded the legions. Of the prisoners there were 700 specially distinguished by their handsome appearance; and these, together with the rebel leaders John and Simon, were reserved for the triumph. Titus now sailed for Rome, was received by his father and by the people with joyful demonstrations, and in common with his father and brother celebrated, in A.D. 71, one triumph, though the Senate had assigned one separately to each of them. During the triumph Simon Bar Giora, the rebel leader, was in accordance with an old custom carried away from the festal procession to prison and executed there.

The conquest of the capital had certainly given to Titus the right to the celebration of the triumph. The whole of Palestine, however, was not yet by any means subdued. The strongholds of Herodium, Machärus, and Masada were still in the hands of the rebels. The reduction of these fortresses was the work of the governor of Palestine at that time, Lucilius Bassus. In regard to the Herodium, this seems to have been accomplished by him without difficulty. The siege of Machärus occupied a longer time. Yet even this strong hald, before it was taken by storm, yielded by a voluntary surrender. The decision to surrender was finally taken in consequence of the apprehension of a youth called Eleasar, who had particularly distinguished himself in the defence. Bassus threatened to crucify him in view of the city, and in order to prevent this the Jews gave over the fortress. In the meantime Lucilius Bassus died. To his successor, Flavius Silva, fell the task of taking Masada. In that fortress the Sicarii, under the leadership of Eleasar, the son of Jairi, and a descendant of Judas of Galilee, had established themselves at the commencement of the war, and had continued to maintain their position. The siege proved a very difficult business, since the rock upon which the fortress was built rose on all sides so high and steep that it was almost impossible to bring the engines of destruction near. Only at one point, and even there only by means of difficult and ingenious preparatory operations, was it possible to secure a place for a batteringram. But by the time that this machine had made a breach in the wall, the besieged had already erected behind that wall another bulwark of wood and earth, which, owing to its elasticity, could not be destroyed by the battering-ram. The enemy, however, by the use of fire succeeded in setting this obstacle also aside. When Eleasar saw that there was no longer any hope of resisting the attack, he held a council with the garrison, in which he urged that they should first of all slay the members of their own families, and then put one another to death. This, therefore, was done. When the Romans entered, they beheld with horror that no more work was left for them to do. Thus was the very last stronghold of the rebellion conquered in April A.D. 73.

After the fall of Masada disturbances were made by the Jews in Alexandria and in Cyrene, which in the former place resulted in the closing of the temple of Onias at Leontopolis. But these after-vibrations of the great revolution in the mother country are scarcely worthy of being mentioned along-side of the original movement, The fate of Palestine was sealed by the overthrow of Masada. Vespasian retained the country as a private possession, and the taxes levied went into his own purse. Only to 800 veterans did he distribute grants of land at Emmaus near Jerusalem. The former temple-tax of two drachmas was henceforth exacted of all Jews for the temple, Jupiter Capitolinns. The inhabitants of Palestine became impoverished, and by the seven years’ war their numbers had been terribly reduced. A Jewish magistracy, of the kind formerly possessed, no longer existed. The one gathering point which still remained for the people was the law. Around this they gathered now with anxious and scrupulous faithfulness, and with the indomitable hope that some day, under an established civil government, and even among the nations of the world, it would come again to have a recognised place and practical authority.

THE separation of Judea from the province of Syria, which had been resolved upon at the time when Vespasian was sent thither (see above, vol. i. p. 369), continued in force also after the conclusion of the war. Judea—and indeed under that very name—formed from this time forth an independent province. Since it had as a garrison only one legion, the legio X. Fretensis (see above, p. 248), alongside of which were only auxiliary troops (see above, p. 56), the commander of that legion was at the same time governor of the province. It appears that, as a rule, the position was held by men of praetorian rank. It was only at a later period that the province came to be administered by men of consular rank, probably after the time of Hadrian, since even then the legio VI. Ferrata was stationed in Judea, and the governor was not of an order superior to the commander of a legion.

From the series of governors only certain names are now known to us. The first of these who exercised their functions during the war of A.D. 70–73 have already been briefly referred to:—

1. Sex. Vettulenus Cerialis, who at the siege of Jerusalem commanded the fifth legion (see above, p. 236). He remained after the departure of Titus as commander of the garrison troops, that is, of the tenth legion and of the detachments joined with it, and gave them over to Lucilius Bassus (Wars of the Jews, vii. 6. 1). His full name is given in an inscription (Corpus Inscriptionum Latinorum, t. x. n. 4862).

2. Lucilius Bassus, who took the strongholds of Herodium and Machärus (Josephus, Wars of the Jews, vii. 6. 1–6). He died as governor (Wars of the Jews, vii. 8. 1). The procurator serving under him, L. Laberius (not Λιβέροις) Maximus (Wars of the Jews, vii. 6. 6), is also mentioned in the Acts of the Arval priesthood: Corpus Inscriptionum Latinorum, t. vi. n. 2059, and in the military diploma of A.D. 83 (Ephemeris epigraphica, v. p. 612 sq.). According to the latter authority, he was the governor of Egypt.

3. L. Flavius Silva, the conqueror of Masada (Josephus, Wars of the Jews, vii. 8–9). He was consul in A.D. 81. His full name is given as L. Flavius Silva Nonius Bassus in the Acta Arvalium, Corpus Inscriptionum Latinorum, t. vi. n. 2059. Compare Henzen, Acta Arvalium Index, p. 186.

4. M. Salvidenus, about A.D. 80, is witnessed to by a Palestinian coin of Titus, with the superscription ΕΠΙ Μ. ΣΑΛΟΥΙΔΗΝ(ΟΥ), Madden, Coins of the Jews, p. 218. He is certainly identical with the M. Salvidenus, who, according to a coin of Domitian, was proconsul of Bithynia (Mionnet, Supplement, v. p. 2).

5. Cn. Pompeius Longinus, A.D. 86. In a military diploma of Domitian of A.D. 86 the veterans of two alae and four cohorts are referred to “qui … sunt in Judaea sub Cn. Pompeio Longino” (Corpus Inscriptionum Latinorum, iii. p. 857, Dipl. xiv.). We have no other information with reference to these governors of Judea.—From some statements of the diploma Henzen thought himself justified in drawing the conclusion, that at that time warlike operations were being carried on in Judea. The premises, however, do not by any means sustain such a conclusion.

6. Atticus, about A.D. 107. In two fragments of Hegesippus, which are quoted by Eusebius, it is reported that Simeon, said to be the second bishop of the Church of Jerusalem, died a martyr’s death “under the Emperor Trajan and the governor Atticus” (Eusebius, Hist. eccl. iii. 32. 3: ἐπὶ Τραϊανοῦ Καίσαρος καὶ ὑπατικοῦ Ἀττικοῦ; iii. 32. 6: ἐπὶ Ἀττικοῦ τοῦ ὑπατικοῦ). In the Chronicle of Eusebius this event is placed in the tenth year of Trajan, A.D. 107 (Eusebius, Chronicon, ed. Schoene, ii. p. 162 sq.); in the Chronicon Paschale, ed. Dindorf, i. 471, in the consulship of Candidus and Quadratus, A.D. 105. Neither of these statements, indeed, has the value of traditional testimonies, least of all the statement in the Chronicon Paschale, which has only the authority of Eusebius. Our Atticus is supposed to be identical with the similarly named father of Herod Atticus. The designation of ὑπατικός is remarkable, since other governors of Judea had held this office before their consulship.—Compare generally: Waddington, Fastes des provinces asiatiques, p. 192 sq.; Dittenberger, Hermes, xiii. 1878, pp. 67–89.

7. Pompeius Falco, about A.D. 107 and onwards. The inscription in Corpus Inscriptionum Latinorum, t. x. n. 6321, gives the cursus honorum of this man, who is known from the letters of the younger Pliny. According to this document he was also “leg(atus) Aug(usti) pr(o) pr(aetore) provinc(iae) [Judaeae] et leg(ionis) X. Fret(ensis).” The supplied word Judaeae is warranted here by the fact that the command of the tenth legion was attached to the governorship. According to Pliny, Epist. vii. 22, this governorship dates probably from A.D. 107 to A.D. 110, for in the letter written about that time Pliny commends a friend to Falco for the place of a tribune. But this, according to the other date of the cursus honorum, could only have happened during the period of his governorship of Judea.—The epistles addressed by Pliny to Pompeius Falco are Pliny, Epist. i. 23, iv. 27, vii. 22, ix. 15. Compare generally: Mommsen, Hermes, iii. 1869, p. 51; Pliny, Epist. ed. Keil, p. 422 (Index by Mommsen); Waddington, Fastes des provinces asiatiques, pp. 202–204; Rohden, p. 39; Liebenam, Forschungen, i. 94 ff.; Petersen and Luschan, Reisen in Lykien (1889), p. 123.

8. Tiberianus, about A.D. 114.—In Joannes Malalas, ed. Dindorf, p. 273, the express language of a writing is quoted, which Tiberianus, the governor of Palaestina prima, addressed to Trajan during his stay in Antioch, A.D. 114 (ἐν τῷ δὲ διατρίβειν τὸν αὐτὸν Τραϊανὸν Βασιλέα ἐν Ἀντιοχείᾳ τῆς Συρίας βουλευόμενον τὰ περὶ τοῦ πολέμου ἐμήνυσεν αὐτὸν Τιβεριανός, ἡγεμὼν τοῦ Παλαιστίνων ἔθνους, ταῦτα). In it Tiberianus calls the attention of the emperor to the fact that the Christians in a foolish manner deliver themselves up to martyrdom, and desires directions as to how he should proceed. In reply Trajan commanded him and all other magistrates throughout the whole empire to suspend the persecutions. This same story is told in a somewhat different way by John of Antioch (in Müller, Fragmenta hist. graec. iv. 580, n. 111). The statement of the latter is literally reproduced by Suidas in his Lexicon, s.v. Τραϊανός. Both stories, which are in thorough agreement on all essential points, are in respect of contents highly suspicious. Even the partition of Palestine into Palaestina prima and secunda did not take place before the end of the fourth century. Against the historicity of the narrative, see Gieseler, Kirchengeschichte, i. 1, 4 Aufl. p. 129; Overbeck, Studien zur Geschichte der alten Kirche, i. 122; Görres, Zeitschrift für wissenschaftl. Theologie, 1878, p. 38 f.; Keim, Rom und das Christenthum, 1881, p. 526 f. In favour of it: Wieseler, Die Christenverfolgungen der Caesaren, 1878, p. 126 ff. The stories of Malalas and John of Antioch in this and in many other instances have so much that is common, that evidently the one must have borrowed from the other. Since both probably wrote about the beginning of the seventh century, it is a question to whom the priority belongs. The style of the particular passage before us speaks in favour of the view now prevalent, that Malalas was the older, for Malalas communicates the letter of Tiberianus in the very words of the writer, whereas John of Antioch only describes its contents.

9. Lusius Quietus, about A.D. 117.—This distinguished general, after he had put down the outbreak of the Jews in Mesopotamia, was appointed governor of Judea (Eusebius, Hist. eccl. iv. 2. 5: Ἰουδαίας ἡγεμὼν ὑπὸ τοῦ αὐτοκράτορος ἀνεδείχθη. Eusebius, Chronicon, ed. Schoene, ii. 164; in Greek, in Syncellus, ed. Dindorf, i. 657, at the 18th year of Trajan [2131 Abr.]: ἡγεμὼν τῆς Ἰουδαίας διὰ τοῦτο καθίσταται). Dio Cassius merely says that he administered the government of Palestine after his consulship of A.D. 115 (Dio Cassius, lxviii. 32: ὑπατεῦσαι τῆς τε Παλαιστίνης ἄρξαι). That Trajan sent to Palestine a consular legate, not merely one of praetorian rank, was occasioned by the peculiarly difficult condition of affairs at that time.—By Hadrian, Lusius Quietus was recalled (Spartian. vita Hadriana, c. 5: “Lusium Quietum … exarmavit”), and soon thereafter put to death (ibid. c. 7; Dio Cassius, lxix. 2).—Compare generally: Borghesi, Oeuvres, i. 500 sq.

10. Tineius Rufus, A.D. 132.—When the revolution of Barcochba broke out, one Rufus was governor of Judea (Eusebius, Hist. eccl. iv. 6. 1: Ῥοῦφος ἐπάρχων τῆς Ἰουδαίας). In the Chronicle of Eusebius he is called Tineiua Rufus (Eusebius, Chronicon, ed. Schoene, ii. 166 sq. ad. ann. Abr. 2148; in Greek, in Syncellus, ed. Dindorf, i. 660: ἡγεῖτο δὲ τῆς Ἰουδαίας Τίννιος Ῥοῦφος; in Latin, in Jerome: “tenente provinciam Tinnio Rufo”). In Jerome on Daniel c. 9, s. fin. ed. Vallarsi, v. 695: Timo Rufo; on Zechariah viii. 16 sqq. ed. Vallarsi, vi. 852: T. Annio Rufo (so the earlier editions; the reading Turannio Rufo is only a conjecture of Vallarsi). Undoubtedly the correct form is Tineius Rufus, as is proved by Borghesi. For one Q. Tineius Rufus, who was consul under Commodus, is referred to on several inscriptions. He may have been son or grandson of one Rufus. See Borghesi, Oeuvres, iii. 62–64, viii. 189 sq.; Renan, L’église chrétienne, p. 192 sq.; and also Corpus Inscriptionum Latinorum, t. vi. n. 1978.

In order to suppress the rebellion, Publicius Marcellus, who up to that time had been governor of Syria, was also sent into Judea (Corpus Inscriptionum Graecorum, n. 4033=Archäolog.-epigr. Mittheilungen aus Oesterreich-Ungarn Jahrg. ix. 1885, p. 118: ἡνίκα Πουβλκιος Μάρκελλος διὰ τὴν κίνησιν τὴν Ἰουδαϊκὴν μεταβεβήκει ἀπὸ Συρίας; the same statement also is found in Corpus Inscript. Graec. n. 4034). This strengthening of the fighting forces in Judea is also referred to by Eusebius (Hist. eccl. iv. 6. 1: στρατιωτικῆς αὐτῷ συμμαχίας ὑπὸ βασιλέως πεμφθείσης. Compare Chronicon ad. ann. Abr. 2148).

11. Julius Severus, A.D. 135.—The suppression of the Jewish revolution was thoroughly completed only by Julius Severus, who was sent to Judea from Britain, where he had been up to that time governor (Dio Cassius, lxix. 13). The cursus honorum of this man is given in the inscription, Corpus Inscriptionum Latinorum, t. iii. n. 2830, where the higher offices are enumerated in the following order: “leg(ato) pr(o) pr(aetore) imp(eratoris) Traiani Hadriani Aug(usti) provinciae Daciae, cos. leg. pr. pr. provinciae Moesiae inferioris, leg. pr. pr. provinciae Brittaniae, leg. pr. pr. provinciae Judeae, leg. pr. pr. provinciae Suriae.” This therefore confirms the statement of Dio Cassius that he came from Britain to Judea. On the other hand, the statement of Dio Cassius, or rather that of his unskilful epitomizer Xiphilinus, that after the conclusion of the Jewish revolt he was made governor of Bithynia (Dio Cassius, lxix. 14), is the result of a confusion between him and another Severus. Our Julius Severus, who was consul in A.D. 127, was called Sextus Julius Severus (Corpus Inscript. Lat. iii. p. 874, Dipl. xxxi.), but the governor of Bithynia was Τι. Σεουῆρος (Corpus Inscript. Graec. n. 4033 and 4034), or, according to a more recent copy of one of these inscriptions, Π. Σεουῆρος (Archäolog.-epigr. Mittheilungen aus Oesterreich-Ungarn, ix. 118=Corpus Inscript. Graec. n. 4033). Compare, Marquardt, Romische Staatsverwaltung, Bd. i. 2 Aufl. 1881, p. 353; Rohden, p. 42.

The residence of the imperial governor, as in earlier times that of the procurators had also been, was not Jerusalem, but Caesarea, the important coast town built by Herod the Great. It was formed by Vespasian into a Roman colony, and bore the official name col(onia) prima Fl(avia) Aug(usta) Caesarensis or Caesarea. Jerusalem had been so completely razed to the ground “that there was left nothing to make those that came thither believe it had ever been inhabited.” It was first of all only a Roman camp, in which, if not the whole of the tenth legion, yet at least the chief portion of it, had its headquarters, together with its baggage and followers.

In regard to the other changes made upon the organization of the Palestinian city communities we have only scattered notices. To what extent Vespasian held the country as a private possession cannot be very clearly understood from the indefinite statements of Josephus (see above, p. 253). His private possessions seem to have extended not merely to the town domains of Jerusalem, but to all Judea—that term being understood in its proper and more restricted sense (πᾶσαν γῆν τῶν Ἰουδαίων). The only new town which Vespasian here founded was the military colony of Emmaus (see above, p. 253). In Samaria, Flavia Neapolis, which rapidly grew and flourished, was then founded. For that its founding belongs to the time of Vespasian is proved not only by its name and by the reference in Pliny, but also by the era of the city, the starting-point of which is to be reckoned about A.D. 72. It lay upon the site of a place which was previously called Mabortha or Mamortha, in the immediate vicinity of Shechem, so that it soon came to be identified with Shechem. In the later days of the empire it was one of the most important cities of Palestine. The inhabitants were wholly or predominantly pagan, as their modes of worship witnessed to by coins prove. Upon not a few of these coins, later than the time of Hadrian, Gerizim is represented, and on its top a temple which was dedicated, according to Damascius, to Ζεὺς ὕψιστος. The festive games of Neapolis during the second century, and certainly even at a later date, were regarded as amongst the most important in Palestine.—The founding of Capitolias in Decapolis belongs to the time of Nerva or Trajan; its era begins in A.D. 97 or 98. Hadrian founded Aelia on the site of Jerusalem, the history of which is given below in the account of the war. Other new foundings of Palestinian cities belong to a period later than that of which we treat, such as that of Diocaesarea=Sepphoris (known under its new name from the time of Antonius Pius, see Div. II. vol. i. p. 136), Diospolis=Lydda, Eleutheropolis (both under Septimius Severus), Nicopolis=Emmaus (under Heliogabulus).

The destruction of Jerusalem brought about a violent revolution in the inner life of the Jewish people. No longer a Sanhedrim and no longer a sacrificial service,—the loss of those two great institutions was of itself sufficient to produce a profound change in the conditions of Jewish life. But it has first of all to be established that the sacrificial service actually did cease. Not only the Epistle to the Hebrews, the date of the composition of which is uncertain, but also Clement of Rome and the author of the Epistle to Diognetus, who undoubtedly wrote after the destruction of Jerusalem, speak as if in their time the Jewish sacrificial worship was still maintained. And Josephus also expresses himself quite to the same effect. Not only where he describes the Jewish sacrificial worship in accordance with the Old Testament, but also where he apparently speaks of the customs and practices of his own time, he employs the present tense. It is indeed the fact that when speaking of the sacrifices for the Roman people and for the Roman emperor he makes use of this mode of expression, although this was purely a later custom, and was not a prescription of the Old Testament. Besides this, we have also scattered allusions in the rabbinical literature, which seem to indicate the continuance of the sacrificial service after A.D. 70. It is not to be wondered at that many on the basis of such material should have maintained the continuance of the sacrificial worship. In itself this was quite a possible thing. In an interesting passage in the Mishna, R. Joshua testifies: “I have heard that one ought to present sacrifice even if there be no temple; that one should eat that which is sanctified [on this see Division II. vol. i. p. 236], even though there be no wall around the court; that one may eat what is holy in a lower degree [see on this Division II. vol. i. p. 240] and the second tithe, even if there should be no wall around Jerusalem; for the first consecration has sanctified, not only for its own time, but for all future time.” It was not therefore in utter opposition to the views of the Rabbis that men should continue after the destruction of the temple to offer sacrifices in holy places. But as a matter of fact this was not done. In the enumeration of the unfortunate days of Israel it is distinctly said that on 17th Thammuz the daily sacrifice was abolished (בָּטַל הַתָּמִיד), while there is nowhere any reference made to its restoration, In the description of the Passover in the Mishna, the enumeration of the dishes that had to be set upon the table is concluded with the remark: “During the time that the temple was standing the Paseover offering also was served. This implies that after the destruction of the temple it was no longer offered. In speaking of the legal enactments for determining the new moon it is said: “So long as the temple remained standing those who had seen the new moon were allowed to violate the Sabbath by going to Jerusalem, in order to testify thereto, for the sake of the observance of the sacrifice on the festival of the new moon.” The harmonious testimony of those passages of the Mishna is confirmed by others in the Babylonian Talmud of a character yet more direct, if that were possible, which assume even in regard to the times of Rabban Jochanan ben Saccai, Rabban Gamaliel II. and R Ishmael, i.e. the first decade after the destruction of the temple, that the whole sacrificial worship had ceased. Finally, Justin also appears as a witness on behalf of this view. He says to his opponent Trypho: “God never appointed the Passover to be offered except in the place where His name was to be called upon, knowing that after the passion of Christ the days would come, when even Jerusalem would be given over to our enemies, and all sacrifices should cease.” And in another passage Trypho himself says in answer to Justin’s question as to whether it was not then still possible to observe all the commands of Moses: “By no means, for we know well that it is not allowable to slay the paschal lamb nor the goats for the Day of Atonement, nor generally to present any of the other offerings in any other place”—If, then, Christian writers and Josephus, even long after the destruction of the temple, still speak of the presenting of sacrifices in the present tense, they only describe thereby what is still allowable, but a right that was no longer actually exercised. Precisely the same view is presented in the Mishna from the first page to the last, for all institutions that are legally correct are described as existing customs, even although their observance owing to the circumstances of the time was impossible.

Two facts, therefore, of the highest importance and most widely influential are well established: the abolition of the Sanhedrim and the cessation of the sacrificial worship. In the Sanhedrim there had been embodied the last remnant of the political independence of Judaism, and consequently also the last remnant of the power of the Sadducean nobles. The influence of the Sadducean nobility even since the times of Alexandra had been waning before the advancing strength of the Pharisees. They still managed, however, to exert a very considerable influence so long as the Sanhedrim continued to exist. For the jurisdiction of that aristocratic senate of Judea was down to the time of the procurators pretty extensive, and at its head stood the Sadducean high priest. With the destruction of Jerusalem this Jewish council was immediately brought to an end; the Roman provincial constitution was enforced in a stricter form. With the disappearance of the Sanhedrim, Sadduceanism also disappears from history.—The overthrow of the city, however, led also to the suppression of the sacrificial worship, and therewith the gradual recession of the priesthood from public life. This was only carried out by degrees. It could not for a long time be believed that the disastrous circumstances in which the people were placed were to continue. It seemed to be only a question of the time when the priests should be able again to resume their services. Naturally, all dues were exacted after as well as before the catastrophe. Only the taxes which had been contributed directly for the maintenance of the temple and of the public sacrifices were declared by the Rabbins to be suspended. The contribution devoted to the personal support of the priests continued after as Well as before a duty according to the law, and where there were priests, were given over directly to them. But notwithstanding all this, the priesthood, now that it could no longer perform its service, lost its importance. It was a memorial of a past age, which indeed, as time went on, sank more and more into obscurity and decay.

The Pharisees and the Rabbis now entered into the heritage of the Sadducees and priests. They had an admirable preparation for entering upon this heritage. During two centuries they had been making steady progress toward dominant power. And now for a time they entered upon the enjoyment of absolute sovereignty. The overthrow of Jerusalem means nothing more or less than the passing over of the people to Pharisaism and the Rabbis; for the factors which had hitherto stood in opposition to these had now sunk into utter insignificance.

After the overthrow of Jerusalem, Jamnia (Jabne) seems in a special way to have become a centre of literary activity. There, during the first decade after the destruction of the temple, wrought Rabban Jochanan ben Saccai, and, at the end of the first and beginning of the second century, Rabban Gamaliel II., gathering around them a whole band of scholars. The most celebrated of the contemporaries of Gamaliel were R. Josua ben Chananja and R. Elieser ben Hyrcanus, the latter of whom had his residence at Lydda. Younger contemporaries and pupils of these men were R. Ishmael, R. Akiba, and R. Tarphon. See in regard to all these scholars and their contemporaries, Div. II. vol. i. pp. 366–379.

By these men and by their numerous colleagues and scholars, the interpretation of the law was carried on with greater zeal than ever. It was as though, after the political overthrow, the whole strength of the nation had concentrated itself upon the care of the law as its own highest and proper task. Everything pertaining to it, the criminal and the civil law, and the manifold religious statutes and ordinances, were dealt with by these scholars with painful particularity, and drilled into the memories of the scholars by their teachers. It did not matter in the least whether the circumstances of the time allowed these ordinances to be put in practice or not. All the minutiae of the temple service, the entire ritual of the sacrificial worship, were discussed as diligently and as earnestly as the laws of purifying, the Sabbath commandment, and other religious duties, the observance of which was still possible. There is nothing so fitted to produce before us a lively picture of the faith of the people in their future as the conscientiousness with which the prescriptions about the temple service and the sacrificial worship were treated by the guardians of the law. The time of desolation might continue for a longer or shorter period, but once again the day of restoration would surely dawn. And hence, in the cataloguing by the scribes in the second century of the Jewish law in the corpus juris or Mishna, there are included a topography of the temple in the tract Middoth and a description of the distribution of the priests in the daily service in the tract Tamid. Their descendants, to whom was to be granted the privilege of a restored worship, were to be told how it had previously been conducted in the days of the fathers.

The scholars who after this fashion cared for the highest interests of Israel formed now even more exclusively and unrestrictedly than before the rank of the highest authorities among the people. The priests, who had previously been the most influential in the direction and practice of religious duties, were now relegated to a condition of inactivity. All the energies of the pious had now to be restricted to the doing of that which the Rabbins prescribed to them. There was no need of any external compulsion. Whatever the most distinguished teachers had laid down was regarded by the pious without any further question as obligatory. Indeed, they were not only recognised as lawgivers in spiritual and temporal things, but in all matters of dispute they were appealed to as judges, even in questions of meum and tuum. During this period it was indeed no uncommon occurrence to see, e.g., R. Akiba, purely by means of his spiritual authority, condemning a man to pay 400 denarii compensation, because he had on the street uncovered his head to a woman.

The court of law at Jamnia enjoyed the highest reputation toward the end of the first and in the beginning of the second century after Christ, a college of learned men, which can scarcely have had any formal recognition from the Roman authorities, but yet actually stepped into the place of the old Sanhedrim of Jerusalem, as the supreme court of law for Israel. The enactments passed by Rabban Jochanan ben Saccai in Jamnia after the destruction of the temple, in order to adapt certain legal requirements to the altered circumstance of the times, were regarded as binding. Rabban Gamaliel II. and his court of justice watched over the correct reckoning of the contents of the calendar. To its decisions the elder R. Josua submitted, even if he considered them to be erroneous. As a rule the decisions on points of law issuing from Jamnia were treated as constituting the authoritative standard. Indeed, the succession of Jamnia to the privileges of Jerusalem was so generally acquiesced in, that where this was not the case, it was pointed to as an exception to the rule. Even in regard to the number of members, they seem to have copied the pattern of the Sanhedrim of Jerusalem. At least there occurs in one place a statement to the effect that “the seventy-two elders” appointed as president R. Eleasar ben Asariah.—We may assume that this court of justice at Jamnia was voluntarily accepted by the Jewish people as authoritative, not only in the domain of the ceremonial law, but also in the domain of the civil and criminal law. In reference to the civil law it may indeed have received actual authorization, in accordance with the, general procedure in legislation. For the Roman legislation, so far as we can understand it, recognised the authority of the Jewish communities in the Dispersion to administer the law in civil suits among their countrymen, wherever the contending parties chose to bring their disputes before their own communal court. But in criminal matters this jurisdiction bore the character of a usurped authority, rather than of one conferred by the emperor. Origen very vividly, and at the same time authentically, describes to us the state of matters which then prevailed. In vindicating the story of Susanna and Daniel, he endeavours to prove that the Jews might quite well have had their own judicatories during the Babylonian exile. In proof of this he refers to the state of matters in Palestine in his own days, of which he knew from his own observation. The power of the Jewish Ethnarch (so Origen designates him) is so great, that he is in no respect different from a king (ὠς μηδὲν διαφέρειν βασιλεύοντος τοῦ ἔθνους). “There are also secret legal proceedings in accordance with the law, and many are condemned to death without any general authority having been obtained for the exercise of such functions, and without any attempt to conceal such doings from the governor.” This was the state of matters during the third century, In the first decades after the destruction of Jerusalem, they would not have ventured to go so far. Yet this was the direction in which things were tending.—To this Jewish central court in Palestine, whose president subsequently received the title of Patriarch, were also paid the contributions of the Jews of the Dispersion, so far as these continued to be collected after the destruction of the temple. At least for the period of the later days of the empire this can be proved to demonstration. In this matter also the Rabbis take the place of the priests. For previously the contributions were cast into the central treasury of the priests at Jerusalem. It was now a rabbinical board which made the collection by means of their apostoli, and superintended its proper distribution. See Div. II. vol. ii. pp. 269, 288.

All zeal for the law of their fathers in this later time, at least among the great majority of the pious, had its motive power in the belief in a glorious future for the nation. Such was the case even before the great catastrophe; and so it continued in a yet more exaggerated degree after that terrible event. If now, more zealously than ever, the people occupied themselves with the scrupulous fulfilment of the commandments of God, certainly the most powerful motive working in this direction was the wish to render themselves thereby worthy of the future glory in which they so confidently believed. In regard to this religious movement during the first decades after the overthrow of the holy city, the Apocalypses of Baruch and Ezra, which had their origin in that very period, afford us a lively as well as an authentic picture. On these Apocalypses see Div. II. vol. iii. pp. 83–114. The immediate consequence of the terrible slaughter was indeed a profound and paralyzing shook to the feelings. How could God permit this disaster to befall His own chosen people? But this grand mystery was only a particular instance of the universal mystery: How is the misfortune of the righteous generally and the good fortune of the unrighteous possible? Through the darkness of this latter problem the pious consciousness of Israel had long ago successfully struggled. So now also a satisfactory answer was soon found. It is a chastisement which God has inflicted upon His people because of their sin. It has its own appointed time. When the people by means of it shall have learned righteousness, the promised day of redemption will soon dawn for them. This is the fundamental idea of both of these apocalypses, and their purpose is to comfort the people in their distress, to inspire them with courage and with holy zeal by visions of the redemption that will come to them surely and soon. The confident belief in this future was therefore only intensified, confirmed, and inflamed by the sore sufferings and sad disasters of the time. Out of the grief for the overthrow of the sanctuary, the Messianic hope drew new nourishment, new strength. This was also, from a political point of view, important, and productive of serious consequences. For this Messianic hope was a wonderful blending of religious and political ideals. The political aspirations of the nation had never been abandoned, and the element of danger just lay in the combination of them with religious motives. The political freedom of the nation, which the people longed for, was now represented as the end of the ways of God. The more firmly this was believed, the more readily did the people set out of view the cool calculations of what is humanly possible, the bolder became their resolve to dare even the impossible. It was this feeling which even in the time of Nero had broken out in rebellion. In it there also still lay hidden elements that yet would lead to new and frightful catastrophes.

Under the emperors of the Flavian dynasty (Vespasian, Titus, Domitian, down to A.D. 96) there does not seem to have been any more serious development of these tendencies. Sufficient occasion, however, was presented for giving expression to those already present. For the command to contribute what had been the temple-tax to the Capitoline Jupiter at Rome (see above, p. 255), was an outrage upon the religious sensibilities of the Jews, which every year, on the levying of the tax, must afresh have roused the feeling of resentment. Under Domitian this tax was levied with great strictness, as generally this emperor posed as a decided enemy of the Jews, and conversion to Judaism was punished by the imposition of severe penalties.

Eusebius speaks of an actual persecution of the Jews after the destruction of Jerusalem, even during Vespasian’s reign, referring to Hegesippus as his authority. Vespasian, as well as Domitian and Trajan, is said by Hegesippus to have hunted for and executed all Jews of the house of David with great rigour, in order that the royal family, on which the Jews rested their hopes, should be rooted out. This order led to a great persecution of the Jews under Vespasian. We have no longer any means of determining how far this story is historical. It can scarcely be altogether without foundation, for that a Messiah descending from the house of David was expected is beyond dispute. The existence, therefore, of descendants of David might actually be looked upon as a source of political danger. This “persecution,” however, cannot have been of great dimensions and importance, since it is not taken notice of by any other writer.—Whether political uprisings occurred in Judea under Domitian is certainly very questionable. From certain hints in a military diploma of A.D. 86, some have supposed that such disturbances must have taken place. Meanwhile, these conclusions have not by any means been satisfactorily proved. See above, p. 259.—On the other hand, the outbursts which occurred, first outside of Judea and afterwards in Judea itself, under Trajan and Hadrian, spread widely, and led to scenes of terrible violence.


DIO CASSIUS, lxviii. 32.

EUSEBIUS, Hist. eccl. iv. 2; Chronicon, ed. Schoene, ii. 164 sq.

OROSIUS, vii. 12, almost wholly according to Jerome’s Latin reproduction of the Chronicle of Eusebius.

MÜNTER, Der jüdische Krieg unter den Kaisern Trajan und Hadrian (1821), pp. 10–29.

CASSEL in Ersch and Gruber’s Encyclopaedie, sec. ii. Bd. xxvii. 1850, p. 12 f. (in art. “Juden”).

GRÄTZ, Geschichte der Juden, Bd. iv. p. 123 ff.

DERENBOURG, Histoire de la Palestine, pp. 402–412.

NEUBÜRGER, Monatsschrift für Geschichte und Wissenschaft Judenthums, 1873, pp. 386–397.

EWALD, History of Israel, viii. pp. 271–276.

MORRISON, The Jews under the Roman Empire, pp. 189–194.

HAUSRATH, Neutestamentliche Zeitgeschichte, 2 Aufl. iv. 181–189.

RENAN, Les Évangiles (1877), pp. 503–512.

VOLKMAR, “Zur Chronologie des Trajanischen Partherkrieges mit Rücksicht auf die Ignatiustradition und eine neue Quelle”(Rhein. Museum, Neue Folge, Bd. xii. 1857, pp. 481–511).

VOLKMAR, “Der parthische und jüdische Kreig Trajans nach den Quellen” (Zeitschrift für die Alterthumswissenschaft. XV. Jahrg. 1857, Nr. 61–65).

VOLXXAR, Handbuch der Einleitung in dis Apokryphen, 1 Thl. Abth. 1, Judith. 1860.

DIERAUER in Büdinger’s Untersuchungen zur röm. Kaisergeschichte, i. 1868, p. 182 f.

DE LA BERGE, Essai sur le règne de Trajan (1877), pp. 182–184.

SOHILLER, Geschichte der römischen Kaiserzeit, i. 2 (1883), p. 561 f.

MOMMSEN, Römischs Geschichte, Bd. v. (1885) pp. 542–544 Compare p. 397 ff.

Trajan, during the last years of his life, A.D. 114–117, was incessantly occupied in bold expeditions of conquest in the farthest eastern parts of the empire. While he was, in A.D. 115, engaged in the conquest of Mesopotamia, the Jews in Egypt and Cyrene, taking advantage of the emperor’s absence, “as if driven along by the wild spirit of revolution, began to make riots against the non-Jewish inhabitants of the land.” The rebellion reached such dimensions in the following year, A.D. 116, that it assumed the character of a formal war. The Roman governor of Egypt, M. Rutilius Lupus, seems not to have been aware of the strength of the Jews. In an engagement the rebel Jews conquered the “Greeks,” and compelled them to fly to Alexandria. There, in the capital, the Greeks had decidedly the upper hand, and the Jews residing there were seized and slain.

Still more furiously did the Jews in Cyrene conduct themselves. Of the cruelties which the Jews there perpetrated upon their non-Jewish fellow-inhabitants a dreadful picture is presented by Dio Cassius. They ate their flesh, besmeared themselves with their blood, sawed them through from above downward, or gave them for food to the wild beasts. The number of the murdered is said to have been as many as 220,000. Though here, certainly, the pen has been directed by the most extravagant fancy, the extent and importance of the revolt are beyond all dispute. The leader of the Jewish population of Cyrene, whom they proclaimed as their king, is called by Eusebius, Lukuas, by Dio Cassius, Andrew.

To suppress this revolt Trajan sent one of his best generals, Marcius Turbo. By means of long-continued and persistent fighting (πολλαῖς μάχαις ἐν οὐκ ὀλίγῳ τε χρόνῳ) he brought the war to an end, and slew many thousands of the Jews, not only of Cyrene, but also those of Egypt, who had attached themselves to their “king” Lukuas.

The outbreak had also spread to the island of Cyprus. Under the leadership of a certain Artemio, the Jews there imitated the example of their co-religionists of Cyrene, and murdered 24,000 non-Jewish inhabitants of the island. The very capital, Salamis, was laid waste by them. In regard to the suppression of the revolt we have no information. The consequence of it was that henceforth no Jew was allowed to appear upon the island; and if through stress of weather any Jew should happen to be cast upon its coasts, he was put to death.

Finally, when Trajan had pressed on as far as Ctesiphon, the capital of the Parthian empire, the Jews of Mesopotamia in his rear had become disturbed. Such a disturbance there upon the very frontier of the empire was a most serious affair. Trajan gave orders to the Moorish prince Lusius Quietus, who was at the same time a Roman general, to sweep the rebels out of the province (ἐκκαθᾶραι τῆς ἐπαρχίας αὐτούς). With barbarous cruelty Quietus executed his commission. Thousands of Jews were put to death. Thus was order restored, and Quietus, in recognition of his services, was appointed governor of Palestine.

The Jewish revolt was not, it would seem, finally suppressed until the beginning of Hadrian’s reign in A.D. 117. At least Eusebius speaks of disturbances in Alexandria which Hadrian had to quell; and the biographer of Hadrian states that Palestine also had taken its share in the rebellion. In any case, however, perfect quiet seems to have been restored in the first year of Hadrian.

It is very doubtful indeed whether Palestine generally had any share in the rebellion. This is maintained by Volkmar and Grätz in the interest of their conception of the Book of Judith, which they place in this period; but it has been rightly contested by Lipsius and others. Rabbinical tradition makes mention distinctly of a “war of Quietus,” פוֹלְמוֹס שֶׁל קִיטוֹס; but there is nothing to oblige us to understand by this any other than the well-known war of Quietus in Mesopotamia. In Megillath, Taanith § 29, the 12th Adar is designated the “day of Trajan,” יום טוריינוס, and the commentary upon this passage remarks that this day was celebrated in commemoration of the following incident: Two brothers, Julianus and Pappus, were arrested by Trajan at Laodicea, when the emperor called out to them in mockery: Let your God now save you as he saved Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah. The two brothers replied that neither he nor they were worthy of having such a miracle wrought, but that God would indeed require their blood of him if he slew them. But before Trajan left that place, an order came from Rome, in consequence of which he was put to death. This fable, which deserves no attention whatever, as it proceeds on the assumption that Trajan was only a subordinate officer, is now forsooth offered as the principal evidence regarding the war of Trajan in Palestine! But it should be observed that even in it there is no mention either of a war or of Judea, but expressly of Laodicea.—The one thing that seems to favour Volkmar’s view is the statement of Spartian above referred to, according to which, in the beginning of Hadrian’s reign, Palestine rebelles animos efferebat. From this statement, indeed, it would seem to have been not altogether in a quiet condition. But it can hardly have gone the length of an actual war. Otherwise our original authorities would have given a more circumstantial account of it.


DIO CASSIUS, lxix. 12–14.

EUSEBIUS, Hist. eccl. iv. 6; Chronicon, ed Schoene, ii. 166–169.

On Aristo of Pella, see vol. i. of this work, pp. 69–72.

Rabbinical traditions in Derenbourg, pp. 412–438. A collection of the rabbinical texts which refer to the history of Beth-ther is given in Lebrecht, Bether, pp. 43–50; comp, also p. 20 f.

On the coins, see Appendix IV.

BASNAGE, Histoire des Juifs, t. vii. (according to another arrangement, t. xi.), 1716, pp. 328–378.

TILLEMONT, Histoire des empereurs, t. ii. (Venice 1732), pp. 285–296.

MÜNTER, Der jüdische Krieg unter den Kaisern Trajan und Hadrian, 1821; a most comprehensive monograph.

CASSEL in Ersch and Gruber’s Encyclopaedie, sec. ii. Bd. 27, 1850, pp. 13–16 (in article “Juden”).

HERZFELD, Zur Geschiehte des Barkochba (Monatsschrift für Geschichte und Wissenschaft des Judenthums, 1856, pp. 101–111).

GRÄTZ, Geschichte der Juden, Bd. iv. 2 Aufl. pp. 138–183.

JOST, Geschichte des Judenthums und seiner Sekten, ii. 75–83.

DERENBOURG, Histoire de la Palestine, pp. 412–438.

NEUBÜRGER, Monatsschrift für Geschichte und Wissenschaft des Judenthums, 1873, pp. 433–445, 529–536.

WILLIAMS, The Holy City, vol. i. pp. 209–213.

MORRISON, The Jews under the Roman Empire, pp. 198–206.

The Jewish Wars under Hadrian and Trajan” (Journal of Sacred Literature, vol. vii. 1851, pp. 439–444).

EWALD, History of Israel, viii. 271–311

HAUSRATH, Neutestamentliche Zeitgesch. 2 Aufl. iv. 327–342.

RENAN, L’église, chrétienne (1879), pp. 186–228, 541–553. Revue historigue, t. ii. 1876, pp. 112–120.

SALZER, “Der Aufstand des Bar-Cochba” (Magazin für die Wissenschaft des Judenthums, iii. 1876, pp. 121–139, 173–190; iv. 1877, pp. 17–38).

HAMBURGER, Real-Encyclopaedie für Bibel und Talmud, Abth. ii., articles Akib, Barkochba, Bethar, Hadrian, Hadrianische Verfolgungsedikte.

DERENBOURG, “Quelques Notes sur la guerre de Bar Kozeba” (Mélanges publiés par l’école des hautes etudes, Paris 1878, pp. 167–173).

DARMESTETER, “Notes épigraphiques,” etc. (Revue des études juives, t. i. 1880, pp. 42–55).

SCHILLER, Geschichte der römische Kaiserzeit, i. 2,1883, pp. 612–615.

MOMMSEN, Römische Geschichte, v. pp. 544–546.

GREGOROVIUS, Der Kaiser Hadrian (3 Aufl. 1884), pp. 38 f., 147–153, 188–216.

GREGOROVIUS, “Die Gründung der römischen Colonie Aelia Capitolina” (Sitzungsberichte der philos.-philol. und hist. Classe der Münchener Akademie, 1883, pp. 477–508).

SCHWARZ, Der Bar-Kochbaische Aufstand, Brünn 1885 (worthless; see Bursian’s Jahresber. der class. Alterthumswissensch. pp. 48, 282 f.).

A late Jewish legend tells how in the days of Joshua ben Chananiah, that is, in the time of Hadrian, the pagan government had granted authority to proceed with the building of the temple. But the Samaritans had made representations against the enterprise. And in consequence of these the emperor had not indeed withdrawn the permission, but issued a decree that the new building should not be erected precisely on the site of the old temple, which came to the same thing as an actual prohibition. Then the Jews gathered together in factions in the valley of Beth-Rimmon. But R. Joshua, in order to quiet them, told them the story of the lion and the stork: as the stork ought to be glad to have got its head uninjured out of the jaws of the lion, so also ought they to be glad if they were allowed to live in peace under a heathen government. The historical value of this legend is simply nil, and yet it forms the chief ground for the view insisted upon by many modern scholars, that Hadrian had given permission for the rebuilding of the temple, and that the withdrawal of this permission was the real cause of the great Jewish rebellion. In confirmation of this view reference is made to statements by Christian writers. But even these are little calculated to support such a theory. Chrysostom, Cedrenus, and Nicephorus Callistus only say that the Jews in the time of Hadrian had rebelled and made an attempt to rebuild the temple, and that Hadrian put a stop to that undertaking. The Chronicon Paschale speaks of a destruction by Hadrian of the temple that had actually been built. Of a permission to build the temple that had first been given by Hadrian and afterwards withdrawn, there is no mention whatever. The attempt to rebuild the temple was really itself one of the acts of the rebellion. An apparent support for this theory is to be found only in one passage in the Epistle of Barnabas, of which, however, the explanation is uncertain. Barnabas seeks to show that it is not according to God’s will that the Jews should continue to observe the law. Their Sabbath is not the true one. “And almost like the heathens have they honoured God in a temple.” In order to prove the heathenish character of the Jewish temple, Barnabas, in chap, xvi., quotes the prophecy of Isa. 49:17 (LXX.): “Behold, they who have cast down this temple, even they shall build it up again;” and then proceeds, in chap. xvi. 4: “It has so happened. For through their going to war it was destroyed by their enemies; and now they [together with] the servants of their enemies shall rebuild it” (γίνεται• διὰ γὰρ τὸ πολεμεῖν αὐτοὺς καθῃρέθη ὑπὸ τῶν ἐχθρῶν• νῦν καὶ αὐτοὶ [καὶ] οἱ τῶν ἐχθρῶν ὑπηρέται ἀνοικοδομήσουσιν αὐτόν). Only if the bracketed καί be retained, is the expectation there set forth that now the Jews and the heathens together were to build in common the Jewish temple. By striking out the καί the meaning of the sentence becomes this: the heathens themselves build the temple, that is, for heathenish purposes. But on external grounds also the latter reading deserves the preference. Barnabas seems therefore to allude to Hadrian’s intention to erect a building for heathen worship.—Of the alleged permission given by Hadrian for the rebuilding of the Jewish temple, therefore, we do not meet with any trace when we investigate the causes of the rebellion. Such permission, at least in the form of active encouragement, is also improbable on internal grounds. For while Hadrian zealously patronized the Greek-Roman religious rites, he looked with contempt upon all foreign superstitions.

Only two accounts of the causes of the great rebellion are worthy of consideration. Spartian says: “moverunt ea tempestate et Judaei bellum, quod vetabautur mutilare genitalia.” Dio Cassius, on the contrary, gives his account thus: “When Hadrian had founded at Jerusalem a city of his own in place of the one destroyed, which he called Aelia Capitolina, and on the site of the temple of their God erected another temple to Jupiter, the great and long-continued war broke out. For the Jews regarded it as a horrible outrage that foreigners should settle in their city, and that temples for strange gods should be built in it.” Since Spartian mentions only the one and Dio Cassius only the other, it is doubtful whether without more ado we are entitled to combine the two. Gregorovius rejects the statement of Spartian, and regards that of Dio Cassius as alone worthy of credence. In fact, a prohibition of circumcision, without any special occasion, seems little in accordance with the mild character of Hadrian, although it might quite conceivably be used for the purpose of securing the extinction of the Jews after the suppression of the revolt. Nevertheless, the statement of Spartian is to be defended. For, according to all that we know, the prohibition of circumcision was not limited to the Jews, and was not immediately directed against them. When, under Antoninus Pius, the Jews were again allowed to circumcise their children, the prohibition still stood good against the non-Jewish peoples. It was therefore originally a general order. The special feature of this legislation was not that it aimed at the rooting out of Judaism, but that it placed circumcision on the same level with castration, and punished its practice accordingly. The prohibition was not, therefore, first of all directed against Judaism, but it is at the same time quite evident that Judaism would receive from it a deadly wound. In addition to this it was now made known that Hadrian designed the erection of a new heathen city upon the ruins of Jerusalem. In this also the ruling motive was not hostility to Judaism. The rearing of magnificent buildings and the founding of cities was the work to which Hadrian devoted the energies of his life. But this proposal must also have been regarded as a blow in the face to Judaism. So long as Jerusalem lay in ruins, the Jews could cherish the hope of its restoration. The founding of a heathen city, the erection of a heathen temple on the holy place, put an end to these hopes in terrible manner. It was an outrage as great as that which Antiochus Epiphanea had fomerly committed, and was answered, as that had been, by a genenal uprising of the excited people.—Both reasons, therefore, are not in themselves improbable. A combination of the two is a suggestion which has much to commend it, if the two enactments of Hadrian were not too far separated in time from one another.

In regard to the date at which the building of the Aelia Capitolina was begun, various statements are given in the original authorities. Epiphanius had been informed that Hadrian, forty-seven years after the destruction of Jerusalem, when he arrived there on his second journey, gave orders to rebuild the city (not the temple), and commissioned Aquila to see the work done. This indication of date gives us A.D. 117, immediately after Hadrian’s accession to the throne. He was then certainly in the East, but Epiphauius expressly refers to his later journey taken from Rome, and thus his statement regarding the time is deprived of all its value. The Chronicon Paschale places the founding of Aelia Capitolina in A.D. 119; but it does so only because it has also placed the great Jewish rebellion in that year, after the quelling of which Aelia was founded. With the date fixed for the Jewish rebellion, which is demonstrably false, falls also that fixed for the founding of Aelia. Eusebius also regards the founding of the city as a consequence of the rebellion. This is correct, inasmuch as only thereafter was the plan carried out. But, according to Dio Cassius, it is not to be doubted that the building had already been begun before the outbreak of the rebellion, and indeed not very long before, for he says that the Jews, who were irritated about the building, remained quiet so long as Hadrian stayed in Egypt and Syria, but that they broke out so soon as he had left those regions. In accordance with this, it must be assumed that the founding of the city took place during the period of Hadrian’s visit to Syria, which occurred in A.D. 130.

Hadrian at that time—it was during his last great journey in the East—arrived in Syria from Greece, and thence went to Egypt, and then back again to Syria. It is made certain from inscriptions and coins that he was in Syria in A.D. 130, in Egypt in November A.D. 130, and so again in Syria in A.D. 131. Generally, wherever he went he furthered the interests of culture: artistic and useful buildings were erected: games were celebrated: he was a restitutor in all the provinces. In the cities of Palestine also we come upon traces of his presence. Tiberias had obtained an Ἀδριάνειον; Gaza, a πανήγυρις Ἀδριανή; Petra, in grateful remembrance of the benefactions of the emperor, took the name of Ἀδριανὴ Πέτρα. His residence in Judea was commemorated by coins bearing the inscription, adventui Aug(usti) Judaeae.

The founding of Aelia also, without doubt, belongs to the period of the emperor’s activity. Pliny calls Jerusalem longe clarissima urbium orientis, non Judaeae modo. This celebrated city now lay in ruins, or was still merely a Roman camp. What then could be more attractive to the emperor than the restoring of such a city to its former magnificence? It was, however, manifestly intended that this new magnificence should be of a heathen character. A temple of the Capitoline Jupiter was to be erected on the spot where formerly the temple of the God of the Jews had stood. This was the fatal proposal. The Jews had been roused to a most violent degree by means of the order, issued probably not long before, against the practice of circumcision. And now to that was added a new outrage. By means of this proposed profanation of their city matters were brought to a crisis. The people remained quiet so long as the emperor remained in Egypt, and during his second visit to Syria. But when he was no longer in the neighbourhood, that is, in A.D. 132, they broke out into revolt: an uprising that, in its extent and violence, and its unhappy consequences, was at least as serious as that of the time of Vespasian. If it does not bulk so largely in our records, it is only because of the meagreness of the original sources of information that have come down to us.

The leader of the revolt is called in the works of Christian writers Cochba or Bar-Cochba, and by the rabbinical authorities Barcosiba or Bencosiba. The one as well as the other is only a designation; the former distinguishes him as the star, or the son of the star, with reference to Num. 24:18, which passage R Akiba applied to him; the latter is a name derived either from his father (the son of Cosiba) or from his home (the man of Cosiba), and not until a comparatively late period, and only by a few individual writers, in view of his miserable collapse, was it taken to mean liar or deceiver. The designation Cochba or Bar-Cochba was apparently chosen on account of its similarity in sound to Barcosiba, but seems to have become pretty generally current, since the Christian authorities are acquainted with it alone. The coins have preserved for us the proper name of two men. For it is a fact scarcely admitting of question that the Simon-coins, some of which certainly, and others most probably, were stamped during the period of this outbreak, were issued by the leader of this outbreak, who was certainly Bar-Cochba. Those minted in the first year have the inscription, “Simon, Prince of Israel,” שמעון נשיא ישראל; those minted in the second year have only the name “Simon” שמעון. On some the figure of a star appears over that of a temple. Besides the Simoncoins there are also coins of the first year with the inscription, “Eleasar the Priest,” אלעזר הכהן. There thus seem to have been two men at the head of the rebellion, besides the Prince Simon, the Priest Eleasar. After the second year there are no more Eleasar-coins. Since in late rabbinical documents the R. Eleasar of Modein, who is also known from other sources, is described as the uncle of Barcosiba, some have ventured to conjecture that this man is the same as the one named “Eleasar the Priest” on the coins. But there is nothing anywhere to indicate that Eleasar of Modein was a priest.

The application of the designation of the “Star,” which should come out of Jacob, to Barcosiba, shows that he was regarded as the Messiah. R Akiba, the most celebrated doctor of the law in his time, is said to have distinctly announced him as such. And though, indeed, all the colleagues of Akiba did not recognise him, he had the mass of the people on his side. As in the days of Vespasian, so also at this time there was a widespread idea that the day had come when the old prophecy of the prophets would be fulfilled, and Israel would cast off the yoke of the Gentiles. The Christian legends also declare that Barcosiba bewitched the people by deceitful miracles.—Just by reason of the Messianic character of the movement it was quite impossible for Christians to take part in it. They could not deny their own Messiah by recognising the leader of the political revolution as such. Hence they were persecuted with peculiar violence by the new Messiah, as Justin Martyr and Eusebius testify.

The rebellion spread rapidly over all Palestine. Wherever strongholds, castles, caverns, subterranean passages afforded hiding-places, there were those who struggled for native customs and freedom gathered together. An open conflict they avoided; but from their dens in the mountains they made devastating raids upon the country, and fought with all who did not attach themselves to their party, Jerusalem also was certainly beset by the rebels. The doubt which many, on the other hand, have raised is mainly supported by this, that in the more trustworthy sources (Dio Cassius and Eusebius’ Church History) there is no mention of a war at Jerusalem. But how unspeakably meagre are these sources generally ! Even upon internal grounds it is probable that the rebels, who were at the beginning victorious, should have made themselves masters of Jerusalem, which was not then a strongly fortified city, but only a Roman camp. But this conjecture is confirmed by twofold testimony. In the first place by the coins. The coins that with the greatest confidence can be set down to this period, bear on the one side the name of Simon, שמעון, and on the other side the superscription, לחרות ירושלם, lechêruth Jeruschalem, “the freedom of Jerusalem.” Therefore, the freeing of Jerusalem was commemorated by Simon on the coins. But there are among the coins belonging to this period also examples which, besides the date “First Year of the freeing of Israel” or “Second Year of the freedom of Israel,” bear only the name Jerusalem, ירושלם. These, therefore, have been minted by the city itself in its own name, and hence we see that this city in the first year as well as in the second was in the hands of the rebels. In addition to this witness from the coins, we have the contemporary Appian, by whom, as will be told farther on, the fact of the reconquest of Jerusalem by the Romans is declared as a fact.—Whether during these troubled years of war the rebuilding of the Jewish temple may actually have been begun must be left undecided. Late Christians declare that this was so, and the intention to carry on this work was certainly entertained.

In regard to the progress of the war we know almost nothing. When it broke out Tineius Rufus was governor of Judea. When he was unable with his troops to crash the rebels, the revolt not only increased in dimension and importance throughout all Palestine, but also spread itself far out beyond the limits of that country. Unstable and restless elements indeed of another sort attached themselves to the Jewish rebellion, so that at last “the whole world, so to speak, was in commotion.” The severest measures were necessary in order to put an end to the uproar. Large bodies of troops from other provinces were called in to strengthen the resident garrison. The best generals were commissioned for Palestine. Even the governor of Syria, Publicius Marcellus, hasted to the aid of his endangered colleague. But it seems that Rufus for the most of the time retained the supreme command; for Eusebius names no other Roman commander, and speaks as if the suppression of the revolt was accomplished by Rufus. In rabbinical authorities also, “Rufus the Tyrant,” טורנס רופוס, appears the chief enemy of the Jews at that time. But from Dio Cassius, whose statements on this point are corroborated by the testimony of inscriptions, we know that during the last period of the war Julius Severus, one of the most distinguished of Hadrian’s generals, had the supreme command, and that it was he who succeeded in bringing the rebellion to an end. He was summoned from Britain to conduct this war, and took a considerable time in crushing the revolt. In an open engagement no decisive result was gained. The rebels had to be hunted out of their hidingplaces one by one; and, where they kept concealed in mountain caverns, they were exhausted by having their supplies cut off. Only after long continued conflicts with individuals, in which there was great expenditure of life, did he at last succeed in harrying, exterminating, and rooting them out of the whole country (κατατρῖψαι καὶ ἐκτρυχῶσαι καὶ ἐκκόψαι).

Where Hadrian was residing during the war cannot be determined with certainty. Probably during the critical year he was himself personally present at the seat of war. He had left Syria before the rebellion broke out. The evil tidings seem to have led him to return to Judea; for his presence at the seat of war is not only presupposed in the rabbinical legends, but is also made probable by some particulars derived from inscriptions. There is no reference to his presence in Rome again till May of A.D. 134. He would return so soon as he had been assured of a successful issue to the war, without waiting for the completion of the operations.

Dio Cassius as well as Eusebius is silent regarding the fate of Jerusalem. It certainly did not form the middle point of the conflict, as it had done in the Vespasian war. Its fortifications were quite unimportant. Even although the rebels had succeeded in driving out the Roman garrison, the recapture of the city would have been no very serious undertaking for a sufficiently strong Roman military force. But that it had been actually taken after a violent assault is plainly stated by Appian, a contemporary witness. When Appian speaks of a destruction (κατασκάπτειν), he is undoubtedly right, inasmuch as violent seizure is not conceivable without destruction to a certain extent. But after all, as following the thoroughgoing work of Titus, the object arrived at was comparatively limited. And, on the other hand, the Romans after once they had made themselves masters of the city, would not go further in the work of destruction. This was necessary in view of their purposed new building of Aelia. A siege of the city is assumed by Eusebius in his Demonstratio evangelica. Many Church Fathers (Chrysostom, Jerome, and others) maintain that Hadrian completely destroyed the remnants of the old city which were still left standing after the destruction by Titus. By this they really only mean that Hadrian made an utter end of the old Jewish city, and erected a new heathen city in its place. In the Mishna it is related that Jerusalem was run over on the 9th Ab by the plough. By this, as the context shows, the time of Hadrian is meant. In the Babylonian Talmud and by Jerome this deed is ascribed to Rufus; only they both speak, not of a ploughing of the city, but of the site of the temple. The short statement in the Mishna is specially deserving of notice. What this ceremony would signify, however, would be, not the destruction, but the new founding; and the incident must therefore be placed before the outbreak of the revolt. The story of the conquest of Jerusalem by Hadrian as told in the Samaritan chronicle is wholly fabulous.

The last hiding-place of Bar-Cochba and his followers was the strong mountain fastness of Beth-ther, according to Eusebius not very far from Jerusalem, probably on the site of the modern Bettir, three hours south-west of Jerusalem. After a long and stubborn defence this stronghold was also conquered in the eighteenth year of Hadrian=A.D. 134–135, according to rabbinical calculation on the 9th Ab. In the sack of the city they found Bar-Cochba, “the originator of all the mad fanaticism which had called down the punishment.” We have absolutely no information about the siege and conquest. The rabbinical legends tell all manner of stories about this struggle; but these productions of the wildest fancy do not deserve even once to be mentioned. This one point alone may perhaps deserve to be repeated, that before the fall of the city R. Eleasar, the uncle of Bar-Cochba, is said to have been slain by his nephew because he falsely suspected him of having come to an understanding with the Romans.

With the fall of Beth-ther the war was brought to a close, after having continued for somewhere about three years and a half, A.D. 132–135. During the course of it also many Rabbis died a martyr’s death. The later legends have glorified by poetic amplification and exaggeration especially the death of ten such martyrs, among them that of R. Akiba.

In honour of the victory Hadrian was greeted for the Second time as Imperator. Julius Severus received the ornamenta triumphalia; to officers and men were given the customary rewards. The victory was won indeed at a very heavy cost. So great were the losses that Hadrian in his letter to the Senate omitted the usual introductory formula, that “he and the army were well.” Still more grievous than this direct loss of men was the desolation of the fruitful and populous province. “All Judea was well-nigh a desert.” Fifty fortresses, 985 villages were destroyed, 580,000 Jews (?) fell in battle, while the number of those who succumbed to their wounds and to famine was never reckoned. Innumerable was the multitude of those who were sold away as slaves. At the annual market at the Terebinth of Hebron they were offered for sale in such numbers that a Jewish slave was of no more value than a horse. What could not be disposed of there was brought to Gaza and there sold or sent to Egypt, on the way to which many died of hunger or by shipwreck.

With respect to the capital Jerusalem, that was now proceeded with which had been projected before the war: it was converted into a Roman colony with the name Aelia Capitolina. In order to make permanent the purely heathen character of the city, the Jews still residing there were driven out, and heathen colonists settled in their stead. No Jew was allowed thereafter to enter the territory of the city; if any one should be discovered there he was put to death. The official name of the newly-founded city is given on the coins as Col(onia) Aell(ia) Cap(itolina); writers designate it in their works, as a rule, only Aelia. Its constitution was that of a Roman colony, but it had not the jus Italicum. It may readily be supposed that it did not want beautiful and useful buildings. The Chronicon Paschale mentions: τὰ δύο δημόσια καὶ τὸ θέατρον καὶ τὸ τρικάμαρον καὶ τὸ τετράνυμφον καὶ τὸ δωδεκάπυλον τὸ πρὶν ὀνομαζόμενον ἀναβαθμοὶ καὶ τὴν κόδραν. At the south gate of the city toward Bethlehem the figure of a swine is said to have been engraved. The chief religious worship in the city was that of the Capitoline Jupiter, to whom a temple was erected on the site of the former Jewish temple. It would also seem that in it there was the statue of Hadrian of which Christian writers speak. On the coins, as deities of the city, besides Jupiter are mentioned: Bacchus, Serapis, Astarte, the Dioscuri. A sanctuary of Aphrodite (Astarte) stood on the place where, according to the Christian tradition, the sepulchre of Christ had been; or, according to another version, a sanctuary of Jupiter on the site of the sepulchre, and a sanctuary of Venus on the site of the cross of Christ.

The complete ethnicizing of Jerusalem was the actual accomplishment of a scheme which previously Antiochus Epiphanes had in vain attempted. In another respect also the enactments of Hadrian were similar to those of the former attempt. The prohibition of circumcision, which had been issued probably even before the war, and was directed not specially against the Jews (see above, p. 292), was now without doubt continued in force. It was only under Antoninus Pius that the Jews were again allowed to circumcise their children (see above, p. 292). The Jewish tradition, which certainly refers to this prohibition, affirms that even the observance of the Sabbath and the study of the law had been forbidden. Whether this statement be reliable or not, the prohibition of circumcision was, according to Jewish notions, equivalent to a prohibition of the Jewish religion generally. So long as this prohibition was maintained and acted on, there was no use speaking of a pacification of the Jewish people. In fact we hear again, even in the time of Antoninus Pius, of an attempted rebellion which had to he put down by strong measures. To the Roman authorities there was here only the choice: either to tolerate the religious ceremonies, or to completely exterminate the people. We may indeed assume that the knowledge which the emperor Antoninus had of this alternative, led him to allow again and grant toleration to the practice of circumcision.

Under Hadrian’s successor, therefore, essentially the same state of matters is seen still to exist as had existed since the time of Vespasian. He did not by any means answer the political ideals of the Jews. But in regard to religious matters they could be satisfied with him. The extinction of their political existence just led to this, that those tendencies obtained the supremacy which represented undiluted Judaism: Pharisaism and Rabbinism.

The development now proceeded forth upon those lines which became prominent in consequence of the great revolution of sentiment that followed the destruction of Jerusalem. Without a political home, grouped together into a unity only by the ideal power of the common law, the Jews continued all the more persistently to hold by and cherish this birth-right in which they all shared. In this way the separation between them and the rest of the world was more and more sharply defined. While, during the period in which Hellenistic Judaism flourished, the boundaries between the Jewish and Graeco-Roman view of the world threatened to melt away, the Jews and their opponents now gave attention with all their combined strength to deepen the cleft even more and more. Jewish Hellenism, which proclaimed the common brotherhood of man, disappeared, and Pharisaic Judaism, which sharply repudiated all communion with the Gentile world, won universal acceptance. But paganism also had become more intolerant: the rush of the masses to the worship of the Jewish God had ceased, partly because of other powerful spiritual forces, pre-eminently that of Chris tianity, which exercised a more potent influence, but partly also because of the civil legislation which, without abrogating the guaranteed toleration of the Jewish religion, imposed legal limitations to the further encroachments of Judaism.

And thus the Jews became more and more what they properly and essentially were: strangers in the pagan world. The restoration of a Jewish commonwealth in the Holy Land was, and continued even to be, a subject of religions hope, which they held by with unconquerable tenacity. The difference between the ideal and the actual, however, was at first, and even after centuries had passed, so marked and severe, that they could enter even their own capital only as strangers. Even in the fourth century it was permitted them only once in the year to enter the city on the 9th Ab, the day of the destruction of Jerusalem, in order that they might be able, on the site of the temple, to pour forth their lamentations. In graphic terms Jerome describes how the Jews on that day were wont to gather in mournful companies, to utter forth their grievous complaints, and by gold to purchase from the Roman watch permission to linger longer in the place of mourning: “Usque ad praesentem diem perfidi coloni post interfectionem servorum et ad extremum filii dei excepto planctu prohibentur ingredi Jerusalem, et ut ruinam suae eis flere liceat civitatis pretio redimunt, ut qui quondam emerant sanguinem Christi emant lacrymas suas et ne fletus quidem eis gratuitus sit. Videas in die, quo capta est a Romanis et diruta Jerusalem, venire populum lugubrem, confluere decrepitas mulierculas et senes pannis annisque obsitos, in corporibus et in habitu suo iram Domini demonstrantes. Congregatur turba miserorum; et patibulo Domini coruscante ac radiante ἀναστάσει ejus, de oliveti monte quoque crucis fulgente vexillo, plangere ruinas templi sui populum miserum et tamen non esse miserabilem: adhuc fletus in genis et livida brachia et sparsi crines, et miles merceden postulat, ut illis flere plus liceat. Et dubitat aliquis, quum haec videat, de die tribulationis et angustiae, de die calamitatis et miseriae, de die tenebrarum et caliginis, de die nebulae et turbinis, de die tubae et clangoris? Habent enim et in luctu tubas, et juxta prophetiam vox sollennitatis versa est in planotum. Ululant super cineres sanctuarii et super altare destructum et super civitates quondam munitas et super excelsos angulos templi, de quibus quondam Jacobum fratrem Domini praecipitaverunt.”

NORIS, Annus et epochae Syromacedonum, iii. 9. 3, ed. Lips. pp. 316–322 (History of the City of Chalcis).

BELLEY, “Observations sur les médailles du tetrarque Zenodore” (Mémoires de l’Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres, first series, vol. xxviii. 1761, pp. 545–556).

MÜNTER, De rebus Ituraeorum, Hafniae 1824 (a comprehensive monograph).

WINER, Biblisches Realwörterb. articles “Abilene” (i. 7 f.) and “Iturea” (i. 622).

SCHENKEL, Bibellexicon, articles “Abilene” and “Iturea.”

RIEHM’S Handwörterbuch des biblischen Altertums, articles “Abilene,” “Iturea,” and “Lysanias.”

HERZOG, Real-Encyclopaedie, 2 Aufl. i. 87–89 (article “Abilene” by Wieseler) and vii. 261 f. (article “Ituräa” by Rüetschi).

CLESS, art “Ituräa” in Pauly’s Real-Encyclopaedie der class. Alterthums-wissenschaft, iv. 337–340.

RITTER, Erdkunde, xvii. 1, pp. 14–16 (on the Itureans).

KUHN, Die städtische und bürgerliche Verfassung des römischen Reichs, ii. (1865), pp. 169–174 (on the dynasties of Chalcis, Abilene, and Iturea).

MARQUARDT, Römische Staatsverwaltung, 2 Aufl. i. 1881, pp. 400–403 (on the dynasties of Chalcis and Abilene).

WIESELER, Beiträge zur richtigen Würdigung der Evangelien (1869), pp. 169–204 (Lysanias of Abilene).

DE SAULOY, “Recherches sur les monnaies des tétrarques héréditaires de la Chalcidène et de l’Abilène” (Wiener numismatische Monatshefte von Egger, 5 Bd. 1 Abth. (1869) pp. 1–34).

REIOHARDT, Numismat. Zeitschrift, edited by Huber and Karabacek, ii. 1870, pp. 247–250 (Review of the treatise of De Saulcy).

RENAN, “Mémoire sur la dynastie des Lysanias d’Abilène” (Mémoires de l’Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres, t. xxvi. 2, 1870, pp. 49–84).

Among the sons of Ishmael there is mentioned in the Old Testament one יְטוּר (Gen. 25:15; 1 Chron. 1:31, 5:19). It is without doubt the same tribe that is referred to in the later history under the name Ἰτουραῖοι or Ἰτυραῖοι. The earliest mention of this people, so far as I know, is to be found in the writings of the Jewish Hellenist Eupolemus (in the middle of the second century before Christ), who mentions the Itureans among the tribes fought against by David. Then we know from Josephus and his authorities, Strabo and Timagenes, that the Jewish king Aristobulus I., B.C. 105–104, fought against the Itureans and took from them a portion of their territory (Antiq. xiii. 11. 3). And from this time onward they are frequently mentioned. They were designated sometimes as Syrians, sometimes as Arabians. The proper names of Iturean soldiers, which are mentioned on Latin inscriptions, are Syrian.—At the time of the Roman conquest they were still an uncivilised robber tribe, but greatly celebrated for their skill as bowmen. Even Caesar made use of Iturean bowmen in the African war. The triumvir Marc Antony had some of them as his bodyguard, and with them he terrorized the Senate to the great scandal of Cicero. Poets and historians speak of the Iturean bowmen down to the later days of the empire.

The districts inhabited by them may not always have been the same. But during the period of which we have fullest and most accurate information about them, they are never spoken of as resident elsewhere than in Mount Lebanon. Christian theologians indeed endeavour to place it as near as possible to Trachonitis on account of Luke 3:1. Even Eusebius has for this reason identified Trachonitis and Iturea. But all historical authorities point most distinctly to Lebanon. So pre-eminently Strabo, who repeatedly designates the Itureans mountaineers and inhabitants of that particular mountain which rises upon the plain of Massyas, and says that they had Chalcis as their capital. The plain of Massyas or Marsyas is the plain between the Lebanon and the Anti-Lebanon, beginning in the north at Laodicea of the Lebanon and stretching south as far as Chalcis. Since the Itureans are often named together with the Arabians, they are to be looked for in the mountain range that bounds the Massyas plain on the east, that is, in the Anti-Lebanon. They appear also in later accounts as inhabitants of the Lebanon. Dio Cassius (xlix. 32) plainly names the older Lysanias king of the Itureans. But he was son and successor of Ptolemy Mennäus, whose kingdom just embraccd the Lebanon and the plain of Massyas with the capital Chalcis (see below, p. 329 f.). On the well-known inscription of the time of Quirinius his subordinate general Q. Aemilius Secundus says of himself: “missu Quirini adversus Ituraeos in Libano monte castellum eorum cepi.” During the time of the Vespasian war, Josephus in his Life, xi., mentions a Οὐᾶρος βασιλικοῦ γένους, ἔκγονος Σοέμου τοῦ περὶ τὸν Λίβανον τετραρχοῦντος. But this Soemus was probably the same as is designated by Dio Cassius and Tacitus the ruler of the Itureans. We never find anywhere any indication that the Itureans had dwelt in any other region than in the Lebanon. The opinion of Wetzstein, that they are to be looked for on the eastern borders of the Hauran, is therefore just as erroneous as the older view that the valley of Dschedur, south of Damascus, had received its name from them. The latter theory is now found on philological grounds to be impossible.

In the last decades before the arrival of Pompey, the Itureans belonged to an important confederacy, which recognised as its head Ptolemy the son of Mennäus (Πτολεμαῖος ὁ Μενναίου); for his kingdom, according to the first passage quoted from Strabo (xvi. 2. 10, p. 753), embraced “the mountain lands of the Itureans” and the plain of “Massyas” with the capital Chalcis. The plain of Massyas runs north as far as Laodicea of Lebanon. But it would seem from the other passages that Ptolemy, like Alexander Jannäus, pushed his conquests beyond this limit. His territory (for to him applies what Strabo, xvi. 2. 18, p. 755, says of the inhabitants of the Lebanon) extended westward to the sea. Botrys and Theuprosopon (Θεοῦ πρόσωπον) belonged to him. Byblus and Berytus were threatened by him. In the east the Damascenes suffered at his hands. In the south the district of Panias, as may be inferred from the history of Zenodorus (Josephus, Antiq. xv. 10. 1–3, compare with this passage also below, p. 333), belonged to him. Indeed in the time of the Jewish king Aristobulus I., the kingdom of the Itureans seems to have embraced even Galilee (see vol. i. of present work, pp. 293, 294). In any case the Itureans were in that direction immediate neighbours of the Jews. We have therefore before us a State constructed precisely in the same fashion as was the Jewish State of that time, only that Ptolemy, son of Mennäus, was in point of civilisation a good way in advance of Alexander Jannäus.

Ptolemy, son of Mennäus, reigned from about B.C. 85 to about B.C. 40. About B.C. 85, from fear of him, the Damascenes called in the aid of Aretas, king of the Arabians (Antiq. xiii. 15. 2; Wars of the Jews, i. 4. 8). About B.C. 78, Aristobulus, son of Queen Alexandra, made a journey to Damascus, avowedly with the object of protecting it against Ptolemy (Antiq. xiii. 16. 3; Wars of the Jews, i. 5. 3). When Pompey arrived, Ptolemy purchased immunity from him by the payment of a thousand talents (Antiq. xiv. 3. 2). Pompey, however, destroyed the fortified places in the Lebanon (Strabo, xvi. 2. 18. p. 755), and undoubtedly also curtailed the territory of Ptolemy in a way similar to that in which he dealt with the Jewish territory. In B.C. 49, Ptolemy took under his personal care the sons and daughters of the Jewish king Aristobulus II., who had been deposed and quite recently murdered by the party of Pompey (Antiq. xiv. 7. 4; Wars of the Jews, i. 9. 2). In B.C. 42, when Cassius had left Syria, Ptolemy supported Antigonus, the son of Aristobulus, in his endeavour to secure to himself the government of Judea (Antiq. xiv. 12. 1). Ptolemy died during the progress of the Parthian war, B.C. 40 (Antiq. xiv. 13. 3; Wars of the Jews, i. 13. 1). As he is never designated “king” (Josephus, Antiq. xiv. 7. 4: δυναστεύων), it is possible that the coins, which for the most part have the incomplete superscription Πτολεμαίου τετράρχου ἀρχ(ιερέως), belong to him.

Ptolemy was succeeded by his son Lysanias (Josephus, Antiq. xiv. 13. 3; Wars of the Jews, i. 13. 1), who therefore obtained the kingdom with the same extent of territory as had been left to his father by Pompey. Dio Cassius styles him “King of the Itureans (Dio Cassius, xlix. 32). His reign falls in the time of Antony, who also laid the Itureans under a heavy tribute (Appian, Civ. v. 7). At the instigation of Cleopatra, Antony caused Lysanias to be executed in B.C. 36 (on the reckoning of the date, see vol. i. p. 402), on the pretence that he had been conspiring with the Parthians, and gifted a large portion of his territory to Cleopatra (Josephus, Antiq. xv. 4. 1; Wars of the Jews, i. 22, 3; Dio Cassius, xlix. 32). Since Dio Cassius and Porphyry call him “king,” it is doubtful whether the coins bearing the superscription Λυσανίου τετράρχου καὶ ἀρχιερέως belong to him, for there were one or more younger princes of this name. At the same time writers were accustomed to apply the title of βασιλεύς in a loose way even to tetrarchs.

The further history of the country cannot be followed out in more detail. But it is certain that the once important kingdom of Ptolemy and Lysanias was gradually cut up more and more into smaller districts. We can quite definitely distinguish four different districts, all of which originally belonged to the one kingdom of Chalcis.

1. About the year 23 B.C. (with regard to the chronology, see vol. i. p. 409) Josephus tells of a certain Zenodorus who had taken on lease the possessions that previously belonged to Lysanias (Antiq. xv. 10. 1: ἐμεμίσθωτο τὸν οἶκον τοῦ Λυσανίου; Wars of the Jews, i. 20. 4: ὁ τὸν Λυσανίου μεμισθωμένος οἶκον). This Zenodorus took part in the robberies in Trachonitis, on account of which Trachonitis was separated from the dominions under the sway of Zenodorus, and was conferred upon Herod (Antiq. xv. 10. 1–2; Wars of the Jews, i. 20. 4). Three years later, in B.C. 20, Zenodorus died, and then Augustus conferred upon Herod also the territories over which he had ruled, namely, Ulatha and Panias (Antiq. xv. 10. 3: τὴν τούτου μοῖραν οὐκ ὀλίγην οὖσαν … Οὐλάθαν καὶ Πανιάδα καὶ τὴν πέριξ χώραν; compare Wars of the Jews, i. 20. 4; Dio Cassius, liv. 9: Ζηνοδώρου τινὸς τετραρχίαν) A difficulty arises here inasmuch as Zenodorus is mentioned at first only as lessee or farmer of the οἶκος Λυσανίου, whereas mention is afterwards made of his own country, Dio Cassius speaking of his tetrarchy, which was obtained by Herod. The difficulty might be explained by regarding the two as different territories. But against this may be alleged the circumstance that Josephus most decidedly, at least in his first reference to him, would have designated him by his own territory, if that territory had been different from the one which he had farmed out. We are therefore constrained to regard the two as identical. That the district of Ulatha and Panias had formerly belonged to the dominion of Lysanias, i.e. to the Iturean kingdom, is highly probable, since the latter extended as far as the borders of the Jewish country (see above, p. 330). It seems therefore that Zenodorus, after the death of Lysanias, had received on rent a portion of his territory from Cleopatra, and that after Cleopatra’s death this “rented” domain, subject to tribute, was continued to him with the title of tetrarch.

On a monument to the dynasty of Lysanias at Heliopolis, of the inscription on which we have indeed only fragments, mention is made of a “Zenodorus, son of the tetrarch Lysanias.” The reference has almost universally been supposed to apply to our Zenodorus, and he has therefore been regarded as a son of the Lysanias executed by Antony. Although this also is uncertain, because Lysanias is designated as tetrarch (see above, p. 332), yet there is proved from the inscriptions a genealogical connection between the two families, in which the same name may have been often repeated.—It may be taken as certain that the coins with the superscription Ζηνοδώρου τετράρχου ἀρχιερέως belong to our Zenodorus. They have the year numbers ΠΣ, ΒΠΣ, ΖΠ[Σ]], i.e. 280, 282, 287 aera Seleuc. or B.C. 32, 30, and 25, which precisely fit our hypothesis.

After the death of Herod the Great, a portion of the former tetrarchy of Zenodorus went to Herod’s son, Philip (Antiq. xvii, II. 4; Wars of the Jews, ii. 6. 3). This is the portion referred to by the evangelist Luke (Luke 3:1), when he says that Philip was governor of Iturea (τῆς Ἰτουραίας).—The tetrarchy of Philip was subsequently obtained by Agrippa I. and Agrippa II.

2. Another tetrarchy was sliced off from the earlier Iturean empire in the East between Chalcis and Damascus to form the district of Abila in the Lebanon. This Abila, according to the Itinerarium Antonii and the Peutinger tables, lay 18 mil. pass. from Damascus on the road from that city to Heliopolis, consequently on the site of the present village of Suk on the Barada, where are still to be seen the ruins of an old city. In the neighbourhood on the wall of rock is engraved an inscription, on which it is said that the Emperors Marcus Aurelius and L. Verus viam fluminis vi abruptam interciso monte restituerunt … impendiis Abilenorum. In the same neighbourhood, too, they point out the so-called grave of Abel (Nebi Abil), evidently a legendary creation, which had its origin in the name of the place Abel. The identity of Abila and Suk, therefore, is placed beyond all doubt. Much more uncertain is this identification with our Abila of a city Leucas, urged by many numismatists, of which several coins are still extant. In support of this, reference is made to a coin on which, besides the words [Λευκ]αδιων Κλαυ[διεων], is to be read also the name of the river Χρυσοροας. In ancient times, certainly, the Barada was called Chrysorrhoas, and it had upon its banks, besides Damascus, no other city than Abila. But the name Chrysorrhoas is also met with elsewhere, e.g. on the inscription of the Gerasenes, Div. II. vol. i. p. 118; and it should be particularly observed that on the coin in question the designation of the city is restored only by means of filling up the lacunae.

Our Abila was before the time of Caligula the capital of a tetrarchy which is often spoken of by Josephus. When Caligula ascended the throne in A.D. 37, Agrippa I, besides the tetrarchy of Philip, received also “the tetrarchy of Lysanias” (Antiq. xviii. 6. 10: τὴν Λυσανίου τετραρχίαν). By this is meant the tetrarchy of Abila. For when Claudius came to the throne in A.D. 41, he confirmed and increased the domain of Agrippa by handing over to him the whole empire of his grandfather Herod as his hereditary possession, and adding thereto: Ἀβίλαν τὴν Λυσανίου καὶ ὁπόσα ἐν τῷ Λιβάνῳ ὄρει (Antiq. xix. 5. 1; compare Wars of the Jews, ii. 11. 5: βασιλείαν τὴν Λυσανίου καλουμένην). After the death of Agrippa I., in A.D. 44, his territory was administered by Roman procurators. But in A.D. 53, in the thirteenth year of Claudius, Agrippa II. obtained what had been the tetrarchy of Philip, together with Abila, the tetrarchy of Lysanias (Antiq. xx. 7. 1: σὺν Ἀβίλᾳ, Λυσανία δὲ αὕτη ἐγεγόνει τετραρχία. Compare Wars of the Jews, ii. 12. 8: τήν τε Λυσανίου βασιλείαν).

From these passages we see that the tetrarchy of Abila had belonged previously to A.D. 37 to a certain Lysanias. And seeing that Josephus nowhere previously makes any mention of another Lysanias, except the contemporary of Antony and Cleopatra, B.C. 40–36, theological criticism has endeavoured in various ways to show that there had not afterwards been any other, and that the tetrarchy of Abilene had its name from that older Lysanias. But this is impossible. Lysanias I. had possessed the Iturean kingdom with the same boundaries as his father Ptolemy. The capital of his kingdom was Chalcis (compare also especially the passage quoted from Porphyry on p. 332). The domain of Abila did indeed belong to that territory; for the empire of Ptolemy bordered on the territory of Damascus. But it certainly formed only a small portion of that important kingdom which embraced almost all of the Lebanon. It is therefore impassible that the district of Abila could have been characterized as “the tetrarchy of Lysanias.” It must therefore be assumed as certain that at a later date the district of Abilene had been severed from the kingdom of Chalcis, and had been governed by a younger Lysanias as tetrarch.

The existence of a younger Lysanias is also witnessed to by the following inscription found at Abila:—

Ὑπὲρ τῆς τῶν κυρίων Σε[βαστῶν]

σωτηρίας καὶ τοῦ σύμ[παντος]

αὐτῶν οἴκου, Νυμφαῖος ….

Λυσανίου τετράρχου ἀπελε[ύθερος]

τὴν ὁδὸν κτίσας κ.τ.λ.

Since the correctness of the filling up of the word Σε[βαστῶν] cannot be doubted, the inscription cannot be placed earlier than the time of Tiberius. For the title Augusti in the plural was never before given. The first contemporary Σεβαστοί were Tiberius and his mother Livia, who from the death of Augustus, in consequence of the last expressed wish of her husband, took the title of Augusta. In the time of Tiberius, therefore, at least fifteen years after the death of Lysanias I, it is, indeed, hardly conceivable that a freedman of his would have built a street and erected a temple, as is said on the inscription. Undoubtedly Nyraphäus was the freedman of the younger tetrarch Lysanias.—Also the inscription from Heliopolis, quoted on p. 334, makes it probable that there had been several princes of the name of Lysanias.—The evangelist Luke is thoroughly correct when he assumes (Luke 3:1) that in the fifteenth year of Tiberius there was a Lysanias tetrarch of Abilene.

The tetrarchy of Lysanias I. remained in possession of Agrippa II. down to his death in A.D. 100; but the name of Lysanias long clung to the place. Also in Ptolemaeus, v. 15. 22, Abila is called Ἄβιλα ἐπικληθεῖσα Λυσανίου, as may be supposed because Lysanias was not only a previous possessor, but the new founder of the city (compare Caesarea Philippi).

3. The domains of Zenodorus and Lysanias lay on the circumference of the earlier Iturean kingdom. In the time of Quirinius, his subordinate general, Q. Aemilius Secundus, undertook a warlike expedition against the Itureans proper, as is told us on an inscription (“missu Quirini adversus Ituraeos in Libano monte castellum eorum cepi”). Perhaps just at that time a breaking up of the Iturean kingdom took place. At any rate, in the time of Claudius we find a kingdom of Chalcis and a kingdom of Iturea alongside of one another. In A.D. 38, Caligula deprived a certain Soemus of the government of the Itureans (Dio Cassius, lix. 12: Σοαίμῳ τὴν τῶν Ἰτυραίων τῶν Ἀράβων … ἐχαρίσατο). This Soemus died in A.D. 49, and then his territories were incorporated with the province of Syria. Tacitus, Annales, xii. 23: “Ituraeique et Judaei defunctis regibus Sohaemo atque Agrippa provinciae Suriae additi.” But at the same time a Herod reigned in Chalcis, so that now the one kingdom of Ptolemy and Lysanias was partitioned into, at least, four divisions. The kingdom of Soemus is supposed to have embraced the northern part, from about Heliopolis to Laodicea in the Lebanon.

When, upon the death of Soemus, his territory was confiscated, it would seem that his son Varus (or Noarus, as he is called in Wars of the Jews, ii. 18. 6) was portioned off with a small part of his ancestral domains, and even this he held only till A.D. 53. In that year Claudius bestowed upon Agrippa, in addition to the tetrarchies of Philip and Lysanias, τὴν Οὐάρου γενομένην ἐπαρχίαν (Wars of the Jews, ii. 12. 8; in regard to the date, Antiq. xx. 7. 1). This Varus was, according to Josephus, Life, xi., probably the son of that Soemus who died in A.D. 49 (Οὐᾶρος βασιλικοῦ γένους, ἔκγονος Σοέμου τοῦ περὶ τὸν Λίβανον τετραρχοῦντος).

After the Iturean territories had been amalgamated with the province of Syria, regular Roman troops were enlisted there. We meet with Iturean alae and cohortes from the last decades of the first century in this farthest distant province of the Roman empire.

4. The history of Chalcis, the centre of the former Iturean kingdom, is unknown to us from the death of Cleopatra down to the date of Claudius’ accession. The Emperor Claudius, on his coming to the throne in A.D. 41, gifted it to a grandson of Herod the Great, who was also called Herod. He was a brother of Agrippa I, and so a son of Aristobulus, the son of Herod the Great.

Herod of Chalcis had the title βασιλεύς, and praetorian rank. He was twice married. His first wife was Mariamme, a granddaughter of Herod the Great. By her he had a son, Aristobulus, who married Salome, the daughter of Herodias, and widow of the tetrarch Philip, and obtained from Nero the government of Lesser Armenia. The second wife of Herod was Berenice, the daughter of his brother Agrippa, who gave her to him in marriage after the death of Marcus, son of Alexander, the alabarch of Alexandria, to whom she was first betrothed. By her he had two sons, Berenicianus and Hyrcanus.

At the assembly of princes which was once convened by Agrippa I. at Tiberias, but had been so rudely treated by the Roman governor Marsus, we find our Herod also present. After the death of Agrippa I. in A.D. 44, he besought from the emperor—and this is the point that makes him an object of interest in the Jewish history—the oversight of the temple and the temple treasury, as well as the right of nominating the high priest. His prayer was granted, and he exercised his right by frequent appointments and depositions of high priests.

On his coins he is named Φιλοκλαύδιος—a natural compliment to the emperor, to whom he owed all his advancement. Whether an honorary inscription of the Athenians to a Ἡρώδης Εὐσεβὴς καὶ Φιλόκαισαρ, refers to him, seems doubtful.

He died after a reign of about seven years, in the 8th year of Claudius, A.D. 48. His nephew, Agrippa II., obtained his kingdom, but probably only at a somewhat later period.

Agrippa continued in possession of Chalcis only till A.D. 53, when he, in return for the surrender of this country, obtained a larger kingdom: The history of Chalcis thereafter recedes again into obscurity. In the time of Vespasian there is, indeed, a King Aristobulus of Chalcidice mentioned, who possibly may be identical with the son of Herod of Chalcis and king of Lesser Armenia. But even if this were so, it is very doubtful whether by Chalcidice we are to understand the territory of our Chalcis ad Libanum, or the territory of Chalcis ad Belum. On both see above, p. 329 f.

The city of Chalcis, according to the coins, has an era beginning with A.D. 92, which probably was the year of its incorporation with the province of Syria.

RELAND, Palestina, pp. 90–95.

VINOENT, Commerce and Navigation of the Ancients in the Indian Ocean, London 1807, vol. ii. pp. 273–276 (was not obtainable by me).

QUATREMÈRE, “Mémoire sur les Nabatéens” (Nouveau Journal asiatique, t. xv. 1835, pp. 5–55, 97–137, 209–240).

ROBINSON, Biblical Researches in Palestine, ii. 558 ff.

WILLIAMS IN SMITH’S Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography, art,“Nabataei,” vol. ii. 392–394.

BITTER, Erdkunde von Asien, Thl. xii. (1846), pp. 111–140.

CLESS, art. “Nabataei,” in Pauly’s Real-Encyclopaedie der class. Alterthumswissenschaft, Bd. v. (1848) pp. 377–384.

WINER, Biblisches Realwörterbuch, art. “Nabatäer.”

DUO DE LUYNES, “Monnaies des Nabatéens” (Revue Numismatique, 1858, pp. 292–316, 362–385, pl. xiv., xv., xvi.).

The Nabateans and Professor CHWOLSON (Journal of Sacred Literature and Biblical Record, new series, vol. i. 1862, pp. 103–115).

KUHN, Die städtische und bürgerliche Verfassung des römischen Reichs, Bd. ii. (1865) pp. 165–169.


DE VOGÜÉ, “Monnaies des rois de Nabatène (Revue Numismatique, 1868, pp. 153–168, pl. v.); also reprinted in Mélanges d’archéologie orientale, Paris 1868.

DE VOGÜÉ, Syris centrales, Inscriptions sémitiques (Paris 1868), pp. 100–124; comp. Schröder, Zeitschrift des deutschen Palastina-Vereins, xxxviii. 1884, p. 532 f.

NÖLDEKE, art. “Nabatäer,” in Schenkel’s Bibellexicon, Bd. iv. (1872) p. 269 f.

DE SAULCY, “Numismatique des rois Nabatéens de Pétra” (Annuaire de la Société françaiss de Numismatique et d’Archéologie, t. iv. 1, 1873, pp. 1–35). Supplements to this: (1) Annuaire de la Sociétéfrançaise de Numismatique et d’Archéologie, t. v. (=seconde série, t i) fasc. 5, 1881, p. 462 sq. (unreadable coins, perhaps of Aretas and Sekailath). (2) Mélanges de Numismatique, t iii. 1882, pp. 193–197 (a coin of Aretas and two of Sylläus?).

GRÄTZ, “Die Anfänge der Nabatäerherrschaft” (Monatsschrift für Geschichte und Wissenschaft des Judenthums, 1875, pp. 49–67).

SCHRADER, Keilinschriften und Geschichtsforschung, 1878, pp. 99–116.

KAUTZSCH, art. “Nabatäer,” in Riehm’s Handworterbuch des biblischen Alterthums.

MARQUARDT, Römische Staatsverwaltung, Bd. i. 2 Aufl. 1881, pp. 404 f., 431 f.

SACHAU, “Eine nabatäische Inschrift aus Dmâr” (Zeitschrift der deutschen morgenländ. Gesellsch. 1884, pp. 635–542).—In addition, CLERMONTGANNEAU, Revue critique, 1885, Nr. 5, pp. 88–92, and Nr. 9, p. 176 sq. DE VÖGUE, Comptes rendus de l’Académie des inscriptions et belles-lettres de l’année, 1885 (IV série, t. xiii.), pp. 45–52.

DOUGHTY, Documents épigraphiques recueillis dans le nord de l’Arabie, Paris 1884.

BERGER, “Nouvelles inscriptions nabatéennes de Medaïn Salih” (Comptes rendus de l’Académie des inscriptions et belles-lettres de l’année (IV série, t. xii.), pp. 377–393.

HALÉVY, “Inscriptions nabatéennes” (Revue des études juives, i. ix. 1884, pp. 8–16), known only from quotation in Doughty.

CLERMONT-GANNEAU, “Les noms royaux nabatéens employés comme noms divins” (Revue archéologique, III série, t. v. 1885, pp. 170–178).

NEUBAUER, “On some newly-discovered Temanite and Nabataean Inscriptions” (Studia Biblica, Oxford 1885, pp. 209–232).

MOMMSEN, Römische Geschichte, v. 1885, p. 476 ff.

EUTING, Nabatäische Inschriften aus Arabien, Berlin 1886; in this work at pp. 81–89: GUTSCHMID, Verzeichniss der nabatäischen Könige—the most complete collection of materials.—Euting gives the same inscriptions for the most part as Doughty and Berger, but much more correctly.

SORLIN-DORIGNY and BABELON, “Monnaies Nebatéennes inédites” (Revue Numismatique, troisième sèrie, t. v. 1887, pp. 369–377).

Separate single Nabatean coins have been communicated by Levy, Numismat. Zeitschrift, Bd. iii. 1871, pp. 445–448, and Olshausen, Monatsberichte der Berliner Akademie aus dem Jahrs, 1874, p. 185. A Nabatean inscription from Puteoli is given by Gildemeister, Zeitschrift der DMG. 1869, pp. 150–154; comp, also, Levy, Zeitschrift der DMG. pp. 652–654; Nöldeke, Ibid. 1884, pp. 144, 654. Other examples are given by Renan, Journal asiatique, VII série, t. ii. 1873, pp. 366–382. One inscription from Sidon is given by Levy, in Zeitschrift der DMG. 1869, pp. 435–440.

Greek Aretas coins are given in Eckhel, Doctr. Num. iii. 330; Mionnet, Description de médailles, v. 284 sq.; Visconti, Iconographie grecque, t ii. (p. 444 sq.=atlas, pl. 48, n. 12; Lenormant, Trésor de Numismatique, p. 117, pl. lvi. n. 17–19. A Latin coin of Scaurus, with reference to the subjugation of Aretas, in Eckhel, Doctr. Num. v. 131; Babelon, Monnaies de la république romaine, i. 120 sq.

On the Aretas referred to in the New Testament (2 Cor. 11:32), see especially Job. Gottlob Heyne, De ethnarcha Aretae Arabum regis, 2 vols. Wittemb. 1755; Anger, De temporum in actis apostolorum ratione (1833), pp. 173–182; Wieseler, Chronologie des apostol. Zeitalters (1848), pp. 167–175, and the articles on Aretas in Winer’s Realwörterbuch and Herzog’s Real-Encyclopaedie (the latter by Wieseler).

Besides the Syrian empire in the north, and the Egyptian empire in the south, Palestine had during the Graeco-Roman period a third powerful neighbour: the Nabatean kingdom in the south and east. The history of this kingdom can now be set forth in a tolerably connected manner only when the scattered references to it in early writers, particularly in Josephus, are filled out by means of the rich materials afforded by coins and inscriptions. Information regarding the coins has been imparted by the Duc de Luynes (1858), De Vogüé (1868), and De Saulcy (1873); information regarding the inscriptions by De Vogüé (1868), Doughty (1884), Berger (who in 1884 published the materials gathered by the scientific traveller Huber, who perished as a victim in the prosecution of his calling), and Euting (1885). The inscriptions of De Vogüé belong to the district of the Hauran, and therefore to the north of the Nabatean kingdom; those published by Doughty, Berger, and Euting were found for the most part at el-Hegr. (=Medain Salih), one of the southernmost points of the kingdom of Nabatea. The latter are specially numerous and important, since almost all of them are dated according to the years of the reigns of the Nabatean kings Aretas and Malchus. The correct reading of them was for the first time made possible by the careful copies of Euting. This scholar has also correctly determined the meaning of some Nabatean number-signs, and has thereby made corrections upon several conjectured dates in the earlier readings of the coins and inscriptions. The whole material from writers, coins, and inscriptions has been collected together by Gutschmid in an excursus to Euting’s works. To his full and informing treatise, we are largely indebted for the facts in the following sketch.

About the nation of the Nabateans (Ναβαταῖοι, נבטו) we know so little that we can point to no certain indication of its nationality. The language of the coins and inscriptions, which without exception are in Aramaic, seems to confirm Quatremère’s supposition that they were Aramaeans. On the other hand, they are uniformly designated by early writers Arabians, and indeed not only by those writing at a distance, but also by such as Josephus, who must have been quite familiar with the distinction between Aramaeans and Arabians. Besides this, it should be noted also that the names on the inscriptions are distinctly Arabian. The idea therefore has rightly been insisted upon principally by Nöldeke that they were Arabians, but that they had made use for literary purposes of the Aramaic as the language of culture at that time, because the Arabic had not yet been developed into a literary language.

Regarding the history of the Nabateans previous to the Hellenic period, we really know next to nothing. Their identity with the נְבָיוֹת who are mentioned in Gen. 35:13, 28:9, 36:3, 1 Chron. 1:29, Isa. 60:7, as an Arabian tribe, is indeed probable but by no means certain. Nor do we obtain much further information from the cruciform inscriptions. The first actually reliable information about the Nabateans comes to us at the beginning of the Hellenistic period. We find them then, where in earlier times the Edomites had been settled, between the Dead Sea and the Aelanitic Gulf in the district of Petra, the ancient םֶלַע of the Edomites. When Antigonus, in B.C. 312, had driven Ptolemy Lagus out of Coele-Syria, he sent his general Athenäus with 4000 foot soldiers and 600 cavalry against the Nabateans. Athenäus threw down their stronghold Petra, and took from it great spoil. But in consequence of his own carelessness his army was soon thereafter almost completely annihilated by a night attack of the Nabateans; only fifteen horsemen, and even these mostly wounded, are said to have escaped. Antigonus thereupon sent his son Demetrius against the Nabateans with a new army. But even Demetrius was not able to win any decisive victory. After a fruitless siege of Petra he began again his homeward march, for he had to content himself with arranging for hostages, and taking pledges from the Nabateans that they would maintain friendship. Diodorus, who reports all this to us, gives on this occasion also a description of the Nabateans. They were even then uncivilised nomads, practising no agricultural arts, pursuing no cattle rearing and trade, and evidently still without kings. But gradually culture must have made its way more and more amongst them, until they came to have a sort of civil and political order under regal government. Their dominion was now extended toward the north and toward the south Their capital continued to be that Petra which so early as the time of Antigonus had formed their strongest place of refuge.

The first prince (τύραννος) of the Nabateans of whom we know anything is that Aretas (Aretas I.) with whom the high priest Jason in B.C. 169 in vain sought shelter (2 Macc. 5:8). Since Aretas is designated as τύραννος it would seem that the Nabatean princes then had not yet assumed the title of king.—After the outbreak of the Maccabean revolution the Nabatean princes assumed a friendly attitude toward the leaders of the Jewish national party (Judas, B.C. 164; Jonathan, B.C. 160). See 1 Macc. 5:25, 9:35. The country under their rule now extended as far as to the district east of the Jordan.

The kingdom of the Nabateans, however, did not rise into greater importance until the end of the second century before Christ, when the fall of the empire of the Ptolemies and the Seleucid dynasty made possible the founding of a powerful independent commonwealth upon their borders. In Justin’s abstract from Trogus Pompeius it is said of the period about B.C. 110–100 (Justin, xxxix. 5. 5–6) that this kingdom of Syria and Egypt had become so enfeebled, “ut adsiduis proeliis consumpti in contemptum finitimorum venerint praedaeque Arabum genti, inbelli antea, fuerint: quorum rex Erotimus fiducia septingentorum filiorum, quos ex paelicibus susceperat, divisis exercitibus nunc Aegyptum, nunc Syriam infestabat magnumque nomen Arabum viribus finitimorum exsanguibus fecerat.” This Erotimus therefore ought to be regarded as the founder of the royal Nabatean dynasty.

An Aretas II. (Ἀρέτας ὁ Ἀράβων βασιλεύς) is spoken of at the time of the siege of Gaza by Alexander Jannäus in B.C. 96. He had promised help to the Gazites, but the city fell into the hands of Alexander before Aretas could afford assistance (Josephus, Antiq. xiii. 13. 3).

A couple of years later, about B.C. 90, Alexander Jannäus attacked King Obedas I. (Ὀβέδαν τὸν Ἀράβων Βασιλέα), but suffered at his hands a crushing defeat on the east of the Jordan (Josephus, Antiq. xiii. 13. 5; Wars of the Jews, i 4. 4). De Saulcy, Gutschmid, and Babelon think that to this Obedas I. should be ascribed certain coins with the superscription עבדת מלך נבטו.

Again, another couple of years later, Antiochus XII advanced from Coele-Syria against the king of the Arabians, whose name is not mentioned. This time also the Arabians were victorious. Antiochus himself fell in the battle at Cana (Josephus, Antiq. xiii. 15. 1; Wars of the Jews, i. 4. 7). By the unnamed king of the Arabians we are to understand Aretas III., of whom Josephus immediately afterwards tells that he, just in consequence of the death of Antiochus, succeeded in gaining possession of Coele-Syria and Damascus, and then gained a victory over Alexander Jannäus near Adida (Josephus, Antiq. xiii. 15. 2; Wars of the Jews, i. 4. 8). The power of the Nabatean kings was thus now, about B.C. 85, extended as far as Damascus. To our Aretas III. the Numismatists have rightly assigned the coins with the superscription, Βασιλέως Ἀρέτου Φιλέλληνος. These can belong to no other Aretas, for they were minted in Damascus; and not indeed to the younger Aretas IV., since he called himself “the Friend of his People.” The coins witness therefore to the prevalence of Hellenism at that period in the Nabatean kingdom.—In the time of this Aretas there occurred also the first collision with the Romans. We know from the Jewish history that Aretas, in the conflict between Hyrcanus and Aristobulus, sided with the party of Hyrcanus, supported him with his troops, and laid siege to Aristobulus in Jerusalem; but then, at the command of the Roman general Scaurus, he withdrew, and on his return march was defeated by Aristobulus (Josephus, Antiq. xiv. 1. 4–2. 3; Wars of the Jews, i. 6. 2–3). Thereupon Pompey had made a resolve to go himself against Aretas. But during his march to Petra he was obliged by the hostile attitude of Aristobulus to make his way back to Judea (Antiq. xiv. 3. 3–4). After the conquest of Jerusalem, Pompey made over the province of Syria to Scaurus (Antiq. xiv. 4. 5); and this general was the first to lead an expedition against Petra, but obtained from Aretas no more than the payment of a sum of money (Antiq. xiv. 5. 1; Wars of the Jews, i. 8. 1). Only to this extent was the subjugation of Aretas carried, of which Pompey had boasted, and which was gloried over upon a coin struck in memory of the event The city of Damascus, on the very first appearance of the Romans in Syria, had been laid siege to by the legates of Pompey (Josephus, Antiq. xiv. 2. 3; Wars of the Jews, i. 6. 2), and from that time onward continued under Roman suzerainty.—The period of the reign of Aretas III. extends, according to the hitherto prevailing view, from somewhere about B.C. 85 to B.C. 60. On account of the similarity between his portrait and that of Aretas Philellen, some of the Nabatean coins with the superscription חרתת מלך נבטו have been ascribed to him. On one we meet with the number 17 or 18 (so Euting-Gutschmid, not as was formerly read, 32 or 33).

In B.C. 55 Gabinius undertook an expedition against the Nabateans. Whether at that time Aretas or his successor Malchus occupied the throne is not stated by Josephus (Antiq. xiv. 6. 4; Wars of the Jews, i. 8. 7).

Malchus I. (Μάλχος or Μάλιχος, see Nöldeke in Euting, Nabatäische Inschriften, p. 63) reigned from B.C. 50 to B.C. 28. In B.C. 47 he placed cavalry at the service of Caesar for the Alexandrian war (Bell. Alex. i.). When the Parthians conquered Palestine in B.C. 40, Herod wished to take refuge with Malchus, but was not received by him (Josephus, Antiq. xiv. 14. 1–2; Wars of the Jews, i. 14. 1–2). On account of the aid given by him to the Parthians, Ventidius exacted from him a tribute in B.C. 39 (Dio Cassius, xlviii. 41). Antony bestowed a portion of his territory upon Cleopatra (Dio Cassius, xlix. 32; Plutarch, Anton. 36; Josephus, Wars of the Jews, i. 18. 4). In B.C. 32 Malchus sent to Antony auxiliary troops for the Actean war (Plutarch, Anton. 61). Since he no longer paid the tribute for the portion granted to Cleopatra, war was waged against him by Herod at the instigation of Antony. The war, which at the beginning was favourable to the Arabians, ended in their utter overthrow in B.C. 32–31 (Josephus, Antiq. xv. 5; Wars of the Jews, i. 19). The last that we hear of Malchus is that he promised the aged Hyrcanus to support him in the revolt planned against Herod in B.C. 30 (Antiq. xv. 6. 2–3).—To our Malchus De Vogüé thinks a Nabatean inscription at Bozra should be referred, in which “the eleventh year of King Muliku” is spoken of (למלכו מלכא 11 שנת). Renan finds this same Malchus (מלכו מלך נבטו) on an inscription which has been discovered at Puteoli.

Obodas II., about B.C. 28–9, was king during the campaign of Aelius Gallus against the southern Arabians, B.C. 25–24, in which campaign a thousand Nabatean auxiliary troops took part. He made over the concerns of government wholly to his ἐπίτροπος Syllaeus, who gave to Aeliua Gallus evil counsel as to the course of march that he should take (Strabo, xvi. pp. 780–782). Obodas is still spoken of as king in the last days of Herod, when Syllaeus went to Jerusalem to treat for the hand of Salome, the sister of Herod (Antiq. xvi. 7. 6; Wars of the Jews, i. 24. 6), and when Herod undertook an expedition against the Arabians (Antiq. xvi. 9. 1 and 4). Just about that time, B.C. 9 (?), Obodas died it is supposed by poison administered to him by Syllaeus (Antiq. xvi 9. 4). Some coins have been communicated by De Saulcy.

Aretas IV., whose original name was Aeneas, from B.C. 9 till A.D. 40, succeeded Obodas immediately in the possession of the throne (Antiq. xvi. 9. 4). Because of his assuming the government of his own accord, Augustus was at first indignant, but afterwards recognised him as king (Antiq. xvi. 10. 9). Aretas repeatedly preferred accusations against Syllaeus before Augustus (Antiq. xvii. 3. 2; Wars of the Jews, i. 29. 3), and in consequence of these complaints Syllaeus was put to death in Rome (Strabo, xvi. p. 782; Nicholas of Damascus in Müller, Fragm. hist, graec. iii. 351). When, after the death of Herod in B.C. 4, the governor Varus was obliged to fit out a warlike expedition against the Jews, Aretas contributed auxiliary troops to his army (Antiq. xvii. 10. 9: Wars of the Jews, ii. 5. 1).—From the long reign of Aretas only a few incidents belonging to its latest period have come down to us. The tetrarch Herod Antipas had a daughter of Aretas for his wife, and her he subsequently divorced in order to marry Herodias. The enmity occasioned thereby between the two princes was further inflamed by disputes regarding boundaries. An open conflict followed, in which the army of Herod was defeated by the troops of Aretas. Owing to his having proceeded at his own instance, Aretas was to have been chastised by the governor Vitellius at the instigation of the Emperor Tiberius. But when Vitellius, on his march against Petra, received in Jerusalem the tidings of the death of Tiberius he turned back, leaving his task unperformed (Antiq. xviii. 5.1 and 3). These events therefore belong to the latest years of the reign of Tiberius, A.D. 36–37. At a period not much later occurred Paul’s flight from Damascus, at which time Damascus was under a governor (ἐθνάρχης) of King Aretas (2 Cor. 11:32). We learn from this statement that now again Damascus belonged to the domain of the Arabian king. This is also confirmed by the fact that from the time of Caligula and Claudius no coins of Damascus are known having the image of the Roman emperor. Compare Div. II. vol. i. pp. 97, 98. Probably Caligula, who was induced to the performance of such acts of grace, had restored the city to Aretas.—Of no other Nabatean king have we so rich materials in coins and inscriptions as of Aretas IV. Among the inscriptions of el-Hegr=Medain-Salih, which Doughty, Huber, and, most correctly of all, Euting have communicated, there are found no fewer than twenty which are dated from the reign of this Aretas, most of which are in a good state of preservation. The same Aretas is probably also referred to in an inscription at Sidon, and on the two inscriptions from Puteoli. His name also occurs not infrequently on coins. On the inscriptions at el-Hegr he is constantly called חרתת מלך נבטו רחם עמה, “Charitheth, king of the Nabateans, who loves his people” (Rachem-ammeh). It is the same also, as a rule, upon the coins. The title Rachem-ammeh is an expression of a national patriotic sentiment, and embraces an indirect refusal or repudiation of such titles as Φιλορώμαιος or Φιλόκαισαρ (Gutschmid, p. 85). That this very Aretas, Rachem-ammeh, is identical with Aretas IV. may be regarded as certain. For the year of this reign as given on the inscriptions of el-Hegr reach down to the year 48, and indeed the twenty-eighth year is written on both inscriptions (Euting, No. 16 and 17) in words, שנת ארבעין ותמונא לחרתת מלך נבטו רחם עמה, so that a doubt in regard to the number is impossible. The coins (also according to Euting-Gutschmid, p. 85) come down to the year 48; but only Aretas IV. can have reigned for so long a time. And there is thus also a proof supplied that the Aretas mentioned in the last years of Herod the Great is identical with the opponent of Herod Antipas.

Abias, ὁ Ἀράβων βασιλεύς, in the time of Claudius undertook a warlike expedition against Izates of Adiabene, in which he was aided by the very subjects of Izates, who were disgusted at his conversion to Judaism. Abias was conquered by Izates, and in order to escape falling into his enemy’s hands took his own life (Antiq. xx. 4. 1).—In Gutschmid’s list this Abias is not inserted (or is overlooked?). But certainly the fact is remarkable that a Nabatean king takes the field against the Adiabene lying on the other side of the Euphrates.—In another place, however, Josephus says expressly that Ναβατηνή stretched from the Red Sea to the Euphrates.

Malchus II., about A.D. 48–71, in A.D. 67 contributed auxiliary troops to the army of Vespasian for the Jewish war (Josephus, Wars of the Jews, iii. 4. 2), and is mentioned in the Periplus maris Erythraei, composed about A.D. 70, as king of the Nabateans (Periplus maris Erythrasi, § 19, ed. Fabricius: Λευκὴ κώμη, διὰ ἧς ὁδός ἐστιν εἰς Πέτραν πρὸς Μαλίχαν, βασιλέα Ναβαταίων). An inscription at Salkhat in the Hauran is dated from “the seventeenth year of Maliku, king of the Nabateans, son of Charithath, king of the Nabateans, who loves his people” (Rachem-ammeh). At el-Hegr were found six inscriptions, which are dated according to the years of the reign of Maliku, of which the latest (Euting, No. 26) is of “the twenty-first year of King Maliku, king of the Nabateans,” כשנת עשרין וחדה למלכו מלכא מלד נבטו. There are coins of the year 9, and of the year 23 (so Euting-Gutschmid, p. 86, not as De Vogüé, who reads 25 and 33). Since the king Rabel, according to the inscription of D’mer, succeeded to the throne in A.D. 71, Malchus reigned from about A.D. 48 to 71. During his time also Damascus had been, probably by Nero, again separated from the Nabatean kingdom (see above, p. 357).

Rabel, A.D. 71–106, is known only from inscriptions and coins. His name is, according to Euting, to be pronounced not as formerly Dabei, but Rabel (רבאל). An older Ῥάβιλος βασιλεὺς τῶν Ἀραβίων is mentioned in Steph. Byz. s.v. Μωθώ (see above, p. 352). The year of his accession to the throne can be precisely determined according to the inscription at D’mer, which is dated from the month Ijjar “in the year 405 according to the reckoning of the Romans, that is, in the twenty-fourth year of the king Rabel.” By the year 405, “according to the reckoning of the Romans,” is to be understood the year of the Seleucid era. Accordingly the date corresponds to May A.D. 94. See Gutschmid, p. 86. The first year of Rabel is A.D. 71. On two inscriptions at el-Hegr the second and fourth year of Rabel are mentioned; on an inscription at Salkhat in the Hauran the twenty-fifth, שנת עשרין וחמש לרבאל; the coins give no certain date. Since on some coins Rabel is mentioned along with his mother, he must have been a minor at the time of his accession. Mention of him on the inscription at D’mer, east of Damascus, on the way to Palmyra, proves that the Nabatean dominion extended to that region.

Rabel was probably the last king of the Nabateans, for in A.D. 106 “Arabia belonging to Petra” was converted by Cornelius Palma, the governor of Syria, into a Roman province. The boundary of the province seems to have approached that of what had been the Nabatean kingdom. In any case, Petra in the south and Bostra in the north (in the district of Hauran), both of which reckoned according to the provincial era of A.D. 106, had belonged to that kingdom as its most important cities. Subsequently in the fourth Christian century Arabia was divided into two provinces: Arabia with Bostra as its capital, and Palaestina tertia with Petra as its capital.

              1.              נִיסָן





              2.              אִיָּר





              3.              סִיוָן





              4.              תַּמּוּז





              5.              אָב





              6.              אֱלוּל





              7.              תִּשְׁרִי





              8.              מַרְחֶשְׁוָן





              9.              כִּסְלֵו





              10.              טֵבֵת





              11.              שְׁבָט





              12.              אֲדָר





The Jewish names of the months, as has been now thoroughly established by the cuneiform inscriptions, are of Babylonian-Assyrian origin. On the tablet of months discovered at Nineveh the names are given as follows (see Schrader, The Cuneiform Inscriptions and the Old Testament, London 1885–1888, vol. ii. p. 69): Nisaannu, Airu, Sivanu, Duuzu, Abu, Ululu, Tasritav, Araah samna, Kisilivu, Tibituv, Sabatu, Addaru.—Within the realm of Judaism the most ancient document which gives the names of the months in regular succession is the Megillath Taanith, which was edited sometime during the first Christian century, since it is quoted in the Mishna (see vol. i. of this work, p. 163). Of later witnesses we need here mention only the little-known Christian Josephus, who, in his Hypomnesticum, c. 27, gives the following list (Fabricius, Codex pseudepigraphus Vet. Test. t. ii. Appendix, also in Gallandi, Bibl. patr. t. xiv., and Migne, Patrolog. graec. t. cvi.): Νησάν, Εἴαρ, Σιουάν, Θαμούζ, Ἄβ, Ἐλούλ, Ὀσρί [read Θισρί], Μαρσαβᾶν, Χασελεῦ, Τηβήθ, Σαβάθ, Ἀδάρ. In regard to the several names the oldest proofs and examples, apart from the cuneiform inscriptions, occur in the following passages:—

1. נִיםָן, Neh. 2:1; Esth. 3:7; Mishna, Pesachim iv. 9; Shekalim iii. 1; Rosh hashana i. 1, 3, 4; Taanith i. 2, 7, iv. 5; Nedarim viii. 5; Bechoroth ix. 5. Euting, Nabatäische Inschriften aus Arabien (1885), n. ii. 4, v. 3, x. 7, xi. 7, xii. 9, xvi. 3, xx. 8, xxi. 4; De Vogüé, Syrie centrale, Inscriptions sémitiques (1868), Palmyrenische Inschriften, n. i. 2, 4, 6, 18, 23, 25, 26, 27, 32, 34, and elsewhere.—The Greek Νισάν occurs in Esra apocr. v. 6; Additions to Esther i. 1; Josephus, Antiq. i. 3. 3, ii. 14. 6, iii. 8. 4, 10. 5, xi. 4. 8.

2. אִיָּר, Rosh hashana i. 3; Euting, Nabatäische Inschriften, n. viii. 10, ix. 9, xiii. 8, xxvii. 13; De Vogüé, Inscript. sémit. Palmyren. n. 88.—Ἰάρ, Josephus, Antiq. viii. 3. 1.

3. סִיוָן, Esth. 8:9; Shekalim iii. 1; Bechoroth ix. 5; De Vogüé, Palmyren. n. 33 and 33b.—Σιουάν, Baruch 1:8.

4. תַּמּוּז, Taanith iv. 5, 6.

5. אָב, Pesachim iv. 5; Shekalim iii. 1; Rosh hashana i. 3; Taanith ii. 10, iv. 5, 6; Megilla i. 3; Bechoroth ix. 5; Euting, n. vii. 5; De Vogüé, n. 5, 28, 29, 73, 84, 103.—In Josephus, Antiq. iv. 4. 7, we have the reading Ἀββά (more correctly Ἀβά). It is, indeed, only a conjectural reading introduced by Bernard, but it is a well-conceived conjecture. For the Σαβά adopted, in accordance with the manuscripts by Niese, cannot possibly have been written by Josephus.

6. אֱלוּל, Neh. 6:15; Shekalim iii. 1; Rosh hashana i. 1, 3; Taanith iv. 5; Bechoroth ix. 5, 6; Euting, n. i. 3; De Vogüé, n. 78, 79, 123 I.—Ἐλούλ, 1 Macc. 14:27.

7. תִּשְׁרִי, Shekalim iii. 1; Rosh hashana i. 1, 3, 4; Bechoroth ix. 5, 6; De Vogüé, n. 17, 22, 85, 123 II.—In Josephus, Antiq. viii. 4. 1, where editions since Hudson have Θισρί, Niese reads Ἀθύρει. But Hudson’s reading, which is supported by the form used by older Latin writers, is without doubt the correct one.

8. מַרְחֶשְׁוָן, Taanith i. 3, 4.—Μαρσουάνης, Josephus, Antiq. i. 3. 3.—On the Palmyrene inscriptions this month is called Kanun, כנון, De Vogüé, n. 31, 63, 64.

9. כִּסְלֵו, Zech. 7:1; Neh. 1:1; Rosh hashana i. 3; Taanith i. 5.—Χασελεῦ, 1 Macc. 1:54, 4:52; 2 Macc. 1:9, 18, 10:5; Josephus, Antiq. xii. 5. 4, 7. 6.—On the Palmyrene inscriptions the name is given in the form כסלול, Kislul or Kaslul (De Vogüé, n. 24, 75).

10. טֵבֵת, Esth. 2:16; Taanith iv. 5; Euting, n. iii. 2, xiv. 9, xv. 8; De Vogüé, n. 66, 123 III.—Τεβέθος, Josephus, Antiq. xi. 5. 4.

11. שְׁבָט, Zech. 1:7; Rosh hashana i 1; Euting, n. iv. 9; De Vogüé, n. 67, 89.—Σαβάτ, 1 Macc. 16:14.

12. אֲדָר, frequently in the Book of Esther, and also in Additions to that book; Shekalim i. 1, iii. 1; Rosh hashana i. 3; Megilla i. 4, iii. 4; Nedarim viii. 5; Edujoth vii. 7; Bechoroth ix. 5; Euting, n. xxiv. 6; De Vogüé, n. 8, 10, 11, 12, 13, 19, 94, 117, 119.—Ἀδάρ, 1 Macc. 7:43, 49; 2 Macc. 15:36; Josephus, Antiq. iv. 8. 49, xi. 6. 2, xii. 10. 5.—אְדָר הָרִאשׁוֹן and אֲדָר הַשֵּׁנִי, Megilla i. 4; Nedarim viii. 5.

The Jewish months continued always to be, what the “months” of all civilised nations originally were, actual lunar months. Since the astronomical length of a month is equivalent to 29 days, 12 hours, 44 minutes, 3 seconds (Ideler, Handbuch der Chronologie, i. 43), then it must follow that in actual practice months of 29 and mouths of 30 days must pretty regularly alternate with one another.—But twelve such lunar months would give only 354 days, 8 hours, 48 minutes, and 38 seconds (Ideler, Handbuch der Chronologie, i. 66), whereas the solar year embraccs 365 days, 5 hours, 48 minutes, and 48 seconds (Ideler, i. 35, 66) The difference between a lunar year of twelve months and the solar year is 10 days and 21 hours. In order to do away with this difference a month must be intercalated, at least, in every third year, sometimes even in the second. It was observed in very early times that a sufficiently accurate equation would be reached, if three times in every eight years a month were intercalated (the difference in eight years amounting to 87 days). Acquaintance with this cycle of eight years, this “Octaeteris,” was possessed by those who arranged the Greek games for every fourth year; for the cycle of four years is only got by halving that of eight years. But even as early as the fifth century before Christ, the astronomer Meton of Athens proposed a still more exact system of equation, a cycle of nine years, in which a month had to be seven times intercalated. This was considerably in advance of the eight years’ cycle in accuracy, since in this case in 19 years only a difference of somewhere about 2 hours remained (Ideler, i. 47), whereas in the eight years’ cycle in 8 years there was a remaining difference of 1½ days.

How far, then, had the Jews in the time of Christ advanced in the knowledge of these matters? They, naturally, had a general sort of acquaintance with them. But, unless all indications are deceitful, they did not in the time of Jesus Christ possess as yet any fixed calendar, but on the basis of a purely empirical observation, on each occasion they began a new month with the appearing of the new moon, and likewise on the basis of each repeated observation intercalated a month in the spring of every third and second year, in accordance with the rule that the Passover under all circumstances must fall after the vernal equinox.

1. The author of the astronomical pieces in the Book of Enoch was aware that the year has six months of 30 days each and as many of 29 days each; and Galen, in the second century after Christ, says that “the people of Palestine” divide the period of every two months, embracing 59 days, into two unequal halves, so that they reckon to one month 30 days, and to the other 29 days. But it would be a mistake if we were from this to draw the conclusion that the duration of the months was à priori strictly determined. Even in the age of the Mishna, in the second Christian century, this cannot have been the case; for the whole legislation of the Mishna rests on the presupposition that the new month, without previous reckoning, was begun each time upon the new moon becoming visible. So soon as the appearance of the new moon was proved by credible witnesses before the competent court at Jerusalem and later at Jamnia, the new moon was solemnized, and, after all the rites had been observed, messengers were sent in order to notify the opening of the new month. So, at least, was it done during the six months in which it was of importance on account of the existence of any festival: in Nisan on account of the Passover, in Ab on account of the Fast, in Elul on account of the New Year, in Tizri on account of the arrangement of the feast days of that month, the Day of Atonement, and the Feast of Tabernacles; in Chisleu on account of the feast of the Dedication of the Temple, in Adar on account of the feast of Purim, and so long as the temple stood, in Adar also on account of the little Passover. Since, naturally, it was known pretty accurately when the appearing of the new moon was to be expected, every effort would be made so as to fix the date wherever possible upon the right day. But the duration of the particular months was not fixed. This is confirmed especially by the following two passages from the Mishna: (1) Arachin iii. 7: “If one should have any apprehension in regard to the New Year feast, lest the month Elul should be fixed at 30 days, he may,” etc. (2) Arachin ii. 2: “In one year there are, at least, four months of thirty days, and of these there have not hitherto been more than eight.” From the former passage it appears that it was by no means established à priori whether a month should have 29 or 30 days; and the latter passage shows how uncertain this empirical method left the calendar. Even in the time of the Mishna, the second Christian century, it was still a possible contingency that a year might come in which only four months had each 30 days, and again another in which there might be eight such months. Thus the length of the lunar year might vary from 352 days to 356 days, while in actual fact it can only oscillate between 354 and 355 daye.

2. The system of intercalation was not fixed even in the second century after Christ. Julius Africanus indeed says that the Jews as well as the Greeks intercalated three months in every eight years; and we have no reason for doubting this statement in regard to the time of Julius Africanus, in the first half of the third Christian century, although it is uncertain so far as the Greeks are concerned, for the majority of them had long adopted the more exact cycle of nineteen years. Also for the time of Jesus Christ this statement may be regarded as generally valid, since the thrice repeated intercalation in the course of eight years would naturally result from a purely empirical procedure. But the knowledge of this eight years’ cycle is certainly even in the astronomical pieces in the Book of Enoch and the Book of Jubilees (which may be approximately regarded as witnesses for the period of Christ) extremely inexact, and it is not there made use of for the constructing of a regular intercalary system. In the astronomical pieces of the Book of Enoch the erroneous idea is taken up that the moon in the eight years is only about eighteen days behind the sun, for the lunar year is set down at 354 days and the solar year at 364 (Book of Enoch, c. 74:17; see generally cc. 72–82). The very same inexact conceptions are found also in the Book of Jubilees, c. 6 (Ewald’s Jahrbücher der bibl. Wissensch. ii. 246). A calendar, built up upon such premises as these, would certainly very soon land in serious error. It was fortunate therefore that in actual practice it was disregarded, and the intercalation carried out without reference to any preconceived theory on the basis of an empirical observation made on each separate occasion. That this was still the case in the times of the Mishna is proved from the two following passages:—(1) Megillah i. 4: “If one has read the Megillah (the Book of Esther for the celebration of the feast of Purim) in the first Adar, and the year is then declared to be an intercalary year, he must read it again in the second or intercalary Adar.” (2) Edujoth vii. 7: “R. Joshua and K Papias testified that the year might be declared an intercalary year at any time during the month Adar, for previously this could be done only to the feast of Purim. These same testified that one might conditionally declare the year an intercalary year. When on one occasion Rabban Gamaliel was on a journey in order to obtain a concession from the governor of Syria, and remained long away, the year was pronounced an intercalary year under the reservation that the decision would stand only if Rabban Gamaliel were satisfied. And when he arrived he was satisfied, and so it was an intercalary year.” Both passages are so clear that they need no further commentary. Yet quite at the close of the year, in the month Adar, even after the feast of Purim had been celebrated, the decision might be arrived at whether or not a month was to be intercalated. There is absolutely no tracc of any previous calculation.

The rule, according to which it was determined whether to intercalate or not, was very simple. It required that care should be taken that the Passover festival, to be celebrated at the full moon in Nisan (14th Nisan), should in any case fall after the vernal equinox (μετὰ ἰσημερίαν ἐαρινήν), when the aun stood in the sign Aries. This explanation is characterized by Anatolius in the fragment of decided importance in relation to the history of the Jewish calendar given in Eusebius, Hist. eccl. vii. 32. 16–19, as the view in which all Jewish authorities are agreed, pre-eminently as that of Aristobulus, the celebrated Jewish philosopher of the time of Ptolemy Philouietor (not Philadelphus, as Anatolius erroneously says). With this also agree the statements of Philo and Josephus. If one therefore toward the close of the year noticed that the Passover would fall before the vernal equinox, the intercalation of a month before Nisan would have to be resorted to. The intercalated month was called, like the last month of the year, Adar. They were distinguished respectively as אֲדָר חָרִאשׁוֹן and אֲדָר הַשֵּנִי (first and second Adar).

And yet, primitive as this calendar was, it had this great advantage, that serious and persistent inaccuracies, such as in the course of the year inevitably crept into a calendar calculated upon an incorrect basis, were avoided.—The very complicated later Jewish calendar, calculated upon the nineteen years’ cycle, is said to have been introduced by the patriarch Hillel in the fourth century after Christ. Although this is not witnessed to with absolute certainty, it is not improbable (Ideler, Handbuch der Chronologie, i. 569 ff.).

With reference to the various beginnings of years in spring or in harvest, see vol. i. of the present work, p. 37.

The literature on the Jewish calendar, especially in its later form, is very extensive. A systematic exposition was given as early as the twelfth century by Maimonides in the passage treating of “the celebration of the New Moon” in his great work Jad Ha-chasaka or Mishne Thora (compare: Maimonides’ Kiddusch Hachodesch, translated and explained by Ed. Mahler, Wien 1889). Various monographs are collected by Ugolini in his Thesaurus antiquitatum sacrarum, t. xvii. (Nic. Mülleri Annus Judaeorum luna-solaris et Turc-Arabum mere lunaris; Seldeni Diss. de anno civili Judaeorum; Maimonidis, De sanctificatione novilunii, cum versione Latina de Veilii. Christ. Langnansen, De mense veterum Hebraeorum lunari).—Of more recent date, especially: Ideler, Handbuch der mathematischen und technischen Chronologie, Bd. i pp. 477–583; Wieseler, Chronological Synopsis of the Four Gospels, pp. 401–436; Beiträge zur richtigen Würdigung der Evangelien und der evangelischen Geschichte (1869), pp. 290–321; Seyffarth, Chronologia sacra (1846), pp. 26–80 (believes that the Jewish year down to A.D. 200 was a solar year!); De Wette, Lehrbuch der hebräisch-jüdischen Archäologie, 4 Aufl. 1864, § 178–179; Gumpach, Ueber den altjüdischen Kalender zunāchst in seiner Beziehung zur neutestamentlichen Geschichte, Brüssel 1848; Saalschütz, Das mosaische Recht, Bd. i. 1853, pp. 396–406; Lewisohn, Geschickte und das System des jüdischen Kalenderwesens, Leipzig, 1856 (=Schriften herausgeg. vom Institute zur Förderung der israelit. Literatur, erstes Jahr, 1855–1856); Caspari, Chronological and Geographical Introduction to the Life of Jesus Christ, pp. 2–19; Schwarz, Der jüdische Kalender historisch und astronomisch untersucht, 1872; Dillmann, “Ueber das Kalenderwesen der Israeliten vor dem babylonischen Exil” (Monatsberichte der Berliner Akademie, 1881, pp. 914–935); Zuckermann, Materialien zur Entwickelung der altjüdischen Zeitrechnung im Talmud, 1882 (gathers together the Talmudic deliverances on matters connected with the calendar); Hamburger, Real-Encydopädie für Bibel und Talmud, Abth. ii. 1883, pp. 608–628, art. “Kalender;” Mémain, La connaissance des temps évangéliyues, Paris 1886, pp. 39–43, 377–445, 481 ff.; Isidore Loeb, Tables du calendrier juif depuis l’ère chrétienne jusqu’ au XXX siècle, avec la concordance des dates juives et des dates chrétiennes et une méthode nouvelle pour calculer ces tables, Paris 1886; Mahler, Chronologische Vergleichungs-Tabellen, nebst einer Anleitung zu den Grundzügen der Chronologie, 2 Heft: Die Ziet- und Festrechnung der Juden, Wien 1889; also the articles “Jahr” and “Monate” in the dictionaries of Winer, Schenkel, and Riehm, and in Herzog’s Real-Encyclopaedie, 2 Aufl. vi 495–498, article “Jar” by Leyrer.

Since the Jewish year has sometimes twelve, sometimes thirteen months, it is evident that its months can only be made approximately to correspond to those of the Julian calendar.—The Macedonian names of the months came to be used in Syria from the beginning of the Seleucid domination (Ideler, Handbuch der Chronologie, i. 397). They originally also indicated lunar months. But from the time of Julius Caesar’s reform of the calendar they were employed in Syria and Phoenicia to indicate the twelve months of the solar year, which is, speaking generally, identical with the Julian; therefore its several months do not exactly correspond with those of the Julian, since their beginnings are otherwise determined, and indeed were different in different large cities (Ideler, i. 433). It was not till a later period that the Julian months came to be named in Syria by Maccdonian names (Ideler, i. 429 ff.).—Besides the Macedonian names, the old native Syrian names (which were for the most part identical with the Jewish) were also used; and it may safely be assumed that their use was in strict conformity with that of the Macedonian names. Thus, e.g., the Syrian date on the inscriptions at Palmyra exactly corresponds to the Macedonian (24 Tebeth=24 Audynäus, 21 Adar=21 Dystros; see De Vogüé, Inscriptions, n. 123, iii. 124=Le Bas and Waddington, Inscriptions grecques et latines, t. iii. 2, n. 2571, 2627). The same is true of the later Syrian calendar, where the Syrian as well as the Macedonian names indicate simply the months of the Julian calendar.

Under these circumstances it may be asked what Josephus means when he makes use of the Macedonian names of the months, as he frequently does in his History of the Jewish War. Ordinarily he uses them as perfectly parallel to the Jewish, precisely in the same way as is done in the inscriptions at Palmyra (Nisan=Xanthicus, Ijjar=Artemisius, Ab=Lous, Tizri=Hyperberetaeus, Marcheehwan=Dios, etc.; the proofs for this are given above at p. 364 f,; for the Palmyrene inscriptions see the collection in Le Bas and Waddington, n. 2571). But does he mean precisely the Jewish months when he uses the Macedonian names? In many cases undoubtedly he does so. (1) The Jewish Passover was observed on the 14th Xanthicus (Antiq. iii. 10. 5; Wars of the Jews, v. 3. 1). (2) In the time of Antiochns Epiphanes the temple was desecrated and reconsecrated on 25th Apellaios (Antiq. xii. 5. 4, 7. 6; comp. 1 Macc. 1:59, 4:52. (3) During the siege of Titus the daily morning and evening sacrifice was stopped on 17th Panemos (Wars of the Jews, vi. 2. 1); according to Mishna, Taanith iv. 6, however, this happened on 17th Thammuz. (4) The destruction of the temple of Nebuchadnezzar took place on the 10th Loos (Wars of the Jews, vi 4. 5); according to Jer. 52:12, on the 10th Ab. On the ground of these facts ancient and modern investigators have assumed that Josephus invariably intends when using the Macedonian names of the month to make the dates correspond with the Jewish months. But against this view, after the example of Scaliger, Baronius, and Usher, O. A. Hoffmann has recently advanced objections. He specially urges the point that Josephus was scarcely in a position (and if he had been, would not certainly have taken the trouble) to reckon the dates which had been transmitted to him according to another calendar, in accordance with the Jewish calendar. He just followed the calendar which his authorities followed. But in regard to the numerous dates in the Wars of the Jews, Hoffmann (p. 16) believes that Josephus must have used, as sources, the official State Papers which he found in the Roman camp. Hence it may be assumed that in these the dates were given in accordance with the Julian calendar, the months of which were simply indicated by Josephus under Macedonian names. The grounds for this opinion are undoubtedly correct. A writer like Josephus would not take the trouble to change the reckoning, but would simply give the dates as he found them. One should not therefore assume right off that in his works all the dates would be according to the same calendar, Many are given undoubtedly according to the Jewish calendar, others according to the Roman. But whether the dates in the Wars of the Jews are for the most part derived from the official Roman State Papers, seems to me more than doubtful. It is not correct to say, as Hoffmann does (p. 15), that Josephus almost exclusively gives precise dates for the enterprise of the Romans, but not for the internal events of Jewish history. A thorough examination of the facts communicated in our exposition (§ 20) plainly shows that among the details circumstantially related are many that refer purely to the internal affairs of the Jews, whereas on the other hand the exact statements about the doings of the Bomans, especially of that period, become more numerous when Josephus was first a prisoner and subsequently on his parole in the Roman camp. He had therefore personal knowledge of these things. Indeed, in his vindication of the credibility of his exposition he refers simply to his own memoranda of these occurrences which he had made for himself and not to Roman official documents (Treatise against Apion, i. 9: τὰ κατὰ τὸ στρατόπεδον τὸ Ῥωμαίων ὁρῶν ἐπιμελῶς ἀνέγραφον). Evidently, therefore, he did not use these official papers. But that he had made his memoranda according to the Jewish calendar is probable, partly from the internal probability of the matter, partly from the circumstance that particular dates are given undoubtedly according to the Jewish calendar; so Wars of the Jews, vi. 2. 1 (see above, p. 242), and Wars of the Jews, vi. 4.1–5 (see above, p. 243 f.). The oft recurring formula, Πανέμου νουμηνίᾳ (Wars of the Jews, iii. 7. 36, v. 13. 7, vi. 1. 3), cannot indeed be used as a proof that the months of Josephus actually began with the new moon. For in later usage νουμηνίᾳ signifies generally the first day of the month, even when, according to the calendar employed, the months did not begin with the new moon, as e.g. in the Roman. Compare Dio Cassius, lx. 5: τῇ τοῦ Αὐγούστου νουμηνίᾳ; Plutarch, Galba, 22: ἡ νουμηνία τοῦ πρώρτου μηνός, ἣν καλάνδας Ἰανουαρίας καλοῦσι; Steph. Thesaurus, s.v.

THE extant coins with old Hebrew writing may be arranged in three groups: (1) The coins of the Asmonean high priests and princes which are furnished with names, and therefore are most easily determined; (2) the silver shekel and half-shekel: (3) the “Coins of Freedom,” which with manifold variations celebrate the emancipation (gulla or cheruth) of Israel or Jerusalem or Sion. The most perfect agreement prevails among numismatists with reference to the first group: a pretty general agreement also prevails with reference to the second, because they are assigned by the majority of numismatists to the times of Simon the Maccabee. Most diverse are the views entertained with reference to the third group. Since the placing and determining of the first group is relatively easy and certain, it will be found that we have already communicated all that is necessary regarding it in our historical exposition. A more special investigation is required in reference to the coins of the second and third groups. It must be shown by a systematic examination of all the particulars, that with regard to the third group a much higher degree of certainty may be reached than in regard to the second, that therefore the measure of the present consensus stands in inverse ratio to the degree of scientific certainty attainable.

ECKHEL, Doctrina Numorum veterum, iii. 455 sqq.

CAVEDONI, Biblische Numismatik, transl. by Werhof, i. 18 ff., ii. 10 ff.

DE SAULOY, Recherches sur la Numismatique Judäique, 1854, p. 17 sqq.

EWALD, Gottinger “Nachrichten,” 1855, p. 109 ff.

LEVY, Geschichte der jüdischen Münzen, 1862, p. 39 ff.

MADDEN, History of Jewish Coinage, 1864, p. 43 sqq.

DE SAULCY, Revue Numismatique, 1864, p. 370 sq.

CAVEDONI in Grote’s Münzstudien, v. 1867, pp. 9–18.

REICHARDT in the Wiener Numismatischen Monatsheften, ed. G. Egger, Bd. ii. 1866, p. 137 ff.

DE SAULCY, Revue archéologique, nouv. sér. vol. xxiii. 1872, p. l sqq.

MERZBACHER, De siclis nummis antiquissimis Judaeorum, Berl. 1873.

MADDEN, Numismatic Chronicle, 1874, p. 281 sqq.

LEWIS, Numismatic Chronicle, 1876, p. 322 (Shekel of the year V.).

MERZBACHER in Sallet’s Zeitschrift für Numismatik, Bd. iii. 1876, pp. 141 ff., 183 ff., Bd. v. 1878, pp. 151 ff., 292 ff.

MADDEN, Coins of the Jews, 1881, pp. 67–71, where the material is most fully given.

REINACH, “Actes et conférences de la société des études juives,” 1877 (Supplement to Revue des études juives, 1887), p. cciii sqq. Separate reprint, Les monnaies juives, Paris 1887, p. 42 sqq.

The silver shekel and half-shekel are equal in weight to the Greek tetradrachmae and the double drachmae minted in the Phoenician towns, and afford us a point of connection for estimating the values of Phoenician-Hebrew coins. The superscription runs ירושלם קדשה or ירושלים הקדושה, on the other side שקל ישראל (shekel of Israel); on the half-shekels: חצי השקל (half-shekel), The whole as well as the half-shekels have, besides the indication of the weight, a number, usually accompanied with an שנת = ש, a year; e.g. שב=year II. There are extant examples of both coins from the years א, ב, ד נ (I., II., III., IV.); of the whole shekel there is also an example of שה, year V. As might be expected, we have no portrait profiles, but only simple symbols, the significance of which is still doubtful (a cup and branch of lilies?).—Since upon those coins of the “holy Jerusalem” there is no trace of any personal name, it is extremely difficult to determine their age. But it should first of all be laid down as certain that they cannot have been minted between B.C. 135 and A.D. 66. For the Asmoneans, since John Hyrcanus, B.C. 135, minted coins bearing their own names, as did also Herod and his sons. It is also clear that these coins could not have been struck under the Roman procurators, for they presuppose the political independence of Jerusalem. They can therefore be assigned only to the time before B.C. 135 or after A.D. 66. Under the latter alternative they can be referred only to the period of the war A.D. 66–70; for from the time of the Hadrian war, A.D. 132–135, we have coins of quite another sort. Ewald was the first (Göttinger “Nachrichten,” 1855, p. 109 ff.) to argue in favour of the years 66–70 as the date of the minting of the shekels; and in the first edition of this work, p. 365 f., I adopted his view. Among numismatists, however, this theory is now maintained only by Theód. Reinach (1887) and Imhoof-Blumer (in epistolary correspondence with myself). All the others declare this impossible, in consequence of the antiquated style, and almost unanimously place these shekels in the time of Simon the Maccabee, B.C. 142–135. De Saulcy puts them even farther back, assigning them first of all, in Recherches sur la Numismatique Judaïque, 1854, to the time of Alexander the Great, subsequently, in the Étude chronologique des livres d’Esdras et de Néhémie, 1868 (which has not been accessible to me), and in the Revue archéologique, 1872, to the time of Ezra.—In determining this question we must take into account: (1) Palaeographical, (2) Historical, (3) Numismatical arguments.

1. We may set aside, first of all, the palaeographical, because they scarcely yield any result. The character of the writing is the so-called Phoenician or old Hebraic. But this writing for monumental purposes, such as inscriptions and coins, changed so little during the period coming under consideration, that from this nothing can be gained to help in determining our question. The character of the writing on the coins fits equally the assigning of them to the Maccabean age and to a very much later period, as, upon inquiry, Euting also has assured me, one of the highest authorities on Semitic palaeography.

2. On historical grounds the shekel can hardly have been minted in the Persian and Greek age prior to the winning of Jewish independence by Simon the Maccabee. For according to all that we know, the Jews did not, either in the Persian or in the Greek age, possess such a degree of political independence as is assumed in an autonomous minting of money of their own. This would have been distinctly impossible in the age of Alexander, from the fact that under him in Phoenicia only royal money was minted (so, e.g., in Ascalon, Ptolemais, Damascus; see Div. II. vol. i. pp. 74, 91, 97). All the more perfectly do they now seem to suit the time of Simon the Maccabee. Under him “the yoke of the heathen was taken away from Israel,” and expression was given to this fact by the introduction of a native reckoning of their own, according to the years of Simon (1 Macc. 13:41, 42; compare also p. 256). May it not be just this era that is meant on the shekels? This is indeed what is assumed by most numismatists. But on nearer consideration certain not inconsiderable difficulties arise. The era of Simon begins in the year 170 of the Seleucid era=B.C. 143–142 (1 Macc. 13:41 f.); but Simon did not die before the year 177 of the Seleucid era=B.C. 136–135 (1 Macc. 16:14). One should therefore expect on the shekels the year numbers I.–VII., whereas even of the year V. we have only one example, but no single example for any later years. Merzbacher, Zeitschrift für Numismatik, v. 292 if., has therefore made the attempt to place the era of Simon about two years later. That this expedient is quite inadmissible, I think I have succeeded in proving on page 259. It would also involve this further consequence, that the minting of the shekels in a very remarkable manner was suddenly broken off with Simon, and in their place immediately under Simon’s successor, John Hyrcanus, a minting of quite another kind was introduced, bearing the name of the reigning high priest. If this be not impossible, it is at least very singular. On the other hand, the hypothesis that the shekels were minted during the period of the rebellion A.D. 66–70, is beset by no kind of historical difficulties. It must therefore have the preference, if no numismatic considerations tell against it.

3. The decision from the numismatic standpoint is difficult for this reason, that the minting is of a rude or at least peculiar description, and therefore hard to classify. This explains the fact that even experienced numismatists differ from one another in their judgments. Theód. Reinach has given no convincing proof for the date of A.D. 66–70 as adopted by him. By his publication Imhoof-Blumer has been driven to an examination of the facts of the case, which has led him to accept the theory of Reinach. The grounds which he has been good enough in correspondence to communicate to me are the following: “The small diameter of the shekel and half-shekel, and their border, do hot correspond to the Syrian and Phoenician mintings of the middle of the second century before Christ nearly so well as to the silver coins minted in those districts bearing the images of Nero, Agrippina, and Vespasian, of which there are many tolerably thick examples of about 14 and 7 grs. in weight. Upon a question of style no result can be drawn from the extremely slovenly and rude types referred to, but merely on a question of technology, and in this respect they have no resemblance to the broad coins of the Syrian kings Antichus VI., Tryphon, Antiochus VII.,” etc. Against this theory may be quoted the opinions of all other numismatists of the time, who pronounce it impossible, on account of the ancient appearance of the shekels, that they can be assigned to so late an age. Also it has been emphatically declared against the above statement, e.g. by Sallet in an admirable communication which he has made to me, that the prevailing view must be maintained. “The antique character of the coins is so clearly stamped, the thickness of the piece of metal so thoroughly in accordance with the antique coins minted long before Christ, the stamp and the writing are of so decidedly antique a character, that the coins must be placed in the time of the Maccabees.” They are “distinctly distinguishable “ from the coins of the later rebellion. In presence of this diversity of opinion among the best authorities, no one not an expert can do anything but conclude with the confession: adhuc sub judice lis est.

EOKHEL, Doctrina Numorum, veterum, iii. 464–474.

MIONNET, Description de médailles antiques, v. 555–562, Suppl. viii. 378; Planches, xxvii.–xxviii.

Trésor de Numimatique (edited by Lenormant, 1849), pp. 118–123, pl. lvii.–lix.

CAVEDONI, Biblische Numismatik, transl. by Werlhof, i. 18–51.

DE SAULCY, Recherches sur la Numismatique Judaïque, 1854, pp. 151–170, pl. x.–xv.

EWALD, Göttinger “Nachrichten,” 1855, pp. 109–122; Gött, gel. Anzeigen, 1862, p. 841 ff. (review of Levy’s work).

DE VOGÜÉ, Revue Numismatique, 1860, pp. 280–292 (Eleazar coins)

LEVY, Geschichte der jüdischen Munzen (1862), pp. 83–131.

MADDEN, History of Jewish Coinage (1864), pp. 154–182, 198–210.

CAVEDONI in Grote’a Münzstudien, v. 1867, pp. 29–37.

DE SAULCY, Revue Numismatique, 1865, pp. 29–55.

GARRUCCI, Dissertazioni archeologiche, ii, 1865, pp. 31–39.

MADDEN, Numismatic Chronicle, 1866, pp. 36–65.

DE SAULCY, Numismatic Chronicle, 1871, pp. 250–253.

MERZBACHER, “Untersuchungen über althebräische Münzen” (Zeitschrift für Numismatik, Bd. iv. 1877, pp. 350–365).

DE SAULCY, Mélanges de Numismatique, ii. 1877, pp. 87–92.

SALLET, Zeitschrift für Numismatik, Bd. v. 1878, pp. 110–114.

RENAN, L’église chrétienne (1879), pp. 546–551.

MADDEN, Coins of the Jews (1881), pp. 188–206, 230–246.

STICKEL, Zeitschrift des deutschen Palaestina-Vereins, vii. 1884, pp. 212, 214.

GRÄTZ, Monatsschrift für Geschichte und Wissenschaft des Judenthums, 1887, pp. 145–176 (English translation in Numismatic Chronicle, 1888).

REINACH (THÉOD.), Revue des études juives, t. xv. 1887, pp. 56–61.

REINACH (THÉOD.), Actes et conférences de la société des études juives, 1887 (Suppl. to Revue des études juives, 1887), pp. cciii–ccxvi.—In separate reprint (Les monnaies juives, Paris 1887), pp. 42–67.

GRÄTZ, Revue des études juives, t. xvi. 1888, pp. 161–169; t. xviii. 1889, pp. 301–304.

GRÄTZ, Geschichte der Juden, Bd. iii. 4 Aufl. (1888), pp. 819–841.

REINACH (THÉOD.), Revue des études juives, t. xvii. 1888, pp. 42–45; t. xviii. 1889, pp. 304–306.

The coins of the rebellion belong to the following varieties. The material is adequately presented by De Saulcy, Recherches sur la Numismatique, 1854; Madden, History of Jewish Coinage, 1864; Numismatic Chronicle, 1875; Merzbacher, Zeitschrift für Numis∙atik, iv. 1887; most fully in Madden, Coins of the Jews, 1881.

1. Ligullath Zion, the Deliverance of Zion.

Obv. לנאלת ציון ligullath Zion.

Rev. שנת ארבע, year IV.

or, שנת ארבע חצי, year IV., a half.

or, שנת ארבע רביע, year IV., a quarter.

All these are copper coins of various sizes, with Jewish emblems.

See De Saulcy, Recherches sur la Numismatique, p. 20; Cavedoni, Biblische Numismatik, ii. 11 f.; Ewald, Göttinger Nachrichten, 1855, p. 114; Levy, Geschichte, p. 44; Madden, History of Jewish Coinage, p. 47; Garrucci, Dissertazioni, ii. 32, 38; Madden, Numismatic Chronicle, 1866, pp. 48–63 (very complete in reference to the date, against Garrucci); Merzbacher, Zeitschrift für Numismatik, i. 222, iv. 364; Madden, Coins of the Jews, p. 71 sq.

2. Chêruth Zion, the Emancipation of Zion.

Obv. חרות ציון, chêruth Zion.

Rev. שנת שתים, year II.

or, שנת שלוש year III.

Small copper coins with Jewish emblems of which numerous examples are extant (Sallet, Zeitschrift, v. 110).

See De Saulcy, Recherches, p. 154; Cavedoni, Biblische Numismatik, ii. 53 f.; Ewald, Gött. Nach. 1855, p. 114; Levy, Geschichte, p. 100; Madden, History of Jewish Coinage, p. 180; De Saulcy, Revue Numismatique, 1865, p. 29 sq.; Garrucci, Dissertazioni, ii. 38; Merzbacher, Zeitschrift, i. 223, iv. 364 f.; Madden, Numismatic Chronicle, 1875, p. 320 sq.; Coins of the Jews, p. 206.

3. Year I. ligullath Israel, of the Emancipation of Israel.

Obv. אלעזר הכהן, Eleasar the priest.

Rev. שנת אחת לגאלת ישראל, year I. ligullath Israel.

Obv. אלעזר הכהן, Eleasar the priest.

Rev. שמעון Simon.

Obv. ירושלם, Jerusalem.

Rev. שנת אחת לגאלת ישראל, year I. ligullath Israel

Obv. שמעון נשיא ישראל, Simon prince of Israel.

Rev. שנת אחת לגאלת ישראל, year I. ligullath Israel.

These are some of them silver, some of them copper, coins of various sizes and of various types. That they all belong to the same period is proved from the date “Year I. ligullath Israel,” which is common to all the three. But the coins bearing the names of Eleasar and Simon cannot be separated from the other Eleasar coins.

See De Saulcy, Recherches, pp. 158–160, 165–168; Cavedoni, Biblische Numismatik, ii. 55–59; Ewald, Göttinger Nachr. 1855, p. 119 ff.; De Vogüé, Revue Num. 1860, p. 280 ff. (Eleasar coins communicated for the first time by De Voguë); Levy, Geschichte, pp. 88–92, 97–99; Madden, History of Jewish Coinage, pp. 161–166, 174–178; De Saulcy, Revue Num. 1865, p. 29 sq.; Cavedoni in Grote’s Münzstudien, v. 29 ff.; Garrucci, ii. 37 sq.; Merzbacher, Zeitschrift, i. 229–232, iv. 350–353; Madden, Numismatic Chronicle, 1875, pp. 313–320; Coins of the Jews, pp. 198–206; Sallet, Zeitschrift, v. 110 ff.; Reinach, Revue des études juives, xv. 58 sq. (on the Simon-Eleasar coins).

4. Year II. lechêruth Israel, the Freedom of Israel.

Obv. שמעון, Simon.

Rev. ש׳׳ב לחרות ישראל, year II. lechêruth Israel.

Obv. ירושלם, Jerusalem.

Rev. ש׳׳ב לחרות ישראל, year II. lechêruth Israel.

The latter kind are found rarely, the former very frequently, in silver and copper, of various sizes and of various types. In regard to some it is still discernible that they had been made out of Roman coins of Vespasian and Trajan (Sallet, Zeitschrift, v. 110–114).

See De Saulcy, Recherches, pp. 168–170; Cavedoni, Biblische Numismatik, ii. 59 ff.; Ewald, Göttinger Nachr. 1855, p. 119 ff., Levy, Geschichte, pp. 93–96, 105–108; Madden, History of Jewish Coinage, pp. 166–174, 207 sq. ; De Saulcy, Revue Num. 1865, 29 sq.; Cavedoni in Grote’s Münzstudien, v. 30 ff.; Garrucci, ii. 34; Merzbacher, Zeitschrift, i. 232–236, iv. 353–356; Madden, Numismatic Chronicle, 1875, pp. 329–333; Coins of the Jews, pp. 241–246; Sallet’s Zeitschrift, v. 110–114.

5. Lechêruth Jerushalem, the Freedom of Jerusalem.

Obv. שמעון, Simon.

Rev. לחרות ירושלם, lechêruth Jerushalem.

Silver and copper coins of various sizes and with various types. Many are stamped upon Roman coins, especially upon those of Trajan.

See De Saulcy, Recherches, pp. 160–165; Cavedoni, Biblische Numismatik, ii. 56–59; Ewald, Göttinger Nachr. 1885, p. 119 ff.; Levy, Geschichte, pp. 93–96, 105–108; Madden, History of Jewish Coinage, pp. 166–174, 203–210; De Saulcy, Revue Num. 1865, p. 29 sqq.; Cavedoni in Grote’s Münzstudien, v. 30 ff.; Garrucci, ii. 33 sq.; Merzbacher, Zeitschrift, i. 236 f., iv. 357–363; Madden, Numismatic Chronicle, 1875, pp. 321–328; Coins of the Jews, pp. 233–241; Sallet, Zeitschrift, v. 110–114.

The three last-named classes (Year I. ligullath Israel, year II. lechêruth Israel, lechêruth Jerushalem without date) are to be assigned with great probability, the last two indeed with certainty, to the period of the rebellion of Bar-Cochba. In regard to the last class this is admitted by all. The original Roman minting discernible upon many of them, which gives the figure of the Jewish temple, proves that they were struck not earlier than the times of Trajan. But only one period is conceivable in which this minting can have taken place: that of the rebellion under Hadrian. Yet even among the coins of our fourth class, those of the “Year II. lechêruth Israel,” some examples are met with which are stamped upon coins of Vespasian and Trajan (Sallet, Zeitschrift, v. 110–114). The same therefore applies to them as to those bearing the device “lechêruth Jerushalem.” It will, however, be readily admitted that those results hold not only for the copies stamped upon imperial coins, but also for others with similar superscriptions and of similar types, for the production of which imperial coins were not employed. For it is a singularly arbitrary proceeding to divide among different periods coins of precisely the same impression, only for this reason that on some an original Roman stamp can be traced, while it is not discernible on the others (so. Levy, who divides the coins of our fourth as well as of our fifth class between the first and the second revolutions).—While, therefore, these two classes certainly belong to the time of Bar-Cochba, those of “Year I. ligullath Israel” may be assigned at least with great probability to the same period. For it is admitted by all competent numismatists that they are in style extremely similar to, quite the same, indeed, as the others. The rabbinical tradition also speaks generally of “coins of Bencosiba,” מעות כוזביות or מטבע בן כוזיבא.

The great variety of mintings within a few years, which has been the principal reason for numismatists dividing the coins between the time of the Vespasian and that of the Hadrianic war, is not on closer examination incapable of explanation. During the first year two leaders of the rebellion, “Eleazar the Priest” and “Simon the Prince,” minted coins. In the second year Simon seems to have secured to himself the sole sovereignty. Thus it can be easily understood that on the coins of the first year he distinguished himself from the priest by the title of “prince,” whereas during the second year he no longer found this necessary. Besides Simon and Eleaaar the city of Jerusalem also minted coins, and that indeed during the first as well as the second year ; but these coins are very rare. Finally, Simon, besides the coins dated according to the era of the freedom of Israel, also stamped some coins without date in commemoration of “the freedom of Jerusalem.” Their great variety therefore presents no ground for assigning a portion of them to the time of the war of Vespasian.

In the history of numismatics the classification of our coins has passed through five different stages. 1. The older numismatists, Eckhel, Mionnet, and even Cavedoni, Biblische Num. i., put all the kinds together, so far as they were known, along with the shekel coins in the time of Simon the Maccabee. Only one French scholar of the last century, Henrion, recognised the fact that they belonged to the time of Bar-Cochba (see Eckhel, Doctr. Num. iii. 472). But his voice sounded unheard, although even then some copies stamped upon imperial coins were known, which had to be of necessity assigned to the age of Bar-Cochba (Eckhel, iii. 473).—2. De Saulcy in his Recherches sur la Numismatique Judaïque, 1854, not only essentially enriched the material, but also gave expression to the correct view that all three kinds belonged to the time of Bar-Cochba. He was followed by Cavedoni, Biblische Num. ii, and Ewald. The latter also assigned to the same period the Eleasar coins first communicated by De Vogüé in 1860 (History of Israel, viii. 291).—3. An unfortunate confusion was caused by Levy in 1862 in consequence of his arbitrary division of the coins between the time of Vespasian and that of Hadrian. He assigned to the earlier period not only all coins of “Year I. ligullath Israel,” but also the greater part of those of the “Year II. lechêruth Israel” and “lechêruth Jerushalem.” But some individual examples of the last two classes are met with in the time of Hadrian, and thus coins of a precisely similar stamp are separated by a period of sixty years. Those who issued coins during the age of Vespasian were the well-known leader of the Zealots, Eleasar, then Simon bar-Giora, and the scribe Simon, son of Gamaliel, upon whom the later Jewish legends bestowed the title of Nasi. On the baselessness of this legend see Div. II. vol. i. p. 183 ff. Neither could Eleasar nor Simon bar-Giora have struck the coins of years I. and II. of freedom, since they did not become party leaders until the later days of the rebellion; Simon bar-Giora only in the third year (Wars of the Jews, iv. 9. 12); Eleasar even later, and only for a short time (see above, p. 235). Notwithstanding the more than weak foundation of these hypotheses, Levy obtained at first ardent supporters in Madden, History of Jewish Coinage, 1864, and Cavedoni in Grote’s Münzstudien, v. Madden’s work of 1864 is consequently in those parts extremely ill-suited to afford a clear summary of the history. Also Renan was influenced by Levy, inasmuch as he inclines to ascribe only the superimposition of the stamp to the age of Bar-Cochba (L’église chrétienne, p. 546 sq.). Levy’s and Madden’s views were decidedly combated by Ewald, Gött. gel. Anz. 1862, p. 841 ff., and De Saulcy, Revue Num. 1865, who held fast by their earlier judgments. Yet even De Saulcy so far paid tribute to the Jewish legends as to understand by “Simon the Prince” the younger Simon, son of Gamaliel, grandson of the earlier one of that name, whose title of Nasi, however, stands historically on as weak a foundation, as in the case of his grandfather.—4. A change for the better, however, was made by Merzbacher when he, although still influenced by Levy, abandoned his arbitrary separation of the coins of our fourth and fifth classes. He put all coins of “Year I. ligullath Israel” and all those of “Year II. lecêruth Israel” into the Vespasian age, and all those with “lechêruth Jerushalem” into the age of Hadrian. All the Simon coins of the age of Vespasian, whether with or without the title Nasi, he ascribed to Simon, son of Gamaliel. But even before him Garrucci had come one step nearer the truth when he ascribed to the Hadrianic period both the coins of the “Year II. lechêruth Israel,” and those with “lechêruth Jerushalem,” and assigned to the age of Vespasian only those of “Year I. ligullath Israel.” His arguments also soon made an impression upon Madden (Numismatic Chronicle, 1866, p. 63 sq.), who in his later works (Numismatic Chronicle, 1875; Coins of the Jews, 1881) actually adopted the arrangement of Garrucci. In consequence of this, Madden’s masterpiece of 1881 marks an important advance upon the History of 1864, not only in regard to the wealth of material, but also in respect of its incomparably superior arrangement.—5. The researches of Merzbacher, Garrucci, and Madden gradually unravelled the confusion wrought by Levy, and led step by step back again to the original simple views of De Saulcy. Sallet and Reinach have returned completely to these earlier views, for reasons that have been stated above. Although on other points De Saulcy is not always happy in his historical combinations, his numismatical sense has in this particular guided him aright.—Whether the weight of the arguments by which modern numismatists have been constrained to return step by step to De Saulcy’s view will survive all attacks the future alone can show. An attempt to produce embarrassment anew has been made by Grätz (Monatsschrift, 1887, p. 145 ff.; Revue des études juives, xvi. 161 sqq., xviii. 301 sq.; Geschichte der Juden, iii. 4 Aufl. 1888, p. 819 ff.). There is scarcely any danger of such an attempt succeeding, for any one who has even a moderate appreciation of scientific method must regard Grätz’s speculations as a tissue of groundless surmises. Compare in opposition to him. Reinach, Revue des ëtudes juives, xvii. 42–45, xviii. 304–306.

In regard to the small copper coins communicated under No. 2, with the superscription חרות ציון, chêruth Zion, years II. and III., a much greater agreement prevails than in regard to the coins of our third, fourth, and fifth classes. With almost perfect unanimity they are ascribed to the period of the war of Vespasian. This is the opinion not only of De Saulcy, who assigns to the Vespasian period only those coins, but also of Ewald, who places the shekels along with them, and of Levy, Garrucci, and Madden, who join with them a more or less considerable portion of our Bar-Cochbe coins. This latter view is indeed indefensible, because these coins differ from the others essentially in style, so that Merzbacher renounces the attempt to fix their age (Zeitschrift für Numismatique, i. 223, iv. 364 f.). But if all the coins of our third, fourth, and fifth classes are placed in the time of Bar-Cochba, it will become probable, owing to the diversity of style, that the coins of the years II. and III. chêruth Zion belong to the time of Vespasian. In this case also De Saulcy has hit upon the right explanation.

It is of the utmost importance to determine the coins of the year IV., לגאלת ציון, ligullath Zion, communicated under No. 1. Many, on account of the admitted antiquity of their style, class them along with the shekel coins. So De Saulcy, Cavedoni, Biblische Numismatique, ii.; Ewald, Levy, Madden, 1864. Yet it is just their style which leads Garrucci to separate them from the shekels, and to place them in the time of Vespasian (Dissertazioni, ii. 32); and Madden, after he had, in complete contradiction to Garrucci, maintained their conteraporariness with the shekels (Num. Chron. 1866, pp. 48–63), at last only holds so far to that opinion that their reference to the Seleucidean period seems to some extent proved (Coins of the Jews, p. 73), while even Merzbacher is of opinion that they were not of the same period as the shekels (Zeitschrift, i. 222 f.), and are therefore to be reckoned only as ancient coins of an uncertain age (Zeitschrift, iv. 364). It is thus difficult to arrive at any decided judgment upon these matters.

THE Olympiad era begins in B.C. 776, and is to be reckoned from 1st July. The Seleucid era begins in B.C. 312, and is to be reckoned from 1st October. The Varronian era ab Urbe condita begins in B.C. 753, and counts from the festival of the Palilia, XI. Cal. Maii=21st April. But since writers reckon by the years of office of the consuls, we have to do, not with the starting-point of the Varronian year, but with the point of time at which the consuls entered upon their office. But this took place from A.U. 601, and so continued during almost the whole of the succeeding period, on 1st January.—In the following table the respective years of the Greek, Seleucidean, and Roman eras are paralleled with the same year of the Christian era in which they begin. Thus:

Ol. 151, 1=1st July B.C. 176 down to the same day in B.C. 175.

Sel. 137=1st October B.C. 176 down to the same day in B.C. 175.

A.U. 578=21st April (or 1st January) B.C. 176 down to the same day in B.C. 175.






1, 1





6, 4





117, 1





. .





151, 1




















152, 1




















153, 1




















154, 1




















155, 1




















156, 1




















157, 1




















158, 1




















159, 1




















160, 1




















161, 1




















162, 1




















163, 1




















164, 1




















165, 1




















166, 1




















167, 1




















168, 1




















169, 1




















170, 1




















171, 1




















172, 1




















173, 1




















174, 1




















175, 1




















176, 1




















177, 1




















178, 1




















179, 1




















180, 1




















181, 1




















182, 1




















183, 1




















184, 1




















185, 1




















186, 1




















187, 1




















188, 1




















189, 1




















190, 1




















191, 1




















192, 1




















193, 1




















194, 1




















195, 1



              A.D. 1

















196, 1




















197, 1




















198, 1




















199, 1




















200, 1




















201, 1




















202, 1




















203, 1




















204, 1




















205, 1




















206, 1




















207, 1




















208, 1




















209, 1




















210, 1




















211, 1




















212, 1




















213, 1




















214, 1




















215, 1




















216, 1




















217, 1




















218, 1




















219, 1




















220, 1




















221, 1




















222, 1




















223, 1




















224, 1




















225, 1




















226, 1




















227, 1




















228, 1





















6.               Prideaux. A new and improved edition of this work, revised by J. Talboys Wheeler, appeared in 2 vols, in 1858.

7.               Holtzmann, Oskar, Das Ende des jüdischen Staatswesens und die Entstehung des Christentums, 1888, forming the second half of the second volume of Stade’s Geschichte des Volkes Israel.

8.               Grätz, Geschichte der Juden, vol. iii. 4th edition, 1888; greatly enlarged.

8.               Sack, Die altjüdische Religion im Uebergange vom Bibelthume zum Talmudismus, Berlin 1889 (612 pp.).

9.               Morrison, The Jews under Roman Rule, London 1890 (426 pp.).

10.               Weber, System der altsyn. pal. Theologie, in a new unaltered edition has appeared under the title: Die Lehren des Talmud, quellenmässig, systematisch und gemeinverständlich dargestellt, Leipzig 1886.

18.               Guérin, Jérusalem, son histoire, sa description, ses établissements religieux, Paris 1889 (409 pp.).

19.               Maps of Palestine. The following are important supplements to the English map, which embraces only the country west of the Jordan: (1) The Map of Djaulan by Schumacher, Zeitschrift des DPV. ix. 1886; (2) the Map of the Hauran, “after measurements and plans taken by Dr. Alphons Stübel in 1882, compared with other most important sources, and constructed by Dr. Hans Fischer,” Zeitschrift des DPV. xii. 1889.—A Map of Palestine on a reduced scale after the best authorities, prepared by H. Fischer and H. Guthe, has been issued by Wagner & Debes, Leipzig (1890) for 1 M. 60 Pf. It is given also in vol. xiii. of the Zeitschrift des DPV.

28.               The following additions to the literature of Numismatics may be noticed: Grätz, Geschichte der Juden, vol. iii. 4th edition, 1888, pp. 819–841; Grätz, Revue des études juives, t. xviii. 1889, pp. 301–304; Reinach, Revue des études juives, t. xvii. 1888, pp. 42–45; Reinach, Revue, t. xviii. 1889, pp. 304–306.

34.               Marucchi, Di un nuovo cimitero giudaico scoperto sulla Via Labicana, Roma 1887.

34.               Derenbourg in the Mélanges Renier, 1887, pp. 437–441, from communications by De Rossi, has made known five inscriptions from the Jewish cemetery at Porto, four of these being published for the first time.

43.               On the Sabbatical year: Grätz, Geschichte der Juden, vol. iii. 4th edition, pp. 652–655 (note 8).

53.               On Dellius: Fabricius, Theophilus von Mytilene und Quintus Dellius als Quellen der Geographie des Strabon, Strassburg 1888.

56.               On Strabo: Otto, “Strabonis ἱστορικῶν ὑπομνημάτων fragmenta collegit et enarravit adjectis quaestionibus Strabonianis” (Leipziger Studien zur classischen Philologie, xi. Suppl. vol. 1889).

69.               Grätz, Geschichte der Juden, vol. iii. 4th edition, pp. 554–557, on Justus of Tiberias.

91.               note. Against Niese’s theory about the way in which Josephus obtained access to the authorities referred to in Antiq. xiv. 10, these two facts may be adduced: (1) That the greater part of them refers to that relief from military service (Antiq. xiv. 10. 11–19) which was not in dispute in the controversy between the municipal communities of Asia Minor and the Jews; and (2) that another part of them refers to Judea (Antiq. xiv. 10. 2–10), the affairs of which were of no importance in the particular conflict then going on.

92.               Add to note 1 with regard to Justus of Tiberias: Grätz, Geschichte der Juden, vol. iii. 4th edition, p. 555.

102.               The text of the so-called Hegesippus is, according to Weber, also printed in: Sancti Ambrosii opera omnia, ed. Ballerini, t. vi. (Mediol. 1883) col. 1–276.—The text of Weber’s Programm edition, we may here observe in passing, is not quite complete, since in passing from one Programm to another a small part is wanting. Therefore only the edition in book form can be used (Marburg 1864).—On Hegesippus compare also: Bardenhewer in Wetzer and Welte’s Kirchenlexicon, 2nd edition, vol. v. 1888, col. 1585 f.; Ihm, Studia, Ambrosiana (Jahrbücher für classischen Philologie, xvii. Suppl. vol., 1st pt. 1889), pp. 61–68. The latter is again in favour of assigning the authorship to Ambrose.

105.               The fifth vol. of Niese’s great edition of Josephus, containing the treatise contra Apionem, appeared in 1889.—Of the edition by Bekker, issued in Teubner’s series, vols. i. and ii. have appeared: Flavii Josephi opera omnia recognovit Naber, 1888–1889.

105.               As contributions to criticism of the text: Destinon, De Flavii Josephi bello Judaico recensendo ad Benedictum Nisum epistula critica, Kiel 1889, Programm.

109.               On the State Papers used by Josephus, compare also: Judeich, Caesar im Orient (1885), pp. 119–141; Grätz, Geschichte der Juden, vol. iii. ed. iv. pp. 655–671 (note 9).

129.               Note 2 Fürst, “Antoninus und Rabbi” (Magazin für die Wissenschaft des Judenthums, xvi. 1889, pp. 41–45).

135.               Note 3 Wünsche, Der Babylonische Talmud u. s. w., 2nd half-vol. pts. 3–4, 1889.

137.               Schwab’s French translation of the Jerusalem Talmud has been brought to a conclusion by the publication of vol. xi. 1889 (Sanhedrin, conclusion, Makkoth, Shebuoth, Aboda sara, Horajoth, Nidda).—Of vol. i., which in the first edition contained the tract Berachoth according to the Jerusalem and the Babylonian Talmud, a new edition appeared in 1890, containing the tract Berachoth according to the Jerusalem Talmud only (Le Talmud de Jérusalem, etc., t. i. nouvelle edition, Traité des Berakhoth, Paris 1890).

138.               Wünsche, Der Babylonische Talmud u. s. w., 2nd half-vol. pts. 3–4, 1889.

139.               Levy’s Neuhebräisches und Chaldäisches Wörterbuch has been completed by the issue of the concluding vol. iv. 1889.

139.               Jastrow, A Dictionary, etc., 2 fasc. בריאספלג, New York 1887.

139.               Stein, Das Verbum der Mischnasprache, Berlin 1888.—Rosenberg, Das aramäische Verbum im babylonischen Talmud, Marburg 1888.

143.               Darmesteter, “Le Talmud” (Actes et conférences de la Sociéte des études juives [Appendix to Revue des études juives], 1889, pp. CCCLXXXI–CDXLII).

147.               On Mechilta, Siphra, and Siphre, compare also: D. Hoffmann, Zur Einleitung in die halachischen Midraschim. Contributions to the Jahresbericht des Rabbiner-Seminars, at Berlin 1886–1887; Königsberger, Die Quellen der Halachah. 1 Part. Der Midrasch, Berlin 1890.—I regret that I did not sooner become acquainted with this careful and excellent work of D. Hoffmann. It contains very valuable studies on the history of the origin of the three Midrashim above named. On p. 24, Hoffmann gives a list of the authorities most frequently cited in Siphra; in pp. 38–40 those most frequently cited in Mechilta, and on p. 54 those most frequently mentioned in Siphre. A complete index of the Tannaim in Mechilta, Siphra, and Siphre is given at pp. 82–90.

147.               On Siphre suta, see D. Hoffmann, Zur Einleitung in die halachischen Midraschim, pp. 59–66.

152.               Lévi, “Eléments chrétiens dans le Pirké Rabbi Eliézer” (Revue des études juives, t. xviii. 1889, pp. 83–89).

164.               Grätz, Geschichte der juden, vol. iii. 4th edition, pp. 559–577 (note 1).

208.               Gatt, “Zur Akra-Frage”, (Theol. Quartalschr. 1889, pp. 77–125).

210.               ר׳ אליעזר המודעי is frequently referred to in Mechilta. See the list of passages in D. Hoffmann, Zur Einleitung in die halachischen Midraschim (Jahresbericht des Rabbiner-Seminars, at Berlin 1886–1887), p. 83.

221.               On the geography of 1 Macc. 5:26, compare also Furrer, Zeitschrift des DPV. xii. 1889, pp. 151; Buhl, Zeitschrift, xiii. 1890, pp. 41–43.

254.               On Bascama, see Furrer, Zeitschrift des DPV. xii. p. 151.

268.               On Antiq. xiv. 8. 5: Judeich, Caesar im Orient (1885), pp. 129–136 (reaches same conclusion as Mommsen).

271.               “Kedron is the modern Katrah in the neighbourhood of Jamnia” (Furrer in correspondence).

302.               “Bethome is Betuni on the same mountain ridge as Nebi Samwel” (Furrer in correspondence).

304.               On Gaulana, see Furrer, Zeitschrift des DPV. xii. p. 151.

304.               “Ragaba is very likely Ragib which lies in almost the same degree of latitude as Gerasa” (Furrer in correspondence).

328.               Liebenam, Forschungen zur Verwaltungegeschichte des römischen Kaiserreichs. 1 Bd. Die Legaten in den römischen Provinzen von Augustus bis Diocletian, Leipzig 1888. At pp. 359–389 a list is given of imperial legates in Syria from Augustus down to the third Christian century.

335.               Judeich, Caesar im Orient. Kritische Uebersicht der Ereignisse vom 9 August 48 bis October 47, Leipzig 1885.

417.               The form Ηρωιδης is also found in Corp. Inscr. Atticarum, ii. 3 (1888), n. 1672.

449.               That the Herodian princes were σύμμαχοι is now quite beyond doubt. Compare the Coins of Agrippa above in vol. ii. p. 155.

27.               The custom of celebrating the birthday of a prince is very ancient. Compare Gen. 40:20, and the commentaries on that passage by Dillmann and others. Seeing that the Herodian princes expressly celebrated the day of their accession to the throne (Josephus, Antiq. xv. 11. 6), it is instructive to learn from the great inscription of Rosetta that, e.g., in Egypt also it was customary to keep both days: καὶ ἐπεὶ τὴν τριακάδα τοῦ Μεσορὴ, ἐν ᾖ τὰ γενέθλια τοῦ βασιλέως ἄγεται, ὁμοίως δὲ καὶ [τὴν τοῦ Μεχεὶρ ἑπτακαιδεκάτην], ἐν ᾖ παρέλαβεν τὴν βασιλειαν παρὰ τοῦ πατρός κ.τ.λ. (see the text, e.g. in Müller’s Frag. hist. graec. vol. 1 at close). For the custom of celebrating birthdays, compare also 2 Macc. 6:7 (Antiochus Epiphanes) and Josephus, Antiq. xix. 7. 1 (Agrippa I.).—Since in the Bible out of a great number only the celebrations of the birthdays of Pharaoh (Gen. 40:20) and Herod Antipas are referred to, Origen and Jerome in their observations on Matt. 14:6 drew the conclusion that only wicked men acted thus (Origen on Matt t. x. c. 22; Jerome, Opp. ed. Vallarsi, vii. 101).

58.               A Greek text of the Acts of Perpetua and Felicitas has now been discovered which proves to be the original. The Acts of the Martyrdom of Perpetua and Felicitas; the original Greek text now first edited from a MS. in the library of the Convent of the Holy Sepulchre at Jerusalem by J. Rendel Harris and Seth B. Gifford, London 1890. The passage about the Procurator Hilarius here runs as follows: καὶ Ἱλαρίανος ἐπίτροπος ὃς τότε τοῦ ἀνθυπάτου ἀποθανόντος Μινουκίου Ὀππιάνον ἐξουσίαν εἰλήφει μαχαίρας.

87.               “Tirathana=Tireh, south of Gerizim” (Furrer in correspondence).

224.               Tarichea on the south-western corner of the Lake of Gennezaret. So also Buhl, Zeitschrift des DPV. xiii. 1890, p. 38 ff.

225.               Against Furrer’s identification of Gamala and Jamli I have advanced the consideration that one could not say of a place which is a day’s journey from the sea that it lies ὑπὲρ τὴν λίμνην. With reference to this Furrer writes me: “Jamli stands on a rising ground overlooking the lake, and is indeed the height of the stronghold, seen from the west bank of the lake, occupying a commanding situation, because from it westward the land slopes downward. We may surely say St. Gall overlooks the Lake of Geneva, though it is some five leagues distant from the lake.” I am now inclined to agree with Furrer.

249.               On the Arch of Titus see also Reinach, “L’arc de Titus” (Actes et conférences de la Société des études juives [Appendix to Revue des études juives], 1890, pp. lxv–xci).—The inscription of the other now extant Arch of Titus is given according to the manuscript of Einsiedeln by De Rossi, Inscriptiones christianae urbis Romae, vol. ii. 1 (1888), p. 25, n. 31.

265.               An inscription found in the neighbourhood of Caesarea, on which Caesarea is referred to as a colony (Col. I. Fl. Aug. Caesarea), has been published by Zangemeister, Zeitschrift des DPV. xiii. 1890, p. 25 ff.

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