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Tiresias: The Ancient Mediterranean Religions Source Database



7236
Josephus Flavius, Against Apion, 2.45-2.48


εἰς αὐτὰς μέρος ̓Ιουδαίων ἔπεμψε κατοικῆσον. ὁ δὲ μετ' αὐτὸν Πτολεμαῖος ὁ Φιλάδελφος ἐπικληθεὶς οὐ μόνον εἴ τινες ἦσαν αἰχμάλωτοι παρ' αὐτῷ τῶν ἡμετέρων πάντας ἀπέδωκεν, ἀλλὰ καὶ χρήματα πολλάκις ἐδωρήσατο καὶ τὸ μέγιστον ἐπιθυμητὴς ἐγένετο τοῦ γνῶναι τοὺς ἡμετέρους νόμους καὶ ταῖς τῶν ἱερῶν γραφῶν βίβλοις ἐντυχεῖν.And for his successor Ptolemy, who was called Philadelphus, he did not only set all those of our nation free, who were captives under him, but did frequently give money [for their ransom]; and, what was his greatest work of all, he had a great desire of knowing our laws, and of obtaining the books of our sacred scriptures:


ἔπεμψε γοῦν ἀξιῶν ἄνδρας ἀποσταλῆναι τοὺς ἑρμηνεύσοντας αὐτῷ τὸν νόμον καὶ τοῦ γραφῆναι ταῦτα καλῶς τὴν ἐπιμέλειαν ἐπέταξεν οὐ τοῖς τυχοῦσιν, ἀλλὰ Δημήτριον τὸν Φαληρέα καὶ ̓Ανδρέαν καὶ ̓Αριστέα, τὸν μὲν παιδείᾳ τῶν καθ'accordingly he desired that such men might be sent him as might interpret our law to him; and in order to have them well compiled, he committed that care to no ordinary persons, but ordained that Demetrius Phalereus, and Andreas, and Aristeas; the first, Demetrius, the most learned person of his age


ἑαυτὸν διαφέροντα Δημήτριον, τοὺς δὲ τὴν τοῦ σώματος αὐτοῦ φυλακὴν ἐγκεχειρισμένους, ἐπὶ τῆς ἐπιμελείας ταύτης ἔταξεν, οὐκ ἂν δήπου τοὺς νόμους καὶ τὴν πάτριον ἡμῶν φιλοσοφίαν ἐπιθυμήσας ἐκμαθεῖν, εἰ τῶν χρωμένων αὐτοῖς ἀνδρῶν κατεφρόνει καὶ μὴ λίαν ἐθαύμαζεν.and the others, such as were intrusted with the guard of his body, should take the care of this matter: nor would he certainly have been so desirous of learning our law and the philosophy of our nation had he despised the men that made use of it, or had he not indeed had them in great admiration.


̓Απίωνα δὲ σχεδὸν ἐφεξῆς πάντες ἔλαθον οἱ τῶν προγόνων αὐτοῦ Μακεδόνων βασιλεῖς οἰκειότατα πρὸς ἡμᾶς διατεθέντες: καὶ γὰρ τρίτος Πτολεμαῖος ὁ λεγόμενος Εὐεργέτης κατασχὼν ὅλην Συρίαν κατὰ κράτος οὐ τοῖς ἐν Αἰγύπτῳ θεοῖς χαριστήρια τῆς νίκης ἔθυσεν, ἀλλὰ παραγενόμενος εἰς ̔Ιεροσόλυμα πολλὰς ὡς ἡμῖν νόμιμόν ἐστιν ἐπετέλεσε θυσίας τῷ θεῷ καὶ ἀνέθηκεν ἀναθήματα τῆς νίκης ἀξίως.5. Now this Apion was unacquainted with almost all the kings of those Macedonians whom he pretends to have been his progenitors,—who were yet very well affected towards us; for the third of those Ptolemies, who was called Euergetes, when he had gotten possession of all Syria by force, did not offer his thank-offerings to the Egyptian gods for his victory, but came to Jerusalem, and, according to our own laws, offered many sacrifices to God, and dedicated to him such gifts as were suitable to such a victory:


Intertexts (texts cited often on the same page as the searched text):

13 results
1. Theocritus, Idylls, 17 (4th cent. BCE - 3rd cent. BCE)

2. Hebrew Bible, Daniel, 11.6 (2nd cent. BCE - 2nd cent. BCE)

11.6. וּלְקֵץ שָׁנִים יִתְחַבָּרוּ וּבַת מֶלֶךְ־הַנֶּגֶב תָּבוֹא אֶל־מֶלֶךְ הַצָּפוֹן לַעֲשׂוֹת מֵישָׁרִים וְלֹא־תַעְצֹר כּוֹחַ הַזְּרוֹעַ וְלֹא יַעֲמֹד וּזְרֹעוֹ וְתִנָּתֵן הִיא וּמְבִיאֶיהָ וְהַיֹּלְדָהּ וּמַחֲזִקָהּ בָּעִתִּים׃ 11.6. And at the end of years they shall join themselves together; and the daughter of the king of the south shall come to the king of the north to make an agreement; but she shall not retain the strength of her arm; neither shall he stand, nor his arm; but she shall be given up, and they that brought her, and he that begot her, and he that obtained her in those times."
3. Philo of Alexandria, Against Flaccus, 20, 17 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

17. But when a magistrate begins to despair of his power of exerting authority, it follows inevitably, that his subjects must quickly become disobedient, especially those who are naturally, at every trivial or common occurrence, inclined to show insubordination, and, among people of such a disposition, the Egyptian nation is pre-eminent, being constantly in the habit of exciting great seditions from very small sparks.
4. Philo of Alexandria, On The Embassy To Gaius, 166, 355-367, 66-77, 139 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

139. And what would they not have done in the case of those whom they looked upon as men? a people who look upon dogs, and wolves, and lions, and crocodiles, and numerous other beasts, both terrestrial and aquatic, and numerous birds, as gods, and erect in their honour altars, and temples, and shrines, and consecrated precincts, throughout the whole of Egypt? XXI.
5. Strabo, Geography, 17.1.11 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)

17.1.11. Alexander was succeeded by Ptolemy the son of Lagus, the son of Lagus by Philadelphus, Philadelphus by Euergetes; next succeeded Philopator the lover of Agathocleia, then Epiphanes, afterwards Philometor, the son (thus far) always succeeding the father. But Philometor was succeeded by his brother, the second Euergetes, who was also called Physcon. He was succeeded by Ptolemy surnamed Lathurus, Lathurus by Auletes of our time, who was the father of Cleopatra. All these kings, after the third Ptolemy, were corrupted by luxury and effeminacy, and the affairs of government were very badly administered by them; but worst of all by the fourth, the seventh, and the last, Auletes (or the Piper), who, besides other deeds of shamelessness, acted the piper; indeed he gloried so much in the practice, that he scrupled not to appoint trials of skill in his palace; on which occasions he presented himself as a competitor with other rivals. He was deposed by the Alexandrines; and of his three daughters, one, the eldest, who was legitimate, they proclaimed queen; but his two sons, who were infants, were absolutely excluded from the succession.As a husband for the daughter established on the throne, the Alexandrines invited one Cybiosactes from Syria, who pretended to be descended from the Syrian kings. The queen after a few days, unable to endure his coarseness and vulgarity, rid herself of him by causing him to be strangled. She afterwards married Archelaus, who also pretended to be the son of Mithridates Eupator, but he was really the son of that Archelaus who carried on war against Sulla, and was afterwards honourably treated by the Romans. He was grandfather of the last king of Cappadocia in our time, and priest of Comana in Pontus. He was then (at the time we are speaking of) the guest of Gabinius, and intended to accompany him in an expedition against the Parthians, but unknown to Gabinius, he was conducted away by some (friends) to the queen, and declared king.At this time Pompey the Great entertained Auletes as his guest on his arrival at Rome, and recommended him to the senate, negotiated his return, and contrived the execution of most of the deputies, in number a hundred, who had undertaken to appear against him: at their head was Dion the academic philosopher.Ptolemy (Auletes) on being restored by Gabinius, put to death both Archelaus and his daughter; but not long after he was reinstated in his kingdom, he died a natural death, leaving two sons and two daughters, the eldest of whom was Cleopatra.The Alexandrines declared as sovereigns the eldest son and Cleopatra. But the adherents of the son excited a sedition, and banished Cleopatra, who retired with her sister into Syria.It was about this time that Pompey the Great, in his flight from Palaepharsalus, came to Pelusium and Mount Casium. He was treacherously slain by the king's party. When Caesar arrived, he put the young prince to death, and sending for Cleopatra from her place of exile, appointed her queen of Egypt, declaring also her surviving brother, who was very young, and herself joint sovereigns.After the death of Caesar and the battle at Pharsalia, Antony passed over into Asia; he raised Cleopatra to the highest dignity, made her his wife, and had children by her. He was present with her at the battle of Actium, and accompanied her in her flight. Augustus Caesar pursued them, put an end to their power, and rescued Egypt from misgovernment and revelry.
6. Josephus Flavius, Jewish Antiquities, 11.302-11.347, 12.7-12.118, 13.74-13.79, 18.257-18.260, 19.278-19.285 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

11.302. 2. Now when John had departed this life, his son Jaddua succeeded in the high priesthood. He had a brother, whose name was Manasseh. Now there was one Sanballat, who was sent by Darius, the last king [of Persia], into Samaria. He was a Cutheam by birth; of which stock were the Samaritans also. 11.303. This man knew that the city Jerusalem was a famous city, and that their kings had given a great deal of trouble to the Assyrians, and the people of Celesyria; so that he willingly gave his daughter, whose name was Nicaso, in marriage to Manasseh, as thinking this alliance by marriage would be a pledge and security that the nation of the Jews should continue their good-will to him. 11.304. 1. About this time it was that Philip, king of Macedon, was treacherously assaulted and slain at Egae by Pausanias, the son of Cerastes, who was derived from the family of Oreste 11.305. and his son Alexander succeeded him in the kingdom; who, passing over the Hellespont, overcame the generals of Darius’s army in a battle fought at Granicum. So he marched over Lydia, and subdued Ionia, and overran Caria, and fell upon the places of Pamphylia, as has been related elsewhere. 11.306. 2. But the elders of Jerusalem being very uneasy that the brother of Jaddua the high priest, though married to a foreigner, should be a partner with him in the high priesthood, quarreled with him; 11.307. for they esteemed this man’s marriage a step to such as should be desirous of transgressing about the marriage of [strange] wives, and that this would be the beginning of a mutual society with foreigners 11.308. although the offense of some about marriages, and their having married wives that were not of their own country, had been an occasion of their former captivity, and of the miseries they then underwent; so they commanded Manasseh to divorce his wife, or not to approach the altar 11.309. the high priest himself joining with the people in their indignation against his brother, and driving him away from the altar. Whereupon Manasseh came to his father-in-law, Sanballat, and told him, that although he loved his daughter Nicaso, yet was he not willing to be deprived of his sacerdotal dignity on her account, which was the principal dignity in their nation, and always continued in the same family. 11.311. and he promised that he would do this with the approbation of Darius the king. Manasseh was elevated with these promises, and staid with Sanballat, upon a supposal that he should gain a high priesthood, as bestowed on him by Darius, for it happened that Sanballat was then in years. 11.312. But there was now a great disturbance among the people of Jerusalem, because many of those priests and Levites were entangled in such matches; for they all revolted to Manasseh, and Sanballat afforded them money, and divided among them land for tillage, and habitations also, and all this in order every way to gratify his son-in-law. 11.313. 3. About this time it was that Darius heard how Alexander had passed over the Hellespont, and had beaten his lieutets in the battle at Granicum, and was proceeding further; whereupon he gathered together an army of horse and foot, and determined that he would meet the Macedonians before they should assault and conquer all Asia. 11.314. So he passed over the river Euphrates, and came over Taurus, the Cilician mountain, and at Issus of Cilicia he waited for the enemy, as ready there to give him battle. 11.315. Upon which Sanballat was glad that Darius was come down; and told Manasseh that he would suddenly perform his promises to him, and this as soon as ever Darius should come back, after he had beaten his enemies; for not he only, but all those that were in Asia also, were persuaded that the Macedonians would not so much as come to a battle with the Persians, on account of their multitude. 11.316. But the event proved otherwise than they expected; for the king joined battle with the Macedonians, and was beaten, and lost a great part of his army. His mother also, and his wife and children, were taken captives, and he fled into Persia. 11.317. So Alexander came into Syria, and took Damascus; and when he had obtained Sidon, he besieged Tyre, when he sent an epistle to the Jewish high priest, to send him some auxiliaries, and to supply his army with provisions; and that what presents he formerly sent to Darius, he would now send to him, and choose the friendship of the Macedonians, and that he should never repent of so doing. 11.318. But the high priest answered the messengers, that he had given his oath to Darius not to bear arms against him; and he said that he would not transgress this while Darius was in the land of the living. Upon hearing this answer, Alexander was very angry; 11.319. and though he determined not to leave Tyre, which was just ready to be taken, yet as soon as he had taken it, he threatened that he would make an expedition against the Jewish high priest, and through him teach all men to whom they must keep their oaths. 11.321. 4. But Sanballat thought he had now gotten a proper opportunity to make his attempt, so he renounced Darius, and taking with him seven thousand of his own subjects, he came to Alexander; and finding him beginning the siege of Tyre, he said to him, that he delivered up to him these men, who came out of places under his dominion, and did gladly accept of him for his lord instead of Darius. 11.322. So when Alexander had received him kindly, Sanballat thereupon took courage, and spake to him about his present affair. He told him that he had a son-in-law, Manasseh, who was brother to the high priest Jaddua; and that there were many others of his own nation, now with him, that were desirous to have a temple in the places subject to him; 11.323. that it would be for the king’s advantage to have the strength of the Jews divided into two parts, lest when the nation is of one mind, and united, upon any attempt for innovation, it prove troublesome to kings, as it had formerly proved to the kings of Assyria. 11.324. Whereupon Alexander gave Sanballat leave so to do, who used the utmost diligence, and built the temple, and made Manasseh the priest, and deemed it a great reward that his daughter’s children should have that dignity; 11.325. but when the seven months of the siege of Tyre were over, and the two months of the siege of Gaza, Sanballat died. Now Alexander, when he had taken Gaza, made haste to go up to Jerusalem; 11.326. and Jaddua the high priest, when he heard that, was in an agony, and under terror, as not knowing how he should meet the Macedonians, since the king was displeased at his foregoing disobedience. He therefore ordained that the people should make supplications, and should join with him in offering sacrifice to God, whom he besought to protect that nation, and to deliver them from the perils that were coming upon them; 11.327. whereupon God warned him in a dream, which came upon him after he had offered sacrifice, that he should take courage, and adorn the city, and open the gates; that the rest should appear in white garments, but that he and the priests should meet the king in the habits proper to their order, without the dread of any ill consequences, which the providence of God would prevent. 11.328. Upon which, when he rose from his sleep, he greatly rejoiced, and declared to all the warning he had received from God. According to which dream he acted entirely, and so waited for the coming of the king. 11.329. 5. And when he understood that he was not far from the city, he went out in procession, with the priests and the multitude of the citizens. The procession was venerable, and the manner of it different from that of other nations. It reached to a place called Sapha, which name, translated into Greek, signifies a prospect, for you have thence a prospect both of Jerusalem and of the temple. 11.331. for Alexander, when he saw the multitude at a distance, in white garments, while the priests stood clothed with fine linen, and the high priest in purple and scarlet clothing, with his mitre on his head, having the golden plate whereon the name of God was engraved, he approached by himself, and adored that name, and first saluted the high priest. 11.332. The Jews also did all together, with one voice, salute Alexander, and encompass him about; whereupon the kings of Syria and the rest were surprised at what Alexander had done, and supposed him disordered in his mind. 11.333. However, Parmenio alone went up to him, and asked him how it came to pass that, when all others adored him, he should adore the high priest of the Jews? To whom he replied, “I did not adore him, but that God who hath honored him with his high priesthood; 11.334. for I saw this very person in a dream, in this very habit, when I was at Dios in Macedonia, who, when I was considering with myself how I might obtain the dominion of Asia, exhorted me to make no delay, but boldly to pass over the sea thither, for that he would conduct my army, and would give me the dominion over the Persians; 11.335. whence it is that, having seen no other in that habit, and now seeing this person in it, and remembering that vision, and the exhortation which I had in my dream, I believe that I bring this army under the divine conduct, and shall therewith conquer Darius, and destroy the power of the Persians, and that all things will succeed according to what is in my own mind.” 11.336. And when he had said this to Parmenio, and had given the high priest his right hand, the priests ran along by him, and he came into the city. And when he went up into the temple, he offered sacrifice to God, according to the high priest’s direction, and magnificently treated both the high priest and the priests. 11.337. And when the Book of Daniel was showed him wherein Daniel declared that one of the Greeks should destroy the empire of the Persians, he supposed that himself was the person intended. And as he was then glad, he dismissed the multitude for the present; but the next day he called them to him, and bid them ask what favors they pleased of him; 11.338. whereupon the high priest desired that they might enjoy the laws of their forefathers, and might pay no tribute on the seventh year. He granted all they desired. And when they entreated him that he would permit the Jews in Babylon and Media to enjoy their own laws also, he willingly promised to do hereafter what they desired. 11.339. And when he said to the multitude, that if any of them would enlist themselves in his army, on this condition, that they should continue under the laws of their forefathers, and live according to them, he was willing to take them with him, many were ready to accompany him in his wars. 11.341. for such is the disposition of the Samaritans, as we have already elsewhere declared, that when the Jews are in adversity, they deny that they are of kin to them, and then they confess the truth; but when they perceive that some good fortune hath befallen them, they immediately pretend to have communion with them, saying that they belong to them, and derive their genealogy from the posterity of Joseph, Ephraim, and Manasseh. 11.342. Accordingly, they made their address to the king with splendor, and showed great alacrity in meeting him at a little distance from Jerusalem. And when Alexander had commended them, the Shechemites approached to him, taking with them the troops that Sanballat had sent him, and they desired that he would come to their city, and do honor to their temple also; 11.343. to whom he promised, that when he returned he would come to them. And when they petitioned that he would remit the tribute of the seventh year to them, because they did not sow thereon, he asked who they were that made such a petition; 11.344. and when they said that they were Hebrews, but had the name of Sidonians, living at Shechem, he asked them again whether they were Jews; and when they said they were not Jews, “It was to the Jews,” said he, “that I granted that privilege; however, when I return, and am thoroughly informed by you of this matter, I will do what I shall think proper.” And in this manner he took leave of the Shechenlites; 11.345. but ordered that the troops of Sanballat should follow him into Egypt, because there he designed to give them lands, which he did a little after in Thebais, when he ordered them to guard that country. 11.346. 7. Now when Alexander was dead, the government was parted among his successors, but the temple upon Mount Gerizzim remained. And if any one were accused by those of Jerusalem of having eaten things common or of having broken the Sabbath, or of any other crime of the like nature 11.347. he fled away to the Shechemites, and said that he was accused unjustly. About this time it was that Jaddua the high priest died, and Onias his son took the high priesthood. This was the state of the affairs of the people of Jerusalem at this time. 12.7. This is what Agatharchides relates of our nation. But when Ptolemy had taken a great many captives, both from the mountainous parts of Judea, and from the places about Jerusalem and Samaria, and the places near Mount Gerizzim, he led them all into Egypt, and settled them there. 12.7. for there was made a plate of gold four fingers broad, through the entire breadth of the table, into which they inserted the feet, and then fastened them to the table by buttons and button-holes, at the place where the crown was situate, that so on what side soever of the table one should stand, it might exhibit the very same view of the exquisite workmanship, and of the vast expenses bestowed upon it: 12.8. And as he knew that the people of Jerusalem were most faithful in the observation of oaths and covets; and this from the answer they made to Alexander, when he sent an embassage to them, after he had beaten Darius in battle; so he distributed many of them into garrisons, and at Alexandria gave them equal privileges of citizens with the Macedonians themselves; and required of them to take their oaths, that they would keep their fidelity to the posterity of those who committed these places to their care. 12.8. while small shields, made of stones, beautiful in their kind, and of four fingers’ depth, filled up the middle parts. About the top of the basin were wreathed the leaves of lilies, and of the convolvulus, and the tendrils of vines in a circular manner. 12.9. Nay, there were not a few other Jews who, of their own accord, went into Egypt, as invited by the goodness of the soil, and by the liberality of Ptolemy. 12.9. and when they had taken off the covers wherein they were wrapt up, they showed him the membranes. So the king stood admiring the thinness of those membranes, and the exactness of the junctures, which could not be perceived; (so exactly were they connected one with another;) and this he did for a considerable time. He then said that he returned them thanks for coming to him, and still greater thanks to him that sent them; and, above all, to that God whose laws they appeared to be. 12.11. 1. When Alexander had reigned twelve years, and after him Ptolemy Soter forty years, Philadelphus then took the kingdom of Egypt, and held it forty years within one. He procured the law to be interpreted, and set free those that were come from Jerusalem into Egypt, and were in slavery there, who were a hundred and twenty thousand. The occasion was this: 12.11. 14. So the king rejoiced when he saw that his design of this nature was brought to perfection, to so great advantage; and he was chiefly delighted with hearing the Laws read to him; and was astonished at the deep meaning and wisdom of the legislator. And he began to discourse with Demetrius, “How it came to pass, that when this legislation was so wonderful, no one, either of the poets or of the historians, had made mention of it.” 12.12. Demetrius Phalerius, who was library keeper to the king, was now endeavoring, if it were possible, to gather together all the books that were in the habitable earth, and buying whatsoever was any where valuable, or agreeable to the king’s inclination, (who was very earnestly set upon collecting of books,) to which inclination of his Demetrius was zealously subservient. 12.12. an argument for which you have in this, that whereas the Jews do not make use of oil prepared by foreigners, they receive a certain sum of money from the proper officers belonging to their exercises as the value of that oil; which money, when the people of Antioch would have deprived them of, in the last war, Mucianus, who was then president of Syria, preserved it to them. 12.13. And when once Ptolemy asked him how many ten thousands of books he had collected, he replied, that he had already about twenty times ten thousand; but that, in a little time, he should have fifty times ten thousand. 12.13. for while he was at war with Ptolemy Philopater, and with his son, who was called Epiphanes, it fell out that these nations were equally sufferers, both when he was beaten, and when he beat the others: so that they were very like to a ship in a storm, which is tossed by the waves on both sides; and just thus were they in their situation in the middle between Antiochus’s prosperity and its change to adversity. 12.14. But he said he had been informed that there were many books of laws among the Jews worthy of inquiring after, and worthy of the king’s library, but which, being written in characters and in a dialect of their own, will cause no small pains in getting them translated into the Greek tongue; 12.14. And, in the first place, we have determined, on account of their piety towards God, to bestow on them, as a pension, for their sacrifices of animals that are fit for sacrifice, for wine, and oil, and frankincense, the value of twenty thousand pieces of silver, and [six] sacred artabrae of fine flour, with one thousand four hundred and sixty medimni of wheat, and three hundred and seventy-five medimni of salt. 12.15. that the character in which they are written seems to be like to that which is the proper character of the Syrians, and that its sound, when pronounced, is like theirs also; and that this sound appears to be peculiar to themselves. Wherefore he said that nothing hindered why they might not get those books to be translated also; for while nothing is wanting that is necessary for that purpose, we may have their books also in this library. 12.15. for I am persuaded that they will be well-disposed guardians of our possessions, because of their piety towards God, and because I know that my predecessors have borne witness to them, that they are faithful, and with alacrity do what they are desired to do. I will, therefore, though it be a laborious work, that thou remove these Jews, under a promise, that they shall be permitted to use their own laws. 12.16. So the king thought that Demetrius was very zealous to procure him abundance of books, and that he suggested what was exceeding proper for him to do; and therefore he wrote to the Jewish high priest, that he should act accordingly. 12.16. 2. There was now one Joseph, young in age, but of great reputation among the people of Jerusalem, for gravity, prudence, and justice. His father’s name was Tobias; and his mother was the sister of Onias the high priest, who informed him of the coming of the ambassador; for he was then sojourning at a village named Phicol, where he was born. 12.17. 2. Now there was one Aristeus, who was among the king’s most intimate friends, and on account of his modesty very acceptable to him. This Aristeus resolved frequently, and that before now, to petition the king that he would set all the captive Jews in his kingdom free; 12.17. So these men saw Joseph journeying on the way, and laughed at him for his poverty and meanness. But when he came to Alexandria, and heard that king Ptolemy was at Memphis, he went up thither to meet with him; 12.18. and he thought this to be a convenient opportunity for the making that petition. So he discoursed, in the first place, with the captains of the king’s guards, Sosibius of Tarentum, and Andreas, and persuaded them to assist him in what he was going to intercede with the king for. 12.18. 5. But Joseph took with him two thousand foot soldiers from the king, for he desired he might have some assistance, in order to force such as were refractory in the cities to pay. And borrowing of the king’s friends at Alexandria five hundred talents, he made haste back into Syria. 12.19. Accordingly Aristeus embraced the same opinion with those that have been before mentioned, and went to the king, and made the following speech to him: 12.19. And when this his youngest son showed, at thirteen years old, a mind that was both courageous and wise, and was greatly envied by his brethren, as being of a genius much above them, and such a one as they might well envy 12.21. Do thou then what will be agreeable to thy magimity, and to thy good nature: free them from the miserable condition they are in, because that God, who supporteth thy kingdom, was the author of their law 12.21. And when he was invited to feast with the king among the principal men in the country, he sat down the lowest of them all, because he was little regarded, as a child in age still; and this by those who placed every one according to their dignity. 12.22. as I have learned by particular inquiry; for both these people, and we also, worship the same God the framer of all things. We call him, and that truly, by the name of Ζηνα, [or life, or Jupiter,] because he breathes life into all men. Wherefore do thou restore these men to their own country, and this do to the honor of God, because these men pay a peculiarly excellent worship to him. 12.22. So when the king had paid him very great respects, and had given him very large gifts, and had written to his father and his brethren, and all his commanders and officers, about him, he sent him away. 12.23. And know this further, that though I be not of kin to them by birth, nor one of the same country with them, yet do I desire these favors to be done them, since all men are the workmanship of God; and I am sensible that he is well-pleased with those that do good. I do therefore put up this petition to thee, to do good to them.” 12.23. He also erected a strong castle, and built it entirely of white stone to the very roof, and had animals of a prodigious magnitude engraven upon it. He also drew round it a great and deep canal of water. 12.24. 3. When Aristeus was saying thus, the king looked upon him with a cheerful and joyful countece, and said, “How many ten thousands dost thou suppose there are of such as want to be made free?” To which Andreas replied, as he stood by, and said, “A few more than ten times ten thousand.” The king made answer, “And is this a small gift that thou askest, Aristeus?” 12.24. but the greater part of the people assisted Jason; and by that means Menelaus and the sons of Tobias were distressed, and retired to Antiochus, and informed him that they were desirous to leave the laws of their country, and the Jewish way of living according to them, and to follow the king’s laws, and the Grecian way of living. 12.25. But Sosibius, and the rest that stood by, said that he ought to offer such a thank-offering as was worthy of his greatness of soul, to that God who had given him his kingdom. With this answer he was much pleased; and gave order, that when they paid the soldiers their wages, they should lay down [a hundred and] twenty drachmas for every one of the slaves? 12.25. So he left the temple bare, and took away the golden candlesticks, and the golden altar [of incense], and table [of shew-bread], and the altar [of burnt-offering]; and did not abstain from even the veils, which were made of fine linen and scarlet. He also emptied it of its secret treasures, and left nothing at all remaining; and by this means cast the Jews into great lamentation 12.26. And he promised to publish a magnificent decree, about what they requested, which should confirm what Aristeus had proposed, and especially what God willed should be done; whereby he said he would not only set those free who had been led away captive by his father and his army, but those who were in this kingdom before, and those also, if any such there were, who had been brought away since. 12.26. Now, upon the just treatment of these wicked Jews, those that manage their affairs, supposing that we were of kin to them, and practiced as they do, make us liable to the same accusations, although we be originally Sidonians, as is evident from the public records. 12.27. And when they said that their redemption money would amount to above four hundred talents, he granted it. A copy of which decree I have determined to preserve, that the magimity of this king may be made known. 12.27. But as soon as he had ended his speech, there came one of the Jews into the midst of them, and sacrificed, as Antiochus had commanded. At which Mattathias had great indignation, and ran upon him violently, with his sons, who had swords with them, and slew both the man himself that sacrificed, and Apelles the king’s general, who compelled them to sacrifice, with a few of his soldiers. He also overthrew the idol altar, and cried out 12.28. Its contents were as follows: “Let all those who were soldiers under our father, and who, when they overran Syria and Phoenicia, and laid waste Judea, took the Jews captives, and made them slaves, and brought them into our cities, and into this country, and then sold them; as also all those that were in my kingdom before them, and if there be any that have been lately brought thither,—be made free by those that possess them; and let them accept of [a hundred and] twenty drachmas for every slave. And let the soldiers receive this redemption money with their pay, but the rest out of the king’s treasury: 12.28. but to be mindful of the desires of him who begat you, and brought you up, and to preserve the customs of your country, and to recover your ancient form of government, which is in danger of being overturned, and not to be carried away with those that, either by their own inclination, or out of necessity, betray it 12.29. for I suppose that they were made captives without our father’s consent, and against equity; and that their country was harassed by the insolence of the soldiers, and that, by removing them into Egypt, the soldiers have made a great profit by them. 12.29. upon which Judas met him; and when he intended to give him battle, he saw that his soldiers were backward to fight, because their number was small, and because they wanted food, for they were fasting, he encouraged them, and said to them, that victory and conquest of enemies are not derived from the multitude in armies, but in the exercise of piety towards God; 12.31. And I will that they give in their names within three days after the publication of this edict, to such as are appointed to execute the same, and to produce the slaves before them also, for I think it will be for the advantage of my affairs. And let every one that will inform against those that do not obey this decree, and I will that their estates be confiscated into the king’s treasury.” 12.31. And just as he was speaking to his soldiers, Gorgias’s men looked down into that army which they left in their camp, and saw that it was overthrown, and the camp burnt; for the smoke that arose from it showed them, even when they were a great way off, what had happened. 12.32. When this decree was read to the king, it at first contained the rest that is here inserted, and omitted only those Jews that had formerly been brought, and those brought afterwards, which had not been distinctly mentioned; so he added these clauses out of his humanity, and with great generosity. He also gave order that the payment, which was likely to be done in a hurry, should be divided among the king’s ministers, and among the officers of his treasury. 12.32. Now it so fell out, that these things were done on the very same day on which their divine worship had fallen off, and was reduced to a profane and common use, after three years’ time; for so it was, that the temple was made desolate by Antiochus, and so continued for three years. 12.33. When this was over, what the king had decreed was quickly brought to a conclusion; and this in no more than seven days’ time, the number of the talents paid for the captives being above four hundred and sixty, and this, because their masters required the [hundred and] twenty drachmas for the children also, the king having, in effect, commanded that these should be paid for, when he said in his decree, that they should receive the forementioned sum for every slave. 12.33. But when the neighboring nations understood that he was returned, they got together in great numbers in the land of Gilead, and came against those Jews that were at their borders, who then fled to the garrison of Dathema; and sent to Judas, to inform him that Timotheus was endeavoring to take the place whither they were fled. 12.34. 4. Now when this had been done after so magnificent a manner, according to the king’s inclinations, he gave order to Demetrius to give him in writing his sentiments concerning the transcribing of the Jewish books; for no part of the administration is done rashly by these kings, but all things are managed with great circumspection. 12.34. He then turned aside to a city of the foreigners called Malle, and took it, and slew all the males, and burnt the city itself. He then removed from thence, and overthrew Casphom and Bosor, and many other cities of the land of Gilead. 12.35. On which account I have subjoined a copy of these epistles, and set down the multitude of the vessels sent as gifts [to Jerusalem], and the construction of every one, that the exactness of the artificers’ workmanship, as it appeared to those that saw them, and which workman made every vessel, may be made manifest, and this on account of the excellency of the vessels themselves. Now the copy of the epistle was to this purpose: 12.35. 6. But as to Joseph, the son of Zacharias, and Azarias, whom Judas left generals [of the rest of his forces] at the same time when Simon was in Galilee, fighting against the people of Ptolemais, and Judas himself, and his brother Jonathan, were in the land of Gilead, did these men also affect the glory of being courageous generals in war, in order whereto they took the army that was under their command, and came to Jamnia. 12.36. “Demetrius to the great king. When thou, O king, gavest me a charge concerning the collection of books that were wanting to fill your library, and concerning the care that ought to be taken about such as are imperfect, I have used the utmost diligence about those matters. And I let you know, that we want the books of the Jewish legislation, with some others; for they are written in the Hebrew characters, and being in the language of that nation, are to us unknown. 12.36. 2. However, Antiochus, before he died, called for Philip, who was one of his companions, and made him the guardian of his kingdom; and gave him his diadem, and his garment, and his ring, and charged him to carry them, and deliver them to his son Antiochus; and desired him to take care of his education, and to preserve the kingdom for him. 12.37. It hath also happened to them, that they have been transcribed more carelessly than they ought to have been, because they have not had hitherto royal care taken about them. Now it is necessary that thou shouldst have accurate copies of them. And indeed this legislation is full of hidden wisdom, and entirely blameless, as being the legislation of God; 12.37. but the king soon drew his forces from Bethsura, and brought them to those straits. And as soon as it was day, he put his men in battle-array 12.38. for which cause it is, as Hecateus of Abdera says, that the poets and historians make no mention of it, nor of those men who lead their lives according to it, since it is a holy law, and ought not to be published by profane mouths. 12.38. but the king commanded Lysias to speak openly to the soldiers and the officers, without saying a word about the business of Philip; and to intimate to them that the siege would be very long; that the place was very strong; that they were already in want of provisions; that many affairs of the kingdom wanted regulation; 12.39. If then it please thee, O king, thou mayest write to the high priest of the Jews, to send six of the elders out of every tribe, and those such as are most skillful of the laws, that by their means we may learn the clear and agreeing sense of these books, and may obtain an accurate interpretation of their contents, and so may have such a collection of these as may be suitable to thy desire.” 12.39. And when they had taken Autiochus the king, and Lysias, they brought them to him alive; both which were immediately put to death by the command of Demetrius, when Antiochus had reigned two years, as we have already elsewhere related. 12.41. He also gave order to those who had the custody of the chest that contained those stones, to give the artificers leave to choose out what sorts of them they pleased. He withal appointed, that a hundred talents in money should be sent to the temple for sacrifices, and for other uses. 12.41. upon whose fall the army did not stay; but when they had lost their general, they were put to flight, and threw down their arms. Judas also pursued them and slew them, and gave notice by the sound of the trumpets to the neighboring villages that he had conquered the enemy; 12.42. Now I will give a description of these vessels, and the manner of their construction, but not till after I have set down a copy of the epistle which was written to Eleazar the high priest, who had obtained that dignity on the occasion following: 12.42. 1. But when Demetrius was informed of the death of Nicanor, and of the destruction of the army that was with him, he sent Bacchides again with an army into Judea 12.43. When Onias the high priest was dead, his son Simon became his successor. He was called Simon the Just because of both his piety towards God, and his kind disposition to those of his own nation. 12.43. o being not able to fly, but encompassed round about with enemies, he stood still, and he and those that were with him fought; and when he had slain a great many of those that came against him, he at last was himself wounded, and fell and gave up the ghost, and died in a way like to his former famous actions. 12.44. When he was dead, and had left a young son, who was called Onias, Simon’s brother Eleazar, of whom we are speaking, took the high priesthood; and he it was to whom Ptolemy wrote, and that in the manner following: 12.45. “King Ptolemy to Eleazar the high priest, sendeth greeting. There are many Jews who now dwell in my kingdom, whom the Persians, when they were in power, carried captives. These were honored by my father; some of them he placed in the army, and gave them greater pay than ordinary; to others of them, when they came with him into Egypt, he committed his garrisons, and the guarding of them, that they might be a terror to the Egyptians. 12.46. And when I had taken the government, I treated all men with humanity, and especially those that are thy fellow citizens, of whom I have set free above a hundred thousand that were slaves, and paid the price of their redemption to their masters out of my own revenues; 12.47. and those that are of a fit age, I have admitted into them number of my soldiers. And for such as are capable of being faithful to me, and proper for my court, I have put them in such a post, as thinking this [kindness done to them] to be a very great and an acceptable gift, which I devote to God for his providence over me. 12.48. And as I am desirous to do what will be grateful to these, and to all the other Jews in the habitable earth, I have determined to procure an interpretation of your law, and to have it translated out of Hebrew into Greek, and to be deposited in my library. 12.49. Thou wilt therefore do well to choose out and send to me men of a good character, who are now elders in age, and six in number out of every tribe. These, by their age, must be skillful in the laws, and of abilities to make an accurate interpretation of them; and when this shall be finished, I shall think that I have done a work glorious to myself. 12.51. 6. When this epistle of the king was brought to Eleazar, he wrote an answer to it with all the respect possible: “Eleazar the high priest to king Ptolemy, sendeth greeting. If thou and thy queen Arsinoe, and thy children, be well, we are entirely satisfied. 12.52. When we received thy epistle, we greatly rejoiced at thy intentions; and when the multitude were gathered together, we read it to them, and thereby made them sensible of the piety thou hast towards God. 12.53. We also showed them the twenty vials of gold, and thirty of silver, and the five large basons, and the table for the shew-bread; as also the hundred talents for the sacrifices, and for the making what shall be needful at the temple; which things Andreas and Aristeus, those most honored friends of thine, have brought us; and truly they are persons of an excellent character, and of great learning, and worthy of thy virtue. 12.54. Know then that we will gratify thee in what is for thy advantage, though we do what we used not to do before; for we ought to make a return for the numerous acts of kindness which thou hast done to our countrymen. 12.55. We immediately, therefore, offered sacrifices for thee and thy sister, with thy children and friends; and the multitude made prayers, that thy affairs may be to thy mind, and that thy kingdom may be preserved in peace, and that the translation of our law may come to the conclusion thou desirest, and be for thy advantage. 12.56. We have also chosen six elders out of every tribe, whom we have sent, and the law with them. It will be thy part, out of thy piety and justice, to send back the law, when it hath been translated, and to return those to us that bring it in safety. Farewell.” 12.57. 7. This was the reply which the high priest made. But it does not seem to me to be necessary to set down the names of the seventy [two] elders who were sent by Eleazar, and carried the law, which yet were subjoined at the end of the epistle. 12.58. However, I thought it not improper to give an account of those very valuable and artificially contrived vessels which the king sent to God, that all may see how great a regard the king had for God; for the king allowed a vast deal of expenses for these vessels, and came often to the workmen, and viewed their works, and suffered nothing of carelessness or negligence to be any damage to their operations. 12.59. And I will relate how rich they were as well as I am able, although perhaps the nature of this history may not require such a description; but I imagine I shall thereby recommend the elegant taste and magimity of this king to those that read this history. 12.61. And when he was informed how large that was which was already there, and that nothing hindered but a larger might be made, he said that he was willing to have one made that should be five times as large as the present table; but his fear was, that it might be then useless in their sacred ministrations by its too great largeness; for he desired that the gifts he presented them should not only be there for show, but should be useful also in their sacred ministrations. 12.62. According to which reasoning, that the former table was made of so moderate a size for use, and not for want of gold, he resolved that he would not exceed the former table in largeness; but would make it exceed it in the variety and elegancy of its materials. 12.63. And as he was sagacious in observing the nature of all things, and in having a just notion of what was new and surprising, and where there was no sculptures, he would invent such as were proper by his own skill, and would show them to the workmen, he commanded that such sculptures should now be made, and that those which were delineated should be most accurately formed by a constant regard to their delineation. 12.64. 9. When therefore the workmen had undertaken to make the table, they framed it in length two cubits [and a half], in breadth one cubit, and in height one cubit and a half; and the entire structure of the work was of gold. They withal made a crown of a hand-breadth round it, with wave-work wreathed about it, and with an engraving which imitated a cord, and was admirably turned on its three parts; 12.65. for as they were of a triangular figure, every angle had the same disposition of its sculptures, that when you turned them about, the very same form of them was turned about without any variation. Now that part of the crown-work that was enclosed under the table had its sculptures very beautiful; but that part which went round on the outside was more elaborately adorned with most beautiful ornaments, because it was exposed to sight, and to the view of the spectators; 12.66. for which reason it was that both those sides which were extant above the rest were acute, and none of the angles, which we before told you were three, appeared less than another, when the table was turned about. Now into the cordwork thus turned were precious stones inserted, in rows parallel one to the other, enclosed in golden buttons, which had ouches in them; 12.67. but the parts which were on the side of the crown, and were exposed to the sight, were adorned with a row of oval figures obliquely placed, of the most excellent sort of precious stones, which imitated rods laid close, and encompassed the table round about. 12.68. But under these oval figures, thus engraven, the workmen had put a crown all round it, where the nature of all sorts of fruit was represented, insomuch that the bunches of grapes hung up. And when they had made the stones to represent all the kinds of fruit before mentioned, and that each in its proper color, they made them fast with gold round the whole table. 12.69. The like disposition of the oval figures, and of the engraved rods, was framed under the crown, that the table might on each side show the same appearance of variety and elegancy of its ornaments; so that neither the position of the wave-work nor of the crown might be different, although the table were turned on the other side, but that the prospect of the same artificial contrivances might be extended as far as the feet; 12.71. but upon the table itself they engraved a meander, inserting into it very valuable stones in the middle like stars, of various colors; the carbuncle and the emerald, each of which sent out agreeable rays of light to the spectators; with such stones of other sorts also as were most curious and best esteemed, as being most precious in their kind. 12.72. Hard by this meander a texture of net-work ran round it, the middle of which appeared like a rhombus, into which were inserted rock-crystal and amber, which, by the great resemblance of the appearance they made, gave wonderful delight to those that saw them. 12.73. The chapiters of the feet imitated the first buddings of lilies, while their leaves were bent and laid under the table, but so that the chives were seen standing upright within them. 12.74. Their bases were made of a carbuncle; and the place at the bottom, which rested on that carbuncle, was one palm deep, and eight fingers in breadth. 12.75. Now they had engraven upon it with a very fine tool, and with a great deal of pains, a branch of ivy and tendrils of the vine, sending forth clusters of grapes, that you would guess they were nowise different from real tendrils; for they were so very thin, and so very far extended at their extremities, that they were moved with the wind, and made one believe that they were the product of nature, and not the representation of art. 12.76. They also made the entire workmanship of the table appear to be threefold, while the joints of the several parts were so united together as to be invisible, and the places where they joined could not be distinguished. Now the thickness of the table was not less than half a cubit. 12.77. So that this gift, by the king’s great generosity, by the great value of the materials, and the variety of its exquisite structure, and the artificer’s skill in imitating nature with graying tools, was at length brought to perfection, while the king was very desirous, that though in largeness it were not to be different from that which was already dedicated to God, yet that in exquisite workmanship, and the novelty of the contrivances, and in the splendor of its construction, it should far exceed it, and be more illustrious than that was. 12.78. 10. Now of the cisterns of gold there were two, whose sculpture was of scale-work, from its basis to its belt-like circle, with various sorts of stones enchased in the spiral circles. 12.79. Next to which there was upon it a meander of a cubit in height; it was composed of stones of all sorts of colors. And next to this was the rod-work engraven; and next to that was a rhombus in a texture of net-work, drawn out to the brim of the basin 12.81. And this was the construction of the two cisterns of gold, each containing two firkins. But those which were of silver were much more bright and splendid than looking-glasses, and you might in them see the images that fell upon them more plainly than in the other. 12.82. The king also ordered thirty vials; those of which the parts that were of gold, and filled up with precious stones, were shadowed over with the leaves of ivy and of vines, artificially engraven. 12.83. And these were the vessels that were after an extraordinary manner brought to this perfection, partly by the skill of the workmen, who were admirable in such fine work, but much more by the diligence and generosity of the king 12.84. who not only supplied the artificers abundantly, and with great generosity, with what they wanted, but he forbade public audiences for the time, and came and stood by the workmen, and saw the whole operation. And this was the cause why the workmen were so accurate in their performance, because they had regard to the king, and to his great concern about the vessels, and so the more indefatigably kept close to the work. 12.85. 11. And these were what gifts were sent by Ptolemy to Jerusalem, and dedicated to God there. But when Eleazar the high priest had devoted them to God, and had paid due respect to those that brought them, and had given them presents to be carried to the king, he dismissed them. 12.86. And when they were come to Alexandria, and Ptolemy heard that they were come, and that the seventy elders were come also, he presently sent for Andreas and Aristens, his ambassadors, who came to him, and delivered him the epistle which they brought him from the high priest, and made answer to all the questions he put to them by word of mouth. 12.87. He then made haste to meet the elders that came from Jerusalem for the interpretation of the laws; and he gave command, that every body who came on other occasions should be sent away, which was a thing surprising, and what he did not use to do; 12.88. for those that were drawn thither upon such occasions used to come to him on the fifth day, but ambassadors at the month’s end. But when he had sent those away, he waited for these that were sent by Eleazar; 12.89. but as the old men came in with the presents, which the high priest had given them to bring to the king, and with the membranes, upon which they had their laws written in golden letters he put questions to them concerning those books; 12.91. Then did the elders, and those that were present with them, cry out with one voice, and wished all happiness to the king. Upon which he fell into tears by the violence of the pleasure he had, it being natural to men to afford the same indications in great joy that they do under sorrows. 12.92. And when he had bid them deliver the books to those that were appointed to receive them, he saluted the men, and said that it was but just to discourse, in the first place, of the errand they were sent about, and then to address himself to themselves. He promised, however, that he would make this day on which they came to him remarkable and eminent every year through the whole course of his life; 12.93. for their coming to him, and the victory which he gained over Antigonus by sea, proved to be on the very same day. He also gave orders that they should sup with him; and gave it in charge that they should have excellent lodgings provided for them in the upper part of the city. 12.94. 12. Now he that was appointed to take care of the reception of strangers, Nicanor by name, called for Dorotheus, whose duty it was to make provision for them, and bid him prepare for every one of them what should be requisite for their diet and way of living; which thing was ordered by the king after this manner: 12.95. he took care that those that belonged to every city, which did not use the same way of living, that all things should be prepared for them according to the custom of those that came to him, that, being feasted according to the usual method of their own way of living, they might be the better pleased, and might not be uneasy at any thing done to them from which they were naturally averse. And this was now done in the case of these men by Dorotheus, who was put into this office because of his great skill in such matters belonging to common life; 12.96. for he took care of all such matters as concerned the reception of strangers, and appointed them double seats for them to sit on, according as the king had commanded him to do; for he had commanded that half of their seats should be set at his right hand, and the other half behind his table, and took care that no respect should be omitted that could be shown them. 12.97. And when they were thus set down, he bid Dorotheus to minister to all those that were come to him from Judea, after the manner they used to be ministered to; for which cause he sent away their sacred heralds, and those that slew the sacrifices, and the rest that used to say grace; but called to one of those that were come to him, whose name was Eleazar, who w a priest, and desired him to say grace; 12.98. who then stood in the midst of them, and prayed, that all prosperity might attend the king, and those that were his subjects. Upon which an acclamation was made by the whole company, with joy and a great noise; and when that was over, they fell to eating their supper, and to the enjoyment of what was set before them. 12.99. And at a little interval afterward, when the king thought a sufficient time had been interposed, he began to talk philosophically to them, and he asked every one of them a philosophical question and such a one as might give light in those inquiries; and when they had explained all the problems that had been proposed by the king about every point, he was well-pleased with their answers. This took up the twelve days in which they were treated; 12.101. 13. And while not the king only, but the philosopher Menedemus also, admired them, and said that all things were governed by Providence, and that it was probable that thence it was that such force or beauty was discovered in these men’s words, they then left off asking any more such questions. 12.102. But the king said that he had gained very great advantages by their coming, for that he had received this profit from them, that he had learned how he ought to rule his subjects. And he gave order that they should have every one three talents given them, and that those that were to conduct them to their lodging should do it. 12.103. Accordingly, when three days were over, Demetrius took them, and went over the causeway seven furlongs long: it was a bank in the sea to an island. And when they had gone over the bridge, he proceeded to the northern parts, and showed them where they should meet, which was in a house that was built near the shore, and was a quiet place, and fit for their discoursing together about their work. 12.104. When he had brought them thither, he entreated them (now they had all things about them which they wanted for the interpretation of their law) that they would suffer nothing to interrupt them in their work. Accordingly, they made an accurate interpretation, with great zeal and great pains, and this they continued to do till the ninth hour of the day; 12.105. after which time they relaxed, and took care of their body, while their food was provided for them in great plenty: besides, Dorotheus, at the king’s command, brought them a great deal of what was provided for the king himself. 12.106. But in the morning they came to the court and saluted Ptolemy, and then went away to their former place, where, when they had washed their hands, and purified themselves, they betook themselves to the interpretation of the laws. 12.107. Now when the law was transcribed, and the labor of interpretation was over, which came to its conclusion in seventy-two days, Demetrius gathered all the Jews together to the place where the laws were translated, and where the interpreters were, and read them over. 12.108. The multitude did also approve of those elders that were the interpreters of the law. They withal commended Demetrius for his proposal, as the inventor of what was greatly for their happiness; and they desired that he would give leave to their rulers also to read the law. Moreover, they all, both the priest and the ancientest of the elders, and the principal men of their commonwealth, made it their request, that since the interpretation was happily finished, it might continue in the state it now was, and might not be altered. 12.109. And when they all commended that determination of theirs, they enjoined, that if any one observed either any thing superfluous, or any thing omitted, that he would take a view of it again, and have it laid before them, and corrected; which was a wise action of theirs, that when the thing was judged to have been well done, it might continue for ever. 12.111. Demetrius made answer, “that no one durst be so bold as to touch upon the description of these laws, because they were divine and venerable, and because some that had attempted it were afflicted by God.” 12.112. He also told him, that “Theopompus was desirous of writing somewhat about them, but was thereupon disturbed in his mind for above thirty days’ time; and upon some intermission of his distemper, he appeased God [by prayer], as suspecting that his madness proceeded from that cause.” Nay, indeed, he further saw in a dream, that his distemper befell him while he indulged too great a curiosity about divine matters, and was desirous of publishing them among common men; but when he left off that attempt, he recovered his understanding again. 12.113. Moreover, he informed him of Theodectes, the tragic poet, concerning whom it was reported, that when in a certain dramatic representation he was desirous to make mention of things that were contained in the sacred books, he was afflicted with a darkness in his eyes; and that upon his being conscious of the occasion of his distemper, and appeasing God (by prayer), he was freed from that affliction. 12.114. 15. And when the king had received these books from Demetrius, as we have said already, he adored them, and gave order that great care should be taken of them, that they might remain uncorrupted. He also desired that the interpreters would come often to him out of Judea 12.115. and that both on account of the respects that he would pay them, and on account of the presents he would make them; for he said it was now but just to send them away, although if, of their own accord, they would come to him hereafter, they should obtain all that their own wisdom might justly require, and what his generosity was able to give them. 12.116. So he then sent them away, and gave to every one of them three garments of the best sort, and two talents of gold, and a cup of the value of one talent, and the furniture of the room wherein they were feasted. And these were the things he presented to them. 12.117. But by them he sent to Eleazar the high priest ten beds, with feet of silver, and the furniture to them belonging, and a cup of the value of thirty talents; and besides these, ten garments, and purple, and a very beautiful crown, and a hundred pieces of the finest woven linen; as also vials and dishes, and vessels for pouring, and two golden cisterns to be dedicated to God. 12.118. He also desired him, by an epistle, that he would give these interpreters leave, if any of them were desirous of coming to him, because he highly valued a conversation with men of such learning, and should be very willing to lay out his wealth upon such men. And this was what came to the Jews, and was much to their glory and honor, from Ptolemy Philadelphus. 13.74. 4. Now it came to pass that the Alexandrian Jews, and those Samaritans who paid their worship to the temple that was built in the days of Alexander at Mount Gerizzim, did now make a sedition one against another, and disputed about their temples before Ptolemy himself; the Jews saying that, according to the laws of Moses, the temple was to be built at Jerusalem; and the Samaritans saying that it was to be built at Gerizzim. 13.75. They desired therefore the king to sit with his friends, and hear the debates about these matters, and punish those with death who were baffled. Now Sabbeus and Theodosius managed the argument for the Samaritans, and Andronicus, the son of Messalamus, for the people of Jerusalem; 13.76. and they took an oath by God and the king to make their demonstrations according to the law; and they desired of Ptolemy, that whomsoever he should find that transgressed what they had sworn to, he would put him to death. Accordingly, the king took several of his friends into the council, and sat down, in order to hear what the pleaders said. 13.77. Now the Jews that were at Alexandria were in great concern for those men, whose lot it was to contend for the temple at Jerusalem; for they took it very ill that any should take away the reputation of that temple, which was so ancient and so celebrated all over the habitable earth. 13.78. Now when Sabbeus and Tlteodosius had given leave to Andronicus to speak first, he began to demonstrate out of the law, and out of the successions of the high priests, how they every one in succession from his father had received that dignity, and ruled over the temple; and how all the kings of Asia had honored that temple with their donations, and with the most splendid gifts dedicated thereto. But as for that at Gerizzm, he made no account of it, and regarded it as if it had never had a being. 13.79. By this speech, and other arguments, Andronicus persuaded the king to determine that the temple at Jerusalem was built according to the laws of Moses, and to put Sabbeus and Theodosius to death. And these were the events that befell the Jews at Alexandria in the days of Ptolemy Philometor. 18.257. 1. There was now a tumult arisen at Alexandria, between the Jewish inhabitants and the Greeks; and three ambassadors were chosen out of each party that were at variance, who came to Caius. Now one of these ambassadors from the people of Alexandria was Apion, who uttered many blasphemies against the Jews; and, among other things that he said, he charged them with neglecting the honors that belonged to Caesar; 18.258. for that while all who were subject to the Roman empire built altars and temples to Caius, and in other regards universally received him as they received the gods, these Jews alone thought it a dishonorable thing for them to erect statues in honor of him, as well as to swear by his name. 18.259. Many of these severe things were said by Apion, by which he hoped to provoke Caius to anger at the Jews, as he was likely to be. But Philo, the principal of the Jewish embassage, a man eminent on all accounts, brother to Alexander the alabarch, and one not unskillful in philosophy, was ready to betake himself to make his defense against those accusations; 19.278. 2. Now about this time there was a sedition between the Jews and the Greeks, at the city of Alexandria; for when Caius was dead, the nation of the Jews, which had been very much mortified under the reign of Caius, and reduced to very great distress by the people of Alexandria, recovered itself, and immediately took up their arms to fight for themselves. 19.279. So Claudius sent an order to the president of Egypt to quiet that tumult; he also sent an edict, at the requests of king Agrippa and king Herod, both to Alexandria and to Syria, whose contents were as follows: 19.281. Since I am assured that the Jews of Alexandria, called Alexandrians, have been joint inhabitants in the earliest times with the Alexandrians, and have obtained from their kings equal privileges with them, as is evident by the public records that are in their possession, and the edicts themselves; 19.282. and that after Alexandria had been subjected to our empire by Augustus, their rights and privileges have been preserved by those presidents who have at divers times been sent thither; and that no dispute had been raised about those rights and privileges 19.283. even when Aquila was governor of Alexandria; and that when the Jewish ethnarch was dead, Augustus did not prohibit the making such ethnarchs, as willing that all men should be so subject [to the Romans] as to continue in the observation of their own customs, and not be forced to transgress the ancient rules of their own country religion; 19.284. but that, in the time of Caius, the Alexandrians became insolent towards the Jews that were among them, which Caius, out of his great madness and want of understanding, reduced the nation of the Jews very low, because they would not transgress the religious worship of their country, and call him a god: 19.285. I will therefore that the nation of the Jews be not deprived of their rights and privileges, on account of the madness of Caius; but that those rights and privileges which they formerly enjoyed be preserved to them, and that they may continue in their own customs. And I charge both parties to take very great care that no troubles may arise after the promulgation of this edict.”
7. Josephus Flavius, Jewish War, 2.487-2.488 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

2.487. 7. But for Alexandria, the sedition of the people of the place against the Jews was perpetual, and this from that very time when Alexander [the Great], upon finding the readiness of the Jews in assisting him against the Egyptians, and as a reward for such their assistance, gave them equal privileges in this city with the Grecians themselves; 2.488. which honorary reward Continued among them under his successors, who also set apart for them a particular place, that they might live without being polluted [by the Gentiles], and were thereby not so much intermixed with foreigners as before; they also gave them this further privilege, that they should be called Macedonians. Nay, when the Romans got possession of Egypt, neither the first Caesar, nor anyone that came after him, thought of diminishing the honors which Alexander had bestowed on the Jews.
8. Josephus Flavius, Against Apion, 1.1, 1.22, 1.175, 1.183-1.204, 1.217-1.218, 2.1-2.3, 2.5-2.44, 2.46-2.144 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

1.1. 1. I suppose that, by my books of the Antiquities of the Jews, most excellent Epaphroditus, I have made it evident to those who peruse them, that our Jewish nation is of very great antiquity, and had a distinct subsistence of its own originally; as also I have therein declared how we came to inhabit this country wherein we now live. Those Antiquities contain the history of five thousand years, and are taken out of our sacred books; but are translated by me into the Greek tongue. 1.1. but as for the place where the Grecians inhabit, ten thousand destructions have overtaken it, and blotted out the memory of former actions; so that they were ever beginning a new way of living, and supposed that every one of them was the origin of their new state. It was also late, and with difficulty, that they came to know the letters they now use; for those who would advance their use of these letters to the greatest antiquity pretend that they learned them from the Phoenicians and from Cadmus; 1.1. but after some considerable time, Armais, who was left in Egypt, did all those very things, by way of opposition, which his brother had forbidden him to do, without fear; for he used violence to the queen, and continued to make use of the rest of the concubines, without sparing any of them; nay, at the persuasion of his friends he put on the diadem, and set up to oppose his brother; 1.22. For as to the Arcadians, who make such boasts of their antiquity, what need I speak of them in particular, since it was still later before they got their letters, and learned them, and that with difficulty also. /p 1.22. and that in general this self-contradiction hath happened to many other authors by reason of their ill will to some people, I conclude is not unknown to such as have read histories with sufficient care; for some of them have endeavored to disgrace the nobility of certain nations, and of some of the most glorious cities, and have cast reproaches upon certain forms of government. 1.175. and thus does Cherilus make mention of us. But now that not only the lowest sort of the Grecians, but those that are held in the greatest admiration for their philosophic improvements among them, did not only know the Jews, but, when they lighted upon any of them, admired them also, it is easy for any one to know; 1.183. Now Clearchus said this by way of digression, for his main design was of another nature; but for Hecateus of Abdera, who was both a philosopher and one very useful in an active life, he was contemporary with king Alexander in his youth, and afterward was with Ptolemy, the son of Lagus: he did not write about the Jewish affairs by the by only, but composed an entire book concerning the Jews themselves; out of which book I am willing to run over a few things, of which I have been treating, by way of epitome. 1.184. And, in the first place, I will demonstrate the time when this Hecateus lived; for he mentions the fight that was between Ptolemy and Demetrius about Gaza, which was fought in the eleventh year after the death of Alexander, and in the hundred and seventeenth olympiad, as Castor says in his history: 1.185. for when he had set down this olympiad, he says farther, that “on this olympiad Ptolemy, the son of Lagus, beat in battle Demetrius, the son of Antigonus, who was named Poliorcetes, at Gaza.” Now it is agreed by all that Alexander died in the hundred and fourteenth olympiad; it is therefore evident that our nation flourished in his time, and in the time of Alexander. 1.186. Again, Hecateus says to the same purpose, as follows:—“Ptolemy got possession of the places in Syria after the battle at Gaza; and many, when they heard of Ptolemy’s moderation and humanity, went along with him to Egypt, and were willing to assist him in his affairs; 1.187. one of whom (Hecateus says) was Hezekiah, the high priest of the Jews; a man of about sixty-six years of age, and in great dignity among his own people. He was a very sensible man, and could speak very movingly, and was very skilful in the management of affairs, if any other man ever were so; 1.188. although, as he says, all the priests of the Jews took tithes of the products of the earth, and managed public affairs, and were in number not above fifteen hundred at the most.” 1.189. Hecateus mentions this Hezekiah a second time, and says, that “as he was possessed of so great a dignity, and was become familiar with us, so did he take certain of those that were with him, and explained to them all the circumstances of their people: for he had all their habitations and polity down in writing.” 1.191. Whereupon he adds, that “although they are in a bad reputation among their neighbors, and among all those that come to them, and have been often treated injuriously by the kings and governors of Persia, yet can they not be dissuaded from acting what they think best; but that, when they are stripped on this account, and have torments inflicted upon them, and they are brought to the most terrible kinds of death, they meet them after a most extraordinary manner, beyond all other people, and will not renounce the religion of their forefathers.” 1.192. Hecateus also produces demonstrations not a few of this their resolute tenaciousness of their laws when he speaks thus:—“Alexander was once at Babylon, and had an intention to rebuild the temple of Belus that was fallen to decay: and in order thereto, he commanded all his soldiers in general to bring earth thither. But the Jews, and they only, would not comply with that command; nay, they underwent stripes and great losses of what they had on this account, till the king forgave them, and permitted them to live in quiet.” 1.193. He adds farther, that “when the Macedonians came to them into that country, and demolished the [old] temples and the altars, they assisted them in demolishing them all; but [for not assisting them in rebuilding them] they either underwent losses, or sometimes obtained forgiveness.” He adds, farther, that “these men deserve to be admired on that account.” 1.194. He also speaks of the mighty populousness of our nation, and says that “the Persians formerly carried away many ten thousands of our people to Babylon; as also that not a few ten thousands were removed after Alexander’s death into Egypt and Phoenicia, by reason of the sedition that was arisen in Syria.” 1.195. The same person takes notice in his history, how large the country is which we inhabit, as well as of its excellent character; and says that “the land in which the Jews inhabit contains three millions of arourae, and is generally of a most excellent and most fruitful soil: nor is Judea of lesser dimensions.” 1.196. The same man describes our city Jerusalem also itself as of a most excellent structure, and very large, and inhabited from the most ancient times. He also discourses of the multitude of men in it, and of the construction of our temple, after the following manner:— 1.197. “There are many strong places and villages (says he) in the country of Judea: but one strong city there is, about fifty furlongs in circumference, which is inhabited by a hundred and twenty thousand men, or thereabouts: they call it Jerusalem. 1.198. There is about the middle of the city, a wall of stone, the length of which is five hundred feet, and the breadth a hundred cubits, with double cloisters; wherein there is a square altar, not made of hewn stone, but composed of white stones gathered together, having each side twenty cubits long, and its altitude ten cubits. Hard by it is a large edifice, wherein there is an altar and a candlestick, both of gold, and in weight two talents; 1.199. upon these there is a light that is never extinguished, neither by night nor by day. There is no image, nor any thing, nor any donations therein; nothing at all is there planted, neither grove, nor any thing of that sort. The priests abide therein both nights and days, performing certain purifications, and drinking not the least drop of wine while they are in the temple.” 1.201. “As I was myself going to the Red Sea, there followed us a man, whose name was Mosollam; he was one of the Jewish horsemen who conducted us; he was a person of great courage, of a strong body, and by all allowed to be the most skilful archer that was either among the Greeks or barbarians. 1.202. Now this man, as people were in great numbers passing along the road, and a certain augur was observing an augury by a bird, and requiring them all to stand still, inquired what they staid for. 1.203. Hereupon the augur showed him the bird from whence he took his augury, and told him that if the bird staid where he was, they ought all to stand still; but that if he got up, and flew onward, they must go forward; but that if he flew backward, they must retire again. Mosollam made no reply, but drew his bow, and shot at the bird, and hit him, and killed him; 1.204. and as the augur and some others were very angry, and wished imprecations upon him, he answered them thus:—Why are you so mad as to take this most unhappy bird into your hands? for how can this bird give us any true information concerning our march, which could not foresee how to save himself? for had he been able to foreknow what was future, he would not have come to this place, but would have been afraid lest Mosollam the Jew would shoot at him, and kill him.” 1.217. It is true, many of the men before mentioned have made great mistakes about the true accounts of our nation in the earliest times, because they had not perused our sacred books; yet have they all of them afforded their testimony to our antiquity, concerning which I am now treating. 2.1. 1. In the former book, most honored Epaphroditus, I have demonstrated our antiquity, and confirmed the truth of what I have said, from the writings of the Phoenicians, and Chaldeans, and Egyptians. I have, moreover, produced many of the Grecian writers, as witnesses thereto. I have also made a refutation of Manetho and Cheremon, and of certain others of our enemies. 2.1. for in his third book, which relates to the affairs of Egypt, he speaks thus:—“I have heard of the ancient men of Egypt, that Moses was of Heliopolis, and that he thought himself obliged to follow the customs of his forefathers, and offered his prayers in the open air, towards the city walls; but that he reduced them all to be directed towards the sun-rising, which was agreeable to the situation of Heliopolis; 2.1. Or how is it possible that all the Jews should get together to these sacrifices, and the entrails of one man should be sufficient for so many thousands to taste of them, as Apion pretends? Or why did not the king carry this man, whosoever he was, and whatsoever was his name (which is not set down in Apion’s book) 2.2. I shall now therefore begin a confutation of the remaining authors who have written any thing against us; although I confess I have had a doubt upon me about Apion the grammarian, whether I ought to take the trouble of confuting him or not; 2.2. As for the number of those that were expelled out of Egypt, he hath contrived to have the very same number with Lysimachus, and says they were a hundred and ten thousand. He then assigns a certain wonderful and plausible occasion for the name of Sabbath; 2.2. It commands us also, when we marry, not to have regard to portion, nor to take a woman by violence, nor to persuade her deceitfully and knavishly; but to demand her in marriage of him who hath power to dispose of her, and is fit to give her away by the nearness of his kindred; 2.5. For I also have observed, that many men are very much delighted when they see a man who first began to reproach another, to be himself exposed to contempt on account of the vices he hath himself been guilty of. 2.5. for when these Alexandrians were making war with Cleopatra the queen, and were in danger of being utterly ruined, these Jews brought them to terms of agreement, and freed them from the miseries of a civil war. “But then (says Apion) Onias brought a small army afterward upon the city at the time when Thermus the Roman ambassador was there present.” 2.6. However, it is not a very easy thing to go over this man’s discourse, nor to know plainly what he means; yet does he seem, amidst a great confusion and disorder in his falsehoods, to produce, in the first place, such things as resemble what we have examined already, and relate to the departure of our forefathers out of Egypt; 2.6. nay, when last of all Caesar had taken Alexandria, she came to that pitch of cruelty, that she declared she had some hope of preserving her affairs still, in case she could kill the Jews, though it were with her own hand; to such a degree of barbarity and perfidiousness had she arrived; and doth any one think that we cannot boast ourselves of any thing, if, as Apion says, this queen did not at a time of famine distribute wheat among us? 2.7. and, in the second place, he accuses those Jews that are inhabitants of Alexandria; as, in the third place, he mixes with these things such accusations as concern the sacred purifications, with the other legal rites used in the temple. /p 2.7. These Egyptians therefore were the authors of these troubles, who not having the constancy of Macedonians, nor the prudence of Grecians, indulged all of them the evil manners of the Egyptians, and continued their ancient hatred against us; 2.8. 2. Now, although I cannot but think that I have already demonstrated, and that abundantly, more than was necessary, that our fathers were not originally Egyptians, nor were thence expelled, either on account of bodily diseases, or any other calamities of that sort 2.8. for Apion hath the impudence to pretend, that “the Jews placed an ass’s head in their holy place;” and he affirms that this was discovered when Antiochus Epiphanes spoiled our temple, and found that ass’s head there made of gold, and worth a great deal of money. 2.9. yet will I briefly take notice of what Apion adds upon that subject; 2.9. Now, such men as he are more zealous to justify a sacrilegious king than to write what is just and what is true about us, and about our temple; for when they are desirous of gratifying Antiochus, and of concealing that perfidiousness and sacrilege which he was guilty of, with regard to our nation, when he wanted money, they endeavor to disgrace us, and tell lies even relating to futurities. 2.11. that, he also set up pillars instead of gnomons, under which was represented a cavity like that of a boat, and the shadow that fell from their tops fell down upon that cavity, that it might go round about the like course as the sun itself goes round in the other.” 2.11. Now, if he knew the purity of our temple, he hath entirely omitted to take notice of it; but he forges a story about the seizing of a Grecian, about ineffable food, and the most delicious preparation of dainties; and pretends that strangers could go into a place whereinto the noblest men among the Jews are not allowed to enter, unless they be priests. 2.12. This is that wonderful relation which we have given us by this great grammarian. But that it is a false one is so plain, that it stands in need of few words to prove it, but is manifest from the works of Moses; for when he erected the first tabernacle to God, he did himself neither give order for any such kind of representation to be made at it, nor ordain that those who came after him should make such a one. Moreover, when in a future age Solomon built his temple in Jerusalem, he avoided all such needless decorations as Apion hath here devised. 2.12. though it seems this lamp-bearer of ours opened them easily, or thought he opened them, as he thought he had the ass’s head in his hand. Whether, therefore, he returned it to us again, or whether Apion took it and brought it into the temple again, that Antiochus might find it, and afford a handle for a second fable of Apion’s, is uncertain. 2.13. He says farther, “How he had heard of the ancient men, that Moses was of Heliopolis.” To be sure that was because, being a younger man himself, he believed those that by their elder age were acquainted and conversed with him. 2.13. for it is not reasonable to imitate the clownish ignorance of Apion who hath no regard to the misfortunes of the Athenians, or of the Lacedemonians, the latter of whom were styled by all men the most courageous, and the former the most religious, of the Grecians. 2.14. Now, this [man], grammarian as he was, could not certainly tell which was the poet Homer’s country, no more than he could which was the country of Pythagoras, who lived comparatively but a little while ago; yet does he thus easily determine the age of Moses, who preceded them such a vast number of years, as depending on his ancient men’s relation, which shows how notorious a liar he was. 2.14. However, if any one should ask Apion which of the Egyptians he thinks to be the most wise, and most pious of them all, he would certainly acknowledge the priests to be so; 2.15. But then as to this chronological determination of the time when he says he brought the leprous people, the blind, and the lame, out of Egypt, see how well this most accurate grammarian of ours agrees with those that have written before him. 2.15. and if I be compelled to make mention of the laws of other nations, that are contrary to ours, those ought deservedly to thank themselves for it, who have pretended to depreciate our laws in comparison of their own; nor will there, I think, be any room after that for them to pretend, either that we have no such laws ourselves, an epitome of which I will present to the reader, or that we do not, above all men, continue in the observation of them. /p 2.16. Manetho says that the Jews departed out of Egypt, in the reign of Tethmosis, three hundred and ninety-three years before Danaus fled to Argos; Lysimachus says it was under king Bocchoris, that is, one thousand seven hundred years ago; 2.16. When he had therefore come to such a good resolution, and had performed such wonderful exploits, we had just reason to look upon ourselves as having him for a divine governor and counsellor; and when he had first persuaded himself that his actions and designs were agreeable to God’s will, he thought it his duty to impress, above all things, that notion upon the multitude; for those who have once believed that God is the inspector of their lives, will not permit themselves in any sin; 2.17. Molo and some others determined it as every one pleased; but this Apion of ours, as deserving to be believed before them, hath determined it exactly to have been in the seventh olympiad, and the first year of that olympiad; the very same year in which he says that Carthage was built by the Phoenicians. The reason why he added this building of Carthage was, to be sure, in order, as he thought, to strengthen his assertion by so evident a character of chronology. But he was not aware that this character confutes his assertion; 2.17. The reason why the constitution of this legislation was ever better directed to the utility of all than other legislations were, is this, that Moses did not make religion a part of virtue, but he saw and he ordained other virtues to be parts of religion; I mean justice, and fortitude, and temperance, and a universal agreement of the members of the community with one another; 2.18. for if we may give credit to the Phoenician records as to the time of the first coming of their colony to Carthage, they relate that Hirom their king was above one hundred and fifty years earlier than the building of Carthage; concerning whom I have formerly produced testimonials out of those Phoenician records 2.18. for no other people but we Jews have avoided all discourses about God that any way contradict one another, which yet are frequent among other nations; and this is true not only among ordinary persons, according as every one is affected, but some of the philosophers have been insolent enough to indulge such contradictions, while some of them have undertaken to use such words as entirely take away the nature of God, as others of them have taken away his providence over mankind. 2.19. as also that this Hirom was a friend of Solomon when he was building the temple of Jerusalem, and gave him great assistance in his building that temple, while still Solomon himself built that temple, six hundred and twelve years after the Jews came out of Egypt. 2.19. What are the things then that we are commanded or forbidden?—They are simply and easily known. The first command is concerning God, and affirms that God contains all things, and is a being every way perfect and happy, self-sufficient, and supplying all other beings; the beginning, the middle, and the end of all things. He is manifest in his works and benefits, and more conspicuous than any other being whatsoever, but as to his form and magnitude, he is most obscure. 2.21. for he says, that “when the Jews had travelled a six days’ journey, they had buboes in their groins: and that on this account it was that they rested on the seventh day, as having got safely to that country which is now called Judea; that then they preserved the language of the Egyptians, and called that day the Sabbath, for that malady of buboes in their groin was named Sabbatosis by the Egyptians.” 2.21. Accordingly our legislator admits all those that have a mind to observe our laws, so to do; and this after a friendly manner, as esteeming that a true union, which not only extends to our own stock, but to those that would live after the same manner with us; yet does he not allow those that come to us by accident only to be admitted into communion with us. /p 2.22. And would not a man now laugh at this fellow’s trifling, or rather hate his impudence in writing thus? We must, it seems, take it for granted, that all these hundred and ten thousand men must have these buboes! 2.22. 32. Nay, indeed, in case it had so fallen out, that our nation had not been so thoroughly known among all men as they are, and our voluntary submission to our laws had not been so open and manifest as it is 2.23. But, for certain, if those men had been blind and lame, and had all sorts of distempers upon them, as Apion says they had, they could not have gone one single day’s journey; but if they had been all able to travel over a large desert, and, besides that, to fight and conquer those that opposed them, they had not all of them had buboes in their groins after the sixth day was over; 2.23. while they made use of other men as their servants for all the necessaries of life, and had their food prepared for them by the others: and these good and humane actions they do for no other purpose but this, that by their actions and their sufferings they may be able to conquer all those against whom they make war. 2.24. for no such distemper comes naturally and of necessity upon those that travel; but still, when there are many ten thousands in a camp together, they constantly march a settled space [in a day]. Nor is it at all probable that such a thing should happen by chance: this would be prodigiously absurd to be supposed. 2.24. uch as these, that they may be allowed to be as numerous as they have a mind to have them; that they are begotten one by another, and that after all the kinds of generation you can imagine. They also distinguish them in their places and ways of living, as they would distinguish several sorts of animals: as some to be under the earth; as some to be in the sea; and the ancientest of them all to be bound in hell; 2.25. However, our admirable author Apion hath before told us, that “they came to Judea in six days’ time;” and again, that “Moses went up to a mountain that lay between Egypt and Arabia, which was called Sinai, and was concealed there forty days, and that when he came down from thence he gave laws to the Jews.” But then, how was it possible for them to tarry forty days in a desert place where there was no water, and at the same time to pass all over the country between that and Judea in the six days? 2.25. 36. Wherefore it deserves our inquiry what should be the occasion of this unjust management, and of these scandals about the Deity. And truly I suppose it to be derived from the imperfect knowledge the heathen legislators had at first of the true nature of God; nor did they explain to the people even so far as they did comprehend of it: nor did they compose the other parts of their political settlements according to it 2.26. And as for this grammatical translation of the word Sabbath, it either contains an instance of his great impudence or gross ignorance; 2.26. and perhaps there may be some reason to blame the rigid severity of the Lacedemonians, for they bestowed the privilege of their city on no foreigners, nor indeed would give leave to them to stay among them; 2.27. for the words iSabboand iSabbathare widely different from one another; for the word Sabbath in the Jewish language denotes rest from all sorts of work; but the word Sabbo, as he affirms, denotes among the Egyptians the malady of a bubo in the groin. /p 2.27. And to be sure Apollonius was greatly pleased with the laws of the Persians, and was an admirer of them, because the Greeks enjoyed the advantage of their courage, and had the very same opinion about the gods which they had. This last was exemplified in the temples which they burnt, and their courage in coming, and almost entirely enslaving the Grecians. However, Apollonius has imitated all the Persian institutions, and that by his offering violence to other men’s wives, and castrating his own sons. 2.28. 3. This is that novel account which the Egyptian Apion gives us concerning the Jews’ departure out of Egypt, and is no better than a contrivance of his own. But why should we wonder at the lies he tells us about our forefathers, when he affirms them to be of Egyptian original, when he lies also about himself? 2.28. 40. We have already demonstrated that our laws have been such as have always inspired admiration and imitation into all other men; 2.29. for although he was born at Oasis in Egypt, he pretends to be, as a man may say, the top man of all the Egyptians; yet does he forswear his real country and progenitors, and by falsely pretending to be born at Alexandria, cannot deny the pravity of his family; 2.29. Those accusers reproached our legislator as a vile fellow; whereas God in old time bare witness to his virtuous conduct; and since that testimony of God, time itself hath been discovered to have borne witness to the same thing. /p 2.31. As for the Egyptians’ claim to be of our kindred, they do it on one of the following accounts; I mean, either as they value themselves upon it, and pretend to bear that relation to us: or else as they would draw us in to be partakers of their own infamy. 2.32. But this fine fellow Apion seems to broach this reproachful appellation against us [that we were originally Egyptians] in order to bestow it on the Alexandrians as a reward for the privilege they had given him of being a fellow citizen with them; he also is apprised of the ill will the Alexandrians bear to those Jews who are their fellow citizens, and so proposes to himself to reproach them, although he must thereby include all the other Egyptians also; while in both cases he is no better than an impudent liar. /p 2.33. 4. But let us now see what those heavy and wicked crimes are which Apion charges upon the Alexandrian Jews. “They came (says he) out of Syria, and inhabited near the tempestuous sea, and were in the neighborhood of the dashing of the waves.” 2.34. Now, if the place of habitation includes any thing that is reproachful, this man reproaches not his own real country [Egypt], but what he pretends to be his own country, Alexandria; for all are agreed in this, that the part of that city which is near the sea is the best part of all for habitation. 2.35. Now, if the Jews gained that part of the city by force, and have kept it hitherto without impeachment, this is a mark of their valor: but in reality it was Alexander himself that gave them that place for their habitation, when they obtained equal privileges there with the Macedonians. 2.36. Nor can I devise what Apion would have said, had their habitation been at Necropolis, and not been fixed hard by the royal palace [as it is]; nor had their nation had the denomination of Macedonians given them till this very day [as they have]. 2.37. Had this man now read the epistles of king Alexander, or those of Ptolemy the son of Lagus, or met with the writings of the succeeding kings, or that pillar which is still standing at Alexandria, and contains the privileges which the great [Julius] Caesar bestowed upon the Jews; had this man, I say, known these records, and yet hath the impudence to write in contradiction to them, he hath shown himself to be a wicked man: but if he knew nothing of these records, he hath shown himself to be a man very ignorant; 2.38. nay, when he appears to wonder how Jews could be called Alexandrians, this is another like instance of his ignorance; for all such as are called out to be colonies, although they be ever so far remote from one another in their original, receive their names from those that bring them to their new habitations. 2.39. And what occasion is there to speak of others, when those of us Jews that dwell at Antioch are named Antiochians, because Seleucus the founder of that city gave them the privileges belonging thereto? After the like manner do those Jews that inhabit Ephesus and the other cities of Ionia enjoy the same name with those that were originally born there, by the grant of the succeeding princes; 2.41. and if Apion reject this way of obtaining the privilege of a citizen of Alexandria, let him abstain from calling himself an Alexandrian hereafter; for otherwise, how can he who was born in the very heart of Egypt be an Alexandrian, if this way of accepting such a privilege, of which he would have us deprived, be once abrogated? Although indeed these Romans, who are now the lords of the habitable earth, have forbidden the Egyptians to have the privileges of any city whatsoever 2.42. while this fine fellow, who is willing to partake of such a privilege himself as he is forbidden to make use of, endeavors by calumnies to deprive those of it that have justly received it; for Alexander did not therefore get some of our nation to Alexandria, because he wanted inhabitants for this his city, on whose building he had bestowed so much pains; but this was given to our people as a reward; because he had, upon a careful trial, found them all to have been men of virtue and fidelity to him; 2.43. for, as Hecateus says concerning us, “Alexander honored our nation to such a degree that, for the equity and the fidelity which the Jews exhibited to him, he permitted them to hold the country of Samaria free from tribute. 2.44. of the same mind also was Ptolemy the son of Lagus, as to those Jews who dwelt at Alexandria.” For he intrusted the fortresses of Egypt into their hands, as believing they would keep them faithfully and valiantly for him; and when he was desirous to secure the government of Cyrene, and the other cities of Libya to himself, he sent a party of Jews to inhabit them. 2.46. accordingly he desired that such men might be sent him as might interpret our law to him; and in order to have them well compiled, he committed that care to no ordinary persons, but ordained that Demetrius Phalereus, and Andreas, and Aristeas; the first, Demetrius, the most learned person of his age 2.47. and the others, such as were intrusted with the guard of his body, should take the care of this matter: nor would he certainly have been so desirous of learning our law and the philosophy of our nation had he despised the men that made use of it, or had he not indeed had them in great admiration. /p 2.48. 5. Now this Apion was unacquainted with almost all the kings of those Macedonians whom he pretends to have been his progenitors,—who were yet very well affected towards us; for the third of those Ptolemies, who was called Euergetes, when he had gotten possession of all Syria by force, did not offer his thank-offerings to the Egyptian gods for his victory, but came to Jerusalem, and, according to our own laws, offered many sacrifices to God, and dedicated to him such gifts as were suitable to such a victory: 2.49. and as for Ptolemy Philometor and his wife Cleopatra, they committed their whole kingdom to Jews, when Onias and Dositheus, both Jews, whose names are laughed at by Apion, were the generals of their whole army; but certainly instead of reproaching them, he ought to admire their actions, and return them thanks for saving Alexandria, whose citizen he pretends to be; 2.51. Yes, do I venture to say, and that he did rightly and very justly in so doing; for that Ptolemy who was called Physco, upon the death of his brother Philometor, came from Cyrene, and would have ejected Cleopatra as well as her sons out of their kingdom 2.52. that he might obtain it for himself unjustly. For this cause then it was that Onias undertook a war against him on Cleopatra’s account; nor would he desert that trust the royal family had reposed in him in their distress. 2.53. Accordingly, God gave a remarkable attestation to his righteous procedure; for when Ptolemy Physco had the presumption to fight against Onias’s army, and had caught all the Jews that were in the city [Alexandria], with their children and wives, and exposed them naked and in bonds to his elephants, that they might be trodden upon and destroyed, and when he had made those elephants drunk for that purpose, the event proved contrary to his preparations; 2.54. for these elephants left the Jews who were exposed to them, and fell violently upon Physco’s friends, and slew a great number of them; nay, after this, Ptolemy saw a terrible ghost, which prohibited his hurting those men; 2.55. his very concubine, whom he loved so well (some call her Ithaca, and others Irene), making supplication to him, that he would not perpetrate so great a wickedness. So he complied with her request, and repented of what he either had already done, or was about to do; whence it is well known that the Alexandrian Jews do with good reason celebrate this day, on the account that they had thereon been vouchsafed such an evident deliverance from God. 2.56. However, Apion, the common calumniator of men, hath the presumption to accuse the Jews for making this war against Physco, when he ought to have commended them for the same. This man also makes mention of Cleopatra, the last queen of Alexandria, and abuses us, because she was ungrateful to us; whereas he ought to have reproved her 2.57. who indulged herself in all kinds of injustice and wicked practices, both with regard to her nearest relations, and husbands who had loved her, and indeed in general with regard to all the Romans, and those emperors that were her benefactors; who also had her sister Arsinoe slain in a temple, when she had done her no harm: 2.58. moreover, she had her brother slain by private treachery, and she destroyed the gods of her country and the sepulchres of her progenitors; and while she had received her kingdom from the first Caesar, she had the impudence to rebel against his son and successor; nay, she corrupted Antony with her love-tricks, and rendered him an enemy to his country, and made him treacherous to his friends, and [by his means] despoiled some of their royal authority, and forced others in her madness to act wickedly; 2.59. but what need I enlarge upon this head any farther, when she left Antony in his fight at sea, though he were her husband, and the father of their common children, and compelled him to resign up his government, with the army, and to follow her [into Egypt]; 2.61. However, she at length met with the punishment she deserved. As for us Jews, we appeal to the great Caesar what assistance we brought him, and what fidelity we showed to him against the Egyptians; as also to the senate and its decrees, and the epistles of Augustus Caesar, whereby our merits [to the Romans] are justified. 2.62. Apion ought to have looked upon those epistles, and in particular to have examined the testimonies given on our behalf, under Alexander and all the Ptolemies, and the decrees of the senate and of the greatest Roman emperors; 2.63. and if Germanicus was not able to make a distribution of corn to all the inhabitants of Alexandria, that only shows what a barren time it was, and how great a want there was then of corn, but tends nothing to the accusation of the Jews; for what all the emperors have thought of the Alexandrian Jews is well known 2.64. for this distribution of wheat was no otherwise omitted with regard to the Jews, than it was with regard to the other inhabitants of Alexandria: but they still were desirous to preserve what the kings had formerly intrusted to their care, I mean the custody of the river: nor did those kings think them unworthy of having the entire custody thereof upon all occasions. /p 2.65. 6. But besides this, Apion objects to us thus:—“If the Jews (says he) be citizens of Alexandria, why do they not worship the same gods with the Alexandrians?” To which I give this answer: Since you are yourselves Egyptians, why do you fight out one against another, and have implacable wars about your religion? 2.66. At this rate we must not call you all Egyptians, nor indeed in general men, because you breed up with great care beasts of a nature quite contrary to that of men, although the nature of all men seems to be one and the same. 2.67. Now if there be such differences in opinion among you Egyptians, why are you surprised that those who came to Alexandria from another country, and had original laws of their own before, should persevere in the observance of those laws? 2.68. But still he charges us with being the authors of sedition: which accusation, if it be a just one, why is it not laid against us all, since we are known to be all of one mind? 2.69. Moreover, those that search into such matters will soon discover that the authors of sedition have been such citizens of Alexandria as Apion is; for while they were the Grecians and Macedonians who were in possession of this city, there was no sedition raised against us, and we were permitted to observe our ancient solemnities; but when the number of the Egyptians therein came to be considerable, the times grew confused, and then these seditions brake out still more and more, while our people continued uncorrupted. 2.71. for what is here so presumptuously charged upon us is owing to the differences that are amongst themselves; while many of them have not obtained the privileges of citizens in proper times, but style those who are well known to have had that privilege extended to them all, no other than foreigners; 2.72. for it does not appear that any of the kings have ever formerly bestowed those privileges of citizens upon Egyptians, no more than have the emperors done it more lately; while it was Alexander who introduced us into this city at first, the kings augmented our privileges therein, and the Romans have been pleased to preserve them always inviolable. 2.73. Moreover, Apion would lay a blot upon us, because we do not erect images to our emperors, as if those emperors did not know this before, or stood in need of Apion as their defender; whereas he ought rather to have admired the magimity and modesty of the Romans, whereby they do not compel those that are subject to them to transgress the laws of their countries, but are willing to receive the honors due to them after such a manner as those who are to pay them esteem consistent with piety and with their own laws; for they do not thank people for conferring honors upon them, when they are compelled by violence so to do. 2.74. Accordingly, since the Grecians and some other nations think it a right thing to make images, nay, when they have painted the pictures of their parents, and wives, and children, they exult for joy; and some there are who take pictures for themselves of such persons as were no way related to them: nay, some take the pictures of such servants as they were fond of. What wonder is it then if such as these appear willing to pay the same respect to their princes and lords? 2.75. But then our legislator hath forbidden us to make images, not by way of denunciation beforehand, that the Roman authority was not to be honored, but as despising a thing that was neither necessary nor useful for either God or man; and he forbade them, as we shall prove hereafter, to make these images for any part of the animal creation 2.76. and much less for God himself, who is no part of such animal creation. Yet hath our legislator no where forbidden us to pay honors to worthy men, provided they be of another kind, and inferior to those we pay to God; with which honors we willingly testify our respect to our emperors, and to the people of Rome; 2.77. we also offer perpetual sacrifices for them; nor do we only offer them every day at the common expenses of all the Jews, but although we offer no other such sacrifices out of our common expenses, no, not for our own children, yet do we this as a peculiar honor to the emperors, and to them alone, while we do the same to no other person whomsoever. 2.78. And let this suffice for an answer in general to Apion as to what he says with relation to the Alexandrian Jews. /p 2.79. 7. However, I cannot but admire those other authors who furnished this man with such his materials; I mean Posidonius and Apollonius [the son of] Molo, who while they accuse us for not worshipping the same gods whom others worship, they think themselves not guilty of impiety when they tell lies of us, and frame absurd and reproachful stories about our temple; whereas it is a most shameful thing for freemen to forge lies on any occasion, and much more so to forge them about our temple, which was so famous over all the world, and was preserved so sacred by us; 2.81. To this my first answer shall be this, that had there been any such thing among us, an Egyptian ought by no means to have thrown it in our teeth, since an ass is not a more contemptible animal than [...] and goats, and other such creatures, which among them are gods. 2.82. But besides this answer, I say farther, how comes it about that Apion does not understand this to be no other than a palpable lie, and to be confuted by the thing itself as utterly incredible? For we Jews are always governed by the same laws, in which we constantly persevere; and although many misfortunes have befallen our city, as the like have befallen others, and although Theos [Epiphanes], and Pompey the Great, and Licinius Crassus, and last of all Titus Caesar, have conquered us in war, and gotten possession of our temple, yet have they none of them found any such thing there, nor indeed any thing but what was agreeable to the strictest piety; although what they found we are not at liberty to reveal to other nations. 2.83. But for Antiochus [Epiphanes], he had no just cause for that ravage in our temple that he made; he only came to it when he wanted money, without declaring himself our enemy, and attacked us while we were his associates and his friends: nor did he find any thing there that was ridiculous. 2.84. This is attested by many worthy writers; Polybius of Megalopolis, Strabo of Cappadocia, Nicolaus of Damascus, Timagenes, Castor the chronologer, and Apollodorus, who all say that it was out of Antiochus’s want of money that he broke his league with the Jews, and despoiled their temple when it was full of gold and silver. 2.85. Apion ought to have had a regard to these facts, unless he had himself had either an ass’s heart or a dog’s impudence; of such a dog I mean as they worship; for he had no other external reason for the lies he tells of us. As for us Jews, we ascribe no honor or power to asses, as do the Egyptians to crocodiles and asps, when they esteem such as are seized upon by the former, or bitten by the latter, to be happy persons, and persons worthy of God. 2.86. Asses are the same with us which they are with other wise men, viz., creatures that bear the burdens that we lay upon them; 2.87. but if they come to our threshing floors and eat our corn, or do not perform what we impose upon them, we beat them with a great many stripes; because it is their business to minister to us in our husbandry affairs. 2.88. But this Apion of ours was either perfectly unskilful in the composition of such fallacious discourses, or however, when he began [somewhat better], he was not able to persevere in what he had undertaken, since he hath no manner of success in those reproaches he casts upon us. /p 2.89. 8. He adds another Grecian fable, in order to reproach us. In reply to which, it would be enough to say that they who presume to speak about divine worship, ought not to be ignorant of this plain truth, that it is a degree of less impurity to pass through temples than to forge wicked calumnies of its priests. 2.91. Apion becomes other men’s prophet upon this occasion, and says, that “Antiochus found in our temple a bed and a man lying upon it, with a small table before him, full of dainties, from the [fishes of the] sea, and the fowls of the dry land; that this man was amazed at these dainties thus set before him; 2.92. that he immediately adored the king, upon his coming in, as hoping that he would afford him all possible assistance; that he fell down upon his knees, and stretched out to him his right hand, and begged to be released: and that when the king bade him sit down, and tell him who he was, and why he dwelt there, and what was the meaning of those various sorts of food that were set before him, the man made a lamentable complaint, and with sighs, and tears in his eyes, gave him this account of the distress he was in: 2.93. and said that he was a Greek, and that as he went over this province, in order to get his living, he was seized upon by foreigners, on a sudden, and brought to this temple, and shut up therein, and was seen by nobody, but was fattened by these curious provisions thus set before him: 2.94. and that truly at the first such unexpected advantages seemed to him matter of great joy; that, after a while they brought a suspicion upon him, and at length astonishment, what their meaning should be; that at last he inquired of the servants that came to him, and was by them informed that it was in order to the fulfilling a law of the Jews, which they must not tell him, that he was thus fed; and that they did the same at a set time every year: 2.95. that they used to catch a Greek foreigner, and fat him thus up every year, and then lead him to a certain wood, and kill him, and sacrifice with their accustomed solemnities, and taste of his entrails, and take an oath upon this sacrificing a Greek, that they would ever be at enmity with the Greeks; and that then they threw the remaining parts of the miserable wretch into a certain pit.” 2.96. Apion adds farther, that “the man said there were but a few days to come ere he was to be slain, and implored Antiochus that, out of the reverence he bore to the Grecian gods, he would disappoint the snares the Jews laid for his blood, and would deliver him from the miseries with which he was encompassed.” 2.97. Now this is such a most tragical fable, as is full of nothing but cruelty and impudence; yet does it not excuse Antiochus of his sacrilegious attempts, as those who wrote it in his vindication are willing to suppose; 2.98. for he could not presume beforehand that he should meet with any such thing in coming to the temple, but must have found it unexpectedly. He was therefore still an impious person, that was given to unlawful pleasures, and had no regard to God in his actions. But [as for Apion] he hath done whatever his extravagant love of lying hath dictated to him, as it is most easy to discover by a consideration of his writings; 2.99. for the difference of our laws is known not to regard the Grecians only, but they are principally opposite to the Egyptians, and to some other nations also: for while it so falls out, that men of all countries come sometimes and sojourn among us, how comes it about that we take an oath, and conspire only against the Grecians, and that by the effusion of their blood also? 2.101. with great pomp back into his own country; when he might thereby have been esteemed a religious person himself, and a mighty lover of the Greeks, and might thereby have procured himself great assistance from all men against that hatred the Jews bore to him. 2.102. But I leave this matter; for the proper way of confuting fools is not to use bare words, but to appeal to the things themselves that make against them. Now then, all such as ever saw the construction of our temple, of what nature it was, know well enough how the purity of it was never to be profaned; 2.103. for it had four several courts, encompassed with cloisters round about, every one of which had by our law a peculiar degree of separation from the rest. Into the first court every body was allowed to go, even foreigners; and none but women, during their courses, were prohibited to pass through it; 2.104. all the Jews went into the second court, as well as their wives, when they were free from all uncleanness; into the third went the Jewish men when they were clean and purified; into the fourth went the priests, having on their sacerdotal garments; 2.105. but for the most sacred place, none went in but the high priests, clothed in their peculiar garments. Now there is so great caution used about these offices of religion, that the priests are appointed to go into the temple but at certain hours: for, in the morning, at the opening of the inner temple, those that are to officiate receive the sacrifices, as they do again at noon, till the doors are shut. 2.106. Lastly, it is not so much as lawful to carry any vessel into the holy house; nor is there any thing therein, but the altar [of incense], the table [of show-bread], the censer, and the candlestick, which are all written in the law: 2.107. for there is nothing farther there, nor are there any mysteries performed that may not be spoken of; nor is there any feasting within the place. For what I have now said is publicly known, and supported by the testimony of the whole people, and their operations are very manifest; 2.108. for although there be four courses of the priests, and every one of them have above five thousand men in them, yet do they officiate on certain days only; and when those days are over, other priests succeed in the performance of their sacrifices, and assemble together at mid-day, and receive the keys of the temple, and the vessels by tale, without any thing relating to food or drink being carried into the temple; 2.109. nay, we are not allowed to offer such things at the altar, excepting what is prepared for the sacrifices. /p9. What then can we say of Apion, but that he examined nothing that concerned these things, while still he uttered incredible words about them! But it is a great shame for a grammarian not to be able to write true history. 2.111. This, therefore, is the utmost degree of impiety, and a voluntary lie, in order to the delusion of those who will not examine into the truth of matters. Whereas, such unspeakable mischiefs as are above related, have been occasioned by such calumnies that are raised upon us. /p 2.112. 10. Nay, this miracle of piety derides us farther, and adds the following pretended facts to his former fable; for he says that this man related how, “while the Jews were once in a long war with the Idumeans, there came a man out of one of the cities of the Idumeans, who there had worshipped Apollo. This man, whose name is said to have been Zabidus, came to the Jews, and promised that he would deliver Apollo, the god of Dora into their hands, and that he would come to our temple, if they would all come up with him 2.113. and bring the whole multitude of the Jews with them; that Zabidus made him a certain wooden instrument, and put it round about him, and set three rows of lamps therein, and walked after such a manner, that he appeared to those that stood a great way off him, to be a kind of star walking upon the earth: 2.114. that the Jews were terribly frightened at so surprising an appearance, and stood very quiet at a distance; and that Zabidus, while they continued so very quiet, went into the holy house, and carried off that golden head of an ass (for so facetiously does he write), and then went his way back again to Dora in great haste.” 2.116. for Idumea borders upon our country, and is near to Gaza, in which there is no such city as Dora, although there be, it is true, a city named Dora in Phoenicia, near Mount Carmel, but it is four days’ journey from Idumea. 2.118. for certainly those who have so many festivals, wherein they light lamps, must yet, at this rate, have never seen a candlestick! But still it seems that while Zabidus took his journey over the country, where were so many ten thousands of people, nobody met him. He also, it seems, even in a time of war, found the walls of Jerusalem destitute of guards. I omit the rest. 2.119. Now the doors of the holy house were seventy cubits high, and twenty cubits broad, they were all plated over with gold, and almost of solid gold itself, and there were no fewer than twenty men required to shut them every day; nor was it lawful ever to leave them open 2.121. 11. Apion also tells a false story, when he mentions an oath of ours, as if we “swore by God, the maker of the heaven, and earth, and sea, to bear no good will to any foreigner, and particularly to none of the Greeks.” 2.122. Now this liar ought to have said directly that “we would bear no good will to any foreigner, and particularly to none of the Egyptians.” For then his story about the oath would have squared with the rest of his original forgeries, in case our forefathers had been driven away by their kinsmen the Egyptians, not on account of any wickedness they had been guilty of, but on account of the calamities they were under; 2.123. for as to the Grecians, we are rather remote from them in place than different from them in our institutions, insomuch that we have no enmity with them, nor any jealousy of them. On the contrary, it hath so happened, that many of them have come over to our laws, and some of them have continued in their observation, although others of them had not courage enough to persevere, and so departed from them again; 2.124. nor did any body ever hear this oath sworn by us: Apion, it seems, was the only person that heard it, for he indeed was the first composer of it. /p 2.125. 12. However, Apion deserves to be admired for his great prudence, as to what I am going to say, which is this, “That there is a plain mark among us, that we neither have just laws, nor worship God as we ought to do, because we are not governors, but are rather in subjection to Gentiles, sometimes to one nation, and sometimes to another, and that our city hath been liable to several calamities, while their city [Alexandria] hath been of old time an imperial city, and not used to be in subjection to the Romans.” 2.128. Now for the Egyptians, perhaps they are the only nation that have had this extraordinary privilege, to have never served any of those monarchs who subdued Asia and Europe, and this on account, as they pretend, that the gods fled into their country and saved themselves, by being changed into the shapes of wild beasts. Whereas these Egyptians are the very people that appear to have never, in all the past ages, had one day of freedom, no, not so much as from their own lords. 2.132. But now we have met with Apion, an accuser of our nation, though one that still forgets the miseries of his own people, the Egyptians; but it is that Sesostris, who was once so celebrated a king of Egypt, that hath blinded him. Now we will not brag of our kings, David and Solomon, though they conquered many nations; 2.135. 13. “But,” says Apion, “we Jews have not had any wonderful men amongst us, not any inventors of arts, nor any eminent for wisdom.” He then enumerates Socrates, and Zeno, and Cleanthes, and some others of the same sort; and, after all, he adds himself to them, which is the most wonderful thing of all that he says, and pronounces Alexandria to be happy, because it hath such a citizen as he is in it; 2.136. for he was the fittest man to be a witness to his own deserts, although he hath appeared to all others no better than a wicked mountebank, of a corrupt life, and ill discourses; on which account one may justly pity Alexandria, if it should value itself upon such a citizen as he is. But as to our own men, we have had those who have been as deserving of commendation as any other whosoever; and such as have perused our Antiquities cannot be ignorant of them. /p 2.137. 14. As to the other things which he sets down as blameworthy, it may perhaps be the best way to let them pass without apology, that he may be allowed to be his own accuser, and the accuser of the rest of the Egyptians. However, he accuses us for sacrificing animals, and for abstaining from swine’s flesh, and laughs at us for the circumcision of our privy members. 2.138. Now, as for our slaughter of tame animals for sacrifices, it is common to us and to all other men; but this Apion, by making it a crime to sacrifice them, demonstrates himself to be an Egyptian; for had he been either a Grecian or a Macedonian [as he pretends to be], he had not shown any uneasiness at it; for those people glory in sacrificing whole hecatombs to the gods, and make use of those sacrifices for feasting; and yet is not the world thereby rendered destitute of cattle, as Apion was afraid would come to pass. 2.139. Yet, if all men had followed the manners of the Egyptians, the world had certainly been made desolate as to mankind, but had been filled full of the wildest sort of brute beasts, which, because they suppose them to be gods, they carefully nourish. 2.141. for the histories say that two things were originally committed to their care by their king’s injunctions, the worship of the gods, and the support of wisdom and philosophy. Accordingly, these priests are all circumcised, and abstain from swine’s flesh; nor does any one of the other Egyptians assist them in slaying those sacrifices they offer to the gods. 2.142. Apion was therefore quite blinded in his mind when, for the sake of the Egyptians, he contrived to reproach us, and to accuse such others as not only make use of that conduct of life which he so much abuses, but have also taught other men to be circumcised, as says Herodotus; 2.143. which makes me think that Apion is hereby justly punished for his casting such reproaches on the laws of his own country; for he was circumcised himself of necessity, on account of an ulcer in his privy member; and when he received no benefit by such circumcision, but his member became putrid, he died in great torment.
9. Pliny The Elder, Natural History, None (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

10. Gellius, Attic Nights, 5.14.1, 5.14.3 (2nd cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

11. Eusebius of Caesarea, Ecclesiastical History, 7.32.16 (3rd cent. CE - 4th cent. CE)

7.32.16. And this is not an opinion of our own; but it was known to the Jews of old, even before Christ, and was carefully observed by them. This may be learned from what is said by Philo, Josephus, and Musaeus; and not only by them, but also by those yet more ancient, the two Agathobuli, surnamed 'Masters,' and the famous Aristobulus, who was chosen among the seventy interpreters of the sacred and divine Hebrew Scriptures by Ptolemy Philadelphus and his father, and who also dedicated his exegetical books on the law of Moses to the same kings.
12. Anon., Letter of Aristeas, 101-171, 187-292, 82-100

100. But in order that we might gain complete information, we ascended to the summit of the neighbouring citadel and looked around us. It is situated in a very lofty spot, and is fortified with many towers, which have been built up to the very top of immense stones, with the object, as we were informed, of
13. Papyri, Cpj, 2.153



Subjects of this text:

subject book bibliographic info
aelian Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 154
alexander (the great), settles jews in alexandria Bar Kochba, Pseudo-Hecataeus on the Jews: Legitimizing the Jewish Diaspora (1997) 115
alexander polyhistor Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 154
alexander the great, not having visited jerusalem' Cohen, The Significance of Yavneh and other Essays in Jewish Hellenism (2010) 186
alexandria, heptastadium Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 252
alexandria, jews settled in by alexander Bar Kochba, Pseudo-Hecataeus on the Jews: Legitimizing the Jewish Diaspora (1997) 115
alexandria, library of Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 252
alexandria, pharos, island of Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 252
alexandria, philos perspective on Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224, 252
alexandria Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224, 252
anatolius of alexandria Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224
anti-judaism Piovanelli, Burke, Pettipiece, Rediscovering the Apocryphal Continent: New Perspectives on Early Christian and Late Antique Apocryphal Textsand Traditions. De Gruyter: 2015 (2015) 373
apion, aigyptiaka Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 154
apion, his image of egpyt Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 154
apion Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 149, 154
apion (grammarian) Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 252
apion the grammarian Piovanelli, Burke, Pettipiece, Rediscovering the Apocryphal Continent: New Perspectives on Early Christian and Late Antique Apocryphal Textsand Traditions. De Gruyter: 2015 (2015) 373
aristeas, letter of Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224, 252
aristobulus (= aristobulos) Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224
aulus gellius, on apion Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 154
aulus gellius Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 154
bible, books Veltri, Libraries, Translations, and 'Canonic' Texts: The Septuagint, Aquila and Ben Sira in the Jewish and Christian Traditions (2006) 40
chaeremon Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 149
christians (byzantines, copts, nubians, syrian orthodox) Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224
claudius, emperor Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 149
culture, hellenistic Veltri, Libraries, Translations, and 'Canonic' Texts: The Septuagint, Aquila and Ben Sira in the Jewish and Christian Traditions (2006) 40
dammūh, daniel, book of Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224
eusebius Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224
gaius caligula Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 252
gauger, j.d. Bar Kochba, Pseudo-Hecataeus on the Jews: Legitimizing the Jewish Diaspora (1997) 115
greek, language Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224, 252
herodotus Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 154
isidorus, as anti-jewish adviser Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 149
isidorus Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 149
italy/italians Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 154
jews in alexandria, anti-jewish polemic Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 149, 154
josephus, on apion Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 149
josephus, on the letter of aristeas Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224
josephus Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 154
memory, cultural Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224, 252
migration Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 154
moses, in philos life of moses Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 252
moses Piovanelli, Burke, Pettipiece, Rediscovering the Apocryphal Continent: New Perspectives on Early Christian and Late Antique Apocryphal Textsand Traditions. De Gruyter: 2015 (2015) 373
philo, as contemporary of apion Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 149
philo, as contemporary of chaeremon Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 149
philo of alexandria Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224, 252
philomatheis Veltri, Libraries, Translations, and 'Canonic' Texts: The Septuagint, Aquila and Ben Sira in the Jewish and Christian Traditions (2006) 40
philos perspective Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224, 252
pliny the elder, on apion Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 154
plutarch Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224
poetry Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 252
prologue (to ben sira) Veltri, Libraries, Translations, and 'Canonic' Texts: The Septuagint, Aquila and Ben Sira in the Jewish and Christian Traditions (2006) 40
ptolemaic dynasty Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 252
ptolemy ii Bar Kochba, Pseudo-Hecataeus on the Jews: Legitimizing the Jewish Diaspora (1997) 115
ptolemy ii philadelphus, in philos life of moses Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 252
ptolemy ii philadelphus Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224, 252
ptolemy vi philometor Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224
revelation Veltri, Libraries, Translations, and 'Canonic' Texts: The Septuagint, Aquila and Ben Sira in the Jewish and Christian Traditions (2006) 40
sabbath observance Piovanelli, Burke, Pettipiece, Rediscovering the Apocryphal Continent: New Perspectives on Early Christian and Late Antique Apocryphal Textsand Traditions. De Gruyter: 2015 (2015) 373
septuagint (lxx) Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224
strabo Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224
tatian Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 154
theocritus Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 252
theophrastus Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 154
torah (pentateuch) Salvesen et al., Israel in Egypt: The Land of Egypt as Concept and Reality for Jews in Antiquity and the Early Medieval Period (2020) 224
violence, inter-ethnic Schliesser et al., Alexandria: Hub of the Hellenistic World (2021) 149
wacholder, b. z. Bar Kochba, Pseudo-Hecataeus on the Jews: Legitimizing the Jewish Diaspora (1997) 115
wisdom Veltri, Libraries, Translations, and 'Canonic' Texts: The Septuagint, Aquila and Ben Sira in the Jewish and Christian Traditions (2006) 40