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Tiresias: The Ancient Mediterranean Religions Source Database



7235
Josephus Flavius, Jewish War, 1.16


κἀγὼ μὲν ἀναλώμασι καὶ πόνοις μεγίστοις ἀλλόφυλος ὢν ̔́Ελλησί τε καὶ ̔Ρωμαίοις τὴν μνήμην τῶν κατορθωμάτων ἀνατίθημι: τοῖς δὲ γνησίοις πρὸς μὲν τὰ λήμματα καὶ τὰς δίκας κέχηνεν εὐθέως τὸ στόμα καὶ γλῶσσα λέλυται, πρὸς δὲ τὴν ἱστορίαν, ἔνθα χρὴ τἀληθῆ λέγειν καὶ μετὰ πολλοῦ πόνου τὰ πράγματα συλλέγειν, πεφίμωνται παρέντες τοῖς ἀσθενεστέροις καὶ μηδὲ γινώσκουσι τὰς πράξεις τῶν ἡγεμόνων γράφειν. τιμάσθω δὴ παρ' ἡμῖν τὸ τῆς ἱστορίας ἀληθές, ἐπεὶ παρ' ̔́Ελλησιν ἠμέληται.accordingly, I have been at great charges, and have taken very great pains [about this history], though I be a foreigner; and do dedicate this work, as a memorial of great actions, both to the Greeks and to the Barbarians. But, for some of our own principal men, their mouths are wide open, and their tongues loosed presently, for gain and lawsuits, but quite muzzled up when they are to write history, where they must speak truth and gather facts together with a great deal of pains; and so they leave the writing such histories to weaker people, and to such as are not acquainted with the actions of princes. Yet shall the real truth of historical facts be preferred by us, how much soever it be neglected among the Greek historians.


̔Ο δ' ἀποδρὰς τῶν ̓Αριστοβούλου παίδων Πομπήιον ̓Αλέξανδρος χρόνῳ συναγαγὼν χεῖρα συχνὴν βαρὺς ἦν ̔Υρκανῷ καὶ τὴν ̓Ιουδαίαν κατέτρεχεν, ἐδόκει τε ἂν καταλῦσαι ταχέως αὐτόν, ὅς γε ἤδη καὶ τὸ καταρριφθὲν ὑπὸ Πομπηίου τεῖχος ἐν ̔Ιεροσολύμοις ἀνακτίζειν ἐθάρρει προσελθών, εἰ μὴ Γαβίνιος εἰς Συρίαν πεμφθεὶς Σκαύρῳ διάδοχος τά τε ἄλλα γενναῖον ἀπέδειξεν ἑαυτὸν ἐν πολλοῖς καὶ ἐπ' ̓Αλέξανδρον ὥρμησεν.accordingly, I have been at great charges, and have taken very great pains [about this history], though I be a foreigner; and do dedicate this work, as a memorial of great actions, both to the Greeks and to the Barbarians. But, for some of our own principal men, their mouths are wide open, and their tongues loosed presently, for gain and lawsuits, but quite muzzled up when they are to write history, where they must speak truth and gather facts together with a great deal of pains; and so they leave the writing such histories to weaker people, and to such as are not acquainted with the actions of princes. Yet shall the real truth of historical facts be preferred by us, how much soever it be neglected among the Greek historians.


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

5 results
1. Thucydides, The History of The Peloponnesian War, 1.22.3 (5th cent. BCE - 4th cent. BCE)

1.22.3. My conclusions have cost me some labour from the want of coincidence between accounts of the same occurrences by different eye-witnesses, arising sometimes from imperfect memory, sometimes from undue partiality for one side or the other.
2. Septuagint, 2 Maccabees, 2.24, 6.12-6.16, 15.39 (2nd cent. BCE - 2nd cent. BCE)

2.24. For considering the flood of numbers involved and the difficulty there is for those who wish to enter upon the narratives of history because of the mass of material,' 6.12. Now I urge those who read this book not to be depressed by such calamities, but to recognize that these punishments were designed not to destroy but to discipline our people.' 6.13. In fact, not to let the impious alone for long, but to punish them immediately, is a sign of great kindness.' 6.14. For in the case of the other nations the Lord waits patiently to punish them until they have reached the full measure of their sins; but he does not deal in this way with us,' 6.15. in order that he may not take vengeance on us afterward when our sins have reached their height. 6.16. Therefore he never withdraws his mercy from us. Though he disciplines us with calamities, he does not forsake his own people.' 15.39. For just as it is harmful to drink wine alone, or, again, to drink water alone, while wine mixed with water is sweet and delicious and enhances one's enjoyment, so also the style of the story delights the ears of those who read the work. And here will be the end.'
3. Josephus Flavius, Jewish Antiquities, 12.135-12.137, 12.236, 12.358-12.359, 14.12, 14.74, 14.82-14.83, 14.163-14.176, 14.413-14.419, 15.171-15.172, 16.184-16.187 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

12.135. I will set down presently the epistles themselves which he wrote to the generals concerning them, but will first produce the testimony of Polybius of Megalopolis; for thus does he speak, in the sixteenth book of his history: “Now Scopas, the general of Ptolemy’s army, went in haste to the superior parts of the country, and in the winter time overthrew the nation of the Jews?” 12.136. He also saith, in the same book, that “when Seopas was conquered by Antiochus, Antiochus received Batanea, and Samaria, and Abila, and Gadara; and that, a while afterwards, there came in to him those Jews that inhabited near that temple which was called Jerusalem; concerning which, although I have more to say, and particularly concerning the presence of God about that temple, yet do I put off that history till another opportunity.” 12.137. This it is which Polybius relates. But we will return to the series of the history, when we have first produced the epistles of king Antiochus: 12.236. As for Hyrcanus, when he saw that Antiochus had a great army, and feared lest he should be caught by him, and brought to punishment for what he had done to the Arabians, he ended his life, and slew himself with his own hand; while Antiochus seized upon all his substance. 12.358. Whence one may wonder at Polybius of Megalopolis, who, though otherwise a good man, yet saith that “Antiochus died because he had a purpose to plunder the temple of Diana in Persia;” for the purposing to do a thing, but not actually doing it, is not worthy of punishment. 12.359. But if Polybius could think that Antiochus thus lost his life on that account, it is much more probable that this king died on account of his sacrilegious plundering of the temple at Jerusalem. But we will not contend about this matter with those who may think that the cause assigned by this Polybius of Megalopolis is nearer the truth than that assigned by us. 14.12. And the same speeches he perpetually made to Hyrcanus; and told him that his own life would be in danger, unless he guarded himself, and got shut of Aristobulus; for he said that the friends of Aristobulus omitted no opportunity of advising him to kill him, as being then, and not before, sure to retain his principality. 14.12. And as he came back to Tyre, he went up into Judea also, and fell upon Taricheae, and presently took it, and carried about thirty thousand Jews captives; and slew Pitholaus, who succeeded Aristobulus in his seditious practices, and that by the persuasion of Antipater 14.74. and he made Jerusalem tributary to the Romans, and took away those cities of Celesyria which the inhabitants of Judea had subdued, and put them under the government of the Roman president, and confined the whole nation, which had elevated itself so high before, within its own bounds. 14.82. 2. Some time after this, when Alexander, the son of Aristobulus, made an incursion into Judea, Gabinius came from Rome into Syria, as commander of the Roman forces. He did many considerable actions; and particularly made war with Alexander, since Hyrcanus was not yet able to oppose his power, but was already attempting to rebuild the wall of Jerusalem, which Pompey had overthrown 14.83. although the Romans which were there restrained him from that his design. However, Alexander went over all the country round about, and armed many of the Jews, and suddenly got together ten thousand armed footmen, and fifteen hundred horsemen, and fortified Alexandrium, a fortress near to Coreae, and Macherus, near the mountains of Arabia. 14.163. 3. But now the principal men among the Jews, when they saw Antipater and his sons to grow so much in the good-will the nation bare to them, and in the revenues which they received out of Judea, and out of Hyrcanus’s own wealth, they became ill-disposed to him; 14.164. for indeed Antipater had contracted a friendship with the Roman emperors; and when he had prevailed with Hyrcanus to send them money, he took it to himself, and purloined the present intended, and sent it as if it were his own, and not Hyrcanus’s gift to them. 14.165. Hyrcanus heard of this his management, but took no care about it; nay, he rather was very glad of it. But the chief men of the Jews were therefore in fear, because they saw that Herod was a violent and bold man, and very desirous of acting tyrannically; so they came to Hyrcanus, and now accused Antipater openly, and said to him, “How long wilt thou be quiet under such actions as are now done? Or dost thou not see that Antipater and his sons have already seized upon the government, and that it is only the name of a king which is given thee? 14.166. But do not thou suffer these things to be hidden from thee, nor do thou think to escape danger by being so careless of thyself and of thy kingdom; for Antipater and his sons are not now stewards of thine affairs: do not thou deceive thyself with such a notion; they are evidently absolute lords; 14.167. for Herod, Antipater’s son, hath slain Hezekiah, and those that were with him, and hath thereby transgressed our law, which hath forbidden to slay any man, even though he were a wicked man, unless he had been first condemned to suffer death by the Sanhedrim yet hath he been so insolent as to do this, and that without any authority from thee.” 14.168. 4. Upon Hyrcanus hearing this, he complied with them. The mothers also of those that had been slain by Herod raised his indignation; for those women continued every day in the temple, persuading the king and the people that Herod might undergo a trial before the Sanhedrim for what he had done. 14.169. Hyrcanus was so moved by these complaints, that he summoned Herod to come to his trial for what was charged upon him. Accordingly he came; but his father had persuaded him to come not like a private man, but with a guard, for the security of his person; and that when he had settled the affairs of Galilee in the best manner he could for his own advantage, he should come to his trial, but still with a body of men sufficient for his security on his journey, yet so that he should not come with so great a force as might look like terrifying Hyrcanus, but still such a one as might not expose him naked and unguarded [to his enemies.] 14.171. But when Herod stood before the Sanhedrim, with his body of men about him, he affrighted them all, and no one of his former accusers durst after that bring any charge against him, but there was a deep silence, and nobody knew what was to be done. 14.172. When affairs stood thus, one whose name was Sameas, a righteous man he was, and for that reason above all fear, rose up, and said, “O you that are assessors with me, and O thou that art our king, I neither have ever myself known such a case, nor do I suppose that any one of you can name its parallel, that one who is called to take his trial by us ever stood in such a manner before us; but every one, whosoever he be, that comes to be tried by this Sanhedrim, presents himself in a submissive manner, and like one that is in fear of himself, and that endeavors to move us to compassion, with his hair dishevelled, and in a black and mourning garment: 14.173. but this admirable man Herod, who is accused of murder, and called to answer so heavy an accusation, stands here clothed in purple, and with the hair of his head finely trimmed, and with his armed men about him, that if we shall condemn him by our law, he may slay us, and by overbearing justice may himself escape death. 14.174. Yet do not I make this complaint against Herod himself; he is to be sure more concerned for himself than for the laws; but my complaint is against yourselves, and your king, who gave him a license so to do. However, take you notice, that God is great, and that this very man, whom you are going to absolve and dismiss, for the sake of Hyrcanus, will one day punish both you and your king himself also.” 14.175. Nor did Sameas mistake in any part of this prediction; for when Herod had received the kingdom, he slew all the members of this Sanhedrim, and Hyrcanus himself also, excepting Sameas 14.176. for he had a great honor for him on account of his righteousness, and because, when the city was afterward besieged by Herod and Sosius, he persuaded the people to admit Herod into it; and told them that for their sins they would not be able to escape his hands:—which things will be related by us in their proper places. 14.413. 4. But Herod was not pleased with lying still, but sent out his brother Joseph against Idumea with two thousand armed footmen, and four hundred horsemen, while he himself came to Samaria, and left his mother and his other relations there, for they were already gone out of Masada, and went into Galilee, and took certain places which were held by the garrisons of Antigonus; 14.414. and he passed on to Sepphoris, as God sent a snow, while Antigonus’s garrisons withdrew themselves, and had great plenty of provisions. 14.415. He also went thence, and resolved to destroy those robbers that dwelt in the caves, and did much mischief in the country; so he sent a troop of horsemen, and three companies of armed footmen, against them. They were very near to a village called Arbela; 14.416. and on the fortieth day after, he came himself with his whole army: and as the enemy sallied out boldly upon him, the left wing of his army gave way; but he appearing with a body of men, put those to flight who were already conquerors, and recalled his men that ran away. 14.417. He also pressed upon his enemies, and pursued them as far as the river Jordan, though they ran away by different roads. So he brought over to him all Galilee, excepting those that dwelt in the caves, and distributed money to every one of his soldiers, giving them a hundred and fifty drachmae apiece, and much more to their captains, and sent them into winter quarters; 14.418. at which time Silo came to him, and his commanders with him, because Antigonus would not give them provisions any longer, for he supplied them for no more than one month; nay, he had sent to all the country about, and ordered them to carry off the provisions that were there, and retire to the mountains, that the Romans might have no provisions to live upon, and so might perish by famine. 14.419. But Herod committed the care of that matter to Pheroras, his youngest brother, and ordered him to repair Alexandrium also. Accordingly, he quickly made the soldiers abound with great plenty of provisions, and rebuilt Alexandrium, which had been before desolate. 15.171. So he took his kindness in good part, and bid him besides do what he had already done, that is, go on in serving him, by rolling up the epistle and sealing it again, and delivering it to Malchus, and then to bring back his letter in answer to it; for it would be much better if he could know Malchus’s intentions also. 15.172. And when Dositheus was very ready to serve him in this point also, the Arabian governor returned back for answer, that he would receive Hyrcanus, and all that should come with him, and even all the Jews that were of his party; that he would, moreover, send forces sufficient to secure them in their journey; and that he should be in no want of any thing he should desire. 16.184. for he wrote in Herod’s lifetime, and under his reign, and so as to please him, and as a servant to him, touching upon nothing but what tended to his glory, and openly excusing many of his notorious crimes, and very diligently concealing them. 16.185. And as he was desirous to put handsome colors on the death of Mariamne and her sons, which were barbarous actions in the king, he tells falsehoods about the incontinence of Mariamne, and the treacherous designs of his sons upon him; and thus he proceeded in his whole work, making a pompous encomium upon what just actions he had done, but earnestly apologizing for his unjust ones. 16.186. Indeed, a man, as I said, may have a great deal to say by way of excuse for Nicolaus; for he did not so properly write this as a history for others, as somewhat that might be subservient to the king himself. 16.187. As for ourselves, who come of a family nearly allied to the Asamonean kings, and on that account have an honorable place, which is the priesthood, we think it indecent to say any thing that is false about them, and accordingly we have described their actions after an unblemished and upright manner. And although we reverence many of Herod’s posterity, who still reign, yet do we pay a greater regard to truth than to them, and this though it sometimes happens that we incur their displeasure by so doing.
4. Josephus Flavius, Jewish War, 1.1-1.15, 1.17-1.19, 1.21-1.23, 1.27, 1.30-1.33, 1.154, 1.177, 1.303-1.308, 2.56, 2.390, 4.317, 4.319, 4.366, 5.363-5.419, 6.41, 6.289-6.315, 7.252-7.406, 7.409-7.436 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

1.1. 1. Whereas the war which the Jews made with the Romans hath been the greatest of all those, not only that have been in our times, but, in a manner, of those that ever were heard of; both of those wherein cities have fought against cities, or nations against nations; while some men who were not concerned in the affairs themselves have gotten together vain and contradictory stories by hearsay, and have written them down after a sophistical manner; 1.1. For that it was a seditious temper of our own that destroyed it; and that they were the tyrants among the Jews who brought the Roman power upon us, who unwillingly attacked us, and occasioned the burning of our holy temple; Titus Caesar, who destroyed it, is himself a witness, who, during the entire war, pitied the people who were kept under by the seditious, and did often voluntarily delay the taking of the city, and allowed time to the siege, in order to let the authors have opportunity for repentance. 1.1. But still he was not able to exclude Antiochus, for he burnt the towers, and filled up the trenches, and marched on with his army. And as he looked upon taking his revenge on Alexander, for endeavoring to stop him, as a thing of less consequence, he marched directly against the Arabians 1.2. and while those that were there present have given false accounts of things, and this either out of a humor of flattery to the Romans, or of hatred towards the Jews; and while their writings contain sometimes accusations, and sometimes encomiums, but nowhere the accurate truth of the facts 1.2. as also how our people made a sedition upon Herod’s death, while Augustus was the Roman emperor, and Quintilius Varus was in that country; and how the war broke out in the twelfth year of Nero, with what happened to Cestius; and what places the Jews assaulted in a hostile manner in the first sallies of the war. 1.2. These honorary grants Caesar sent orders to have engraved in the Capitol, that they might stand there as indications of his own justice, and of the virtue of Antipater. 1.3. I have proposed to myself, for the sake of such as live under the government of the Romans, to translate those books into the Greek tongue, which I formerly composed in the language of our country, and sent to the Upper Barbarians; I, Joseph, the son of Matthias, by birth a Hebrew, a priest also, and one who at first fought against the Romans myself, and was forced to be present at what was done afterward [am the author of this work]. 1.3. 12. I have comprehended all these things in seven books, and have left no occasion for complaint or accusation to such as have been acquainted with this war; and I have written it down for the sake of those that love truth, but not for those that please themselves [with fictitious relations]. And I will begin my account of these things with what I call my First Chapter. 1.3. When Antigonus heard of this, he sent some of his party with orders to hinder, and lay ambushes for these collectors of corn. This command was obeyed, and a great multitude of armed men were gathered together about Jericho, and lay upon the mountains, to watch those that brought the provisions. 1.4. 2. Now at the time when this great concussion of affairs happened, the affairs of the Romans were themselves in great disorder. Those Jews also, who were for innovations, then arose when the times were disturbed; they were also in a flourishing condition for strength and riches, insomuch that the affairs of the East were then exceeding tumultuous, while some hoped for gain, and others were afraid of loss in such troubles; 1.4. and when the city had already received its sacred constitution again, Antiochus died; whose son Antiochus succeeded him in the kingdom, and in his hatred to the Jews also. 1.4. but when Zenodorus was dead, Caesar bestowed on him all that land which lay between Trachonitis and Galilee. Yet, what was still of more consequence to Herod, he was beloved by Caesar next after Agrippa, and by Agrippa next after Caesar; whence he arrived at a very great degree of felicity. Yet did the greatness of his soul exceed it, and the main part of his magimity was extended to the promotion of piety. 1.5. for the Jews hoped that all of their nation which were beyond Euphrates would have raised an insurrection together with them. The Gauls also, in the neighborhood of the Romans, were in motion, and the Celtae were not quiet; but all was in disorder after the death of Nero. And the opportunity now offered induced many to aim at the royal power; and the soldiery affected change, out of the hopes of getting money. 1.5. 2. However, Simeon managed the public affairs after a courageous manner, and took Gazara, and Joppa, and Jamnia, which were cities in the neighborhood. He also got the garrison under, and demolished the citadel. He was afterward an auxiliary to Antiochus, against Trypho, whom he besieged in Dora, before he went on his expedition against the Medes; 1.5. for when he was come to him, he cried out, “Where in the world is this wretched son-in-law of mine? Where shall I see the head of him which contrived to murder his father, which I will tear to pieces with my own hands? I will do the same also to my daughter, who hath such a fine husband; for although she be not a partner in the plot, yet, by being the wife of such a creature, she is polluted. 1.6. I thought it therefore an absurd thing to see the truth falsified in affairs of such great consequence, and to take no notice of it; but to suffer those Greeks and Romans that were not in the wars to be ignorant of these things, and to read either flatteries or fictions, while the Parthians, and the Babylonians, and the remotest Arabians, and those of our nation beyond Euphrates, with the Adiabeni, by my means, knew accurately both whence the war begun, what miseries it brought upon us, and after what manner it ended. 1.6. And as the siege was delayed by this means, the year of rest came on, upon which the Jews rest every seventh year as they do on every seventh day. On this year, therefore, Ptolemy was freed from being besieged, and slew the brethren of John, with their mother, and fled to Zeno, who was also called Cotylas, who was the tyrant of Philadelphia. 1.6. Whereupon the king avenged this insolent attempt of the mother upon her son, and blotted Herod, whom he had by her, out of his testament, who had been before named therein as successor to Antipater. 1.7. 3. It is true, these writers have the confidence to call their accounts histories; wherein yet they seem to me to fail of their own purpose, as well as to relate nothing that is sound. For they have a mind to demonstrate the greatness of the Romans, while they still diminish and lessen the actions of the Jews 1.7. 1. For after the death of their father, the elder of them, Aristobulus, changed the government into a kingdom, and was the first that put a diadem upon his head, four hundred seventy and one years and three months after our people came down into this country, when they were set free from the Babylonian slavery. 1.8. as not discerning how it cannot be that those must appear to be great who have only conquered those that were little. Nor are they ashamed to overlook the length of the war, the multitude of the Roman forces who so greatly suffered in it, or the might of the commanders, whose great labors about Jerusalem will be deemed inglorious, if what they achieved be reckoned but a small matter. 1.8. And when the old man had said this, he was dejected in his mind, and so continued. But, in a little time, news came that Antigonus was slain in a subterraneous place, which was itself also called Strato’s Tower, by the same name with that Caesarea which lay by the seaside; and this ambiguity it was which caused the prophet’s disorder. 1.9. 4. However, I will not go to the other extreme, out of opposition to those men who extol the Romans, nor will I determine to raise the actions of my countrymen too high; but I will prosecute the actions of both parties with accuracy. Yet shall I suit my language to the passions I am under, as to the affairs I describe, and must be allowed to indulge some lamentations upon the miseries undergone by my own country. 1.9. 4. However, when he fought with Obodas, king of the Arabians, who had laid an ambush for him near Golan, and a plot against him, he lost his entire army, which was crowded together in a deep valley, and broken to pieces by the multitude of camels. And when he had made his escape to Jerusalem, he provoked the multitude, which hated him before, to make an insurrection against him, and this on account of the greatness of the calamity that he was under. 1.11. But if anyone makes an unjust accusation against us, when we speak so passionately about the tyrants, or the robbers, or sorely bewail the misfortunes of our country, let him indulge my affections herein, though it be contrary to the rules for writing history; because it had so come to pass, that our city Jerusalem had arrived at a higher degree of felicity than any other city under the Roman government, and yet at last fell into the sorest of calamities again. 1.11. 2. And now the Pharisees joined themselves to her, to assist her in the government. These are a certain sect of the Jews that appear more religious than others, and seem to interpret the laws more accurately. 1.12. Accordingly, it appears to me that the misfortunes of all men, from the beginning of the world, if they be compared to these of the Jews, are not so considerable as they were; while the authors of them were not foreigners neither. This makes it impossible for me to contain my lamentations. But, if anyone be inflexible in his censures of me, let him attribute the facts themselves to the historical part, and the lamentations to the writer himself only. 1.12. 1. Now Hyrcanus was heir to the kingdom, and to him did his mother commit it before she died; but Aristobulus was superior to him in power and magimity; and when there was a battle between them, to decide the dispute about the kingdom, near Jericho, the greatest part deserted Hyrcanus, and went over to Aristobulus; 1.15. But then, an undertaking to preserve the memory of what hath not been before recorded, and to represent the affairs of one’s own time to those that come afterward, is really worthy of praise and commendation. Now he is to be esteemed to have taken good pains in earnest, not who does no more than change the disposition and order of other men’s works, but he who not only relates what had not been related before, but composes an entire body of history of his own: 1.15. 5. And now did many of the priests, even when they saw their enemies assailing them with swords in their hands, without any disturbance, go on with their Divine worship, and were slain while they were offering their drink-offerings, and burning their incense, as preferring the duties about their worship to God before their own preservation. The greatest part of them were slain by their own countrymen, of the adverse faction, and an innumerable multitude threw themselves down precipices; nay, some there were who were so distracted among the insuperable difficulties they were under, that they set fire to the buildings that were near to the wall, and were burnt together with them. 1.17. 6. To write concerning the Antiquities of the Jews, who they were [originally], and how they revolted from the Egyptians, and what country they traveled over, and what countries they seized upon afterward, and how they were removed out of them, I think this not to be a fit opportunity, and, on other accounts, also superfluous; and this because many Jews before me have composed the histories of our ancestors very exactly; as have some of the Greeks done it also, and have translated our histories into their own tongue, and have not much mistaken the truth in their histories. 1.17. He also parted the whole nation into five conventions, assigning one portion to Jerusalem, another to Gadara, that another should belong to Amathus, a fourth to Jericho, and to the fifth division was allotted Sepphoris, a city of Galilee. So the people were glad to be thus freed from monarchical government, and were governed for the future by an aristocracy. 1.18. But then, where the writers of these affairs and our prophets leave off, thence shall I take my rise and begin my history. Now, as to what concerns that war which happened in my own time, I will go over it very largely, and with all the diligence I am able; but for what preceded mine own age, that I shall run over briefly. 1.18. 9. But now Cassius, after Crassus, put a stop to the Parthians, who were marching in order to enter Syria. Cassius had fled into that province, and when he had taken possession of the same, he made a hasty march into Judea; and, upon his taking Taricheae, he carried thirty thousand Jews into slavery. He also slew Pitholaus, who had supported the seditious followers of Aristobulus; and it was Antipater who advised him so to do. 1.19. 7. [For example, I shall relate] how Antiochus, who was named Epiphanes, took Jerusalem by force, and held it three years and three months, and was then ejected out of the country by the sons of Asamoneus: after that, how their posterity quarreled about the government, and brought upon their settlement the Romans and Pompey; how Herod also, the son of Antipater, dissolved their government, and brought Socius upon them; 1.19. 4. Thus was Pelusium taken. But still, as they were marching on, those Egyptian Jews that inhabited the country called the country of Onias stopped them. Then did Antipater not only persuade them not to stop them, but to afford provisions for their army; on which account even the people about Memphis would not fight against them, but of their own accord joined Mithridates. 1.21. 8. As also [I shall relate] how they built walls about the neighboring cities; and how Nero, upon Cestuis’s defeat, was in fear of the entire event of the war, and thereupon made Vespasian general in this war; and how this Vespasian, with the elder of his sons, made an expedition into the country of Judea; what was the number of the Roman army that he made use of; and how many of his auxiliaries were cut off in all Galilee; and how he took some of its cities entirely, and by force, and others of them by treaty, and on terms. 1.21. 7. Now Hyrcanus was, by degrees, inflamed with these discourses, and at length could bear no longer, but he summoned Herod to take his trial. Accordingly, by his father’s advice, and as soon as the affairs of Galilee would give him leave, he came up [to Jerusalem], when he had first placed garrisons in Galilee; however, he came with a sufficient body of soldiers, so many indeed that he might not appear to have with him an army able to overthrow Hyrcanus’s government, nor yet so few as to expose him to the insults of those that envied him. 1.22. Now, when I am come so far, I shall describe the good order of the Romans in war, and the discipline of their legions; the amplitude of both the Galilees, with its nature, and the limits of Judea. And, besides this, I shall particularly go over what is peculiar to the country, the lakes and fountains that are in them, and what miseries happened to every city as they were taken; and all this with accuracy, as I saw the things done, or suffered in them. For I shall not conceal any of the calamities I myself endured, since I shall relate them to such as know the truth of them. 1.22. 2. So he gave command that the Jews should bring in seven hundred talents; whereupon Antipater, out of his dread of Cassius’s threats, parted the raising of this sum among his sons, and among others of his acquaintance, and to be done immediately; and among them he required one Malichus, who was at enmity with him, to do his part also, which necessity forced him to do. 1.23. 9. After this, [I shall relate] how, When the Jews’ affairs were become very bad, Nero died, and Vespasian, when he was going to attack Jerusalem, was called back to take the government upon him; what signs happened to him relating to his gaining that government, and what mutations of government then happened at Rome 1.23. Upon which Malichus came to him, and bewailed Antipater; Herod also made him believe [he admitted of his lamentations as real], although he had much ado to restrain his passion at him; however, he did himself bewail the murder of his father in his letters to Cassius, who, on other accounts, also hated Malichus. Cassius sent him word back that he should avenge his father’s death upon him, and privately gave order to the tribunes that were under him, that they should assist Herod in a righteous action he was about. 1.27. 11. After this, I shall relate the barbarity of the tyrants towards the people of their own nation, as well as the indulgence of the Romans in sparing foreigners; and how often Titus, out of his desire to preserve the city and the temple, invited the seditious to come to terms of accommodation. I shall also distinguish the sufferings of the people, and their calamities; how far they were afflicted by the sedition, and how far by the famine, and at length were taken. 1.27. Antigonus himself also bit off Hyrcanus’s ears with his own teeth, as he fell down upon his knees to him, that so he might never be able upon any mutation of affairs to take the high priesthood again, for the high priests that officiated were to be complete, and without blemish. 1.31. Now these caves were in the precipices of craggy mountains, and could not be come at from any side, since they had only some winding pathways, very narrow, by which they got up to them; but the rock that lay on their front had beneath it valleys of a vast depth, and of an almost perpendicular declivity; insomuch that the king was doubtful for a long time what to do, by reason of a kind of impossibility there was of attacking the place. Yet did he at length make use of a contrivance that was subject to the utmost hazard; 1.31. 1. At the same time that Antiochus, who was called Epiphanes, had a quarrel with the sixth Ptolemy about his right to the whole country of Syria, a great sedition fell among the men of power in Judea, and they had a contention about obtaining the government; while each of those that were of dignity could not endure to be subject to their equals. However, Onias, one of the high priests, got the better, and cast the sons of Tobias out of the city; 1.32. 7. Hereupon Herod was very angry at him, and was going to fight against Macheras as his enemy; but he restrained his indignation, and marched to Antony to accuse Macheras of mal-administration. But Macheras was made sensible of his offenses, and followed after the king immediately, and earnestly begged and obtained that he would be reconciled to him. 1.32. who fled to Antiochus, and besought him to make use of them for his leaders, and to make an expedition into Judea. The king being thereto disposed beforehand, complied with them, and came upon the Jews with a great army, and took their city by force, and slew a great multitude of those that favored Ptolemy, and sent out his soldiers to plunder them without mercy. He also spoiled the temple, and put a stop to the constant practice of offering a daily sacrifice of expiation for three years and six months. 1.33. But Onias, the high priest, fled to Ptolemy, and received a place from him in the Nomus of Heliopolis, where he built a city resembling Jerusalem, and a temple that was like its temple, concerning which we shall speak more in its proper place hereafter. 1.33. He also made an immediate and continual attack upon the fortress. Yet was he forced, by a most terrible storm, to pitch his camp in the neighboring villages before he could take it. But when, after a few days’ time, the second legion, that came from Antony, joined themselves to him, the enemy were affrighted at his power, and left their fortifications in the nighttime. 1.154. Now, among the captives, Aristobulus’s father-in-law was taken, who was also his uncle: so those that were the most guilty he punished with decollation; but rewarded Faustus, and those with him that had fought so bravely, with glorious presents, and laid a tribute upon the country, and upon Jerusalem itself. 1.177. hereupon Gabinius was afraid (for he was come back already out of Egypt, and obliged to come back quickly by these tumults), and sent Antipater, who prevailed with some of the revolters to be quiet. However, thirty thousand still continued with Alexander, who was himself eager to fight also; accordingly, Gabinius went out to fight, when the Jews met him; and as the battle was fought near Mount Tabor, ten thousand of them were slain, and the rest of the multitude dispersed themselves, and fled away. 1.303. 1. So the Romans lived in plenty of all things, and rested from war. However, Herod did not lie at rest, but seized upon Idumea, and kept it, with two thousand footmen, and four hundred horsemen; and this he did by sending his brother Joseph thither, that no innovation might be made by Antigonus. He also removed his mother, and all his relations, who had been in Masada, to Samaria; and when he had settled them securely, he marched to take the remaining parts of Galilee, and to drive away the garrisons placed there by Antigonus. 1.304. 2. But when Herod had reached Sepphoris, in a very great snow, he took the city without any difficulty; the guards that should have kept it flying away before it was assaulted; where he gave an opportunity to his followers that had been in distress to refresh themselves, there being in that city a great abundance of necessaries. After which he hasted away to the robbers that were in the caves, who overran a great part of the country, and did as great mischief to its inhabitants as a war itself could have done. 1.305. Accordingly, he sent beforehand three cohorts of footmen, and one troop of horsemen, to the village Arbela, and came himself forty days afterwards with the rest of his forces. Yet were not the enemy affrighted at his assault but met him in arms; for their skill was that of warriors, but their boldness was the boldness of robbers: 1.306. when therefore it came to a pitched battle, they put to flight Herod’s left wing with their right one; but Herod, wheeling about on the sudden from his own right wing, came to their assistance, and both made his own left wing return back from its flight, and fell upon the pursuers, and cooled their courage, till they could not bear the attempts that were made directly upon them, and so turned back and ran away. 1.307. 3. But Herod followed them, and slew them as he followed them, and destroyed a great part of them, till those that remained were scattered beyond the river [Jordan]; and Galilee was freed from the terrors they had been under, excepting from those that remained, and lay concealed in caves, which required longer time ere they could be conquered. 1.308. In order to which Herod, in the first place, distributed the fruits of their former labors to the soldiers, and gave every one of them a hundred and fifty drachmae of silver, and a great deal more to their commanders, and sent them into their winter quarters. He also sent to his youngest brother Pheroras, to take care of a good market for them, where they might buy themselves provisions, and to build a wall about Alexandrium; who took care of both those injunctions accordingly. 2.56. In Sepphoris also, a city of Galilee, there was one Judas (the son of that arch-robber Hezekias, who formerly overran the country, and had been subdued by king Herod); this man got no small multitude together, and broke open the place where the royal armor was laid up, and armed those about him, and attacked those that were so earnest to gain the dominion. 2.56. and as they had them already cooped up together in the place of public exercises, which they had done out of the suspicion they had of them, they thought they should meet with no difficulty in the attempt; yet did they distrust their own wives, which were almost all of them addicted to the Jewish religion; 4.317. Nay, they proceeded to that degree of impiety, as to cast away their dead bodies without burial, although the Jews used to take so much care of the burial of men, that they took down those that were condemned and crucified, and buried them before the going down of the sun. 4.319. He was on other accounts also a venerable, and a very just man; and besides the grandeur of that nobility, and dignity, and honor of which he was possessed, he had been a lover of a kind of parity, even with regard to the meanest of the people; 4.366. 2. And now all the rest of the commanders of the Romans deemed this sedition among their enemies to be of great advantage to them, and were very earnest to march to the city, and they urged Vespasian, as their lord and general in all cases, to make haste, and said to him, that “the providence of God is on our side, by setting our enemies at variance against one another; 5.363. for that the Romans, who had no relation to those things, had a reverence for their sacred rites and places, although they belonged to their enemies, and had till now kept their hands off from meddling with them; while such as were brought up under them, and, if they be preserved, will be the only people that will reap the benefit of them, hurry on to have them destroyed. 5.364. That certainly they have seen their strongest walls demolished, and that the wall still remaining was weaker than those that were already taken. That they must know the Roman power was invincible, and that they had been used to serve them; 5.365. for, that in case it be allowed a right thing to fight for liberty, that ought to have been done at first; but for them that have once fallen under the power of the Romans, and have now submitted to them for so many long years, to pretend to shake off that yoke afterward, was the work of such as had a mind to die miserably, not of such as were lovers of liberty. 5.366. Besides, men may well enough grudge at the dishonor of owning ignoble masters over them, but ought not to do so to those who have all things under their command; for what part of the world is there that hath escaped the Romans, unless it be such as are of no use for violent heat, or for violent cold? 5.367. And evident it is that fortune is on all hands gone over to them; and that God, when he had gone round the nations with this dominion, is now settled in Italy. That, moreover, it is a strong and fixed law, even among brute beasts, as well as among men, to yield to those that are too strong for them; and to suffer those to have dominion who are too hard 5.368. for the rest in war; for which reason it was that their forefathers, who were far superior to them, both in their souls and bodies, and other advantages, did yet submit to the Romans, which they would not have suffered, had they not known that God was with them. 5.369. As for themselves, what can they depend on in this their opposition, when the greatest part of their city is already taken? and when those that are within it are under greater miseries than if they were taken, although their walls be still standing? 5.371. for although the Romans should leave off the siege, and not fall upon the city with their swords in their hands, yet was there an insuperable war that beset them within, and was augmented every hour, unless they were able to wage war with famine, and fight against it, or could alone conquer their natural appetites. 5.372. He added this further, how right a thing it was to change their conduct before their calamities were become incurable, and to have recourse to such advice as might preserve them, while opportunity was offered them for so doing; for that the Romans would not be mindful of their past actions to their disadvantage, unless they persevered in their insolent behavior to the end; because they were naturally mild in their conquests, and preferred what was profitable, before what their passions dictated to them; 5.373. which profit of theirs lay not in leaving the city empty of inhabitants, nor the country a desert; on which account Caesar did now offer them his right hand for their security. Whereas, if he took the city by force, he would not save anyone of them, and this especially, if they rejected his offers in these their utmost distresses; 5.374. for the walls that were already taken could not but assure them that the third wall would quickly be taken also. And though their fortifications should prove too strong for the Romans to break through them, yet would the famine fight for the Romans against them. 5.375. 4. While Josephus was making this exhortation to the Jews, many of them jested upon him from the wall, and many reproached him; nay, some threw their darts at him: but when he could not himself persuade them by such open good advice, he betook himself to the histories belonging to their own nation 5.376. and cried out aloud, “O miserable creatures! are you so unmindful of those that used to assist you, that you will fight by your weapons and by your hands against the Romans? When did we ever conquer any other nation by such means? 5.377. and when was it that God, who is the Creator of the Jewish people, did not avenge them when they had been injured? Will not you turn again, and look back, and consider whence it is that you fight with such violence, and how great a Supporter you have profanely abused? Will not you recall to mind the prodigious things done for your forefathers and this holy place, and how great enemies of yours were by him subdued under you? 5.378. I even tremble myself in declaring the works of God before your ears, that are unworthy to hear them; however, hearken to me, that you may be informed how you fight not only against the Romans, but against God himself. 5.379. In old times there was one Necao, king of Egypt, who was also called Pharaoh; he came with a prodigious army of soldiers, and seized queen Sarah, the mother of our nation. 5.381. Was not our queen sent back, without any defilement, to her husband, the very next evening?—while the king of Egypt fled away, adoring this place which you have defiled by shedding thereon the blood of your own countrymen; and he also trembled at those visions which he saw in the night season, and bestowed both silver and gold on the Hebrews, as on a people beloved by God. 5.382. Shall I say nothing, or shall I mention the removal of our fathers into Egypt, who, when they were used tyrannically, and were fallen under the power of foreign kings for four hundred years together, and might have defended themselves by war and by fighting, did yet do nothing but commit themselves to God? 5.383. Who is there that does not know that Egypt was overrun with all sorts of wild beasts, and consumed by all sorts of distempers? how their land did not bring forth its fruit? how the Nile failed of water? how the ten plagues of Egypt followed one upon another? and how by those means our fathers were sent away under a guard, without any bloodshed, and without running any dangers, because God conducted them as his peculiar servants? 5.384. Moreover, did not Palestine groan under the ravage the Assyrians made, when they carried away our sacred ark? asdid their idol Dagon, and as also did that entire nation of those that carried it away 5.385. how they were smitten with a loathsome distemper in the secret parts of their bodies, when their very bowels came down together with what they had eaten, till those hands that stole it away were obliged to bring it back again, and that with the sound of cymbals and timbrels, and other oblations, in order to appease the anger of God for their violation of his holy ark. 5.386. It was God who then became our General, and accomplished these great things for our fathers, and this because they did not meddle with war and fighting, but committed it to him to judge about their affairs. 5.387. When Sennacherib, king of Assyria, brought along with him all Asia, and encompassed this city round with his army, did he fall by the hands of men? 5.388. were not those hands lifted up to God in prayers, without meddling with their arms, when an angel of God destroyed that prodigious army in one night? when the Assyrian king, as he rose the next day, found a hundred fourscore and five thousand dead bodies, and when he, with the remainder of his army, fled away from the Hebrews, though they were unarmed, and did not pursue them. 5.389. You are also acquainted with the slavery we were under at Babylon, where the people were captives for seventy years; yet were they not delivered into freedom again before God made Cyrus his gracious instrument in bringing it about; accordingly they were set free by him, and did again restore the worship of their Deliverer at his temple. 5.391. for example, when the king of Babylon besieged this very city, and our king Zedekiah fought against him, contrary to what predictions were made to him by Jeremiah the prophet, he was at once taken prisoner, and saw the city and the temple demolished. Yet how much greater was the moderation of that king, than is that of your present governors, and that of the people then under him, than is that of you at this time! 5.392. for when Jeremiah cried out aloud, how very angry God was at them, because of their transgressions, and told them that they should be taken prisoners, unless they would surrender up their city, neither did the king nor the people put him to death; 5.393. but for you (to pass over what you have done within the city, which I am not able to describe as your wickedness deserves) you abuse me, and throw darts at me, who only exhort you to save yourselves, as being provoked when you are put in mind of your sins, and cannot bear the very mention of those crimes which you every day perpetrate. 5.394. For another example, when Antiochus, who was called Epiphanes, lay before this city, and had been guilty of many indignities against God, and our forefathers met him in arms, they then were slain in the battle, this city was plundered by our enemies, and our sanctuary made desolate for three years and six months. And what need I bring any more examples? 5.395. Indeed what can it be that hath stirred up an army of the Romans against our nation? Is it not the impiety of the inhabitants? Whence did our servitude commence? 5.396. Was it not derived from the seditions that were among our forefathers, when the madness of Aristobulus and Hyrcanus, and our mutual quarrels, brought Pompey upon this city, and when God reduced those under subjection to the Romans who were unworthy of the liberty they had enjoyed? 5.397. After a siege, therefore, of three months, they were forced to surrender themselves, although they had not been guilty of such offenses, with regard to our sanctuary and our laws, as you have; and this while they had much greater advantages to go to war than you have. 5.398. Do not we know what end Antigonus, the son of Aristobulus, came to, under whose reign God provided that this city should be taken again upon account of the people’s offenses? When Herod, the son of Antipater, brought upon us Sosius, and Sosius brought upon us the Roman army, they were then encompassed and besieged for six months, till, as a punishment for their sins, they were taken, and the city was plundered by the enemy. 5.399. Thus it appears that arms were never given to our nation, but that we are always given up to be fought against, and to be taken; 5.401. As for you, what have you done of those things that are recommended by our legislator? and what have you not done of those things that he hath condemned? How much more impious are you than those who were so quickly taken! 5.402. You have not avoided so much as those sins that are usually done in secret; I mean thefts, and treacherous plots against men, and adulteries. You are quarreling about rapines and murders, and invent strange ways of wickedness. Nay, the temple itself is become the receptacle of all, and this Divine place is polluted by the hands of those of our own country; which place hath yet been reverenced by the Romans when it was at a distance from them, when they have suffered many of their own customs to give place to our law. 5.403. And, after all this, do you expect Him whom you have so impiously abused to be your supporter? To be sure then you have a right to be petitioners, and to call upon Him to assist you, so pure are your hands! 5.404. Did your king [Hezekiah] lift up such hands in prayer to God against the king of Assyria, when he destroyed that great army in one night? And do the Romans commit such wickedness as did the king of Assyria, that you may have reason to hope for the like vengeance upon them? 5.405. Did not that king accept of money from our king on this condition, that he should not destroy the city, and yet, contrary to the oath he had taken, he came down to burn the temple? while the Romans do demand no more than that accustomed tribute which our fathers paid to their fathers; 5.406. and if they may but once obtain that, they neither aim to destroy this city, nor to touch this sanctuary; nay, they will grant you besides, that your posterity shall be free, and your possessions secured to you, and will preserve your holy laws inviolate to you. 5.407. And it is plain madness to expect that God should appear as well disposed towards the wicked as towards the righteous, since he knows when it is proper to punish men for their sins immediately; accordingly he brake the power of the Assyrians the very first night that they pitched their camp. 5.408. Wherefore, had he judged that our nation was worthy of freedom, or the Romans of punishment, he had immediately inflicted punishment upon those Romans, as he did upon the Assyrians, when Pompey began to meddle with our nation, or when after him Sosius came up against us, or when Vespasian laid waste Galilee, or, lastly, when Titus came first of all near to the city; 5.409. although Magnus and Sosius did not only suffer nothing, but took the city by force; as did Vespasian go from the war he made against you to receive the empire; and as for Titus, those springs that were formerly almost dried up when they were under your power since he is come, run more plentifully than they did before; 5.411. The same wonderful sign you had also experience of formerly, when the forementioned king of Babylon made war against us, and when he took the city, and burnt the temple; while yet I believe the Jews of that age were not so impious as you are. 5.412. Wherefore I cannot but suppose that God is fled out of his sanctuary, and stands on the side of those against whom you fight. 5.413. Now, even a man, if he be but a good man, will fly from an impure house, and will hate those that are in it; and do you persuade yourselves that God will abide with you in your iniquities, who sees all secret things, and hears what is kept most private? 5.414. Now, what crime is there, I pray you, that is so much as kept secret among you, or is concealed by you? nay, what is there that is not open to your very enemies? for you show your transgressions after a pompous manner, and contend one with another which of you shall be more wicked than another; and you make a public demonstration of your injustice, as if it were virtue. 5.415. However, there is a place left for your preservation, if you be willing to accept of it; and God is easily reconciled to those that confess their faults, and repent of them. 5.416. O hard-hearted wretches as you are! cast away all your arms, and take pity of your country already going to ruin; return from your wicked ways, and have regard to the excellency of that city which you are going to betray, to that excellent temple with the donations of so many countries in it. 5.417. Who could bear to be the first that should set that temple on fire? who could be willing that these things should be no more? and what is there that can better deserve to be preserved? O insensible creatures, and more stupid than are the stones themselves! 5.418. And if you cannot look at these things with discerning eyes, yet, however, have pity upon your families, and set before every one of your eyes your children, and wives, and parents, who will be gradually consumed either by famine or by war. 5.419. I am sensible that this danger will extend to my mother, and wife, and to that family of mine who have been by no means ignoble, and indeed to one that hath been very eminent in old time; and perhaps you may imagine that it is on their account only that I give you this advice; if that be all, kill them; nay, take my own blood as a reward, if it may but procure your preservation; for I am ready to die, in case you will but return to a sound mind after my death.” 6.289. Thus there was a star resembling a sword, which stood over the city, and a comet, that continued a whole year. 6.291. This light seemed to be a good sign to the unskillful, but was so interpreted by the sacred scribes, as to portend those events that followed immediately upon it. 6.292. At the same festival also, a heifer, as she was led by the high priest to be sacrificed, brought forth a lamb in the midst of the temple. 6.293. Moreover, the eastern gate of the inner [court of the] temple, which was of brass, and vastly heavy, and had been with difficulty shut by twenty men, and rested upon a basis armed with iron, and had bolts fastened very deep into the firm floor, which was there made of one entire stone, was seen to be opened of its own accord about the sixth hour of the night. 6.294. Now, those that kept watch in the temple came hereupon running to the captain of the temple, and told him of it; who then came up thither, and not without great difficulty was able to shut the gate again. 6.295. This also appeared to the vulgar to be a very happy prodigy, as if God did thereby open them the gate of happiness. But the men of learning understood it, that the security of their holy house was dissolved of its own accord, and that the gate was opened for the advantage of their enemies. 6.296. So these publicly declared that the signal foreshowed the desolation that was coming upon them. Besides these, a few days after that feast, on the one and twentieth day of the month Artemisius, [Jyar] 6.297. a certain prodigious and incredible phenomenon appeared: I suppose the account of it would seem to be a fable, were it not related by those that saw it 6.298. and were not the events that followed it of so considerable a nature as to deserve such signals; for, before sunsetting, chariots and troops of soldiers in their armor were seen 6.299. running about among the clouds, and surrounding of cities. Moreover, at that feast which we call Pentecost, as the priests were going by night into the inner [court of the] temple, as their custom was, to perform their sacred ministrations, they said that, in the first place, they felt a quaking, and heard a great noise 6.301. began on a sudden to cry aloud, “A voice from the east, a voice from the west, a voice from the four winds, a voice against Jerusalem and the holy house, a voice against the bridegrooms and the brides, and a voice against this whole people!” This was his cry, as he went about by day and by night, in all the lanes of the city. 6.302. However, certain of the most eminent among the populace had great indignation at this dire cry of his, and took up the man, and gave him a great number of severe stripes; yet did not he either say anything for himself, or anything peculiar to those that chastised him, but still he went on with the same words which he cried before. 6.303. Hereupon our rulers, supposing, as the case proved to be, that this was a sort of divine fury in the man, brought him to the Roman procurator 6.304. where he was whipped till his bones were laid bare; yet he did not make any supplication for himself, nor shed any tears, but turning his voice to the most lamentable tone possible, at every stroke of the whip his answer was, “Woe, woe to Jerusalem!” 6.305. And when Albinus (for he was then our procurator) asked him, Who he was? and whence he came? and why he uttered such words? he made no manner of reply to what he said, but still did not leave off his melancholy ditty, till Albinus took him to be a madman, and dismissed him. 6.306. Now, during all the time that passed before the war began, this man did not go near any of the citizens, nor was seen by them while he said so; but he every day uttered these lamentable words, as if it were his premeditated vow, “Woe, woe to Jerusalem!” 6.307. Nor did he give ill words to any of those that beat him every day, nor good words to those that gave him food; but this was his reply to all men, and indeed no other than a melancholy presage of what was to come. 6.308. This cry of his was the loudest at the festivals; and he continued this ditty for seven years and five months, without growing hoarse, or being tired therewith, until the very time that he saw his presage in earnest fulfilled in our siege, when it ceased; 6.309. for as he was going round upon the wall, he cried out with his utmost force, “Woe, woe to the city again, and to the people, and to the holy house!” And just as he added at the last, “Woe, woe to myself also!” there came a stone out of one of the engines, and smote him, and killed him immediately; and as he was uttering the very same presages he gave up the ghost. 6.311. for the Jews, by demolishing the tower of Antonia, had made their temple foursquare, while at the same time they had it written in their sacred oracles, “That then should their city be taken, as well as their holy house, when once their temple should become foursquare.” 6.312. But now, what did most elevate them in undertaking this war, was an ambiguous oracle that was also found in their sacred writings, how, “about that time, one from their country should become governor of the habitable earth.” 6.313. The Jews took this prediction to belong to themselves in particular, and many of the wise men were thereby deceived in their determination. Now, this oracle certainly denoted the government of Vespasian, who was appointed emperor in Judea. 6.314. However, it is not possible for men to avoid fate, although they see it beforehand. 6.315. But these men interpreted some of these signals according to their own pleasure, and some of them they utterly despised, until their madness was demonstrated, both by the taking of their city and their own destruction. 7.252. 1. When Bassus was dead in Judea, Flavius Silva succeeded him as procurator there; who, when he saw that all the rest of the country was subdued in this war, and that there was but one only stronghold that was still in rebellion, he got all his army together that lay in different places, and made an expedition against it. This fortress was called Masada. 7.253. It was one Eleazar, a potent man, and the commander of these Sicarii, that had seized upon it. He was a descendant from that Judas who had persuaded abundance of the Jews, as we have formerly related, not to submit to the taxation when Cyrenius was sent into Judea to make one; 7.254. for then it was that the Sicarii got together against those that were willing to submit to the Romans, and treated them in all respects as if they had been their enemies, both by plundering them of what they had, by driving away their cattle, and by setting fire to their houses; 7.255. for they said that they differed not at all from foreigners, by betraying, in so cowardly a manner, that freedom which Jews thought worthy to be contended for to the utmost, and by owning that they preferred slavery under the Romans before such a contention. 7.256. Now this was in reality no better than a pretense and a cloak for the barbarity which was made use of by them, and to color over their own avarice, which they afterwards made evident by their own actions; 7.257. for those that were partners with them in their rebellion joined also with them in the war against the Romans, and went further lengths with them in their impudent undertakings against them; 7.258. and when they were again convicted of dissembling in such their pretenses, they still more abused those that justly reproached them for their wickedness. 7.259. And indeed that was a time most fertile in all manner of wicked practices, insomuch that no kind of evil deeds were then left undone; nor could anyone so much as devise any bad thing that was new 7.261. The one part were desirous of tyrannizing over others, and the rest of offering violence to others, and of plundering such as were richer than themselves. 7.262. They were the Sicarii who first began these transgressions, and first became barbarous towards those allied to them, and left no words of reproach unsaid, and no works of perdition untried, in order to destroy those whom their contrivances affected. 7.263. Yet did John demonstrate by his actions that these Sicarii were more moderate than he was himself, for he not only slew all such as gave him good counsel to do what was right, but treated them worst of all, as the most bitter enemies that he had among all the Citizens; nay, he filled his entire country with ten thousand instances of wickedness, such as a man who was already hardened sufficiently in his impiety towards God would naturally do; 7.264. for the food was unlawful that was set upon his table, and he rejected those purifications that the law of his country had ordained; so that it was no longer a wonder if he, who was so mad in his impiety towards God, did not observe any rules of gentleness and common affection towards men. 7.265. Again, therefore, what mischief was there which Simon the son of Gioras did not do? or what kind of abuses did he abstain from as to those very free-men who had set him up for a tyrant? 7.266. What friendship or kindred were there that did not make him more bold in his daily murders? for they looked upon the doing of mischief to strangers only as a work beneath their courage, but thought their barbarity towards their nearest relations would be a glorious demonstration thereof. 7.267. The Idumeans also strove with these men who should be guilty of the greatest madness! for they [all], vile wretches as they were, cut the throats of the high priests, that so no part of a religious regard to God might be preserved; they thence proceeded to destroy utterly the least remains of a political government 7.268. and introduced the most complete scene of iniquity in all instances that were practicable; under which scene that sort of people that were called zealots grew up, and who indeed corresponded to the name; 7.269. for they imitated every wicked work; nor, if their memory suggested any evil thing that had formerly been done, did they avoid zealously to pursue the same; 7.271. Accordingly, they all met with such ends as God deservedly brought upon them in way of punishment; 7.272. for all such miseries have been sent upon them as man’s nature is capable of undergoing, till the utmost period of their lives, and till death came upon them in various ways of torment; 7.273. yet might one say justly that they suffered less than they had done, because it was impossible they could be punished according to their deserving. 7.274. But to make a lamentation according to the deserts of those who fell under these men’s barbarity, this is not a proper place for it;—I therefore now return again to the remaining part of the present narration. 7.275. 2. For now it was that the Roman general came, and led his army against Eleazar and those Sicarii who held the fortress Masada together with him; and for the whole country adjoining, he presently gained it, and put garrisons into the most proper places of it; 7.276. he also built a wall quite round the entire fortress, that none of the besieged might easily escape; he also set his men to guard the several parts of it; 7.277. he also pitched his camp in such an agreeable place as he had chosen for the siege, and at which place the rock belonging to the fortress did make the nearest approach to the neighboring mountain, which yet was a place of difficulty for getting plenty of provisions; 7.278. for it was not only food that was to be brought from a great distance [to the army], and this with a great deal of pain to those Jews who were appointed for that purpose, but water was also to be brought to the camp, because the place afforded no fountain that was near it. 7.279. When therefore Silva had ordered these affairs beforehand, he fell to besieging the place; which siege was likely to stand in need of a great deal of skill and pains, by reason of the strength of the fortress, the nature of which I will now describe. 7.281. Now, of the ways that lead to it, one is that from the lake Asphaltitis, towards the sunrising, and another on the west, where the ascent is easier: 7.282. the one of these ways is called the Serpent, as resembling that animal in its narrowness and its perpetual windings; for it is broken off at the prominent precipices of the rock, and returns frequently into itself, and lengthening again by little and little, hath much ado to proceed forward; 7.283. and he that would walk along it must first go on one leg, and then on the other; there is also nothing but destruction, in case your feet slip; for on each side there is a vastly deep chasm and precipice, sufficient to quell the courage of everybody by the terror it infuses into the mind. 7.284. When, therefore, a man hath gone along this way for thirty furlongs, the rest is the top of the hill—not ending at a small point, but is no other than a plain upon the highest part of the mountain. 7.285. Upon this top of the hill, Jonathan the high priest first of all built a fortress, and called it Masada: after which the rebuilding of this place employed the care of king Herod to a great degree; 7.286. he also built a wall round about the entire top of the hill, seven furlongs long; it was composed of white stone; its height was twelve, and its breadth eight cubits; 7.287. there were also erected upon that wall thirty-eight towers, each of them fifty cubits high; out of which you might pass into lesser edifices, which were built on the inside, round the entire wall; 7.288. for the king reserved the top of the hill, which was of a fat soil, and better mould than any valley for agriculture, that such as committed themselves to this fortress for their preservation might not even there be quite destitute of food, in case they should ever be in want of it from abroad. 7.289. Moreover, he built a palace therein at the western ascent; it was within and beneath the walls of the citadel, but inclined to its north side. Now the wall of this palace was very high and strong, and had at its four corners towers sixty cubits high. 7.291. at every one of the places that were inhabited, both above and round about the palace, and before the wall; and by this contrivance he endeavored to have water for several uses, as if there had been fountains there. 7.292. Here was also a road digged from the palace, and leading to the very top of the mountain, which yet could not be seen by such as were without [the walls]; nor indeed could enemies easily make use of the plain roads; 7.293. for the road on the east side, as we have already taken notice, could not be walked upon, by reason of its nature; and for the western road, he built a large tower at its narrowest place, at no less a distance from the top of the hill than a thousand cubits; which tower could not possibly be passed by, nor could it be easily taken; nor indeed could those that walked along it without any fear (such was its contrivance) easily get to the end of it; 7.294. and after such a manner was this citadel fortified, both by nature and by the hands of men, in order to frustrate the attacks of enemies. 7.295. 4. As for the furniture that was within this fortress, it was still more wonderful on account of its splendor and long continuance; 7.296. for here was laid up corn in large quantities, and such as would subsist men for a long time; here was also wine and oil in abundance, with all kinds of pulse and dates heaped up together; 7.297. all which Eleazar found there, when he and his Sicarii got possession of the fortress by treachery. These fruits were also fresh and full ripe, and no way inferior to such fruits newly laid in, although they were little short of a hundred years from the laying in these provisions [by Herod], till the place was taken by the Romans; nay, indeed, when the Romans got possession of those fruits that were left, they found them not corrupted all that while; 7.298. nor should we be mistaken, if we supposed that the air was here the cause of their enduring so long; this fortress being so high, and so free from the mixture of all terrene and muddy particles of matter. 7.299. There was also found here a large quantity of all sorts of weapons of war, which had been treasured up by that king, and were sufficient for ten thousand men; there was cast iron, and brass, and tin, which show that he had taken much pains to have all things here ready for the greatest occasions; 7.301. who did not conceal her intentions, but spoke often to Antony, and desired him to cut off Herod, and entreated him to bestow the kingdom of Judea upon her. 7.302. And certainly it is a great wonder that Antony did never comply with her commands in this point, as he was so miserably enslaved to his passion for her; nor should anyone have been surprised if she had been gratified in such her request. 7.303. So the fear of these dangers made Herod rebuild Masada, and thereby leave it for the finishing stroke of the Romans in this Jewish war. 7.304. 5. Since therefore the Roman commander Silva had now built a wall on the outside, round about this whole place, as we have said already, and had thereby made a most accurate provision to prevent anyone of the besieged running away, he undertook the siege itself, though he found but one single place that would admit of the banks he was to raise; 7.305. for behind that tower which secured the road that led to the palace, and to the top of the hill from the west; there was a certain eminency of the rock, very broad and very prominent, but three hundred cubits beneath the highest part of Masada; it was called the White Promontory. 7.306. Accordingly, he got upon that part of the rock, and ordered the army to bring earth; and when they fell to that work with alacrity, and abundance of them together, the bank was raised, and became solid for two hundred cubits in height. 7.307. Yet was not this bank thought sufficiently high for the use of the engines that were to be set upon it; but still another elevated work of great stones compacted together was raised upon that bank; this was fifty cubits, both in breadth and height. 7.308. The other machines that were now got ready were like to those that had been first devised by Vespasian, and afterward by Titus, for sieges. 7.309. There was also a tower made of the height of sixty cubits, and all over plated with iron, out of which the Romans threw darts and stones from the engines, and soon made those that fought from the walls of the place to retire, and would not let them lift up their heads above the works. 7.311. However, the Sicarii made haste, and presently built another wall within that, which should not be liable to the same misfortune from the machines with the other; it was made soft and yielding, and so was capable of avoiding the terrible blows that affected the other. It was framed after the following manner: 7.312. They laid together great beams of wood lengthways, one close to the end of another, and the same way in which they were cut: there were two of these rows parallel to one another, and laid at such a distance from each other as the breadth of the wall required, and earth was put into the space between those rows. 7.313. Now, that the earth might not fall away upon the elevation of this bank to a greater height, they further laid other beams over across them, and thereby bound those beams together that lay lengthways. 7.314. This work of theirs was like a real edifice; and when the machines were applied, the blows were weakened by its yielding; and as the materials by such concussion were shaken closer together, the pile by that means became firmer than before. 7.315. When Silva saw this, he thought it best to endeavor the taking of this wall by setting fire to it; so he gave order that the soldiers should throw a great number of burning torches upon it: 7.316. accordingly, as it was chiefly made of wood, it soon took fire; and when it was once set on fire, its hollowness made that fire spread to a mighty flame. 7.317. Now, at the very beginning of this fire, a north wind that then blew proved terrible to the Romans; for by bringing the flame downward, it drove it upon them, and they were almost in despair of success, as fearing their machines would be burnt: 7.318. but after this, on a sudden the wind changed into the south, as if it were done by Divine Providence, and blew strongly the contrary way, and carried the flame, and drove it against the wall, which was now on fire through its entire thickness. 7.319. So the Romans, having now assistance from God, returned to their camp with joy, and resolved to attack their enemies the very next day; on which occasion they set their watch more carefully that night, lest any of the Jews should run away from them without being discovered. 7.321. but when he saw their wall burned down by the fire, and could devise no other way of escaping, or room for their further courage, and setting before their eyes what the Romans would do to them, their children, and their wives, if they got them into their power, he consulted about having them all slain. 7.322. Now, as he judged this to be the best thing they could do in their present circumstances, he gathered the most courageous of his companions together, and encouraged them to take that course by a speech which he made to them in the manner following: 7.323. “Since we, long ago, my generous friends, resolved never to be servants to the Romans, nor to any other than to God himself, who alone is the true and just Lord of mankind, the time is now come that obliges us to make that resolution true in practice. 7.324. And let us not at this time bring a reproach upon ourselves for self-contradiction, while we formerly would not undergo slavery, though it were then without danger, but must now, together with slavery, choose such punishments also as are intolerable; I mean this, upon the supposition that the Romans once reduce us under their power while we are alive. We were the very first that revolted from them, and we are the last that fight against them; 7.325. and I cannot but esteem it as a favor that God hath granted us, that it is still in our power to die bravely, and in a state of freedom, which hath not been the case of others, who were conquered unexpectedly. 7.326. It is very plain that we shall be taken within a day’s time; but it is still an eligible thing to die after a glorious manner, together with our dearest friends. This is what our enemies themselves cannot by any means hinder, although they be very desirous to take us alive. Nor can we propose to ourselves any more to fight them, and beat them. 7.327. It had been proper indeed for us to have conjectured at the purpose of God much sooner, and at the very first, when we were so desirous of defending our liberty, and when we received such sore treatment from one another, and worse treatment from our enemies, and to have been sensible that the same God, who had of old taken the Jewish nation into his favor, had now condemned them to destruction; 7.328. for had he either continued favorable, or been but in a lesser degree displeased with us, he had not overlooked the destruction of so many men, or delivered his most holy city to be burnt and demolished by our enemies. 7.329. To be sure we weakly hoped to have preserved ourselves, and ourselves alone, still in a state of freedom, as if we had been guilty of no sins ourselves against God, nor been partners with those of others; we also taught other men to preserve their liberty. 7.331. for the nature of this fortress which was in itself unconquerable, hath not proved a means of our deliverance; and even while we have still great abundance of food, and a great quantity of arms, and other necessaries more than we want, we are openly deprived by God himself of all hope of deliverance; 7.332. for that fire which was driven upon our enemies did not of its own accord turn back upon the wall which we had built; this was the effect of God’s anger against us for our manifold sins, which we have been guilty of in a most insolent and extravagant manner with regard to our own countrymen; 7.333. the punishments of which let us not receive from the Romans, but from God himself, as executed by our own hands; for these will be more moderate than the other. 7.334. Let our wives die before they are abused, and our children before they have tasted of slavery; and after we have slain them, let us bestow that glorious benefit upon one another mutually, and preserve ourselves in freedom, as an excellent funeral monument for us. 7.335. But first let us destroy our money and the fortress by fire; for I am well assured that this will be a great grief to the Romans, that they shall not be able to seize upon our bodies, and shall fail of our wealth also; 7.336. and let us spare nothing but our provisions; for they will be a testimonial when we are dead that we were not subdued for want of necessaries, but that, according to our original resolution, we have preferred death before slavery.” 7.337. 7. This was Eleazar’s speech to them. Yet did not the opinions of all the auditors acquiesce therein; but although some of them were very zealous to put his advice in practice, and were in a manner filled with pleasure at it, and thought death to be a good thing 7.338. yet had those that were most effeminate a commiseration for their wives and families; and when these men were especially moved by the prospect of their own certain death, they looked wistfully at one another, and by the tears that were in their eyes declared their dissent from his opinion. 7.339. When Eleazar saw these people in such fear, and that their souls were dejected at so prodigious a proposal, he was afraid lest perhaps these effeminate persons should, by their lamentations and tears, enfeeble those that heard what he had said courageously; 7.341. So he made a lamentable groan, and fixing his eyes intently on those that wept, he spake thus:—“Truly, I was greatly mistaken when I thought to be assisting to brave men who struggled hard for their liberty, and to such as were resolved either to live with honor, or else to die; 7.342. but I find that you are such people as are no better than others, either in virtue or in courage, and are afraid of dying, though you be delivered thereby from the greatest miseries, while you ought to make no delay in this matter, nor to await anyone to give you good advice; 7.343. for the laws of our country, and of God himself, have from ancient times, and as soon as ever we could use our reason, continually taught us, and our forefathers have corroborated the same doctrine by their actions, and by their bravery of mind, that it is life that is a calamity to men, and not death; 7.344. for this last affords our souls their liberty, and sends them by a removal into their own place of purity, where they are to be insensible of all sorts of misery; for while souls are tied down to a mortal body, they are partakers of its miseries; and really, to speak the truth, they are themselves dead; for the union of what is divine to what is mortal is disagreeable. 7.345. It is true, the power of the soul is great, even when it is imprisoned in a mortal body; for by moving it after a way that is invisible, it makes the body a sensible instrument, and causes it to advance further in its actions than mortal nature could otherwise do. 7.346. However, when it is freed from that weight which draws it down to the earth and is connected with it, it obtains its own proper place, and does then become a partaker of that blessed power, and those abilities, which are then every way incapable of being hindered in their operations. It continues invisible, indeed, to the eyes of men, as does God himself; 7.347. for certainly it is not itself seen while it is in the body; for it is there after an invisible manner, and when it is freed from it, it is still not seen. It is this soul which hath one nature, and that an incorruptible one also; but yet it is the cause of the change that is made in the body; 7.348. for whatsoever it be which the soul touches, that lives and flourishes; and from whatsoever it is removed, that withers away and dies; such a degree is there in it of immortality. 7.349. Let me produce the state of sleep as a most evident demonstration of the truth of what I say; wherein souls, when the body does not distract them, have the sweetest rest depending on themselves, and conversing with God, by their alliance to him; they then go everywhere, and foretell many futurities beforehand. 7.351. We, therefore, who have been brought up in a discipline of our own, ought to become an example to others of our readiness to die; yet if we dostand in need of foreigners to support us in this matter, let us regard those Indians who profess the exercise of philosophy; 7.352. for these good men do but unwillingly undergo the time of life, and look upon it as a necessary servitude 7.353. and make haste to let their souls loose from their bodies; nay, when no misfortune presses them to it, nor drives them upon it, these have such a desire of a life of immortality, that they tell other men beforehand that they are about to depart; and nobody hinders them, but everyone thinks them happy men, and gives them letters to be carried to their familiar friends [that are dead]; 7.354. o firmly and certainly do they believe that souls converse with one another [in the other world]. 7.355. So when these men have heard all such commands that were to be given them, they deliver their body to the fire; and, in order to their getting their soul a separation from the body in the greatest purity, they die in the midst of hymns of commendations made to them; 7.356. for their dearest friends conduct them to their death more readily than do any of the rest of mankind conduct their fellow-citizens when they are going a very long journey, who at the same time weep on their own account, but look upon the others as happy persons, as so soon to be made partakers of the immortal order of beings. 7.357. Are not we, therefore, ashamed to have lower notions than the Indians? and by our own cowardice to lay a base reproach upon the laws of our country, which are so much desired and imitated by all mankind? 7.358. But put the case that we had been brought up under another persuasion, and taught that life is the greatest good which men are capable of, and that death is a calamity; however, the circumstances we are now in ought to be an inducement to us to bear such calamity courageously, since it is by the will of God, and by necessity, that we are to die; 7.359. for it now appears that God hath made such a decree against the whole Jewish nation, that we are to be deprived of this life which [he knew] we would not make a due use of. 7.361. What Roman weapons, I pray you, were those by which the Jews at Caesarea were slain? 7.362. On the contrary, when they were no way disposed to rebel, but were all the while keeping their seventh day festival, and did not so much as lift up their hands against the citizens of Caesarea, yet did those citizens run upon them in great crowds, and cut their throats, and the throats of their wives and children, and this without any regard to the Romans themselves, who never took us for their enemies till we revolted from them. 7.363. But some may be ready to say, that truly the people of Caesarea had always a quarrel against those that lived among them, and that when an opportunity offered itself, they only satisfied the old rancor they had against them. 7.364. What then shall we say to those of Scythopolis, who ventured to wage war with us on account of the Greeks? Nor did they do it by way of revenge upon the Romans, when they acted in concert with our countrymen. 7.365. Wherefore you see how little our goodwill and fidelity to them profited us, while they were slain, they and their whole families, after the most inhuman manner, which was all the requital that was made them for the assistance they had afforded the others; 7.366. for that very same destruction which they had prevented from falling upon the others did they suffer themselves from them, as if they had been ready to be the actors against them. It would be too long for me to speak at this time of every destruction brought upon us; 7.367. for you cannot but know that there was not anyone Syrian city which did not slay their Jewish inhabitants, and were not more bitter enemies to us than were the Romans themselves; 7.368. nay, even those of Damascus, when they were able to allege no tolerable pretense against us, filled their city with the most barbarous slaughters of our people, and cut the throats of eighteen thousand Jews, with their wives and children. 7.369. And as to the multitude of those that were slain in Egypt, and that with torments also, we have been informed they were more than sixty thousand; those, indeed, being in a foreign country, and so naturally meeting with nothing to oppose against their enemies, were killed in the manner forementioned. As for all those of us who have waged war against the Romans in our own country, had we not sufficient reason to have sure hopes of victory? 7.371. But then these advantages sufficed us but for a short time, and only raised our hopes, while they really appeared to be the origin of our miseries; for all we had hath been taken from us, and all hath fallen under our enemies, as if these advantages were only to render their victory over us the more glorious, and were not disposed for the preservation of those by whom these preparations were made. 7.372. And as for those that are already dead in the war, it is reasonable we should esteem them blessed, for they are dead in defending, and not in betraying their liberty; but as to the multitude of those that are now under the Romans, who would not pity their condition? and who would not make haste to die, before he would suffer the same miseries with them? 7.373. Some of them have been put upon the rack, and tortured with fire and whippings, and so died. Some have been halfdevoured by wild beasts, and yet have been reserved alive to be devoured by them a second time, in order to afford laughter and sport to our enemies; 7.374. and such of those as are alive still are to be looked on as the most miserable, who, being so desirous of death, could not come at it. 7.375. And where is now that great city, the metropolis of the Jewish nation, which was fortified by so many walls round about, which had so many fortresses and large towers to defend it, which could hardly contain the instruments prepared for the war, and which had so many ten thousands of men to fight for it? 7.376. Where is this city that was believed to have God himself inhabiting therein? It is now demolished to the very foundations, and hath nothing but that monument of it preserved, I mean the camp of those that hath destroyed it, which still dwells upon its ruins; 7.377. ome unfortunate old men also lie upon the ashes of the temple, and a few women are there preserved alive by the enemy, for our bitter shame and reproach. 7.378. Now, who is there that revolves these things in his mind, and yet is able to bear the sight of the sun, though he might live out of danger? Who is there so much his country’s enemy, or so unmanly, and so desirous of living, as not to repent that he is still alive? 7.379. And I cannot but wish that we had all died before we had seen that holy city demolished by the hands of our enemies, or the foundations of our holy temple dug up after so profane a manner. 7.381. for we were born to die, as well as those were whom we have begotten; nor is it in the power of the most happy of our race to avoid it. 7.382. But for abuses, and slavery, and the sight of our wives led away after an ignominious manner, with their children, these are not such evils as are natural and necessary among men; although such as do not prefer death before those miseries, when it is in their power so to do, must undergo even them, on account of their own cowardice. 7.383. We revolted from the Romans with great pretensions to courage; and when, at the very last, they invited us to preserve ourselves, we would not comply with them. 7.384. Who will not, therefore, believe that they will certainly be in a rage at us, in case they can take us alive? Miserable will then be the young men who will be strong enough in their bodies to sustain many torments! miserable also will be those of elder years, who will not be able to bear those calamities which young men might sustain. 7.385. One man will be obliged to hear the voice of his son implore help of his father, when his hands are bound. 7.386. But certainly our hands are still at liberty, and have a sword in them; let them then be subservient to us in our glorious design; let us die before we become slaves under our enemies, and let us go out of the world, together with our children and our wives, in a state of freedom. 7.387. This it is that our laws command us to do; this it is that our wives and children crave at our hands; nay, God himself hath brought this necessity upon us; while the Romans desire the contrary, and are afraid lest any of us should die before we are taken. 7.388. Let us therefore make haste, and instead of affording them so much pleasure, as they hope for in getting us under their power, let us leave them an example which shall at once cause their astonishment at our death, and their admiration of our hardiness therein.” 7.389. 1. Now as Eleazar was proceeding on in this exhortation, they all cut him off short, and made haste to do the work, as full of an unconquerable ardor of mind, and moved with a demoniacal fury. So they went their ways, as one still endeavoring to be before another, and as thinking that this eagerness would be a demonstration of their courage and good conduct, if they could avoid appearing in the last class; so great was the zeal they were in to slay their wives and children, and themselves also! 7.391. for the husbands tenderly embraced their wives, and took their children into their arms, and gave the longest parting kisses to them, with tears in their eyes. 7.392. Yet at the same time did they complete what they had resolved on, as if they had been executed by the hands of strangers; and they had nothing else for their comfort but the necessity they were in of doing this execution, to avoid that prospect they had of the miseries they were to suffer from their enemies. 7.393. Nor was there at length anyone of these men found that scrupled to act their part in this terrible execution, but every one of them dispatched his dearest relations. Miserable men indeed were they! whose distress forced them to slay their own wives and children with their own hands, as the lightest of those evils that were before them. 7.394. So they being not able to bear the grief they were under for what they had done any longer, and esteeming it an injury to those they had slain, to live even the shortest space of time after them,—they presently laid all they had upon a heap, and set fire to it. 7.395. They then chose ten men by lot out of them to slay all the rest; every one of whom laid himself down by his wife and children on the ground, and threw his arms about them, and they offered their necks to the stroke of those who by lot executed that melancholy office; 7.396. and when these ten had, without fear, slain them all, they made the same rule for casting lots for themselves, that he whose lot it was should first kill the other nine, and after all should kill himself. Accordingly, all these had courage sufficient to be no way behind one another in doing or suffering; 7.397. o, for a conclusion, the nine offered their necks to the executioner, and he who was the last of all took a view of all the other bodies, lest perchance some or other among so many that were slain should want his assistance to be quite dispatched; and when he perceived that they were all slain, he set fire to the palace, and with the great force of his hand ran his sword entirely through himself, and fell down dead near to his own relations. 7.398. So these people died with this intention, that they would not leave so much as one soul among them all alive to be subject to the Romans. 7.399. Yet was there an ancient woman, and another who was of kin to Eleazar, and superior to most women in prudence and learning, with five children, who had concealed themselves in caverns under ground, and had carried water thither for their drink, and were hidden there when the rest were intent upon the slaughter of one another. 7.401. This calamitous slaughter was made on the fifteenth day of the month Xanthicus [Nisan]. 7.402. 2. Now for the Romans, they expected that they should be fought in the morning, when, accordingly, they put on their armor, and laid bridges of planks upon their ladders from their banks, to make an assault upon the fortress, which they did; 7.403. but saw nobody as an enemy, but a terrible solitude on every side, with a fire within the place, as well as a perfect silence. So they were at a loss to guess at what had happened. At length they made a shout, as if it had been at a blow given by the batteringram, to try whether they could bring anyone out that was within; 7.404. the women heard this noise, and came out of their underground cavern, and informed the Romans what had been done, as it was done; and the second of them clearly described all both what was said and what was done, and the manner of it; 7.405. yet did they not easily give their attention to such a desperate undertaking, and did not believe it could be as they said; they also attempted to put the fire out, and quickly cutting themselves a way through it, they came within the palace 7.406. and so met with the multitude of the slain, but could take no pleasure in the fact, though it were done to their enemies. Nor could they do other than wonder at the courage of their resolution, and the immovable contempt of death which so great a number of them had shown, when they went through with such an action as that was. 7.409. for still it came to pass that many Jews were slain at Alexandria in Egypt; 7.411. But when part of the Jews of reputation opposed them, they slew some of them, and with the others they were very pressing in their exhortations to revolt from the Romans; 7.412. but when the principal men of the senate saw what madness they were come to, they thought it no longer safe for themselves to overlook them. So they got all the Jews together to an assembly, and accused the madness of the Sicarii, and demonstrated that they had been the authors of all the evils that had come upon them. 7.413. They said also that “these men, now they were run away from Judea, having no sure hope of escaping, because as soon as ever they shall be known, they will be soon destroyed by the Romans, they come hither and fill us full of those calamities which belong to them, while we have not been partakers with them in any of their sins.” 7.414. Accordingly, they exhorted the multitude to have a care, lest they should be brought to destruction by their means, and to make their apology to the Romans for what had been done, by delivering these men up to them; 7.415. who being thus apprised of the greatness of the danger they were in, complied with what was proposed, and ran with great violence upon the Sicarii, and seized upon them; 7.416. and indeed six hundred of them were caught immediately: but as to all those that fled into Egypt and to the Egyptian Thebes, it was not long ere they were caught also, and brought back,— 7.417. whose courage, or whether we ought to call it madness, or hardiness in their opinions, everybody was amazed at. 7.418. For when all sorts of torments and vexations of their bodies that could be devised were made use of to them, they could not get anyone of them to comply so far as to confess, or seem to confess, that Caesar was their lord; but they preserved their own opinion, in spite of all the distress they were brought to, as if they received these torments and the fire itself with bodies insensible of pain, and with a soul that in a manner rejoiced under them. 7.419. But what was most of all astonishing to the beholders was the courage of the children; for not one of these children was so far overcome by these torments, as to name Caesar for their lord. So far does the strength of the courage [of the soul] prevail over the weakness of the body. 7.421. who having in suspicion the restless temper of the Jews for innovation, and being afraid lest they should get together again, and persuade some others to join with them, gave orders to Lupus to demolish that Jewish temple which was in the region called Onion 7.422. and was in Egypt, which was built and had its denomination from the occasion following: 7.423. Onias, the son of Simon, one of the Jewish high priests, fled from Antiochus the king of Syria, when he made war with the Jews, and came to Alexandria; and as Ptolemy received him very kindly, on account of his hatred to Antiochus, he assured him, that if he would comply with his proposal, he would bring all the Jews to his assistance; 7.424. and when the king agreed to do it so far as he was able, he desired him to give him leave to build a temple somewhere in Egypt, and to worship God according to the customs of his own country; 7.425. for that the Jews would then be so much readier to fight against Antiochus who had laid waste the temple at Jerusalem, and that they would then come to him with greater goodwill; and that, by granting them liberty of conscience, very many of them would come over to him. 7.426. 3. So Ptolemy complied with his proposals, and gave him a place one hundred and eighty furlongs distant from Memphis. That Nomos was called the Nomos of Heliopoli 7.427. where Onias built a fortress and a temple, not like to that at Jerusalem, but such as resembled a tower. He built it of large stones to the height of sixty cubits; 7.428. he made the structure of the altar in imitation of that in our own country, and in like manner adorned with gifts, excepting the make of the candlestick 7.429. for he did not make a candlestick, but had a [single] lamp hammered out of a piece of gold, which illuminated the place with its rays, and which he hung by a chain of gold; 7.431. Yet did not Onias do this out of a sober disposition, but he had a mind to contend with the Jews at Jerusalem, and could not forget the indignation he had for being banished thence. Accordingly, he thought that by building this temple he should draw away a great number from them to himself. 7.432. There had been also a certain ancient prediction made by [a prophet] whose name was Isaiah, about six hundred years before, that this temple should be built by a man that was a Jew in Egypt. And this is the history of the building of that temple. 7.433. 4. And now Lupus, the governor of Alexandria, upon the receipt of Caesar’s letter, came to the temple, and carried out of it some of the donations dedicated thereto, and shut up the temple itself. 7.434. And as Lupus died a little afterward, Paulinus succeeded him. This man left none of those donations there, and threatened the priests severely if they did not bring them all out; nor did he permit any who were desirous of worshipping God there so much as to come near the whole sacred place; 7.435. but when he had shut up the gates, he made it entirely inaccessible, insomuch that there remained no longer the least footsteps of any Divine worship that had been in that place. 7.436. Now the duration of the time from the building of this temple till it was shut up again was three hundred and forty-three years.
5. Josephus Flavius, Against Apion, 2.84 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

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.


Subjects of this text:

subject book bibliographic info
agrippa (son of agrippa) Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 115
agrippa ii Brodd and Reed, Rome and Religion: A Cross-Disciplinary Dialogue on the Imperial Cult (2011) 121
aims and purpose Edwards, In the Court of the Gentiles: Narrative, Exemplarity, and Scriptural Adaptation in the Court-Tales of Flavius Josephus (2023) 15
antigonos Brodd and Reed, Rome and Religion: A Cross-Disciplinary Dialogue on the Imperial Cult (2011) 121
aristobulus ii Brodd and Reed, Rome and Religion: A Cross-Disciplinary Dialogue on the Imperial Cult (2011) 121
audience, date of composition Edwards, In the Court of the Gentiles: Narrative, Exemplarity, and Scriptural Adaptation in the Court-Tales of Flavius Josephus (2023) 4
authority, divine Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 30, 142
bandit, banditry (λῃστής), in war Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 62
caesarea Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 62
daring (τόλμα) Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 71
domitian, and date and audience of josephus works Edwards, In the Court of the Gentiles: Narrative, Exemplarity, and Scriptural Adaptation in the Court-Tales of Flavius Josephus (2023) 4
flavian propaganda, and war Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 30, 142
flavian propaganda, at rome Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 43
greed (πλεονεξία) Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 104
hall of infamy Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 59
historiography, and aims of josephus Edwards, In the Court of the Gentiles: Narrative, Exemplarity, and Scriptural Adaptation in the Court-Tales of Flavius Josephus (2023) 15
historiography, greco-roman Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 25
irony and figured speech, in the alexandrian narrative Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 137
irony and figured speech, in the masada narrative Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 129
irony and figured speech Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 142
jotapata Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 129
judgment, divine Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 115
justice Westwood, Moses among the Greek Lawgivers: Reading Josephus’ Antiquities through Plutarch’s Lives (2023) 211
maccabean martyrs Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 137
masada, and the themes of war Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 115
masada, archaeology Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 129
masada, heroes Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 129
masada, madness/cowardice Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 129
menahem Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 80
necessity (ἀνάγκη), proem of war Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 30, 43, 44, 62, 67, 80, 129
nero Brodd and Reed, Rome and Religion: A Cross-Disciplinary Dialogue on the Imperial Cult (2011) 121
pompey Brodd and Reed, Rome and Religion: A Cross-Disciplinary Dialogue on the Imperial Cult (2011) 121
power, roman, as theme of war Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 142
practical decision-making, greco-roman practice of Edwards, In the Court of the Gentiles: Narrative, Exemplarity, and Scriptural Adaptation in the Court-Tales of Flavius Josephus (2023) 15
practical decision-making, practical ethics Edwards, In the Court of the Gentiles: Narrative, Exemplarity, and Scriptural Adaptation in the Court-Tales of Flavius Josephus (2023) 15
readers of 2 maccabees Schwartz, 2 Maccabees (2008) 177
readership, jewish Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 43, 44
roman Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 43
sickness (νόσος) Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 59, 62
stasis (στάσις) Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 25, 62, 67, 71, 80, 137, 142
tarichaeae Brodd and Reed, Rome and Religion: A Cross-Disciplinary Dialogue on the Imperial Cult (2011) 121
theocracy Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 137
triumph Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 43, 142
tyrant, tyranny (τύρρανος); Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 80
universalism' Schwartz, 2 Maccabees (2008) 177
valor of jews Brighton, Sicarii in Josephus's Judean War: Rhetorical Analysis and Historical Observations (2009) 115, 142
varus Brodd and Reed, Rome and Religion: A Cross-Disciplinary Dialogue on the Imperial Cult (2011) 121
virtues, cardinal Westwood, Moses among the Greek Lawgivers: Reading Josephus’ Antiquities through Plutarch’s Lives (2023) 211