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Tiresias: The Ancient Mediterranean Religions Source Database



10591
Tacitus, Histories, 5.9-5.10


nan Still the Jews' patience lasted until Gessius Florus became procurator: in his time war began. When Cestius Gallus, governor of Syria, tried to stop it, he suffered varied fortunes and met defeat more often than he gained victory. On his death, whether in the course of nature or from vexation, Nero sent out Vespasian, who, aided by his good fortune and reputation as well as by his excellent subordinates, within two summers occupied with his victorious army the whole of the level country and all the cities except Jerusalem. The next year was taken up with civil war, and thus was passed in inactivity so far as the Jews were concerned. When peace had been secured throughout Italy, foreign troubles began again; and the fact that the Jews alone had failed to surrender increased our resentment; at the same time, having regard to all the possibilities and hazards of a new reign, it seemed expedient for Titus to remain with the army.


nan The first Roman to subdue the Jews and set foot in their temple by right of conquest was Gnaeus Pompey; thereafter it was a matter of common knowledge that there were no representations of the gods within, but that the place was empty and the secret shrine contained nothing. The walls of Jerusalem were razed, but the temple remained standing. Later, in the time of our civil wars, when these eastern provinces had fallen into the hands of Mark Antony, the Parthian prince, Pacorus, seized Judea, but he was slain by Publius Ventidius, and the Parthians were thrown back across the Euphrates: the Jews were subdued by Gaius Sosius. Antony gave the throne to Herod, and Augustus, after his victory, increased his power. After Herod's death, a certain Simon assumed the name of king without waiting for Caesar's decision. He, however, was put to death by Quintilius Varus, governor of Syria; the Jews were repressed; and the kingdom was divided into three parts and given to Herod's sons. Under Tiberius all was quiet. Then, when Caligula ordered the Jews to set up his statue in their temple, they chose rather to resort to arms, but the emperor's death put an end to their uprising. The princes now being dead or reduced to insignificance, Claudius made Judea a province and entrusted it to Roman knights or to freedmen; one of the latter, Antonius Felix, practised every kind of cruelty and lust, wielding the power of king with all the instincts of a slave; he had married Drusilla, the grand-daughter of Cleopatra and Antony, and so was Antony's grandson-in‑law, while Claudius was Antony's grandson.


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

23 results
1. Hebrew Bible, Isaiah, 7.14 (8th cent. BCE - 5th cent. BCE)

7.14. לָכֵן יִתֵּן אֲדֹנָי הוּא לָכֶם אוֹת הִנֵּה הָעַלְמָה הָרָה וְיֹלֶדֶת בֵּן וְקָרָאת שְׁמוֹ עִמָּנוּ אֵל׃ 7.14. Therefore the Lord Himself shall give you a sign: behold, the young woman shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel."
2. Herodotus, Histories, 4.11 (5th cent. BCE - 5th cent. BCE)

4.11. There is yet another story, to which account I myself especially incline. It is to this effect. The nomadic Scythians inhabiting Asia, when hard pressed in war by the Massagetae, fled across the Araxes river to the Cimmerian country (for the country which the Scythians now inhabit is said to have belonged to the Cimmerians before),,and the Cimmerians, at the advance of the Scythians, deliberated as men threatened by a great force should. Opinions were divided; both were strongly held, but that of the princes was the more honorable; for the people believed that their part was to withdraw and that there was no need to risk their lives for the dust of the earth; but the princes were for fighting to defend their country against the attackers. ,Neither side could persuade the other, neither the people the princes nor the princes the people; the one party planned to depart without fighting and leave the country to their enemies, but the princes were determined to lie dead in their own country and not to flee with the people, for they considered how happy their situation had been and what ills were likely to come upon them if they fled from their native land. ,Having made up their minds, the princes separated into two equal bands and fought with each other until they were all killed by each other's hands; then the Cimmerian people buried them by the Tyras river, where their tombs are still to be seen, and having buried them left the land; and the Scythians came and took possession of the country left empty.
3. Diodorus Siculus, Historical Library, 2.48.7, 19.98 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)

2.48.7.  It has a length of about five hundred stades and a width of about sixty, and its water is so ill-smelling and so very bitter that it cannot support fish or any of the other animals which commonly live in water. And although great rivers of remarkable sweetness empty into it, the lake gets the better of them by reason of its evil smell, and from its centre it spouts forth once a year a great mass of asphalt, which sometimes extends for more than three plethra, and sometimes for only two; and when this occurs the barbarians who live about the lake usually call the larger flow a "bull" and to the smaller one they give the name "calf.
4. Horace, Sermones, 1.9.69 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)

5. Philo of Alexandria, On The Embassy To Gaius, 300-305, 299 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. CE)

299. Moreover, I have it in my power to relate one act of ambition on his part, though I suffered an infinite number of evils when he was alive; but nevertheless the truth is considered dear, and much to be honoured by you. Pilate was one of the emperor's lieutets, having been appointed governor of Judaea. He, not more with the object of doing honour to Tiberius than with that of vexing the multitude, dedicated some gilt shields in the palace of Herod, in the holy city; which had no form nor any other forbidden thing represented on them except some necessary inscription, which mentioned these two facts, the name of the person who had placed them there, and the person in whose honour they were so placed there.
6. Vergil, Aeneis, 6.440-6.441 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)

6.440. Into the billowy deep. Aeneas now 6.441. Discerned his sad face through the blinding gloom
7. Josephus Flavius, Jewish Antiquities, 1.6, 1.14, 1.20, 20.142-20.144 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

1.6. And indeed I did formerly intend, when I wrote of the war, to explain who the Jews originally were,—what fortunes they had been subject to,—and by what legislator they had been instructed in piety, and the exercise of other virtues,—what wars also they had made in remote ages, till they were unwillingly engaged in this last with the Romans: 1.6. 2. And when Cain had traveled over many countries, he, with his wife, built a city, named Nod, which is a place so called, and there he settled his abode; where also he had children. However, he did not accept of his punishment in order to amendment, but to increase his wickedness; for he only aimed to procure every thing that was for his own bodily pleasure, though it obliged him to be injurious to his neighbors. 1.14. Upon the whole, a man that will peruse this history, may principally learn from it, that all events succeed well, even to an incredible degree, and the reward of felicity is proposed by God; but then it is to those that follow his will, and do not venture to break his excellent laws: and that so far as men any way apostatize from the accurate observation of them, what was practicable before becomes impracticable; and whatsoever they set about as a good thing is converted into an incurable calamity. 1.14. 3. Noah, when, after the deluge, the earth was resettled in its former condition, set about its cultivation; and when he had planted it with vines, and when the fruit was ripe, and he had gathered the grapes in their season, and the wine was ready for use, he offered sacrifice, and feasted 20.142. While Felix was procurator of Judea, he saw this Drusilla, and fell in love with her; for she did indeed exceed all other women in beauty; and he sent to her a person whose name was Simon one of his friends; a Jew he was, and by birth a Cypriot, and one who pretended to be a magician, and endeavored to persuade her to forsake her present husband, and marry him; and promised, that if she would not refuse him, he would make her a happy woman. 20.143. Accordingly she acted ill, and because she was desirous to avoid her sister Bernice’s envy, for she was very ill treated by her on account of her beauty, was prevailed upon to transgress the laws of her forefathers, and to marry Felix; and when he had had a son by her, he named him Agrippa. 20.144. But after what manner that young man, with his wife, perished at the conflagration of the mountain Vesuvius, in the days of Titus Caesar, shall be related hereafter.
8. Josephus Flavius, Jewish War, 2.204-2.308, 2.409, 2.454, 2.456-2.457, 6.312-6.315, 7.451-7.453 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

2.205. but the senate, upon the reference of the consuls, Sentius Saturninus, and Pomponius Secundus, gave orders to the three regiments of soldiers that staid with them to keep the city quiet, and went up into the capitol in great numbers, and resolved to oppose Claudius by force, on account of the barbarous treatment they had met with from Caius; and they determined either to settle the nation under an aristocracy, as they had of old been governed, or at least to choose by vote such a one for emperor as might be worthy of it. 2.208. He added further, that he would administer the government as a good prince, and not like a tyrant; for that he would be satisfied with the honor of being called emperor, but would, in every one of his actions, permit them all to give him their advice; for that although he had not been by nature for moderation, yet would the death of Caius afford him a sufficient demonstration how soberly he ought to act in that station. 2.209. 3. This message was delivered by Agrippa; to which the senate replied, that since they had an army, and the wisest counsels on their side, they would not endure a voluntary slavery. And when Claudius heard what answer the senate had made, he sent Agrippa to them again, with the following message: That he could not bear the thoughts of betraying them that had given their oaths to be true to him; and that he saw he must fight, though unwillingly, against such as he had no mind to fight; 2.211. 4. In the meantime, one of the soldiers belonging to the senate drew his sword, and cried out, “O my fellow soldiers, what is the meaning of this choice of ours, to kill our brethren, and to use violence to our kindred that are with Claudius? while we may have him for our emperor whom no one can blame, and who hath so many just reasons [to lay claim to the government]! and this with regard to those against whom we are going to fight!” 2.212. When he had said this, he marched through the whole senate, and carried all the soldiers along with him. Upon which all the patricians were immediately in a great fright at their being thus deserted. But still, because there appeared no other way whither they could turn themselves for deliverance, they made haste the same way with the soldiers, and went to Claudius. 2.213. But those that had the greatest luck in flattering the good fortune of Claudius betimes met them before the walls with their naked swords, and there was reason to fear that those that came first might have been in danger, before Claudius could know what violence the soldiers were going to offer them, had not Agrippa run before, and told him what a dangerous thing they were going about, and that unless he restrained the violence of these men, who were in a fit of madness against the patricians, he would lose those on whose account it was most desirable to rule, and would be emperor over a desert. 2.214. 5. When Claudius heard this, he restrained the violence of the soldiery, and received the senate into the camp, and treated them after an obliging manner, and went out with them presently to offer their thank-offerings to God, which were proper upon, his first coming to the empire. 2.215. Moreover, he bestowed on Agrippa his whole paternal kingdom immediately, and added to it, besides those countries that had been given by Augustus to Herod, Trachonitis and Auranitis, and still, besides these, that kingdom which was called the kingdom of Lysanias. 2.216. This gift he declared to the people by a decree, but ordered the magistrates to have the donation engraved on tables of brass, and to be set up in the capitol. 2.218. 6. So now riches flowed in to Agrippa by his enjoyment of so large a dominion; nor did he abuse the money he had on small matters, but he began to encompass Jerusalem with such a wall, which, had it been brought to perfection, had made it impracticable for the Romans to take it by siege; 2.219. but his death, which happened at Caesarea, before he had raised the walls to their due height, prevented him. He had then reigned three years, as he had governed his tetrarchies three other years. 2.222. and these, as I have formerly said, were the children of Aristobulus the son of Herod, which Aristobulus and Alexander were born to Herod by Mariamne, and were slain by him. But as for Alexander’s posterity, they reigned in Armenia. 2.223. 1. Now after the death of Herod, king of Chalcis, Claudius set Agrippa, the son of Agrippa, over his uncle’s kingdom, while Cumanus took upon him the office of procurator of the rest, which was a Roman province, and therein he succeeded Alexander; under which Cumanus began the troubles, and the Jews’ ruin came on; 2.224. for when the multitude were come together to Jerusalem, to the feast of unleavened bread, and a Roman cohort stood over the cloisters of the temple(for they always were armed, and kept guard at the festivals, to prevent any innovation which the multitude thus gathered together might make), one of the soldiers pulled back his garment, and cowering down after an indecent manner, turned his breech to the Jews, and spake such words as you might expect upon such a posture. 2.226. Upon which Cumanus was afraid lest all the people should make an assault upon him, and sent to call for more armed men, who, when they came in great numbers into the cloisters, the Jews were in a very great consternation; and being beaten out of the temple, they ran into the city; 2.227. and the violence with which they crowded to get out was so great, that they trod upon each other, and squeezed one another, till ten thousand of them were killed, insomuch that this feast became the cause of mourning to the whole nation, and every family lamented [their own relations]. 2.228. 2. Now there followed after this another calamity, which arose from a tumult made by robbers; for at the public road of Bethhoron, one Stephen, a servant of Caesar, carried some furniture, which the robbers fell upon and seized. 2.229. Upon this Cumanus sent men to go round about to the neighboring villages, and to bring their inhabitants to him bound, as laying it to their charge that they had not pursued after the thieves, and caught them. Now here it was that a certain soldier, finding the sacred book of the law, tore it to pieces, and threw it into the fire. 2.231. Accordingly, he, perceiving that the multitude would not be quiet unless they had a comfortable answer from him, gave order that the soldier should be brought, and drawn through those that required to have him punished, to execution, which being done, the Jews went their ways. 2.232. 3. After this there happened a fight between the Galileans and the Samaritans; it happened at a village called Geman, which is situated in the great plain of Samaria; where, as a great number of Jews were going up to Jerusalem to the feast [of tabernacles,] a certain Galilean was slain; 2.233. and besides, a vast number of people ran together out of Galilee, in order to fight with the Samaritans. But the principal men among them came to Cumanus, and besought him that, before the evil became incurable, he would come into Galilee, and bring the authors of this murder to punishment; for that there was no other way to make the multitude separate without coming to blows. However, Cumanus postponed their supplications to the other affairs he was then about, and sent the petitioners away without success. 2.234. 4. But when the affair of this murder came to be told at Jerusalem, it put the multitude into disorder, and they left the feast; and without any generals to conduct them, they marched with great violence to Samaria; nor would they be ruled by any of the magistrates that were set over them 2.235. but they were managed by one Eleazar, the son of Dineus, and by Alexander, in these their thievish and seditious attempts. These men fell upon those that were in the neighborhood of the Acrabatene toparchy, and slew them, without sparing any age, and set the villages on fire. 2.236. 5. But Cumanus took one troop of horsemen, called the troop of Sebaste, out of Caesarea, and came to the assistance of those that were spoiled; he also seized upon a great number of those that followed Eleazar, and slew more of them. 2.237. And as for the rest of the multitude of those that went so zealously to fight with the Samaritans, the rulers of Jerusalem ran out, clothed with sackcloth, and having ashes on their heads, and begged of them to go their ways, lest by their attempt to revenge themselves upon the Samaritans they should provoke the Romans to come against Jerusalem; to have compassion upon their country and temple, their children and their wives, and not bring the utmost dangers of destruction upon them, in order to avenge themselves upon one Galilean only. 2.238. The Jews complied with these persuasions of theirs, and dispersed themselves; but still there were a great number who betook themselves to robbing, in hopes of impunity; and rapines and insurrections of the bolder sort happened over the whole country. 2.239. And the men of power among the Samaritans came to Tyre, to Ummidius Quadratus, the president of Syria, and desired that they that had laid waste the country might be punished: 2.241. 6. But Quadratus put both parties off for that time, and told them, that when he should come to those places, he would make a diligent inquiry after every circumstance. After which he went to Caesarea, and crucified all those whom Cumanus had taken alive; 2.242. and when from thence he was come to the city Lydda, he heard the affair of the Samaritans, and sent for eighteen of the Jews, whom he had learned to have been concerned in that fight, and beheaded them; 2.243. but he sent two others of those that were of the greatest power among them, and both Jonathan and Aias, the high priests, as also Aus the son of this Aias, and certain others that were eminent among the Jews, to Caesar; as he did in like manner by the most illustrious of the Samaritans. 2.244. He also ordered that Cumanus [the procurator] and Celer the tribune should sail to Rome, in order to give an account of what had been done to Caesar. When he had finished these matters, he went up from Lydda to Jerusalem, and finding the multitude celebrating their feast of unleavened bread without any tumult, he returned to Antioch. 2.245. 7. Now when Caesar at Rome had heard what Cumanus and the Samaritans had to say (where it was done in the hearing of Agrippa, who zealously espoused the cause of the Jews, as in like manner many of the great men stood by Cumanus), he condemned the Samaritans, and commanded that three of the most powerful men among them should be put to death; he banished Cumanus 2.246. and sent Celer bound to Jerusalem, to be delivered over to the Jews to be tormented; that he should be drawn round the city, and then beheaded. 2.247. 8. After this Caesar sent Felix, the brother of Pallas, to be procurator of Galilee, and Samaria, and Perea, and removed Agrippa from Chalcis unto a greater kingdom; for he gave him the tetrarchy which had belonged to Philip, which contained Batanea, Trachonitis, and Gaulonitis: he added to it the kingdom of Lysanias, and that province [Abilene] which Varus had governed. 2.248. But Claudius himself, when he had administered the government thirteen years, eight months, and twenty days, died, and left Nero to be his successor in the empire, whom he had adopted by his Wife Agrippina’s delusions, in order to be his successor, although he had a son of his own, whose name was Britannicus, by Messalina his former wife, and a daughter whose name was Octavia 2.249. whom he had married to Nero; he had also another daughter by Petina, whose name was Antonia. 2.252. 2. Nero therefore bestowed the kingdom of the Lesser Armenia upon Aristobulus, Herod’s son, and he added to Agrippa’s kingdom four cities, with the toparchies to them belonging; I mean Abila, and that Julias which is in Perea, Taricheae also, and Tiberias of Galilee; but over the rest of Judea he made Felix procurator. 2.253. This Felix took Eleazar the arch-robber, and many that were with him, alive, when they had ravaged the country for twenty years together, and sent them to Rome; but as to the number of robbers whom he caused to be crucified, and of those who were caught among them, and whom he brought to punishment, they were a multitude not to be enumerated. 2.254. 3. When the country was purged of these, there sprang up another sort of robbers in Jerusalem, which were called Sicarii, who slew men in the daytime, and in the midst of the city; 2.255. this they did chiefly at the festivals, when they mingled themselves among the multitude, and concealed daggers under their garments, with which they stabbed those that were their enemies; and when any fell down dead, the murderers became a part of those that had indignation against them; by which means they appeared persons of such reputation, that they could by no means be discovered. 2.256. The first man who was slain by them was Jonathan the high priest, after whose death many were slain every day, while the fear men were in of being so served was more afflicting than the calamity itself; 2.257. and while everybody expected death every hour, as men do in war, so men were obliged to look before them, and to take notice of their enemies at a great distance; nor, if their friends were coming to them, durst they trust them any longer; but, in the midst of their suspicions and guarding of themselves, they were slain. Such was the celerity of the plotters against them, and so cunning was their contrivance. 2.258. 4. There was also another body of wicked men gotten together, not so impure in their actions, but more wicked in their intentions, which laid waste the happy state of the city no less than did these murderers. 2.259. These were such men as deceived and deluded the people under pretense of Divine inspiration, but were for procuring innovations and changes of the government; and these prevailed with the multitude to act like madmen, and went before them into the wilderness, as pretending that God would there show them the signals of liberty. 2.261. 5. But there was an Egyptian false prophet that did the Jews more mischief than the former; for he was a cheat, and pretended to be a prophet also, and got together thirty thousand men that were deluded by him; 2.262. these he led round about from the wilderness to the mount which was called the Mount of Olives, and was ready to break into Jerusalem by force from that place; and if he could but once conquer the Roman garrison and the people, he intended to domineer over them by the assistance of those guards of his that were to break into the city with him. 2.263. But Felix prevented his attempt, and met him with his Roman soldiers, while all the people assisted him in his attack upon them, insomuch that when it came to a battle, the Egyptian ran away, with a few others, while the greatest part of those that were with him were either destroyed or taken alive; but the rest of the multitude were dispersed every one to their own homes, and there concealed themselves. 2.264. 6. Now, when these were quieted, it happened, as it does in a diseased body, that another part was subject to an inflammation; for a company of deceivers and robbers got together, and persuaded the Jews to revolt, and exhorted them to assert their liberty, inflicting death on those that continued in obedience to the Roman government, and saying, that such as willingly chose slavery ought to be forced from such their desired inclinations; 2.265. for they parted themselves into different bodies, and lay in wait up and down the country, and plundered the houses of the great men, and slew the men themselves, and set the villages on fire; and this till all Judea was filled with the effects of their madness. And thus the flame was every day more and more blown up, till it came to a direct war. 2.266. 7. There was also another disturbance at Caesarea:—those Jews who were mixed with the Syrians that lived there, raising a tumult against them. The Jews pretended that the city was theirs, and said that he who built it was a Jew, meaning king Herod. The Syrians confessed also that its builder was a Jew; but they still said, however, that the city was a Grecian city; for that he who set up statues and temples in it could not design it for Jews. 2.267. On which account both parties had a contest with one another; and this contest increased so much, that it came at last to arms, and the bolder sort of them marched out to fight; for the elders of the Jews were not able to put a stop to their own people that were disposed to be tumultuous, and the Greeks thought it a shame for them to be overcome by the Jews. 2.268. Now these Jews exceeded the others in riches and strength of body; but the Grecian part had the advantage of assistance from the soldiery; for the greatest part of the Roman garrison was raised out of Syria; and being thus related to the Syrian part, they were ready to assist it. 2.269. However, the governors of the city were concerned to keep all quiet, and whenever they caught those that were most for fighting on either side, they punished them with stripes and bonds. Yet did not the sufferings of those that were caught affright the remainder, or make them desist; but they were still more and more exasperated, and deeper engaged in the sedition. 2.271. 1. Now it was that Festus succeeded Felix as procurator, and made it his business to correct those that made disturbances in the country. So he caught the greatest part of the robbers, and destroyed a great many of them. 2.272. But then Albinus, who succeeded Festus, did not execute his office as the other had done; nor was there any sort of wickedness that could be named but he had a hand in it. 2.273. Accordingly, he did not only, in his political capacity, steal and plunder every one’s substance, nor did he only burden the whole nation with taxes, but he permitted the relations of such as were in prison for robbery, and had been laid there, either by the senate of every city, or by the former procurators, to redeem them for money; and nobody remained in the prisons as a malefactor but he who gave him nothing. 2.274. At this time it was that the enterprises of the seditious at Jerusalem were very formidable; the principal men among them purchasing leave of Albinus to go on with their seditious practices; while that part of the people who delighted in disturbances joined themselves to such as had fellowship with Albinus; 2.275. and everyone of these wicked wretches were encompassed with his own band of robbers, while he himself, like an arch-robber, or a tyrant, made a figure among his company, and abused his authority over those about him, in order to plunder those that lived quietly. 2.276. The effect of which was this, that those who lost their goods were forced to hold their peace, when they had reason to show great indignation at what they had suffered; but those who had escaped were forced to flatter him that deserved to be punished, out of the fear they were in of suffering equally with the others. Upon the whole, nobody durst speak their minds, but tyranny was generally tolerated; and at this time were those seeds sown which brought the city to destruction. 2.277. 2. And although such was the character of Albinus, yet did Gessius Florus who succeeded him, demonstrate him to have been a most excellent person, upon the comparison; for the former did the greatest part of his rogueries in private, and with a sort of dissimulation; but Gessius did his unjust actions to the harm of the nation after a pompous manner; and as though he had been sent as an executioner to punish condemned malefactors, he omitted no sort of rapine, or of vexation; 2.278. where the case was really pitiable, he was most barbarous, and in things of the greatest turpitude he was most impudent. Nor could anyone outdo him in disguising the truth; nor could anyone contrive more subtle ways of deceit than he did. He indeed thought it but a petty offense to get money out of single persons; so he spoiled whole cities, and ruined entire bodies of men at once, and did almost publicly proclaim it all the country over, that they had liberty given them to turn robbers, upon this condition, that he might go shares with them in the spoils they got. 2.279. Accordingly, this his greediness of gain was the occasion that entire toparchies were brought to desolation, and a great many of the people left their own country, and fled into foreign provinces. 2.281. But as he was present, and stood by Cestius, he laughed at their words. However, Cestius, when he had quieted the multitude, and had assured them that he would take care that Florus should hereafter treat them in a more gentle manner, returned to Antioch. 2.282. Florus also conducted him as far as Caesarea, and deluded him, though he had at that very time the purpose of showing his anger at the nation, and procuring a war upon them, by which means alone it was that he supposed he might conceal his enormities; 2.283. for he expected that if the peace continued, he should have the Jews for his accusers before Caesar; but that if he could procure them to make a revolt, he should divert their laying lesser crimes to his charge, by a misery that was so much greater; he therefore did every day augment their calamities, in order to induce them to a rebellion. 2.284. 4. Now at this time it happened that the Grecians at Caesarea had been too hard for the Jews, and had obtained of Nero the government of the city, and had brought the judicial determination: at the same time began the war, in the twelfth year of the reign of Nero, and the seventeenth of the reign of Agrippa, in the month of Artemisius [Jyar]. 2.285. Now the occasion of this war was by no means proportionable to those heavy calamities which it brought upon us. For the Jews that dwelt at Caesarea had a synagogue near the place, whose owner was a certain Cesarean Greek: the Jews had endeavored frequently to have purchased the possession of the place, and had offered many times its value for its price; 2.286. but as the owner overlooked their offers, so did he raise other buildings upon the place, in way of affront to them, and made workingshops of them, and left them but a narrow passage, and such as was very troublesome for them to go along to their synagogue. Whereupon the warmer part of the Jewish youth went hastily to the workmen, and forbade them to build there; 2.287. but as Florus would not permit them to use force, the great men of the Jews, with John the publican, being in the utmost distress what to do, persuaded Florus, with the offer of eight talents, to hinder the work. 2.288. He then, being intent upon nothing but getting money, promised he would do for them all they desired of him, and then went away from Caesarea to Sebaste, and left the sedition to take its full course, as if he had sold a license to the Jews to fight it out. 2.289. 5. Now on the next day, which was the seventh day of the week, when the Jews were crowding apace to their synagogue, a certain man of Caesarea, of a seditious temper, got an earthen vessel, and set it with the bottom upward, at the entrance of that synagogue, and sacrificed birds. This thing provoked the Jews to an incurable degree, because their laws were affronted, and the place was polluted. 2.291. Hereupon Jucundus, the master of the horse, who was ordered to prevent the fight, came thither, and took away the earthen vessel, and endeavored to put a stop to the sedition; but when he was overcome by the violence of the people of Caesarea, the Jews caught up their books of the law, and retired to Narbata, which was a place to them belonging, distant from Caesarea sixty furlongs. 2.292. But John, and twelve of the principal men with him, went to Florus, to Sebaste, and made a lamentable complaint of their case, and besought him to help them; and with all possible decency, put him in mind of the eight talents they had given him; but he had the men seized upon and put in prison, and accused them for carrying the books of the law out of Caesarea. 2.293. 6. Moreover, as to the citizens of Jerusalem, although they took this matter very ill, yet did they restrain their passion; but Florus acted herein as if he had been hired, and blew up the war into a flame, and sent some to take seventeen talents out of the sacred treasure, and pretended that Caesar wanted them. 2.294. At this the people were in confusion immediately, and ran together to the temple, with prodigious clamors, and called upon Caesar by name, and besought him to free them from the tyranny of Florus. 2.295. Some also of the seditious cried out upon Florus, and cast the greatest reproaches upon him, and carried a basket about, and begged some spills of money for him, as for one that was destitute of possessions, and in a miserable condition. Yet was not he made ashamed hereby of his love of money, but was more enraged, and provoked to get still more; 2.296. and instead of coming to Caesarea, as he ought to have done, and quenching the flame of war, which was beginning thence, and so taking away the occasion of any disturbances, on which account it was that he had received a reward [of eight talents], he marched hastily with an army of horsemen and footmen against Jerusalem, that he might gain his will by the arms of the Romans, and might, by his terror, and by his threatenings, bring the city into subjection. 2.297. 7. But the people were desirous of making Florus ashamed of his attempt, and met his soldiers with acclamations, and put themselves in order to receive him very submissively. 2.298. But he sent Capito, a centurion, beforehand, with fifty soldiers, to bid them go back, and not now make a show of receiving him in an obliging manner, whom they had so foully reproached before; 2.299. and said that it was incumbent on them, in case they had generous souls, and were free speakers, to jest upon him to his face, and appear to be lovers of liberty, not only in words, but with their weapons also. 2.301. 8. Now at this time Florus took up his quarters at the palace; and on the next day he had his tribunal set before it, and sat upon it, when the high priests, and the men of power, and those of the greatest eminence in the city, came all before that tribunal; 2.302. upon which Florus commanded them to deliver up to him those that had reproached him, and told them that they should themselves partake of the vengeance to them belonging, if they did not produce the criminals; but these demonstrated that the people were peaceably disposed, and they begged forgiveness for those that had spoken amiss; 2.303. for that it was no wonder at all that in so great a multitude there should be some more daring than they ought to be, and, by reason of their younger age, foolish also; and that it was impossible to distinguish those that offended from the rest, while every one was sorry for what he had done, and denied it out of fear of what would follow: 2.304. that he ought, however, to provide for the peace of the nation, and to take such counsels as might preserve the city for the Romans, and rather for the sake of a great number of innocent people to forgive a few that were guilty, than for the sake of a few of the wicked to put so large and good a body of men into disorder. 2.305. 9. Florus was more provoked at this, and called out aloud to the soldiers to plunder that which was called the Upper Market-place, and to slay such as they met with. So the soldiers, taking this exhortation of their commander in a sense agreeable to their desire of gain, did not only plunder the place they were sent to, but forcing themselves into every house, they slew its inhabitants; 2.306. o the citizens fled along the narrow lanes, and the soldiers slew those that they caught, and no method of plunder was omitted; they also caught many of the quiet people, and brought them before Florus, whom he first chastised with stripes, and then crucified. 2.307. Accordingly, the whole number of those that were destroyed that day, with their wives and children (for they did not spare even the infants themselves), was about three thousand and six hundred. 2.308. And what made this calamity the heavier was this new method of Roman barbarity; for Florus ventured then to do what no one had done before, that is, to have men of the equestrian order whipped and nailed to the cross before his tribunal; who, although they were by birth Jews, yet were they of Roman dignity notwithstanding. 2.409. At the same time Eleazar, the son of Aias the high priest, a very bold youth, who was at that time governor of the temple, persuaded those that officiated in the Divine service to receive no gift or sacrifice for any foreigner. And this was the true beginning of our war with the Romans; for they rejected the sacrifice of Caesar on this account; 2.454. And thus were all these men barbarously murdered, excepting Metilius; for when he entreated for mercy, and promised that he would turn Jew, and be circumcised, they saved him alive, but none else. This loss to the Romans was but light, there being no more than a few slain out of an immense army; but still it appeared to be a prelude to the Jews’ own destruction 2.456. for indeed it so happened that this murder was perpetrated on the Sabbath day, on which day the Jews have a respite from their works on account of Divine worship. 2.457. 1. Now the people of Caesarea had slain the Jews that were among them on the very same day and hour [when the soldiers were slain], which one would think must have come to pass by the direction of Providence; insomuch that in one hour’s time above twenty thousand Jews were killed, and all Caesarea was emptied of its Jewish inhabitants; for Florus caught such as ran away, and sent them in bonds to the galleys. 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. 7.451. 4. But as to Catullus, the emperors were so gentle to him, that he underwent no severe condemnation at this time; yet was it not long before he fell into a complicated and almost incurable distemper, and died miserably. He was not only afflicted in body, but the distemper in his mind was more heavy upon him than the other; 7.452. for he was terribly disturbed, and continually cried out that he saw the ghosts of those whom he had slain standing before him. Whereupon he was not able to contain himself, but leaped out of his bed, as if both torments and fire were brought to him. 7.453. This his distemper grew still a great deal worse and worse continually, and his very entrails were so corroded, that they fell out of his body, and in that condition he died. Thus he became as great an instance of Divine Providence as ever was, and demonstrated that God punishes wicked men.
9. Josephus Flavius, Against Apion, 1.50 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

10. Josephus Flavius, Life, 358, 342 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

11. New Testament, Acts, 24.24-24.25 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

24.24. But after some days, Felix came with Drusilla, his wife, who was a Jewess, and sent for Paul, and heard him concerning the faith in Christ Jesus. 24.25. As he reasoned about righteousness, self-control, and the judgment to come, Felix was terrified, and answered, "Go your way for this time, and when it is convenient for me, I will summon you.
12. Pliny The Elder, Natural History, 5.70-5.71 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)

13. Suetonius, Vespasianus, 4 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

14. Tacitus, Annals, 15.44 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

15.44.  So far, the precautions taken were suggested by human prudence: now means were sought for appeasing deity, and application was made to the Sibylline books; at the injunction of which public prayers were offered to Vulcan, Ceres, and Proserpine, while Juno was propitiated by the matrons, first in the Capitol, then at the nearest point of the sea-shore, where water was drawn for sprinkling the temple and image of the goddess. Ritual banquets and all-night vigils were celebrated by women in the married state. But neither human help, nor imperial munificence, nor all the modes of placating Heaven, could stifle scandal or dispel the belief that the fire had taken place by order. Therefore, to scotch the rumour, Nero substituted as culprits, and punished with the utmost refinements of cruelty, a class of men, loathed for their vices, whom the crowd styled Christians. Christus, the founder of the name, had undergone the death penalty in the reign of Tiberius, by sentence of the procurator Pontius Pilatus, and the pernicious superstition was checked for a moment, only to break out once more, not merely in Judaea, the home of the disease, but in the capital itself, where all things horrible or shameful in the world collect and find a vogue. First, then, the confessed members of the sect were arrested; next, on their disclosures, vast numbers were convicted, not so much on the count of arson as for hatred of the human race. And derision accompanied their end: they were covered with wild beasts' skins and torn to death by dogs; or they were fastened on crosses, and, when daylight failed were burned to serve as lamps by night. Nero had offered his Gardens for the spectacle, and gave an exhibition in his Circus, mixing with the crowd in the habit of a charioteer, or mounted on his car. Hence, in spite of a guilt which had earned the most exemplary punishment, there arose a sentiment of pity, due to the impression that they were being sacrificed not for the welfare of the state but to the ferocity of a single man.
15. Tacitus, Histories, 1.2-1.4, 1.3.2, 1.10.3, 1.27.1, 1.86, 2.1.1, 2.3-2.4, 2.50.2, 2.78, 2.91.1, 3.56.1, 3.71-3.72, 4.61, 4.81-4.84, 5.2-5.9, 5.4.2, 5.5.1-5.5.2, 5.5.4, 5.11-5.13 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

1.86.  Prodigies which were reported on various authorities also contributed to the general terror. It was said that in the vestibule of the Capitol the reins of the chariot in which Victory stood had fallen from the goddess's hands, that a superhuman form had rushed out of Juno's chapel, that a statue of the deified Julius on the island of the Tiber had turned from west to east on a bright calm day, that an ox had spoken in Etruria, that animals had given birth to strange young, and that many other things had happened which in barbarous ages used to be noticed even during peace, but which now are only heard of in seasons of terror. Yet the chief anxiety which was connected with both present disaster and future danger was caused by a sudden overflow of the Tiber which, swollen to a great height, broke down the wooden bridge and then was thrown back by the ruins of the bridge which dammed the stream, and overflowed not only the low-lying level parts of the city, but also parts which are normally free from such disasters. Many were swept away in the public streets, a larger number cut off in shops and in their beds. The common people were reduced to famine by lack of employment and failure of supplies. Apartment houses had their foundations undermined by the standing water and then collapsed when the flood withdrew. The moment people's minds were relieved of this danger, the very fact that when Otho was planning a military expedition, the Campus Martius and the Flaminian Way, over which he was to advance, were blocked against him was interpreted as a prodigy and an omen of impending disaster rather than as the result of chance or natural causes. 2.3.  The founder of the temple, according to ancient tradition, was King Aerias. Some, however, say that this was the name of the goddess herself. A more recent tradition reports that the temple was consecrated by Cinyras, and that the goddess herself after she sprang from the sea, was wafted hither; but that the science and method of divination were imported from abroad by the Cilician Tamiras, and so it was agreed that the descendants of both Tamiras and Cinyras should preside over the sacred rites. It is also said that in a later time the foreigners gave up the craft that they had introduced, that the royal family might have some prerogative over foreign stock. Only a descendant of Cinyras is now consulted as priest. Such victims are accepted as the individual vows, but male ones are preferred. The greatest confidence is put in the entrails of kids. Blood may not be shed upon the altar, but offering is made only with prayers and pure fire. The altar is never wet by any rain, although it is in the open air. The representation of the goddess is not in human form, but it is a circular mass that is broader at the base and rises like a turning-post to a small circumference at the top. The reason for this is obscure. 2.4.  After Titus had examined the treasures, the gifts made by kings, and all those other things which the Greeks from their delight in ancient tales attribute to a dim antiquity, he asked the oracle first with regard to his voyage. On learning that his path was open and the sea favourable, he slew many victims and then questioned indirectly about himself. When Sostratus, for such was the priest's name, saw that the entrails were uniformly favourable and that the goddess favoured great undertakings, he made at the moment a brief reply in the usual fashion, but asked for a private interview in which he disclosed the future. Greatly encouraged, Titus sailed on to his father; his arrival brought a great accession of confidence to the provincials and to the troops, who were in a state of anxious uncertainty. Vespasian had almost put an end to the war with the Jews. The siege of Jerusalem, however, remained, a task rendered difficult and arduous by the character of the mountain-citadel and the obstinate superstition of the Jews rather than by any adequate resources which the besieged possessed to withstand the inevitable hardships of a siege. As we have stated above, Vespasian himself had three legions experienced in war. Mucianus was in command of four in a peaceful province, but a spirit of emulation and the glory won by the neighbouring army had banished from his troops all inclination to idleness, and just as dangers and toils had given Vespasian's troops power of resistance, so those of Mucianus had gained vigour from unbroken repose and that love of war which springs from inexperience. Both generals had auxiliary infantry and cavalry, as well as fleets and allied kings; while each possessed a famous name, though a different reputation. 2.78.  After Mucianus had spoken, the rest became bolder; they gathered about Vespasian, encouraged him, and recalled the prophecies of seers and the movements of the stars. Nor indeed was he wholly free from such superstitious belief, as was evident later when he had obtained supreme power, for he openly kept at court an astrologer named Seleucus, whom he regarded as his guide and oracle. Old omens came back to his mind: once on his country estate a cypress of conspicuous height suddenly fell, but the next day it rose again on the selfsame spot fresh, tall, and with wider expanse than before. This occurrence was a favourable omen of great significance, as the haruspices all agreed, and promised the highest distinctions for Vespasian, who was then still a young man. At first, however, the insignia of a triumph, his consulship, and his victory over Judea appeared to have fulfilled the promise given by the omen; yet after he had gained these honours, he began to think that it was the imperial throne that was foretold. Between Judea and Syria lies Carmel: this is the name given to both the mountain and the divinity. The god has no image or temple — such is the rule handed down by the fathers; there is only an altar and the worship of the god. When Vespasian was sacrificing there and thinking over his secret hopes in his heart, the priest Basilides, after repeated inspection of the victim's vitals, said to him: "Whatever you are planning, Vespasian, whether to build a house, or to enlarge your holdings, or to increase the number of your slaves, the god grants you a mighty home, limitless bounds, and a multitude of men." This obscure oracle rumour had caught up at the time, and now was trying to interpret; nothing indeed was more often on men's lips. It was discussed even more in Vespasian's presence — for men have more to say to those who are filled with hope. The two leaders now separated with clear purposes before them, Mucianus going to Antioch, Vespasian to Caesarea. Antioch is the capital of Syria, Caesarea of Judea. 3.71.  Martialis had hardly returned to the Capitol when the soldiers arrived in fury. They had no leader; each directed his own movements. Rushing through the Forum and past the temples that rise above it, they advanced in column up the hill, as far as the first gates of the Capitoline citadel. There were then some old colonnades on the right as you go up the slopes; the defenders came out on the roofs of these and showered stones and tiles on their assailants. The latter had no arms except their swords, and they thought that it would cost too much time to send for artillery and missiles; consequently they threw firebrands on a projecting colonnade, and then followed in the path of the flames; they actually burned the gates of the Capitol and would have forced their way through, if Sabinus had not torn down all the statues, memorials to the glory of our ancestors, and piled them up across the entrance as a barricade. Then the assailants tried different approaches to the Capitol, one by the grove of the asylum and another by the hundred steps that lead up to the Tarpeian Rock. Both attacks were unexpected; but the one by the asylum was closer and more threatening. Moreover, the defenders were unable to stop those who climbed through neighbouring houses, which, built high in time of peace, reached the level of the Capitol. It is a question here whether it was the besiegers or the besieged who threw fire on the roofs. The more common tradition says this was done by the latter in their attempts to repel their assailants, who were climbing up or had reached the top. From the houses the fire spread to the colonnades adjoining the temple; then the "eagles" which supported the roof, being of old wood, caught and fed the flames. So the Capitol burned with its doors closed; none defended it, none pillaged it. 3.72.  This was the saddest and most shameful crime that the Roman state had ever suffered since its foundation. Rome had no foreign foe; the gods were ready to be propitious if our characters had allowed; and yet the home of Jupiter Optimus Maximus, founded after due auspices by our ancestors as a pledge of empire, which neither Porsenna, when the city gave itself up to him, nor the Gauls when they captured it, could violate — this was the shrine that the mad fury of emperors destroyed! The Capitol had indeed been burned before in civil war, but the crime was that of private individuals. Now it was openly besieged, openly burned — and what were the causes that led to arms? What was the price paid for this great disaster? This temple stood intact so long as we fought for our country. King Tarquinius Priscus had vowed it in the war with the Sabines and had laid its foundations rather to match his hope of future greatness than in accordance with what the fortunes of the Roman people, still moderate, could supply. Later the building was begun by Servius Tullius with the enthusiastic help of Rome's allies, and afterwards carried on by Tarquinius Superbus with the spoils taken from the enemy at the capture of Suessa Pometia. But the glory of completing the work was reserved for liberty: after the expulsion of the kings, Horatius Pulvillus in his second consulship dedicated it; and its magnificence was such that the enormous wealth of the Roman people acquired thereafter adorned rather than increased its splendour. The temple was built again on the same spot when after an interval of four hundred and fifteen years it had been burned in the consulship of Lucius Scipio and Gaius Norbanus. The victorious Sulla undertook the work, but still he did not dedicate it; that was the only thing that his good fortune was refused. Amid all the great works built by the Caesars the name of Lutatius Catulus kept its place down to Vitellius's day. This was the temple that then was burned. 4.61.  Civilis, in accordance with a vow such as these barbarians frequently make, had dyed his hair red and let it grow long from the time he first took up arms against the Romans, but now that the massacre of the legions was finally accomplished, he cut it short; it was also said that he presented his little son with some captives to be targets for the child's arrows and darts. However, he did not bind himself or any Batavian by an oath of allegiance to Gaul, for he relied on the resources of the Germans, and he felt that, if it became necessary to dispute the empire with the Gauls, he would have the advantage of his reputation and his superior power. Munius Lupercus, commander of a legion, was sent, among other gifts, to Veleda. This maiden of the tribe of the Bructeri enjoyed extensive authority, according to the ancient German custom, which regards many women as endowed with prophetic powers and, as the superstition grows, attributes divinity to them. At this time Veleda's influence was at its height, since she had foretold the German success and the destruction of the legions. But Lupercus was killed on the road. A few of the centurions and tribunes of Gallic birth were reserved as hostages to assure the alliance. The winter quarters of the auxiliary infantry and cavalry and of the legions were pulled down and burned, with the sole exception of those at Mainz and Vindonissa. 4.81.  During the months while Vespasian was waiting at Alexandria for the regular season of the summer winds and a settled sea, many marvels continued to mark the favour of heaven and a certain partiality of the gods toward him. One of the common people of Alexandria, well known for his loss of sight, threw himself before Vespasian's knees, praying him with groans to cure his blindness, being so directed by the god Serapis, whom this most superstitious of nations worships before all others; and he besought the emperor to deign to moisten his cheeks and eyes with his spittle. Another, whose hand was useless, prompted by the same god, begged Caesar to step and trample on it. Vespasian at first ridiculed these appeals and treated them with scorn; then, when the men persisted, he began at one moment to fear the discredit of failure, at another to be inspired with hopes of success by the appeals of the suppliants and the flattery of his courtiers: finally, he directed the physicians to give their opinion as to whether such blindness and infirmity could be overcome by human aid. Their reply treated the two cases differently: they said that in the first the power of sight had not been completely eaten away and it would return if the obstacles were removed; in the other, the joints had slipped and become displaced, but they could be restored if a healing pressure were applied to them. Such perhaps was the wish of the gods, and it might be that the emperor had been chosen for this divine service; in any case, if a cure were obtained, the glory would be Caesar's, but in the event of failure, ridicule would fall only on the poor suppliants. So Vespasian, believing that his good fortune was capable of anything and that nothing was any longer incredible, with a smiling countece, and amid intense excitement on the part of the bystanders, did as he was asked to do. The hand was instantly restored to use, and the day again shone for the blind man. Both facts are told by eye-witnesses even now when falsehood brings no reward. 4.82.  These events gave Vespasian a deeper desire to visit the sanctuary of the god to consult him with regard to his imperial fortune: he ordered all to be excluded from the temple. Then after he had entered the temple and was absorbed in contemplation of the god, he saw behind him one of the leading men of Egypt, named Basilides, who he knew was detained by sickness in a place many days' journey distant from Alexandria. He asked the priests whether Basilides had entered the temple on that day; he questioned the passers-by whether he had been seen in the city; finally, he sent some cavalry and found that at that moment he had been eighty miles away: then he concluded that this was a supernatural vision and drew a prophecy from the name Basilides. 4.83.  The origin of this god has not yet been generally treated by our authors: the Egyptian priests tell the following story, that when King Ptolemy, the first of the Macedonians to put the power of Egypt on a firm foundation, was giving the new city of Alexandria walls, temples, and religious rites, there appeared to him in his sleep a vision of a young man of extraordinary beauty and of more than human stature, who warned him to send his most faithful friends to Pontus and bring his statue hither; the vision said that this act would be a happy thing for the kingdom and that the city that received the god would be great and famous: after these words the youth seemed to be carried to heaven in a blaze of fire. Ptolemy, moved by this miraculous omen, disclosed this nocturnal vision to the Egyptian priests, whose business it is to interpret such things. When they proved to know little of Pontus and foreign countries, he questioned Timotheus, an Athenian of the clan of the Eumolpidae, whom he had called from Eleusis to preside over the sacred rites, and asked him what this religion was and what the divinity meant. Timotheus learned by questioning men who had travelled to Pontus that there was a city there called Sinope, and that not far from it there was a temple of Jupiter Dis, long famous among the natives: for there sits beside the god a female figure which most call Proserpina. But Ptolemy, although prone to superstitious fears after the nature of kings, when he once more felt secure, being more eager for pleasures than religious rites, began gradually to neglect the matter and to turn his attention to other things, until the same vision, now more terrible and insistent, threatened ruin upon the king himself and his kingdom unless his orders were carried out. Then Ptolemy directed that ambassadors and gifts should be despatched to King Scydrothemis — he ruled over the people of Sinope at that time — and when the embassy was about to sail he instructed them to visit Pythian Apollo. The ambassadors found the sea favourable; and the answer of the oracle was not uncertain: Apollo bade them go on and bring back the image of his father, but leave that of his sister. 4.84.  When the ambassadors reached Sinope, they delivered the gifts, requests, and messages of their king to Scydrothemis. He was all uncertainty, now fearing the god and again being terrified by the threats and opposition of his people; often he was tempted by the gifts and promises of the ambassadors. In the meantime three years passed during which Ptolemy did not lessen his zeal or his appeals; he increased the dignity of his ambassadors, the number of his ships, and the quantity of gold offered. Then a terrifying vision appeared to Scydrothemis, warning him not to hinder longer the purposes of the god: as he still hesitated, various disasters, diseases, and the evident anger of the gods, growing heavier from day to day, beset the king. He called an assembly of his people and made known to them the god's orders, the visions that had appeared to him and to Ptolemy, and the misfortunes that were multiplying upon them: the people opposed their king; they were jealous of Egypt, afraid for themselves, and so gathered about the temple of the god. At this point the tale becomes stranger, for tradition says that the god himself, voluntarily embarking on the fleet that was lying on the shore, miraculously crossed the wide stretch of sea and reached Alexandria in two days. A temple, befitting the size of the city, was erected in the quarter called Rhacotis; there had previously been on that spot an ancient shrine dedicated to Serapis and Isis. Such is the most popular account of the origin and arrival of the god. Yet I am not unaware that there are some who maintain that the god was brought from Seleucia in Syria in the reign of Ptolemy III; still others claim that the same Ptolemy introduced the god, but that the place from which he came was Memphis, once a famous city and the bulwark of ancient Egypt. Many regard the god himself as identical with Aesculapius, because he cures the sick; some as Osiris, the oldest god among these peoples; still more identify him with Jupiter as the supreme lord of all things; the majority, however, arguing from the attributes of the god that are seen on his statue or from their own conjectures, hold him to be Father Dis. 5.2.  However, as I am about to describe the last days of a famous city, it seems proper for me to give some account of its origin. It is said that the Jews were originally exiles from the island of Crete who settled in the farthest parts of Libya at the time when Saturn had been deposed and expelled by Jove. An argument in favour of this is derived from the name: there is a famous mountain in Crete called Ida, and hence the inhabitants were called the Idaei, which was later lengthened into the barbarous form Iudaei. Some hold that in the reign of Isis the superfluous population of Egypt, under the leadership of Hierosolymus and Iuda, discharged itself on the neighbouring lands; many others think that they were an Egyptian stock, which in the reign of Cepheus was forced to migrate by fear and hatred. Still others report that they were Assyrian refugees, a landless people, who first got control of a part of Egypt, then later they had their own cities and lived in the Hebrew territory and the nearer parts of Syria. Still others say that the Jews are of illustrious origin, being the Solymi, a people celebrated in Homer's poems, who founded a city and gave it the name Hierosolyma, formed from their own. 5.3.  Most authors agree that once during a plague in Egypt which caused bodily disfigurement, King Bocchoris approached the oracle of Ammon and asked for a remedy, whereupon he was told to purge his kingdom and to transport this race into other lands, since it was hateful to the gods. So the Hebrews were searched out and gathered together; then, being abandoned in the desert, while all others lay idle and weeping, one only of the exiles, Moses by name, warned them not to hope for help from gods or men, for they were deserted by both, but to trust to themselves, regarding as a guide sent from heaven the one whose assistance should first give them escape from their present distress. They agreed, and then set out on their journey in utter ignorance, but trusting to chance. Nothing caused them so much distress as scarcity of water, and in fact they had already fallen exhausted over the plain nigh unto death, when a herd of wild asses moved from their pasturage to a rock that was shaded by a grove of trees. Moses followed them, and, conjecturing the truth from the grassy ground, discovered abundant streams of water. This relieved them, and they then marched six days continuously, and on the seventh seized a country, expelling the former inhabitants; there they founded a city and dedicated a temple. 5.4.  To establish his influence over this people for all time, Moses introduced new religious practices, quite opposed to those of all other religions. The Jews regard as profane all that we hold sacred; on the other hand, they permit all that we abhor. They dedicated, in a shrine, a statue of that creature whose guidance enabled them to put an end to their wandering and thirst, sacrificing a ram, apparently in derision of Ammon. They likewise offer the ox, because the Egyptians worship Apis. They abstain from pork, in recollection of a plague, for the scab to which this animal is subject once afflicted them. By frequent fasts even now they bear witness to the long hunger with which they were once distressed, and the unleavened Jewish bread is still employed in memory of the haste with which they seized the grain. They say that they first chose to rest on the seventh day because that day ended their toils; but after a time they were led by the charms of indolence to give over the seventh year as well to inactivity. Others say that this is done in honour of Saturn, whether it be that the primitive elements of their religion were given by the Idaeans, who, according to tradition, were expelled with Saturn and became the founders of the Jewish race, or is due to the fact that, of the seven planets that rule the fortunes of mankind, Saturn moves in the highest orbit and has the greatest potency; and that many of the heavenly bodies traverse their paths and courses in multiples of seven. 5.5.  Whatever their origin, these rites are maintained by their antiquity: the other customs of the Jews are base and abominable, and owe their persistence to their depravity. For the worst rascals among other peoples, renouncing their ancestral religions, always kept sending tribute and contributions to Jerusalem, thereby increasing the wealth of the Jews; again, the Jews are extremely loyal toward one another, and always ready to show compassion, but toward every other people they feel only hate and enmity. They sit apart at meals, and they sleep apart, and although as a race, they are prone to lust, they abstain from intercourse with foreign women; yet among themselves nothing is unlawful. They adopted circumcision to distinguish themselves from other peoples by this difference. Those who are converted to their ways follow the same practice, and the earliest lesson they receive is to despise the gods, to disown their country, and to regard their parents, children, and brothers as of little account. However, they take thought to increase their numbers; for they regard it as a crime to kill any late-born child, and they believe that the souls of those who are killed in battle or by the executioner are immortal: hence comes their passion for begetting children, and their scorn of death. They bury the body rather than burn it, thus following the Egyptians' custom; they likewise bestow the same care on the dead, and hold the same belief about the world below; but their ideas of heavenly things are quite the opposite. The Egyptians worship many animals and monstrous images; the Jews conceive of one god only, and that with the mind alone: they regard as impious those who make from perishable materials representations of gods in man's image; that supreme and eternal being is to them incapable of representation and without end. Therefore they set up no statues in their cities, still less in their temples; this flattery is not paid their kings, nor this honour given to the Caesars. But since their priests used to chant to the accompaniment of pipes and cymbals and to wear garlands of ivy, and because a golden vine was found in their temple, some have thought that they were devotees of Father Liber, the conqueror of the East, in spite of the incongruity of their customs. For Liber established festive rites of a joyous nature, while the ways of the Jews are preposterous and mean. 5.6.  Their land is bounded by Arabia on the east, Egypt lies on the south, on the west are Phoenicia and the sea, and toward the north the people enjoy a wide prospect over Syria. The inhabitants are healthy and hardy. Rains are rare; the soil is fertile; its products are like ours, save that the balsam and the palm also grow there. The palm is a tall and handsome tree; the balsam a mere shrub: if a branch, when swollen with sap, is pierced with steel, the veins shrivel up; so a piece of stone or a potsherd is used to open them; the juice is employed by physicians. of the mountains, Lebanon rises to the greatest height, and is in fact a marvel, for in the midst of the excessive heat its summit is shaded by trees and covered with snow; it likewise is the source and supply of the river Jordan. This river does not empty into the sea, but after flowing with volume undiminished through two lakes is lost in the third. The last is a lake of great size: it is like the sea, but its water has a nauseous taste, and its offensive odour is injurious to those who live near it. Its waters are not moved by the wind, and neither fish nor water-fowl can live there. Its lifeless waves bear up whatever is thrown upon them as on a solid surface; all swimmers, whether skilled or not, are buoyed up by them. At a certain season of the year the sea throws up bitumen, and experience has taught the natives how to collect this, as she teaches all arts. Bitumen is by nature a dark fluid which coagulates when sprinkled with vinegar, and swims on the surface. Those whose business it is, catch hold of it with their hands and haul it on shipboard: then with no artificial aid the bitumen flows in and loads the ship until the stream is cut off. Yet you cannot use bronze or iron to cut the bituminous stream; it shrinks from blood or from a cloth stained with a woman's menses. Such is the story told by ancient writers, but those who are acquainted with the country aver that the floating masses of bitumen are driven by the winds or drawn by hand to shore, where later, after they have been dried by vapours from the earth or by the heat of the sun, they are split like timber or stone with axes and wedges. 5.7.  Not far from this lake is a plain which, according to report, was once fertile and the site of great cities, but which was later devastated by lightning; and it is said that traces of this disaster still exist there, and that the very ground looks burnt and has lost its fertility. In fact, all the plants there, whether wild or cultivated, turn black, become sterile, and seem to wither into dust, either in leaf or in flower or after they have reached their usual mature form. Now for my part, although I should grant that famous cities were once destroyed by fire from heaven, I still think that it is the exhalations from the lake that infect the ground and poison the atmosphere about this district, and that this is the reason that crops and fruits decay, since both soil and climate are deleterious. The river Belus also empties into the Jewish Sea; around its mouth a kind of sand is gathered, which when mixed with soda is fused into glass. The beach is of moderate size, but it furnishes an inexhaustible supply. 5.8.  A great part of Judea is covered with scattered villages, but there are some towns also; Jerusalem is the capital of the Jews. In it was a temple possessing enormous riches. The first line of fortifications protected the city, the next the palace, and the innermost wall the temple. Only a Jew might approach its doors, and all save the priests were forbidden to cross the threshold. While the East was under the dominion of the Assyrians, Medes, and Persians, the Jews were regarded as the meanest of their subjects: but after the Macedonians gained supremacy, King Antiochus endeavoured to abolish Jewish superstition and to introduce Greek civilization; the war with the Parthians, however, prevented his improving this basest of peoples; for it was exactly at that time that Arsaces had revolted. Later on, since the power of Macedon had waned, the Parthians were not yet come to their strength, and the Romans were far away, the Jews selected their own kings. These in turn were expelled by the fickle mob; but recovering their throne by force of arms, they banished citizens, destroyed towns, killed brothers, wives, and parents, and dared essay every other kind of royal crime without hesitation; but they fostered the national superstition, for they had assumed the priesthood to support their civil authority. 5.9.  The first Roman to subdue the Jews and set foot in their temple by right of conquest was Gnaeus Pompey; thereafter it was a matter of common knowledge that there were no representations of the gods within, but that the place was empty and the secret shrine contained nothing. The walls of Jerusalem were razed, but the temple remained standing. Later, in the time of our civil wars, when these eastern provinces had fallen into the hands of Mark Antony, the Parthian prince, Pacorus, seized Judea, but he was slain by Publius Ventidius, and the Parthians were thrown back across the Euphrates: the Jews were subdued by Gaius Sosius. Antony gave the throne to Herod, and Augustus, after his victory, increased his power. After Herod's death, a certain Simon assumed the name of king without waiting for Caesar's decision. He, however, was put to death by Quintilius Varus, governor of Syria; the Jews were repressed; and the kingdom was divided into three parts and given to Herod's sons. Under Tiberius all was quiet. Then, when Caligula ordered the Jews to set up his statue in their temple, they chose rather to resort to arms, but the emperor's death put an end to their uprising. The princes now being dead or reduced to insignificance, Claudius made Judea a province and entrusted it to Roman knights or to freedmen; one of the latter, Antonius Felix, practised every kind of cruelty and lust, wielding the power of king with all the instincts of a slave; he had married Drusilla, the grand-daughter of Cleopatra and Antony, and so was Antony's grandson-in‑law, while Claudius was Antony's grandson. 5.11.  Therefore, as I have said above, Titus pitched his camp before the walls of Jerusalem and displayed his legions in battle array: the Jews formed their line close beneath their walls, being thus ready to advance if successful, and having a refuge at hand in case they were driven back. Some horse and light-armed foot were sent against them, but fought indecisively; later the enemy retired, and during the following days they engaged in many skirmishes before their gates until at last their continual defeats drove them within their walls. The Romans now turned to preparations for an assault; for the soldiers thought it beneath their dignity to wait for the enemy to be starved out, and so they began to clamour for danger, part being prompted by bravery, but many were moved by their savage natures and their desire for booty. Titus himself had before his eyes a vision of Rome, its wealth and its pleasures, and he felt that if Jerusalem did not fall at once, his enjoyment of them was delayed. But the city stands on an eminence, and the Jews had defended it with works and fortifications sufficient to protect even level ground; for the two hills that rise to a great height had been included within walls that had been skillfully built, projecting out or bending in so as to put the flanks of an assailing body under fire. The rocks terminated in sheer cliffs, and towers rose to a height of sixty feet where the hill assisted the fortifications, and in the valleys they reached one hundred and twenty; they presented a wonderful sight, and appeared of equal height when viewed from a distance. An inner line of walls had been built around the palace, and on a conspicuous height stands Antony's Tower, so named by Herod in honour of Mark Antony. 5.12.  The temple was built like a citadel, with walls of its own, which were constructed with more care and effort than any of the rest; the very colonnades about the temple made a splendid defence. Within the enclosure is an ever-flowing spring; in the hills are subterraneous excavations, with pools and cisterns for holding rain-water. The founders of the city had foreseen that there would be many wars because the ways of their people differed so from those of the neighbours: therefore they had built at every point as if they expected a long siege; and after the city had been stormed by Pompey, their fears and experience taught them much. Moreover, profiting by the greed displayed during the reign of Claudius, they had bought the privilege of fortifying the city, and in time of peace had built walls as if for war. The population at this time had been increased by streams of rabble that flowed in from the other captured cities, for the most desperate rebels had taken refuge here, and consequently sedition was the more rife. There were three generals, three armies: the outermost and largest circuit of the walls was held by Simon, the middle of the city by John, and the temple was guarded by Eleazar. John and Simon were strong in numbers and equipment, Eleazar had the advantage of position: between these three there was constant fighting, treachery, and arson, and a great store of grain was consumed. Then John got possession of the temple by sending a party, under pretence of offering sacrifice, to slay Eleazar and his troops. So the citizens were divided into two factions until, at the approach of the Romans, foreign war produced concord. 5.13.  Prodigies had indeed occurred, but to avert them either by victims or by vows is held unlawful by a people which, though prone to superstition, is opposed to all propitiatory rites. Contending hosts were seen meeting in the skies, arms flashed, and suddenly the temple was illumined with fire from the clouds. of a sudden the doors of the shrine opened and a superhuman voice cried: "The gods are departing": at the same moment the mighty stir of their going was heard. Few interpreted these omens as fearful; the majority firmly believed that their ancient priestly writings contained the prophecy that this was the very time when the East should grow strong and that men starting from Judea should possess the world. This mysterious prophecy had in reality pointed to Vespasian and Titus, but the common people, as is the way of human ambition, interpreted these great destinies in their own favour, and could not be turned to the truth even by adversity. We have heard that the total number of the besieged of every age and both sexes was six hundred thousand; there were arms for all who could use them, and the number ready to fight was larger than could have been anticipated from the total population. Both men and women showed the same determination; and if they were to be forced to change their home, they feared life more than death. Such was the city and people against which Titus Caesar now proceeded; since the nature of the ground did not allow him to assault or employ any sudden operations, he decided to use earthworks and mantlets; the legions were assigned to their several tasks, and there was a respite of fighting until they made ready every device for storming a town that the ancients had ever employed or modern ingenuity invented.
16. Tosefta, Menachot, 13.22 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)

17. Cassius Dio, Roman History, 66.4.3, 66.5.4 (2nd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)

18. Philostratus The Athenian, Life of Apollonius, 5.33 (2nd cent. CE

5.33. While Apollonius spoke, Euphrates concealed the jealousy he already felt of one whose utterances clearly interested the emperor hardly less than those of an oracular shrine interest those who repair to it for guidance. But now at last his feelings overcame him, and, raising his voice above its usual pitch, he cried: We must not flatter men's impulses, nor allow ourselves to be carried away against our better judgment by men of unbridled ambition; but we should rather, if we are enamored of wisdom, recall them to the sober facts of life. Here is a policy about the very expediency of which we should first calmly deliberate, and yet you would have us prescribe a way of executing it, before you know if the measures under discussion are desirable. For myself, I quite approve of the deposition of Vitellius, whom I know to be a ruffian drunk with every sort of profligacy; nevertheless, although I know you to be a worthy man and of pre-eminent nobility of character, I deny that you ought to undertake the correction of Vitellius without first establishing an ideal for yourself. I need not instruct you in the excesses chargeable to monarchy as such, for you have yourself described them; but this I would have you recognize, that whereas youth leaping into the tyrant's saddle does but obey its own instincts — for playing the tyrant comes natural to young men as wine or women, and we cannot reproach a young man merely for making himself a tyrant, unless in pursuit of his role he shows himself a murderer, a ruffian, or a debauchee — on the other hand when an old man makes himself a tyrant, the first thing we blame in him is that he ever nursed such an ambition. It is no use his showing himself an example of humanity and moderation, for of these qualities we shall give the credit not to himself, but to his age and mature training. And men will believe that he nursed the ambition long before, when he was still a stripling, only that he failed to realize it; and such failures are partly attributed to ill luck, partly to pusillanimity. I mean that he will be thought to have renounced his dream of becoming a tyrant, because he distrusted his own star, or that he stood aside and made way for another who entertained the same ambition and whose superior manliness was dreaded. As for the count of ill luck, I may dismiss it; but as for that of cowardice, how can you avoid it? How escape the reproach of having been afraid of Nero, the most cowardly and supine of rulers? Look at the revolt against him planned by Vindex, you surely were the man of the hour, its natural leader, not he! For you had an army at your back, and the forces you were leading against the Jews, would they not have been more suitably employed in chastising Nero? For the Jews have long been in revolt not only against the Romans, but against humanity; and a race that has made its own a life apart and irreconcilable, that cannot share with the rest of mankind in the pleasures of the table nor join in their libations or prayers or sacrifices, are separated from ourselves by a greater gulf than divides us from Susa or Bactra or the more distant Indies. What sense then or reason was there in chastising them for revolting from us, whom we had better have never annexed? As for Nero, who would not have prayed with his own hand to slay a man well-nigh drunk with human blood, singing as he sat amidst the hecatombs of his victims? I confess that I ever pricked up my ears when any messenger from yonder brought tidings of yourself, and told us how in one hand battle you had slain thirty thousand Jews and in the next fifty thousand. In such cases I would take the courier aside and ask him: “But what of the great man? Will he not rise to higher things than this?' Since then you have discovered in Vitellius an image and ape of Nero, and are turning your arms against him, persist in the policy you have embraced, for it too is a noble one, only let its sequel be noble too. You know how dear to the Romans are the popular institutions, and how nearly all their conquests were won under a free polity. Put then an end to monarchy, of which you have repeated to us so evil a record; and bestow upon Romans a popular government, and on yourself the glory of inaugurating for them a reign of liberty. [ 1]
19. Babylonian Talmud, Betzah, None (3rd cent. CE - 6th cent. CE)

16a. כל מזונותיו של אדם קצובים לו מראש השנה ועד יום הכפורים חוץ מהוצאת שבתות והוצאת י"ט והוצאת בניו לתלמוד תורה שאם פחת פוחתין לו ואם הוסיף מוסיפין לו,א"ר אבהו מאי קראה (תהלים פא, ד) תקעו בחדש שופר (בכסא) ליום חגנו איזהו חג שהחדש מתכסה בו הוי אומר זה ראש השנה וכתיב (תהלים פא, ה) כי חק לישראל הוא משפט לאלהי יעקב,מאי משמע דהאי חק לישנא דמזוני הוא דכתיב (בראשית מז, כב) ואכלו את חקם אשר נתן להם פרעה מר זוטרא אמר מהכא (משלי ל, ח) הטריפני לחם חקי,תניא אמרו עליו על שמאי הזקן כל ימיו היה אוכל לכבוד שבת מצא בהמה נאה אומר זו לשבת מצא אחרת נאה הימנה מניח את השניה ואוכל את הראשונה,אבל הלל הזקן מדה אחרת היתה לו שכל מעשיו לשם שמים שנאמר (תהלים סח, כ) ברוך ה' יום יום תניא נמי הכי בית שמאי אומרים מחד שביך לשבתיך ובית הלל אומרים ברוך ה' יום יום,א"ר חמא ברבי חנינא הנותן מתנה לחברו אין צריך להודיעו שנאמר (שמות לד, כט) ומשה לא ידע כי קרן עור פניו,מיתיבי (שמות לא, יג) לדעת כי אני ה' מקדשכם אמר לו הקב"ה למשה משה מתנה טובה יש לי בבית גנזי ושבת שמה ואני מבקש ליתנה לישראל לך והודיע אותם מכאן אמר רבן שמעון בן גמליאל הנותן פת לתינוק צריך להודיע לאמו,לא קשיא הא במתנה דעבידא לאגלויי הא במתנה דלא עבידא לאגלויי שבת נמי מתנה דעבידא לאגלויי מתן שכרה לא עבידא לאגלויי:,אמר מר מכאן אמר רשב"ג הנותן פת לתינוק צריך להודיע לאמו מאי עביד ליה שייף ליה משחא ומלי ליה כוחלא והאידנא דחיישינן לכשפים מאי אמר רב פפא שייף ליה מאותו המין,א"ר יוחנן משום ר' שמעון בן יוחי כל מצות שנתן להם הקב"ה לישראל נתן להם בפרהסיא חוץ משבת שנתן להם בצנעא שנאמר (שמות לא, יז) ביני ובין בני ישראל אות היא לעולם,אי הכי לא לענשו נכרים עלה שבת אודועי אודעינהו מתן שכרה לא אודעינהו ואי בעית אימא מתן שכרה נמי אודעינהו נשמה יתירה לא אודעינהו,דאמר ר' שמעון בן לקיש נשמה יתירה נותן הקב"ה באדם ערב שבת ולמוצאי שבת נוטלין אותה הימנו שנאמר (שמות לא, יז) שבת וינפש כיון ששבת ווי אבדה נפש:,עושה אדם תבשיל מערב יום טוב: אמר אביי לא שנו אלא תבשיל אבל פת לא,מאי שנא פת דלא אילימא מידי דמלפת בעינן ופת לא מלפתא והא דייסא נמי דלא מלפתא דאמר ר' זירא הני בבלאי טפשאי דאכלי נהמא בנהמא ואמר רב נחומי בר זכריה משמיה דאביי מערבין בדייסא אלא מידי דלא שכיח בעינן ופת שכיחא ודייסא לא שכיחא,איכא דאמרי אמר אביי לא שנו אלא תבשיל אבל פת לא מאי טעמא אילימא דמידי דלא שכיח בעינן ופת שכיחא והא דייסא לא שכיחא ואמר רב נחומי בר זכריה משמיה דאביי אין מערבין בדייסא אלא מידי דמלפת בעינן ופת לא מלפתא ודייסא נמי לא מלפתא דאמר ר' זירא הני בבלאי טפשאי דאכלי נהמא בנהמא,תני ר' חייא עדשים שבשולי קדרה סומך עליהן משום ערובי תבשילין וה"מ דאית בהו כזית אמר רב יצחק בריה דרב יהודה שמנונית שעל גבי הסכין גוררו וסומך עליו משום ערובי תבשילין והני מילי דאית בהו כזית,אמר רב אסי אמר רב דגים קטנים מלוחים אין בהם משום בשולי נכרים אמר רב יוסף ואם צלאן נכרי סומך עליהם משום ערובי תבשילין ואי עבדינהו נכרי כסא דהרסנא אסור,פשיטא מהו דתימא 16a. bA person’s entire livelihood is allocated to himduring the period bfrom Rosh HaShana to Yom Kippur.During that time, as each individual is judged, it is decreed exactly how much money he will earn for all his expenditures of the coming year, bexcept for expenditures for iShabbatot /i, and expenditures for Festivals, and expenditures forthe school fees of bhis sons’ Torah study.In these areas, no exact amount is determined at the beginning of the year; rather, bif he reducedthe amount he spends for these purposes, bhisincome bis reducedand he earns that much less money in that year, band if he increasedhis expenditures in these areas, bhisincome bis increasedto ensure that he can cover the expense. Therefore, one may borrow for these purposes, since he is guaranteed to have enough income to cover whatever he spends for them., bRabbi Abbahu said: What is the versefrom which this dictum is derived? The source is: b“Blow the ishofarat the New Moon, at the concealedtime bfor our Festival day”(Psalms 81:4). bOn which Festival is the new moon concealed?You bmust saythat bit is Rosh HaShana,which occurs on the first of the month, when the moon is not yet visible, while the moon is visible during the other Festivals, which occur in the middle of the month. bAnd it is writtenin the next verse: b“For it is a statute [ iḥok /i] for Israel, a judgment of the God of Jacob”(Psalms 81:5).,The Gemara explains: bFrom wheremay it bbe inferred that thisword b“statute [ iḥok /i]” is a termrelating bto food? As it is written: “And they ate their allotment [ iḥukkam /i], which Pharaoh gave them”(Genesis 47:22). bMar Zutra said:One can learn that iḥokis referring to food bfrom here: “Feed me with my allotted [ iḥukki /i] bread”(Proverbs 30:8)., bIt is taughtin a ibaraita /i: bThey said about Shammai the Elderthat ball his days he would eat in honor of Shabbat.How so? If bhe found a choice animal, hewould bsay: This is for Shabbat.If bhesubsequently bfound another one choicer than it, hewould bset aside the secondfor Shabbat band eat the first.He would eat the first to leave the better-quality animal for Shabbat, which continually rendered his eating an act of honoring Shabbat., bHowever, Hillel the Elder had a different trait, that all his actions,including those on a weekday, bwere for the sake of Heaven, as it is stated: “Blessed be the Lord, day by day;He bears our burden, our God who is our salvation; Selah” (Psalms 68:20), meaning that God gives a blessing for each and every day. bThat is also taughtin a ibaraitain more general terms: bBeit Shammai say: From the firstday bof the week,Sunday, start preparing already bfor your Shabbat. And Beit Hillel say: “Blessed be the Lord, day by day.” /b,§ Apropos the statements about honoring Shabbat, the Gemara cites another statement on the same topic. bRabbi Ḥama, son of Rabbi Ḥanina, said: One who gives a gift to his friend need not inform himthat he has given it to him, and he need not concern himself that the recipient might not realize who gave it to him. bAs it is stated: “And Moses did not know that the skin of his face was radiant”(Exodus 34:29); Moses received this gift unawares.,The Gemara braises an objectionto this. Isn’t it written: “Nevertheless, you must keep My iShabbatot /i, for this is a sign between Me and you throughout your generations, bthat you may know that I am the Lord Who sanctifies you”(Exodus 31:13), which the Sages expounded as follows: bThe Holy One, Blessed be He, said to Moses: Moses, I have a good gift in My treasury, and its name is Shabbat, and I wish to give it to the Jewish people. Go and inform themof this intention of Mine. bAnd from here Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel said: One who givesa gift of ba piece of bread to a child must inform his motherof his actions, so that the child’s parents will be aware of the giver’s fond feelings for them, thereby enhancing friendly relations and companionship among Jews. This appears to be in direct contradiction to Rabbi Ḥama’s statement.,The Gemara answers: This is bnot difficult; thiscase, where one need not inform the recipient, bis referring to a gift that is likely to be revealed,such as Moses’ shining face, which everyone would point out to him; bthatcase, where one must inform the recipient, bis referring to a gift that is not likely to be revealedin the natural course of events. The Gemara challenges: Isn’t bShabbat also a gift that is likely to be revealed,as the Jews would eventually be instructed with regard to the time and nature of Shabbat? The Gemara answers: Nevertheless, bits reward is not likely to be revealed.Therefore, God told Moses to inform the Jews of the gift of Shabbat and its reward., bThe Master saidearlier that bfrom here Rabban Shimon ben Gamliel said: One who gives a piece of bread to a child must inform his mother.The Gemara asks: bWhat does he do to him;how does he inform the child’s mother? bHe rubs oil on him and paints his eyes blue,so that when the child arrives home his mother will ask him who did this to him and he will reply that it was a person who also gave him a piece of bread. The Gemara comments: bAnd nowadays, when we are concerned about witchcraft,i.e., that painting the child’s eyes might have been performed as an act of sorcery, bwhatshould one do? bRav Pappa said: He rubs onthe child a little bof that same typeof food that he put on the bread, such as butter or cheese, and this will cause the child’s mother to notice that he received a present.,The Gemara cites a further statement with regard to the gift of Shabbat to the Jewish people. bRabbi Yoḥa said in the name of Rabbi Shimon ben Yoḥai: Allthe bmitzvot that the Holy One, Blessed be He, gave to the Jewish people, He gave to them in public [ iparhesya /i] except for Shabbat, which he gave to them in private. As it is stated: “It is a sign between Me and the children of Israel forever”(Exodus 31:17), meaning that in a sense, it is a secret between God and the Jewish people.,The Gemara challenges: bIfit is bsothat it was given in secret so that not everyone knew about it, bthe gentiles should not be punished fornot wanting to accept bit;they are liable to receive punishment for refusing to accept the other mitzvot of the Torah. The Gemara answers: The Holy One, Blessed be He, bdid inform themof the concept of bShabbat,but He bdid not inform themof bthe rewardfor the fulfillment of the mitzva. bAnd if you wish, sayinstead that bHe also informedthe gentiles of bits reward,but about the idea of the badditional soulgiven to each person on Shabbat bHe did not inform them. /b, bAs Rabbi Shimon ben Lakish said: The Holy One, Blessed be He, gives a person an additional soul on Shabbat eve, and at the conclusion of Shabbat removes it from him, as it is stated: “He ceased from work and was refreshed [ ivayinafash /i]”(Exodus 31:17). Rabbi Shimon ben Lakish expounds the verse as follows: bSince he ceased from work,and now Shabbat has concluded and his additional soul is removed from him, bwoe [ ivai /i]for the additional bsoul [ inefesh /i]that is blost. /b,It was taught in the mishna that ba person may prepare a cooked dish on a Festival eveand rely on it for Shabbat for the joining of cooked foods. bAbaye said: They taughtthat the joining of cooked foods allows one to cook on a Festival for Shabbat bonlywhen it is made from ba cooked dish; however,if it is composed of bbreadalone, bno,this is not sufficient.,The Gemara asks: bWhat is differentabout bbread thatmakes it bnotfit for this purpose? bIf we saythat bwe require something that accompaniesbread, band bread does not accompanyitself, the following difficulty arises: bPorridge also does not accompanybread, as bRabbi Zeira said: Those foolish Babylonians eat bread with bread,referring to their custom of eating bread with porridge. This shows that porridge is no better accompaniment to bread than bread itself, bandyet bRav Neḥumi bar Zekharya said in the name of Abaye: One may establish an ieiruvwith porridge. Rather,one must say as follows: bWe require something that is not routine,so that it will be clear that one is setting it aside for the purpose of an ieiruv /i, band bread is routine,whereas bporridge is not routine. /b, bSome saya different version of this discussion: bAbaye said: They taughtthat a joining of cooked foods allows one to cook on a Festival for Shabbat bonlywhen it is made from ba cooked dish; however,if it is composed of bbread, no,that is not sufficient. The Gemara asks: bWhat is the reasonfor this? bIf we say that we require something that is not routine, and bread is routine,the following difficulty arises: bIsn’t porridge notparticularly broutine? Andyet bRav Neḥumi bar Zekharya said in the name of Abaye: One may not establish an ieiruvwith porridge. Rather,one should say as follows: bWe require something that accompaniesbread, band bread does not accompanyitself, band porridge, too, does not accompanybread, bas Rabbi Zeira said: Those foolish Babylonians eat bread with bread,from which it is clear that like bread, porridge does not accompany bread and consequently cannot constitute an ieiruv /i., bRabbi Ḥiyya taught:With regard to blentils thatremain bat the bottom of a poton the eve of a Festival, bone may rely on them forthe bjoining of cooked foods.Although they were not prepared with this purpose in mind, they are nevertheless considered a cooked dish. bAnd this applies onlyif bthere is an olive-bulkof lentils in total. Similarly, bRav Yitzḥak, son of Rav Yehuda, said:With regard to bfatof meat and the like bthat is on a knife, one may scrape itoff the knife band rely on it for the joining of cooked foods; and this applies onlyif bthere is an olive-bulkof fat in total., bRav Asi saidthat bRav said: Small salted fishthat a gentile then cooked bare not considered the cooked food of gentilesbecause cooking does not prepare them to be food any more than they already were, as they can be eaten in their salted state. bRav Yosef said: Andeven bif a gentile roasted them,a Jew may brely on them for the joining of cooked foods,as they are not considered the cooked food of a gentile and are indeed already edible. However, bifthe bgentile made theminto bfish fried with oil and flour [ ikasa deharsena /i], it is prohibitedto eat them. In this case they are considered the cooked food of a gentile, since his actions have made them into noteworthy food.,The Gemara challenges: bIt is obviousthat this is the case; it need not be taught. The Gemara answers: The justification for teaching it is blest you saythat
20. Babylonian Talmud, Shabbat, None (3rd cent. CE - 6th cent. CE)

13b. ושימש תלמידי חכמים הרבה מפני מה מת בחצי ימיו ולא היה אדם מחזירה דבר פעם אחת נתארחתי אצלה והיתה מסיחה כל אותו מאורע ואמרתי לה בתי בימי נדותך מה הוא אצלך אמרה לי חס ושלום אפי' באצבע קטנה לא נגע [בי] בימי לבוניך מהו אצלך אכל עמי ושתה עמי וישן עמי בקירוב בשר ולא עלתה דעתו על דבר אחר ואמרתי לה ברוך המקום שהרגו שלא נשא פנים לתורה שהרי אמרה תורה (ויקרא יח, יט) ואל אשה בנדת טומאתה לא תקרב כי אתא רב דימי אמר מטה חדא הואי במערבא אמרי אמר רב יצחק בר יוסף סינר מפסיק בינו לבינה:, big strongמתני׳ /strong /big ואלו מן ההלכות שאמרו בעליית חנניה בן חזקיה בן גרון שעלו לבקרו נמנו ורבו ב"ש על ב"ה וי"ח דברים גזרו בו ביום:, big strongגמ׳ /strong /big א"ל אביי לרב יוסף אלו תנן או ואלו תנן ואלו תנן הני דאמרן או אלו תנן דבעינן למימר קמן תא שמע אין פולין לאור הנר ואין קורין לאור הנר ואלו מן ההלכות שאמרו בעליית חנניה בן חזקיה בן גרון ש"מ ואלו תנן ש"מ:,ת"ר מי כתב מגילת תענית אמרו חנניה בן חזקיה וסיעתו שהיו מחבבין את הצרות,אמר רשב"ג אף אנו מחבבין את הצרות אבל מה נעשה שאם באנו לכתוב אין אנו מספיקין,ד"א אין שוטה נפגע,ד"א אין בשר המת מרגיש באיזמל איני והאמר רב יצחק קשה רימה למת כמחט בבשר החי שנא' (איוב יד, כב) אך בשרו עליו יכאב ונפשו עליו תאבל אימא אין בשר המת שבחי מרגיש באיזמל,אמר רב יהודה אמר רב ברם זכור אותו האיש לטוב וחנניה בן חזקיה שמו שאלמלא הוא נגנז ספר יחזקאל שהיו דבריו סותרין דברי תורה מה עשה העלו לו ג' מאות גרבי שמן וישב בעלייה ודרשן:,ושמנה עשר דבר גזרו: מאי נינהו שמנה עשר דבר דתנן אלו פוסלין את התרומה האוכל אוכל ראשון והאוכל אוכל שני והשותה משקין טמאין והבא ראשו ורובו במים שאובין וטהור שנפלו על ראשו ורובו שלשה לוגין מים שאובין והספר והידים והטבול יום והאוכלים והכלים שנטמאו במשקין,מאן תנא האוכל אוכל ראשון והאוכל אוכל שני מפסל פסלי טמויי 13b. band served Torah scholars extensively, why did he die at half his days?Where is the length of days promised him in the verse? bNo one would respond to herastonishment bat all.Eliyahu said: bOne time I was a guest in herhouse, band she was relating that entire eventwith regard to the death of her husband. bAnd I said to her: My daughter, during the period of your menstruation, howdid bheact btoward you? She said to me: Heaven forbid, he did not touch me even withhis blittle finger.And I asked her: bIn the days of your whitegarments, after the menstrual flow ended, and you were just counting clean days, bhow did he act toward youthen? She said to me: bHe ate with me, and drank with me, and slept with me with bodily contact and,however, bit did not enter his mind about something else,i.e., conjugal relations. bAnd I said to her: Blessed is the Omnipresent who killed himfor this sin, basyour husband bdid not show respect to the Torah. The Torah said: “And to a woman in the separation of her impurity you should not approach”(Leviticus 18:19), even mere affectionate contact is prohibited. The Gemara relates that bwhen Rav Dimi camefrom Eretz Yisrael to Babylonia, bhe said:That student did not actually sleep with her with bodily contact; rather, bit wasin bone bedthat they slept without contact. bIn the West,in Eretz Yisrael, bthey saythat bRav Yitzḥak bar Yosef said:When they would sleep together in one bed, she wore ba belt [ isinar /i]from the waist down that bwould separate between him and her.Nevertheless, since the matter is prohibited, that student was punished., strongMISHNA: /strong bAnd these are among the ihalakhotthatthe Sages, bwho went up to visit him, said in the upper story of Ḥaya ben Ḥizkiya ben Garon.The precise nature of these ihalakhotwill be explained in the Gemara. These ihalakhotare considered one unit because they share a distinctive element. Since many Sages were there, among them most of the generation’s Torah scholars in Eretz Yisrael, they engaged in discussion of various ihalakhotof the Torah. It turned out that when the people expressing opinions bwere counted,the students of bBeit Shammai outnumberedthe students of bBeit Hillel, and they issued decreeswith regard to beighteen matters on that dayin accordance with the opinion of Beit Shammai., strongGEMARA: /strong With regard to the language that introduces our mishna, bAbaye said to Rav Yosef: Did we learnin our mishna: bThese areamong the ihalakhot /i, bor did we learnin our mishna: bAnd these areamong the ihalakhot /i? The difference is significant. bDid we learn: And these,and if so, the reference would be to bthose that we saidearlier, i.e., that those ihalakhotare included in the decrees? bOr did we learn: These,and if so the reference would be to bthose that we seek to mention below? Comeand bheara solution to this dilemma from the fact that these matters were taught together in a ibaraita /i: bOne may not shakegarments to rid them of lice bby the light of the lamp and one may not read by the light of the lamp; and these are among the ihalakhotthatthe Sages bsaid in the attic of Ḥaya ben Ḥizkiya ben Garon. Conclude from thisthat bwe learned: And thesein the mishna, and the reference is to the decrees mentioned earlier., bThe Sages taughtin a ibaraitawith regard to iMegillat Ta’anit /i, which is a list of days of redemption that were established as celebrations for generations: bWho wrote iMegillat Ta’anit /i?This scroll was written by bḤaya ben Ḥizkiyaben Garon band his faction, who held dearthe memory of bthe troublesthat befell Israel and their salvation from them., bRabban Shimon ben Gamliel said: We also hold dearthe memory of bthe troublesfrom which Israel was saved, bbut what can we do? If we came to writeall the days of that kind, bwe would not manage todo so, as the troubles that Israel experienced in every generation and era are numerous, and on each day there is an event worthy of commemoration., bAlternatively:Why do we not record the days of salvation from troubles? Just as ba crazy person is not hurt,as he is not aware of the troubles that befall him, so too, we cannot appreciate the magnitude of the calamities that befall us., bAlternatively: The flesh of a dead person does not feel the scalpel[iizemel/b] cutting into him, and we, too, are in such a difficult situation that we no longer feel the pains and troubles. With regard to the last analogy, the Gemara asks: bIs that so? Didn’t Rav Yitzḥak say: Thegnawing of bmaggots is as excruciating to the dead asthe stab of ba needle is to the flesh of the living,as bit is statedwith regard to the dead: b“But his flesh shall hurt him, and his soul mourns over him”(Job 14:22)? Rather, bsayand explain the matter: bThe dead fleshin parts of the body bof the living personthat are insensitive to pain bdoes not feel the scalpelthat cuts him., bRav Yehuda saidthat bRav said: Truly, that man is remembered for the good, and his name is Ḥaya ben Ḥizkiya, as if not for him, the book of Ezekiel would have been suppressed because its contents,in many details, bcontradict matters of Torah.The Sages sought to suppress the book and exclude it from the canon. bWhat did he,Ḥaya ben Ḥizkiya, bdo? They brought him three hundred jugs of oil,for light and food, bupto his upper story, band he satisolated bin the upper storyand did not move from there until bhe homiletically interpretedall of those verses in the book of Ezekiel that seemed contradictory, and resolved the contradictions.,We learned in the mishna that when the Sages went up to the upper story of the house of Ḥaya ben Ḥizkiya ben Garon, they were counted band issued eighteen decreesin accordance with the opinion of Beit Shammai. The Gemara asks: bWhat are those eighteen matters?The Gemara answers: bAs we learnedin a mishna, a list of the decrees that the Sages issued with regard to items whose level of impurity is such that if they come into contact with iterumathey disqualify it. By means of that contact, the iterumaitself becomes impure, but it does not transmit impurity to other items. bThese disqualify iteruma /i: One who eats foodwith bfirstdegree ritual impurity status acquired as a result of contact with a primary source of ritual impurity, e.g., a creeping animal; band one who eats foodwith bseconddegree ritual impurity status acquired as a result of contact with an item with first degree ritual impurity status; band one who drinks impure liquidsof any degree of impurity; band one whose head and most of hisbody bcome into drawn waterafter he immersed himself in a ritual bath to purify himself; band a ritually pure person that three ilog /iof bdrawn water fell on his head and most of hisbody; band a Torah scroll; and the handsof any person who did not purify himself for the purpose of handling iteruma /i; bandone bwho immersed himself during the day,i.e., one who was impure and immersed himself, and until evening he is not considered completely pure; band foods and vessels that became impure bycoming into contact with impure bliquids.Contact with any of these disqualifies the iteruma /i. The Gemara seeks to clarify these matters.,The Gemara asks first: bWho is the itanna /iwho holds that bone who eats foodwith bfirstdegree ritual impurity status, band one who eats foodwith bseconddegree ritual impurity status, bdisqualifythe iteruma,but
21. Babylonian Talmud, Yoma, None (3rd cent. CE - 6th cent. CE)

9b. ששהו את קיניהן מיהא מעלה עליהן הכתוב כאילו שכבום,בזיון קדשים דכתיב (שמואל א ב, טו) גם בטרם יקטירון את החלב ובא נער הכהן ואמר לאיש הזובח תנה בשר לצלות לכהן ולא יקח ממך בשר מבושל כי אם חי ויאמר אליו האיש קטר יקטירון כיום החלב וקח לך כאשר תאוה נפשך ואמר לו כי עתה תתן ואם לא לקחתי בחזקה ותהי חטאת הנערים גדולה מאד את פני ה' כי נאצו האנשים את מנחת ה',מקדש ראשון מפני מה חרב מפני ג' דברים שהיו בו ע"ז וגלוי עריות ושפיכות דמים ע"ז דכתיב (ישעיהו כח, כ) כי קצר המצע מהשתרע,מאי קצר המצע מהשתרע א"ר יונתן קצר מצע זה מהשתרר עליו שני רעים כאחד,(ישעיהו כח, כ) והמסכה צרה כהתכנס א"ר שמואל בר נחמני כי מטי רבי יונתן להאי קרא בכי אמר מאן דכתיב ביה (תהלים לג, ז) כונס כנד מי הים נעשית לו מסכה צרה,גלוי עריות דכתיב (ישעיהו ג, טז) ויאמר ה' יען כי גבהו בנות ציון ותלכנה נטויות גרון ומשקרות עינים הלוך וטפוף תלכנה וברגליהן תעכסנה יען כי גבהו בנות ציון שהיו מהלכות ארוכה בצד קצרה ותלכנה נטויות גרון שהיו מהלכות בקומה זקופה ומשקרות עינים דהוו מליין כוחלא עיניהן הלוך וטפוף תלכנה שהיו מהלכות עקב בצד גודל וברגליהן תעכסנה א"ר יצחק שהיו מביאות מור ואפרסמון ומניחות במנעליהן וכשמגיעות אצל בחורי ישראל בועטות ומתיזות עליהן ומכניסין בהן יצה"ר כארס בכעוס,שפיכות דמים דכתיב (מלכים ב כא, טז) וגם דם נקי שפך מנשה [הרבה מאד] עד אשר מלא את ירושלם פה לפה,אבל מקדש שני שהיו עוסקין בתורה ובמצות וגמילות חסדים מפני מה חרב מפני שהיתה בו שנאת חנם ללמדך ששקולה שנאת חנם כנגד שלש עבירות ע"ז גלוי עריות ושפיכות דמים,רשעים היו אלא שתלו בטחונם בהקב"ה אתאן למקדש ראשון דכתיב (מיכה ג, יא) ראשיה בשוחד ישפוטו וכהניה במחיר יורו ונביאיה בכסף יקסומו ועל ה' ישענו לאמר הלא ה' בקרבנו לא תבוא עלינו רעה לפיכך הביא עליהן הקב"ה ג' גזרות כנגד ג' עבירות שבידם שנאמר (מיכה ג, יב) לכן בגללכם ציון שדה תחרש וירושלים עיין תהיה והר הבית לבמות יער,ובמקדש ראשון לא הוה ביה שנאת חנם והכתיב (יחזקאל כא, יז) מגורי אל חרב היו את עמי לכן ספוק אל ירך וא"ר (אליעזר) אלו בני אדם שאוכלין ושותין זה עם זה ודוקרין זה את זה בחרבות שבלשונם,ההיא בנשיאי ישראל הואי דכתיב (יחזקאל כא, יז) זעק והילל בן אדם כי היא היתה בעמי ותניא זעק והילל בן אדם יכול לכל תלמוד לומר היא בכל נשיאי ישראל,ר' יוחנן ור"א דאמרי תרווייהו ראשונים שנתגלה עונם נתגלה קצם אחרונים שלא נתגלה עונם לא נתגלה קצם,אמר רבי יוחנן טובה צפורנן של ראשונים מכריסו של אחרונים א"ל ריש לקיש אדרבה אחרונים עדיפי אף על גב דאיכא שעבוד מלכיות קא עסקי בתורה אמר ליה בירה תוכיח שחזרה לראשונים ולא חזרה לאחרונים,שאלו את רבי אלעזר ראשונים גדולים או אחרונים גדולים אמר להם תנו עיניכם בבירה איכא דאמרי אמר להם עידיכם בירה,ריש לקיש הוי סחי בירדנא אתא רבה בר בר חנה יהב ליה ידא א"ל אלהא סנינא לכו דכתיב (שיר השירים ח, ט) אם חומה היא נבנה עליה טירת כסף ואם דלת היא נצור עליה לוח ארז אם עשיתם עצמכם כחומה ועליתם כולכם בימי עזרא נמשלתם ככסף שאין רקב שולט בו עכשיו שעליתם כדלתות נמשלתם כארז שהרקב שולט בו,מאי ארז אמר עולא ססמגור מאי ססמגור אמר רבי אבא בת קול כדתניא משמתו נביאים האחרונים חגי זכריה ומלאכי נסתלקה רוח הקדש מישראל ועדיין היו משתמשין בבת קול,וריש לקיש מי משתעי בהדי רבה בר בר חנה ומה רבי (אליעזר) דמרא דארעא דישראל הוה ולא הוה משתעי ר"ל בהדיה דמאן דמשתעי ר"ל בהדיה בשוק יהבו ליה עיסקא בלא סהדי בהדי רבב"ח משתעי,אמר רב פפא שדי גברא בינייהו או ריש לקיש הוה וזעירי או רבה בר בר חנה הוה ור"א כי אתא לקמיה דרבי יוחנן א"ל לאו היינו טעמא א"נ סליקו כולהו בימי עזרא לא הוה שריא שכינה במקדש שני דכתיב (בראשית ט, כז) יפת אלהים ליפת וישכן באהלי שם 9b. bthat they deferredthe sacrifice of btheirbird-offerings by women after childbirth; bnevertheless, the verse ascribes to them as if they laywith bthem.These women came to the Tabernacle to sacrifice doves or pigeons as bird-offerings as part of their purification process, which would permit them to engage in sexual relations with their husbands. Eli’s sons delayed the sacrifice of these offerings and thereby delayed the return of these women to their husbands and their fulfillment of the mitzva of procreation. Even though, according to this opinion, Eli’s sons did not actually engage in sexual relations with these women, the verse attributes that degree of severity to their conduct.,Eli’s sons also sinned in the bdegradation of consecrated items, as it is written: “Before the fat was made burned, the priest’s servant came and said to the man who sacrificed: Hand over some flesh to roast for the priest, for he will not take cooked flesh from you, but raw. And if the man said to him: Let the fat be burnt first and then take as much as you want, then he would say: No, hand it over right now, or I will take it by force. The sin of the young men against the Lord was very great, for the men treated the Lord’s offerings with contempt”(I Samuel 2:15–17).,§ The iToseftacontinues with a discussion of the sins of the Jewish people over the generations: bDue to whatreason bwasthe bFirst Temple destroyed?It was destroyed bdue tothe fact bthat there were three mattersthat existed binthe First Temple: bIdol worship, forbidden sexual relations, and bloodshed. Idol worship, as it is written: “The bed is too short for stretching [ imehistare’a /i],and the cover is too narrow for gathering” (Isaiah 28:20)., bWhat isthe meaning of: b“The bed is too short for stretching?” Rabbi Yonatan said: This bed is too short for two counterparts [ ire’im /i] to dominate [ imehistarer /i]. iMehistare’ais a contraction of imehistarer re’im /i. It is inconceivable that there would be in one Temple both service of God and worship of the idol placed there by King Manasseh., bWhatis the meaning of: bAnd the cover [ ivehamasseikha /i] is too narrow [ itzara /i] for gathering [ ikehitkannes /i]? Rabbi Shmuel bar Naḥmani saidthat bwhen Rabbi Yonatan reached this verse, he weptand bsaid: For He about Whom it is written: “He gathers [ ikones /i] waters of the sea together as a heap”(Psalms 33:7), bthe idol [ imasseikha /i] became a rival [ itzara /i]?In the homiletic interpretation, imasseikhais interpreted as idol and itzarais interpreted as rival, as in the term used to describe the relationship between two women married to the same husband, iisha tzara /i.,With regard to bforbidden sexual relations, it is written: “The Lord says because the daughters of Zion are haughty and walk with outstretched necks and wanton eyes, walking and mincing as they go and making a tinkling with their feet”(Isaiah 3:16). br bBecause the daughters of Zion are haughty,indicates a btallwoman walking balongsidea bshortone so that the tall woman would stand out. br bAnd walk with outstretched necks,indicates bthat they would walk with upright statureand carry themselves in an immodest way. br bAnd wanton eyes,indicates bthat they would fill their eyes with blue eye shadowin order to draw attention to their eyes. br bWalking and mincing as they go,indicates bthat they would walkin small steps, bheel to toe,so onlookers would notice them. br bMaking a tinkling [ ite’akasna /i] with their feet, Rabbi Yitzḥak said:This teaches bthat they would bring myrrh and balsam and placethem bin their shoesand would walk in the marketplaces of Jerusalem. bAnd once they approacheda place where byoung Jewish menwere congregated, bthey would stamptheir feet on the ground band splashthe perfume btoward them and instill the evil inclination into them like venom of a viper [ ike’eres bikhos /i]. /b,With regard to bbloodshed it is written: “Moreover, Manasseh shed innocent blood very much, until he had filled Jerusalem from one end to another”(II Kings 21:16)., bHowever,considering that the people during bthe Second Templeperiod bwere engaged in Torahstudy, observance of bmitzvot, and acts of kindness,and that they did not perform the sinful acts that were performed in the First Temple, bwhy wasthe Second Temple bdestroyed?It was destroyed bdue tothe fact bthat there was wanton hatredduring that period. This comes bto teach you thatthe sin of bwanton hatred is equivalent to the threesevere btransgressions: Idol worship, forbidden sexual relations and bloodshed. /b,The Gemara continues: bThey were wicked; however, they put their faith in the Holy One, Blessed be He.With that statement bwe have come tothe bFirst Templeera, about bwhich it is written: “Her chiefs judge for bribes, her priests give rulings for a fee, and her prophets divine for pay; yet they rely on the Lord, saying: The Lord is in our midst, no tragedy will overtake us”(Micah 3:11). At least the final portion of the verse was to their credit. bTherefore, the Holy One, Blessed be He, brought upon them three decrees corresponding to their three wicked sins, as it is stated: “Therefore, due to you Zion will be plowed as a field, Jerusalem will become heaps of ruins, and the Temple Mount will be a like a shrine in the woods”(Micah 3:12).,The Gemara asks: bAnd in the First Templeera bwas therereally bno baseless hatred? Isn’t it written:“Cry and wail, son of man, for this will befall my people, this will befall all the princes of Israel: bThey will be cast before the sword together with my people, therefore strike the thigh”(Ezekiel 21:17)? bRabbi Eliezerinterpreted this verse and bsaid: These are people who eat and drink with each other, and stab each other with verbal barbs.Apparently, even those who were close were filled with hatred toward one another.,The Gemara answers: bThatbehavior bwasfound only among bthe princes of Israel, as it is written: “Cry and wail, son of man, for this will befall my people”; and it was taughtin a ibaraita /i: b“Cry and wail, son of man,for this will befall my people”; one bmighthave thought that this unsavory trait was common bto all.Therefore, bthe verse states: “This will befall all the princes of Israel.”It was only the leaders of the nation who harbored baseless hatred for each other; the people of the nation as a whole did not hate one another.,§ It was bRabbi Yoḥa and Rabbi Elazar who both said:In the case of bthe former,the people in the First Temple era, bwhose sin was exposedand no attempt was made to disguise their conduct, the bendof btheirpunishment bwas exposed,and the prophet informed them that they would return to their land in seventy years. In the case of bthe latter,the people in the Second Temple era, bwhose sin was not exposed;rather, they attempted to disguise their conduct, the bendof btheirpunishment bwas not exposed. /b, bRabbi Yoḥa said: The fingernails of the former are preferable to the belly of the latter. Reish Lakish said to him: On the contrary, the latter were superior; even though there is subjugation by the kingdoms, they are engaged in Torah study.Rabbi Yoḥa bsaid toReish Lakish: bThe Temple will provethat the former were superior, bas itwas brestored to the former.The Second Temple was constructed after the destruction of the first. However, after the destruction of the Second Temple, bitwas bnot restored to the latter.Apparently, the former were superior to the latter.,Similarly, the Sages basked Rabbi Elazar: Are the former greater or are the latter greater? He said to them: Look to the Templeand see if it has been restored, as it was to our predecessors. bSome saythe exchange was slightly different: bHe said to them: The Temple is your witness.The restoration of the Temple after the destruction of the First Temple, attests to the fact that the former generation was greater., bReish Lakish was swimming in the Jordan Riverwhen bRabba bar bar Ḥana came and gave him a handto help him out. Reish Lakish bsaid to him: My God! I hate youBabylonians, bas it is written: “If she be a wall we will build a silver turret upon her, if she be a door we will cover her with boards of cedar”(Song of Songs 8:9). This is the meaning of the verse as it applies to the Jewish people: bHad you rendered yourselvesa solid bloc blike a wall and all ascendedto Eretz Yisrael bin the days of Ezra, you would have been likened to silver, which rot does not infest,in the sense that you would have merited experiencing the Divine Presence in all its glory. bNow that you ascended like doors,and only some of you came to Eretz Yisrael, byou are likened to cedar, which rot infests,and you merit experiencing only partial revelation of the Divine Presence.,The Gemara asks: bWhatrot infests bcedar? Ulla said: It is isasmagor /i,a type of worm. The Gemara asks: bWhatdoes isasmagor /ihave to do with the Divine Presence during the Second Temple era? bRabbi Abba said:Just as little remains from a cedar tree infested by this worm, similarly, all that remained from the Divine Presence during the Second Temple period was a bDivine Voice, as it was taughtin a ibaraita /i: bAfter the last prophets Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi died, the Divine Spiritof prophetic revelation bdeparted from the Jewish people, and they were still utilizing a Divine Voice,which they heard as an echo of prophecy.,The Gemara asks: bAnd would Reish Lakish speak with Rabba bar bar Ḥanain public? bJust as Rabbi Elazar, who was the master of Eretz Yisraelin wisdom and character, bandnevertheless, bReish Lakish would not speak with himin public, as Reish Lakish was sparing in his speech and extended friendship to only a select few prominent, righteous people, to the extent that ba person to whom Reish Lakishwas seen bspeaking in the marketplace, one would give hima loan and bdo businesswith him bwithout witnesses;would he bhave spoken with Rabba bar bar Ḥana? /b, bRav Pappa said: Cast a man between them,and say that the incident did not involve Reish Lakish and Rabba bar bar Ḥana. It bwas either Reish Lakishbathing in the river band Ze’iri,the prominent Babylonian Sage, who extended him a hand, borit was bRabba bar bar Ḥanawho was in the river band Rabbi Elazarextended a hand to him. In any event, bwhenthe Sage who heard what Reish Lakish said bcame before Rabbi Yoḥaand related it, Rabbi Yoḥa bsaid to him: That is not the reason; even had they all ascended in the days of Ezra, the Divine Presence would not have rested in the Second Temple, as it is written: “God will enlarge Japheth, and dwell in the tents of Shem”(Genesis 9:27).
22. Augustine, The City of God, 4.31, 6.11 (4th cent. CE - 5th cent. CE)

4.31. What says Varro himself, whom we grieve to have found, although not by his own judgment, placing the scenic plays among things divine? When in many passages he is exhorting, like a religious man, to the worship of the gods, does he not in doing so admit that he does not in his own judgment believe those things which he relates that the Roman state has instituted; so that he does not hesitate to affirm that if he were founding a new state, he could enumerate the gods and their names better by the rule of nature? But being born into a nation already ancient, he says that he finds himself bound to accept the traditional names and surnames of the gods, and the histories connected with them, and that his purpose in investigating and publishing these details is to incline the people to worship the gods, and not to despise them. By which words this most acute man sufficiently indicates that he does not publish all things, because they would not only have been contemptible to himself, but would have seemed despicable even to the rabble, unless they had been passed over in silence. I should be thought to conjecture these things, unless he himself, in another passage, had openly said, in speaking of religious rites, that many things are true which it is not only not useful for the common people to know, but that it is expedient that the people should think otherwise, even though falsely, and therefore the Greeks have shut up the religious ceremonies and mysteries in silence, and within walls. In this he no doubt expresses the policy of the so-called wise men by whom states and peoples are ruled. Yet by this crafty device the malign demons are wonderfully delighted, who possess alike the deceivers and the deceived, and from whose tyranny nothing sets free save the grace of God through Jesus Christ our Lord. The same most acute and learned author also says, that those alone seem to him to have perceived what God is, who have believed Him to be the soul of the world, governing it by design and reason. And by this, it appears, that although he did not attain to the truth - for the true God is not a soul, but the maker and author of the soul - yet if he could have been free to go against the prejudices of custom, he could have confessed and counselled others that the one God ought to be worshipped, who governs the world by design and reason; so that on this subject only this point would remain to be debated with him, that he had called Him a soul, and not rather the creator of the soul. He says, also, that the ancient Romans, for more than a hundred and seventy years, worshipped the gods without an image. And if this custom, he says, could have remained till now, the gods would have been more purely worshipped. In favor of this opinion, he cites as a witness among others the Jewish nation; nor does he hesitate to conclude that passage by saying of those who first consecrated images for the people, that they have both taken away religious fear from their fellow citizens, and increased error, wisely thinking that the gods easily fall into contempt when exhibited under the stolidity of images. But as he does not say they have transmitted error, but that they have increased it, he therefore wishes it to be understood that there was error already when there were no images. Wherefore, when he says they alone have perceived what God is who have believed Him to be the governing soul of the world, and thinks that the rites of religion would have been more purely observed without images, who fails to see how near he has come to the truth? For if he had been able to do anything against so inveterate an error, he would certainly have given it as his opinion both that the one God should be worshipped, and that He should be worshipped without an image; and having so nearly discovered the truth, perhaps he might easily have been put in mind of the mutability of the soul, and might thus have perceived that the true God is that immutable nature which made the soul itself. Since these things are so, whatever ridicule such men have poured in their writings against the plurality of the gods, they have done so rather as compelled by the secret will of God to confess them, than as trying to persuade others. If, therefore, any testimonies are adduced by us from these writings, they are adduced for the confutation of those who are unwilling to consider from how great and maligt a power of the demons the singular sacrifice of the shedding of the most holy blood, and the gift of the imparted Spirit, can set us free. 6.11. Seneca, among the other superstitions of civil theology, also found fault with the sacred things of the Jews, and especially the sabbaths, affirming that they act uselessly in keeping those seventh days, whereby they lose through idleness about the seventh part of their life, and also many things which demand immediate attention are damaged. The Christians, however, who were already most hostile to the Jews, he did not dare to mention, either for praise or blame, lest, if he praised them, he should do so against the ancient custom of his country, or, perhaps, if he should blame them, he should do so against his own will. When he was speaking concerning those Jews, he said, When, meanwhile, the customs of that most accursed nation have gained such strength that they have been now received in all lands, the conquered have given laws to the conquerors. By these words he expresses his astonishment; and, not knowing what the providence of God was leading him to say, subjoins in plain words an opinion by which he showed what he thought about the meaning of those sacred institutions: For, he says, those, however, know the cause of their rites, while the greater part of the people know not why they perform theirs. But concerning the solemnities of the Jews, either why or how far they were instituted by divine authority, and afterwards, in due time, by the same authority taken away from the people of God, to whom the mystery of eternal life was revealed, we have both spoken elsewhere, especially when we were treating against the Manich ans, and also intend to speak in this work in a more suitable place.
23. Anon., Soferim, 1.7



Subjects of this text:

subject book bibliographic info
(on the jews) Witter et al., Torah, Temple, Land: Constructions of Judaism in Antiquity (2021) 235
aelia capitolina Cohn, The Memory of the Temple and the Making of the Rabbis (2013) 115, 188
anger, divine Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 16
anthropogeography Bloch, Ancient Jewish Diaspora: Essays on Hellenism (2022) 86, 88
apollonius of tyana Neusner Green and Avery-Peck, Judaism from Moses to Muhammad: An Interpretation: Turning Points and Focal Points (2022) 157
archelaos Jensen, Herod Antipas in Galilee: The Literary and Archaeological Sources on the Reign of Herod Antipas and Its Socio-Economic Impact on Galilee (2010) 102
augustus Jensen, Herod Antipas in Galilee: The Literary and Archaeological Sources on the Reign of Herod Antipas and Its Socio-Economic Impact on Galilee (2010) 102
autochthony Bloch, Ancient Jewish Diaspora: Essays on Hellenism (2022) 86
bar kokhba revolt Cohn, The Memory of the Temple and the Making of the Rabbis (2013) 115
ben garon Tomson, Studies on Jews and Christians in the First and Second Centuries (2019) 289
bezalel bar-kochva Bloch, Ancient Jewish Diaspora: Essays on Hellenism (2022) 88
caesarea Dijkstra and Raschle, Religious Violence in the Ancient World: From Classical Athens to Late Antiquity (2020) 123
chaldea, chaldeans Bloch, Ancient Jewish Diaspora: Essays on Hellenism (2022) 86
chronicler, as precedent for an alternative version of sacred text Feldman, Judaism and Hellenism Reconsidered (2006) 345
circumcision Tomson, Studies on Jews and Christians in the First and Second Centuries (2019) 289
claudius, roman emperor, expulsion of jews from rome by Feldman, Judaism and Hellenism Reconsidered (2006) 318, 345
claudius Dijkstra and Raschle, Religious Violence in the Ancient World: From Classical Athens to Late Antiquity (2020) 123
conversion/proselytes, roman hostility to Gruen, Ethnicity in the Ancient World - Did it matter (2020) 86
cumanus, ventidius Dijkstra and Raschle, Religious Violence in the Ancient World: From Classical Athens to Late Antiquity (2020) 123
customs/traditions/practices as identity markers, among jews Gruen, Ethnicity in the Ancient World - Did it matter (2020) 86
dead sea Bloch, Ancient Jewish Diaspora: Essays on Hellenism (2022) 88
diaspora, jewish / diaspora judaism Witter et al., Torah, Temple, Land: Constructions of Judaism in Antiquity (2021) 235
drusilla Dijkstra and Raschle, Religious Violence in the Ancient World: From Classical Athens to Late Antiquity (2020) 123
egyptians Gruen, Ethnicity in the Ancient World - Did it matter (2020) 86
eleazar (son of high-priest ananias) Tomson, Studies on Jews and Christians in the First and Second Centuries (2019) 289
ethnography Bloch, Ancient Jewish Diaspora: Essays on Hellenism (2022) 86, 88
execution Dijkstra and Raschle, Religious Violence in the Ancient World: From Classical Athens to Late Antiquity (2020) 123
facitus Neusner Green and Avery-Peck, Judaism from Moses to Muhammad: An Interpretation: Turning Points and Focal Points (2022) 157
felix, m. antoninus Dijkstra and Raschle, Religious Violence in the Ancient World: From Classical Athens to Late Antiquity (2020) 123
felix Tomson, Studies on Jews and Christians in the First and Second Centuries (2019) 289
festus, porcius Dijkstra and Raschle, Religious Violence in the Ancient World: From Classical Athens to Late Antiquity (2020) 123
flavian house, titus Jensen, Herod Antipas in Galilee: The Literary and Archaeological Sources on the Reign of Herod Antipas and Its Socio-Economic Impact on Galilee (2010) 102
flavians Bloch, Ancient Jewish Diaspora: Essays on Hellenism (2022) 86
florus, gessius Dijkstra and Raschle, Religious Violence in the Ancient World: From Classical Athens to Late Antiquity (2020) 123
genos/gene/gens/genus, jews as Gruen, Ethnicity in the Ancient World - Did it matter (2020) 86
gentile Tomson, Studies on Jews and Christians in the First and Second Centuries (2019) 289
gentiles, as contrast with jews Gruen, Ethnicity in the Ancient World - Did it matter (2020) 86
gentiles, inclusion of Gruen, Ethnicity in the Ancient World - Did it matter (2020) 86
gomorrah Bloch, Ancient Jewish Diaspora: Essays on Hellenism (2022) 88
hananya Tomson, Studies on Jews and Christians in the First and Second Centuries (2019) 289
hasmoneans (dynasty, period) Tomson, Studies on Jews and Christians in the First and Second Centuries (2019) 289
hecataeus of abdera Bloch, Ancient Jewish Diaspora: Essays on Hellenism (2022) 86
herod agrippa i Dijkstra and Raschle, Religious Violence in the Ancient World: From Classical Athens to Late Antiquity (2020) 123
herod agrippa ii Dijkstra and Raschle, Religious Violence in the Ancient World: From Classical Athens to Late Antiquity (2020) 123
herod antipas Jensen, Herod Antipas in Galilee: The Literary and Archaeological Sources on the Reign of Herod Antipas and Its Socio-Economic Impact on Galilee (2010) 102
herod archelaus Dijkstra and Raschle, Religious Violence in the Ancient World: From Classical Athens to Late Antiquity (2020) 123
herod the great Dijkstra and Raschle, Religious Violence in the Ancient World: From Classical Athens to Late Antiquity (2020) 123; Jensen, Herod Antipas in Galilee: The Literary and Archaeological Sources on the Reign of Herod Antipas and Its Socio-Economic Impact on Galilee (2010) 102
hillel the elder Tomson, Studies on Jews and Christians in the First and Second Centuries (2019) 289
histories, prodigies and omens in Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 16
histories (tacitus) Neusner Green and Avery-Peck, Judaism from Moses to Muhammad: An Interpretation: Turning Points and Focal Points (2022) 157
iudaeus / iudaicus Witter et al., Torah, Temple, Land: Constructions of Judaism in Antiquity (2021) 235
jerusalem Bloch, Ancient Jewish Diaspora: Essays on Hellenism (2022) 86, 88; Dijkstra and Raschle, Religious Violence in the Ancient World: From Classical Athens to Late Antiquity (2020) 123; Gruen, Ethnicity in the Ancient World - Did it matter (2020) 86; Jensen, Herod Antipas in Galilee: The Literary and Archaeological Sources on the Reign of Herod Antipas and Its Socio-Economic Impact on Galilee (2010) 102
jews, origins Neusner Green and Avery-Peck, Judaism from Moses to Muhammad: An Interpretation: Turning Points and Focal Points (2022) 157
jonathan Dijkstra and Raschle, Religious Violence in the Ancient World: From Classical Athens to Late Antiquity (2020) 123
josephus Jensen, Herod Antipas in Galilee: The Literary and Archaeological Sources on the Reign of Herod Antipas and Its Socio-Economic Impact on Galilee (2010) 102; Tomson, Studies on Jews and Christians in the First and Second Centuries (2019) 289
judaea Dijkstra and Raschle, Religious Violence in the Ancient World: From Classical Athens to Late Antiquity (2020) 123
judaean/jewish Dijkstra and Raschle, Religious Violence in the Ancient World: From Classical Athens to Late Antiquity (2020) 123
judea Bloch, Ancient Jewish Diaspora: Essays on Hellenism (2022) 86, 88; Witter et al., Torah, Temple, Land: Constructions of Judaism in Antiquity (2021) 235
julio-claudian dynasty Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 16
latin literature (on the jews) Witter et al., Torah, Temple, Land: Constructions of Judaism in Antiquity (2021) 235
life of apollonius of tyana (philostratus) Neusner Green and Avery-Peck, Judaism from Moses to Muhammad: An Interpretation: Turning Points and Focal Points (2022) 157
mockery/irony/parody, of jews Gruen, Ethnicity in the Ancient World - Did it matter (2020) 86
nero Dijkstra and Raschle, Religious Violence in the Ancient World: From Classical Athens to Late Antiquity (2020) 123
paul (saul) Tomson, Studies on Jews and Christians in the First and Second Centuries (2019) 289
petronius Witter et al., Torah, Temple, Land: Constructions of Judaism in Antiquity (2021) 235
philip the tetrarch Jensen, Herod Antipas in Galilee: The Literary and Archaeological Sources on the Reign of Herod Antipas and Its Socio-Economic Impact on Galilee (2010) 102
philostratus Neusner Green and Avery-Peck, Judaism from Moses to Muhammad: An Interpretation: Turning Points and Focal Points (2022) 157
phoenicia, phoenicians Bloch, Ancient Jewish Diaspora: Essays on Hellenism (2022) 86
posidonius Bloch, Ancient Jewish Diaspora: Essays on Hellenism (2022) 86
prodigies Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 16
revolt/war, under nero (great ~) Tomson, Studies on Jews and Christians in the First and Second Centuries (2019) 289
roman, period Tomson, Studies on Jews and Christians in the First and Second Centuries (2019) 289
rome, romans Bloch, Ancient Jewish Diaspora: Essays on Hellenism (2022) 86, 88
rome/romans, attitudes toward non-romans Gruen, Ethnicity in the Ancient World - Did it matter (2020) 86
sabbath Tomson, Studies on Jews and Christians in the First and Second Centuries (2019) 289; Witter et al., Torah, Temple, Land: Constructions of Judaism in Antiquity (2021) 235
scythia, scythians Bloch, Ancient Jewish Diaspora: Essays on Hellenism (2022) 86
shammai, school Tomson, Studies on Jews and Christians in the First and Second Centuries (2019) 289
shammai (see also subject index) Tomson, Studies on Jews and Christians in the First and Second Centuries (2019) 289
sicarii Tomson, Studies on Jews and Christians in the First and Second Centuries (2019) 289
sodom Bloch, Ancient Jewish Diaspora: Essays on Hellenism (2022) 88
syria, interest in religious material Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 16
syria/syrians Gruen, Ethnicity in the Ancient World - Did it matter (2020) 86
tacitus Dijkstra and Raschle, Religious Violence in the Ancient World: From Classical Athens to Late Antiquity (2020) 123; Neusner Green and Avery-Peck, Judaism from Moses to Muhammad: An Interpretation: Turning Points and Focal Points (2022) 157
ultio' Shannon-Henderson, Power Play in Latin Love Elegy and its Multiple Forms of Continuity in Ovid’s (2019) 16
values/character as identity marker, for roman writers Gruen, Ethnicity in the Ancient World - Did it matter (2020) 86
xenophobia/misanthropy Gruen, Ethnicity in the Ancient World - Did it matter (2020) 86