A History of the Jewish War: AD 66-74 by Steve Mason

By Steve Mason

A clash that erupted among Roman legions and a few Judaeans in past due A.D. sixty six had an incalculable effect on Rome's actual visual appeal and imperial governance; on historic Jews bereft in their mother-city and temple; and on early Christian fortunes. ancient scholarship and cinema alike are likely to see the clash because the end result of lengthy Jewish resistance to Roman oppression. during this quantity, Steve Mason re-examines the struggle in all proper contexts (e.g., the Parthian measurement, Judaea's position in Roman Syria) and levels, from the Hasmoneans to the autumn of Masada. Mason ways each one subject as a old research, clarifying difficulties that have to be solved, realizing the on hand proof, and contemplating situations that will clarify the proof. the easiest reconstructions make the clash extra humanly intelligible whereas casting doubt on obtained wisdom.

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153–57). Read as part of Josephus’ story, the Flavians’ choice of Simon as enemy general is a shrewd one. In the narrative he is anything but a representative Judaean: a nogoodnik of the first water, hated by everyone, and not even from Jerusalem. A callous troublemaker by nature, he brutally handles everyone he meets: distinguished Judaeans, innocent villagers of Idumaea and Samaria, Cestius Gallus’ legion, or Zealots in Jerusalem. 101 The only reason Simon is able to enter Jerusalem is that desperate Jerusalemites, suffering horribly under another interloper from outside, consider him the only poison strong enough to neutralize John from Galilee.

1. It is part of War’s detached style that Josephus reserves his character’s appearances for star turns. 562–84), and he remains in focus only as long as he is a brilliant commander and then a gifted seer with occult powers. He all but disappears after his capture, except to deliver a couple of brilliant speeches. His autobiography mentions, however, the honour he enjoyed as Titus’ chosen companion on the crossing from Alexandria to Rome (Life 422–23). 119–20). He was evidently on hand, and he may have been consulted for Judaean realia as the parade was being staged.

Galilee as a whole falls rapidly and without notable fighting, aside from Iotapata, and those unlucky enough to be caught in postures of resistance died. Josephus himself survived only through a unique string of lucky circumstances (Chapter 2). 90 That leaves only Jerusalem. But Simon and John, the two leaders caught in the besieged capital and held chiefly responsible, do not seem to have been set atop the floats (cf. 154). The only other generals in the story ‒ King Agrippa, regional kings, Tiberius Alexander, and legionary commanders ‒ worked with Vespasian and Titus.

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