Citation
Ethnicity and Jewish Identity in Josephus

Material Information

Title:
Ethnicity and Jewish Identity in Josephus
Creator:
McClister, David
Place of Publication:
[Gainesville, Fla.]
Publisher:
University of Florida
Publication Date:
Language:
english
Physical Description:
1 online resource (297 p.)

Thesis/Dissertation Information

Degree:
Doctorate ( Ph.D.)
Degree Grantor:
University of Florida
Degree Disciplines:
Classical Studies
Classics
Committee Chair:
Kapparis, Konstantin
Committee Members:
Schmeling, Gareth L.
Rea, Jennifer
Kessler, Gwynn L.
Graduation Date:
5/1/2008

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords:
Apologetics ( jstor )
Cultural identity ( jstor )
Diasporas ( jstor )
Ethnicity ( jstor )
Historiography ( jstor )
Jewish peoples ( jstor )
Judaism ( jstor )
Religion ( jstor )
Temples ( jstor )
War ( jstor )
Classics -- Dissertations, Academic -- UF
ethnicity, jewish, josephus
Miami metropolitan area ( local )
Genre:
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation
bibliography ( marcgt )
theses ( marcgt )
Classical Studies thesis, Ph.D.

Notes

Abstract:
Flavius Josephus was a Jewish historian who lived in the first century CE. When the First Jewish War began in 66 CE, Josephus was given a leading role in the defense of Galilee in northern Palestine. He was captured by the Roman forces and accompanied them to Jerusalem where he witnessed the fall of the city in 70 CE. After that Josephus was taken to Rome where he wrote an account of the Jewish war with Rome (the Bellum Judaicum), a history of the Jews (the Antiquitates Judaicae), a short autobiography (the Vita), and a defense of the antiquity of the Jews (the Contra Apionem). All of these works were intended for a non-Jewish audience. Josephus wrote at a time when anti-Jewish sentiments were common, and the recent defeat at the hands of Rome only exacerbated the negative image ascribed to Jews. It is the thesis of this dissertation that Josephus produced his literary works not simply to satisfy the curiosity of interested Gentiles concerning Jewish origins and customs, but to craft and negotiate an ethnicity for the Jews that would portray them as a people worthy of Roman respect. Ethnic identity is a social construct that is shaped in a complex matrix of psychological and social factors, and often in response to a perceived crisis that threatens a person?s or group?s sense of social belonging. Josephus lived under the kinds of conditions in which groups typically feel the need to adjust and reassert their social identity. I suggest that this lens can provide a useful way of reading Josephus, and can account for the shape and purpose of his works. Josephus' strategy for creating this ethnic portrait was to depict the Jews as having essentially the same qualities of the noble Greeks of the past, whom the Romans respected. In this undertaking Josephus was participating in a long-standing debate within Jewish circles over the limits and extent of Hellenization among them. What was new was that Josephus used the vehicle of Greek historiography to accomplish his purpose. All of his literary works drew heavily on well-known Greek historiographical models for their presentations of the events, their characterizations of the Jewish people, and their refutations of Gentile slanders. The result was a picture of Jewish history and piety in which the Jews are seen to embody well-respected Greek ideals. It is not known how widely Josephus? works circulated in his own day or shortly thereafter, nor do we know how successful they were in their purpose of creating a bold, new picture of Jewish identity. There are indications that Josephus? works did not effect much change in how Gentiles viewed Jews in the Roman empire. However, the success of the project (measured in terms of social acceptance) is not the object of this study, nor is it a criterion for judging the importance of what Josephus wrote. One of the enduring values of Josephus? works is that they demonstrate, in antiquity, an attempt by a marginalized group to negotiate an ethnicity, and thus they provide an important window into the complexities of Jewish life in the Roman empire. ( en )
General Note:
In the series University of Florida Digital Collections.
General Note:
Includes vita.
Bibliography:
Includes bibliographical references.
Source of Description:
Description based on online resource; title from PDF title page.
Source of Description:
This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The University of Florida Libraries, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
Thesis:
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Florida, 2008.
Local:
Adviser: Kapparis, Konstantin.
Statement of Responsibility:
by David McClister

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Holding Location:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
Copyright David McClister. Permission granted to the University of Florida to digitize, archive and distribute this item for non-profit research and educational purposes. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions requires permission of the copyright holder.
Embargo Date:
7/11/2008
Classification:
LD1780 2008 ( lcc )

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Full Text





as a testimony to his victory ... Thus Titus, having been proclaimed imperator by the
army, burned and destroyed the temple in Jerusalem")90

The picture from both authors is that in the end the decision was reached that the temple ought to

be destroyed. Interestingly, Josephus tells us that the final decision was to let the temple stand: 6

65 TLro( ou6' &v ETLPLvrtE ETr' aUTOb TarOXE [o oLV 'IOU&oL LOL TC~ UVTL TW;V dlV6p&)V dUcUVEta0LCL

T& cUlu"( o0U6i KXTa()E)AELV Tro0Th TrXALKOTo0V 'Epyov 'Po4LLo)V yap 'eoeocaL TrTv PALPTriv o5rtEp

KCL K6a ov T fT TYE4LovL (a aCfTro pivovron ("But Titus was saying that even if the Jews should

advance upon it and fight from there, the fighting should not be against inanimate things instead

of men, nor should there ever be a burning of so great a work by the Romans, for that would be

harmful, and it would also be an adornment of their abiding empire").91

So what is the truth here? Barnes believes that "Tacitus' version of the destruction of the

temple must surely be preferred to that of Josephus."92 Given the prevalence of anti-Jewish

sentiment in the Roman world, it certainly seems incredible that a battle-hardened commander

like Titus should be so reluctant to press for a decisive victory in such circumstances. In fact,

Rives has suggested that it might even be possible to detect here the application of a Flavian

policy towards foreign cults that threatened loyalties to Rome and Roman identity. Vespasian, he

argues, would not have seen Jerusalem as the center of a religion as we would see it, but as the

center of a cult that threatened the peace and security of the empire by virtue of its claim to an

alternate authority.93 This, however, may be going too far. As Gruen has noted, the extant

evidence does not support the notion that the Romans felt threatened by the Jews.94 More


90 Historiae adversum Paganos 7.9.5-6; text as quoted in Barnes 135.
91 BJ6.241.
92 Barnes 143. So also W. Weber, Josephus and Vespasian: Untersuchungen zu dem
Judischen Krieg des Flavius Josephus (Hildesheim 1973) 72-3.
93 J. Rives, 'Flavian Religious Policy and the Destruction of the Jerusalem Temple', in J.
Edmondson et al (eds.), Flavius Josephus andFlavian Rome (Oxford 2005) 145-66.
94 Gruen, 'Roman Perspectives on the Jews', 29-37.









was first written in an Aramaic version, which has not survived, but Josephus then composed a

version of it in Greek.3 Next he wrote a history of the Jewish people, the Antiquities of the Jews

('Iou6iL'Kfi 'ApXLcaooyL( ; later known by the Latin title Antiquitates Judaicae), in twenty

books, which was published in 93 or 94 CE.4 Josephus' autobiographical work, the Life

('IwooFTrou PLo(; later known as the Vita), which mostly deals with his time as commander in

Galilee, was written between 94 and 96 CE5 and made an appendix to the Antiquitates Judaicae.

The purpose of this short treatise was to defend himself and his conduct during the war against

criticisms that had been leveled by a political rival, Justus of Tiberias. His last literary

production,6 a polemical apologetical treatise in two books, came to be called Against Apion

(Ilepi 'ApXaLTrL6TO 'Iou6aia)v Aoyo; later known by the Latin title Contra Apionem). While

this later Latin title singles out Apion (a well-known Egyptian scholar and literary critic; died c.

45 CE) as the object of the work's response (&vTLpprlotL), he is actually only the subject of the


Composition and Publication of Josephus' "Bellum Judaicum" Book 7', HTR 79 (1986) 373-86.
All translations in this study are my own unless otherwise noted.
3 Josephus says TrpouOietrlv y ToL Karc rilv 'PoU4caov YE0ioviLav 'EXXU&6L yXooi.
[EtrapcPXV 'a TOL &v) pappapoL TO TrccrpL'c ouvrTacL U'VE'TrE4i*a TrpoTEpov 4rly'lo(xoUca ("I
have proposed to relate in the Greek language, for those under Roman rule, translating those
things which I formerly sent to the upper barbarians, having first laid them out in my native
language"). However, e'trapcLdv here is best understood as rewriting instead of translating. The
Greek reads like an original composition and not simply a translation from an Aramaic source.
G. Hata, 'Is the Greek Version of Josephus' "Jewish War" a Translation or a Rewriting of the
First Version?', JQR 66 (1975) 90-6.
4 In AJ20.267, Josephus says "the present day" (Tfj v6v ... Tl~ppa) was the 13th year of
Domitian and Josephus' 56th year. Some scholars working with source-critical tools have
suggested that the AJmay have gone through more than one edition, but the internal evidence for
two editions is slim. D. Barish, 'The "Autobiography" of Josephus and the Hypothesis of a
Second Edition of His "Antiquities",' HTR 71 (1978) 61-71.
5 Barish 75.
6 It has sometimes been suggested that AJ 20.267 indicates that Josephus intended to
write another account of the First Jewish War. The context, however, shows that Josephus was
speaking of the Vita. H. Petersen, 'Real and Alleged Literary Projects of Josephus', AJP 79
(1958) 259-62. Josephus then mentioned (20.268) plans for a theological treatise. Petersen (263-
5) identified it with the Contra Apionem, but Feldman thinks a different work was envisioned (L.
Feldman, Josephus, 9: Jewish Antiquities Books 18-20 (Cambridge, MA 1969) 531.









while there was a sense among Jewish authors that foundational stories were elastic, few of them

strayed from the order in which events were presented in the canonical Biblical texts. For

example, Philo of Alexandria, for all of his extensive treatment of the Biblical materials, never

changed the order of the Biblical details. Josephus stands almost alone in taking liberty at this

point, and certainly was unique in the extent to which he was willing to practice it.17 It is thus

another indicator of how Josephus made the Biblical materials fit into a Greek mold.

One overall impression Josephus seems to have been crafting was that the Jewish people

had long been objects of scorn not because they were irreligious, but because they were highly

religious. The problem lay not in the Jews but in the irreligious character of their neighbors, who

did not appreciate their high view of God. This of course, only worked to the shame of these

neighbors, the latest of whom was Rome. Much of the narrative was therefore designed to

highlight the high moral and religious character of Jewish culture.

The first move in Josephus' strategy of building a positive image of Jews was to lay out the

proper understanding of the Jewish God and his role in history. Hence in 1.14 Josephus

explained the controlling idea: the God of the Jews is concerned, above all, with moral virtue,

specifically (&pEr'; 1.20, 23). This virtue is spelled out in the Jewish Law, we are told, and was

demonstrated in the lives of great Jewish historical characters. Those who conform to God's

demand of moral virtue are rewarded and those who refuse to conform to it are punished, and

these rewards and punishments are not reserved for the afterlife but are experienced in the

vicissitudes of the present.18 The destruction of the Jerusalem temple was already interpreted in



17 There are a few exceptions in Pseudo-Philo and the midrashic literature. L. Feldman,
'Rearrangement of pentateuchal narrative material', 132.
18I am not arguing that Josephus' view of God, or his theological outlook, was in some
sense "correct," normative, etc. Josephus' Pharisaic outlook colors his view, to be sure, and his
view was only one of several such competing views among his Jewish contemporaries. In fact,









Within Palestine, the aristocracy was the group most interested in Hellenism partly because it

offered them a means of maintaining their economic status.29 At the same time it seems correct

to recognize that there were some substantial differences between the Judaism of Palestine and

that of the Diaspora,30 without falling into the false either/or dichotomy of a normalized Judaism

(Palestine) versus a compromised Judaism (in the Diaspora). It would not be an

oversimplification to say that Jerusalem was the greatest pocket of conservative or orthodox

Judaism in the ancient world, but this does not mean that one would regularly encounter Jews

who were not zealous for their religion outside of Jerusalem. The difference between Palestinian

Judaism and Diaspora Judaism was not the religion, the zeal for the religion, the purity of the

religion, etc. The difference may be better described as lying in the approach to and construction

of the ethnicity, and the choices of what would count as ethnic indicia. Concerning the presence

and power of Hellenism, however, there is no doubt. The question is not if Hellenism penetrated

Palestine, but instead the question is one of how much resistance did a particular person or group

offer to it31 and how a Jew or a local group of Jews managed their self-understanding, how they

constructed their ethnicities, in light of it.

Hellenization had occurred even among Palestinian Jews, yet at the same time we must

recognize that the religious criterion always played a powerful role in their lives and ethnic self-

understanding. That dominance of religious concerns did not, however, prevent even Palestinian

Jews from absorbing Hellenism to a great degree. Jerusalem itself bore many marks of

Hellenization in the first century. Levine's survey of the evidence led him to conclude that "The



29 Hengel, Judaism andHellenism 1.56. Surely we must attribute much of Josephus' own
affection for Hellenism to his association with the aristocracy.
30 J. Collins, 'Cult and Culture: The Limits of Hellenization in Judea', in J. Collins and G.
Sterling (eds.), Hellenism in the Land of srael (Notre Dame 2001) 52.
31 Feldman, Jew and Gentile in the Ancient World 44.









So, by Josephus' ideas of Greek identity, the Jews of Alexandria were Greeks, and Claudius

himself said so.

The problem here is that isopoliteia was a relationship between Greek cities in which

citizenship in one city was granted reciprocal recognition in the other.30 It is impossible that this

relationship existed between Jews and native Alexandrians, for at least two reasons: 1) there is

no evidence that Greek cities had isopoliteia with non-Greek cities,31 and 2) the Jews lived in the

same city with the Alexandrians.32 Most modern scholars have therefore resorted to attributing a

different sense to Josephus' 'oTIo TroXLTEL('. H. Jones suggested that the Alexandrian Jews

possessed a status between that of full Alexandrian citizens and ordinary aoil, and that the

peoples of such an intermediate group had full civil rights, but not citizenship.33 In other words,

the Jews constituted a (foreign) Tro~reuxa, and they could be called TroXLTcL of that TroxLTEU[a,

but they were not technically TroiTcaL of Alexandria. Josephus, however, would apparently have

us to believe that Claudius' words admitted all Alexandrian Jews into citizenship of that city, and

thus they enjoyed recognition of Greek ethnicity by the Romans.34

Josephus attempted the same thing in other places. In Antiquitates Judaicae 14.185-267 he

cited a long list of documents which were adduced to show that the Romans had always been

friendly and respectful toward the Jews. In one of these citations Josephus referred to a public

inscription, in bronze, set up by Julius Caesar in Alexandria that declared the Jews to be citizens


30 A. Chaniotis, Die Vei i/age zwischen kretischen Poleis in der hellenistischen Zeit.
(Heidelberger althistorische Beitrage und epigraphische Studien 24, Stuttgart 1996) 101-8.
31 Applebaum, "The Legal Status of the Jewish Communities', 438.
32 In the response, Caesar rebuked the Jews for sending their own embassy to him as if
they lived in a separate city.
33 'Claudius and the Jewish Question at Alexandria', JRS 16 (1926) 29.
34 Some Jews were able to manage their way into full Alexandrian citizenship. However,
it also appears that their status as citizens was precarious. CPJII no. 151 is a letter of an
Alexandrian Jew complaining to the Roman governor that his status as a citizen of Alexandria
had been unfairly downgraded.









Smith's six elements of ethnicity were noted above. By the first century, all of these

elements were in place for the group commonly called the "Greeks." 1) They had a group name,

"Greeks." 2) They believed in a common myth of descent, which extended back into the heroic

past. The fact that the Greeks themselves seem to have been mostly uninformed about the

historical particulars of their own national history much prior to the beginning of the first

millennium BCE does not diminish anything. As I noted above, it is the belief, not necessarily

the proof, of common descent that lies at the heart of an ethnicity. What matters was not that they

knew all the details of their common descent, but that they believed they had one and were

conscious of it. 3) They had a shared history that had been well-chronicled in its latter days

through literary historiographies. 4) Greek culture was distinctive, and well-known and well-

recognized into and through the Roman period. 5) The Greeks had a long association with a

particular geographical place, and it could be argued that they had created 6) a sense of

communal solidarity among themselves. While it might be a matter of debate as to the level and

success of this solidarity, this seems to be what Aristotle had in mind as he described Greek life

together: IIodIL tiev oiv OLKLd)V TrXr6 Od( OTL KUCL XOpci KCL KT~[rL4Tov aUumpKE Trpb6 TO eU

rCTV. (Exvepb6v 6E" (orav yap [i4 6UVwU5oI CoL To'TAOU O 'UYXyVELV, 56LVueTaL KI '. KOLVvia. 'ETL

5e EVEKC TOUTOUI) uvEPXOVrcL" O) 6o 'EVEKC 'EOTL KUCL yEyovE, KCUi ri OUOLC.a (UTOU UuyXU'VEL arU1TI

ouoa ("By a Nation we mean an assemblage of houses, lands, and property sufficient to enable

the inhabitants to lead a civilized life. This is proved by the fact that when such a life is no longer

possible for them, the tie itself which unites them is dissolved. Moreover, it is with such a life in

view that the association is originally formed; and the object for which a thing exists and has

come into being is in fact the very essence of that particular thing").78



78 Oec. 1.1.2. Armstrong's translation.









Schalit, A. "Josephus, Flavius." In Encyclopedia Judaica 10:251-65. Jerusalem: Keter 1972.

Schmeling, G. Xenophon ofEphesus. Twayne's World Author Series 613, Boston: Twayne
1980.

Schrekenberg, H. "The Works of Josephus and the Early Christian Church." Tr. H. Regensteiner.
In Josephus, Judaism, and Christianity, edited by L. Feldman and G. Hata, 315-24,
Detroit: Wayne State University Press 1987.

Schiurer, E. The History of the Jewish People in the Age of Jesus Christ (175 BC-AD 135).
Revised and edited by G. Vermes et al. 3 vols. Edinburgh Clark, 1973-87.

--. "Josephus, Flavius." In Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge 6, 236. Grand
Rapids: Baker 1953.

Schwartz, D. "Herodians and loudaioi in Flavian Rome." In Flavius Josephus andFlavian
Rome, edited by J. Edmondson, et al, 63-78. Oxford: Oxford University Press 2005.

Schwartz, S. "The Composition and Publication of Josephus' Bellum Judaicum Book 7." HTR 79
(1986) 373-86.

Scott, J. "Exile and the Self-Understanding of Diaspora Jews in the Greco-Roman Period." In
Exile: Old Testament, Jewish, and Christian Conceptions, edited by J. Scott, 173-218.
JSJS 56. Leiden: Brill 1997.

Sevenster, J. Do You Know Greek? Leiden: Brill 1968.

---. The Roots ofAnti-Semitism in the Ancient World. NovTSup 41. Leiden: Brill 1975.

Shutt, R. Studies in Josephus. London: SPCK 1961.

Smallwood, E. "Domitian's Attitude towards Jews and Judaism." CP 51 (1956) 1-13.

--. The Jews Under Roman Rule From Pompey to Domitian. Studies in Judaism in Late
Antiquity 20, Leiden: Brill 1976.

Smith, A. National Identity. Reno: University of Nevada Press 1991.

---. The Ethnic Origins ofNations. New York: Basil Blackwell 1987.

Smith, M. "Palestinian Judaism in the First Century." In Israel: Its Role in Civilization, edited by
M. Davis, 67-81. New York: Harper 1956.

Sorensen, J. "Native Reactions to Foreign Rule and Culture in Religious Literature." In Ethnicity
in Hellenistic Egypt, edited by P. Bilde et al, 164-81. Studies in Hellenistic Civilization 3,
Aarhus: Aarhus University Press 1992.

Spilsbury, P. "Contra Apionem and Antiquitates Judaicae: Points of Contact." In Josephus'
Contra Apionem: Studies in Its Character and COniei n i/th a Latin Concordance to the









Jerusalem in the Diaspora, where Hellenism was the culture. Generally, the current scholarly

discussion is not about the possibility of Hellenistic influence on Judaism (including in

Palestine), but about the level of penetration. Gruen has argued that there is, in the thinking of

some, a simplistic dichotomy of "either resistance to assimilation and longing for Jerusalem, or

conformity to and embrace of the alien environment" and that this dichotomy

did not face the Jews who dwelled in Greco-Roman communities in the Second Temple
period. ... The Jews abroad had chosen there residence voluntarily and (in many cases) had
been there for generations. They had no cause to ache for Jerusalem. Nor, by contrast, were
they obliged to adopt a new guise and sacrifice their identity to blend in with their
surroundings.26

He goes on to note that

We can therefore abandon simplistic dichotomies. Diaspora Jews did not huddle in
enclaves, isolated and oppressed, clinging to a heritage under threat. Nor did they
assimilate to the broader cultural and political world, compromising their past, ignoring the
homeland, and reckoning the Book (in Greek) as surrogate for the Temple. The stark
alternatives obscure understanding. A complex set of circumstances, diverse and dependent
on local conditions, produced a mixed, ambiguous, and varied picture.27

As I noted above, as one moved away from Palestine, Hellenistic influence was much

more apparent in the Jews of the Diaspora than among the Palestinian Jews. In the Diaspora we

see a wide range of assimilation and accommodation to Greek culture. Thus

There is growing recognition that Jews in antiquity experienced very different social and
political conditions, and correspondingly engaged in their local political, social and
cultural environments in many different ways. Several recent studies of the Jewish
communities of the Diaspora generally indicate that there is good evidence for many Jews
integrating at a local level and expressing a real sense of identification with the local
environment while maintaining their Jewish identity.28








26 E. Gruen, Diaspora: Jews Amidst Greeks andRomans (Cambridge 2002) 5.
27 E. Gruen, Diaspora 6.
28 Pearce and Jones 17.









study to attempt to formulate a new critical theory of ethnicity that is in dialogue with current

scholarly viewpoints or to attempt a new working model. I will instead attempt the more modest

task of taking a current, generally-accepted understanding of ethnicity and applying it to the

works of Flavius Josephus in the context of the world of the first century BCE.

The term "ethnicity" denotes a socio-political self-understanding. The subject of this self-

understanding may be an individual or a group of people. Although Weber despaired that the

term was so nebulous that it ought to be abandoned,4 most modern scholars are more optimistic,

and there is widespread agreement that the basis of an ethnic community is a shared belief in a

common descent. So Weber proposed that "We shall call 'ethnic groups' those human groups

that entertain a subjective belief in their common descent because of similarities of physical type

or custom or both, or because of memories of colonization or migration; ... it does not matter

whether or not an objective blood relationship exists ...."5 This is what others have called a

putative myth of shared descent.6 Ethnicity is not an objective category, but a subjective one. A

person lays claim to an ethnicity on the basis of what he or she believes, whether that claim is

grounded in (historical) fact or not. "Ethnicity is based on mythical beliefs about the

genealogical facts, not the genealogical facts themselves."7 The story of shared descent may

indeed have basis in historical fact or in blood relationships, but it need not have. Belief in this

story is chosen, not necessarily innate, and the basis for choosing to believe for oneself one story

of origins over another is complicated by many factors, not all of which are rational. "This belief

is of course never finished but always subject to reinterpretations and adjustments, depending on


4 M. Weber, Economy and Society: An Outline ofInterpretive Sociology (New York
1968) 385.
5 M. Weber 389.
6 Cf G. Bentley, 'Response to Yelvington', Comparative Studies in Society andHistory
33 (1991) 169.
7 A. Abizadeh, 'Ethnicity, Race, and a Possible Humanity', World Order 33 (2001) 25.









impression Josephus left from his handling of them. Their precise legal content has been

summarized-that is, generalized-in order to milk them for political capital.

In Antiquitates Judaicae 16.178 Josephus admitted that there was at least one scandal

involving a collection of funds for Jerusalem. An unnamed Jew who was in trouble with the law

in Palestine came to Rome and presented himself as a teacher of Jewish wisdom. He managed,

with three partners, to convince an affluent Roman woman, Fulvia, who was a proselyte, that she

had to send purple and gold to the temple in Jerusalem, which he and his friends would be glad

to deliver for her. She gave them the contribution, and they put it in their own pockets. The

woman feared she had been duped, told her husband what had happened, and he reported the

matter to the emperor. The result was that Tiberius ordered all the Jews to leave Rome.153 The

date was 19 CE.

In an account designed to portray the Jews in the best possible light to outsiders, this story

stands out as a shining example of avarice and greed. Why did Josephus tell this story? Why tell

a story that seemed to communicate the very impression of Jews that Josephus was trying to

correct? Why not just skip this story, as he did with other things? There are at least three

answers. First, as I noted in chapter two, Romans acknowledged both good and bad among

Greeks, and the Greeks themselves were sometimes critical of various sub-groups within their

own ethnicity.154 Josephus was thus not doing anything unusual here. Second, it would have been

unwise and unrealistic if Josephus had ignored well-known examples of Jewish shortcomings.

He had to avoid presenting the Jews as the perfect people, because no one would have believed

it. As I also noted in chapter two, the construction of an ethnicity must adhere to some semblance



153 AJ 18.81-4.
154 cf a Rhodian's criticism of other Greeks in Livy, 45.23.14-16, and Cicero
distinguishes between good ones and bad ones in Ver. 2.2.7.









strange to Greeks. N. Cohen has noted that Josephus made more changes to the Biblical stories in

this part of the history than in the rest of it.

"In AJ I-V the material has been entirely recast with the object of bringing the Biblical
narratives into conformity with the style and psychology of the Greek novel. The
genealogies have been paraphrased in the Greek style, the narratives embellished with long
speeches in the traditional manner of the contemporary historiographer, and much
additional matter culled from non-Biblical sources has been added, ...."131

Sometimes Josephus encountered the opposite problem in the Biblical materials: not

enough information to suggest alignment between Jews and Greeks. Instead of a negative

impression, such material simply constituted a non-impression. When this happened, Josephus,

with his fluid understanding of the nature of traditional stories, embellished and added details to

make a story sound more Greek. For example, one of the most impressive displays of dedication

to God in the Hebrew Bible is the aqedah, Abraham's "offering" of Isaac at the command of

God (Genesis 22). The Biblical narrative was sparse on details in a way that was not typical of

Greek stories. So Josephus "hellenized the Biblical narrative so that it acquires precisely those

qualities that are missing in the Bible-clarity, uniform illumination, and lack of suspense."132 In

the process he also downplayed the theological element of the story and used terminology that

echoed Homer's description of Priam. For example, Isaac is described in Antiquitates Judaicae

1.222 as EirT yYp ow oi566c KarT &6opE&v a~6c To OO eo yevo'[evov ("who was as a gift to him

[Abraham] from God on the threshold of his old age"), and Homer described Priam, who was

about to lose his son Hector, as uTrL yfpcao oiu6 (II. 22.60).133 Similarly, Josephus' presentation

of Isaac has affinities with Euripides' presentation of Iphigenia; both are portrayed as being the

delight of their parent, but also willing to be offered and rejecting any notion of acting against


131 N. Cohen, 'Josephus and Scripture: Is Josephus' Treatment of the Scriptural Narrative
Similar Throughout the "Antiquities" I-XI?', JQR 54 (1964) 319.
132 L. Feldman, 'Josephus as a Biblical Interpreter: The "Aqedah"', JQR 75 (1985) 213.
133 Feldman, 'Josephus as a Biblical Interpreter: The "Aqedah"', 213, 215.









-the last three of which are especially commended.30 These lists of Greek names were surely

intended to be impressive. The sense is that there was a kind of familiarity between the ancient

Greeks and Jews.

Josephus wanted to have the best of both worlds, and this created a problem that appears in

two ways. First, he provided perfectly good explanations for why the Jews did not appear in

Greek history, but then he adduced these two lists of references to Jews in the works of Greek

historians. Apparently it did not occur to Josephus that these two approaches might be mutually

exclusive. This same technique appeared in Josephus' major works, where he juxtaposed a

Jewish theology of retribution with a Greek view of XrlT to explain historical events. Here as

well as there, two different lines of reasoning created an unresolved tension in the argument.

Second, Josephus criticized Greek historical knowledge for its inability to go into the distant

past, but then he cited two lists of Greek authors as evidence in his argument for the antiquity of

the Jewish people. If the antiquity of the Jews was the main concern, the argument is self-

contradictory. If, however, the main concern was to create the impression of a close agreement

between Jews and Greeks culturally, then the evidence has a different function, namely to re-

affirm the close cultural connections between Greeks and Jews. This inconsistency in Josephus'

method serves to confirm our suspicion, noted above, that the real issue for Josephus in the

Contra Apionem was not the antiquity of the Jews, but the Greek rejection of Jewish claims to be

the cultural equals of Greeks.

The actual evidence that comes from these lists is mostly speculative over-reaching if not

incorrect. As factual arguments they leave much to be desired. On the first list, for the authors he

explicitly quotes, his "evidence" is less than sure. For example, his so-called evidence of


30 Ap. 1.161-218.









decision to adopt a Greek mythological progenitor for the subject of the national epic.112 By the

turn of the first century CE, the mood of uneasy recognition of Greek culture seems to have

shifted sufficiently that Dionysus of Halicarnassus could contrive a Greek origin for the Romans

and proclaim that Rome should rightly be called a Greek city.113 He also produced explanations

of the Greek origins of clientship and the Senate, he found Greek elements in various features of

Roman religion, and he had several characters who are either portrayed as aware of the Greek

political models or as consciously imitating famous Greeks.114 Hill has suggested that Dionysius

was consciously opposing the anti-Hellenic undercurrent of sentiment in his day.115 Even if that

assessment goes to far, Dionysius still stands as a confession (even if it is overdone) of the

enduring power of Greek culture in his day.

It was also noted above, from Hall, that among the ancients, ethnicity was expressed in

texts. Historiography after the Greek model was, by Josephus' time, a nearly-ideal vehicle for the

expression or construction of an ethnicity, since it was capable of dealing with the subjects of

origins as well as portraying the defining characteristics of a people as revealed through their

words, actions, and customs. Greek historiography developed initially from the epic tradition,

and the power of the Iliad and the Odyssey as a definition of Greek identity was and is well

known. Both of those works communicated a strong sense of ouYyyEveL (in spite of the personal

disagreements between major characters) and strong ties to the homeland. Greek historiography

acquired an interest in geography and the cultures of other lands from the influence of Hecataeus

of Miletus and his nIpLpyiFroL; FIle, a work that combined a survey of geography with

ethnography. It was left for Herodotus to take the next step and turn ethnography into history.

112 Hill 90, 92.
113 1.89.1.
114 Hill 89.
115 Hill 92-3.









EKpoXacLa ("they settled at the harborless sea, near the pounding of the waves"),55 and he

expressed surprise that the Jews there should even be acknowledged as Alexandrians. Clearly

Apion had portrayed the Jews as outsiders in an extreme way, not even worthy of association

with the city in which they lived. Josephus' rebuttal to this quickly turned into a discussion of

Jewish privileges not only in Alexandria but in other major centers of the Hellenistic world. The

Jewish presence in that part of Alexandria was, according to Josephus, due to the grant of

Alexander himself and was further confirmed by the Ptolemaic monarchs,56 public monuments,

and Caesar. The combination of both Greek and Roman recognition is emphatic. Public

recognition of the Jews' rightful place in this leading Hellenistic city was an important matter,

especially for Josephus' program of ethnicity-building. According to him, then, the Jews rightly

bore the title of "Alexandrians" just as was the custom in other places:

Tr/VTE( y&p oL (0EL UTrOLKLC(V TLVC& K(T(KXTirOEvT( KOV TrXELOTOv XX'1AXov TOL(T yEVEoL
6LUE)ppOLV 76T O T(V OLKL'OTGV TOV TTpoor(yopL'(V Xa cpcVOUoLV. KU1 iL 6EL TrEpi U(V
c"XXov aX.eyLV CUI clV y&p toiav ol uyv 'AVuL6XOtLa Kar0OLKO0VTE( 'AvrLoXEdt vomLonCova TcL
Trsv y&p oTrOXLTULcV tahuTO E'6(l)KEV 6 KTLiOTrh T e XEUKO 60io Ai oL Ev 'Eiocr KS L KUrc( trlv
"XXIrv '(oviav TOLT aUUOLyEvEoL TroTX iTLL 6o)VUOUiOLV TOiTO T0rapaoCX6vTv WaVUoi, O ,V
6Lx560Xv. '5 6 t 'PG)4L,)V LXavOp&Urri Tr T&LV ouv tLLKpOu 6eLV G T| U I(,U)V TrTporTyopL(0X
LETUx6E60UKEV O LO6vov Lv6pCoOLV LXXC&L KCL LEya'XOL 'EOveoLV O6XOL "IpT pE yofv oL TrU'XaL
KaCL TupprIvoiL KCCL CapLvoL PUo^C(LOL KCXoVTCaL

("For all who are called to any colony, even if they are greatly separated from one another
in their own race, take their appellative from their founders. And why is it necessary to
speak of others? For the Jews living in Antioch are called Antiochenes, for Seleucus the
founder gave them citizenship, just as the Jews living in Ephesus and the rest of Ionia share
the same name with the native citizens, this granted also to them by the royal successors.
And the benevolence of the Romans has extended still further, that their appellative has
been bestowed not only on men but also on entire great nations, so even those who were
formerly Iberians, and Tyrians, and Sabines are called Romans").5





55 Ap. 2.33.
56 Cf. AJ 12.8, where Josephus claimed that Ptolemy I (Soter) gave the Jews the status of
LooTroXLTEL'2.
57 Ap. 2.38-40.









the Greek cultural heritage, thereby attempting assimilation into the Roman world, and engaging

in what modern sociologists call identity politics. A reader of the Bellum Judaicum in ancient

times would certainly have been impressed with how Greek the Jews appear in that narrative,

and how Greek the narrative itself sounded. That reader would have thought that he was reading

a Greek historiography of a people who were like the ancient Greeks themselves in many ways.

By adopting the Greek tradition to tell his story, Josephus was hoping to convince his target

audience (readers in the Greek world) that the Jews were, in substantial ways, just like the

Greeks of the past. If they were just like them, then they ought to be regarded with the same kind

of openness and respect. This mode of reading Josephus need not be exclusive. Josephus was

skilled enough to manipulate his materials for other purposes also, but the desire to design an

ethnicity along Greek lines explains the phenomenon well.









people prided themselves at all on being pious and religious, then stories of their interference in

Jewish religious matters should cause them to reconsider their attitudes and actions. As I have

shown in chapter five, Josephus supported the idea that the Romans were religiously sensitive.

His portrayal of Titus' reluctance to destroy the Jerusalem temple emphasized this quality. This

was not a matter of cowering to the imperial ego, as it has often been interpreted in the history of

Josephan studies. Instead Josephus was affirming Roman religious sensibilities in order to build

a case that the Jews ought to be respected for the greatness of this same quality among

themselves. This depended, of course, on also demonstrating that Judaism enshrined

considerably noble ideals itself, which is the very thing the Antiquitates Judaicae is designed to

do. Yet as always, this presentation was crafted in such a way to show that the Jewish religion

participated in the good qualities that were also recognized and admired in Greek culture. With

such a portrait, Josephus could hope to lift the stigma that Judaism was a foreign, "eastern" (i.e.,

suspicious) religion.

The stories which Josephus told about Jewish mistreatment are those that were likely

circulated as proof of the foreign and rebellious nature of Jews. Therefore Josephus chose to

address the very stories that were used to fuel anti-Jewish sentiments, in order to demonstrate

that they had been misinterpreted. He was attacking the problem of anti-Jewishness head-on. The

tactic here was the same as in the Bellum Judaicum, where Josephus said that he wrote his

account to set the record straight against other accounts that denigrated both him and the Jewish

people. In doing so Josephus was careful in how he told the stories, and in choosing which

elements of the stories got emphasis.

The story about Pilate's placement of images of Tiberius, on military signa, in Jerusalem

was one of the stories Josephus told to illustrate how Jews had been treated unfairly. There are,









imitate their style and work, but also to advance upon them in some way (including correcting

them). As noted above, the ideal was to pay homage to the tradition and yet not be completely

bound by it. It was also customary to offer some kind of criticism of one's predecessors and their

treatment of events. This element in the historiographical tradition goes back to Hecataeus of

Miletus, and was perhaps most famously sounded in Thucydides' criticism of Herodotus (1.20).

Josephus engaged in all of these aspects of the tradition. He was acquainted with the works of

Thucydides, Herodotus, Polybius, Dionysius of Halicamassus, and Nicolaus of Damascus at a

minimum-of whom the first three were considered the standard models for Hellenistic

historians22 (although he specifically mentions none of them in the Bellum Judaicum). Yet he

made it clear that he was also making an original contribution: LX6ATrovovC 65 oi( 6 eXTraTrOLUv

OLKOVO[LLoV KUL T"dULV dXX'OTUpLcv dcXX' 6 4LUer TO) KCLVC& XEYELV KML Tb oCJIc Tri [GoTopL'U

KaTROKEUU CV 'i"Lov ("The industrious one is not he who remodels the arrangement and order of

another but who, along with reporting new things, prepares his own body of history").23 He also

complained that Greek historians had neglected Jewish history almost completely,24 that he was

aware of other histories of the Jewish War, and that he set out to correct what he thought were

glaring inaccuracies in them.25 This last complaint is, in fact, arguably the most emphatic theme

in the introduction to the Bellum Judaicum, but it is also quite Thucydidean as well, since

Thucydides registered the same kinds of complaints about the historian Hellanicus.26







22 Momigliano, 'Tradition and the Classical Historian', 280.
23 BJ1.15.
24 BJ 1.13.
25 BJ 1.1, 6-9.
26 1.97.









that activates prior knowledge and associations, and so steers (or at least potentially affects)

reader-response through allusion to common frames of reference ...."62 Whereas Mader suggests

that Josephus' use of Thucydides and the Greek historiographical tradition in general serves to

give the impression of rationality to an account that is really nothing more than subjective

polemic,63 I suggest that Josephus' employment of that tradition alternately, or additionally,

served to provide an ethnicity for Hellenistic Jews.

Some Greek Elements Within the Bellum Judaicum

Is there anything to which we might look in Josephus that would demonstrate that

Josephus' wrote with a specifically ethnic slant or purpose? Three examples stand out. First, as

noted above, Josephus, like his model Polybius, appeals to u'64 as a factor in Rome's success.

In fact, 'Irl appears twenty-two times in the narrative. In Bellum Judaicum 1.45 Josephus

reports that TrXA OEL 6i uTrEepEXovr oL PCFOLALKOL KCO L 6E L& XpriodCtvoL UX1T KpcrouoL ("the

king's forces, being larger and having luck on their side, were victorious"). For a Jewish writer,

this is amazing for at least two reasons. First, Josephus tells us that the Pharisees ascribed all

events to destiny and to God.65 As a Pharisee, we would expect Josephus to have been satisfied

with taking this course in explaining the Jewish defeat, but he was not. Second, Josephus'

introduction of r~6r into the account is amazing especially in light of the fact that Josephus had


62 Mader 8.
63 Mader 4.
64 ',uUI came into Greek historiography through the influence of Greek tragedy. C.
Fornara, The Nature of History in Ancient Greece and Rome (Berkeley 1983) 125-7.
65 BJ2.162. Greek: et Lcp4i TE K EL ( o TrpooTrrTOUOL TrwVTX. Cf. AJ 13.172: o o pev ov
cJapLodo(LL TLVO KCL 0ou TraLV lx 'Urf E[4UP4EVTc EYOpyoV E[vaL XEAyoUOLV ULV& 6' E4' Ea'UUoic
uTrPXEtLV oulpacUVELV TE KMIL [4i1 yLvEOUcL ("The Pharisees say that some things, but not all things,
are the work of fate, and some things happen by our own doing and do not come about [by
fate]"); cf 16.398. The two were perhaps not necessarily seen as exclusive, but understanding
Josephus' descriptions, and the relationship between these two forces, has proved difficult. Cf G.
Moore, 'Schicksal und freier Wille in der jidischen Philosophie bei Josephus', in A. Schalit
(ed.), Zur Josephus-Forschung (Wege der Forshung 84, Darmstadt 1973) 167-89.









people were seized by armed men, and many of them who were attacked in this way even
died, and the wounded ones withdrew, and thus the revolt ended.").31

Given the other examples reviewed above, it is clear that Pilate was acting in a way that other

Roman officials had acted toward Jews in other parts of the empire. His seizure of Jewish funds

was not unprecedented. Funds in Jerusalem must have been especially tempting. The annual

temple tax sent from Jews in the provinces made the temple rich and had made it a target more

than once. For example, Crassus plundered the Jerusalem temple during his Parthian

expedition.32 How much money was taken in this particular incident we do not know, but it

seems that the knowledge that a sizeable sum of money was sitting in Jerusalem proved an

irresistible temptation for a procurator who wished to engage in public works as part of a

program to honor the emperor and stay in his favor.33 Josephus reports the incident as a misuse

of Roman imperium and a breach of good will with the client subjects, the Jews.

Josephus himself had a first-hand experience with unfair treatment of Jews at the hands of

Romans when, at the age of 26 (63/64 CE), he participated in a delegation to Rome to appeal to

Nero on behalf of some Jewish priests from the homeland of Judea (remember, Josephus was

such a person himself) who had been imprisoned and sent to Rome for trial. The details of this

are sketchy. He says

MET' ELKOOTOV 6e KcL `KTOV EvL duTrv dEL 'PPo[Trlv [0oL OUVETrEOeV &vcVOxpvL 6L& T OIv
XEXOTrloo4EVTirv aUL'iav KaU' ov xp6vov "XAL Trfl 'Iou1)aia[ EiTrETpoTrEUEv 'LEpElt TLVC(;
ouv OELG E4iol KXaXOb) KxyaUOOk) 6L& tLLKP(V Kca TT1v TUXOUUoav caLLav 65'oa(C EL'( tlv
'PGjtTIv 'ETrE*t XO 6yov 6iE'ovTa (; Kcaoapi oi Ey'Y Tropov EUpEoOaCL pouXt0oEVOc
ooWtTrpLTaL dUXLora 65 TrTuOe6lvo OTL KcaUTrEp EV KC(KOLc jOVTE OUK ETrEX'.OOVto Trfl| E' T6
OeLov EUIo1EPELca ..'. dOLK6iTIv el tilv T'PotTIrv ... 6i& 4LALX(wU 4LK6OtTIv 'AXLTU6pQ
tLtotXoyofo 6' rIv omocU t&XLOTFCa TCo NEpovi KaTaLLOtLLo 'IouGa)xo( T6 yEvo( KaL 6t' amTo6
nIoTrraLC TT Tof Ka[oappo( yuvaLKL yvooO et. Trpovo3) Oe TdXLoTa TrxapaKaUEoaC aUrTiv



31 AJ 18.60-2.
32 AJ 14.105-9.
33 J. Taylor, 'Pontius Pilate and the Imperial Cult in Roman Judea', NTS 52 (2006) 555-
82.









("But some of them persisted in dissatisfaction with the practices that were not customary,
and they thought that such dismissal of the ancestral ways would lead to the beginning of
great evils, and that it was better to make a bold attempt than to seem to overlook the
changes Herod had made in their state, bringing things in by force which were not
customary, and that he was a king in pretext but in deed appeared as the enemy of all the
people.")59

Ongoing objections did not, however, put an end to the presence of Hellenism in Palestine.

After Herod's death, his son Herod Antipas continued in the same direction. "The rebuilding of

Sephhoris and establishment of Tiberias allowed the client king to demonstrate his enthusiasm

for the mingling of Greek, Roman, and local cultures that was taking place throughout the

Levant."60 In addition, a basilica was built in Beth-she'arim and a hippodrome was built in

Magdala.61 Krauss has shown that the rabbinic literature contains over three thousand Greek and

Latin loanwords,62 and Stein demonstrated suggestive parallels between the Seder and Passover

Haggadah on the one hand, and Greco-Roman symposia on the other hand.63 B. Cohen has

suggested points of contact between the legal corpora of Romans and Jews,64 and Daube

explored the influence of Hellenistic rhetoric on rabbinic Biblical interpretation.65 The overall

picture that emerges is that Hellenism was a substantial presence in the institutions of the Jews

within Palestine.

59 AJ 15.280-1. Out of sensitivity to Jewish religious concerns, Herod generally avoided
the use of images of living things in his buildings within Judea. He was more liberal outside of
Judea. Richardson, Building Jewish, 238-9.
60 Chancey 221.
61 Chancey 223.
62 S. Krauss, Greichsiche undLateinische Lehnworter im Talmud, Midrasch und Targum
(Berlin 1899).
63 S. Stein, 'The Influence of Symposia Literature on the Literary Form of the Pesah
Haggadah', JJS 8 (1957) 13-44.
64 B. Cohen, Jewish and Roman Law: A Comparative Study (New York 1966). A more
moderate assessment was provided by B. Jackson, 'On the Problem of Roman Influence on the
Halakah and Normative Self-Definition in Judaism', in E. Sanders et al (eds.), Jewish and
Christian Self-Definition 2. Aspects of Judaism in the Graeco-Roman Period (Philadelphia 1981)
157-203.
65 D. Daube, 'Rabbinic Methods and Interpretation and Hellenistic Rhetoric', HUCA 22
(1949) 239-64.









Portion Missing in Greek, edited by L. Feldman and J. Levison, 348-68. Arbeiten zur
Geschichte des Antiken Judentums und des Urchristentums 34, Leiden: Brill 1996.

Squires, J. "Hellenistic Historiography and Philosophy in Josephus' Account of Jewish History."
Australian Journal of Jewish Studies 4 (1990) 148-57.

Stein, E. De Woordenkeuze in het Bellum Judaicum van Flavius Josephus. Amsterdam: H. J.
Paris 1937.

Stein, S. "The Influence of Symposia Literature on the Literary Form of the Pesah Haggadah."
JJS 8 (1957) 13-44.

Sterling, G. Historiography and Self-Definition: Josephos, Luke-Acts and Apologetic
Historiography. NovT Supplements 64, Leiden: Brill 1992.

Stern, M., ed., Greek and Latin Authors on Jews and Judaism. Jerusalem: Israel Academy of
Sciences and Humanities 1984.

Stern, S. "Dissonance and Misunderstanding in Jewish-Roman Relations." In Jews in a Greco-
Roman World, edited by M. Goodman, 241-50. Oxford: Oxford University Press 1998.

Tar, W. Hellenistic Civilization. London: Edward Arnold 1947.

Taylor, J. "Pontius Pilate and the Imperial Cult in Roman Judea." NTS 52 (2006) 555-82.

Tcherikover, V. Hellenistic Civilization and the Jews. New York: Atheneum 1977.

---. "Jewish Apologetic Literature Reconsidered." Eos 48 (1956) 169-93.

Teixidor, J. "Interpretations and Misinterpretations of the East in Hellenistic Times." In Religion
and Religious Practice in the SeleucidKingdom, edited by P. Bilde et al, 66-78. Studies
in Hellenistic Civilization 1, Aarhus: Aarhus University Press 1990.

Thackeray, H. St. John, R. Marcus, and L. Feldman, tr. Josephus. 9 vols. Loeb Classical Library.
Cambridge: Harvard University Press 1956-1969.

--. Josephus: The Man and the Historian. New York: Jewish Institute of Religion Press 1929.

Toynbee, J. "Dictators and Philosophers in the First Century A.D." G&R 13 (1944) 43-58.

Verkuyten, M. The Social Psychology of Ethnic Identity. New York: Psychology Press 2005.

Walbank, F. "Nationality as a Factor in Roman History." HSCP 76 (1972) 145-68.

Weber, M. Economy and Society: An Outline ofInterpretive Sociology. New York: Bedmeister
1968.

Weber, W. Josephus and Vespasian: Untersuchungen zu dem Judischen Krieg des Flavius
Josephus. Hildesheim: G. Olms, 1973.









Greek historiography that was in vogue in his day. The remarks of Mader summarize the point

well. After referring to a few of Josephus' uses of Thucydides and Polybius, Mader says:

Intertextual allusion of this kind is not just a matter of formal ornatus, but implies also an
interpretive intent: Josephus by invoking recognizable frames and models suggests
analogies and parallels in a manner which would engage his Greco-Roman readers in their
own cultural terms, and which thus adds subtle nuance to his narrative. From this
perspective the 'Hellenizing glass' serves as a medium for implied authorial comment,
predisposing the reader to a particular interpretation of the historical data.59

In light of the fact that the Jews of the first century were struggling for acceptance in the wider

Hellenistic culture, and that Josephus was writing for the Greek-speaking world of his day, it

would seem that more than mimesis is going on here. Josephus is instead characterizing. These

phenomena suggest that Josephus had a purpose in mind for how he wanted his account, and the

people in it, to be understood.60 The clear echoes from the opening of Thucydides' Histories

immediately brings the reader to think of the conflict of the ancient Greeks and the story in the

Bellum Judaicum in the same terms, and to see the people (the Jews) of the Bellum Judaicum as

in some way parallel to the ancient Greeks. This becomes even more apparent in light of the fact

that this frequent use of the Greek historiographical tradition was not consistent across Josephus'

writings. In particular, his Antiquities have an observable "Isocratean-Dioysian slant," whereas

the Bellum Judaicum has "a conscious Thucydidean-Polybian orientation."61 The use of the

Thucydidean-Polybian model in the Bellum Judaicum seems to be deliberate and suggests that it

was designed to invite implicit comparison between Josephus' subject and that of Thucydides.

As Mader notes, "Josephus brings to bear the classical categories ... on his Jewish narrative

apparently with an eye to informed readers (Greeks, Romans, Hellenized Jews) and in a manner


59 P.9; he alludes to Rajak, Josephus: The Historian andHis Society, 103. Although
Mader is arguing for a different use of the Greek historiographical tradition than we are arguing
in this paper, he bases his approach on this same intertextual phenomenon.
60 Cf Mader 5.
61 Attridge, 'The Interpretation of Biblical History', 44-50.









character of opponents.13 When we take this rhetorical practice into account, "there is little left of

Cicero's supposed anti-Semitism."14 In the rest of Cicero's extant works the Jews are

conspicuously ignored, so he does not seem to have been particularly troubled by, nor interested

in, them. Yet a case can be made that Cicero was playing upon current anti-Jewish sentiments,

and that "... Cicero counted on arousing anti-Jewish prejudice in the jurors' minds to colour their

consideration of the charges against Flaccus."15

Another example dates from 14 BCE and comes from Josephus:

T6OT 6e Trepi trv 'IviLAv brUTp V yEvoiHeov dV roiX TrXniOo 'Iou6gcav Titd Tro6XEL o)KEL
TrPOo~tEL KcLpo Kca Tr cppeOLca( E~TrELXTI 44EVOL KtCL T& ErTrPELCa 'e yov a ieTrrpO e COVuTO
frITE V6o0Lo OLKELOLc E 4EVOL XpfaOUcL 6iKac TE UcVcyKcLO[LEVOL 6L6ov0cL KWT' E'TriPELcUv
eV EUOUvovTOV iv L'V paiLs y 14eipauLe KCoL TV dEL 'IEpoooXuha pl xpratov advattLOEiwvov
4dcULPpoLVTO OTpateLWV KCaL XELTOUpyLGv cdvayLyKcaCdovoL KOLVo)VELV KCaL TrpO TaXUTa
5(TrcLvcv Th)V LEpG)V Vp6r')VPav 4Lv (X)eLcrdoav 'PUe' 4ocaov XITOL( ETrLUpE*,vrov KaTU
TOUR OLKELOUc CT1V VO[LOU.

("Then when they [Agrippa and Herod] were in Ionia, a great multitude of Jews who
inhabit their cities came, seizing the opportunity and courage, and related the abuses they
were suffering, that they were not allowed to have their own laws, that they were forced to
present their lawsuits, by the abuse of the judges, on the holy days, and that they were
deprived of the funds that had been set aside for Jerusalem, having been forced to
participate in campaigns and public services and to spend the sacred funds for these things,
from which they were always released by the Romans, who had allowed them to live
according to their own laws.")16

The litany of complaints reveals a situation of frequent interference in their way of life and, even

more, being forced to do things that were against their religion. The fact that they had lawsuits in


13 To cite one example, Cicero used similar language defending Fonteius against the
Celts. He said: ceterae pro religionibus suis bella suscipiunt, istae contra omnium religiones; illae
in bellis gerendis ab dis immortalibus pacem ac veniam petunt, istae cum ipsis dis immortalibus
bella gesserunt ("others undertake wars on behalf of their religions, but they wage war against
the religion of all; others when waging war beg for peace and pardon from the immortal gods,
but they have waged war with the immortal gods themselves"). Pro Font., 30. See also Walbank
158.
14 M. Stern (ed.), Greek and Latin Authors on Jews and Judaism (Jerusalem 1984) 194.
See also A. Marshall, 'Flaccus and the Jews of Asia (Cicero 'Pro Flacco' 28.67-69)', Phoenix 29
(1975) 141-2.
15 Marshall 142.
16 AJ 16.27-8.









world (e.g., the Epicureans) believed that the interpretation of dreams was the proper domain of

philosophers.101 Either way, Joseph was in good company. That one of the founding figures of

the Jewish people had significant experiences with dreams (either receiving them or interpreting

them) that led him from one land to another immediately makes us think also of Aeneas and his

dream in Aeneid 3.147-71, where he is told to go to Italy.102 Of course, not everyone in ancient

times believed that dreams were auspicious. Thucydides ignored them, and among some people

in Roman times, dreams were considered only deceptive and insubstantial, things that concerned

only those who were simplistically superstitious.103 Yet in spite of skeptics, belief in the divine

nature or divine origin of dreams persisted in the ancient world. Even Aristotle believed that they

had some significance although he was able to deny intellectually that they were sent by gods.104

Josephus was not necessarily arguing philosophically about their significance one way or the

other. It seems that instead Josephus saw in this feature of the Joseph story an element that

resounded with the culture of his day, one that made the Jews look much like Greeks and

Romans. In fact, the time in which Josephus wrote was a time when dreams were being given

more and more credence in the culture at large. The abundance of documents about dreams and

their interpretation from the Greek East and Egypt led Clay to refer to the second century CE as

"an age of dreams,"105 and Harris remarks that "the epigraphical evidence suggests at least the

possibility that dream prophecies gained an extra degree of importance from Flavian times or

after 100 AD."106 The Joseph narrative lent itself quite easily to the sentiments of the day.



101 See D. Clay, 'An Epicurean Interpretation of Dreams', AJP 101 (1980) 342-65.
102 Cf A. Weston, 'Three Dreams of Aeneas', CJ32 (1937) 229-32.
103 E.g., Theophrastus (Char. 16.11) and Diogenes of Sinope (Diog. Laert. 6.43). See W.
Harris, 'Roman Opinions About the Truthfulness of Dreams', JRS 93 (2003) 18-34.
104 Arist., Div. Somn. 1.462b14-15, 463a5-6; 2.463b12-464b6.
105 Clay 343.
106 Harris 31.









noXuKpwr(1 6( 6' 5r6v TpLTro.XLLK6v ypa'*cU ou y&p 6 1 OEO6Trolrr61 -OTLV (v o'iOVTUC TLVE- KcML

Triv OT1Pcdov Tr6OXLV TrpooaCEapEV TroX&a 65 KaL TitcaLO Ev TXLL LoTopcL'LK Trepi iTGV

TrpoeLprtievov K0CL Trepi AloXXv pepX oaifll4Kev ("Theopompus slandered Athens, Polycrates

slandered Sparta, and the one who wrote the Tripoliticus (for he certainly was not Theopompus

as some think) fastened upon Thebes, and Timaeus in his histories slandered many of those just

mentioned and others also").44 The Jews were in good Greek company here, even if what they

had in common was that they both had been the victims of malicious literary defamation. This is

reminiscent of the implicit comparison noted in the Bellum Judaicum, where the impression was

created that the Jewish experience in the First Jewish War was much like the experience of the

Greeks at the hands of their enemies. Another function of the story was that it put the Jews side-

by-side with the Greeks in popular sentiment. I noted in chapter three that Roman admiration of

the Greeks was also tempered with contempt, so even in their experience of contempt, the Jews

had something in common with the Greeks. In Contra Apionem 2.130 he again compared the

Jews' national misfortunes with those of the Greeks as he refuted the slander that Jewish history

was full of defeats. So was the history of others, Josephus replied, including the Greeks. Defeat,

says Josephus, does not mean the victims were inferior people. ouvdei.j wvnei,disen tau/ta toi/j

paqou/sin ("No one reproached those who suffered these things").45 In the same passage he

latently compared the destruction of the Jerusalem temple to the destruction of the famous

shrines in Athens, Ephesus, and Delphi. Again, the Jews were in very good Greek company here.

I have noted that Josephus, in his major works, used Greek terms to describe various

aspects of Jewish culture even when those terms did not precisely fit (terms such as LXooocao').

In the Contra Apionem, however, Josephus went even farther and actually invented a new word:


44Ap. 1.221.
45 Ap. 2.131.









trouble and who defiled the Jewish temple in doing so. He also depicts the Romans as having had

good relations with the Jews until the war, and reluctant to destroy the city during the war.24

Even more, the Bellum Judaicum was designed to show that Judaism and Roman power were not

incompatible, as the Jewish God used the Romans to punish the rebels in Jerusalem. This is

hardly imperial propaganda.25 These considerations make it unlikely that his account was

designed for application to politics on the larger level of the client kingdom26 or for application

to those nations that had hostile intentions toward Rome.

The Greek version of the Bellum Judaicum did not have a (Roman) propagandist purpose

either, as Josephus' own statements in his introduction show. Josephus was well aware that

historiography could be, and regularly was, written for purposes other than recording the events,

or was exploited for political purposes. He notes:

ol iv ou TrUxpUXTuXO6vTE TOL; Trpcy[txoJLV ULXX' C(KOT oUXXEyovTE EKiC(L Kc(L &Cdt(XOVX
6LTryilJXTaa CO0LOTLKG;) 'VxypUd(OU)OLV, ol TrcapayEv1JEvo L 6e KOXCaKiEL- T TI Trp6(
Poaicaou "i [JLLOCEL TO) TrTp6 'Iou6aLOUi Kaa(XEU6OvTaXL 'TUV TTpayt(Xl)v TTEPLE'XEL 6 ai)TOiL
O7TOIu tV KaTIryopLCav O"TrOu 6e E'yKG 4Lov rTC ouyypY[aL4Ua TO 6' 'lKpLPe Ttr LoopTaPL(X


("Those who were not present for these events, but having gathered random and discordant
bits from rumor, write narratives sophistically, and those who were present, either for



24 See, e.g., BJ 1.10.
25 M. Goodman, "Josephus as Roman Citizen," in F. Parente and J. Sievers (eds.),
Josephus and the History of the Greco-Roman Period: Essays in Memory of Morton Smithi
(Studia Post-Biblica 41, Leiden 1994) 337-8.
26 Cf Rajak, Josephus: The Historian and His Society, 181: .. it is hard to see how
Josephus' subject-matter could ever have served to deliver a short, sharp message to the east. It is
hardly plausible that the news of Rome's effective suppression of a petty province in revolt
would have much impressed the ruler of a great empire like Parthia." Thus when Josephus says
(3.108) Tac0Ca ev olv 6t &e0XOv ou 'PPoucLouI E'Trcavioa( Trpoa(pokU[evo; TOOOUTOV Ooov 'EL; T
TrOapa uOLav TWoV KEXELp OEvov) KL EL( UTroTroTriV Tv T VEw veo tpLCt(6ov ("I have therefore
recounted these things, not as preferring to commend the Romans, but for the comfort of those
who have been conquered and for the prevention of those who make insurrection"), we should
probably understand this to mean that he hoped any surviving radical faction in Judea would not
attempt a second revolt.









assimilation constituted a compromise of Jewish identity. Instead, there was a general dialogue

of Jews with Hellenism that was going on simultaneously in different places, and at different

levels, and with different convictions about what constituted an acceptable degree of

acculturation. It is clear that Hellenism provoked a crisis in Jewish self-definition, and that crisis

was met with varying responses.

Yet the great abundance of evidence suggests more than the fact that Hellenism merely

penetrated Judaism. It suggests also that among most Jews in antiquity, there was a perceived

need to fit into Hellenistic culture at large. The Jews were, at various levels, eager to see

themselves in Greek terms. Hellenization on the part of the Jews was intentional. It was, as we

have seen, more than the presence of Greek elements in native non-Greek societies. Hellenism

necessitated peoples' redefinition of themselves, and the Jews actively participated in this

process. The significance of this fact for the present study is that it helps us to see more clearly

the character of Josephus' works.

Conclusion

I discussed in the previous chapter that a strong anti-Jewish sentiment pervaded the Roman

world of Josephus' day, and this was sufficient to provoke a sense of a need for self-definition

among Jews. In this chapter I have shown that many Jews attempted to overcome this negative

perception by embracing Hellenism, often to great lengths. In other words, Hellenism was widely

perceived to be the solution to the problem. The outsiders (in this case, Jews) were trying to get

in by adopting, as much as they could, cultural identity markers belonging to the insiders (those

identified by Hellenistic criteria). This was, to be sure, a balancing act in which the goal was to

get "inside" without sacrificing those things that expressed their own self-understanding as

Jewish (which made them "outsiders" in the first place). To be both thoroughly Jewish and

thoroughly Hellenistic was surely a difficult thing to attempt, and it is doubtful if many Jews









by using Greek terms to describe Jewish institutions (including one Josephus invented), and by

emphasizing the political status Jews had enjoyed, especially under Greek rulers. He also

managed negative impressions of Jews by reverting to the same theme that characterized the

Antiquitates Judaicae, namely the lofty nature of Jewish piety. Even here, however, the

apologetics were accompanied by comparison with a Greek notion of piety.

The Contra Apionem has a more aggressive presentation of Jewish ethnicity than does

Josephus' other works. This is due to the nature of the work itself and the circumstances which

prompted its origin. Continued anti-Jewish polemics, in spite of Josephus' thoroughly Greek

depiction of them in the Antiquitates Judaicae, called for strong rebuttal. Moreover, it would

seem that Jewish-Roman relations took a downward turn in the reign of Domitian. A shortage of

cash prompted Domitian to collect the Jewish tax with more rigor,80 and the emperor was taking

his deity more seriously all the time, especially against those (like Jews81 and Christians82)

whose religious scruples or philosophical ideas conflicted with acknowledging his divine

status.83 It is possible to see in Josephus' writings a growing sense of apprehension about the

nature of Jewish-Roman relations.84 The significance of this for the present study is that the

deterioration of this relationship would have prompted increased efforts on Josephus' part to

assert a Jewish ethnicity that called for acceptance in the Roman world, and this is exactly what

we see.

However, a note of caution is appropriate here. We should not jump to the conclusion that

Josephus' portrayal of things necessarily reflects the social realities of his day accurately. "It is


80 Suet., Dom. 12.
81 Cf D.C. 67.14, where the philosopher Juventius Celsus was threatened with
banishment and escaped by acknowledging the emperor as "master and god."
82 Cf the New Testament's Apocalypse of John (the Book ofRevelation).
83 Cf D.C. 67.13.
84 Case 10-20.









Use of Greek Forms, Paradigms, and Terms .............. ............ ..................... ..........188
Exempla ............. ...... ... .................. ........... ............... 204
Stories of Positive Impressions on Non-Jews ......... .......................... ......213
Management of Negative Impressions ................................. ........................... 217
C o n c lu sio n ........................................... .. .............................................................................2 3 7

7 JEWISH ETHNICITY IN JOSEPHUS' VITA AND CONTRA APIONEM........................239

T h e V ita .............. ............................................................................................ ............. ..... 2 3 9
The C ontra Apionem ............................ ........................ ..... ............ .. ............. 244
C o n clu sio n ................................64.............................

8 SUM M ARY AND CONCLUSION S............................. .. ............................................. 268

REFERENCE LIST ............................. .................................. 279

B IO G R A PH IC A L SK E T C H ............................................................................. ....................297





































6









Gerber, C. "Des Josephus Apologie fur das Judentum. Prolegomena zu einer Interpretation von C
2:145ff" In Internationales Josephus-Kolloquium Brissel 1997, edited by F. Siegert and
J. Kalms, 251-69. Muensteraner Judaistische Studien 4, Minster 1999.

Giovannini, A. "Greek Cities and Greek Commonwealth." In Images andIdeologies: Self-
definition in the Hellenistic World, edited by A. Bulloch et al, 265-86. Berkeley:
University of California Press 1993.

Glazier, N., and D. Moynihan. Ethnicity: Theory and Experience. Cambridge: Harvard
University Press 1975.

Goldstein, J. "Jewish Acceptance and Rejection of Hellenism." In Jewish and Christian Self-
Definition Volume 2, edited by E. Sanders, 64-87. Philadelphia: Fortress 1981.

Goodman, M. "Jews and Judaism in the Mediterranean Diaspora in the Late-Roman Period: The
Limitations of Evidence." In Ancient Judaism in Its Hellenistic Context, edited by C.
Bakhos, 177-204. Suppl.JSJ 95, Leiden: Brill 2005.

--. "Josephus as Roman Citizen." In Josephus and the History of the Greco-Roman Period:
Essays in Memory of Morton S.mith, edited by F. Parente and J. Sievers, 329-38. Studia
Post-Biblica 41, Leiden: Brill 1994.

Goudriaan, K. "Ethnical Strategies in Graeco-Roman Egypt." In Ethnicity in Hellenistic Egypt,
edited by P. Bilde et al, 74-99. Studies in Hellenistic Civilization 3, Aarhus: Aarhus
University Press 1992.

Grabbe, L. "The Hellenistic City of Jerusalem." In Jews in the Hellenistic andRoman Cities,
edited by J. Barlett, 6-21. London: Routledge 2002.

--. "The Jews and Hellenization: Hengel and His Critics." Ioudaios 15 May 2006
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Grant, M. Greek and Roman Historians. London: Routledge 1995.

Green, P. Alexander to Actium: The Historical Evolution of the Hellenistic Age. Hellenistic
Culture and Society 1. Berkeley: University of California Press 1990.

Gruen, E. "Cultural Fictions and Cultural Identity." TAPA 123 (1993) 1-14.

--. Culture and National Identity in Republican Rome. Ithaca: Cornell University Press 1992.

--. Diaspora: Jews Amidst Greeks and Romans. Cambridge: Harvard University Press 2002.

--. "Greeks and Jews: Mutual Misperceptions in Josephus' Contra Apionem." In Ancient
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Exempla

The Hellenistic canons of Greek historiography also made impressions on Josephus'

account of Jewish history. By Josephus' day historiography was becoming more biographically-

oriented. It had long been a method within Greek historiography to present leading figures in

historical episodes as exempla of character traits, virtues, and conduct to be emulated.65 The

technique was already discernible in Aristotle, Isocrates (his Evagoras), and Thucydides.66 It

received further impetus in Xenophon's Hellenica and his biography of Agesilaus,67 and in the

hands of Polybius exempla became prime vehicles for his purposes of modeling political utility.68

Plutarch's Parallel Lives (which he himself called "histories") represented a culmination of this

process of transformation from history as a record of events, led along the way by great historical

figures, to history mostly as the biography of an exemplar. Interestingly, Plutarch's biographies

were apologetic in nature, designed to demonstrate that great Greeks were equal to great

Romans.69 Josephus' presentation of Jewish history in the Antiquitates Judaicae was similarly

driven by exempla, and their stories were crafted to make them similar to prominent Greek

characters. A few examples may suffice.

The founding father of the Jews was Abraham, and Josephus crafted his presentation of

this leading Jewish exemplar after the model of a Greek philosopher. Josephus says that

Abraham 6ELV6c (C3v ouvelvai T TrEpi Tru'VTr V KCL TirLOUV6( TOT( (KpoW4ivoL( ("was clever,







65 Momigliano, 'Tradition and the Classical Historian', 289.
66 Feldman, 'Josephus' Moses and Plutarch's Lycurgus', 209-11.
67 J. Bury, The Ancient Greek Historians (New York 1958), 153.
68 Fornara 107-113.
69 Grant 73.









character of Josephus' works to his assistants only creates more difficulties than it purports to

solve.

An important contribution to the question of Hellenistic Jewish literature was

Tcherikover's 1956 essay "Jewish Apologetic Literature Reconsidered," where he argued that

Jews, not pagans, were reading this literature, because pagans would not have been interested in

it in the first place.101 The result for Josephus studies was that an attempt was made to understand

his works in light of a Jewish audience. A few scholars have followed this lead, but it does not fit

Josephus' own statements about his target audience (noted above), nor does it explain why

Josephus was constantly explaining Jewish customs to his readers. Most modem scholarship has

concluded, instead, that Josephus was writing for non-Jews. What remains, however, is

Tcherikover's important question of why Josephus thought non-Jews would have been interested

in Jewish history and customs. The usual answer is that his works answered an implicit and

ongoing public debate over the value of Judaism. That is, Josephus' works were primarily

apologetic in character and purpose. Mason has noted, however, that this solution does not

answer all the questions. If, for example, the Antiquitates Judaicae is designed to refute slanders

about Jewish origins and customs, then why does that topic not take up more of the work? And

why would Josephus write an account that is only implicitly, but not explicitly, apologetic? And

what Gentile would have waded through 60,000 lines on the subject?102 Clearly, more research

can be done.

The modern positive view of Josephus has led to a more serious study of how Josephus

crafted his literary works. Several studies, in which the emphasis is on Josephus in his cultural


101 See n.46 above.
102 S. Mason, '"Should Any Wish to Enquire Further" (Ant. 1.25): The Aim and
Audience of Josephus' Judean Antiquities', in S. Mason (ed.), Understanding Josephus: Seven
Perspectives (JSPseudSup 32, Sheffield 1998) 68-72.









BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH

L. David McClister was born in 1960 in Evergreen Park, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago.

He grew up in the neighboring suburbs of Crestwood and Burbank, and graduated from Reavis

High School in 1978. He attended Florida College, in Temple Terrace, Florida and received his

A.A. degree from that school in 1980. He earned a B.A. in classical civilization from Loyola

University of Chicago in 1983, and an M.A. in biblical studies from that same institution in

1988. David has also served as a minister among Churches of Christ since 1980, working with

local congregations in Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, and Florida. In 1996 David moved to Temple

Terrace, Florida to accept a teaching position at Florida College, and was granted tenure in 2005.

He has had articles published in the Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society (1996) and

The New Eerdmans Dictionary of the Bible (2000). While he was working at Florida College, the

Classics department at the University of Florida created its distance program leading to the Ph.D.

in classics, and David began work in that program in 2003.

Upon completion of his Ph.D. David plans to continue teaching at Florida College. David

has been married to Lisa Ann McClister for 26 years. They have four children: Melissa

(Senuick), age, 24; Matthew, age 23; Meghan, age 20; and Michelle, age 17.









clearly shared many similarities with Plutarch's presentation of Lycurgus. In fact, "Moses is

modeled in Platonic fashion after the founder of a Greekpolis, whose laws form the constitution

(TroXLo~Lra) of the state."87 In this way, Moses was presented as reflecting Greek virtues almost

transparently. Such a thoroughly Greek picture of the Jewish lawgiver was designed not only to

present yet another great exemplar for which the Jewish people as a whole ought to be respected,

but also to impart a similar respect to the law which came through Moses. This was an important

part of the project for Josephus, given the low view many pagans had about things such as

Jewish Sabbath observance and dietary restrictions.

Certain foreigners in the Biblical stories, or stories of Jews in foreign contexts, were

especially important for Josephus because they presented opportunities to show favorable

relationships between Jews and non-Jews. Again, such incidents become arguments imbedded

within the narrative. If other foreigners could respect the Jews and their culture, and treat them

favorably, then so could the Romans. In fact, in light of stories of favorable relationships

between Jews and other nations, the Romans would appear out of step, as if every other nation

found admirable qualities in the Jews except the Romans. So Josephus had Jethro, a foreigner

(Midianite), adopt Moses as his son,88 something the canonical Biblical story did not posit. Most

importantly, Joseph rose to prominence in Egypt, and Daniel was a Jew who served the

Babylonian court in the Jewish diaspora in Babylon itself. Since such narrative situations were

important for presenting a positive picture of Jews in the diaspora in the Roman world, Josephus

gave considerable space in his work to these two figures. In fact, both of these figures would



87 Feldman, 'Josephus' Portrait of Moses. Part Three', 215-6. Cf A. Droge ('Josephus
Between Greeks and Barbarians', 126) commenting on the similar treatment of Moses in the Ap.:
"The presentation of Moses in this passage owes more to Plato's Laws than it does to the book of
Deuteronomy."
8 AJ 2.263.









bore an inscription that proclaimed it had been built from the spoils of Jerusalem.70 An arch of

Isis also proclaimed the Roman victory.71 The spoils from the temple (specifically the golden

menorah and the table) were put on public display in Vespasian's new Temple of Peace, and the

temple torah scroll and purple wall hangings from the Jerusalem sanctuary were taken to his

palace.72 For the next 12 years Vespasian and Titus minted coins, which were circulated

throughout the empire, bearing the inscription IUDAEA CAPTA, and a new tax, for a newfiscus

ludaicus, was levied on Jews in place of the collection they had formerly taken up for the

Jerusalem temple.73 The tax funded the new temple of Jupiter Capitolinus and its yearly

collection reminded the Jews that the money once used for their own God was now being given

to a Roman deity. The destruction of Jerusalem provided a much-needed foundational myth for

the fledgling Flavian dynasty and allowed it to compare itself favorably to the first principate

that brought stability after a time of civil strife.74 While Rome conquered other places during this

period, no conquest was given as much resources or as much public attention as that of

Jerusalem. "... never had Jews as a nation and as an ethnos had to deal with symbolism that

singled out their defeat with consistent iconographic and rhetorical displays across the breadth of




70 G. Alfoldy, 'Eine Bauinschrift aus dem Colosseum', ZPE 109 (1993) 195-226. See
also L. Feldman, 'Financing the Colosseum', BibArchRev 27 (2001) 20-31, 60-1, which mostly
summarizes Alfoldy. The stone that originally bore the inscription is currently on display in the
gallery in the upper level of the Colosseum.
71 Edwards 304.
72 BJ 7.158-62.
73 BJ7.218; D.C. 66.7.2.
74 T. Barnes, 'The Sack of the Temple in Josephus and Tacitus', in J. Edmondson et al
(eds.), Flavius Josephus and Flavian Rome (Oxford 2005) 129.
75 While the conquest of Jerusalem was not the largest conflict the Romans ever engaged,
they did pour tremendous resources into it. It was arguably the longest siege against any city in
the first century CE (it lasted five months), and employed four legions, parts of two others,
twenty infantry cohorts, eight mounted regiments, and 18,000 foot soldiers supplied by client
kings. This was more than was sent for the invasion of Britain in 43 CE. Millar 101.









Most notably, Jews in many places used the Greek language, even if they continued to use

a local or native language alongside it. As noted in chapter two, language can serve as an ethnic

indicium. Accordingly, adoption of the Greek language by ancient Jews was more than just a

concession to the political and economic realities around them. Admittedly, some facility in

Greek was necessary for commerce and communication with foreign magistrates, so use of the

Greek language by itself would not necessarily comprise evidence of Hellenization among Jews.

It is, however, evidence when viewed in the larger context in which other elements of Greek

culture were also adopted into Jewish culture. In that larger context it indicated a degree of

acceptance of Hellenism and a desire to be counted as part of that social world. The strength of

this fact is more obvious when we contrast the scene in 2 Maccabees 7.8, where one of the seven

brothers voiced his refusal to eat pig's flesh u T CarpLC
and in Second Jewish War, the Bar-Kochba Revolt (132-135 AD), when the leaders of the revolt

mandated the used of Hebrew as an expression of nationalistic solidarity.16 Similarly, in Luke's

Acts (14.8-18) we hear of the people of Lystra in the interior of Asia Minor speaking in the

Lycaonian language, not Greek, and Paul chose to address a hostile Jewish crowd in Jerusalem in

Aramaic (21.40), not Greek. In some contexts, choice of language reflected a conscious ethnic

identification.

A command of the Greek language was necessary at a minimum for anyone who wished to

carve out a place for themselves in the Hellenistic world, and refusal to use the language

indicated a rejection of Hellenism to some extent and a preference for some other ethnic






16 A. Berlin and J. Overman, 'Introduction', in A. Berlin and J. Overman (eds.), The First
Jewish Revolt: Archaeology, History, and Ideology (London 2002) 10.









ever really succeeded at convincing other peoples of the Roman world that they had

accomplished it. The persistence of rejection from the Greco-Roman society at large in spite of

sweeping adoption of Hellenistic identity markers on the part of Jews confirms this.

The point to see is that the Jews themselves saw no problem in being both Jewish and

Hellenistic. This was because they were able intellectually to divorce certain expressions of

Greco-Roman culture from religion. This was a different mindset than operated among most

others. Most public buildings in the Greco-Roman world, including places like public baths, had

close religious associations bound up with them. It does not seem that the Jews could have, or

would have, denied a connection between culture and religion. The ancient world was saturated

with this kind of thinking, and the Jews were no exception. In their way of thinking, however,

the connection was between culture and religion (in general), but not necessarily with Greco-

Roman religion in particular. It is precisely at this point that Josephus found a way "in." He

proposed to define Jewishness as equal to, but without being identical to, the cultural and

religious heritage of the Greeks and Romans. In this way he preserved what was specifically

Jewish and at the same time hoped to negotiate a place within the dominant culture around him.

Given the dilemma of defining Jews in terms of what was unique to them or what was

compatible with Hellenistic culture, Josephus made his case on the Greek side of self-definition,

since the Romans had admired and patterned much of their own culture after that of the Greeks.

In portraying the Jews as he did, Josephus was participating in an on-going dialogue and, at the

same time, advancing it through new means historiographyy in the Greek vein).

Of course, this line of reasoning involved a problem. Josephus hoped that Jews and

Judaism would find a place in the larger Roman society, that it would be accepted and respected

because it shared many of the virtues the Romans had long admired among the Greeks. In other









paradigms were often secular, not merely religious, in character, and by using them Josephus

demonstrated that he had more than Gentile religious sympathy in view. He had a larger, social

agenda.

Josephus' circumstances, and the content of his writings, suggest that his works were

designed to present a positive image of Jewish culture which served as a correction to the

prevailing, mostly negative image. The present investigation stands in the trajectories of recent

Josephan studies and of explorations into the ethnicities of ancient peoples and the texts that

reflect them. I propose that, given the historical context in which Josephus wrote, Josephus was

attempting a transformation in the way non-Jews viewed and understood Jews. That is, Josephus

was not simply accommodating Jewish history and customs to pagan points of view so they

could understand it or that they would be attracted to it. He was instead accommodating Jewish

ethnicity to Hellenism so that the Jews would be perceived as a people who possessed Greek

qualities. This was more than explaining the Jewish way of life to outsiders, and it was more than

simple apologetics. Josephus was re-inventing Jewish identity to conform with Greek identity.

The best way to describe this is that he was in the business of constructing an ethnicity for the

Jewish people of his day through his literary works.

The construction of an ethnicity is more than an exercise in self-defense125 (even though

ethnicities can be, and often are, constructed in response to some perceived social

marginalization), let alone religious self-defense. It is instead to make a claim in the world, to

make a statement about "who we are," to provide a rationale for fitting into a larger society. The

goal of the present study is to read and describe Josephus' literary works from the perspective of

ethnicity. I wish to view his writings not from the Jews' perspective simply as a retelling of



125 Cf E. Gruen, 'Cultural Fictions and Cultural Identity' TAPA 123 (1993) 13.









A more subtle approach is taken concerning the presentation of Moses' deeds. Feldman

has observed that the contours of Josephus' portrayal of Moses follow closely the contours of

Plutarch's portrayal of the Spartan lawgiver Lycurgus. For example, both are portrayed as

reluctant to take hold of the reins of power, as the objects of envy, as men who sought wisdom

from abroad, as military leaders, as survivors of rebellions led by relatives, and as men

characterized by moderation and piety.82 Similarly, the bodies of law that came from each are

described as having similar features. Both came from deity, both created councils of elders to

assist in governance, both discouraged the visual arts, both forbade consultation of soothsayers,

both demanded an offering of the first fruits of crops, both paid particular attention to details of

child-rearing, and both demanded that the laws not be changed.83 In other ways, Josephus

presented Moses as a Stoic philosopher. For example, Josephus borrowed a Stoic phrase, Tr6vov

KcUrapovCoEL ("despising exertion") to describe the greatness of Moses in Antiquitates Judaicae

2.229.84 The account also has dramatic touches with motifs and phrases from the Greek

tragedians.85

Whether or not Josephus knew Plutarch or his writings is debatable, so the question of

borrowing is hard to decide. Feldman argues that it is possible, if not likely, that the two men at

least knew of each other if they did not actually know each other.86 However, both authors were

acquainted with the elements of encomia commonly advocated in the rhetorical practices of the

day. Thus even if they did not have direct access to each other's work, they shared a common

paradigm for writing about great historical figures. Either way, Josephus' portrait of Moses



82 Feldman, 'Josephus' Moses and Plutarch's Lycurgus', 216-22.
83 Feldman, 'Josephus' Moses and Plutarch's Lycurgus', 222-30.
84 L. Feldman, 'Josephus' Portrait of Moses. Part Three', JQR 83 (1993) 321.
85 Feldman, 'Josephus' Portrait of Moses. Part Three', 322-5.
86 Feldman, 'Josephus' Portrait of Moses. Part Three', 231-7.









Phoenicians),61 the EupoOL'VLKOL (Syro-Phoenicians),62 the Gallograeci (Phrygian Gauls,

Galatians),63 and the Celtiberi (Iberian Celts, in Hispania).64 Of special interest are the

OOLVLKcLyuTrTLOL (Phoenician Egyptians),65 the 'EXX1votE4L cLa (Greco-Memphites),66 and the

KapotE4(iL at (Carian Memphites), all of whom were neighbors of the Jews whom Josephus

designated as 'Iou6aiot A'yUirroL. All of these groups had been allocated land and had

permission to build temples for themselves. That is, Egypt became their new homeland, and this

important element of ethnic identity became transposed, as it were.67

In spite of the fact that some people managed to achieve a kind of dual-ethnicity, the norm

was that most people continued to be associated with a single ethnicity, whether that association

was hereditary or negotiated. Thus in Euripides' Phrixus, we hear of a (fictional) man who left

Sidon and settled in Thebes, and Fotvi TrEUKU5, EK 6' d&cEL ETcL yEvoc 'EXXrIVLK6v ("having

been Phoenician originally, he changed his genos to Greek"),68 and in Heliodorus' Aethiopica a

Tyrian character offers to exchange his cilinm and hispatris for another ('vo5 6e KaL Trarp~6a

tiv 6~terpav &XXdo'cLat) if it means he can marry the Egyptian girl with whom he has fallen in

love.69 Strabo's opinion in the early first century CE was that the Greek cities of the part of Italy

known to him as Magna Graecia (except Tarentum, Rhegium, and Naples) had become

completely barbarized (EKPEtPPappacooat) and thus lost their Greek character.70 In a similar vein,


61 The term is used by Polybius (e.g., 3.33.15), whose works were known by Josephus.
62 Used in the New Testament, Mark 7.26.
63 E.g., Tac. Ann. 15.6; Caes. Civ. 3.4; Liv. 38.12.1. The Greek version of the word
appears in D.S. 5.32.
64 E.g., Caes. Civ. 1.38.
65 PSI 5.53 1.1.
66 PSI 5.531.6.
67 Bohak 190.
68 Fr. 819.
69 5.19.
70 6.1.2.









were naturally interested in matters of Jewish history,38 which was probably a rhetorical touch on

his part. The assumption, however, bought into the paradigm neatly. It added to the sense that

one was reading legitimate Greek historiography.

Literary artistry was considered another hallmark of proper Greek history-writing. It

remained that good, respectable history was first and foremost supposed to be factual and

truthful, yet all historians felt the need for their accounts to be written in a way that was engaging

(following the high style of Thucydides). Josephus explicitly distanced himself from merely

rhetorical accounts in Bellum Judaicum 1.1, where he spoke of other accounts that had been

written "sophistically" (oodLjoTLK(Ji). Some modern scholars would judge this to be mere lip-

service on Josephus' part, since his account is fairly heavy with rhetorical flourishes.39 However,

it is not the truth of the claim that is ultimately important, but the impression that claim makes on

the reader. In this same vein, Josephus was also careful to note in Bellum Judaicum 1.13-14 that

excellence of literary style ought not be the primary standard of good history either. In fact, in

that passage Josephus implicitly compares his own account with the accounts of the classical

historians, and against contemporary Greek authors. In doing so he was participating in the

Roman practice, noted before, of distinguishing between the noble Greeks of the past and

contemporary Greeks of lesser achievements, and comparing himself favorably with the former.

The personal observation of what was studied (autopsy), participation in the events one

narrated, or having seen sites personally was considered a requirement for any Greek historian

who wished to be judged as competent. Thucydides had participated in the Peloponnesian War,

and Polybius experienced Roman conquest himself and even claimed to have visited the site



38 BJ 1.3, 16; cf. AJ 1.9.
39 Cf S. Cohen, Josephus in Galilee andRome, 90: "BJ is a good representative of
rhetorical historiography."









that war was an admission that lent itself easily to pro-Christian politics and propaganda. It was

not until the modem era that Josephus began to be read seriously as an author in his own right.

Modem scholarship on Josephus went through a mostly negative phase in the late 1800s

and early 1900s, with an emphasis on source criticism that resulted in the view that Josephus'

own contribution to his works was minimal.75 The cue for this came from Josephus himself, who

mentioned that he used assistants in connection with writing the Bellum Judaicum: Tmor|C [oiL TT;

Trpxy[LXTELX( EV TTrUpaoKEUr yeyev'rLevrT1 XprToci4Ev6OU TLOL Trp6o tiv 'ErXX|v5(xa ()VTiv ouVEpyoiL

oiUTWr ETOLroctrv LV TTpeowV Tiv TT apl600Lv ("when all my materials were prepared, I made

use of some assistants for the Greek language, and thus I prepared the account of the events").76

He also admitted for the Antiquitates Judaicae that Xp6vou 6' Trpo'6vroV iTrep Lx~e To UL

[EycXUov ciTrTeGaOL 6L5vooUiEvoLL OKVO [OL KCUL EiXXTjrOL( EyivETO UTiTXLKUxTTIrV [LETEVEYKELV

6dOEeoLv el[; &XX0o6UTrrv t41v KCCL Evrv 6La EiKTou ouvAOELav ("as time went on, as it likes to

take hold of those who contemplate great things, there developed for me a hesitation and delay to

translate such a great purpose into a usage of language that is foreign and strange to us").77

Thackeray's studies emphasized the role he believed the literary assistants had,78 and many

scholars, following his lead, came to view Josephus merely as a redactor who relied heavily on

written sources and literary assistants instead of as an author in his own right. Scholars also

viewed Josephus with great suspicion personally for two main reasons: 1) it was generally

believed that Josephus' patronage by the imperial Flavian family stood at odds with his loyalties

to the Jews, and 2) the accounts in the Bellum Judaicum and Vita seem to give two different

pictures of Josephus' loyalties during the First Jewish War. Josephus was thus seen not only as a

75 Bilde calls this the "classic conception of Josephus." 'Main Trends in Modern Josephus
Research', Nordisk Judaistik. .\kA, Inlin, vi iii Jewish Studies 8 (1987) 74-6.
76 Ap. 1.50.
77 AJ 1.7.
78 Thackeray, Josephus: The Man and the Historian 100-24.









where Hannibal crossed the Alps. This emphasis on eyewitness testimony was another part of the

tradition's heritage from Greek pre-Socratic philosophy. In good Greek fashion, Josephus thus

placed his claim to be an eyewitness at the front of his account: 'I)orlTrroc Ma 0(ou wrTra c e

'IEpooo3iuwv ilpeuc; awvOC Te 'P-vi[C 'rroUC erToaqi(w Tv Trp2a KCm TOIC iuoepov

Trapaawuv e' &v'yK|l ("I myself, Joseph son of Matthias, a priest from Jerusalem, fought the

Romans at first and was forced to be present for what happened later").40 Similarly, a good

historian was expected to maintain some semblance of neutrality and objectivity and refrain from

excesses of either praise or blame in his account. This is evident as early as Homer. Similarly, in

Herodotus barbarians are generally portrayed sympathetically, not as inherently evil. In keeping

with this aspect of the tradition, Josephus presented his claim to objectivity in Bellum Judaicum

1.9: Ou0 [Ufv ey4 TOIC ETraLpouoL vm 'Pw[aiLv lVTL4)LjOVELKG)V yuioELV T T63pv 6Oo4~u.. .v

6LEyvGov diU T [I pev 'epya [LE' CKpLpeLa f poTdpTpgv 6L'etiteL ("Now I have resolved not

to magnify the deeds of my countrymen out of jealously against those who exalt the Roman

deeds, but I am recounting the deeds of both with accuracy").

There is, in Greek historiography, a precedent for establishing the authority of the

historical account in some way. Marincola observes that whereas in myth the authority is

guaranteed by the muse, in history the authority is vouchsafed by the author himself.41 How this

was achieved in practice varied. Herodotus constantly appears in the first person in his narrative

to provide testimony to what is presented, but Thucydides rarely interjects himself into his

account. His method instead was instead to write a seamless account that has the appearance of

being the presentation of the facts. "The narrative homogeneity of Thucydides is meant to inspire


40 BJ 1.3.
41 Pp.4-5.









occurrence in the cities where Jews lived, and that the Jews complained about it often. The

overall purpose of these stories, which are a major and distinctive part of the Antiquitates

Judaicae, was to establish that Romans had always sided with Jews when it came to practicing

their customs,20 although this falls far short of any official "charter" of Jewish privilege across

the empire.21 Josephus' overall appeal for ethnic toleration of the Jews was not new. The fact that

he felt compelled to rehash the matter suggests, however, that anti-Jewish sentiments had risen

and now required that his audience be reminded of the long-standing friendly disposition of

Rome towards the Jews.

Perhaps one of the most famous incidents of Jewish mistreatment happened in Egypt

during the tenure of Aulus Avilius Flaccus (32-8 CE), an event that has come to be called the

first pogrom. Philo of Alexandria was a witness to the scene. In 38 CE Herod Agrippa I (who

was a friend of the emperor Gaius) visited Alexandria on his way to take his new position as

"king" of part of Palestine, and on his visit he was publicly insulted by anti-Jewish Greeks in that

city. The incident quickly spilled over into the synagogues and the Jewish sections of the city.

Many Jews were killed or tortured, their homes ransacked and their possessions looted. Philo laid

the blame for the riot at the feet of the Roman governor Flaccus, who, he charges, was paranoid

with suspicion that Agrippa was out to topple him.22 The governor failed to restrain the violent

mob and, according to Philo, even encouraged its actions. The groundwork for this violence had

been laid in the time of Augustus, when he confirmed the special privileges the Jews already

enjoyed and at the same time denied the Alexandrians' request for a senate.23 The Jews had long

shown loyalty to Rome, but Alexandrians were anti-Roman. Action against the Jews therefore


20 S. J. Case, 'Josephus' Anticipation of a Domitianic Persecution', JBL 44 (1925) 14.
21 T. Rajak, The Jewish Dialogue i/ ith Greece and Rome (Leiden: Brill, 2002) 301-11.
22 Ph., In Flaccum 10-20.
23 CPJ II no. 150.









Sophon, from whom the Sophacians derived their name. Plutarch (Sert. 9.8-10) speaks of a son

of Heracles named Sophax, and relates that Sparta was founded by Heracles and that the city was

ruled by his descendants for several generations. Herodotus reported (7.208) that Leonidas was

descended from Heracles.51 So a connection between Abraham and Heracles made Jews and

Spartans brethren. Josephus never made the direct connection himself, but, as it was in the case

of his reference to Homer, it was unnecessary to do so. The suggestion was enough.

Sometimes Josephus was fortunate enough to find a reference in a Greek author that fit his

Jewish topic precisely. For example, in Antiquitates Judaicae 1.107-8 Josephus was dealing with

the long lifespans of people in the primeval age, specifically the age of Noah. The Biblical text

says that Noah died at the age of 950 years.52 This, of course, required some kind of defense, and

Josephus found it in the works of Greek historians. He said:

IcprTpoUoL 6E IOU T'O X6yc Tirc'VTE; oL Trap' "EXXTIOL KCL pcppcLpoL; ouyypaUi4EvoL T&C
cpXUaLoXoyLc Kcai y&p KcL McavEWov 6 triv A'yuTrruL'v TOLtrlociUevo0 ccvcypa~i v KUL
BilpGo6( 6 T0& Xa c6a'K& ouvUcyc6ylv KCL M ;6 TE KCIL 'EEoTLCLO( KUCL Trpboc To~oOOL 6
A'LyUTTrLO 'Iepwvu~o 0 oT T& (cOLVLKLK& ouyypa ci LJ4EVOL OUJOVOUOL TOL UTT' E OU
XEyoiEvoL. 'Holo66( TE KCL 'EKETCCLO( KCL 'EXX&VLKO( KCL 'AKOUCOL'XCo KCL Trpb TOU'TOL;
"E0opo0 KCL NLK6Oao oG LTopoUtL Toik UpXCaLoul C'oUvraVt 'eTir XLXLC Trep'i [V TOUTi)V 6(
Uv EKUoCTOL ri XLAOV OUTU) OKOTrELT)OoCLV

("All those from the Greeks and the barbarians who have composed Archaeologies testify
about my statement, for even Manetho who produced the Egyptian history, and Berosus,
who collected the Chaldean evidences, and Mochus, and Hestiaius, and with these the
Egyptian Hieronymus and those who composed the Phoenician records, agree with the
things said by me, and Hesiod, Hecataeus, Hellanicus, and Acusilaus, and with these
Ephorus and Nicolaus, record that the ancients lived a thousand years. But concerning
these things, let each one consider them as he pleases.").







51 In making these connections I have followed L. Feldman, 'Josephus' Moses and
Plutarch's Lycurgus', in J. Edmondson et al (eds.), Flavius Josephus andFlavian Rome (Oxford
2005) 212-3. See also Gruen, 'Cultural Fictions and Cultural Identity', 9-10.
52 Gen. 9.29.









Greek adventus story, in which a monarch is given a grand welcome by the inhabitants of a

city.126 Alexander was dutifully and clearly acknowledged for the great leader he was. The story

goes on to relate that after his adventus Alexander honored the Jewish God with a sacrifice and,

most importantly, the Jews freely capitulated to Alexander's authority, and Alexander confirmed

their right to practice their ancestral customs. Jewish acceptance of Greek culture is thus

underscored, as is Greek approval of exclusivistic Jewish monotheism, an approval from the

hand of one no less than the founder of the Hellenistic world himself. Furthermore, the story also

shares in the qualities of a epiphany tale where a god appears to an important figure in a dream,

the result of which is the salvation of a city from destruction.127 Here both Alexander and the

Jewish high priest Jaddus received dreams, thus doubly insuring the city's safety. The potential

aggressor Alexander was prevented from attacking the city, and the guardian priest Jaddus was

encouraged about the city's safety. Most importantly, the story also served as a foundation for

Josephus' multiple assertions that the Jews enjoyed Greek civic rights from Alexander himself.

Management of Negative Impressions

It is one thing to present an ethnic group as positively as possible using the conventions of

the dominant social structure to argue for a basic compatibility between that structure and the

ethnic group. It is another thing to deal with negative perceptions satisfactorily. It is to this latter

problem, as it presented itself to Josephus in telling the material of Jewish history, that I now

turn. Because of the milieu in which he lived and wrote, it was impossible for Josephus to ignore

the many criticisms that had been leveled against Jews and Judaism. The risk, however, was

always that bringing these matters up only tended to magnify them and keep them in the

forefront unless they could be given a truly satisfying treatment.


126 S. Cohen, 'Alexander the Great and Jaddus the High Priest', 45-9.
127 S. Cohen, 'Alexander the Great and Jaddus the High Priest', 49-53.









by its exterior.109 Outside of Palestine there is the striking example of the synagogue in Sardis,

which was part of a massive urban complex that comprised the public gymnasium.110 The only

way into the synagogue is through the entrance on the outside street; no entrance from the

gymnasium complex was available. In the main hall of the synagogue was a heavy table that

probably served as the lectern. The supports of this table carry carved depictions of Roman

eagles clutching thunderbolts, and the table itself is flanked by two pairs of stone lions, which

were prominent in the local mythology of Sardis.111 The entrance to the synagogue had a public

fountain, the floors were done in mosaics, and Greek inscriptions lined the walls surrounding the

aedicules which probably housed the Torah scrolls. The impression is one of a wealthy Jewish

community that felt comfortable with its Hellenistic surroundings and its symbols, yet at the

same time maintained a measure of distance.112 Thus even an institution as significant for self-

definition as the Sabbath was subjected, in the synagogue, to considerable Hellenistic influence.

The picture that develops is that there was no corner of ancient Judaism that was not

affected by Hellenism, even in Palestine. Even those ethnic markers that were considered most

characteristic or even essential to Jewish self-definition were affected by Hellenism in some

ways. There was no single, monolithic entity of Judaism in the first century CE. The ethnic

boundaries were never clearly or firmly fixed, nor was there agreement among Jews as to level

of acculturation with Hellenistic culture was and what was not acceptable, or what degree of



109 P.143.
110 The synagogue apparently became part of the complex after it was rebuilt and
remodeled in the second century CE. A. Kraabel, 'Paganism and Judaism: The Sardis Evidence',
in J. Overman and R. MacLenna (eds.), Diaspora Jews and Judaism: Essays in Honor of and in
Dialogue i/ ith, A. Thomas Kraabel (Atlantal992) 242.
111 Kraabel, 'Paganism and Judaism', 245-6.
112 Goodman ('Jews and Judaism', 193-7) has suggested, based on the unusual features of
the site, that the building might have been not a synagogue, but a place where Gentiles ("God-
fearers") worshipped the Jewish God. This interpretation has not gained general acceptance.









CHAPTER 2
ETHNICITY, SELF-DEFINITION, AND THE ANCIENTS

The Concept of Ethnicity

The word "ethnicity" was coined in modern times,1 but the concept has a history going

back into ancient times. The English word is derived from the Greek word 'evo(, which

originally referred to a group of people (or even animals) who lived together, and then acquired

the sense of a group of people who comprise a nationality (i.e., they lived together as a nation),

whether it was stated positively (a group of people belonging to the same nation) or negatively (a

group of people not belonging to a particular nation under consideration). In this latter usage, T&

EOvrl came to mean "foreigners." Among Greeks, therefore, the term could mean "non-Greek."

Similarly, Jewish literature in Greek regularly refers to Gentiles as T& 'evrl. The word could also

be used in a narrower sense to denote the people who comprised smaller social units, and could

be applied to groups such as guilds, classes of people, the people in a geographical area such as

"the provincials," or the people under a particular ruler.2 The basic idea was of a group that

shared some common characteristics, especially some level of social life together. An EOvo( was

a geographical, political, or cultural group.3

Even though the phenomenon of ethnicity has become the object of modern scholarly

inquiry only relatively recently, approaches to this subject have changed over recent years as the

social and political climate in which modern scholars' work has changed. The result is that

debate persists over several issues in the study of ethnicity. It is beyond the scope of the present



1 In 1953, according to J. Hall 34. The term did not enter English dictionaries until 1972.
N. Glazier and D. Moynihan, Ethnicity: Theory and Experience (Cambridge, MA 1975) 1.
Ground-breaking discussions were E. Leach, Political Systems ofHighland Burma (London
1954) and F. Barth, Ethnic Groups and Boundaries (Boston 1969).
2 LSJ480.
3 C. Jones, '"Ovo( and y'vo( in Herodotus', CQ 46 (1996) 316.









Bilde, P. "Contra Apionem 1.28-56: An Essay on Josephus' View of His Own Work in the
Context of Jewish Canon." In Josephus' Contra Apionem: Studies in Its Character and
COuei\ i /th a Latin Concordance to the Portion Missing in Greek, edited by L. Feldman
and J. Levison, 94-114. Arbeiten zur Geschichte des Antiken Judentums und des
Urchristentums 34, Leiden: Brill 1996.

-. Flavius Josephus Between Jerusalem and Rome: His Life, His Works, and Their Importance
JSPSS 2. Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press 1988.

-. "Main Trends in Modem Josephus Research." Nordisk Judaistik. .,kanihua1vi a Jewish
Studies 8 (1987) 73-105.

-. "The Causes of the Jewish War According to Josephus." JSJ 10 (1979) 179-202.

-. "The Jews in the Diaspora of the Roman Empire." Nordisk Judaistik. .tA,\h/,u/i/i/ri/ t, Jewish
Studies 13 (1992) 103-24.

Bohak, G. "Ethnic Continuity in the Jewish Diaspora in Antiquity." In Jews in the Hellenistic
Roman Cities, edited by J. Bartlett, 175-92. London: Routledge 2002.

Borgen, P. "Philo of Alexandria." In Jewish Writings of the Second Temple Period, edited by M.
Stone, 233-82. CRINT 2.2, Philadelphia: Fortress 1984.

Bowley, J. "Josephus' Use of Greek Sources for Biblical History." In Pursuing the Text, edited
by J. Reeves, 202-15. JSOTSuppl. 184, Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press 1994.

Braun, M. "The Prophet Who Became a Historian." Listener 56 (1956) 53-7.

Brighton, M. The Sicarii in Josephus' Judean War. PhD Diss. University of California, Irvine
2005.

Bruce, F. "Tacitus on Jewish History." JSS 29 (1984) 33-44.

Bruner, M. Strategies ofRemembrance: The Rhetorical Dimensions ofNational Identity
Construction. Columbia: University of South Carolina Press 2002.

Bichler, A. "La relation de Josephe concemant Alexandre le Grand." Revue des etudesjuives 36
(1898) 1-26.

Bull, R. "Caesarea Maritima: The Search for Herod's City." BAR 8 (1982) 24-41.

Bulloch, A., E. Gruen, A. Long, and A. Stewart, eds, Images andIdeologies: Self-Definition in
the Hellenistic World. Berkeley: University of California Press 1993.

Bury, J. The Ancient Greek Historians. New York: Dover 1958.

Case, S. "Josephus' Anticipation of a Domitianic Persecution." JBL 44 (1925) 10-20.









words, Josephus was hoping that Roman cultural and religious pluralism would be large enough

to embrace the Jews and their religion. The problem, however, was that the pluralistic sentiment

did not run the other way. Josephus was unwilling to compromise what he understood to be

essential elements in Judaism in order to bridge the gap between "inside" and "outside."

Fundamental among these elements was monotheism. The difference between Jew and Gentile

was, for Josephus, a real one. He neither ignored it nor dismissed it. Everyone knew better.

However, syncretism of the kind needed to fully assimilate Judaism into the Roman world was

not possible. This would prove to be the deal-breaker. "Jewish faith bred an anti-social

clannishness which in turn cast suspicion on them as citizens."113 Yet Josephus hoped he could

get around this by emphasizing the good qualities that already existed within his people.

Josephus hoped to present a broader picture of Judaism which revealed that it was consonant

with peoples the Romans already admired and accepted.

























113 J. Daniel, 'Anti-Semitism', 58.









of Alexandria (Kcdocap 'IoiUXLto Trot; v 'AXExav6peL( 'Iou6aoLot; TrotiocaX XaLXKv C r Xrlv

e i'6G)oev OL 'AXExav6pE'v TroXltaL eloLv).35 He did not, however, quote the inscription. The

omission of a quotation of such a crucial piece of evidence suggests that Josephus was being

quite liberal in his interpretation of the inscription. In that same list of documents Josephus has

the people of Sardis referring to the Jews as citizens.36 But Josephus seems to betray himself

when he says in another place that an Alexandrian stele recorded Jewish rights (rd

6LKaL0w[TxR),7 and of Alexander he says that to the Jews' E'6KEv Tb TETOLKEiV KaTr TriV TTroXLV S

'LOou 4olpac Trp6b roTo "EXXirvaX ("he granted for them to reside in the city in equal portion with

the Greeks")-an ambiguous phrase. Neither 6LKUcaG LtX nor k 'i'ou [oiLpac amounted to

Alexandrian citizenship. The best interpretation is that the Roman emperors confirmed the

Jewish status as a TrOVLi uia, but nothing more.38

Josephus also betrayed the real situation when he quoted Strabo as saying that in Cyrene

TETTrrpE 6' 'CaFv kv rT TrTO/XL uT5v Kuprivcaov TE rT rUTv TOXLTr5)V KCL Ti r0TV yE(py&)v rpLirl 6'

Ti To)V tEUOLKKOV TerTrdprr 6' i rTov 'Iou6aicv ("there were four groups in the city of the

Cyrenaicans: the citizens, the farmers, the resident aliens, and the Jews"). It should be

remembered that Cyrene was one of the places where the Jews' temple contributions had been

confiscated. It is clear from Strabo's words that the Jews did not fit into any native political

category in Cyrene, so they were not citizens of that city. Their vaguely-defined status may have


35 AJ 14.189. Similarly, in 12.8 he says Alexander the Great rote MaKE66 LV kv
'AXE av6peLU vrotiL ac [aoTroXilaTC ("made them equal citizens with the Macedonians in
Alexandria").
36 14.259: oL KWTOLKOVTEo iLv Ev Tr TrOdr6L Tr' a'pXfl 'IouGaioL Tro~^LTaL ("The Jews
who live in this city from the beginning are citizens").
37 Ap. 2.37.
38 CPJ 1.56. This was simply a political expedient on the part of the Romans. The
dissolution of the Ptolemaic government left the status of minority ethnic groups in question, and
Rome simply confirmed the status they had previously enjoyed.









positively in Josephus than he is in the Biblical text, and he repeatedly heaps praise upon Joseph

(in contrast to the more reserved picture in the Biblical text).140 Similarly, the Pharaoh of the

exodus, in scenes foreign to the Bible, tenderly holds the baby Moses in his arms141 and later

entrusts Moses to lead an Egyptian expedition against Ethiopia.142 The idea to kill Hebrew babies

as a means of population control and prevention of uprising came from Pharaoh in the Bible, but

in the account of Josephus it comes from one of Pharaoh's scribes. In this way the Pharaoh's

characterization was softened in a way similar to that of the treatment of Titus in the Bellum

Judaicum. The ruler was not depicted as callously harsh toward Jews, and the hardships that

came on the Jews in his time were seen as the work of underlings who lacked the king's

appreciation for the Jews and their piety.

Other difficult parts of Biblical stories lent themselves more readily to reception by ears

accustomed to hearing the Greek tales, and only needed the appropriate key words inserted into

them to make the connections more apparent. For example, the Biblical flood story raises the

question of why God would create man and then turn around and destroy him. For this question

there was an answer more amenable to the philhellenic spirit: it was the i pp[L of man that

precipitated the flood.143 With this word, which is not used in the LXX version of the story,

Josephus subtly tapped into the Greek tragic tradition and provided a solution that a Hellenic

audience would have found perfectly satisfactory. In fact, Josephus laid the groundwork for this

explanation previously in Antiquitates Judaicae 1.66, where he accused Cain and his descendants

of U1ppl(3v. He provided a similar explanation for God's confusing the languages at the Tower of

Babel. There man's prosperity led to i[ppL, and iUppiL led to punishment. This follows a fairly

140 Feldman, Studies in Josephus' Rewritten Bible, 83-4.
141 AJ2.232f.
142 AJ2.238-53.
143 AJ 1.100, using the verb Euppi().









already noted in my discussion of the Bellum Judaicum that Josephus chose to use the term

(LXooo(LaX to describe Jewish theology. This practice continued in the Antiquitates Judaicae as

well.21 In the introduction to the Antiquitates Judaicae, Josephus said that an inquirer into the

details of Jewish theology would find the endeavor to be "exceedingly philosophical" (XLav

LX6oo0o0).22 He portrayed Jewish envoys to Alexandria as perfectly competent to answer

difficult philosophical questions23 to the point that they gained the admiration of the Alexandrian

philosopher Menedemus.24 In a similar way Josephus portrayed Solomon, whom the Biblical

tradition says was expert in all matters of the natural world (1 Kings 4.29-34), as a philosopher

(he says that Solomon iQLX0oo6rloE "did philosophy"),25 and claimed that the Queen of Sheba

was interested in meeting Solomon because she was a student of philosophy herself.26 This made

Solomon's philosophical ability appear even greater, since the queen was portrayed as one who

would not have been impressed with pseudo-intellectualism.

A glimpse of how Josephus tended to downplay things that were uniquely Jewish may be

seen in his choice of terms for his own people. The designation "Hebrews" occurs 319 times in

his writings, all demonstrably in contexts where Josephus, or a character in his narrative, is

referring to Jews in remote antiquity. In contrast, the term "Jews" appears 1,241 times in his

writings, occasionally side-by-side with the term Hebrews, but most frequently in his history of

his people from the Seleucid period onwards. Harvey has suggested that the term "Hebrews" in



21 AJ18.11, 23; cf. Ap. 1.54.
22 AJ 1.25.
23 AJ 12.99.
24 AJ 12.101.
25 AJ 8.44. Even here, however, Solomon was not engaged in the same kind of activity as
the Greeks had classically pursued, for Solomon's knowledge of the natural world was the
product of the gift of oo(xa from God, a point that Josephus dutifully mentions (8.42) but does
not emphasize.
26AJ8.165.









knowing all things and able to persuade those who heard him").70 His ability to persuade, that is,

to use rhetoric effectively, cast him in good Greek fashion. Josephus also presented Abraham as

having higher conceptions of &peTi than others and as being the first proponent of monotheism,71

having arrived at this conclusion not by divine revelation (as the Biblical story might suggest),

but by use of his ability to reason.72 In fact, the Abraham of Josephus uses a form of the

teleological argument that is based on Platonic and Stoic models.73 "More simply, we may say

that Josephus has taken Cleanthes' third argument from the irregularity of sublunar phenomena

and extended it to the heavens themselves. Josephus was apparently the first to do so, and

Abraham is thus depicted as a philosophic innovator."74 The portrait also included statements

that Abraham won the respect of the Egyptians as being a man of the greatest intelligence

(ouvetrTTro;o), that he (again) possessed a superb ability to persuade, and was the one who taught

the Egyptians arithmetic and astronomy,7 and that when he went to Egypt at a time of famine in

Palestine it was not simply to get food, but also to converse with the Egyptians on philosophical

matters and to correct their thinking, unless theirs proved superior to his.76 He was superbly

intelligent and yet fair-minded, and most importantly, open to serious and substantial dialogue

with others. This strongly positive portrayal of Abraham no doubt was designed to counter the

popular image that Jews were closed-minded and intolerant of all that was not Jewish. Abraham





70 AJ 1.154. Feldman notes that d&Kpodo[at was used of students listening in the
philosophical schools. L. Feldman, 'Abraham the Greek Philosopher in Josephus', TPAPA 99
(1968) 145.
71 AJ1.155.
72 AJ 1.155-57.
73 Feldman, 'Abraham the Greek Philosopher', 146-7.
74 Feldman, 'Abraham the Greek Philosopher', 149.
75 AJ 1.167.
76 AJ 1.161.









("Then I will recount the fierceness of the tyrants against their own fellow-countrymen, and the

forbearance of the Romans to the foreigners, and how often Titus, wanting to save the city and

the temple, offered the rebels assurances").84 Similarly, in 6.215f, during the siege, Josephus

portrayed Titus as having been left no other choice but to destroy the temple and to press the

revolt to a violent end: Katoap 65 dUTrEXoyeiTO KiL TrEpi TOOU 'T~ r OEc; 4c LOKG)V Trap& ['v a"UroU

'IouaLoL( ELlp'qvirv KCaL CJUOVOiLC'V Trpor'tLveoacL KCaL TU'VTo V U4vrTOTLUcv TWV TETOX4TrLiEvov

Troi 6e UCVT!L 4iLv 6[0ovoi0a O(TCOLV CdVTL 6e ELp'vrc TrOX6eLov Trpo Kopou 6E KCaL EurOTIVLCa XLLbv

("but Caesar exonerated himself before God concerning this, saying that peace and independence

had been offered to the Jews by him, and amnesty for all the wrongs they had done, but instead

of instead of harmony they preferred rebellion, instead of peace they chose war, and rather than a

measure of abundance they chose famine"). In 5.456 he has Titus practically begging the Jews

not to force him to destroy the city, and in 6.95 we are told that Titus even offered to send

Josephus into the city to offer the daily sacrifice (since at this point those who regularly did this

were now dead) and that he had no intention of destroying the temple and offending its God.

Instead he wanted it to stand because it was worthy of admiration as a great foreign edifice,85 and

he expressed regret that it had to end as it did.86 Perhaps even more amazing is the comment that

Titus despaired at the crucifixions of so many Jews who were caught escaping the city,

crucifixions that he himself had ordered for the purpose of instilling fear in those who remained

inside.

Lco/TLyouOLeVOL 6T KaCL TrpopaocavLCo(dvoL TOD Oavdrou Tr&oa (LKLCaV aveoTofupoUVTo TO
TeLXoul &uVTLKpU. TLT tav oiv oLrKrp6v T TrO vOo0 Ka(TE acLVETO Tr(EvrTKOOL(ov EKdOTdrl
ThEpcU ECOTVL 6e OTE KCL TrXELOVVoV lALOK KLEvov ... TO' yE pio v TrOXEov OUlK EK6jXUEV TXo' 3v
EV60oUL Trpo TT1V OjJLV E'XTUrCia amUcOU EL [ill TrcLpaUoLEv Oo0LU TrELoo0EvoufU


84 BJ 1.27.
85 BJ 6.228.
86 BJ7.112-13.









and reject things that would be considered ethnic dilution. There is more than one way to do this.

One method would be to continue to speak one's native language, or to continue to reckon time

by the calendar of one's homeland. Another method would be to create new dimensions of

comparison with the dominant group that enable the disadvantaged group to bypass its social

dislocation.48 If possible, a group may attempt to reacquire its traditional territory and

homeland,49 or it may try to reestablish itself by placing renewed emphasis on genealogical

legitimation.50 Such circumstances may even breed apocalypticism. The practical difficulties

involved in implementing such strategies often result in the failure to maintain this stance as a

permanent option. A second option is to assimilate culturally with the dominant group on the

largest scale possible. This entails a breach of the group's ethnic boundaries in order to adopt

new ones that are acceptable to the dominant culture, and often requires some kind of

management of a subjective or intellectual transcendence of nationality. The ancient Thracians

are an example of this. They flocked into Egypt in droves as mercenaries for Ptolemy II and

Ptolemy III and within a few generations had taken up Greek names, and typical Thracian names

(like Seuthes) eventually passed into the stock of common Greek names. They so fully

assimilated to Greek culture that they erased their own distinctive ethnicity. "In the end, there

was no cultural feature left by which they could (or, for that matter, would) distinguish

themselves from the Greeks. At that moment they vanished from history."51 The chief problem



48 J. Hall 31.
49 This was one of the goals of the Zealot party among the Jews. A. Smith, The Ethnic
Origins of Nations 57. We should remember that land-holding, especially in the Roman
provinces, was a form of economic power, although the land also had a religious significance for
ancient Jews.
50 A. Smith, The Ethnic Origins of Nations 50-3.
51 Goudriaan 79. Cf also S. Honigman, 'The Birth of a Diaspora: The Emergence of a
Jewish Self-Definition in Ptolemaic Egypt in the Light of Onomastics', in J. Cohen and E.
Frerichs (eds.), Diasporas in Antiquity (Brown Judaic Studies 288, Atlanta 1993) 102-4.









by offering large prizes by which he hoped to attract the most well-known athletes of the day.49

He also built an amphitheater somewhere outside the city5 and rebuilt the citadel north of the

temple and renamed it the Antonia.51 All of this gave an unmistakably strong Hellenistic, and

especially Roman, flavor to the city.52

Herod's renovation of Jerusalem aroused some complaints among the local inhabitants.

Just as it had been in the days of the Maccabean revolt, the Jerusalem Jews still drew a line

between the two spheres of culture and cult.53 Many Jews were tolerant of many Greek things in

their local cultures, but they were especially sensitive and resistant to anything that was

perceived as a threat to or compromise of the exclusive worship of their ancestral God, Yahweh,

and hence to their identity as Jews. Josephus prefaces his account of these things saying AL&

TOUTO KL i&XXOV EE-'iULEv,'eV TVU'v TXTpi)v e- ;v KUcL tEVLKOL( E'TLTT6EU ljuacLV i)TT6L&e(ELpEv Tiiv

TrcXaL KUU(J'T(OJLV XTraPEYXELPTprTov oVUaOv EV cWv o0 ,LKp( KUCL Trpoc TOyV aU OL Xp6vov

r6LKiO r4lEV a&LEXTrOivrv Voa Trp6~opov EirL Trv EUJopepLaV Tiyev Toi)b 6XOou n ("On account of

this he departed even more from the ancestral customs, and through foreign pursuits he gradually

corrupted the ancient way of life that was inviolable; from which things we were harmed not a

little and at a later time as well, as whatever things that formerly led the masses to piety were




49 AJ 15.268-70.
50 Possibly the same as the hippodrome mentioned in BJ2.44 and AJ 17.255.
51 BJ 1.401. See the list of Herod's buildings in P. Richardson, Herod. King of the Jews
andFriend of the Romans (Columbia 1996) 197-202. From this same time is the non-Herodian,
but still Hellenistic, so-called tomb of Absalom dated to the first century CE and featuring
engaged Ionic columns. L. Rahmani, 'Ancient Jerusalem's Funerary Customs and Tombs: Part
Three', Biblical Archaeologist 45 (1982) 47.
52 Yet we should be careful to distinguish Herod's use of Hellenistic architectural models
from the idea that Herod was acting as an agent for Hellenization. Richardson, Building Jewish,
238.
53 Collins, 'Cult and Culture', 55. As I have suggested, however, the Jews did not always
agree about where the line was to be drawn.









exactly this way in the Bellum Judaicum-God's retribution against the rebels who desecrated

the holy precincts. Of course, &peti was a quality that had a long and lofty history among the

Greeks,19 if not a diverse one.20 The Greek word had, by Hellenistic times, developed a Semantic

range large enough to encompass many subordinate ideas and was capable of describing the

morality inculcated in the Hebrew Bible without doing much violence to either the word itself or

to Jewish ethics. It is arguably one of Josephus' favorite words, appearing nearly 300 times in his

writings. That it is consciously used for its significance in Hellenic culture is suggested by the

fact that the LXX rarely used the word in the canonical books (seven times total, and never in the

Pentateuch). Josephus was not following the LXX here by this choice of terms. By concentrating

on the moral virtue of Jewish religion, and using a highly-visible Greek keyword for it, Josephus

was able to align the Jews with the same kinds of virtues the Romans already knew from the

Greeks and at the same bypass those elements of religion in which the Jews looked so foreign.

Furthermore, as I have suggested, this becomes an argument: if the Romans are a religious

people, then they ought to respect the high virtue of the Jewish God.

In constructing his ethnic portrait of Jews, Josephus was aware that those religious

elements that were uniquely Jewish were going to be the parts of the story that would be the least

likely to be accepted or appreciated by his Greco-Roman audience, a noble portrait of the Jewish

deity notwithstanding. His strategy in dealing with these things was, time and time again, simply

to convert them to Greek models and effectively eliminate the differences between Jewish and

Greek cultures that had become such obstacles for winning respect for Jewish culture. I have



Josephus' interpretations of Jewish laws or customs are sometimes singular. B. Revel, 'Some
Anti-Traditional Laws of Josephus', JQR 14 (1924) 293-301.
19 See W. Jaeger, Paideia: The Ideals of Greek Culture Vol. 1 (New York 1945), 3-14.
20 See M. Finkelberg, 'Virtue and Circumstances: On the City-state Concept of Arete',
AJP 123 (2002) 35-49.









Another part of the Greek historiographical tradition was an ongoing debate over the value

and purpose of history,27 whether it was for entertainment or for a didactic purpose. A didactic

purpose required accuracy and emphasis on truth, whereas history as entertainment participated

in conventions from tragedy (paradox, crisis, suspense, intervention of the gods, myth, etc.).

Thucydides was considered the model for didactic history, and later also Polybius. Herodotus

was more the story-teller, but Cicero called him "the father of history" because he was the first to

differentiate clearly between myth and history in his account, and his expressed aim was to

preserve the memory of the glorious deeds of the past: ) [rE Ti yevo[ievc kE &dvOPpd)rv TO

XpoV(o E'LTrM ax yEvrrTaL, TirtE 'Epy'a [EYUaAX TE KUL Go&iao u& Eiv "Eir|OL 'U 5& papppoLoL

dTro6EXOE8VTr d&KXE& yEvrTLca ("so that the things done by men might not be forgotten in time, nor

the great and marvelous works, some displayed by the Greeks and some by the barbarians, might

become inglorious").28 In good Herodotean style, Josephus claims KdyG) ... Tv LV 'iLrv TLV

KaropOWLt)TWV dTvac(OrlLt ("I am setting forth the memorial of great achievements"). However,

the Greek historiographical tradition was strongly indebted to Greek tragedy from Herodotus

onwards, and this element of it never disappeared.29 Therefore, although Josephus stated that his

account of the Jewish war was not designed for entertainment, but for those who seriously

wished to know the facts about it,30 he did not ignore the rhetorical, dramatic side of history-

writing. Eusebius had long ago recognized the tragic nature of the Josephus' account of Herod,31

and G. M. Paul noted that Josephus used past unreal conditional sentences, probably imitated

from Homer and introducing an unexpected event that dramatically reverses the situation in the


27 Momigliano, 'Tradition and the Classical Historian', 291.
28 Hdt. 1.1.
29 These two aims are not necessarily exclusive, as Rhodes has noted (p. 166).
30 BJ 1.6, 16.
31 He calls it a TpayLKi 6pacaroupyLa in H.E. 1.8. Thackeray notes several dramatic
elements in that story in his preface to the Loeb edition of Josephus, II xvi-xvii.









For example, the senate expelled some Greek philosophers from Rome in 162 and 155 BCE,79 as

did Nero in 65 CE, 80 Vespasian in 72 CE,81 and Domitian in 90 CE82 and again in 93 CE.83

Political interests manipulated the personal fears or paranoia of the emperors, and criticisms of

the emperors were treated harshly.84 But the fact that the Jews were not alone in being perceived

as cultural misfits does not diminish the nature of what they experienced.

The situation of the Jews in the Hellenistic world was complicated by the fact that

perceptions of the Jews and their place in that world were different on the "inside" (majority)

than they were on the "outside." The insiders, the client peoples of the Roman empire who

worshipped the traditional gods of Greece and Rome and who acknowledged the imperium

Romanum, saw Jews in an either/or way: they could be Jews (i.e., practice Judaism), or they

could assimilate themselves into Greco-Roman society and culture, along with the identity it

implied, but they could not do both. It was assumed that Judaism and full participation in

Hellenism were opposites. From the ancient texts we hear no overtures from the pagans to the

Jews, inviting them or instructing them how to become part of their world. What we hear instead

from the "insiders" is a constant rehearsal of stereotypes and negative images that shouted "stay

away." Full Jewish participation in the institutions that marked off Greek and Roman identity

was considered impossible. The nature of the Jewish people and their religion made it so,

according to the "insiders." There were, of course, proselytes, and some of them were even


79 Gruen, The Hellenistic World and the Coming ofRome, 257.
80 Tac. Ann. 15.71.
81 D.C. 65.9.
82 This first banishment is implied by Dio Cassius' statement in 67.13 that Domitian
banished philosophers again. It probably occurred in connection with the conspiracy of
Saturninus. J. Toynbee, 'Dictators and Philosophers in the First Century A.D.', G&R 13 (1944)
58.
83 D.C. 67.13; Suet. Dom. 10.2; Aulus Gellius 15.11.4. See R. Harte, 'The Praetorship of
the Younger Pliny', JRS 25 (1935) 53.
84 Toynbee 43-58.









anything else, the prime factor behind anti-Jewish sentiments.1 In addition to this, the Jews of

Josephus' day had most recently been defeated by the Romans (by Pompey, who subjugated

Judea in 64 BCE, and again, of course, in the First Jewish War, 66-70 CE). Therefore this ethnic

group, which was already seen as odd and hostile, now had the added stigma of having been

humiliated in military defeat, twice within recent memory. As a result of previous conquests (at

the hands of Assyrians, Babylonians, and Greeks), by the first century CE Jews had been

dispersed all over the ancient world (commonly called the Jewish diaspora). A people who were

displaced because of war, unrest, famine, etc. now also found themselves in even more difficult

circumstances: they were a minority in a foreign place, and they generally were among the

poorer people in that place.

The picture that emerges from the ancient sources is that Jews were regularly subjected to

unfair or harsh treatment by Roman society at large, and that the Roman governmental machine

was hardly sympathetic at local levels. In what follows I will attempt to review briefly, in

chronological order, a series of events that demonstrates this picture.

Unfair economic policies toward Jews predated Roman control of the east. In the late-

second and early-first centuries BCE, a wave of nationalism swept through Egypt as the

Ptolemaic regime weakened and economic difficulties arose.2 Under this movement the Egyptian

Jews did not fare well, and the Seleucid king Seleucus IV Philopater (187-175 BCE) tried to

confiscate the temple treasury in Jerusalem for the Seleucid coffers.3 By the first century BCE,



1 Sevenster, The Roots ofPagan Anti-Semitism, 143-4. Z. Yavetz wisely suggests that
anti-Jewish sentiments in antiquity should not be viewed as a unique phenomenon but should be
understood against the wider context of antibarbarism in general. 'Judeophobia in Classical
Antiquity: A Different Approach', JJS 44 (1993) 13.
2 E. Gabba, 'The Growth of Anti-Judaism or the Greek Attitude Towards the Jews', in W.
Davies and L. Finkelstein (eds.), The Cambridge History ofJudaism, 2 (Cambridge 1989) 635.
3 2 Mac 3:1-40.









Mason, S. Josephus and the New Testament. Peabody: Hendrickson 1992.


--. "The Contra Apionem in Social and Literary Context: An Invitation to Judean Philosophy."
In Josephus' Contra Apionem: Studies in Its Character and Context i/h a Latin
Concordance to the Portion Missing in Greek, edited by L. Feldman and J. Levison, 187-
228. Arbeiten zur Geschichte des Antiken Judentums und des Urchristentums 34, Leiden:
Brill 1996.

--. "Of Audience and Meaning: Reading Josephus' Bellum Judaicum in the Context of a Flavian
Audience." In Josephus and Jewish History in Flavian Rome and Beyond, edited by J.
Sievers and G. Lembi, 71-100. SupJSJ 104. Leiden: Brill 2005.

--. "'Should Any Wish to Enquire Further' (Ant. 1.25): The Aim and Audience of Josephus'
Judean Antiquities." In Understanding Josephus: Seven Perspectives, edited by S.
Mason. JSPSuppl. 32, Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press 1998.

McLaren, J. "Josephus on Titus: The Vanquished Writing about the Victor." In In Josephus and
Jewish History in Flavian Rome andBeyond, edited by J. Sievers and G. Lembi, 279-96.
Suppl.JSJ 104, Leiden: Brill 2005.

--. Turbulent Times? Josephus and Scholarship on Judea in the First Century CE. JSPSS 29.
Sheffield: Sheffield Academic Press 1998.

Meleze-Modrzejewski, J. "How to Be A Greek and Yet a Jew in Hellenistic Alexandria." In
Diasporas in Antiquity, edited by S. Cohen and E. Frerichs, 65-92. Brown Judaic Studies
288, Atlanta: Scholars Press 1993.

Mendels, D. The Rise and Fall of Jewish Nationalism: Jewish and Christian Ethnicity in Ancient
Palestine. Anchor Bible Reference Library, New York: Doubleday 1992.

Michael, J. "The Jewish Sabbath in the Latin Classical Writers." AJSLL 40 (1924) 117-24.

Millar, F. "Last Year in Jerusalem: Monuments of the Jewish War in Rome." In Flavius
Josephus andFlavian Rome, edited by J. Edmondson et al, 101-28. Oxford: Oxford
University Press 2005.

Moehring, H. "Joseph ben Matthia and Flavius Josephus: the Jewish Prophet and Roman
Historian." In ANRWII.21.2 (1984) 864-944.

Momigliano, A. Alien Wisdom: The Limits ofHellenization. Cambridge: Cambridge University
Press 1975.

--. "Flavius Josephus and Alexander's Visit to Jerusalem." Athanaeum 57 (1979) 442-8.

--. "Greek Historiography." History and Theory 17 (1978) 1-28.

--. "Hengel, M. 'Judentum und Hellenismus: Studien zu ihrer Begegnung unter besonderer
Berucksichtigung Palatinas bis zur Mitte des 2. Jh. v. Ch'." JTS 21 (1970): 149-53.









Collins, J. "Anti-Semitism in Antiquity? The Case of Alexandria." In Ancient Judaism in Its
Hellenistic Context, edited by C. Bakhos, 9-30. Suppl.JSJ 95, Leiden: Brill 2005.

--. Between Aithen and Jerusalem: Jewish Identity in the Hellenistic Diaspora. 2nd ed. Biblical
Resource Series. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans 2000.

--. "Cult and Culture: The Limits of Hellenization in Judea." In Hellenism in the Land ofIsrael,
edited by J. Collins and G. Sterling, 38-61. Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press
2001.

Collomp, P. "Der Platz des Josephus in der Technike der hellenistischen Geschichtsschreibung."
In Zur Josephus-Forschung, edited by A. Schalit, 278-93. Wege der Forshung 84,
Darmstadt: Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft 1973.

Cotton, H., and W. Eck, "Josephus' Roman Audience: Josephus and the Roman Elites." In
Flavius Josephus andFlavian Rome, edited by J. Edmondson et al, 37-52. Oxford:
Oxford University Press 2005.

Daniel, J. "Anti-Semitism in the Hellenistic Roman Period." JBL 98 (1979) 45-65.

---. Apologetics in Josephus. Ph.D.Diss. Rutgers University 1981.

Damschen, G. "Lysimachos [6]." In Der neue Pauly. Enzyklopadie der Antike, edited by H.
Cancik and H. Schneider, 7.608. Das klassische Altertum und seine
Rezeptionsgeschichte, Stuttgart: J.B. Metzler 2003.

Daube, D. "Rabbinic Methods and Interpretation and Hellenistic Rhetoric." HUCA 22 (1949)
239-64.

Destinon, J von. Die Quellen des Flavius Josephus in derJiddische Archaeologie, Buch xii-xvii- Juid. KriegBuch I Kiel:
Lipsius and Tischer 1882.

Droge, A. "Josephus Between Greeks and Barbarians." In Josephus' Contra Apionem: Studies in
Its Character and Cneiwi\ i /th a Latin Concordance to the Portion Missing in Greek,
edited by L. Feldman and J. Levison, 115-42. Arbeiten zur Geschichte des Antiken
Judentums und des Urchristentums 34, Leiden: Brill 1996.

Droysen, J. Geschichte des Hellenismus. 2 aufl. Gotha: F. A. Pethes 1877-78.

Druner, H. Untersuchungen fiber Josephus. Marburg 1896.

Eckstein, A. "Josephus and Polybius: A Reconsideration." CA 9 (1990) 175-208.

Edwards, D. "Religion, Power and Politics: Jewish Defeats by the Romans in Iconography and
Josephus." In Diaspora Jews and Judaism: Essays in Honor of and in Dialogue i /h,
Thomas A. Kraabel, edited by J. Overman and R. MacLennan, 293-310. Atlanta: Scholars
Press 1992.









problems, in order to minimize those aspects of Jewish culture that would have seemed foreign

or hostile to Hellenistic society and to highlight the aspect of Jewish piety or innocence in them.

What was the purpose of the dialogue Josephus initiated with the Hellenistic world? There

were other accounts of the First Jewish War circulating in Josephus' day. The problem was in the

way they depicted the Jews, and Josephus in particular. Similarly, there was already an account

of Jewish history written in Greek (the LXX) for any Gentile who may have wished to know the

facts of that history and the origins of Jewish culture. For Josephus, however, the problem with

the LXX seems to have been that although it was written in the Greek language, it was not Greek

in its spirit or presentation, and its characters did not look like Greeks, not to mention that it was

a collection of fairly disparate materials that lacked literary and linguistic cohesion. That is, the

Jews still looked strange and aloof from the world in that telling of the story. Like those other

accounts of the First Jewish War, the problem with the LXX lay also in the way it depicted the

Jews. Furthermore, the LXX did not extend its history down to the present day, and thus did not

fit the literary expectations of a Greek reader in that regard either. In Josephus' view, the Jews

were suffering socially and culturally under the malicious perceptions of others, and there was

nothing to which Gentiles could turn to see it differently. The customs, the history, and the

version of the war they knew obscured (if not downright perverted), in Josephus' opinion, the

true identity of the Jewish people. Therefore Josephus set out to fill the void, to provide a

presentation of the Jews that showed them in the light in which Hellenistic society ought to see

them.

The point, then, of the Bellum Judaicum was not simply to provide a Jewish account of the

war, but to provide a corrected account of the war that presented the Jews in the proper way. The

other accounts of the war had presented the Jewish people (as a group) as hostile foreigners, but









Josephus saw this feature of Thucydides' work and adopted it for his own ends might beg the

question of how much Josephus actually knew and understood the History. However, the

consensus of modern scholarship is that Josephus was himself well acquainted with the work of

Thucydides,55 and it is not inconceivable that this feature of the History was not lost on Josephus.

At the very least it shows that Josephus' purpose was not inherently contradictory to his models

and therefore it was not out of line for Josephus to use Thucydides as a model for describing a

war in which cultural identity played a role.

Eckstein thinks Josephus used Polybius as his primary model.56 He argues that Josephus

used Polybius on both the conceptual and the verbal levels. Specifically, Josephus' description of

the Roman army in Bellum Judaicum 3.70-109 (which contributes nothing to the narrative itself)

draws heavily on Polybius' description in 6.19-42. Josephus emphasizes the importance of a

historian having political and military experience and being an eyewitness to and participant in

the things he relates; he is willing to overlook the failure of another historian to tell all the truth

of a matter; he is willing to tell the whole story even though it may prove embarrassing to his

own people; he is conscious that his emotional involvement in the story he relates may interfere

with the proper telling of history; he blames the loss of the conflict on the ineptness of some of

his own fellow-countrymen; he writes about a conflict that engulfs the entire Mediterranean

basin; he writes contemporary history (in the Bellum Judaicum); he provides a table of contents

at the beginning of the work; he writes for those who "are lovers of truth"; he has a resignation

and a conciliatory tone towards Rome and its power; he blames the irrational youth of some of

his countrymen for the start of the war; he appeals to u-Xrl as a factor in the rise of Rome's


55 Mader 5.
56 P.207. Similarly, Petersen (266-72) has suggested that in six places in the AJwhere
Josephus claims that a topic has been covered, when in fact it has not (AJ 12.390; 13:36, 61, 108,
119, and 186), the referent is to coverage in Polybius.









provided by one who fought in the conflict and witnessed much of it firsthand. This mimesis was

not merely a formal exercise meant to be a token gesture toward the conventions of the day.

Instead it lay at the heart of Josephus' narrative and colored almost everything in it, including

Josephus' presentation of himself as an historian after the Greek paradigm. In addition to

adopting the formal elements of the tradition, Josephus also used specific scenes from Greek

history as types for his depiction of the Jews, and he even used elements of the Greek

historiographical tradition when did they not fit well with his own story (as in his use of uuXrlI).

Complementary to this was his suppression of things (like the Jewish sects) that were uniquely

Jewish and recasting them in Greek terms, or the suppression of things that would have reminded

his readers of Roman animosity (as seen in his favorable portrait of Titus). In the Antiquitates

Judaicae, Josephus used an &pxcaLoXoyLc of the past as a vehicle for presenting the essential

agreement between the Jews and the ancient Greeks culturally. The fluid way in which

foundational stories were treated and understood in his day allowed him the flexibility to do this.

Around the central facet of a holy God Josephus told the stories of the Jewish Biblical tradition

in such a way that Jewish piety resembled Greek virtue. He changed the vocabulary of the stories

to echo Greek stories, he used Greek terms to describe Jewish cultural or political institutions

(even though the terms did not always fit), he downplayed or ignored aspects of the stories that

would have seemed especially foreign for a Greek reader, and he labored to establish

connections between the Jews and the Greeks in the past. He presented major figures in Jewish

history like Greek exempla who embodied Hellenistic ideals, he emphasized those episodes in

the tradition where Jews made positive impressions on Greeks, and he manipulated the

presentation of stories that presented the Jews in a bad light, or that presented theological









Marital,103 Juvenal,104 and Tacitus.105 In fact, the Jewish practice of refraining from labor on the

Sabbath was so well-known that it evidently gave rise to a belief that Jews even refrained from

eating on the Sabbath.106 As noted in the previous chapter, this custom was interpreted as being

alien and was treated with ridicule. Williams suggests that the Sabbath played a special role in

the lives of Jews in Rome, since most of those Jews were descendants of people who had been

sent to Rome as slaves after Pompey's subjugation of Judea in 63 BC and Sosius' recapture of

Jerusalem from the Parthians in 37 BC. On both occasions, the historians say that Jerusalem fell

to the invaders on a Sabbath. The Sabbath, then, was for Roman Jews a day of remembrance of

their present exile.107 In other words, its praxis served a role in their ethnicity.

Yet even this essential Jewish institution acquired Hellenistic features. Closely related to

the Sabbath was the institution of the synagogue, where Sabbath assemblies were convened and,

in the Diaspora, the Scriptures were read in Greek. The existence of synagogues throughout the

ancient world is a well-known fact, and Hellenistic influence is apparent in their architecture.

Synagogues were typically built according to the style of the country in which they existed,108

and many examples of synagogues built in good Hellenistic style survive, including in Palestine.

Levine notes that based upon both architectural remains and literary descriptions, in Galilee and

the Golan it was almost impossible to distinguish a synagogue from a non-Jewish edifice merely





103 4.4.
104 14.96-106.
105 Hist. 5.4.
106 J. Michael, 'The Jewish Sabbath in the Latin Classical Writers', American Journal of
Semitic Languages and Literature 40 (1924) 124.
107 M. Williams, 'Being a Jew in Rome: Sabbath Fasting as an Expression of Romano-
Jewish Identity', in J. Barclay (ed.), Negotiating Diaspora. Jewish Strategies in the Roman
Empire (London 2004) 15-18.
108 Levine 139-79.









became a convenient way for Alexandrians to vent their dislike of Rome.24 Flaccus eventually

fell victim to the political intrigues of the day, resulting in banishment and execution, but the

Jews found no redress in the emperor Gaius who treated their delegation scornfully at Rome.

When Claudius came to the throne, the Jews appealed once more for reparations, but all they got

was an order not to push the situation either in Alexandria or in Rome any farther.25

We should not develop the impression that Alexandria was the norm.26 Of course, Jews

coexisted peacefully with their pagan neighbors in many places. For example, there was a large

Jewish population in Syrian Antioch (estimated at 65,000 persons), many of whom probably

enjoyed civic privileges equal to those of Greeks, and they constituted a TroXLtuEta--an ethnic

group from abroad that constituted a self-contained, but not autonomous, political community

and that enjoyed a pleasant existence there.27 Furthermore, Dio Cassius portrays the

Alexandrians as a people who did not get along with anyone28-an exaggeration, but probably

indicative of the volatile situation that seems to have been characteristic of that city. However,





24 H. Bell, 'Anti-Semitism in Alexandria', JRS 31 (1941) 4.
25 The text of the decree is in CPJII no. 153 and A. Hunt and C. Edgar (trans.) Select
Papyri II (Loeb Classical Library, Cambridge, MA 1963) 79-89.
26 As J. Collins has suggested, the rioting in Alexandria in 38 CE was the product of
specific circumstances in that city and not the product of a general hatred of Jews. 'Anti-
Semitism in Antiquity?: The Case of Alexandria', in C. Bakhos (ed.), Ancient Judaism in its
Hellenistic Context (SupJSJ 95, Leiden 2005) 18.
27 C. Kraeling, 'The Jewish Community at Antioch', JBL 51 (1932) 130-60; CJP 1.6.
There is scholarly debate over whether Jews constituted a TroXruT.LT in any of the cities where
they lived. J. Meleze-Modrzejewski denies that the Jews had such a status ('How to be a Greek
and Yet a Jew in Hellenistic Alexandria', in S. Cohen and E. Frerichs (eds.), Diasporas in
Antiquity (Brown Judaic Studies 288, Atlanta 1993) 77-80). However, the Letter ofAristeas
(310) refers to Alexandrian Jews by this term, and two inscriptions from Berenice in Cyrenaica
(1st cent. CE) mention 'E60o TroiL pXouoL KCL T~ TroXLTEU't'TL T()v 'v BepEviLK 'IouaG& v. E.
Schirer, The History of the Jewish People in the Age of Jesus Christ, 3.1 (rev. and ed. G. Vermes
et al, 3 vols.; Edinburgh 1986) 88.
28 65.8.









their religious beliefs are every bit as old as (and even older than) those of the Greeks, and

wholly compatible with them (the ethnic thrust of the Contra Apionem).

Josephus' foray into historiography must no doubt be seen as an ambitious move on his

part. Even if it was commonly expected for authors of accounts of wars to imitate Thucydides,

and to engage in mimesis of the tradition as a whole,127 to put oneself in such famous company

was surely always a bold step. Yet even here we may be witnessing another aspect of Josephus'

overall plan. It appears that Josephus hoped to present the Jews as possessing the respected

elements of the Greek cultural heritage, including a preeminent national historian: himself. He

presented himself, therefore, as the Jewish Thucydides (even to the point that, just like

Thucydides, he was criticized concerning his actions in the war), the Jewish Herodotus, the

Jewish Polybius, but also more: a Jewish prophet whose understandings were divinely guided.

Given the political and cultural climate in which he wrote, this must have been an audacious step

indeed. However, we can see Josephus' posturing of himself as the great historian of a people

whom he wanted to compare favorably to the Greeks as completing the broad picture he aimed to

present. Of course, it also served the function of presenting himself favorably to his patron and

the literary elite of Rome.

I will not argue that the construction of an ethnicity was the exclusive purpose of Josephus'

works. There is plenty of self-encomium and nationalistic propaganda in them as well. However,

reading Josephus's writings from the perspective of ethnicity reveals another important

dimension of them. To my knowledge, while it is well-known that Josephus presented the Jews

to his readers in Greek models, no study has yet interpreted this phenomenon in terms of


127 Marincola 12.









that were dear to them (Corinth and Jerusalem), and both wrote histories concentrating on

Roman power in which they defended their own behavior.12 Concerning Xenophon and

Josephus, both served as military leaders (neither of high rank), both served a foreign army

(albeit in different capacities), both witnessed a decisive military engagement in their day, both

wrote an account of their experiences, and both had to deal with the image of being a traitor.13 It

is likely that Josephus realized that his own experiences had paralleled many of the experiences

of the great Greek soldier-historians and that he stood in an ideal position to write the account of

the Jewish War.

In the course of the account Josephus presented himself as an ideal general who had the

status of a hero among the Jews, whose capture all but guaranteed Roman victory, and whom

Vespasian praised as "the most sagacious of his enemies."14 The need for this characterization

was exacerbated in Josephus' case by the fact that he had a personal detractor, Justus of Tiberias,

who had also written an account of the war that portrayed Josephus as the enemy of Rome.15

However, Josephus was also consciously following the Greek historiographical tradition by

presenting himself so positively. S. Cohen has noted that Josephus' self-portrayals follow

familiar Greek models.16 His self-description mirrors the kinds of stock descriptions of good





12 Eckstein 175.
13 There are, of course, significant differences between the two. Xenophon witnessed a
battle fought on a battlefield (Cunaxa), whereas Josephus witnessed the siege of a city
(Jerusalem). Xenophon claims that when he joined the expedition of Cyrus, he did not know its
purpose. When Josephus joined the Roman side, however, it was because he was convinced that
God was on the side of the Romans. In a twist of irony, Josephus says that in his case, it was the
Romans who were ignorant of the nature of the fight they entered. Also, Xenophon fights his
way back home, but Josephus remains in Rome.
14BJ2.568, 3.143-4, 341, 435-6; Attridge, 'Josephus and His Works', 188.
15 Josephus' response to Justus appears in Vit. 1:336-67.
16 S. Cohen, Josephus in Galilee andRome 91-7.









That this was an ongoing problem is evidenced by the fact that he had to write the Vita, in

defense of his character and in response to a fellow-Jew, some fifteen years after the publication

of the Antiquitates Judaicae. The problems with his own reputation may even account for why

the Aramaic version of the Bellum Judaicum did not survive antiquity.833 Josephus' Greek

writings appear to have been completely ignored by the Jews of his day. "Understandably, the

cozier he [Josephus] became with the Romans-the conquerors of the Jews-the more detestable

he became to his people. ... His name does not appear in either version of the voluminous

Talmud, which was finally edited in the fifth and sixth centuries, or in any other early Jewish

writing."834 The fact that Josephus apparently did not maintain contact with Jews in Palestine

after settling in Rome probably did not help matters.835 To the Romans Josephus probably

always appeared as little more than a member, however noble in person,836 of that defeated

people who had caused so much trouble in the recent past. It would be a long time before the

Jews recovered from the black eye received in their defeat in 70 CE. Neither group, then, had

much use for him, and in the end his program for Jewish ethnicity was too simplistic to handle

the complicated nature of the situation it was designed to address.














833 Feldman, 'Flavius Josephus Revisited', 839.
834 Mason, Josephus and the New Testament 25. This is due also in part to the fact that
the rabbis generally avoided references to the war.
835 Moehring 865.
836 Suetonius referred to him as a nobilis captivus (Vesp. 5.6).









Furthermore, the Jews had been expelled from Rome twice, once under Tiberius in 19 CE out of

fear of the foreign nature of Jewish religious rites,52 and later under Claudius in 49 CE for

rioting.53 Such moves on the part of the emperor surely must have fueled popular suspicion, if

not ill-will, towards the Jews in Rome.

That Josephus wrote to counter and correct such a negative public image of Judaism seems

apparent in light of his expressed aim to show, through the Antiquitates Judaicum, that Judaism

was all about a just God who rewards the faithful and punishes the disobedient. He says:

Tb ouvoXov 65 [4UXLOT' TLt &V EK Ta Srl. tx0oL ~fi [ToTopL'aX OEX AoaF acr'iv 6LEXOEtLV OTL
TotL; p v OEo0 yvoi)1 KaTUCKOXUOOUOBL KUCL T& Ka L0( votOETrlO9evTRx 4i1 TOtX14oL
TrCapapLaVELV TrTVTr Karopou0ca T rEpa TrLOTE'C( KCL yipac eUUL6aLtovLa TTpoKELTcL Trap& OEO6
KaO' ooov 6' &v C(TTOOTTOL Tr~| TOUTO6V (lKpLPOuf EiTrtLEXELc cta Tropa [Lv yLVETC'(L ~r TrOCpLLa'
TpiTrE'tra 6e el; out4)op&c &vKrlKeOOui 3 TL TroT' &v e & ya96bv 6pav oTrou6oG)otLV

("On the whole, whoever especially wishes to go through it would learn from this history
that for those who obey the purpose of God and do not dare to transgress the appropriately
ordained things, they succeed in all things beyond belief, and good fortune lies ahead as a
reward from God; but to whatever extent they withdraw from exact attention to these
things, the possible becomes impossible and whatever they are zealous to do as good turns
into incurable calamities").54

This portrait of the God of the Jews is then set in contrast to what can only be a reference to the

gods of the Greeks and Romans: oi ptev y&p XXoiL vo[o00tat ToiL [6uOoLt kE$aKOXOUvO'aUvTE TUV

dvOp(o)Trriv(v U&dxp[Trlt(o T)v EL( ToI0 OEoib TU; XA6yQ TiV cLoOXvrlv tieTUOEoav KC K TroXXiv

iUTroLtirloLV TOiL TTovTIpotL 'EOKCKV ("But other legislators, following myths, have in their account



52 Tac. Ann. 2.85; Suet. Tib. 36; D.C. 57.18.5a.
53 Suet. Cl. 25.4.
54 AJ 1.14. Josephus was not alone in this view among the ancient Jews. The same
approach to respect for divine institutions drives the history of 2 Maccabees. Cf especially 2
Mac 4:16-17: 6'v KUCL XptLv TrepEioX'v acVJroiU X~lXE.eTi TrepLOTrCOL KKCL Uv i(rouv Tm&e dayoya
KCL KaO' &TrUv ijOEXov E'OtoLoBO9eL TO6rTOUI TrOXELiOU KCL TL (oprIT&( 'ioXov doCepeLV y&p EL'
Toi) OELoui v6Otou) o0 p6tLOV &lXX& Tau6Ta 6 &KodlOUOOG KtLpbC 65iXWAoeL ("For this reason a
painful circumstance overcame them, and those whom they emulated wished to assimilate their
culture in every way became their enemies and punishers. For it is not a light matter to be
impious toward the divine laws-and the following period will make these things clear"). This
was the general view of the rabbis as well.









second book. The treatise addresses claims of several critics of Jews and of Judaism that were

circulating in Josephus' own day, of whom Apion was the most outspoken. As the Greek title

indicates, the basic focus of the work is a defense of the antiquity of the Jewish people, a topic

that had already been addressed in the Antiquitates Judaicae.

The writings of Josephus were transmitted in antiquity by Christian scribes (as all classical

works were), and the edition of Niese, published in seven volumes from 1885 to 1895, has

generally remained the standard scholarly critical edition to the present day. Later editions have

not strayed far from Niese in spite of the fact that his text relied too heavily on too few textual

witnesses. In particular, Niese relied heavily on Codex Palatinus Graecus 14 (P; Vaticanus, 10th

century) for the Vita, and did not give enough consideration to later manuscripts that appear to

have preserved better readings. Similarly, he basically relied on Codex Parisinus Graecus 142

and Codex Ambrosianus (A; Mediolanensis), both from the 10th century, for the Bellum

Judaicum, and Codex Regius Parisinus (R; 14th century) and Codex Oxoniensis (15th century) for

the Antiquitates Judaicae. 8 The Contra Apionem survives in a single exemplar, Codex

Laurentianus (L), which lacks 2.52-113. The missing section is extant in an Old Latin translation

produced under Cassiodorus, c. 550 CE, which has yet to be fully exploited for purposes of

textual criticism of the Greek text.9 The present study uses the Niese edition, and consults the





7 Flavii, Josephi, Opera. Edidit et apparatu critic instruxit Benedictus Niese. 7 vols.
(Berlin 1885-1895). This was the first truly critical Greek text of Josephus. A concise history of
editions appears at the end of E. Schiirer, 'Josephus, Flavius' in S. Jackson (ed.), Schaff-Herzog
Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge, 6 (Grand Rapids 1953) 236.
8 L. Feldman, 'Flavius Josephus Revisited', in ANRWII.21.2 (New York 1984) 765. The
new commentary on Josephus published by Brill (not yet complete) is based on the Niese text
with few emendations.
9 G. Richards and R. Shutt, 'Critical Notes on Josephus' Antiquities', CQ 31 (1937) 170-
77.









OEoKpariLa. It appears in his explanation of the Mosaic legal code: 6 6' TI[erEpo voio0eirt; e'l

[Ev TOUvTo)V OU60oTLOuV cdTrEiL6v o 6' &v TL( E'LTrOL pLc CFcU4vo TO6V X,6yov OEoKpUccL'v cdTrE6ELE Tb

TrOXLLTEUa cO OE T iv &p~iv Kcd Tb KpaTO( &vacOEL; ("But our legislator envisioned none of these

[other kinds of governments], but he created the government which one might call by a strained

expression a Theocracy, attributing authority and power to God").46 The fact that he used the

word prefaced by a kind of apology (it is "a strained expression") surely indicates that Josephus

coined this word.47 There was no term in either Hebrew or Aramaic that was equivalent to it. The

Jewish TrOXLuL tca is a OEOKparci, Josephus says.

As ingenious as this was, again the term does not exactly seem to fit. There are at least two

problems here. First, the picture from the canonical Biblical texts is that God delivered the law to

Moses, who then taught it to the people. A law of divine origin was a common-enough idea in

the Ancient Near East,48 but not necessarily in Hellenic culture. The Greek concept of a

TrOXLUtEUia involved a different idea, that of a legislator (a vo[oo&erit) who assigned specific roles

to various parts of the state.49 Josephus changed the Biblical picture to fit a Hellenistic mold. The

problem is that, technically, Josephus has Moses as the author of the TroULtEUIia, who then assigns

God the role of chief legal authority.5o In attempting to describe the Jewish "constitution" as a

TrOXLTEUiaU of the great lawgiver Moses, he therefore actually had God in a subordinate role,



46 Ap. 2.165.
47 Amir, 'Josephus on the Mosaic "Constitution"', 20.
48 For example, the famous stele that records the Code of Hammurabi depicts, at the top,
the king in the presence of the god Shamash, receiving symbols of authority (a rod and a ring).
The implication is that the laws Hammurabi published had divine authority behind them, if not
divine origin. Shamash was, among other things, a god of justice.
49 Some (like Plato) claimed divine origin for laws, but most Greeks seem to have viewed
this as a ploy to get people to obey them. Cf Str. 16.2.39: TCB0T y&p OTr(o Twrori AXTrlOeL' 'EiXL,
Trcap& ye TOtL; avpoiTrOLt ETrErTOTEUTO KUCL EVEV'LLoro ("For these things, whatever truth they
have, are believed and enacted by men").
50 Amir, 'Josephus on the Mosaic "Constitution"', 22.
































2008 David McClister









"which seems to be the consequence of grafting a religious concept onto a secular

background."51 As I noted concerning the Antiquitates Judaicae, sometimes Josephus' zeal to

relate the Jews to the Greeks resulted in an anomaly. Second, Josephus explicitly distanced the

Mosaic TrOXLTiEUx from three other forms of government that were well-known to his readers:

monarchies, oligarchies, and republics.52 In doing so he mimicked Plato, who similarly rejected

all other forms of government for a unified system that bore the name of the god who provided

its justice.53 This conscious distancing of Jewish culture from Hellenistic culture, even though

following a Greek model (Plato) to do it, seems unusual for an author who otherwise strained to

make Jewish institutions look as Greek as possible, but it is understandable when we remember

that there are some things about Judaism that Josephus was not at all ready to surrender to

Hellenism, and chief on that list was always Jewish religious practices and ethics. Josephus saw

the Jewish TroXL EuLa as inextricably bound up with Jewish religion. To describe the government

in purely secular terms would have been to give up the unique religious content of it, and this he

would not do. We have here, therefore, a place in which Josephus seems to have been caught

between managing a Hellenistic impression for his readers on the one hand, and preserving his

Jewish religious sensibilities on the other hand. His solution, technically, failed at both. In an

ironic way, however, Josephus' invention of this word managed to answer another criticism that

had been leveled against the Jews, namely that the Jews had nothing innovative in their history.54

Another criticism Apion leveled against the Jews was that they settled in a poorly-chosen

place in Alexandria:


51 Amir, 'Josephus on the Mosaic "Constitution"', 22.
52 Ap. 2.164.
53 Pl., Lg. 4.713a. cf Y. Amir, 'Theokratia as a Concept of Political Philosophy', Scripta
Classica Israelica 8-9 (1989) 83-105.
54 Ap. 2.135.









---. Judaism and Hellenism. Tr. J. Bowden. Philadelphia: Fortress 1981.


--. "Judaism and Hellenism Revisited." In Hellenism in the Land of srael, edited by in J.
Collins and G. Sterling, 6-37. Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press 2001.

Henrichs, A. "Graecia Capta: Roman Views of Greek Culture." HSCP 97 (1995) 243-61.

Hicks, E. "Iasos." JHS 8 (1887) 83-118.

Hill, H. "Dionysius of Halicarnassus and the Origins of Rome." JRS 51 (1961) 88-93.

Himmelfarb, M. "The Torah Between Athens and Jerusalem: Jewish Difference in Antiquity." In
Ancient Judaism in Its Hellenistic Context, edited by C. Bakhos, 113-30. Suppl.JSJ 95,
Leiden: Brill 2005.

Holladay, C. "Jewish Responses to Hellenistic Culture in Early Ptolemaic Egypt." In Ethnicity in
Hellenistic Egypt, edited by P. Bilde et al, 139-63. Studies in Hellenistic Civilization 3,
Aarhus: Aarhus University Press 1992.

Holscher, G. "Josephus." In Paulys Realencycloptdie der classischen Altertumswissenschaft:
neue Bearbeitung, editied by A. Pauly et al, 9.1934-2000. Stuttgart: J. B. Metzler 1894-
1980.

Holscher, T. "Images of War in Greece and Rome: Between Military Practice, Public Memory,
and Cultural Symbolism." JRS 93 (2003) 1-17.

Honigman, S. "The Birth of a Diaspora: The Emergence of a Jewish Self-Definition in Ptolemaic
Egypt in the Light of Onomastics." In Diasporas in Antiquity, edited by S. Cohen and E.
Frerichs, 93-127. Brown Judaic Studies 288, Atlanta: Scholars Press 1993.

Hyldahl, N. "The Maccabean Rebellion and the Question of 'Hellenization'." In Religion and
Religious Practice in the Seleucid Kingdom, edited by P. Bilde et al, 188-203. Studies in
Hellenistic Civilization 1, Aarhus: Aarhus University Press 1990.

Ilan, T., and J. Price. "Seven Onomastic Problems in Josephus' 'Bellum Judaicum'." JQR 84 2/3
(1993-1994) 189-208.

Jacobson, D. "Herod's Roman Temple." BAR 28 (2002) 18-27.

Jackson, B. "On the Problem of Roman Influence on the Halakah and Normative Self-Definition
in Judaism." In Jewish and Christian Self-Definition 2: Aspects ofJudaism in the
Graeco-Roman Period, edited by E. Sanders et al, 157-203. Philadelphia: Fortress 1981.

Jaeger, W. "Greeks and Jews: The First Greek Records of Jewish Religion and Civilization." JR
18 (1938) 127-43.

--. Paideia: The Ideals of Greek Culture Vol. 1. New York: Oxford University Press 1945.









Septuagint as originating in Hellenistic Egyptian interest in and respect for the Jewish sacred

texts, and portrayed the production of the translation as a model of Jewish-Egyptian cordiality.

The account followed the rhetorical canons of the progymnasmata in creating a work in the

Greek genre of diegesis.80 "Such willingness to experiment with new literary forms, especially to

this extent, suggests a rather significant level of engagement with Hellenistic culture."81 The

Letter stops short, however, of any sense of full assimilation of Hellenistic values. For all its

conciliatory tone, the author defends strict monotheism over against the polytheism of the culture

around him.82 However, he is willing to treat Jewish food laws-which were always a major

difference between Jews and their pagan neighbors-allegorically.83 The Third Sibylline Oracle,

produced in Egypt in the mid-second century BCE, took a more conservative stance. It was

critical of pagan religion, but it stopped short of expressing hostility and was, after all, in a Greek

literary form (pronouncements from a sibyl). At the other end of the spectrum, Philo of

Alexandria, who lived a generation before Josephus, was practicing an allegorical approach to

the Jewish scriptures to show the basic compatibility of Jewish beliefs and Greek philosophy. All

of this shows that some Egyptian Jews were doing what Josephus would do in Rome in the first

century CE: using Greek literary models to forge an essentially Greek ethnicity for Jews.

On the whole, these works are evidence of the willingness of Egyptian Jews to participate

in the intellectual life of the Hellenistic culture around them, and to express their ethnicity in new

ways. Holladay notes

Jewish engagement with Hellenistic culture, as represented in these writings, represents
both an exercise in ethnic promotion as well as ethnic self-preservation. ... Their
appropriation of these new forms suggests not only that Hellenistic culture was speaking to


80 Holladay 142.
81 Holladay 143.
82 Sections 134-8.
83 Sections 151-2.









CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION

Josephus and His Writings

Joseph ben Matthias, more commonly known by his Roman name, Flavius Josephus, was

born in Jerusalem in 37/38 CE.1 He grew up among the Jewish aristocracy and dabbled in the

various Jewish religious sects, ultimately deciding to identify himself with the Pharisees. When

he was twenty-six years old (c. 63/64 CE), he participated in a delegation to Rome to plead for

the release of Jewish priests who had been imprisoned by the procurator of Judea, Marcus

Antonius Felix. There he came into contact with influential people in Roman society and

government, including Poppea, Nero's wife. He returned to Palestine and became caught up in

the early stages of the First Jewish War, and in the fall of 66 CE he was put in charge of the

defense of Galilee. Vespasian and the Roman fifth, tenth, and 15th legions arrived in Galilee from

Syria and laid siege to the town of Jotapata where Josephus was serving as general. The town fell

but Josephus was spared because he predicted that Vespasian, as well as his son Titus, would

become emperor. Josephus then accompanied the legionary forces to Jerusalem and witnessed

the fall of the city in 70 CE. After that he was removed to Rome, granted citizenship, and wrote

several literary works.

Josephus' first literary product was an account of the First Jewish War in seven books; his

Jewish War ('IoTopia 'Iouc''Kou TroXEiou T rp6b 'Po~aiou; known later by the Latin title Bellum

Judaicum) was written between 75 and 81 CE,2 possibly under imperial patronage. This work



1 The first year of the emperor Gaius. Vit. 2; BJ 1.3.
2 M. Brighton, The Sicarii in Josephus' Judean War (PhD Diss. University of California,
Irvine, 2005) 58. In Vit. 361 Josephus says amrolt ieTr~6)K TOro ccuTOKpcropot T~& PLPXL'a [d6vov
o v TwV 'pyOv ')i PETro T vV ("I gave the books to the emperors themselves while the events
were all but still being seen"). Parts of the work thus must have been finished before the death of
Vespasian in June of 79 CE. The book seems to show signs of later revision. S. Schwartz, 'The









In addition, Josephus had good reasons for animosity against Cleopatra as a Jew, for the

Egyptian monarch had no respect for Jewish political concerns and traded Jewish interests like

pawns in her political game (by intervening in the intrigues within the family of Herod she hoped

to give control of Idumea to Antony; 15:62ff). The Jews and the Romans therefore had a

common enemy in Cleopatra. Both could rightly complain about how she had acted against their

sovereignty. In some ways, Herod and Mariamne were analogues to Antony and Cleopatra.147

Both Romans and Jews had endured rulers who were self-serving tyrants. In this way Josephus

demonstrated a solidarity between Jews and Romans in that both had similar experiences with

unscrupulous Hellenistic client kings.

As I have shown in chapter three, Josephus gave considerable attention in the latter part of

his Antiquitates Judaicae to stories of how Jews were mistreated by those in Greco-Roman

culture at large, and in particular how Jewish funds meant for the temple were often confiscated

by Roman officials or with their knowledge. These stories played a significant apologetic role in

the Antiquitates Judaicae in at least two ways. First, the significance of these stories in terms of

ethnicity is that they portray precisely the kind of institutional philanthropic expression that

manifests the sense of solidarity which Smith posited as a fundamental element in ethnic self-

definition. Monetary contributions to the temple in the ancestral homeland were a public

expression of Jewish solidarity. The fact that Josephus related several instances of the violation

of these funds suggests that he found in this problem a particularly menacing threat to a practice

that, in his view, lay at the heart of Jewish self-understanding. His repeated attention to this

particular problem is a strong indicator that he saw this as a violation of the Jewish way of life

itself. For Josephus, an important element of Jewish ethnicity was at stake. Second, if the Roman



147 Interestingly, one of Herod's nine wives was named Cleopatra (AJ 17.21).









ETHNICITY AND JEWISH IDENTITY IN JOSEPHUS


By

DAVID McCLISTER























A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL
OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT
OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF
DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY

UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA

2008









are a large part of the man and his circumstances, and several streams of modem scholarly

inquiry therefore converge in Josephus.

The Present Study and Its Contribution

It is common in the scholarship on Josephus for his writings to be described as an

apologetic retelling of traditional Jewish stories in order to make them more amenable to a Greek

audience. This retelling has often been viewed as a degrading of those stories,17 motivated by

missionary zeal.118 There are at least three problems, however, with this approach. First, such a

description of his writings assumes the perspective of an insider whose chief concerns were

primarily religious in nature, and further tends to assume a dichotomy between an imaginary and

monolithic "normative" Judaism and a corrupted, Hellenized form of it-assumptions that can

hardly stand.119 Josephus' literary portraits of the Jews looked like rewritings only if one knew

what the originals looked like (which his Gentiles readers did not), and it is questionable whether

we should assume that religious zeal was the primary concern of people like Josephus120 or that

anti-Jewish sentiments centered around Jewish religion. Second, it is not generally agreed that

Judaism was a missionary religion in Josephus' day, nor does writing in the mode of apologetics




117 E.g., J. Daniel, 'Apologetics in Josephus' (PhD Diss. Rutgers University, 1981) iii,
212-15; M. Hengel, Judaism andHellenism, trans. J. Bowden (Philadelphia 1981) 1.313.
118 A. Kraabel refers to this as the "old consensus," characterized by paganizing Jewish
religion to make it more attractive to Gentiles and by a longing for the ancestral homeland, and
viewed primarily as a religious endeavor. 'The Roman Diaspora: Six Questionable
Assumptions', in J. Overman and R. MacLennan (eds.), Diaspora Jews and Judaism: Essays in
Honor of and in Dialogue / i/h, A. Thomas Kraabel (Atlanta 1992) 5-6.
119 S. Jones, 'Identities in Practice: Towards and Archaeological Perspective on Jewish
Identity in Antiquity', in S. Jones and S. Pearce (eds.), Jewish Local Patriotism and Self-
Identification in the Graeco-Roman Period (JSPseudSup 31, Sheffield 1998) 29-30.
120 S. Cohen, 'Respect for Judaism by Gentiles According to Josephus', HTR 80 (1987)
423: "In his view Judaism is not a missionary religion." Some scholars, however, still defend the
idea that Josephus' aim was to win adherents to Judaism. Cf S. Mason, "The Contra Apionem in
Social and Literary Context', 208-16.









even been the pretext for the locals' confiscation of their temple contribution.39 Further

confirmation of their non-citizen status appears in Augustus' response to the Jewish complaint in

Alexandria. He granted the Jews ivsotelei/a, which meant that they had a status between that of

metics and citizens and thus were not liable to the same taxes as metics. Similarly, Philo of

Alexandria never spoke of Jews as possessing full citizenship in the po,lij of Alexandria, and the

Jews were subjected to the laographia by Rome (beginning in 4 CE), indicating that Rome did

not count them as citizens of Alexandria either, and thus they were not considered true

Hellenes.40 On the whole, Applebaum concluded "We have not discovered in the course of our

investigation evidence that in any Greek city in the Hellenistic or early Roman period the Jews

possessed citizenship as a body."41 Yet Josephus often seems to give the impression that Jews

regularly enjoyed citizenship status. The picture that develops is that Josephus was playing fast

and loose with the terminology in such a way that implied the Jews were citizens. This is striking

in light of the fact that Josephus later criticized Apion for trying to pass as a native Alexandrian

when he was not.42 Furthermore, Josephus was playing with fire as he attempted to get the Jews

into Alexandrian citizenship. Egypt, to Roman ears, conjured up the image of Cleopatra. So










39 Applebaum, 'The Legal Status of the Jewish Communities', 444.
40 CPJ 1.59-64. For purposes of the poll tax, the Jews were not even considered
metropolitan, which would have recognized them as people of Greek education but not citizens
of the polis, and which would have given them a discount on the tax liability.
41 Applebaum, 'The Legal Status of the Jewish Communities', 449. He goes on to note
that there was no precise and comprehensive Roman legislation concerning Jewish rights empire-
wide. What existed was a series of imperial confirmations of Jewish privileges in local places
(pp.457-8).
42 Ap. 2.29.









Weston, A. "Three Dreams of Aeneas." CJ32 (1937) 229-32.

Williams, M. "Being a Jew in Rome: Sabbath Fasting as an Expression of Romano-Jewish
Identity." In Negotiating Diaspora: Jewish Strategies in the Roman Empire, edited by J.
Barclay, 9-18. Library of Second Temple Studies 45, London: Clark 2004.

---, editor. The Jews Among the Greeks and Romans: A Diasporan Sourcebook. Baltimore: John
Hopkins University Press 1998.

W. Wuellner, "Arrangement." In Handbook of Classical Rhetoric in the Hellenistic Period,
edited by S. Porter, 51-87. Leiden: Brill 2001.

Yavetz, Z. "Judeophobia in Classical Antiquity: A Different Approach." JJS 44 (1993) 1-22.

Yinger, J. "Ethnicity." ARS 11 (1985) 151-80.

Zanker, P. The Power of mages in the Age ofAugustus. Tr. A. Shapiro. Ann Arbor: University
of Michigan Press 1990.









and literary context, have investigated his works in comparison with classical Greek literary

paradigms. Many scholars have demonstrated clear Thucydidean influences on the Bellum

Judaicum.103 Rajak argues that the Antiquitates Judaicae shares many common elements with

Livius, Diodorus Siculus, Manetho, Hecataeus of Abdera, and Berosus,104 and Eckstein has

demonstrated Josephus' conscious use of Polybius in the Bellum Judaicum.l05 In fact,

comparison of Josephus and earlier Greek historiographers has become a well-explored facet of

Josephan studies. Also, as noted above, Feldman has investigated the Hellenistic shape of many

of the Biblical stories in the Antiquitates Judaicae. As a result of such studies, recent scholarship

on Josephus is less concerned with attempting to reconstruct (and condemn) Josephus' personal

motives, or to discover the sources he used. Instead scholars are concerned with Josephus'

shaping of his materials according to the traditions of Greek historiography and the results this

shaping produced.

The interplay between Josephus' apologetic concerns and his shaping of his material was

explored in a 1981 dissertation at Rutgers University entitled "Apologetics in Josephus" by J.

Daniel. He argued that Josephus wrote the Antiquitates Judaicae with an eye on enhancing the

image of Jews and Judaism before the Greco-Roman culture at large, and this involved extensive

reshaping of the materials of the Biblical stories to the point that the resulting picture of the Jews

is hardly recognizable compared to the stories in the Hebrew Bible. Daniel also emphasized the

cultural situation in which Josephus wrote his works and claimed that intense anti-Jewish

sentiments in the Greco-Roman world motivated Josephus.





103 E.g., Mader, Stein, Thackeray, and Druner.
104 'Josephus and the "Archaeology" of the Jews', JJS 33 (1982) 465-77.
105 A. Eckstein, 'Josephus and Polybius: A Reconsideration', CA 9 (1990) 175-208.









tradition.17 Hengel notes that "anyone who sought social respect or even the reputation of being

an educated man had to have an impeccable command of it. The word k~XX viL'EL primarily

meant 'speak Greek correctly', and only secondarily 'adopt a Greek style of life'. Impeccable

command of the Greek language was the most important qualification for taking over Greek

culture."18 Diodorus Siculus could say in the mid-first century BCE EupUPXXEcaL 6' aiUrTr Kac

Trrp6 XO6you 6U5LvqLV, ou KCUXXLOV 'ETepOV OUK &V TL pq65LG EUijpOL. TO&U0 y&p ol 4ev "EXXTrVE(

TG(V P PPUp'POv, ol 6( TrETrUX6LE~UL voL T )v dTraUL6EU6)v TrpoieouoL, Trp6c 65 TOUT Lo 6& 40dvou

To6Uou 6wvadr6v EorLv eva 'w V TTOXX&)v TrEpLyevEoOaL ("But it [history] also contributes to the

power of speech, and one cannot easily find another, better thing than that. For in this matter the

Greeks surpass the barbarians, and the educated surpass the uneducated, and by this power alone

one man is able to rise above the many").19 Similarly, the LXX was produced initially not for

pagans, but for the Jews of Alexandria who were so immersed in Greek culture that many of

them could not read their Scriptures in the original Hebrew.20 The fact that the Hebrew

Scriptures now took on Greek dress is significant. The Alexandrian Jews were presenting

themselves, by means of the LXX, as a people whose religion was not foreign to the Hellenistic

world around them.21 There is a scholarly consensus that many Palestinian Jews were conversant






17 Cf the fact that the Roman senate did not allow anyone to address it in any language
other than Latin, or that L. Aemilius Pallus delivered Rome's terms to Amphipolis (at the end of
the Third Macedonia War) in Latin even though his Greek was impeccable (Livy 45.29.3). This
was a conscious distancing of themselves from Greek culture. Gruen, The Hellenistic World and
the Coming of Rome 267.
18 Hengel, Judaism and Hellenism 58.
19 1.2.5-6.
20 P. Green, Alexander to Actium: The Historical evolution of the Hellenistic Age
(Hellenistic Culture and Society 9, Berkeley 1990) 317.
21 CPJI.41f.









Josephus says IILM&To 6' 6 Ti 'Iou6aiL ';YEti v orpar'CLv EK KEaLoCpEUEL &'yay(yv KKL

eGL6puoca XELcU56LoUo V ouv Iv 'poooo0XuOL; EiTrL KTA6&UOU L iTV VOIL'O)V iTv 'Io6U'CLKG;v

04p6vr1oe ("Pilate, the governor of Judea, intended the abolition of Jewish customs when he led

the army from Caesarea and wintered it in Jerusalem"). Caesarea Maritima, thirty five miles

away, was the normal residence of the procurator. Pilate certainly would have felt at home there,

for the city was thoroughly Romanized. According to Josephus, then, the reason Pilate made this

invasive move to Jerusalem for the winter was that he willfully intended to violate and do away

with Jewish customs. In other words, the Jews were innocent victims of a man who had no

respect for their religion and who was bent on causing trouble. Given the pluralism of Roman

religion, this is surely designed to strike the reader as odd and sinister.

Josephus also relates a mistreatment of Jews by the same governor only a year or so later.

He says

'Y6T rov 6e EircUyoyWYiv tEL T& 'IEpooAu[LcL 'EirpcLEV 6avTrUVT1J TWV LEpU)V XPTr1 Po)V EKXPcLp.v
T rv UapX1rv TOU pe'uiccTOr Ooov &6(TO o6LCHoV 6LCKooLG)v ol 6' OUK T'y&cTrr)v TOLt &4oi Tb
i56op 6pG~iEvoL; TroXXca TE upLu6 ~de &vOp&Trrv ouvEXO6ovrT KatEPo()v crToO TrrauoaoGc
TOU ETrL TOLo6oUTOL TpoOu4ouL EoV TLve 65E KUCL A0OL60opL Xp6ievoL i'ppLov el; T0V cv6pa
ola 6T tLXEL TTpaooeLV oiiLXo0. 6 6 e aOTOXT Tt EKELV(OV TroA TTrXfiO orparuTioL v
a4rEXo 6vov O'L E0 E POVO oKUTA(LXC 6UT T(Li OTOAXoCL 6LaLrEi~' EL Trde EpLEXOOLEv a(o6U;
aU6t EKE XEUuoev Vc(vaopeLV TWV 6e (pPrLKOl h)v dEL TO6 OL60peLV TTro66LcXOL TToL

EXpvrTo TrXTiyaL; TOU6; TE OopupouvTra ev 'LOaC KUCL 4i Kol(Covrt e ol 6' ELoe4)poTro
aacXK6v ou 6Ev odOTE &oTrXOL XAivr|OTeV iUTr' Uav6p6Cv EK TxapoKEUTe E( TL()eP0poiEV(V TrOXXOL
i v "UT(V TUC/UT1 KCL cdTr'OvrTIKOV ol 6e KUCL Tpaua4TL'L oVEX6JprT1oav KCL oU5T) Tr o6EU L Ti


("He [Pilate] made a supply of water for Jerusalem, taking for its expense the sacred funds,
for the head of the stream was two hundred stadia away. But they [the Jews] were not
pleased with the things that had been done regarding the water, and many ten thousands of
men got together and complained to him to stop such a desire. And some attacked him with
verbal abuse and insulted the man, just as a crowd likes to do. But he, covering with their
robes a great multitude of soldiers, who carried clubs under their robes, and sending them
to where they might surround them [the Jews], himself ordered the Jews to leave, but when
they began to insult him, he gave to the soldiers the signal which had been previously
arranged. They gave much more blows than Pilate had ordered, punishing equally the
troublemakers and those who were not, and they brought on nothing mild so that unarmed









narrative, in order "to present Titus in particular in a dramatic way."32 Chapman has shown that

Josephus employed the device of spectacle and the language of Greek tragedy to describe the

siege of Jerusalem and other stories in his account,33 and R. Hall has demonstrated a

correspondence between Josephus' method in the Contra Apionem and the canons of Roman

rhetorical inquiry.34

As the Greek tradition of historiography developed, there came to be an emphasis on

contemporary history. Even those who wrote about the ancient past brought the narrative down

to their present day. There developed a general reluctance to re-hash what others had already said

about the past because of the belief that the past was unavailable historically. The difference

between heroic and historical times was basically introduced by the work of Hecataeus. This

distinction was already accepted and assumed by the time of Herodotus, and an emphasis on

contemporary history began in earnest with Thucydides. There came to be a realization that the

past was, in a real sense, beyond the historian's grasp and therefore there was nothing new to

add. Opportunity and fame as a historian lay instead in writing on new things. Of course,

Josephus wrote of a war that happened within his own lifetime and within his own experience.

He sharply criticized Greek historians who had neglected such a great war in favor of simply re-

hashing the histories of older times, some for which they had no data.35





32 G. M. Paul, 'The Presentation of Titus in the "Jewish War" of Josephus: Two Aspects',
Phoenix 47 (1993) 57.
33 H. Chapman, 'Spectacle and Theater in Josephus' Bellum Judaicum' (PhD Diss.
Stanford University 1998).
34 R. Hall, 'Josephus, Contra Apionem and Historical Inquiry in the Roman Rhetorical
Schools', in L. Feldman and J. Levison (eds.), Josephus' Contra Apionem: Studies in Its
Character and Cniexi\ n i//h a Latin Concordance to the Portion Missing in Greek (Leiden 1996)
229-49.
35 BJ 1.14-16.









necessarily imply a missionary purpose.121 The question of how successful Judaism was in

winning converts in the first century CE is still open, and the lack of a definitive answer

precludes using it as a basis for suggesting that Josephus had a missionary purpose in his literary

works. Third, the word "apologetic" has been so stretched in scholarly usage that it is barely a

useful term any more.122

The known facts point in another direction. Two things in particular stand out. First, there

is more than defense of Jewish religious customs going on in Josephus. Although Josephus knew

how to defend his people from misconceptions and wild derogatory rumors, his writings also

went well beyond these kinds of apologetics. Gruen's observation about Jewish Hellenistic

literature is especially appropriate to the works of Josephus: "These works go beyond what is

conventionally termed apologetic writing. They do not represent mere defensive, rear-guard

action by a beleaguered minority in an alien world. What stands out is the aggressive

inventiveness of the stories."123 Second, Josephus' Greek writings were qualitatively different

from the majority of works produced by Jews from Maccabean times to his own day in that he

wrote about Jewish history and culture to inform non-Jewish readers. All of his literary works

had a non-Jewish target audience, but a Jewish subject-matter.

What might these facts tell us about the purposes of those works? Surely there is a

connection between the intended audience of Josephus' writings, the nature and subject of those

writings, and the context in which he wrote them. Any interpretation must take into consideration

that his writings were a response to what Josephus saw as the practical concerns of the situation,



121 Barclay, 'Apologetics in the Jewish Diaspora', 136, 147f.
122 Barclay, 'Apologetics in the Jewish Diaspora', 135.
123 E. Gruen, 'Fact and Fiction: Jewish Legends in a Hellenistic Context', in P. Cartledge
et al (eds.), Hellenistic Constructs: Essays in Culture, History, and Historiography (Hellenistic
Culture and Society 26, Berkeley 1997) 87.









held the field."8 In fact, the retention of the Greek element of the story proved an important part

of the myth for the purposes of Roman self-definition. "It enabled Rome to associate itself with

the rich and complex fabric of Hellenic tradition, thus to enter that cultural world, just as it had

entered the wider political world. But at the same time, it also announced Rome's distinctiveness

from that world."9 The preservation of the Greek element in the myth allowed the Romans to

both compare and contrast themselves to the Greeks at the same time. Otherwise, however, the

details of the story were always somewhat negotiable. Even when Roman historiographical

literature began to flourish, the Aeneas story was not cast in an unalterable form. "... it was

accepted practice at a time when traditions were fluid and particulars susceptible to

manipulation. ... The connection itself delivered the vital message. All the rest was malleable."10

Josephus was taking advantage of this kind of approach to ancient traditions as he set out to

relate Jewish history for his non-Jewish audience in the Antiquitates Judaicae.

Another element that made Josephus' task easier was the fact that it was common

practice in Hellenistic historiography for an author to rewrite his sources extensively. It can be

observed in Aeschines' handling of material from Andocides, Livy's use of Claudius

Quadrigarius, Diodorus of Sicily's incorporation of Agatharcides, and Plutarch's appropriation

of Dionysius of Halicarnassus. "An author was expected to take some liberties with his source.

... He was expected to recast the narrative, to place his own stamp upon it, to use the material for

his own purposes, to create something new. But on the whole he was faithful to the content and

sequence of the original."11 This practice was itself a reflection of the larger phenomenon of




s Gruen, Culture andNational Identity, 19.
9 Gruen, Culture and National Identity, 31.
10 Gruen, Culture and National Identity, 35.
11 S. Cohen, Josephus in Galilee and Rome, 31.









Examples of Josephus' Positive Portrayal of Jews and Jewish History
by Means of Greek Models

The Antiquitates Judaicae may be thought of as the foundation for Josephus' program of

ethnicity-building. In order to make the case that Jews ought to be given a respected place within

Roman culture, Josephus needed to demonstrate that Jewish culture embodied the very ideals

that the Romans already respected: those of the ancient Greeks. In this way the presentation of

Jewish culture along the lines of things the Romans already respected became an argument, as it

were, that the Romans ought to extend their respect to the Jews. In fact, if an awareness of the

extensive similarities between Jewish and Greek cultures, institutions, great figures, histories,

etc. did not prompt the Romans to revise their attitudes toward Jews, then the Romans would

have to face the idea that they were being inconsistent at the least, or patently hypocritical at the

most.

Use of Greek Forms, Paradigms, and Terms

The form of Josephus' work is the first suggestion that he was aligning the Jews with the

Greeks: an apxCatooyLca of the Jews14 in 20 books, a clear reminiscence of Dionysius of

Halicamassus' 'PG 4OLK-i apxcatooyL'a also in 20 books. The name and arrangement of the work

announced to its ancient audience that this was Jewish history cast in Greek form, following the

forms and conventions of Greek historiography. Furthermore, as noted above, Dionysius of

Halicamassus attempted to establish the closest possible relationship between the Greeks and the

Romans, so far as to posit a Greek origin for the Romans. While Josephus did not go this far with

the Jews, he hoped to show as many congruencies between Jews and Greeks as he could without

sacrificing his own notion of Jewishness.




14 This is how Josephus describes his work in AJ 1.5.









prominent.134 Schwartz notices that "if one compares the War and the Antiquities, Josephus'

usage seems to show a growing notion of the Jews as people defined not by virtue of their

relationship to a place, but, by virtue of their relationship to a religion."135 In fact, Josephus

downplayed the significance of the Jewish homeland in his narrative of Biblical history,

Antiquitates Judaicae 1-11. In the canonical Biblical texts, the land of Palestine belongs to the

Jews by a covenantal promise from God. As Josephus tells the stories, however, he often omits

repetitions of that promise and instead turns the occupation of the land into a prophecy (and

uttered by a pagan prophet at that).136 Similarly, he omits God's order to Joshua to conquer the

land, and he regularly omits the divine promise of return to the land after the Babylonian exile.

"He simply does not portray the land as the heart of the Jewish experience."137 Josephus seems to

have acknowledged that, in the face of the political realities of his day, a strong sense of

connection with Palestine was not a viable criterion of Jewish ethnicity.

The religious dimension of Jewish ethnicity was a sensitive issue for a person in Josephus'

situation. On the one hand, Josephus remained Jewish in his religious convictions throughout his

literary works. Nowhere did he assimilate the Jewish God with a pagan god, nor offered a way

by which Jews could worship pagan gods, and he went to great lengths to explain how the

customs which seemed so odd to non-Jews were actually expressions of great piety when

understood correctly. For Josephus, being Jewish meant worshipping and living according to

Torah and Jewish customs respectively. His idea of Jewish identity is TLVE OvrTEE E pxfi

'Iou0ioU L KM TiOL XprloTjCEvoL TUOXCL i4' O'L) TE TrcaL6uOeiv'VE vo0ioOi ~r T rpbo EUO' pELav

("who Jews were from the beginning, and what fortunes they have experienced, and by what


134 D. Schwartz 69-70.
135 D. Schwartz 77.
136 AJ 4.101ff, Balaam.
137 B. Amaru, 'Land Theology in Josephus' "Jewish Antiquities"', JQR 71 (1981) 229.









instruction first than to despise the gods, to disown their country, and to consider parents,
children, and brethren worthless.")56

When seen in the light of these kinds of remarks, actions by local officials that disregarded

Jewish rights are not surprising.

Josephus' Own Experiences

We must not ignore Josephus' personal experience with anti-Jewish sentiments, for these

were surely powerful forces that factored into his writing plans. In Palestine Josephus knew well

the tensions between Jews and the native Syro-Greek populations, and he cited these tensions as

a fundamental contributing factor in the start of the First Jewish War.7 There were several more

opportunities to experience similar tension in Rome. At first glance, Josephus' situation in Rome

seems to have been comfortable if not privileged. Vespasian granted Josephus citizenship, an

apartment in the emperor's house on the Quirinal hill (in regio VI of Rome), and a pension.58

The emperor also gave him land in Judea, which Domitian later declared tax-exempt.59 However,

closer examination reveals that there was little of elite treatment here. Vespasian's palace was on

the Palatine hill, so Josephus was being kept at a distance from emperor even if he did enjoy a

free room from him. By 94 CE the house on the Quirinal hill was demolished by Domitian to

build the temple of the gens Flavia, and we may suppose that Josephus was either evicted or




56 Hist. 5.5.
57 Bilde, 'The Causes of the Jewish War', 189-90: "An important aspect of this conflict,
in the view of Josephus, was the ethnic composition of the Roman auxiliaries in Palestine,
because these were dominated precisely by natives among the non-Jewish inhabitants. According
to Josephus this state of affairs was a direct contributory cause of the war." Of these people
Josephus said do Kci ~TOT( ETrLOUoL XpovoL; [EyV tyLorT)V 'Iou65aoL; eyevovro outiopG1v apx
TOU KarCT cJDXpov TTroXE4o oTrippara paXd6OVT ("who in the following times were those who
became the greatest hazards to the Jews, sowing the seeds of the war beginning at the time of
Florus") (AJ 19.364).
58 Vit. 423.
59 Vit. 425, 429.









This was important evidence, for it showed Jews both enjoying and being viewed as regular

members of major Hellenistic cities. Alexandria, Syrian Antioch, and Ephesus were among the

largest and most important Hellenistic cities in Josephus' day, so it was not as if the Jews'

political status was recognized only in backwater towns. Josephus made an emphatic point that

he was not merely citing a political theory (KacL i 6el Trepi T v &XXWv XEYELv). The fact was,

according to Josephus, that in the greatest cities of the Roman world the Jews had been treated

exactly like any other group within Hellenistic culture. Moreover, they bore the same local

names as the natives in the old Greek heartland itself, the western coast of Asia Minor, and he

implies that the Jews were certainly included under the umbrella of "Roman."58 It is the Greek

recognition of Jews, however, that gets the most attention from Josephus. After the statement

quoted above Josephus goes into a short history of benevolent treatment of the Jews by

Alexander III, Ptolemy I (Soter), Ptolemy II (Philadelphus), Ptolemy III (Euergetes), and

Ptolemy VI (Philometor), a history which emphasizes the loyalty and service of the Jews to

Greek rulers of Egypt. The trouble with Cleopatra found the Jews on the side of the Romans, and

Josephus duly noted that this loyalty was attested by both Julius Caesar and Augustus. Again,

both Greeks and Romans had acknowledged the Jews as a significant constituency and ally.59

At Contra Apionem 2.145 Josephus finished his refutation of the criticisms of Apion and

turned to other slanders from other authors, namely Apollonius Molon and Lysimachus, whose

slanders concerned Moses. While he said ou y&p EyKOc4Ltov cTu4(Xv v TrpoELXOidTrv ouyypt4EL





58 Josephus' statement about the Iberians is probably to be taken as a generalization. Not
all communities in Roman Hispania enjoyed Roman citizenship. See T. Mommsen, The
Provinces of the Roman Empire (Chicago 1968) 71. See also n."a" in Thackeray's Loeb
translation, 1:308.
59 Josephus repeats this important fact in Ap. 2.72.









have pointed them to the LXX, easily available in his day, or he could have simply reproduced

the LXX stories as closely as he wished. But in fact he did neither. Instead he chose to relate

those stories in his own words, casting them in ways more easily digested by his Greco-Roman

audience, while still claiming that he was faithful to the canonical ("orthodox") versions of those

stories. In Antiquitates Judaicae 1.17 Josephus therefore says T& ttv oiv &KpLPt TyV kv av mi

Uavaypa^ icLL Trpo*i'v 6 X6yo( KarT TrV OLKELCV Ta Lv ori[avEi TOUTro y&p 6L& ra UrTTl TOLTotLV

rT TrpayTXarTELX iETTrryyELXicU4rv ou6ev Trpoo t; ou6' adu TrUapuXLTrr G ("As I go on, the story of the

things contained in the records will tell accurately, according to the proper order, for I have

promised to do this throughout this treatise, adding nothing nor neglecting anything"). Similarly,

in 10.218 he says

EyKcLXeoT6 6E [OL rLT6'iL ouT 'EKCXTaora TOUToV ULTrayyEXXovTL 6L& Tr|( ypX(fj( ie v TOLi
UpxaioiL EUpLOKG) PLPVioL KCML ycap EU'Ou kv Up^T) Trf LOTTOpLO) Terpk U TO LCOrT'UOVTUX(
TL TTrp'i T' V TpXy[JTGJi)V "i [4E4[o[EVOU 10Fo)xaLOCX4lV [LOVOV TE [ETUX)pxCLELV Tf& 'EPpCLxov
PiPXoui E'LTrGv EL' Trv 'EXX56a yXWTLrav KCL TM(UX 6T(XG )roeLV fiTE TreVpooTLOE TOL(
TrpUy[CaoLV aJUT6ob L56LC( t.rT' 'dUaLpC)v UiTrELoFXriEvoc

("But let no one accuse me for relating every one of these things throughout the work as I
find them in our ancient books. For directly in the beginning of my history, I have been
careful, against those who were seeking something about these matters or who were
finding fault with me, only to translate the Hebrew books, saying them in the Greek
language, and promising to reveal these things neither adding my own ideas to these
matters nor taking anything away.")

Either Josephus lied outrightly (which is hard to believe), or he did not see his presentations of

the Biblical stories as containing any substantial violations with respect to the shapes they bore

in the canonical Hebrew Bible. In fact, Josephus described his Antiquitates Judaicae as a

translation of the Bible.3 I noted above that he presented himself as the analogue to Eleazar in

the Letter ofAristeas, and thus implied that his Antiquitates Judaicae was the analogue to the

LXX. The fact that Josephus presented himself as a prophet also created the impression that

3 Ap. 1.54 (tEOep[4rVEUELv, but interestingly ouyypPcpELV in 1.1); AJ 1.5 (tEOEprTLveltUL);
10.218 ([eraTUp(CELv); cf. 20.261.









Aeyo[ev 1 ("which is nearly the same as that which is called the Stoics by the Greeks").5 We see

here the same kind of approach that characterized certain depictions in the Antiquitates Judaicae:

describing Jewish institutions with familiar Greek terms, yet stopping short of equating the two.

In this way what was uniquely Jewish was not lost, but was accommodated to Hellenistic

standards. A fuller explanation of the beliefs of Pharisees, as Josephus understood them (or at

least as he wanted them to be understood) appeared in Bellum Judaicum 2.162-3, 166 and

Antiquitates Judaicae 18:12-15.6 Here in the Vita he could have easily either rehearsed them or

he could have simply referred his reader to the pertinent section of his previous works (as he

does in Antiquitates Judaicae 13.173 and 18.11). Instead he chose now to go further and

compare them closely to a philosophical sect within Hellenistic culture. The comparison counted

on the assumption that the reader did not know much about the Pharisees in the first place,

because a closer examination would have revealed several significant differences between

Pharisees and Stoics. Josephus' description basically erased the line between Jewish culture and

Hellenistic culture, and a non-Jewish reader who was unfamiliar with Jewish sectarianism would

have been under the impression that Pharisees and Stoics held to the same basic beliefs. Jewish

institutions were again brought into Roman culture through the door of Hellenism.

As noted before, at age 26 Josephus participated in a delegation to Rome to secure the

release of some Jewish priests who had been sent there on charges by the procurator of Judea, M.

Antonius Felix. The account appears in Vita 1.13ff. A noteworthy feature of this story is that

Josephus was careful to trace the network of social and political connections that got him to

Poppea and that enabled him to secure the release of the priests. He made a special point that



5 Vit. 12. The precise nuance of TrapUaTrr A.oLo is hard to determine from this context. The
word can mean "nearly resembling," "about the same," "similar," or "about equal to." LSJ 1321.
6 See alsoAJ 13.172.









also concluded, after carefully examining Josephus' various statements about the causes of the

First Jewish War, that "Josephus cannot be reduced to an apologist for the Romans, or even the

Flavian dynasty. It is completely wrong then to see his main concern as primarily apologizing

and justifying his own dubious activities during the war."95 Moehring's portrait of Josephus in

his 1984 ANRW essay is also positive along the same lines.96 He attempts to break away from the

older pessimistic approach and to understand Josephus on his own premises. He sees the ancient

historian as being motivated by an issue with which Josephus wrestled personally, namely, a

desire to reconcile Jerusalem and Rome. The result is a view of the man and his works that does

not posit a fundamental contradiction at the foundation.

Two more things may be added to the observations of these scholars. First, the writings of

Josephus themselves do not support the view that Josephus's personal circumstances

compromised him personally or as a historian. As noted above, Josephus' writings show him to

be a staunch apologist for Judaism. If he was the Roman collaborator and lackey that he has so

often been made out to be,97 he surely would not have spent a good portion of his life trying to

present a positive picture of Jewish character to outsiders. We would expect him to have

abandoned his heritage and taken up literary themes that were more laudatory of the Romans.

Rather than see his situation as compromising his veracity, the texts themselves show that

Josephus used his situation to the advantage of his people. His position in Rome became a pulpit,

as it were, for the defense of Judaism. There is no personal compromise here.





95 P. Bilde, 'The Causes of the Jewish War According to Josephus', JSJ 10 (1979) 201.
96 H. Moehring, 'Joseph ben Matthia and Flavius Josephus: the Jewish Prophet and
Roman Historian', in ANRW II.21.2 (1984) 864-944.
97 Cf S. Cohen, Josephus in Galilee andRome, 86: "If any historian was a Flavian
lackey, it was Josephus."









notoriously unwise to rely on a group's self-description to produce an accurate picture of that

group."'8 This is rhetorical polemic, not objective history. As I have noted, there are several

oddities about Josephus' method in the Contra Apionem. He does not tell us who was

complaining that the Jews were not an ancient culture. He denigrated Greek history when it

appeared to criticize the Jews, but piled up names of Greek historians when he thought he saw in

them references to Jews, and the main charge he set out to refute does not sound like a typical

Greek complaint about foreigners. He was not accurate when he used the Greek historians, and

his use of Greek terms to describe Jewish institutions was dubious. A good case can be made that

Josephus was dealing more with his own perception of anti-Jewish sentiments than with real

ones.86 After all, he began the treatise by mentioning that several people had criticized his

Antiquitates Judaicae. He then took that to be a criticism of Jewish culture and ethnicity

generally. It is not that widespread anti-Jewish perceptions could not have existed. I have argued

above, in chapter three, that the Roman world had its share of anti-Jewish sentiment, and surely

Josephus' perceptions were grounded in his actual social situation. He could not have invented

these objections wholesale, written a book to refute them, and expected people to take the result

seriously. But the Contra Apionem does not necessarily reflect its historical context in a purely

objective way. The fact that Josephus' personal situation compromised his objectivity and

sometimes interfered with his larger purpose will always be a factor in reading his works, and to

insist on deciding between him writing out of personal motives or out of national interests is to

create a false dichotomy. Both played a part, but how to weight them will be a matter of ongoing

debate. For the purposes of this study, however, a stance is not necessary. Ethnicities are not

necessarily driven by the realities of the situations in which they are proposed, but by a perceived


85 Goodman, 'Jews and Judaism in the Mediterranean Diaspora', 182.
86 Gruen, 'Greeks and Jews: Mutual Misperceptions', 39-50.









Both of the examples above show that Josephus was making conscious choices about his

presentation of the Jews. In the former example, Josephus was adding an element of explanation

to the story that was unnecessary from a Jewish point of view, but one that would have greatly

increased the Hellenic characterization of the story and its peoples by its addition. In the latter

example Josephus was suppressing elements of Jewish ethnicity that one would otherwise expect

to find in a Jewish description of Jewish culture, elements that would have made the Jews appear

un-Greek, and has instead re-cast a major component of Jewish ethnicity in purely Greek terms.

These techniques, along with his heavy use of the Greek historiographical tradition throughout,

led the ancient reader to see the Jews in much the same way as that same reader would have

encountered the Greeks in the works of the recognized, authoritative Greek historians.

Perhaps the most noticeable evidence within the Bellum Judaicum that Josephus was trying

to bridge the divide between Roman and Jewish relationships appears in his treatment of the

emperor Titus who, at the time of the Jewish revolt, was the officer in charge of finishing the

campaign. As I have tried to demonstrate in chapter three, Roman-Jewish tensions were high in

the first century CE. Josephus needed to soften Roman views of Jews and to present a view of

Titus that was not antagonistic toward Jews if there was to be a successful negotiation on the part

of Jews into Roman society. The former of these tasks involved explaining that the war was

started and prosecuted by a handful of Jews who were bent on making trouble.81 The rest of the

populace involved in the conflagration was, according to Josephus, quite unwilling to be in that

situation. This may have been an attempt to counter a notion that Jews in general across the

Roman empire were eager for a revolt. In 1.5 we hear what sounds like an echo of this rumor:

eTTrL6T 'Iou6XiLOL iJ V rraVv Tb 33r0 p EipcTirv 6[L6u)Xov oUVTrcUpOrtoeoOcaL O4LAOLV ijXTrLoav ("For



81BJ 1.10; 2.290, 330; etc.




Full Text

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1 ETHNICITY AND JEWISH IDENTITY IN JOSEPHUS By DAVID McCLISTER A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2008

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2 2008 David McClister

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3 To the memory of my father, Dorval L. McClis ter, who instilled in me a love of learning; to the memory of Dr. Phil Roberts, my esteemed colleague; and to my wife, Lisa, without whose support this dissertation, or much else that I do, would not have been possible.

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4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I gladly recognize my supervisory committee ch air (Dr. Konstantinos Kapparis, Associate Professor in the Classics Department at the Univer sity of Florida). I also wish to thank the other supervisory commiteee members (Dr. Jennifer Rea, Dr. Gareth Schmeling, and Dr. Gwynn Kessler as a reader from the Religious Studies Department). It is an honor to have their contributions and to work under their guidance. I also wish to thank the library staff at the University of Florida and at Florida College (e specially Ashley Barlar) who did their work so well and retrieved the research materials necessary for this project. I al so wish to thank my family for their patient indulgence as I have robbed them of time to give attention to the work necessary to pursue my academic interests. BWGRKL [Greek] Postscript Type 1 and TrueTypeT font Copyright 1994-2006 BibleWorks, LLC. All rights reserved. These Bib lical Greek and Hebrew fonts are used with permission and are from BibleWorks, softwa re for Biblical exegesis and research.

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5 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS...............................................................................................................4 ABSTRACT.....................................................................................................................................7 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION....................................................................................................................9 Josephus and His Writings........................................................................................................9 The Bellum Judaicum......................................................................................................13 The Antiquitates Judaicae...............................................................................................19 The Vita and the Contra Apionem...................................................................................25 A Brief History of Research...................................................................................................29 The Present Study and Its Contribution..................................................................................40 2 ETHNICITY, SELF-DEFINITION, AND THE ANCIENTS...............................................47 The Concept of Ethnicity........................................................................................................47 Greek Ethnicity and the Roman World..................................................................................67 Josephus and Ethnicity...........................................................................................................84 Conclusion..............................................................................................................................89 3 THE MILIEU IN WHICH JOSEPHUS LIVED AND WROTE............................................93 Mistreatment of Jews in Greco-Roman Society.....................................................................93 JosephusÂ’ Own Experiences.................................................................................................110 Conclusion............................................................................................................................114 4 HELLENISTIC CULTURE AND JEWISH ACCULTURATION.....................................117 The Question of Jewish Hellenization..................................................................................117 Conclusion............................................................................................................................144 5 JEWISH ETHNICITY IN JOSPEHUSÂ’ BELLUM JUDAICUM.........................................147 The Bellum Judaicum and the Greek Tradition of Historiography......................................147 Some Greek Elements Within the Bellum Judaicum............................................................167 Conclusion............................................................................................................................178 6 JOSEPHUSÂ’ PRESENTATION OF THE JEWS IN HIS ANTIQUITATES JUDAICAE....181 The Fluid Nature of Foundational History/Myth..................................................................181 Examples of JosephusÂ’ Positive Portrayal of Jews and Jewish History by Means of Greek Models...........................................................................................188

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6 Use of Greek Forms, Paradigms, and Terms.................................................................188 Exempla .........................................................................................................................204 Stories of Positive Impressions on Non-Jews...............................................................213 Management of Negative Impressions.................................................................................217 Conclusion..................................................................................................................... .......237 7 JEWISH ETHNICITY IN JOSEPHUSÂ’ VITA AND CONTRA APIONEM .........................239 The Vita ............................................................................................................................... .239 The Contra Apionem .............................................................................................................244 Conclusion..................................................................................................................... .......264 8 SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS...................................................................................268 REFERENCE LIST................................................................................................................. ....279 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH.......................................................................................................297

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7 Abstract of Dissertation Pres ented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy ETHNICITY AND JEWISH IDENTITY IN JOSEPHUS By David McClister May 2008 Chair: Konstantinos Kapparis Major: Classical Studies Flavius Josephus was a Jewish historian who liv ed in the first century CE. When the First Jewish War began in 66 CE, Josephus was given a leading role in the defense of Galilee in northern Palestine. He was captured by the Roman forces and accompanied them to Jerusalem where he witnessed the fall of the city in 70 CE. After that Josephus was taken to Rome where he wrote an account of the Jewish war with Rome (the Bellum Judaicum) a history of the Jews (the Antiquitates Judaicae ), a short autobiography (the Vita ), and a defense of the antiquity of the Jews (the Contra Apionem ). All of these works were inte nded for a non-Jewish audience. Josephus wrote at a time when anti-Jewish se ntiments were common, and the recent defeat at the hands of Rome only exacerbate d the negative image ascribed to Jews. It is the thesis of this dissertation that Josephus produced his literary works not simply to satisfy the curiosity of interested Gentiles concerning Jewi sh origins and customs, but to craft and negotiate an ethnicity for the Jews that would portray them as a peopl e worthy of Roman respect. Ethnic identity is a social construct that is shaped in a complex matr ix of psychological and so cial factors, and often in response to a perceived crisis that threatens a personÂ’s or groupÂ’s sense of social belonging. Josephus lived under the kinds of conditions in whic h groups typically feel the need to adjust and

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8 reassert their social id entity. I suggest that th is lens can provide a useful way of reading Josephus, and can account for the shape and purpose of his works. JosephusÂ’ strategy for creating this ethnic por trait was to depict the Jews as having essentially the same qualities of the noble Greeks of the past, wh om the Romans respected. In this undertaking Josephus was participating in a long-standing debate with in Jewish circles over the limits and extent of Hellenization among th em. What was new was that Josephus used the vehicle of Greek historiography to accomplish his purpose. All of his literary works drew heavily on well-known Greek historiographical models fo r their presentations of the events, their characterizations of the Jewish people, and their refutations of Gentile slanders. The result was a picture of Jewish history and piety in which the Jews are s een to embody well-respected Greek ideals. It is not known how widely JosephusÂ’ work s circulated in his own day or shortly thereafter, nor do we know how successful they were in their purpose of creating a bold, new picture of Jewish identity. Ther e are indications that JosephusÂ’ wo rks did not effect much change in how Gentiles viewed Jews in the Roman em pire. However, the success of the project (measured in terms of social acceptance) is not the object of this study, nor is it a criterion for judging the importance of what Josephus wrote. One of the enduring values of JosephusÂ’ works is that they demonstrate, in antiquity, an at tempt by a marginalized group to negotiate an ethnicity, and thus they provide an important window into the comp lexities of Jewish life in the Roman empire.

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9 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION Josephus and His Writings Joseph ben Matthias, more commonly known by his Roman name, Flavius Josephus, was born in Jerusalem in 37/38 CE.1 He grew up among the Jewish aristocracy and dabbled in the various Jewish religious sects, ultimately deciding to identify himself with the Pharisees. When he was twenty-six years old (c. 63/64 CE), he pa rticipated in a delegation to Rome to plead for the release of Jewish priests who had been imprisoned by the pr ocurator of Judea, Marcus Antonius Felix. There he came into contact wi th influential people in Roman society and government, including Poppea, Nero’s wife. He re turned to Palestine and became caught up in the early stages of the First Jewish War, and in the fall of 66 CE he was put in charge of the defense of Galilee. Vespasian and the Roman fifth, tenth, and 15th legions arrived in Galilee from Syria and laid siege to the town of Jotapata wh ere Josephus was serving as general. The town fell but Josephus was spared because he predicted that Vespasian, as well as his son Titus, would become emperor. Josephus then accompanied th e legionary forces to Jerusalem and witnessed the fall of the city in 70 CE. After that he was removed to Rome, granted citizenship, and wrote several literary works. Josephus’ first literary product was an account of the First Jewish War in seven books; his Jewish War ( VIstori,a VIouai?kou/ pole,mou pro.j ~Rwmai,ouj ; known later by the Latin title Bellum Judaicum ) was written between 75 and 81 CE,2 possibly under imperial patronage. This work 1 The first year of the emperor Gaius. Vit. 2; BJ 1.3. 2 M. Brighton, The Sicarii in Josephus’ Judean War (PhD Diss. University of California, Irvine, 2005) 58. In Vit. 361 Josephus says auvtoi/j evpe,dwka toi/j auvtokra,torsi ta. bibli,a mo,non ouv tw/n e;rgwn e;ti blepome,nwn (“I gave the books to the empero rs themselves while the events were all but still being seen”). Part s of the work thus must have been finished before the death of Vespasian in June of 79 CE. The book seems to s how signs of later revi sion. S. Schwartz, ‘The

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10 was first written in an Aramaic version, which ha s not survived, but Jose phus then composed a version of it in Greek.3 Next he wrote a history of the Jewish people, the Antiquities of the Jews ( VIoudai?kh/j VArcaiologi,aj ; later known by the Latin title Antiquitates Judaicae ), in twenty books, which was published in 93 or 94 CE.4 Josephus’ autobiographical work, the Life ( VIwsh,pou bi,oj ; later known as the Vita ), which mostly deals with his time as commander in Galilee, was written between 94 and 96 CE5 and made an appendix to the Antiquitates Judaicae The purpose of this short treatise was to defe nd himself and his conduct during the war against criticisms that had been leveled by a political rival, Justus of Tiberi as. His last literary production,6 a polemical apologetical treatis e in two books, came to be called Against Apion ( Peri. VArcaio,thtoj VIoudai,wn Lo,goj ; later known by the Latin title Contra Apionem ). While this later Latin title singles out Apion (a wellknown Egyptian scholar and literary critic; died c. 45 CE) as the object of the work’s response ( avnti,rrhsij ), he is actually only the subject of the Composition and Publication of Jo sephus’ “Bellum Judaicum” Book 7’, HTR 79 (1986) 373-86. All translations in this study ar e my own unless otherwise noted. 3 Josephus says prouqe,mhn evgw. toi/j kata. th.n ~R wmai,wn h`gemoni,an ~Ella,di glw,ssh| metabalw.n a] toi/j a;nw barba,ro ij th/| patri,w| sunta,xaj avn e,pemya pro,teron avfhgh,sasqai (“I have proposed to relate in the Greek language for those under Roman rule, translating those things which I formerly sent to the upper barb arians, having first laid them out in my native language”). However, metabalw.n here is best understood as rewr iting instead of translating. The Greek reads like an original composition and not simply a translation from an Aramaic source. G. Hata, ‘Is the Greek Version of Josephus’ “Jew ish War” a Translation or a Rewriting of the First Version?’, JQR 66 (1975) 90-6. 4 In AJ 20.267, Josephus says “the present day” ( th/j nu/n … h`me,raj ) was the 13th year of Domitian and Josephus’ 56th year. Some scholars working wi th source-criti cal tools have suggested that the AJ may have gone through more than one edition, but the internal evidence for two editions is slim. D. Bari sh, ‘The “Autobiography” of Jo sephus and the Hypothesis of a Second Edition of His “Antiquities”,’ HTR 71 (1978) 61-71. 5 Barish 75. 6 It has sometimes been suggested that AJ 20.267 indicates that Josephus intended to write another account of the First Jewish War. The context, however, shows that Josephus was speaking of the Vita H. Petersen, ‘Real and Alleged Literary Projects of Josephus’, AJP 79 (1958) 259-62. Josephus then mentioned (20.268) plan s for a theological treatise. Petersen (2635) identified it with the Contra Apionem but Feldman thinks a differe nt work was envisioned (L. Feldman, Josephus, 9: Jewish Antiquities Books 18-20 (Cambridge, MA 1969) 531.

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11 second book. The treatise addresses cl aims of several cri tics of Jews and of Judaism that were circulating in Josephus’ own day, of whom Apio n was the most outspoken. As the Greek title indicates, the basic focus of the work is a defense of the antiquity of the Jewish people, a topic that had already been addressed in the Antiquitates Judaicae The writings of Josephus were transmitted in an tiquity by Christian scri bes (as all classical works were), and the edition of Niese, pub lished in seven volumes from 1885 to 1895, has generally remained the standard schola rly critical edition to the present day.7 Later editions have not strayed far from Niese in spite of the fact that his text relied too heavily on too few textual witnesses. In particular, Niese relied heavily on Codex Palatinus Graecus 14 (P; Vaticanus, 10th century) for the Vita and did not give enough c onsideration to later manus cripts that appear to have preserved better readings. Similarly, he basically relied on Code x Parisinus Graecus 142 and Codex Ambrosianus (A; Mediolanensis), both from the 10th century, for the Bellum Judaicum and Codex Regius Parisinus (R; 14th century) and Codex Oxoniensis (15th century) for the Antiquitates Judaicae 8 The Contra Apionem survives in a single exemplar, Codex Laurentianus (L), which lacks 2.52-113. The missing section is extant in an Old Latin translation produced under Cassiodorus, c. 550 CE, which has yet to be fully exploited for purposes of textual criticism of the Greek text.9 The present study uses the Ni ese edition, and consults the 7 Flavii, Josephi, Opera. Edidit et apparat u critico instruxit Benedictus Niese 7 vols. (Berlin 1885-1895). This was the firs t truly critical Greek text of Josephus. A concise history of editions appears at the end of E. Schrer ‘Josephus, Flavius’ in S. Jackson (ed.), Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge, 6 (Grand Rapids 1953) 236. 8 L. Feldman, ‘Flavius Josephus Revisited’, in ANRW II.21.2 (New York 1984) 765. The new commentary on Josephus published by Brill (not yet complete) is based on the Niese text with few emendations. 9 G. Richards and R. Shutt, ‘Cri tical Notes on Josephus’ Antiquities’, CQ 31 (1937) 17077.

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12 eclectic text of Thackeray, whic h generally follows Niese and the Teubner edition by Naber10 and is printed in the Loeb volumes of Josephus.11 Josephus’ literary output has s ecured him a prominent place in later Greek historiography. The Vita is the only extant pr e-Christian autobiography.12 The Bellum Judaicum is our sole source for most of our knowledge of the First Jewish War,13 and has also long been of interest to historians for its portra yal of the political situa tion behind the revolt, to scholars of Judaism and Jewish history as an important source of informa tion for a key moment in that history and for the diverse nature of Judaism in th e first century CE, and to New Testament scholars as a source of information for an important period of earliest Christianity. The monumental Antiquitates Judaicae is the only complete, full-scale secular a ccount of Jewish history to survive antiquity14 and was a remarkable attempt to introduce Jewish history and religion to the Gentile world. The Vita and Contra Apionem provide striking examples of dir ect apologetic confrontation with Hellenistic culture. Together the writings of Jose phus provide us with an invaluable and wide view of the complexities of Jewish life within the Roman empire. Most significant for this study is the fact that Josephus stands in a unique place among the anci ent Hellenistic historiographers because he had a foot in three different worl ds at the same time: Jewish, Roman, and Greek. 10 S. Naber, Flavii Iosephi opera omnia 6 vols. (Leipzig 1888-1896). 11 H. Thackeray, R. Marcus, and L. Feldman (trans.), Josephus 9 vols. (Loeb Classical Library; Cambridge, MA 1956-1969). Of this text, Feldman says “there have been few reasons for challenging, in any subs tantial way, the readings of that text.” L. Feldman, Judean Antiquities 1-4: Translation and Commentary (Leiden 2000) xxxvii. 12 S. Cohen, Josephus in Galilee and Rome: His Vita and Development as a Historian (Boston 2002), 101. 13 Dio Cassius’ description of the sieg e of Jerusalem (66.4.1–7.2) is the only other substantial account. Tacitus has a short account of the war in Hist. 5.1-13, and Suetonius’ biographies of the Flavian emperors mention scattered details. A summary of the non-Josephan data is in S. Cohen, Josephus in Galilee and Rome 243-60. 14 The only other work that comes close is the Liber Antiquitatum Biblicarum by PseudoPhilo, written some time in the first century CE, and which selectively covers the Biblical narrative from Genesis to the death of king Saul.

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13 The Bellum Judaicum The questions of the original target a udience of Josephus’ works, and why he felt compelled to write them, are complicated. Jose phus says that the Aramaic version of the Bellum Judaicum was written toi/j a;nw barba,roij (“to the upper barbarians”).15 These people could be the same ones mentioned a few lines later, Pa,rqouj me.n kai. Babul wni,ouj VAra,bwn te tou.j porrwta,tw kai. to. u`pe.r Euvfra,thn o`mo,fulon h`mi/n VAdiabhnou,j (“the Parthians and the Babylonians, the farthest Arabians and our fellow-countrymen beyond the Euphrates, and the Adiabenenes”).16 It seems easier to believe that Josephus wrote his original account in Aramaic for Palestinian Jews, since that was their (and his) native language, and to conclude with Rajak that “We have, then, to take it that Josephus is fancifully exaggerating or engaging in a certain amount of wishful thinking when he extends hi s prospective readership beyond his own people to the oriental world at large.”17 Josephus never specifically id entifies the intended audience of his Greek version of the Bellum Judaicum other than to say that kavgw. me.n avnalw,masi kai. po,noij megi,stoij avllo,fuloj w'n {Ellhsi, te kai. ~Rwmai,oij th.n mnh,mhn tw/n katorqwma,twn avnati,qhmi (“I, with great expenses and labors, being a foreigner, am pr esenting this record of accomplishments to both Greeks and Romans”)18 and prouqe,mhn evgw. toi/j kata. th.n ~Rwmai,wn h`gemoni,an (“I have set forth [an account] for those under Roman rule”).19 Mason has suggested a Roman audience was particularly in view,20 and Josephus says that the empero r Titus himself gave the work his 15 BJ 1.3. 16 BJ 1.6. 17 T. Rajak, Josephus: The Historian and His Society (Philadelphia 1983) 181. 18 BJ 1.16. He similarly mentions both Greeks a nd Romans as his targ et audience in 1.6. 19 BJ 1.3. 20 S. Mason, Josephus and the New Testament (Peabody 1992) 64.

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14 approval.21 However, a wider audience cannot be ruled out and, in f act, seems warranted. Josephus was well aware of the differences be tween Greeks and Romans; he distinguished between them often enough in his writings. Thus wh en he says that he wrote for both Greeks and Romans, it must mean that he had more than ju st a Roman audience in mind. He aimed his work at the general Hellenistic reading public made up of both groups. It is most reasonable to believe, then, that the Bellum Judaicum was intended generally for the Greek-speaking world of the Roman empire which would include Romans, Greek s, and Josephus’ own people, the Jews, most of whom were convers ant in Greek as well.22 The fact that the emperor gave it his approval need not mean that Josephus’ account was aimed only at a Roman audience. It simply means that the emperor judged it to be appropriate readi ng for the general pub lic of the empire. What purpose was the Bellum Judaicum intended to serve? Josephus does not explicitly say why he wrote his first, Aramaic account. Ma ny earlier scholars believed it was written to discourage further rebe llion in the east,23 and that the Greek version of the Bellum Judaicum served the same purpose for Palestinian Jews. Howe ver, this view has increasingly come to be questioned by modern scholars. The approach that the Bellum Judaicum served as Roman imperial propaganda first does not do justice to the nature of Josephus’ account, which does not portray the revolt as stemming from the Jewish people generally nor from the Jews in Palestine as a whole. Josephus lays the blame for the war on a minority of Jews who were bent on causing 21 Ap. 1.50-52; Vit. 1.363. 22 Rajak concludes that “the Jewish Diaspor a was always the primary setting for Josephus as a writer” and “what Josephus wrote was a report on a tragic event, issu ed for those who were interested” ( Josephus: The Historian and His Society 178 and 184). 23 Thackeray’s suggestion was typical: “J osephus was commissioned by the conquerors to write the official history of the war for propa gandist purposes. It was a manifesto, intended as a warning to the East of the futility of furthe r opposition and to allay the after-war thirst for revenge, which ultimately found vent in the fierce out-breaks under Trajan and Hadrian.” H. St. John Thackeray, Josephus: The Man and the Historian (New York 1929) 27.

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15 trouble and who defiled the Jewish temple in doing so. He also depicts the Romans as having had good relations with the Jews until the war, and reluctant to destroy the city during the war.24 Even more, the Bellum Judaicum was designed to show that J udaism and Roman power were not incompatible, as the Jewish God used the Romans to punish the rebels in Jerusalem. This is hardly imperial propaganda.25 These considerations make it unlikely that his account was designed for application to politics on the larger level of the client kingdom26 or for application to those nations that had hos tile intentions toward Rome. The Greek version of the Bellum Judaicum did not have a (Roman ) propagandist purpose either, as Josephus’ own statements in his in troduction show. Josephus was well aware that historiography could be, and regularly was, written for purposes other than recording the events, or was exploited for political purposes. He notes: oi` me.n ouv paratuco,ntej toi/j pra,gmasin av llV avkoh/| sulle,gonte j eivkai/a kai. avsu,mfwna dihgh,mata sofistikw/j avnagra,fousin( oi ` parageno,menoi de. h' kolakei,a| th/| pro.j ~Rwmai,ouj h' mi,sei tw/| pro.j VIoudai,ouj katay eu,dontai tw/n pragma,twn perie,cei de. auvtoi/j o[pou me.n kathgori,an o[pou de. evgkw,mion ta. suggra,mmata to. dV avkribe.j th/j i`stori,aj ouvdamou/) (“Those who were not present for these events but having gathered random and discordant bits from rumor, write narratives sophistical ly, and those who were present, either for 24 See, e.g., BJ 1.10. 25 M. Goodman, “Josephus as Roman Citizen,” in F. Parente and J. Sievers (eds.), Josephus and the History of the Greco-Roman Period: Essays in Memory of Morton Smith (Studia Post-Biblica 41, Leiden 1994) 337-8. 26 Cf. Rajak, Josephus: The Historian and His Society 181: “ … it is hard to see how Josephus’ subject-matter could ever have served to de liver a short, sharp message to the east. It is hardly plausible that the news of Rome’s effective suppressi on of a petty province in revolt would have much impressed the ruler of a great empire like Parthia.” Thus when Josephus says (3.108) Tau/ta me.n ou=n diexh/lqon ouv ~Rwmai,ouj evpaine,sai proairo u,menoj tosou/ton o[son ei;j te paramuqi,an tw/n keceirwme,nwn kai. ei vj avpotroph.n tw/n newterizo,ntwn (“I have therefore recounted these things, not as preferring to commend the Romans, but for the comfort of those who have been conquered and for the prevention of those who make insu rrection”), we should probably understand this to mean that he hoped a ny surviving radical faction in Judea would not attempt a second revolt.

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16 flattery to the Romans or hatred against th e Jews, falsely report the events, and their writings contain either accu sation or encomium, but nowhe re historical accuracy”).27 In the Antiquitates Judaicae he referred to the Bellum Judaicum saying evbia,sqhn evkdihgh,sasqai dia. tou.j evn tw/| gra,fein luma inome,nouj th.n avlh,qeian (“I was compelled to set out the truth in detail on account of those who are doing harm in their writings”). He therefore made a careful point that he was aware of the extremes to wh ich historiography was s ubject. While he claimed that to.n VIoudai,wn pro.j ~Rwmai,ouj po,lemon susta,nta me,giston ouv mo,non tw/n kaqV h`ma/j scedo.n de. kai. w-n avkoh/| pareilh,famen h' po,lewn pro.j po,leij h' evqnw/n e;qnesi surrage,ntwn (“the war of the Jews with Rome constituted the greatest war, not only of those which have been in our time but also nearly the greatest of which we have receiv ed a report, either of c ity fighting with city or nation with nation”),28 he also criticized other historians and their accounts of the war saying bou,lontai me.n ga.r mega,louj tou.j ~Rwmai,ouj avp odeiknu,ein kataba,llous in de. avei. ta. VIoudai,wn kai. tapeinou/sin\ ouvc o`rw/ de, pw/j a'n ei=nai mega,loi dokoi/en oi` mikrou.j nenikhko,tej (“they wish to demonstrate Roman greatness, but they c onstantly put down and lessen the actions of the Jews, but I do not see how those who have defeated the little might be c onsidered to be great”).29 He gives further notice that Ouv mh.n evgw. toi/j evpai,rousi ta. ~Rwmai,wn avntifiloneikw/n au;xein ta. tw/n o`mofu,lwn die,gnwn (“I for my part have determined not to exalt the deeds of my fellowcountrymen out of jealousy agai nst those who exaggerate the d eeds of the Romans”). It seems clear that Josephus did not see himself as writing military or political propaganda for either side. The theory that Josephus wrote to discourage rebellion also puts him in a compromising position personally, since he himself participated in the rebellion in Palestine, and discouraging rebellion would make him look like a traitor to his own people. Ther e was definitely a tension in 27 BJ 1.1-2. 28 BJ 1.1. 29 BJ 1.7-8.

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17 which Josephus found himself as he wrote under Ro man sponsorship. He had to take care not to offend his imperial patron, and at the same time he felt loyalty to his people and homeland. The degree to which this compromised Josephus’ portra yal of things is an ongoing debate. However, it is clear that Josephus himself was aware of this tension, and he addressed it at the beginning of his work. He says tou.j dV evpi. toi/j pra,gmasi lo,gouj avn ati,qhmi th/| diaqe,sei kai. toi/j evmautou/ pa,qesi didou.j evpolofu,resqai tai/j th/j patri,doj sumforai/j (“but I attribute my words on the events to my disposition and to my own feelings being given over to lament for the calamities of my homeland”)30 and eiv dh, tij o[sa pro.j tou.j tura,nnouj h' to. lh|striko.n auvtw/n kathgorikw/j le,goimen h' toi/j dustuch,masi th/j patri,doj ev piste,nontej sukofantoi,h dido,tw para. to.n th/j i`stori,aj no,mon suggnw,mhn tw/| pa,qei (“if indeed there should be someone who with complaint might slander what we might say accusingly about the tyrants or their piracy or the ill fortune of my homeland, let him give sympathetic indulgen ce for what is outside the standard of the historian”).31 Either Josephus was feigning patriotism, or he truly lamented the recent calamity. And if he was a traitor, then why write an accoun t that attempted to absolve the majority of Jews of blame? The nature of the account itself suggest s that Josephus was no tr aitor to his people. He thought that the best policy for hi m was not to deny that his closen ess to the events affected his portrayal of them. Josephus was aware of his de licate position, personally and politically, and thought of himself neither as a traitor to his pe ople nor as the author of imperial propaganda. Josephus’ purpose in the Greek Bellum Judaicum was instead correc tive and apologetic. The passages quoted above repeatedly refer to inaccuracies of other accounts of the war due largely in part to a desire either to flatter the Romans or to denigrate th e Jews (or both). Of other accounts he says Kai,toi ge i`stori,aj auvta.j evpigra,fein tolm w/sin evn ai-j pro.j tw/| mhde.n u`gie.j 30 BJ 1.9. 31 BJ 1.11.

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18 dhlou/n kai. tou/ skopou/ doko u/sin e;moige diamarta,nein (“Although they [other historians of the war] presume to entitle their accounts ‘histories,’ in which additionally they set forth nothing that is sound, they seem to me to miss their own mark completely”).32 He also remarks a;topon h`ghsa,menoj periidei/n plazome,nhn evpi. thlikou,toij pra,gmasi th.n avlh,qeian (“I thought it improper to ignore the straying from the truth on such great matters”)33 and ta. me.n e;rga metV avkribei,aj avmfote,rwn die,xeimi (“I am setting forth the deeds of both sides with precision”).34 Such bold claims invite public scrutiny and ar e not the kinds of things one would normally propose if he were writing slanted political propaganda knowingly filled with historical inaccuracies. Josephus may have been refuting a wide-sprea d view that the Jewish populace of Palestine as a whole started and actively par ticipated in the war, or that Je ws everywhere were the enemies of the Romans. As cases in point, Tacitus pr efaced his account of the Jewish revolt with a polemic against Jewish character ( Hist 5.5), and in Philostratus’ biography of Apollonius of Tyana we hear Euphrates say evkei/noi me.n ga.r pa,lai avfesta/sin ouv mo,non ~Rwmai,wn( avlla. kai. pa,ntwn avnqrw,pwn (“For they [Jews] have long been in revolt not only against the Romans, but against all men”).35 Josephus was careful to note that this idea, that all Jews everywhere were united in anti-Roman sentiment, belonged to the rebels alone, and it never materialized: evpeidh. VIoudai/oi me.n a[pan to. u`pe.r Euvfra,thn o` mo,fulon suneparqh,sesqai sfi,sin h;lpisan (“these Jews hoped that all their kinsmen beyond the Euphrates would join with them”),36 and in the Antiquitates Judaicae he says to.n teleutai/on a;kontej pro.j ~Rwmai,ouj kate,sthsan (“[the Jews] 32 BJ 1.6. 33 BJ 1.6. 34 BJ 1.9. 35 5.33. 36 BJ 1.5.

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19 unwillingly engaged this last [war] with the Romans”).37 His sympathetic, almost forgiving picture of Titus further suggests that Josephus was also hoping to temper Jewish attitudes toward Rome.38 Such an apologetic approach fits well with what we know about Josephus’ other writings (discussed below) and w ith the conclusion drawn above a bout the intended audience of the account. I will suggest below that there is anot her function of this account, but it is necessary to discuss Josephus’ other writings first. The Antiquitates Judaicae Concerning the Antiquitates Judaicae Josephus claimed that he wrote for interested persons in the Greek-speaking world: tau,thn de. th.n evnestw/san evgkecei,rismai pragmatei,an nomi,zwn a[pasi fanei/sqai toi/ j {Ellhsin avxi,an spoudh/j (“I have taken this present work in hand believing that it will appear wort hy of attention to all the Greeks”).39 In 16.8 he says me,llousin ai` tw/n h`mete,rwn pra,xewn avnag rafai. to. ple,on eivj tou.j {Ellhnaj ive,nai (“the records of our deeds are intended to be mostly fo r the Greeks”), and at the end of that work he says again le,gw dh. qarsh,saj h;dh dia. th.n tw/n pr oteqe,ntwn sunte,leian o[ti mhdei.j a'n e[teroj hvdunh,qh qelh,saj mh,te VIoudai/oj mh,te avllo,fuloj th.n pragmatei,an tau,thn ou[twj avkribw/j eivj {Ellhnaj evxenegkei/n (“I indeed say boldly now at the completion of this task that no one else could be so willing, neither among Jews or foreigne rs, to carry out this undertaking so accurately for the Greeks”).40 An examination of the introduction to the Antiquitates Judaicae reveals Josephus’ purpose for the work. The first thing the reader encounters is a different kind of statement of the motive for writing the history from that found in the Bellum Judaicum In that previous work there were 37 AJ 1.6. 38 Cf Mason, Josephus and the New Testament 61. 39 AJ 1.5. 40 AJ 20.262.

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20 several references to faulty accoun ts of the war with Rome, and Jo sephus said he wrote to correct them. Here in the Antiquitates Judaicae however, there are no explic it references to other works that stand in need of correction. Wh at Josephus emphasized instead for the Antiquitates Judaicae is that he wrote to meet a public interest in Je wish history. He reports that others, including his patron, Epaphroditus, also encouraged the work: h=san de, tinej oi] po,qw| th/j i`stori,aj evpV auvth,n me prou,trepon kai. ma,lista dh. pa,ntwn VEpafro,ditoj (“There were some who, with desire for our history, urged me upon it, and especi ally more than all, Epaphroditus”).41 Besides this, Josephus added e;ti kavkei/na pro.j toi/j eivrhme,noij lo gisa,menoj ouv pare,rgwj peri, te tw/n h`mete,rwn progo,nwn eiv metadido,nai tw/n toiou,t wn h;qelon kai. peri. tw/n ~Ellh,nwn ei; tinej auvtw/n gnw/nai ta. parV h`mi/n evspou,dasan (“and in addition to these reasons I was thinking not cursorily about whether our ancestors wished to share these things and about whether some of those among the Greeks were eager to know the things concerning us”).42 In fact, Josephus portrayed himself as responding to the same kind of interest in Jewish things and the general Hellenistic love of knowledge43 that supposedly prompted the pr oduction of the Septuagint in the third century BCE for Gentile readers, a nd drew a parallel betw een himself and the Antiquitates Judaicae on the one hand, and Eleazar the priest and the Septuagint on the other hand.44 41 AJ 1.8. Epaphroditus is menti oned as the patron of the AJ Vit ., and Ap His identity cannot be correlated with certain ty with others of the same name who are known to us from antiquity. See H. Cotton and W. Eck, ‘Josephus ’ Roman Audience: Josephus and the Roman Elites’, in J. Edmondson et al (eds.), Flavius Josephus and Flavian Rome (Oxford 2005) 49-52. 42 AJ 1.9. 43 In AJ 1.12 he says evno,misa ))) tw/| basilei/ de. pollou.j o`mo i,wj u`polabei/n kai. nu/n ei=nai filomaqei/j (“and I likewise thought … to suppose that there are many even now who, like the king, are lovers of learning”). 44 AJ 1.10-12. Josephus knew the so-called Letter of Aristeas which purports to narrate the circumstances behind the production of the Greek Torah in Alexandria in the time of Ptolemy II. He gives his version of th e story, closely following the Letter in AJ 12:11-118. According to the Letter Eleazar was the name of the Jewish high pr iest whom Ptolemy contacted in order to

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21 Josephus even suggested that his servi ce to the Greek-speaking world in the Antiquitates Judaicae was greater than that of the Septuagint, since the Sept uagint produced under Eleazar contained only the first five books of the Hebrew Bible, but his own account covered the entire history of the Jews.45 All of this was certainly an ambitious pictur e given that Gentiles we re, by all indications, generally uninterested in the history or customs of the Jews As Tcherikover noted, “the translation of the Holy Scriptures into Greek ma de no impression whatsoever in the Greek world, since in the whole of Greek litera ture there is no indication that the Greeks read the Bible before the Christian period.”46 We may therefore characterize Josephus ’ picture of a general public that is hungry to learn of Judaism as a rhetorical touch designed to genera te interest in his account. It is the same kind of ambitious promotion of his work that was noticed above in the Bellum Judaicum .47 However overstated this was, it is clear that Josephus wrote the Antiquitates translate the Hebrew Scriptures into Greek. Since Josephus was himself a priest, the comparison no doubt seemed natural. 45 AJ 1.12-13. 46 V. Tcherikover, ‘Jewish Apocal yptic Literature Reconsidered,’ Eos 48 (1956) 177. Cf. also J. Barclay, ‘Apologetics in the Jewi sh Diaspora,’ in J. Bartlett (ed.), Jews in the Hellenistic Roman Cities (London 2002) 141. 47 The claim may be exaggerated but not who lly untrue. Some Gentiles in Rome were interested in Judaism, for Tacitus men tions Jewish proselytes in Rome in Hist. 5.5. Philo and Josephus both speak of proselytes with suffici ent regularity to give the impression that they could be found everywhere, and proselytism was th e reason given for Jewish expulsions in Rome in 139 BCE and 19 CE (D.C. 57.18.5a). Mason says that the evidence shows that “the only reasonable hypothesis seems to be that gentile attraction and also full conversion to Judaism were easily observable phenomena during Josephus’ residency in Rome at the end of the first century.” S. Mason, “The Contra Apionem in So cial and Literary Cont ext: An Invitation to Judean Philosophy,” in L. Feldman and J. Levison (eds.), Josephus’ Contra Apionem: Studies in its Character and Context with a Latin Conc ordance to the Portion Missing in Greek (Leiden 1996) 193. It was one of the paradoxes of the anci ent world that Judaism held an attraction for some and a repulsion for others. J. Sevenster, The Roots of Pagan Anti-Semitism in Ancient Times (NovTSup 41, Leiden 1975) 191-218; L. Feldman, Jew and Gentile in the Ancient World (Princeton 1993) 288-382.

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22 Judaicae for a general audience, mostly Gentile, wh om he assumed, or at least hoped, would find his account worth the reading. Although Josephus did not expl icitly say so in the Antiquitates Judaicae a case can be made that it was written to address then -current misconceptions about Judaism.48 His own narrative comments throughout the work “suggest he is concerned to address a real threat to the Jews: denigration of them as a people.”49 Josephus composed the work in Rome where there were significant anti-Jewish sentiments based on superstitious misconceptions about Judaism. One example of such misconceptions may be found in the description of Tacitus (fl. c. 75-120 CE), who feared foreign influen ces in Rome and whose views must have reflected a segment of popular opinion. He described Je wish customs in general as “sinister and disgusting” ( sinistra foeda ), he said that they harbor hatred and enmity toward all other people ( adversus omnis alios hostile odium ), and that among themselves noth ing was considered unlawful ( inter se nihil inlicitum ). Because the Jews believed in an invisibl e God, Tacitus charged that they disdained anyone who worshipped an image of a god made from perishable materials in human form ( profanos qui deum imagines mortalibus materiis in species hominum effingant ), and for this same reason they had no statues in their cities and refused to pay honor to their kings or to the emperor ( Igitur nulla simulacra urbibus suis, nedu m templis sistunt, non regibus haec adulatio, non Caesaribus honor )50 a complaint Josephus also took up later in his Contra Apionem F. F. Bruce has suggested that Tacitus preferred to pa int the Jews in the worst possible light because “Tacitus simply shared a widespread prejudi ce, as did his younger contemporary Juvenal.”51 48 I will attempt to establish this context more thoroughly in a subsequent chapter. 49 J. McLaren, Turbulent Times?: Josephus and Scholarship on Judea in the First Century CE (JSPseudSup 29, Sheffield 1998) 108. 50 Hist. 5.5. 51 ‘Tacitus on Jewish History’, JSS 29 (1984) 33, 40.

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23 Furthermore, the Jews had been expelled from Rome twice, once under Tibe rius in 19 CE out of fear of the foreign nature of Jewish religious rites,52 and later under Claudius in 49 CE for rioting.53 Such moves on the part of the emperor sure ly must have fueled popular suspicion, if not ill-will, towards the Jews in Rome. That Josephus wrote to counter and correct such a negative public image of Judaism seems apparent in light of his expressed aim to show, through the Antiquitates Judaicum that Judaism was all about a just God who rewards the faithful and punishes the disobedient. He says: to. su,nolon de. ma,lista, tij a'n evk tau,thj ma,qoi th/j i`stori,aj evqelh,saj auvth.n dielqei/n o[ti toi/j me.n qeou/ gnw,mh| kat akolouqou/si kai. ta. kalw/j no moqethqe,nta mh. tolmw/si parabai,nein pa,nta katorqou/tai pe,ra pi,stewj kai. ge,raj euvdaimoni,a pro,keitai para. qeou/ kaqV o[son dV a'n avpostw/si th/j tou,twn avkribou/j evpimelei,aj a;p ora me.n gi,netai ta. po,rima tre,petai de. eivj sumfora.j avnhke,stouj o[ ti potV a'n w`j avgaqo.n dra/n spouda,swsin (“On the whole, whoever especially wishes to go through it would le arn from this history that for those who obey the purpose of God and do not dare to transg ress the appropriately ordained things, they succeed in all things beyond belief, and good fortune lies ahead as a reward from God; but to what ever extent they withdraw fr om exact attention to these things, the possible becomes impossible and whatever they are zealous to do as good turns into incurable calamities”).54 This portrait of the God of the Jews is then set in contrast to what can onl y be a reference to the gods of the Greeks and Romans: oi` me.n ga.r a;lloi nomoqe,tai to i/j mu,qoij evxakolouqh,santej tw/n avnqrwpi,nwn a`marthma,twn eivj tou.j qeou.j tw/| lo ,gw| th.n aivscu,nhn mete,qesan kai. pollh.n u`poti,mhsin toi/j ponhroi/j e;dwkan (“But other legislators, following myths, have in their account 52 Tac. Ann. 2.85; Suet. Tib. 36; D.C. 57.18.5a. 53 Suet. Cl. 25.4. 54 AJ 1.14. Josephus was not alone in this view among the ancient Jews. The same approach to respect for divine institu tions drives the history of 2 Maccabees. Cf. especially 2 Mac 4:16-17: w-n kai. ca,rin perie,scen auvtou.j caleph. p eri,stasij kai. w-n evzh,loun ta.j avgwga.j kai. kaqV a[pan h;qelon evxomoiou/sqai tou,touj pole mi,ouj kai. timwrhta.j e;scon avsebei/n ga.r eivj tou.j qei,ouj no,mouj ouv r`a,|dion avlla. tau/ta o` avko,louqoj kairo.j dhlw,sei (“For this reason a painful circumstance overcame them, and those whom they emulated wished to assimilate their culture in every way became their enemies and punishers. For it is not a light matter to be impious toward the divine laws and the following period will make these things clear”). This was the general view of the rabbis as well.

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24 ascribed to the gods the shame of human sins and have given the wicked much excuse”).55 By such a portrait of God, set so st arkly against the Hellenistic g ods, Josephus would hope to show that the Jews themselves were not the scoundrel s they were commonly t hought to be but were actually the devoted people of a respectable and noble deity, a deity more upright than those of the Gentiles. Given this picture of God, goodness consists first of all in piety toward God, which can regularly be seen in Jewish praxis wh en it is understood correctly and divorced from slanderous prejudice.56 If the Gentiles could see this, Je wish religious practices and customs would then be viewed in an entire ly different light. If pagans coul d see the true nature of the God of the Jews, they would also see the true ch aracter of the Jews themselves. The means to accomplish this understanding was a full-scale pr esentation of the history of Judaism, highlighting the origin of its customs, its laws, it s great figures, and above all, the nature of its God. The second major work of Jo sephus thus also, like the Bellum Judaicum had an apologetic purpose. In the Bellum Judaicum Josephus wrote to correct fau lty accounts and impressions of the war with Rome, but especially those that denigrated the Jews and himself. In the Antiquitates Judaicae he wrote to correct misconc eptions about the Jewish peopl e that came as a result of misinformation about Jewish origins, customs, and laws. What united both works was a common concern to present a positive pictur e of the Jewish character to th e world. It is important to note that in the Antiquitates Judaicae Josephus shows no sign of distancing himself from the particular view of God he has come to hold as a Jew (and more particularly, as a Pharisee). For example, there is no attempt to identify the God of the Jews with a Hellenistic deity. He had no intention of assimilating Jewish ways to ot hers, but of explaining them. His refusal to 55 AJ 1.22. Cf Ap 2.239. 56 AJ 3.49. euvse,beia and its cognates appears 110 times in the AJ Cf Ap 2.171.

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25 compromise on this essential point further refu tes any idea that Josephus ’ personal situation led him to compromise himself, his people or his religion before the Romans. The Antiquitates Judaicae gave Josephus a different kind of platform for his apologetic concerns, and allowed him to present a much mo re comprehensive apologetic than was possible through a vehicle like the Bellum Judaicum alone. Josephus thus wrote both a contemporary history (the Bellum Judaicum ) and a history of the distant past (the Antiquitates Judaicae ), for each could provide a unique way of demonstr ating Jewish character, and together the combination of literary topoi afforded him a larger canvas on which to paint his picture of the Jewish people. In undertaking both kinds of accounts he actually anticipated his younger contemporary Tacitus, who wrote both a history of recent times of war (the Histories ) and later an account of the formative period before his own day (the Annales ). The Vita and the Contra Apionem The Vita was written primarily in response to char ges from Justus of Tiberias, a rival who had written an account of the First Jewish War (published perhaps in the early 90’s CE,57 but now lost) that was critical of Josephus and his conduct during the war. Because of the nature of the accusations, the Vita concentrates on the period of Jose phus’ life, spanning about six months, when he commanded Jewish rebel forces in Gali lee. Justus’ account was apparently designed to discredit Josephus before his Roman patrons and be fore leading Jews in Palestine. Josephus does not quote any direct accusations from his rival, but a mirror reading of the Vita suggests that he was accused of actively promoting the revolt in Galile e, especially in the city of Tiberias, as a kind of corrupt renegade who lacked both the suppor t of the Jewish author ities in Jerusalem and 57 Based on Josephus’ statement in Vit. 359 that Justus had dela yed the publication of his account until after the de aths of Vespasian, Titus, and the Jewish ethnarch Herod Agrippa II. Agrippa either died or was deposed in 88/9 CE. See A. Kushner-Stein, ‘The Coinage of Agrippa II’, Scripta Classica Israelica 21 (2002) 123-31.

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26 popular support in Galilee, and of using his pos ition as military leader for personal gain.58 The target audience, therefore, of the Vita must have been a wide one, including the Roman imperial household with its network of patrons and client s, Justus and his supporters, and Jews who may have been exposed to stories of Josephus’ treason and impiety. The fact that this work was appended to the Antiquitates Judaicae is significant. What was at stake in the slanders of Just us was not just Josephus’ own reput ation, but the credibility of the accounts he wrote. For ancient historians, credibi lity was a matter of the historian’s character. Marincola speaks of the importance in antiquity of character in rhetoric and real life: the highly stratified societies of Greece and Rome cared a great deal about the stat us of the speaker. The proof that things are as the historian says they are depended not a little on the audience’s perception of the narrator’s char acter: to believe an historic al account, it was necessary to believe the historian himself.59 For Romans, this consideration was mo re important than it was for Greeks.60 Josephus’ selfdefense is therefore a defense of the history he wrote. The Contra Apionem was Josephus’ last literary wor k, published in two books perhaps near the end of Domitian’s reign. Its original ti tle is uncertain. Eusebius refers to it as On the Antiquity of the Jews ,61 and Porphyry knew it as Against the Greeks .62 Jerome seems to have been the one who gave it the title Contra Apionem .63 The treatise is generally a defense of the antiquity of the Jewish people, but responds to many other charges agai nst the Jews as well. Authors of works on Egyptian history (Man etho, Chaeremon, and Lysimachus) who had 58 H. Attridge, “Josephus and Hi s Works” in M. Stone (ed.), Jewish Writings of the Second Temple Period (CRINT 2.2, Philadelphi a 1984) 190; T. Rajak, “J ustus of Tiberias,” CQ n.s. 23 (1973) 354-8; S. Cohen, Josephus in Galilee and Rome 126. 59 J. Marincola, Authority and Tradition in Ancient Historiography (Cambridge 1997) 6. 60 Marincola 130. 61 H.E. 3.9.4. 62 De abst 4.11. 63 Adv. Iou. 2.14, where he quotes Porphyry and replaces Porphyry’s title with this one.

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27 transmitted outlandish stories about the Jewish people are mentioned, and answered, in the first book. Manetho (fl. third century BCE) was a nati ve Egyptian who wrote a history of Egypt in Greek which has survived only in fragments quoted in other authors.64 Chaeremon of Alexandria was a Stoic philosopher, a tutor of Nero, and also wrote a history of Egypt in Greek, again known only in fragments.65 Lysimachus was a Greek grammarian and mythographer66 who flourished some time after the second century BC E and wrote treatises on Jewish history and laws.67 Apion was an Alexandrian rhetorician, literary critic, and outspoken de tractor of the Jews in the first century CE, who also wrote a histor y of Egypt. He attracted Josephus’ ire by telling the same kinds of stories about the origins of th e Hebrews as the other authors he refutes, but also by maligning the Jews as a low, rebellious people who refused to worship the same gods as most others in the Hellenistic world. He also represented the Alexandrians before Caligula against the Jews in the delegation that went to Rome over ethnic riots in that city in 38 CE. In the Contra Apionem then, Josephus was directly responding to leading sources of anti-Jewish rhetoric and polemic, especially those who had maligned the Jews using historiography. The aim of this work was therefore in k eeping with the aims of both the Antiquitates Judaicae and the Bellum Judaicum in that it shared a concern to present a positive picture of the Jewish people in 64 R. Laqueur, ‘Manethon’, in A. Pa uly and G. Wissowa, et al (eds.), Paulys Realencyclopdie der classischen Altert umswissenschaft: neue Bearbeitung (Stuttgart 18941980) 1060-1106. 65 M. Frede, ‘Chaeremon der Stoiker’, in ANRW II.36.3 (1989) 2067-103. 66 G. Damschen, ‘Lysimachos [6]’, in H. Cancik and H. Schneider (eds.), Der neue Pauly. Enzyklopdie der Antike. Das klassische Altertum und seine Rezeptionsgeschichte, 7 (Stuttgart 2003) 608. 67 Josephus says VEpei. de. kai. VApollw,nioj o` Mo,lwn kai Lusi,macoj kai, tinej a;lloi ta. me.n u`pV avgnoi,aj to. plei/ston de. kata. dusme,nei an peri, te tou/ nomoqeth,santoj h`mi/n Mwse,wj kai. peri. tw/n no,mwn pepoi,hntai lo,gouj ou;te dikai,ouj ou;te avlhqei/j … (“And since Apollonius Molon and Lysimachus and some others, partly from ignorance and mostly from enmity, have produced treatises which are neither fair nor tr ue concerning both our la wgiver Moses and the laws …”). Ap. 2.145.

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28 light of popul ar suspicions and to correct inaccurate elements in then-circulating reports about the Jews. He addressed his work to pa,ntaj o[soi tavlhqe.j eivde,nai bou,lontai peri. th/j h`mete,raj avrcaio,thtoj (“all who wish to know the tr uth concerning our antiquity”).68 How widely Josephus’ works actually circulat ed in his day cannot be determined. In antiquity books were mostly read by and ci rculated among a limited group within (local) society.69 Authors normally wrote under patronage, and their works would have been most wellknown by the patron, the people within his social circle, and his ot her clients. However, Josephus says that his account of the Jewish war had ci rculated among Romans who had participated in the campaign and that he sold copies of the work to some fellow-Jews, including Julius Archelaus and Herod Agrippa II.70 In the Antiquitates Judaicae he refers to the Bellum Judaicum as if it were commonly available and as if his readers were acquainted with it.71 We may assume that proselytes72 in Rome and elsewhere were interested in his works, and it has been suggested that Tacitus and Suetonius used Josephus as thei r source for the idea that the Jewish Scriptures predicted the rise of a great world leader from Judea.73 Given what is known about the publication of books in antiquity, it is not unlikely that Josephus’ works were first, and perhaps mainly, read by those in literary circles in Rome Yet we may certainly believe that any author 68 Ap. 1.3. 69 L. Reynolds and N Wilson, Scribes and Scholars (3rd edn, Oxford 1991) 19; S. Mason, ‘Of Audience and Meaning: Reading Josephus’ Bellum Judaicum in the Context of a Flavian Audience’, in J. Sievers and G. Lembi (eds.), Josephus and Jewish History in Flavian Rome and Beyond (SupJSJ 104, Leiden 2005) 71-91. 70 Ap. 1.51. 71 AJ 1.4, 203; 13.72, 298; 18.11; cf Vit. 413. 72 As noted (n.47 above). Proselytism was apparently successful enough to warrant imperial attention. Sevenster, The Roots of Pagan Anti-Semitism 195-9. 73 Bruce 42. Tacitus mentions this in Hist. 5.13.4f, and Suetonius in Ves. 4.5. Josephus describes the prophecy in BJ 6.312f.

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29 hoped that his work would eventually attain a much wider circulation, as Josephus’ own words have already shown. This brief survey of Josephus’ publications show s that, in contrast to the great amount of Jewish literature that had been produced since the Maccabean revol t and into Josephus’ time, his Greek writings were not aimed ex clusively at fellow-Jews. He does not engage in an “inside” conversation, but in all his works he writes for a wider audience. In fact, none of his works in Greek could be described as ha ving been written primarily for fellow-Jews. They were instead written with non-Jewish readers in mind first. Additionally, his works were written with the purpose of informing the general public about th e facts concerning the re cent war with Rome, the Jewish religion, and the ge neral character of the Je wish people. His writings reveal that he was perhaps the leading apologist for Judaism of hi s day. This dissertation is an inquiry into a particular aspect of this la rger purpose, and how Josephus went about accomplishing it. A Brief History of Research In order to describe the contribu tion of the present inquiry it is necessary to sketch briefly a history of investigations into the writings of Josephus that have examined his purpose and methods. Since Christians took interest in Jose phus’ works soon after th eir publication, Josephan studies have a long history. Much of that history, however, involve d the use of Josephus in antiJewish theological polemics.74 This is sadly ironic, for as I have shown above, Josephus hoped that his writings would present a positive picture of the Jews to his readers. Nevertheless the Bellum Judaicum proved to be an irresistible proof text for Christians who wished to demonstrate the superiority of Christianity over Judaism thr ough the results of the First Jewish War. Having a contemporary Jewish author declare that God was on the side of the Romans against the Jews in 74 See Mason, Josephus and the New Testament 8-24; H. Schreckenberg, ‘The Works of Josephus and the Early Christian Church ’, in L. Feldman G. Hata (eds.), Josephus, Judaism, and Christianity (Detroit 1987) 315-21.

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30 that war was an admission that lent itself easily to pro-Christian politics and propaganda. It was not until the modern era that Josephus began to be read seriously as an author in his own right. Modern scholarship on Josephus went through a mostly negative phase in the late 1800s and early 1900s, with an emphasis on source critic ism that resulted in th e view that Josephus’ own contribution to his works was minimal.75 The cue for this came from Josephus himself, who mentioned that he used assistants in connection with writing the Bellum Judaicum : pa,shj moi th/j pragmatei,aj evn paraskeuh/| gegenhme,nhj crhsa,men o,j tisi pro.j th.n ~Ellhni,da fwnh.n sunergoi/j ou[twj evpoihsa,mhn tw/n pra,xewn th.n para,dosin (“when all my materials were prepared, I made use of some assistants for the Greek language, an d thus I prepared the account of the events”).76 He also admitted for the Antiquitates Judaicae that cro,nou de. proi?o,ntoj o[per filei/ toi/j mega,lwn a[ptesqai dianooume,noij o;knoj moi kai me,llhsij evgi,neto thlikau,thn metenegkei/n u`po,qesin eivj avllodaph.n h`mi/n kai xe,nhn diale,ktou sunh,qeian (“as time went on, as it likes to take hold of those who contemplat e great things, there developed fo r me a hesitation and delay to translate such a great purpose into a usage of language that is foreign and strange to us”).77 Thackeray’s studies emphasized the role he believed the literary assistants had,78 and many scholars, following his lead, came to view Josep hus merely as a redactor who relied heavily on written sources and literary assistants instead of as an author in his own right. Scholars also viewed Josephus with great su spicion personally for two main reasons: 1) it was generally believed that Josephus’ patronage by the imperial Flavian family stood at odds with his loyalties to the Jews, and 2) the accounts in the Bellum Judaicum and Vita seem to give two different pictures of Josephus’ loyalties during the First Je wish War. Josephus was thus seen not only as a 75 Bilde calls this the “classic conception of Josephus.” ‘Main Trends in Modern Josephus Research’, Nordisk Judaistik. Skandinavian Jewish Studies 8 (1987) 74-6. 76 Ap 1.50. 77 AJ 1.7. 78 Thackeray, Josephus: The Man and the Historian 100-24.

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31 plunderer of other works, but also as an opportu nist who manipulated his circumstances to his favor without regard for persona l integrity. Representatives of this view were Bentwich,79 von Destinon,80 Hlscher,81 Laqueur,82 and Foakes-Jackson.83 One of the products of this phase of research was a high degree of skepticism concerning the historical reliability of Josephus’ works (since Josephus himself was viewed as a scoundrel), and vestiges of this view and its conclusions remain in the works of some scholars of the present day. There has been a shift in the direction of Josephan studies since the mid-1900s. Many scholars today are more open to seeing Josephus as an independent author with creative skills of his own. The way for this new direction was pa ved by the studies of scholars such as Drner,84 E. Stein,85 Richards,86 and Shutt,87 who argued for the linguistic an d stylistic unity of Josephus’ writings. This perspective suggested that Josephus did much more than simply excavate material from other sources. A notable contribution was Attridge’s 1976 Harvar d dissertation on the Antiquitates Judaicae which argued that Josephus was adding his own individual (and theological) perspective to the forms and categorie s of Greek historiography that were current in 79 N. Bentwich, Josephus (Philadelphia 1914). “Josephus hardly merits a place on his own account in a series of Jewish Worthies, since neither as a man of action nor as man of letters did he deserve particularly well of his nation” (p.5). 80 J. von Destinon, Die Quellen des Flavius Josephus in der Jdische Archaeologie, Buch xii-xvii (Kiel 1882). 81 G. Hlscher, ‘Josephus’, in Pauly A. and G.Wisso wa, et al (eds.), Paulys Realencyclopdie der classischen Altert umswissenschaft: neue Bearbeitung, 9 (Stuttgart 18941980) 1934-2000. 82 R. Laqueur, Der jdische Historiker Flavius Jo sephus. Ein biografischer Versuch auf neuer Quellenkritischer Grundlage (Geissen 1920). 83 F. J. Foakes-Jackson, Josephus and the Jews (Grand Rapids 1977). 84 H. Drner, Untersuchungen ber Josephus (Marburg 1896). 85 E. Stein, De Woordenkeuze in het Bellum Judaicum van Flavius Josephus (Amsterdam 1937). 86 G. Richards, ‘The Compositi on of Josephus’ “A ntiquities”’, CQ 33 (1939) 36-40. 87 R. Shutt, Studies in Josephus (London 1961).

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32 his day so that the result was anything but a mere cutting-and-pasting of sources.88 The result of this new approach is that Josephus is generally now given more credit as a skillful author who shaped his sources for definite aims. Pe ssimism concerning Josephus’ personal motives continues in the work of S. Cohen,89 Schalit is severe in his judgme nt of him as a person in his Encyclopedia Judaica article,90 and O’Neill has defended Thackeray’s thesis that Josephus’ assistants (and later editors ) played a major role in the composition of his works.91 Nevertheless, several attempts have been made to see Jo sephus as operating with purer motives. Farmer compared Josephus with Polybius and conclude d that the pro-Roman elements of Josephus’ works were an outgrowth of hi s zeal to serve his own people.92 Braun read the Bellum Judaicum as Josephus’ own attempt to explain (like a th eodicy) the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple.93 Both scholars attributed to Josephus a n obler aim that absolved him of outright duplicity. In a similar way, Rajak, Bilde, and Jossa have each proposed that Josephus’ role in the Jewish revolt in Galilee is not pres ented in two different ways in the Bellum Judaicum and Vita Instead, these scholars argue that the differences in the accounts are due to the different natures and purposes of those works, and that together they present the same picture in principle.94 Such views tend not to see Josephus as an unscrupulou s manipulator of his circumstances. Bilde has 88 H. Attridge, The Interpretation of Biblical History in the Antiquitates Judaicae of Flavius Josephus (Harvard Dissertations in Religion 7, Missoula 1976). 89 S. Cohen, Josephus in Galilee and Rome 90 A. Schalit, ‘Josephus, Flavius’, in Encyclopedia Judaica, 10 (Jerusalem 1972) 251-65. 91 J. O’Neill, ‘Who Wrote What in Josephus’ Contra Apionem ?’, in J. Kalms and F. Siegert (eds.), Internationales Josephus -Kolloquium Brssel 1998 (Mnster 1998) 270-77. 92 W. Farmer, Maccabees, Zealots, and Josephus: An Enquiry into Jewish Nationalism in the Greco-Roman Period (New York 1956). 93 M. Braun, ‘The Prophet Who Became a Historian’, Listener 56 (1956) 53-7. 94 Rajak, Josephus: The Historian and His Society 183-222; see also her “Justus of Tiberias,” 351-4; P. Bilde, Flavius Josephus Between Jerusalem and Rome (JSPseudSup 2; Sheffield 1988) 176-82; G. Jossa, ‘Josephus’ Action in Galilee During the Jewish War’, in F. Parente and J. Sievers (eds.), Josephus and the History of the Greco-Roman Period: Essays in Memory of Morton Smith (Studia Post-Biblica 4 1, Leiden 1994) 265-78.

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33 also concluded, after carefully examining Josephus ’ various statements about the causes of the First Jewish War, that “Josephus cannot be reduced to an apologi st for the Romans, or even the Flavian dynasty. It is completely wrong then to see his main concern as primarily apologizing and justifying his own dubious activities during the war.”95 Moehring’s portrait of Josephus in his 1984 ANRW essay is also positive along the same lines.96 He attempts to break away from the older pessimistic approach and to understand Jo sephus on his own premises. He sees the ancient historian as being motivated by an issue with which Josephus wrestle d personally, namely, a desire to reconcile Jerusalem a nd Rome. The result is a view of the man and his works that does not posit a fundamental contra diction at the foundation. Two more things may be added to the observations of these scholars. Fi rst, the writings of Josephus themselves do not support the view that Josephus’s personal circumstances compromised him personally or as a historian. As noted above, Josephus’ writings show him to be a staunch apologist for Judaism. If he was th e Roman collaborator and la ckey that he has so often been made out to be,97 he surely would not have spen t a good portion of hi s life trying to present a positive picture of Jewish character to outsiders. We would expect him to have abandoned his heritage and taken up literary themes that were more laudatory of the Romans. Rather than see his situation as compromising his veracity, the texts themselves show that Josephus used his situation to the advantage of his people. His position in Rome became a pulpit, as it were, for the defense of Judaism. There is no personal compromise here. 95 P. Bilde, ‘The Causes of the Je wish War According to Josephus’, JSJ 10 (1979) 201. 96 H. Moehring, ‘Joseph ben Matthia and Flavius Josephus: the Jewish Prophet and Roman Historian’, in ANRW II.21.2 (1984) 864-944. 97 Cf. S. Cohen, Josephus in Galilee and Rome 86: “If any historian was a Flavian lackey, it was Josephus.”

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34 Second, there is nothing inherently odd nor susp icious about a non-nati ve speaker of Greek seeking assistance with Greek composition. No one t oday would charge that an author writing in a language not native to him was not the true aut hor of what he wrote be cause he had editorial assistance. Josephus’ use of assistants in Greek composition should not, th erefore, lead us to assign a minimal role to Josephus himself in shapi ng the character of his pub lications. In fact, if large tracts of Josephus’ works were mostly the product of his presumably non-Jewish assistants,98 it would be difficult to expl ain the thoroughly pro-Jewish, apologetic nature of those works. Feldman has examined several of the stories in the Antiquitates Judaicae and has shown they are often cast in a way to make them more amenable to Hellenistic audiences, by reshaping the characters and their actions to conform to Hellenic models.99 None of this would be expected from texts written largely by outsiders unless we are prepared to say th at Josephus cared little for, or was unable to control, the final charact er of the works bearing his name, or that the assistants are in the end solely responsible, ev en quite apart from Josephus’ own aims, for the thoroughly Greek character of the accounts. Josephus tells us that he took pains to acquaint himself with Greek language and literature.100 For an author living in Rome, this would have been a personal necessity, not something delega ted to subordinates. Attributing much of the 98 Thackeray was noted for having claimed to have detected the work of at least two different assistants in the AJ Josephus: The Man and the Historian 100-24. He nowhere ventures a guess about the ethnicity of these assistants, but what he attributes to them would be most fitting only for Greek assistants. 99 See especially his Studies in Josephus’ Rewritten Bible (SupJSJ 58, Atlanta 1998) and Josephus' Interpretation of the Bible (Hellenistic Culture and Society 27, Berkeley 1998). 100 AJ 20.263: … kai. tw/n ~Ellhnikw/n de. gramma,t wn evspou,dasa metascei/n th.n grammatikh.n evmpeiri,an avnalabw,n th.n de. peri th.n profora.n avkri,beian pa,trioj evkw,lusen sunh,qeia (“… and I was eager to share in the wri tings and the scholarly experience of the Greeks, although my ancestral usage hindered my acquiri ng precision concerning the pronunciation”).

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35 character of Josephus’ works to hi s assistants only creates more difficulties than it purports to solve. An important contribution to the questi on of Hellenistic Je wish literature was Tcherikover’s 1956 essay “Jewish Apologetic Literatu re Reconsidered,” where he argued that Jews, not pagans, were reading this literature, because pagans woul d not have been interested in it in the first place.101 The result for Josephus studies was that an attempt was made to understand his works in light of a Jewish audience. A few sc holars have followed this lead, but it does not fit Josephus’ own statements about his target audi ence (noted above), nor does it explain why Josephus was constantly explaining Jewish customs to his readers. Most modern scholarship has concluded, instead, that Josephus was writing for non-Jews. What remains, however, is Tcherikover’s important question of why Josephus thought non-Jews would have been interested in Jewish history and customs. The usual answer is that his works answered an implicit and ongoing public debate over the value of Judais m. That is, Josephus’ works were primarily apologetic in character and purpose. Mason has noted, however, that this solution does not answer all the questions If, for example, the Antiquitates Judaicae is designed to refute slanders about Jewish origins and customs, then why does that topic not take up more of the work? And why would Josephus write an account that is onl y implicitly, but not ex plicitly, apologetic? And what Gentile would have wade d through 60,000 lines on the subject?102 Clearly, more research can be done. The modern positive view of Josephus has le d to a more serious study of how Josephus crafted his literary works. Several studies, in which the emphasis is on Josephus in his cultural 101 See n.46 above. 102 S. Mason, ‘“Should Any Wish to Enqui re Further” (Ant. 1.25): The Aim and Audience of Josephus’ Judean Antiq uities’, in S. Mason (ed.), Understanding Josephus: Seven Perspectives (JSPseudSup 32, Sheffield 1998) 68-72.

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36 and literary context, have inve stigated his works in comparison with classical Greek literary paradigms. Many scholars have demonstrat ed clear Thucydidean influences on the Bellum Judaicum .103 Rajak argues that the Antiquitates Judaicae shares many common elements with Livius, Diodorus Siculus, Manet ho, Hecataeus of Abdera, and Berosus,104 and Eckstein has demonstrated Josephus’ conscious use of Polybius in the Bellum Judaicum .105 In fact, comparison of Josephus and earlier Greek historiogr aphers has become a well-explored facet of Josephan studies. Also, as noted above, Feldman has investigated the Hellenistic shape of many of the Biblical stories in the Antiquitates Judaicae As a result of such studies, recent scholarship on Josephus is less concerned with attempting to reconstruct (and condemn) Josephus’ personal motives, or to discover the sources he used. Instead scholars are conc erned with Josephus’ shaping of his materials according to the traditions of Greek historiography and the results this shaping produced. The interplay between Josephus’ apologetic con cerns and his shaping of his material was explored in a 1981 dissertation at Rutgers University entitled “A pologetics in Josephus” by J. Daniel. He argued that Josephus wrote the Antiquitates Judaicae with an eye on enhancing the image of Jews and Judaism before the Greco-Roman culture at large, and this involved extensive reshaping of the materials of the Bi blical stories to the point that the resulting pict ure of the Jews is hardly recognizable compared to the stories in the Hebrew Bi ble. Daniel also emphasized the cultural situation in which Jo sephus wrote his works and claimed that intense anti-Jewish sentiments in the Greco-Roman world motivated Josephus. 103 E.g., Mader, Stein, Thackeray, and Drner. 104 ‘Josephus and the “Archaeology” of the Jews’, JJS 33 (1982) 465-77. 105 A. Eckstein, ‘Josephus and Polybius: A Reconsideration’, CA 9 (1990) 175-208.

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37 Daniel’s work is, in a way, typical of how sc holars continue to view Josephus. While there has been a shift in how Josephus himself has been viewed, investiga tions into Josephus’ extensive use of Greek literary topoi have produced their own skep ticism about the historical value of the end results, often suggesting that th e models are more important for Josephus than historical accuracy. As Rhodes has observed, howe ver, just because an author employs a wellknown topos does not mean that he is somehow being insincere or untruthful.106 It is true that anyone who would use Josephus as a source for the events in Palestine in the first century CE must acknowledge that in Josephus we have a tightly woven and highly selective combination of fact and interpretation.107 It is, after all, Josephus’ version of the events. On the whole, however, recent scholarly work on Josephus has a higher regard for the historical cred ibility of his writings (or of scholarship’s ability to get to the unbiased hi storical facts) than thos e of the early twentieth century.108 Yet, as the survey of Josephus’ work pr esented above has shown, modern scholarship generally agrees that there is more than a simple reporting of facts going on in Josephus. It has come to the attention of some modern scholars that Josephus’ efforts to present the Jews favorably to a Hellenistic audience can also be viewed as an exerci se in self-d efinition. In particular, Sterling’s study, Historiography and Self-Definition argues that Josephus was writing in a genre he identified as apologetic historio graphy. He argues that th is genre has roots going back to the sixth century BCE and has these characteristics: All of the authors [in this genr e] were natives or “insiders” who related the story of their own group in an effort to offer a self-defin ition of that group (function). The texts were addressed to outsiders in some cases and to members of the same group in others. The common element in all cases was the need that each author felt to relate his/her group to 106 P. J. Rhodes, ‘In Defense of the Greek Historians’, G&R 41 (1994) 157-8. 107 McLaren 179-218. 108 Some noted problems in Josephus’ BJ are discussed in T. Ilan and J. Price, ‘Seven Onomastic Problems in Josephus’ “Bellum Judaicum”’, JQR 84 (1993) 189-208.

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38 the larger world. The works are therefore a pologetic, but may be either directly or indirectly apologetic dependi ng upon the primary audience.109 By “self-definition” Sterling meant: … the attempt of an author to provide identity for the group to which the author belongs in contrast to outside perceptions. It is not intended to convey the impression that the author’s proposal was normative for the group, but that the author offered it as a normative understanding. In each instance, this definition represents a shift from previously held views since the group in question is now seen as a subgroup within a larger body rather than as an isolated unit. Th e phrase thus connotes an effo rt to shape as well as to describe.110 Sterling’s discovery of the genr e of apologetic historiography is significant for the present study. By the first century CE, Greek histori ography already had a l ong association with ethnography. The works of Hecataeus and Herodotus in particular devoted much of their space to description of foreign people and their customs. Historiogr aphy easily became the venue by which a people could be described or by which a people could describe themselves in relation to others. That is, it became a vehicle for presenti ng, or constructing, an ethnic identity. That construction could also have an apologetic pu rpose. Concerning apologetics, Kasher notes “From the viewpoint of the literary genre and es pecially from the psycho logical viewpoint, the use of apologetics may at times be interpreted as an expression of lack of confidence, the manifestation of a position of weakness and inferior ity relative to the rival, as if it were an excuse with some regret or as if it were conciliatory in nature.”111 Kasher also observes that “there is usually a direct conn ection between apologetics and c ontroversial personal or social phenomena in certain circumstances of time and place, and … apologetics is intended to defend 109 G. Sterling, Historiography and Self-Definition: Josephos, Luke-Acts, and Apologetic Historiography (NTSupp 64, Leiden 1992) 17. 110 Sterling 17. 111 A. Kasher, ‘Polemic and Apologetic Methods of Writing in Contra Apionem’, in L. Feldman and J. Levison (eds.), Josephus’ Contra Apionem: Studies in Its Character and Context with a Latin Concordance to the Portion Missing in Greek (Leiden 1996) 145.

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39 persons or groups in respect of thei r actions or opinions and views.”112 When apologetics are undertaken on the group level, th is collective apologetics has cl ose connections with ethnical discussions. Sterling’s study, and to a certain extent also Da niel’s, anticipated a growing interest in the subject of how peoples in ancient times viewed and portrayed themse lves, particularly in literary texts. Such studies draw upon the phenomenon of ethnicity The study of ethnicity, or the way in which people define themselves, is a modern one. However, scholars have begun to apply questions about ethnicity to peoples in ancient times, and to read ancient texts with an eye to discerning their ethnic components or ethnic information. Hall’s book Ethnic Identity in Greek Antiquity was first published in 1997,113 and has become regarded as a kind of benchmark in its field. Other examples of such studies are R. Laurence’s essay “Territory, Ethnonyms, and Geography: The Construction of Identity in Roman Italy,”114 the volume edited by A. Bulloch E. Gruen, A. Long, and A. Stewart entitled Images and Ideologies: Se lf-Definition in the Hellenistic World ,115 and Ethnicity in Hellenistic Egypt edited by P. Bilde, T. Engberg-Pedersen, L. Hannestad, and J. Zahle.116 Study in the self-definition part icularly of Jews in ancient times has been encouraged by long-standing scholarly interests in the char acter of formative Judaism and the conditions surrounding the rise of early Christianity. Josephus is an important source for both, and he also fits Sterling’s model of an author who wrote apologetic historiography. Also, as noted above, Josephus has a foot in three worlds at the same time. The matters of ethn icity and self-definition 112 Kasher, ‘Polemic and Apologetic Methods’, 146. 113 J. Hall, Ethnic Identity in Greek Antiquity (Cambridge 1997). 114 In R. Laurence and J. Berry (eds.), Cultural Identity in the Roman Empire (London 1998) 95-110. 115 (Berkeley 1994). 116 (Aarhus 1992).

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40 are a large part of the man and his circumstan ces, and several streams of modern scholarly inquiry therefore converge in Josephus. The Present Study and Its Contribution It is common in the scholarship on Josephus for his writings to be described as an apologetic retelling of traditional Jewish stories in order to make them more amenable to a Greek audience. This retelling ha s often been viewed as a degrading of those stories,117 motivated by missionary zeal.118 There are at least three problems, however, with this approach. First, such a description of his writings assumes the perspective of an insider whose chief concerns were primarily religious in nature, and further tends to assume a dichotomy between an imaginary and monolithic “normative” Judaism and a corrupted, Hellenized form of it assumptions that can hardly stand.119 Josephus’ literary portraits of the Jews looked like rewritings only if one knew what the originals looked like (whi ch his Gentiles readers did not), and it is questionable whether we should assume that religious zeal was the primary concern of people like Josephus120 or that anti-Jewish sentiments centered around Jewish religion. Second, it is not generally agreed that Judaism was a missionary religion in Josephus’ da y, nor does writing in the mode of apologetics 117 E.g., J. Daniel, ‘Apologetic s in Josephus’ (PhD Diss. Rutgers University, 1981) iii, 212-15; M. Hengel, Judaism and Hellenism trans. J. Bowden (Philadelphia 1981) 1.313. 118 A. Kraabel refers to this as the “old consensus,” characterized by paganizing Jewish religion to make it more attractive to Gentiles and by a longing for the ancestral homeland, and viewed primarily as a religious endeavor ‘The Roman Diaspora: Six Questionable Assumptions’, in J. Overman and R. MacLennan (eds.), Diaspora Jews and Judaism: Essays in Honor of, and in Dialogue with, A. Thomas Kraabel (Atlanta 1992) 5-6. 119 S. Jones, ‘Identities in Practice: Towards and Archaeological Perspective on Jewish Identity in Antiquity’, in S. Jones and S. Pearce (eds.), Jewish Local Patriotism and SelfIdentification in the Graeco-Roman Period (JSPseudSup 31, Sheffield 1998) 29-30. 120 S. Cohen, ‘Respect for Judaism by Gentiles According to Josephus’, HTR 80 (1987) 423: “In his view Judaism is not a missionary religion.” Some schol ars, however, still defend the idea that Josephus’ aim was to win adherents to Judaism. Cf. S. Mason, “The Contra Apionem in Social and Literary Context’, 208-16.

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41 necessarily imply a missionary purpose.121 The question of how su ccessful Judaism was in winning converts in the first century CE is sti ll open, and the lack of a definitive answer precludes using it as a basis for suggesting that Josephus had a mi ssionary purpose in his literary works. Third, the word “apologetic” has been so st retched in scholarly usage that it is barely a useful term any more.122 The known facts point in another direction. Two th ings in particular st and out. First, there is more than defense of Jewish religious customs going on in Josephus. Although Josephus knew how to defend his people from misconceptions a nd wild derogatory rumors, his writings also went well beyond these kinds of apologetics. Gr uen’s observation about Jewish Hellenistic literature is especially appropr iate to the works of Josephus: “These works go beyond what is conventionally termed apologetic writing. They do not represent mere defensive, rear-guard action by a beleaguered minority in an alien world. What stands out is the aggressive inventiveness of the stories.”123 Second, Josephus’ Greek writings were qualitatively different from the majority of works produced by Jews fr om Maccabean times to his own day in that he wrote about Jewish history and culture to inform non-Jewish readers. All of his literary works had a non-Jewish target audience, but a Jewish subject-matter. What might these facts tell us about the pur poses of those works? Surely there is a connection between the intended au dience of Josephus’ writings, the nature and subject of those writings, and the context in which he wrote them. Any interpretation must take into consideration that his writings were a response to what Josephus saw as the prac tical concerns of the situation, 121 Barclay, ‘Apologetics in th e Jewish Diaspora’, 136, 147f. 122 Barclay, ‘Apologetics in the Jewish Diaspora’, 135. 123 E. Gruen, ‘Fact and Fiction: Jewish Legends in a Hellenistic Context’, in P. Cartledge et al (eds.), Hellenistic Constructs: Essays in Culture, History, and Historiography (Hellenistic Culture and Society 26, Berkeley 1997) 87.

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42 namely the enormity of anti-Jewish sentiment in the Roman world. The Romans had drawn a clear line between Hellenes (in wh ich the Romans included them selves) and Jews, and Josephus was trying to re-draw it. The recent war with Rome had exacerbated a long-standing negative image of Jews in the ancient world, an image of Jews as rebels and, ultimately, losers. That image needed repair, and the ideology that had fu eled the rebels in the recent war with Rome, and that had bred a perception of wide-spread Jewish animosity toward Rome, needed to be repudiated and replaced. To an outsider (to whom the texts were aime d), Josephus’ writings were literary portraits of Jewishness that were intended to be normativ e for understanding all Jews, and the nature of these portraits is that they are not wholly, or even primarily, re ligious in character. The sum effect of Josephus’ writings, which always had n on-Jews in view, was to shape a positive picture of Jews not only religiously, but also historically and socially Josephus was well-aware of the sentiments of Gentiles towards Jews in his day. He knew that the rebels who had, in his view, caused the war had promoted an image of Je wishness that led dire ctly to violence,124 and he aimed to replace that view with one that was more amenable to Roman tastes. He knew the rumors and the popular unkind interpretations that had been placed on the behavior and customs of his people, and he wrote to confront and to correct the untruths and misconceptions. He did this not only by offering counter-facts, but also by crafting a new cultural portrait of Jews. Furthermore, in constructing this new positive image he used the paradigms of the very people who had created, received, and fostered the negative rumors and misconceptions. These 124 For this phenomenon, see J. Fearon and D. Laitin, ‘Violence and the Social Construction of Ethnic Identity’, International Organization 54 (2000) 845-77. One may compare this with the ethnic constructions behi nd the riot in Alexandria in 38 BC. See K. Goudriaan, ‘Ethnical Strategies in Graeco-Rom an Egypt’, in P. Bilde et al (eds.), Ethnicity in Hellenistic Egypt (Studies in Hellenistic Ci vilization 3, Aarhus 1992) 79-95.

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43 paradigms were often secular, not merely relig ious, in character, and by using them Josephus demonstrated that he had more than Gentile reli gious sympathy in view. He had a larger, social agenda. Josephus’ circumstances, and the content of hi s writings, suggest th at his works were designed to present a positive image of Jewish culture which served as a correction to the prevailing, mostly negative image. The present investigat ion stands in the tr ajectories of recent Josephan studies and of explorations into the et hnicities of ancient peoples and the texts that reflect them. I propose that, give n the historical context in wh ich Josephus wrote, Josephus was attempting a transformation in the way non-Jews viewed and understood Jews. That is, Josephus was not simply accommodating Jewish history and customs to pagan points of view so they could understand it or that they would be attracted to it. He was instead accommodating Jewish ethnicity to Hellenism so that the Jews woul d be perceived as a people who possessed Greek qualities. This was more than explaining the Jewish way of life to outsiders, and it was more than simple apologetics. Josephus was re-inventing Jewi sh identity to conform with Greek identity. The best way to describe this is that he was in the business of construc ting an ethnicity for the Jewish people of his day through his literary works. The construction of an ethnicity is mo re than an exercise in self-defense125 (even though ethnicities can be, and often are, construc ted in response to so me perceived social marginalization), let alone religious self-defense. It is instead to make a claim in the world, to make a statement about “who we are,” to provide a rationale for fitting into a larger society. The goal of the present study is to r ead and describe Josephus’ literary works from the perspective of ethnicity. I wish to view his wr itings not from the Jews’ persp ective simply as a retelling of 125 Cf. E. Gruen, ‘Cultural Fictions and Cultural Identity’ TAPA 123 (1993) 13.

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44 traditional stories, nor primarily as a religious undertaking with a missionary purpose, but as carefully crafted products for Gentile readers whose aim was to broker a respectable social position for Jews within Greco-Rom an society at large in the fi rst century. Specifically, I will attempt to explore the writings of Josephus to di scern the picture of Jewish self-definition and ethnicity that emerges from them. This study will also, following the l ead of modern Josephus scholarship, look into how Josephus used Greek literary models to craft his works. The combination of these two perspectives will construct the basic thesis of this dissertation, that Josephus used these models to create a picture of Jewish ethnicity and self-definition that hoped to present the Jews to the Greco-Roman world at large as having the best characteristics of the noble Greeks of the past. Josephus was not the only, nor first, Jew in an cient times to attempt to show that Jews exhibited qualities that were essentially Gr eek in character. Philo of Alexandria ( fl. first century BCE) attempted to show the compatibility betwee n the teachings of the Hebrew Scriptures and those of Greek philosophy.126 Josephus’ contribution lay in bu ilding a large-s cale ethnicity through the tool of historiogra phy. It was not, in Josephus’ view, only that Jewish theology could compete with the best of pagan philosophy (the basic approach of Philo). Josephus wanted his audience to see that the Jews also shared the Gr eek spirit in their experiences and in their great historical figures, and historio graphy was the vehicle of choice for presenting these ideas. He saw fertile opportunities in the rich diversity of Jewish hist ory to demonstrate the essentially Greek character of his people (the ethnic thrust of the Antiquitates Judaicae ), he told the story of their war with Rome in such a way that a reader would see Greek qualities in the Jews and their experiences (the ethnic thrust of the Bellum Judaicum ), and he demonstrated that the Jews and 126 P. Borgen, ‘Philo of Alexandria’, in M. Stone (ed.), Jewish Writings of the Second Temple Period (CRINT 2.2, Philadelphia 1984) 233-82.

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45 their religious beliefs are every bit as old as (and even older than) those of the Greeks, and wholly compatible with them (the ethnic thrust of the Contra Apionem ). JosephusÂ’ foray into historiography must no doubt be seen as an ambitious move on his part. Even if it was commonly expected for author s of accounts of wars to imitate Thucydides, and to engage in mimesis of the tradition as a whole,127 to put oneself in such famous company was surely always a bold step. Yet even here we may be witnessing another aspect of JosephusÂ’ overall plan. It appears that Josephus hoped to present the Jews as po ssessing the respected elements of the Greek cultural heritage, includin g a preeminent national historian: himself. He presented himself, therefore, as the Jewish Thucydides (even to the point that, just like Thucydides, he was criticized concerning his ac tions in the war), the Jewish Herodotus, the Jewish Polybius, but also more: a Jewish pr ophet whose understandings were divinely guided. Given the political and cultural climate in which he wrote, this must have been an audacious step indeed. However, we can see JosephusÂ’ posturing of himself as the great historian of a people whom he wanted to compare favorably to the Gree ks as completing the broad picture he aimed to present. Of course, it also served the function of presenting himself favorably to his patron and the literary elite of Rome. I will not argue that the constr uction of an ethnicity was th e exclusive purpose of JosephusÂ’ works. There is plenty of self-encomium and nati onalistic propaganda in them as well. However, reading JosephusÂ’s writings from the perspec tive of ethnicity reve als another important dimension of them. To my knowledge, while it is well-known that Josephus presented the Jews to his readers in Greek models, no study has yet interpreted this phenomenon in terms of 127 Marincola 12.

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46 ethnicity.128 What I propose to do, then, is to use the insights of mode rn studies of ethnicity as a way of interpreting the overall aim and pur pose of Josephus’ literary output. I hope to demonstrate that this method can provide a sa tisfactory answer for the questions of what Josephus was doing and why he was doing it. I do not presume that this approach explains everything about Josephus’ editoria l activity, because it is probab ly not possible to argue that Josephus followed a single rationale consistently.129 His works are complex materials generated in a complex situation. I do hope to show, how ever, that approaching Josephus from the perspective of ethnicity can provide a new perspective on his works. The approach of this dissertation also shares the concern of recent scholarship to read Josephus as seriously as possible in his own ri ght and to locate Josephus firmly within the Hellenistic cultural and literary milieu. It is within that milieu that we can expect to find not only evidence of Josephus’ method but also the reason that prompted the effort and the concern Josephus addressed and hoped to answer, namely, the wide-scale social rejection of Jews in the Greco-Roman world and the corresponding desire, at least among Jews like Josephus, to find a legitimate, accepted plac e within that culture. 128 Rajak authored a short essay on ‘Ethnic Identities in Josephus’ but it is only a sketch of how Josephus views the difference between Greeks and Jews. The Jewish Dialogue with Greece and Rome (Boston 2002) 137-46. 129 S. Cohen, Josephus in Galilee and Rome 37.

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47 CHAPTER 2 ETHNICITY, SELF-DEFINITION, AND THE ANCIENTS The Concept of Ethnicity The word “ethnicity” was coined in modern times,1 but the concept ha s a history going back into ancient times. The English wo rd is derived from the Greek word e;qnoj which originally referred to a group of people (or even animals) who liv ed together, and then acquired the sense of a group of people who comprise a nationality ( i.e. they lived together as a nation), whether it was stated positively (a group of people belonging to the same nation) or negatively (a group of people not belonging to a particular nati on under consideration). In this latter usage, ta. e;qnh came to mean “foreigners.” Among Greeks, th erefore, the term could mean “non-Greek.” Similarly, Jewish literature in Gree k regularly refers to Gentiles as ta. e;qnh The word could also be used in a narrower sense to denote the peop le who comprised smaller social units, and could be applied to groups such as guilds, classes of people, the people in a geographical area such as “the provincials,” or the pe ople under a particular ruler.2 The basic idea was of a group that shared some common characteristics, especia lly some level of social life together. An e;qnoj was a geographical, political or cultural group.3 Even though the phenomenon of ethnicity has become the object of modern scholarly inquiry only relatively re cently, approaches to this subject ha ve changed over recent years as the social and political climate in which modern sc holars’ work has changed. The result is that debate persists over several issues in the study of ethnicity. It is beyond th e scope of the present 1 In 1953, according to J. Hall 34. The term did not enter Eng lish dictionari es until 1972. N. Glazier and D. Moynihan, Ethnicity: Theory and Experience (Cambridge, MA 1975) 1. Ground-breaking discussions were E. Leach, Political Systems of Highland Burma (London 1954) and F. Barth, Ethnic Groups and Boundaries (Boston 1969). 2 LSJ 480. 3 C. Jones, ‘ e;qnoj and ge,noj in Herodotus’, CQ 46 (1996) 316.

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48 study to attempt to formulate a new critical theory of ethnicity th at is in dialogue with current scholarly viewpoints or to attempt a new working model. I will instead attempt the more modest task of taking a current, generally-accepted unde rstanding of ethnicity and applying it to the works of Flavius Josephus in the contex t of the world of the first century BCE. The term “ethnicity” denotes a socio-political self-understanding. The s ubject of this selfunderstanding may be an indivi dual or a group of people. Al though Weber despaired that the term was so nebulous that it ought to be abandoned,4 most modern scholars are more optimistic, and there is widespread agreement that the basis of an ethnic community is a shared belief in a common descent. So Weber proposed that “We shall call ‘ethnic groups ’ those human groups that entertain a subjective belief in their common descent because of simila rities of physical type or custom or both, or because of memories of colonization or migration; … it does not matter whether or not an objective blood relationship exists ….”5 This is what others have called a putative myth of shared descent.6 Ethnicity is not an objective category, but a subjective one. A person lays claim to an ethnicity on the basis of what he or she believes, whether that claim is grounded in (historical) fact or not. “Ethnicity is based on mythical beliefs about the genealogical facts, not the ge nealogical facts themselves.”7 The story of shared descent may indeed have basis in historical fact or in blood relationships, but it need not have. Belief in this story is chosen, not necessarily innate, and the ba sis for choosing to believe for oneself one story of origins over another is complicated by many fact ors, not all of which ar e rational. “This belief is of course never finished but always subject to reinterpreta tions and adjustments, depending on 4 M. Weber, Economy and Society: An Outline of Interpretive Sociology (New York 1968) 385. 5 M. Weber 389. 6 Cf. G. Bentley, ‘Response to Yelvington’, Comparative Studies in Society and History 33 (1991) 169. 7 A. Abizadeh, ‘Ethnicity, Race, and a Possible Humanity’, World Order 33 (2001) 25.

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49 the present circumstances. In that sense, et hnicity is dynamic, changeable, and socially constructed.”8 This understanding of ethnicity means that a person or group may define themselves as they choose. Since ethnicity is not purely a f unction of actual genealogy, but of the adoption of a wider set of symbols, a person or group may construct their ethnicity more broadly than nationalistic or genealogical lines alone would allow.9 Some people prefer to define themselves more narrowly, as they may refer to themselves as African Americans, Irish Catholics, or French Canadians. This was also common in the ancient world, as in the designation “Hellenistic Jews.” Ethnicity, then, has no fixed esse nce or boundaries that are someho w inherent to a particular people. Instead the boundaries of ethnicity are mutable, subject to re vision, adaptation, or abandonment in favor of other ones. “… ethnicity is a bundle of shifting interactions rather than a nuclear component of social organization. … Th e primary characteristic s of ethnic boundaries is attitudinal. In their origins and in their mo st fundamental effects, ethnic boundary mechanisms exist in the minds of people.”10 The creation or adoption of an ethnicity is an act of self-definition. It allows a person or minority group to situate themselves within the larger world and create a unique identity for themselves. “Ethnic identity can be a fundament al element of self-understanding, rooted in notions of loyalty and a sense of consistency across time and contexts.”11 As noted above, Weber 8 M. Verkuyten, The Social Psychology of Ethnic Identity (New York 2005) 75. 9 Cf. “Fewer Americans Call Themselves Multiracial” USA Today < http://www.usa today.com/news/nation/2007-05-04-multiracia l_N.htm?csp=34 > 4 May 2007. Although the article title suggests that it is re porting on racial identif ication, the fact that this phenomenon is changing (based on comparison with earlier Census Bureau data) suggests that this is also a matter of ethnicity. 10 U. stergrd, “What is National and Ethni c Identity?,” in P. Bilde et al (eds.), Ethnicity in Hellenistic Egypt (Aarhus 1992) 36-7. 11 Verkuyten 78.

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50 also included in his definition th e idea that ethnicities are accompanied by a sense of sharing in visible things like physical types or customs. His “or” reflect s that there is more than one way into a specific ethnicity. However, the inclusion of customs in the defini tion means that a person who does not share physical characteristics associat ed with a particular ethnicity may still lay claim to that ethnicity by belief in some kind of connection with the origins of those in the group, and also by adopting the customs that have come to be associated with the ethnic group. In this way ethnicities are negotiable. However, most sociologists today woul d probably agree that Weber’s inclusion of custom unnecessarily limits the concept of ethnici ty, because customs are themselves a negotiable element in the construction of an ethnicity. Fundamental to the idea of an ethnicity, as reflected in stergrd’s words above, is the drawing of a boundary that either demarcates “us” from “them” or that identif ies “us” with “them” (or that does both simultaneously). I will discuss below what factor s serve to achieve that demonstration. The fact that an ethnicity is a social construct that is chosen by a group or individual means that the composition and mainte nance of any ethnicity, that is, of the boundary, is a task that confronts each successive generation. Every generati on must decide what to do with the ethnicity it has inherited, whether it be to cha nge it, abandon it, or reaffirm it. Because people chose an ethnicity, there is nothing about an ethnicity itself that is self-maintaining; ethnicities must be maintained boundary-lines must be determined by the people who adopt them. The decisions a group makes concerning the maintenan ce of its ethnicity are collectively called an ethnical strategy .12 Since the myth of shared descent that lies at the heart of an ethnicity can be real or mythical, ethnicity has been viewed either in a primordial way or in an instrumental way. The 12 Goudriaan 76.

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51 primordial view sees ethnicity as “a basi c and natural unit of history and humanity,”13 often with a deterministic role in things. T hose who view ethnicity in this way see it as a kind of force of nature, almost biological. The inst rumentalist view sees ethnicity as a tool that social groups use for the pursuit or advancement of their political and economic age ndas or interests. As such it has a situational quality. That is, the primordia list view emphasizes the emotional attachment generated from actual blood ties, while the instrumentalist view sees the adoption of an ethnicity as a means to political or economic ends, leavi ng the truth of any claims to common origin as another matter. Which approach is the better de scription of how ethnicity actually operates is a matter of current debate.14 Given the phenomenon of ethnic malleability, the instrumentalist approach seems to be able to mount the st ronger case and is the predominant view among modern sociologists. However, the two approaches need not be understood as exclusive of each other, as most sociologists would also argue th at ethnicity has roots in nationality. Smith has therefore suggested that ethniciti es are best described as havi ng both historical and symboliccultural attributes.15 That is, ethnicity and concepts of r ace or “nation” can be, and often are, related, but they need not necessarily be. There is a dialectic betw een the social and individual levels in the construction of ethnicity. From the level of society, it is clear that so ciocultural circumstances and structures are an important part of the dynamics of ethnicity. Pe ople are affected by their social environment. However, individuals are also strong forces in the matrix of factors that go together to forge an ethnicity. When approached from this perspective, it is equally clear that “people are not passive 13 J. Hall 17. 14 See G. Bentley, ‘Ethnicity and Practice’, Comparative Studies in Society and History 29 (1987) 25-7. 15 A. Smith, National Identity (Reno 1991) 20. Cf. Verkuyten (88): “Primordial and circumstantial approaches … are complimentary rather than contradictory.”

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52 victims of circumstance. They are able to th ink about their situati on, do something about it, reflect, assert, react, and create.”16 Forces from both levels must therefore be recognized.17 People function in, and in respons e to, specific socio-political c ontexts, but these same people are also contributors to those contexts. The dyna mic and negotiable nature of ethnicity and the multi-dimensional character of ethnicity-building does not mean, however, that all elements in the matrix of factors are capable of the same ki nd or level of manipulation. The role of individual choice is, nonetheless, “important among ethnic minority groups with a more collectivist cultural background.”18 The way that individuals can posture themselv es within society is limited by the more stable nature of social institutions. “The continuous negotiation on the level of everyday interactions does not imply a similar level of fl exibility and variability on the level of society.”19 In other words, change at the institutional and cult ural level does not occur easily. It is, generally, the nature of institutions to resi st change. What this means is that there can be a re al difference in how an individual chooses to define himself, and how the society into which he hopes to fit perceives his attempt. The social nature of ethni city means that an ethnical strategy is practiced within a dialogue with a society that is “other ,” and that “other” may not view an ethnic group the way the group views itself. The differences between those two view s can create tension. These two factors the dynamic, negotiable quality of et hnicities, and the resistance of social institutions to change have a bearing on the success of a given ethnic agenda. Together they make ethnicities especially susceptible to falsification. Negotiation in to an ethnicity, if it 16 Verkuyten 17. 17 See S. Jones, ‘Discourses of Identity in the Interpretation of th e Past’, in P. GraveBrown, et al, (eds.), Cultural Identity and Archaeology: The Construction of European Communities (London 1996) 67-8. 18 Verkuyten 25. 19 Verkuyten 25.

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53 hopes to be accepted, requires some semblance of credibility. Verkuyten has observed that ethnic constructions must not stray too far from reality if they are to serve as emotionally convincing and satisfying self-definitions.20 One cannot invent, or attach ones elf to, an ethnicity out of thin air. As an exercise in historical reconstructi on, an ethnicity must ostensibly be believable, especially by the larger group into which an ethnic group seeks admission. Since the purposes of constructing or attaching oneself to an ethnicity are to enjoy a sense of unique identity and to provide a means by which others may view a nd understand oneself or the group, the ethnicity has to maintain some kind of connection with the real world. Ultimately, the success of the enterprise relies on the quality of the dialectic between the larger social level and the smaller individual or minority group leve l. “Ethnic identities are not simply the products of ethnic assignments imposed by others or assertions ma de by people themselves, but the result of the interaction between the two.”21 The drive to situate oneself (a s an individual or a minority gr oup) within the larger social context involves psychological fa ctors, especially the sense of self-esteem. Here Verkuyten notes that “People prefer identifications that bring positive social identities, and thereby positive collective self-esteem. … Identification and self -esteem are assumed to be closely related, and often they are not distinguished but ta ken as indicators for each another.”22 Also relevant to this study is his observation that “A se nse of identity implies an awar eness not only of who and what one is, but also of the value, recognition, and resp ect that particular iden tities bring. Self-esteem 20 “Justification … is necessary both for in-group members and for outsiders. Ethnic claims have to be ‘proven’ if they are to beco me meaningful identities. Many things are possible here, but not every possibility is intellectually plausible and morally acceptable. Although ethnic identities are malleable, they are not complete fabrications.” Verkuyten 75. 21 Verkuyten 18. 22 Verkuyten 67.

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54 develops in interaction with others and is st rongly dependent on the esteem granted socially.”23 While these observations do not constitute absolute “rules” of how ethnic identities must, or always, develop, they acknowledge the important fact that the need to feel accepted, to achieve a sense of belonging, is a legitimate factor in the formation of an ethnic identity. Furthermore, the degree to which one thinks ethnic identity is negotiable is directly related to one’s current position in the larger society. “… members of ma rginalized and minority groups are more likely to hold a constructionist point of view in whic h empiricist claims are criticized and multiple interpretations of realit y are considered valid.”24 Ethnicity is not the same thing as what we might loosely call nationalism25 or patriotism. Nationalism is a sense of pride in one’s perceived heritage, or “the attitude that the members of a nation have when they care about their national identity.”26 Nationalism often carries with it the sense of promotion and defense of one’s heritage in the face of some perceived crisis or threat, whereas patriotism “denotes an identification wi th a loyalty towards a peculiar combination of territory and nation.”27 The two, are however, closely rela ted. When these are driven by a perceived threat, that threat ma y come from outsiders whose diffe rent values and lifestyles are seen as a menace to the survival and the very ex istence of the group, or the perceived threat to the heritage may come from within the group itself, from members who are judged to have compromised key elements of the group’s collectiv e identity. It may even involve both, when 23 Verkuyten 68. 24 Verkuyten 28. Cf. J. Hall 18. 25 I am not using the term in the same way some anthropologists use it, to describe an attitude of which the goal is th e formation of a political nation-s tate. I am using the term here more in accordance with its popular usage. 26 ‘Nationalism’, Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy < http://plato.stanford.edu/ entries/nationalism/ > 23 May 2006. 27 S. Pearce and S. Jones, ‘Introduction: Jewish Local Identities and Patriotism in the Graeco-Roman Period’, in L. Grabbe and J. Charlesworth (eds.), Jewish Local Patriotism and Self-Identification in the Graeco-Roman Period (Sheffield 1998) 22.

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55 some members of a group see other members as having compromised or identified with an external threat. Since nationalism may be ignited by the percepti on of others within the same ethnic group, nationalism is not ethnicity. This is not to say that nati onalistic concerns are unrelated to ethnic self-definitions. Indeed, they are.28 It is instead to say that nationalism should be viewed as an element or catalyst in the formation of an ethnicity.29 A significant study of ethnicity among the ancient Greeks is Ethnic Identity in Greek Antiquity by Jonathan Hall, who proposes that ethnici ty is characterized chiefly by three things: 1) a putative myth of shared descent, 2) a dyna mic, negotiable quality, an d 3) expression through written and spoken discourse.30 This description follows the ba sic understanding of ethnicity laid out above, that what chiefly makes for ethnicity is the belief or the assertion shared by a group of people that they have a common origin. The putativ e character of this basic element of ethnicity makes it dynamic and negotiable. Also, like others Hall posits that ethnicities are maintained through a dialectic between the individual and a collectivity.31 What he adds to the discussion here is that ethnicity can be negotiated through texts (oral or wr itten) that crea te a narrative 28 “Specific social identities can also beco me overwhelming or unidimensional when the society obliges people to place a pa rticular identity in the forefront of their minds and central in their behavior. A simple example is a nation at war when national identity forcibly takes precedence to almost all other ones.” Verkuyten 52. 29 Modern discussions of national identity are identical in many ways to discussions of ethnicity, and some scholars have not differen tiated clearly between th e two. This is because there seems to be general agreem ent that national identities are rooted in ethnicities. See A. Smith, National Identity 19-42. Similarly, B. Anderson refe rred to nations as “imagined communities,” yet the attributes of “nation” as he described them are much the same as the attributes of ethnicity ( Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism (London 1983)). The same is true of M. Br uner’s description of the formation of national identity in Strategies of Remembrance: The Rhetor ical Dimensions of National Identity Construction (Columbia 2002) 1-11. Nevertheless, ethnicity and nationhood are different (although related) social constructs The perspective of this dissert ation is not that Josephus was forging a national identity for Jews. They already had th at. Instead, Josephus was forging a new ethnic identity for Jews. 30 J. Hall 2. 31 J. Hall 29.

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56 connection of shared origin, in the past, be tween people. Texts create and communicate a narrative thought world that is interpretive of the myth of de scent of the people who use and transmit those texts. The creation of texts (whether they be deme membership lists, literary texts, genealogies, etc.) is thus a signi ficant moment in the creation of an ethnicity. Through these texts elements of identity can be described, denied, or polarized in relation to competing or alternate elements. However, while recognizing the role of texts in the construction of ethnicity, we should not go to the extreme of reducing ethnic ity solely or purely to a function of selfdefinitional literary discourse. While an ethnicity may utilize texts, ethnici ty is not a literary construct. The realities are more complex and flexible than that, and self-definition is accomplished in specific contexts that bring vari ed and unique collections of circumstances to bear on the shape and outcome of the exercise and th at affect how an ethnicity actually translates into a mode of being. “Whilst ethnicity always involves active processes of performance and interpretation in the objectification of cultural diffe rence, it is still constituted in the context of specific cultural practices and historical experi ences which provide the basis for the perception of similarity and difference.”32 A fuller description of ethnicity is offered by Smith, who has suggested that there are six characteristics of the ethnic group as opposed to other kinds of social groups: 1) a collective name, 2) a common myth of descent, 3) a shared history, 4) a distinctive shared culture, 5) an association with a specific territory, and 6) a sense of communal solidarity.33 This description adds precision to those of Weber and Hall. Sm ith’s description recognizes the importance of a collective name for the ethnic group. Names have always been one of the most powerful means 32 Jones, “Discourses of Identity’, 56. 33 A. Smith, The Ethnic Origins of Nations (New York 1987) 22-46.

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57 of self-definition known to people, arguably more so among the ancients than among peoples in modern times. Smith’s description also adds to the fundamental notion of a shared myth of origins the important idea that an ethnicity includes a shar ed history that enjoys a traditional status among those who subscribe to it. This is not contradictory to the fact that the putative myth is subject to modification or revision, because traditions are them selves fluid things, and a shared history may certainly change over time as it is transmitted and retold for new generations. However, even as the story may take new nuances or shapes, the thi ng that survives is the ethnicity codified or institutionalized in the story. This results in wh at Smith calls the paradox of ethnicity, viz., “its mutability in persistence, a nd its persistence through change.”34 Although the precise contours of an ethnicity change over time, the ethnicity itself remains viable. Furthermore, it is easy to see how this role of tradition works hand-in-hand with the presence of literary texts. As the texts are preserved and transmitted, the ethnicity they portray comes to have a codified, or institutional, quality that eventua lly becomes tradition. Smith further suggests that an ethnic group will have a distinctive shared culture. This is not, however, to equate ethnicity with culture. To say that ethnici ty is the product of a perceived or believed, and hence negotiable, putative myth of common descent is to say that ethnicity is neither determined nor necessarily expressed by sy mbols of material cultur e. No ethnic group is defined by markers (including cultural ones) that ar e objectively absolute, because ethnicity is a social construct. Hall therefor e distinguishes between ethnic criteria and ethnic indicia The former are those attributes that are chosen by the group as deterministic of membership within the ethnic group. The latter are merely operationa l attributes “which people tend to associate 34 A. Smith, The Ethnic Origins of Nations 32.

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58 with particular ethnic groups once th e criteria have been established.”35 These kinds of identifiers can change over time and thus are not formally determinative of ethnicity. More importantly, both the criteria and the indicia may vary from one group to the next. Thus, for example, a specific religion may be a criteria for one ethnic ity, but religion may serve only as an indicia in another ethnicity. Or, use of a specific language may be a criteri a for one ethnicity, but language may not be crucial to the ethnic ity of another person or group.36 The determinative factor is whether or not something contributes to the cr eation and maintenance of the putative myth of common descent that lies at the heart of the ethnicity.37 It is thus also context-sensitive. The existence of a shared culture within an ethnic ity is a product of the fact that ethnicity is a subset of culture. Culture, like ethnicity, is an attempt at identificati on, but is conceptually different38 and broader. There are usually various ethnicities within a culture. Friedman delineates the two thusly: “If cultural identity is the generic concept, referring to the attribution of a set of qualities to a given popul ation, we can say that cultural id entity that is experienced as carried by the individual, in the blood, so to say, is what is commonly known as ethnicity .”39 Ethnicity thus involves how an individual, or a group, appropriates the elem ents of their culture into their own contexts. As Verkuyten describes it, Acculturation as the process of becoming more similar culturally does not have to imply a change of group membership and self-definition …. People often hold on to their ethnic group identity, to what they feel is a con tinuity with the past although their culture 35 J. Hall 21. 36 For example, J. Hall argues (168-81) that even among the ancient Greeks, dialectical differences were not determ inative of ethnic groups. 37 Verkuyten 75. It is for this reason that it is methodologically unsound to attempt to determine the ethnicity of a people solely or pr imarily from the archaeological examination of material cultural remains. See S. Jones, The Archaeology of Ethnicity: Constructing Identities in the Past and Present (New York 1997); idem “Identities in Practice’, 48. 38 S. Jones, ‘Discourses of Identity’, 67. Sh e notes that the reali zation that ethnic groups are self-defined “reveals a critical break between culture and ethnicity.” 39 J. Friedman, Cultural Identity and Global Process (London 1994) 26.

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59 becomes intermingled with that of others. Contact between ethnic groups almost always leads to an exchange of cultural characterist ics and mutual adjustments, but at the same time it often results in enhanced ethnic consciousness and stronge r group differentiation. Â… Cultural content and ethnic identity are, to an important degree, functionally independent.40 So a person or group may assimilate elements of a culture near to them but these assimilated elements do not essentially cha nge a groupÂ’s understanding of thei r own ethnicity. In fact, such cultural elements are often redefined to attain a new and special meaning within a particular, new ethnic context. It is in this sense, then, that an ethnicity will have a di stinctive shared culture. The last two of SmithÂ’s elements, associati on with a specific territory and a sense of communal solidarity, prove to be flexible in prac tice. Concerning territory, it is entirely possible for a person or group to maintain their ethnicity outside of their ancest ral homeland and retain only the most nominal connection with it. For example, it is commonplace among many nativeborn U.S. citizens that they know where their ancestors came from outside of the U.S., but they have never visited those ancestral homelands and have no personal ties to them. Yet they often still proudly claim a heritage from outside U.S. territories. A group may even adopt a place as a new homeland. The myth of Aeneas leaving Gr eek lands to establish a people in Latium immediately comes to mind, as well as the fact that many people in Roman imperial times lived in lands other than their ancestral homelands. Th ere were several diasporas in antiquity, caused by war, famine, and other such things. The Jewish diaspora was one of these. However, many of these diasporas managed to adjust their understa nding of their relation to an ancestral homeland in such a way as to survive well outside of it. SmithÂ’s last element, co mmunal solidarity, is a difficult thing to define. It should not be surprising, ther efore, if it proves to be quite variable in its application. However, he states that one form in which this element of ethnicity is manifested is in institutional philanthropic expression. The powe r of this element is that it may overcome 40 Verkuyten 77.

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60 things such as territorial disl ocation or internal factionali sm or sectarianism. Community solidarity provides a sense of togetherness which can override internal soci al stratifications or ideological disputes.41 Organized religion can play a partic ularly powerful role within an ethnicity in that it is able to reinforce an ethnicity in a unique way. Some would even go as far as to say that a shared religion is a fundamental element of an ethnicity.42 Smith has identified three aspects of the relationship between organized re ligion and ethnicity that make the combination especially potent.43 First, religions often embody some kind of st ory of origins, ofte n in close connection with a creation story. These stories of origins ar e closely related to ethnicity’s myth of common descent, and serve to define that myth in cosm ic terms so that the people who subscribe to the ethnicity feel that they have a special place in the cosmos, leading to a sense of separation and superiority. Second, religions regularly succumb to political and cultural agendas. Even those religions which are in theory unive rsalistic and teach a salvation that transcends ethnic, social, or national boundaries regularly become associat ed, in time, with specific communities and succumb to forces that forge new forms and cont ents for the religion, w ith the resu lt that the religion and the specific ethni c community become closely li nked. Third, organized religion often has a ready-made apparatus for the diffusion of ethnic myths and symbols. Typically this apparatus consists of things like a priesthood and channels of communication (such as regular assemblies of the social group) through which groups are regularly taught the symbols. In addition, religious clergy (whether they are called such or not) se rve to guard and codify sacred 41 A. Smith, The Ethnic Origins of Nations 30. 42 C. Renfrew, “Prehistory and the Identity of Europe,” in P. Grave-Brown, et al (eds.), Cultural Identity and Archaeology: The Construction of European Communities (London 1996) 130. 43 A. Smith, The Ethnic Origins of Nations 34-7.

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61 texts and legal codes which reflect the se lf-understanding of the group. Religion becomes especially important for diaspora communities: “Religion here plays a dual role, at once conservative as with resident ethnie and innovatively adaptive to meet a variety of changing conditions while retaining its central promise.”44 It must be understood that the description of ethnicity I have given above is a composite construct. The model is descriptiv e, not prescriptive. Not all of th e elements need to exist for a people to have an ethnicity, nor must they forma lly recognize them in orde r for their ethnicity to be genuine. All that is essential is some sense of “us” that is construed as being in some sense different from “them.” The sociological study of a people’s ethnicity may therefore, for the sake of description, impose categories on that people which they themselves do not actually use to define themselves. It is in this sense that Re nfrew says that “ethnicity is a matter of degree.”45 However, the formal elements are useful as anal ytical tools if it is remembered that they are theoretical, categorical descriptions that do not n ecessarily directly reflec t how a people thinks or speaks about themselves. Whenever an ethnic group is confronted ( by whatever means) with another, dominant culture, a crisis in self-understanding often result s. “A crisis of confid ence often develops in a less developed community when it comes into pr olonged cultural contact with a more developed power. Imperial expansion, for example, carries an almost magnetic attraction for the threatened or conquered peoples in its path.”46 In such a situation that weaker group has limited options for maintaining its ethnicity.47 One option is to effectively ignore the dominant culture altogether 44 A. Smith, The Ethnic Origins of Nations 114. 45 Renfrew 130. 46 A. Smith, The Ethnic Origins of Nations 56. 47 J. Hall 31; cf. G. Bohak, ‘Ethnic Continuity in the Jewish Diaspora in Antiquity’, in J. Bartlett (ed.), Jews in the Hellenistic Roman Cities (London 2002) 180.

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62 and reject things that would be considered ethnic dilution. There is more than one way to do this. One method would be to continue to speak one’s native language, or to continue to reckon time by the calendar of one’s homeland. Another me thod would be to create new dimensions of comparison with the dominant group that enable the disadvantaged group to bypass its social dislocation.48 If possible, a group may attempt to r eacquire its traditional territory and homeland,49 or it may try to reestablish itself by placing renewed emphasis on genealogical legitimation.50 Such circumstances may even breed a pocalypticism. The practical difficulties involved in implementing such strategies often resu lt in the failure to main tain this stance as a permanent option. A second option is to assimila te culturally with the dominant group on the largest scale possible. This entails a breach of the group’s ethnic boundaries in order to adopt new ones that are acceptable to the dominant culture, and often requires some kind of management of a subjective or intellectual transcendence of na tionality. The ancient Thracians are an example of this. They flocked into E gypt in droves as mercen aries for Ptolemy II and Ptolemy III and within a few generations had take n up Greek names, and typical Thracian names (like Seuthes) eventually passed into the st ock of common Greek names. They so fully assimilated to Greek culture that they erased their own distinctive ethni city. “In the end, there was no cultural feature left by which they coul d (or, for that matter, would) distinguish themselves from the Greeks. At that moment they vanished from history.”51 The chief problem 48 J. Hall 31. 49 This was one of the goals of the Zealot party among the Jews. A. Smith, The Ethnic Origins of Nations 57. We should remember that land -holding, especially in the Roman provinces, was a form of economic power, although the land also had a relig ious significance for ancient Jews. 50 A. Smith, The Ethnic Origins of Nations 50-3. 51 Goudriaan 79. Cf. also S. Honigman, ‘The Birth of a Diaspora: The Emergence of a Jewish Self-Definition in Ptolemaic Egypt in th e Light of Onomastics’, in J. Cohen and E. Frerichs (eds.), Diasporas in Antiquity (Brown Judaic Studie s 288, Atlanta 1993) 102-4.

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63 with pursuing this option is that it will, if pursu ed fully, result in the subv ersion and loss of oneÂ’s original identity by the complete absorption into the dominant group. The third option is to attempt to establish so me kind of dialectic in which one negotiates some self-definitional elements that will be sh ared with the surrounding culture while keeping other elements intact. In practical terms, this may entail living in a new place, in a different culture, but retaining certain ethnic markers from oneÂ’s homeland, making trips back to the homeland,52 maintaining correspondence with others in the homeland, continuing to practice traditional religion, becoming bilingual, etc. Some ethnic markers that ar e negatively perceived in the dominant culture are thus remodeled or adapted and presented positively. In this option, existing ethnic markers are conserved (but not in pristine condition). Depending on which strategy the group adopts, identities may be ob literated, transformed, or revived. However, the strong force of assimilation operati ve in the ancient world meant that groups that adopted the first option probably began a process by which th eir descendants would eventually practice the third. For those who pursued the third option, especi ally for a prolonged period of time, the phenomenon of ethnicity was further complicated when self-definition was practiced in the context of an overarching imperialistic politi co-commercial structur e (such as the Roman empire). In such a context As the accumulation and possession of abstract w ealth plays a central role in the definition of social position, ascribed ethni c categories are not directly c onstitutive of the social order Â…. Ethnic categories cannot function as categorie s of social structure in a system were social position is not ethnically described, but economically and politic ally achieved. It is 52 There are several reports in th e ancient literature of Jewish pilgrimages to Palestine in Roman times. Cf. Philo, De Provid 2.64; Euseb. PE 8.14.

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64 in such circumstances that ethnicity or cultur al identity becomes salient, insofar as it is clearly separate from social position.53 Ethnic groups that lie outside of the political an d economic mainstream therefore find that their ethnicity, no matter how well-defined it is, is in sufficient to purchase them a place within the social structures where power is brokered. The ethnicity that perhaps once served as a powerful marker of social status become s relativized and marginalized within a larger, “foreign” system where social position is determined otherwise. A people’s sense of ethnicity may be a comfort to them in other ways, but it certainly can be divorce d from social status. Of course, this would be more acute for those who were once considered e lites within their own (previous) ethnic selfunderstanding. Indeed, radical changes of status on many levels are possible in such a scenario, and the rise of an apocalyptic mi ndset to interpret the changes of the present is sometimes not far behind.54 Modern scholarship in post-colonial theory has explored the comp lex negotiation between a group and the structure of power that has come to dominate it. When one culture dominates another, the result is often a kind of hybrid situation which enta ils “the ambivalence of the new cultural formation which results from cultura l contact in conditions of unequal power.”55 Both the dominant culture and the dominated culture experience change in this process. The contours of this change are not static and thus many possibilities fo r confrontation, compromise, assimilation, syncretism, or dialogue become possi ble all at once. Author s within the dominated culture may “negotiate complex paths of self -expression through the ad apted medium of the 53 J. Friedman, “Notes on Culture and Identity in Imperial Worlds,” in P. Bilde et al (eds.), Religion and Religious Practi ce in the Seleucid Kingdom (Studies in Hellenistic Civilization 1, Aarhus 1990) 30. 54 J. Srensen, ‘Native Reactions to Foreign Ru le and Culture in Religious Literature’, in P. Bilde et al (eds.), Ethnicity in Hellenistic Egypt (Studies in Hellenistic Civilization 3, Aarhus 1992) 164, 180. 55 J. Barclay, ‘Josephan Rhetoric in Flavia n Rome’, in J. Edmondson et al (eds.), Flavius Josephus and Flavian Rome (Clarendon 2005) 317.

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65 dominant discourse”56 resulting in what some have called transculturation. The permeability and mutability of ethnic boundaries t hus becomes both a means of survival for an ethnic group and at the same time a threat to its unique identity or even its ex istence. On the one hand, this permeability makes it possible for one ethnic group (like the Jews) to assimilate and lay claim to a status within a larger dominant culture (such as Hellenistic culture) and, in the process, to change that culture to some degree. On the othe r hand, this same openness to culture carries with it a certain dilution of the exis ting ethnic identity (which wa s a concern of some ancient Romans). Too little assimilation keeps the group on the “outside,” and too much assimilation can make for the disappearance of th e distinctives of the group alt ogether. Decisions about what elements are to be retained as ethnic criteria and which ones may be re duced to the status of ethnic indicia are often complex a nd hotly debated. This is to be expected, because a traditional self-understanding is at stake. Th e situation is further complicated by the fact that language of assimilation or acculturation may mask a subversive, revolutionary spirit.57 An ethnicity has political dimensions to the ex tent that it is a declar ation of how a person or group wishes to be perceived or treated by othe rs with regard to social power. Ethnicity can become a powerful motivator in political causes when an ethnic group be lieves its political rights are being denied or suppressed so as to produce a situation of inequality or oppression, and especially when the denial of those rights or privileges runs counter to elements of one’s ethnicity. To the extent that ethnicity can lay cla im to a place or status within a larger culture, the assertion of ethnicity can amount to a reaffirm ation of political status. Sometimes the struggle may be for political power withou t the element of inequality, and sometimes the goal may simply 56 Barclay, ‘Josephan Rhetoric’, 318. 57 N. Elliot, ‘The “Patience of the Jews”: Strategies of Resistance and Accommodation to Imperial Cultures’, in J. Anderson et al (eds.), Pauline Conversations in Context: Essays in Honor of Calvin J. Roetzel (JSOTSup 221, London 2002) 32-41.

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66 be equality, not superiority. The modern term for this phenomenon is “identity politics.” Verkuyten describes it this way: Identity politics is about the recognition of one’s status as rightfully belonging and the public manifestation of modes of belonging. In addition, identity politics is about recognition by others of who and what one is…. It is concerne d with the emancipation from repressive, ignored, or denied social identities, and with the equal va lue of groups and the equal respect to which they are entitled. For many, this does not simply impl y equal treatment but rather that specific experiences, histories, cultures, and contri butions of groups are publicly affirmed and recognized.58 The following points summarize the features of the concept of ethnicity I have described: The term “ethnicity” denotes a socio-political self-understanding held either by individuals or groups. The term is modern, but th e concept is a historical phenomenon. The fundamental element of ethnic self-unde rstanding is a putative myth of common origin. Ethnicities are constructed and maintained in a dialectic, or matrix of relationships, between the individual or minority group and th e larger society. However, not all elements in the matrix are equally malleable. As a social construct based on a putative myt h, an ethnicity is negotiable, yet it must maintain some semblance of credibility with in a dialogue between insiders and outsiders. This is a function of the dialectic in which an ethnicity works. Ethnicity is not the same thing as race, nationalism, or patriotism. Ethnic criteria are not static. Instead they are chosen because they support in some significant way the putative myth of common origin. Cultural elements may be assimilated in the service of an ethnicity, but ethnic identity and acculturation are separable. Ethnicity can be expressed through texts, which often impart an institu tional and traditional quality to the ethnicity. 58 P.69.

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67 Religion can be a powerful force in the maintena nce of an ethnicity, especially for diaspora communities. Ethnic groups are sometimes called upon to manage their self-understand ing in the face of a larger, dominant culture. Th ey may manage this by ignoring the dominant culture, by completely assimilating to it, or by attempting to negotiate some level of participation in it while retaining elements or markers of their own distinctive self-definition. Ethnicity does not necessarily buy power with in a social structur e. In fact, it may buy marginalization. The negotiable quality of ethni city creates a situation in which the negotiation risks the loss (through assimilation or otherwise) of el ements that some may have considered as ethnic criteria. One motive for constructing an ethnicity is the psychological need for self-esteem and a sense of belonging. “Identity politics” is the politicizing of this psychological need. Greek Ethnicity and the Roman World Questions of ethnicity may be applied to an cient peoples, and have been so applied by classical scholars for some time (although the soci ological models and definitions of ethnicity have changed throughout the history of classical scholarship on this subject). This becomes a useful way to explore what people in ancient ti mes thought of themselves, and may help explain historical processes, events, and literature. Ethnic self-understandings were just as flexib le in the ancient worl d as they are in our world today. Multiple ethnic designations were certainly possible in ancient Greco-Roman society. Josephus spoke of one group of Jews saying h=san de. VIoudai/oi Aivgu,ptoi (“they were Egyptian Jews”).59 These Jews had survived in Egypt and had maintained a high degree of separateness from the larger culture of which th ey were a subset, enough to still call themselves Jews, but had also managed a degree of assim ilation by which they could be called “Egyptian.” Bohak cites60 as other examples the ~Ellhnosku,qai (Greco-Scythians), the Libufoi,nikoi (Libyan 59 BJ 1.190. 60 P.189.

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68 Phoenicians),61 the Surofoi,nikoi (Syro-Phoenicians),62 the Gallograeci (Phrygian Gauls, Galatians),63 and the Celtiberi (Iberian Celts, in Hispania).64 Of special interest are the Foinikaigu,ptioi (Phoenician Egyptians),65 the ~Ellhnomemfi,tai (Greco-Memphites),66 and the Karomemfi,tai (Carian Memphites), all of whom were neighbors of the Jews whom Josephus designated as VIoudai/oi Aivgu,ptoi All of these groups had been allocated land and had permission to build temples for themselves. That is, Egypt became their new homeland, and this important element of ethnic identi ty became transposed, as it were.67 In spite of the fact that so me people managed to achieve a kind of dual-ethnicity, the norm was that most people continued to be associated with a single ethnicity, whether that association was hereditary or negotia ted. Thus in Euripides’ Phrixus we hear of a (fictional) man who left Sidon and settled in Thebes, and Foi/nix pefukw,j( evk d v avmei,betai ge,noj ~Ellhniko,n (“having been Phoenician originally, he changed his genos to Greek”),68 and in Heliodorus’ Aethiopica a Tyrian character offers to exchange his ethnos and his patris for another ( e;qnoj de. kai. patri,da th.n u`mete,ran avlla,xomai ) if it means he can marry the Egyptian girl with whom he has fallen in love.69 Strabo’s opinion in the early fi rst century CE was that the Greek cities of the part of Italy known to him as Magna Graecia (except Tare ntum, Rhegium, and Naples) had become completely barbarized ( evkbebarbarw/sqai ) and thus lost their Greek character.70 In a similar vein, 61 The term is used by Polybius (e.g., 3.33.15), whose works were known by Josephus. 62 Used in the New Testament, Mark 7.26. 63 E.g., Tac. Ann. 15.6; Caes. Civ. 3.4; Liv. 38.12.1. The Greek version of the word appears in D.S. 5.32. 64 E.g., Caes. Civ 1.38. 65 PSI 5.531.1. 66 PSI 5.531.6. 67 Bohak 190. 68 Fr 819. 69 5.19. 70 6.1.2.

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69 Dionysius of Halicarnassus, a generation earlie r, spoke unapprovingly of Greeks who had forgotten their Greek heritage, ceased speaki ng the language, and no longer acknowledged the ancient gods.71 To him, they were no longer Greek. In Ptolemaic Egypt, Jews took on the designation “Macedonian” when they joined the m ilitary unit that was originally comprised of ethnic Macedonians, 72 a point which Josephus was eager to mention.73 Similarly, he mentions the case of queen Helena: Kata. tou/ton de. to.n kairo.n tw/n VA diabhnw/n basili.j ~Ele,nh kai. o` pai/j auvth/j VIza,thj eivj ta. V Ioudai,wn e;qh to.n bi,on mete,balon (“about this time Helena, queen of the Adiabenenes, and her son Izates, change d their life to the custom of the Jews”),74 and kai. th.n ~Ele,nhn o`moi,wj u`fV e`te,rou tino.j VIoudai,ou didacqei/san eivj tou.j evkei,nwn metakekomi,sqai no,mouj (“and Helena likewise was taught by another Jew and was brought over to their laws”),75 Puqo,menoj de. pa,nu toi/j VIoudai,wn e;qesin cai,rein th.n mhte,ra th.n e`autou/ e;speuse kai. auvto.j eivj evkei/na metaqe,sqai nomi,zwn te mh. a'n ei=nai bebai,wj VIoudai/oj eiv mh. perite,mnoito pra,ttein h=n e[toimoj (“when he [Izates] learned th at his own mother was quite happy with the Jewish customs, he also changed to them, and thinking that he would not truly be a Jew unless he was circumcised, he was ready to do it”).76 A similar case appears in 3 Maccabees 1.3: Dosi,qeoj o` Drimu,lou lego,menoj to. g e,noj Ioudai/oj u[steron de. metabalw.n ta. no,mima kai. tw/n patri,wn dogma,twn avphllotriwme,noj (“Dositheos, the on e called the son of Drimulus, later changed his customs and estranged himself from the ordinances of his fathers”). The fact that ethnicities could be changed or adopted is also reflected in a statement recorded in Arrian’s Discourses of Epictetus concerning Jews: 71 1.89.4. 72 Tcherikover, CPJ I.14; II nos. 142 and 143. 73 BJ 2.487f; AJ 12.8. Ap 2.35f. 74 AJ 20.17. 75 AJ 20.35. 76 AJ 20.38.

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70 Ti, ou=n Stwiko.n le,geij seauto,n( ti, evxapata| /j tou.j pollou,j( ti, u`p okri,nh| VIoudai/on w'n {Ellhn* ouvc o`ra|/j pw/j e[kastoj le,getai VIoudai /oj( pw/j Su,roj( pw/j Aivgu,ptioj* kai. o[tan tina. evpamfoteri,zonta i;dwmen( eivw,qamen le,gein ouvk e;stin VIoudai/oj( avllV u`pokri,netai) o[tan dV avnala,bh| to. pa,qoj to. tou/ bebamme,nou kai. h`|rhme,nou( to,te kai. e;sti tw|/ o;nti kai. kalei/tai VIoudai/oj) (“Why, then, do you say you are a Stoic, why do you deceive the majority, why do you play the part of a Jew although you are a Greek ? Do you not see how each is called a Jew, a Syrian, or an Egyptian? For whenever we see someone acting both ways, we customarily say ‘He is not a Jew, but he is only playi ng the part.’ But whenever he takes up the pathos of the of who has been immersed and joined it, then he is called by the name ‘Jew’.”)77 Four things stand out about this statement. First, it shows that adopting a different ethnicity for oneself was common enough that it c ould be used as a real-life illustration of Epictetus’ point about the need for consistency between one’s pr ofession and one’s practice. Interestingly, the statement apparently reflects Je wish proselytism. Second, it show s that a person could present himself before others in any wa y he chose. What makes a person an Egyptian is not his physical parentage, but that he adopts and lives by Egyp tian customs; so also for Syrians and Jews respectively. Third, at the core of the matter, a person becomes a “Jew” when he consciously adopts the mentality ( pa,qoj ) of a Jew. It is a conscious, delibe rate choice to define oneself, and to be known by others, in a particular way and acc ording to an already-kno wn ethnicity. Fourth, simply imitating the ethnicity of another, while holding on to customs or practices normally associated with a different ethn icity, or while thinking in a way incongruous with that imitation, was considered disingenuous. Being Jewish and merely acting Greek (or vice versa) fooled no one. To become a Jew is to take up the Jewish pathos not merely to participate in external ethnic indicia. 77 2.9.19-20. W. Oldfather ((trans.), Epictetus: The Discourses as Reported by Arrian, the Manual, and Fragments, 1 (Loeb Classical Library, Cambri dge, MA 1956) 272) notes that the reading ti, u`pokri,nh| VIoudai/on w'n {Ellhn* is an emendation, “for the MS. says ‘the part of Greeks when you are a Jew’.” For the purposes of this study, the point is made either way.

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71 Smith’s six elements of ethnicity were noted above. By the first century, all of these elements were in place for the group commonly called the “Greeks.” 1) They had a group name, “Greeks.” 2) They believed in a common myth of descent, which extended back into the heroic past. The fact that the Greeks themselves seem to have been mostly uninformed about the historical particulars of their own national history much prior to the beginning of the first millennium BCE does not diminish anything. As I not ed above, it is the belief, not necessarily the proof, of common descent that lie s at the heart of an ethnicity. What matters was not that they knew all the details of their common descent, bu t that they believed they had one and were conscious of it. 3) They had a shared history th at had been well-chronicl ed in its latter days through literary historiographies 4) Greek culture was distin ctive, and well-known and wellrecognized into and through the Roman period. 5) The Greeks had a long association with a particular geographical place, and it could be ar gued that they had created 6) a sense of communal solidarity among themselves. While it might be a matter of debate as to the level and success of this solidarity, this seems to be what Aristotle had in mind as he described Greek life together: Po,lij me.n ou=n oivkiw.n plh/qo,j evsti kai. cw,raj kai. kthma,twn au;tarkej pro.j to. eu= zh/n) fanero.n de,\ o[tan ga.r mh. dunatoi. w=si tou,tou tugca,nein( dialu,etai kai. h` koinwni,a) e;ti de. e[neka tou,tou sune,rcontai\ oude. e[neka e;sti kai. ge,gone( kai. h` ouvsi,a auvtou/ tugca,nei au[th ou=sa (“By a Nation we mean an assemblage of hous es, lands, and property sufficient to enable the inhabitants to lead a civilized life. This is proved by the f act that when such a life is no longer possible for them, the tie itself which unites them is dissolved. Moreover, it is with such a life in view that the association is originally formed ; and the object for which a thing exists and has come into being is in fact the very essence of that particular thing”).78 78 Oec 1.1.2. Armstrong’s translation.

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72 The existence of these six elements is not to say that there was a nything like a standard uniformity across the ancient world of how Greek ethnicity was perceived, experienced, practiced, or described. What does seem fairly constant, however, is that the cultural aspect of this ethnic identity was particular ly strong. This was due in part to the great power of classical Greek culture. Ironically, it was so pervasive th at the concept of Greek identity became diluted. This is reflected as early as c. 380 BCE in Isocrates, Panegyricus 50: to. tw/n ~Ellh,vwn o;noma pepoi,hke mhke,ti tou/ ge,nouj avlla. th/j dianoi,aj dokei/n ei=nai( kai. ma/llon {Ellhnaj kalei/sqai tou.j th/j paideu,sewj th/j h`mete,raj h' tou.j th/j koinh/j fu,sewj mete,contaj (“the name of the Greeks seems to have been made no longer the na me of the nation, but of the thought, and those who share our learning are called ‘Greek’ rather than those who share a common nature”). Nor am I suggesting that Smith’s six elements are a precise description of the way the ancients viewed and described themselves. Their categories were not completely the same as ours. For example, Herodotus speaks of to. ~Ellhniko.n evo.n o[maimo,n te kai. o`mo,glwsson kai. qew/n i`dru,mata, te koina. kai. qusi ,ai h;qea, te o`mo,tropa (“the kinship of Greeks in the same blood, and the same language, and their common shrines of the gods, and customary sa crifices, and habits”) (8.144). I am instead saying that it is possible to see Smith’s six elements among the ancient Greeks. Furthermore, by the time of Josephus Gr eek ethnicity was mediated through widespread Hellenism, and there were many variants of what could be called “Greek” as these elements of ethnicity took on local colorings. Ho wever, it is clear that the sema ntic field of the word “Greek” was sufficiently defined in antiquity, the term was readily understan dable as denoting an ethnicity, and it can be described in terms of these six elements. As I noted above, ethnical strategies are ofte n born in situations wh ere an ethnicity is confronted with a more powerful social reality that threatens it in some way. For example, the

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73 causes of war often involve some element of ethn icity, but questions of ethnic self-understanding are also prompted by other, and larger, phenomen a. The rise of Hellenism in the ancient, classical world was such a phenomenon. With the influx of Greek culture throughout the ancient world, many peoples found themselves in need of reaffirming their unique identities, and much of their literature in the Helleni stic period reflects a consciousness of the need for self-definition. The growth and eventual domination of Roman power throughout the ancient world occasioned another, and simultaneous, crisis for many pe oples. By Roman times, although Hellenism was arguably the most prominent feat ure of the larger so cio-political situation, it was mediated through the experience of Roman imperium Long-standing political st ructures and hierarchies were dismantled or relativized by Roman conquest. Groups needed to maintain some sense of identity in the face of the ne w situation. As social structur es changed, ethnicities needed modification, revision, and rene gotiation. In classical antiquit y, this renegotiation of ethnic identity was expedited partly because ancient cu lture was characterized by assimilation in almost every aspect of life. The power of the Greek cultu ral heritage, coupled with both a thorough-going assimilation within society and the plastic, negotiable nature of ethnicity, enabled Gree k culture and ethnicity to survive in the Roman world. There was, however, a change in the notion of “Hellenic” as Greek power weakened and Roman power grew. So, “…the Romans of the Republic and later were usually content with the term Graecus to denote both ethnic Greek s and Hellenised peoples of non-Greek origin.”79 As I noted above, in the negotiation of an ethnicity with in the context of a dominant culture, both the dominant culture and the minority culture experience change. Greek ethnicity was able to survive th rough means of an ex tensive and influential dialogue with Rome. 79 N. Petrocheilos, Roman Attitudes to the Greeks (Athens 1974) 18.

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74 In that dialogue the Roman world was profoundly a ffected by Greek culture, but the definition of Greek identity changed also. Furthermore, this change was imposed from without, by a new and dominant culture. This resulted in wide-scale changes in how people were defined by others and in how they defined themselves. This is not th e place to enter into a discussion of how Romans defined themselves vis--vis Greeks. The approac h, as well as the answer, to that question is complicated, but it remains that the Roman world of the first century was a world largely adapted from Greek models. This is not to say, however, that Greek culture was static over its history in ancient times. The Hellenistic world had witnessed great politi cal and cultural changes. As early as 405 BCE Aristophanes (in The Frogs ) was lamenting the end (in his op inion) of high Athenian culture with the passing of Euripides and Sophocles, and the sense of Greek superiority generated in the wake of the Persian wars was relativized by th e conquests of Alexander III and their aftermath. “From the point of view of the Greeks, or at least the majority of them, the rise of Macedonia and the conquest of the East was not a victory of Hellenism over the barb arians; they could not identify themselves with the Macedonians and their kings.”80 As Polybius tried to point out to his fellow-Greeks, there simply was no stopping Roma n imperialism. By the time of Cicero, the orator could speak of Athens as “weakened and virtually broken.”81 Control of Greek affairs moved from Greece to new Hellenistic centers of power (places like Pella, Alexandria, and Antioch), and with the coming of Roman imperia lism power shifted again to Rome. Yet in spite of the political decline of Greece, Greek things were still highly respected in the Roman world, and Greek ethnicity itself survived. 80 A. Giovannini, ‘Greek Cities and Greek Comm onwealth’, in A. Bulloch et al (eds.), Images and Ideologies: Self-defini tion in the Hellenistic World (Berkeley 1993) 265. 81 QFr 1.1.28.

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75 …despite these vicissitudes and misfortunes, the Greeks were able to preserve their identity remarkably well. Even in the worst c onditions, even as exiles or as slaves, they preserved the awareness that they were the heir s to a great culture th at was different from all others. They were proud of their way of living and thinking. The humiliation of economic and political decline was to a certa in degree compensated for by the admiration for Greek civilization. Hellenism was extraord inarily attractive, a nd the Greeks were conscious of this attractiveness.82 Conscious, but also guarded. The Roman admiration for Greek cult ure did not run in the opposite direction. This feeling was not reciprocated. Some Greek s might admire the political wisdom of the Romans and all were impressed by their military power, but they never ceased to regard them culturally as barbarians. The Greeks were supremely satisfied with their own language and literature, and, except for a few an tiquarians like Plutar ch, who were curious about Roman history and institutions, felt no ca ll to learn the barb arous Latin tongue or read its uncouth and imitative literature. The result was that the Greeks had no impulse to Romanize themselves, and the Roman government felt no mission to impose their civilization on the East.83 The basic effect of Roman domination was to ma ke the maintenance of an ethnicity outside of its original context even more difficult. Th e dominant culture was always quick to remind such people that they were outsi ders. “…foreign immigrants could expect their host society … to note their peculiar appearances, cu stoms and accents, and to remi nd them of thei r ‘barbarian’ origins.”84 With Greeks in the Roman world this difficu lty was strongly mitigated by the fact that their culture was the source of much that was now called Roman. Greeks thus had fewer reasons to feel like outsiders. In fact, the Romans s eem to have extended sympathy toward contemporary Greeks out of a sense of Roman debt to Greek cult ure. “The former glories of Greece are seen as still compensating for its reduced state, and … the achievements and services of Athens in 82 Giovannini 267. 83 A. H. M. Jones, ‘The Greeks Under the Roman Empire’, Dumbarton Oaks Papers 17 (1963) 4. 84 Bohak 178-9.

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76 particular, and of the other old states in some degree, are held to just ify, and indeed to demand, specially considerate treatment of the contemporary Greek world.”85 The Roman stance toward the Greeks, although mostly positive, was an uneasy one. As noted earlier, ethnicity does not necessarily buy status, even if that ethnicity has managed to pervade a large part of the larger society. Th e Greeks were a conquere d people and received the scorn normally accorded to those wh o were vanquished. The Latin verb pergraecor acquired a contemptuous nuance (“self-indulgent”),86 as did the term Graeculus (“Grecian”),87 which was accompanied by such adjectives as levis (“capricious”), loquax (“talkative”), insulsus (“boring, stupid”), and fallax (“deceitful”).88 Latin authors ascribed to Greeks the qualities of volubilitas (“too talkative”), ineptia (“immoderate behavior or speech”), arrogantia (“haughtiness”), impudentia (“shamelessness”), levitas (“instability”), as well as deceit, luxury, and a lack of manliness.89 None of this rhetoric, however, coul d hide what was obvious, and, in truth, only sarcastically confessed it : that the Romans owed a tremendous debt to Greek culture in almost every way. Cato the Censor (M. Porcius Cato ; c. 243-149 BCE) was famously opposed to the influx of Greek things in his day, fearing them as a corrupting influence.90 Gruen has argued, however, that it would be a mistake to see in Cato’s invectives some kind of wholesale repudiation of Hellenic excellence. He was, after all, quite know ledgeable in all things Greek himself. Instead, Cato was interested in assert ing Roman superiority over Greek culture. “Cato’s knowledge of Greek and Greek culture, on the one hand, and his disparaging attitude, on the 85 Petrocheilos 67. 86 As in Pl. Mos. 64. Cf. J. Balsdon, Romans and Aliens (Chapel Hill 1979) 38. 87 This word was used to express a variety of attitudes towards Greeks, “from the mildly patronising to the openly c ontemptuous.” Petrocheilos 53. 88 H. Hill, ‘Dionysius of Halicarna ssus and the Origins of Rome’, JRS 51 (1961) 90. 89 Petrocheilos 35-48. 90 Plu. Cat. Ma

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77 other, were mutually reinforcing.”91 By criticizing Greek achieveme nts, the surpassing quality of the Roman achievements in the same areas would become more apparent. That is, Cato objected not to philhellenism in general, but to a ph ilhellenism that suggested Roman inferiority. Post-Cato rhetoric against Hellenism seems to have softened considerably. After the second century BCE, “Romans tended to idolize not only Greece’s past glory, but those Greeks whose creation it was, as well,”92 and “the anti-Greek current in Republican Rome perished virtually without a trace.”93 Cicero was an admirer of Greek culture and styled himself a philhellene.94 He expressed regret that Cori nth had been destroyed (146 BCE),95 and he spoke approvingly of Greek cities of his day as cultural centers96 as well as the cult ural superiority of Athens.97 This is no surprise, since Cicero himself received a Greek education. Guite has surveyed Cicero’s references to Greeks and has concluded, however, that Cicero’s praise of Greek things is also tempered by his patriotism. He was fighting, as Scipio had fought, to give th e Roman spirit a chance to declare itself in letters as well as in life. It was the Gr eeks who had made him aware of what Roman literature could be, it was they who had nourishe d its earliest growth; it was they who even now furnished his mind, exercised his intellig ence, and sharpened his pen. And yet it was these same Greeks who by their terrible dominan ce were preventing Roma n literature from ever achieving its rightful stature.98 Here we see that a strong sense of Roman ethnicity continued to pl ay a formative role in the face of the power of Greek culture and dominated the dialogue, just as it had in Cato the Censor’s criticisms of Greek culture. As much as Cicero was indebted to Greek culture, he envisioned the day in which Romans would know an even better culture built on its foundations. Until that day 91 E. Gruen, Culture and Identity in Republican Rome (Ithaca 1992) 74. 92 A. Henrichs, ‘Graecia Capta: Roman Views of Greek Culture’, HSCP 97 (1995) 244. 93 Henrichs 246. 94 Att 1.15.1. 95 Off 1.35. 96 QFr 1.1.27-8. 97 Flac 62. 98 H. Guite, ‘Cicero’s A ttitude to the Greeks’, GR 9 (1962) 157.

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78 dawned, Cicero seems to have harbored a kind of love-hate relationship with Greek culture. The often-quoted line about literature by Horace, Graecia capta ferum victorem cepit et artis intulit agresti Latio (“captured Greece seized her fierce conquero r and brought the arts into uncivilized Latium”), latently admits an inferiority to Greek things, an attitude th at apparently was both widespread and humiliating at the same time.99 Vergil, a contemporary of Horace, also paid hesitating homage to Greek culture in Aeneid 6.847-53: Excudent alii spirantia mollius aera (credo equidem), vivos ducent de marmore vultus, orabunt causa melius, caelique meatus describent radio et su rgentia sidera dicent: tu regere imperio populos, Romane, memento (hae tibi erunt artes), paci sque imponere morem, parcere subiectis et debellare superbos (“Others will fashion more softly-breathing bronzes (I truly believe), and will bring out fresh faces from marble, they will plead their cases better, and the movement of the heavens they will trace with a rod a nd designate the rising stars: you, Roman, remember to rule peoples with supreme power (these will be your arts), and to establish the order of peace, to spare those who have been subj ected and to subdue the arrogant”).100 Again, the Greek heritage is summoned only to become the foil for Roman excellence. While the Greeks had excelled in artistic achievements, they did not achieve anything like the Roman empire with its impressive display of polit ical power. In the comparison, Rome wins. Rome’s debt to Greece was undeniable, and yet the Romans despised the implication that Greece was therefore the greater culture, and th ey detested certain qualities among the Greeks. 99 The statement appears in Ep. 2.1.156-7. Hill (92) refers to th e sentiment of these words as “the conventional theory” in its day. Saunders suggests that Horace was echoing the words of Cato (‘The Nature of Rome’s Ea rly Appraisal of Greek Culture’, CP 39 (1944) 209). Cf. Liv. 34.4.3. 100 However, the Aeneid still reflects a good amount of tension between Greece and Rome. See Hill 90-2.

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79 This tension was managed in three ways.101 One strategy was to claim that Greeks throughout the ages possessed both good qualities and bad ones.102 Another strategy made a distinction between the Greeks of the past and the Greeks of the pres ent, the former being noble, the latter being contemptible.103 Yet another way around the tension was to distinguish between good ones and bad ones among contemporary Greeks.104 It could be argued that the second of these approaches was the most common. By Roman imperial times, Greek things, especially from the golden age of Athens, were considered, in many ways, to repr esent an ideal. This was especially apparent in the influence Greek culture had on Roman art, ar chitecture, and literature. Many of the temples in Rome were built using Greek craftsmen and after archaic Greek models, Roman villas were built in Greek style,105 and Greek works of art had flooded Italy since the second century BCE.106 With the coming of the Augustan age and the flow ering of a truly nationa l literature, there was little, if any, doubt that Roman culture, and thus an increasing sense of Roman ethnicity which was different from that of the Greeks, had come into its own. Yet even in that time many of RomeÂ’s best literati still looked back to Greek culture with a se nse of debt, as evidenced by the lines from Horace and Vergil quoted above. And ther e were other, more general, indicators that Greek culture and ethnicity survived well under Roman domination. In imp erial times literature continued to be written in Greek, even literatur e designed for the eyes of Roman elites who daily conversed in Latin, and within the Greek language itself there was an Atticizing movement which attempted to mimic the style and rhetoric of classical Athens. Josephus wrote in the time of the Second Sophistic, a kind of renaissance of Gr eek culture. What is important here is that 101 Balsdon 38-40. 102 Cic. Flac. 9. 103 Cf. Cic., De Orat 3.197; D.Chr., Or 31.157-60. 104 Cic. Ver ., 2.2.7. 105 P. Zanker, The Power of Images in the Age of Augustus (Ann Arbor 1990) 25-31. 106 E. Gruen, The Hellenistic World and the Coming of Rome (Berkeley 1984) 259.

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80 there was among some a distinction to be dr awn between contemporary Greeks and Greeks of the past. The ideal lay with the latter, not the former.107 Furthermore, Romans spoke well of Greek culture because they saw themselves as st anding on the shoulders of that culture, as it were, and having surpassed it. “A widespread co nsensus held that command of Greek learning was not only respectable but fundamental in projecting Rome’s own cultural ascendancy.”108 Greek ethnicity was thus able to survive the Ro man crisis in large part because the Romans themselves had a use for it, even if ultimately to claim superiority to it. Hellenistic authors, presumably driven by th e wants and needs of th eir audiences, found legitimation in establishing conn ections between themselves and the mythic, heroic Greek past. That is, ethnicities were reinvented by appeal to the epic age. “… in the competitive atmosphere of the Hellenistic world, a claim to heroic a ssociations became one ritual means by which to articulate local histories and local strengths to outs ide authorities.”109 This is another way of speaking of re-casting an ethnicity in a Greek mold. Alcock goes on to speak of …the yearning on the part of Hellenistic co mmunities for a history, either real or “invented.” … Stress was laid upon recovering and celebrating origin myths and legends, on establishing pedigrees running back into the mists of time. In part, this selfconsciousness appears a product of th e threat to the independent life of small cities, a threat rooted in Hellenistic times which grew apace under the Roman empire. The right to privilege, the very right to existence, increasingly had to be demanded upon historic grounds. … Ancestries and origins, invoked thro ugh myth and ritual, could be used to claim kinship with other cities, to esta blish status, and to secure identity.110 Historians such as Polybius, a native Greek who lived in Rome for several years and tutored Scipio, no doubt did much to fost er and feed philhellenism in Rome,111 as did Augustus’ 107 Petrocheilos 63-7. 108 Gruen, Culture and National Identity 270. 109 S. Alcock, ‘The Heroic Past in a Hellenis tic Present’, in P. Cartledge et al (eds.), Hellenistic Constructs: Essays in Culture, History, and Historiography (Hellenistic Culture and Society 26, Berkeley 1997) 33. 110 Alcock 33. 111 See Saunders 212-3.

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81 decision to adopt a Greek myt hological progenitor for the su bject of the national epic.112 By the turn of the first century CE, the mood of uneasy recognition of Greek culture seems to have shifted sufficiently that Dionysus of Halicarnassus could contrive a Greek origin for the Romans and proclaim that Rome should rightly be called a Greek city.113 He also produced explanations of the Greek origins of clientship and the Senate, he found Greek el ements in various features of Roman religion, and he had severa l characters who are either por trayed as aware of the Greek political models or as cons ciously imitating famous Greeks.114 Hill has suggested that Dionysius was consciously opposing the anti-Hellenic undercurrent of sentiment in his day.115 Even if that assessment goes to far, Dionysius still stands as a confession (even if it is overdone) of the enduring power of Greek culture in his day. It was also noted above, from Hall, that am ong the ancients, ethnicity was expressed in texts. Historiography after the Gr eek model was, by JosephusÂ’ time, a nearly-ideal vehicle for the expression or construction of an ethnicity, since it was capable of dealing with the subjects of origins as well as portraying the defining charact eristics of a people as revealed through their words, actions, and customs. Greek historiogr aphy developed initially from the epic tradition, and the power of the Iliad and the Odyssey as a definition of Greek identity was and is well known. Both of those works communicated a strong sense of sugge,neia (in spite of the personal disagreements between major characters) and st rong ties to the homeland. Greek historiography acquired an interest in geography and the cultures of other lands from the influence of Hecataeus of Miletus and his Perih,ghsij Gh/j a work that combined a survey of geography with ethnography. It was left for Herodotus to take th e next step and turn ethnography into history. 112 Hill 90, 92. 113 1.89.1. 114 Hill 89. 115 Hill 92-3.

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82 “Ethnography was subsequently either subsumed under the banner of history or became more historically oriented.”116 Greek historiography became a medium by which the cultures of others served to highlight what was essentially Greek by way of contrast and comparison. Even as the Mediterranean world fell under Roman rule, the Roman admiration for Greek things meant that historiography in the Greek ve in continued to be written witness Polybius and Dionysius of Halicarnassus, and in a different genre, the Aeneid of Vergil. In these writers we see that Greek culture was still th e latent benchmark of comparison, even when the subject was the history of Rome. Although Greek culture was now the foil fo r Roman culture, the shape of the expression was still Greek. My discussion of Greek ethnicity has, so far, drawn from sources in the world around Josephus. But what did Josephus himself mean when he said that something, or some one, was “Greek”? What was his concept of Greek ethnicity? This has a significant bearing on what Josephus thought he was doing and how he tried to do it. As it turns, out, Josephus does not seem to have had a clearly-defined idea of Greek identity. Nowhere did he discuss the matter explicitly, and often “Greek” in Josephus simply means “non-Jewish.” In the Bellum Judaicum the term regularly appears as part of an “us” versus “them” dichotomy in which those who are not “us” (Jewish) are often ( but not always) hostile to Jews.117 Herein lies a significant clue to Josephus’ literary aims. His use of the word “Greek” to denote what is non-Jewish (often with hostility) betrays his view of the world in which he lived, a world in which Jews were “other,” not part of mainstream society. He operated on the basis of a perceived wide-scale social rejection of his people and he wrot e to get them “inside.” As I ha ve shown above, this is typical of scenarios in which ethnicities are created. Jo sephus fits the model well. At any rate, Josephus’ 116 Sterling 52. 117 Rajak, The Jewish Dialogue 139, 142.

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83 failure to lay down explicit criter ia for what he means by the word “Greek” can be interpreted to mean that he operated on the idea of Greek iden tity that was common in his day. No explication was needed, because everyone knew what it was. If this assumption is correct, then we are justified in understanding Greek identity in the way I have outlined above, as drawn from the ancient sources. Rajak has also noted that Josephus sometime s distinguishes between Syrians and Greeks. In Palestine this distinction woul d not have been easy to maintain, especially if “Syrian” simply reflects the Roman provincial desi gnation of the area in which these people lived. Surely they were thoroughly Greek in their culture, so the difference between Greeks and Syrians is puzzling. Rajak has suggested, tent atively, that “Greek” refers to people who were citizens of Greek-style cities, presumably with their own constitutions, and “Syrian” refers to those who lived in towns or villages, but whose culture was Greek also.118 The suggestion is viable. If it is correct, it provides an important clue about what Josephus thinks a Greek is: he is one who is a recognized part of an established Greek city. At least one thing does seem clear: Josephus operates on the basis of a cultural idea of Greek identity. “… at the time of writing the Jewish War Josephus was on the way to forming a conception of a Greek culture as something di stinct from the people who were contemporary Greeks, or would-be Greeks.”119 Framing the matter in this way is what would allow Josephus an opportunity to attempt to negotiate a way in fo r the Jews. If Greek identity was a matter of culture Josephus could argue that Jews are Greek in this way even though Jews had no blood ties to Greeks. 118 Rajak, The Jewish Dialogue 140f. 119 Rajak, The Jewish Dialogue 143.

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84 Josephus and Ethnicity As there was a Greek ethnicity in Roman times, there was also a Jewish ethnicity in place. Smith’s six elements of ethnicity existed for the Jews. In additi on to 1) their communal name ( VIoudai/oi ),120 they possessed 2) a national, canonized literature (the texts of the Hebrew Bible) that detailed a myth of common descent and 3) a more recent literature (such as the books of the Maccabees) that continued to tell their shared history. Strongly ingrained in that name and history was their religion. It is probably true that, in antiquity, to say that someone was Jewish always included the idea that they practiced Judaism in some form or to some extent.121 This does not, however, warrant the id ea that the religious component was necessarily the dominant one signified by the word VIoudai/oj It would be correct to say, how ever, that in the first century CE religion was a criterion for Jewishness and no t merely an indicium. It was also well-known that Jews had 4) a distinctive shared culture, th at 5) their ancestral hom e was considered to be Palestine (and especially its capital, Jerusalem) and 6) that they not only perceived but also practiced a strong sense of co mmunal solidarity. Items 1, 4, 5, a nd 6 were often noted by pagan authors.122 While Greek ethnicity fared well under Ro man domination, Jewish ethnicity did not. Greek culture became such a powerful force that it was considered the norm, and non-Greek cultures were considered inferior As Verkuyten describes it, Ethnicity and race can develop into stigma id entities, which provide a chronically salient distinction or a master status that cannot be ignored and se rves to define the essential character of those who are clas sified. An example of this is the identity ‘Gypsy’ in many 120 The meaning of the name VIoudai/oj changed over time. It was originally, and predominantly, an ethno-geographic term. After the Maccabean period the Judean ethnos changed and the term acquired a wider meaning, denoting anyone who followed a Jewish way of life. S. Cohen, The Beginnings of Jewishness (Berkeley 1999) 69-70, 78-9. 121 S. Cohen, The Beginnings of Jewishness 135-97. 122 I will demonstrate this in chapter 3.

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85 east European countries. A person can be a doctor, an engineer, or a t eacher, but as soon as she or he is known to be a Gypsy, this id entity tends to become the definitive one.123 The same situation prevailed for Jews in th e Roman empire. Some of the most abundant evidence for Jewish engagement in ancient soci ety has come from Egypt, where it appears that Jews pervaded almost every level of ancient Hellenistic society. Some served as soldiers (of various ranks, until the Roman period), some were money lenders, some were tradesmen, contractors, horse dealers, taxfarmers, artisans, merchants, vine-dressers, weavers, potters, musicians, doctors, etc., and more often than not they bore Greek names in addition to their national names. “A general conclusion emerging fr om the surviving record s is that the economic and occupational status of Egyptian Jewry under the Ptolemies was normal to the extent that they were represented in all callings, well represen ted on the land, in the armed forces and in the government services,”124 and evidence from other places suggests that Egypt was not an anomalous situation for the Jews under Roman rule Jews were not distinguished from Gentiles by their occupations,125 and even in Rome itself they appear to be regular parts of public life. Cicero noted their presence in his public defense of Flaccus,126 and Suetonius mentions their presence among those who mourned the death of Julius Caesar.127 Yet in spite of this thorough penetration into the institutions of the ancient world, the Jews were viewed as different from the rest of th e Greco-Roman world in every one of Smith’s six elements of ethnicity. In the next chapter I hope to describe the ex tent and severity of this public perception of the Jews in the ti me of Josephus. For now, the point is that the perceived Roman 123 P.52. 124 S. Applebaum, ‘The Social and Economic Stat us of Jews in the Diaspora’, in S. Safrai and M Stern (eds.), The Jewish People in the First Century (CRINT 1.2, Philadelphia 1976) 7034. Cf. Tcherikover, CPJ I.16-19; also M. Williams, The Jews Among the Greeks and Romans: A Diasporan Sourcebook (Baltimore 1998) 19-26. 125 S. Cohen, The Beginnings of Jewishness 37. 126 Flac. 28. 127 Iul. 84.5.

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86 political and cultural realities of the first century CE meant that th e Jews were in need of revising and renegotiating their ethnicity if they hoped to enjoy a respected place within the larger cultural realm. The motive for this was, as noted above, rooted in a psychological need for some sense of self-esteem and belonging. What was Josephus’ understanding of Jewi sh ethnicity? For him, the term VIoudai/oj simply means “Jewish,” and he used it in both an ethno -geographic sense and as a religious term. When used as an ethno-geographic term, it can refer to all the inhabitants of th e country called “Judea,” or it can refer more narrowly to the people who li ve in the southern part of that country (as opposed to Samaritans or Galileans).128 In fact, Josephus regularly distinguishes Jews from both Samaritans and Idumeans ethnically and the “boundaries of what may count as Jewish do thus appear relatively non-negotiable.”129 The phrase VIoudai/oj to. ge,noj basically means “Judaean by birth,” and S. Cohen has argued that the phrase do es not necessarily have a religious implication for Josephus. It means that a person was born in Judea.130 One area in which Jewish ethnicity was esp ecially vulnerable to change was in the association of Jews with the homeland and the cap ital city of Jerusalem. By the time of Josephus, it seems that “Judea” was becoming less and less of an ethnic criterion for Jews because their territorially dislocated situat ions often made strong ties to the homeland difficult or nearly impossible. The political situa tion contributed greatly to this condition. Josephus wrote during the Flavian dynasty of Rome, in which broad politi cal changes were being effected in the Roman east. The Roman experiment with client kingdo ms in the east had, in a word, failed, having 128 S. Cohen, ‘ VIOUDAIOS TO GENOS and Related Expressions in Josephus’, in F. Parente and J. Sievers (eds.), Josephus and the History of the Greco-Roman Period: Essays in Memory of Morton Smith (Studia Post-Biblica 41, Leiden 1994) 25-32. 129 Rajak, The Jewish Dialogue 138. 130 S. Cohen, ‘ VIOUDAIOS TO GENOS ’, 36-38.

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87 resulted in too much instability. When Vespas ian came to the throne, eastern client kingdoms were dismantled and replaced by direct Roman over sight. Aristobulus, king of Lesser Armenia, had his kingdom annexed to the province of Gala tia in 71 or 72 CE; Antiochus IV, king of Commagene, was deposed in c. 73 CE and had his kingdom annexed to the province of Syria; Sohaemus lost his throne as king of Emesa and hi s territory was also attached to Syria in the early 70’s CE; Vespasian refused to reinstitute the Herodian dynasty of s outhern Palestine when he declined to appoint Herod Agrippa II as ki ng over Judea, and Trajan annexed the kingdom of the Nabateans in southern Palestine in 106 CE. As more and more territory came under direct Roman administration, concepts of homeland were harder to maintai n. Palestine in particular saw more than its share of Roman manipulation. “ … within a time span of 132 years (63 BCE– 70CE), Palestine was divided and redivided many tim es, given to local dynasts, and taken from others by the Roman oppressor.”131 The imposition of Roman rule in 63 CE permanently changed the character of the Jewish homeland. Jews saw it as becoming more and more pagan, and it eventually lost much of its value as a political national symbol. The terminology in the surviving texts is also telling, since “almost no one in the Flavian period calls the Jews ‘Judeans’; th at is, almost no one links the Iudaioi to Judea.”132 The term for the ancestral homeland becomes, among non-Jews, e ither Idumea or Palestina, and when pagan authors speak of Iudaioi they do not link them with J udea. Among Romans, Judea as an ethnographic place was, in effect, disappearing,133 and this made the religious indicium more 131 D. Mendels, The Rise and Fall of Jewish Nationalism (New York 1992) 252. 132 D. Schwartz, ‘Herodians and Ioudaioi in Flavian Rome’, in J. Edmondson et al (eds.), Flavius Josephus and Flavian Rome (Oxford 2005) 69. 133 A similar thing happened with Greek culture. The Romans referred to Greece as Achaea, not as Hellas.

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88 prominent.134 Schwartz notices that “if one compares the War and the Antiquities Josephus’ usage seems to show a growing notion of the Je ws as people defined not by virtue of their relationship to a place, but, by virtue of their relationship to a religion.”135 In fact, Josephus downplayed the significance of the Jewish homel and in his narrative of Biblical history, Antiquitates Judaicae 1-11. In the canonical Biblical texts, the land of Palestine belongs to the Jews by a covenantal promise from God. As Jose phus tells the stories, however, he often omits repetitions of that promise and instead turns the occupation of the land into a prophecy (and uttered by a pagan prophet at that).136 Similarly, he omits God’s order to Joshua to conquer the land, and he regularly omits the divine promise of return to the land after the Babylonian exile. “He simply does not portray the land as the heart of the Jewish experience.”137 Josephus seems to have acknowledged that, in the face of the po litical realities of hi s day, a strong sense of connection with Palestine was not a vi able criterion of Jewish ethnicity. The religious dimension of Jewish ethnicity wa s a sensitive issue for a person in Josephus’ situation. On the one hand, Josephus remained Jewi sh in his religious co nvictions throughout his literary works. Nowhere did he assimilate the Jewish God with a pagan god, nor offered a way by which Jews could worship pagan gods, and he went to great lengths to explain how the customs which seemed so odd to non-Jews were actually expressions of great piety when understood correctly. For Josephus being Jewish meant worshi pping and living according to Torah and Jewish customs respectivel y. His idea of Jewish identity is ti,nej o;ntej evx avrch/j VIoudai/oi kai. ti,si crhsa,menoi tu,caij u`fV oi[w| te paideuqe,ntej nomoqe,th| ta. pro.j euvse,beian (“who Jews were from the beginning, and what fortunes they have experienced, and by what 134 D. Schwartz 69-70. 135 D. Schwartz 77. 136 AJ 4.101ff, Balaam. 137 B. Amaru, ‘Land Theology in Josephus’ “Jewish Antiquities”’, JQR 71 (1981) 229.

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89 lawgiver they were taught the things of piety”).138 Josephus was basically invoking what Smith identifies as a shared history. These things were not for sale, they were non-negotiable. On the other hand, Jewish refusal to integrate into pa gan religion and to give up foreign customs was commonly interpreted as kind of malevolence against the world at worst, or a strange aloofness at best. A large part of Josephus’ task was to tr y to convince his Greek (i .e., Hellenistic) readers that the Jews were sufficiently Greek culturally that these other aspect s of their self-identity should not pose a significant obstacle to full membership in Hellenistic society. Conclusion Josephus wrote in the milieu where older Gr eek things were viewed with a kind of idealism, where Jewish things we re viewed as foreign, and in which the Jews were struggling with affirming, or renegotiating, th eir self-definition. It was also a time when the Jews had been publicly defeated by Roman power, their homela nd was ceasing to function as an element of their self-understanding, and the Roman east wa s becoming more tightly controlled directly by Rome. Before Josephus wrote the Bellum Judaicum other accounts of the wa r either flattered the Romans or denigrated the Jews,139 and Josephus repeatedly men tioned Roman hatred of the Jewish nation as an important part of the background to the war.140 The public perception of Jewish ethnicity was suffering terribly. Howeve r, Josephus also stood in a tradition of openness to Hellenism.141 From this collection of circumstances an opportunity presented itself. Josephus had at his disposal a literary vehicle by which he could constr uct an ethnicity for the Jews: historiography in the Greek trad ition. Through this genre he w ould contribute to the dialogue 138 AJ 1.6. 139 BJ 1.2. 140 Cf. BJ 3.133, 140; 4.135; 5:451, 556; 6:214, 263; etc. BJ 7:47 sums it up: to. de. kata. tw/n VIoudai,wn para. pa/sin h;kmaze mi/soj (“hatred of the Jews by all men was at its height”). 141 This is the subject of the next chapter.

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90 about how to perceive Jewish identity in the wo rld of the first century CE. From its roots in Homer and on through the work of Herodotus, Greek historiography had long possessed strong ethnic qualities and Josephus chose to exploit this function of the genre for the crisis in which he envisioned his people. His plan was to write Je wish historiography in the Greek vein for the purpose of negotiating a renewed de finition of Jewish ethnicity in the Roman world. He himself was well-suited to the task, since he was a Jew who lived in Rome and enjoyed Roman citizenship and literary patronage. He immersed hims elf in Greek literature for the task that he no doubt thought would redeem his people in the ar ena of public opinion and provide them with a new sense of self-understanding that would carry them into the foreseeable future. S. Cohen has argued that “the Hellenistic worl d not only served as the foil against which the Jews redefined themselves, but also provided the conceptions that were essential to the new Jewish self-definition.”142 This comports to what was noted above, that an ethnic group often hopes to define itself in terms of the symbols of the dominant culture around it. Josephus was keenly aware of this fact and used the concepti ons, and the means for expressing them, of his day to accomplish this redefinition. Dionysius’ positive presentation of Hellenism is significant for the present study. Dionysius was a native of Halicar nassus (east of Rome) who came to Rome c. 29 BCE after a war (the civil war in Rome) a nd wrote a national (Roman) history in twenty books. He felt indebted to the Romans for the benefits of his life in Rome143 and wrote to educate Greeks about Roman history which he felt they knew only incorrectly.144 His history concerns ethnicity in that he set out to correct and change (for the bette r) the perceptions of one people 142 S. Cohen, “Religion, Ethnicity, and ‘Helleni sm’ in the Emergence of Jewish Identity in Maccabean Palestine” in P. Bilde et al (eds.), Religion and Religious Prac tice in the Seleucid Kingdom (Aarhus 1990) 204. 143 1.6.5. 144 1.4.2.

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91 about another. To this extent he was opening th e dialogue that makes the establishment of an ethnicity possible. All of this is remarkably sim ilar to Josephus, who came to Rome from the east after a war only a couple of generations late r and who, it is generally acknowledged, knew the Roman Antiquities of Dionysius145 and wrote a national (Jewish) history in twenty books that was designed to dispel false understandi ngs of Jewish origins and customs.146 Both authors were engaged in the business of constructing an ethnic ity for peoples of their own day. While neither were ready to surrender either a fundamental Roman or Jewish identity respectively, both labored to show that those identities had strong and old affinities with Hellenism. Again, we may not suppose that Dionysius’ Roman Antiquities represents the view of every Roman, but its publication argues for a continuing acknowledgement of the Roman debt toward the Greeks and Greek culture, even if in the end the Romans viewed themselves as better by the comparison. More importantly, as Saunders has observed, “T he philhellenes seem to have been slow to relinquish any part of their Roman birthright. Yet from the introduction of Greek philosophy at Rome there did slowly emerge a mingling of Greek and Roman ideals which resulted in a more cosmopolitan view of men and of life.”147 Indeed, the classic Greek distinction between Greeks and barbarians had no counter part in the Roman view.148 This more cosmopolitan view, which stands behind Dionysius’ work, along with ever-e xpanding notions of what it meant to be Greek, opened a window of opportunity fo r Josephus to negotiate for the Jews a favorable place within the sentiments of his day in Rome which were increasingly favorable toward Greek culture. 145 Cf. L. Feldman, ‘Hellenizations in Josephus ’ Jewish Antiquities : The Portrait of Abraham’, in L. Feldman and G. Hata (eds.), Josephus, Judaism, and Christianity (Detroit 1987) 134. 146 P. Collomp, ‘Der Platz des Josephus in der Teknik der Hellenistichen Geschichtsschreibung’, in A. Schalit (hg.), Zur Josephus-Forschung (Darmstadt 1973). 147 Saunders 217. Cf. also Balsdon 41. 148 F. W. Walbank, ‘Nationality as a Factor in Roman History’, HSCP 76 (1972) 158.

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92 As Josephus undertook his literary works he wa s therefore engaging in a project of ethnic self-definition that was in keep ing with the concerns of other literary works in his own day. He was also participating in a longstanding Jewish concern to re-affi rm who they were in the face of a changing world. How to do this, however, had been, and was still, debated in Josephus’ time. The Jewish literature that arose in the period from the fourth century BCE to the first century CE (known as the Apocrypha and Pseude pigrapha) proposed differe nt strategies that spanned a wide range of possibili ties. Josephus’ choice was to attempt to define Jews in Greek terms. That he did not chose to align Jews with Roman excellence is significant. As I have noted, the Romans respected Greek cultur e but at the same time felt th at they had surpassed it. By choosing to align the Jews with Greek excellence, Josephus was car eful not to claim any kind of equal footing with Roman ascendancy.149 No one would have believed it, especially in light of the humiliating defeat of 70 CE. Instead, Josephus chose the more humble option of aligning the Jews with that Greek culture with which the Romans had already made peace, a culture they could respect and despise at th e same time. For Josephus, if the Jews could attain to some semblance of the respect the Romans offered the Greeks (even if it was offered in condescension), that would have been enough. This approach was markedly different from the violent apocalypticism that had culminated in the First Jewish War. It was, instead, an approach that emphasized sameness and compatibility. 149 Goodman, ‘Josephus as Roman Citizen’, 336-38.

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93 CHAPTER 3 THE MILIEU IN WHICH JO SEPHUS LIVED AND WROTE Why did Josephus feel the need to produce te xts that, among other th ings, reconstructed Jewish ethnicity? This question is not fully an swered by the observation noted in chapter two, that a psychological sense of self-esteem and bel onging is an important factor in the development of an ethnicity. The question may be taken furthe r: what precipitated a sense of low self-esteem and rejection that led Josephus and others like him to propose new ways of understanding the relationship between the Jews and Hellenistic cu lture? What was going on that created a sense of crisis calling for the reassertion of Jewish self-understanding? The answer to this question is important because it establishes a motive, wi thin historical conditions, for the ethnographic feature of all of Josephus’ works. People do not produce statements of ethnicity, or literary works heavy with ethnic apologetics, spontane ously or randomly. Ethnicities need revision and renegotiation in the face of challe nge and perceived crisis that affect self-esteem. Ethnicities are, by their nature, responses. In th is chapter I hope to reconstruct a historical context for Josephus’ works that explains why concerns of ethnicity and se lf-definition would have been on his mind, as well as demonstrate his awareness of them. Mistreatment of Jews in Greco-Roman Society I noted in the previous chapter that the Jews appeared differe nt to their neighbors in every way, if we use Smith’s description of ethnicity as a way of comparing two groups. Even worse, attempts by Jews in ancient times to maintain those differences in practice by conserving traditional customs and refusing to adopt custom s of the people around them (thus adopting what appeared to be a strategy of i gnoring the dominant culture) made them appear not just different, but conceited and hostile to the rest of society. This “strangeness” was, perhaps more than

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94 anything else, the prime factor behind anti-Jewish sentiments.1 In addition to this, the Jews of Josephus’ day had most recently been defeated by the Romans (by Pompey, who subjugated Judea in 64 BCE, and again, of course, in the Firs t Jewish War, 66-70 CE). Therefore this ethnic group, which was already seen as odd and hostile, now had the added stigma of having been humiliated in military defeat, tw ice within recent memory. As a result of previous conquests (at the hands of Assyrians, Babylonians, and Greek s), by the first century CE Jews had been dispersed all over the ancient world (commonly called the Jewish diaspora). A people who were displaced because of war, unrest, famine, etc. now also found themselves in even more difficult circumstances: they were a minority in a fore ign place, and they generally were among the poorer people in that place. The picture that emerges from the ancient sources is that Jews were regularly subjected to unfair or harsh treatment by Roman society at la rge, and that the Roman governmental machine was hardly sympathetic at local levels. In what follows I will attempt to review briefly, in chronological order, a seri es of events that demo nstrates this picture. Unfair economic policies toward Jews predated Roman control of th e east. In the latesecond and early-first centurie s BCE, a wave of nationalism swept through Egypt as the Ptolemaic regime weakened and economic difficulties arose.2 Under this movement the Egyptian Jews did not fare well, and the Seleucid king Seleucus IV Philopater (187-175 BCE) tried to confiscate the temple treasury in Jerusalem for the Seleucid coffers.3 By the first century BCE, 1 Sevenster, The Roots of Pagan Anti-Semitism 143-4. Z. Yavetz wisely suggests that anti-Jewish sentiments in antiq uity should not be viewed as a unique phenomenon but should be understood against the wider context of antibar barism in general. ‘Judeophobia in Classical Antiquity: A Different Approach’, JJS 44 (1993) 13. 2 E. Gabba, ‘The Growth of Anti-Judaism or th e Greek Attitude Towards the Jews’, in W. Davies and L. Finkelstein (eds.), The Cambridge History of Judaism, 2 (Cambridge 1989) 635. 3 2 Mac 3:1-40.

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95 Egyptian anti-Judaism had transc ended its local setti ng and combined with misinformation in Greek authors and anti-Jewish propaganda from the Seleucids to create a wider anti-Jewish environment in the ancient world.4 When Roman rule began in 31 BCE, changes in Egyptian governmental administration resulted in Jews basi cally disappearing from civil service positions in society, which probably suggests that not many of them were economically affluent at that time.5 This significance of this is that in the ancient world, social mobility was basically available through the network of civil service pos itions which contributed to the maintenance of social homogeneity.6 In addition to being cut off from positions from which they might better themselves, most Egyptian Jews were also subjected to heavier taxation than Greeks.7 In a similar move, after the conflagration of 70 CE, Vespasian imposed a tax for a new fiscus Iudaicus on all Jews in the empire.8 It was well-known in many places that, prior to the First Jewish War, Jewish communities outside of Jerusalem (the Diaspor a) levied a tax among themselves and sent the sum to Jerusalem every year.9 For example, Tacitus mentions it in his Histories (5.5) as part of his description of the customs of the Jewish people. The problem wa s that it was a constant challenge for Jews to keep these funds safe for their inte nded destination. For example, in Antiquitates Judaicae 4 Gabba 636, 646. 5 Applebaum, ‘The Social and Economic Status’, 704-5. 6 See N. Purcell, ‘The Apparitore s: A Study in Social Mobility’, Papers of the British School at Rome 51 (1983) 125-73. 7 The evidence is collected in CPJ I nos. 60-2. 8 C.D 65.2. 9 J. Liver, ‘The Half-Shekel Offering in Biblical and Post-Bib lical Literature,’ HTR 56 (1963) 173-98. Josephus mentions the practice as being that of all Jews everywhere. “ Qauma,sh| de. mhdei,j eiv tosou/toj h=n plou/toj evn tw/| h`mete,r w| i`erw/| pa,ntwn tw/n kata. th.n oivkoume,nhn VIoudai,wn kai. sebome,nwn to.n qeo.n e;ti de. kai. tw/n avpo. th/j VAsi,aj kai. th/j Euvrw,phj eivj auvto. sumfero,ntwn evk pollw/n pa,nu cro,nwn .” (“And let no one wonder that there was such wealth in our temple, since all the Jews throughout the empire, and those who worshipped God, even those of Asia and Europe, have been sending their c ontributions to it from very ancient times.”) AJ 14.11. Tacitus knew about it as well: Hist. 5.5.

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96 14:112f, Josephus quotes the Historica Hypomnemata of Strabo of Cappadocia as evidence of this problem. Strabo documented that in the course of the war in 88 BCE pe,myaj de. Miqrida,thj eivj Kw/ e;labe ta. crh,mata a] pare,qeto evkei / Kleopa,tra basi,lissa kai. ta. tw/n VIoudai,wn ovktako,sia ta,lanta (“Mithridates sent to Cos and took th e funds which queen Cleopatra had put there, and eight hundred talents of the Jews”), to which Josephus adds the explanation: “ h`mi/n de. dhmo,sia crh,mata ouvk e;stin h' mo,na ta. tou/ qeo u/ kai. dh/lon o[ti tau/ta meth,negkan eivj Kw/ ta. crh,mata oi` evn th/| VAsi,a| VIoudai/oi dia. to.n Miqrida,tou fo,bon ” (“For we have no funds but only those that are God’s, and it is clea r that the Asian Jews had sent th ese funds to Cos out of fear of Mithridates”). Confiscating these funds was a relatively eas y thing to do and was one of the most common actions taken against Jewish communities. In the ancient literature we hear several complaints that these funds had been seized by local officials. In 59 BCE Lucius Valerius Flaccus, the imperial legate in Asia in 6261 BCE, was tried for maladministration over a complaint by the Jews of Asia that he had c onfiscated their funds wh ich were intended for Jerusalem. He was defended by Cicero. The Ro man Senate had banned the export of gold and silver to foreign countries, but the Jews had alwa ys been granted an exemption in order to pay their temple tax.10 Flaccus, however, ignored the exempti on and put the money into the Roman publicum Cicero’s defense was to admit that the charge s were true and that his client was acting dutifully, following Roman law in prohibiting th e export of the funds. In the course of the defense, Cicero shows little restrain t in denigrating the Jews. He says: Quis est, iudices, qui hoc non vere laudare possit? Exportari aurum non oportere cum saepe antea senatus tum me consule grav issime iudicavit. Huic autem barbarae superstitioni resistere severitatis, multit udinem Iudaeorum flagrantem non numquam in contionibus pro re publica contemnere gravit atis summae fuit. … Stantibus Hierosolymis 10 E. Smallwood, The Jews Under Roman Rule From Pompey to Domitian (Leiden 1976) 126.

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97 pacatisque Iudaeis tamen istorum religio sacr orum a splendore huius imperi, gravitate nominis nostri, maiorum institutis abhorrebat; nu nc vero hoc magis, quod illa gens quid de nostro imperio sentiret ostendit armis; quam cara dis immortalibus esset docuit, quod est victa, quod elocata, quod serva facta. (“Who is there, judges, who cannot truly praise this? The senate had most seriously ruled often before, while I was consul, that gold ought not be exported. But to resist this barbarous superstition was to be strict, and to disregard the multitude of Jews, who were inflamed in the assemblies about public busin ess, was an act of the highest dignity. … While Jerusalem was standing and the Jews were peaceful, the religion of that detestable people was adverse to the splendor of this empire, the dignity of our name, and the customs of our ancestors; now it is more trul y detestable, since that people have shown with arms what they think about our empire; and just how dear it was to the immortal gods has been shown, because it was conquered, farmed out for taxes, and has become occupied.”)11 The defeat of Jerusalem to which Cicero refe rred was that of Pompey in 64/3 BCE, which brought Judea under Roman control. Cicero’s speech was delivered in 59 BCE, so the memory of that defeat was still fresh in Roman minds. Cicero seemed confident that he could easily arouse anti-Jewish sentiments amon g the jurors, whom he was attempting to persuade to see the issue from the Roman side. To deny the Jews an exemption was simply to hold them to the demands of law; Flaccus was acting properly, Cicer o explains. According to him, the Jews had proven themselves to be troublemakers both in Rome and in Jerusalem, and this latest incident was another example of their rebellion agains t Roman law. He therefore argued that they deserved to have their requests ignored. Furthermore, he added, th e inferiority of the Jews as a people was evident in the results of the recent co nflict. The gods obviously did not favor them. In another place in the same speec h, he referred to Jerusalem as suspiciosa ac maledica civitate (“a suspicious and slanderous city”).12 Yet we probably ought not ma ke too much of Cicero’s rhetoric here. It was his common practice, in such judicial set tings, to incriminate the national 11 Flac. 69. 12 Flac. 68.

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98 character of opponents.13 When we take this rhetorical practice into account, “there is little left of Cicero’s supposed anti-Semitism.”14 In the rest of Cicero’s extant works the Jews are conspicuously ignored, so he does not seem to have been particularly trou bled by, nor interested in, them. Yet a case can be made that Cicero wa s playing upon current an ti-Jewish sentiments, and that “… Cicero counted on arousing anti-Jewish prejudice in the jurors’ minds to colour their consideration of the ch arges against Flaccus.”15 Another example dates from 14 BCE and comes from Josephus: To,te de. peri. th.n VIwni,an auvtw/n genome,nwn po lu. plh/qoj VIoudai,wn o] ta.j po,leij w;|kei prosh,|ei kairou/ kai. parrhsi,aj evpeilhmme,noi kai. ta.j evphrei,aj e;legon a]j evphrea,zonto mh,te no,moij oivkei,oij evw,menoi crh/sqai di,kaj te avnagkazo,menoi dido,nai katV evph,reian tw/n euvquno,ntwn evn i`erai/j h`me,raij kai. tw /n eivj ~Ieroso,luma crhma,twn avnatiqeme,nwn avfairoi/nto strateiw/n kai. leitourgiw/n avnagkazo,menoi koinwnei/n kai. pro.j tau/ta dapana/n tw/n i`erw/n crhma,twn w-n avfei,qhsan aivei. ~Rwmai,wn auvtoi/j evpitreya,ntwn kata. tou.j oivkei,ouj zh/n no,mouj) (“Then when they [Agrippa and Herod] were in Ionia, a great multitude of Jews who inhabit their cities came, seizing the opportuni ty and courage, and related the abuses they were suffering, that they were not allowed to ha ve their own laws, that they were forced to present their lawsuits, by the abuse of the judges, on the holy days, and that they were deprived of the funds that had been set aside for Jerusalem, having been forced to participate in campaigns and public services a nd to spend the sacred funds for these things, from which they were always released by the Romans, who had allowed them to live according to their own laws.”)16 The litany of complaints reveals a situation of fr equent interference in th eir way of life and, even more, being forced to do things that were against their relig ion. The fact that they had lawsuits in 13 To cite one example, Cicero used simila r language defending Fonteius against the Celts. He said: ceterae pro religionibus suis bella su scipiunt, istae contra omnium religiones; illae in bellis gerendis ab dis immortalibus pacem ac veniam petunt, istae cum ipsis dis immortalibus bella gesserunt (“others undertake wars on behalf of their religi ons, but they wage war against the religion of all; others when waging war be g for peace and pardon from the immortal gods, but they have waged war with the immortal gods themselves”). Pro Font. 30. See also Walbank 158. 14 M. Stern (ed.), Greek and Latin Authors on Jews and Judaism (Jerusalem 1984) 194. See also A. Marshall, ‘Flaccus and the Je ws of Asia (Cicero ‘Pro Flacco’ 28.67-69)’, Phoenix 29 (1975) 141-2. 15 Marshall 142. 16 AJ 16.27-8.

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99 the public courts suggests that they had been defr auded in some ways and needed to seek redress in the local legal system. They were, however, fo rced to conduct legal business on Saturdays in violation of their practic e of not working on the Sabbaths. The choice they were given was either to violate the Sabbath and get so me legal relief, or keep the Sabbath and suffer injustices. Their temple contributions were also confiscated a nd spent on public works, and they were pressed into military service in spite of the fact that it was well-known that the Sabbath regulations forbade Jews from taking up arms on that day.17 In fact, it seems that Jews were regularly granted exemption from Roman milita ry service for this very reason.18 Later in the same book, Josephus relates in a lengthy section (16.160-173) that Jews in Asia and Cyrene were experiencing, among othe r things, further inte rference with their collection of money for the Jerusalem temple, a nd they appealed to Augustus for help. All Josephus says is that evn de. tw/| to,te diV evphrei,aj evco,nt wn tw/n ~Ellh,nwn auvtou,j w`j kai. crhma,twn i`erw/n avfai,resin (“at that time the Greeks mistreated them so far that they took their sacred funds”).19 The Jews sent envoys to Augustus to complain about this treatment, and Augustus ruled in their favor. Jo sephus then quotes the decree Augustus made about this matter and proceeds to quote five more such decrees: one by Augustus addressed to Gaius Norbanus Flaccus, the proconsul of Asia, one by Agrippa addressed to the people of Ephesus, another by Agrippa to the people of Cyrene, one by Flaccus to the magistrates of Sardis, and one by the proconsul Julius Antonius to the people of Ephesu s, all to the same effect, that the money the Jews collected for the Jerusalem temple was not to be touched. The picture that develops is that seizure of Jewish Diaspora funds intended for the Jerusale m temple was not an uncommon 17 Cf. AJ 14.226. 18 S. Applebaum, ‘The Legal Status of th e Jewish Communities in the Diaspora’, in The Jewish People in the First Century (CRINT 1.2, Philadelphia 1974) 459-60. 19 AJ 16.160.

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100 occurrence in the cities where Je ws lived, and that the Jews co mplained about it often. The overall purpose of these stories, which are a major and distinctive part of the Antiquitates Judaicae was to establish that Romans had always sided with Jews when it came to practicing their customs,20 although this falls far short of any offici al “charter” of Jewish privilege across the empire.21 Josephus’ overall appeal for ethnic toleration of the Jews was not new. The fact that he felt compelled to rehash the matter suggests, however, that anti-Jewish sentiments had risen and now required that his audience be reminde d of the long-standing friendly disposition of Rome towards the Jews. Perhaps one of the most famous incidents of Jewish mistreatment happened in Egypt during the tenure of Aulus Avilius Flaccus (32-8 CE), an event that has come to be called the first pogrom. Philo of Alexandria was a witness to the scene. In 38 CE Herod Agrippa I (who was a friend of the emperor Gaius) visited Alex andria on his way to ta ke his new position as “king” of part of Palestine, and on his visit he was publicly insulted by anti-Jewish Greeks in that city. The incident quickly spilled over into the synagogues and the Jewish sections of the city. Many Jews were killed or tortured, their homes ransacked and their possessions looted. Philo laid the blame for the riot at the f eet of the Roman governor Flaccus, who, he charges, was paranoid with suspicion that Agrippa was out to topple him.22 The governor failed to restrain the violent mob and, according to Philo, even encouraged it s actions. The groundwork for this violence had been laid in the time of Augustus, when he confirmed the special privileges the Jews already enjoyed and at the same time denied th e Alexandrians’ request for a senate.23 The Jews had long shown loyalty to Rome, but Alex andrians were anti-Roman. Action against the Jews therefore 20 S. J. Case, ‘Josephus’ Anticipation of a Domitianic Persecution’, JBL 44 (1925) 14. 21 T. Rajak, The Jewish Dialogue with Greece and Rome (Leiden: Brill, 2002) 301-11. 22 Ph., In Flaccum 10-20. 23 CPJ II no. 150.

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101 became a convenient way for Alexandrians to vent their dislike of Rome.24 Flaccus eventually fell victim to the political intrigues of the day, resulting in banishment and execution, but the Jews found no redress in the emperor Gaius who treated their delegation scornfully at Rome. When Claudius came to the throne, the Jews appe aled once more for repara tions, but all they got was an order not to push the situation either in Alexandria or in Rome any farther.25 We should not develop the impressi on that Alexandria was the norm.26 Of course, Jews coexisted peacefully with their pagan neighbors in many places. For example, there was a large Jewish population in Syrian Antioch (estimat ed at 65,000 persons), many of whom probably enjoyed civic privileges equal to those of Greeks, and they constituted a poli,teuma an ethnic group from abroad that consti tuted a self-contained, but not autonomous, political community and that enjoyed a plea sant existence there.27 Furthermore, Dio Cassius portrays the Alexandrians as a people who did not get along with anyone28 an exaggeration, but probably indicative of the volatile situation that seems to ha ve been characteristic of that city. However, 24 H. Bell, ‘Anti-Semitism in Alexandria’, JRS 31 (1941) 4. 25 The text of the decree is in CPJ II no. 153 and A. Hunt and C. Edgar (trans.) Select Papyri II (Loeb Classical Library, Cambridge, MA 1963) 79-89. 26 As J. Collins has suggested, the rioting in Alexandria in 38 CE was the product of specific circumstances in that city and not th e product of a general hatred of Jews. ‘AntiSemitism in Antiquity?: The Case of Alexandria’, in C. Bakhos (ed.), Ancient Judaism in its Hellenistic Context (SupJSJ 95, Leiden 2005) 18. 27 C. Kraeling, ‘The Jewish Community at Antioch’, JBL 51 (1932) 130-60; CJP 1.6. There is scholarly debate over whether Jews constituted a poli,teuma in any of the cities where they lived. J. Mlze-Modrzejewski denies that th e Jews had such a status (‘How to be a Greek and Yet a Jew in Hellenistic Alexandria’, in S. Cohen and E. Frerichs (eds.), Diasporas in Antiquity (Brown Judaic Studies 288, A tlanta 1993) 77-80). However, the Letter of Aristeas (310) refers to Alexandrian Jews by this term, and two inscriptions from Berenice in Cyrenaica (1st cent. CE) mention e;doxe toi/j a;rcousi kai. tw|/ politeu,m ati tw/n evn Bereni,kh| VIoudai,wn E. Schrer, The History of the Jewish People in the Age of Jesus Christ, 3.1 (rev. and ed. G. Vermes et al, 3 vols.; Edinburgh 1986) 88. 28 65.8.

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102 the evidence is broad enough to conclude that Jews regularly and frequently suffered various forms of harassment from their neig hbors, even if it was not universal. Within Palestine, a well-known Roman governor Pontius Pilate, incurred the displeasure of Jews more than once for actions they considered to be willfully offensive. Josephus reports in Antiquitates Judaicae 18.55-59 that Pilate set up images of Ti berius in Jerusalem. He also tells the story in Bellum Judaicum 2.169-174. That the same story appear s in both works suggests that our author saw this as important for his purposes. The date was pr obably Pilate’s first year in office, 26 CE, and the images were most likely the signa of the Roman cohort in Judea, which had representations of the emperor.29 In the Antiquitates Judaicae Josephus calls them protoma.j Kai,saroj ai] tai/j shmai,aij prosh/san (“busts of Caesar, which were attached to the ensigns”), in the Bellum Judaicum ta.j Kai,saroj eivko,naj ai] shmai/ai kalou/ntai (“the images of Caesar which are called ensigns”). The exact na ture of the Jewish objection is unclear, because there was nothing in Biblical Jewish law th at would have prohibited this.30 Nevertheless, the Jerusalem Jews objected that this action on Pilate’s part violated a Jewish prohibition of idols within the city. Pilate received the Jewish objectors in th e stadium at Caesarea Maritima, and stationed soldiers in the wings who, at his signal, adva nced on the crowd. The procurator eventually backed down, but the incident refl ected a willingness on his part to use force, instead of legal procedures, to settle complaints about the vi olation of Jewish religious sensibilities. As it stands, this story is an example of an unprovoked and undeserved affront against Jewish piety. The occasion for bringing the signa to Jerusalem was that Pilate had moved Roman troops to Jerusalem for the winter. In the version of the story in the Antiquitates Judaicae 29 C. Kraeling, ‘The Episode of the Roman Standards at Jerusalem’, HTR 35 (1942) 26389. 30 Feldman, ‘Flavius Josephus Revisited’, 818.

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103 Josephus says Pila/toj de. o` th/j VIoudai,aj h`gemw.n stratia.n evk Kaisarei,aj avgagw.n kai. meqidru,saj ceimadiou/san evn ~Ierosolu,moij evpi. katalu,sei tw/n nomi,mwn tw/n VIoudai?kw/n evfro,nhse (“Pilate, the governor of Jud ea, intended the abolition of Jewish customs when he led the army from Caesarea and wintered it in Jeru salem”). Caesarea Maritima, thirty five miles away, was the normal residence of the procurator. P ilate certainly would have felt at home there, for the city was thoroughly Romanized. According to Josephus, then, the reason Pilate made this invasive move to Jerusalem for the winter was th at he willfully intended to violate and do away with Jewish customs. In other words, the Je ws were innocent victim s of a man who had no respect for their religion and who was bent on causing trouble. Given th e pluralism of Roman religion, this is surely designed to st rike the reader as odd and sinister. Josephus also relates a mistreatment of Jews by the same governor only a year or so later. He says ~Uda,twn de. evpagwgh.n eivj ta. ~I eroso,luma e;praxen dapa,nh| tw/n i`erw/n crhma,twn evklabw.n th.n avrch.n tou/ r`eu,matoj o[son avpo. stadi,wn diak osi,wn oi` dV ouvk hvga,pwn toi/j avmfi. to. u[dwr drwme,noij pollai, te muria,dej avnqrw,p wn sunelqo,ntej katebo, wn auvtou/ pau,sasqai tou/ evpi. toiou,toij proqumoume,nou tine.j de. kai. loidori,a| crw,menoi u[brizon eivj to.n a;ndra oi-a dh. filei/ pra,ssein o[miloj) o` de. stol h/| th/| evkei,nwn polu. plh/qoj stratiwtw/n avmpeco,menon oi] evfe,ronto skuta,laj u`po. tai/j stol ai/j diape,myaj eivj o] perie,lqoien auvtou,j auvto.j evke,leusen avnacwrei/n tw/n de. w`rmhko,twn eivj to. loidorei/n avpodi,dwsi toi/j stratiw,taij o] prosune,keito shmei/on) oi` de. kai. polu. meizo,nwj h;per evpe,taxen Pila/toj evcrw/nto plhgai/j tou,j te qorubou/ntaj evn i;sw| kai. mh. kola,zontej oi` dV eivsefe,ronto malako.n ouvde,n w[ste a;oploi lhfqe,ntej u`pV avndrw/n evk paraskeuh/j evpiferome,nwn polloi. me.n auvtw/n tau,th| kai. avpe,qnhskon oi` de. kai. traumati,ai avnecw,rhsan kai. ou[tw pau,etai h` sta,sij) (“He [Pilate] made a supply of water for Jerusa lem, taking for its expense the sacred funds, for the head of the stream was two hundred stadia away. But they [the Jews] were not pleased with the things that had been done re garding the water, and many ten thousands of men got together and complained to him to st op such a desire. And some attacked him with verbal abuse and insulted the man, just as a crowd likes to do. But he, covering with their robes a great multitude of soldiers, who carried clubs under their robes, and sending them to where they might surround them [the Jews], himself ordered the Jews to leave, but when they began to insult him, he gave to the so ldiers the signal which had been previously arranged. They gave much more blows than Pilate had ordered, punishing equally the troublemakers and those who were not, and they brought on nothing mild so that unarmed

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104 people were seized by armed men, and many of th em who were attacked in this way even died, and the wounded ones withdrew and thus the revolt ended.”).31 Given the other examples reviewed above, it is cl ear that Pilate was acting in a way that other Roman officials had acted toward Jews in other parts of the empi re. His seizure of Jewish funds was not unprecedented. Funds in Jerusalem must have been especially tempting. The annual temple tax sent from Jews in the provinces made the temple rich and had made it a target more than once. For example, Crassus plundered the Jerusalem temple during his Parthian expedition.32 How much money was taken in this part icular incident we do not know, but it seems that the knowledge that a sizeable sum of money was sitting in Jerusalem proved an irresistible temptation for a procurator who wish ed to engage in public works as part of a program to honor the emperor and stay in his favor.33 Josephus reports the incident as a misuse of Roman imperium and a breach of good will with the client subjects, the Jews. Josephus himself had a first-hand experience with unfai r treatment of Jews at the hands of Romans when, at the age of 26 (63/64 CE), he part icipated in a delegation to Rome to appeal to Nero on behalf of some Jewish priests from the homeland of Judea (remember, Josephus was such a person himself) who had been imprisoned a nd sent to Rome for tria l. The details of this are sketchy. He says MetV eivkosto.n de. kai. e[kton evn iauto.n eivj ~Rw,mhn moi sun e,pesen avnabh/nai dia. th.n lecqhsome,nhn aivti,an kaqV o]n cro,non Fh/lix th/j VIoudai,aj evpetro,peuen i`erei/j tinaj sunh,qeij evmoi. kalou.j kavgaqou.j dia. mikra.n kai. th.n tucou/san aivti,an dh,saj eivj th.n ~Rw,mhn e;pemye lo,gon u`fe,xontaj tw/| Kai,sari, oi-j evgw. po,ron eu`re,sqai boulo,menoj swthri,aj ma,lista de. puqo,menoj o[ti kai,per evn kakoi/j o;ntej ouvk evpela,qonto th/j eivj to. qei/on euvsebei,aj … avfiko,mhn eivj th.n ~Rw,mhn … dia. fili,aj avfiko,mhn ~Alitu,rw| mimolo,goj dV h=n ou-toj ma,lista tw/| Ne,rwni kat aqu,mioj VIoudai/oj to. ge,noj kai. diV auvtou/ Poppai,a| th/| tou/ Kai,saroj gunaiki. gnwsqei.j) pronow/ w`j ta,cista parakale,saj auvth.n 31 AJ 18.60-2. 32 AJ 14.105-9. 33 J. Taylor, ‘Pontius Pilate and th e Imperial Cult in Roman Judea’, NTS 52 (2006) 55582.

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105 tou.j i`erei/j luqh/nai mega,lwn de. dwrew/n pro.j th/| euvergesi,a| tau,th| tucw.n para. th/j Poppai,aj u`pe,strefon evpi. th.n oivkei,an) (“When I was in my 26th year, it fell to me to go up to Rome for the reason that will now be stated: At the time when Felix was procur ator of Judea, some priests who were close friends to me, and fine and good men, were bound for a small and indefinite reason and sent to Rome to furnish a defense to Caesar men for whom I was desiring to find a means of rescuing, especially since I l earned that although they were living in hardships, they did not forget piety toward the divine being …. I arrived at Rome … and through friendship I became known to Aliturus, a Jew by race but who was especially mindful to Nero, and through him I became known to Poppea, Caesa r’s wife. I gave thought as quickly as possible, calling on her for help that the priests be released; and having gained great gifts from Poppea, in addition to th is service, I returned home”).34 We do not know what these priests had done to la nd them in this trouble. The picture Josephus gives us is that the procurator’s actions were mo tivated out of spite against Jews rather than out of any serious legal offense. The charges against them, Josephus says, were trivial. Whether this assessment of the situation is historically correct or not, we will never know, but it is not out of line with the way other Roman officials sometimes treated Jews, especial ly those officials who were assigned to Judea. These priests may have done nothing more than ir ritate the procurator with some complaint of a civil nature, enough that the procurator could accuse them of causing civil unrest. The fact that the matter was resolved so easily sugge sts that no serious infraction of Roman law was involved. We may also surmise that these Jews had already had a hearing before the procurator and had appealed to Rome. Felix was recalled from office some time in the late 50’s CE. Josephus says he joined the delegation to Rome in his twenty-sixth year, or 63-64 CE. Therefore the Jewish priests Felix had sent to Rome had been held in custody on minor charges for between six and ten years wit hout a hearing before the empero r. The wheels of justice had been turning slowly for these people.35 34 Vit. 1.13-14, 16. 35 In the New Testament’s Acts of the Apostles (12.1-12, 25) a simila r scene is described as another Jew, Paul, stood tria l before Felix’s successor, Porciu s Festus. Felix had left Paul’s case unresolved for two full years. Festus admitt ed that he could not discern that Paul had

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106 The events reviewed above paint a general pict ure of frequent harassment of Jews at the local level in the provinces, an harassment that was frequently instigated by Roman officials themselves. It was not official persecution, but it was not kind treatment ei ther. Daniel correctly observes that “The Greek and Roma n attitude toward them was mo re one of contempt than of hatred,”36 and Gruen notes that “Romans showed little understanding of Judaism, but were hardly inveterate bigots. The te xts reveal neither intolerance nor racism. And nothing in them suggests that Romans we re bent on persecution.”37 These actions did, however send the message that the Jews were not c onsidered social equals. The kinds of harassment noted above reflect in actions the derogatory comments we hear about the Jews in th e ancient literature.38 Apollonius Molo (first cent. BCE), a famous rhetorician whose pupils included Cicero and Caesar, referred to the Jews as cowards, godless, witless, hostile to other men, the vilest of all men, and having contributed nothing to civilization.39 Similarly, according to Augus tine, Seneca called the Jews sceleratissimae gentis committed any crime but indicated that he was willing to sacrifice Paul (and turn him over to his enemies) for the sake of initial good relationships with the local client authorities, and so Paul exercised his right to provocatio This incident took place in 57 CE, when Porcius Festus began his procuratorship in Judea, onl y six years before Josephus made his trip to Rome. When the account in Acts ends, Paul had sat in custody in Rome fo r two more years, s till waiting for his trial before the emperor (28.30). One is also re minded of the group of Greeks of which Polybius was a part. They were sent to Rome in 168 BCE on charges of opposition to the sovereignty of Rome and held for seventeen years without tria l. Hata has suggested, in a highly speculative article, that Josephus’ story is fictitious. G. Hata, ‘Imagining Some Dark Periods in Josephus’ Life’, in F. Parente and J. Sievers (eds.), Josephus and the History of the Greco-Roman Period: Essays in Memory of Morton Smith (Studia Post-Biblica 41, Leiden 1994) 314. 36 J. Daniel, ‘Anti-Semitism in the Hellenistic-Roman Period’, JBL 98 (1979) 53. 37 E. Gruen, ‘Roman Perspectives on the Jews in the Age of the Great Revolt’, in A. Berlin and J. Overman (eds.), The First Jewish Revolt: Archaeology, History, and Ideology (London 2002) 37. 38 For a full treatment, see Stern, Greek and Latin Authors 39 As reported by Josephus in Ap 2.148, 236.

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107 (“a most wicked people”).40 The poverty of many Jews also made them despised, as when Martial describes a matre doctus … rogare Iudaeus (“the Jew taught by his mother to beg”).41 These opinions were based largely on misinf ormation or malicious interpretations about actual Jewish practices. Most Greek and Latin au thors do not seem to have investigated these matters much at all, and simply repeated common (and malevolent) stories about Jewish practices, their origins, and their meanings that were de monstrably incorrect. For example, Horace, Tacitus, Juvenal, Petronius, Seneca, a nd Dio Cassius all viewed the Sabbath observance as the practice of idleness and a waste of time.42 Pliny the Elder described Judaism as a kind of magic,43 and Pompeius Trogus said th e Jews came from Damascus,44 while Strabo repeated a story that said the Jews were Egyptians.45 Even when Varro, the great scholar and forerunner of the Augustan religious restora tion, commended Jews for worshi pping an aniconic deity, he was nevertheless misinformed when he said that the Jews worshipped the Roman god Jupiter.46 The transmission of such stories, careless by modern historical st andards, is indeed partially attributable to the nature of historiography in the ancient Hell enistic world. Much of it sounds like stereotyping and it cannot be taken at face value. However, the creation and propagation of stereotypes reflects a prejudice that was willing to believe such outrageous stories about Jews in the first place. Furthermore, as Gruen has pointed out, what is interesti ng is that anti-Jewish 40 De civ. D 6.11. 41 12.57.13, as noted by Daniel, ‘Anti-Semitism’, 52. 42 Hor. Satires 1.9; Tac. Hist 5.4.; Juv. 14.105-6; Petr. Satyr. frag. 37; Seneca, as reported in August., C.D. 6.11; D.C. 37.17. Older Greek writers su ch as Agatharchides of Cnidus believed the same thing (quoted to this effect by Josephus in Ap. 1.209-12). 43 HN 30.11: Est et alia magices factio a Mose et Ianne et Lotape ac Iudaeis pendens, sed multis milibus annorum post Zoroastren (“There is another branch of magic, derived from Moses and Jannes and Lotapes and the Jews, but co ming many thousand years after Zoroaster”). 44 In Justin’s epitome of the Historiae Philippicae bk. 36 (epitome 2.1). 45 From Strabo’s lost Historica Hypomnemata quoted by Josephus AJ 14.118. 46 In August., De Consensu Evangelistarum 1.22.30, 31; 1.27.42.

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108 sentiments seem to be the same both before and after the War.47 That is, the sentiment remained constant, apparently well-ro oted in the Roman psyche. A clearer example is the slander that appears to have been widespread in the first century, that the Jews worshipped the head of an ass in the Jerusalem temple. Tacitus mentions it,48 and Josephus includes it in his list of things to refute in his Contra Apionem .49 A sense of the animosity some Greeks felt toward the Jews is re lated in another story, apparently also widelycirculated,50 that the reason the Jewish temple in Jerusalem was off-limits to everyone was because the Jews kept a Greek captive there and fe d him liberally in order to use him as a human sacrifice and to eat his flesh.51 According to the story, the eating of the victim’s entrails was accompanied by an oath in which the Jews vowed to hate Greeks. What is especially interesting about the story is that the Greeks are the yearly object of Jewish hatred. Similarly, the Suda lexicon reports that an otherw ise unknown author Damocritus (lat e first century BCE or early first century CE) related a stor y that the Jews hunted down and captured a foreigner every seven years, and killed him by shredding his flesh.52 The stories emphasize the extreme “otherness” of the Jews as perceived by pagans, a cultural distan ce that was interpreted as hostility. Such tales 47 E. Gruen, ‘Roman Perspectives’, 28-9. 48 Hist 5.4. 49 Ap. 2.80ff. The story was as old as the th ird century BCE, probably originated in Egypt, and eventually existed in three versions. B. Bar-Koc hva, ‘An Ass in the Jerusalem Temple The Origins and Development of the Slander’, in L. Feldman and J. Levison (eds.), Josephus’ Contra Apionem: Studies in its Char acter and Context with a Latin Concordance to the Portion Missing in Greek (Arbeiten zur Geschichte des Antiken Judentums und des Urchristentums 34, Leiden 1996) 310-26. The fact th at it is recorded in Mnaseas, Apollonius Molon, Posidonius, Damocritus, Apion, Plutarch, and Tacitus is eviden ce that anti-Jewish slanders were wide-spread in antiquity and pr obably more numerous than the extant evidence betrays. Sevenster, The Roots of Pagan Anti-Semitism 8-11. 50 Josephus says that Apion was acting as spokesman for others ( propheta vero aliorum factus est Apion ) Ap 2.91. 51 Ap 2.91-5. 52 FgrHist 730. The mention of “every seven years” is possibly a gross misunderstanding of the Jewish cycle of Sabbath years.

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109 were designed to portray the Je ws as barbarians, the enemies of civilized society, people who were not fully human and who, worst of all, in th e worst kind of deception hid their hostility in the guise of religious piety. 53 Jews were generally regarded as a backward s, foreign (i.e., un-Roman) people whose ways and beliefs were strange. As Dani el has noted, “A survey of the comments about Jews in the Hellenistic-Roman literature shows that they were almost universally disliked, or at least viewed with an amused contempt.”54 Furthermore, their strict monothe ism, coupled with privileges that exempted them from Roman institutions like the emperor cult and the fact that they often willfully segregated themselves from others in the cities where they lived, made them appear aloof and, even worse, hostile to the rest of society. Such was the impression of Philostratus, Diodorus Siculus, and Juvenal.55 Some of the most vitriolic stat ements are found in Tacitus. In one place he says: Hi ritus quoquo modo inducti antiquitate defenduntur: cetera instituta, sinistra foeda, pravitate valuere. Nam pessimus quisque spretis religionibus patriis tributa et stipes illuc congerebant, unde auctae Iudaeorum res, et quia apud ipsos fides obstinata, misericordia in promptu, sed adversus omnis alios hostile odi um. Separati epulis, discreti cubilibus, proiectissima ad libidinem gens alienarum concubitu abstinen t; inter se nihil inlicitum. Circumcidere genitalia instituerunt ut divers itate noscantur. Transgressi in morem eorum idem usurpant, nec quicquam prius imbuuntur quam contemnere deos, exuere patriam, parentes liberos fratres vilia habere. (“This worship [the Sabbath], however it wa s introduced, is defended by its antiquity; the other customs, perverted and disgusting, are superior in their depravity, for the worst among all other people, scorning the religions of their homelands, piled up contributions and presents there, from which the wea lth of the Jews was augmented; and among themselves they are resolutely loyal, disp laying compassion, yet they show hostile hatred against all others. They are separate at feas ts, they sleep apart, they are a nation most abandoned to lust, and they abstain from intercourse with foreign women; among themselves nothing is unlawful. They instituted circumcision that th ey might be known as different, and those who have gone over to th eir custom practice it; nor do they give any 53 J. Rives, ‘Human Sacrifice among Pagans and Christians,’ JRS 85 (1995) 71-2. 54 Daniel, ‘Anti-Semitism’, 46. 55 Philostr., VA 5.33; D.S.,34.1; 40.3-4; Juv. Satires 14.102-4.

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110 instruction first than to despise the gods, to disown their country, and to consider parents, children, and brethren worthless.”)56 When seen in the light of these kinds of rema rks, actions by local officials that disregarded Jewish rights are not surprising. Josephus’ Own Experiences We must not ignore Josephus’ personal experi ence with anti-Jewish sentiments, for these were surely powerful forces that factored into his writing plans. In Palestine Josephus knew well the tensions between Jews and the native Syro-Gr eek populations, and he ci ted these tensions as a fundamental contributing factor in the start of the First Jewish War.57 There were several more opportunities to experience similar tension in Rome. At first glan ce, Josephus’ situation in Rome seems to have been comfortable if not privile ged. Vespasian granted Josephus citizenship, an apartment in the emperor’s house on the Quirinal hill (in regio VI of Rome), and a pension.58 The emperor also gave him land in Judea, which Domitian later declared tax-exempt.59 However, closer examination reveals that there was little of elite treatment here. Vespasian’s palace was on the Palatine hill, so Josephus was being kept at a distance from emperor even if he did enjoy a free room from him. By 94 CE the house on the Quirinal hill was demolished by Domitian to build the temple of the gens Flavia and we may suppose that Josephus was either evicted or 56 Hist 5.5. 57 Bilde, ‘The Causes of the Jewish War’, 18990: “An important aspect of this conflict, in the view of Josephus, was the ethnic compos ition of the Roman auxiliaries in Palestine, because these were dominated precisely by nati ves among the non-Jewish inhabitants. According to Josephus this state of affairs was a direct contributory cause of the war.” Of these people Josephus said oi] kai. toi/j evpiou/si cro,noij tw/n megi,st wn VIoudai,oij evge,nonto sumforw/n avrch. tou/ kata. Flw/ron pole,mou spe,rmata balo,ntej (“who in the following times were those who became the greatest hazards to the Jews, sowing the seeds of the war beginning at the time of Florus”) ( AJ 19.364). 58 Vit 423. 59 Vit 425, 429.

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111 relocated, presumably to a less prominent place.60 The Flavians actively promoted eastern nobles in their administration, so Josephus’ treatment was nothing special, nor was the gift of tax exemption by Domitian, who gave the same privil ege to all teachers of grammar and rhetoric.61 There is no indication that Jose phus knew anyone within the imperi al family except Titus, and even then there is no indication of familiarit y. It is not even certain, contrary to common assumption, that the emperors commissioned Josephus’ works62 (Epaphroditus is named as his patron for Antiquitates Judaicae not the emperor), nor is there any evidence that Josephus had any important connections in Roman society with anyone from the equestrian order or above. An author who was not reluctant to sing his own praises surely woul d have mentioned such social connections if he had them. He mentions one Catullus, the h`gemw,n of Cyrene, who implicated Josephus in the riots in Alexandria.63 The exact identity of this Ca tullus is problematic, but even without such details all that can be said is that Josephus was prominent enough to become the target of anti-Jewish rhetoric by a member of the Roman aristocracy.64 All Josephus could say about his own status was that he had been gran ted Roman citizenship by the emperor, but in the first century CE this was nothing uncommon eith er; “there is nothing to distinguish Josephus’ status and role as an imperial client from that of hundreds if not thousands of other imperial clients with the name Flavius.”65 This is a far cry from any noti on that he kept and maintained a network of social contacts among the elite and po werful in Rome. Price has also suggested, with 60 Cotton and Eck 39-41. This corresponds with evidence that suggests that the latter part of Domitian’s principate was characterized by increased emphasis on Roman nationalism (specifically, the imperial cult ) and a stricter policy toward Jews. E. Smallwood, ‘Domitian’s Attitude toward the Jews and Judaism’, CP 51 (1956) 1-13. 61 S. Mason, ‘“Should Any Wish to Enquire Further”’, 75f. 62 S. Mason, ‘“Should Any Wish to Enquire Further”’, 77. 63 BJ 7.437-53. 64 Cotton and Eck 48. 65 J. Price, ‘The Provincial Historian in Rome’, in J. Sievers and G. Lembi (eds.), Josephus and Jewish History in Flavian Rome and Beyond (SupJSJ 104, Leiden 2005) 106.

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112 plausibility, that Josephus probabl y never did any public recitations of his works, given his poor spoken Greek, and so he was not a regular among the literary figures in Rome in his time.66 He seems only to have enjoyed the ordinary beneficia that emperors were generous to give anyway, and nothing more, and by all evidence he wa s basically ignored by the elite in Rome. Furthermore, during Josephus’ own lifetime Ro me was being transformed by the Flavian dynasty into a place and an administration that proclaimed the Roman victory over Jerusalem through its public institutions and architecture. Pr evious victories over the Jews in Palestine had been publicly celebrated,67 but the attention given to the Roman victory in 70 CE outstripped them all. Triumphal arches commemorating Titus’ victory in Jerusalem were set up, one at the circular end of the Circus Maximus,68 and the other on Via Sacra on the slope of the Velia (where it still stands). The exta nt arch displays in its inner pa nels the looting of the Jerusalem temple and Titus riding in triumphal procession. Th ese were, of course, not memorials of war in the modern sense. They were public political statements. “War monuments that perpetuate victory and glory are another means of conver ting military achievement into political power.”69 In addition to these arches, according to the work of Alfldy, the Flavian amphitheater originally 66 J. Price, ‘The Provincia l Historian in Rome’, 105. 67 Coins proclaimed Pompey’s victory, and So sius celebrated a trium ph in Rome after his defeat of the Hasmonean Antigonus in 37 BCE, and the victory was proclaimed on coins and on the Fasti Triumphales Capitolini inscription ( CIL 1.2 (1893): 50, 70). D. Edwards, ‘Religion, Power, and Politics: Jewish Defeats by the Roma ns in Iconography and Josephus’, in J. Overman and R. MacLenna (eds.), Diaspora Jews and Judaism: Essays in Honor of, and in Dialogue with, A. Thomas Kraabel (Atlanta 1992) 294-99. 68 This arch is no longer extant, but was dedica ted in 81 CE. It is depicted on the Severan Marble Plan of Rome an d stood at least until the 9th century CE, for its inscription is recorded in the manuscript known as the Anonymous Einsiedlensis (published in CIL VI.944), and its foundations were discovered in modern excavati ons. See F. Millar, ‘Last Year in Jerusalem: Monuments of the Jewish War in Rome’, in J. Edmondson et al (eds.), Flavius Josephus and Flavian Rome (Oxford 2005) 120. 69 Hlscher 15.

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113 bore an inscription that proclaimed it had been built from the spoils of Jerusalem.70 An arch of Isis also proclaimed the Roman victory.71 The spoils from the temple (specifically the golden menorah and the table) were put on public display in Vespasian’s new Temple of Peace, and the temple torah scroll and purple wall hangings fr om the Jerusalem sanctuary were taken to his palace.72 For the next 12 years Vespasian and Titu s minted coins, which were circulated throughout the empire, bearing the inscription IUDAEA CAPTA and a new tax, for a new fiscus Iudaicus was levied on Jews in place of the colle ction they had formerly taken up for the Jerusalem temple.73 The tax funded the new temple of Jupiter Capitolinus and its yearly collection reminded the Jews that the money once used for thei r own God was now being given to a Roman deity. The destruction of Jerusale m provided a much-needed foundational myth for the fledgling Flavian dynasty and allowed it to compare itself favorably to the first principate that brought stability after a time of civil strife.74 While Rome conquered other places during this period, no conquest was given as much resources75 or as much public attention as that of Jerusalem. “… never had Jews as a nation and as an ethnos had to deal with symbolism that singled out their defeat with c onsistent iconographic and rhetorical displays across the breadth of 70 G. Alfldy, ‘Eine Bauinschrift aus dem Colosseum’, ZPE 109 (1993) 195-226. See also L. Feldman, ‘Financing the Colosseum’, BibArchRev 27 (2001) 20-31, 60-1, which mostly summarizes Alfldy. The stone that originally bore the inscription is currently on display in the gallery in the upper le vel of the Colosseum. 71 Edwards 304. 72 BJ 7.158-62. 73 BJ 7.218; D.C. 66.7.2. 74 T. Barnes, ‘The Sack of the Temple in Josephus and Tacitus’, in J. Edmondson et al (eds.), Flavius Josephus and Flavian Rome (Oxford 2005) 129. 75 While the conquest of Jerusalem was not the largest conflict the Romans ever engaged, they did pour tremendous resources into it. It wa s arguably the longest sieg e against any city in the first century CE (it lasted five months), and employed four legions, parts of two others, twenty infantry cohorts, eight mounted regiment s, and 18,000 foot soldiers supplied by client kings. This was more than was sent for th e invasion of Britain in 43 CE. Millar 101.

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114 the Roman empire for the bett er part of twelve years.”76 As much as 15 years after the event, when Domitian needed to legitimize his reign, he turned once again to the conquest of Jerusalem for political capital and re-issued the IUDAEA CAPTA coins to tie him to that great victory. Reminders of the denigrated position of Jews in Roman eyes were, literally, all around Josephus. His own experience was that Judaism was under exceptional pressure.77 Conclusion As I have shown in the previous chapter, expr essions of ethnicity, esp ecially literary ones, are the result of a perceived cris is of identity and a sense of a lienation. The need for self-esteem and social acceptance is a powerful force in drivi ng the creation of an ethnicity. So what was the perceived crisis behind the literary works of Jo sephus? The answer, in short, was a wide-spread anti-Jewish sentiment in the Gr eco-Roman world in which Josephus lived. This sentiment was, for Josephus, recently further exacerbated by the humiliating defeat of th e Jews by the Romans in the First Jewish War, reminders of which were everywhere around him in Flavian Rome. The Jews had become a veritable symbol of the uncooperative, and even hostile, foreigner whose exclusion from the vitality, wea lth, and power of the Roman world was considered just and right. The Jews were subject to mistreatments of va rious kinds in the ancient world because they were seen as outsiders who refused to demons trate local civic pride and as a people whose practices seemed judgmental agai nst others or simply foreign. It would, of course, be a mistake to think that the Jews were the only ethnic, social, or religious gr oup who experienced such mistreatments.78 There was in Josephus’ day a general prejudice against al l things and people who did not conform to the Roman ideal, and th is prejudice found expres sion in various ways. 76 Edwards 306. 77 Goodman, “Josephus as Roman Citizen,” 338. 78 Sevenster, The Roots of Pagan Anti-Semitism 42-48.

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115 For example, the senate expelled some Gr eek philosophers from Rome in 162 and 155 BCE,79 as did Nero in 65 CE, 80 Vespasian in 72 CE,81 and Domitian in 90 CE82 and again in 93 CE.83 Political interests manipulated the personal fears or paranoia of the emperors, and criticisms of the emperors were treated harshly.84 But the fact that the Jews we re not alone in being perceived as cultural misfits does not diminish the nature of what they experienced. The situation of the Jews in the Hellenis tic world was complicated by the fact that perceptions of the Jews and thei r place in that world were di fferent on the “inside” (majority) than they were on the “outside.” The insiders the client peoples of the Roman empire who worshipped the traditional gods of Gr eece and Rome and who acknowledged the imperium Romanum saw Jews in an either/or way: they coul d be Jews (i.e., practice Judaism), or they could assimilate themselves into Greco-Roman society and culture, along with the identity it implied, but they could not do both. It was assu med that Judaism and full participation in Hellenism were opposites. From the ancient texts we hear no overtures from the pagans to the Jews, inviting them or instructing them how to b ecome part of their world. What we hear instead from the “insiders” is a constant rehearsal of stereotypes and ne gative images that shouted “stay away.” Full Jewish participation in the institutio ns that marked off Greek and Roman identity was considered impossible. The nature of th e Jewish people and their religion made it so, according to the “insiders.” There were, of cour se, proselytes, and some of them were even 79 Gruen, The Hellenistic World and the Coming of Rome 257. 80 Tac. Ann 15.71. 81 D.C. 65.9. 82 This first banishment is implied by Dio Cassius’ statement in 67.13 that Domitian banished philosophers again It probably occurred in conne ction with the conspiracy of Saturninus. J. Toynbee, ‘Dictators and Ph ilosophers in the First Century A.D.’, G&R 13 (1944) 58. 83 D.C. 67.13; Suet. Dom 10.2; Aulus Gellius 15.11.4. See R. Harte, ‘The Praetorship of the Younger Pliny’, JRS 25 (1935) 53. 84 Toynbee 43-58.

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116 influential or well-known people. On the whole, however, their presence does not mitigate the general exclusion Jews faced from society. One of the great driving fo rces at work in this tension was the connection between culture and religion. As long as the Jews had a different God and a different understanding of the relationship between religion and secular culture, and refused to acknowledge in any meaningful way the gods of the Greeks and Romans, getting “inside” was going to be impossible. Josephus, however, was c onvinced that one of the problems was that the Greeks and Romans fundamentally misunderst ood Judaism and its God, and he wrote the Antiquitates Judaicae to explain it properly. In approaching the problem from the standpoint of overcoming misunderstandings, Josephus had landed on one of the fundamental aspects of that problem85 and was taking a positive track and going beyond mere apologetics. 85 On the role of cultural dissonance in the tensions between Jews and Romans, see S. Stern, ‘Dissonance and Misunderstanding in Jewi sh-Roman Relations’, in M. Goodman (ed.), Jews in a Graeco-Roman World (Oxford 1998) 241-50. In ancient times it seems that, in spite of much contact, there was little real understandi ng of other cultures outside of one’s own. J. Teixidor, ‘Interpretations and Misint erpretations of the East in Helle nistic Times’, in P. Bilde et al (eds.), Religion and Religious Practi ce in the Seleucid Kingdom (Studies in Hellenistic Civilization 1, Aarhus 1990) 66-78.

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117 CHAPTER 4 HELLENISTIC CULTURE AND JEWISH ACCULTURATION In the previous chapter I expl ored several lines of evidence that shows that Jews were, generally, objects of contempt in Roman Hellenis tic culture at large. Th e kind of crisis that would typically give rise to some kind of attempt at, or assertion of, self -definition was in place. But did the Jews feel compelled by this crisis to respond in this way? Is there any indication that Jews wanted to fit into the Helle nistic culture around th em? Is there evidence to suggest that they cared to be seen as “insiders”? The answer is that the Jews were not only eager to fit in, but they had also been trying this very thing for a long time when Josephus arrive d on the scene. Josephus shared the hopes of many of his fellow-Jews, that they coul d negotiate a respected place within the culture of his day, and the ethnographic, or et hnicity-creating, character of his writings was yet another attempt to achieve this. Josephus was actually participating in, and advancing, a long-standing project among Je ws in the ancient world. If all we had were the statements of outsiders about how Jews refused to assimilate into the society at large in their day, we might think that the Jews resisted assimilation in every facet of their lives, for the outsiders typically complained of how Jews remained (in their perception) aloof from Hellenistic culture in critical ways. Ho wever, the fact is that Jews in various places attempted assimilation into Greco-Roman society to varying degrees and on a broad scale. The evidence leads us to ask not if the Jews had tried to be Hellenistic, but instead the extent to which Jews in ancient times assimilated Hellenistic in stitutions as markers of their own identity. The Question of Jewish Hellenization By terms such as “Hellenism,” “Hellenistic ,” and “Hellenization” I mean what Hengel said, “a complex phenomena which cannot be limited to purely political, socio-economic,

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118 cultural or religious aspects, but embraces them all,”1 and further “it cannot be restricted to Greek paideia philosophy and rhetoric, even less to syncretism and mystery religions.”2 This fits well with Friedman’s description: “Hellenism is not simply about the sp read of Greek cultural forms to Asia. It is about conquest and the es tablishment and transformation of political and economic structures in a wide region. It is, not least, about the colonial establishment of Greeks in Asia and the consequences of this phenomenon for cultural change.”3 It was a pervasive influence4 of the Greek culture on the cultures of the Orient, but this influe nce did not displace native traditions. Grabbe summarizes Hellenization was a long and complex phenomenon. It cannot be summarized in a word or a sentence. It was not just the adoption of Greek ways by the inhabitants of the ancient Near East or of Oriental wa ys by Greeks who settled in the East. Hellenistic civilization was sui generis and must be considered from a variety of points of view, for it concerned many different areas of life: language, custom religion, commerce, architecture, dress, government, literary and philosophical ideals. Hellenization represented a process as well as a description of a type of culture.5 Levine casts the net a little wider: Hellenization constituted more than simply the dissemination of Greek social mores, language, and institutions throughout the East ; …. What took place was a much a process of selection, adoption, and adaptation as it was of conque st and subjugation. Moreover, without denying the dominant role of Gr eek civilization, we should recognize that Hellenization was far more complex than mere ly the impact of the West on the East. …. 1 Hengel, Judaism and Hellenism 3. 2 M. Hengel, ‘Judaism and Hellenism Revisite d’, in J. Collins and G. Sterling (eds.), Hellenism in the Land of Israel (Notre Dame 2001) 9. 3 J. Friedman, ‘Notes on Cu lture and Identity’, 25. 4 Some scholars (such as W. Tarn, Hellenistic Civilization (London 1947)) thought of Hellenism as a dominance of Greek culture and institutions, but this is not necessary to the idea of Hellenism. 5 L. Grabbe, ‘The Jews and Helle nization: Hengel and His Critics’, Ioudaios < ftp://ftp.lehigh.edu/pub/listserv/ioudaios-l/ Articles/lghellen > 15 May 2006. The idea of Hellenization was coined by J. Droysen in Geschichte des Hellenismus (2 aufl., Gotha 1877-78). Debate continues over whether Hellenism produ ced a melting-pot of cu ltures or a two-tiered society.

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119 In this light, therefore, Hellenization is … the interplay of a wide range of cultural forces on an oikoumene defined in large part but not exclusively by the Greek conquests of the fourth and third centuries B.C.E.6 What is important for this study is that the kind of acculturation that happened in Hellenization “is primarily a process of change in identity a nd not simply a question of the learning of codes.”7 Hellenization entailed much more than simp ly learning the Greek language, doing public construction with Greek architectu ral models, etc. It involved a redefinition of many peoples on many levels. Any inquiry into the pheno menon of Hellenization among th e Jews of antiquity is complicated by at least three factors. First, ther e is the diversity within ancient Judaism itself. Most scholars today prefer to speak of the Judais ms of antiquity rather than portray Judaism as a monolithic, homogeneous thing. Pearce and Jones summarize the position of modern scholarship well by saying We have seen a move away from the understa nding of Judaism and Jewish identity as normative, homogeneous phenomena, …. Notions of ‘essence’ and homogeneity have been abandoned and an altern ative model has been widely adopted which stresses the existence of a plurality of Judaisms and Je wish identities in antiquity that made up complex and variegated social phenomena in both the Land of Israel and the Diaspora.8 Various sects existed within ancient Judaism, and these sects had different views, sometimes widely different, on a range of topics from Hellenistic accultur ation to the prospects of the liberation of Palestine from Roman rule. Each gr oup had different response s to the question of what defined a Jew, and each had different ag endas for the nation. And certainly, individuals 6 L. Levine, Judaism and Hellenism in Antiquity (Peabody 1998) 18-19. 7 Friedman, ‘Notes on Culture and Identity’, 25. 8 P.15. See also M. Smith, ‘Pal estinian Judaism in the First Century’, in M. Davis (ed.), Israel: Its Role in Civilization (New York 1956) 68-78. This unders tanding is a product of the nature of the evidence and not of the claims made in the evidence. When ancient Jewish authors wrote of Judaism, “they tended to assu me that there was only one Judaism” ( i.e. theirs). M Goodman, ‘Jews and Judaism in the Mediterran ean Diaspora in the Late-Roman Period: The Limitations of the Evidence’, in C. Bakhos (ed.), Ancient Judaism in its Hellenistic Context (SupJSJ 95, Leiden 2005) 182.

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120 within each group did not ag ree with each other in ev ery detail of their shared attitudes or in their level of conviction concerning them. This phenome non is a function of the fact that ethnicities are chosen by a people and not inherent to them. It is not even clear from the extant materials if any of the ancient Jewish sects represented the theological views of the average Palestinian Jew (the am ha-aretz ).9 The variety within ancient Judaism th erefore makes it impossible to speak of ancient Jewish ethnicity or the adoption of ethnic markers in such a way that would describe all Jews of antiquity. The second factor is the varying degrees with which Jews had contact with Hellenism in different places. Jerusalem and its firmly entr enched customs provided a strong resistance to Hellenism. Once outside of Jerusalem and its i mmediate environs, one could find significant contact with Hellenism mediated through Roman im perialism in places within Palestine such as Caesarea Maritima or Sebaste. However, we shou ld not suppose that Palestine was as thoroughly Romanized as it is sometimes thought. Even in Galile e in the north, the fact is that evidence of widespread Romanization in the first century is lacking until after the outbreak of the First Jewish War.10 Outside of Palestine rabbinic influence was probably not great11 and the Roman mediation of Hellenism for Jews was ge nerally more powerful and successful.12 9 M. Smith 68-73. 10 See M. Chancey, Greco-Roman Culture and the Galilee of Jesus (SNTSMS 134, Cambridge 2005) 221-9; A. Berlin, ‘Romanization and anti-Romanization in pre-Revolt Galilee’, in A. Berlin and J. Overman (eds.), The First Jewish Revolt: Archaeology, History, and Ideology (London 2002) 69. 11 M. Goodman, ‘Jews and Judaism in the Mediterranean Diaspora’, 178-9. 12 Even here, however, we must guard against s upposing that the differences were drastic. “… the religion and theology of the Jews seems to have been basically the same character in Palestine and in the Diaspora. … Of course, th e absence of the Temple in the Diaspora caused the cultic, ritual and religious lif e to be different.” P. Bilde, ‘T he Jews in the Diaspora of the Roman Empire’, Nordisk Judaistik. Skandinavian Jewish Studies 13 (1992) 117.

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121 The third factor is the differing attitudes of Jews in various places toward the culture around them. The fact is that, within the groups that constituted ancient Judaism, many voices were competing to be heard concerning the rela tionship of Jews to Greco-Roman society at large. The Jewish literature of the Hellenistic period13 shows much diversity when it comes to attitudes toward Gentiles and their cultures. Th e provenance, purpose, and intended audience of much of this literature is sometimes hard to ascertain, and thus we may only speak of the propagandistic or apologetic func tions of this literature provisi onally. It does seem, however, judging from the volume and diversity of literatu re that has survived, that Jewish authors believed they could inform and persuade their fe llow-Jews to adopt some particular aspect of self-understanding. The diversity of the surviving literature th us again suggests that the boundaries of Jewish ethnicity in anci ent times were debated and not fixed. These factors resulted in a situation that wa s in no way uniform in every place for every Jew. As noted above, the ancient world was a wo rld in which forces of assimilation operated powerfully. These forces were so strong that Boha k has argued that it is not possible to speak of any kind of ethnic continuity am ong diaspora Jews. If it existed, he claims, it was the exception, not the rule.14 This seems, to me, an overstatement, or perhaps an overly narrow use of the term “continuity.” Most, if not all, Jews were a pparently influenced by Hellenism in some way,15 and most, if not all, Jews were comfortable with some degree of Helleni zation, and they still considered themselves Jews by some set of stan dards even if the assimilation and acculturation was not uniform in every place where Jews lived. 13 It suffices for this study to restrict our use of this terminology to Jewish literature that was written in Greek. 14 Bohak 175, 191. 15 So V. Tcherikover, Hellenistic Civilization and the Jews (New York 1977).

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122 Most notably, Jews in many places used the Gr eek language, even if they continued to use a local or native language alongside it. As noted in chapter two, language can serve as an ethnic indicium. Accordingly, adoption of the Greek lan guage by ancient Jews was more than just a concession to the political and economic realit ies around them. Admittedly, some facility in Greek was necessary for commerce and communicati on with foreign magistrates, so use of the Greek language by itself would not necessarily comprise evidence of Hellenization among Jews. It is, however, evidence when viewed in the larg er context in which other elements of Greek culture were also adopted into Jewish culture. In that larger context it indicated a degree of acceptance of Hellenism and a desire to be counted as part of that social world. The strength of this fact is more obvious when we contrast the scene in 2 Maccabees 7.8, where one of the seven brothers voiced his refusal to eat pig’s flesh th/| patri,w| fwnh/| (“in the language of his fathers”), and in Second Jewish War, the Bar-Kochba Revo lt (132-135 AD), when the leaders of the revolt mandated the used of Hebrew as an expression of nati onalistic solidarity.16 Similarly, in Luke’s Acts (14.8-18) we hear of the people of Lystra in the interior of Asia Minor speaking in the Lycaonian language, not Greek, and Paul chose to address a hostile Jewish crowd in Jerusalem in Aramaic (21.40), not Greek. In some contexts, ch oice of language reflected a conscious ethnic identification. A command of the Greek language was necessary at a minimum for anyone who wished to carve out a place for themselves in the Hellenistic world, and refusal to use the language indicated a rejection of Hellenism to some extent and a preference for some other ethnic 16 A. Berlin and J. Overman, ‘Introduction’ in A. Berlin and J. Overman (eds.), The First Jewish Revolt: Archaeology History, and Ideology (London 2002) 10.

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123 tradition.17 Hengel notes that “anyone who sought social respect or ev en the reputation of being an educated man had to have an impeccable command of it. The word e`llhni,zein primarily meant ‘speak Greek correctly’, and only seconda rily ‘adopt a Greek styl e of life’. Impeccable command of the Greek language was the most im portant qualification for taking over Greek culture.”18 Diodorus Siculus could say in the mid-first century BCE Sumba,lletai d v au[th kai. pro.j lo,gou du,namin( ouka,llion e[teron ouvk a;n tij r`a|di,wj eu[roi) tou,tw| ga.r oi` me.n [Ellhnej tw/n barba,rwn( oi` de. pepaideume,noi tw/n avpai deu,twn proe,cousi( pro.j de. tou,toij dia. mo,nou tou,tou dunato,n evstin e[na tw /n pollw/n perigene,sqai (“But it [history] also contributes to the power of speech, and one cannot easily find another, better thing than that. For in this matter the Greeks surpass the barbarians, and the educated surpass the uneducated, and by this power alone one man is able to rise above the many”).19 Similarly, the LXX was produced initially not for pagans, but for the Jews of Alex andria who were so immersed in Greek culture that many of them could not read their Script ures in the original Hebrew.20 The fact that the Hebrew Scriptures now took on Greek dr ess is significant. The Alex andrian Jews were presenting themselves, by means of the LXX, as a people wh ose religion was not foreign to the Hellenistic world around them.21 There is a scholarly consensus that many Palestinian Jews were conversant 17 Cf. the fact that the Roman senate did not allow anyone to addre ss it in any language other than Latin, or that L. Aemilius Pallus deliv ered Rome’s terms to Amphipolis (at the end of the Third Macedonia War) in Latin even though his Greek was impeccable (Livy 45.29.3). This was a conscious distancing of themse lves from Greek culture. Gruen, The Hellenistic World and the Coming of Rome 267. 18 Hengel, Judaism and Hellenism 58. 19 1.2.5-6. 20 P. Green, Alexander to Actium: The Historical evolution of the Hellenistic Age (Hellenistic Culture and So ciety 9, Berkeley 1990) 317. 21 CPJ I.41f.

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124 in Greek as well.22 Jews of the Diaspora were taking Gr eek names since the third century BCE, documents in Greek were among those found in the Jewish manuscript caches at Qumran, Murabbat, Nahal Hever, Nahal Seelim, Nahal Mish mar, the so-called Cave of the Letters, and Masada, and hundreds of Greek inscriptions of Jewish origin (funerary inscri ptions, ostraca, etc.) have been found both in Pale stine and in the Diaspora.23 The widespread use of Greek by Jews in antiquity should thus be interpreted as an indicat or of their willingness to be understood to some extent along the lines of Greek culture. While it might be easy to think of the situati on of the ancient Jews vis--vis Hellenism as creating an either/or proposition for them, this doe s not appear to have been the case even in Palestine where Jewish nationalism flared up at times. Concerning Palestinian Jews, the landmark study of Hengel, Judaism and Hellenism challenged any such dichotomy. Many ancient Jews apparently did not see themselves as caught betw een being Jewish on the one hand, or compromising their Jewishness and adopting Hellenistic culture on the other hand. Hengel argued that the Hellenization of Jews in Palestin e was a long process that had begun even before the conquests of Alexander and that resulted, by the first century, in a thorough saturation of Greek culture among Jews throughout the ancient wo rld. He asserted that “the usual distinction between Palestinian and Hellenistic Judaism need s to be corrected. … From about the middle of the third century BC all Judais m must really be designated ‘Hellenistic Judaism’ in the strict sense ….” 24 Another way of saying this is that the ev idence seems to sugge st that the ancient Jews readily found in Hellenism new means for self-definit ion. The thoroughness of the 22 See J. Sevenster, Do You Know Greek? (Leiden 1968), and J. Fitzmyer, ‘Languages of Palestine in the First Century A.D.’, CBQ 32 (1970) 501-31. 23 G. Mussies, ‘Greek in Palestine and the Di aspora’, in S. Safrai and M Stern (eds.), The Jewish People in the First Century (CRINT 1.2, Philadelphia 1976) 1042-51. 24 Hengel, Judaism and Hellenism 104.

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125 Hellenization of the ancient Jews suggests that they were eager to find a place for themselves in the broader Hellenistic culture. Hengel’s picture of ancient Juda ism stirred scholarly debate,25 but generally it has prevailed. Yet it does seem that Hengel went too far in parts of his thesis. For example, in making his case for pervasive Hellenization of the ancient Jews, Hengel downplayed the difference between Palestinian Judaism and the Je ws of the Diaspora. This was a methodological mistake that blurred the great amount of diversity that actually a ppeared within Judaism. A better corrective to Hengel’s picture of a massive, thorough penetrati on of Hellenism into Judaism (including in Palestine) is the study by Green, Alexander to Actium: The Historical Evolution of the Hellenistic Age where he argues that Hellenism did not spread evenly or even easily throughout the areas affected by Alexander’s conquests. Inst ead, Green argues, Alexander succeeded in establishing pockets or islands of Hellenism, and Hellenistic influence on surrounding non-Greek cultures was often met with va rying degrees of accep tance, if not with resistance. It would not be accurate to think that people in remote areas were regularly conversant in Greek or adopted Greek culture. Although Hengel’s conclusions need to be nuanced more, it seems unavoidable that Hellenism indeed made inroads, sometimes substan tial ones, into many quarters of Judaism. This became more apparent as one moved away from Palestine and into territory that was not the Jewish homeland. In fact, the majority of Jews in ancient times lived a nd flourished outside of 25 Most notably by L. Feldman, ‘Hengel’s Judaism and Hellenism in Retrospect’, JBL 96 (1977) 371-82; his Jew and Gentile in the Ancient World ; and his ‘How Much Hellenism in the Land of Israel?’, JSJ 33 (2002) 290-313; and by A. Momigliano, in his re view of Hengel’s book, ‘Hengel, M. “Judentum und Hellenismus: St udien zu ihrer Begegnung unter besonderer Bercksichtigung Paltinas bis zu r Mitte des 2. Jh. v. Ch.”.’, JTS n.s. 21 (1970) 151. Momigliano called for a more judicious trea tment of the phenomenon in his Alien Wisdom: The Limits of Hellenization (Cambridge 1975).

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126 Jerusalem in the Diaspora, where Hellenism was the culture. Generally, th e current scholarly discussion is not about the possibility of Hellenistic influen ce on Judaism (including in Palestine), but about the level of penetration. Gruen has argued th at there is, in the thinking of some, a simplistic dichotomy of “either resistance to assimilation and longing for Jerusalem, or conformity to and embrace of the alien e nvironment” and that this dichotomy did not face the Jews who dwelled in Greco -Roman communities in the Second Temple period. … The Jews abroad had chosen there residence voluntarily and (in many cases) had been there for generations. They had no cause to ache for Jerusalem. Nor, by contrast, were they obliged to adopt a new guise and sacrif ice their identity to blend in with their surroundings.26 He goes on to note that We can therefore abandon simplistic dic hotomies. Diaspora Jews did not huddle in enclaves, isolated and oppressed, clinging to a heritage under threat. Nor did they assimilate to the broader cultural and political world, compromising their past, ignoring the homeland, and reckoning the Book (in Greek) as surrogate for the Temple. The stark alternatives obscure understanding. A complex set of circumstances, diverse and dependent on local conditions, produced a mixe d, ambiguous, and varied picture.27 As I noted above, as one moved away from Palestine, Hellenistic influence was much more apparent in the Jews of the Diaspora than among the Palestinian Jews. In the Diaspora we see a wide range of assimilation and accommodation to Greek culture. Thus There is growing recognition that Jews in antiq uity experienced very different social and political conditions, and correspondingly enga ged in their local political, social and cultural environments in many different wa ys. Several recent studies of the Jewish communities of the Diaspora generally indicate that there is good evidence for many Jews integrating at a local level and expressing a real sense of identification with the local environment while maintaining their Jewish identity.28 26 E. Gruen, Diaspora: Jews Amidst Greeks and Romans (Cambridge 2002) 5. 27 E. Gruen, Diaspora 6. 28 Pearce and Jones 17.

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127 Within Palestine, the aristocracy was the group mo st interested in Hellenism partly because it offered them a means of main taining their economic status.29 At the same time it seems correct to recognize that there were some substantial differences between the Judaism of Palestine and that of the Diaspora,30 without falling into the false either/or dichotomy of a normalized Judaism (Palestine) versus a compromised Judaism (in the Diaspora). It would not be an oversimplification to say that Jerusalem was the greatest pocket of conservative or orthodox Judaism in the ancient world, but this does not mean that one would re gularly encounter Jews who were not zealous for their religion outside of Jerusalem. The difference between Palestinian Judaism and Diaspora Judaism was not the religi on, the zeal for the reli gion, the purity of the religion, etc. The difference may be better described as lying in the approach to and construction of the ethnicity, and the choices of what would count as ethnic i ndicia. Concerning the presence and power of Hellenism, however, there is no doubt The question is not if Hellenism penetrated Palestine, but instead th e question is one of how much resist ance did a particular person or group offer to it31 and how a Jew or a local group of Jews managed their self-understanding, how they constructed their ethnicities, in light of it. Hellenization had occurred even among Palestin ian Jews, yet at the same time we must recognize that the religious criter ion always played a powerful role in their lives and ethnic selfunderstanding. That dominance of religious concerns did not, how ever, prevent even Palestinian Jews from absorbing Hellenism to a great degree. Jerusalem itself bore many marks of Hellenization in the first century. Levine’s survey of the evidence led him to conclude that “The 29 Hengel, Judaism and Hellenism 1.56. Surely we must attribute much of Josephus’ own affection for Hellenism to his association with the aristocracy. 30 J. Collins, ‘Cult and Culture: The Limits of Hellenization in Judea’, in J. Collins and G. Sterling (eds.), Hellenism in the Land of Israel (Notre Dame 2001) 52. 31 Feldman, Jew and Gentile in the Ancient World 44.

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128 impact of Hellenism on the Near East in genera l, and on Judaea and Jerusalem in particular, was considerable.”32 The origins of the Hellenizati on of the capital city of Jerusalem have proven to be a controversial topic in modern scholarship. So me questions about th e so-called Seleucid enforcement of Hellenization are still open.33 However, even the Jewish account in 2 Maccabees reveals that Hellenization was not initially forced upon the Jews by the Seleucids, but that Jason (note the Greek name), out of personal ambition to become high priest, bargained with Antiochus IV to secure the priesthood and to turn Jerusalem into a Hellen istic city. The bargain involved a promise of a substantial increas e in tribute revenues from th e Jews to the Seleucid king an additional 440 talents of silver, with another 150 to come if permission was granted to build a gymnasium and enrolled the men of Jerusalem as citizens of the capital city, Antioch.34 The author of 2 Maccabees clearly was not pleased with Jason. He reported that h=n dV ou[twj avkmh, tij ~Ellhnismou/ kai. pro, sbasij avllofulismou/ dia. th.n tou/ avsebou/j kai. ouvk avrciere,wj VIa,swnoj u`perba,llousan avna gnei,an w[ste mhke,ti peri. ta.j tou/ qusiasthri,ou leitourgi,aj proqu,mouj ei=nai tou.j i`erei/j avlla. tou/ me.n new. katafronou/ntej kai. tw/n qusiw/n avmelou/ntej e;speudon mete,cei n th/j evn palai,strh| parano,mou corhgi,aj meta. th.n tou/ di,skou pro,sklhsin. (“There was such a high degree of Hellenization ( ~Ellhnismo,j ) and increase in the adoption of foreign ways ( avllofulismo,j ) because of the surpassing wickedness of Jason, who was impious and not high priest [legitimatel y], that the priests were no longer intent upon their service at the altar, but despising the sanctuary and neglecting the sacrifices, they hastened to participate in the unlawf ul spectacle in the wrestling arena after the invitation to the discus.”)35 The author of 2 Maccabees thought that Jason’s predecesso r, Onias, was a model of righteousness, and he has imposed a religious overl ay upon the politics of th e situation. Yet even 32 Levine 38. 33 cf. E. Gruen, ‘Hellenism and Persecution: An tiochus IV and the Jews’, in P. Green (ed.), Hellenistic History and Culture (Berkeley 1993) 238-73. 34 2 Mac 4:8-9. 35 2 Mac 4:13-14.

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129 this anti-Hellenistic author conceded that at first Helleni sm was not forced upon the Jews. It was Jason’s idea, not that of the Seleucids. Interestingly, the author of 1 Maccabees was pro-Roman and anti -Greek. He described a Jewish delegation to Rome saying ai. evpele,xato Ioudaj to.n Euvpo,lemon ui`o.n Iwannou tou/ Akkwj kai. VIa,sona ui`o.n Eleazarou kai. avpe,steilen auvtou.j eivj ~Rw,mh n sth/sai fili,an kai. summaci,an kai. tou/ a=rai to.n zugo.n avpV auvtw/n o[ti ei=don th.n basi lei,an tw/n ~Ellh,nwn katadouloume,nouj to.n Israhl doulei,a| (“So Judas chose Eupolemus the son of John, son of Accos, and Jason the son of Eleazar, and sent them to Rome to establish friendship and alliance, and to free themselves from the yoke; for they saw that the kingdom of the Greeks was completely enslaving Israel.”)36 But the authors of these books are giving an opinion of Hellenization that, as far as we can tell, proceeded with no opposition in Jason’s own day. Th ere are no reports of contemporary riots or dissentions over Jason’s initiatives,37 and none of the Jewish litera ture written shortly after the event criticized the initiative.38 The books of Maccabees look back at that time with disdain and identified Jason’s behavior as a horrible mistake, but that is a later perspective, and it cannot be identified as a majority view. Ironically, the books of the Maccabees were written in Greek .39 Problems came when another contender for th e priesthood, Menelaus, offered Antiochus a greater sum for the priesthood, effectively out-bid ding Jason. Antiochus agreed, and to raise the money Menelaus took vessels from the Jerusalem te mple and sold them in the markets near Tyre ( 2 Mac 4:23-42). This caused rioting in Jerusalem. Apparently the Jews of Jason’s day were able to distinguish between civic elements (ethnic indi cia) of their identity and religious elements 36 1 Mac 8:17-18. 37 L. Grabbe, ‘The Hellenistic City of Jerusalem’, in J. Bartlett (ed.), Jews in the Hellenistic and Roman Cities (London 2002) 13. 38 J. Goldstein, ‘Jewish Acceptance and Reject ion of Hellenism’, in E. Sanders (ed.), Jewish and Christian Self-Definition: Volume Tw o: Aspects of Judaism in the Graeco-Roman Period (Philadelphia 1981) 81. 39 1 Maccabees was originally written in Hebrew, but that text did not survive antiquity. What survived was the Greek translation. Goldstein 18.

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130 (ethnic criteria) without difficult y. Stealing from the temple crossed the line, but Hellenizing the city did not. When Menelaus made his power pl ay, Antiochus was away (in 168 BC, fighting in Egypt). With the Syrian ruler away, the riots ove r Menelaus’ looting of the temple encouraged Jason to retake his position by force. When Antioc hus returned to Palestine, he saw what looked like a general revolt, and it is at this point that the Seleucid king began to forbid the practice of Judaism. It was not long after this that th e Maccabean War for independence began. However, the problem is far too camplex to describe with the simple solution that Jason’s introduction of Hellenism was the cause, as the authors of 1 and 2 Maccabees have postulated.40 Again, however, the problem was not that the Jews of Jerusalem were opposed to Hellenization, but that they jealously and zealously valued their ancestr al worship. Only when Hellenization interfered with that did the Jews revolt. Otherwise some notable monuments in Jerusalem were built in this time, namely the tomb of the Bene Hezir in Je rusalem’s Kidron Valley, and Jason’s tomb west of the city, both featuring Doric ar chitectural style, and Hasmonean coins were minted bearing symbols common in the Helle nistic world at the time except there are no images of living beings.41 Within Palestine, a good indicator of the exte nt of Jewish Helleniza tion into the time of Josephus is the nature of the client kingdom of Herod the Great, who ruled from 40-1 BCE.42 Herod filled Palestine with Hellenistic material culture.43 Three notable examples were the cities 40 N. Hyldahl, ‘The Maccabean Rebellion a nd the Question of “Hellenization”’, in P. Bilde et al (eds.), Religion and Religious Practice in the Seleucid Kingdom (Studies in Hellenistic Civilizat ion 1, Aarhus 1990) 194. 41 Levine 44. 42 I am here using the revised dates of J. Finegan, Handbook of Biblical Chronology (rev. edn., Peabody 1998) 291-300. Others put the death of Herod at 4 BCE. 43 Hellenism was not the only influence on He rodian architecture, for Herod was also affected by his affinities for the cultures of Rome and the east. But “Hellenistic architecture was obviously the most vigorous cultural determin ant on Herod’s buildings.” P. Richardson, Building

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131 of Caesarea Maritima, Banias, a nd Sebaste (formerly Samaria). All three cities had temples either pagan deities, to Rome, or to Augustus in the first century.44 Caesarea Maritima was only about 60 miles from Jerusalem, and there was a significant Jewish popula tion there, enough that an offense against the Jews of Caesarea Maritima is c ited by Josephus as the event that started the Revolt of 66 CE.45 However, Caesarea Maritima looked so much like a Greek city that the Gentile inhabitants argued that it belonged to them, and cited as proof the presence of statues and temples which Jews would not have built.46 The temple to Augustus at Banias closely resembled a temple to Augustus at Pola.47 Most interesting is the fact that Herod especially concentrated on making the capital city of Jerusalem as Hellenistic as he could. In Jerusalem itself he built pools, and a theater (possibly out of wood48). This theater was adorne d with inscriptions honoring Caesar and was the site of athletic games, involving contests between animals and condemned prisoners, in honor of Augustus on a five year cycl e. According to Josephus, Herod tried his best to make the games equal in prestige with those that were celebrated in other parts of the empire Jewish in the Roman East (Waco 2004) 226-7. See also G. Foerster, ‘Art and Architecture in Palestine’, in S. Safrai and M. Stern (eds.), The Jewish People in the First Century (CRINT 1.2, Philadelphia 1976) 971-1006. 44 At Banias, the temple to Zeus Heliopolitanus was built near the end of the first century CE. A temple to Pan and the nymphs had been built n ear it in the earlier part of the first century CE. Herod the Great also built a temple to Augustus there in 19 BCE. Josephus BJ 1.404-6; AJ 15.359, 363-4. See A. Berlin, ‘Where Was Herod’s Temple to Augustus?’, BibArchRev 29 (2003) 22-4. Caesarea Maritima had a temple to Rome and Augustus sitting atop a prominent platform facing the harbor. Josephus mentions it in AJ 15.339; BJ 1.417. See R. Bull, ‘Caesarea Maritima: The Search for Herod’s City,’ BibArchRev 8 (1982) 24-41. A temple of Augustus stood at Sebaste, the stairs and pl atform of which are still there. BJ 1.403; AJ 15.298. See D. Barag, ‘King Herod’s Royal Ca stle at Samaria-Sebaste’, Palestine Exploration Quarterly 125 (1993) 4–8. 45 BJ 2:282ff. 46 BJ 2.266. 47 D. Jacobson, ‘Herod’s Roman Temple’, BibArchRev 28 (2002) 18-27. 48 See J. Patrich, ‘Herod’s Theater in Jerusalem A New Proposal’, Israel Exploration Journal 52 (2002) 231-9.

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132 by offering large prizes by which he hoped to at tract the most well-known athletes of the day.49 He also built an amphitheater somewhere outside the city50 and rebuilt the cita del north of the temple and renamed it the Antonia.51 All of this gave an unmis takably strong Hellenistic, and especially Roman, flavor to the city.52 Herod’s renovation of Jerusalem aroused some complaints among the local inhabitants. Just as it had been in the days of the Maccabea n revolt, the Jerusalem Jews still drew a line between the two sphere s of culture and cult.53 Many Jews were tolerant of many Greek things in their local cultures, but they were especially sensitive and resistant to anything that was perceived as a threat to or compromise of the exclusive worship of thei r ancestral God, Yahweh, and hence to their identity as Jews. Josephus prefaces his account of these things saying Dia. tou/to kai. ma/llon evxe,bainen tw/n patri,wn evqw/n kai. xenikoi/j evpithdeu,masin u`podie,fqeiren th.n pa,lai kata,stasin avparegcei,rhto n ou=san evx w-n ouv mikra. kai. pro.j to.n au=qij cro,non hvdikh,qhmen avmelhqe,ntwn o[sa pro,teron ev pi. th.n euvse,beian h=gen tou.j o;clouj (“On account of this he departed even more from the ancestral customs, and through forei gn pursuits he gradually corrupted the ancient way of life that was inviol able; from which things we were harmed not a little and at a later time as well, as whatever th ings that formerly led the masses to piety were 49 AJ 15.268-70. 50 Possibly the same as the hippodrome mentioned in BJ 2.44 and AJ 17.255. 51 BJ 1.401. See the list of Herod’s buildings in P. Richardson, Herod: King of the Jews and Friend of the Romans (Columbia 1996) 197-202. From this same time is the non-Herodian, but still Hellenistic, so-called tomb of Absalo m dated to the first century CE and featuring engaged Ionic columns. L. Rahmani, ‘Ancient Jerusalem’s Funerary Customs and Tombs: Part Three’, Biblical Archaeologist 45 (1982) 47. 52 Yet we should be careful to distinguish Her od’s use of Hellenistic architectural models from the idea that Herod was acting as an agent for Hellenization. Richardson, Building Jewish 238. 53 Collins, ‘Cult and Culture’, 55. As I have suggested, however, the Jews did not always agree about where the li ne was to be drawn.

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133 being neglected.”).54 Josephus thought the Hellenization of the city had, in some areas, gone too far so as to corrupt Jewish religious values, whic h in turn led to a general impiety towards their God.55 Nor was he alone in this view. He reports that the locals complained that having athletic contests between wild animals or between anim als and men was clearly contrary to Jewish customs. avsebe.j me.n ga.r evk prodh,lou katefai,neto qhri, oij avnqrw,pouj u`porri,ptein evpi. te,ryei th/j avnqrw,pwn qe,aj avsebe.j de. xenikoi/j evpithdeu,masin ev xalla,ttein tou.j evqismou,j (“For it appeared as blatant impiety to throw men to wild beasts for the enjoyment of men as spectators, and also as impiety to change th eir customs for foreign practices”).56 Just how strong this protection of Jewish identity markers was in Jerusalem became clear when the trophies for these contests were displayed in public. To many of th e locals, they appeared to be presented as objects of worship containing human likenesses on standards adorned with weapons, which mh. pa,trion h=n auvtoi/j ta. toiau/ta se,bein (“it was not their ancestral practice to venerate such things”).57 When it became clear that these had pro voked significant consternation, Herod invited a dialogue, the purpose of which Josephus saw as trying to persuade them to abandon their religious convictions ( kai. parhgo,rei th/j dei sidaimoni,aj avfairou,menoj ).58 It turns out that they were not images at all, and only when they insp ected the trophies closely did they cease their objection. Even this, however, did no t alleviate everyone’s suspicions: tine.j dV auvtw/n evpe,menon th/| duscerei,a| tw/n ouvk evx e;qouj evpithdeuma,twn kai. to. katalu,esqai ta. pa,tria mega,lwn h`gou,menoi avrch.n kakw/n o[sion wv|h,qhsan avpokinduneu/sai ma/llon h' dokei/n evxallattome,nhj auvtoi/j th/j politei,aj periora/n ~Hrw,dhn pro.j bi,an evpeisa,gonta ta. mh. diV e;qouj o;nta kai. lo ,gw| me.n basile,a tw/| dV e;rgw| pole,mion faino,menon tou/ panto.j e;qnouj 54 AJ 15.267. 55 Cf. also Case 15-17. 56 AJ 15.275. 57 AJ 15.276. 58 AJ 15.277.

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134 (“But some of them persisted in dissatisfacti on with the practices th at were not customary, and they thought that such dismissal of the an cestral ways would lead to the beginning of great evils, and that it was be tter to make a bold attempt than to seem to overlook the changes Herod had made in their state, br inging things in by force which were not customary, and that he was a king in pretext but in deed appeared as the enemy of all the people.”)59 Ongoing objections did not, however, put an end to the presence of Hellenism in Palestine. After Herod’s death, his son Her od Antipas continued in the same direction. “The rebuilding of Sephhoris and establishment of Ti berias allowed the client king to demonstrate his enthusiasm for the mingling of Greek, Roman, and local cu ltures that was taking place throughout the Levant.”60 In addition, a basilica was built in Beth -she’arim and a hippodrome was built in Magdala.61 Krauss has shown that the rabbinic literatu re contains over three thousand Greek and Latin loanwords,62 and Stein demonstrated suggestive pa rallels between the Seder and Passover Haggadah on the one hand, and Greco-Roman symposia on the other hand.63 B. Cohen has suggested points of contact between th e legal corpora of Romans and Jews,64 and Daube explored the influence of Hellenistic rhetoric on rabbi nic Biblical interpretation.65 The overall picture that emerges is that Hellenism was a subs tantial presence in the institutions of the Jews within Palestine. 59 AJ 15.280-1. Out of sensitivity to Jewish reli gious concerns, Herod generally avoided the use of images of living things in his buildings within Judea. He was more liberal outside of Judea. Richardson, Building Jewish 238-9. 60 Chancey 221. 61 Chancey 223. 62 S. Krauss, Greichsiche und Lateinische Lehnwrter im Talmud, Midrasch und Targum (Berlin 1899). 63 S. Stein, ‘The Influence of Symposia Lite rature on the Literary Form of the Pesah Haggadah’, JJS 8 (1957) 13-44. 64 B. Cohen, Jewish and Roman Law: A Comparative Study (New York 1966). A more moderate assessment was provided by B. Jacks on, ‘On the Problem of Roman Influence on the Halakah and Normative Self-Definition in J udaism’, in E. Sanders et al (eds.), Jewish and Christian Self-Definition 2: Aspects of Judaism in the Graeco-Roman Period (Philadelphia 1981) 157-203. 65 D. Daube, ‘Rabbinic Methods and Inte rpretation and Hellenistic Rhetoric’, HUCA 22 (1949) 239-64.

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135 How did Diaspora Jews, those outside of Palestine, see themselves? Did they see themselves as aliens in foreign lands, strangers to the culture around them? Did they see their Jewishness constantly challenged by the Greek cultu re around them? Were they forced to live in some kind of reluctant compromise with Judaism? Did they long for the homeland? Did they, in essence, see themselves as living in some kind of exile? Or were they co mfortable with many of the elements of Hellenism? Again, there is no single picture that emerges from the ancient evidence. Instead we find that Jewish feeling ab out life in the Diaspora ran a gamut of reactions. “There is evidence that at least some Dias pora Jews of the Greco-Roman period understood themselves as living in an ongoing ‘exile’ which w ould be remedied by an eventual return to the Land.”66 Some saw the destruction of the temple and the taking of Jews into foreign slavery as a prelude to the coming of the Messiah.67 Others, however, did not define themselves in these ways. Gruen concludes “It is not easy to imagine that millions of ancient Jews dwelled in foreign parts for generations mired in misery and obsesse d with a longing for Jerusalem that had little chance of fulfillment. … To assume that they repeatedly lamented their fate and pinned their hopes on recovery of the home land is quite preposterous.”68 Even among those who did define their Jewishness in terms of exile, the definiti ons are not consistent. For example, in the Book of Jubilees written in the second century BC, the role of the Israelite homeland is downplayed in favor of a definition of Jewishness that emphasi zed the nation’s moral purity and closeness with 66 J. Scott, ‘Exile and the Self-Understa nding of Diaspora Jews in the Greco-Roman Period’, in J. Scott (ed.), Exile: Old Testament, Jewish, and Christian Conceptions (Leiden 1997) 218. 67 B. Chilton, ‘Salvific Exile in the Is aiah Targum’, in J. Scott (ed.), Exile: Old Testament, Jewish, and Christian Conceptions (SupJSJ 56, Leiden 1997) 239-47. 68 Diaspora 234.

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136 God.69 While the homeland could be a part of a Jew’ s self-definition, nothing said it had to be, and most were apparently quite content withou t it playing a central role in their selfunderstanding. The Zealots were, of course, the striking exception. But even Josephus does not seem to think of the Diaspora in Hellenistic times in negative terms. He does not speak of either the deportation by the Assyrians or by the Babylonians as an exile ( fugh,), nor does he speak of his own removal to Rome as an exile. In fact, he seems to speak of th e spread of the Jews throughout the ancient world with pride.70 He sees no inherent problem with either the Diaspora itself or its Hellenization. This co rresponds with what I have pointed out in a previous chapter, that the ethnographic character of Palestine for Jews was virt ually disappearing in the first century CE. In fact, some Jews in the Diaspora went to considerable lengths in appropriating local culture. An inscription from Iasos dated to the second century BCE lists a Jew, a certain “Nicetas, son of Jason, a Jerusalemite ,” as a contributor to the Dionysia.71 Jews had reserved seats in the theater at Miletus72 and Aphrodisias, and they par ticipated in trade guilds in 69 B. Halpern-Amaru, ‘Exile and Return in Jubilees’, in J. Scott (ed.), Exile: Old Testament, Jewish, and Christian Conceptions (Leiden 1997) 143-4. Inte restingly, the book of Jubilees was written in Hebrew. 70 L. Feldman, ‘The Concept of Exile in Josephus’, in J. Scott (ed.), Exile: Old Testament, Jewish, and Christian Conceptions (Leiden 1997) 147-61. 71 E. Hicks, ‘Iasos’, JHS 8 (1887) 102. Whether he contributed willingly or under compulsion, we do not know. M. Hengel, Jews, Greeks, and Barbarians (trans. J. Bowden, Philadelphia 1980) 105. 72 According to the inscription on the fi fth row of seats concerning a group called ton qeosebion CIJ II no. 748. Even if the inscription refers to Jewish sympathizers and not ethnic Jews, it still evidences close cont act between Jewish and pagan cu ltures. See J. Gager, ‘Jews, Gentiles, and Synagogues in the Book of Acts’, HTR 79 (1986) 91-9. Philo attended the theater performances in Alexandria ( On Drunkenness 177).

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137 Hierapolis.73 Inscriptional evidence show s that some Jews were among the gymnasium graduates at Cyrene.74 In death, they used Greek funerary epithets.75 Jews in Hellenistic Egypt assimilated Greek cult ure to a relatively high degree, at least as far as the matter can be judged from literary ev idence. The Jewish historian Demetrius (“the Chronographer”; c. late third century BCE) wrote a history of the Jewish monarchy that employed the Greek literary device of aporialusis indicating a thorough acquaintance with the critical methodologies of his day.76 Artapanus, an Egyptian Jew of the mid-second century BCE, wrote a work Concerning the Jews in which he retold Biblical stories in the genre of the historical romance. He claimed that Moses was the teacher of Orpheus and that he was called Hermes by the Egyptian priests.77 Artapanus was clearly interest ed in reconciling Jewish and Hellenistic Egyptian religious claims, and the general tone of his work was pro-Egyptian. Ezekiel the tragedian wrote The Exodus in iambic trimeter, following Greek tragic poetry (especially Euripi des and Aeschylus).78 Aristobulus (fl. mid-s econd century BCE) employed allegory in his exegesis of Jewish scripture al ong lines similar to those of the Stoics, and the surviving fragments of his work show evidence of interaction with th e Stoic and Pythagorean philosophies.79 He claimed that Greeks knew the teachi ngs of Moses, thus implying that the Jewish traditions were older. The Letter of Aristeas of Egyptian provenance, described the 73 A. Kraabel, ‘Impact of the Discovery of th e Sardis Synagogue’, in J. Overman and R. MacLennan (eds.), Diaspora Jews and Judaism: Essays in Honor of, and in Dialogue with, A. Thomas Kraabel (Atlanta 1992) 275. 74 M. Williams (ed.) 107, 113f. 75 M. Williams (ed.) 126-28. 76 C. Holladay, ‘Jewish Responses to Hellenistic Culture in Early Ptolemaic Egypt’, in P. Bilde et al (eds.), Ethnicity in Hellenistic Egypt (Studies in Hellenistic Civilization 3, Aarhus 1992) 140. 77 Holladay 141, 145. 78 Holladay 141. 79 Holladay 142.

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138 Septuagint as originating in He llenistic Egyptian interest in an d respect for the Jewish sacred texts, and portrayed the production of the transl ation as a model of Jewish-Egyptian cordiality. The account followed the rhetorical canons of the progymnasmata in creating a work in the Greek genre of diegesis .80 “Such willingness to experiment with new literary forms, especially to this extent, suggests a rather significant level of engageme nt with Hellenistic culture.”81 The Letter stops short, however, of any sense of full a ssimilation of Hellenistic values. For all its conciliatory tone, the author de fends strict monotheism over agains t the polytheism of the culture around him.82 However, he is willing to treat Jewish food laws which were always a major difference between Jews and their pagan neighbors allegorically.83 The Third Sibylline Oracle produced in Egypt in the mid-second century BC E, took a more conservative stance. It was critical of pagan religion, but it stopped short of expressing hostility and was, after all, in a Greek literary form (pronouncements from a sibyl). At the other end of the spectrum, Philo of Alexandria, who lived a generation before Joseph us, was practicing an allegorical approach to the Jewish scriptures to show the basic compa tibility of Jewish belief s and Greek philosophy. All of this shows that some Egyptian Jews were doing what Josephus would do in Rome in the first century CE: using Greek literary models to fo rge an essentially Greek ethnicity for Jews. On the whole, these works are evidence of th e willingness of Egyptian Jews to participate in the intellectual lif e of the Hellenistic culture around them, and to express their ethnicity in new ways. Holladay notes Jewish engagement with Hellenistic culture, as represented in these writings, represents both an exercise in ethnic promotion as well as ethnic self-p reservation. … Their appropriation of these new forms suggests not only that Hellenistic culture was speaking to 80 Holladay 142. 81 Holladay 143. 82 Sections 134-8. 83 Sections 151-2.

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139 them, but that they were speak ing to Hellenistic culture. Yet these new literary forms are also serving to reinforce ethnic identit y by providing ways for making both Jewish scripture and tradition more credible to Jews themselves.84 Similarly, Gabba notes that “The emergence of a Je wish literature in Alex andria, at the end of the third century BCE, does not betoken a missionary or apologe tic campaign directed towards Greek readers, but rather an internal need of the Jewish community itself, since it aims to strengthen the Jews’ own consciousne ss of their religion and nationality.”85 The Jews of Alexandria maintained their specifically Jewish customs as they lived in that city. They had synagogues, they followed the dietary restrictio ns, and they had their own governing council. They were, to use the Greek term, a poli,teuma .86 Whether in or out of Palestine, a degree of Jewish acculturation with Hellenism was regularly observed. Even that most solid cr iterion of Jewishness, Jewish religion, was significantly affected. Three examples will illustrate this point broadly. First, the Torah was common to all Jews, even if only nominally. Collins notes that “The Torah provided a common basis for postexilic Judaism in the sense that al l forms of Judaism related to it in one way or another.”87 Yet he goes on to note that in spite of th e unifying character of the Torah, “It did not provide a definitive norm in the sense of pres cribing a single orthodox way of being Jewish.”88 However, the fact remains that the Jews had some thing that few other people in antiquity had: a single document to which they co uld appeal for their self-identit y. Within this one document, the Torah, was contained both the narratives of Israel ’s founding fathers as well as the laws which framed the Israelite covenant with their God. Himmelfarb notes that the Torah “was a central 84 Holladay 144. 85 Gabba 637. 86 A. Kasher, ‘The Civic Status of the Jews in Ptolemaic Egypt’, in P. Bilde et al (eds.), Ethnicity in Hellenistic Egypt (Studies in Hellenistic Ci vilization 3, Aarhus 1992) 117. 87 J. Collins, Between Athens and Jerusalem: Jewish Ident ity in the Hellenistic Diaspora (2nd edn, Grand Rapids 2000) 20. 88 Collins, Between Athens and Jerusalem 20.

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140 institution for Jews in the hellenistic period” and that this institutionalized document attained such a powerful status that it enabled Jews to main tain a grip on their ethnic heritage sufficient to withstand the leveling force of Hellenism.89 However, even the Torah itself could be subjected to a thoroughly Hellenistic treatment (in addition to having been transl ated in Greek). The works of Artapanus and Ezekiel the Tragedian had al ready taken a step in this direction. Second, many Jews considered circumcision th e defining characteristic of a Jew, and apparently many non-Jews considered it the same way.90 Whenever Petronius mentioned Jews, he saw circumcision as their defining custom.91 In Luke’s Acts of the Apostles converted Jewish Pharisaic teachers who wished to interpret Ch ristianity along the lines of Pharisaic Judaism insisted that Gentile converts be circumcised according to the covenant demand of the Jewish Torah.92 This emphasis on the symbol of circumcisi on was not unique to Palestinian Jews. Yet discussions over the necessity of observing the practice are frequent enough in the ancient literature to suggest that many doubt ed whether it was essential to Jewish self-definition. By no means is it clear that basically all Jews in the Hellenistic period saw it that way. Josephus himself sometimes omits references to it in his retelling of Biblical stories,93 and some Jews had the surgical procedure known as epispasm performe d to reverse their circ umcision. The reason for this was that it was considered unacceptable to appear in a public bath or gymnasium circumcised. The author of 1 Maccabees recalls with disdain how th is was done even during the 89 M. Himmelfarb, ‘The Torah Between Athens and Jerusalem: Jewish Difference in Antiquity’, in C. Bakhos (ed.), Ancient Judaism in its Hellenistic Context (SupJSJ 95, Boston 2005) 114, 121-2. 90 Hadrian’s later prohibition of the practice suggests that it was interpreted as a clear sign of the practice of Judaism. Scriptores historiae Augustae: Hadrian 14.2. 91 Satyricon 68.8; 102.13-14; frag. 37. 92 Acts 15.1, 5. 93 E.g., in the story of Joshua, AJ 5.1, and in the story of the demands of Jacob’s sons on the Shechemites, AJ 1.340.

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141 time of Jason: kai. wv|kodo,mhsan gumna,sion evn ~Ierosol u,moij kata. ta. no,mima tw/n evqnw/n kai. evpoi,hsan e`autoi/j avkrobusti,aj (“and they built a gymnasium in Jerusalem according to the customs of the Gentiles, and they made themselves uncircumcised”).94 The fact that some Jews went to this length to participat e in that most import ant Hellenistic instit ution, the gymnasium, speaks volumes about the degree of Helleni stic acculturation among the ancient Jews. 95 It is further indication of how the elements or markers of Jewish ethnicity were not considered fixed. Third, many Jews, and apparently many non-Jews in the Hellenistic period thought that Sabbath observance was a chief identifying mark of Jews. Josephus himself seems to brag that it was known throughout the Greek world.96 If there was an element that was a near-universal marker of Jewish identity, the Sabbath came cl ose to it. Sabbath-keeping among the Jews of Rome is mentioned by Horace,97 Tibullus,98 Ovid,99 Pompeius Trogus,100 Seneca,101 Petronius,102 94 1.14-15. 95 On a related point, it ha s been claimed that the Letter of Claudius to the Alexandrians indicates that Jews of that city were tr ying to gain access into the gymnasium. Roman reorganization of Egypt had le d to the gymnasium becoming one of the most elite social institutions in the country’s metopoleis (R. Alston, ‘Philo’s “In Flaccum”: Ethnicity and Social Space in Roman Alexandria’, G&R 44 (1997) 167-9). Entrance was admitted only to ephebes. In the aftermath of the riot in 38 CE, Cla udius told the Jews, among other things mhde. evpispai,ein gumnasiarcikoi/j h' kosmhtikoi/j avgw/si (“not to intrude into the games put on by the gymnasiarchoi or the cosmetai ”; line 93). The reading evpispai,rein has been suggested instead of evpispai,ein which would mean that the Jews were told not to oppose or harass the games (A. Kasher, ‘The Jewish Attitude to the Alexandrian Gymnasiu m in the First Century AD’, American Journal of Ancient History 1 (1976) 152-6). Exactly what the Jews were doing with reference to the gymnasium in Alexandria is unclear either way, and Kasher’s suggestion is based on an incorrect unde rstanding of the Jewish population’s status as a poli,teuma (see Collins, Between Athens and Jerusalem 120-2). Since this evidence is ambiguous, I have not included it as evidence of Jewish assimila tion of Hellenism in antiquity. 96 Ap. 2.282. 97 Satires 1.9. 98 Eleg 1.3.13ff. 99 Ars Amat 1.3, 11; Rem. Amat .219-20. 100 As reported in the Epitome of Pompeius Trogus by Marcus Junianus Justinus, bk 36. 101 As reported in August., De Civ. D 6.11. 102 Fragmenta 37.

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142 Marital,103 Juvenal,104 and Tacitus.105 In fact, the Jewish practice of refraining from labor on the Sabbath was so well-known that it evidently gave ri se to a belief that Jews even refrained from eating on the Sabbath.106 As noted in the previous chapter, this custom was interpreted as being alien and was treated with ridicule. Williams sugge sts that the Sabbath played a special role in the lives of Jews in Rome, since most of thos e Jews were descendants of people who had been sent to Rome as slaves after Pompey’s subjuga tion of Judea in 63 BC and Sosius’ recapture of Jerusalem from the Parthians in 37 BC. On both occasions, the historians say that Jerusalem fell to the invaders on a Sabbath. The Sabbath, then, was for Roman Jews a day of remembrance of their present exile.107 In other words, its praxis se rved a role in their ethnicity. Yet even this essential Jewish institution acquired Hellenistic features. Closely related to the Sabbath was the institution of the synagogue, where Sabbath assemblies were convened and, in the Diaspora, the Scriptures were read in Greek. The existence of synagogues throughout the ancient world is a well-known fact and Hellenistic influence is a pparent in their architecture. Synagogues were typically built according to the style of the country in which they existed,108 and many examples of synagogues built in good Helleni stic style survive, including in Palestine. Levine notes that based upon both architectural re mains and literary descriptions, in Galilee and the Golan it was almost impossible to distingu ish a synagogue from a non-Jewish edifice merely 103 4.4. 104 14.96-106. 105 Hist 5.4. 106 J. Michael, ‘The Jewish Sabbath in the Latin Classical Writers’, American Journal of Semitic Languages and Literature 40 (1924) 124. 107 M. Williams, ‘Being a Jew in Rome: Sabba th Fasting as an Expression of RomanoJewish Identity’, in J. Barclay (ed.), Negotiating Diaspora: Jewish Strategies in the Roman Empire (London 2004) 15-18. 108 Levine 139-79.

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143 by its exterior.109 Outside of Palestine ther e is the striking example of the synagogue in Sardis, which was part of a massive urban comp lex that comprised the public gymnasium.110 The only way into the synagogue is through the entrance on the outside street; no entrance from the gymnasium complex was available. In the main hall of the synagogue was a heavy table that probably served as the lectern. The supports of this table carry carved depictions of Roman eagles clutching thunderbolts, and th e table itself is flanked by two pairs of stone lions, which were prominent in the local mythology of Sardis.111 The entrance to the synagogue had a public fountain, the floors were done in mosaics, and Gr eek inscriptions lined the walls surrounding the aedicules which probably housed the Torah scrolls. The impression is one of a wealthy Jewish community that felt comfortable with its Hellen istic surroundings and its symbols, yet at the same time maintained a measure of distance.112 Thus even an institution as significant for selfdefinition as the Sabbath was subj ected, in the synagogue, to consid erable Hellenistic influence. The picture that develops is that there wa s no corner of ancient Judaism that was not affected by Hellenism, even in Palestine. Even th ose ethnic markers that were considered most characteristic or even essential to Jewish se lf-definition were affected by Hellenism in some ways. There was no single, monolithic entity of Judaism in the first century CE. The ethnic boundaries were never clearly or firmly fixed, nor was there agreement among Jews as to level of acculturation with Hellenistic culture was a nd what was not acceptable, or what degree of 109 P.143. 110 The synagogue apparently became part of the complex after it was rebuilt and remodeled in the second century CE. A. Kraabel, ‘Paganism and Judaism: The Sardis Evidence’, in J. Overman and R. MacLenna (eds.), Diaspora Jews and Judaism: Essays in Honor of, and in Dialogue with, A. Thomas Kraabel (Atlanta1992) 242. 111 Kraabel, ‘Paganism and Judaism’, 245-6. 112 Goodman (‘Jews and Judaism’, 193-7) has s uggested, based on the unusual features of the site, that the building might have been not a synagogue, but a place where Gentiles (“Godfearers”) worshipped the Jewish God. This inte rpretation has not gain ed general acceptance.

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144 assimilation constituted a compromise of Jewish identity. Instead, there was a general dialogue of Jews with Hellenism that was going on simulta neously in different places, and at different levels, and with different convictions a bout what constituted an acceptable degree of acculturation. It is clear that He llenism provoked a crisis in Jewish self-definition, and that crisis was met with varying responses. Yet the great abundance of evid ence suggests more than the f act that Hellenism merely penetrated Judaism. It suggests also that among most Jews in antiquity, there was a perceived need to fit into Hellenistic culture at large. The Jews were, at various levels, eager to see themselves in Greek terms. Hellenization on the part of the Jews was intentional. It was, as we have seen, more than the presence of Greek el ements in native non-Greek societies. Hellenism necessitated peoples’ redefinition of themselves, and the Jews actively participated in this process. The significance of this fact for the pres ent study is that it helps us to see more clearly the character of Josephus’ works. Conclusion I discussed in the previous ch apter that a strong anti-Jewish sentiment pervaded the Roman world of Josephus’ day, and this was sufficient to provoke a sense of a need for self-definition among Jews. In this chapter I have shown that many Jews attempted to overcome this negative perception by embracing Hellenism, of ten to great lengths. In othe r words, Hellenism was widely perceived to be the solution to the problem. The outsiders (in this case, Jews) were trying to get in by adopting, as much as they could, cultural id entity markers belonging to the insiders (those identified by Hellenistic criteria). This was, to be sure, a balanc ing act in which the goal was to get “inside” without sacrificing those things th at expressed their own self-understanding as Jewish (which made them “outsiders” in the first place). To be both thoroughly Jewish and thoroughly Hellenistic was surely a difficult thing to attempt, and it is doubtful if many Jews

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145 ever really succeeded at convincing other pe oples of the Roman world that they had accomplished it. The persistence of rejection from the Greco-Roman society at large in spite of sweeping adoption of Hellenistic identity markers on the part of Jews confirms this. The point to see is that the Jews themselv es saw no problem in being both Jewish and Hellenistic. This was because they were able in tellectually to divorce certain expressions of Greco-Roman culture from religion. This was a different mindset than operated among most others. Most public buildings in the Greco-Roman world, including places like public baths, had close religious associations bound up with them. It does not seem that the Jews could have, or would have, denied a connection between culture and religion. The ancient world was saturated with this kind of thinking, and the Jews we re no exception. In their way of thinking, however, the connection was between culture and religion (in general), but not ne cessarily with GrecoRoman religion in particular. It is precisely at this point th at Josephus found a way “in.” He proposed to define Jewishness as equal to, bu t without being identical to, the cultural and religious heritage of the Greeks and Romans. In this way he pr eserved what was specifically Jewish and at the same time hoped to negotiate a place within the dominant culture around him. Given the dilemma of defining Jews in terms of what was unique to them or what was compatible with Hellenistic culture, Josephus made his case on the Greek side of self-definition, since the Romans had admired and patterned much of their own culture after that of the Greeks. In portraying the Jews as he did, Josephus was pa rticipating in an on-goi ng dialogue and, at the same time, advancing it through new mean s (historiography in the Greek vein). Of course, this line of reasoning involved a problem. Josephus hoped that Jews and Judaism would find a place in the larger Roman society, that it would be accepted and respected because it shared many of the virtues the Romans had long admired among the Greeks. In other

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146 words, Josephus was hoping that Roman cultural and religious pluralism would be large enough to embrace the Jews and their religion. The problem however, was that the pluralistic sentiment did not run the other way. Josephus was unwilling to compromise what he understood to be essential elements in Judaism in order to br idge the gap between “inside” and “outside.” Fundamental among these elements was monotheis m. The difference between Jew and Gentile was, for Josephus, a real one. He neither ignored it nor dismissed it. Everyone knew better. However, syncretism of the kind needed to fully assimilate Judaism into the Roman world was not possible. This would prove to be the deal -breaker. “Jewish faith bred an anti-social clannishness which in tu rn cast suspicion on them as citizens .”113 Yet Josephus hoped he could get around this by emphasizing th e good qualities that already existed within his people. Josephus hoped to present a broader picture of Judaism which revealed that it was consonant with peoples the Romans already admired and accepted. 113 J. Daniel, ‘Anti-Semitism’, 58.

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147 CHAPTER 5 JEWISH ETHNICITY IN JOSPEHUS’ BELLUM JUDAICUM The Bellum Judaicum and the Greek Tradition of Historiography In his first literary work, the Bellum Judaicum Josephus consciously stepped into the world of Greek historiography a nd crafted a narrative that not only read or sounded like Greek history, but that also portrayed the Jews as be ing a people similar in ma ny ways to the ancient Greeks. Scholarship on Josephus ha s long explored his use of Greek models in it. Some scholars (e.g. Hlscher, Bilde, Horsley, Feldman) have s uggested that Josephus’ us e of these models is merely formal and conventional, but others (e.g., Shutt, Mader) have argued that it is functional. If the use of these models is simply conven tional, then it remains to explain why they had to be used at all. Of course it is certainly possible, even probable, that this is part of a strategy to win an initial reading of his account After all, why would a Greek or Roman reader be inclined to read something written in a mode foreign to them ? It would be much better to tell the story in a way that did not tax the reader up front. Furthermor e, all historians after the classical period felt compelled to imitate Herodotus and especially T hucydides to some extent Marincola notes that the literary tradition of classical antiquity including the writing of history was conservative and, … had as its centr al technique the employment of mimesis the creative imitation of one’s predecessors. The idea that one should imitate one’s great predecessors, and look to them for the proper way to treat al most any task is a fundamental aspect of ancient literary creation and criticism. Already establishe d by the fourth century BC, imitation of one’s predecessors never ceased to exert an influence on ancient writers of both poetry and prose. 1 However, mere use of traditional vocabulary or imitation of style was not enough. “… the writer must appropriate the spirit of his model or mode ls and breathe new life into them …. the goal of ancient composition was not to strike out boldly in a radical departure from one’s predecessors, but rather to be incrementally innovative within a tradition, by embracing the best in previous 1 Pp.12-13.

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148 performers and adding something of one’s own marked with an individual stamp.”2 There is ample evidence that Josephus was aware of what good Greek history was supposed to look like, and yet it is also clear that Josephus did not simply go about hi s work in a merely mechanical way.3 He even stated explicitly that he was awar e of the “rules” for th e production of a proper historical account. In Bellum Judaicum 5.20, while lamenting the fate of Jerusalem, Josephus says avlla. kaqekte,on ga.r kai. ta. pa,qh tw/| no,mw| th/j grafh/j w`j ouvk ovlofurmw/n oivkei,wn o` kairo,j avllV avfhgh,sewj pragma,twn (“but it is necessary by the rule of composition to refrain from such emotions, as not being the time for pers onal lamentations but the narrating of events”). In other words, he followed the models, but not slavishly, and gave his own personal cast to the work. Precisely how much of this modeling and bo rrowing was due to Josephus himself has been debated, for, as I have noted, he admits that he had help with Greek composition. Some modern scholars have gone as far as to suggest that Jose phus’ literary a ssistants were responsible for much of the finished result. Thackeray believed that these “hacks” (as he calls them) were trained in the Thucydidean school whic h is mentioned by Cicero and Lucian4 and were therefore responsible for the good Atticistic style of the wo rk, although they were, in Thackeray’s opinion, far inferior in style to the master, Thucydides. Thackeray ev en thought he could distinguish different assistants in different parts of the Antiquities .5 This may be more than the evidence can bear, for style is a difficult criteria to define a nd use in source criticism. Shutt correctly observes that Josephus’ statement about “assistants with the Greek language” does not mean that Josephus was mostly ignorant of the language and that the assistants therefore basically did much of the 2 Marincola 14. 3 This was established in Attridge’s dissertation. 4 Cic. Orat. 9.30; Lucianus Hist.Conscr 15.21-3. 5 Josephus: The Man and the Historian 107-116.

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149 actual composition, but that Josephus was conversant in the vernacular Koine and simply needed help in producing a more refined, polished written Greek in the Atticistic style.6 Even with help, Josephus was the final judge of what was pr oduced under his name, and the thoroughly Greek cast of the work was still ultimately the product of its author. As Rajak has noted, “It would be rash … to suppose that he would not be f it, when eventually he came to the Greek War at the very least to collaborate fruitfully with his assistants, and to take the ultimate responsibility for substance and style alike.”7 There is a sense in which war was the first, and always the greatest, theme of Greek historiography. This goes back to the epic tradition institutionalized in Homer’s Iliad and it is also the main theme in Herodotus (the Pe rsian War), Xenophon (the expedition of Cyrus), Thucydides (the Peloponnesian War), and Polybi us (the Roman conquest of Greece). Similarly, the conflict of Greeks versus barbarians, or east versus we st (Herodotus), became emphatic aspects of the typical narrative. The treatment of warfare never lost sight of its epic roots, and by the first century CE there was an observable “int ermeshing between histori cal narratives and epic in the area of warfare.”8 Josephus’ use of Greek historiogra phical models for the account of a great war can be understood as a facet of his pr ogram of building a Greek-looking ethnicity for Jews. Rajak recognizes this when she notes that “what is striki ng and even bold in Josephus is the very fact that he had intr oduced a distinctive Jewish interp retation into a political history which is fully Greek in form, juxtaposing the two approaches.”9 The fact that the Jews had participated in a war that was billed by the Flav ian dynasty as one of the greatest wars of recent 6 Pp.59-68. 7 Josephus: The Historian and His Society 62-3. 8 R. Ash, ‘Epic Encounters? Ancient Historical Battle Narratives and the Epic Tradition’, in Clio and the Poets: Augustan Poetry and the Traditions of Ancient Historiography (Mnemosyne 224, Leiden 2002) 255. 9 Josephus: The Historian and His Society 79.

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150 memory naturally presented Josephus with an oppor tunity to compare the Jews and the Greeks in their experience of an epic war. His choice to wr ite on the theme of a great war also had a direct relationship with his agenda of ethnicity-building, because “War defines oppositions between one subject group and others, and be tween a collective self and a co llective enemy. It is the most extreme form of realizing identity and otherness.”10 Josephus’ account, which explicitly aimed to correct then-current interpretations of the war, would attack head-on th e idea that most Jews were confirmed enemies of Hellenistic culture and Roman society. In effect, he would use a story about a conflict to disarm the perceptions of cultural ho stilities that the conflict had produced. In the ancient Roman culture of honor and sham e, character and credibility went hand-inhand, and an historian’s cr edibility rested to a large extent on the public perception of his own character. It is not surprising, th erefore, that Josephus engages in what appears to us today to be an inordinate amount of self-flattery for the pur pose of establishing his own authority and thus the authority of his account. Josephus no doubt sa w himself (or at least saw an opportunity to portray himself) as similar to note d Greek historians and thus as stan ding in a legitimate role as a Greek historiographer. For example, both Thucyd ides and Josephus were commanders in the war in which they participated, both lost the enga gements in which they were involved, and both received the criticism of their fellow-countrymen for it.11 Concerning Polybius and Josephus, both men served in military positions in their own home countries, both came under the protective sponsorship of powerful Roman families, both witnessed the dest ruction of great cities 10 T. Hlscher 4. 11 It is a curious coincidence that many Greek historiographers were exiles from their own cities: Herodotus, Thucydides, Ctesias, Theopompus, Philoistus, Timaeus, Polybius, Dionysius of Halicarnassus, and Posidonius. A. Momigliano, ‘Greek Historiography’, History and Theory 17 (1978) 9. To this list we may add Josephus.

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151 that were dear to them (Corinth and Jerusa lem), and both wrote histories concentrating on Roman power in which they defended their own behavior.12 Concerning Xenophon and Josephus, both served as military leaders (neither of high rank) both served a foreign army (albeit in different capacities), both witnessed a decisive military engagement in their day, both wrote an account of their experiences, and both ha d to deal with the im age of being a traitor.13 It is likely that Josephus re alized that his own experiences had paralleled many of the experiences of the great Greek soldier-historians and that he stood in an ideal position to write the account of the Jewish War. In the course of the account Josephus presente d himself as an ideal general who had the status of a hero among the Jews, whose capture all but guaranteed Roman victory, and whom Vespasian praised as “the most sagacious of his enemies.”14 The need for this characterization was exacerbated in Josephus’ case by the fact that he had a personal detractor, Justus of Tiberias, who had also written an account of the war th at portrayed Josephus as the enemy of Rome.15 However, Josephus was also consciously follo wing the Greek histori ographical tradition by presenting himself so positively. S. Cohen ha s noted that Josephus’ self-portrayals follow familiar Greek models.16 His self-description mirrors the ki nds of stock descriptions of good 12 Eckstein 175. 13 There are, of course, significant diff erences between the two. Xenophon witnessed a battle fought on a battlefield (Cunaxa), wher eas Josephus witnessed the siege of a city (Jerusalem). Xenophon claims that when he joined the expedition of Cyrus, he did not know its purpose. When Josephus joined the Roman side, ho wever, it was because he was convinced that God was on the side of the Romans. In a twist of irony, Josephus says that in his case, it was the Romans who were ignorant of the nature of the fight they entered. Also, Xenophon fights his way back home, but Josephus remains in Rome. 14 BJ 2.568, 3.143-4, 341, 435-6; Attridge, ‘J osephus and His Works’, 188. 15 Josephus’ response to Justus appears in Vit. 1:336-67. 16 S. Cohen, Josephus in Galilee and Rome 91-7.

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152 generals found in authors such as Cicero and Onasander,17 and he attributes to himself the use of the same kinds of military tactics that are descri bed in Thucydides, Herodotus, and other sources. For example, raising the height of the walls and erecting animal-skin coverings over his men ( BJ 3.171-4) was done at Plataea in the Peloponnesian War (Th. 2.75), and hanging out wet objects to make the enemy think the defenders ha ve plenty of water inside the city ( BJ 3.186-9) was done by Thrasybulus of Miletus (Hdt. 1.21.1–22.3). S. Cohen puts all of this down to Josephus’ ego and claims that it was counter to Josephus’ apologetic purpose.18 I would suggest, however, that two other considerations ap ply here. First, Josephus was enga ging in an aspect of the Greek tradition by his self-advertisement. “That the anci ent historian was concerned with his own fame and wrote history to achieve renown is not to be doubted.”19 Second, this characterization formed the perfect complement to his presentation of his own people, the Jews, as similar to the ancient Greeks in this experience. Just as the Greeks had a tradition of war and great historians, so the Jews had the First Jewish War and Josephus. From a literary point of view, Josephus st ood in a great stream of tradition of prose Hellenic historiography, and he c onsciously incorporated many conve ntions from that tradition into his own history. This was recognized as early as the fourth century CE, when Jerome described Josephus as “the Greek Livy.”20 Casting stories in Greek molds for the benefit of Greek readers was part of this tr adition, traceable back to Xanthus.21 In particular, authors of histories regularly acquainted themselves with th e histories of other aut hors and felt obliged to 17 Cic. De Imperio Cn. Pompei 13.36-48; Onasander 1.1, 2.2. 18 S. Cohen, Josephus in Galilee and Rome 95-7. 19 Marincola 61. cf. A. Momigliano: “Adulation, ra ther than propaganda, was the insidious tempter of the classical historians ” (‘Tradition and the Classical Historian’, History and Theory 11 (1972) 286). 20 Ep. XXII ad Eustochium 35. 21 Momigliano, ‘Greek Historiography’, 3.

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153 imitate their style and work, but also to adva nce upon them in some way (including correcting them). As noted above, the ideal was to pay homa ge to the tradition and yet not be completely bound by it. It was also customary to offer some ki nd of criticism of one’s predecessors and their treatment of events. This element in the histor iographical tradition goes back to Hecataeus of Miletus, and was perhaps most famously sounded in Thucydides’ criticis m of Herodotus (1.20). Josephus engaged in all of these aspects of the tradition. He wa s acquainted with the works of Thucydides, Herodotus, Polybius, Dionysius of Halicarnassus, and Nicolaus of Damascus at a minimum of whom the first three were considered the standard models for Hellenistic historians22 (although he specifically mentions none of them in the Bellum Judaicum ). Yet he made it clear that he was also making an original contribution: filo,ponoj de. ouvc o` metapoiw/n oivkonomi,an kai. ta,xin avllotri,an avllV o` meta. tou/ kaina. le,gein kai. to. sw/ma th/j i`stori,aj kataskeua,zwn i;dion (“The industrious one is not he who remodels the arrangement and order of another but who, along with re porting new things, prepares his own body of history”).23 He also complained that Greek historians had negl ected Jewish history almost completely,24 that he was aware of other histories of the Jewish War, and th at he set out to correct what he thought were glaring inaccuracies in them.25 This last complaint is, in fact arguably the most emphatic theme in the introduction to the Bellum Judaicum but it is also quite Thucydidean as well, since Thucydides registered the same kinds of complaints about the historian Hellanicus.26 22 Momigliano, ‘Tradition and the Classical Historian’, 280. 23 BJ 1.15. 24 BJ 1.13. 25 BJ 1.1, 6-9. 26 1.97.

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154 Another part of the Greek hi storiographical tradition was an ongoing debate over the value and purpose of history,27 whether it was for entertainment or for a didactic purpose. A didactic purpose required accuracy and emphasis on truth, whereas history as entertainment participated in conventions from tragedy (p aradox, crisis, suspense, interv ention of the gods, myth, etc.). Thucydides was considered the model for didactic history, and later also Polybius. Herodotus was more the story-teller, but Cicer o called him “the father of histor y” because he was the first to differentiate clearly be tween myth and history in his accoun t, and his expressed aim was to preserve the memory of the glorious deeds of the past: w`j mh,te ta. geno,mena evx avnqrw,pwn tw/| cro,nw| evxi,thla ge,nhtai( mh,te e;rga mega,la te ka i. qwmasta,( ta. me.n {Ellhsi ta. de. barba,roisi avpodecqe,nta avklea/ ge,nhtai (“so that the things done by men might not be forgotten in time, nor the great and marvelous works, some displayed by the Greeks and some by the barbarians, might become inglorious”).28 In good Herodotean style, Josephus claims kavgw. ))) th.n mnh,mhn tw/n katorqwma,twn avnati,qhmi (“I am setting forth the memorial of great achievements”). However, the Greek historiographical trad ition was strongly inde bted to Greek tragedy from Herodotus onwards, and this element of it never disappeared.29 Therefore, although Josephus stated that his account of the Jewish war was not designed for entertainment, but for those who seriously wished to know the facts about it,30 he did not ignore the rhetori cal, dramatic side of historywriting. Eusebius had long ago recognized the trag ic nature of the Josephus’ account of Herod,31 and G. M. Paul noted that Jose phus used past unreal conditional sentence s, probably imitated from Homer and introducing an unexpected event that dramatically reverses the situation in the 27 Momigliano, ‘Tradition and the Classical Historian’, 291. 28 Hdt. 1.1. 29 These two aims are not necessarily ex clusive, as Rhodes has noted (p.166). 30 BJ 1.6, 16. 31 He calls it a tragikh. dramatourgi,a in H.E. 1.8. Thackeray notes several dramatic elements in that story in his preface to the Loeb edition of Josephus, II xvi-xvii.

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155 narrative, in order “to present Titus in particular in a dramatic way.”32 Chapman has shown that Josephus employed the device of spectacle and th e language of Greek tragedy to describe the siege of Jerusalem and other stories in his account,33 and R. Hall has demonstrated a correspondence between Josephus’ method in the Contra Apionem and the canons of Roman rhetorical inquiry.34 As the Greek tradition of historiography de veloped, there came to be an emphasis on contemporary history. Even those who wrote about the ancient past br ought the narrative down to their present day. There devel oped a general reluctance to re-has h what others had already said about the past because of the belief that the pa st was unavailable historically. The difference between heroic and historical times was basica lly introduced by the work of Hecataeus. This distinction was already accepted and assumed by the time of Herodotus, and an emphasis on contemporary history began in earnest with Thucydi des. There came to be a realization that the past was, in a real sense, beyond the historian’s grasp and th erefore there was nothing new to add. Opportunity and fame as a historian lay instead in writing on new things. Of course, Josephus wrote of a war that happened within his own lifetime and with in his own experience. He sharply criticized Greek histor ians who had neglected such a gr eat war in favor of simply rehashing the histories of older times some for which they had no data.35 32 G. M. Paul, ‘The Presentation of Titus in the “Jewish War” of Josephus: Two Aspects’, Phoenix 47 (1993) 57. 33 H. Chapman, ‘Spectacle and Theater in Josephus’ Bellum Judaicum’ (PhD Diss. Stanford University 1998). 34 R. Hall, ‘Josephus, Contra Apionem and Hi storical Inquiry in the Roman Rhetorical Schools’, in L. Feldman and J. Levison (eds.), Josephus’ Contra Apionem: Studies in Its Character and Context with a Latin Conc ordance to the Portion Missing in Greek (Leiden 1996) 229-49. 35 BJ 1.14-16.

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156 The craft of the ancient historian lay in the discernment and descrip tion of change and its causes. This theme fascinated the ancients of the classical world, especially the Ionian preSocratic philosophers. Behind all things they se arched for the underlying principles and causes. This quest for identifying causes of historical events appeared prominently in Herodotus and Thucydides, but was well-alive in later Greek historians also. In fact, the themes of change and war often went hand-in-hand, because wars we re often the means by which great societal changes were effected.36 Accordingly, Josephus’ choice of a war as the subject of his first book was thus a natural foray into Greek historiograp hy, and he spent a large section of his account (1.1-2.283, or 956 sections of the text as it has come to be divided) describing the political context that, in his view, le d to the First Jewish War.37 Josephus’ descriptions of the several smaller events that cumulatively led to the gr eat revolt cannot help but remind us of the same kind of presentation in Thucydides. Another fascination for the Greek histor ians was foreign lands and peoples. The ethnographic emphasis in the tradition goes back to Homer’s Odyssey and is prominent also in the travel digressions in Hecataeus, Herodotus and Theopompus. However, it was the Greek experience of war against foreign enemies th at brought the differences between Greeks and barbarians into sharpest focus. What wa s essentially Greek be came clearer through the exploration of the customs, laws, and governme nts of other peoples, and through the accounts of conflict with them, so this element of the tr adition served a role in the construction, or affirmation, of Greek ethnicity. Similarly, Joseph us acted as if his Greek and Roman readers 36 Momigliano, ‘Tradition and the Classical Historian’, 283. 37 In fact, Josephus seems to have been esp ecially aware of the co mplex nature of the causes of this war. Bilde, ‘The Causes of the Jewish War’, 197-202.

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157 were naturally interested in matters of Jewish history,38 which was probably a rhetorical touch on his part. The assumption, however, bought into the pa radigm neatly. It adde d to the sense that one was reading legitimate Greek historiography. Literary artistry was considered another hallmark of proper Gr eek history-writing. It remained that good, respectable history was firs t and foremost supposed to be factual and truthful, yet all historians felt the need for their accounts to be written in a way that was engaging (following the high style of Thucydides). Josephus explicitly distanced himself from merely rhetorical accounts in Bellum Judaicum 1.1, where he spoke of other accounts that had been written “sophistically” ( sofistikw/j ). Some modern scholars would judge this to be mere lipservice on Josephus’ part, since his account is fairly heavy with rhetorical flourishes.39 However, it is not the truth of the claim that is ultimatel y important, but the impression that claim makes on the reader. In this same vein, Jose phus was also careful to note in Bellum Judaicum 1.13-14 that excellence of literary style ought not be the primar y standard of good histor y either. In fact, in that passage Josephus implicitly compares his own account with th e accounts of the classical historians, and against contempor ary Greek authors. In doing so he was participating in the Roman practice, noted before, of distinguishin g between the noble Greeks of the past and contemporary Greeks of lesser achievements, and comparing himself favorably with the former. The personal observation of what was studied (autopsy), participati on in the events one narrated, or having seen sites personally was co nsidered a requirement for any Greek historian who wished to be judged as competent. Thucydi des had participated in the Peloponnesian War, and Polybius experienced Roman conquest himself and even claimed to have visited the site 38 BJ 1.3, 16; cf. AJ 1.9. 39 Cf. S. Cohen, Josephus in Galilee and Rome 90: “BJ is a good representative of rhetorical historiography.”

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158 where Hannibal crossed the Alps. This emphasis on eyewitness testimony was another part of the tradition’s heritage from Greek pre-Socratic philosophy. In good Greek fashion, Josephus thus placed his claim to be an eyewitn ess at the front of his account: VIw,shpoj Matqi,ou pai/j evx ~Ierosolu,mwn i`ereu,j auvto,j te ~Rwmai,ouj polemh,saj ta. prw/ta kai. toi/j u[steron paratucw.n evx avna,gkhj (“I myself, Joseph son of Matthias, a priest from Jerusalem, fought the Romans at first and was forced to be present for what happened later”).40 Similarly, a good historian was expected to maintain some semblan ce of neutrality and objectivity and refrain from excesses of either praise or blame in his account. This is evident as early as Homer. Similarly, in Herodotus barbarians are generally portrayed sympathetic ally, not as inherently evil. In keeping with this aspect of the tradition, Josep hus presented his claim to objectivity in Bellum Judaicum 1.9: Ouv mh.n evgw. toi/j evpai,rousi ta. ~Rwmai,wn avntifiloneikw/n au;xein ta. tw/n o`mofu,lwn die,gnwn avlla. ta. me.n e;rga metV avkribei,aj avmfote,rwn die,xeimi (“Now I have resolved not to magnify the deeds of my countrymen out of jealously against those who exalt the Roman deeds, but I am recounting the deeds of both with accuracy”). There is, in Greek historiography, a preceden t for establishing the authority of the historical account in some wa y. Marincola observes that whereas in myth the authority is guaranteed by the muse, in history the aut hority is vouchsafed by the author himself.41 How this was achieved in practice varied. Herodotus constan tly appears in the firs t person in his narrative to provide testimony to what is presented, but Thucydides rarely interjects himself into his account. His method instead was instead to write a seamless account that ha s the appearance of being the presentation of the facts. “The narrative homogeneity of T hucydides is meant to inspire 40 BJ 1.3. 41 Pp.4-5.

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159 confidence.”42 Polybius appears as a mixture of thes e two methods. “The Polybian narrator combines a largely unobtrusive narr ative of the deeds with a highly intrusive explicator of that narrative.”43 Close to Thucydides’ method was Xe nophon, who is so unobtrusive in his Anabasis as to be nearly anonymous.44 Josephus followed a path somewhere between that of Xenophon and Polybius. Outside of the introduction to the Bellum Judaicum Josephus does not often speak in the first person. He prefered, like Xenophon, to treat himself in the third person as a true character in the narrative. Yet Josephus was not adverse to interjec ting explanations and comments, like Polybius, and thus presented hi mself as the fairly typical Greek author. While the foregoing discussion does not exhaus t the list of things that were common to, or defined, Greek historiogra phy, it shows that Josephus was c onsciously tapping into that tradition. No educated reader in his day would have missed the f act that Josephus was presenting his account according to the standard form for Gr eek historiography. Given the circumstances in which Josephus wrote (specifica lly, the anti-Jewish climate), and the thorough-going nature of his use of these models, surely more was involved in the Bellum Judaicum than an author paying lip-service to a literary genre. My contention is that Josephus saw in the use of the paradigm of Greek historiography a way of fitting the Jews into the larger, well-accepted cultural paradigm of the ancient noble Greeks. Josephus went beyond adopting the formal el ements of the Greek historiographical tradition. He also adopted specific situations from it as types for his presen tation of the Jews. For example, he adopted from Herodotus the paradi gm of a clash between a superpower and an underdog. For Herodotus, the superpower was Pers ia, who threatened the Greek homeland and 42 Marincola 9. 43 Marincola 10. 44 Marincola 10.

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160 its smaller forces. Polybius engaged this same pa radigm as he chronicled the rise of Rome over the Greek states, arguing that resistance was futile and Roman domination was inevitable. For Josephus the superpower is Rome, and the underdog is the Palestinian Jews. There was some of this in Thucydides as well, in the well-known Melian dialogue in 5.17 of his History There the Athenians demanded that the island of Melos cap itulate to them, underscoring their demand with a reminder that the Athenians possessed the greater military force on that occasion. The Athenians portrayed themselves as a much greater power which the Melians could never withstand. The dialogue there was echoed in the speech which Josephus himself delivered to the Jerusalem Jews, on behalf of the Romans, in Bellum Judaicum 5.367. Another example appears in Bellum Judaicum 1.373ff, where Josephus has Herod maki ng a speech to his troops who were discouraged over a military defeat and the havoc wr eaked by an earthquake. This is similar to the scene in Thucydides (2.60ff) where Pericles deliv ered a speech to the Athenians after they had suffered invasion of their homeland and a devastating plague.45 Also, the account of the report of the news that Jotapata had fallen to the Romans46 is reminiscent of the account in Thucydides (8.1) of the failure of the Sicilian expedition,47 and Josephus’ description of the nature of the sta,sij in Jerusalem “is clearly inspired by” Thucydides’ de scription of the sta,sij in Corcyra (3.82f).48 In fact, Mader has argued that Thucydides’ narrative of the Corcyrean affair “shimmers like a subtext through BJ often enough to suggest that it provid es a stable point of reference.”49 45 Thackeray notes this in vol. 2 of the Loeb edition of Josephus, p. xvii, as does Mader 6. 46 BJ 3.432. 47 Thackeray’s Loeb edition, II xvii. This kind of borrowing also appears in the AJ where the description of Herod’s disease (17.167ff) cl osely follows Thucydides’ description of the symptoms of those who suffered in the plague in Athens (Th. 2.49.2-6). D. Ladouceur, ‘The Death of Herod the Great’, CP 76 (1981) 28-30. 48 Eckstein 178. 49 Mader 56.

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161 More specific examples are availa ble. It is well-known that the Bellum Judaicum has several clear verbal or paradigmatic echoes of Thucydides’ History so much so that recent treatments of Josephus no longer bother to cite the parallels. It is usef ul for the present study, however, to rehearse some of these briefly. There are close verbal parallels as Josephus gives an overview of the political context of the war: Thucydides Josephus Bellum Judaicum 1.1 avkma,zonte,j te h|=san evj auvto.n avmfo,teroi paraskeuh|/ th|/ pa,sh| kai. to. a;llo VEllhniko.n o`rw/n xuni sta,menon pro.j evkate,rouj to. me.n evuqu,j( to. de. kai. dianoou,menon) ki,nhsij ga.r au[th dh. megi,sth toi/j Ellhsin evge,neto me,rei tini. tw/n barba,rwn( ) ) ) ) (“ both sides were complete in all the preparations for it, a nd seeing the other Greeks united against the others, some immediately, others contemplating it Indeed this was the greatest uproar among the Greeks and among a certain part of the barbarians .”) 1.4 genome,nou ga,r w`j e;fhn megi,stou tou/de tou/ kinh,matoj evn ~Rwmai,oij me.n evno,sei ta. oivkei/a VIoudai,wn de. to. newteri,zon to,te tetaragme,noij evpane,sth toi/j kairoi/j avkma,zon) (“For when, as I said, th is greatest of uproars happened, of the internal affairs of the Romans were in disorder, and th e revolutionary party of the Jews then arose and flourished when the times were ripe.”) A few more verbal similarities a ppear as both authors claim that the war of which they wrote was the greatest in the world’s history: Thucydides Josephus Bellum Judaicum 1.2 ki,nhsij ga.r au[th dh. megi,sth toi/j Ellhsin evge,neto me,rei tini. tw/n barba,rwn( w`j de. eivpei/n kai. evpi. plei/ston avnqrw,pwn) ta. ga,r pro. auvtw/n kai. ta. e;ti palai,tera saqw/j me,n eu`rei/n dia. cro,nou plh/qoj avdu,naton h=n( evk de. tekmhri,wn w-n evpi. makro,taton skopou/nti, moi pisteu/sai xumbai,nei( ouv mega,la nomi,zw gene,sqai ou;te kata. tou.j pole,mouj ou;te evj ta. a;lla) (“For this was the greatest upheaval that happened among the Greeks, and among a certain part of the barbarians, and as one might say, the majority of mankind. For it has been impossible to discern the full picture, because of the passing of time, concerning the things 1)1 VEpeidh. to.n VIoudai,wn pro.j ~Rwmai,ouj po,lemon susta,nta me,giston ouv mo,non tw/n kaqV h`ma/j scedo.n de. kai. w-n avkoh/| pareilh,famen h' po,lewn pro.j po,leij h' evqnw/n e;qnesi surrage,ntwn ) ) ) ) (“Since the war of the Jews with the Romans has been the greatest ever engaged, not only of those that have been in our times, but nearly of all those that we have he ard of; either of those of cities fighting against cities, or nations against nations .”)

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162 Thucydides Josephus Bellum Judaicum before these events and the more ancient things; but by my considering proofs to the fullest extent it has turned out that I have come to believe that I do no t think greater things have happened either in wars or other things.”). Thackeray lists six more cases where it is clea r that Josephus has borrowed the vocabulary of Thucydides, nine cases of verbal indebt edness to Herodotus, six for Xenophon, six for Demosthenes, and others for Homer, Sophocles, and Virgil.50 As for paradigmatic parallels, Josephus follo ws Thucydides in claiming that his account rises above the normal tendencies of ex aggeration and only reports the truth: Thucydides Josephus Bellum Judaicum 1.21.2 kai. o` po,lemoj ou-toj( kai,per tw.n avnqrw,pwn evn w-| me.n a'n polemw/si to.n paro,nta aivei. me,giston krino,ntwn( pausame,nwn de. ta. avrxai/a ma/llon qaumazo,ntwn( avp v auvtw/n tw/n e;rgwn skpou/si dhlw,sei o[mwj mei,zwn gegenhme,noj auvtw/n) (“And so this war, although the men who fight in it always judge it to be the greatest one, and when it is over they wonder more at earlier ones, from observation of their deeds it will be clear that it was much greater than those that happened before.”) 1.2, 12 oi` parageno,menoi de. h' kolakei,a| th/| pro.j ~Rwmai,ouj h' mi,sei tw/| pro.j VIoudai,ouj katayeu,dontai tw/n pragma,twn perie,cei de. auvtoi/j o[pou me.n kathgori,an o[pou de. evgkw,mion ta. suggra,mmata to. dV avkribe.j th/j i`stori,aj ouvdamou/ ) ) ) ta. gou/n pa,ntwn avpV aivw/noj avtuch,mata pro.j ta. VIoudai,wn h`tth/sqai dokw/ kata. su,gkrisin) (“Those who were present, either for flattery to the Romans or for hatred against the Jews, lie about the events, and the things written by them contain either accusation or encomium, but nowhere the historical truth. The misfortunes of all men from the beginning of the world seems to me to be inferior, by comparison, to those of the Jews.”) And in a similar way Josephus follows Thucydide s in defending the writing of a factual account that may read dryly over an acc ount written for entertainment: 50 Loeb edition, II xvii.

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163 Thucydides Josephus Bellum Judaicum 1.22.4 kai. evj me.n avkro,asin i;swj to. mh. muqw/dej auvtw/n avterpesteron fanei/tai\ o[soi de. boulh,sontai tw/n te genome,nwn to. safe.j skopei/n kai. tw/n mello,ntwn pote. au=qij kata. to. avnqrw,pinon toiou,ntwn kai. paraplhsi,wn e;sesqai( wvfe,lima kri,nein auvta. avrkou,ntwj e-xei) kth/ma. te evj aivei. ma/llon h' avgw,nisma evj to. paracrh/ma avkou,ein xu,gkeitai) (“ And likewise the lack of what is mythological will app ear, to the hearing, boring; but if as many as wish to know the exact truth about the things that have happened, and of such things and similar things that will happen again according to human experience, judge these things to be beneficial, it will be enough. It has been written as a possession for all time rather than as a show-piece for momentary hearing.”) 1.15-16, 30 to, ge mh.n mnh,mh| ta. proi?storhqe,nta dido,nai kai. ta. tw/n ivdi,wn cro,nwn toi/j metV auvto.n sunista,nein evpai,nou kai. marturi,aj a;xion ) ) ) tima,sqw dh. parV h`mi/n to. th/j i`stori,aj avlhqe,j evpei. parV {Ellhsin hvme,lhtai ) ) ) ge th.n avlh,qeian avgapw/sin avlla. mh. pro. j h`donh.n avne,graya) (“Offering the memory of what has not been previously recorded, and putting together the affairs of one's own time for those who come afterward, is a task worthy of praise and declaration. … Yet let that which is true in history be preferred by us, since it has been neglected among the Greeks and I have written it for those who love the truth but not for those who love pleasure.”) Mader notes additional correspondences in Bellum Judaicum 4.131-4 (= Th. 3.82-3), 4.319-21 (= Th. 2.65), 5.367 (= Th. 1.72.2 and 5.105.2), and 6.136-40 (= Th. 7.44).51 E. Stein has catalogued allusions to Greek authors at the rate of be tween two and four allusions per page in the Bellum Judaicum ,52 and Drner’s examination of the evidence le d him to conclude that Josephus’ use of Thucydides was deliberate.53 It is possible that Thucydides served as more than a verbal or paradigmatic template for Josephus, because aspects of ethnicity also played a role in Thucydides’ pr esentation of the war. Price notes that “… the Hellenes fighting the war engaged in radical rede finition of the entity Hellas, to which they all claime d proprietary rights in a way which excluded their opponents.”54 This is typical of how ethnici ties are constructed, especially for imperialists. To say that 51 P.6. 52 Pp.58-68. 53 P.34. 54 J. Price, Thucydides and Internal War (Cambridge 2001) 328.

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164 Josephus saw this feature of Thucydides’ work and adopted it for his own ends might beg the question of how much Josephus actually knew and understood the History However, the consensus of modern scholarship is that Josephu s was himself well acquainted with the work of Thucydides,55 and it is not inconceivable that this feature of the History was not lost on Josephus. At the very least it shows that Josephus’ purpose was not inherently contradictory to his models and therefore it was not out of line for Josephus to use Thucydides as a model for describing a war in which cultural identity played a role. Eckstein thinks Josephus used Polybius as his primary model.56 He argues that Josephus used Polybius on both the conceptual and the verb al levels. Specifically, Josephus’ description of the Roman army in Bellum Judaicum 3.70-109 (which contributes nothi ng to the narrative itself) draws heavily on Polybius’ description in 6.1942. Josephus emphasizes the importance of a historian having political and military experience and being an eyewitness to and participant in the things he relates; he is w illing to overlook the failure of anothe r historian to tell all the truth of a matter; he is willing to tell the whole story even though it may prove embarrassing to his own people; he is conscious that his emotional in volvement in the story he relates may interfere with the proper telling of histor y; he blames the loss of the conf lict on the ineptness of some of his own fellow-countrymen; he writes about a c onflict that engulfs th e entire Mediterranean basin; he writes contemporary history (in the Bellum Judaicum ); he provides a table of contents at the beginning of the work; he writes for thos e who “are lovers of truth”; he has a resignation and a conciliatory tone towards Rome and its pow er; he blames the irrational youth of some of his countrymen for the start of the war; he appeals to tu,ch as a factor in th e rise of Rome’s 55 Mader 5. 56 P.207. Similarly, Petersen (266-72) has suggested that in six places in the AJ where Josephus claims that a topic has been covered, when in fact it has not ( AJ 12.390; 13:36, 61, 108, 119, and 186), the referent is to coverage in Polybius.

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165 prominence, and he says that that Roman success was inevitable. All of these features of the Bellum Judaicum have direct parallels in Polybius, and Eckstein argues that in some of them, Polybius can be the only model Josephus coul d have followed. He observes that “Polybius revealed to Josephus a good Hellenistic explan ation of events, one that would obviously be acceptable to a Greek-speaking audience, and one that carried the additional advantage of exonerating much of the Jewish populati on from responsibility for the Revolt.”57 Champion has shown that Polybius portrays th e Romans as in keeping with the best traditions of the ancient Greeks. “Romans are in corporated as part of the Hellenic cultural commune, and Polybius presents them with didac tic and admonitory less ons for preserving their polity in its optimal condition.”58 Josephus, like Polybius, wrote to demonstrate that a group that had come to be hated by some (for Polybius the Romans; for Josephus, the Jews) in fact exhibited some of the best ideals of that model of nobility, the ancient Greeks. Both authors were holding up a nation as worthy of respect and awe b ecause of its affinities to Greek ideals. In doing so, both authors interjected et hnicity into their presentations. Debate over whether Josephus’ primary model wa s Thucydides or Polybius is not crucial for this study. It is possible, if not likely, that no one author served as a primary model for the Bellum Judaicum I have already noted that Josephus dr ew on a number of themes from several Greek historians. What is important is the implication of Josephus’ extensive use of Greek historical models. Are these examples simply a case of a later historia n paying homage, through mimesis to his literary predecessors according to Hellenistic convention? Or is there more to it than this? I suggest that Josephus wrote not simply to disc ourage anti-Jewish sentiment, but to make a positive statement about the Jews, and in doing so he tapped into a characteristic of 57 P.93. 58 C. Champion, Cultural Politics in Polybius’ Histories (Berkeley 2004) 99.

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166 Greek historiography that was in vogue in his day. The remarks of Mader summarize the point well. After referring to a few of Josephus’ us es of Thucydides and Polybius, Mader says: Intertextual allusion of this kind is not just a matter of formal ornatus but implies also an interpretive intent: Jo sephus by invoking recognizable frames and models suggests analogies and parallels in a manner which woul d engage his Greco-Roman readers in their own cultural terms, and which thus adds s ubtle nuance to his narrative. From this perspective the ‘Hellenizing glass’ serves as a medium for implied authorial comment, predisposing the reader to a particular interpretation of the historical data.59 In light of the fact that the Jews of the first century were struggling for acceptance in the wider Hellenistic culture, and that Josephus was writin g for the Greek-speaking world of his day, it would seem that more than mimesis is going on here. Josephus is instead characterizing. These phenomena suggest that Josephus had a purpose in mind for how he wanted his account, and the people in it, to be understood.60 The clear echoes from the opening of Thucydides’ Histories immediately brings the reader to think of the conflict of the ancient Greeks and the story in the Bellum Judaicum in the same terms, and to s ee the people (the Jews) of the Bellum Judaicum as in some way parallel to the ancient Greeks. This becomes even more apparent in light of the fact that this frequent use of the Gr eek historiographical tradition wa s not consistent across Josephus’ writings. In particular, his Antiquities have an observable “Isocratean-Dioysian slant,” whereas the Bellum Judaicum has “a conscious Thucydide an-Polybian orientation.”61 The use of the Thucydidean-Polybian model in the Bellum Judaicum seems to be deliberat e and suggests that it was designed to invite implicit comparison between Josephus’ subject and that of Thucydides. As Mader notes, “Josephus brings to bear th e classical categories … on his Jewish narrative apparently with an eye to informed readers (G reeks, Romans, Hellenized Jews) and in a manner 59 P.9; he alludes to Rajak, Josephus: The Historian and His Society 103. Although Mader is arguing for a different use of the Greek historiographical tradit ion than we are arguing in this paper, he bases his approach on this same intertextual phenomenon. 60 Cf. Mader 5. 61 Attridge, ‘The Interpretati on of Biblical History’, 44-50.

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167 that activates prior knowledge and associations, a nd so steers (or at leas t potentially affects) reader-response through allusion to common frames of reference ….”62 Whereas Mader suggests that Josephus’ use of Thucydides and the Greek hi storiographical tr adition in general serves to give the impression of rationality to an account that is really nothing more than subjective polemic,63 I suggest that Josephus’ employment of th at tradition alternately, or additionally, served to provide an ethnicity for Hellenistic Jews. Some Greek Elements Within the Bellum Judaicum Is there anything to which we might look in Josephus that would demonstrate that Josephus’ wrote with a specifically ethnic slant or purpose? Three examples stand out. First, as noted above, Josephus, like his model Polybius, appeals to tu,ch64 as a factor in Rome’s success. In fact, tu,ch appears twenty-two times in the narrative. In Bellum Judaicum 1.45 Josephus reports that plh,qei de. u`pere,contej oi` basilikoi. kai. dexia/| crhsa,menoi tu,ch| kratou/si (“the king’s forces, being larger and having luck on thei r side, were victorious”). For a Jewish writer, this is amazing for at least two reasons. First, Josephus tells us that the Pharisees ascribed all events to destiny and to God.65 As a Pharisee, we would expect Josephus to have been satisfied with taking this course in explaining the Je wish defeat, but he was not. Second, Josephus’ introduction of tu,ch into the account is amazing especially in light of th e fact that Josephus had 62 Mader 8. 63 Mader 4. 64 tu,ch came into Greek historiography thr ough the influence of Greek tragedy. C. Fornara, The Nature of History in Ancient Greece and Rome (Berkeley 1983) 125-7. 65 BJ 2.162. Greek: ei`marme,nh| te kai. qew/| prosa,ptousi pa,nta) Cf. AJ 13.172: oi` me.n ou=n Farisai/oi tina. kai. ouv pa,nta th/j ei`marme,nhj e;rgon ei=nai le,gousin tina. dV evfV e`autoi/j u`pa,rcein sumbai,nein te kai. mh. gi,nesqai (“The Pharisees say that some things, but not all things, are the work of fate, and some things ha ppen by our own doing and do not come about [by fate]”); cf. 16.398. The two were perhaps not necessar ily seen as exclusive, but understanding Josephus’ descriptions, and the relationship be tween these two forces, has proved difficult. Cf. G. Moore, ‘Schicksal und freier Wille in der jdi schen Philosophie bei Josephus’, in A. Schalit (ed.), Zur Josephus-Forschung (Wege der Forshung 84, Darmstadt 1973) 167-89.

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168 another, competing factor in place in his account to explain the Roman victory at Jerusalem: the favor of the God of the Jews. It is a major theme in the Bellum Judaicum that the Jews lost the war because fanatical rebels angered God by thei r pollution of the temple, and thus God favored the Romans and gave them victory as punishment for the rebels’ impiety. qeo.j dV h=n a;ra o` ~Rwmai,oij ta. Galilai,wn pa,qh carizo,menoj (“It was God favoring the Romans for the calamities of the Galileans”).66 Josephus himself warned the inhabitants of Jerusalem saying qeo.j a;ra qeo.j auvto.j evpa,gei meta. ~Rwmai,wn ka,qarsin auvtw/| pu/r kai. th.n tosou,twn miasma,twn ge,mousan po,lin avnarpa,zei (“It is indeed God, God hi mself, urging on with the Romans a cleansing fire for himself, and he is plucking up the city that is full of such defilements”).67 In fact, Josephus presented himself as the prophetic author of this explanation, for which reason the Romans spared his life at Jotapata. That is, Josephus presented this explanat ion as coming from God. Now Josephus already had a perfectly good explanation for the Roman victory at Jerusalem, one that Jewish readers would ha ve found to be perfectly orthodox, especially because a similar theology was found alrea dy in the canonical book of Jeremiah, which discussed the Babylonian de struction of the city.68 Even for non-Jewish readers, the concept of the gods being on the side of the victor had a long history, going back to Homer, as part of the religious milieu of the ancient world. It would ha ve made good sense to a non-Jewish reader if Josephus had left the matter as a case of victory by the help of a deity. Therefore Josephus did not need to tap into the concept of tu,ch in order to explain the outcome of the war either to Jews 66 BJ 3.293. 67 BJ 6.110. He puts the same sentiment in the mouth of Agrippa II in 2.390-94. 68 S. Cohen, ‘Josephus, Jeremiah, and Polybius’, History and Theory 21 (1982) 370-7.

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169 or Gentiles. Yet Josephus added this element to his account, creating tension with the other explanations.69 Why? Perhaps Josephus thought that a theological ex planation of the war’s outcome would have been ultimately unsatisfying to his pagan readers. After all, Josephus presen ts the war not just as another war, but as an event co mparable to the Peloponnesian Wa r, a war that forever changed the world. Momigliano has observed that “Though Tyche might appeal to a pagan historian, no personal god was ever invoked to explain the course of history.”70 After Herodotus, gods play no direct role in historical explanation. Instead the gods became the instrument of overriding tu,ch .71 So perhaps the idea of a world-changing war di rectly determined by the personal God of the Jews was, in Josephus’ judgment, too Jewish of an explanation. tu,ch provided a less personal explanation and even made the presentation some what Thucydidean, since in Thucydides there was a thread that decisions made by human beings were also pa rt of a larger divine plan.72 Squires has noted that a concept of divine providence can be discer ned in the classical historians, and that Josephus’ Jewish theological views enabled him to capital ize on this theme,73 but appealing to tu,ch aligned his description with Greek c onventions. In short, an appeal to tu,ch would have made better sense to his Hellenistic readers. Whatever the reason, Josephus’ use of this term that had a well-known place in Greek thought shows that Jose phus was deliberately casting the story in specifically Greek terms, t hus making the story appear closer to Greek experience than it could have been po rtrayed otherwise. By interjecting tu,ch into the account, 69 S. Cohen notes (‘Josephus, Jeremiah, and Polybius’, 372) that Josephus’ use of the term tu,ch is not consistent. 70 Momigliano, ‘Tradition and the Classical Historian’, 284. 71 Price, ‘The Provincial Historian in Rome’, 116-7. 72 Rhodes 158. 73 J. Squires, ‘Hellenistic Historiography and Philosophy in Josephus’ Account of the Jewish History’, Australian Journal of Jewish Studies 4 (1990) 148-54.

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170 Josephus was explicitly painting the Jews in Gr eek dress, and implicitly declaring that the experiences of the Jews paralleled those of the Greeks. The Jews, for literary purposes, have become Greeks. A second indicator of the specifically ethnic function of JosephusÂ’ use of Greek historiographical models can been seen in how he seemed to dow nplay those things that were specifically and uniquely Jewish. While th is program is most noticeable in the Antiquitates Judaicae rewriting for the purpose of making the materi al appear more Greek also characterizes the Bellum Judaicum For example, the various sects of the Jews are presented as philosophies74 to make them appear more Greek. Specifically, the Essenes are said to live the same kind of life as the Greek Pythagoreans,75 the Pharisees are said to be like the Stoics,76 and his descriptions of the Sadducees and Epicureans have much in common.77 Closer inspection reveals, however, that the Pharisees, Sadducees, Zealots, and Essenes had little in common with the classical Greek notions of philosophy. The term filosofi,a of course had a long hist ory and had come to denote Greek speculative thought on the nature of the world and existence (inc luding the role of the gods). The Jews, however, historically shunned such speculation since they believed their sacred texts provided answers to the kinds of questions the Greeks asked. Jo sephusÂ’ choice of terms, in spite of the fact that they did not accurately describe the institu tions of Jewish culture, indicates his desire to paint the Jews with a Greek brush politically and so cially. In fact, Josephus could have cited Greek approval for his choice of term s. Theophrastus, Aristo tleÂ’s successor in the 74 BJ 2.119ff. 75 AJ 15.371. 76 Vit 12. 77 AJ 10.277f and Ap 2.180.

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171 Peripatetic school, referred to th e Jews as “a philosophical race.”78 In Josephus’ defense, the term “philosophy” was broad enough that it could encompass the peculiar th eological traditions of the Jews. There was no single word in the an cient world that comprehensively denoted what our word “religion” denotes. “P hilosophy” was the closest term,79 but at the same time its use by Josephus did not denote quite what it meant among Greeks.80 Josephus took advantage of this ambiguity to create the impression of alignment between Greek and Jewish culture on this point. This technique of painting the Jews with a Gr eek brush is seen to be all the more bold when one notes that Jews and Greeks were si gnificantly different in many ways. The Jews classically were a nation who lived in a territo ry with a capital city, Jerusalem. The Greeks, however, classically had no capit al city. Instead the Greeks lived in several independent po,leij Jewish religion was monotheistic and centered in one place in the ancient world (Jerusalem), but Greek religion was polytheistic and had shrines everywhere. The Jews had a Torah, revealed by their God, that dictated morality. For the Greeks, the gods were not sources of moral instruction. Ethics was instead the purview of speculative ph ilosophy. Jewish law contained dietary strictures that applied to everyday life, most notably abstinence from pork. The Greeks had no such customary restrictions. The Greeks were a s eafaring people, but the Jews were not. The differences can easily be multiplied. Josephus co nsistently smoothed over or ignored significant differences between Jewish and Greek ethnicities and recast the former to look as much as possible like the latter. 78 In Porph. Abst. 2.26. From the fragment it does not seem that Theophrastus had anywhere near an accurate know ledge of Jewish beliefs and cu stoms. W. Jaeger, ‘Greeks and Jews: The First Greek Records of Jewish Religion and Civilization’, JR 18 (1938) 131-4. 79 M. Smith 79. 80 Cf. Green 501: “Hellenistic Greeks…thought of Jews as a race of philosophers (a view sustainable only by the failure to re ad anything they actually wrote…).”

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172 Both of the examples above show that Jo sephus was making consci ous choices about his presentation of the Jews. In the former exampl e, Josephus was adding an element of explanation to the story that was unnecessary from a Jewish point of view, but one that would have greatly increased the Hellenic characterization of the st ory and its peoples by it s addition. In the latter example Josephus was suppressing elements of Jewi sh ethnicity that one would otherwise expect to find in a Jewish description of Jewish culture, elements that would have made the Jews appear un-Greek, and has instead re-cast a major component of Jewish ethnicity in purely Greek terms. These techniques, along with his heavy use of the Greek historiographical tradition throughout, led the ancient reader to see the Jews in much the same way as that same reader would have encountered the Greeks in the works of the recognized, authoritative Greek historians. Perhaps the most noticeable evidence within the Bellum Judaicum that Josephus was trying to bridge the divide between Roman and Jewish relationships appears in his treatment of the emperor Titus who, at the time of the Jewish revo lt, was the officer in charge of finishing the campaign. As I have tried to demonstrate in chap ter three, Roman-Jewish tensions were high in the first century CE. Josephus needed to soften Roman views of Jews and to present a view of Titus that was not antagonistic toward Jews if th ere was to be a successful negotiation on the part of Jews into Roman society. The former of thes e tasks involved explaining that the war was started and prosecuted by a handful of Jews who were bent on making trouble.81 The rest of the populace involved in the conflagration was, accordi ng to Josephus, quite unwilling to be in that situation. This may have been an attempt to c ounter a notion that Jews in general across the Roman empire were eager for a revolt. In 1.5 we hear what sounds like an echo of this rumor: evpeidh. VIoudai/oi me.n a[pan to. u`pe.r Euvfra,thn o`mo,fulon suneparqh,sesqai sfi,sin h;lpisan (“For 81 BJ 1.10; 2.290, 330; etc.

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173 the Jews hoped that their fellow-country from beyond the Euphrates would join with them”). The insurrectionists apparently envision ed this as a great war of east ve rsus west, and mention of this little fact is reminiscent of the Herodotean pr esentation of groups in terms of polarities. Discrediting this idea of a war of Jews versus the world required presentin g Titus as God-fearing and pious, respectful of the Jews and their gr eat religious institution, sympathetic and unwilling to bring calamity on the Jews. In short, Josephus n eeded to show that, from the point of view of an authoritative Jewish historian, Jews did not view Titus as their arch-enemy. If this point could be established, Roman perceptions of Jews could be softened.82 According to Josephus, Titus did not want to de stroy the Jewish temple. In the introduction to the Bellum Judaicum Josephus set the tone for the reader and said that the Romans attacked the Jews unwillingly ( cei/raj avkou,saj ) and Kai/sar Ti,toj evn panti. tw/| pole,mw| to.n me.n dh/mon evleh,saj u`po. tw/n stasiastw/ n frourou,menon polla,kij de. e`kw.n th.n a[lwsin th/j po,lewj u`pertiqe,menoj kai. didou.j th/| poliorki,a| cr o,non eivj meta,noian tw/n aivti,wn (“Titus Caesar throughout the whole war pitied the people who were being held by the rebels, and often willingly held off the taking of the city, and gave time for repentance for those who started it while the siege was underway”).83 In fact, he set this tone twice in the preface, to make sure that the reader understood that this was the proper interpretive grid through which the history was to be read. After telling how he will describe the coming of the Roman army, the activities of the rebels, and the place where all this happened, he says: :Epeita die,xeimi th,n te tw/n tura,nnwn pro.j tou.j o`mofu,louj wvmo,thta kai. th.n ~Rwmai ,wn feidw. pro.j tou.j avllofu,louj kai. o`sa,kij Ti,toj sw/sai th.n po,lin kai. to.n nao.n evpiqum w/n evpi. dexia.j tou.j stasia,zontaj proukale,sato 82 In exonerating the Roman general (and by implication, the army) of much of the blame, Josephus anticipates Livy, who exonerates Rome of guilt in the S econd Punic War and is generously favorable to Titus Quinctius Flaminiu s, who ended that war with a crushing victory. Cf. M. Grant, Greek and Roman Historians (London 1995) 72-3. 83 BJ 1.10.

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174 (“Then I will recount the fierceness of the ty rants against their own fellow-countrymen, and the forbearance of the Romans to the foreigners, and how often Titus, wanting to save the city and the temple, offered the rebels assurances”).84 Similarly, in 6.215f, dur ing the siege, Josephus portrayed Titus as having been left no other ch oice but to destroy the temple and to press the revolt to a violent end: Kai/sar de. avpelogei/to kai. peri. tou,tou tw/| qew/| fa,skwn para. me.n auvtou/ VIoudai,oij eivrh,nhn kai. auvtono mi,an protei,nesqai kai. pa,ntwn avmnhsti,an tw/n tetolmhme,nwn tou.j de. avnti. me.n o`monoi,aj sta,sin avnti. de. eivrh,nhj po,lemon pro. ko,rou de. kai. euvqhni,aj limo.n (“but Caesar exonerated himself before God concerning this, sayi ng that peace and independence had been offered to the Jews by him, and amne sty for all the wrongs they had done, but instead of instead of harmony they preferre d rebellion, instead of peace they chose war, and rather than a measure of abundance they chose famine”). In 5.456 he has Titus practica lly begging the Jews not to force him to destroy the city, and in 6.95 we are told that Titus even offered to send Josephus into the city to offer th e daily sacrifice (since at this poi nt those who regularly did this were now dead) and that he had no intention of destroying the temple and offending its God. Instead he wanted it to stand because it was wo rthy of admiration as a great foreign edifice,85 and he expressed regret that it had to end as it did.86 Perhaps even more amazing is the comment that Titus despaired at the crucif ixions of so many Jews who were caught escaping the city, crucifixions that he himself had ordered for the purpose of instill ing fear in those who remained inside. mastigou,menoi dh. kai. probasanizo,menoi tou/ qana,tou pa/san aivki,an avnestaurou/nto tou/ tei,couj avntikru,) Ti,tw| me.n ou=n oivktro.n to. pa,qoj katefai,neto pentakosi,wn e`ka,sthj h`me,raj e;sti de. o[te kai. pleio,nwn a`liskome,nwn ))) to, ge mh.n ple,on ouvk evkw,luen ta,cV a'n evndou/nai pro.j th.n o;yin evlpi,saj auvtou,j eiv mh. paradoi/en o[moia peisome,nouj 84 BJ 1.27. 85 BJ 6.228. 86 BJ 7.112-13.

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175 (“having first been whipped and tormented to th e point of death with every kind of torture, they were crucified opposite the walls. The su ffering brought pity to Titus, as every day five hundred Jews were being caught, and so metimes more; … The main reason he did not hinder it was that he was hoping they might possibl y give in at the sight of it, fearing lest they might suffer the same things”).87 What are we to make of all th is positive, generous characteri zation of Titus? Is it true? Since the corresponding sections of Tacitus have been lost, we have no other contemporary ancient source by which we may compare it. Howeve r, the lost parts of Tacitus were known to both Sulpicius Severus and Orosius, fourth-century Christian author s, and their accounts of this event were built on them.88 Both of these later historians repor ted that Titus deliberated with his advisers concerning whether or no t to destroy the temple (which Josephus confirms in 6.236-43). The texts are pertinent here. Severus says Fertur Titus adhibito consilio prius deliberasse an templum tanti operis everteret. Etenim nonnullis videbatur aedem sacratam ultra omni a mortalia illustrem non oportere deleri, quae servata modestiae Romanae testimonium diruta perennem crudelitatis notam praeberet. At contra alii et Titus ipse evertendum in primis templum censebant … (“It is said that Titus summ oned a council first, to consider whether he should destroy a temple of such great work. Indeed, it seemed to some that destruction of a holy, illustrious temple beyond all human achievement was not required, whose preservation was a testimony of Roman restraint, and whose destru ction would offer a lasting mark of cruelty. Against this, others and Titus himself determin ed that the temple especially had to be destroyed …”)89 And Orosius reports quod tamen postquam in potestatem redactum opere atque antiquitate suspexit, diu deliberavit utrum tamquam incitamentum hostiu m incenderet an in testimonium victoriae reservaret … itaque Titus, imperator ab exer citu pronuntiatus, templum in Hierosolymis incendit ac diruit. (“after it had been forcefully taken and he had admired its works and antiquity, for a long time he deliberated whether he should burn it as an incitement of the enemy or preserve it 87 BJ 5.449-50. 88 This was demonstrated by J. Bernays, Ueber die Chronik des Sulpicius Severus (Berlin 1861) ii.81-200, as noted by Barnes 133-4. 89 Chronicorum Libri duo 2.30.6-7; text as quoted in Barnes 134-5. The text also appears in the preface to the Loeb edition of Josephus, II xx.

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176 as a testimony to his victory … Thus Titus, having been proclaimed imperator by the army, burned and destroyed the temple in Jerusalem”)90 The picture from both authors is that in the end the decision was reached that the temple ought to be destroyed. Interestingly, Josephus tells us that the final decision was to let the temple stand: o` de. Ti,toj ouvdV a'n evpiba,ntej evpV auvtou/ polemw/sin VIoudai/oi fh,saj avnti. tw/n avndrw/n avmunei/sqai ta. a;yuca ouvde. katafle,xein pote. thlikou/ton e;rgon ~Rwmai,wn ga.r e;sesqai th.n bla,bhn w[sper kai. ko,smon th/j h`gemo ni,aj auvtou/ me,nontoj (“But Titus was saying that even if the Jews should advance upon it and fight from there, the fighting should not be against in animate things instead of men, nor should there ever be a burning of so great a work by the Romans, for that would be harmful, and it would also be an a dornment of their abiding empire”).91 So what is the truth here? Barnes believes th at “Tacitus’ version of the destruction of the temple must surely be pref erred to that of Josephus.”92 Given the prevalence of anti-Jewish sentiment in the Roman world, it certainly seem s incredible that a battle-hardened commander like Titus should be so reluctant to press for a de cisive victory in such circumstances. In fact, Rives has suggested that it might even be possible to detect here the application of a Flavian policy towards foreign cults that threatened loya lties to Rome and Roman identity. Vespasian, he argues, would not have seen Jerusalem as the cente r of a religion as we w ould see it, but as the center of a cult that threatened the peace and secur ity of the empire by virtue of its claim to an alternate authority.93 This, however, may be going too far. As Gruen has noted, the extant evidence does not support the notion that the Romans felt threatened by the Jews.94 More 90 Historiae adversum Paganos 7.9.5-6; text as quoted in Barnes 135. 91 BJ 6.241. 92 Barnes 143. So also W. Weber, Josephus and Vespasian: Untersuchungen zu dem Judischen Krieg des Flavius Josephus (Hildesheim 1973) 72-3. 93 J. Rives, ‘Flavian Religious Policy and the Destruction of the Jerusalem Temple’, in J. Edmondson et al (eds.), Flavius Josephus and Flavian Rome (Oxford 2005) 145-66. 94 Gruen, ‘Roman Perspectiv es on the Jews’, 29-37.

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177 realistic, it seems, is the notion that Titus, a nd Romans in general, were shocked and angered at the ingratitude the revolt communicated. The Romans had no vested interest in the destruction of Jews or Judaism, and had bent over backwards to accommodate this unusual people. Now the Palestinian Jews had started a war, in spite of good treatment from Ro me, and there was no way the Romans were about to let it go unpunished. The incredulity of Titus’ behavior in Jo sephus’ account thus highlights just how far Josephus was willing to go to present the Romans and Jews as being on favorable terms with each other. This literary “handshaking” can be interpreted as evidence that Josephus was attempting to negotiate a way into Roman culture for the Jews. Titus is presented as a pious, God-fearing man who wished to avoid bloodshed and the destruction of the Jerusalem temple, but was forced into both by the rebels. Likewise the majority of Jews are presented not as victims not of outright Roman hatr ed, nor as fighting out of hatred for the Romans themselves, but as trapped by the insane dete rmination on the part of the rebe ls to fight until the very end. This distancing of Titus from the decision to dest roy the temple also served to put the matter in God’s hands, where Josephus claimed the matter lay from the beginning. Whether Josephus was simply capitalizing on what appeared to be hesitation on Titus’ part (and Josephus was simply inferring that this mean t that Titus did not want the temple destroyed), or Titus was at one point actually opposed to th e temple’s destruction, or Josephus felt political pressure to present his patron in the best light possible and thus simply invented the outcome of the council, or he willingly cont radicted the facts, it is clear that Josephus was manipulating his material here. Of course, this sympathetic port rait of Titus has contributed greatly to the perception that Josephus was a tr aitor to his own people who wa s simply touting the imperial propaganda. However, I suggest that if we read Josephus from th e point of view of ethnicity,

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178 another agenda emerges that is not so derogato ry to Josephus nor as complementary to Titus.95 The picture that Josephus was trying to create was that no one wanted this war except the minority that made up the insurrectionists, and that both groups were peace-loving people who had every intention and prospect of getting along othe rwise. Titus’ reluctance to destroy the temple in Josephus’ telling of the story sta nds as a gesture of good will toward the Jews proceeding from the emperor himself. The action is far more significant than a glimpse into military deliberations in a great war. It becomes a symbol of the imperial attitude toward the Jews, employed by Josephus to fit his literary aim of demonstrating Roman acceptance of Jews. It also absolves Josephus of much of the char acterization of shamelessl y praising his imperial patron. Conclusion It is clear that Josephus followed the Greek tradition of historiography as he composed his Bellum Judaicum He imitated that tradition in adopti ng as his basic subject the theme of a great, contemporary war between peoples who were foreigners to each other. Like a good Greek historian he criticized his predec essors and claimed that his work was written as a monument of a great event for serious seekers of the truth. He wrote from his own personal experience in the events he related, he established himself as a trus tworthy interpreter of the war, he paid careful attention to the antecedents of the war, and he included tragic elements within the narrative all in good Greek fashion. He followed Greek form in laying out the introducti on to his work, often step-by-step with Thucydides, he engaged in verbal echoing or borrowing from well-known 95 Cf. McLaren, who has shown that Josephus doe s not follow stock descriptions of a good military commander current in his day. ‘Jos ephus on Titus: The Vanquished Writing About the Victor’, in J. Siev ers and G. Lembi (eds.), Josephus and Jewish History in Flavian Rome and Beyond (SupJSJ 104, Leiden 2005) 279-95. He argues that there is implicit cri ticism of Titus in this, but it may well also be that Josephus wa s simply not familiar enough with the stock conventions to employ them.

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179 Greek authors such as Thucydides and Polybius, a nd he cast some of the stories in his narrative in ways that were clearly remini scent of the types of stories he found in these authors as well. The Greek historiographical tradition was Jose phusÂ’ paradigm on severa l levels. In addition, Josephus downplayed the Jewish character of so me things by putting them in Greek dress. The Jewish sects became philosophies, and the outcome of the war was determined not by God alone which would have been a perfectly accepta ble explanation for both Jewish and pagan readers but also by the Greek element of tu,ch In the sensitive issue of hostility between Romans and Jews, Josephus nearly stretched the limits of credib ility as he basically absolved Titus of responsibility in the destruction of the Jerusalem temple. The Roman commander was portrayed as having been forced, against his personal sentiments, piety, and pleas to the contrary, to act as he did by the obstinate determination of the rebels. The rebels were to blame, not a general Roman hatred of Jews or a general Jewi sh hatred of Romans. The two nations are both depicted as victims of the rebels Â’ actions; otherwise they would not have fought with each other. How is all of this to be understood? Scholar ship has wrestled with this question and has produced different answers. Some have suggested that JosephusÂ’ use of Greek models is merely formal, and that nothing more shoul d be read into it. Others have suggested that his use of these models is part of an integral strategy on JosephusÂ’ part but there is disagreement over what that strategy was. I believe that Mader was correct in noting that all of this Hellenism was designed to create and manage a deliberate impression on the reader, and I suggest that one way to interpret the matter is that Josephus was attempting to build a new ethnicity for Jews in his day. Following an instrumentalist understanding of ethnicity, it is possible to see these features of the Bellum Judaicum as JosephusÂ’ attempt to nego tiate a place for the Jews within the larger (Roman) culture of his day. Specifically, he was establishing, through a literary construc t, a solidarity with

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180 the Greek cultural heritage, thereby attempting assimilation into the Roman world, and engaging in what modern sociologists call identity politics. A reader of the Bellum Judaicum in ancient times would certainly have been impressed with how Greek the Jews appear in that narrative, and how Greek the narrative itsel f sounded. That reader would have thought that he was reading a Greek historiography of a peopl e who were like the ancient Greeks themselves in many ways. By adopting the Greek tradition to tell his story, Josephus was hoping to convince his target audience (readers in the Greek world) that the Jews were, in substantial ways, just like the Greeks of the past. If they were just like them, th en they ought to be rega rded with the same kind of openness and respect. This mode of reading Josephus need not be exclusive. Josephus was skilled enough to manipulate his materials for ot her purposes also, but th e desire to design an ethnicity along Greek lines explains the phenomenon well.

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181 CHAPTER 6 JOSEPHUSÂ’ PRESENTATION OF THE JEWS IN HIS ANTIQUITATES JUDAICAE In the late 80s or early 90s CE, Josephus undert ook his most extensive literary project, the Antiquitates Judaicae Here he presented a version of Jewi sh history for a Hellenistic audience. In this chapter I hope to show that Josephus has manipulated the presentation of this history to suit an agenda of ethnicity-bui lding. The literature that has ar isen in connection with the Antiquitates Judaicae is vast,1 and a comprehensive look at the Antiquitates Judaicae is neither possible nor necessary for the present purposes. I hope instead to cite elements of the Antiquitates Judaicae that demonstrate how it addresses conc erns of Jewish ethnicity and to look at two basic aspects of that work: 1) JosephusÂ’ positive presentation of Jewish history and its great characters, 2) and his management of ne gative elements. In this latter aspect I will concentrate on his presentation of the part of th at history that was cont emporary to him and his audience (basically the history of the Herodian dynasty in Pa lestine and Roman rule through procurators). The Fluid Nature of Foundational History/Myth It is important to realize th at as Josephus was aligning Je wish piety with Greek in the Antiquitates Judaicae at the same time he was preservi ng elements of Jewish uniqueness. Josephus accomplished this latter objective by a staunch refusal to compromise anything that was, in his judgment, essentially Jewish. Nowhere did Josephus at tempt to align the God of the Jews with a pagan deity. Likewise, some institutions which were uniquely Jewish such as Sabbath observance were neither downplayed nor aligne d with any practice from paganism. Josephus had no intention of completely assimila ting Judaism into Hellenism (a feat he could 1 Cf. L. Feldman, Josephus and Modern Scholarship (1937-1980) (Berlin 1984). The topical bibliography of works between 1937 and 1980 covers nearly 900 pages, approximately 600 of which relate to the AJ

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182 have attempted if he so desired), of complete ly surrendering Jewish identity for a Greek one. Instead he was doing what everyone else did with stories of national origins: he was taking advantage of the flexible, plastic nature of those st ories in order to craft a particular perception or to serve a particular end. As I noted in chapter two, the fluid nature of traditions is one of the things that makes the creation and ma intenance of an ethnicity possible. Myths in the ancient world were incredibly elastic and capable of a wide latitude of treatment and even of transformation, as the needs allowed and demanded. A cursory look at any compilation of ancient Greek and Roman myths show s that many variants of the stories existed, often side-by-side historically. Fu rthermore, the more remote the myth, the more it came to attain a symbolic quality and not that of historical fact ( cf. Herodotus’ wrestling with the problem in his History ). The remote antiquity of many of the storie s at Josephus’ disposal easily lent them, in the Greco-Roman milieu in which he wrote, to adaptation. Even if a Roman reader knew the details of these stories from the LXX (which is highly doubtful), he would not have thought it strange to hear slightly different versions of those stories from Josephus, nor would he have necessarily thought that Josephus was being decep tive by changing elements of the story for his audience. “Roman writers, well aware that they were working with legendary material and malleable traditions, felt free to redesign and embellish within the ge neral framework. They found no virtue in mere reproduction of predeces sors, nor did they regard themselves as promoting a canonical tale. Their presuppositio ns had little in co mmon with modern expectations.”2 Josephus took a similar approach to the Biblical stories he retold in the Antiquitates Judaicae If he wanted his readers to hear a “standar d” version of any of them, he simply could 2 Gruen, Culture and National Identity 32.

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183 have pointed them to the LXX, easily available in his day, or he could have simply reproduced the LXX stories as closely as he wished. But in f act he did neither. Inst ead he chose to relate those stories in his own words, casting them in ways more easily digested by his Greco-Roman audience, while still claiming that he was faithful to the canonical (“ortho dox”) versions of those stories. In Antiquitates Judaicae 1.17 Josephus therefore says ta. me.n ou=n avkribh/ tw/n evn tai/j avnagrafai/j proi?w.n o` lo,goj kata. th.n oivkei,an ta,xin shmanei/ tou/to g a.r dia. tau,thj poih,sein th/j pragmatei,aj evphggeila,mhn ouvde .n prosqei.j ouvdV au= paralipw,n (“As I go on, the story of the things contained in the records will tell accura tely, according to the proper order, for I have promised to do this throughout th is treatise, adding nothing nor neglecting anything”). Similarly, in 10.218 he says evgkale,sh| de, moi mhdei.j ou[twj e[kasta tou,twn avpagge,llonti dia. th/j grafh/j w`j evn toi/j avrcai,oij eu`ri,skw bibli,oij kai. ga.r euvqu.j evn avrc h/| th/j i`stori,aj pro.j tou.j evpizhth,sonta,j ti peri. tw/n pragma,twn h' memyome,nouj hvsfal isa,mhn mo,non te metafra,zein ta.j ~Ebrai,wn bi,blouj eivpw.n eivj th.n ~Ella,da glw/ttan kai. tau/ta dhlw ,sein mh,te prostiqei.j toi/j pra,gmasin auvto.j ivdi,a| mh,tV avfairw/n u`peischme,noj (“But let no one accuse me for relating every on e of these things throughout the work as I find them in our ancient books. For directly in the beginning of my history, I have been careful, against those who were seeking so mething about these matters or who were finding fault with me, only to translate the Hebrew books, saying them in the Greek language, and promising to reveal these thi ngs neither adding my own ideas to these matters nor taking anything away.”) Either Josephus lied outrightly (w hich is hard to believe), or he did not see his presentations of the Biblical stories as containing any substantial violations with respect to the shapes they bore in the canonical Hebrew Bible. In fact, Josephus described his Antiquitates Judaicae as a translation of the Bible.3 I noted above that he presented himself as the analogue to Eleazar in the Letter of Aristeas and thus implied that his Antiquitates Judaicae was the analogue to the LXX. The fact that Josephus pr esented himself as a prophet also created the impression that 3 Ap 1.54 ( meqermhneu,ein but interestingly suggra,fein in 1.1); AJ 1.5 ( meqermhneu,ein ); 10.218 ( metafra,zein ); cf. 20.261.

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184 Josephus’ translation was divinely inspired (which claim was also made for the LXX) and thus as reliable as the prophetic literature of the Bible itself.4 By “translation” Josephus did not understand a literal rendering, but a dynamic one. The Jews agreed that the truth lay in their sacred books. What they did when they wrote about them was to interpret, contemporize, and actualize them.5 There is good indication that Jo sephus was already aware of vari ations in the materials he knew. In the Antiquitates Judaicae Josephus repeatedly demonstr ated his knowledge of Hebrew as he cited and explained the Hebrew words that describe Jewish traditio ns. Modern research has concluded, however, that Josephus was basically following the LXX in the Biblical parts of his Antiquitates Judaicae .6 If this is correct, then Josephus must have known that the LXX versions of many Biblical stories were not identical in every respect with their Hebrew versions. Variations in names, geographical details, num bers, genealogies, and details of stories abound between the two collections. Josephu s already stood in the stream of a tradition that knew more than one version of traditional stories. As a Pharisee Josephus was also well aware of the many variants or additional details of the Biblical stories that circulated through the apocryphal an d pseudepigraphica l literature and other traditions. These alternate stories were highly esteemed by many Jews. The Pharisees in 4 P. Bilde, ‘ Contra Apionem 1.28-56: An Essay on Josephus’ View of His Own Work in the Context of Jewish Canon’, in L. Feldman and J. Levison (eds.), Josephus’ Contra Apionem: Studies in Its Character and Cont ext with a Latin Concordance to the Portion Missing in Greek (Leiden 1996) 103-8. 5 Bilde, ‘ Contra Apionem 1.28-56’, 108-9. 6 K. Krieger, ‘Die Funktionen der Septuagi nta-Legende in Flavius Josephus' Werken Antiquitates Judaicae und Contra Apionem,’ in Internationales Josephus-Kolloquium (1999) 246-261. Cf. also J. Fischer: “Josephus, who in the first four books of hi s Antiquities gives a paraphrased and annotated versi on of the Pentateuch, composed in Greek, relied heavily on the Septuagint version, as is evident from the many parallel passages.” ‘The Term DESPOTHS in Josephus’, JQR 49 (1958) 133. There is debate over how much he consulted the Hebrew text, and if he consulted an Aramaic Targum. S. Cohen, Josephus in Galilee and Rome 35f.

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185 particular accepted more than what was containe d in the written Torah and the Jewish sacred canon. Their adherence to and defense of the or al Torah, which some of them claimed had authority equal to that of th e written Torah, is well known. Alt hough we in modern times have trained ourselves, when coming to such a variety of traditions, to ask cr itical questions about sources, or kernels of historical truth, etc., many Jews of antiquity did not come to these stories with the same kinds of concerns, at least init ially. Since Josephus already believed that the stories in the Hebrew Bible were not necessarily complete, and that other trusted versions of the stories existed, it was not difficult for him to re shape those stories for an audience who would have had trouble appreciati ng the (Jewish) cultural nua nces of the originals. Josephus was far from alone in this kind of ha ndling of materials from his Jewish tradition. From a survey of Jewish literature of Hellenistic times Gruen concludes For Hellenistic Jews writing in Greek, the Scri ptures provided stimulus for ingenuity and creativity. The concept of a fixed and una lterable tradition had not yet taken hold. … Composition and interpretation proceeded concu rrently, and the idea of established texts was still in process of formation. The fluid ity of the tradition may frustrate modern scholars. But it gave impetus to writers eag er to reshape and re vivify narratives long familiar but conveniently adaptable.7 In fact, Jewish authors (including Josephus) were adopting the same kind of approach that the Romans themselves had taken concerning their own foundational myth, the story of Aeneas. In another study, Gruen has shown that the myth of Rome’s origins was a complicated tangle of stories that knew many variants Some of these variants emph asized a Greek origin for the Romans (which Dionysius of Halicarnassus was able to exploit), and indeed that element of the story never disappeared. “The no tion of Rome as a Greek foundati on or one with a substantial Greek component remained alive and well, even at a time when Aeneas might otherwise have 7 E. Gruen, Heritage and Hellenism: The Reinvention of Jewish Tradition (Berkeley 1998) 110.

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186 held the field.”8 In fact, the retention of the Greek elemen t of the story proved an important part of the myth for the purposes of Roman self-definition. “It enabled Ro me to associate itself with the rich and complex fabric of Hellenic tradition, thus to enter that cultu ral world, just as it had entered the wider political world. But at the same time, it also announced Rome’s distinctiveness from that world.”9 The preservation of the Greek element in the myth allowed the Romans to both compare and contrast themselves to the Greek s at the same time. Otherwise, however, the details of the story were always somewhat ne gotiable. Even when Ro man historiographical literature began to flourish, the Aeneas story was not cast in an unalterable form. “… it was accepted practice at a time when traditions were fluid and particulars susceptible to manipulation. … The connection itself delivered th e vital message. All the rest was malleable.”10 Josephus was taking advantage of this kind of appr oach to ancient traditio ns as he set out to relate Jewish history for his non-Jewish audience in the Antiquitates Judaicae Another element that made Josephus’ ta sk easier was the fact that it was common practice in Hellenistic historiograp hy for an author to rewrite hi s sources extensively. It can be observed in Aeschines’ handli ng of material from Andocid es, Livy’s use of Claudius Quadrigarius, Diodorus of Sicily ’s incorporation of Agatharcid es, and Plutarch’s appropriation of Dionysius of Halicarnassus. “An author was expected to take so me liberties with his source. … He was expected to recast the narrative, to place his own stam p upon it, to use the material for his own purposes, to create something new. But on the whole he was faithful to the content and sequence of the original.”11 This practice was itself a reflec tion of the larger phenomenon of 8 Gruen, Culture and National Identity 19. 9 Gruen, Culture and National Identity 31. 10 Gruen, Culture and National Identity 35. 11 S. Cohen, Josephus in Galilee and Rome 31.

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187 Hellenistic historiography, which was, in this sense, largely a creative endeavor,12 and Josephus stood firmly within the stream of such creative historical writing for the purpose of creating a national identity which is another way of speaking of creating a putative myth of shared descent for purposes of ethnicity. This creative type of historiography wa s a wide-spread reaction to the power of Hellenism that confronted many pe oples with a need to define themselves anew in light of the cultural changes and new cultural forces that had appeared after Alexander the Great.13 With this flexible approach to both anci ent history and to his own method of writing history, Josephus was cleverly attempting to broke r a place for Jews within the Roman world. As I noted in chapter two, Romans paid homage to their debt to Greece even if only to use the greatness of Greek accomplishments as the backdr op that set Roman accomplishments in even greater relief. Roman philhelleni sm had a double edge. Too much pr aise of Greek things sounded like an admission that Roman things were inferi or. In a similar way, Josephus was both aligning the Jewish heritage with the Greek, yet at the sa me time keeping a measured distance from it. His approach was neither apathetic aloofness from Roman sensitivities nor shameless surrender of Jewish cultural values. He needed to establis h enough Hellenic qualities in Jewish culture to create a sense of admiration for it, yet be careful not to overdo it lest it appear as a slight against Roman greatness or as a competitor to it. Within this strategy was room for display of those things that were al so uniquely Jewish. 12 Although there were dissenting voices such as Polybius and Ephorus, who took a more rationalist approach. Collomp 287. 13 Mendels 37-45.

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188 Examples of JosephusÂ’ Positive Port rayal of Jews and Jewish History by Means of Greek Models The Antiquitates Judaicae may be thought of as the f oundation for JosephusÂ’ program of ethnicity-building. In order to make the case that Jews ought to be given a respected place within Roman culture, Josephus needed to demonstrate th at Jewish culture embodied the very ideals that the Romans already respected: those of the ancient Greeks. In this way the presentation of Jewish culture along the lines of things the Romans already respect ed became an argument, as it were, that the Romans ought to ex tend their respect to th e Jews. In fact, if an awareness of the extensive similarities between Jewish and Greek cultures, institutions, great figures, histories, etc. did not prompt the Romans to revise thei r attitudes toward Jews, then the Romans would have to face the idea that they were being inconsis tent at the least, or pa tently hypocritical at the most. Use of Greek Forms, Paradigms, and Terms The form of JosephusÂ’ work is the first sugges tion that he was aligni ng the Jews with the Greeks: an avrcaiologi,a of the Jews14 in 20 books, a clear reminiscence of Dionysius of HalicarnassusÂ’ ~Rwmaikh. avrcaiologi,a also in 20 books. The name and arrangement of the work announced to its ancient audience that this was Jewish history cast in Greek form, following the forms and conventions of Greek historiography. Furthermore, as noted above, Dionysius of Halicarnassus attempted to establish the closest possible relationship between the Greeks and the Romans, so far as to posit a Greek origin for th e Romans. While Josephus di d not go this far with the Jews, he hoped to show as many congruencies between Jews and Greeks as he could without sacrificing his own notion of Jewishness. 14 This is how Josephus describes his work in AJ 1.5.

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189 The arrangement or rearrangement, as it turns out of Josephus’ material also betrays a conscious effort to imitate Greek historiography which was, in his day, influenced by rhetorical theory. In Antiquitates Judaicae 4.196-7 he stated that the lega l materials concerning Moses in the Jewish canon were not in the best arrangement as they stood in the sacred texts, and that he deliberately set them out in a different order: Bou,lomai de. th.n politei,an pro,teron eivpw.n tw/| te Mwuse,oj avxiw,mati th/j avreth/j avnalogou/san kai. maqei/n pare,xwn diV auvth/j toi/j evnteuxome,noij oi-a ta. kaqV h`ma/j avrch/qen h=n evpi. th.n tw/n a;llwn trape,sqai dih,gh sin) ge,graptai de. pa,nqV w`j evkei/noj kate,lipen ouvde.n h`mw/n evpi. kallwpismw/| prosqe,nt wn ouvdV o[ti mh. katele,loipe Mwush/j) nenewte,ristai dV h`mi/n to. kata. ge,noj e[kasta ta,xai spora,dhn ga.r u`pV evkei,nou katelei,fqh grafe,nta kai. w`j e[kasto,n ti para. tou/ qeou/ pu,q oito tou,tou ca,rin avnagkai/on h`ghsa,mhn prodiastei,lasqai mh. kai, tij h`mi/n para. tw/n o`mofu,lwn evntuco,ntwn th/| grafh/| me,myij w`j dihmarthko,si ge,nhtai) (“But I wish first to discuss the government, rela ting what is proper to the virtue of Moses, and to supply learning to those who encounter through it the things that were according to our antiquity, and then turn to the narrative of other things. They are a ll written as he left them, nothing being added by us by way of or nament nor anything besides what Moses left. But it has been changed by us, to set in order each according to its kind, for it was left by him having been written in a in scattered wa y and as he learned each thing from God. I thought it necessary to explai n this freely beforehand, lest there might be someone from my countrymen bringing a charge that we ha ve erred with respect to the Scripture.”) In doing so, Josephus was demonstrating a sens itivity to the rhetorical concerns of ta,xij( oivkonomi,a and dia,qesij to make his narrative materials more orderly and readily understandable. In particular, the term oivkonomi,a was used by Greek authors to de scribe the orderly presentation of material that imparts a sens e of continuity to a narrativ e and makes it easier to follow.15 It is even possible to detect here the traces of Josephus’ furthe r indebtedness to Dionysius of Halicarnassus, who had much to say on the ar rangement and development of rhetorical material.16 That Josephus had Greek rhetor ical practice in mind here is clear from the fact that 15 W. Wuellner, ‘Arrangement’, in S. Porter (ed.), Handbook of Classical Rhetoric in the Hellenistic Period (Leiden 2001) 51-87. 16 Lys 15; Isoc 4; Dem 15; Comp 6; Th L. Feldman, ‘Rearrangement of pentateuchal narrative material in Josephus' Antiquities Books 1-4’, HUCA 70-71 (1999-2000) 133-4.

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190 while there was a sense among Jewish authors that foundational stories were elastic, few of them strayed from the order in which events were presented in the canonical Biblical texts. For example, Philo of Alexandria, for all of his exte nsive treatment of the Biblical materials, never changed the order of the Biblical details. Josephus stands almost alone in taking lib erty at this point, and certainly was unique in the exte nt to which he was willing to practice it.17 It is thus another indicator of how Josephus made the Biblical materials fit into a Greek mold. One overall impression Josephus seems to have been crafting was that the Jewish people had long been objects of scorn not because they we re irreligious, but because they were highly religious. The problem lay not in the Jews but in the irreligious character of their neighbors, who did not appreciate their high view of God. This of course, only worked to the shame of these neighbors, the latest of whom was Rome. Much of the narra tive was therefore designed to highlight the high moral and religiou s character of Jewish culture. The first move in Josephus’ strategy of building a positive image of Jews was to lay out the proper understanding of the Jewish God and hi s role in history. Hence in 1.14 Josephus explained the controlling idea: th e God of the Jews is concerned, above all, with moral virtue, specifically ( avreth, ; 1.20, 23). This virtue is spelled out in the Jewish Law, we are told, and was demonstrated in the lives of great Jewish hist orical characters. Those who conform to God’s demand of moral virtue are rewarded and those who refuse to conform to it are punished, and these rewards and punishments are not reserved for the afterlife but ar e experienced in the vicissitudes of the present.18 The destruction of the Jerusalem temple was already interpreted in 17 There are a few exceptions in Pseudo-Philo and the midrashic literature. L. Feldman, ‘Rearrangement of pentateuchal narrative material’, 132. 18 I am not arguing that Josephus’ view of G od, or his theological outlook, was in some sense “correct,” normative, etc. Josephus’ Pharisaic outlook colors his view, to be sure, and his view was only one of several such competing vi ews among his Jewish contemporaries. In fact,

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191 exactly this way in the Bellum Judaicum God’s retribution against th e rebels who desecrated the holy precincts. Of course, avreth, was a quality that had a l ong and lofty history among the Greeks,19 if not a diverse one.20 The Greek word had, by Hellenistic times, developed a Semantic range large enough to encompass many subordinate ideas and was capable of describing the morality inculcated in the Hebrew Bible without doi ng much violence to either the word itself or to Jewish ethics. It is arguably one of Josephus’ favorite words, a ppearing nearly 300 times in his writings. That it is consciously used for its sign ificance in Hellenic cultu re is suggested by the fact that the LXX rarely used the word in the ca nonical books (seven times total, and never in the Pentateuch). Josephus was not following the LXX he re by this choice of terms. By concentrating on the moral virtue of Jewish religion, and usi ng a highly-visible Greek keyword for it, Josephus was able to align the Jews with the same kinds of virtues the Romans already knew from the Greeks and at the same bypass those elements of religion in which the Jews looked so foreign. Furthermore, as I have suggested, this become s an argument: if the Romans are a religious people, then they ought to respect the high virtue of the Jewish God. In constructing his ethnic portrait of Jews Josephus was aware that those religious elements that were uniquely Jewish were going to be the parts of th e story that would be the least likely to be accepted or appreciated by his Greco-R oman audience, a noble portrait of the Jewish deity notwithstanding. His strategy in dealing with these things was, time and time again, simply to convert them to Greek models and effectivel y eliminate the differences between Jewish and Greek cultures that had become such obstacles for winning respect for Je wish culture. I have Josephus’ interpretations of Jewi sh laws or customs are sometimes singular. B. Revel, ‘Some Anti-Traditional Laws of Josephus’, JQR 14 (1924) 293-301. 19 See W. Jaeger, Paideia: The Ideals of Greek Culture Vol. 1 (New York 1945), 3-14. 20 See M. Finkelberg, ‘Virtue and Circumstan ces: On the City-state Concept of Arete’, AJP 123 (2002) 35-49.

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192 already noted in my discussion of the Bellum Judaicum that Josephus chose to use the term filosofi,a to describe Jewish theology. This practice continued in the Antiquitates Judaicae as well.21 In the introduction to the Antiquitates Judaicae Josephus said that an inquirer into the details of Jewish theology would find the endeavor to be “exceedingly philosophical” ( li,an filo,sofoj ).22 He portrayed Jewish envoys to Alexandr ia as perfectly competent to answer difficult philosophical questions23 to the point that they gained the admiration of the Alexandrian philosopher Menedemus.24 In a similar way Josephus portrayed Solomon, whom the Biblical tradition says was expert in all matters of th e natural world (1 Kings 4.29-34), as a philosopher (he says that Solomon evfiloso,fhse “did philosophy”),25 and claimed that the Queen of Sheba was interested in meeting Solomon because she was a student of philosophy herself.26 This made Solomon’s philosophical ability appear even grea ter, since the queen was portrayed as one who would not have been impresse d with pseudo-intellectualism. A glimpse of how Josephus tended to downplay things that were uniquely Jewish may be seen in his choice of terms for his own people. The designation “Hebrews” occurs 319 times in his writings, all demonstrably in contexts wher e Josephus, or a character in his narrative, is referring to Jews in remote antiquity. In cont rast, the term “Jews” appears 1,241 times in his writings, occasionally side-by-side with the term Hebrews, but most frequently in his history of his people from the Seleucid period onwards. Harv ey has suggested that the term “Hebrews” in 21 AJ 18.11, 23; cf. Ap. 1.54. 22 AJ 1.25. 23 AJ 12.99. 24 AJ 12.101. 25 AJ 8.44. Even here, however, Solomon was not engaged in the same kind of activity as the Greeks had classically pursued, for Solomon’s knowledge of the natural world was the product of the gift of sofi,a from God, a point that Josephus dutifully mentions (8.42) but does not emphasize. 26 AJ 8.165.

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193 Josephus’ day meant “one who is a good Jew, ” a Jew who is religiously orthodox and traditionally pious.27 That is, the term “Hebrew” had a st rong ethnic demarcation attached to it and suggested a separateness from the Gentile world the very picture Josephus was trying to dismantle. So, while he did not completely di ssociate contemporary Jews from the ancient Hebrews, he kept the ethnically-loaded term “H ebrews” in the background, in the portion of the narrative dealing with the distant past. Another example surfaces in how Josephus repe atedly referred to the Jewish political system by the Greek term poli,teuma or politei,a spelled out in a dia,taxij The LXX, however, regularly described the Jewi sh religious charter as a diaqh,kh a covenant with God. For his account, Josephus suppressed the use of the term th at was regular for the LXX, a term that was not ordinarily used of political charters in the secular Greek of his day. In fact, the word diaqh,kh does not appear in the Antiquitates Judaicae until 13.349 when Josephus is covering the background of the Herodian client kingdom, and there it has the ordinar y, secular sense of a “will.” It never appears in his re telling of the Biblical story, although the LXX he followed used the word well over 300 times to denote the special agreement between the Jews and their God. Josephus decided instead to use a word th at was more commonly and more readily understandable and, even more importan tly, culturally connected to Hellenism.28 In doing so, however, he arguably altered the pi cture of Jewish government as it stood in the LXX and gave the Jewish political arrangement a Greek character This becomes even more significant in light 27 G. Harvey, ‘Synagogues of the Hebrews: “G ood Jews” in the Diaspora’, in S. Jones and S. Pearce (eds.), Jewish Local Patriotism and Self-Id entification in the Graeco-Roman Period (JSPseudSup 31, Sheffield 1998) 132-47. 28 A similar phenomenon appears as Jose phus described Jewish synagogues as su,nodoi a term used regularly for the associations and guilds in Graeco-Roman cities. A. FitzpatrickMcKinley, ‘Synagogue Communities in the GraecoRoman Cities’, in J. Bartlett (ed.), Jews in the Hellenistic and Roman Cities (London 2002) 63.

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194 of the fact that Josephus took pain s to explain other words that were particularly Jewish, such as the Hebrew words “Sabbath” (as in AJ 1.33), “Israel” ( AJ 1.333), and “Adonai” ( AJ 5.121) as well as many Hebrew personal names throughout th e narrative. Josephus could have explained that the Jewish political system was different from what regularly prevailed in Hellenic culture, and that it was commonly called a diaqh,kh translating the Hebrew term berith Instead he presented the matter to his reading audience as if the Hebrew and Greek political arrangements were the same. The result is that the suggestion th at the Jews enjoyed a privileged and exclusive relationship with God (making them appear aloof and negatively critical) is gone. Beyond using Greek terms for Jewish institut ions, it seems that Jo sephus stretched the facts to create the impression that Jews were regu lar citizens in Greek citi es. I briefly mentioned earlier that the riots in Alexandria in 38 CE were the subject of a responsa by Claudius in 41 CE, who demanded that the public disturbances stop a nd that the Jews not press for more privileges than they already enjoyed. It is cl ear from the imperial letter that the emperor did not believe that Jews were citizens of Alexandr ia, as he described them as evn avllotri,a| po,l ei periousi,aj (“living in a city not their own”).29 The keys to the situation are th at citizenship in Alexandria was considered to be Roman recognition of Greek et hnicity, and, as I have shown earlier, Josephus seemed to operate on the idea that a Greek was one who was a citizen, or at least a recognized part, of an established Greek c ity. In commenting on the emperor’s responsa Josephus quotes Claudius as saying that the Alexandrian Jews i;shj politei,aj para. tw/n basile,wn teteuco,taj kaqw.j fanero.n evge,neto evk tw/n gramma,twn tw/n parV auvtoi/j kai. tw/n diatagma,twn (“possessed equal citizenship from the kings. This is clear from the records they have and from their edicts”). 29 “The Letter of Claudius to the Alexandrians,” in CPJ II no. 153 (p.41, line 95).

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195 So, by Josephus’ ideas of Greek id entity, the Jews of Alexandria were Greeks, and Claudius himself said so. The problem here is that isopoliteia was a relationship between Greek cities in which citizenship in one city was granted reciprocal recognition in the other.30 It is impossible that this relationship existed between Jews and native Alexa ndrians, for at least two reasons: 1) there is no evidence that Greek cities had isopoliteia with non-Greek cities,31 and 2) the Jews lived in the same city with the Alexandrians.32 Most modern scholars have ther efore resorted to attributing a different sense to Josephus’ i;shj politei,aj H. Jones suggested that the Alexandrian Jews possessed a status between that of fu ll Alexandrian citizens and ordinary laoi, and that the peoples of such an intermediate group ha d full civil rights, but not citizenship.33 In other words, the Jews constituted a (foreign) poli,teuma and they could be called poli/tai of that poli,teuma but they were not technically poli/tai of Alexandria. Josephus, howev er, would apparently have us to believe that Claudius’ words admitted all Alexandrian Jews into citizenship of that city, and thus they enjoyed recognition of Greek ethnicity by the Romans.34 Josephus attempted the same thing in other places. In Antiquitates Judaicae 14.185-267 he cited a long list of documents which were adduced to show that the Romans had always been friendly and respectful toward th e Jews. In one of these citati ons Josephus referred to a public inscription, in bronze, set up by Julius Caesar in Al exandria that declared the Jews to be citizens 30 A. Chaniotis, Die Vertrge zwischen kretischen Poleis in der hellenistischen Zeit (Heidelberger althistorische Beitrge und epigraphische St udien 24, Stuttgart 1996) 101-8. 31 Applebaum, “The Legal Status of the Jewish Communities’, 438. 32 In the responsa Caesar rebuked the Jews for sending their own embassy to him as if they lived in a separate city. 33 ‘Claudius and the Jewish Question at Alexandria’, JRS 16 (1926) 29. 34 Some Jews were able to manage their wa y into full Alexandrian citizenship. However, it also appears that their stat us as citizens was precarious. CPJ II no. 151 is a letter of an Alexandrian Jew complaining to th e Roman governor that his status as a citizen of Alexandria had been unfairly downgraded.

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196 of Alexandria ( Kai/sar VIou,lioj toi/j evn VAlexandrei,a| VIoudai,oij poih,saj calkh/n sth,lhn evdh,lwsen o[ti VAlexandre,wn poli/tai, eivsin ).35 He did not, however, quote the inscription. The omission of a quotation of such a crucial piece of evidence suggests that Josephus was being quite liberal in his interpretation of the inscription. In that sa me list of documents Josephus has the people of Sardis referring to the Jews as citizens.36 But Josephus seems to betray himself when he says in another place that an Alexandrian stele recorded Jewish rights ( ta, dikaiw,mata ),37 and of Alexander he says that to the Jews e;dwken to. metoikei/n kata. th.n po,lin evx i;sou moi,raj pro.j tou.j {Ellhnaj (“he granted for them to reside in the city in equal portion with the Greeks”) an ambiguous phrase. Neither dikaiw,mata nor evx i;sou moi,raj amounted to Alexandrian citizenship. The best interpretati on is that the Roman emperors confirmed the Jewish status as a poli,teuma but nothing more.38 Josephus also betrayed the real situation when he quoted Strabo as saying that in Cyrene te,ttarej dV h=san evn th/| po,lei tw /n Kurhnai,wn h[ te tw/n politw/n kai. h` tw/n gewrgw/n tri,th dV h` tw/n metoi,kwn teta,rth dV h` tw/n VIoudai,wn (“there were four groups in the city of the Cyrenaicans: the citizens, the farmers, the re sident aliens, and the Jews”). It should be remembered that Cyrene was one of the places where the Jews’ temple contributions had been confiscated. It is clear from Stra bo’s words that the Jews did not fit into any native political category in Cyrene, so they were not citizens of that c ity. Their vaguely-defined status may have 35 AJ 14.189. Similarly, in 12.8 he says Alexander the Great toi/j Makedo,sin evn VAlexandrei,a| poih,saj ivsopoli,taj (“made them equal citizen s with the Macedonians in Alexandria”). 36 14.259: oi` katoikou/ntej h`mw/n evn th/| po ,lei avpV avrch/j VIoudai/oi poli/tai (“The Jews who live in this city from the beginning are citizens”). 37 Ap 2.37. 38 CPJ 1.56. This was simply a political expedient on the part of the Romans. The dissolution of the Ptolemaic government left the status of minority ethni c groups in question, and Rome simply confirmed the status they had previously enjoyed.

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197 even been the pretext for the locals’ c onfiscation of their temple contribution.39 Further confirmation of their non-citizen status appears in Augustus’ res ponse to the Jewish complaint in Alexandria. He granted the Jews ivsotelei/a, which meant that they had a status between that of metics and citizens and thus were not liable to the same taxes as metics. Similarly, Philo of Alexandria never spoke of Jews as possessing full citizenship in th e po,lij of Alexandria, and the Jews were subjected to the laographia by Rome (beginning in 4 CE), indicating that Rome did not count them as citizens of Alexandria eith er, and thus they were not considered true Hellenes.40 On the whole, Applebaum concluded “We ha ve not discovered in the course of our investigation evidence that in any Greek city in the Hellenistic or early Roman period the Jews possessed citizenship as a body.”41 Yet Josephus often seems to gi ve the impression that Jews regularly enjoyed citizenship stat us. The picture that develops is that Josephus was playing fast and loose with the terminology in such a way that im plied the Jews were citi zens. This is striking in light of the fact that Josephus later criticized Apion for tryi ng to pass as a native Alexandrian when he was not.42 Furthermore, Josephus was playing with fire as he attempted to get the Jews into Alexandrian citizenship. E gypt, to Roman ears, conjured up the image of Cleopatra. So 39 Applebaum, ‘The Legal Status of the Jewish Communities’, 444. 40 CPJ 1.59-64. For purposes of the poll tax, th e Jews were not even considered metropolitai which would have recognized them as pe ople of Greek education but not citizens of the polis and which would have given them a discount on the tax liability. 41 Applebaum, ‘The Legal Status of the Jewish Communities’, 449. He goes on to note that there was no precise and comprehensive Roma n legislation concerning Jewish rights empirewide. What existed was a series of imperial confir mations of Jewish privil eges in local places (pp.457-8). 42 Ap 2.29.

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198 Josephus was careful to press for recogniti on of Jews as citizens of the Greek polis of Alexandria, but at the same time kept a distance from Egyptians.43 Applebaum further notes “However small the pr ospects of success for the average Jew, the claim to civic equality might become significant fr om a psychological, fis cal, and judicial point of view.”44 His notice of the psychological motive fits well with the approach of this dissertation, that a perceived crisis in self -esteem motivated Josephus to portray the Jews in terms of the Greeks. In the matter of political terminology it a ppears that he either thought the terms were fluid enough to include Jews as citizens of major Gr eek cities, or he himself used the terms imprecisely. Either way it is clear that Josephus was eager to posit citizenship of Diaspora Jews, for this would certainly have made them look like insiders, equal to Greeks in many ways. The question of the status of Jews in Alexandria was an old one in Josephus’ day. However, his aim was not simply to contribute an opinion about that par ticular problem. Instead he made the case for Jewish equality on a much larger scale. The Jewish struggle for civi c status also reveals another dimension of the situati on. Bilde noted that the most im portant feature of the Western Jewish Diaspora was its struggle for equal civi c rights and cultural recognition, “And this struggle was, and had to be, fought against their Greek fellow citizens.”45 Roman ascendancy, however, meant that the struggle the Jews ha d engaged with their Greek neighbors was now taken to a Roman audience for adjudication. Beyond things such as adopting a Greek paradi gm for the title and number of books for his work, and using Greek terms where they did not precisely fit, Josephus also made connections 43 J. Barclay, ‘The Politics of Contempt: J udaeans and Egyptians in Josephus’ Against Apion’, in J. Barclay (ed.), Negotiating Diaspora: Jewish Strategies in the Roman Empire (London 2004) 109-27. 44 Applebaum, ‘The Legal Status of the Jewish Communities’, 451. 45 Bilde, ‘The Jews in the Dias pora of the Roman Empire’, 106.

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199 between ancient Greeks and Jewi sh history. Overall, Josephus cited 55 Greek authors in his works, 21 of them in the Biblical section of Antiquitates Judaicae in 36 citations.46 For example, in Antiquitates Judaicae 7.67, as Josephus related the capture of Jerusalem from the Jebusites by David, he paused to note that ga.r ~Abra,mou tou/ progo,nou h`mw/n So,luma evkalei/to meta. tau/ta de. auvth,n fasi, tinej o[ti kai. {Omhroj tau/tV wvno ,masen ~Ieroso,luma to ga.r i`erou/ kata. th.n ~Ebrai,wn glw/ttan wvno,mase t a. So,luma o[ evstin avsfa,leia (“For it was called Soluma at the time of Abraham our forefather, but af ter these things some say that Homer also called it Jerusalem, for the temple is called, according to the Hebr ew language, Soluma, that is, ‘stability’”).47 The reference is possibly to Odyssey 5.283, which mentions the Solymian hills. This connection is probably incorrect,48 but Josephus was using a well-know n method among the ancients (seen especially in Herodotus) to c onnect ancient places with places known to contemporary readers. The fact that Tacitus made the same possible id entification of the Jews with the Solymi in Jerusalem in his Histories (5.2) may mean that Josephus was drawing on a fairly well-known idea (unless Tacitus got the idea from Josephus). It was the connection with Homer (or epic poetry in general) that was significant for Jo sephus, and not whethe r the connection could withstand all criticism. By making this connection Josephus hinted at two things: 1) the antiquity of Jewish culture and its capital city (and an tiquity was a well-respected quality among the Romans), and 2) that the greatest poet of ancien t Greece apparently knew of the Jews and graced them with mention in his immortal compositi on. The connection was designed to give his 46 J. Bowley, ‘Josephus’ Use of Greek Sources fo r Biblical History’, in J. Reeves and J. Kampen (eds.), Pursuing the Text: Studies in Honor of Ben Zion Wacholder (JSOTSup 184, Sheffield 1994) 202-4. 47 The part of the text that mentions Homer is disputed. Marcus’ opinion (Loeb edition V 394) is that “these word s are probably a gloss.” 48 Jaeger 127-8.

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200 narrative more credibility and to offer a broader perspective which took in non-Jews.49 Josephus was arguably following the model of Herodotus, w hose account was famous for its inclusion of stories about foreigners. Even more, such st ories “provided a convenient means whereby the Jews could reinvent themselv es in a Hellenistic context”50 that is, they provided a way to construct a Greek ethnicity for Jews. There was also a thread that conne cted the Jews with Sparta. In 2 Maccabees 5.9 is the story that in 168 BCE the high prie st of the Jews, Jason, fled to Sparta when he could find no refuge in Egypt. The reason he chose Sparta was dia. th.n sugge,neian (“on account of their kinship”). Another story related how the high priest Jonathan sent letters to Rome and to Sparta asking for renewal of friendship with those stat es. The letter to Sparta is recorded in 1 Maccabees 12.5-18, and a copy of the response from ki ng Areus of Sparta follows (verses 1923). In those letters the Jews and Spar tans mutually acknowledged each other as avdelfoi, Josephus related this latter st ory in a shortened form in Antiquitates Judaicae 12.225-7, and had the Spartan king say to the Jews that evntuco,ntej grafh/| tini eu[romen w`j evx e`no.j ei=en ge,nouj VIoudai/oi kai. Lakedaimo,nioi kai. evk th/j pro.j :Abramon oivkeio,thtoj (“by coming across a certain document we have found that Jews and Spartans are of one genos and are of kinship to Abraham”), and then referred to the Jews saying avdelfou.j u`ma/j o;ntaj (“since you are brethren”). After Jonathan died, th e Spartans also sent an offer of alliance to his successor, Simon ( 1 Mac 14.20-3). Earlier, in Antiquitates Judaicae 1.240-1 Josephus quoted the historian Alexander Polyhistor (first century BCE), w ho himself cited an author named Cleodemus Malchus, that two of Abraham’s sons accompanie d Heracles in his Libyan expedition. The daughter of one of these sons married Hercules and bore Diodorus, who fathered a son named 49 Bowley 207. 50 E. Gruen, ‘Fact and Fiction’, 78.

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201 Sophon, from whom the Sophacians de rived their name. Plutarch ( Sert 9.8-10) speaks of a son of Heracles named Sophax, and re lates that Sparta was founded by Heracles and that the city was ruled by his descendants for seve ral generations. Herodotus reporte d (7.208) that Leonidas was descended from Heracles.51 So a connection between Abraham and Heracles made Jews and Spartans brethren. Josephus neve r made the direct connection hims elf, but, as it was in the case of his reference to Homer, it was unnece ssary to do so. The suggestion was enough. Sometimes Josephus was fortunate enough to find a reference in a Greek author that fit his Jewish topic precisely. For example, in Antiquitates Judaicae 1.107-8 Josephus was dealing with the long lifespans of people in the primeval age, specifically the age of Noah. The Biblical text says that Noah died at the age of 950 years.52 This, of course, required some kind of defense, and Josephus found it in the works of Greek historians. He said: marturou/si de, mou tw/| lo,gw| pa,ntej oi` parV {Ellhsi kai. barba,roij suggraya,menoi ta.j avrcaiologi,aj kai. ga.r kai. Mane,qwn o` th .n Aivgupti,wn poihsa,menoj avnagrafh.n kai. Bhrwso.j o` ta. Caldai?ka. sunagagw.n kai. Mw /co,j te kai. ~Estiai/oj kai. pro.j tou,toij o` Aivgu,ptioj ~Ierw,numoj oi` ta. Foinikika. su ggraya,menoi sumfwnou/si toi/j u`pV evmou/ legome,noij ~Hsi,odo,j te kai. ~Ekatai/oj kai. ~Ella,nikoj kai. VAkousi,laoj kai. pro.j tou,toij :Eforoj kai. Niko,laoj i`storou/si tou.j avrcai,ouj zh,santaj e;th ci,lia peri. me.n tou,twn w`j a'n e`ka,stoij h=| fi,lon ou[tw skopei,twsan (“All those from the Greeks and th e barbarians who have composed Archaeologies testify about my statement, for even Manetho who produced the Egyptian history, and Berosus, who collected the Chaldean evidences, and Mo chus, and Hestiaius, and with these the Egyptian Hieronymus and those who composed the Phoenician record s, agree with the things said by me, and Hesiod, Hecataeus, Hellanicus, and Acusilaus, and with these Ephorus and Nicolaus, record that the anci ents lived a thousand years. But concerning these things, let each one cons ider them as he pleases.”). 51 In making these connections I have followed L. Feldman, ‘Josephus’ Moses and Plutarch’s Lycurgus’, in J. Edmondson et al (eds.), Flavius Josephus and Flavian Rome (Oxford 2005) 212-3. See also Gruen, ‘Cultural Fi ctions and Cultural Identity’, 9-10. 52 Gen 9.29.

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202 What is most interesting is the comment at the end ( cf. also 2.348, 3.81, et al) which echoed well-known statements in Greek historiographers53 and “became a commonplace in HellenisticRoman historiography.”54 This offer to allow the reader to judge for himself was an obvious Greek touch in an account that was otherwise st rongly apologetic. In this same vein, Josephus sometimes mentioned Herodotus in order to disagree with him.55 By the first century faultfinding with Herodotus had become a minor convention in historiography,56 and Josephus participated in it like any other contemporary Greek author would. Many Greek paradigms made impressions on the Antiquitates Judaicae and sometimes particular elements within the traditional materials with which Jo sephus worked lent themselves quite easily to Greek presentations. For exampl e, the creation story in the Biblical account described a primordial world surrounded by water, which Josephus implicitly connected with the mention of the four-headed river of Genesis 2.10 to become a river that encircles the whole earth.57 This sounds just like the Greek Oceanos th at surrounded the earth and was the source of all life.58 That this was purely an attempt to make th e Biblical account conform to Greek models is made clearer by the fact that the rabbinic reading of the Bib lical creation story posited no such 53 E.g., Hdt. 2.123; Th. 6.2.1; D.H. 1.48. 54 S. Cohen, Josephus in Galilee and Rome 39. The practice is recommended explicitly in Lucian, Hist.Conscr. 60. 55 AJ 8.253ff, 10.19f. 56 Bowley 211-2. cf. the famous passage in Thucydides, 1.20, and Plutarch’s On the Malice of Herodotus Josephus later says in Ap 1.16 peri,ergoj dV a'n ei;hn evgw. tou.j evmou/ ma/llon evpistame,nouj dida,skwn o[sa me.n ~Ella,nikoj VAkousila,w| peri. tw /n genealogiw/n diapefw,nhken o[sa de. diorqou/tai to.n ~Hsi,odon VAkousi,laoj h' ti,na tro,pon :Eforoj me.n ~Ella,nikon evn toi/j plei,stoij yeudo,menon evpidei,knusin :Eforon de. Ti,maioj kai. Ti,maion oi` metV evkei/non gegono,tej ~Hro,doton de. pa,ntej (“I would be over-doing it if I we re to teach them what they know, what a great disagreement Hellanicus ha s with Acusilaus a bout genealogies, how Acusilaus sets Hesiod straight, or in what way Ephorus demonstrat es Hellanicus a liar in most of his history, as Timaeus then does to Ephorus, an d the succeeding writers do to Timaeus, and all do to Herodotus”). 57 AJ 1.38. 58 Cf. Il. 18.607, 21.194; Hdt. 4.8; Arist. Metaph A3.983b27.

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203 thing.59 At other times Josephus expanded a Biblical narrative to incorporate Greek features that were not originally there in his source materials. Thus although the canoni cal Biblical picture did not describe the life of the first man, Adam, as bl issful, Josephus used th is language to enlarge on the Biblical account and thus made the narrative conform to Greek ideal of the past Golden Age as found in Hesiod and many other classical authors.60 In particular, Hesiod said that in the Golden Age men were free from ills ( kakoi, ) and toil ( po,noj ), in contrast to a life of misery in which men grow old quickly ( kataghra,skw ).61 Josephus had God say that Adam’s life was kakou/ panto.j avpaqh/ (“free from every evil”), that Adam was able to live cwri.j u`mete,rou po,nou (“without your own toil”) which otherwise would have only brought on old age sooner ( w-n paro,ntwn gh/ra,j te qa/tton ).62 Alternately, sometimes Josephus inserted key terms that would make a reader think of a Biblical story in terms of a similar Greek story. So in telling the story of the flood Josephus said that Noah built an ark, a la,rnax The LXX used a different word ( kibwto,j ), but Josephus chose to use the word that was used by Apollodorus63 and Plutarch64 in telling the Greek tradition of the flood and the stor y of Deucalion. Thus either by adding details, by capitalizing on features of his material that had Greek parallels, or by changing the vocabulary to suggest Greek parallels, Josephus told the ancestral Jewish stor ies in a particularly Greek way. 59 Feldman, Studies in Josephus’ Rewritten Bible 1. 60 Feldman, Studies in Josephus’ Rewritten Bible 3-4. 61 Op. 113-115, 90-93. 62 AJ 1.46. Note that Josephus has used the Attic spelling ( qa/tton ) instead of the spelling more common in the Koine, qa/sson 63 Bibliotheca 1.7.2. 64 De soll. an ., 13.

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204 Exempla The Hellenistic canons of Greek historio graphy also made impressions on Josephus’ account of Jewish history. By Josephus’ day hi storiography was becomi ng more biographicallyoriented. It had long been a me thod within Greek historiography to present leading figures in historical episodes as exempla of character traits virtues, and conduct to be emulated.65 The technique was already discernible in Aristotle, Isocrates (his Evagoras ), and Thucydides.66 It received further impetus in Xenophon’s Hellenica and his biography of Agesilaus,67 and in the hands of Polybius exempla became prime vehicles for his purpos es of modeling political utility.68 Plutarch’s Parallel Lives (which he himself called “histories”) represented a culmination of this process of transformation from history as a record of events, led along the way by great historical figures, to history mostly as the biography of an exemplar. Interestingly, Plutarch’s biographies were apologetic in nature, de signed to demonstrate that grea t Greeks were equal to great Romans.69 Josephus’ presentation of Jewish history in the Antiquitates Judaicae was similarly driven by exempla and their stories were crafted to ma ke them similar to prominent Greek characters. A few examples may suffice. The founding father of the Jews was Abraham, and Josephus crafted his presentation of this leading Jewish exemplar after the mode l of a Greek philosopher. Josephus says that Abraham deino.j w'n sunei/nai, te peri. p a,ntwn kai. piqano.j toi/j avkrowme,noij (“was clever, 65 Momigliano, ‘Tradition and the Classical Historian’, 289. 66 Feldman, ‘Josephus’ Moses and Plutarch’s Lycurgus’, 209-11. 67 J. Bury, The Ancient Greek Historians (New York 1958), 153. 68 Fornara 107-113. 69 Grant 73.

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205 knowing all things and able to persuade those who heard him”).70 His ability to persuade, that is, to use rhetoric effectively, cast him in good Greek fashion. Josephus also presented Abraham as having higher conceptions of avreth, than others and as being th e first proponent of monotheism,71 having arrived at this conclusion not by divine revelation (as the Biblical story might suggest), but by use of his ability to reason.72 In fact, the Abraham of Josephus uses a form of the teleological argument that is base d on Platonic and Stoic models.73 “More simply, we may say that Josephus has taken Cleanthes’ third argumen t from the irregularity of sublunar phenomena and extended it to the heavens themselves. Jose phus was apparently the first to do so, and Abraham is thus depicted as a philosophic innovator.”74 The portrait also included statements that Abraham won the respect of the Egyptians as being a man of the greatest intelligence ( sunetw,tatoj ), that he (again) possessed a superb abil ity to persuade, and was the one who taught the Egyptians arithmetic and astronomy,75 and that when he went to Egypt at a time of famine in Palestine it was not simply to get food, but also to converse with the Egyptians on philosophical matters and to correct th eir thinking, unless theirs proved superior to his.76 He was superbly intelligent and yet fair-minded, and most importa ntly, open to serious and substantial dialogue with others. This strongly positive portrayal of Abraham no doubt was de signed to counter the popular image that Jews were clos ed-minded and intolerant of all that was not Jewish. Abraham 70 AJ 1.154. Feldman notes that avkroa,omai was used of students listening in the philosophical schools. L. Feldman, ‘Abrah am the Greek Philosopher in Josephus’, TPAPA 99 (1968) 145. 71 AJ 1.155. 72 AJ 1.155-57. 73 Feldman, ‘Abraham the Greek Philosopher’, 146-7. 74 Feldman, ‘Abraham the Greek Philosopher’, 149. 75 AJ 1.167. 76 AJ 1.161.

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206 was portrayed as a veritable Jewish Aristotle, a Hellenistic “renaissance man.” With such a great exemplar at the head of their family tree, how could one not respect the Jews? In Greek thought, the nobility of a body of law was partly a function of the nobility of the lawgiver.77 Thus it was necessary for Josephus to present a positive and Greek portrayal of the great lawgiver of the Jews, Moses, who was apparently the most well-known Jewish character among Gentiles.78 A positive, Greek portrayal of Moses would (in Josephus’ opinion at least) have contributed significan tly to the building of a Jewish ethnicity along Greek lines. Hata has argued that Josephus’ treatment of Moses “rev eals the intention of it s author and the hidden current running under its narrative only when it is read within the cont ext of the anti-Semitism that is attacked in Against Apion .”79 One of the most obvious attempts to align Moses with Greeks is when Josephus says th at the so-called Song of Moses the poem celebrating the deliverance of the Israelites at the Red Sea and the simultaneous defeat of the Egyptians (Exodus 15) was composed in hexameter verse,80 and that Moses later composed another work in hexameter,81 which by its description apparently refers to a section of the canonical Deuteronomy. There is no such regularly discerni ble thing as hexameter in Hebrew poetry, nor does the LXX text of Exodus 15 render the Song of Moses as hexameter; this was a purely Greek characterization on Josephus’ part It did, however, make Moses l ook like that famous ancient Greek historian-poet, Homer. 77 Cf. Y. Amir, ‘Josephus on the Mosaic “Constitu tion”’, in H. Reven tlow et al (eds.), Politics and Theopolitics in the Bi ble and Postbiblical Literature (JSOTSup 171, Sheffield 1994) 18. 78 There are at least 24 separate references to Moses or the exodus in pagan literature contemporary with Josephus. G. Hata, ‘The Stor y of Moses Interpreted within the Context of Anti-Semitism’, in L. Feldman and G. Hata (eds.), Josephus, Judaism, and Christianity (Detroit 1987) 180f. 79 Hata, ‘The Story of Moses’, 182. 80 AJ 2.346. 81 AJ 4.303.

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207 A more subtle approach is taken concerning the presentation of Moses’ deeds. Feldman has observed that the contours of Josephus’ portrayal of Moses follow closely the contours of Plutarch’s portrayal of the Spartan lawgiver Lycurgus. For example, both are portrayed as reluctant to take hold of the reins of power, as the objects of envy, as men who sought wisdom from abroad, as military leaders, as survivors of rebellions led by relatives, and as men characterized by moderation and piety.82 Similarly, the bodies of law that came from each are described as having similar features. Both came from deity, both created councils of elders to assist in governance, both discour aged the visual arts, both forb ade consultation of soothsayers, both demanded an offering of the first fruits of cr ops, both paid particular attention to details of child-rearing, and both demanded th at the laws not be changed.83 In other ways, Josephus presented Moses as a Stoic philosopher. For example, Josephus borro wed a Stoic phrase, po,nwn katafronh,sei (“despising exertion”) to descri be the greatness of Moses in Antiquitates Judaicae 2.229.84 The account also has dramatic touches with motifs and phrases from the Greek tragedians.85 Whether or not Josephus knew Pl utarch or his writings is de batable, so the question of borrowing is hard to decide. Feld man argues that it is possible, if not likely, that the two men at least knew of each other if they did not actually know each other.86 However, both authors were acquainted with the elements of encomia commonly advocated in the rh etorical practices of the day. Thus even if they did not have direct acc ess to each other’s work, they shared a common paradigm for writing about grea t historical figures. Either way, Josephus’ portrait of Moses 82 Feldman, ‘Josephus’ Moses and Plutarch’s Lycurgus’, 216-22. 83 Feldman, ‘Josephus’ Moses and Plutarch’s Lycurgus’, 222-30. 84 L. Feldman, ‘Josephus’ Port rait of Moses. Part Three’, JQR 83 (1993) 321. 85 Feldman, ‘Josephus’ Portrait of Moses. Part Three’, 322-5. 86 Feldman, ‘Josephus’ Portrait of Moses. Part Three’, 231-7.

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208 clearly shared many similarities with Plutarch’s presentation of Lycurgus. In fact, “Moses is modeled in Platonic fashion after the founder of a Greek polis whose laws form the constitution ( politei,a ) of the state.”87 In this way, Moses was presented as reflecting Greek virtues almost transparently. Such a thoroughly Gr eek picture of the Jewish lawg iver was designed not only to present yet another great exemplar for which the Jewish people as a whole ought to be respected, but also to impart a similar respect to the law which came through Moses. This was an important part of the project for Josephus, given the low view many pagans had ab out things such as Jewish Sabbath observance and dietary restrictions. Certain foreigners in the Biblical stories, or stories of Jews in foreign contexts, were especially important for Josephus because they presented opportunities to show favorable relationships between Jews and non-Jews. Agai n, such incidents become arguments imbedded within the narrative. If other foreigners could re spect the Jews and their culture, and treat them favorably, then so could the Romans. In fact, in light of stories of favorable relationships between Jews and other nations, th e Romans would appear out of step, as if every other nation found admirable qualities in the Jews except the Romans. So Jo sephus had Jethro, a foreigner (Midianite), adopt Moses as his son,88 something the canonical Biblical story did not posit. Most importantly, Joseph rose to prominence in E gypt, and Daniel was a Jew who served the Babylonian court in the Jewish di aspora in Babylon itself. Since su ch narrative situations were important for presenting a positiv e picture of Jews in the dias pora in the Roman world, Josephus gave considerable space in his work to these two figures. In fact, both of these figures would 87 Feldman, ‘Josephus’ Portrait of Moses. Part Three’, 215-6. Cf. A. Droge (‘Josephus Between Greeks and Barbarians’, 126) commenti ng on the similar treatment of Moses in the Ap .: “The presentation of Moses in this passage owes more to Plato’s Laws than it does to the book of Deuteronomy.” 88 AJ 2.263.

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209 have been an important characters for Jose phus personally, since the y, like Josephus, were prophets living outside of their homeland who predicted favorable things of the pagans they served and who were the object of jealousy on the pa rt of rivals. In each of these cases Josephus expanded the Biblical accounts to enhance the idea of a positive reception of Jews by non-Jews which was only latent in the Biblical texts.89 Josephus paid special attention to the acc ount of the Jewish patriarch Joseph. The canonical Hebrew text of Genesis spent 585 lines to tell his story, but Josephus used 1172 lines.90 In Josephus’ hands, Joseph was presented as havi ng the best qualities of a Hellenistic hero. Josephus emphasized Joseph’s good looks, a quality th at reminds us of great Greek characters renowned for their handsome appear ance such as Hector in the Iliad91 or the statement in Plato’s Phaedrus that leaders ought to be handsome.92 In addition to good looks, Josephus also claimed that Joseph possessed a keen mind, evoking the semblance of Roman characters such as Romulus and Remus who are de scribed in the same way.93 In fact Josephus went out of his way to stress the wisdom of Joseph, using no less than five different words ( sofi,a su,nesij dexio,thj fro,nhsij / fro,nhma and logisno,j ) for wisdom or intelligence in the account.94 His wisdom was manifested in several ways. For example, Joseph is presented as being skilled in the art of persuasion in a way that is quite different from the presentation in the Biblical text. In the scene 89 It may be that Josephus also emphasized th ese stories out of self -defense. As prophets in foreign courts, Joseph and Daniel serve as paradigms for Josephus himself. Although the Greeks and Romans were well familiar with the id ea of inspired poets, they were unfamiliar with the idea of inspired historiographers. As I not ed in chapter two, Josephus’ status as a prophet (respected in Jewish culture) w ould have been radically relativized under the social structure of Roman culture. Perhaps these stories therefore also served as an apologe tic for Josephus’ selfdesignated role in his Roman situation. 90 L. Feldman, ‘Josephus’ Portrait of Joseph’, RB 99 (1992) 380-1. 91 22.370. 92 279. 93 Dion. Hal. 1.79.10. 94 As noted by Feldman, ‘Josephus’ Portrait of Joseph’, 392.

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210 where Potiphar’s wife propositions Joseph, in th e Biblical account the young man refuses on moral grounds alone ( Genesis 39:8-9). In Josephus’ account, how ever, Joseph attempts to avert the woman’s advances with rational argument. In fact, in Josephus’ telling of the story, Potiphar’s wife was just as attracted to Jose ph because of his intellect as she was by his good looks.95 In a similar way, although the Biblical text reports that the king of Egypt consulted his magicians in the attempt to interpret his dreams, in Josephus’ telling of the story the magicians are not mentioned and the story becomes a contes t between the wise men of Egypt and the wise Joseph.96 Furthermore, in the Biblical text Joseph s uggested that the pharaoh appoint someone to manage the harvests in light of the coming fa mine, but in Josephus’ version the pharaoh asked Joseph to do this job without having it suggested to him first, which gave the impression that the pharaoh was impressed with Joseph’s wisdom alrea dy. Generally, foreigners in Josephus’ telling of the story (Potiphar, his wife, the king of Egypt, etc.) regularly not iced Joseph’s intellect. More importantly, Josephus drew significant at tention to Joseph’s wisdom in his ability to interpret dreams, a skill widely revered in the ancient world, including among the Greeks. Dreams were important for Josephus; he recorded 35 of them in his works.97 Like other ancient peoples, the Greeks generally believed th at dreams were communications from gods,98 and the ability to interpret them was considered a specia l talent. In fact, it wa s generally acknowledged that the interpretation of dreams was a talent that belonged only to people who were spiritual99 and who possessed a high degree of piety and goodness.100 Alternately, some in the ancient 95 AJ 2.41. 96 AJ 2.75. 97 Feldman, ‘Josephus’ Portrait of Joseph’, 396. 98 Cf. Il 1.62-3; Hes. Theog 211-13; Crito 44.A2-B5. 99 Pl. Smp. 203A. 100 P. Athanassiadi, ‘Dreams, Theurgy, a nd Freelance Divination: The Testimony of Iamblichus’, JRS 83 (1993) 116.

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211 world (e.g., the Epicureans) believed that the interpretation of dr eams was the proper domain of philosophers.101 Either way, Joseph was in good compa ny. That one of the founding figures of the Jewish people had significant experiences with dreams (either receiving them or interpreting them) that led him from one land to another imme diately makes us think also of Aeneas and his dream in Aeneid 3.147-71, where he is told to go to Italy.102 Of course, not everyone in ancient times believed that dreams were auspicious. Thucydides ignored them, and among some people in Roman times, dreams were considered only de ceptive and insubstantial, things that concerned only those who were simplistically superstitious. 103 Yet in spite of skeptics, belief in the divine nature or divine origin of dreams persisted in th e ancient world. Even Aristotle believed that they had some significance although he was able to de ny intellectually that they were sent by gods.104 Josephus was not necessarily arguing philosophi cally about their significance one way or the other. It seems that instead Josephus saw in th is feature of the Joseph story an element that resounded with the culture of his day, one th at made the Jews look much like Greeks and Romans. In fact, the time in which Josephus wr ote was a time when dreams were being given more and more credence in the culture at la rge. The abundance of documents about dreams and their interpretation from the Greek East and Egypt led Clay to refer to the second century CE as “an age of dreams,”105 and Harris remarks that “the epigra phical evidence suggests at least the possibility that dream prophecies gained an ex tra degree of importance from Flavian times or after 100 AD.”106 The Joseph narrative lent itself quite easily to the sentiments of the day. 101 See D. Clay, ‘An Epicurean Interpretation of Dreams’, AJP 101 (1980) 342-65. 102 Cf. A. Weston, ‘Three Dreams of Aeneas’, CJ 32 (1937) 229-32. 103 E.g., Theophrastus ( Char. 16.11) and Diogenes of Sinope ( Diog. Laert. 6.43). See W. Harris, ‘Roman Opinions About the Truthfulness of Dreams’, JRS 93 (2003) 18-34. 104 Arist., Div. Somn. 1.462b14-15, 463a5-6; 2.463b12-464b6. 105 Clay 343. 106 Harris 31.

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212 In the story of Joseph we see another quality of the Hellenistic hero, viz. that he comes from good stock. This too was part of the Greek convention of historiography Josephus chose to emulate. The Hippias maior ascribed to Plato, dictated that one of the things that ought to receive due attention in an avrcaiologi,a is the matter of genealogy.107 Glaucus and Diomedes exchanged genealogies when they meet on the battlefield in the Iliad to establish their status as great men.108 Tacitus related the ancest ry of Agricola in his biography of that well-known legate,109 and Herodotus traced the lineage of the Spartan king Leonidas.110 Dionysius of Halicarnassus emphasized this quality in Romulus and Remus when he noted that oi` de. andrwqe,ntej gi,nontai kata, te avxi,wsin morfh/j kai. fronh,matoj o;gkon ouv suoforboi/j kai. bouko,loij evoiko,tej( avll v oi[ouj a;n tij avxiw,seie tou/j evk basilei,ou te fu,ntaj ge,nouj kai. avpo. daimo,nwn spora/j gene,sqai nomizome,nouj (“when they became men, they appeared both in elegance of form and elevation of thought not as pig-herders or cattle-her ders, but as those whom one might consider as born of royal lineag e and thought to be offspring of the gods”).111 The ancient novel likewise ga ve due attention up front to the genealogy of the main character.112 Yet Josephus did not use genealogies in his stories to connect the Jews to the Greeks. Instead he used them to connect great Jewish figures with the Greek value of having a good ancestry. Josephus’ presentation of the Jewish prophet Da niel makes the same basic impression as the Joseph story. In general, Josephus tried to em phasize a core set of va lues about many of the Biblical characters he treated. “W hen we examine the key figures in Josephus’ paraphrase of the Biblical narrative, we see that, in almost every case, in addition to the external qualities of good 107 285D. 108 6.123-231. 109 Ag 4. 110 7.204. 111 1.79.10. 112 G. Schmeling, Xenophon of Ephesus (Boston 1980) 21.

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213 birth and handsome stature, he places great stress on the four cardinal virtues of character wisdom, courage, temperance, and justice and on the spiritual quality of piety.”113 Josephus used the literary convention of the exemplar not only in imitation of Greek historiographical style, but al so to present Jewish characte rs as people who embodied Greek ideals. To say that Josephus portrayed Jews as having Gr eek characteristics, or that he used Greek models in telling Jewish history, is not to say that Josephus necessarily did it well. The fact that he was a newcomer to the Greek literary traditi on showed itself from time to time. One of the most obvious problems was that in the part of the Antiquitates Judaicae that dealt with Biblical history (books 1-11), he sometimes mixed the ge nres of myth and historiography (as when he compared Moses to Homer). The history of the Hebrews as contained in the canonical books of the Hebrew Bible114 was written as history, as a detailed account presented as a continuum. In this way the Jews had long been different from the Greeks, who had myths (in poetry) for their ancient past and histories (in pr ose) for their recent past. Wh en Josephus attempted to cast Hebrew “historical” characters into forms that ma de them resemble Greek mythical characters, he was blurring a well-known line in his day.115 The result does not look typically Greek in some ways and thus paradoxically made the finished product look foreign in these aspects, not Hellenic. Stories of Positive Impressions on Non-Jews Just as foreigners in the Biblical storie s are often heard acknowledging Jewish piety, Josephus also knew of another document that bolst ered this image. Thus Josephus paid special 113 Feldman, ‘Josephus’ Portrait of Joseph’, 390. Cf. also L. Feldman, ‘Josephus’ Portrait of Jacob’, JQR 79 2/3 (1988-1989) 106. 114 The contents of his Bible are described in Ap 1.38-40. The Hebrew canon was considered closed in Josephus’ day. 115 M. I. Finley, ‘Myth, Memory, and History’, History and Theory 4 (1965) 281-302.

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214 attention to the story of the LXX itself. A particular document, the so-called Letter of Aristeas explained the origin of the tran slation and suited Josephus’ purpos es well. Just how important it was for Josephus may be gauged from the amount of space he devoted to it in his work. Pelletier claims that “After the Bible, it is the document that Josephus cites most extensively.”116 From it Josephus presented the LXX as a bona fide piece of Greek literature, produced at the request of an pagan ruler (Ptolemy Philadephus ) who is portrayed as interested in Jewish laws and customs and whose invitation to produce the translation was a tacit invitation for the Jews to participate in the Hellenistic cultural world. The story was particularly well-sui ted to Josephus’ aims, because the Letter placed the production of the LXX within the context of the bi rth of the Hellenistic ag e and in a place that was indisputably one of the grea test centers of Hellenistic lear ning, Alexandria. The picture was that from the beginning of the Hellenistic age, the Jews had been r ecognized as having something important to contribute and were i nvited inside. A Hellenistic scholar, with the agreement of the king, thought that the books of the Jews ought to have a place in the great library. Their inclusion there was a confession, as it were, that the LXX was worth reading by the Greeks. This point was guaranteed by the f act that the LXX had been produced under the patronage of no less than the king of Egypt in consultation with one who was arguably the greatest scholar of the day, the keeper of th e Royal Library of Alexandria, Demetrius of Phalerum. This story, however, betrays evidence of editing that was sensitive to the tastes of a Roman audience. The Letter of Aristeas had been transmitted among the Jews (obtaining a place in the collection known as the Apocrypha), but it was written in the Koine Greek of the second and third centuries BCE, and that style “did not reflect the literary tast es of the early Roman 116 A. Pelletier, ‘Josephus, the Letter of Ariste as, and the Septuagint’, in L. Feldman and G. Hata (eds.), Josephus, The Bible, and History (Detroit 1989) 102.

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215 Empire.”117 So rather than quote from the document, Josephus paraphrased it. Similarly, details of the story that would have bored Romans are omitted, and he has simply extracted the material that made for the best narrative.118 Foreign rulers or other powerful figures w ho had favorable experiences with Jews were also important for Josephus’ purposes, and their stories were similarly enhanced to emphasize their good will toward Jews. Balaam, the Mesopo tamian prophet who was hired to curse the Israelites but who instead blessed them, thus became an important figure for Josephus, and he devoted a third more space to the account than th e LXX did. The picture of Balaam in Josephus is not that of the classical arch-enemy of Jews as the rabbis depicted him. Josephus instead softened the picture by adding such things as Balaam’s offering a sacrifice before he prophesied119 and the prophet’s hospitality toward the envoys from the Moabite king Balak.120 Even more importantly, here Josephus had a story of a non-Jew blessing the Jews. However, with the prophet’s blessing in the Biblical text came the characterization that the people of Israel “will dwell alone” ( Numbers 23:9), which could poten tially only serve to underscore perceptions of Jewish aloofness from the rest of the world. So Josephus had the prophet predict instead that the Jews would become the happiest of all people.121 In a similar vein, Josephus was able to capitalize on the fact that the Letter of Aristeas portrays Ptolemy Philadelphus as having such a fa vorable disposition towards the Jews and such high regard for their piety that he released all Jews from slavery within his domain, at considerable expense (700 talents) to the roya l treasury, and that the invitation to come to 117 Pelletier, 102-3. 118 Pelletier, 103-6. 119 AJ 4.113. 120 AJ 4.105. 121 AJ 4. 114.

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216 Alexandria and work on the translation was accompanied by beautiful furnishings for the Jerusalem temple. What a contrast there was be tween the magnanimous and respectful treatment of Ptolemy on the one hand, and the treatment Jews received from Romans on the other hand. Ptolemy supplied a table for the temple, the Romans had taken a table out of the temple when they sacked it. Ptolemy released Jewish slav es, the Romans made sl aves of Jews. Ptolemy invited the Jews to be part of Hellenistic culture and for the written expressi ons of their culture to have a place on of the most important instituti ons of the day, the library of Alexandria. The Romans, however, generally kept the Jews at arm’s length. Sure ly these contrasts were not totally lost on Roman readers of the Antiquitates Judaicae and were designed to make them rethink their stance toward the Jews. One of the most important stories for Jose phus’ purpose of aligning Jews with Greeks was his account of the meeting between Alexande r the Great and the Jews in Jerusalem.122 As it stands the story appears to be a co mpilation of three original stories,123 which Josephus himself combined.124 The tale is surely apocryphal, da ting perhaps from the Maccabean period.125 Neither Arrian nor Plutarch nor any other cred ible Greek source mentions a visit to inland Palestine by Alexander, neither on his way to nor from Egypt. The only other literature in which the story is mentioned is late and Jewish in origin. Greek history knew nothing about a meeting of Alexander with Jerusalem Jews. Nevertheless, the value of this story for Josephus’ purposes of ethnicity was immense. The Je wish reception of Alexander at Je rusalem is related as a typical 122 AJ 11.302-47. 123 A. Bchler, ‘La relation de Jos phe concernant Alex andre le Grand’, Revue des tudes juives 36 (1898) 1-26. 124 S. Cohen, ‘Alexander the Great and Jaddus the High Priest According to Josephus’, AJS Review 7 (1982) 43; see also R. Marcus’ appendi x C in vol. 6 of the Loeb edition of Josephus. 125 A. Momigliano, ‘Flavius Josephus a nd Alexander’s Visit to Jerusalem’, Athanaeum 57 (1979) 442-8.

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217 Greek adventus story, in which a monarch is given a grand welcome by the inhabitants of a city.126 Alexander was dutifully and clearly acknowledge d for the great leader he was. The story goes on to relate that after his adventus Alexander honored the Jewish God with a sacrifice and, most importantly, the Jews freely capitulated to Alexander’s authority, and Alexander confirmed their right to practice their ancestral customs. Jewish acceptance of Greek culture is thus underscored, as is Greek approval of exclusivis tic Jewish monotheism, an approval from the hand of one no less than the founder of the Hellenistic world himself. Furthermore, the story also shares in the qualities of a epi phany tale where a god appears to an important figure in a dream, the result of which is the salvation of a city from destruction.127 Here both Alexander and the Jewish high priest Jaddus received dreams, thus doubly insuring the city’s safety. The potential aggressor Alexander was prevented from attackin g the city, and the guard ian priest Jaddus was encouraged about the city’s safe ty. Most importantly, the story also served as a foundation for Josephus’ multiple assertions that the Jews enjoye d Greek civic rights from Alexander himself. Management of Negative Impressions It is one thing to pr esent an ethnic group as positively as possible using the conventions of the dominant social structure to argue for a basi c compatibility between that structure and the ethnic group. It is another thing to deal with negative per ceptions satisfactorily. It is to this latter problem, as it presented itself to Josephus in tel ling the material of Jewi sh history, that I now turn. Because of the milieu in which he lived an d wrote, it was impossible for Josephus to ignore the many criticisms that had been leveled against Jews and Judaism. The risk, however, was always that bringing these matte rs up only tended to magnify them and keep them in the forefront unless they could be gi ven a truly satisfying treatment. 126 S. Cohen, ‘Alexander the Great and Jaddus the High Priest’, 45-9. 127 S. Cohen, ‘Alexander the Great and Jaddus the High Priest’, 49-53.

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218 One tactic available to Josephus was simply to avoid making things worse for himself and omit elements of stories that proved to be probl ematic. For example, the Biblical story of the flood has God punishing the world because God “r epented” of having made man. This has long proved to be a thorny text and Josephus appare ntly anticipated that it would have raised considerable problems for his reader s. It was not as if there was a lack of attempts to make sense of the Biblical statement; several were at hand to Josephus in the rabbinic traditions. The problem was that a pagan audience that was generally unsympathetic toward Judaism in the first place was not in a position to appreciate any of them. So Josephus’ solution was to omit the statement from the history altogether.128 Here we see Josephus at work, picking and choosing which elements of his material can or cannot, in his judgment, manage the impression he hoped to create. This was not, however, a standard nor preferred practice for Josephus. It was risky, because anyone who wished to check the LXX could have seen that Josephus had conveniently left out details that were pot entially embarrassing or philoso phically problematic. Josephus’ preferred approach instead was to recast the stories in such a way that they were more intelligible for a Hellenistic audience,129 or to add materials to make them more palatable. “If we examine other passages which Josephus totally omits, we s ee that the overwhelming majority of them fall into two categories: either the omission is to protect the reputation of a character, … or the passages in question are such as would impugn th e Jews’ reputation for tolerance .. and offered ammunition to Jew-baiters in his non-Jewish audience.”130 Either way, omission seems to have been the solution of last resort. However, the Hebr ew primeval history seems to have been one of the most problematic parts of Scripture for Josephus, no doubt because many parts of it sounded 128 Feldman, Studies in Josephus’ Rewritten Bible 21-2. 129 Feldman, Studies in Josephus’ Rewritten Bible 61. 130 Feldman, Studies in Josephus’ Rewritten Bible 62.

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219 strange to Greeks. N. Cohen has noted that Josephus made more changes to the Biblical stories in this part of the history than in the rest of it. “In AJ I-V the material has been entirely reca st with the object of bringing the Biblical narratives into conformity with the st yle and psychology of the Greek novel. The genealogies have been paraphrased in the Greek style, the narratives embellished with long speeches in the traditional manner of the contemporary historiographer, and much additional matter culled from non-Biblical sources has been added, ….”131 Sometimes Josephus encountered the opposite pr oblem in the Biblical materials: not enough information to suggest alignment between Jews and Greeks. Instead of a negative impression, such material simply constituted a non-impression. When this happened, Josephus, with his fluid understanding of the nature of tr aditional stories, embellished and added details to make a story sound more Greek. For example, one of the most impressive displays of dedication to God in the Hebrew Bible is the aqedah Abraham’s “offering” of Isaac at the command of God ( Genesis 22). The Biblical narrative was sparse on details in a way that was not typical of Greek stories. So Josephus “hellenized the Biblic al narrative so that it acquires precisely those qualities that are missing in the Bible clarity, uniform illumination, and lack of suspense.”132 In the process he also downplayed the theological element of the story and used terminology that echoed Homer’s description of Priam. For example, Isaac is described in Antiquitates Judaicae 1.222 as evpi. gh,rwj ouvdw/| kata. dwrea.n auvtw/| tou/ qeou/ geno,menon (“who was as a gift to him [Abraham] from God on the thres hold of his old age”), and Homer described Priam, who was about to lose his son Hector, as evpi, gh,raoj ouvdw|/ ( Il 22.60).133 Similarly, Josephus’ presentation of Isaac has affinities with Euripides’ presentation of Iphigenia; both are portrayed as being the delight of their parent, but also willing to be offered and rejecting any notion of acting against 131 N. Cohen, ‘Josephus and Scripture: Is Jose phus’ Treatment of the Scriptural Narrative Similar Throughout the “Antiquities” I-XI?’, JQR 54 (1964) 319. 132 L. Feldman, ‘Josephus as a Bibl ical Interpreter: The “Aqedah”’, JQR 75 (1985) 213. 133 Feldman, ‘Josephus as a Biblical Interpreter: The “Aqedah”’, 213, 215.

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220 the will of a god.134 Yet the story of the aqedah had its own problem: it could read to a pagan like a story of child sacrif ice, something that was taboo in Hellenistic times.135 So in Josephus’ account we hear the explanation: ouv ga.r evpiqumh,saj ai[matoj avn qrwpi,nou th.n sfagh.n auvtw/| prosta,xai tou/ paido.j e;legen (“for it was not that he [God] was desiring human blood that he ordered the slaying of the child by him”)136 an addition to the Biblical account. The Jewish right to the land of Palestine was a touchy issue for Josephus. I noted in a previous chapter that land is a prominent et hnic criterion by most accounts, but that ethnic element was bearing less and less weight for Jews in the first century CE, mostly due to the fact that many of them lived outside the traditiona l homeland, client kingdoms of Rome in the east were being replaced by direct Roman oversight, and in 70 CE their center of worship in the ancestral homeland was destroyed. In light of these factors (especi ally the last one), it would have been difficult for Josephus to maintain so me kind of Jewish theological claim to the traditional homeland with any kind of credibility. In post-70 CE, Jerusalem was a symbol of Jewish defeat and Roman supremacy, and a theo logy of possession of Pale stine by divine right would have sounded ludicrous. This created a problem for Josephus as he told the Biblical story to outsiders, because the canonical Biblical text s have as a prominent theme the giving of the land of Palestine to Israel by covenant promise from God. So rather than have Abraham leave Chaldea for Palestine at the command of God, Jo sephus has him leave because of the religious intolerance of the Mesopotamians, and Abraham’s descendants will get the land as fulfillment of a prophecy but not as the guara ntee of a covenant with God.137 There are many places in the canonical narrative where the land and the covena nt with God are explicitly connected, but 134 Feldman, ‘Josephus as a Biblical Interpreter: The “Aqedah”’, 219, 221, 233. 135 Cf. Plutarch, Pelopidas 21.4. 136 AJ 1.233. 137 AJ 1.185.

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221 Josephus regularly ignored or minimized them. The land theology of the Jews has thus been suppressed at the least, and denied at the most. There were probably many reasons that presented themselves to Josephus for suppressing the land aspect of the canonical narrative. As I have noted, th e land theology in the canonical texts simply would not have been believable in li ght of the historical fact s, especially those of 66-70 CE. Also, Josephus was probably distancing himself from the kind of Jewish nationalism (such as that of the Zealots) that made posse ssion of the land of Pa lestine one of the key contentions between Jerusalem and Rome. “He de leted the theology of covenanted land because he did not want the land to be a focal point, as it was for Davidic messianism, with all its revolutionary implicatio ns in Josephus’ day.”138 In fact, Josephus has instead read, and presented, the Biblical story to expound a rationale for the Jewish Diaspora of his own day. He has the pagan prophet Balaam (an outsider, from the story in Numbers 22-23) predict that the piety of the Jews would result in their filling the earth and sea. “It is not a portrait true to the classical Biblical end of days; rather it is a reflection of the Hellenistic world.”139 Scenes in the Hebrew Bible where Jews suffe red under the treatment of foreign monarchs would also prove a difficult subject for Josephus if he wanted to smooth out Jewish-Roman relationships in his day. It w ould not serve his purpose to repe at stories about mean-spirited foreigners, for such stories could easily be seen as representing analogues to the Romans. Furthermore, stories of Jewish mistreatment by foreigners would only serve to demolish the portrait of a long history of good rela tionships with foreigners that he presented elsewhere. It was in the interest of Joseph us’ plan, therefore, to remove the ha rsh edges of characters who, in the Biblical texts, came across as villains. So the Pharaoh of Joseph’s time is portrayed much more 138 Amaru 229. 139 Amaru 228.

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222 positively in Josephus than he is in the Biblical text, and he repeatedly heaps praise upon Joseph (in contrast to the more reserved picture in the Biblical text).140 Similarly, the Pharaoh of the exodus, in scenes foreign to the Bible, tenderly holds the baby Moses in his arms141 and later entrusts Moses to lead an E gyptian expedition against Ethiopia.142 The idea to kill Hebrew babies as a means of population control a nd prevention of uprising came fr om Pharaoh in the Bible, but in the account of Josephus it comes from one of PharaohÂ’s scribes. In this way the PharaohÂ’s characterization was softened in a way similar to that of the treatment of Titus in the Bellum Judaicum The ruler was not depicted as callously harsh toward Jews, and the hardships that came on the Jews in his time were seen as th e work of underlings who lacked the kingÂ’s appreciation for the Jews and their piety. Other difficult parts of Biblical stories lent themselves more readily to reception by ears accustomed to hearing the Greek tales, and only n eeded the appropriate ke y words inserted into them to make the connections more apparent. Fo r example, the Biblical flood story raises the question of why God would create man and then turn around and destroy him. For this question there was an answer more amenable to the philhellenic spirit: it was the u[brij of man that precipitated the flood.143 With this word, which is not used in the LXX version of the story, Josephus subtly tapped into the Greek tragic tr adition and provided a solution that a Hellenic audience would have found perfectly satisfactory. In fact, Josephus laid the groundwork for this explanation previously in Antiquitates Judaicae 1.66, where he accused Cain and his descendants of u`bri,zwn He provided a similar explanation for GodÂ’ s confusing the langua ges at the Tower of Babel. There manÂ’s prosperity led to u[brij and u[brij led to punishment. This follows a fairly 140 Feldman, Studies in JosephusÂ’ Rewritten Bible 83-4. 141 AJ 2.232f. 142 AJ 2.238-53. 143 AJ 1.100, using the verb evxubri,zw

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223 typical pattern in Greek tragedy.144 Coloring the story in this way helped JosephusÂ’ readers overcome a potential problem with the story a nd thus enabled Josephus to manage negative impressions that could have arisen from the traditional materials. Another kind of difficulty presented itself w ith the story of Solom on, who is portrayed in the Bible as being corrupted by hi s attraction to foreign gods. In th e Biblical story, the ruin of SolomonÂ’s kingdom is directly tied to his partic ipation in and support of foreign religious cults among his foreign wives. This was problematic for Josephus, for it reinforced the negative stereotype of the religiously intolerant Jew who looked upon non-Je ws as defiled. Jewish refusal to participate in Greco-Roman religion was one of the most persistent pagan criticisms leveled against Jews in JosephusÂ’ day. Jose phus therefore softened the Bib lical picture in several ways. Human speakers replace God, so the rebuke agains t Solomon does not come directly from the deity. JosephusÂ’ telling of the So lomon story also has a more erotic emphasis, as well as an emphasis on SolomonÂ’s advanced age, which serves to excuse his offense to some degree. Furthermore, in the Josephus version, Solomon does not build high places for worship of foreign gods. His offense instead is that he used a few features of forei gn iconography in his own projects. The interesting thing here is that Josephus could have chosen to follow the account in Chronicles which does not mention SolomonÂ’s offens es. Instead he chose to use, with modifications, the more embarrassing version from Kings Why? Begg has suggested that the story held two attractions for Jo sephus. First, it highlighted his theme of the moral excellence of God, and how God rewards the good and punishes the evil ( AJ 1.14). Second, the story has tragic features (a character wh ose good life is ruined by hubris ) which Greek reader s would have found 144 Feldman, Studies in JosephusÂ’ Rewritten Bible 28.

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224 congenial.145 This corresponds with what I will dem onstrate next about ot her stories in the Antiquitates Judaicum : Josephus manages potentially negative stories as exempla of high moral virtues. It is in the latter part of the Antiquitates Judaicae that some of the most difficult problems for the construction of an ethnicity appeared. Many Greek or Roman r eaders would have been largely ignorant of ancient Jewish history, but would have been more familiar with the negative stories associated with the Jews within recent memory. Books 14-20 of the Antiquitates Judaicae center around the client ki ngdom of Herod the Great in Palestine, and its legacy. It is clear that Josephus was not an admirer of Herod the Great. Among the things Josephus said about him are that he had no rightful claim to rule the Je ws, he came to prominence by killing his rival Aristobulus, he was gripped by an insane jeal ousy and paranoia that drove him to acts of immense cruelty, he was a hypocrite inasmuch as he criticized the Arabs for the very things he himself did, it was his idea to kill his son Hyrcanus, and he killed his own wife because he suspected that she had turned ag ainst him and had encouraged hi s children to do the same. The latter act caused Herod considerable personal anguish, because he loved Mariamne greatly. In fact, in Josephus’ portrait Herod loved all wo men yet was quick to condemn rival kings on rumors of their adultery. Herod also corrupted the kingdom’s piety, he looted the tomb of the revered king David, and he executed his sons on th e belief that they had plotted to overthrow him. He was a tyrant at home, but in the presence of the Roman emperor he gave every impression of being fair, just, and loyal to Roman interests. He was power-hungry and manipulated everyone and everything around him in order to enhance or maintain the power he 145 C. Begg, ‘Solomon’s Apostasy (1 Kgs. 11,1-13) according to Josephus’, JSJ 28 (1997) 312-13.

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225 had accumulated. HerodÂ’s wife, Mariamne, fares lit tle better. Although she eventually lost her life at her husbandÂ’s command, she ha d plenty of vices of her own. How could such an embarrassing portrait of hi s homelandÂ’s most famous king and his wife serve any good purpose for building a positive view of Jews in the Roman world? A partial answer is suggested in 16.395-8, wh ere Josephus briefly entertained the idea that it might be that the forces of tu,ch and avna,gkh which is also called ei`marme,nh were at work. As in the Bellum Judaicum Josephus allowed this Greek explanation a place in his history even though he had clearly stated in the preface of his work that the history he relates is controlled by the fact that God rewards the righteous and punishes the wicked.146 Josephus had a perfectly good and consistent explanation for why the house of Herod was plagued by such intern al turmoil. In fact, he charged Herod with impiety in 16.188 (he looted the tomb of David), so the suggestion of the role of tu,ch is again all the more surprising, since we would expect JosephusÂ’ theology of retribution from a just God to expl ain the matter instead. The use of the tu,ch here is another sign that Josephus was crafting his narrative in such a way as to reflect a sharing in perspectives and experiences that were typically Greek. Another part of the answer su rely lies in JosephusÂ’ theol ogy of divine retribution. The story of HerodÂ’s horrible end displays the justic e of God. Yet another aspect of the answer may lie in JosephusÂ’ description of the famous Egyptian queen Cleopatra in 13.328-43 and 15.77-258. She was, Josephus says, a scheming, murderous woman allied with a man (Antony) whose loyalties to his own homeland we re compromised in the pursuit of personal power, who meddled in the affairs of other governments in the attemp ts to expand her own power, and who had driven her own son from Egypt. Josephus was buying into the standard Roman view of Cleopatra here. 146 AJ 1.14.

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226 In addition, Josephus had good reasons for animos ity against Cleopatra as a Jew, for the Egyptian monarch had no respect fo r Jewish political concerns a nd traded Jewish interests like pawns in her political game (by intervening in th e intrigues within the fa mily of Herod she hoped to give control of Idumea to Antony; 15:62 ff). The Jews and the Romans therefore had a common enemy in Cleopatra. Both could rightly complain about how she had acted against their sovereignty. In some ways, Herod and Mariam ne were analogues to Antony and Cleopatra.147 Both Romans and Jews had endured rulers who we re self-serving tyrants. In this way Josephus demonstrated a solidarity between Jews and Roma ns in that both had similar experiences with unscrupulous Hellenistic client kings. As I have shown in chapter three, Josephus gave considerable attention in the latter part of his Antiquitates Judaicae to stories of how Jews were mi streated by those in Greco-Roman culture at large, and in particular how Jewish funds meant for the temple were often confiscated by Roman officials or with their knowledge. These stories played a significant apologetic role in the Antiquitates Judaicae in at least two ways. First, the sign ificance of these stories in terms of ethnicity is that they portray precisely the kind of institutiona l philanthropic expression that manifests the sense of solidarity which Smith pos ited as a fundamental element in ethnic selfdefinition. Monetary contributions to the temple in the ances tral homeland were a public expression of Jewish solidarity. The fact that Jo sephus related several inst ances of the violation of these funds suggests that he found in this probl em a particularly menacing threat to a practice that, in his view, lay at the heart of Jewish se lf-understanding. His repeat ed attention to this particular problem is a strong indicator that he sa w this as a violation of the Jewish way of life itself. For Josephus, an important element of Jewi sh ethnicity was at stake. Second, if the Roman 147 Interestingly, one of HerodÂ’s ni ne wives was named Cleopatra ( AJ 17.21).

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227 people prided themselves at all on being pious and religious, then stories of their interference in Jewish religious matters should cause them to r econsider their attitudes and actions. As I have shown in chapter five, Josephus su pported the idea that the Romans were religiously sensitive. His portrayal of Titus’ reluctan ce to destroy the Jerusalem temple emphasized this quality. This was not a matter of cowering to the imperial ego, as it has often been interpreted in the history of Josephan studies. Instead Josephus was affirming Ro man religious sensibilities in order to build a case that the Jews ought to be respected fo r the greatness of this same quality among themselves. This depended, of course, on al so demonstrating that Judaism enshrined considerably noble ideals itself, which is the very thing the Antiquitates Judaicae is designed to do. Yet as always, this presentation was crafted in such a way to show that the Jewish religion participated in the good qualities that were also recognized and admired in Greek culture. With such a portrait, Josephus could hope to lift the stigma that Judais m was a foreign, “eastern” (i.e., suspicious) religion. The stories which Josephus told about Jewish mistreatment are those that were likely circulated as proof of the fore ign and rebellious nature of Je ws. Therefore Josephus chose to address the very stories that were used to fuel anti-Jewish sen timents, in order to demonstrate that they had been misinterpreted. He was att acking the problem of anti-Jewishness head-on. The tactic here was the same as in the Bellum Judaicum where Josephus said that he wrote his account to set the record straight against other accounts that de nigrated both him and the Jewish people. In doing so Josephus was careful in how he told the stories, and in choosing which elements of the stories got emphasis. The story about Pilate’s placement of images of Tiberius, on military signa in Jerusalem was one of the stories Josephus told to illustrate how Jews had been treated unfairly. There are,

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228 however, a few things amiss with this story. First, it would have been cooler in Jerusalem (in the mountains of Judea, elevation approximately 2,550 f eet above sea level) in the winter than in Caesarea, which sits on the coast. That Pilate would have moved himself and a Roman cohort to a colder place for the winter does not make sens e by itself. Much more likely is that Pilate anticipated problems in Jerusalem, or that he simp ly wanted to assert his presence in the capital city as the new procurator and the local embodiment of Roman power. It co uld well have been an introductory display of power designed to remind th e locals just who was in control. Alternately, it could have been a routine, or even friendly visit to the city. In the Acts of the Apostles Luke relates that Porcius Festus, upon taking office in Judea, visited Jerusale m to meet the local leaders.148 Either way, it seems more plausible that P ilateÂ’s visit to Jerusalem had to do with asserting Roman authority and k eeping the peace more than it did with the suitability of Jerusalem as winter quarters for troops. Sec ond, since Pilate would have been personally accountable to Rome for anything he did that stirred up unrest among the client peoples, it is hard to believe that he went to Jerusalem specifically with the intention of undoing Jewish customs, as Josephus claims he did. It is unthi nkable that Pilate could not have known about the sensitivity of Palestinian Jews concerning Jeru salem itself. Third, this was a risky story for Josephus to tell, because it portrayed the Palestinia n Jews as religiously and culturally intolerant, which is one of the perceptions that stigmatized them in the Hellenistic world in the first place. It was normal Roman practice for Roman troops to set up their standards wherever they camped. Like raising oneÂ’s flag at an embassy or in an occupied town, it was inde ed a political statement (that, in its day, also included religious overtones). The act itself was not necessarily 148 Acts 25.1.

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229 inflammatory, and may have been nothing more th an a display of the pr ocuratorÂ’s loyalty to emperor, yet the Jerusalem Jews took great offense at it. Josephus crafted the presentation of this stor y carefully for his ow n apologetic purposes. The episode has been narrated in such a way so as to maximize both the sense of unfairness within it and the high piety of the Jews. Josephus saw in this incident a prime example of how Jews were treated unfairly, how their religious beliefs were discounted by Romans, and how their protests against such treatment were summ arily dismissed or, worse, interpreted as their causing trouble. The Jewish opposition to the Roman ensigns was presented as an objection arising from the greatest kind of piety and religious dedication. Josephus wanted his readers to think that it was only because th e Jews were such good, religious people that this was a problem for them. His agenda is clear, and the difficultie s in his story are completely overshadowed by the characterization of the incident as a willf ul affront against a pious people. In the end, Josephus thought it was worth the risk to tell this story because it highlighted Jewish piety and innocence. This was important in the f ace of accusations that the Jews were avsebei/j and a;qeoi Similar considerations apply to the story of PilateÂ’s confisca tion of temple funds to build an aqueduct. Stern notes that if there was more money in the te mple treasury than was actually needed for temple expenditures, the surplus was used for other things including the municipal needs of Jerusalem.149 Pilate may not have thought he was out of line and that such use of the funds were at his discretion. While the fact that he again used armed troops to end the discussion does not encourage optimism concerning his motives his actions need not be interpreted as wholly malicious either. As Josephus told the story, however, only one conclusion seemed proper. 149 Stern, Greek and Latin Authors 198.

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230 The event related in Antiquitates Judaicae 16, where Jews of Asia and Cyrenaica complained to Herod and Agrippa in Asia, is al so problematic. There was, again, a risk involved in presenting things in this way. Josephus’ repeat ed appeals to official documents and decrees that gave the Jews exemptions ran the risk of emphasizing Jewish nonconformity and special treatment. Decree after d ecree testified to th e existence of a privilege that made the Jews look foreign and unlike their neighbors, but the risk was offset first by the apologetic value these stories held, and second by the fact that the decrees Josephus listed were tangible “proof” (depending on one’s perspective, of course) of Rome’s kind disposi tion toward Jews. As Josephus saw it, the decrees constituted official Roman recognition of the great piety of the Jewish people everywhere. Even when their pr actice of sending money to Jerusalem cut across Roman law, the highest officials in Roman gove rnment had consistently ruled that this expression of Jewish piety was extraordinary and was not to be violated. This in turn became a compliment to the Romans themselves for having recognized and upheld such piety among a client people, and a reproach upon those who had tr ied to violate it. Allowi ng the Jews to collect and send money to Jerusalem demonstrated the Ro man recognition of the God of the Jews as a legitimate deity whose worship and favor needed to be maintained. Seen in this way, the Jewish collection for Jerusalem was not so much a case of special pleading and priv ilege (i.e., otherness, non-Roman), but an act of relig ious piety respected by the em peror himself, thoroughly in keeping with Augustan ideals of reli gious piety, and thus thoroughly Roman. After listing the various decrees that allowed the Jews to main tain their practice, Josephus says poiou/mai de. polla,kij auvtw/n th.n mnh,mhn evpidia lla,ttwn ta. ge,nh kai. ta.j evmpefukui,aj toi/j avlogi,stoij h`mw/n te kavkei,nwn mi,souj aivti,aj u`pexairou,menoj (“I make frequent mention of them [the decrees] to bring the nations to reconciliation and to remove the causes of hatred that have

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231 clung to those who are unreas onable among us and them”).150 The problem, he says, was social and cultural dissonance, not im morality. Josephus pleaded that the Jews were good people, and this goodness made them just like other respected peoples, esp ecially the Greeks. dio. kai. tau/ta parV evkei,nwn h`mi/n avpaithte,on kai. de,on ouvk ev n th/| diafora/| tw/n evpithdeuma,twn oi;esqai to. avllo,trion avllV evn tw/| pro.j kalokagaqi,an evpithdei,wj e;cein (“therefore these things are more expected from them concerning us, and it is nece ssary for them not to suppose hostility in the difference of practices, but that there is a careful disposition to goodness”).151 This is an important statement, because it reveals that Jose phus knew the attitude of the inhabitants of the provinces toward Jews, and their perception of them. He appealed to the Hellenistic society at large for a more beneficent interp retation, not only of the former Jewish collection for Jerusalem, but of all Jewish customs. The fact that the Jews had large su ms of money which they had not invested in the local cities where they lived no doubt made them appear to be unconcerned, aloof, and willfully disengaged from civic life and their neighbors. Josephus tried hard to explain that this was not a proper interpretation and that the collection of this money ought to be seen as one way Jews had of honoring their God. It was an act of piety, he s uggests, not of ill-will against the cities in which they lived. Rajak has noted that Josephus had to engage in a kind of slight-of-hand to make this argument work. The decrees which Josephus cite d are haphazardly listed, and none of them would have constituted an official Roman legal ch arter for Jewish privileges. They were instead responses to particular incidents, over particular problems, in va rious places and would not have been meant, nor interpreted at Rome, as empire-wide precedents.152 Yet that was exactly the 150 AJ 16.175. 151 AJ 16.178. 152 Rajak, The Jewish Dialogue with Greece and Rome 304-18.

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232 impression Josephus left from his handling of them. Their precise le gal content has been summarized that is, generalized in order to milk them for political capital. In Antiquitates Judaicae 16.178 Josephus admitted that ther e was at least one scandal involving a collection of funds for Jerusalem. An unnamed Jew who was in trouble with the law in Palestine came to Rome and presented himsel f as a teacher of Jewi sh wisdom. He managed, with three partners, to convince an affluent Roman wo man, Fulvia, who was a proselyte, that she had to send purple and gold to the temple in Jeru salem, which he and his friends would be glad to deliver for her. She gave them the contribu tion, and they put it in their own pockets. The woman feared she had been duped, told her hus band what had happened, and he reported the matter to the emperor. The result was that Ti berius ordered all the Jews to leave Rome.153 The date was 19 CE. In an account designed to portray the Jews in the best possible light to outsiders, this story stands out as a shining example of avarice and greed. Why did Josephus tell this story? Why tell a story that seemed to communicate the very im pression of Jews that Josephus was trying to correct? Why not just skip this story, as he did with other th ings? There are at least three answers. First, as I noted in chapter tw o, Romans acknowledged both good and bad among Greeks, and the Greeks themselves were sometimes critical of various sub-groups within their own ethnicity.154 Josephus was thus not doing anything unus ual here. Second, it would have been unwise and unrealistic if Josephus had ignored we ll-known examples of Jewish shortcomings. He had to avoid presenting the Jews as the pe rfect people, because no one would have believed it. As I also noted in chapter tw o, the construction of an ethnicity must adhere to some semblance 153 AJ 18.81-4. 154 cf. a RhodianÂ’s criticism of other Greeks in Livy, 45.23.14-16, and Cicero distinguishes between g ood ones and bad ones in Ver 2.2.7.

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233 of credibility if it is to succee d. Third, Josephus depicts the major ity of Jews as victims here, suffering for the actions of a few who were uns crupulous and greedy. This is exactly how he depicted the Jews of Jerusalem in his account of th e First Jewish War, wher e he said that the war was caused by a minority who were bent on rebellion and that the rest of the Jews of Palestine were innocently caught up in, and suffered in, the war. Similarly, here Josephus ended the story saying kai. oi` me.n dh. dia. kaki,an tessa,rwn avndrw/n hvlau,nonto th/j po,lewj (“So for the wickedness of four men they [the Je ws] were banished from the city”).155 This story seems designed to serve as a prime example of the prej udices Jews constantly faced, and the unfairness of the actions that resulted from them. As the st ory stands in Josephus, it strikes the reader that the punishment here (banishment of all Jews) does not fit the crime (the deception of four of them). It was presented as a story of wide-sca le unfair treatment of Jews. Such, according to Josephus, was the world in which Jews lived. It was a world in which lurid stories about Jews abounded, a world in which tales of Jewish offenses against society and cu lture circulated freely, and a world in which those tales were believe d and used as justification for widespread mistreatment of Jews and for interference in Je wish religious practices. That is, even though the present story was embarrassing, Josephus risked tell ing this story to make another point, a point consonant with his overall por trayal of Jews to Greeks a nd Romans: that this should not be understood as a story that descri bes typical Jewish behavior. Th is was not the action of the majority, but of a few. However, this story of the expulsion of the Jews in 19 CE is also related by Suetonius, Dio Cassius, and Tacitus, where we learn that ther e were other factors at work. Suetonius says Externas caerimonias, Aegyptios Iudaicosque ritu s compescuit, coactis qui superstitione ea tenebantur religiosas uestes cum instrumento omni comburere. Iudaeorum iuuentutem per 155 AJ 18.84.

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234 speciem sacramenti in prouincias grauioris cae li distribuit, reliquos gentis eiusdem uel similia sectantes urbe summouit, sub poena perpetuae seruitutis nisi obtemperassent. Expulit et mathematicos, sed deprecantibus ac se artem desituros promittentibus ueniam dedit. (“He abolished foreign cults, especially the Egyptian and the Jewish rites, compelling all who were addicted to such superstitions to burn their religious ve stments and all their paraphernalia. Those of the Jews who were of military age he assigned to provinces of less healthy climate, ostensibly to serve in the army ; the others of that same race or of similar beliefs he banished from the city, on pain of slavery for life if they did not obey. He banished the astrologers as we ll, but pardoned such as begged for indulgence and promised to give up their art”).156 The classification of Judaism along with Egypt ian rites and (eastern ) astrology is telling, According to Suetonius, the emperor apparently thought that the Jews were part of a larger influx into Rome of foreign practices and eastern in fluences which were viewed as socially and culturally unhealthy. The expulsion of the Jews was, it could have been argued, an act of Tiberius’ zeal for the traditional gods of Rome a nd for Roman society in general. Tacitus, who also feared any non-Roman influe nces, wrote of this incident: …. actum et de sacris Aegyptiis Iudaicisque pellendis factumque patrum consultum ut quattuor milia libertini generis ea supersti tione infecta quis idonea aetas in insulam Sardiniam veherentur, coercendis illic latrociniis et, si ob gravitatem caeli interissent, vile damnum; ceteri cederent Italia nisi certam ante diem profanos ritus exuissent. (“….There was a debate too about expelli ng the Egyptian and Jewish worship, and a resolution of the Senate was passed that 4000 of the freedmen class who were infected with those superstitions and were of military age should be transported to the island of Sardinia, to curb the brigandage of the place, a cheap sacrifice should they die from the pestilential climate. The rest were to leave Italy, unless before a certain day they repudiated their impious rites.”).157 This corresponds to a mention of an earlier e xpulsion in 139 BCE. Valerius Maximus reported: Chaldaeos igitur Cornelius Hispalus urbe expulit et intra decem dies Italia abire iussit, ne peregrinam scientiam vendita rent. Iudaeos quoque, qui Roma nis tradere sacra sua conati erant, idem Hispalus urbe exterminavit ar asque privatas e publicis locis abiecit. 156 Tib 36. 157 Ann 2.85.

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235 “Cornelius Hispalus therefore e xpelled the Chaldeans from th e city and ordered them to leave Italy within ten days, and that they s hould not sell their foreign knowledge. The Jews also, who had tried to pass their sacred thi ngs on to the Romans, the same Hispalus banished from the city and he threw thei r private altars out of public places.” The Romans had a long history of being suspicious of foreign in fluences. It makes much more sense to interpret the expulsion of Jews from Rome in 19 CE in this light than it does to interpret it as the result of one incident of fraud that a ffected one Roman family. Dio Cassius sheds further light on the incident as he reports Tw/n te VIoudai,wn pollw/n evj th.n ~Rw,mhn sunelqo,ntwn kai. sucnou.j tw/n evpicwri,wn evj ta. sfe,tera e;qn meqista,ntwn( tou.j plei,onaj evxh,lasen (“As many Jews came to Rome in great numbers and were c onverting many of the natives to their ways, he banished most of them”).158 Apparently the Jews had become successful enough at proselytizing that Judaism was making inroads into Roman soci ety, and this aroused the emperor’s suspicion. Proselytizing could itself be view ed as an activity that proclaim ed the Jewish rejection of the Roman gods and the Roman way of life.159 Tacitus complained of converts to Judaism: Nam pessimus quisque spretis religioni bus patriis tributa et stipes illuc congerebant, unde auctae Iudaeorum res (“For whoever are the worst people, havi ng scorned their ancetral religions, kept giving tribute payments and offerings, from which the wealth of the Jews increased”).160 The combination of success at proselytizing plus the sens e that Jews were part of a suspicious eastern influx into Rome made them ripe targets for im perial expulsion. As the Romans told this story, then, the emperor’s actions were about maintaini ng Roman purity. It had certain ethnic overtones and depicted the Jews as foreign and unwelcome. The way in which Josephus chose to relate this story, however, provided the scenario of unfairness and innocence he was trying to communi cate to his Hellenistic audience. Gone from 158 D.C. 57.18.6a. 159 Daniel, ‘Anti-Semitism in the Hellenistic-Roman Period’, 62-4. 160 Hist 5.5.

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236 his account are any suggestions th at the Jews were introducing nonRoman things into Rome or pushing a foreign religion. That would have only reinforced the popul ar view of Jewish otherness. The lack of this information in Jose phusÂ’ version instead made the Jews appear just like any other inhabitants of Rome. On the literary level, Josephus presented the Jews as insiders who, for reasons that were completely unfair, were treated like outsiders. Th e harsh nature of the punishment, as it is portrayed, also bespeaks th e attitude Josephus wa s addressing, that of popular prejudice against Jews. The banishment of all Jews over this incident makes sense only if there is already a strong susp icion against all Jews within the social and cultural context. How many scams were foisted in the name of religio us contributions to Je rusalem we cannot know. Surely there were others, and even if they we re not common, the emperorÂ’s harsh reaction seems to suggest that the action of th ese Jews only served to confirm what was already the prevailing public impression of Jews among the inhabitants of Rome, viz that Jews were maliciously deceptive, that they were a threat to the well-being of Romans ev erywhere, and that they were up to no good. Even when it was risky, Josephus presented thos e stories in the relation between Jews and Rome wherein true Jewish reli gious devotion could be seen. In fact, it was quite bold on JosephusÂ’ part to address his apol ogetic agenda in this fashion. Rather than downplay or ignore episodes that tended to demonstrate characterist ics of Jews that were deemed foreign and unRoman, Josephus told those stories but advised his readers, through his narrative presentation, that it would be a mistake to see in them s upposed elements of alienation. Instead, he argued, they demonstrate the best qualities of these peop le. This double public persona of being pious yet at the same time being accused of a ll kinds of evil, is reflected in Satire 14 of Juvenal (who was JosephusÂ’ contemporary) which says Romanas autem soliti contemne re leges Iudaicum ediscunt

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237 et seruant ac metuunt ius, tradi dit arcano quodcumque volumine Moyses (“they are in the habit of disregarding Roman laws, yet they memorize a nd guard and fear Jewish duty, all that Moses handed down in his secret book”).161 Conclusion Josephus intended his Greek read ers to see leading Jewish hist orical figures as equal to great figures in Greek history. To a Hellenistic reader unfamili ar with the LXX accounts, and who read only Josephus’ versions of the stories, the impression would have been basically straightforward. From the title of the work, to its concerns for or der, to connections with wellknown Greek figures, to its use of exempla such a reader would have fe lt basically at home with much in the Antiquitates Judaicae Some particularly Jewish elements in the stories were preserved because, in Josephus’ judgment, they high lighted virtues that we re unique to the Jews in the ancient world, even when those stories ra n the risk of touching on negative stereotypes of Jews. Other elements of the stories were either ignored (like the Jewish practice of circumcision), downplayed (like the Jewish claim to the land of Palestine), or transformed by casting them in Greek forms (as seen in his use of particular Gr eek terms to describe facets of Jewish culture). He was able to adapt his stories in this way pa rtly because the traditions he knew, and the milieu in which he wrote, allowed him some flexibility. His rewriting of those st ories was in step with the historiographical conventions of his day, and the fluid natu re of foundational myths gave Josephus room to emphasize, or create, dimensions of his traditional materials to suit his aim of aligning Greek and Jewish ethniciti es, or to omit elements of the tradition that did not serve his purpose. Confirmation that it was his specific intention to create this alignment of Jewish and Greek characteristics comes in a statemen t Josephus himself made about the Antiquitates Judaicae later 161 Lines 100-02.

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238 in the Contra Apionem Apion had charged that the Jews had no great intellectuals in their history. VAlla. qaumastou.j a;ndraj ouv paresch,kamen oi-on tecnw/n tinwn eu`reta.j h' sofi,a| diafe,rontaj kai. katariqmei/ Swkra,thn kai. Zh,nwna kai. Klea,nqhn kai. toiou,touj tina,j ))) peri. de. tw/n parV h`mi/n avndrw/n gegono,twn ouvdeno.j htton evpai,nou tugca,nein avxi,wn i;sasin oi` tai/j h`mete,raij avrcaiologi,aij evntugca,nontej (“But [he says that] we have not provided illustrious men such as inventors of any arts or men disti nguished in wisdom, and he enumerates Socrates and Zeno and Cleanthes and some other su ch ones. … Those who have read my Archaeologies know, concerning the men we have produced, that there has been no one found less worthy of praise”).162 The Jews deserved the same praise as Greeks because they were, in Josephus’ hands, basically the same people culturally. The Antiquitates Judaicae was more than Jewish histor y for Greek readers. That was already available to the Helleni stic world in the LXX. Josephus went well beyond simply telling the stories. He re-made the history and, in the pr ocess, re-made the people who were its subject. Through the vehicle of historiography Josephus was re-inventing Jewish identity, he was redrawing the ethnic lines that se parated Jews from others, he was creating a Jewish ethnicity which (he hoped) would allow Jews a regular place in Hellenistic society. 162 Ap 2.135f.

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239 CHAPTER 7 JEWISH ETHNICITY IN JOSEPHUS’ VITA AND CONTRA APIONEM Josephus’ Vita and his Contra Apionem were both written to answer criticisms. In the former, he reacted mostly to criticisms about hi s own conduct during the war. In the latter, he answered derogatory statements about the Jews made by intellectuals of his day. The nature of these works meant that there was more apologetic and polemic in them than would appear in an historical account, and subseque ntly there is less of the progr am of ethnicity -building than appears in the Bellum Judaicum or the Antiquitates Judaicae The fact that these two later works had to be written at all was something of an admission on Josephus’ part that his major works had failed to persuade his readers concer ning Josephus’ role in the war (for the Bellum Judaicum ) and his portrait of Je wish culture (for the Antiquitates Judaicae ). “Josephus believes that it is his ‘duty’ ( dei/n ) to defend his people, but his pers istence is nothin g other than a confession that he has failed in his attempt, and it confirms the vigor of the anti-Semitism existing in Rome.”1 Both of these lesser works still, th erefore, had non-Jewish readers in mind, and in both works he continued to depict himself and the Jews in ways that were essentially Greek. The Vita Josephus’ Vita written after both the Bellum Judaicum and the Antiquitates Judaicae was not a full-scale autobiography, but was a response to an assau lt on his character brought by a rival, Justus of Tiberias, who had written an account of the war that slandered Josephus. The Vita begins with Josephus’ genealogy, a claim that he was something of a chil d prodigy, his religious 1 G. Hata, ‘The Story of Moses’, 195. cf. also Spilsbury, ‘ Contra Apionem and Antiquitates Judaicae : Points of Contact’, in L. Feldman and J. Levison (eds.), Josephus’ Contra Apionem: Studies in Its Charac ter and Context with a Latin C oncordance to the Portion Missing in Greek (Arbeiten zur Geschichte des Antiken Ju dentums und des Urchristentums 34, Leiden 1996) 367.

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240 experimentations, and a story of his participation in a delegation to Rome when he was 26 years old. The purpose of this prefatory material was to argue that Josephus had been an upright, respectable person all his life. After that the account is absorb ed with his personal conduct during the First Jewish War. Because the Vita centers around Josephus pe rsonally, there are fewer indications of his view of th e ethnicity of Jewish people as a group. However, Hellenistic standards served as part of the conceptual foundation for the wo rk as well as provided models for specific responses. The fact that Josephus wrote an apologetic autobiography itself refl ects a point I have already noted, that the credibility of an ancient Greek historianÂ’s work was measured in part by the character and conduct of the historian himsel f. In Jewish culture a nd literature, however, credibility was usually establis hed on other grounds. Jewish aut hors writing in a Jewish vein often emphasized some notion of divine author ity, themselves fading into the background as divine instruction took over, or they established cred ibility by assuming a pseudonym (especially of a Biblical character) or by advertising their reputation as defenders of their ancestral faith (either through apology, polemic, or expertise in the Torah). The fact that Josephus defended himself even though he claimed to be a prophet and an expert in th e Torah, suggests that he was writing with Greek standards of credibility in mi nd, not Jewish ones. In other words, the mode by which Josephus here establishes his credibility is Greek, not Jewi sh. In this way he continued to portray himself like a Greek historian, suggesting to his reader that the history he produced is to be read according to that form. This appeal to an historianÂ’s pe rsonal life as the basis for the credibility of his work is also reflected in JosephusÂ’ criticisms of Justus of Tiberias. Justus Â’ account has not survived, but Rajak has reasoned that it must have portrayed Josephus as two-faced, a man playing to Roman

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241 interests yet all the while an insurrectionist at heart, and that Josephus’ piety may have been questioned as well.2 In Vita 338-67 Josephus launched his specific rebuttals of Justus. He got to the heart of the matter when he said (a s if Justus were present before him) kai. ai` meta. tau/ta de. politei/ai, sou safw/j evmfani,zousin to,n te bi,o n to.n a;llon kai. o[ti s u. th.n patri,da ~Rwmai,wn avpe,sthsaj (“and your political dealings after these thi ngs clearly show your life differently, and that it was you who led the revolt against the Romans”).3 This statement summarizes several specific criticisms raised in the following sections of the Vita In the end, Josephus claimed that Justus’ personal behavior discredited him. The th ing to note is that Josephus was holding Justus to a Greek standard of credibility. Justus’ lost account no doubt largely focused on the revolt in Galilee and also contained a description of the siege of Jerusa lem. In chapter five I noted th at one of the criteria of a good Greek historian by the first century CE was that he was an eyewitness of the things he reported. In Vita 358 Josephus charged that Justus ’ account of the revolt in Ga lilee surely must be suspect, because it failed to meet this criterion. Justus wa s not present in the places where key parts of the history unfolded. According to Jo sephus, Justus was in Berytus4 at the time and thus was in no position to say what happened in Galilee, at Jo tapata (the city Josephus defended against the Romans), or in Jerusalem. Justin’s account was therefore to be rejected by the general reading public because Justus failed to meet the Greek standard of a good historian. In the account of his religious experimentati ons, Josephus relates that he finally settled upon the sect of the Pharisees, which, he says paraplh,sio,j evsti th/| parV {Ellhsin Stwi?kh/| 2 Rajak, ‘Justus of Tiberias’, 357. 3 Vit. 344. 4 Vit 357. Berytus is modern-day Beirut, Le banon. In Josephus’ day it was in the Phoenician region of Syria. It is approximately 60 linear miles from the Sea of Galilee.

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242 legome,nh| (“which is nearly the same as that wh ich is called the St oics by the Greeks”).5 We see here the same kind of approach that ch aracterized certain depictions in the Antiquitates Judaicae : describing Jewish institutions with familiar Greek terms, yet stopping short of equating the two. In this way what was uniquely Jewish was not lost, but was accommodated to Hellenistic standards. A fuller explanation of the beliefs of Pharisees, as Josephus understood them (or at least as he wanted them to be understood) appeared in Bellum Judaicum 2.162-3, 166 and Antiquitates Judaicae 18:12-15.6 Here in the Vita he could have easily ei ther rehearsed them or he could have simply referred his reader to the pertinent section of his previous works (as he does in Antiquitates Judaicae 13.173 and 18.11). Instead he chose now to go further and compare them closely to a philos ophical sect within Hellenistic culture. The comparison counted on the assumption that the reader did not know much about the Pharisees in the first place, because a closer examination would have reve aled several significant differences between Pharisees and Stoics. Josephus’ description basica lly erased the line between Jewish culture and Hellenistic culture, and a non-Jewi sh reader who was unfamiliar with Jewish sectarianism would have been under the impression that Pharisees and Stoics held to the same basic beliefs. Jewish institutions were again br ought into Roman culture th rough the door of Hellenism. As noted before, at age 26 Josephus participat ed in a delegation to Rome to secure the release of some Jewish priests who had been sent there on charges by the pr ocurator of Judea, M. Antonius Felix. The account appears in Vita 1.13ff. A noteworthy feature of this story is that Josephus was careful to trace the network of social and political connections that got him to Poppea and that enabled him to secure the release of the priests. He made a special point that 5 Vit. 12. The precise nuance of paraplh,sioj is hard to determine from this context. The word can mean “nearly resembling,” “about th e same,” “similar,” or “about equal to.” LSJ 1321. 6 See also AJ 13.172.

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243 there was a Jew, Aliturus (an ac tor), who was well-liked by Nero, and through this fellow-Jew he was able to approach Poppea. The fact that there was a highly respected Jew among Nero’s friends was important for Josephus. Aliturus was a good example of a Jew who had successfully made the transition from outsider to insider. He acts within the story as any other insider would, able to use his influence for his friends. His a ppearance in the narrative is itself an apologetic for Jewish mobility within Roman society. Then Josephus himself took on the role of the insider. He formed connections with important people, and th rough them he was able to secure favors for others. His language does not necessarily indicate that he got a personal audience with Poppea, and Josephus probably would have made a bigger point of this had it actually happened. Nevertheless, Josephus (at least on a literary leve l) had made the transition from outsider to insider, a role in which he portrayed himself c onsistently as the account goes on. That the story concerned Romans in the highest levels of civi c life was not insignificant, for it bolstered the image of friendly relations between Romans and Jews. We would like to know about some of the period s in Josephus’ adult life which he does not cover in the Vita especially the two-year period between his return to Palestine after participating in the delegation to Nero and the time he was appointed commander of Jewish forces in Jotapata.7 For example, how is it that the rulers in Jerusalem, who were priests and Sadducees, asked Josephus, a priest who had rejected the sect of the Sadducees and chose to live according to the sect of the Pharisees, to repr esent their concerns in Galilee, a place that foreseeably was going to be absolutely crucial in the war? Some things about the picture do not add up, and given what we know about the wa y in which Josephus suppressed unflattering information in the Antiquitates Judaicae we are suspicious about what Josephus has not told us 7 Cf. G. Hata, ‘Imagining Some Dark Periods in Josephus’ Life’, 309.

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244 in the Vita What we do have, however, is a picture of Josephus meeting the requirements of a Greek historian and an Hellenistic “insid er,”and that was what counted for him. The Contra Apionem The Contra Apionem was ostensibly written in response to criticisms leveled against the Jews by well-known Greeks. While the Alexandrian grammarian Apion received much of the attention, the introduction makes it clear that the real targ et audience of the Contra Apionem was a nebulous “them” who had read, and rejected, Jo sephus’ explanation of Jewish culture in his Antiquitates Judaicae : ~Ikanw/j me.n u`polamba,nw kai. dia. th/j peri. th.n avrcaiologi,an suggrafh/j kra,tiste avndrw/n VEpafro,dite to i/j evnteuxome,noij auvth/| pepoihke,nai fanero.n peri. tou/ ge,nouj h`mw/n tw/n VIoudai,wn o[ti kai. palaio,tato,n evsti (“I take it that it has been made sufficiently clear, through the narrative of the Archaeology most excellent Epaphroditus, to those who have read it, concerning our Jewish race, that it is also most ancient”).8 In the next section he mentions an anonymous sucnoi, (“large number of people”) who had rejected what they read in the Antiquitates Judaicae and then in 1.3 he said it was his aim tw/n me.n loidorou,ntwn th.n dusme,neian kai. th.n e`kou,sion evle,gxai yeudologi,an tw/n de. th.n a;gnoian evpanorqw,sasqai (“to disprove those who accuse us of ill will and volun tary lies, and to correct the ignorance of others”). Furthermore, it is clear that this sucnoi, are Greeks, for Josephus says his aim was to answer them by producing literary witne sses who were esteemed by the Greeks: crh,somai de. tw/n me.n u`pV evmou/ legome,nwn ma,rtusi toi/j avxiopis tota,toij ei=nai peri. pa,shj avrcaiologi,aj u`po. tw/n ~Ellh,nwn kekrime,noij (“I will use for the things I have said the witnesses who are judged by the Greeks to be most trustw orthy concerning all antiquity)9 on the assumption that Greek critics would be silenced by Greek evidence. If we are correct in our thesis that one of the 8 Ap 1.1. 9 Ap 1.4.

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245 burdens of the Antiquitates Judaicae was to show the essentiall y Greek character of Jewish ethnicity, then the rejection of the Antiquitates Judaicae must mean that Greeks readers, for whom it was intended, had rejected that characterization of Jewish ethnicity. The significance of this observa tion is that, as I have suggest ed, the Greeks were the very group to which Josephus wished to join the Jews culturally. Their rejection of Josephus’ program needed serious attention. It would have been one thing to convince Romans that Jews were just like Greeks culturally, but what if the Greeks were not buying it? What if Greek literati rejected the comparison between Jews and Greeks? The Gr eeks knew what was Greek, and if they did not see Jews as possessing Greek quali ties, Josephus’ enterprise was doomed to fail. Perhaps this accounts for why the Contra Apionem had to be written, from Josephus’ perspective. Although Josephus called the Contra Apionem an avpologi,a ,10 a notable difference between this work and his other literary pr oductions is that whereas there is a definite apologetic thread running throughout all of them, the Contra Apionem added polemics to apologetics. This gave the work an added sense of urgency, ev en beyond that which was seen in the Antiquitates Judaicae If the Antiquitates Judaicae was eager to show the Greek qualities of Jewish culture (to the point of ma king strained comparisons), then the Contra Apionem was almost desperate to do so. “What was set out obliquely in the national hi story of the Jews is set out more directly in the CA .”11 The difference between apologetics and pol emics may be a fine line, but the terms may be understood as suggesting that polemics is a more rhetorically-heightened form of apologetic response. One of the purposes of polemic s is “to change the opinions of the distant 10 Ap 2.147. ouv ga.r evgkw,mion h`mw/n auvtw/n pr oeilo,mhn suggra,fein avlla. polla. kai. yeudh/ kathgoroume,noij h`mi/n tau,thn avpologi,an dikaiota,thn ei=nai nomi,zw (“I do not propose to write an encomium about ourselves but I consider this to be a most reasonable apology against the many and false things that have been charged to us”). 11 Spilsbury 367.

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246 and the opposed (at least to ca st doubt in their minds), a nd to arouse interest among the indifferent and the uninvolved, with a view to eventually convincing them as well.”12 Polemics was the tool Josephus needed to forge a new Jewi sh ethnicity for Greeks (and their sympathetic audience) who had rejected Josephus’ proposal about the fundamentally Greek character of Jewish identity. The apologetic nature of his major works expressed a psychological need to conciliate Jews to the Hellenistic world, but polem ics were needed to persuade those readers in whom Josephus perceived a hostile rejection of hi s claims for Jewish ethnicity. I have noted in chapter two that a psychological need for be longing, and posturing oneself for acceptance, are hallmarks of an ethnical strategy. In the Contra Apionem we have it taken to the next level, through polemics, because of the nature of the situation, viz. outspoken rejection of Jewish claims to fit into Greek culture. At the beginning of the Contra Apionem Josephus rehearsed the kinds of accusations that prompted his response. They were 1) the charge that the history of the Jews did not go into ancient times, as evidenced by the fact that the Jews were basically ignored by the Greek historians who covered those times (the assumpti on being that if the Gr eek historians did not mention it, it was not to be taken as fact13), 2) the charge that the Jews were not a pure race of people, and 3) that they came to inhabit Pale stine in an underhanded way. The first of these charges received most of Josephus’ attention, wh ich indicates that something important was at stake in it. “For Josephus the alle gation of “lateness” wa s equivalent to the assertion of cultural dependence and historical insignificance. … Simply put, nothing could be both new and true.”14 12 Kasher, ‘Polemic and Apologetic Methods’, 144. 13 See Ap. 1.161. 14 Droge 125.

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247 The Romans generally respected what was ancient.15 To say that Jewish culture was not ancient was therefore to say that it deserv ed no respect. What is interes ting here, as Gruen has noted, is that this was not a typical Greek complaint concerning other peoples.16 This suggests that Josephus may have been dealing more with a perceived sentiment than an actual one, and that the real issue that concerned him wa s not the antiquity of the Jews but the Greek assessment of Jews In responding to the charge of lateness, Josephus echoed and amplified the criticism he offered in Bellum Judaicum 1.13-16, that Greek historiography wa s overrated as far as coverage of the remote past was concerne d. He established this in the Contra Apionem by applying the standards of Greek historiogra phy to the Greek historians them selves. In particular, Josephus pointed out that the oldest Greek historians a nd philosophers did not belo ng to the remote past themselves and were indebted to other sources for their information.17 They were not contemporaries of the events they reported, and since the Greeks themselves did not keep historical records very well, th e historians had no re liable Greek eyewitness testimony to which they could appeal.18 In short, they did not meet their own standards for good historiography. The result was that Greek historical knowledge of the distant past (specificall y, prior to the Persian invasions) was a mess, and there was little agreem ent among the Greek hist orians concerning it. In raising this defense, Jose phus was actually echoing Plato’s Laws where Clinias admitted that Greek civilization was, in Plato’s day, relatively recent.19 Clinias there, speaking of the events of ancient times, says w`j e;poj eivpei/n cqe.j kai. prw,hn gegono,ta (“they happened, so to 15 Cf. the statement made by Tacitus about Jewi sh Sabbath observance, noted earlier: Hi ritus quoquo modo inducti an tiquitate defenduntur (“This worshi p, however it was introduced, is defended by its antiquity”) ( Hist 5.5). 16 E. Gruen, ‘Greeks and Jews: Mutual Misper ceptions in Josephus’ Contra Apionem’, in C. Bakhos (ed.), Ancient Judaism in its Hellenistic Context (SupJSJ 95, Leiden 2005) 40. 17 Ap 1.7-14, 44-6. 18 Ap 15-22. 19 3.677d; cf. Timaeus 22ac.

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248 speak, only yesterday and the day before”). Josephus said evcqe.j dh. kai. prw,|hn ))) fai,nontai gegono,tej (“they appear to have happened yesterday or the day before”).20 Herodotus likewise made it clear that Egyptian history went much further back than Greek history21 and explicitly admitted that the Greeks did not learn of the orig in of their gods “until yesterday or the day before, as they say” ( ouvk hvpiste,ato me,cri ouprw,hn te kai. cqe,j w`j eivpei/n lo,gw| ).22 “In the Hellenistic period the same poi nt would be made again and again by native writers who had learned to compose history in Greek fashion.”23 Pointing out the lack of Greek knowledge of ancient times was thus a Greek thing to do, a nd Josephus appeared quite Greek in doing it. There were other reasons the Jews did not a ppear in the Greek historians. Josephus argued that the Jews had no significant contact with the Greeks because they were not a seafaring people, and thus the Greek historians naturally knew little about them, just as they also knew little about other great nations such as the Iberians or the Romans.24 He added that the lack of historical accuracy among the Greeks was due to the fact that the Greek historians were too preoccupied with literary style and not enough with veracity, that the former interfered with the latter because inventiveness was valued over truthfulness,25 and that general malice toward the Jews also explained why no Greek writer mentioned them.26 With these replies, Josephus excused the Jews from attaining a prominent place in the works of Greek historians. The standards that made Greek historiogra phy look bad when it came to the distant past made Jewish history look good. Josephus claime d that the Jews had always treated the 20 Ap 2.154. 21 2.143. 22 2.53. 23 Drodge 120. 24 Ap 1.60-8. 25 Ap 1.24-7. 26 Ap 1.213-4.

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249 documents of the Biblical canon with the greatest respect (in contrast to the nearly indifferent attitude of Greeks toward their hi storical records), and that it cont ained “the record of all time” ( tou/ panto.j e;conta cro,nou th.n avnagrafh,n ),27 spanning about 5000 years.28 That is, if one used conventional Greek standards of historical trustworthiness, the Jews outdid the Greeks themselves. The same kind of favorable comp arison appears later in 2.171f, where Josephus claimed that the Jewish legal approach combined the best qualities of both Athenian and Spartan laws: the Athenian system emphasized legal pr escription, and the Spartan system emphasized practical training, but the Jewish system had both. In both cases the point was that the Jews had achieved the ideal the Greeks had propos ed but themselves failed to reach. For reliable information on the remote past, Jo sephus argued that one would have to read the ancient records of the civi lizations of the Egyptians (via Manetho), the Babylonians (via Berosus), and the Phoenicians (v ia an otherwise unknown author named Dius), all of which he quoted at length.29 Unlike the Greek records, these acc ounts went far into the past, and they clearly established the antiquity of the Jews. Even while he wa s busy defending this particular point, however, the business of connecting the Jews with the Greeks was ne ver far behind. If the authorities he had already cite d were not enough to satisfy a Gr eek reader, Josephus then cited two lists of Greek names to show that the Gr eeks had known about the Jews for a long time. The first list names Pythagoras, Theophrastus, He rodotus, Choerilus, Aristotle, Hecataeus, and Agatharchides, and the second list names Th eophilus, Theodotus, Mnaseas, Aristophanes, Hermogenes, Euhemerus, Conon, Zopyrion, Demetriu s Phalarus, Philo the elder, and Eupolemus 27 Ap 1.38. 28 Ap 1.1; cf. AJ 1.13. 29 Ap. 1.69-160.

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250 the last three of which are especially commended.30 These lists of Greek names were surely intended to be impressive. The sense is that th ere was a kind of familiarity between the ancient Greeks and Jews. Josephus wanted to have the best of both worlds and this created a problem that appears in two ways. First, he provided perfectly good expl anations for why the Jews did not appear in Greek history, but then he adduced these two lists of references to Jews in the works of Greek historians. Apparently it did not occur to Josephu s that these two approaches might be mutually exclusive. This same technique appeared in Josephus’ major works, where he juxtaposed a Jewish theology of retribu tion with a Greek view of tu,ch to explain historic al events. Here as well as there, two different lines of reasoning created an unresolved te nsion in the argument. Second, Josephus criticized Greek historical knowl edge for its inability to go into the distant past, but then he cited two lists of Greek authors as evidence in his argument for the antiquity of the Jewish people. If the antiquity of the Jews was the main concern, the argument is selfcontradictory. If, however, the main concern was to create the impression of a close agreement between Jews and Greeks culturally, then the ev idence has a different function, namely to reaffirm the close cultural connect ions between Greeks and Jews. This inconsistency in Josephus’ method serves to confirm our suspicion, noted a bove, that the real issue for Josephus in the Contra Apionem was not the antiquity of the Jews, but the Greek rejection of Jewish claims to be the cultural equals of Greeks. The actual evidence that comes from these lists is mostly speculative over-reaching if not incorrect. As factual arguments they leave much to be desired. On the first list, for the authors he explicitly quotes, his “evidence” is less than sure. For example, his so-called evidence of 30 Ap 1.161-218.

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251 Herodotus’ knowledge of the Jews is the historia n’s notice of the “Syria ns of Palestine who practice circumcision” (2.104.3).31 However, this is a referenc e to Philistines, not Jews.32 Similarly, Josephus cites the poet Choerilus as a w itness, but the evidence consists of the poet’s mention of ge,noj qaumasto.n ivde,sqai glw/ssan me.n Fo i,nissan avpo. stoma,twn avfie,ntej w;|keon dV evn Solu,moij o;resi plate,h| para. li,mnh| auvcmale,o i korufa.j trocokoura,dej auvta.r u[perqen i[ppwn darta. pro,swpV evfo,roun evsklhko,ta kapnw/| (“a race wonderful to see, uttering the Phoenician language from their mouths. They were living in the Solymian mountains, by a broad lake, having dark heads shaved around, and above them they wore smoke-dried skins stripped from horses’ heads”),33 concerning which Josephus says dh/lon ou=n evstin w`j oi=mai pa/sin h`mw/n auvto.n memnh/sqai (“I think it is clear to al l that he had us in mind”).34 However, Choerlius used Herodotus (7.70) as his source for these people, and Herodotus was desc ribing Ethiopians, not Jews. The Solymian mountains are similarly menti oned in connection with the Ethiopians in the Odyssey 5.282f.35 Josephus misunderstood the reference, blinded by his zeal to make connections between Jews and Greeks. To those who knew the works of Herodotus or Choerlius better, this blunder would surely ha ve cast doubt on Josephus’ scholarship. The second list of authors is even more problematic. The way Josephus summarily cites them by name only, but with no quotations to pr ove his point, is suspic ious. “…none of these writers can be identified with absolute certainty. … Josephus is able to give an illusory impression of scholarship, but it remains doubtful whether he knew any of these historians at 31 Quoted in Ap 1.169. 32 Gruen, ‘Greeks and Jews: Mutual Misperceptions’, 42. 33 Ap 1.173. 34 Ap 1.174. 35 Gabba 655-6.

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252 first hand.”36 Gruen is even more skeptical. Concerni ng the last three names on the list, whom Josephus especially commends, he says: We may be confident that each of these writ ers was, in fact, a Jew, writing under a Greek pseudonym. That is surely true of Hecataeus and almost as surely of Philo, Demetrius, and Eupolemus. Josephus ought to have known this and probably did. … he was perfectly happy, even proud, to parade Greek authors, or what he took to be Greek authors, as confirming the favorable impressions and the prestige that Jews enjoyed among the intelligensia of the Mediterranean world.37 In spite of the fact that Jose phus was probably speaking past the facts, he was doing what Jewish apologists normally did, looking for any possi ble allusion to Jews in Greek authors.38 It is in this attempt to connect the Jews w ith the Greeks as closely as possible that we encounter one of the most fabulous stories in Josephus’ works. In Contra Apionem 1.176-182, Josephus tells a story, gleaned from the writings of Clearchus of Soli, of how Aristotle once met with a Jew, presumably at Assos,39 and was favorably impressed w ith him. Quite significant for Josephus’ purposes were the words Clearchus put in Aristotle’s mouth about the Jewish fellow: ou-toj ou=n o` a;nqrwpoj evpixenou,meno,j te polloi/ j kavk tw/n a;nw to,pwn eivj tou.j evpiqalatti,ouj u`pokatabai,nwn ~Ellhniko.j h= n ouv th/| diale,ktw| mo,non avlla. kai. th/| yuch/| (“This man, being shown hospitality by many, and having come down from the upper regions to those which are by the sea, was Greek not only in language but also in spirit”).40 According to Clearchus, Aristotle even admitted to his followers that the Jew taught him more than he was able to teach the Jew.41 36 Droge 124-5. 37 Gruen, ‘Greeks and Jews: Mutual Misperceptions’, 42-3. 38 Here he was following in the steps of Demetrius, Pseudo-Eupolemus, and Artapanus. Gabba, ‘The Growth of Anti-Judaism’, 618, 638-41. 39 H. Lewy, ‘Aristotle and the Jewish Sa ge According to Clearchus of Soli’, HTR 31 (1938) 207; also B. Bar-Kochva, ‘The Wisdom of the Jew and the Wisdom of Aristotle’, in J. Kalms and F. Siegert (eds.), Internationales Josephus-Kolloquium Brssel 1998 (Mnster 1998) 241. 40 Ap 1.181. 41 Greek paredi,dou ti ma/llon w-n ei=cen Bar-Kochva (‘The Wisdom of the Jew’, 245-47) has argued that the passage cannot mean this, howe ver. Instead, he argues, the passage should be

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253 The Jew was received warmly among the Ionian Greeks and had no less a figure than Aristotle himself to testify to the excellence of Jewish philosophy and moral virtue. It stretches credibility to think that the story is true as it stands. For one thing, it contains a factual error. In the story Clearchus described th e Jews as descendants of the Indian Kalanoi, but there was no such caste.42 Furthermore, the form of the quotation prefaced and ended with a warning that material will be omitted, and picking up in the middle of the story suggests that Josephus has been highly selective from his source and has omitted details that would have made the Jewish character seem more foreign.43 As I have shown, this was standard practice for Josephus as he carefully managed negative impre ssions. The story probably tells us more about Clearchus’ musings about Jews than anything else, for it reflects a common ancient Greek belief that easterners had a strange and wonderful kind of wisdom and philosophy, but it also served to demonstrate Josephus’ contention that the Jews were not a recentlyderived race of people ( contra Apion). Most of all, it has a well-respec ted Greek referring to a Jew as one who was Greek in his language and in his spirit. A better endorsement of Jewish intellectual culture would have been hard to imagine, yet Josephus was ca reful not to over-play the story. As it stands the story hints that some of Aristotl e’s brilliance was due to his enc ounter with this Jew, and hence with Jewish intellectualism, but it does not belabor the notion. Further alignment of Jews with Greeks was achieved when Josephus compared the two on the matter of national slanders: Qeo,pompoj me.n th.n VAqhnai,wn th.n de. Lakedaimoni,wn read as “he rather conveyed someth ing of the things he had,” taking ma/llon in an absolute sense instead of as a comparative. Reading the words this way results in the passage asserting that this Jewish fellow had integrated himself enough into Greek culture sufficiently to engage Aristotle in conversation on substantial phi losophical topics. This is ho w Clement understood the passage, Strom 1.15. 42 Bar-Kochva, ‘The Wisdom of the Jew’, 247. 43 Lewy 223-6; Gabba, ‘The Growth of Anti-Judaism’, 621.

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254 Polukra,thj o` de. to.n Tripolitiko.n gra,yaj ouv g a.r dh. Qeo,pompo,j evstin w`j oi;ontai, tinej kai. th.n Qhbai,wn po,lin prose,laben polla. de. kai Ti,maioj evn tai/j i`stori,aij peri. tw/n proeirhme,nwn kai. peri. a;llwn beblasfh,mhken (“Theopompus slandered Athens, Polycrates slandered Sparta, and the one who wrote the Tripoliticus (for he certainly was not Theopompus as some think) fastened upon Thebes, and Timaeus in his histories slandered many of those just mentioned and others also”).44 The Jews were in good Greek company here, even if what they had in common was that they both had been the vi ctims of malicious literary defamation. This is reminiscent of the implicit comparison noted in the Bellum Judaicum where the impression was created that the Jewish experience in the First Jewish War was much like the experience of the Greeks at the hands of their enemie s. Another function of the story was that it put the Jews sideby-side with the Greeks in popular sentiment. I not ed in chapter three th at Roman admiration of the Greeks was also tempered with contempt, so even in their experience of contempt, the Jews had something in common with the Greeks. In Contra Apionem 2.130 he again compared the Jews’ national misfortunes with those of the Greeks as he refuted the slander that Jewish history was full of defeats. So was the history of othe rs, Josephus replied, includ ing the Greeks. Defeat, says Josephus, does not mean the victims were in ferior people. ouvdei.j w vnei,disen tau/ta toi/j paqou/sin (“No one reproached t hose who suffered these things”).45 In the same passage he latently compared the destruction of the Jerusa lem temple to the destruction of the famous shrines in Athens, Ephesus, and Delphi. Again, th e Jews were in very good Greek company here. I have noted that Josephus, in his major wo rks, used Greek terms to describe various aspects of Jewish culture even when those terms did not precisely fit (terms such as filosofi,a ). In the Contra Apionem however, Josephus went even farthe r and actually invented a new word: 44 Ap. 1.221. 45 Ap. 2.131.

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255 qeokrati,a It appears in his explanatio n of the Mosaic legal code: o` dV h`me,teroj nomoqe,thj eivj me.n tou,twn ouvdotiou/n avpei/den w` j dV a;n tij ei;poi biasa,menoj to.n lo,gon qeokrati,an avpe,deixe to. poli,teuma qew/| th.n avrch. n kai. to. kra,toj avnaqei,j (“But our legislator en visioned none of these [other kinds of governments], but he created the government whic h one might call by a strained expression a Theocracy, attributi ng authority and power to God”).46 The fact that he used the word prefaced by a kind of apology (it is “a strain ed expression”) surely indicates that Josephus coined this word.47 There was no term in either Hebrew or Aramaic that was equivalent to it. The Jewish poli,tuema is a qeokrati,a Josephus says. As ingenious as this was, again the term does not exactly seem to fit. There are at least two problems here. First, the picture fr om the canonical Biblical texts is that God delivered the law to Moses, who then taught it to the people. A la w of divine origin was a common-enough idea in the Ancient Near East,48 but not necessarily in Hellenic culture. The Greek concept of a poli,teuma involved a different idea, th at of a legislator (a nomoqe,thj ) who assigned specific roles to various parts of the state.49 Josephus changed the Biblical pict ure to fit a Hellenistic mold. The problem is that, technically, Josephu s has Moses as the author of the poli,teuma who then assigns God the role of chief legal authority.50 In attempting to describe the Jewish “constitution” as a poli,teuma of the great lawgiver Moses, he therefor e actually had God in a subordinate role, 46 Ap. 2.165. 47 Amir, ‘Josephus on the Mosaic “Constitution”’, 20. 48 For example, the famous stele that records the Code of Hammurabi depicts, at the top, the king in the presence of the god Shamash, recei ving symbols of authority (a rod and a ring). The implication is that the laws Hammurabi publ ished had divine authority behind them, if not divine origin. Shamash was, among other things, a god of justice. 49 Some (like Plato) cl aimed divine origin for laws, but most Greeks seem to have viewed this as a ploy to get people to obey them. Cf. Str. 16.2.39: Tau/ta ga.r o[pwj pote. avlhqei,aj e;cei( para. ge toi/j avnqrw,poij evpepi,steuto kai. evneno,misto (“For these things, whatever truth they have, are believed and enacted by men”). 50 Amir, ‘Josephus on the Mosaic “Constitution”’, 22.

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256 “which seems to be the consequence of grafting a religious concept onto a secular background.”51 As I noted concerning the Antiquitates Judaicae sometimes Josephus’ zeal to relate the Jews to the Greeks re sulted in an anomaly. Second, Jo sephus explicitly distanced the Mosaic poli,teuma from three other forms of government that were well-known to his readers: monarchies, oligarchies, and republics.52 In doing so he mimicked Plato, who similarly rejected all other forms of government for a unified syst em that bore the name of the god who provided its justice.53 This conscious distancing of Jewish cultu re from Hellenistic culture, even though following a Greek model (Plato) to do it, seems u nusual for an author who otherwise strained to make Jewish institutions look as Greek as possi ble, but it is understandable when we remember that there are some things about Judaism that Josephus was not at all ready to surrender to Hellenism, and chief on that list was always Jewi sh religious practices and ethics. Josephus saw the Jewish poli,teuma as inextricably bound up with Jewish religion. To describe the government in purely secular terms would have been to give up the unique religious cont ent of it, and this he would not do. We have here, therefore, a place in which Josephus seems to have been caught between managing a Hellenistic impression for hi s readers on the one hand, and preserving his Jewish religious sensibilities on the other hand. His solution, tec hnically, failed at both. In an ironic way, however, Josephus’ inven tion of this word managed to answer another criticism that had been leveled against the Jews, namely that the Jews had nothing innovative in their history.54 Another criticism Apion leveled against the Je ws was that they sett led in a poorly-chosen place in Alexandria: w;|khsan pro.j avli,menon qa,lassan geitnia,santej tai/j tw/n kuma,twn 51 Amir, ‘Josephus on the Mosaic “Constitution”’, 22. 52 Ap. 2.164. 53 Pl., Lg. 4.713a. cf. Y. Amir, ‘Theokratia as a Co ncept of Political Philosophy’, Scripta Classica Israelica 8-9 (1989) 83-105. 54 Ap 2.135.

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257 evkbolai/j (“they settled at the harborless s ea, near the pounding of the waves”),55 and he expressed surprise that the Jews there should even be acknowledged as Alexandrians. Clearly Apion had portrayed the Jews as outsiders in an extreme way, not even worthy of association with the city in which they live d. Josephus’ rebuttal to this quic kly turned into a discussion of Jewish privileges not only in Al exandria but in other major cent ers of the Hellenistic world. The Jewish presence in that part of Alexandria wa s, according to Josephus due to the grant of Alexander himself and was further c onfirmed by the Ptolemaic monarchs,56 public monuments, and Caesar. The combination of both Greek and Roman recognition is emphatic. Public recognition of the Jews’ rightful pl ace in this leading Hellenistic city was an important matter, especially for Josephus’ program of ethnicity-building. According to him, then, the Jews rightly bore the title of “Alexandr ians” just as was the custom in other places: pa,ntej ga.r oi` eivj avpoiki,an tina. kataklhq e,ntej ka'n plei/ston avllh,lwn toi/j ge,nesi diafe,rwsin avpo. tw/n oivkistw/n th.n proshgor i,an lamba,nousin) kai. ti, dei/ peri. tw/n a;llwn le,gein auvtw/n ga.r h`mw/n oi` th.n VAn tio,ceian katoikou/ntej VAntiocei/j ovnoma,zontai th.n ga.r politei,an auvtoi/j e;dw ken o` kti,sthj Se,leukoj o`moi,wj oi` evn VEfe,sw| kai. kata. th.n a;llhn VIwni,an toi/j auvqigene,si poli,taij o` mwnumou/sin tou/to parasco,ntwn auvtoi/j tw/n diado,cwn) h` de. ~Rwmai,wn fila nqrwpi,a pa/sin ouv mikrou/ dei/ n th/j auvtw/n proshgori,aj metade,dwken ouv mo,non avndra,sin avlla. kai. mega ,loij e;qnesin o[loij :Ibhrej gou/n oi` pa,lai kai. Turrhnoi. kai. Sabi/noi ~Rwmai/oi kalou/ntai (“For all who are called to any colony, even if they are greatly separated from one another in their own race, take their appellative fr om their founders. And w hy is it necessary to speak of others? For the Jews living in Antioch are called An tiochenes, for Seleucus the founder gave them citizenship, just as the Jews living in Ephesus and the rest of Ionia share the same name with the native citizens, this granted also to them by the royal successors. And the benevolence of the Romans has extended still further, that their appellative has been bestowed not only on men but also on entir e great nations, so even those who were formerly Iberians, and Tyrians, and Sabines are called Romans”).57 55 Ap. 2.33. 56 Cf. AJ 12.8, where Josephus claimed that Ptolemy I (Soter) gave the Jews the status of ivsopolitei,a 57 Ap. 2.38-40.

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258 This was important evidence, for it showed Jews both enjoying and being viewed as regular members of major Hellenistic cities. Alexandr ia, Syrian Antioch, and Ephesus were among the largest and most important Hell enistic cities in Josephus’ day, so it was not as if the Jews’ political status was recognized only in backwate r towns. Josephus made an emphatic point that he was not merely citing a political theory ( kai. ti, dei/ peri. tw/n a;llwn le,gein ). The fact was, according to Josephus, that in the greatest cities of the Roman world the Jews had been treated exactly like any other group within Hellenistic culture. Moreover, they bore the same local names as the natives in the old Greek heartland itself, the western coast of Asia Minor, and he implies that the Jews were certainly included under the umbrella of “Roman.”58 It is the Greek recognition of Jews, however, that gets the most attention from Josephus. After the statement quoted above Josephus goes into a short histor y of benevolent treatment of the Jews by Alexander III, Ptolemy I (Soter), Ptolemy II (Philadelphus), Ptolemy III (Euergetes), and Ptolemy VI (Philometor), a history which emphasi zes the loyalty and service of the Jews to Greek rulers of Egypt. The trouble with Cleopatra found the Jews on the side of the Romans, and Josephus duly noted that this loyalty was atte sted by both Julius Caesar and Augustus. Again, both Greeks and Romans had acknowledged the Jews as a significant constituency and ally.59 At Contra Apionem 2.145 Josephus finished his refutation of the criticisms of Apion and turned to other slanders from other authors, namely Apollonius Molon and Lysimachus, whose slanders concerned Moses. While he said ouv ga.r evgkw,mion h`mw/n au vtw/n proeilo,mhn suggra,fein 58 Josephus’ statement about the Iberians is pr obably to be taken as a generalization. Not all communities in Roman Hispania enj oyed Roman citizenship. See T. Mommsen, The Provinces of the Roman Empire (Chicago 1968) 71. See also n.“a” in Thackeray’s Loeb translation, 1:308. 59 Josephus repeats this important fact in Ap. 2.72.

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259 (“I do not propose to write an encomium about ourselves”),60 he again turned to Greek models for comparison. Specifically, Josephus claimed that Moses surpassed the greatest names in Greek legal history. fhmi. toi,nun to.n h`me,teron nomoqe,thn tw/n o`poudhpotou/n mnhmoneuome,nwn nomoqetw/n proa,gein avrcaio,thti Lukou/rgoi ga.r kai So,lwnej kai. Za,leukoj o` tw/n Lokrw/n kai. pa,ntej oi` qaumazo,menoi para. toi/j {Ellhsin evcqe.j dh. kai. prw,|hn w`j pro.j evkei/non paraballo,menoi fai,nontai (“Thus I say that our lawgiver su rpasses in antiquity all the known lawgivers anywhere. For Lycurguses and Solons a nd Zaleucus of the Locrians and all those who are marveled at by the Greeks have appeared only yesterday or the day before in comparison to him”).61 Similarly, he explicitly compared Moses with Minos: toiou/toj me.n dh, tij auvto.j h`mw/n o` nomoqe,thj ouv go,hj ouvdV avpatew,n a[per loidor ou/ntej le,gousin avdi,kwj avllV oi[ouj para. toi/j {Ellhsin auvcou/sin to.n Mi ,nw gegone,nai kai. meta. t au/ta tou.j a;llouj nomoqe,taj (“such a one was indeed the kind of person our lawgiver was; not a swindler, nor a cheat, which is the very thing the revilers unjus tly say, but such a one as Minos had been among the Greeks, and the other lawgivers afterwards”),62 and went on to extol the Jewish legal charter as the best that could be imagined. What is surprising is th at Josephus’ description of the Jewish politicoreligious system in the Contra Apionem does not so much follow the contours of the description in the canonical Biblical account, but follows th e one in Hecataeus of Abdera, a Greek author.63 In 2.168 he came even closer to claiming explic itly that the Jews were the source of Greek wisdom. He says: tau/ta peri. qeou/ fronei/n oi` sofw,tatoi parV {Ellhsin o[ti me.n evdida,cqhsan evkei,nou ta.j avrca.j parasco,ntoj evw/ nu/n le,gein o[ti dV evs ti. kala. kai. pre,ponta th/| tou/ qeou/ fu,sei kai. megaleio,thti sfo,dra memarturh,kasi kai. ga.r Puqago,raj kai. VAnaxago,raj kai. Pla,twn oi[ 60 Ap 2.147. 61 Ap. 2.154. See pp.248-9 above for Josephus’ appropr iation of the phrase “yesterday or the day before” from Greek literature. 62 Ap 2.161. 63 Droge 137.

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260 te metV evkei/non avpo. th/j stoa/j filo,sofoi kai. mikrou/ dei/n a[pantej ou[twj fai,nontai peri. th/j tou/ qeou/ fu,sewj pefronhko,tej (“I now leave off from saying that the wisest of the Greeks learned these things about God because they were taught by him [Moses] w ho provided the principles, for they testify greatly that they are good and fitting to the nature and majesty of God. For Pythagoras, and Anaxagoras, and Plato, and those philosophers who came after him from the Stoa, and nearly all others, exhibited as much, ha ving thought about the nature of God”). Josephus was in a bold mood here. Josephus says he would not make the explicit claim that the Jews were in fact the source of Greek inte llectualism (although his words produce that same effect), but would allow the evidence to speak fo r itself. If the Jews had these ideas about God first, and then the Greeks had similar ones, the im plication was that the Jews were the source for the Greeks. As if he could hold it in no longer, and convinced he has made his case, he finally said in 2.281: prw/toi me.n ga.r oi` para. toi/j {Ellhsi filo sofh,santej tw/| me.n dokei/n ta. pa,tria diefu,latton evn de. toi/j pra,gmasi kai. tw /| filosofei/n evkei,nw| kathkolou,qhsan (“The earliest philosophers among the Greeks, whil e they seemingly observed their ancestral customs, in their deeds and in their philosophies they followed him [Moses]”). Josephus seems to have failed to keep his promise of avoiding encomium, yet he was sharing in a particular apologetic that Jews had been advancing for nearly 300 years. “In ad dition to Aristobulus, the Jewish historians Eupolemus and Artapanus presented Moses and th e patriarchs as cult ure-bringers to the Egyptians, Babylonians, and Phoenicians, who in turn civilized the Greeks.”64 The cue for this was actually, again, the Greek H ecataeus of Abdera, who had esta blished a paradigm of great civilizations branching off from Egypt. Droge notes: Hecataeus had produced a model and, more importantly, had established a relationship between Egyptians, Greeks, and Jews which w ould become the standard for nearly three centuries. Both Josephus’ method of cultural comparison and his representation of Judaism remain in thrall to Hecataeus’ ethnographic model. To insist, as he does at the beginning of his treatise, that the first Greek philosophers were ‘disciples’ of the Egyptians and Babylonians, was to say nothing new. … Whether as native Egyptians or as resident aliens, 64 Droge 128.

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261 the Jews had been linked to a prestigious source which conferred on them an enviable antiquity and pedigree. In this sense, then, the Jews were called upon to perpetuate their own myth in the terms in which the Greeks had invented it.65 The result was that not only were the Jews in JosephusÂ’ presentation quite Greek in their legal traditions, but the Greeks turned out to be qui te Jewish, and, more importantly, if DrogeÂ’s assessment is correct, Josephus was bringing his Greek readers back to a well-established understanding of Jewish origins that was well-ro oted in Greek thought. The malicious versions of Jewish origins circulated by anti-Judaic writ ers such as Apion were thus seen to be a perversion of a Greek story that originally complimented the Jews. JosephusÂ’ defense of Jewish law culminated with another compar ison to Athenian and Spartan traditions. As Josephus had expounded the virtues and excellencies of Jewish law for Greek readers, he was aware that he had painte d a picture that probabl y seemed too good to be true, a picture of a nation of people who had th e highest philosophical c oncept of God, who lived according to the highest moral standards, who f ound unity in all things that were good, and who had a long history of faithfulness to their origin al laws. The problem, of course, was that the more he elevated Jewish piety, the more it bega n to sound like a criticism of non-Jews, and that brought to the fore again the matter of Jewish ex clusivity. JosephusÂ’ answer was that PlatoÂ’s high ideals (which Josephus claims did not reach as high as Jewish ones) evoked the same kind of criticism. 66 That is, the Jewish religion was comparable to some of the lof tiest thoughts in the Greek philosophical tradition, including the respons e they both drew. If that were not enough, Josephus then conceded that some found the Sparta ns to be the better legal and moral example, for they long remained faithful to the laws of Lycurgus. Even here, however, the Jews prove to be the better ones, Josephus argued, because th e Spartans abandoned their legal faithfulness 65 Droge 133. 66 Ap. 2.220-35.

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262 when times got tough.67 The Jews, on the other hand, had rema ined faithful to their law when they were persecuted (or so Josephus claimed). So again, the Jews had out-Greeked the Greeks themselves. Josephus was using a rhetorical tech nique of defending an ap parent transgression as an expression of loyalty to tradition,68 something Greek readers surely would have noticed. The implicit criticism of pagan religion became explicit in 2.236-249, where Josephus entered the well-known Greek trad ition of criticism of the mo rality of th e ancient gods, following the si,lloi of Greeks such as Xenophanes of Co lophon, Heraclitus of Ephesus, Timon of Philus, and Greek skepticism in general.69 He defended his attack on Greek religion by appealing to the Greeks themselves. ti,j ga.r tw/n para. toi/j {Ellhsin evpi. sofi,a| teqaumasme,nwn ouvk evpiteti,mhken kai. poihtw/n toi/j evpefanesta,toij kai. nomoqetw/n toi/j ma,lista pepisteume,noij o[ti toiau,taj do,xaj peri. qew/n evx avrc h/j toi/j plh,qesin evgkate,speiran (“For who of those admired by the Greeks for wisdom did not rebuke the most famous of the poets and the most trusted of the legislators because they sowed from the beginning such estimates of the gods among the multitudes?”).70 These teqaumasme,noi are later called oi` fronh,sei diafe,rontej (“those who are superior in thought”).71 The point is that if the high ch aracter of Judaism came across as a criticism of Greek religion, this criticism itself was a Hellenic kind of thing because the noblest among the Greeks themselves criticized their an cestral religion. Thus again the Jews were standing well within the thought and pr actice of the noble Greeks of the past. 67 Ap. 2.227. 68 As seen in Aelius Theon, Exercises 8: “Whenever we seek forgiveness we shall have starting points from the following: first, that the action was unintentional, either through ignorance of chance or necessity; but if it was in tentional, one should say that it was reverent, that it was customary, that it was useful.” In G. Kennedy (trans.), Progymnasmata: Greek Textbooks of Prose Composition and Rhetoric (Atlanta 2003) 49. 69 Josephus had mentioned this feature of Greek religion briefly before, in AJ 1.22. 70 Ap. 2.239. 71 Ap. 2.242.

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263 Jewish refusal to assimilate to Greek religion was, of course, at the core of the Jewish social problem. Apion had put his finger on the pr oblem when he asked, concerning the Jews of Alexandria, quomodo ergo … si sunt cives, eosdem deos quos Alexandrini non colunt? (“how then is it … if they are citizen s, that they do not worship the same gods as the Alexandrians?”),72 and the issue was raised again by Apollonius Molon. Interestingly, nowhere did Josephus say that the practice of Judaism entaile d the rejection of the pagan gods,73 and however numerous proselytes were, Josephus consis tently downplayed their presence.74 Instead, Josephus’ response was that it was a mark of piety that Jews remain ed faithful to the laws which Moses gave them from God. He argued that what contemporary critic s viewed as a fault in the Jews was actually a virtue when seen in the light of classical Greek practice. Plato, the Spartans, and the ancient Athenians prized the same attitude toward laws and moral behavior as proved by their treatments of Socrates, Anaxagoras, Diagoras, and Protagoras.75 If such a virtuous attitude was judged to be intolerance, then the Greeks themselves were gui lty of the same offense. Josephus put forth the case of Ninus as additional evidence: Ni,non76 ga.r th.n i`e,reian avpe,kteinan evpei, tij auvt h/j kathgo,rhsen o[ti xe,nouj evmu,ei qeou,j no,mw| dV h=n tou/to parV auvtoi /j kekwlume,non kai. timwri,a kata. tw/n xe,non eivsago,ntwn qeo.n w[risto qa,natoj oi` de. toiou,tw| no,mw| crw,menoi dh/lon o[ti tou.j tw/n a; llwn ouvk evno,mizon ei=nai qeou,j ouv ga.r a'n auvtoi /j pleio,nwn avpolau,ein evfqo,noun (“For they executed Ninus the priestess, sinc e someone accused her, that she lulled people to the custom of strange gods. This had been forbidden by them, and a punishment of death had been determined for those who bring in a strange god. Now those who act by such a 72 Ap 2.65. 73 S. Cohen, ‘Crossing the Boundary and Becoming a Jew’, HTR 82 (1989) 27. 74 S. Cohen, ‘Respect for Judaism by Gentiles’, HTR 80 (1987) 427-8. Similarly, C. Gerber suggests that Josephus’ de piction of proselytes in the Ap. is largely a literary device. ‘Des Josephus Apologie fr Judentum’, in J. Kalms and F. Siegert (hg.), Internationales JosephusKolloquium Brssel 1998 (Mnster 1998) 265. 75 Ap. 2.255-268. 76 An emendation from nu/n in the manuscripts.

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264 law make it clear that they do not consider the gods of othe rs to be gods, otherwise they would not have begrudged them selves to enjoy more gods”).77 So again, the Jews were actually like the Greeks in this regard. The Greeks were not an intolerant people, but were simply zealous to preserve the pu rity of their religious customs. If that was a good Greek quality, then the Jews lacked nothing in that regard. Conclusion Perceived criticism against the Jews provi ded Josephus with further opportunities to construct his Greek ethnicity for the Jewish peopl e. The program that characterized his earlier, major works continued in his later, minor work s. There is less of this collective program discernible in the Vita because that work concentrated on Josephus himself and not on the Jewish people as a whole. Even so, Josephus describe d his own affiliations and conduct in way that depicted him as an insider who was in touch with Hellenistic culture and politics, and he latently used Greek standards for historia ns to portray himself favorably to his readers and to discredit his detractors. The collective program of ethnicitybuilding is more visible in the Contra Apionem where broad slanders against the Jews allowed Jose phus further opportunities to align Jews with Greeks. The extent to which Josephus we nt to achieve this alignment in the Contra Apionem is paralleled only in the Antiquitates Judaicae ,78 and in some ways exceeds it. In the Contra Apionem Josephus compared the Jews and Greeks by using Greek standards of historiography,79 by citing several famous Greek figures who were acquainted with the Jews (culminating in a story concerning Aristotle and a Jew), by compar ing the misfortunes of both Jews and Greeks, 77 Ap. 2.267-8. She is mentioned in D. Adv. Boeot. 39.2. 78 Spilsbury (348-67) has noted the ex tensive similarities between the Contra Apionem and the Antiquitates Judaicae 79 My own reading has confirmed the view of S. Cohen in this regard, who has noted that in the Contra Apionem “Josephus attacks the Greeks with their own weapons.” S. Cohen, ‘History and Historiography in the Against Apion of Josephus’, History and Theory 27 (1988) 5.

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265 by using Greek terms to describe Jewish institu tions (including one Josephus invented), and by emphasizing the political status Jews had enjoye d, especially under Greek rulers. He also managed negative impressions of Jews by reverti ng to the same theme that characterized the Antiquitates Judaicae namely the lofty nature of Jewish piety. Even here, however, the apologetics were accompanied by comparison with a Greek notion of piety. The Contra Apionem has a more aggressive presentati on of Jewish ethnicity than does Josephus’ other works. This is due to the nature of the work itself and the circumstances which prompted its origin. Continued anti-Jewish pol emics, in spite of Josephus’ thoroughly Greek depiction of them in the Antiquitates Judaicae called for strong rebutta l. Moreover, it would seem that Jewish-Roman relations took a downward turn in the reign of Domitian. A shortage of cash prompted Domitian to collect the Jewish tax with more rigor,80 and the emperor was taking his deity more seriously all the time especially against those (like Jews81 and Christians82) whose religious scruples or philosophical ideas conflicted with acknowledging his divine status.83 It is possible to see in Josephus’ writi ngs a growing sense of apprehension about the nature of Jewish-Roman relations.84 The significance of this for the present study is that the deterioration of this relationship would have prompted increased efforts on Josephus’ part to assert a Jewish ethnicity that called for acceptanc e in the Roman world, and this is exactly what we see. However, a note of caution is appropriate here. We should not jump to the conclusion that Josephus’ portrayal of things necessarily reflects th e social realities of his day accurately. “It is 80 Suet., Dom 12. 81 Cf. D.C. 67.14, where the philosopher Juve ntius Celsus was threatened with banishment and escaped by acknowledging the emperor as “master and god.” 82 Cf. the New Testament’s Apocalypse of John (the Book of Revelation ). 83 Cf. D.C. 67.13. 84 Case 10-20.

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266 notoriously unwise to rely on a gr oup’s self-description to produce an accurate picture of that group.”85 This is rhetorical polemic, not objective history. As I have not ed, there are several oddities about Josephus’ method in the Contra Apionem He does not tell us who was complaining that the Jews were not an ancient culture. He denigrated Greek history when it appeared to criticize the Jews, but piled up names of Greek histor ians when he thought he saw in them references to Jews, and the main charge he set out to refute doe s not sound like a typical Greek complaint about foreigners. He was not accu rate when he used the Greek historians, and his use of Greek terms to describe Jewish inst itutions was dubious. A good case can be made that Josephus was dealing more with his own percepti on of anti-Jewish sentiments than with real ones.86 After all, he began the treatise by menti oning that several peopl e had criticized his Antiquitates Judaicae He then took that to be a critic ism of Jewish culture and ethnicity generally. It is not that widesp read anti-Jewish perceptions coul d not have existed. I have argued above, in chapter three, that the Roman world had its share of anti-Jewish sentiment, and surely Josephus’ perceptions were grounded in his actual social situation. He could not have invented these objections wholesale, written a book to refu te them, and expected people to take the result seriously. But the Contra Apionem does not necessarily reflect its historical context in a purely objective way. The fact that Josephus’ persona l situation compromised his objectivity and sometimes interfered with his larger purpose will al ways be a factor in reading his works, and to insist on deciding between him writing out of persona l motives or out of national interests is to create a false dichotomy. Both played a part, bu t how to weight them will be a matter of ongoing debate. For the purposes of this study, however a stance is not necessary. Ethnicities are not necessarily driven by the realities of the situations in which they are proposed, but by a perceived 85 Goodman, ‘Jews and Judaism in the Mediterranean Diaspora’, 182. 86 Gruen, ‘Greeks and Jews: Mutual Misperceptions’, 39-50.

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267 crisis on the part of those w ho propose them. Whether the percep tion accurately reflects the reality is beside the point. What we see is that the factors that typically motivate people to forge and promote an ethnicity were in place for Josephus, and the Contra Apionem makes sense when read in this light.

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268 CHAPTER 8 SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS The literary works of Flavius Josephus were a ddressed to non-Jews. This is our first clue concerning the nature and purpose of these work s. Josephus was not engaging in an inside conversation among Jews over how, or to what ex tent, Hellenism compromised Jewish religious principles or Jewish ethnic iden tity (the two were closely rela ted). He was instead initiating a dialogue with the larger RomanHellenistic world of his day. This dialogue was prompted by a wide-spread and persistent anti-Jewish sentimen t in Hellenistic society, a sentiment that had originated in Egypt, but by the first century CE had spread to many other places. Diaspora Jews were often subjected to unfair treatments of various kinds a nd were the objects of literary slanders. They were seldom in a position to access the means by which upward social mobility could have been attained, and they often had th eir temple contributions confiscated while local Roman officials either looked on or encouraged it. As a result, they often felt antagonized by Roman imperium Their exclusive dedication (which they viewed as the expression of piety) to their own religion was interpreted as malice towa rds all others, and those who did not understand Jewish customs often put a malicious spin on th em. More than anything else, the First Jewish War had ended in a crushing defeat of the Je ws that was institutionalized in the political machinery of the Roman empire and that was used to bolster the image of the Flavian dynasty at Jewish expense. The Jewish social and cultura l image had suffered grea tly in JosephusÂ’ day. They had been marginalized and discounted in almost every way. It is not as if the Jews had deliberately isolated themselves culturally from the rest of the world. Indeed, they had a long history of Helleni zation going back to the Seleucid period in Palestine. Of course, this was not uniform fo r Jews everywhere, since Hellenization was not a uniform phenomenon, nor was Judaism a monolithic social entity. However, in many places and

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269 in many ways the Jews had deliberately assimilate d Hellenistic culture. There was a widespread use of the Greek language on their part, and the ev idence suggests that this was not simply due to the practical exigencies of the day. The LXX was th e Bible of most Jews in the first century CE. They used Greek architectural styles for their public buildings (especia lly synagogues), and they were integrated into the work force of th e ancient world across the spectrum of usual occupations. The Greek literature produced by Je wish authors such as Artapanus, Aristobulus, and Ezekiel the Tragedian, as well as the anonymous authors of the Jewish Sibylline Oracles and the Letter of Aristeas thoroughly incorporated Gr eek literary motifs in their works. Even in southern Palestine, where the presence of the Jerusalem temple offered strong resistance to Hellenism, Greek culture within Jewish institu tions was apparent. Her od the Great had left public buildings throughout his domain, most of which prominently bore explicit Hellenistic features. We have argued that the evidence reveal s a picture of the Jews not as a people who found Hellenism imposed on them and who reluctan tly tolerated it, but as a people who were willing to adapt to the social forces around th em and who did not see the Hellenization as inherently consisting in a compromise with their collective identity. What was the subject of the dialogue Josephus initiated wi th the Hellenistic world? A close look at Josephus’ literary methods holds an answ er: the subject of the dialogue was the Greek quality of the Jewish people. Throughout his writi ngs Josephus portrayed Jews as sharing in the qualities and experiences of the noble Greeks of the past. In the Bellum Judaicum Josephus recounted the First Jewish War following the Greek models of Herodotus, Thucydides, and Polybius in particular, but also participating in the conventions of the Greek traditions of historiography in general. It was “the greatest war ever,” it was fought between a superpower and much smaller nation, people found themselves unw illing participants in it, and its record was

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270 provided by one who fought in the conflict and witnessed much of it firsthand. This mimesis was not merely a formal exercise meant to be a t oken gesture toward the conventions of the day. Instead it lay at the hear t of JosephusÂ’ narrative and colored almost everything in it, including JosephusÂ’ presentation of himself as an histor ian after the Greek para digm. In addition to adopting the formal elements of the tradition, Josephus also used specific scenes from Greek history as types for his depiction of the Jews and he even used elements of the Greek historiographical tradit ion when did they not fit well with his own story (a s in his use of tu,ch ). Complementary to this was his s uppression of things (l ike the Jewish sects) that were uniquely Jewish and recasting them in Greek terms, or th e suppression of things that would have reminded his readers of Roman animosity (as seen in his favorable portrait of Titus). In the Antiquitates Judaicae Josephus used an avrcaiologi,a of the past as a vehicle for presenting the essential agreement between the Jews and the ancient Greeks culturally. The fluid way in which foundational stories were treated and understood in his day allowed him the flexibility to do this. Around the central facet of a holy G od Josephus told the stories of the Jewish Biblical tradition in such a way that Jewish piety resembled Greek virtue. He changed the vo cabulary of the stories to echo Greek stories, he used Greek terms to de scribe Jewish cultural or political institutions (even though the terms did not alwa ys fit), he downplayed or ignor ed aspects of the stories that would have seemed especially foreign for a Greek reader, and he labored to establish connections between the Jews and the Greeks in th e past. He presented major figures in Jewish history like Greek exempla who embodied Hellenistic ideals, he emphasized those episodes in the tradition where Jews made positive impr essions on Greeks, and he manipulated the presentation of stories that pr esented the Jews in a bad light, or that presented theological

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271 problems, in order to minimize those aspects of Jewish culture that would have seemed foreign or hostile to Hellenistic society and to highlight the aspect of Je wish piety or innocence in them. What was the purpose of the dialogue Josephus initiated with the Hellenistic world? There were other accounts of the First Jewish War circulating in Jose phusÂ’ day. The problem was in the way they depicted the Jews, and Josephus in pa rticular. Similarly, there was already an account of Jewish history written in Gr eek (the LXX) for any Gentile w ho may have wished to know the facts of that history and the or igins of Jewish culture. For Josephus, however, the problem with the LXX seems to have been that although it was written in the Greek language, it was not Greek in its spirit or presentatio n, and its characters did not look like Greeks, not to mention that it was a collection of fairly disparate ma terials that lacked literary a nd linguistic cohesion. That is, the Jews still looked strange and aloof from the world in that telling of the story. Like those other accounts of the First Jewish War, the problem with the LXX lay al so in the way it depicted the Jews. Furthermore, the LXX did not extend its hi story down to the present day, and thus did not fit the literary exp ectations of a Greek reader in that re gard either. In JosephusÂ’ view, the Jews were suffering socially and culturally under the ma licious perceptions of others, and there was nothing to which Gentiles could turn to see it differently. The customs, the history, and the version of the war they knew obscured (if not downright perverted), in JosephusÂ’ opinion, the true identity of the Jewish people. Therefore Josephus set out to fill the void, to provide a presentation of the Jews that showed them in th e light in which Hellenistic society ought to see them. The point, then, of the Bellum Judaicum was not simply to provide a Jewish account of the war, but to provide a corrected account of the war that presented the Jews in the proper way. The other accounts of the war had presented the Jewi sh people (as a group) as hostile foreigners, but

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272 Josephus wanted them to be viewed as a peopl e who embodied those features that had already been accepted (even if grudgingly) in the Roma n world: those of th e ancient Greeks. The Bellum Judaicum thus showed how closely the Jews had para lleled Greek experience in their own. This point was made on a larger scale in the Antiquitates Judaicae Its purpose was not to explain Jewish culture to Greek readers, for if Josephus simply wanted to explain the various facets of that history and culture as they appeared in the LXX, he coul d have done so easily. The problem with explanation is that while it may address mis understandings or provide a rationale for what is mysterious, it leaves its object as what it is. An explanation of foreign customs still leaves the reader with foreign customs. But the perception of Jews as a people of strange, foreign (and thus hostile) ways was the problem. More than simple explanation was neede d. Thus the purpose of the Antiquitates Judaicae was to show its intended non-Jewish readership that the essential features and characters of Jewish culture a nd history were, for all practical purposes, Greek. Josephus was re-describing Jewish identity for his readers. Like most Jews, Josephus was able to feel at home personally in the Hellenistic wo rld, but he perceived th at non-Jews did not reciprocate the feeling. His two major literary pr oductions were an attempt to bridge the gap of negative perceptions for non-Jews, to show them that they could vi ew the Jews in the same way they viewed Greeks, because they both had the same qualities. He found the seeds of such a use of historiography within the Greek tradition already, for Gr eek historiography had long contained ethnographic elements. It has been common in the scholarship on Joseph us to refer to his wr itings as apologetic. While this description is corre ct, it does not go far enough. There is more than ordinary apologetics going on here. The t horough-going nature of his app lication of Greek models to Jewish things, resulting in omission of old mate rials or invention of new elements, shows that

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273 more than defense was involved. Josephus engaged in a re-writing of the tr aditional materials in order to present the Jewish people in a different way. The result, while not perfect, would have been fairly straightforward for his target audience. As they re ad about the Jews in Josephus’ writings, readers would have come away with th e impression that the Jews were remarkably similar to the ancient Greeks in many ways. The be tter way to describe this is that Josephus was constructing an ethnicity for the Jews. “From a ‘b ird’s eye view’ the constr uction of ethnicity is likely to be manifested as multiple overlapp ing boundaries constituted by representations of cultural difference, which are at once transient, but also subject to reproduction and transformation in the ongoing process of social life.”820 This describes succinctly, and exactly, what Josephus was doing as he app lied Greek models to Jewish history. An ethnicity is a dynamic social construct by which a person, or group, defines themselves in relation to others out of a basic psychologica l need for self-esteem. The need for such selfdefinition often arises out of a se nse of crisis that threatens on e’s established self-understanding. The crisis can consist of almost anything, includi ng war or large-scale so cial forces (such as Hellenism) that confront a social group in a way th at is perceived as thr eatening. At the heart of such a construct is a putative myth of shared de scent. This myth may be understood literally, as referring to an actual blood tie, bu t more often it is construed in other ways. Other elements of an ethnicity are typically things lik e a shared history, a distinctive culture, a homeland, and a sense of community solidarity. Not everything needs to be negotiable, and not everything that is available for negotiation needs to be negotiable to the same extent, nor does every element of an ethnicity have to bear equal we ight. Some elements, such as cl aim to a homeland, prove to be expendable in practice. Many fact ors will determine the course of an ethnical strategy, such as 820 S. Jones, ‘Discourses of Identity in the Interpretation of the Past’, 70-1.

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274 the power of religious institutions. The nature and value of any particular ethnic identifier (whether at the level of criteria or indicia) is determined by the socio-historical context in which the ethnic dialectic is pursued. As Josephus undertook his reinvention of Jewish ethnicity, he faced all the limiting factors that any ethnicity faces. He had to negotiate it in the face of a dominant “other” culture and its conservative, resistant institutions. He had to make the end result plausible. In the end, an ethnicity is a proposal for how a certain people are to be underst ood in relation to the rest of society. For that reason, the “succes s” of an ethnicity is ultimat ely not determined by the people who forge it, but by the people who are asked to accept it. Josephus’ program of building a new ethnicity for the Jews, of re-inventing Jewish identity for Gentile readers, proved difficult as evidenced by the fact that he had to follow up his major literary works with two smaller works, both of which pressed the ethnic ag enda again. The credibility of hi s portrait of Jewish ethnicity in the Bellum Judaicum was questioned, mostly because of critics who cast aspersions on his character, and he responded with the Vita a defense of his own conduct. Greek readers were also hesitant to accept his picture of Je wish culture and ethnicity in the Antiquitates Judaicae and he responded with the Contra Apionem in which he zealously pressed his case further. In his literary works Josephus produced an ethnic ity for Jews that was unique in its time in terms of its scope. However, the verdict of histor y seems to be that Josephus’ proposed ethnicity for the Jews was rejected by both his own peopl e and the Roman world around them. Quotations from his works do not appear until the end of th e second century, where he is first cited by the Christian author Theophilus of Antioch.821 Josephus is mentioned by Suetonius ( Vesp 5.6) and Dio Cassius (65.1), but no pagan author apparently cited Josephus until Porphyry, at the end of 821 In Autol 3.20-3.

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275 the third century CE,822 and no Jewish author cited him until the Middle Ages.823 It is possible, but not certain, that Dio Cassi us used Josephus as a model.824 Eusebius825 in the fourth century CE said that copies of Josephus’ works had been deposited in a library in Rome, but who put them there we do not know. Later Christians used Josephus generally for their own theological purposes (which were often anti-Jewish), but not for understanding Jewish ethnicity. We will close with a few suggestions about why it did not work. First, neither the Jews nor the Romans were ready for it.826 The Jews were still feeling the sting of defeat in war, and the Romans were not done manipulating its value to them. Neither party was in a position to re-think Jewish identity in such a way that the barriers of the past could be removed. The Roman literary scene was probab ly not ready for a Jewish Thucydides either. The problem was that too many ot her considerations were in pl ay. As J. Hall notes, “… ethnic identity can sometimes be a matter of an achieved status which vests itself in the garb of an ascribed one. This happens wher e an individual manages successf ully to persuade his or her peers that s/he fulfills the criteria for ethnic inclusion, regardless of any objective considerations .”827 However, the objective considerations were too powerful to overcome at the time the ethnicity was proposed. The context of Roman imperial power made the successful prosecution of new ethnicities vi rtually impossible. J. Yinger not es that “In some developing states, of course, ethnicity has been accepted as an organizing principle, to some degree because 822 In Abst 4.11.2-14.2. 823 Droge 141. 824 M. Eisman, ‘Dio and Josephus: Parallel Analyses’, Latomus 36 (1977) 657-73. 825 H.E. 3.9.2. 826 cf. Droge 141: “In the end it was an experime nt that failed, or perhaps we should say, an experiment whose time had not yet come. Not even his coreligionists were persuaded.” 827 P.28.

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276 no ethnic group has had sufficient powe r to declare itself the core.”828 The opposite, however, was true in Josephus’ context, and Roman ident ity politics prevailed over Jewish ethnic myth. Second, the Romans’ cultural patience for the Jews had already been exhausted.829 The differences between Jews and others were per ceived as too great to allow them a place on the inside. The Romans were generally tolerant toward native cultures and were perfectly willing to extend citizenship to thos e who adopted Roman mores.830 However, Josephus’ proposals were too little too late. There were ju st too many things about the square peg of Jewish culture that could not fit into the round hole of Hellenistic society. In a sense, Jose phus’ sense of his own culture, and his aim to preserve it (even though he was trying to put it in Greek guise), was his biggest obstacle. Third, we noted in our chapter on ethnicity th at any ethnical strategy must attain some semblance of credibility if it hopes to succeed. There were many elements of Josephus’ ethnicity, however, that failed at precisely this point. Would any Roman really have believed that a Roman general like Titus was shoc ked and moved to tears at the sight of his enemies getting what they deserved? Would they have believed that the ex pulsion of Jews from Rome in 19 CE was really caused only by the actions of four men, and that the emperor would be that unfair? Would any Greek really have believed that Aristotle learned philosophy from a Jew? Would any Alexandrian have agreed that the Jews in that city were on an equal pol itical footing with the Alexandrians themselves? In th ese and similar other places Jo sephus was trying too hard and crossed the line of believability. In others ways as well, the project must have seemed like an attempt to justify a contradiction. If the Jews re ally were just like the Greeks in Hellenistic 828 ‘Ethnicity’, Annual Review of Sociology 11 (1985) 169. 829 Yavetz 15-18. 830 Walbank 155.

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277 society, then why did they not participate in the local cults, or why did they send their money to Jerusalem instead of investing it in the cities where they lived? In some ways, it must have appeared as an attempt to integrate without compromise. Fourth, and related to the third reason, is that in some places Josephus’ employment of Greek paradigms comes across as ham-fisted an d unsatisfying. As we have noted above, he crossed a well-known boundary between history and myth when he compared Moses and Homer. In his attempt to describe the Jewish government al system in Greek terms he has Moses, not God, at the head of the Jewish state. He made the Roman army the tool of the Jewish God, and he admitted his personal bias up front in the Bellum Judaicum (1.9-12), something no selfrespecting Hellenistic historian would have done.831 It certainly made him look inept and not worth the reading. There were also important features of the Gr eek historiographical tradition that an ancient reader would have noticed were lacking in Josephus’ major works. For example, we noted in our study of Josephus’ Bellum Judaicum that change and its causes was a major theme of the Greek historians, and that a war wa s one manifestation of it. However, Josephus has a war, but no change. At the beginning of the st ory Rome ruled the world, and at the end of the story the world is still secure ly under Roman control. Simila rly, the theme of change is completely absent from the Antiquitates Judaicae Instead it sought to ju stify Jewish traditional customs by comparison with Greek ones. But in using historiography in this way, Josephus was acting against a major element of the convention he was trying so hard to employ. “The Greek and Roman historians were not suppos ed to be the keep ers of tradition.”832 Fifth, Josephus’ reputation was apparently a continual obstacle to both groups. His reputation as a Roman sympathizer generally prevented Jews from accepting his literary works. 831 J. Price, ‘The Provincia l Historian in Rome’, 110-11. 832 Momigliano, ‘Tradition and the Classical Historian’, 284.

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278 That this was an ongoing problem is evidenced by the fact that he had to write the Vita in defense of his character and in response to a fe llow-Jew, some fifteen years after the publication of the Antiquitates Judaicae The problems with his own repu tation may even account for why the Aramaic version of the Bellum Judaicum did not survive antiquity.833 Josephus’ Greek writings appear to have been completely ignor ed by the Jews of his day. “Understandably, the cozier he [Josephus] became with the Romans the conquerors of the Jews the more detestable he became to his people. … His name does not appear in either version of the voluminous Talmud, which was finally edited in the fifth and si xth centuries, or in any other early Jewish writing.”834 The fact that Josephus appa rently did not maintain cont act with Jews in Palestine after settling in Rome probably did not help matters.835 To the Romans Josephus probably always appeared as little more th an a member, however noble in person,836 of that defeated people who had caused so much trouble in the re cent past. It would be a long time before the Jews recovered from the black eye received in their defeat in 70 CE. Neither group, then, had much use for him, and in the end his program fo r Jewish ethnicity was too simplistic to handle the complicated nature of the situat ion it was designed to address. 833 Feldman, ‘Flavius Josephus Revisited’, 839. 834 Mason, Josephus and the New Testament 25. This is due also in part to the fact that the rabbis generally avoide d references to the war. 835 Moehring 865. 836 Suetonius referred to him as a nobilis captivus ( Vesp 5.6).

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297 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH L. David McClister was born in 1960 in Ev ergreen Park, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. He grew up in the neighboring suburbs of Cr estwood and Burbank, and graduated from Reavis High School in 1978. He attended Florida College, in Temple Terrace, Florida and received his A.A. degree from that school in 1980. He earned a B.A. in classical civilization from Loyola University of Chicago in 1983, and an M.A. in biblical studies from that same institution in 1988. David has also served as a minister among Churches of Christ since 1980, working with local congregations in Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, and Florida. In 1996 David moved to Temple Terrace, Florida to accept a teaching position at Fl orida College, and was granted tenure in 2005. He has had articles published in the Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society (1996) and The New Eerdmans Dictionary of the Bible (2000). While he was work ing at Florida College, the Classics department at the University of Florid a created its distance program leading to the Ph.D. in classics, and David began work in that program in 2003. Upon completion of his Ph.D. David plans to continue teaching at Florida College. David has been married to Lisa Ann McClister for 26 years. They have f our children: Melissa (Senuick), age, 24; Matthew, age 23; Meghan, age 20; and Michelle, age 17.