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Antiquities of the Jews



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Antiquities of the Jews - Book XIII




1. BY what means the nation of the Jews recovered their freedom when they had been brought into slavery by the
Macedonians, and what struggles, and how great battles, Judas, the general of their army, ran through, till he was
slain as he was fighting for them, hath been related in the foregoing book; but after he was dead, all the wicked, and
those that transgressed the laws of their forefathers, sprang up again in Judea, and grew upon them, and distressed
them on every side. A famine also assisted their wickedness, and afflicted the country, till not a few, who by reason
of their want of necessaries, and because they were not able to bear up against the miseries that both the famine
and their enemies brought upon them, deserted their country, and went to the Macedonians. And now Bacchides
gathered those Jews together who had apostatized from the accustomed way of living of their forefathers, and
chose to live like their neighbors, and committed the care of the country to them, who also caught the friends of
Judas, and those of his party, and delivered them up to Bacchides, who when he had, in the first place, tortured and
tormented them at his pleasure, he, by that means, at length killed them. And when this calamity of the Jews was
become so great, as they had never had experience of the like since their return out of Babylon, those that
remained of the companions of Judas, seeing that the nation was ready to be destroyed after a miserable manner,
came to his brother Jonathan, and desired him that he would imitate his brother, and that care which he took of his
countrymen, for whose liberty in general he died also; and that he would not permit the nation to be without a
governor, especially in those destructive circumstances wherein it now was. And where Jonathan said that he was
ready to die for them, and esteemed no inferior to his brother, he was appointed to be the general of the Jewish

2. When Bacchides heard this, and was afraid that Jonathan might be very troublesome to the king and the
Macedonians, as Judas had been before him, he sought how he might slay him by treachery. But this intention of
his was not unknown to Jonathan, nor to his brother Simon; but when these two were apprized of it, they took all
their companions, and presently fled into that wilderness which was nearest to the city; and when they were come to
a lake called Asphar, they abode there. But when Bacchides was sensible that they were in a low state, and were in
that place, he hasted to fall upon them with all his forces, and pitching his camp beyond Jordan, he recruited his
army. But when Jonathan knew that Bacchides Was coming upon him, he sent his brother John, who was also called
Gaddis, to the Nabatean Arabs, that he might lodge his baggage with them until the battle with Bacchides should be
over, for they were the Jews' friends. And the sons of Ambri laid an ambush for John from the city Medaba, and
seized upon him, and upon those that were with him, and plundered all that they had with them. They also slew
John, and all his companions. However, they were sufficiently punished for what they now did by John's brethren,
as we shall relate presently.

3. But when Bacchides knew that Jonathan had pitched his camp among the lakes of Jordan, he observed when
their sabbath day came, and then assaulted him, [as supposing that he would not fight because of the law for resting
on that day]: but he exhorted his companions [to fight]; and told them that their lives were at stake, since they were
encompassed by the river, and by their enemies, and had no way to escape, for that their enemies pressed upon
them from before, and the river was behind them. So after he had prayed to God to give them the victory, he joined
battle with the enemy, of whom he overthrew many; and as he saw Bacchides coming up boldly to him, he stretched
out his right hand to smite him; but the other foreseeing and avoiding the stroke, Jonathan with his companions
leaped into the river, and swam over it, and by that means escaped beyond Jordan while the enemies did not pass
over that river; but Bacchides returned presently to the citadel at Jerusalem, having lost about two thousand of his
army. He also fortified many cities of Judea, whose walls had been demolished; Jericho, and Emmaus, and
Betboron, and Bethel, and Tinma, and Pharatho, and Tecoa, and Gazara, and built towers in every one of these
cities, and encompassed them with strong walls, that were very large also, and put garrisons into them, that they
might issue out of them, and do mischief to the Jews. He also fortified the citadel at Jerusalem more than all the
rest. Moreover, he took the sons of the principal Jews as pledges, and hut them up in the citadel, and in that
manner guarded it.

4. About the same time one came to Jonathan, and to his brother Simon, and told them that the sons of Ambri were
celebrating a marriage, and bringing the bride from the city Gabatha, who was the daughter of one of the illustrious
men among the Arabians, and that the damsel was to be conducted with pomp, and splendor, and much riches: so
Jonathan and Simon thinking this appeared to be the fittest time for them to avenge the death of their brother, and
that they had forces sufficient for receiving satisfaction from them for his death, they made haste to Medaba, and
lay in wait among the mountains for the coming of their enemies; and as soon as they saw them conducting the
virgin, and her bridegroom, and such a great company of their friends with them as was to be expected at this
wedding, they sallied out of their ambush, and slew them all, and took their ornaments, and all the prey that then
followed them, and so returned, and received this satisfaction for their brother John from the sons of Ambri; for as
well those sons themselves, as their friends, and wives, and children that followed them, perished, being in number
about four hundred.

5. However, Simon and Jonathan returned to the lakes of the river, and abode there. But Bacchides, when he had
secured all Judea with his garrisons, returned to the king; and then it was that the affairs of Judea were quiet for
two years. But when the deserters and the wicked saw that Jonathan and those that were with him lived in the
country very quietly, by reason of the peace, they sent to king Demetrius, and excited him to send Bacchides to
seize upon Jonathan, which they said was to be done without any trouble, and in one night's time; and that if they
fell upon them before they were aware, they might slay them all. So the king sent Bacchides, who, when he was
come into Judea, wrote to all his friends, both Jews and auxiliaries, that they should seize upon Jonathan, and bring
him to him; and when, upon all their endeavors, they were not able to seize upon Jonathan, for he was sensible of
the snares they laid for him, and very carefully guarded against them, Bacchides was angry at these deserters, as
having imposed upon him, and upon the king, and slew fifty of their leaders: whereupon Jonathan, with his brother,
and those that were with him, retired to Bethagla, a village that lay in the wilderness, out of his fear of Bacchides.
He also built towers in it, and encompassed it with walls, and took care that it should be safely guarded. Upon the
hearing of which Bacchides led his own army along with him, and besides took his Jewish auxiliaries, and came
against Jonathan, and made an assault upon his fortifications, and besieged him many days; but Jonathan did not
abate of his courage at the zeal Bacchides used in the siege, but courageously opposed him. And while he left his
brother Simon in the city to fight with Bacchides, he went privately out himself into the country, and got a great
body of men together of his own party, and fell upon Bacchides's camp in the night time, and destroyed a great
many of them. His brother Simon knew also of this his falling upon them, because he perceived that the enemies
were slain by him; so he sallied out upon them, and burnt the engines which the Macedonians used, and made a
great slaughter of them. And when Bacchides saw himself encompassed with enemies, and some of them before and
some behind him, he fell into despair and trouble of mind, as confounded at the unexpected ill success of this siege.
However, he vented his displeasure at these misfortunes upon those deserters who sent for him from the king, as
having deluded him. So he had a mind to finish this siege after a decent manner, if it were possible for him so to do,
and then to return home.

6. When Jonathan understood these his intentions, he sent ambassadors to him about a league of friendship and
mutual assistance, and that they might restore those they had taken captive on both sides. So Bacchides thought
this a pretty decent way of retiring home, and made a league of friendship with Jonathan, when they sware that they
would not any more make war one against another. Accordingly, he restored the captives, and took his own men
with him, and returned to the king at Antioch; and after this his departure, he never came into Judea again. Then
did Jonathan take the opportunity of this quiet state of things, and went and lived in the city Michmash; and there
governed the multitude, and punished the wicked and ungodly, and by that means purged the nation of them.



1. NOW in the hundred and sixtieth year, it fell out that Alexander, the son of Antiochus Epiphanes, (1) came up
into Syria, and took Ptolemais the soldiers within having betrayed it to him; for they were at enmity with Demetrius,
on account of his insolence and difficulty of access; for he shut himself up in a palace of his that had four towers
which he had built himself, not far from Antioch and admitted nobody. He was withal slothful and negligent about
the public affairs, whereby the hatred of his subjects was the more kindled against him, as we have elsewhere
already related. When therefore Demetrius heard that Alexander was in Ptolemais, he took his whole army, and led
it against him; he also sent ambassadors to Jonathan about a league of mutual assistance and friendship, for he
resolved to be beforehand with Alexander, lest the other should treat with him first, and gain assistance from him;
and this he did out of the fear he had lest Jonathan should remember how ill Demetrius had formerly treated him,
and should join with him in this war against him. He therefore gave orders that Jonathan should be allowed to raise
an army, and should get armor made, and should receive back those hostages of the Jewish nation whom Baechides
had shut up in the citadel of Jerusalem. When this good fortune had befallen Jonathan, by the concession of
Demetrius, he came to Jerusalem, and read the king's letter in the audience of the people, and of those that kept
the citadel. When these were read, these wicked men and deserters, who were in the citadel, were greatly afraid,
upon the king's permission to Jonathan to raise an army, and to receive back the hostages. So he delivered every
one of them to his own parents. And thus did Jonathan make his abode at Jerusalem, renewing the city to a better
state, and reforming the buildings as he pleased; for he gave orders that the walls of the city should be rebuilt with
square stones, that it might be more secure from their enemies. And when those that kept the garrisons that were
in Judea saw this, they all left them, and fled to Antioch, excepting those that were in the city Bethsura, and those
that were in the citadel of Jerusalem, for the greater part of these was of the wicked Jews and deserters, and on
that account these did not deliver up their garrisons.

2. When Alexander knew what promises Demetrius had made Jonathan, and withal knew his courage, and what
great things he had done when he fought the Macedonians, and besides what hardships he had undergone by the
means of Demetrius, and of Bacchides, the general of Demetrius's army, he told his friends that he could not at
present find any one else that might afford him better assistance than Jonathan, who was both courageous against
his enemies, and had a particular hatred against Demetrius, as having both suffered many hard things from him,
and acted many hard things against him. If therefore they were of opinion that they should make him their friend
against Demetrius, it was more for their advantage to invite him to assist them now than at another time. It being
therefore determined by him and his friends to send to Jonathan, he wrote to him this epistle: "King Alexander to
his brother Jonathan, sendeth greeting. We have long ago heard of thy courage and thy fidelity, and for that reason
have sent to thee, to make with thee a league of friendship and mutual assistance. We therefore do ordain thee this
day the high priest of the Jews, and that thou beest called my friend. I have also sent thee, as presents, a purple
robe and a golden crown, and desire that, now thou art by us honored, thou wilt in like manner respect us also."

3. When Jonathan had received this letter, he put on the pontifical robe at the time of the feast of tabernacles, (2)
four years after the death of his brother Judas, for at that time no high priest had been made. So he raised great
forces, and had abundance of armor got ready. This greatly grieved Demetrius when he heard of it, and made him
blame himself for his slowness, that he had not prevented Alexander, and got the good-will of Jonathan, but had
given him time so to do. However, he also himself wrote a letter to Jonathan, and to the people, the contents
whereof are these: "King Demetrius to Jonathan, and to the nation of the Jews, sendeth greeting. Since you have
preserved your friendship for us, and when you have been tempted by our enemies, you have not joined yourselves
to them, I both commend you for this your fidelity, and exhort you to continue in the same disposition, for which you
shall be repaid, and receive rewards from us; for I will free you from the greatest part of the tributes and taxes
which you formerly paid to the kings my predecessors, and to myself; and I do now set you free from those tributes
which you have ever paid; and besides, I forgive you the tax upon salt, and the value of the crowns which you used
to offer to me (3) and instead of the third part of the fruits [of the field], and the half of the fruits of the trees, I
relinquish my part of them from this day: and as to the poll-money, which ought to be given me for every head of
the inhabitants of Judea, and of the three toparchies that adjoin to Judea, Samaria, and Galilee, and Peres, that I
relinquish to you for this time, and for all time to come. I will also that the city of Jerusalem be holy and inviolable,
and free from the tithe, and from the taxes, unto its utmost bounds. And I so far recede from my title to the citadel,
as to permit Jonathan your high priest to possess it, that he may place such a garrison in it as he approves of for
fidelity and good-will to himself, that they may keep it for us. I also make free all those Jews who have been made
captives and slaves in my kingdom. I also give order that the beasts of the Jews be not pressed for our service; and
let their sabbaths, and all their festivals, and three days before each of them, be free from any imposition. In the
same manner, I set free the Jews that are inhabitants of my kingdom, and order that no injury be done them. I also
give leave to such of them as are willing to list themselves in my army, that they may do it, and those as far as
thirty thousand; which Jewish soldiers, wheresoever they go, shall have the same pay that my own army hath; and
some of them I will place in my garrisons, and some as guards about mine own body, and as rulers over those that
are in my court. I give them leave also to use the laws of their forefathers, and to observe them; and I will that they
have power over the three toparchies that are added to Judea; and it shall be in the power of the high priest to take
care that no one Jew shall have any other temple for worship but only that at Jerusalem. I bequeath also, out of my
own revenues, yearly, for the expenses about the sacrifices, one hundred and fifty thousand [drachmae]; and what
money is to spare, I will that it shall be your own. I also release to you those ten thousand drachmae which the
kings received from the temple, because they appertain to the priests that minister in that temple. And whosoever
shall fly to the temple at Jerusalem, or to the places thereto belonging, or who owe the king money, or are there on
any other account, let them be set free, and let their goods be in safety. I also give you leave to repair and rebuild
your temple, and that all be done at my expenses. I also allow you to build the walls of your city, and to erect high
towers, and that they be erected at my charge. And if there be any fortified town that would be convenient for the
Jewish country to have very strong, let it be so built at my expenses."

4. This was what Demetrius promised and granted to the Jews by this letter. But king Alexander raised a great
army of mercenary soldiers, and of those that deserted to him out of Syria, and made an expedition against
Demetrius. And when it was come to a battle, the left wing of Demetrius put those who opposed them to flight, and
pursued them a great way, and slew many of them, and spoiled their camp; but the right wing, where Demetrius
happened to be, was beaten; and as for all the rest, they ran away. But Demetrius fought courageously, and slew a
great many of the enemy; but as he was in the pursuit of the rest, his horse carried him into a deep bog, where it
was hard to get out, and there it happened, that upon his horse's falling down, he could not escape being killed; for
when his enemies saw what had befallen him, they returned back, and encompassed Demetrius round, and they all
threw their darts at him; but he, being now on foot, fought bravely. But at length he received so many wounds, that
he was not able to bear up any longer, but fell. And this is the end that Demetrius came to, when he had reigned
eleven years, (4) as we have elsewhere related.



1. BUT then the son of Onias the high priest, who was of the same name with his father, and who fled to king
Ptolemy, who was called Philometor, lived now at Alexandria, as we have said already. When this Onias saw that
Judea was oppressed by the Macedonians and their kings, out of a desire to purchase to himself a memorial and
eternal fame he resolved to send to king Ptolemy and queen Cleopatra, to ask leave of them that he might build a
temple in Egypt like to that at Jerusalem, and might ordain Levites and priests out of their own stock. The chief
reason why he was desirous so to do, was, that he relied upon the prophet Isaiah, who lived above six hundred
years before, and foretold that there certainly was to be a temple built to Almighty God in Egypt by a man that was
a Jew. Onias was elevated with this prediction, and wrote the following epistle to Ptolemy and Cleopatra: "Having
done many and great things for you in the affairs of the war, by the assistance of God, and that in Celesyria and
Phoenicia, I came at length with the Jews to Leontopolis, and to other places of your nation, where I found that the
greatest part of your people had temples in an improper manner, and that on this account they bare ill-will one
against another, which happens to the Egyptians by reason of the multitude of their temples, and the difference of
opinions about Divine worship. Now I found a very fit place in a castle that hath its name from the country Diana;
this place is full of materials of several sorts, and replenished with sacred animals; I desire therefore that you will
grant me leave to purge this holy place, which belongs to no master, and is fallen down, and to build there a temple
to Almighty God, after the pattern of that in Jerusalem, and of the same dimensions, that may be for the benefit of
thyself, and thy wife and children, that those Jews which dwell in Egypt may have a place whither they may come
and meet together in mutual harmony one with another, and he subservient to thy advantages; for the prophet
Isaiah foretold that "there should be an altar in Egypt to the Lord God; (5) and many other such things did he
prophesy relating to that place."

2. And this was what Onias wrote to king Ptolemy. Now any one may observe his piety, and that of his sister and
wife Cleopatra, by that epistle which they wrote in answer to it; for they laid the blame and the transgression of the
law upon the head of Onias. And this was their reply: "King Ptolemy and queen Cleopatra to Onias, send greeting.
We have read thy petition, wherein thou desirest leave to be given thee to purge that temple which is fallen down at
Leontopolis, in the Nomus of Heliopolis, and which is named from the country Bubastis; on which account we
cannot but wonder that it should be pleasing to God to have a temple erected in a place so unclean, and so full of
sacred animals. But since thou sayest that Isaiah the prophet foretold this long ago, we give thee leave to do it, if it
may be done according to your law, and so that we may not appear to have at all offended God herein."

3. So Onias took the place, and built a temple, and an altar to God, like indeed to that in Jerusalem, but smaller and
poorer. I do not think it proper for me now to describe its dimensions or its vessels, which have been already
described in my seventh book of the Wars of the Jews. However, Onias found other Jews like to himself, together
with priests and Levites, that there performed Divine service. But we have said enough about this temple.

4. Now it came to pass that the Alexandrian Jews, and those Samaritans who paid their worship to the temple that
was built in the days of Alexander at Mount Gerizzim, did now make a sedition one against another, and disputed
about their temples before Ptolemy himself; the Jews saying that, according to the laws of Moses, the temple was
to be built at Jerusalem; and the Samaritans saying that it was to be built at Gerizzim. They desired therefore the
king to sit with his friends, and hear the debates about these matters, and punish those with death who were baffled.
Now Sabbeus and Theodosius managed the argument for the Samaritans, and Andronicus, the son of Messalamus,
for the people of Jerusalem; and they took an oath by God and the king to make their demonstrations according to
the law; and they desired of Ptolemy, that whomsoever he should find that transgressed what they had sworn to, he
would put him to death. Accordingly, the king took several of his friends into the council, and sat down, in order to
hear what the pleaders said. Now the Jews that were at Alexandria were in great concern for those men, whose lot
it was to contend for the temple at Jerusalem; for they took it very ill that any should take away the reputation of
that temple, which was so ancient and so celebrated all over the habitable earth. Now when Sabbeus and
Tlteodosius had given leave to Andronicus to speak first, he began to demonstrate out of the law, and out of the
successions of the high priests, how they every one in succession from his father had received that dignity, and
ruled over the temple; and how all the kings of Asia had honored that temple with their donations, and with the most
splendid gifts dedicated thereto. But as for that at Gerizzm, he made no account of it, and regarded it as if it had
never had a being. By this speech, and other arguments, Andronicus persuaded the king to determine that the
temple at Jerusalem was built according to the laws of Moses, (6) and to put Sabbeus and Theodosius to death. And
these were the events that befell the Jews at Alexandria in the days of Ptolemy Philometor.



1. DEMETRIUS being thus slain in battle, as we have above related, Alexander took the kingdom of Syria; and
wrote to Ptolemy Philometor, and desired his daughter in marriage; and said it was but just that he should be joined
an affinity to one that had now received the principality of his forefathers, and had been promoted to it by God's
providence, and had conquered Demetrius, and that was on other accounts not unworthy of being related to him.
Ptolemy received this proposal of marriage gladly; and wrote him an answer, saluting him on account of his having
received the principality of his forefathers; and promising him that he would give him his daughter in marriage; and
assured him that he was coming to meet him at Ptolemais, and desired that he would there meet him, for that he
would accompany her from Egypt so far, and would there marry his child to him. When Ptolemy had written thus, he
came suddenly to Ptolemais, and brought his daughter Cleopatra along with him; and as he found Alexander there
before him, as he desired him to come, he gave him his child in marriage, and for her portion gave her as much
silver and gold as became such a king to give.

2. When the wedding was over, Alexander wrote to Jonathan the high priest, and desired him to come to Ptolemais.
So when he came to these kings, and had made them magnificent presents, he was honored by them both.
Alexander compelled him also to put off his own garment, and to take a purple garment, and made him sit with him
in his throne; and commanded his captains that they should go with him into the middle of the city, and proclaim,
that it was not permitted to any one to speak against him, or to give him any disturbance. And when the captains
had thus done, those that were prepared to accuse Jonathan, and who bore him ill-will, when they saw the honor
that was done him by proclamation, and that by the king's order, ran away, and were afraid lest some mischief
should befall them. Nay, king Alexander was so very kind to Jonathan, that he set him down as the principal of his

3. But then, upon the hundred and sixty-fifth year, Demetrius, the son of Demetrius, came from Crete with a great
number of mercenary soldiers, which Lasthenes, the Cretian, brought him, and sailed to Cilicia. This thing cast
Alexander into great concern and disorder when he heard it; so he made haste immediately out of Phoenicia, and
came to Antioch, that he might put matters in a safe posture there before Demetrius should come. He also left
Apollonius Daus (7) governor of Celesyria, who coming to Jamnia with a great army, sent to Jonathan the high
priest, and told him that it was not right that he alone should live at rest, and with authority, and not be subject to
the king; that this thing had made him a reproach among all men, that he had not yet made him subject to the king.
"Do not thou therefore deceive thyself, and sit still among the mountains, and pretend to have forces with thee; but
if thou hast any dependence on thy strength, come down into the plain, and let our armies be compared together,
and the event of the battle will demonstrate which of us is the most courageous. However, take notice, that the
most valiant men of every city are in my army, and that these are the very men who have always beaten thy
progenitors; but let us have the battle in such a place of the country where we may fight with weapons, and not with
stones, and where there may be no place whither those that are beaten may fly."

4. With this Jonathan was irritated; and choosing himself out ten thousand of his soldiers, he went out of Jerusalem
in haste, with his brother Simon, and came to Joppa, and pitched his camp on the outside of the city, because the
people of Joppa had shut their gates against him, for they had a garrison in the city put there by Apollonius. But
when Jonathan was preparing to besiege them, they were afraid he would take them by force, and so they opened
the gates to him. But Apollonius, when he heard that Joppa was taken by Jonathan, took three thousand horsemen,
and eight thousand footmen and came to Ashdod; and removing thence, he made his journey silently and slowly,
and going up to Joppa, he made as if he was retiring from the place, and so drew Jonathan into the plain, as valuing
himself highly upon his horsemen, and having his hopes of victory principally in them. However, Jonathan sallied
out, and pursued Apollonius to Ashdod; but as soon as Apollonius perceived that his enemy was in the plain, he
came back and gave him battle. But Apollonius had laid a thousand horsemen in ambush in a valley, that they might
be seen by their enemies as behind them; which when Jonathan perceived, he was under no consternation, but
ordering his army to stand in a square battle-array, he gave them a charge to fall on the enemy on both sides, and
set them to face those that attacked them both before and behind; and while the fight lasted till the evening, he
gave part of his forces to his brother Simon, and ordered him to attack the enemies; but for himself, he charged
those that were with him to cover themselves with their armor, and receive the darts of the horsemen, who did as
they were commanded; so that the enemy's horsemen, while they threw their darts till they had no more left, did
them no harm, for the darts that were thrown did not enter into their bodies, being thrown upon the shields that
were united and conjoined together, the closeness of which easily overcame the force of the darts, and they flew
about without any effect. But when the enemy grew remiss in throwing their darts from morning till late at night,
Simon perceived their weariness, and fell upon the body of men before him; and because his soldiers showed great
alacrity, he put the enemy to flight. And when the horsemen saw that the footmen ran away, neither did they stay
themselves, but they being very weary, by the duration of the fight till the evening, and their hope from the footmen
being quite gone, they basely ran away, and in great confusion also, till they were separated one from another, and
scattered over all the plain. Upon which Jonathan pursued them as far as Ashdod, and slew a great many of them,
and compelled the rest, in despair of escaping, to fly to the temple of Dagon, which was at Ashdod; but Jonathan
took the city on the first onset, and burnt it, and the villages about it; nor did he abstain from the temple of Dagon
itself, but burnt it also, and destroyed those that had fled to it. Now the entire multitude of the enemies that fell in
the battle, and were consumed in the temple, were eight thousand. When Jonathan therefore had overcome so
great an army, he removed from Ashdod, and came to Askelon; and when he had pitched his camp without the city,
the people of Askelon came out and met him, bringing him hospitable presents, and honoring him; so he accepted of
their kind intentions, and returned thence to Jerusalem with a great deal of prey, which he brought thence when he
conquered his enemies. But when Alexander heard that Apollonius, the general of his army, was beaten, he
pretended to be glad of it, because he had fought with Jonathan his friend and ally against his directions.
Accordingly, he sent to Jonathan, and gave testimony to his worth; and gave him honorary rewards, as a golden
button, (8) which it is the custom to give the king's kinsmen, and allowed him Ekron and its toparchy for his own

5. About this time it was that king Ptolemy, who was called Philometor, led an army, part by the sea, and part by
land, and came to Syria, to the assistance of Alexander, who was his son-in-law; and accordingly all the cities
received him willingly, as Alexander had commanded them to do, and conducted him as far as Ashdod; where they
all made loud complaints about the temple of Dagon, which was burnt, and accused Jonathan of having laid it waste,
and destroyed the country adjoining with fire, and slain a great number of them. Ptolemy heard these accusations,
but said nothing. Jonathan also went to meet Ptolemy as far as Joppa, and obtained from him hospitable presents,
and those glorious in their kinds, with all the marks of honor; and when he had conducted him as far as the river
called Eleutherus, he returned again to Jerusalem.

6. But as Ptolemy was at Ptolemais, he was very near to a most unexpected destruction; for a treacherous design
was laid for his life by Alexander, by the means of Ammonius, who was his friend; and as the treachery was very
plain, Ptolemy wrote to Alexander, and required of him that he should bring Ammonius to condign punishment,
informing him what snares had been laid for him by Ammonius, and desiring that he might he accordingly punished
for it. But when Alexander did not comply with his demands, he perceived that it was he himself who laid the design,
and was very angry at him. Alexander had also formerly been on very ill terms with the people of Antioch, for they
had suffered very much by his means; yet did Ammonius at length undergo the punishment his insolent crimes had
deserved, for he was killed in an opprobrious manner, like a woman, while he endeavored to conceal himself in a
feminine habit, as we have elsewhere related.

7. Hereupon Ptolemy blamed himself for having given his daughter in marriage to Alexander, and for the league he
had made with him to assist him against Demetrius; so he dissolved his relation to him, and took his daughter away
from him, and immediately sent to Demetrius, and offered to make a league of mutual assistance and friendship
with him, and agreed with him to give him his daughter in marriage, and to restore him to the principality of his
fathers. Demetrius was well pleased with this embassage, and accepted of his assistance, and of the marriage of his
daughter. But Ptolemy had still one more hard task to do, and that was to persuade the people of Antioch to receive
Demetrius, because they were greatly displeased at him, on account of the injuries his father Demetrius had done
them; yet did he bring this about; for as the people of Antioch hated Alexander on Ammonius's account, as we have
shown already, they were easily prevailed with to cast him out of Antioch; who, thus expelled out of Antioch, came
into Cilicia. Ptolemy came then to Antioch, and was made king by its inhabitants, and by the army; so that he was
forced to put on two diadems, the one of Asia, the other of Egypt: but being naturally a good and a righteous man,
and not desirous of what belonged to others, and besides these dispositions, being also a wise man in reasoning
about futurities, he determined to avoid the envy of the Romans; so he called the people of Antioch together to an
assembly, and persuaded them to receive Demetrius; and assured them that he would not be mindful of what they
did to his father in case he should he now obliged by them; and he undertook that he would himself be a good
monitor and governor to him, and promised that he would not permit him to attempt any bad actions; but that, for
his own part, he was contented with the kingdom of Egypt. By which discourse he persuaded the people of Antioch
to receive Demetrius.

8. But now Alexander made haste with a numerous and great army, and came out of Cilicia into Syria, and burnt the
country belonging to Antioch, and pillaged it; whereupon Ptolemy, and his son-in-law Demetrius, brought their army
against him, (for he had already given him his daughter in marriage,) and beat Alexander, and put him to flight; and
accordingly he fled into Arabia. Now it happened in the time of the battle that Ptolemy' horse, upon hearing the
noise of an elephant, cast him off his back, and threw him on the ground; upon the sight of which accident, his
enemies fell upon him, and gave him many wounds upon his head, and brought him into danger of death; for when
his guards caught him up, he was so very ill, that for four days' time he was not able either to understand or to
speak. However, Zabdiel, a prince among the Arabians, cut off Alexander's head, and sent it to Ptolemy, who
recovering of his wounds, and returning to his understanding, on the fifth day, heard at once a most agreeable
hearing, and saw a most agreeable sight, which were the death and the head of Alexander; yet a little after this his
joy for the death of Alexander, with which he was so greatly satisfied, he also departed this life. Now Alexander,
who was called Balas, reigned over Asia five years, as we have elsewhere related.

9. But when Demetrius, who was styled Nicator, (9) had taken the kingdom, he was so wicked as to treat Ptolemy's
soldiers very hardly, neither remembering the league of mutual assistance that was between them, nor that he was
his son-in-law and kinsman, by Cleopatra's marriage to him; so the soldiers fled from his wicked treatment to
Alexandria; but Demetrius kept his elephants. But Jonathan the high priest levied an army out of all Judea, and
attacked the citadel at Jerusalem, and besieged it. It was held by a garrison of Macedonians, and by some of those
wicked men who had deserted the customs of their forefathers. These men at first despised the attempts of
Jonathan for taking the place, as depending on its strength; but some of those wicked men went out by night, and
came to Demetrius, and informed him that the citadel was besieged; who was irritated with what he heard, and took
his army, and came from Antioch, against Jonathan. And when he was at Antioch, he wrote to him, and commanded
him to come to him quickly to Ptolemais: upon which Jonathan did not intermit the siege of the citadel, but took with
him the elders of the people, and the priests, and carried with him gold, and silver, and garments, and a great
number of presents of friendship, and came to Demetrius, and presented him with them, and thereby pacified the
king's anger. So he was honored by him, and received from him the confirmation of his high priesthood, as he had
possessed it by the grants of the kings his predecessors. And when the Jewish deserters accused him, Demetrius
was so far from giving credit to them, that when he petitioned him that he would demand no more than three
hundred talents for the tribute of all Judea, and the three toparchies of Samaria, and Perea, and Galilee, he
complied with the proposal, and gave him a letter confirming all those grants; whose contents were as follows:
"King Demetrius to Jonathan his brother, and to the nation of the Jews, sendeth greeting. We have sent you a copy
of that epistle which we have written to Lasthones our kinsman, that you may know its contents. "King Demetrus
to Lasthenes our father, sendeth greeting. I have determined to return thanks, and to show favor to the nation of
the Jews, which hath observed the rules of justice in our concerns. Accordingly, I remit to them the three
prefectures, Apherims, and Lydda, and Ramatha, which have been added to Judea out of Samaria, with their
appurtenances; as also what the kings my predecessors received from those that offered sacrifices in Jerusalem,
and what are due from the fruits of the earth, and of the trees, and what else belongs to us; with the salt-pits, and
the crowns that used to be presented to us. Nor shall they be compelled to pay any of those taxes from this time to
all futurity. Take care therefore that a copy of this epistle be taken, and given to Jonathan, and be set up in an
eminent place of their holy temple.'" And these were the contents of this writing. And now when Demetrius saw that
there was peace every where, and that there was no danger, nor fear of war, he disbanded the greatest part of his
army, and diminished their pay, and even retained in pay no others than such foreigners as came up with him from
Crete, and from the other islands. However, this procured him ill-will and hatred from the soldiers; on whom he
bestowed nothing from this time, while the kings before him used to pay them in time of peace as they did before,
that they might have their good-will, and that they might be very ready to undergo the difficulties of war, if any
occasion should require it.



1. NOW there was a certain commander of Alexander's forces, an Apanemian by birth, whose name was Diodotus,
and was also called Trypho, took notice the ill-will of the soldiers bare to Demetrius, and went to Malchus the
Arabian, who brought up Antiochus, the son of Alexander, and told him what ill-will the army bare Demetrius, and
persuaded him to give him Antiochus, because he would make him king, and recover to him the kingdom of his
father. Malchus at the first opposed him in this attempt, because he could not believe him; but when Trypho lay
hard at him for a long time, he over-persuaded him to comply with Trypho's intentions and entreaties. And this was
the state Trypho was now in.

2. But Jonathan the high priest, being desirous to get clear of those that were in the citadel of Jerusalem, and of the
Jewish deserters, and wicked men, as well as of those in all the garrisons in the country, sent presents and
ambassadors to Demetrius, and entreated him to take away his soldiers out of the strong holds of Judea.
Demetrius made answer, that after the war, which he was now deeply engaged in, was over, he would not only grant
him that, but greater things than that also; and he desired he would send him some assistance, and informed him
that his army had deserted him. So Jonathan chose out three thousand of his soldiers, and sent them to Demetrius.

3. Now the people of Antioch hated Demetrius, both on account of what mischief he had himself done them, and
because they were his enemies also on account of his father Demetrius, who had greatly abused them; so they
watched some opportunity which they might lay hold on to fall upon him. And when they were informed of the
assistance that was coming to Demetrius from Jonathan, and considered at the same time that he would raise a
numerous army, unless they prevented him, and seized upon him, they took their weapons immediately, and
encompassed his palace in the way of a siege, and seizing upon all the ways of getting out, they sought to subdue
their king. And when he saw that the people of Antioch were become his bitter enemies and that they were thus in
arms, he took the mercenary soldiers which he had with them, and those Jews who were sent by Jonathan, and
assaulted the Antiochians; but he was overpowered by them, for they were many ten thousands, and was beaten.
But when the Jews saw that the Antiochians were superior, they went up to the top of the palace, and shot at them
from thence; and because they were so remote from them by their height, that they suffered nothing on their side,
but did great execution on the others, as fighting from such an elevation, they drove them out of the adjoining
houses, and immediately set them on fire, whereupon the flame spread itself over the whole city, and burnt it all
down. This happened by reason of the closeness of the houses, and because they were generally built of wood. So
the Antioehians, when they were not able to help themselves, nor to stop the fire, were put to flight. And as the
Jews leaped from the top of one house to the top of another, and pursued them after that manner, it thence
happened that the pursuit was so very surprising. But when the king saw that the Antiochians were were busy in
saving their children and their wives, and so did not fight any longer, he fell upon them in the narrow passages, and
fought them, and slew a great many of them, till at last they were forced to throw down their arms, and to deliver
themselves up to Demetrius. So he forgave them this their insolent behavior, and put an end to the sedition; and
when he had given rewards to the Jews out of the rich spoils he had gotten, and had returned them thanks, as the
cause of his victory, he sent them away to Jerusalem to Jonathan, with an ample testimony of the assistance they
had afforded him. Yet did he prove an ill man to Jonathan afterward, and broke the promises he had made; and he
threatened that he would make war upon him, unless he would pay all that tribute which the Jewish nation owed to
the first kings [of Syria]. And this he had done, if Trypho had not hindered him, and diverted his preparations
against Jonathan to a concern for his own preservation; for he now returned out of Arabia into Syria, with the child
Antiochus, for he was yet in age but a youth, and put the diadem on his head; and as the whole forces that had left
Demetrius, because they had no pay, came to his assistance, he made war upon Demetrius, and joining battle with
him, overcame him in the fight, and took from him both his elephants and the city Antioch.

4. Demetrius, upon this defeat, retired into Cilicia; but the child Antiochus sent ambassadors and an epistle to
Jonathan, and made him his friend and confederate, and confirmed to him the high priesthood, and yielded up to
him the four prefectures which had been added to Judea. Moreover, he sent him vessels and cups of gold, and a
purple garment, and gave him leave to use them. He also presented him with a golden button, and styled him one of
his principal friends, and appointed his brother Simon to be the general over the forces, from the Ladder of Tyre
unto Egypt. So Jonathan was so pleased with these grants made him by Antiochus, that he sent ambassadors to him
and to Trypho, and professed himself to be their friend and confederate, and said he would join with him in a war
against Demetrius, informing him that he had made no proper returns for the kindness he had done him; for that
when he had received many marks of kindness from him, when he stood in great need of them, he, for such good
turns, had requited him with further injuries.

5. So Antiochus gave Jonathan leave to raise himself a numerous army out of Syria and Phoenicia and to make war
against Demetrius's generals; whereupon he went in haste to the several cities which received him splendidly
indeed, but put no forces into his hands. And when he was come from thence to Askelon, the inhabitants of Askelon
came and brought him presents, and met him in a splendid manner. He exhorted them, and every one of the cities
of Celesyria, to forsake Demetrius, and to join with Antiochus; and, in assisting him, to endeavor to punish
Demetrius for what offenses he had been guilty of against themselves; and told them there were many reasons for
that their procedure, if they had a mind so to do. And when he had persuaded those cities to promise their
assistance to Antiochus, he came to Gaza, in order to induce them also to be friends to Antiochus; but he found the
inhabitants of Gaza much more alienated from him than he expected, for they had shut their gates against him; and
although they had deserted Demetrius, they had not resolved to join themselves to Antiochus. This provoked
Jonathan to besiege them, and to harass their country; for as he set a part of his army round about Gaza itself, so
with the rest he overran their land, and spoiled it, and burnt what was in it. When the of Gaza saw themselves in this
state of affliction, and that no assistance came to them from Demetrius, that what distressed them was at hand, but
what should profit them was still at a great distance, and it was uncertain whether it would come at all or not, they
thought it would he prudent conduct to leave off any longer continuance with them, and to cultivate friendship with
the other; so they sent to Jonathan, and professed they would be his friends, and afford him assistance: for such is
the temper of men, that before they have had the trial of great afflictions, they do not understand what is for their
advantage; but when they find themselves under such afflictions, they then change their minds, and what it had
been better for them to have done before they had been at all damaged, they choose to do, but not till after they
have suffered such damages. However, he made a league of friendship with them, and took from them hostages for
their performance of it, and sent these hostages to Jerusalem, while he went himself over all the country, as far as

6. But when he heard that the generals of Demetrius's forces were come to the city Cadesh with a numerous army,
(the place lies between the land of the Tyrians and Galilee,)for they supposed they should hereby draw him out of
Syria, in order to preserve Galilee, and that he would not overlook the Galileans, who were his own people, when
war was made upon them, he went to meet them, having left Simon in Judea, who raised as great an army as he was
able out of the country, and then sat down before Bethsura, and besieged it, that being the strongest place in all
Judea; and a garrison of Demetrius's kept it, as we have already related. But as Simon was raising banks, and
bringing his engines of war against Bethsura, and was very earnest about the siege of it, the garrison was afraid
lest the place should be taken of Simon by force, and they put to the sword; so they sent to Simon, and desired the
security of his oath, that they should come to no harm from him, and that they would leave the place, and go away
to Demetrius. Accordingly he gave them his oath, and ejected them out of the city, and he put therein a garrison of
his own.

7. But Jonathan removed out of Galilee, and from the waters which are called Gennesar, for there he was before
encamped, and came into the plain that is called Asor, without knowing that the enemy was there. When therefore
Demetrius's men knew a day beforehand that Jonathan was coming against them, they laid an ambush in the
mountain, who were to assault him on the sudden, while they themselves met him with an army in the plain; which
army, when Jonathan saw ready to engage him, he also got ready his own soldiers for the battle as well as he was
able; but those that were laid in ambush by Demetrius's generals being behind them, the Jews were afraid lest they
should be caught in the midst between two bodies, and perish; so they ran away in haste, and indeed all the rest left
Jonathan; but a few there were, in number about fifty, who staid with him, and with them Mattathias, the son of
Absalom, and Judas, the son of Chapseus, who were commanders of the whole army. These marched boldly, and
like men desperate, against the enemy, and so pushed them, that by their courage they daunted them, and with
their weapons in their hands they put them to flight. And when those soldiers of Jonathan that had retired saw the
enemy giving way, they got together after their flight, and pursued them with great violence; and this did they as far
as Cadesh, where the camp of the enemy lay.

8. Jonathan having thus gotten a glorious victory, and slain two thousand of the enemy, returned to Jerusalem. So
when he saw that all his affairs prospered according to his mind, by the providence of God, he sent ambassadors to
the Romans, being desirous of renewing that friendship which their nation had with them formerly. He enjoined the
same ambassadors, that, as they came back, they should go to the Spartans, and put them in mind of their
friendship and kindred. So when the ambassadors came to Rome, they went into their senate, and said what they
were commanded by Jonathan the high priest to say, how he had sent them to confirm their friendship. The senate
then confirmed what had been formerly decreed concerning their friendship with the Jews, and gave them letters to
carry to all the kings of Asia and Europe, and to the governors of the cities, that they might safely conduct them to
their own country. Accordingly, as they returned, they came to Sparta, and delivered the epistle which they had
received of Jonathan to them; a copy of which here follows: "Jonathan the high priest of the Jewish nation, and the
senate, and body of the people of the Jews, to the ephori, and senate, and people of the Lacedemonians, send
greeting. If you be well, and both your public and private affairs be agreeable to your mind, it is according to our
wishes. We are well also. When in former times an epistle was brought to Onias, who was then our high priest, from
Areus, who at that time was your king, by Demoteles, concerning the kindred that was between us and you, a copy
of which is here subjoined, we both joyfully received the epistle, and were well pleased with Demoteles and Areus,
although we did not need such a demonstration, because we were satisfied about it from the sacred writings (10) yet
did not we think fit first to begin the claim of this relation to you, lest we should seem too early in taking to
ourselves the glory which is now given us by you. It is a long time since this relation of ours to you hath been
renewed; and when we, upon holy and festival days, offer sacrifices to God, we pray to him for your preservation
and victory. As to ourselves, although we have had many wars that have compassed us around, by reason of the
covetousness of our neighbors, yet did not we determine to be troublesome either to you, or to others that were
related to us; but since we have now overcome our enemies, and have occasion to send Numenius the son of
Antiochus, and Antipater the son of Jason, who are both honorable men belonging to our senate, to the Romans, we
gave them this epistle to you also, that they might renew that friendship which is between us. You will therefore do
well yourselves to write to us, and send us an account of what you stand in need of from us, since we are in all
things disposed to act according to your desires." So the Lacedemonians received the ambassadors kindly, and
made a decree for friendship and mutual assistance, and sent it to them.

9. At this time there were three sects among the Jews, who had different opinions concerning human actions; the
one was called the sect of the Pharisees, another the sect of the Sadducees, and the other the sect of the Essens.
Now for the Pharisees, (11) they say that some actions, but not all, are the work of fate, and some of them are in
our own power, and that they are liable to fate, but are not caused by fate. But the sect of the Essens affirm, that
fate governs all things, and that nothing befalls men but what is according to its determination. And for the
Sadducees, they take away fate, and say there is no such thing, and that the events of human affairs are not at its
disposal; but they suppose that all our actions are in our own power, so that we are ourselves the causes of what is
good, and receive what is evil from our own folly. However, I have given a more exact account of these opinions in
the second book of the Jewish War.

10. But now the generals of Demetrius being willing to recover the defeat they had had, gathered a greater army
together than they had before, and came against Jonathan; but as soon as he was informed of their coming, he went
suddenly to meet them, to the country of Hamoth, for he resolved to give them no opportunity of coming into Judea;
so he pitched his camp at fifty furlongs' distance from the enemy, and sent out spies to take a view of their camp,
and after what manner they were encamped. When his spies had given him full information, and had seized upon
some of them by night, who told him the enemy would soon attack him, he, thus apprized beforehand, provided for
his security, and placed watchmen beyond his camp, and kept all his forces armed all night; and he gave them a
charge to be of good courage, and to have their minds prepared to fight in the night time, if they should be obliged
so to do, lest their enemy's designs should seem concealed from them. But when Demetrius's commanders were
informed that Jonathan knew what they intended, their counsels were disordered, and it alarmed them to find that
the enemy had discovered those their intentions; nor did they expect to overcome them any other way, now they
had failed in the snares they had laid for them; for should they hazard an open battle, they did not think they should
be a match for Jonathan's army, so they resolved to fly; and having lighted many fires, that when the enemy saw
them they might suppose they were there still, they retired. When Jonathan came to give them battle in the
morning in their camp, and found it deserted, and understood they were fled, he pursued them; yet he could not
overtake them, for they had already passed over the river Eleutherus, and were out of danger. So when Jonathan
was returned thence, he went into Arabia, and fought against the Nabateans, and drove away a great deal of their
prey, and took [many] captives, and came to Damascus, and there sold off what he had taken. About the same time
it was that Simon his brother went over all Judea and Palestine, as far as Askelon, and fortified the strong holds;
and when he had made them very strong, both in the edifices erected, and in the garrisons placed in them, he came
to Joppa; and when he had taken it, he brought a great garrison into it, for he heard that the people of Joppa were
disposed to deliver up the city to Demetrius's generals.

11. When Simon and Jonathan had finished these affairs, they returned to Jerusalem, where Jonathan gathered all
the people together, and took counsel to restore the walls of Jerusalem, and to rebuild the wall that encompassed
the temple, which had been thrown down, and to make the places adjoining stronger by very high towers; and
besides that, to build another wall in the midst of the city, in order to exclude the market-place from the garrison,
which was in the citadel, and by that means to hinder them from any plenty of provisions; and moreover, to make
the fortresses that were in the country much stronger and more defensible than they were before. And when these
things were approved of by the multitude, as rightly proposed, Jonathan himself took care of the building that
belonged to the city, and sent Simon away to make the fortresses in the country more secure than formerly. But
Demetrius passed over [Euphrates], and came into Mesopotamia, as desirous to retain that country still, as well as
Babylon; and when he should have obtained the dominion of the upper provinces, to lay a foundation for recovering
his entire kingdom; for those Greeks and Macedonians who dwelt there frequently sent ambassadors to him, and
promised, that if he would come to them, they would deliver themselves up to him, and assist him in fighting against
Arsaces, (12) the king of the Parthians. So he was elevated with these hopes, and came hastily to them, as having
resolved, that if he had once overthrown the Parthians, and gotten an army of his own, he would make war against
Trypho, and eject him out of Syria; and the people of that country received him with great alacrity. So he raised
forces, with which he fought against Arsaces, and lost all his army, and was himself taken alive, as we have
elsewhere related.



1. NOW when Trypho knew what had befallen Demetrius, he was no longer firm to Antiochus, but contrived by
subtlety to kill him, and then take possession of his kingdom; but the fear that he was in of Jonathan was an
obstacle to this his design, for Jonathan was a friend to Antiochus, for which cause he resolved first to take
Jonathan out of the way, and then to set about his design relating to Antiochus; but he judging it best to take him
off by deceit and treachery, came from Antioch to Bethshan, which by the Greeks is called Scythopolis, at which
place Jonathan met him with forty thousand chosen men, for he thought that he came to fight him; but when he
perceived that Jonathan was ready to fight, he attempted to gain him by presents and kind treatment, and gave
order to his captains to obey him, and by these means was desirous to give assurance of his good-will, and to take
away all suspicions out of his mind, that so he might make him careless and inconsiderate, and might take him when
he was unguarded. He also advised him to dismiss his army, because there was no occasion for bringing it with him
when there was no war, but all was in peace. However, he desired him to retain a few about him, and go with him to
Ptolemais, for that he would deliver the city up to him, and would bring all the fortresses that were in the country
under his dominion; and he told him that he came with those very designs.

2. Yet did not Jonathan suspect any thing at all by this his management, but believed that Trypho gave him this
advice out of kindness, and with a sincere design. Accordingly, he dismissed his army, and retained no more than
three thousand of them with him, and left two thousand in Galilee; and he himself, with one thousand, came with
Trypho to Ptolemais. But when the people of Ptolemais had shut their gates, as it had been commanded by Trypho
to do, he took Jonathan alive, and slew all that were with him. He also sent soldiers against those two thousand that
were left in Galilee, in order to destroy them; but those men having heard the report of what had happened to
Jonathan, they prevented the execution; and before those that were sent by Trypho came, they covered themselves
with their armor, and went away out of the country. Now when those that were sent against them saw that they were
ready to fight for their lives, they gave them no disturbance, but returned back to Trypho.

3. But when the people of Jerusalem heard that Jonathan was taken, and that the soldiers who were with him were
destroyed, they deplored his sad fate; and there was earnest inquiry made about him by every body, and a great
and just fear fell upon them, and made them sad, lest, now they were deprived of the courage and conduct of
Jonathan, the nations about them should bear them ill-will; and as they were before quiet on account of Jonathan
they should now rise up against them, and by making war with them, should force them into the utmost dangers.
And indeed what they suspected really befell them; for when those nations heard of the death of Jonathan, they
began to make war with the Jews as now destitute of a governor and Trypho himself got an army together, and had
intention to go up to Judea, and make war against its inhabitants. But when Simon saw that the people of Jerusalem
were terrified at the circumstances they were in, he desired to make a speech to them, and thereby to render them
more resolute in opposing Trypho when he should come against them. He then called the people together into the
temple, and thence began thus to encourage them: "O my countrymen, you are not ignorant that our father, myself,
and my brethren, have ventured to hazard our lives, and that willingly, for the recovery of your liberty; since I have
therefore such plenty of examples before me, and we of our family have determined with ourselves to die for our
laws, and our Divine worship, there shall no terror be so great as to banish this resolution from our souls, nor to
introduce in its place a love of life, and a contempt of glory. Do you therefore follow me with alacrity whithersoever
I shall lead you, as not destitute of such a captain as is willing to suffer, and to do the greatest things for you; for
neither am I better than my brethren that I should be sparing of my own life, nor so far worse than they as to avoid
and refuse what they thought the most honorable of all things, - I mean, to undergo death for your laws, and for that
worship of God which is peculiar to you; I will therefore give such proper demonstrations as will show that I am
their own brother; and I am so bold as to expect that I shall avenge their blood upon our enemies, and deliver you
all with your wives and children from the injuries they intend against you, and, with God's assistance, to preserve
your temple from destruction by them; for I see that these nations have you in contempt, as being without a
governor, and that they thence are encouraged to make war against you."

4. By this speech of Simon he inspired the multitude with courage; and as they had been before dispirited through
fear, they were now raised to a good hope of better things, insomuch that the whole multitude of the people cried
out all at once that Simon should be their leader; and that instead of Judas and Jonathan his brethren, he should
have the government over them; and they promised that they would readily obey him in whatsoever he should
command them. So he got together immediately all his own soldiers that were fit for war, and made haste in
rebuilding the walls of the city, and strengthening them by very high and strong towers, and sent a friend of his, one
Jonathan, the son of Absalom, to Joppa, and gave him order to eject the inhabitants out of the city, for he was
afraid lest they should deliver up the city to Trypho; but he himself staid to secure Jerusalem.

5. But Trypho removed from Ptoeinais with a great army, and came into Judea, and brought Jonathan with him in
bonds. Simon also met him with his army at the city Adida, which is upon a hill, and beneath it lie the plains of
Judea. And when Trypho knew that Simon was by the Jews made their governor, he sent to him, and would have
imposed upon him by deceit and trencher, and desired, if he would have his brother Jonathan released, that he
would send him a hundred talents of silver, and two of Jonathan's sons as hostages, that when he shall be released,
he may not make Judea revolt from the king; for that at present he was kept in bonds on account of the money he
had borrowed of the king, and now owed it to him. But Simon was aware of the craft of Trypho; and although he
knew that if he gave him the money he should lose it, and that Trypho would not set his brother free and withal
should deliver the sons of Jonathan to the enemy, yet because he was afraid that he should have a calumny raised
against him among the multitude as the cause of his brother's death, if he neither gave the money, nor sent
Jonathan's sons, he gathered his army together, and told them what offers Trypho had made; and added this, that
the offers were ensnaring and treacherous, and yet that it was more eligible to send the money and Jonathan's
sons, than to be liable to the imputation of not complying with Trypho's offers, and thereby refusing to save his
brother. Accordingly, Simon sent the sons of Jonathan and the money; but when Trypho had received them, he did
not keep his promise, nor set Jonathan free, but took his army, and went about all the country, and resolved to go
afterward to Jerusalem by the way of Idumea, while Simon went over against him with his army, and all along
pitched his own camp over against his.

6. But when those that were in the citadel had sent to Trypho, and besought him to make haste and come to them,
and to send them provisions, he prepared his cavalry as though he would be at Jerusalem that very night; but so
great a quantity of snow fell in the night, that it covered the roads, and made them so deep, that there was no
passing, especially for the cavalry. This hindered him from coming to Jerusalem; whereupon Trypho removed
thence, and came into Celesyria, and falling vehemently upon the land of Gilead, he slew Jonathan there; and when
he had given order for his burial, he returned himself to Antioch. However, Simon sent some to the city Basca to
bring away his brother's bones, and buried them in their own city Modin; and all the people made great lamentation
over him. Simon also erected a very large monument for his father and his brethren, of white and polished stone,
and raised it a great height, and so as to be seen a long way off, and made cloisters about it, and set up pillars,
which were of one stone apiece; a work it was wonderful to see. Moreover, he built seven pyramids also for his
parents and his brethren, one for each of them, which were made very surprising, both for their largeness and
beauty, and which have been preserved to this day; and we know that it was Simon who bestowed so much zeal
about the burial of Jonathan, and the building of these monuments for his relations. Now Jonathan died when he
had been high priest four years (13) and had been also the governor of his nation. And these were the
circumstances that concerned his death.

7. But Simon, who was made high priest by the multitude, on the very first year of his high priesthood set his people
free from their slavery under the Macedonians, and permitted them to pay tribute to them no longer; which liberty
and freedom from tribute they obtained after a hundred and seventy years (14) of the kingdom of the Assyrians,
which was after Seleucus, who was called Nicator, got the dominion over Syria. Now the affection of the multitude
towards Simon was so great, that in their contracts one with another, and in their public records, they wrote, "in the
first year of Simon the benefactor and ethnarch of the Jews;" for under him they were very happy, and overcame
the enemies that were round about them; for Simon overthrew the city Gazara, and Joppa, and Jamhis. He also
took the citadel of Jerusalem by siege, and cast it down to the ground, that it might not be any more a place of
refuge to their enemies when they took it, to do them a mischief, as it had been till now. And when he had done this,
he thought it their best way, and most for their advantage, to level the very mountain itself upon which the citadel
happened to stand, that so the temple might be higher than it. And indeed, when he had called the multitude to an
assembly, he persuaded them to have it so demolished, and this by putting them in mind what miseries they had
suffered by its garrison and the Jewish deserters, and what miseries they might hereafter suffer in case any
foreigner should obtain the kingdom, and put a garrison into that citadel. This speech induced the multitude to a
compliance, because he exhorted them to do nothing but what was for their own good: so they all set themselves to
the work, and leveled the mountain, and in that work spent both day and night without any intermission, which cost
them three whole years before it was removed, and brought to an entire level with the plain of the rest of the city.
After which the temple was the highest of all the buildings, now the citadel, as well as the mountain whereon it
stood, were demolished. And these actions were thus performed under Simon.



1. (15) Now a little while after Demetrius had been carried into captivity, Trypho his governor destroyed Antiochus,
(16) the son of Alexander, who was also called The God, (17) and this when he had reigned four years, though he
gave it out that he died under the hands of the surgeons. He then sent his friends, and those that were most
intimate with him, to the soldiers, and promised that he would give them a great deal of money if they would make
him king. He intimated to them that Demetrius was made a captive by the Parthians; and that Demetrius's brother
Atitiochus, if he came to be king, would do them a great deal of mischief, in way of revenge for their revolting from
his brother. So the soldiers, in expectation of the wealth they should get by bestowing the kingdom on Trypho,
made him their ruler. However, when Trypho had gained the management of affairs, he demonstrated his
disposition to be wicked; for while he was a private person, he cultivated familiarity with the multitude, and
pretended to great moderation, and so drew them on artfully to whatsoever he pleased; but when he had once taken
the kingdom, he laid aside any further dissimulation, and was the true Trypho; which behavior made his enemies
superior to him; for the soldiery hated him, and revolted from him to Cleopatra, the wife of Demetrius, who was
then shut up in Seleucia with her children. But as Antiochus, the brother of Demetrius who was called Soter, was
not admitted by any of the cities on account of Trypho, Cleopatra sent to him, and invited him to marry her, and to
take the kingdom. The reasons why she made this invitation were these: That her friends persuaded her to it, and
that she was afraid for herself, in case some of the people of Seleucia should deliver up the city to Trypho.

2. As Antlochuswas now come to Seleucia, and his forces increased every day, he marched to fight Trypho; and
having beaten him in the battle, he ejected him out of the Upper Syria into Phoenicia, and pursued him thither, and
besieged him in Dora which was a fortress hard to be taken, whither he had fled. He also sent ambassadors to
Simon the Jewish high priest, about a league of friendship and mutual assistance; who readily accepted of the
invitation, and sent to Antiochus great sums of money and provisions for those that besieged Dora, and thereby
supplied them very plentifully, so that for a little while he was looked upon as one of his most intimate friends; but
still Trypho fled from Dora to Apamia, where he was taken during the siege, and put to death, when he had reigned
three years.

3. However, Antiochus forgot the kind assistance that Simon had afforded him in his necessity, by reason of his
covetous and wicked disposition, and committed an army of soldiers to his friend Cendebeus, and sent him at once
to ravage Judea, and to seize Simon. When Simon heard of Antiochus's breaking his league with him, although he
were now in years, yet, provoked with the unjust treatment he had met with from Antiochus, and taking a resolution
brisker than his age could well bear, he went like a young man to act as general of his army. He also sent his sons
before among the most hardy of his soldiers, and he himself marched on with his army another way, and laid many
of his men in ambushes in the narrow valleys between the mountains; nor did he fail of success in any one of his
attempts, but was too hard for his enemies in every one of them. So he led the rest of his life in peace, and did also
himself make a league with the Romans.

4. Now he was the ruler of the Jews in all eight years; but at a feast came to his end. It was caused by the treachery
of his son-in-law Ptolemy, who caught also his wife, and two of his sons, and kept them in bonds. He also sent some
to kill John the third son, whose name was Hyrcanus; but the young man perceiving them coming, he avoided the
danger he was in from them, (18) and made haste into the city [Jerusalem], as relying on the good-will of the
multitude, because of the benefits they had received from his father, and because of the hatred the same multitude
bare to Ptolemy; so that when Ptolemy was endeavoring to enter the city by another gate, they drove him away, as
having already admitted Hyrcanus.



1. SO Ptolemy retired to one of the fortresses that was above Jericho, which was called Dagon. But Hyrcanus
having taken the high priesthood that had been his father's before, and in the first place propitiated God by
sacrifices, he then made an expedition against Ptolemy; and when he made his attacks upon the place, in other
points he was too hard for him, but was rendered weaker than he, by the commiseration he had for his mother and
brethren, and by that only; for Ptolemy brought them upon the wall, and tormented them in the sight of all, and
threatened that he would throw them down headlong, unless Hyrcanus would leave off the siege. And as he thought
that so far as he relaxed as to the siege and taking of the place, so much favor did he show to those that were
dearest to him by preventing their misery, his zeal about it was cooled. However, his mother spread out her hands,
and begged of him that he would not grow remiss on her account, but indulge his indignation so much the more, and
that he would do his utmost to take the place quickly, in order to get their enemy under his power, and then to
avenge upon him what he had done to those that were dearest to himself; for that death would be to her sweet,
though with torment, if that enemy of theirs might but be brought to punishment for his wicked dealings to them.
Now when his mother said so, he resolved to take the fortress immediately; but when he saw her beaten, and torn
to pieces, his courage failed him, and he could not but sympathize with what his mother suffered, and was thereby
overcome. And as the siege was drawn out into length by this means, that year on which the Jews used to rest came
on; for the Jews observe this rest every seventh year, as they do every seventh day; so that Ptolemy being for this
cause released from the war, (19) he slew the brethren of Hyrcanus, and his mother; and when he had so done, he
fled to Zeno, who was called Cotylas, who was then the tyrant of the city Philadelphia.

2. But Antiochus, being very uneasy at the miseries that Simon had brought upon him, he invaded Judea in the
fourth years' of his reign, and the first year of the principality of Hyrcanus, in the hundred and sixty-second
olympiad. (20) And when he had burnt the country, he shut up Hyrcanus in the city, which he encompassed round
with seven encampments; but did just nothing at the first, because of the strength of the walls, and because of the
valor of the besieged, although they were once in want of water, which yet they were delivered from by a large
shower of rain, which fell at the setting of the Pleiades (21) However, about the north part of the wall, where it
happened the city was upon a level with the outward ground, the king raised a hundred towers of three stories high,
and placed bodies of soldiers upon them; and as he made his attacks every day, he cut a double ditch, deep and
broad, and confined the inhabitants within it as within a wall; but the besieged contrived to make frequent sallies
out; and if the enemy were not any where upon their guard, they fell upon them, and did them a great deal of
mischief; and if they perceived them, they then retired into the city with ease. But because Hyrcanus discerned the
inconvenience of so great a number of men in the city, while the provisions were the sooner spent by them, and yet,
as is natural to suppose, those great numbers did nothing, he separated the useless part, and excluded them out of
the city, and retained that part only which were in the flower of their age, and fit for war. However, Antiochus would
not let those that were excluded go away, who therefore wandering about between the wails, and consuming away
by famine, died miserably; but when the feast of tabernacles was at hand, those that were within commiserated
their condition, and received them in again. And when Hyrcanus sent to Antiochus, and desired there might be a
truce for seven days, because of the festival, be gave way to this piety towards God, and made that truce
accordingly. And besides that, he sent in a magnificent sacrifice, bulls with their horns gilded, (22) with all sorts of
sweet spices, and with cups of gold and silver. So those that were at the gates received the sacrifices from those
that brought them, and led them to the temple, Antiochus the mean while feasting his army, which was a quite
different conduct from Antiochus Epiphanes, who, when he had taken the city, offered swine upon the altar, and
sprinkled the temple with the broth of their flesh, in order to violate the laws of the Jews, and the religion they
derived from their forefathers; for which reason our nation made war with him, and would never be reconciled to
him; but for this Antiochus, all men called him Antiochus the Pious, for the great zeal he had about religion.

3. Accordingly, Hyrcanus took this moderation of his kindly; and when he understood how religious he was towards
the Deity, he sent an embassage to him, and desired that he would restore the settlements they received from their
forefathers. So he rejected the counsel of those that would have him utterly destroy the nation, (23) by reason of
their way of living, which was to others unsociable, and did not regard what they said. But being persuaded that all
they did was out of a religious mind, he answered the ambassadors, that if the besieged would deliver up their arms,
and pay tribute for Joppa, and the other cities which bordered upon Judea, and admit a garrison of his, on these
terms he would make war against them no longer. But the Jews, although they were content with the other
conditions, did not agree to admit the garrison, because they could not associate with other people, nor converse
with them; yet were they willing, instead of the admission of the garrison, to give him hostages, and five hundred
talents of silver; of which they paid down three hundred, and sent the hostages immediately, which king Antiochus
accepted. One of those hostages was Hyrcanus's brother. But still he broke down the fortifications that
encompassed the city. And upon these conditions Antiochus broke up the siege, and departed.

4. But Hyrcanus opened the sepulcher of David, who excelled all other kings in riches, and took out of it three
thousand talents. He was also the first of the Jews that, relying on this wealth, maintained foreign troops. There
was also a league of friendship and mutual assistance made between them; upon which Hyrcanus admitted him into
the city, and furnished him with whatsoever his army wanted in great plenty, and with great generosity, and
marched along with him when he made an expedition against the Parthians; of which Nicolaus of Damascus is a
witness for us; who in his history writes thus: "When Antiochus had erected a trophy at the river Lycus, upon his
conquest of Indates, the general of the Parthians, he staid there two days. It was at the desire of Lyrcanus the Jew,
because it was such a festival derived to them from their forefathers, whereon the law of the Jews did not allow
them to travel." And truly he did not speak falsely in saying so; for that festival, which we call Pentecost, did then
fall out to be the next day to the Sabbath. Nor is it lawful for us to journey, either on the Sabbath day, or on a
festival day (24) But when Antiochus joined battle with Arsaces, the king of Parthin, he lost a great part of his
army, and was himself slain; and his brother Demetrius succeeded in the kingdom of Syria, by the permission of
Arsaces, who freed him from his captivity at the same time that Antiochus attacked Parthin, as we have formerly
related elsewhere.



1. BUT when Hyrcanus heard of the death of Antiochus, he presently made an expedition against the cities of
Syria, hoping to find them destitute of fighting men, and of such as were able to defend them. However, it was not
till the sixth month that he took Medaba, and that not without the greatest distress of his army. After this he took
Samega, and the neighboring places; and besides these, Shechem and Gerizzim, and the nation of the Cutheans,
who dwelt at the temple which resembled that temple which was at Jerusalem, and which Alexander permitted
Sanballat, the general of his army, to build for the sake of Manasseh, who was son-in-law to Jaddua the high priest,
as we have formerly related; which temple was now deserted two hundred years after it was built. Hyrcanus took
also Dora and Marissa, cities of Idumea, and subdued all the Idumeans; and permitted them to stay in that country,
if they would circumcise their genitals, and make use of the laws of the Jews; and they were so desirous of living in
the country of their forefathers, that they submitted to the use of circumcision, (25) and of the rest of the Jewish
ways of living; at which time therefore this befell them, that they were hereafter no other than Jews.

2. But Hyrcanus the high priest was desirous to renew that league of friendship they had with the Romans.
Accordingly, he sent an embassage to them; and when the senate had received their epistle, they made a league of
friendship with them, after the manner following: "Fanius, the son of Marcus, the praetor, gathered the senate
together on the eighth day before the Ides of February, in the senate-house, when Lucius Manlius, the son of
Lucius, of the Mentine tribe, and Caius Sempronius, the son of Caius, of the Falernian tribe, were present. The
occasion was, that the ambassadors sent by the people of the Jews (26) Simon, the son of Dositheus, and
Apollonius, the son of Alexander, and Diodorus, the son of Jason, who were good and virtuous men, had somewhat
to propose about that league of friendship and mutual assistance which subsisted between them and the Romans,
and about other public affairs, who desired that Joppa, and the havens, and Gazara, and the springs [of Jordan],
and the several other cities and countries of theirs, which Antiochus had taken from them in the war, contrary to the
decree of the senate, might be restored to them; and that it might not be lawful for the king's troops to pass through
their country, and the countries of those that are subject to them; and that what attempts Antiochus had made
during that war, without the decree of the senate, might be made void; and that they would send ambassadors, who
should take care that restitution be made them of what Antiochus had taken from them, and that they should make
an estimate of the country that had been laid waste in the war; and that they would grant them letters of protection
to the kings and free people, in order to their quiet return home. It was therefore decreed, as to these points, to
renew their league of friendship and mutual assistance with these good men, and who were sent by a good and a
friendly people." But as to the letters desired, their answer was, that the senate would consult about that matter
when their own affairs would give them leave; and that they would endeavor, for the time to come, that no like
injury should be done to them; and that their praetor Fanius should give them money out of the public treasury to
bear their expenses home. And thus did Fanius dismiss the Jewish ambassadors, and gave them money out of the
public treasury; and gave the decree of the senate to those that were to conduct them, and to take care that they
should return home in safety.

3. And thus stood the affairs of Hyrcanus the high priest. But as for king Demetrius, who had a mind to make war
against Hyrcanus, there was no opportunity nor room for it, while both the Syrians and the soldiers bare ill-will to
him, because he was an ill man. But when they had sent ambassadors to Ptolemy, who was called Physcon, that he
would send them one of the family at Seleueus, in order to take the kingdom, and he had sent them Alexander, who
was called Zebina, with an army, and there had been a battle between them, Demetrius was beaten in the fight, and
fled to Cleopatra his wife, to Ptolemais; but his wife would not receive him. He went thence to Tyre, and was there
caught; and when he had suffered much from his enemies before his death, he was slain by them. So Alexander
took the kingdom, and made a league with Hyrcanus, who yet, when he afterward fought with Antiochus the son of
Demetrius, who was called Grypus, was also beaten in the fight, and slain.



1. WHEN Antiochus had taken the kingdom, he was afraid to make war against Judea, because he heard that his
brother by the same mother, who was also called Antiochus, was raising an army against him out of Cyzicum; so he
staid in his own land, and resolved to prepare himself for the attack he expected from his brother, who was called
Cyzicenus, because he had been brought up in that city. He was the son of Antiochus that was called Soter, who
died in Parthia. He was the brother of Demetrius, the father of Grypus; for it had so happened, that one and the
same Cleopatra was married to two who were brethren, as we have related elsewhere. But Antiochus Cyzicenus
coming into Syria, continued many years at war with his brother. Now Hyrcanus lived all this while in peace; for
after the death of Antlochus, he revolted from the Macedonians, (27) nor did he any longer pay them the least
regard, either as their subject or their friend; but his affairs were in a very improving and flourishing condition in
the times of Alexander Zebina, and especially under these brethren, for the war which they had with one another
gave Hyrcanus the opportunity of enjoying himself in Judea quietly, insomuch that he got an immense quantity of
money. How ever, when Antiochus Cyzicenus distressed his land, he then openly showed what he meant. And when
he saw that Antiochus was destitute of Egyptian auxiliaries, and that both he and his brother were in an ill condition
in the struggles they had one with another, he despised them both.

2. So he made an expedition against Samaria which was a very strong city; of whose present name Sebaste, and its
rebuilding by Herod, we shall speak at a proper time; but he made his attack against it, and besieged it with a great
deal of pains; for he was greatly displeased with the Samaritans for the injuries they had done to the people of
Merissa, a colony of the Jews, and confederate with them, and this in compliance to the kings of Syria. When he
had therefore drawn a ditch, and built a double wall round the city, which was fourscore furlongs long, he set his
sons Antigonus and Arisrobulna over the siege; which brought the Samaritans to that great distress by famine, that
they were forced to eat what used not to be eaten, and to call for Antiochus Cyzicenus to help them, who came
readily to their assistance, but was beaten by Aristobulus; and when he was pursued as far as Scythopolis by the
two brethren, he got away. So they returned to Samaria, and shut them again within the wall, till they were forced to
send for the same Antiochus a second time to help them, who procured about six thousand men from Ptolemy
Lathyrus, which were sent them without his mother's consent, who had then in a manner turned him out of his
government. With these Egyptians Antiochus did at first overrun and ravage the country of Hyrcanus after the
manner of a robber, for he durst not meet him in the face to fight with him, as not having an army sufficient for that
purpose, but only from this supposal, that by thus harassing his land he should force Hyrcanus to raise the siege of
Samaria; but because he fell into snares, and lost many of his soldiers therein, he went away to Tripoli, and
committed the prosecution of the war against the Jews to Callimander and Epicrates.

3. But as to Callimander, he attacked the enemy too rashly, and was put to flight, and destroyed immediately; and
as to Epicrates, he was such a lover of money, that he openly betrayed Scythopolis, and other places near it, to the
Jews, but was not able to make them raise the siege of Samaria. And when Hyrcanus had taken that city, which was
not done till after a year's siege, he was not contented with doing that only, but he demolished it entirely, and
brought rivulets to it to drown it, for he dug such hollows as might let the water run under it; nay, he took away the
very marks that there had ever been such a city there. Now a very surprising thing is related of this high priest
Hyrcanus, how God came to discourse with him; for they say that on the very same day on which his sons fought
with Antiochus Cyzicenus, he was alone in the temple, as high priest, offering incense, and heard a voice, that his
sons had just then overcome Antiochus. And this he openly declared before all the multitude upon his coming out of
the temple; and it accordingly proved true; and in this posture were the affairs of Hyrcanus.

4. Now it happened at this time, that not only those Jews who were at Jerusalem and in Judea were in prosperity,
but also those of them that were at Alexandria, and in Egypt and Cyprus; for Cleopatra the queen was at variance
with her son Ptolemy, who was called Lathyrus, and appointed for her generals Chelcias and Ananias, the sons of
that Onias who built the temple in the prefecture of Heliopolis, like to that at Jerusalem, as we have elsewhere
related. Cleopatra intrusted these men with her army, and did nothing without their advice, as Strabo of Cappadocia
attests, when he saith thus, "Now the greater part, both those that came to Cyprus with us, and those that were
sent afterward thither, revolted to Ptolemy immediately; only those that were called Onias's party, being Jews,
continued faithful, because their countrymen Chelcias and Ananias were in chief favor with the queen." These are
the words of Strabo.

5. However, this prosperous state of affairs moved the Jews to envy Hyrcanus; but they that were the worst
disposed to him were the Pharisees, (28) who were one of the sects of the Jews, as we have informed you already.
These have so great a power over the multitude, that when they say any thing against the king, or against the high
priest, they are presently believed. Now Hyrcanus was a disciple of theirs, and greatly beloved by them. And when
he once invited them to a feast, and entertained them very kindly, when he saw them in a good humor, he began to
say to them, that they knew he was desirous to be a righteous man, and to do all things whereby he might please
God, which was the profession of the Pharisees also. However, he desired, that if they observed him offending in
any point, and going out of the right way, they would call him back and correct him. On which occasion they attested
to his being entirely virtuous; with which commendation he was well pleased. But still there was one of his guests
there, whose name was Eleazar, a man of an ill temper, and delighting in seditious practices. This man said," Since
thou desirest to know the truth, if thou wilt be righteous in earnest, lay down the high priesthood, and content
thyself with the civil government of the people," And when he desired to know for what cause he ought to lay down
the high priesthood, the other replied, "We have heard it from old men, that thy mother had been a captive under
the reign of Antiochus Epiphanes. (29) "This story was false, and Hyrcanus was provoked against him; and all the
Pharisees had a very great indignation against him.

6. Now there was one Jonathan, a very great friend of Hyrcanus's, but of the sect of the Sadducees, whose notions
are quite contrary to those of the Pharisees. He told Hyrcanus that Eleazar had cast such a reproach upon him,
according to the common sentiments of all the Pharisees, and that this would be made manifest if he would but ask
them the question, What punishment they thought this man deserved? for that he might depend upon it, that the
reproach was not laid on him with their approbation, if they were for punishing him as his crime deserved. So the
Pharisees made answer, that he deserved stripes and bonds, but that it did not seem right to punish reproaches with
death. And indeed the Pharisees, even upon other occasions, are not apt to be severe in punishments. At this gentle
sentence, Hyrcanus was very angry, and thought that this man reproached him by their approbation. It was this
Jonathan who chiefly irritated him, and influenced him so far, that he made him leave the party of the Pharisees,
and abolish the decrees they had imposed on the people, and to punish those that observed them. From this source
arose that hatred which he and his sons met with from the multitude: but of these matters we shall speak hereafter.
What I would now explain is this, that the Pharisees have delivered to the people a great many observances by
succession from their fathers, which are not written in the laws of Moses; and for that reason it is that the
Sadducees reject them, and say that we are to esteem those observances to be obligatory which are in the written
word, but are not to observe what are derived from the tradition of our forefathers. And concerning these things it
is that great disputes and differences have arisen among them, while the Sadducees are able to persuade none but
the rich, and have not the populace obsequious to them, but the Pharisees have the multitude on their side. But
about these two sects, and that of the Essens, I have treated accurately in the second book of Jewish affairs.

7. But when Hyrcanus had put an end to this sedition, he after that lived happily, and administered the government
in the best manner for thirty-one years, and then died, (30) leaving behind him five sons. He was esteemed by God
worthy of three of the greatest privileges, - the government of his nation, the dignity of the high priesthood, and
prophecy; for God was with him, and enabled him to know futurities; and to foretell this in particular, that, as to his
two eldest sons, he foretold that they would not long continue in the government of public affairs; whose unhappy
catastrophe will be worth our description, that we may thence learn how very much they were inferior to their
father's happiness.



1. NOW when their father Hyrcanus was dead, the eldest son Aristobulus, intending to change the government into
a kingdom, for so he resolved to do, first of all put a diadem on his head, four hundred eighty and one years and
three months after the people had been delivered from the Babylonish slavery, and were returned to their own
country again. This Aristobulus loved his next brother Antigonus, and treated him as his equal; but the others he
held in bonds. He also cast his mother into prison, because she disputed the government with him; for Hyrcanus
had left her to be mistress of all. He also proceeded to that degree of barbarity, as to kill her in prison with hunger;
nay, he was alienated from his brother Antigonus by calumnies, and added him to the rest whom he slew; yet he
seemed to have an affection for him, and made him above the rest a partner with him in the kingdom. Those
calumnies he at first did not give credit to, partly because he loved him, and so did not give heed to what was said
against him, and partly because he thought the reproaches were derived from the envy of the relaters. But when
Antigonus was once returned from the army, and that feast was then at hand when they make tabernacles to [the
honor of God,] it happened that Arlstobulus was fallen sick, and that Antigonus went up most splendidly adorned,
and with his soldiers about him in their armor, to the temple to celebrate the feast, and to put up many prayers for
the recovery of his brother, when some wicked persons, who had a great mind to raise a difference between the
brethren, made use of this opportunity of the pompous appearance of Antigonus, and of the great actions which he
had done, and went to the king, and spitefully aggravated the pompous show of his at the feast, and pretended that
all these circumstances were not like those of a private person; that these actions were indications of an affectation
of royal authority; and that his coming with a strong body of men must be with an intention to kill him; and that his
way of reasoning was this: That it was a silly thing in him, while it was in his power to reign himself, to look upon it
as a great favor that he was honored with a lower dignity by his brother.

2. Aristobulus yielded to these imputations, but took care both that his brother should not suspect him, and that he
himself might not run the hazard of his own safety; so he ordered his guards to lie in a certain place that was under
ground, and dark; (he himself then lying sick in the tower which was called Antonia;) and he commanded them, that
in case Antigonus came in to him unarmed, they should not touch any body, but if armed, they should kill him; yet
did he send to Antigonus, and desired that he would come unarmed; but the queen, and those that joined with her in
the plot against Antigonus, persuaded the messenger to tell him the direct contrary: how his brother had heard that
he had made himself a fine suit of armor for war, and desired him to come to him in that armor, that he might see
how fine it was. So Antigonus suspecting no treachery, but depending on the good-will of his brother, came to
Aristobulus armed, as he used to be, with his entire armor, in order to show it to him; but when he was come to a
place which was called Strato's Tower, where the passage happened to be exceeding dark, the guards slew him;
which death of his demonstrates that nothing is stronger than envy and calumny, and that nothing does more
certainly divide the good-will and natural affections of men than those passions. But here one may take occasion to
wonder at one Judas, who was of the sect of the Essens, (31) and who never missed the truth in his predictions; for
this man, when he saw Antigonus passing by the temple, cried out to his companions and friends, who abode with
him as his scholars, in order to learn the art of foretelling things to come?" That it was good for him to die now,
since he had spoken falsely about Antigonus, who is still alive, and I see him passing by, although he had foretold
he should die at the place called Strato's Tower that very day, while yet the place is six hundred furlongs off, where
he had foretold he should be slain; and still this day is a great part of it already past, so that he was in danger of
proving a false prophet." As he was saying this, and that in a melancholy mood, the news came that Antigonus was
slain in a place under ground, which itself was called also Strato's Tower, or of the same name with that Cesarea
which is seated at the sea. This event put the prophet into a great disorder.

3. But Aristobulus repented immediately of this slaughter of his brother; on which account his disease increased
upon him, and he was disturbed in his mind, upon the guilt of such wickedness, insomuch that his entrails were
corrupted by his intolerable pain, and he vomited blood: at which time one of the servants that attended upon him,
and was carrying his blood away, did, by Divine Providence, as I cannot but suppose, slip down, and shed part of his
blood at the very place where there were spots of Antigonus's blood, there slain, still remaining; and when there
was a cry made by the spectators, as if the servant had on purpose shed the blood on that place, Aristobulus heard
it, and inquired what the matter was; and as they did not answer him, he was the more earnest to know what it was,
it being natural to men to suspect that what is thus concealed is very bad: so upon his threatening, and forcing them
by terrors to speak, they at length told him the truth; whereupon he shed many tears, in that disorder of mind which
arose from his consciousness of what he had done, and gave a deep groan, and said, "I am not therefore, I
perceive, to be concealed from God, in the impious and horrid crimes I have been guilty of; but a sudden
punishment is coming upon me for the shedding the blood of my relations. And now, O thou most impudent body of
mine, how long wilt thou retain a soul that ought to die, in order to appease the ghosts of my brother and my
mother? Why dost thou not give it all up at once? And why do I deliver up my blood drop by drop to those whom I
have so wickedly murdered?" In saying which last words he died, having reigned a year. He was called a lover of
the Grecians; and had conferred many benefits on his own country, and made war against Iturea, and added a great
part of it to Judea, and compelled the inhabitants, if they would continue in that country, to be circumcised, and to
live according to the Jewish laws. He was naturally a man of candor, and of great modesty, as Strabo bears witness,
in the name of Timagenes; who says thus: "This man was a person of candor, and very serviceable to the Jews; for
he added a country to them, and obtained a part of the nation of the Itureans for them, and bound them to them by
the bond of the circumcision of their genitals."



1. WHEN Aristobulus was dead, his wife Salome, who, by the Greeks, was called Alexandra, let his brethren out of
prison, (for Aristobulus had kept them in bonds, as we have said already,) and made Alexander Janneus king, who
was the superior in age and in moderation. This child happened to be hated by his father as soon as he was born,
and could never be permitted to come into his father's sight till he died. (32) The occasion of which hatred is thus
reported: when Hyrcanus chiefly loved the two eldest of his sons, Antigonus and Aristobutus, God appeared to him
in his sleep, of whom he inquired which of his sons should be his successor. Upon God's representing to him the
countenance of Alexander, he was grieved that he was to be the heir of all his goods, and suffered him to be
brought up in Galilee However, God did not deceive Hyrcanus; for after the death of Aristobulus, he certainly took
the kingdom; and one of his brethren, who affected the kingdom, he slew; and the other, who chose to live a private
and quiet life, he had in esteem.

2. When Alexander Janneus had settled the government in the manner that he judged best, he made an expedition
against Ptolemais; and having overcome the men in battle, he shut them up in the city, and sat round about it, and
besieged it; for of the maritime cities there remained only Ptolemais and Gaza to be conquered, besides Strato's
Tower and Dora, which were held by the tyrant Zoilus. Now while Antiochus Philometor, and Antiochus who was
called Cyzicenus, were making war one against another, and destroying one another's armies, the people of
Ptolemais could have no assistance from them; but when they were distressed with this siege, Zoilus, who
possessed Strato's Tower and Dora, and maintained a legion of soldiers, and, on occasion of the contest between
the kings, affected tyranny himself, came and brought some small assistance to the people of Ptolemais; nor indeed
had the kings such a friendship for them, as that they should hope for any advantage from them. Both those kings
were in the case of wrestlers, who finding themselves deficient in. strength, and yet being ashamed to yield, put off
the fight by laziness, and by lying still as long as they can. The only hope they had remaining was from the kings of
Egypt, and from Ptolemy Lathyrus, who now held Cyprus, and who came to Cyprus when he was driven from the
government of Egypt by Cleopatra his mother. So the people of Ptolemais sent to this Ptolemy Lathyrus, and
desired him to come as a confederate, to deliver them, now they were in such danger, out of the hands of
Alexander. And as the ambassadors gave him hopes, that if he would pass over into Syria, he would have the
people of Gaza on the side of those of Ptolemais; as also they said, that Zoilus, and besides these the Sidonians,
and many others, would assist them; so he was elevated at this, and got his fleet ready as soon as possible.

3. But in this interval Demenetus, one that was of abilities to persuade men to do as he would have them, and a
leader of the populace, made those of Ptolemais change their opinions; and said to them, that it was better to run
the hazard of being subject to the Jews, than to admit of evident slavery by delivering themselves up to a master;
and besides that, to have not only a war at present, but to expect a much greater war from Egypt; for that
Cleopatra would not overlook an army raised by Ptolemy for himself out of the neighborhood, but would come
against them with a great army of her own, and this because she was laboring to eject her son out of Cyprus also;
that as for Ptolemy, if he fail of his hopes, he can still retire to Cyprus, but that they will be left in the greatest
danger possible. Now Ptolemy, although he had heard of the change that was made in the people of Ptolemais, yet
did he still go on with his voyage, and came to the country called Sycamine, and there set his army on shore. This
army of his, in the whole horse and foot together, were about thirty thousand, with which he marched near to
Ptolemais, and there pitched his camp. But when the people of Ptolemais neither received his ambassadors, nor
would hear what they had to say, he was under a very great concern.

4. But when Zoilus and the people of Gaza came to him, and desired his assistance, because their country was laid
waste by the Jews, and by Alexander, Alexander raised the siege, for fear of Ptolemy: and when he had drawn off
his army into his own country, he used a stratagem afterwards, by privately inviting Cleopatra to come against
Ptolemy, but publicly pretending to desire a league of friendship and mutual assistance with him; and promising to
give him four hundred talents of silver, he desired that, by way of requital, he would take off Zoilus the tyrant, and
give his country to the Jews. And then indeed Ptolemy, with pleasure, made such a league of friendship with
Alexander, and subdued Zoilus; but when he afterwards heard that he had privily sent to Cleopatra his mother, he
broke the league with him, which yet he had confirmed with an oath, and fell upon him, and besieged Ptolemais,
because it would not receive him. However, leaving his generals, with some part of his forces, to go on with the
siege, he went himself immediately with the rest to lay Judea waste; and when Alexander understood this to be
Ptolemy's intention, he also got together about fifty thousand soldiers out of his own country; nay, as some writers
have said, eighty thousand (33) He then took his army, and went to meet Ptolemy; but Ptolemy fell upon Asochis, a
city of Galilee, and took it by force on the sabbath day, and there he took about ten thousand slaves, and a great
deal of other prey.

5. He then tried to take Sepphoris, which was a city not far from that which was destroyed, but lost many of his
men; yet did he then go to fight with Alexander; which Alexander met him at the river Jordan, near a certain place
called Saphoth, [not far from the river Jordan,] and pitched his camp near to the enemy. He had however eight
thousand in the first rank, which he styled Hecatontomachi, having shields of brass. Those in the first rank of
Ptolemy's soldiers also had shields covered with brass. But Ptolemy's soldiers in other respects were inferior to
those of Alexander, and therefore were more fearful of running hazards; but Philostephanus, the camp-master, put
great courage into them, and ordered them to pass the river, which was between their camps. Nor did Alexander
think fit to hinder their passage over it; for he thought, that if the enemy had once gotten the river on their back,
that he should the easier take them prisoners, when they could not flee out of the battle: in the beginning of which,
the acts on both sides, with their hands, and with their alacrity, were alike, and a great slaughter was made by both
the armies; but Alexander was superior, till Philostephanus opportunely brought up the auxiliaries, to help those
that were giving way; but as there were no auxiliaries to afford help to that part of the Jews that gave way, it fell
out that they fled, and those near them did no assist them, but fled along with them. However, Ptolemy's soldiers
acted quite otherwise; for they followed the Jews, and killed them, till at length those that slew them pursued after
them when they had made them all run away, and slew them so long, that their weapons of iron were blunted, and
their hands quite tired with the slaughter; for the report was, that thirty thousand men were then slain. Timagenes
says they were fifty thousand. As for the rest, they were part of them taken captives, and the other part ran away
to their own country.

6. After this victory, Ptolemy overran all the country; and when night came on, he abode in certain villages of
Judea, which when he found full of women and children, he commanded his soldiers to strangle them, and to cut
them in pieces, and then to cast them into boiling caldrons, and then to devour their limbs as sacrifices. This
commandment was given, that such as fled from the battle, and came to them, might suppose their enemies were
cannibals, and eat men's flesh, and might on that account be still more terrified at them upon such a sight. And both
Strabo and Nicholaus [of Damascus] affirm, that they used these people after this manner, as I have already
related. Ptolemy also took Ptolemais by force, as we have declared elsewhere.



1. WHEN Cleopatra saw that her son was grown great, and laid Judea waste, without disturbance, and had gotten
the city of Gaza under his power, she resolved no longer to overlook what he did, when he was almost at her gates;
and she concluded, that now he was so much stronger than before, he would be very desirous of the dominion over
the Egyptians; but she immediately marched against him, with a fleet at sea and an army of foot on land, and made
Chelcias and Ananias the Jews generals of her whole army, while she sent the greatest part of her riches, her
grandchildren, and her testament, to the people of Cos (34) Cleopatra also ordered her son Alexander to sail with a
great fleet to Phoenicia; and when that country had revolted, she came to Ptolemais; and because the people of
Ptolemais did not receive her, she besieged the city; but Ptolemy went out of Syria, and made haste unto Egypt,
supposing that he should find it destitute of an army, and soon take it, though he failed of his hopes. At this time
Chelcias, one of Cleopatra's generals, happened to die in Celesyria, as he was in pursuit of Ptolemy.

2. When Cleopatra heard of her son's attempt, and that his Egyptian expedition did not succeed according to his
expectations, she sent thither part of her army, and drove him out of that country; so when he was returned out of
Egypt again, he abode during the winter at Gaza, in which time Cleopatra took the garrison that was in Ptolemais by
siege, as well as the city; and when Alexander came to her, he gave her presents, and such marks of respect as
were but proper, since under the miseries he endured by Ptolemy he had no other refuge but her. Now there were
some of her friends who persuaded her to seize Alexander, and to overrun and take possession of the country, and
not to sit still and see such a multitude of brave Jews subject to one man. But Ananias's counsel was contrary to
theirs, who said that she would do an unjust action if she deprived a man that was her ally of that authority which
belonged to him, and this a man who is related to us; "for (said he) I would not have thee ignorant of this, that what
in. justice thou dost to him will make all us that are Jews to be thy enemies. This desire of Ananias Cleopatra
complied with, and did no injury to Alexander, but made a league of mutual assistance with him at Scythopolis, a
city of Celesyria.

3. So when Alexander was delivered from the fear he was in of Ptolemy, he presently made an expedition against
Coelesyria. He also took Gadara, after a siege of ten months. He took also Areathus, a very strong fortress
belonging to the inhabitants above Jordan, where Theodorus, the son of Zeno, had his chief treasure, and what he
esteemed most precious. This Zeno fell unexpectedly upon the Jews, and slew ten thousand of them, and seized
upon Alexander's baggage. Yet did not this misfortune terrify Alexander; but he made an expedition upon the
maritime parts of the country, Raphia and Anthedon, (the name of which king Herod afterwards changed to
Agrippias,) and took even that by force. But when Alexander saw that Ptolemy was retired from Gaza to Cyprus,
and his mother Cleopatra was returned to Egypt, he grew angry at the people of Gaza, because they had invited
Ptolemy to assist them, and besieged their city, and ravaged their country. But as Apollodotus, the general of the
army of Gaza, fell upon the camp of the Jews by night, with two thousand foreign and ten thousand of his own
forces, while the night lasted, those of Gaza prevailed, because the enemy was made to believe that it was Ptolemy
who attacked them; but when day was come on, and that mistake was corrected, and the Jews knew the truth of the
matter, they came back again, and fell upon those of Gaza, and slew of them about a thousand. But as those of
Gaza stoutly resisted them, and would not yield for either their want of any thing, nor for the great multitude that
were slain, (for they would rather suffer any hardship whatever than come under the power of their enemies,)
Aretas, king of the Arabians, a person then very illustrious, encouraged them to go on with alacrity, and promised
them that he would come to their assistance; but it happened that before he came Apollodotus was slain; for his
brother Lysimachus envying him for the great reputation he had gained among the citizens, slew him, and got the
army together, and delivered up the city to Alexander, who, when he came in at first, lay quiet, but afterward set his
army upon the inhabitants of Gaza, and gave them leave to punish them; so some went one way, and some went
another, and slew the inhabitants of Gaza; yet were not they of cowardly hearts, but opposed those that came to
slay them, and slew as many of the Jews; and some of them, when they saw themselves deserted, burnt their own
houses, that the enemy might get none of their spoils; nay, some of them, with their own hands, slew their children
and their wives, having no other way but this of avoiding slavery for them; but the senators, who were in all five
hundred, fled to Apollo's temple, (for this attack happened to be made as they were sitting,) whom Alexander slew;
and when he had utterly overthrown their city, he returned to Jerusalem, having spent a year in that siege.

4. About this very time Antiochus, who was called Grypus, died (35) His death was caused by Heracleon's
treachery, when he had lived forty-five years, and had reigned twenty-nine. (36) His son Seleucus succeeded him in
the kingdom, and made war with Antiochus, his father's brother, who was called Antiochus Cyzicenus, and beat him,
and took him prisoner, and slew him. But after a while Antiochus, the son of Cyzicenus, who was called Pius, came
to Aradus, and put the diadem on his own head, and made war with Seleucus, and beat him, and drove him out of all
Syria. But when he fled out of Syria, he came to Mopsuestia again, and levied money upon them; but the people of
Mopsuestin had indignation at what he did, and burnt down his palace, and slew him, together with his friends. But
when Antiochus, the son of Cyzicenus, was king of Syria, Antiochus, (37) the brother of Seleucus, made war upon
him, and was overcome, and destroyed, he and his army. After him, his brother Philip put on the diadem, and
reigned over some part of Syria; but Ptolemy Lathyrus sent for his fourth brother Demetrius, who was called
Eucerus, from Cnidus, and made him king of Damascus. Both these brothers did Antiochus vehemently oppose, but
presently died; for when he was come as an auxiliary to Laodice, queen of the Gileadites, (38) when she was
making war against the Parthians, and he was fighting courageously, he fell, while Demetrius and Philip governed
Syria, as hath been elsewhere related.

5. As to Alexander, his own people were seditious against him; for at a festival which was then celebrated, when he
stood upon the altar, and was going to sacrifice, the nation rose upon him, and pelted him with citrons [which they
then had in their hands, because] the law of the Jews required that at the feast of tabernacles every one should
have branches of the palm tree and citron tree; which thing we have elsewhere related. They also reviled him, as
derived from a captive, and so unworthy of his dignity and of sacrificing. At this he was in a rage, and slew of them
about six thousand. He also built a partition-wall of wood round the altar and the temple, as far as that partition
within which it was only lawful for the priests to enter; and by this means he obstructed the multitude from coming
at him. He also maintained foreigners of Pisidie and Cilicia; for as to the Syrians, he was at war with them, and so
made no use of them. He also overcame the Arabians, such as the Moabites and Gileadites, and made them bring
tribute. Moreover, he demolished Amathus, while Theodorus (39) durst not fight with him; but as he had joined
battle with Obedas, king of the Arabians, and fell into an ambush in the places that were rugged and difficult to be
traveled over, he was thrown down into a deep valley, by the multitude of the camels at Gadurn, a village of Gilead,
and hardly escaped with his life. From thence he fled to Jerusalem, where, besides his other ill success, the nation
insulted him, and he fought against them for six years, and slew no fewer than fifty thousand of them. And when he
desired that they would desist from their ill-will to him, they hated him so much the more, on account of what had
already happened; and when he had asked them what he ought to do, they all cried out, that he ought to kill himself.
They also sent to Demetrius Eucerus, and desired him to make a league of mutual defense with them.



1. SO Demetrius came with an army, and took those that invited him, and pitched his camp near the city Shechem;
upon which Alexander, with his six thousand two hundred mercenaries, and about twenty thousand Jews, who were
of his party, went against Demetrius, who had three thousand horsemen, and forty thousand footmen. Now there
were great endeavors used on both sides, - Demetrius trying to bring off the mercenaries that were with Alexander,
because they were Greeks, and Alexander trying to bring off the Jews that were with Demetrius. However, when
neither of them could persuade them so to do, they came to a battle, and Demetrius was the conqueror; in which all
Alexander's mercenaries were killed, when they had given demonstration of their fidelity and courage. A great
number of Demetrius's soldiers were slain also.

2. Now as Alexander fled to the mountains, six thousand of the Jews hereupon came together [from Demetrius] to
him out of pity at the change of his fortune; upon which Demetrius was afraid, and retired out of the country; after
which the Jews fought against Alexander, and being beaten, were slain in great numbers in the several battles
which they had; and when he had shut up the most powerful of them in the city Bethome, he besieged them therein;
and when he had taken the city, and gotten the men into his power, he brought them to Jerusalem, and did one of
the most barbarous actions in the world to them; for as he was feasting with his concubines, in the sight of all the
city, he ordered about eight hundred of them to be crucified; and while they were living, he ordered the throats of
their children and wives to be cut before their eyes. This was indeed by way of revenge for the injuries they had
done him; which punishment yet was of an inhuman nature, though we suppose that he had been never so much
distressed, as indeed he had been, by his wars with them, for he had by their means come to the last degree of
hazard, both of his life and of his kingdom, while they were not satisfied by themselves only to fight against him, but
introduced foreigners also for the same purpose; nay, at length they reduced him to that degree of necessity, that
he was forced to deliver back to the king of Arabia the land of Moab and Gilead, which he had subdued, and the
places that were in them, that they might not join with them in the war against him, as they had done ten thousand
other things that tended to affront and reproach him. However, this barbarity seems to have been without any
necessity, on which account he bare the name of a Thracian among the Jews (40) whereupon the soldiers that had
fought against him, being about eight thousand in number, ran away by night, and continued fugitives all the time
that Alexander lived; who being now freed from any further disturbance from them, reigned the rest of his time in
the utmost tranquillity.

3. But when Demetrius was departed out of Judea, he went to Berea, and besieged his brother Philip, having with
him ten thousand footmen, and a thousand horsemen. However Strato, the tyrant of Berea, the confederate of
Philip, called in Zizon, the ruler of the Arabian tribes, and Mithridates Sinax, the ruler of the Parthians, who coming
with a great number of forces, and besieging Demetrius in his encampment, into which they had driven them with
their arrows, they compelled those that were with him by thirst to deliver up themselves. So they took a great many
spoils out of that country, and Demetrius himself, whom they sent to Mithridates, who was then king of Parthis; but
as to those whom they took captives of the people of Antioch, they restored them to the Antiochinus without any
reward. Now Mithridates, the king of Parthis, had Demetrius in great honor, till Demetrius ended his life by
sickness. So Philip, presently after the fight was over, came to Antioch, and took it, and reigned over Syria.



1. AFTER this, Antiochus, who was called Dionysus, (41) and was Philip's brother, aspired to the dominion, and
carne to Damascus, and got the power into his hands, and there he reigned; but as he was making war against the
Arabians, his brother Philip heard of it, and came to Damascus, where Milesius, who had been left governor of the
citadel, and the Damascens themselves, delivered up the city to him; yet because Philip was become ungrateful to
him, and had bestowed upon him nothing of that in hopes whereof he had received him into the city, but had a mind
to have it believed that it was rather delivered up out of fear than by the kindness of Milesius, and because he had
not rewarded him as he ought to have done, he became suspected by him, and so he was obliged to leave Damascus
again; for Milesius caught him marching out into the Hippodrome, and shut him up in it, and kept Damascus for
Antiochus [Eucerus], who hearing how Philip's affairs stood, came back out of Arabia. He also came immediately,
and made an expedition against Judea, with eight thousand armed footmen, and eight hundred horsemen. So
Alexander, out of fear of his coming, dug a deep ditch, beginning at Chabarzaba, which is now called Antipatris, to
the sea of Joppa, on which part only his army could be brought against him. He also raised a wall, and erected
wooden towers, and intermediate redoubts, for one hundred and fifty furlongs in length, and there expected the
coming of Antiochus; but he soon burnt them all, and made his army pass by that way into Arabia. The Arabian king
[Aretas] at first retreated, but afterward appeared on the sudden with ten thousand horsemen. Antiochus gave them
the meeting, and fought desperately; and indeed when he had gotten the victory, and was bringing some auxiliaries
to that part of his army that was in distress, he was slain. When Antiochus was fallen, his army fled to the village
Cana, where the greatest part of them perished by famine.

2. After him (42) Arems reigned over Celesyria, being called to the government by those that held Damascus, by
reason of the hatred they bare to Ptolemy Menneus. He also made thence an expedition against Judea, and beat
Alexander in battle, near a place called Adida; yet did he, upon certain conditions agreed on between them, retire
out of Judea.

3. But Alexander marched again to the city Dios, and took it; and then made an expedition against Essa, where was
the best part of Zeno's treasures, and there he encompassed the place with three walls; and when he had taken the
city by fighting, he marched to Golan and Seleucia; and when he had taken these cities, he, besides them, took that
valley which is called The Valley of Antiochus, as also the fortress of Gamala. He also accused Demetrius, who was
governor of those places, of many crimes, and turned him out; and after he had spent three years in this war, he
returned to his own country, when the Jews joyfully received him upon this his good success.

4. Now at this time the Jews were in possession of the following cities that had belonged to the Syrians, and
Idumeans, and Phoenicians: At the sea-side, Strato's Tower, Apollonia, Joppa, Jamhis, Ashdod, Gaza, Anthedon,
Raphia, and Rhinocolura; in the middle of the country, near to Idumea, Adorn, and Marissa; near the country of
Samaria, Mount Carmel, and Mount Tabor, Scythopolis, and Gadara; of the country of Gaulonitis, Seleucia and
Gabala; in the country of Moab, Heshbon, and Medaba, Lemba, and Oronas, Gelithon, Zorn, the valley of the
Cilices, and Pollo; which last they utterly destroyed, because its inhabitants would not bear to change their religious
rites for those peculiar to the Jews. (43) The Jews also possessed others of the principal cities of Syria, which had
been destroyed.

5. After this, king Alexander, although he fell into a distemper by hard drinking, and had a quartan ague, which held
him three years, yet would not leave off going out with his army, till he was quite spent with the labors he had
undergone, and died in the bounds of Ragaba, a fortress beyond Jordan. But when his queen saw that he was ready
to die, and had no longer any hopes of surviving, she came to him weeping and lamenting, and bewailed herself and
her sons on the desolate condition they should be left in; and said to him, "To whom dost thou thus leave me and
my children, who are destitute of all other supports, and this when thou knowest how much ill-will thy nation bears
thee?" But he gave her the following advice: That she need but follow what he would suggest to her, in order to
retain the kingdom securely, with her children: that she should conceal his death from the soldiers till she should
have taken that place; after this she should go in triumph, as upon a victory, to Jerusalem, and put some of her
authority into the hands of the Pharisees; for that they would commend her for the honor she had done them, and
would reconcile the nation to her for he told her they had great authority among the Jews, both to do hurt to such as
they hated, and to bring advantages to those to whom they were friendly disposed; for that they are then believed
best of all by the multitude when they speak any severe thing against others, though it be only out of envy at them.
And he said that it was by their means that he had incurred the displeasure of the nation, whom indeed he had
injured. "Do thou, therefore," said he, "when thou art come to Jerusalem, send for the leading men among them,
and show them my body, and with great appearance of sincerity, give them leave to use it as they themselves
please, whether they will dishonor the dead body by refusing it burial, as having severely suffered by my means, or
whether in their anger they will offer any other injury to that body. Promise them also that thou wilt do nothing
without them in the affairs of the kingdom. If thou dost but say this to them, I shall have the honor of a more
glorious Funeral from them than thou couldst have made for me; and when it is in their power to abuse my dead
body, they will do it no injury at all, and thou wilt rule in safety." (44) So when he had given his wife this advice, he
died, after he had reigned twenty-seven years, and lived fifty years within one.



1. SO Alexandra, when she had taken the fortress, acted as her husband had suggested to her, and spake to the
Pharisees, and put all things into their power, both as to the dead body, and as to the affairs of the kingdom, and
thereby pacified their anger against Alexander, and made them bear goodwill and friendship to him; who then came
among the multitude, and made speeches to them, and laid before them the actions of Alexander, and told them that
they had lost a righteous king; and by the commendation they gave him, they brought them to grieve, and to be in
heaviness for him, so that he had a funeral more splendid than had any of the kings before him. Alexander left
behind him two sons, Hyrcanus and Aristobulus, but committed the kingdom to Alexandra. Now, as to these two
sons, Hyrcanus was indeed unable to manage public affairs, and delighted rather in a quiet life; but the younger,
Aristobulus, was an active and a bold man; and for this woman herself, Alexandra, she was loved by the multitude,
because she seemed displeased at the offenses her husband had been guilty of.

2. So she made Hyrcanus high priest, because he was the elder, but much more because he cared not to meddle
with politics, and permitted the Pharisees to do every thing; to whom also she ordered the multitude to be obedient.
She also restored again those practices which the Pharisees had introduced, according to the traditions of their
forefathers, and which her father-in-law, Hyrcanus, had abrogated. So she had indeed the name of the regent, but
the Pharisees had the authority; for it was they who restored such as had been banished, and set such as were
prisoners at liberty, and, to say all at once, they differed in nothing from lords. However, the queen also took care
of the affairs of the kingdom, and got together a great body of mercenary soldiers, and increased her own army to
such a degree, that she became terrible to the neighboring tyrants, and took hostages of them: and the country was
entirely at peace, excepting the Pharisees; for they disturbed the queen, and desired that she would kill those who
persuaded Alexander to slay the eight hundred men; after which they cut the throat of one of them, Diogenes; and
after him they did the same to several, one after another, till the men that were the most potent came into the
palace, and Aristobulus with them, for he seemed to be displeased at what was done; and it appeared openly, that if
he had an opportunity, he would not permit his mother to go on so. These put the queen in mind what great dangers
they had gone through, and great things they had done, whereby they had demonstrated the firmness of their
fidelity to their master, insomuch that they had recieved the greatest marks of favor from him; and they begged of
her, that she would not utterly blast their hopes, as it now happened, that when they had escaped the hazards that
arose from their [open] enemies, they were to be cut off at home by their [private] enemies, like brute beasts,
without any help whatsoever. They said also, that if their adversaries would be satisfied with those that had been
slain already, they would take what had been done patiently, on account of their natural love to their governors; but
if they must expect the same for the future also, they implored of her a dismission from her service; for they could
not bear to think of attempting any method for their deliverance without her, but would rather die willingly before
the palace gate, in case she would not forgive them. And that it was a great shame, both for themselves and for the
queen, that when they were neglected by her, they should come under the lash of her husband's enemies; for that
Aretas, the Arabian king, and the monarchs, would give any reward, if they could get such men as foreign
auxiliaries, to whom their very names, before their voices be heard, may perhaps be terrible; but if they could not
obtain this their second request, and if she had determined to prefer the Pharisees before them, they still insisted
that she would place them every one in her fortresses; for if some fatal demon hath a constant spite against
Alexander's house, they would be willing to bear their part, and to live in a private station there.

3. As these men said thus, and called upon Alexander's ghost for commiseration of those already slain, and those in
danger of it, all the bystanders brake out into tears. But Aristobulus chiefly made manifest what were his
sentiments, and used. many reproachful expressions to his mother, [saying,] "Nay, indeed, the case is this, that
they have been themselves the authors of their own calamities, who have permitted a woman who, against reason,
was mad with ambition, to reign over them, when there were sons in the flower of their age fitter for it." So
Alexandra, not knowing what to do with any decency, committed the fortresses to them, all but Hyrcania, and
Alexandrium, and Macherus, where her principal treasures were. After a little while also, she sent her son
Aristobulus with an army to Damascus against Ptolemy, who was called Menneus, who was such a bad neighbor to
the city; but he did nothing considerable there, and so returned home.

4. About this time news was brought that Tigranes, the king of Armenia, had made an irruption into Syria with five
hundred thousand soldiers, (45) and was coming against Judea. This news, as may well be supposed, terrified the
queen and the nation. Accordingly, they sent him many and very valuable presents, as also ambassadors, and that
as he was besieging Ptolemais; for Selene the queen, the same that was also called Cleopatra, ruled then over
Syria, who had persuaded the inhabitants to exclude Tigranes. So the Jewish ambassadors interceded with him, and
entreated him that he would determine nothing that was severe about their queen or nation. He commended them
for the respects they paid him at so great a distance, and gave them good hopes of his favor. But as soon as
Ptolemais was taken, news came to Tigranes, that Lucullus, in his pursuit of Mithridates, could not light upon him,
who was fled into Iberia, but was laying waste Armenia, and besieging its cities. Now when Tigranes knew this, he
returned home.

5. After this, when the queen was fallen into a dangerous distemper, Aristobulus resolved to attempt the seizing of
the government; so he stole away secretly by night, with only one of his servants, and went to the fortresses,
wherein his friends, that were such from the days of his father, were settled; for as he had been a great while
displeased at his mother's conduct, so he was now much more afraid, lest, upon her death, their whole family should
be under the power of the Pharisees; for he saw the inability of his brother, who was to succeed in the government;
nor was any one conscious of what he was doing but only his wife, whom he left at Jerusalem with their children. He
first of all came to Agaba, where was Galestes, one of the potent men before mentioned, and was received by him.
When it was day, the queen perceived that Aristobulus was fled; and for some time she supposed that his departure
was not in order to make any innovation; but when messengers came one after another with the news that he had
secured the first place, the second place, and all the places, for as soon as one had begun they all submitted to his
disposal, then it was that the queen and the nation were in the greatest disorder, for they were aware that it would
not be long ere Aristobulus would be able to settle himself firmly in the government. What they were principally
afraid of was this, that he would inflict punishment upon them for the mad treatment his house had had from them.
So they resolved to take his wife and children into custody, and keep them in the fortress that was over the temple.
(46) Now there was a mighty conflux of people that came to Aristobulus from all parts, insomuch that he had a kind
of royal attendants about him; for in a little more than fifteen days he got twenty-two strong places, which gave him
the opportunity of raising an army from Libanus and Trachonitis, and the monarchs; for men are easily led by the
greater number, and easily submit to them. And besides this, that by affording him their assistance, when he could
not expect it, they, as well as he, should have the advantages that would come by his being king, because they had
been the occasion of his gaining the kingdom. Now the eiders of the Jews, and Hyrcanus with them, went in unto the
queen, and desired that she would give them her sentiments about the present posture of affairs, for that
Aristobulus was in effect lord of almost all the kingdom, by possessing of so many strong holds, and that it was
absurd for them to take any counsel by themselves, how ill soever she were, whilst she was alive, and that the
danger would be upon them in no long time. But she bid them do what they thought proper to be done; that they had
many circumstances in their favor still remaining, a nation in good heart, an army, and money in their several
treasuries; for that she had small concern about public affairs now, when the strength of her body already failed

6. Now a little while after she had said this to them, she died, when she had reigned nine years, and had in all lived
seventy-three. A woman she was who showed no signs of the weakness of her sex, for she was sagacious to the
greatest degree in her ambition of governing; and demonstrated by her doings at once, that her mind was fit for
action, and that sometimes men themselves show the little understanding they have by the frequent mistakes they
make in point of government; for she always preferred the present to futurity, and preferred the power of an
imperious dominion above all things, and in comparison of that had no regard to what was good, or what was right.
However, she brought the affairs of her house to such an unfortunate condition, that she was the occasion of the
taking away that authority from it, and that in no long time afterward, which she had obtained by a vast number of
hazards and misfortunes, and this out of a desire of what does not belong to a woman, and all by a compliance in her
sentiments with those that bare ill-will to their family, and by leaving the administration destitute of a proper
support of great men; and, indeed, her management during her administration while she was alive, was such as
filled the palace after her death with calamities and disturbance. However, although this had been her way of
governing, she preserved the nation in peace. And this is the conclusion of the affairs of, Alexandra.


(1) This Alexander Bala, who certainly pretended to be the son of Antiochus Epiphanes, and was owned for such by
the Jews and Romans, and many others, and yet is by several historians deemed to be a counterfeit, and of no
family at all, is, however, by Josephus believed to have been the real son of that Antiochus, and by him always
spoken of accordingly. And truly, since the original contemporary and authentic author of the First Book of
Maccabees (10:1) calls him by his father's name, Epiphanes, and says he was the son of Antiochus, I suppose the
other writers, who are all much later, are not to be followed against such evidence, though perhaps Epiphanes might
have him by a woman of no family. The king of Egypt also, Philometor, soon gave him his daughter in marriage,
which he would hardly have done, had he believed him to be a counterfeit, and of so very mean a birth as the later
historians pretend.

(2) Since Jonathan plainly did not put on the pontifical robes till seven or eight years after the death of his brother
Judas, or not till the feast of tabernacles, in the 160th of the Seleucidm, 1 Macc. 10;21, Petitus's emendation seems
here to deserve consideration, who, instead of "after four years since the death of his brother Judas," would have
us read, "and therefore after eight years since the death of his brother Judas." This would tolerably well agree with
the date of the Maccabees, and with Josephus's own exact chronology at the end of the twentieth book of these
Antiquities, which the present text cannot be made to do.

(3) Take Grotius's note here: "The Jews," says he, "were wont to present crowns to the kings [of Syria];
afterwards that gold which was paid instead of those crowns, or which was expended in making them, was called the
crown gold and crown tax." On 1 Macc. 10:29.

(4) Since the rest of the historians now extant give this Demetrius thirteen years, and Josephus only eleven years,
Dean Prideaux does not amiss in ascribing to him the mean number twelve.

(5) It seems to me contrary to the opinion of Josephus, and of the moderns, both Jews and Christians, that this
prophecy of Isaiah, 19:19, etc., "In that day there shall be an altar to the Lord in the midst of the land of Egypt,"
etc., directly foretold the building of this temple of Onias in Egypt, and was a sufficient warrant to the Jews for
building it, and for worshipping the true God. the God of Israel, therein. See Authent. Rec. 11. p. 755. That God
seems to have soon better accepted of the sacrifices and prayers here offered him than those at Jerusalem, see the
note on ch. 10. sect. 7. And truly the marks of Jewish corruption or interpolation in this text, in order to discourage
their people from approving of the Worship of God here, are very strong, and highly deserve our consideration and
correction. The foregoing verse in Isaiah runs thus in our common copies, "In that day shall five cities in the land of
Egypt speak the language of Canaan," [the Hebrew language; shall be full of Jews, whose sacred books were in
Hebrew,] "and swear to the Lord of hosts; one" [or the first] "shall be called, The City of Destruction," Isaiah
19:18. A strange-name, "City of Destruction," upon so joyful occasion, and a name never heard of in the land of
Egypt, or perhaps in any other nation. The old reading was evidently the City of the Sun, or Heliopolis; and
Unkelos, in effect, and Symmachus, with the Arabic version, entirely confess that to be the true reading. The
Septuagint also, though they have the text disguised in the common copies, and call it Asedek, the City of
Righteousness; yet in two or three other copies the Hebrew word itself for the Sun, Achares, or Thares, is
preserved. And since Onias insists with the king and queen, that Isaiah's prophecy contained many other
predictions relating to this place besides the words by him recited, it is highly probable that these were especially
meant by him; and that one main reason why he applied this prediction to himself, and to his prefecture of
Heliopolis, which Dean Prideaux well proves was in that part of Egypt, and why he chose to build in that prefecture
of Heliopolis, though otherwise an improper place, was this, that the same authority that he had for building this
temple in Egypt, the very same he had for building it in his own prefecture of Heliopolis also, which he desired to
do, and which he did accordingly. Dean Prideaux has much ado to avoid seeing this corruption of the Hebrew; but it
being in support of his own opinion about this temple, he durst not see it; and indeed he reasons here in the most
injudicious manner possible. See him at the year 149.

(6) A very unfair disputation this! while the Jewish disputant, knowing that he could not properly prove out of the
Pentateuch, that "the place which the Lord their God shall choose to place his name there," so often referred to in
the Book of Deuteronomy, was Jerusalem any more than Gerizzim, that being not determined till the days of David,
Antiq. B. VII. ch. 13. sect. 4, proves only, what the Samaritans did not deny, that the temple at Jerusalem was much
more ancient, and much more celebrated and honored, than that at Gerizzim, which was nothing to the present
purpose. The whole evidence, by the very oaths of both parties, being, we see, obliged to be confined to the law of
Moses, or to the Pentateuch alone. However, worldly policy and interest and the multitude prevailing, the court
gave sentence, as usual, on the stronger side. and poor Sabbeus and Theodosius, the Samaritan disputants, were
martyred, and this, so far as appears, without any direct hearing at all, which is like the usual practice of such
political courts about matters of religion. Our copies say that the body of the Jews were in a great concern about
those men (in the plural) who were to dispute for their temple at Jerusalem, whereas it seems here they had but one
disputant, Andronicus by name. Perhaps more were prepared to speak on the Jews' side; but the firstraying
answered to his name, and overcome the Samaritans, there was necessity for any other defender of the Jerusalem

(7) Of the several Apollonius about these ages, see Dean Prideaux at the year 148. This Apollonius Daus was, by
his account, the son of that Apollonius who had been made governor of Celesyria and Phoenicia by Seleueus
Philopater, and was himself a confidant of his son Demetrius the father, and restored to his father's government by
him, but afterwards revolted from him to Alexander; but not to Demetrius the son, as he supposes.

(8) Dr. Hudson here observes, that the Phoenicians and Romans used to reward such as had deserved well of them,
by presenting to them a golden button. See ch. 5. sect. 4.

(9) This name, Demetrius Nicator, or Demetrius the conqueror, is so written on his coins still extant, as Hudson and
Spanheim inform us; the latter of whom gives us here the entire inscription, "King Demetrius the God,
Philadelphus, Nicator."

(10) This clause is otherwise rendered in the First Book of Maccabees, 12:9, "For that we have the holy books of
Scripture in our bands to comfort us." The Hebrew original being lost, we cannot certainly judge which was the
truest version only the coherence favors Josephus. But if this were the Jews' meaning, that they were satisfied out
of their Bible that the Jews and Lacedemonians were of kin, that part of their Bible is now lost, for we find no such
assertion in our present copies.

(11) Those that suppose Josephus to contradict himself in his three several accounts of the notions of the
Pharisees, this here, and that earlier one, which is the largest, Of the War B. II. ch. 8. sect. 14, and that later,
Antiq. B. XVIII. ch. 1. sect. 3, as if he sometimes said they introduced an absolute fatality, and denied all freedom
of human actions, is almost wholly groundless if he ever, as the very learned Casaubon here truly observes,
asserting, that the Pharisees were between the Essens and Sadducees, and did so far ascribe all to fate or Divine
Providence as was consistent with the freedom of human actions. However, their perplexed way of talking about
fate, or Providence, as overruling all things, made it commonly thought they were willing to excuse their sins by
ascribing them to fate, as in the Apostolical Constitutions, B. VI. ch. 6. Perhaps under the same general name some
difference of opinions in this point might be propagated, as is very common in all parties, especially in points of
metaphysical subtilty. However, our Josephus, who in his heart was a great admirer of the piety of the Essens, was
yet in practice a Pharisee, as he himself informs us, in his own Life, sect. 2. And his account of this doctrine of the
Pharisees is for certain agreeable to his own opinion, who ever both fully allowed the freedom of human actions,
and yet strongly believed the powerful interposition of Divine Providence. See concerning this matter a remarkable
clause, Antiq. B. XVI. ch. 11. sect. 7.

(12) This king, who was of the famous race of Arsaces, is bethused to call them; but by the elder author of the First
Maccahere, and 1 Macc. 14:2, called by the family name Arsaces; was, the king of the Persians and Medes,
according to the land but Appion says his proper name was Phraates. He is language of the Eastern nations. See
Authent. Rec. Part II. also called by Josephus the king of the Parthians, as the Greeks p. 1108.

(13) There is some error in the copies here, when no more than four years are ascribed to the high priesthood of
Jonathan. We know by Josephus's last Jewish chronology, Antiq. B. XX. ch. 10., that there was an interval of seven
years between the death of Alcimus, or Jacimus, the last high priest, and the real high priesthood of Jonathan, to
whom yet those seven years seem here to be ascribed, as a part of them were to Judas before, Antiq. B. XII. ch.
10. sect. 6. Now since, besides these seven years interregnum in the pontificate, we are told, Antiq. B. XX. ch. 10.,
that Jonathan's real high priesthood lasted seven years more, these two seven years will make up fourteen years,
which I suppose was Josephus's own number in this place, instead of the four in our present copies.

(14) These one hundred and seventy years of the Assyrians mean no more, as Josephus explains himself here, than
from the sara of Seleucus, which as it is known to have began on the 312th year before the Christian sara, from its
spring in the First Book of Maccabees, and from its autumn in the Second Book of Maccabees, so did it not begin
at Babylon till the next spring, on the 311th year. See Prid. at the year 312. And it is truly observed by Dr. Hudson
on this place, that the Syrians and Assyrians are sometimes confounded in ancient authors, according to the words
of Justin, the epitomiser of Trogus -pompeius, who says that "the Assyrians were afterward called Syrian." B. I.
ch. 11. See Of the War, B. V. ch. 9. sect. 4, where the Philistines themselves, at the very south limit of Syria, in its
utmost extent, are called Assyrians by Josephus as Spanheim observes.

(15) It must here be diligently noted, that Josephus's copy of the First Book of Maccabees, which he had so
carefully followed, and faithfully abridged, as far as the fiftieth verse of the thirteenth chapter, seems there to have
ended. What few things there are afterward common to both, might probably be learned by him from some other
more imperfect records. However, we must exactly observe here, what the remaining part of that book of the
Maccabees informs us of, and what Josephus would never have omitted, had his copy contained so much, that this
Simon the Great, the Maccabee, made a league with Antiochus Soter, the son of Demetrius Soter, and brother of
the other Demetrius, who was now a captive in Parthis: that upon his coming to the crown, about the 140th year
before the Christian sets, he granted great privileges to the Jewish nation, and to Simon their high priest and
ethnarch; which privileges Simon seems to have taken of his own accord about three years before. In particular, he
gave him leave to coin money for his country with his own stamp; and as concerning Jerusalem and the sanctuary,
that they should be free, or, as the vulgar Latin hath it, "holy and free," 1 Macc. 15:6, 7, which I take to be the
truer reading, as being the very words of his father's concession offered to Jonathan several years before, ch.
10:31; and Antiq. B, XIII. ch. 2. sect. 3. Now what makes this date and these grants greatly remarkable, is the
state of the remaining genuine shekels of the Jews with Samaritan characters, which seem to have been (most of
them at least) coined in the first four years of this Simon the Asamonean, and having upon them these words on one
side, "Jerusalem the Holy ;" and on the reverse, "In the Year of Freedom," 1, or 2, or 3, or 4; which shekels
therefore are original monuments of these times, and undeniable marks of the truth of the history in these chapters,
though it be in great measure omitted by Josephus. See Essay on the Old Test. p. 157, 158. The reason why I
rather suppose that his copy of the Maccabees wanted these chapters, than that his own copies are here imperfect,
is this, that all their contents are not here omitted, though much the greatest part be.

(16) How Trypho killed this Antiochus the epitome of Livy informs us, ch. 53, viz. that he corrupted his physicians
or surgeons, who falsely pretending to the people that he was perishing with the stone, as they cut him for it, killed
him, which exactly agrees with Josephus.

(17) That this Antiochus, the son of Alexader Balas, was called "The God," is evident from his coins, which
Spanheim assures us bear this inscription, "King Antiochus the God, Epiphanes the Victorious."

(18) Here Josephus begins to follow and to abridge the next sacred Hebrew book, styled in the end of the First
Book of Maccabees, "The Chronicle of John [Hyrcanus's] high priesthood;" but in some of the Greek copies,"
The Fourth Book of Maccabees." A Greek version of this chronicle was extant not very long ago in the days of
Sautes Pagninus, and Sixtus Senensis, at Lyons, though it seems to have been there burnt, and to be utterly lost.
See Sixtus Senensis's account of it, of its many Hebraisms, and its great agreement with Josephus's abridgement,
in the Authent. Rec. Part I. p. 206, 207, 208.

(19) Hence we learn, that in the days of this excellent high priest, John Hyrcanus, the observation of the Sabbatic
year, as Josephus supposed, required a rest from war, as did that of the weekly sabbath from work; I mean this,
unless in the case of necessity, when the Jews were attacked by their enemies, in which case indeed, and in which
alone, they then allowed defensive fighting to be lawful, even on the sabbath day, as we see in several places of
Josephus, Antlq. B. XII. ch. 6. sect. 2; B. XIII. ch. 1. sect. 2; Of. the War, B. I. ch. 7. sect. 3. But then it must be
noted, that this rest from war no way appears in the First Book of Maccabees, ch. 16., but the direct contrary;
though indeed the Jews, in the days of Antiochus Epiphanes, did not venture upon fighting on the Sabbath day, even
in the defense of their own lives, till the Asamoneans or Maccabees decreed so to do, 1 Macc. 2:32-41; Antiq. B.
XII. ch. 6. sect. 2.

(20) Josephus's copies, both Greek and Latin, have here a gross mistake, when they say that this first year of John
Hyrcanus, which we have just now seen to have been a Sabbatic year, was in the 162nd olympiad, whereas it was
for certain the second year of the 161st. See the like before, B. XII. ch. 7. sect. 6.

(21) This heliacal setting of the Pleiades, or seven stars, was, in the days of Hyrcanus and Josephus, early in the
spring, about February, the time of the latter rain in Judea; and this, so far as I remember, is the only astronomical
character of time, besides one eclipse of the moon in the reign of Herod, that we meet with in all Josephus; the
Jews being little accustomed to astronomical observations, any further than for the uses of their calendar, and
utterly forbidden those astrological uses which the heathens commonly made of them.

(22) Dr. Hudson tells us here, that this custom of gilding the horns of those oxen that were to be sacrificed is a
known thing both in the poets and orators.

(23) This account in Josephus, that the present Antiochus was persuaded, though in vain, not to make peace with
the Jews, but to cut them off utterly, is fully confirmed by Diodorus Siculus, in Photiua's extracts out of his 34th

(24) The Jews were not to march or journey on the sabbath, or on such a great festival as was equivalent to the
sabbath, any farther than a sabbath day's journey, or two thousand cubits, see the note on Antiq. B. XX. ch. 8. sect.

(25) This account of the Idumeans admitting circumcision, and the entire Jewish law, from this time, or from the
days of Hyrcanus, is confirmed by their entire history afterward. See Antiq. B. XIV. ch. 8. sect. 1; B. XV. ch. 7.
sect. 9. Of the War, B. II. ch. 3. sect. 1; B. IV. ch. 4. sect. 5. This, in the opinion of Josephus, made them proselytes
of justice, or entire Jews, as here and elsewhere, Antiq. B. XIV. ch. 8. sect. 1. However, Antigonus, the enemy of
Herod, though Herod were derived from such a proselyte of justice for several generations, will allow him to be no
more than a half Jew, B. XV. ch. 15. sect. 2. .But still, take out of Dean Prideaux, at the year 129, the words of
Ammouius, a grammarian, which fully confirm this account of the Idumeans in Josephus: "The Jews," says he, are
such by nature, and from the beginning, whilst the Idumeans were not Jews from the beginning, but Phoenicians and
Syrians; but being afterward subdued by the Jews, and compelled to be circumcised, and to unite into one nation,
and be subject to the same laws, they were called Jews." Dio also says, as the Dean there quotes him, from Book
XXXVI. p. 37, "That country is called Judea, and the people Jews; and this name is given also to as many others as
embrace their religion, though of other nations." But then upon what foundation so good a governor as Hyrcanus
took upon him to compel those Idumeans either to become Jews, or to leave the country, deserves great
consideration. I suppose it was because they had long ago been driven out of the land of Edom, and had seized on
and possessed the tribe of Simeon, and all the southern parts of the tribe of Judah, which was the peculiar
inheritance of the worshippers of the true God without idolatry, as the reader may learn from Reland, Palestine,
Part I. p. 154, 305; and from Prideaux, at the years 140 and 165.

(26) In this decree of the Roman senate, it seems that these ambassadors were sent from the "people of the Jews,"
as well as from their prince or high priest, John Hyrcanus.

(27) Dean Prideaux takes notice at the year 130, that Justin, in agreement with Josephus, says, "The power of the
Jews was now grown so great, that after this Antiochus they would not bear any Macedonian king over them; and
that they set up a government of their own, and infested Syria with great wars."

(28) The original of the Sadducees, as a considerable party among the Jews, being contained in this and the two
following sections, take Dean Prideaux's note upon this their first public appearance, which I suppose to be true:
"Hyrcanus," says be, "went over to the party of the Sadducees; that is, by embracing their doctrine against the
traditions of the eiders, added to the written law, and made of equal authority with it, but not their doctrine against
the resurrection and a future state; for this cannot be supposed of so good and righteous a man as John Hyrcanus
is said to be. It is most probable, that at this time the Sadducees had gone no further in the doctrines of that sect
than to deny all their unwritten traditions, which the Pharisees were so fond of; for Josephus mentions no other
difference at this time between them; neither doth he say that Hyrcanna went over to the Sadducees in any other
particular than in the abolishing of all the traditionary constitutions of the Pharisees, which our Savior condemned
as well as they." [At the year.]

(29) This slander, that arose from a Pharisee, has been preserved by their successors the Rabbins to these later
ages; for Dr. Hudson assures us that David Gantz, in his Chronology, S. Pr. p. 77, in Vorstius's version, relates that
Hyrcanus's mother was taken captive in Mount Modinth. See ch. 13. sect. 5.

(30) Here ends the high priesthood, and the life of this excellent person John Hyrcanus, and together with him the
holy theocracy, or Divine government of the Jewish nation, and its concomitant oracle by Urim. Now follows the
profane and tyrannical Jewish monarchy, first of the Asamoneans or Maccabees, and then of Herod the Great, the
Idumean, till the coming of the Messiah. See the note on Antiq. B. III. ch. 8. sect. 9. Hear Strabo's testimony on
this occasion, B. XVI. p. 761, 762: "Those," says he, "that succeeded Moses continued for some time in earnest,
both in righteous actions and in piety; but after a while there were others that took upon them the high priesthood,
at first superstitious and afterward tyrannical persons. Such a prophet was Moses and those that succeeded him,
beginning in a way not to be blamed, but changing for the worse. And when it openly appeared that the government
was become tyrannical, Alexander was the first that set up himself for a king instead of a priest; and his sons were
Hyrcanus and Aristobulus." All in agreement with Josephus, excepting this, that Strabo omits the first king,
Aristobulus, who reigning but a single year, seems hardly to have come to his knowledge. Nor indeed does
Aristobulus, the son of Alexander, pretend that the name of king was taken before his father Alexander took it
himself, Antiq. B. XIV. ch. 3. sect. 2. See also ch. 12. sect. l, which favor Strabo also. And indeed, if we may judge
from the very different characters of the Egyptian Jews under high priests, and of the Palestine Jews under kings,
in the two next centuries, we may well suppose that the Divine Shechinah was removed into Egypt, and that the
worshippers at the temple of Onias were better men than those at the temple of Jerusalem.

(31) Hence we learn that the Essens pretended to have ruled whereby men might foretell things to come, and that
this Judas the Essen taught those rules to his scholars; but whether their pretense were of an astrological or
magical nature, which yet in such religious Jews, who were utterly forbidden such arts, is no way probable, or to any
Bath Col, spoken of by the later Rabbins, or otherwise, I cannot tell. See Of the War, B. II. ch. 8. sect. 12.

(32) The reason why Hyrcanus suffered not this son of his whom he did not love to come into Judea, but ordered
him to be brought up in Galilee, is suggested by Dr. Hudson, that Galilee was not esteemed so happy and well
cultivated a country as Judea, Matthew 26:73; John 7:52; Acts 2:7, although another obvious reason occurs also,
that he was out of his sight in Galilee than he would have been in Judea.

(33) From these, and other occasional expressions, dropped by Josephus, we may learn, that where the sacred
hooks of the Jews were deficient, he had several other histories then extant, (but now most of them lost,) which he
faithfully followed in his own history; nor indeed have we any other records of those times, relating to Judea, that
can be compared to these accounts of Josephus, though when we do meet with authentic fragments of such original
records, they almost always confirm his history.

(34) This city, or island, Cos, is not that remote island in the Aegean Sea, famous for the birth of the great
Hippocrates, but a city or island of the same name adjoining to Egypt, mentioned both by Stephanus and Ptolemy,
as Dr. Mizon informs us. Of which Cos, and the treasures there laid up by Cleopatra and the Jews, see Antiq. B.
XIV. ch. 7, sect. 2.

(35) This account of the death of Antiochus Grypus is confirmed by Appion, Syriac. p. 132, here cited by Spanheim.

(36) Porphyry says that this Antiochus Grypus reigned but twenty-six years, as Dr. Hudson observes. The copies of
Josephus, both Greek and Latin, have here so grossly false a reading, Antiochus and Antoninus, or Antonius Plus,
for Antiochus Pius, that the editors are forced to correct the text from the other historians, who all agree that this
king's name was nothing more than Antiochus Plus.

(37) These two brothers, Antiochus and Philippus are called twins by Porphyry; the fourth brother was king of
Damascus: both which are the observations of Spanheim.

(38) This Laodicea was a city of Gilead beyond Jordan. However, Porphyry says that this Antiochus Pius did not die
in this battle; but, running away, was drowned in the river Orontes. Appian says that he, was deprived of the
kingdom of Syria by Tigranes; but Porphyry makes this Laodice queen of the Calamans; — all which is noted by
Spanheim. In such confusion of the later historians, we have no reason to prefer any of them before Josephus, who
had more original ones before him. This reproach upon Alexander, that he was sprung from a captive, seems only
the repetition of the old Pharisaical calumny upon his father, ch. 10. sect. 5.

(39) This Theodorus was the son of Zeno, and was in possession of Areathus, as we learn from sect. 3 foregoing.

(40) This name Thracida, which the Jews gave Alexander, must, by the coherence, denote as barbarous as a
Thracian, or somewhat like it; but what it properly signifies is not known.

(41) Spanheim takes notice that this Antiochus Dionysus [the brother of Philip, and of Demetrius Eucerus, and of
two otbsrs] was the fifth son of Antiochus Grypus; and that he is styled on the coins, "Antiochus, Epiphanes,

(42) This Aretas was the first king of the Arabians who took Damascus, and reigned there; which name became
afterwards common to such Arabian kings, both at Petra and at Damascus, as we learn from Josephus in many
places; and from St. Paul, 2 Corinthians 11:32. See the note on Antiq. B. XVI. ch. 9. sect. 4.

(43) We may here and elsewhere take notice, that whatever countries or cities the Asamoneans conquered from
any of the neighboring nations, or whatever countries or cities they gained from them that had not belonged to them
before, they, after the days of Hyrcanus, compelled the inhabitants to leave their idolatry, and entirely to receive
the law of Moses, as proselytes of justice, or else banished them into other lands. That excellent prince, John
Hyrcanus, did it to the Idumeans, as I have noted on ch. 9. sect. 1, already, who lived then in the Promised Land,
and this I suppose justly; but by what right the rest did it, even to the countries or cities that were no part of that
land, I do not at all know. This looks too like unjust persecution for religion.

(44) It seems, by this dying advice of Alexander Janneus to his wife, that he had himself pursued the measures of
his father Hyrcanus. and taken part with the Sadducees, who kept close to the written law, against the Pharisees,
who had introduced their own traditions, ch. 16. sect. 2; and that he now saw a political necessity of submitting to
the Pharisees and their traditions hereafter, if his widow and family minded to retain their monarchical government
or tyranny over the Jewish nation; which sect yet, thus supported, were at last in a great measure the ruin of the
religion, government, and nation of the Jews, and brought them into so wicked a state, that the vengeance of God
came upon them to their utter excision. Just thus did Caiaphas politically advise the Jewish sanhedrim, John 11:50,
"That it was expedient for them that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not;" and
this in consequence of their own political supposal, ver. 48, that, "If they let Jesus alone," with his miracles, "all
men would believe on him, and the Romans would come and take away both their place and nation." Which political
crucifixion of Jesus of Nazareth brought down the vengeance of God upon them, and occasioned those very
Romans, of whom they seemed so much afraid, that to prevent it they put him to death, actually to "come and take
away both their place and nation" within thirty-eight years afterwards. I heartily wish the politicians of Christendom
would consider these and the like examples, and no longer sacrifice all virtue and religion to their pernicious
schemes of government, to the bringing down the judgments of God upon themselves, and the several nations
intrusted to their care. But this is a digression. I wish it were an unseasonable one also. Josephus himself several
times makes such digressions, and I here venture to follow him. See one of them at the conclusion of the very next

(45) The number of five hundred thousand or even three hundred thousand, as one Greek copy, with the Latin
copies, have it, for Tigranes's army, that came out of Armenia into Syria and Judea, seems much too large. We
have had already several such extravagant numbers in Josephus's present copies, which are not to he at all
ascribed to him. Accordingly, I incline to Dr. Hudson's emendation here, which supposes them but forty thousand.

(46) This fortress, castle, citadel, or tower, whither the wife and children of Aristobulus were new sent, and which
overlooked the temple, could be no other than what Hyrcanus I. built, (Antiq. B. XVIII ch. 4. sect. 3,) and Herod the
Great rebuilt, and called the "Tower of Antonia," Aatiq. B. XV. ch. 11. sect. 5.



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