The Jewish Dialogue with Greece and Rome: Studies in Cultural and Social Interaction

The Jewish Dialogue with Greece and Rome: Studies in Cultural and Social Interaction

Language: English

Pages: 580

ISBN: 0391041339

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

This volume includes twenty-seven interdisciplinary essays written by Tessa Rajak, a well-known scholar, on aspects of Judaism in the Greco-Roman world. The essays derive from the author's long-standing interests in the analysis of texts as documents of cultural and religious interaction, and in how Jewish communities were woven into the social fabric of Greek cities in the Hellenistic and Roman East. The book is divided into four sections: Greeks and Jews, Josephus, The Jewish Diaspora and Epigraphy, and an epilogue, which addresses modern uses and abuses of the Greek-Jewish polarity as exemplified by three nineteenth-century writers. Scholars and students from a wide variety of backgrounds will benefit. This publication has also been published in hardback, please click here for details.













Oxford. Kasher, A. 1988a. Jews, Idumaeans and Ancient Arabs. Texte und Studien zum Antiken Judentum 18. Tubingen. 1988b. Canaan, Philistia, Greece and Israel: Relations of the Jews in EretzTsrael with the Hellenistic Cities (332 B.C.E.-70 C.E.) (Hebrew). Jerusalem. Kuhrt, A. & Sherwin-White, S. (eds). 1988. Hellenism in the East. London. Lieberman, S. 1962. Hellenism in Jewish Palestine. Texts and Studies of the Jewish Theological Seminary 18. New York. Meshorer, Y. 1982. Ancient Jewish Coinage,

are no signs elsewhere in Josephus of independent knowledge of Posidonius. Furthermore, Josephus' wording, in the surviving Latin translation of this section, does not even allow us to judge precisely with what statements Posidonius is supposed to be associated. Cf. Stern 1974: 141-144. ROMAN INTERVENTION? 85 Sidetes dismissed the charges against the Jews, exacted the tribute due, and dismantled the walls of Jerusalem. In spite of Sidetes' rejection of the advice, the negative picture of

cause lies in the strong reaction evoked by the force which we call Hellenism. It is fair, after all, to describe the Greek way of life as the most dynamic 'package' with which the Jews engaged. This was the language, these the social forms, which encroached on others. How far this reality should be seen as springing from qualities inherent in Greek civilization is a matter for debate. Whatever its merits, the Jews knew perfectly well that the Greek culture of the day was the culture of the

confrontation—tasting forbidden food—and the larger cause for which the martyrs stand.53 2. The Tyrant Already in 2 Maccabees, the Seleucid monarch is categorized as a savage tyrant (7:27).54 In 4 Maccabees, the word tyrannos is liberally 51 Redditt 1983. See the analysis by Renehan 1972. Weber 1991 covers similar ground. See below, 126-129. 54 And once such imagery is used of Menelaus the high priest, described as having 'the fury of a savage beast' (4:25). 1 Maccabees also contains one

abstention from pork. The detailed food laws of Leviticus are not referred to by Eleazar. We may contrast the Letter of Aristeas, a defence of Judaism written in the Hellenistic period, which accords a large part of the High Priest's exposition of the Law to the topic of unclean foods of different kinds, and examines various prescriptions before offering an allegorical interpretation (142 55). In whatever vein, the prominence of the forbidden acts of consumption in the definition of Judaism

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