By Steve Mason
Flavius Josephus is undoubtedly an important witness to old Judaism from the shut of the biblical interval to the aftermath of the destruction of the temple in A.D. 70. His 4 surviving works - "Judean War", "Judean Antiquities", "Life", and "Against Apion" - give you the narrative stucture for studying the opposite, extra fragmentary written resources and actual continues to be from this era. His descriptions of the Temple, the Judean geographical region, Jewish-Roman kinfolk and conflicts, and teams and associations of old Judea became critical for the scholar of early Judaism, the Classicist, and the reader of the hot testomony alike. The priestly aristocrat Josephus used to be born in A.D. 37 and died round the yr a hundred. After battling opposed to the Romans within the battle of 66-73/4 and surrendering within the earliest part of the crusade, he moved to Rome the place he all started a efficient literary occupation. His 4 surviving works in thirty Greek volumes are largely excerpted for historic reasons, yet nonetheless hardly ever learn of their literary and old contexts. This venture goals to help each severe reader of Josephus through offering a brand new literal translation, in addition to a observation suggesting literary and ancient connnections.
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Additional info for Flavius Josephus: Translation and Commentary : Life of Josephus
Cicero’s Laelius on Friendship stresses the noble ideals of friendship against the background of this more utilitarian norm. In any case, powerful friends (amici potentes) were expected to concern themselves with the welfare of less fortunate associates (not the truly poor), who took on unavoidable reciprocal obligations. Networks of “friends” became major political forces: to be within the circle of one prominent figure might well lead one into difficulties with another. In the same way, Josephus claims to have encountered problems with the distinguished Simon son of Gamaliel because that man happened to be a close associate of Josephus’ enemy Ioannes of Gischala at the time (§ 192).
The first part of his book examined Josephus’ different accounts of his own career in the War and Life, which had to be explained on the basis of personal growth and not sources (pp. 1-127); the second part applied this result to the relationship between War and Ant. 14. In both cases, it is a question of Josephus’ own “coloring” according to his changing perspectives, not of new sources. Laqueur’s analysis of the Life began with the premise that this work must have served some pressing need, which could not be found in Josephus’ Roman career long after the war.
In later life, he became a priest in Delphi’s world-renowned temple. Plutarch’s mature vision of political life in a Greek state under Roman hegemony is that of a Mediterranean aristocrat who sees the world much as Josephus does. It is helpful to observe some of Plutarch’s assumptions, his prescriptions for political life, and even his language, which throw much light on the dilemmas faced by Josephus. 1. 99A). Compare Josephus’ entry into public life (politeu/esqai) at Life 12. 2. The statesman’s first task is to learn, to listen, and to understand the character ( h]qoj) of the people to be governed.