Monday, August 16, 2010

Which 'Josephus' is Closer to the Original? Pseudo-Hegesippus Book 3 Chapter 13 or Bellum Judaicum Book 3 Chapter 7?

The next section in Hegesippus reads:

Because of this delay of the siege the people of the city of Iafa which was neighboring became insolent, because it was being fought so long. Alarmed by this Vespasian sent Trajan who was head of the office of commander of the fifteenth legion with a thousand horsemen and two thousand men of the infantry. Who without discussion having set out a man keen and gifted in the arts of fighting he with his zeal met with the appropriate outcome of the combat. For since it was a city enclosed by the nature of the place and surrounded by a double wall, the people not content to protect themselves with its fortifications thought they should attack the Romans. But daring to resist only a short time they took themselves back inside the exterior wall wishing equally to bring back the enemy, for when they themselves hurrying the Romans also entered. Also the gates to the interior walls had been closed by those taking refuge lest again the Romans equally should break in. And so the aid of god having been turned away from themselves the Jews were fighting, with which previously they had been accustomed to win. But they had offended with infamous shameful acts, and thus from them the punishment owed was demanded, that they should give their punishments to the gentiles. Finally they were crushed more nearly by their wars between themselves than by an enemy. The people of Iafa are an example, who opened the gates the gates for the Romans and closed them for themselves. For as the Romans attacked the first wall, they themselves opened it, and so that Jews should not penetrate the second wall, Jews closed it. And so an enemy is received, an ally is shut out, the first is received lest an assassin should be wanting, the second was shut out lest about to perish it should escape. And so between two walls the Jews were cut to pieces fighting hand to hand, at a distance from the wall. Many men of the Roman forces compressed by the narrowness climbed the wall and hurled javelins against those below. And so the Galilaeans more dangerous to their own than to the enemy asked that they 3 should be received at the entrance of the interior wall, but they resisted their own. It was fought [p. 207] at the threshold of the gate Jews fighting among themselves. The one group warded off a rushing wedge with swords, the other group fought those resisting. They died calling down savage curses upon each other by turns and the smaller attested at the top of their voices themselves by their merits to have endured to the full. And so twelve thousand men out of all the fighters were killed. Thinking that either none would fight against him or that storming the city would be easy, being a man of long standing discipline, Trajan reserved the leadership of the victory for Vespasian and sent to him asking that he should send his son Titus, who would give an end to the battle. Who arriving a forcible entry having been made and many humans having been killed, not without labor and danger, victory yields to the Romans. Against them who had entered the interior wall whoever was suitable for fighting threw themselves and positioned in the narrow passage made a two front fight against the victors fighting from above men and women alongside and often even throwing rocks against their own and all types of weapons which by chance they had found. To sum up it was fought for six hours to the end itself from the beginning. Finally those having been killed, who had stood firm ready to fight, it was proceeded against the rest without order without method without mercy. Old men with young men were butchered, women or small children were saved not for pardon but for slavery, all males were killed except those whom childhood or infancy defended. As booty were led away two thousand eight hundred slaves, masters with their slaves in the same sort of situation whom captivity had made equals.[Pseudo-Hegesippus 3.13]

The parallel section of text in Jewish War reads:

About this time it was that Vespasian sent out Trajan against a city called Japha, that lay near to Jotapata, and that desired innovations, and was puffed up with the unexpected length of the opposition of Jotapata. This Trajan was the commander of the tenth legion, and to him Vespasian committed one thousand horsemen, and two thousand footmen. When Trajan came to the city, he found it hard to be taken, for besides the natural strength of its situation, it was also secured by a double wall; but when he saw the people of this city coming out of it, and ready to fight him, he joined battle with them, and after a short resistance which they made, he pursued after them; and as they fled to their first wall, the Romans followed them so closely, that they fell in together with them: but when the Jews were endeavoring to get again within their second wall, their fellow citizens shut them out, as being afraid that the Romans would force themselves in with them. It was certainly God therefore who brought the Romans to punish the Galileans, and did then expose the people of the city every one of them manifestly to be destroyed by their bloody enemies; for they fell upon the gates in great crowds, and earnestly calling to those that kept them, and that by their names also, yet had they their throats cut in the very midst of their supplications; for the enemy shut the gates of the first wall, and their own citizens shut the gates of the second, so they were enclosed between two walls, and were slain in great numbers together; many of them were run through by swords of their own men, and many by their own swords, besides an immense number that were slain by the Romans. Nor had they any courage to revenge themselves; for there was added to the consternation they were in from the enemy, their being betrayed by their own friends, which quite broke their spirits; and at last they died, cursing not the Romans, but their own citizens, till they were all destroyed, being in number twelve thousand. So Trajan gathered that the city was empty of people that could fight, and although there should a few of them be therein, he supposed that they would be too timorous to venture upon any opposition; so he reserved the taking of the city to the general. Accordingly, he sent messengers to Vespasian, and desired him to send his son Titus to finish the victory he had gained. Vespasian hereupon imagining there might be some pains still necessary, sent his son with an army of five hundred horsemen, and one thousand footmen. So he came quickly to the city, and put his army in order, and set Trajan over the left wing, while he had the right himself, and led them to the siege: and when the soldiers brought ladders to be laid against the wall on every side, the Galileans opposed them from above for a while; but soon afterward they left the walls. Then did Titus's men leap into the city, and seized upon it presently; but when those that were in it were gotten together, there was a fierce battle between them; for the men of power fell upon the Romans in the narrow streets, and the women threw whatsoever came next to hand at them, and sustained a fight with them for six hours' time; but when the fighting men were spent, the rest of the multitude had their throats cut, partly in the open air, and partly in their own houses, both young and old together. So there were no males now remaining, besides infants, which, with the women, were carried as slaves into captivity; so that the number of the slain, both now in the city and at the former fight, was fifteen thousand, and the captives were two thousand one hundred and thirty. This calamity befell the Galileans on the twenty-fifth day of the month Desius. (Sivan) [Jewish War 3.7.31]

Notice the different number of captives mentioned - 2,800 in Hegesippus and 2,130 in Jewish War.

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