The Flavius Josephus
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Welcome!

This site is dedicated to the works of the Jewish historian Flavius Josephus (37 CE - circa 100 CE .

For centuries Josephus' works were more widely read in Europe than any book other than the Bible. They are an invaluable eye-witness to a momentous turning point in Judaism, Christianity, and Western civilization.

Flavius Josephus Home Scroll
"I present to Greeks and Romans this memorial of great achievements."
 YOSEF BEN MATTITYAHU
Email gary@Josephus.org

The Works of Josephus

A note on how the works are referenced on this site.
 

Downloadable Files (Project Gutenberg)
The Jewish War (460 KB)
Antiquities of the Jews (1,030 KB)
The Life (60 KB)
Against Apion (90 KB)

The Works of Josephus 
The Whiston translation online (external link).

The Works of Josephus in Greek 
The Greek text of B. Niese at the Perseus Project.

Brill Translations with Commentary
The essential internet site for Josephus scholars is PACE, the Project on Ancient Cultural Engagement, led by Professor Steve Mason. Incredibly, the Brill translation and commentary, which is very expensive in hardcover, is available FREE on the PACE site. The English translation appears parallel to the Greek text of Niese (provided by The Perseus Project) and commentary is seen by clicking on the footnote numbers. Clicking on a Greek word brings up the Perseus analysis tools. The published volumes of the Brill Josephus Project are now:

    Life (Mason)
    Ant. 1-4 (Feldman)
    Ant. 5-7 (Begg)
    Ant. 8-10 (Begg, Spilsbury)
    Against Apion (Barclay)
    War Book 2(Mason)
See the previously posted reviews of the volumes of the Brill Commentary Life and Antiquities 1-4.



The Life of Josephus

Biography 

Timeline 
Josephus' life in the context of events in Rome and early  Christianity. 

Genealogy 
Descent from the Hasmoneans (Maccabees).



The War

Josephus on the Destruction of the Temple

Josephus on the Causes of the War Against Rome

Josephus as a Source for a Military History of the Jewish Revolt 
 by Jim Bloom

Crane Brinton's Model of Revolution and the Jewish Revolt
 by Ken West

Lion Feuchtwanger and his Josephus Trilogy
 by Jim Bloom



Chronology of the War

Introduction

Part 1: Revolt in Jerusalem
    August-September 66 CE

Part 2: The Campaign of Cestius Gallus and the Defeat of the XIIth Legion
    October-November  66 CE

Part 3: The New Government
    November 66 - March 67

Part 4: Josephus in Galilee
    December 66 - May 67

Part 5:  The Success of Vespasian
    January 67 - December 69 

Part 6: The Factions Battle for Power
    January 68 - May 70

Part 7: The Siege and Destruction of Jerusalem
    March 70 - September 70



Holidays

Passover 
   The collection of all occurrences of Passover stories in Josephus' writing; with commentary.

Pentecost / Shavuos 
    Everything Josephus has to say about the celebration of the festival of Pentecost (Shavuos) -- including the most violent protest prior to the War.

Sukkot
   The Feast of Tabernacles, with its great crowds in Jerusalem, often marked the beginning and end of dynasties. Here is a summary of these events in the works of Josephus

Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur 
   The holiest days of modern Judaism are barely mentioned by Josephus. Why?

Purim 
   Esther's story.

Hanukkah 
   Did Josephus censor his description of Hanukkah?



Women

Women in Josephus' Works
   An overview.

Queen Alexandra
   The female ruler of Judea.

Mariamme 
   The story of the the last Hasmonean princess, whom Herod married to secure his kingdom, and their stormy marriage.

Esther - Her Point of View 
   Josephus' retelling of the story of Esther.

"Trouble-quiet Sowers of Unrest": Representations of Women, from Josephus to Cary 
   by Maria M. Oberg. Elizabeth Cary, the 17th century English playwright, drew from Josephus to compose her work The Tragedy of Mariam, the Fair Queen of Jewry.The manner in which these two authors portray the actions of speech of women is the subject of this engrossing study



Rulers and Nations

The Hasmonean Dynasty
   Genealogical chart of the Jewish rulers of Judaea, drawn from Josephus' account.

Ancient Jewish Coins Related to the Works of Josephus
   The history of the rulers of Judaea as revealed in ancient silver and bronze coins.

Gaza
   The relations between Judeans and the people on the coast have often been difficult, as Josephus relates.


Modern Aspects

The Campaign against Al Qaeda and the Jewish War: Some Parallels
   by Jim Bloom (December 2001)

Remarks on Josephus in the Light of Current Events: 2001
   by G. J. Goldberg (December 2001)



Links

Steve Mason at York University

Josephus Works at PACE: Brill, Whiston and Greek

Josephus Bibliography On-Line at PACE

Perseus Greek Texts and Translations

Resource Pages for Biblical Studies

New Testament Gateway

Ritmeyer Archaeological Design


Categorized Josephus Links

Josephus in General

Articles

Archaeology and Josephus

Judaism and Early Christianity

Language

Literary Works Connected to Josephus



Josephus' Account of Jesus: The Testimonium Flavianum

The earliest description of Jesus outside of the Gospels is found in Josephus' Jewish Antiquities. Yet for centuries scholars have doubted that a Jewish writer could have written an account that contains basic tenets of Christian belief. This conflict is resolved by understanding the source of Josephus' composition.

Article for Download (PDF file)

The Coincidences of the Testimonium of Josephus and the Emmaus Narrative of Luke,
by G. J. Goldberg
 


The Journal for the Study of the Pseudepigrapha 13 (1995) pp. 59-77  


   In this article the Testimonium is shown to be a close rewording of a text that also appears in the Book of Luke. This modification of a source while respecting peculiarities and difficult phrases can be explained as Josephus' standard method of working, but cannot be explained as the normal manner of composing a Jesus story by later Christian writers. The conclusion is that the account in the Antiquities is almost entirely the work of Josephus, based on a Christian proselytizing document that was in circulation circa the year 90.



The New Approach to the Testimonium

 Introduction. 
Josephus' Account of Jesus.

 1. The Mystery of Josephus' Jesus Account 
A summary of the history of the controversy.

  2. The Josephus-Luke Connection

  3. The Testimonium-Luke Comparison Table
At-a-glance view of the parallels between the two Jesus descriptions.

  4. Statistical Analysis of Jesus Texts
The statistical significance of the Testimonium-Luke relationship when compared with other Jesus descriptions from early Christianity.

  5. Quantitative Content Analysis of Jesus Texts
Further statistical studies.

  6. Critique of John Meier's Argument in A Marginal Jew in Light of the Lukan Connection

  7. Conclusions: Answers to Frequently Asked Testimonium Questions
How the past puzzles of the Jesus account of Josephus are resolved by the Lukan source.

 8. Testimonium Bibliography

Appendix: Robert Eisler on the Testimonium Flavianum




The New Testament

New Testament Parallels
   Side-by-side comparison of Josephus and the New Testament.
 
Jesus of Nazareth
   All of the references by Josephus to Jesus, James, and Pontius Pilate
 
John the Baptist 
   A discussion of Josephus' account of John the Baptist and its relation to New Testament passages.

The Star of Bethlehem
   Speculation on a prophetic image.

Honi the Circle-Drawer
   A popular miracle-worker is killed in Jerusalem at Passover. 



Mail and Frequently Asked Questions

How is the name "Josephus" pronounced?

Where does Josephus tell the story of Masada?

Does Josephus describe Jesus' physical appearance?

What are the oldest manuscripts we have of Josephus' works?

Did Josephus write the "Discourse on Hades?"

Could Luke and Josephus both be right about Lysanias, Tetrach of Abilene?

What are your credentials?

Josephus in America

Josephus on Audio

Archaeological Correction: Gamla and Cana

The Veil of the Temple

A Rope on the High Priest?

Michal's Idol

Translating the Sodomites




Books and Articles

Editions of Josephus

    Complete Works

    Condensed Versions

Josephus Studies

Bibliographies and Scholarly Aids

Josephus in Literary Fiction

MONTY PYTHON AND THE WORKS OF JOSEPHUS

"What Jesus blatantly fails to appreciate is that it's the meek who are the problem."

First-Century Judaea

Links to Book Reviews - Society of Biblical Literature



What's New

The next installment in the Chronology of the War

Part 7: The Siege and Destruction of Jerusalem

Temple Mount seen from Antonia Fortress


   After Rome survived its own nearly disastrous civil war it turned its attention back to Jerusalem. The Judean rebels felt secure in the strength of the city walls and in the favor of heaven. Nothing could persuade them to surrender -- not even the pleas of Josephus. Part 7 of the Chronology describes the battles and the horrendous suffering of the city that brought its destruction. Includes images provided by Ritmeyer Archaeological Design.




The Flavius Josephus Home Page address is www.Josephus.org.

The older versions of the pages ("The War," etc.) formerly at AOL are still available by clicking on the title of each section, and these retain their organizing commentary.

Please send comments to: gary@josephus.org

Last update: July 8, 2012



The image of Josephus at the top of this page is from an engraving of Josephus from the frontispiece of the 1736 edition of the works of Josephus translated by Sir Roger L'Estrange. Image courtesy of Morris & Heather Tushinski.

The Flavius Josephus Home Page is edited by G. J. Goldberg
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Copyright 1998-2010 G. J. Goldberg. All rights reserved.

Email gary@Josephus.org