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Re: Calendar, MMT

Greg Doudna writes:

> Vernon Chadwick offered three reasonable arguments
> in favor of the existence of 2nd-1st BCE Temple lunar 
> calendar practice as opposed to the Qumran solar 
> calendar, which then becomes "sectarian"....

> b) pHab 11.4-8 refers to a Wicked Priest pursuing 
>  the T of R to his house of exile...on the day of 
>  Atonement.  Agreed that the "wicked priest" is a 
>  high priest (among other things, the pun HKHN HRS' 
>  on HKHN HR'S supports that).  Since
>  a high priest or any temple official would be in
>  the temple on the Day of Atonement, this passage
>  despite its cryptic references looks like
>  a two-calendar system--with by implication the
>  "wrong" lunar calendar associated with the WP/Jerusalem.
>  (None of this is original--it goes back to Talmon long
>  ago, if not earlier.)  But--this is one 
>  incident.  If this WP is one of the "wicked" hp's
>  collaborating with Antiochus IV and his ilk of later
>  memory, say Menalaus (as good a candidate for the 
>  pHab WP as any), then we're looking at some oblique 
>  retroactive glimpse of a moment in the 160's or late 
>  170's BCE.  At most this says something about one
>  period--the Hellenistic crisis period reflected in Daniel
>  if the analysis and dating here is correct.  What then 
>  does the pHab glimpse provide as evidence about calendar 
>  practice in the temple after the Maccabean
>  victory--the second half of the 2nd BCE or the entire
>  1st BCE, with the many political upheavals and shifts
>  in these centuries?  Probably nothing at all.

Both Vernon and Greg assume, like the many others who have repeated this
argument from Habakkuk Pesher, that the High  Priest was ofnecessity always
present at Atonement.  Greg's mention of Menelaus as a candidate for Wicked
Priest highlights the tenuousness of this position.  According to Rowley's
theory from the 1950s (which has much to recommend it), Onias III was the
Teacher of Righteousness, and Menelaus the Wicked Priest.  Onias, who was
living in exile in Antioch during the years 175-170 BCE, was assassinated by
governor Andronicus at the instigation of Menelaus when the latter had been
summoned to the Syrian capital.  This took place in late summer or the start
of fall 170 BCE, according to evidence on the brief tenure of Andronicus.
 Here is a historical circumstance in which the most notoriously wicked high
priest of the second temple period assaulted a Zadokite predecessor,
conceivably around Atonement time.  Menelaus, summoned to give account before
Antiochus IV regarding his delinquency in paying tribute, had no choice about
being away from Jerusalem around this time (yearly tribute was due in the
fall).  While he was absent from Jerusalem, he appointed his brother
Lysimachus to serve in his place (as prostates or sagan, i.e. deputy high
priest).  This historical incident serves as a counter-example to the
assumption that a high priest could not be absent during the Atonement
festival.  Hence the Habakkuk Pesher incident in no way implies that the
Wicked Priest and the sectarians under the Teacher of Righteousness used
distinct calendars.

Russell Gmirkin