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Re: Essenes, again.

Ian Hutchesson writes:

> You have no evidence to show that the Essenes can be in fact dated back as
>  as the last known reference in the dss (62 bce). The talk of Essenes has
>  always been a flight of fancy and it is time that it is dropped so that
>  people can get on with serious analysis and not just stop gap defense of
>  untenable hypotheses.
> The historical information we have is scant and cannot sustain
> the Essene hypothesis, nor can it indicate the differences between any
> of the period of the dss if in fact there were sects (as against political
> parties). We have no indication as to when the Essenes emerged. So everyone
> on the Essene kick has simply been shooting from the hip.

I'm not taking sides in the discussion with Moshe Shulman about the Essene
hypothesis, but I have a minor question.  Ignoring the reference to Judas the
Essene, contemporary of Aristobulus I ca. 100 BCE (Ant. 13.311), when would
you date the incident when Manaemus the Essene predicted Herod the Great
would be king?  This took place when Herod was a "boy" (Ant. 15.373).  I
don't know exactly when Herod was born, but he began to serve as governor of
Galilee prior to 47 BCE (Wars 1.203) [around age 25?], and died at a
reasonably advanced age in 4 BCE [around age 65-70?].  I would guess in 62
BCE Herod was about 10, give or take 5 years, and so the encounter with
Manaemus probably took place around this time.  So in your opinion about how
long had the Essene sect/party been in existence at this incident, or do you
discount the anecdotes about early Essenes scattered in Ant.?


Russell Gmirkin

P.S. I notice I failed to respond to a previous query of yours.

> Ian Hutchesson
> By the way, how come the header spells your name Gmerkyn while you sign
> Gmirkin?  (curiosity)

What with the Stalinist purges of the 1930s, 
there's less than a dozen Gmirkins on the _planet_, 
and one of them managed to scarf up RGmirkin@aol.com.  
Go figure.  So I decided to revert to the pre-Americanized 
spelling Gmerkyn.  
-- R. Gm.