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Re: orion: Musings on 4Q448

Dear Greg Doudna,
	You wrote that 4Q448  is "obviously of much significance..." but
you did not write what you consider that significance to be. You provided a
heuristic example of what that significance is not.  And you wrote about
"...the kind of leaping to conclusions on the basis of slender data that
has plagued the Qumran field." I take it, if I may, that we agree there
have been plenty of  mistaken "conclusions" offered about Qumran, but that
our lists of such examples would differ.  Now, selected musings on your
	You wrote, "I have never heard and cannot imagine this reading
being interpreted as an anti-Jonathan text." Though I admit the text is
difficult to read, your hearing and imagination may note that D.J.
Harrington and J. Strugnell wrote in JBL 1993 p.498 "...the text could be
addressed 'for' or 'against' Alexander Jannaeus...."; and they offer as a
possiblity, "Rise up, O Holy One, against King Jonathan..." For a second
example, see the abstract by E. Main from May 1996 on the orion web site;
Main wrote, "Examination of the biblical passages quoted in this
text...leads us to the conclusion that it in fact denounce [sic] the
king..." It is not my point here to agree or disagree. I have not taken a
position on this, acknowledging uncertainty in this case. I mentioned 4Q448
in my post "Alexander Jannaeus" because I knew some readers would think of
it as a possible contraindication of my reading of 4QpNah. (My reading
shares much with what several learned authors indeed have considered
"obvious"--that it refers to Jannaeus--but differs with many by proposing
him as wicked priest.) On 4Q448 I wrote of  options--not certainties--1) it
was early, when his rule was favored or 2) it was difficult to read even
then or 3) it had holy psalm(s) on it, so was kept. So, Greg, I was saying,
in effect, we should not read too much into 4Q448, given the uncertainties,
such as Vermes and Puech (in RQ Milik FS) reading it as having to do with
Jonathan I, decades earlier.
	Rather, I suggested we rely on relatively clearer texts, e.g.
4QpNah, and the confluences of witnesses, e.g. for a crucifixion circa 88
BCE. 4QpNah wrote not merely of flatterers as opportunists as in Dan 11:32,
but of an *edah* which via *drash* interpreted and taught torah in a way
the author disapproved. Do you think frag. 3-4 col. 2 does not refer to
Alexandra Salome and her alliance with "Ephraim"/Pharisees?
	Your use of the burial passage in Josephus did not mention that
Josephus used more than one source. Again I recommend A. Baumgarten's JBL
article on the name of the Pharisees. As to the complexities and
ambivalence some felt, one might consult also BT Sota 22b (Jannaeus,
suposedly, to his wife) "...fear not the Pharisees...but the hypocrites who
ape the Pharisees, because theirs deeds are the deeds of Zimri, but they
expect a reward like Phineas..." Or Avot d R. Natan A 37 and parallels on
seven types of Pharisee, some good, some bad.
	As your post did not do so, I await your book on 4QpNah, which,
perhaps, will explain why you, apparently, and some others, regard proposed
readings of 4QpNah historically as referring to Jannaeus and Pharisees as
unworthy of serious scholars from Joseph Amussine to M. P. Horgan to L. H.
Stephen Goranson   goranson@duke.edu