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orion ancient names; archaeology questions; etc.
Acts 11:26 does *not* say Christians were named by outsiders, but merely
(RSV) that "...in Antioch the disciples were for the first time called
Christians." It may be that many modern commentators take this
sentence--which does *not* specify the agent of action, whether outsiders
or insiders--as indicating outside naming. But I doubt it, and question the
chronological setting. One can look at who uses the name, e.g. Ignatius of
Antioch--without any sense of it being imposed on gentile Christians. And
look at those who do not, e.g., the Essene-influenced Jewish Christian
author of Apocalypse of John. If Flusser is right on "Sons of Light" (as
*one* of the relevant names), one can then explore the worldview of
Luke/Acts vis-a-vis Apocalypse of John.
Cynics may not have minded being called dogs, at first by
outsiders, but most ancient "heresies" (in the then-neutral sense) made
their own names.
Modern declarations that Zealots or Pharisees would not have called
themselves the Semitic versions of these names merely beg the question.
Declaration that the origin of the name "Essene" is less important is
Retrojecting rabbinic ambiguity toward the name (and two meanings)
of "Pharisees" to second temple times merely obscures the issue. "Don't
separate from the community" is a post-70, rabbinic, not Pharisaic, saying.
That some second temple perspective could see "Essenes" and "Pharisees" (in
the *usual* Josephus renderings) as both Perushim is worth exploring. But
prior to that one needs get beyond the particular sociology of scholarship
dynamics which delivered the mistake that "Essene" is not in the scrolls--a
mistake in many reference books by now.
Note that "Pharisee" as either separatist or as specifier is a name
used without the object being specified in [or unseparated from ;-)] the
name. I.e., separated from what; specifiers of what.
More needs be done on the calculus of postulates on the names, IMO.
Brian Capper has a long and complex and speculative article, "'With
the Oldest Monks...": Light from Essene History on the Career of the
Beloved Disciple?" in the latest JTS, 49 (April 1998) 1-55. I don't wish to
attempt a review here, other than to say that, even with some interesting
proposals, the article appears to me to be wrong on Qumran archaeology
chronology vis-a-vis the "Essene Quarter"--though presence of Essenes in
Jerusalem does not require absence (i.e., a gap) at Qumran.
Furthermore--and yet another symptom of the failure to address adequately
the name "Essenes"-- Capper, after accepting archaeological work on the
"Gate of the Essenes," prefers the term "ascetic" to "Essene."
I failed to get a clarification on the "fine parchment" of 4Q298.
Can one analyse direction of hair folicles on true parchment? I don't know;
I was just asking. But that's not one of the more interesting or pressing
archaeological questions, so I'll try some others:
Are people with long experience with pottery working on de Vaux's
Qumran pottery? Stephen Pfann, when and where will yor publication appear?
As part of the series edited by J.-B. Humbert? Is that series still alive?
Do you accept (as, e.g., Capper does) de Vaux's date estimates of the
beginning of period 1, or did he place it too early? Was de Vaux wrong
about a long gap after the earthquake? Have Y. Magen and A. Drori
published anything? At least, I guess, we agree that Y. Hirschfeld's
proposal of Pliny's Essenes at Ein Gedi is too little, too late. Time for
more information on the Essenes of Qumran and elsewhere, in my opinion.
Stephen Goranson firstname.lastname@example.org