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Re: orion-list Pliny Qumran analysis


>  Three questions in an attempt at clearer thinking:
>  (1) If it were not for the scrolls finds around Qumran, would anyone
>  have identified Qumran as the location of Pliny's Essenes?  (i.e. 
>  is that an obvious or natural reading of Pliny if no scrolls were 
>  known?)

    Here's a short extract from H Travers Herford's article on the Essenes in 
the 1941 edition of _The Universal Jewish Encyclopedia_. 
    "They were a group of pious recluses , for the most part living in 
settlements like the monasteries of later Christian times. They dwelt chiefly 
in the neighborhood of the Dead Sea, and Philo says that they were in number 
about 4000."
    It sounds to me as if Herford would have called Qumran an Essene site 
even if no scrolls were found.
Virgil Brown
For private reply, e-mail to VirgBrown@aol.com
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