[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

SV: orion-list 63 BCE; 4QMishC

    [The following text is in the "iso-8859-1" character set]
    [Your display is set for the "ISO-8859-8" character set]
    [Some characters may be displayed incorrectly]

Dierk van der Berg correctly points out that the 4Q324a D
Frg 2 (= 4QMishC), with the "Aemilius killed--" readings, has
sequential calendar references with priestly courses, and that
these correspond to the other calendar texts.  Fair enough,
and correct on the evidence.  But why are there those two
references to "Aemilius killed--" (direct object and the rest of
the clause are missing due to lacuna in both cases) there at

The notion that there is some kind of "annal" involved in this
text is not original with me.  The main published study of
4QMishC is still that of Michael Wise in _Thunder in Gemini_
(Sheffield, 1994), pp. 186-221.  Wise titles his chapter: "An
Annalistic Calendar from Qumran".  On p. 197 Wise says,
"I would hypothesize that this Qumran work was a
'Hasmonean Chronicle'".  However on p. 220 Wise concludes
more ambiguously: "it is not, for example, a chronicle . . .
nevertheless, many of its entries presuppose one or more
chronicles or the equivalent" (and then Wise cites American
calendars which have Lincoln's birthday, etc.).  "Thus, while
it is no annal, the designation 'annalistic calendar' seems
appropriate" (Wise, 221).

However is this a complete understanding of this text?  Ian
has proposed (I hope I paraphrase his sense accurately)
that rather than a timeless recurring 6-year cycle priestly
course sequence, that this IS an annal--like a chronicle or
diary--although from a priestly point of view.  Consider: every
week a scribe or temple chronicler--however it worked--writes
down the signficant news for that week.  Most weeks nothing
important happens except for the change of course of the
priests (that, of course, is very important, indicating the
authors of the text).  But when a war, a battle, a new monarch,
etc. happens, that is also written down.  No week goes by
without a change of priests' course, so that is a headline every
week.  The other "news headlines" get written in sporadically
as they occur.  This then is no timeless 6-year cycle for
priestly courses.  It is literally a diary, written contemporary
to the events it tells, over the course of a few years.  It is
literally a firsthand contemporary chronicle of events from a
temple historian.  That would be the hypothesis to consider.
(Somewhere I recall reading that apparently some Hebrew
Union College doctoral student under Wacholder wrote his
dissertation on these calendar texts.  Does anyone know
what became of that student or that dissertation?)

> A brief word on Aem. Scaurus. Both his pre- and post-63er killing is -
> even
> historical possible - merely exaggerated assumption (for we really don't
> know it! - more: we not even know if Aem. Scaurus was meant...)
The name is there; it is a clear reading, twice.  The other
fragments's names, e.g. Shelamzion (Alexandra Salome)
and Hyrcanus (Hyrcanus II, because on the same fragment
in association with Shelamzion) are in the same period.
Aemilius sounds Roman, and who else is he if not Aemilius
Scaurus?  Are there any other known Aemiliuses of relevance
to Judea in the Second Temple era?  Note that Wacholder
thinks there may be a reading of "Gabinius", Pompey's other
main general, at 4Q322 A 1.4, ] HWShYB G.[, "Ga[binius?]
returned (?)".  One expects a proper name following the 3rd
masc. sing. verb.  The Gimel is a secure reading and the
traces following it are compatible with Bet.  On analogy with
the undisputed "Aemilius" elsewhere, it could be "Gabinius"
here.  Not as certain as "Aemilius", but it would be
compatible.  As for how trustworthy the reference, consider
that MishC may be the real, contemporary information
compared to Josephus who draws from sources from later

> PS. If democracy is still alive, I vote for Ian's return to the list.
Yes.  Send a polite note to the moderator offlist, is my 

Greg Doudna

For private reply, e-mail to Greg Doudna <gd@teol.ku.dk>
To unsubscribe from Orion, e-mail to majordomo@panda.mscc.huji.ac.il with
the message: "unsubscribe Orion." For more information on the Orion Center
or for Orion archives, visit our web site http://orion.mscc.huji.ac.il.