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Re: orion-list Essenes, Zias article, etc.
Dear Robert D. Leonard Jr.,
I will be happy to read your new article when it is available. Judah
Lefkovits' three-volume NYU dissertation (to be published by Brill) is
surely a wonderful mine of information and proposals, though, perhaps we
can agree, there are still many questions about which reasonable people can
differ. If you consider some unspecified amounts to be exagerated (or
decoys?), then that would appear to make rather less than sure your
assertion of the amount suposedly too big for the entire Essene movement,
to which members over decades gave all their property. Also, didn't the
Romans capure wealth from the temple? I have suggested that some copper
scroll items may have been cancelled out (after being retreived) by the
Greek letters appended at the ends of some early-deposited items and then
relisted in different lots, reducing the total. The copper scroll assets
may have been deposited over a long period of time; not necessarily all at
once. I suggest this was not current temple property, but intented for a
future temple, or future temple administration. (Perhaps some of the hoards
you mention were also Essene.) I agree with you that the list, found in
Cave 3 with other sectarian texts, is authentic.
Dear Leo Abrami,
I do not know who you have spoken to, or what claims they passed along to
you. But I can speak for myself as a historian: no instituion, religious or
secular, has coerced me in my views about the copper scroll. From my
experience in meeting many scholars from many backgounds, and based on my
reading, there is no single Jewish opinion on the scrolls and there is no
single Christian opinion on the scrolls. I suggest that if you look into
the matter further--either by wider reading or wider conversation--you may
find this to be the case.
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