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many who have done their endeavours, with great patience, to obtain this learning, there have yet hardly been so many as two or three that have succeeded therein, who were immediately well rewarded for their pains.
3. And now it will not be, perhaps, an invidious thing, if I treat briefly of my own family, and of the actions of my own life, while there is still living such as can either prove what I say to be false, or can attest that it is true; with which accounts I shall put an end to these Antiquities, which are contained in twenty books, and sixty thousand verses. And, if God * permit me, I will briefly run over this war again, with what befell us therein, to this very day, which is the thirteenth year of the reign of Caesar Domitian, and the fif
* What Josephus here declares his intention to do, if God permitted, to give the public again an abridgment of the Jewish War, and to add. what befell ihem farther to that very day, the 13th of Domitian, or A, D. 93, is not, that I have observed, taken distinct notice of by any; nor do we ever hear of it elsewhere, whether he performed what he now intended or not. Some of the reasons of this design of his might possibly be his observation of the many errors he had been guilty of in the two first of those seven books of the War, which were written when he was comparatively young, and less acquainted with the Jewish Antiquities than he now was, and in which abridgment we might have hoped to find those many passages which himself, as well as those several passages which others refer to, as written by him, but which are not extant in his present works. However, since many of his own references to what he had written elsewhere, as well as most of his own errors, belong to such early times, as could not well come into his abridgment of the Jewish war; and since none of those that quote things not now extant in his works, including himself, as well as others, ever cite any such abridgment, I am forced rather to suppose that he never did publish any such work at all; I mean as distinct from his own life, written by himself, for an appendix to these Antiquities, and this at least above seven years after these Antiquities were finished. Nor indeed does it appear to me, that Josephus ever published that other work here mentioned, as intended by him for the public also, I mean the three or four books concerning God and his essence, and concerning the Jewish laus; why, according to them, some things were permitted the Jews, and others prohibited: which last seems to be the same work which Josephus had also promised, if God permitted, at the conclusion of his preface to these Antiquities; nor do I suppose that he ever published any of them. The death of all his friends at court, Vespasian Titus, and Domitian, and the coming of those he had no acquaintance with, to the crown, I mean Nerva and Trajan, together with bis removal from Rome to Judea, with what followed it, might easily interrupt such his intentions, and prevent his publication of those works.
ty-sixth year of my own life. I have also an intention to write three books concerning our Jewish opinions about God, and his essence, and about our laws; why, according to them, some things are permitted us to do, and others are prohibited.
$ 1. The family from which I am derived is not an ignoble one, but hath descended all along from the priests : and as nobility among several people is of a different origin, so with us to be of sacerdotal dignity, is an indication of the 'splendour of the family. Now I am not only sprung from a sacerdotal family in general, but from the first of the twentyfour * courses; and as among us there is not only a considerable difference between one family of each course, and another, I am of the chief family of that first course also: nay, farther, by my mother I am of the royal blood; for the children of Asamoneus, from whom that family was derived, had both the office of the high-priesthood, and the dignity of a king for a long time together. I will accordingly set down my progenitors in order. My grandfather's father was named Simon, with the addition of Psellus : he lived at the same time with that son of Simon the high-priest, who first of all the high-priests was named Hyrcanus. This Simon Psellus had nine sons, one of which was Matthias, called Ephlias; he married the daughter of Jonathan the highpriest, which Jonathan was the first of the sons of Asamoneus, who was high-priest, and was the brother of Simon the high-priest also. This Matthias had a son called Mat.
* We may bence correct the error of the Latin copy of the 2d book against Apion, $ 7, 8. (for the Greek is there lost,) which says, there were then only 4 tribes or courses of the priests, instead of 24. Nor is this testimony to be disregarded, as if Josephus there contradicted what he had affirmed here, because even the account there given bet ter agrees to 24 than to 4 courses, while he says that each of those courses contained above 5000 men, which multiplied by only 4 will make not many more than 20,000 priests ; whereas the number 1 20,000, as multiplied by 24, seems much the most probable, they being about one tenth of the whole people, even after the captivity. See Ezra, ii. 36-39. Nehem. vii. 39–42. 1 Esd. v. 24, 25, with Ezra, ii. 64. Nehem. vii. 66. 1 Esd. v. 41. Nor will this common reading or no. tion of but 4 courses of priests, agree with Josephus's own farther assertion elsewhere, Antiq. B. vii. ch. xiv. § 7. that David's partition the priests iuto 24 courses had continued to that day.
thias Curtus, and that in the first year of the government of Hyrcanus: his son's name was Joseph, born in the ninth year of the reign of Alexandra: his son Matthias was born in the tenth year of the reign of Archelaus ; as was I born to Matthias on the first year of the reign of Caius Caesar. I have three sons: Hyrcanus, the eldest, was born on the . fourth year of the reign of Vespasian, as was Justus born on the seventh, and Agrippa on the ninth. Thus have I set down the genealogy of my family, as I have found it described * in the public records, and so bid adieu to those who calumniate me, Tas of a lower original.] "2. Now my father Matthias was not only eminent on account of his nobility, but had an higher commendation on .account of his righteousness, and was in great reputation in Jerusalem, the greatest city we have. I was myself brought -up with my brother, whose name was Matthias, for he was my own brother, by both father and mother; and I made -mighty proficiency in the improvements in my learning, and appeared to have both a great memory and understanding. Moreover, when I was a child, and about fourteen years of age, I was commended by all for the love I had to learning; on which account the high-priests, and principal men of the city, came then frequently to me together, in order to know my opinion about the accurate understanding of points of the law. And when I was about sixteen years old I had a mind to make trial of the several sects that were among us. *These sects are three; the first is that of the Pharisees, the second that of the Sadducees, and the third that of the Essens, as we have frequently told you; for I thought that by this means I might choose the best, if I were once acquainted with them all ; so I contented myself with hard fare, and underwent great difficulties, and went through them all.7 Nor did I content myself with these trials only; but when I was informed that one, whose name was Banus, lived in the desert, and used no other clothing than grew upon trees, and had no other food than what grew of its own accord, and bathed himself in cold water frequently, both by night and by day, in order to preserve his chastity, I imitated him in those things, and continued with him three years.
* An eminent example of the care of the Jews about their genealo." gies, especially as to the prieste. See Contr. Ap. B. i. ch. vii. 1 hen Josephus here says, that from 16 to 19, or for three years ke So when I had accomplished my desires, I returned back to the city, being now nineteen years old, and began to conduct myself according to the rules of the sect of the Pharisees, which is of kin to the sect of the Stoics, as the Greeks call them.
3. But, when I was in the twenty-sixth year of my age, · it happened that I took a voyage to Rome, and this on the occasion which I shall now describe. At the time when Felix was procurator of Jadea, there were certain priests of my acquaintance, and very excellent persons they were, whom, on a small and trifling occasion, he had put into bonds, and sent to Rome, to plead their cause before Caesar. These I was desirous to procure deliverance for, and that especially because I was informed that they were not immindful of piety towards God even under their afflictions, but supported themselves with figs and nuts.* Accordingly,
came to Rome, though it were through a great number of hazards by sea ; for, as our ship was drowned in the Adriatic Sea, we that were in it, being about six hundred in numberit swam for our lives all the night; when upon the first appearance of the day, and upon our sight of a ship of Cyrene, I and some others, eighty in all, by God's providence, prevented the rest, and were taken up into the other ship. And when I had thus escaped, and was come to Dicearchia, made trial of the three Jewish sects, the Pharisees, the Sadducees, and the Essens, and yet says presently, in all our copies, that he stayed besides with one particular ascetic, called Banus, Top aulo, with him, and this still before he was 19, there is little room left for his trial of the other three sects. I suppose, therefore, that for nas aula', with him, the old reading might be tag Uloss, with them ; which is a very small emendation, and takes away the difficulty before us. Nor is Dr. Hudson's conjecture, hinted at by Mr. Hall, in his preface to the doctor's edition of Jo. sephus, at all improbable, that this Banus, by this his description, might well be a follower of John the Baptist, and that from him Josephus might easily imbibe such notions, as afterward prepared him to have a favourable opinion about Jesus Christ himself, who was attested to by John the Baptist.
* We may note here, that religious men among the Jews, or at least those that were priests, were sometimes ascetics also, and like Daniel and his companions in Babylon, Dan, 1. 8-16. ate no flesh but figs and nuts, &c. only. This was like the grego pogla, or austere diet of the christian ascetics in Passion week. Constitut. v. 18.
It hath been thought the number of Paul and his companions on shipboard, Acts, sxvii. 37. which are 276 in our copies, are too many ; whereas we find here, that Josephus and his companions, a very few years after the other, were about 600.