« PreviousContinue »
ty and largeness; and therein was a Colossus of Caesar, not less than that of Jupiter Olympius, which it was made to resemble. The other Colossus of Rome was equal to that of Juno, at Argos. So he dedicated the city to the province, and the haven to the sailors there ; but the honour of the building he ascribed to * Caesar, and named it Caesarea accordingly.
8. He also built the other edifices, the amphitheatre, and theatre, and market-place, in a manner agreeable to that denomination; and appointed games every fifth year, and called them, in like manner, Caesar's Games; and he first himself proposed the largest prizes upon the hundred ninetysecond Olympiad ; in which not only the victors themselves, but those that came next to them, and even those that came in the third place, were partakers of his royal bounty. He also rebuilt Anthedon, a city that lay on the coast, and had been demolished in the wars, and named it Agrippeum. Moreover, he had so very great a kindness for his friend Agrippa, that he had his name engraven upon that gate which he had himself erected in the temple.
9. Herod was also a lover of his father, if any other person ever was so; for he made a monument for his father, even that city which he built in the finest plain that was in his kingdom, and which had rivers and trees in abundance, and named it Antipatris. He also built a wall about a citadel that lay above Jericho, and was a very strong and very fine building, and dedicated it to his mother, and called it Cypros. Moreover, he dedicated a tower that was at Jerusalem, and called it by the name of his brother, Phasaelus, whose structure, largeness, and magnificence, we shall describe hereafter. He also built another city in the valley that leads northward from Jericho, and named it Phasaelis.
10. And as he transmitted to eternity his family and friends, so did he not neglect a memorial for himself, but built a fortress upon a mountain towards Arabia, and named it from himself, + Herodium ; and he called that hill that was
* Those buildings of cities hy the name of Caesar, and institution of solemn games in honour of Augustus Caesar, as here, and in the Antiquities, related of Herod by Josephus, the Roman historians attest to as things then frequent in the provinces of that empire, as Dean Aldrich observes on this chapter.
+ There were two cities or citadels called Herodiums, in Judea, and both mentioned by Josephus, not only here, but Antiq. B. xiv, ch. xii. 49. B. xv. ch. ix. j 6. Of the War, B. i. ch. xiii. $ 8. B. ii. cb, iji. 5.
of the shape of a woman's breast, and was sixty furlongs distant from Jerusalem, by the same name. He also bestowed much curious art upon it, with great ambition, and built round towers all about the top of it, and filled up the remaining space with most costly palaces round about, insomuch, that not only the sight of the inner apartments was splendid, but great wealth was laid out on the outward walls, and partitions, and roofs also. Besides this, he brought a mighty quantity of water from a great distance, and at vast charges, and raised an ascent to it of two hundred steps, of the whitest marble, for the hill was itself moderately high, and entirely fictitious. He also built other palaces about the roots of the hill, sufficient to receive the furniture that was put into them, with his friends also, insomuch, that on account of its containing all necessaries, the fortress might seem to be a city, but by the bounds it had, a palace only.
11. And when he had built so much, he showed the greatness of his soul to no small number of foreign cities. He. built places for exercise at Tripoli, and Damascus, and Ptolemais; he built a wall about Byblus, as also large rooms, and cloisters, and temples, and market-places at Berytus, and Tyre, with theatres at Sidon apd Damascus. He also built aqueducts for those Laodiceans who lived by the seaside ; and for those of Ascalon he built baths and costly fountains, as also cloisters round a court, that were adinirable, both for their workmanship and largeness. Moreover, he dedicated groves and meadows to some people; nay, not a few.cities there were who had lands of his donation, as if they were parts of his own kingdom. He also bestowed annual revenues, and those forever also, on the settlements for exercises, and appointed for them, as well as for the people of Cos, that such rewards should never be wanting. He also gave corn to all such as wanted it, and conferred upon Rhodes large sums of money for building ships, and this he did in many places, and frequently also. And when Apollo's temple had been burnt down he rebuilt it, at his own charges, after a better manner than it was before. What need I speak of the presents he made to the Lycians and Samnians ? or of his great liberality through all Ionia ? and that according to every body's wants of them. And are not the One of them was 200, and the other 60 furlongs distant from Jerusalem. One of them is mentioned by Pliny, Hist. Nat. B. v. ch. xiy, as Dean Aldrich observes here..
Athenians, and Lacedemonians, and Nicopolitans, and that Pergamus which is in Mysia, full of donations that Herod presented them withall ? And as for that large open place belonging to Antioch in Syria, did he not pave it with polished marble, though it were twenty furlongs long ? and this when it was shunned by all men before, because it was full of dirt and filthiness, when he besides adorned the same place with a cloister of the same length.
12. It is true, a man may say these were favours peculiar to those particular places, on which he bestowed his benefits; but then what favours he bestowed on the Eleans was a donation, not only in common to all Greece, but to all the habitable earth, as far as the glory of the Olympic games reached. For when he perceived that they were come to nothing, for want of money, and that the only remains of ancient Greece were in a manner gone, he not only became one of the combatants in that return of the fifth-year games, which in his sailing to Rome he happened to be present at, but he settled upon them revenues of money for perpetuity, insomuch, that his memorial as a combatant there can never fail. It would be an infinite task if I should go over his payments of people's debts, or tributes for them, as he eased the people of Phasaelus, of Batanea, and of the small cities about Cicilia, of those annual pensions they before paid, However, the fear he was in much disturbed the greatness of his soul, lest he should be exposed to envy, or seem to hunt after greater things than he ought, while he bestowed more liberal gifts upon these cities than did their owners themselves.
13. Now Herod had a body suited to his soul, and was ever a most excellent hunter, where he generally had good success, by the means of his great skill in riding horses; for in one day he caught forty wild beasts ;* that country breeds also bears, and the greatest part of it is replenished with stags and wild assės. He was also such a warrior as could not be withstood: many men, therefore, there are, who have stood amazed at his readiness in his exercises, when they saw him throw the javelin directly forward, and to shoot the arrow upon the mark. And then, besides these performances of his, depending on his own strength of mind and
* Here seems to be a small defect in the copies, which describe the wild beasts which were hunted in a certain country by Herod, without naming any such country at all.
body, fortune was also very favourable to him; for he seldom failed of success in his wars; and when he failed, he was not himself the occasion of such failings, but he either was betrayed by some, or the rashness of his own soldiers procured his defeat.
. CHAP. XXII. The murder of Aristobulus and Hyrcanus the high-priests, as
also of Mariamne the queen. 8 1. HOWEVER, fortune .was avenged on Herod in his eternal great successes, by raising him up domestic troubles, and he began to have wild disorders in his family, on account of his wife, of whom he was so very fond. For when he came to the government, he sent away her whom he had before married, when he was a private person, and who was born at Jerusalem, whose name was Doris, and married Mariamne, the daughter of Alexander, the son of Aristobulus; on whose account disturbances arose in his family, and that in part very soon, but chiefly after his return from Rome. For first of all he repelled Antirater, the son of Doris, for the sake of his sons by Mariamne, out of the city, and permitted him to come thither at no other times than at the festivals. After this he slew his wife's grandfather, Hyrcanus, when he was returned out of Parthia to him, under this pretence, that he suspected him of plotting against him. Now this Hyrcanus had been carried captive to Barzapharnes, when he over-ran Syria ; but those of his own country beyond Euphrates were desirous he would stay with them, and this out of the commiseration they had for his condition ; and had he complied with their desires, when they exhorted him not to go over the river to Herod, he had not perished: but the marriage of his granddaughter [to Herod) was his temptation ; or, as he relied upon him, and was over fond of his own country, he came back to it. Herod's provocation was this, not that Hyrcanus made any attempt to gain the kingdom, but that it was Gitter for him to be their king than for Herod.
2. Now of the five children which Herod had by Mariamne, two of them were daughters and three were sons; and the youngest of these sons was educated at Rome, and there died ; but the two eldest he treated as those of royal blood, on account of the nobility of their mother, and because they were not born till he was king. But then what was stronger than all this, was the love that he bare to Mariamne, and which inflamed him every day to a great degree, and so far conspired with the other motives, that he felt no other troubles on account of her he loved so entirely. But Mariamne's hatred to him was not inferior to his love to her. She had indeed but too just a cause of indignation, from what he had done, while her boldness proceeded from his affection to her; so she openly reproached him with what he had done to her grandfather Hyrcanus, and to her brother Aristobulus; for he had not spared this Aristobulus, though he were but a child; for when he had given him the high-priesthood at the age of seventeen, he slew him quickly after he had conferred that dignity upon bim ; but when Aristobulus had put on the holy vestments, and had approached to the altar, at a festival, the multitude in great crowds fell into tears; whereupon the child was sent by night to Jericho, and was there dipped by the Gauls, at Herod's command, in a pool till he was drowned.
3. For these reasons Mariamne reproached Herod, and his sister and mother after a most contumelious manner, while he was dumb on account of his affection for her; yet had the women great indignation at her, and raised a calumny against her, that she was false to his bed; which thing they thought nost likely to move Herod to anger. They also contrived to have many other circumstances believed, in order to make the thing more credible, and accused her of having sent her picture into Egypt to Antony, and that her lust was so extravagant, as to have thus showed herself, though she was absent, to a man that ran mad after women, and to a man that had it in his power to use violence to her. This charge fell like a thunderbolt upon Herod, and put him into disorder; and that especially, because his love to her occasioned him to be jealous, and because he considered with himself that Cleopatra was a shrewd woman, and that on her account Lysanias the king was taken off, as well as Malichus the Arabian ; for his fear did not only extend to the dissolving of his marriage, but to the danger of his life.
4. When, therefore, he was about to take a journey abroad, he committed his wife to Joseph, bis sister Salome's husband, as to one who would be faithful to him, and bare