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had brought public affairs to; in the mean time the zealots grew tumultuous, and had much ado to abstain from drawing their swords, although they designed to preserve the appearance and shew of a judicatare to the end. They were also desirous, on other accounts, to try the judges, whether they would be unmindful of what was just at their own peril. Now the seventy judges brought in their verdict that the person accused was not guilty, as choosing rather to die themselves with him, than to have his death laid at their doors; hereupon there arose a great clamour of the zealots upon his acquittal, and they all had indignation at the judge es for not understauding that the authority that was given them was but in jest. So the two boldest of the fell upon Zacharias in the middle of the temple, and slew him, and as he fell down dead, they bantered him, and said, “ Thou hast also our verdict, and this will prove sa more sure acquittal to thee, than the other." They also threw him down from the temple immediately into the valley beneath it. Moreover they struck the judges with the backs of their swords, by way of abuse, and thrust them out of the court of the temple, and spared their lives with no other desigo than that, when they were dispersed among the people in the city, they might become their messengers, to let them know they were to better than slaves... • 5. But by this time the Idumeans repented of their coming; and were displeased at what had been done; and when they were assembled together by one of the zealots, who had come privately to them, he declared to them, what a number of wicked pranks they had themselves done in conjunction with those that invited them, and gave a particular account of what mischiefs had been done against their metrópolis. He said, that they had taken arms, as though the high-priests “ were betraying their metropolis to the Romans, but had 66 found no indication of any such treachery; but that they “ had succoured those that bad prétended to believe such a " thing, while they did themselves the works of war and 26 tyranny, after an insolent manner. It had been indeed “ their business to have hindered them from such their pró“ ceedings at the first, but seeing they had once been part“ners with them in shedding the blood of their own coun“ trymen, it was high time to put a stop to such crimes, and “ not continue to afford any more assistance to such as are *s subverting the laws of their forefathers; for that if any
“ had taken it ill that the gates had been shut against them, “ and they had not been permitted to come into the city, yet 66 that those who had excluded them have been punished, « and Apanus is dead, and that almost all those people had 66 been destroyed in one pight's time. That one may perw ceive many of themselves pow repenting for what they had * done, and might see the horrid barbarity of those that had “ invited them, and that they had no regard to such as had “ saved them ; that they were so impudent as to perpetrate 56 the vilest things, under the eyes of those that had support" ed them, and that their wicked actions would be laid to the 56 charge of the Idumeans, and would be so laid to their 6 charge till somebody obstructs their proceedings, or sepa. 46 rates himself fron the same wicked action; that they 66 therefore ought to retire home, since the imputation of trea“ son appears to be a calumny, and that there was no ex66 pectation of the coming of the Romans at this time, and “Wat the government of the city was secured by such walls s6 as cannot easily be thrown down : and, by avoiding any 66 farther fellowship with these bad men, to make some ex6 cuse for themselves, as to what they had been so far de“ luded, as to have been partners with them hitherto."
CHAP. VI. How the zealots, when they were forced from the Idumeans, slew a
great many more of the citizens. And how Vespasian dissuaded the Romans, when they were very earnest to march against the
Jews, from proceeding in the war at that time. . $ 1. The Idumeans complied with these persuasions, and in the first place, they set those that were in the prisons at liberty, being about two thousand of the populace, who thereupon fled away immediately to Simon, one whom we shall speak of presently. After which these Idumeans retired from Jerusalem, and went home, which departure of theirs was a great surprise to both parties; for the people not knowing of their repentance, pulled up their courage for a while, as eased of so many of their enemies, while the zealots grew more insolent, not as deserted by their confederates, but as freed from such men as might hinder their designs, and put some stop to their wickedness. Accordingly they made no longer any delay, nor took any deliberation in their enormous practices, but made use of the shortest me. thods for all their executions, and what they had once resolv
ed upon, they put in practice sooner than any one could imagine. But their thirst was chiefly after the blood of valiant men, and men of good families; the one sort of which they destroyed out of envy, the other out of fear; for they thought their whole security lay in leaving no potent men alive, on which account they slew Gorion, a person eminent in diguity, and on account of his family also; he was also for democracy, and of as great boldness and freedom of spirit as were any of the Jews whosoever; the principal thing that ruined him, added to his other advantages, was his free speaking. Nor did Niger of Perea escape their hands; he had been a man of great valour in their war with the Romans, but was now drawn through the middle of the city, and, as he went, he frequently cried out, and shewed the scars of his wouods; and when he was drawn out of the gates, and despaired of his preservation, he besought them to grant him a burial; but as they had threatened him beforehand not to grant him any spot of earth for a grave, which he chiefly desired of them, so did they slay him [without permitting him to be buried.] Now when they were slaying him, he made this imprecation upon them, that they might undergo hoth famine and pestilence in this war, and besides all that, they might come to the mutual slaughter of one another ; all which imprecations God confirmed against these impious men, and was what came most justly upon them, when not long afterwards they tasted of their own madriess in their mutual seditions one against another. So when this Niger was killed, their fears of being overturned were di'minished; and indecd there was no part of the people but they found out some pretence to destroy them ; for some were therefore slain, because they had had differences with some of them ; and as to those who had not opposed them in times of peace, they watched seasonable opportunities to gain some accusation against them ; and if any one did not come near them at all, he was under their suspicion as a proud man; if any one came with boldness, he was esteemed a contemner of them; and if any one came as aiming to oblige them, he was supposed to have some treacherous plot against them; while the only punishment of crimes, whether they were of the greatest or smallest sort, was death. Nor could any one escape, unless he were very inconsiderable, either on account of the meanness of his birth, or on account of his fortune,
2. And now all the rest of the commanders of the Romans deemed this sedition among their enemies to be of great advantage to them, and were very earnest to march to the city, and they urged Vespasian as their lord and general in all cases, to make haste, and said to him, that “ the providence of “God is on our side, by setting our enemies at variance agaiust
one another ; that still the change in such cases may be “ sudden, and the Jews may quickly be at one again, either “ because they may be tired out with their civil miseries, " or repent them of such doings.” But Vespasian replied, that “they were greatly mistaken in what they thought fit to “ be done, as those that, upon the theatre, love to make a "shew of their hands, and of their weapons, but do it to
6 their own hazard, without considering what was for their :-“ advantage and for their security ; for that if they now go and 66 attack the city immediately, they shall but occasion their “ enemies to unite together, and shall convert their force, now “ it is in its height, against themselves. But if they stay a 6 while they shall have fewer enemies, because they will be “ consumed in this sedition : that God acts as a general of as the Romans better than he can do, and is giving the Jews “ up to them without any pains of their own, and granting * their army a victory, without any danger: that therefore it. " is their best way while their enemies are destroying each s other with their own hands, and falling into the greatest .66 of misfortunes, which is of that sedition, to sit still as spec
tators of the dangers they run into, rather than to fight hand “ to hand with men that love murderirg, and are mad one ,“ against another. But if any one imagines that the glory of
“ victory, when it is gotten without fighting, will be more in66 sipid, let him know this much that a glorious success quiet. ..“ ly obtained, is more profitable than the dangers of a battle: ,for we ought to esteem those that do what is agreeable to 6 temperance aŅd prudence, no less glorious than those that “ have gained great reputation by their actions in war : that " he shall lead on his army with greater force, when their ene.
mies are diminished, and his owu army refreshed after the “ continual labours he had uudergone. However, that this ," is not a proper time to propose to ourselves the glory of ," victory; for that the Jews are not now employed in ma. “ king of armour or building of walls, nor indeed in getting ,“ together auxiliaries, while the advantage will be on their
side, who give them such opportunity of delay; but that
“ the Jews are vexed to pieces every day by their civil wars " and dissensions, and are under greater miseries than, if they “ were once taken, could be ipflicted on them by us. Whe* ther therefore any one hath regard to what is for our safe" ty, he ought to suffer these Jews to destroy one another, or s whether he hath regard to the greater glory of the actjo,
we ought by no means to meddle with those men, now they “ are afflicted with a distemper at home; for should we now e conquer them, it would be said the conquest was not owing u to our bravery, but to their sedition."
3. And now the commanders joined in their approbation of what Vespasian had said, and it was soon discovered how wise an opinion he had given. And iudeed many there were of the Jews that deserted every day, and fled away from the zealots, although their flight was very difficult, since they had guarded every passage out of the city, and slev every one that was caught by them, as taking it for granted they were going over to the Romans; yet did he who gave them money get clear off, while he only that gave them none was voted a traitor. So the upshot was this, that the rich purchased their fight by money, while none but the poor were slain. Along all the roads also vast numbers of dead bodies lay on heaps, and even many of those that were so zealous in deserting, at length chose rather to perish with io the city ; for the hopes of burial made death in their own city appear of the two less terrible to them. But these zealots came at last to that degree of barbarity, as pot to bestow a burial, either on those slain in the city, or on those that lay along the roads; but as if they had made an agreement to cancel both the laws of their country, and the laws of nature, and at the same time that they defiled men with their wicked actions, they would pollute the Divinity itself also, they left the dead bodies to putrify under the sun : and the same punishment was allotted to such as buried any, as to those that deserted, which was no other than death; while he that granted the favour of a grave to another would preseatly stand in need of a grave himself. To say all in a word, no other gentle passion was so entirely lost among them as mercy; for what were the greatest objects of pity did most of all irritate these wretches, and they transferred their rage from the living to those that had been slain, and from the dead to the living. Nay, the terror was so very great, that he who survived called them that were first dead