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ANTIQUITIES OF THE JEWS. Book XVII. believe every thing he said. He was also formidable to all, not so much on account of the power and authority he had, as for the shrewdness of his vile attempts before-hand: but he who principally cultivated a friendship with him was Pheroras, who received the like marks of his friendship; while Antipater had cunningly encompassed him about by a company of women, when he placed as guards about him : for Pheroras was greatly enslaved to his wife, and to her mother, and to her sister; and this notwithstanding the hatred he: bare them, for the indignities they had offered to his virgin daughters. Yet did he bear them, and nothing was to be done witbout the women, who had got this man into their circle, and continued still to assist each other in all things, insomuch that Antipater was entirely addicted to them, both by himself, and by his mother; for these four women * said all one and the same thing ; but the opinions of Pheroras and Antipater were different in some points of no consequence. But the king's sister (Salome) was their antagonist, who for a good while had looked about all their affairs, and was apprized that this their friendship was made in order to do Herod some mischief, and was disposed to inform the king of it. And since these people knew that their friendship was very disagreeable to Herod, as tending to do him a mischief, they contrived that their meetings should not be discovered; so they pretended to hate one another, and to abuse one another when time served, and especially when Herod was present, or when any one was there that would tell him; but still their intimacy was firmer than ever, when they were private. And this was the course they took ; but they could not conceal from Salome neither their first contrivance, when they set about these their intentions, nor when they had made some progress in them: but she searched out every thing; and, aggravating the relations to her brother, declared to him, “ As is well their secret assemblies and compotations, as their " counsels taken in a clandestine manner, which, if they o were not in order to destroy him, they might well enough 66 have been open and public. But to appearance, tbey are " at variance, and speak about one another as if they intend" ed one another a mischief, but agree so well together when “ they are out of the sight of the multitude; for when they " are alone by themselves they act in concert, and profess " that they will never leave off their friendship but will fight " against those from whom they conceal their designs.” And thus did she search out these things, and get a perfect knowledge of them, and then told her brother of them, who un. derstood also of himself a great deal of what she said, but still * Paeroras's wife and her mother, and sister, and Doris, Antipater's mother.
durst not depend upon it, because of the suspicions he had of his sister's calumnies. For there was a certain sect of men that were Jews, who valued themselves highly upon the exact skill they had in the law of their fathers, and made men believe they were highly favoured by God, by whom this set of women were inveigled. These are those that are called the sect of the Pharisees, who were in a capacity of greatly opposing kings. A cunning sect tbey were, and soon elevated to a pitch of open fighting, and doing mischief. Accordingly, when all the people of the Jews gave assurance of their good-will to Cæsar, and to the king's government, these very men did not swear, being above six thousand; and when the king iniposed a five upon them, Pberoras's wife paid their fine for them. In order to requite which kindness of her's, since they were believed to have the foreknowledge of things to come by divine inspiration, they foretold how God had decreed, that Herod's government should cease, and his posterity should be deprived of it; but that the kingdom should come to her and Pheroras, and to their cbildren. These predictions were not concealed from Salome, but were told the king; as also how they had perverted some persons about the palace itself: so the king slew such of the Pharisees as were principally accused, and Bagoas the eunuch, and one Carus, who exceeded all men of that time in comeliness, and one that was his catamite. He slew also all those of his own family who had consented to what the Pharisees foretold : and for Bagoas, he had been puffed up by them, as though he should be named the father and the benefactor of him who, by the prediction, was foretold to be their appointed king; for that this king would have all things in his power, and would enable Bagoas to marry, and to have children of his own body begotten.
| C H A P. III.
Concerning the enmity between Herod and Pheroras : how
Herod sent Antipater to Cesur; and of the death of Phe
roras. $ 1. W hen Herod had punished those Pharisees who had been convicted of the foregoing crimes, he gathered an assembly together of his friends, and accused Pheroras's wife; and, ascribing the abuses of the virgins to the impudence of that woman, brought an accusation against her for the dishonour she had brought upon them: That “ she had studiously
“ introduced a quarrel between him and his brother, and, by .“ her ill temper, had brought them into a state of war, both
" by her words and actions; that the fines which he had laid < had not been paid, and the offenders had escaped punish6 ment by her means; and that notbing which had of late " been done had been done without her: for which reason " Pheroras would do well, if he would, of his own accord, 66 and by his own comniand, and not at my entreaty, or as “ following my opinion, put this his wife away, as one that 56 will still be the occasion of war between thee and me. And “ now Pheroras, if thou valuest thy relation to me, put this 66 wife of thine away : for by 'this means thou wilt continue 6 to be a brother to me, and wilt abide in thy love to me.” Then said Pheroras, (although he were pressed hard by the former words, that " As he would not do so unjust a thing so as to renounce his brotherly relation to him, so would he 66 not leave off his affection for his wife: that he would ra66 ther choose to die than to live, and be deprived of a wife " that was so dear unto him." Hereupon Herod put off his anger against Pheroras on these accounts, although he himself thereby underwent a very uneasy punishment. However, he forbade Antipater and his mother to have any conversation with Pheroras, and bid them to take care to avoid the assemblies of the women: which they promised to do; but still got together when occasion served, and both Pheroras and Antipater had their own merry meetings. The report went also, that Antipater had criminal conversation with Pheroras's wife; and that they were brought together by Antipater's mother.
2. But Antipater had now a suspicion of his father, and was afraid that the effects of his hatred to him might increase: so he wrote to his friends at Rome, and bid them to send to Herod, that he would immediately send Antipater to Cæsar ; which, when it was done, Herod sent Antipater thither, and sent most noble presents along with him; as also his testament, wherein Antipater was appointed to be bis successor : and that if Antipater should die first, bis (Herod Philip] son by the high-priest's daughter, should succeed. And, toge
ther with Antipater, there went to Rome, Sylleys the Ara· bian, although he had done nothing of all that Cæsar bad enjoined him. Antipater also accused him of the same crimes of which he had been formerly accused by Herod. Sylleus was also accused by Aretas, that without his consent, he had slain many of the chief of the Arabians at Petra; and particularly Soemus, a man that deserved to be hovoured by all men; and that he had slain Fabatus, a servant of Cæsar's. These were the things of which Sylleus was accused, and that on the occasion following: There was one Corinthus belonging to Herod, of the guards of the king's body, and one who was greatly trusted by him. Sylleus had persuaded this man with the offer of a great sum of money, to kill Herod; and he had promised to do it. When Fabatus had been acquainted with this, for Sylleus had himself told him of it, be informed the king of it; who caught Corinthus, and put bim to the torture, and thereby got out of him the whole conspiracy. He also caught two other Arabians, who were discovered by Corinthus ; the one the head of a tribe, and the other a friend to Sylleus, who both were by the king brought to the torture, and confessed that they were come to encourage Corinthus not to fail of doing what he had undertaken to do; and to assist him with their own hands in the murder, if need should require their assistance. So Saturninus, upon Herod's discovering the whole to him, sent them to Rome. . .
3. At this time, Herod commanded Pheroras, that since he was so obstinate in his affection for his wife, he should retire into his own tetrarchy; which he did very willingly, and sware many oaths that he would not come again, till he heard that Herod was dead. And indeed, when, upon a sickness of the king's, he was desired to come to him before he died, that he might intrust him with some of his injunctions, he had such a regard to his oath, that he would not come to him: yet did not Herod so retain his hatred to Pheroras, but remitted of his purpose [not to see him,] which he before had, and that for such great causes as have been already mentioned: but as soon as he began to be ill, he came to him, and this without being sent for; and when he was dead, he took care of his funeral, and had his body brought to Jerusalem and buried there, and appointed a solemn mourning for bim. This [death of Pheroras) became the origin of Antipater's misfortunes, although he were already sailed for Rome, God now being about to punish him for the murder of his brethren. I will explain the history of this matter very distinctly, that it may be for a warning to mankind, that they take care of conducting their whole lives by the rules of virtue. i
Pheroras's wife is accused by his freed men, as guilty of poi
soning him; and how Herod, upon examination of the matter by torture, found the poison; but so that it had been prepared for himself by his son Antipater : and, upon an enquiry by torture, he discovered the dangerous designs of
Antipater. § 1. As soon as Pheroras was dead, and his funeral was over, two of Pheroras's freed-men who were much esteemed
by him, came to Herod, and entreated him not to leave the murder of his brother without avenging it, but to examine into such an unreasonable and unhappy death. When he was moved with these words, for they seemed to hiin to be true, they said, That “ Pheroras supped with his wife the day be“ fore he fell sick, and that a certain potion was brought 6 him in such a sort of food as he was not used to eat; but “ that when he had eaten he died of it: that this potion was « brought out of Arabia by a woman, under pretence indeed " as a love potion, for that was its name, but in reality to " kill Pheroras; for that the Arabian women are skilful in 66 making such poisons : and the woman to whom they as« cribe this, was confessedly a most intimate friend of one of “ Sylleus's mistresses; and that both the mother and the sis. « ter of Pheroras's wife had been at the places where she 6 lived, and had persuaded her to sell them this potion, and “ had come back and brought it with them the day before " that of his supper.” Hereupon the king was provoked, and put the women slaves to the torture, and some that were free with them; and as the fact did not yet appear, because none of them would confess it; at length one of them, under her utmost agonies, said no more but this, That “ she prayed " that God would send the like agonies upon Antipater's “ mother, who had been the occasion of these miseries to all " of them.” This prayer induced Herod to increase the women's tortures, till thereby all was discovered : “ Their mers ry meetings, their secret assemblies, and the disclosing of 66 what he had said to his son alone, unto Pberoras's * wo. 6 men.” (Now what Herod had charged Antipater to conceal, was, the gift of an hundred talents to him not to have any conversation with Pheroras.) " And what hatred he " bore to his father, and that he complained to his mother 6 how very long his father lived; and that he was himself al6 most an old man, insomuch, that if the kingdom sbould " come to him, it would not afford him any great pleasure; " and that there were a great many of his brothers, or bro66 thers' children, bringing up, that might bave hopes of the " kingdom as well as himself, all which made his own hopes « of it uncertain; for that even now, if he should himself not
* His wife, her mother and sister.
It seems to me, by this whole story put together, that Pheroras was not him. self poisoned, as is commonly supposed; for Antipater had persuaded him to poison Herod, ch. v. § 1. which would fall to the ground, if he were himself poisoned; nor could the poisoning of Pheroras serve any design that appears now going forward ; it was only the supposal of two of his freed-men, that this love-potion, or poison, which they knew was brought to Pheroras's wife, was *made use of for poisoning him; whereas it appears to have been brought for her busband to poison Herod withal, as the future examinations demonstrate,