Page images

by his ankle, as he was running away. The man was, however, of a robuft body, and in his armour; so low did Pedanins bend himselt downward from his horse, even as he was galloping away, and so great was the strength of his right hand, and of the rest of his body, as also fuch skill had he in horsemanthip. So this man seized upon that his prey as upon a precious treasure, and carried him as his captive to Cæfar : Whereupon Titus admired the man that had reized the other for his great strength, and ordered the man that was caught to be punished (with death) for his attempt against the Roman wall, but betook himself to the siege of the temple; and to pressing on the raising of the banks.

9. In the mean time, the Jews were so distressed by the fights they had been in, as the war advanced higher and higher, and creeping up to the holy house itself, that they, as it were, cut off those liinbs of their body which were infected, in order to prevent the distemper's spreading farther ; for they fet the north-west cloister, which was joined to the tower of Antonia, on fire, and after that brake off about twenty cubitsof that cloister, and thereby inade a beginning in burning the fanctuary : Two day's after which, or on the twenty-fourth day of the forenamed month, (Panemus or Tamuz] the Ro. mans set fire to the cloister that joined to the other, when the fire went fifteen cubits farther. The Jews in like manner cut off its roof; nor did they entirely leave off what they were about till the tower of Antonia was parted from the temple. even when it was in their power to have stopped the fire ; nay. they lay still while the temple was first set on fire,and deemed this spreading of the fire to be for their own advantage. Howey. er, the armies were still fighting one against another about the temple, and the war was managed by continual sallies of particular parties against one another.

10. Now there was at this time a man among the Jews; low of flature he was, and of a despicable appearance; of no char. acter either as to his family, or in other relpects : His name was Jonathan. He went out at the high-priest John's monu. ment, and uttered many other insolent things to the Romans, and challenged the best of them all to a single combat. But many of those that stood there in the army huffed him, and many of them (as they migbt well be) were afraid of him. Some of thein also reasoned thus, and that juftly enough, that it was not fit to fight with a man that desired to die. because those that utterly despaired of deliverance had, besides other passions, a violence in attacking men that could not be oppof. ed; and had nu regard to God himself; and that to bazard one's felt with a person, whom, it you overcome, you do no great matter, and by whom it is hazardous that you may be taken prisoner, would be an instance not of manly courage, but of uninanly rasknefs. So there being no body that came out to accept the man's challenge, and the Jew cutting them with a

great number of reproaches, as cowards, (for he was a very haughty man in hiinself, and a great despiser of the Romans), one whose name was Pudens, of the body of horsemen, out of his abomination of the other's words, and of his impudence withal, and perhaps out of an incon Giderate arrogance, on account of the other's lowness of ftature, ran out to him, and was too hard for him in other respeas. but was betrayed by his fortune ; for he fell down, and as he was down, Jonathan came running to him, and cut his throat, and then Atanding upon his dead body, he brandished his sword, bloody as it was, and shook his shield with his left hand, and made many accla. mations to the Roman army, and inlulted over the dead man, and jefted upon the Romans.; till at length one Priscus a centurion shot a dart at him, as he was leaping and playing the fool with himselt, and thereby pierced him through : Upon which a fhout, was set up both by the Jews and the Romans, though on different accounts. So Jonathan grew giddy by the pain of his wounds, and fell down upon the body of his adversary, as a plain instance how suddenly vengeance may come upon men that have success in war, without any just deserving the same.

c H A P. 11I.

Concerning a Stratagem that was Devised by the Jeu's, by which

they Burnt many of the Romans; with another Defcription

of the Terrible Famine that was in the City. : $1. PUT now the seditious that were in the temple did

D every day openly endeavour to beat off the soldiers that were upon the banks, and on the twenty-seventh day of the forenamed month Panemus or Tamuz contrived such a Stratagem as this: They filled that part of the western cloister * which was between the beams, and the roof under them, with dry materials, as also with bitumen and pitch, and then retired from that place, as though they were tired with the pains they had taken; at which procedure of theirs many of the most inconsiderate among the Romans, who were carried .away with violent passions, followed hard after them as they were retiring, and applied ladders to the cloister, and got up to it suddenly: But the prudenter part of them, when they understood this unaccountable retreat of the Jews, stood stil! where they were before. However, the cloilter was full of those that were gone up the ladders; at which time the Jews set it all on fire; and as the flame burst out every where on the sudden, the Romans that were out of the danger were seiz. ed with a very great consternation, as were those that were in the midst of the danger in the utmost distress. So when they perceived themselves surrounded with the flames, some of

* Of the Court of the Gentila.

them threw themselves down backwards into the city, and some among their enemies (in the temple); as did many leap down to their own men, and broke their limbs to pieces : But a great number of thofe that were going to take thele violent methods, were prevented by the fire ; though some prevented the fire by their own words. However, the fire was on tbe sudden carried so far as to surround those who would have otherwise perished. As for Cæsar himlelf, he could not, however, but commiserate those that thus perished, although they got up chiiher without any order for so doing, since there was no way of giving them any relief. Yet was this some com. fort to thole that were destroyed, that every body might see that person grieve, for whose fake they came to their end; for he cried out openly to them, and leaped up, and exhorted those that were about him to do their utmoft to relieve them. So every one of them died cheertully, as carrying along with him these words, and this intention of Cæsar as a fepulchral monument. Some there were indeed who retired into the wall of the cloister which was broad, and were preserved out of the fire, but were then furrounded by the Jews; and although they made resistance against the Jews for a long time, yet were they wounded by them, and at length they all fell down dead.

2. At the last a young man among them, whofe name was Langus, became a decoration to this sad affair, and while eve. ry one of them that perihed were worthy of a memorial, this mnan appeared to delerve it beyond all the rest. Now the Jews admired this man tor his courage, and were farther deJirous of having him lain ; so they persuaded him to come. down to them, upon security given him for his life. But Cornelius his brother perfuaded him on the contrary, not to tarnish their own glory, nor that of the Roman army. He complied with this last advice, and lifting up his sword belore both armies, he flew himself. Yet was there one Artorius a. mong those surrounded with the fire, who escaped by his subtilty ; for when he had with a loud voice called to him Lu. cius, one of his fellow soldiers that lay with him in the same tent, and said to him, " I do leave thee heir of all I have, if thou wilt come and receive me." Upon this he came run. ning 10 receive him readily: Artorius then threw himself down upon him, and saved his own lite, while he that receive ed him was dashed so vehemently against the stone pavement by the other's weight, that he died immediately. This melan. choly accident made the Romans sad for a while, but still it made them more upon their guard for the future, and was of advantage to them against the delusions of the Jews, by which they were greatly damaged through their unacquaintednels with the places, and with the nature of the inhabitants. Now this cloister was burnt down as far as John's tower, which he built in the war he made against Simon, over the gates that led to the Xyflus. The Jews also cut off the rest of that clois.

ter from the temple, after they had destroyed those that got up to it. But the next day the Romans burnt down the north. ern cloister, entirely as far as the east cloister, whose common angle joined to the valley that was called Cedron, and was built over it; on which account the depth was frightful. And this was the state of the temple at that time,

3. Now, of those that perished by famine in the city, the number was prodigious, and the miseries they underwent were unspeakable ; for it so much as the shadow of any kind of food did any where appear, a war was commenced present. ly, and the dearest friends fell a-fighting one with another a. bout it, snatching from each other the most miserable supports of life. Nor would men believe that those who were dying had no food, but the robbers would search them when they were expiring, lest any one should have concealed food in their bosoms, and counterfeited dying : Nay, these robbers gaped for want, and ian about stumbling and staggering along like mad dogs, and reeling against the doors of the houses, like drunken men ; they would allo, in the great distress they were in, rush into the very fame houses two or three times in one and the same day. Moreover, their hunger was so intolerable, that it obliged them to chew every thing, while they gathered such things as the most sordid animals would not touch, and endured to eat them; nor did they at length ab. stain from girdles and shoes, and the very leather which beJonged to their Dields they pulled off and gnawed : The very wisps of old hay became food to some, and some gathered up fibres, and sold a very small weight of them for tour Attic [drachmæl. But why do I describe the shameless impudence that the famine brought on men in their eating inanimate things ? while I am going to relate a matter of fact, the like to which no hiftory relates *, either among the Greeks or Bar. barians. It is horrible to speak of it, and incredible when heard. I had indeed willingly omitted this calamity of ours, that I might not seem to deliver what is so portentous to por. terity, but that I have innumerable witnesses to it in my own

* What Josephus observes b-re, that no parallel examples had been recorded bca fore his time of such sieges, wherein mothers were forced by extremity of famine to eat their own children, as had been threatened to the Jews in the law of Moles upon obftinate disobedience, and more than once fulfilled (lee my Boyle's Lectures, p. 210—214), is by Dr. Hudson supposed to have had two or three parallel examples in later ages. He might have had more examples I suppose of persons on Ship-board, or in a desert iland, cafting lots for each other's bodies ; but all this was only in cases where they knew of no possible way to avoid death themselves, but by killing and eating others. Whether such examples come up to the present case, may be doubted. The Romans were not only willing, but very desirous to grant those Jews in Jerusalem both their lives and their liberties, and to save both their city and their temple. But the Zelotes, the robbers, and the seditious, would hearken to no terms of submission. They voluntarily chose to reduce the citizens to that extremity, as to force mothers to this unnatural barbarity, which, in all its circumstances, has not, I fill suppose, beon hitherto paralleled among the rolt of mankind.

age ; and hefides, my country would have had little reason to thank me for supprefling the mileries that she underwent at this time.

4. There was a certain woman that dwelt beyond Jordan, her name was Mary; her father was Eleazar, of the village Betbezub, which signifies the house of Hylop. She was emi. nent for her family and her wealth, and had fled away to Jeru. falem with the rest of the multitude, and was with them befieged therein at this time. The other effects of this woman had been already seized upon, such I mean as she had brought with her out of Perea, and removed to the city. What she had treasured up besides, as also what tood she had contrived to fave, had been also carried off by the rapacious guards, who came every day running into her houle for that purpose. This put the poor woman into a very great passion, and by the frequent reproaches and imprecations the cast at these rapa. cious villains, he had provoked them to anger against her: but none of them, either out of the indignation she had raised against hersell, or out of commiseration of her case, would take away her life: And if he found any food, she perceived her labours were for others, and not for herselt ; and it was now become impoflible for her any way to find any more food, wbile the famine pierced through her very bowels and mara TOW, when also her paslion was fired to a degree beyond the famine itself : Nor did she consult with any thing but with her passion and the necessity she was in. She then attempted a most unnatural thing, and, (natching up her son who was a child sucking at her breaft, the said, “ thou miserable infant! for whom shall I preserve thee in this war, chis famine, and this (edition ? As to the war with the Romans, if they preserve our lives, we must be flaves. This famine also will destroy us even before that lavery comes upon us. Yet are these leditious rogues more terrible than both the other. Come on; be thou my faud, and be thou a tury to these sedinous varlets and a by-word to the world ; which is all that is now wanting to complete the calamities of us Jews." As soon as the had laid this, she flew her son, and then roasted him, and eat the one half of him, and kepe the other half by her conceal. ed. Upon this the seditious came in presently, and smelling the horrid (cent of this food, they threatened her, that they would cut her throat immediately if he did not shew them what food she had gotten ready. She replied, That “ lhe had faved a very fine portion ot it for them;" and withal uncovered what was left of her son. Hereupon they were seized with an horror and amazement of mind, and stood astonished at the sight, when the faid to them, “This is mine own son, and what hath been done was mine own doing. Come, eat of this food; for I have eaten of it myself. Do not you pretend to be either more tender than a woman, or more compaflionale than a mo. ther : But if you be lo scrupulous, and do abominate this my

« PreviousContinue »