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throw them down headlong; at which sight Hyrcanus's commiseration and cou. cern were too hard for his anger. But his mother was not dismayed, neither at the stripes she received, nor at the death with which she was threatened; but' stretched out her hands, and prayed her son not to be moved with the injuries that she suffered, to spare the wretch ; since it was to her better to die by the means of Ptolemy, than to live ever so long provided he might be punished for the injuries he had done to their family. Now John's case was this.When he considered the courage of his mother, and heard her entreaty, he set about his attacks ; but when he saw her beaten, and torn to pieces with the stripes, he grew feeble, and was entirety overcome by his affections. the seige was delayed by this means, the year of rest came on, upon which the Jews rest every seventh year, as they do on every seventh day. On this year, therefore, Ptolemy was freed from being besieged, and slew the brethren of Joha, with their mother, and fled to Zeno, who was also called Cotylas, who was the tyrant of Philadelphia,
5. And now Antiochus was so angry at what he had suffered from Simeon, that he made an expedition into Judea, and sat down before Jerusalem, and be. sieged Hyrcanus ; but Hyrcanus opened the sepulchre of David, who was the richest of all kings, and took thence about three thousand talents in money, and induced Antiochus, by the promise of three thousand talents, to raise the siege. Moreover, he was the first of the Jews that had money enough, and began to luire foreign auxiliaries also.
6. However, at another time, when Antiochus was gone upon an expedition against he Medes, and so gave Hyrcanus an opportunity of being revenged upon him, he immediately made an attack upon the cities of Syria, as thinking, what proved to be the case with them, that he should find them empty of good troops. So he took Medaba and Samea, with the towns in their neighbourhood, us also Shechem and Cerizzim, and besides these she subdued] the nation of the Chutheans, who dwelt round about that temple which was built in imitation of the temple at Jerusalem ; he also took a great many other cities of Idumea, wbith Adoreon and Marissa.
7. He also proceeded as far as Samaria, where is now the city Sebaste, which was built by Herod the king, and encompassed it all round with a wall, and set his sons, Aristobulus and Antigonus, over the siege, who pushed it on so hard, that a famine so far prevailed within the city, that they were forced to eat what never was esteemed food. They also invited Antiochus, who was called Cyzica nau, to come to their assistance ; whereupon he got ready, and complied with their invitation, but was beaten by Aristobulus and Antigonus; and, indeed, he was pursued as far as Scythopolis by these brethren, and fled away from them. So they returned back to Samaria, and shut the multitude again within the wall ; and when they had taken the city, they demolished it and made slaves of its in. habitants. And as they had still great success in their undertakings, they did not suffer their zeal to cool, but marched with an army as far as Scythopolis, and made an incursion upon it, and laid waste all the country that lay within Mougt Carmel.
8. But then these successes of John and of his sons made them be envied, and occasioned a sedition in the country; and many there were who got together and vould not be at rest till they brake out into open war, in which war they were beaten. So John lived the rest of his life very happily, and administered the government after a most extraordinary manner, and this for thirty-three entire years together. He died, leaving five sons behind him. He was certainly a very happy man, and afforded no occasion to have any complaint made of fortune on his account. He it was who alone had three of the most desirable things in the world, the government of his nation, and the high priesthood, and the gift of propbeey: for the Deity conversed with him, and he was not ignorant of any thing that was to come afterward, insomuch that he foresaw and foretold that his two
oldest sons would not continue masters of the government; and it will highly deserve our narration, to describe their catastrophe, and how far inferior these maer. were to their father in felicity.
How Aristobulus was the first that put a Diadem about his Head, and, after he had pre his Mother and Brother to Death, died himself, when he had reigned
no more than a Year. $1. For after the death of their father, the elder of them, Aristobulus, changed che government into a kingdom, and was the first that put a diadem about his head, four hundred seventy and one years and three months after our people came down into this country, when they were set free from the Babylonian slavery. Now of his brethren he appeared to have an affectior. for Antigonus, who was next to him, and made him his equal : but for the rest, he bound them, and put them in prison. He also put his mother in bonds, for her contesting the government with him; for John had left her to be the governess of the public affairs. He also proceeded to that degree of barbarity as to cause her to be pined to death in prison.
2. But vengeance circumvented him in the affair of his brother Antigonus, what he loved, and whom he made his partner in the kingdom; for he slew him by the means of the calumnies which ill men about the palace contrived against him. At first, indeed, Aristobulus would not believe their reports, partly out of the al fection he had for his brother, and partly because he thought that a great part of these tales were owing to the envy of the relaters : however, as Antigonus came once in a splendid manner from the army to that festival, wherein our ancient custom is to make tabernacles for God, it happened in those days that Aristobulus was sick, and that, at the conclusion of the feast, Antigonus came up to it, with his armed men about him; and this when he was adorned in the finest manner possible, and that, in a great measure, to pray to God on the behalf of his brother. Now at this very time it was that these ill men came to the king, and told lum in what a pompous manner the armed men came, and with what insolence Antigonus marched, and that such his insolence was too great for a private person; and that, accordingly, he was come with a great band of men to kill him; for that he could not endure this bare enjoyment of royal honour, when it was in his power to take the kingdom himself.
3. Now Aristobulus, by degrees and unwillingly, gave credit to these accusa. tions : accordingly, he took care not to discover his suspicion openly, though he provided to be secure against any accidents : so he placed the guards of his body in a certain dark subterranean passage; for he lay sick in a place called formerly the Citadel, though afterwards its name was changed to Antonia ; and he gave orders, that if Antigonus came unarmed, they should let him alone ; but if he came to him in his armour, they should kill him. He also sent some to let him know beforehand, that he should come unarmed. But, upon this occasion, the queen very cunningly contrived the matter with those that plotted his ruin; for she persuaded those that were sent to conceal the king's message: but to tell An. tigonus, how his brother had heard he had got a very fine suit of armour,
mado with fine martial ornaments, in Galilee ; and because his present sickness hiodored him from coming, and seeing all that finery, he very much desired to see him now in his armour; because, said he in a little time thou art going away
4. As soon as Antigonus heard this, the good temper of his brother not allowing hiin to suspect any harm from him, he came along with his armour on, to show it
to his brother ; but when he was going along that dark passage, which was callod Strato's Tower, he was slain by the body guards, and became an eminent instance bow calumny destroys all good will and natural affection, and how none of our good affections are strong enough to resist envy perpetually.
5. And truly any one would be surprised at Judas upon this occasion. He was of the sect of the Essens, and had never failed or deceived men in his predictions before. Now this man saw Antigonus as he was passing along by the temple, and cried out to his acquaintance (they were not a few who attended upon him as his scholars,)“O strange! said he ; it is good for me to die now, since truth is dead before me, and somewhat that I have foretold hath proved false ; for this Antigonus is this day alive, who ought to have died this day; and the place where be ought to be slain, according to that fatal decree, was Strato's Tower, which is at the distance of six hundred furlongs from this place, and yet four hours of this day are over already, which point of time renders the prediction impossible to be fulfilled.” And when the old man had said this, he was dejected in his mind, and so continued. But in a little time news came, that Antigonus was slain in a subterraneous place, which was itself also called Strato's Tower, by the same name with that Cæsarea which lay by the sea side; and this ambiguity it Tas which caused the prophet's disorder.
6. Hereupon Aristobulus repented of the great crime he had been guilty of, and this gave occasion to the increase of his distemper. He also grew worso and worse, and his soul was constantly disturbed at the thoughts of what he had done, till his very bowels being torn to pieces by the intolerable grief he was ander, he threw up a great quantity of blood. And, as one of those servants that attended him carried out that blood, he, by some supernatural providence, dipped and fell down in the very place where Antigonus had been slain ; and so be spilt some of the murderer's blood upon the spots of the blood of him that had been murdered, which still appeared. Hereupon a lamentable cry arose among the spectators, as if the servant had spilled the blood on purpose in that place : und as the king heard that cry, he inquired what was the cause of it? And whilo Qobody durst tell him, he pressed them so much the more to let him know what vas the matter; so at length, when he had threatened them, and forced them to speak out, they told; whereupon he burst out into tears, and groaned, and said,"So I perceive I am not like to escape the all-seeing eye of God, as to the great crimes I have committed : but the vengeance of the blood of
kinsman pursues me hastily. Othou most impudent body, how long wilt thou retain a soul that ought to die on account of that punishment it ought to suffer for a mother and a brother slain? How long shall I myself spend my blood drop by drop? Let them take it all at once ; and let their ghosts no longer be disappointed by a few parcels of my bowels offered to them." As soon as he had said these words, bu presently died, when he had reigned no longer than a year.
What Actions were done by Alexander Janneus, who reigned Troenty-seven Years. $1. And now the king's wife loosed the king's brethren, and made Alexander ting, who appeared both elder in age and more moderate in his temper than the rest; who, when he came to the government, slew the one of his breihren, as afo secting to govern himself, but had the other of them in great esteem, as loving a quiet life, without meddling with public affairs.
2. Now it happened that there was a battle between him and Ptolemy, who was called Lathyrus, who had taken the city Asochis. He, indeed, slow a great many of his enemios, but the victory rather inclined to Prolomv. But when this Ptolemy was pursued by his mother Cleopatra, and retired into Egypt, Alexan. der besieged Gadara, and took it; as also he did Amathus, which was the strongest of all the fortressses that were about Jordan, and therein were the most precious of all the possessions of Theodorus, the son of Zeno. Whereupon Theodorus mar hed against him, and look what belonged to himself, as well as the king's baggage, and slew ten thousand of the Jews. However, Alexander recovered this blow, and turned his force towards the maritime parts, and took Rapbia, and Gaza, with Anthedon also, which was afterwards called Agrippias by king Herod.
3. But when he had made slaves of the citizens of all these cities, the nation of the Jews made an insurrection against him at a festival ; for at those feasts seditions are generally begun, and it looked as if he should not be able to escape the plot they had laid for him, had not his foreign auxiliaries, the Pisidians and Cilicians, assisted him; for as to the Syrians, he never admitted them among his mercenary troops, on account of their innate enmity against the Jewish na. tion. And when he had slain more than six thousand of the rebels, he made an incursion into Arabia, and when he had taken that country, together with the Gileadites and Moabites, he enjoined them to pay him tribute, and returned to Amathus; and as Theodorus was surprised at his great success, he took the fortress, and demolished it.
4. However, when he fought with Obodus, king of the Arabians, who had laid an ambush for him near Golan, and a plot against him, he lost his entire army, which was crowded together in a deep valley, and broken to pieces by the mul. titude of camels. And when he had made his escape to Jerusalem, he provoked the multitude, which hated him before, to make an insurrection agaiost him, and this on account of the greatness of the calamity that he was under. However, he was then too hard for them, and in the several battles that were fought on both sides, he slew not fewer than fifty thousand of the Jews in the interval of six years. Yet had he no reason to rejoice in these victories, since he did but consume his owa kingdom, till at length he fell off fighting, and endeavoured to come to a composi. tion with them, by talking with his subjects. But this mutability and irregularity of his conduct made them hate him still more. And when he asked them, why they so hated him, and what he should do in order to appease them ? they said, by killing himself; for that it would be then all they could do to be reconciled to him, who had done such tragical things to them, even when he was dead. de the same time they invited Demetrius, who was called Eucerus, to assist them; and as he readily complied with their request, in hopes of great advantages, and came with his army, the Jews joined with those their auxiliaries about Shechem.
5. Yet did Alexander meet both these forces with one thousand horsemen, and eight thousand mercenaries, that were on foot. He had also with him that part of the Jews which favoured him, to the number of ten thousand : while the ad. verse party had three thousand horsemen and fourteen thousand footmen. Now, before they joined battle, the kings made proclamation, and endeavoured to draw off each other's soldiers, and make them revolt; while Demetrius hoped to in. duce Alexander's mercenaries to leave him, and Alexander hoped to induce the Jews that were with Demetrius to leave him. But since neither the Jews would leave off their rage, nor the Greeks prove unfaithful, they came to an engage. mnent, and to a close fight, with their weapons. In which battle Demetrius was the conqueror, although Alexander's mercenaries showed the greatest exploits, both in soul and body. Yet did the upshot of this battle prove different from what was expected, as to both of them; for neither did those that invited Ile. metrius to come to them continue firm to him though he were conqueror ; and vix thousand Jews, out of pity to the change of Alexander's condition, when he was fled to the mountains, came over to him. Yet could not Demetrius bear this turn of affairs, but supposing that Alexander was already become a match for him again, and that all the nation would (at length) run in to him, he left the country,
and went his way. 6. However, the rest of the Jewish) multitude did not lay aside their quarrela with him, when the [foreign] auxiliaries were gone ; but they had a perpetual war with Alexander, until he had slain the greatest part of them, and driven the rest into the city Bemeselis ; and when he had demolished that city, he carried the captives to Jerusalem. Nay, bis rage was grown so extravagant, that his barbarity proceeded to the degree of impiety : for when he had ordered eight bundred to be hung upon crosses in the midst of the city, he had the throats of their wives and children cut before their eyes; and these executions he saw as he was drinking, and lying down with his concubines. Upon which so deep a Rurprise seized on the people, that eight thousand of his opposers fled away, the very next night, out of all Judea, whose flight was only terminated by Alexan. der's death : so at last, though not till late, and with great difficulty, he, by such actions, procured quiet to his kingdom, and left off fighting any more.
7. Yet did that Antiochus, who was also called Dionysus, become an origin of troubles again. This man was the brother of Demetrius, and the last* of the race of the Seleucidæ. Alexander was afraid of him, when he was marching against the Arabians; so he cut a deep trench between Antipatris, which was near the mountains, and the shores of Joppa; he also erected a high wall before the trench, and built wooden towers, in order to hinder any sudden approaches. But still he was not able to exclude Antiochus ; for he burnt the towers, and filled up the trenches, and marched on with his army. And as he looked upon laking his revenge on Alexander, for endeavouring to stop him, as a thing of less consequence, he marched directly against the Arabians, whose king retired into such parts of the country as were fittest for engaging the enemy, and then, on the sudden, made his horse turn back, which were in number ten thousand, and fell upon Antiochus's army, while they were in disorder, and a terrible battle ensued. Antiochus's troops, so long as he was alive, fought it out, although a mighty slaughter was made among them by the Arabians ; but when he fell, for be was in the forefront, in the utmost danger in rallying his troops, they all gave ground, and the greatest part of his army were destroyed, either in the action or in the flight; and for the rest who fled to the village of Cana, it happened that they were all consumed by want of necessaries, a few only excepted.
& About this time it was that the people of Damascus, out of their hatred to Ptolemy, the son of Menneus, invited Aretas (to take the government,) and made kim king of Celosyria. This man also made an expedition against Judea, and beat Alexander in battle, but afterwards retired by mutual agreement. But Alexander, when he had taken Pella, marched to Gerasa again, out of the covetous desire he had of Theodorus's possessions : and when he had built a triple Wall about the garrison, he took the place by force. He also demolished Golan and Seleucia, and what was called the valley of Antiochus ; besides which he took the strong fortress of Gamala, and stripped Demetrius, who was governor therein , of what he had, on account of the many crimes laid to his charge, and then returned into Judea, after he had been three whole years in this expedition. And now he was kindly received of the nation, because of the good success he had. So when he was at rest from war, he fell into a distemper; for he was afflicted
a quartan ague, and supposed that by exercising himself again in martial affairs, he should get rid of his distemper'; but by making such expeditions at unseasonable times, and forcing his body to undergo greater hardships than it was able to bear, he brought himself to his end. He died, therefore, in the midst of bis troubles, after he had reigned seven and twenty years. Josephus here calls this Antiochus the last of the Seleucida, although there remamed still a shadow of another king of that family, Antiochus Asiaticus, or Corninagenus, who reigned, or rather lay huss all Pornpey quite turned hin out, as Dean Aldrich here notes, from Appian aod Justin