Judaism and Hellenism: Studies in their Encounter in by John Bowden, Visit Amazon's Martin Hengel Page, search

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Extra info for Judaism and Hellenism: Studies in their Encounter in Palestine during the Early Hellenistic Period (Vols. 1 & 2)

Sample text

Idumeans and Jews were not so easy to regulate as the Egyptian fellahin, and even the right hand of the all-powerful finance minister instilled little respect into them. It was of decisive significance that the Ptolemies also introduced the originally Greek system of tax-farming and delegation of tolls into their foreign possessions. La'Ta) 22 Early Hellenism as a Political and Economic Force and a special royal decree. All this must be taken as the expression of special legislative activity for the province.

However, they did not form a strictly demarcated nucleus; as can be seen from the change in designations, their boundary was still indeterminate. 174 The principal priests, who are still mentioned alongside the high priest in the writings of the Jews of 26 Early Hellenism as a Political and Economic Force Elephantine,175 presumably also had a share in the constitution of the gerousia. We meet it as a regular authority for the first time in the decree of Antiochus III after his seizure of Jerusalem, where the gerousia, together with the priests, temple scribes and temple singers are granted exemption from tax in gratitude for their support of the king in his capture of the country: ~ yepovala Kal ol lepe'is Kal ol ypafLfLaTe'is ToiJ lepoiJ Kal ol lepoljJaATaL.

So the Ptolemaic administration will not have made any fundamental exception in its treatment of the Jewish 'ethnos' ,157 and will not have been particularly lenient towards them. Like the rest of the population of Syria-Palestine, the Jews who settled outside their main territory in Galilee (I Macc. ), Idumea and Transjordania will - if they did not have a special status as c1eruchs (see above, pp. aTa AatKd. €A€l)()€pa (see above, p. 146, 32S). 159 In addition, Judea not only formed the heart of an 'ethnos', but could at the same time be regarded as a 'temple state'.

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