By Victor Tcherikover
The come upon among Jews and Greeks marked some of the most innovative conferences within the historical global, for in that stumble upon politics, economics, tradition, and faith replaced dramatically. Victor Tcherikover, who dedicated his complete scholarly lifestyles to the research of the Hellenistic interval, deals the following a benchmark evaluation of that stumble upon. during this reprinted variation of his most renowned paintings, together with a brand new preface by way of college of Chicago Professor John J. Collins, Tcherikover uniquely combines ''analyses of 2 of the main exciting episodes of Jewish heritage in antiquity: the occasions that resulted in the Maccabean uprising and the fight for rights in Alexandria within the first century CE'' (from the preface).
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Religion occupied an im portant place in the life of the Greek city; it is possible to state without exaggeration that its entire public life revolved within the framework of Greek religion. Every polis had its particular god who was its guardian a n d whose cult was the focus of the religious life of the citizen body. T h e participation of citizens in this official cult was taken for granted, and desire to abstain from it would have been regarded by the city as an insult to its dignity and as a political offense.
L e t us attempt to analyze this story. It is clear that w e have here two different narratives which have been linked together by Josephus: the first dealing with the disputes between the Jews and Samaritans and the 43 HELLENISTIC CIVILIZATION AND THE J E W S erection of the temple at Samaria; the second with Alexander's visit to Jerusalem and his negative attitude to the Samaritans. Behind the first, historical events can b e discerned: the building of the Samaria temple is a historical fact, and Sanballat, satrap of Samaria, is known to us from the Book of Nehemiah, while the Elephantine papyri also mention his n a m e .
Alexander received him favorably and gave him the permit to build the temple at Samaria. Thereupon San ballat returned home and built it, but died shortly afterwards, before G a z a had surrendered to Alexander. Alexander's first meet ing with the Samaritans, therefore, took place in peaceful fashion. But the case with the Jews was different. During his seige of Gaza, Alexander sent a letter to the Jews demanding that the High Priest despatch auxiliary troops and corn for his host; but Yadoa would not dishonor his oath of allegiance to Darius and refused Alexander's demands.
Hellenistic Civilization and the Jews by Victor Tcherikover