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The Wars of the Jews or History of the Destruction of Jerusalem by Flavius Josephus

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hundred and fifty. The country of Sodom borders upon it. It was
of old a most happy land, both for the fruits it bore and the
riches of its cities, although it be now all burnt up. It is
related how, for the impiety of its inhabitants, it was burnt by
lightning; in consequence of which there are still the
remainders of that Divine fire, and the traces [or shadows] of
the five cities are still to be seen, as well as the ashes
growing in their fruits; which fruits have a color as if they
were fit to be eaten, but if you pluck them with your hands, they
dissolve into smoke and ashes. And thus what is related of this
land of Sodom hath these marks of credibility which our very
sight affords us.


That Vespasian, After He Had Taken Gadara Made Preparation For
The Siege Of Jerusalem; But That, Upon His Hearing Of The Death
Of Nero, He Changed His Intentions. As Also Concerning Simon Of
1. And now Vespasian had fortified all the places round
about Jerusalem, and erected citadels at Jericho and Adida, and
placed garrisons in them both, partly out of his own Romans, and
partly out of the body of his auxiliaries. He also sent Lucius
Annius to Gerasa, and delivered to him a body of horsemen, and a
considerable number of footmen. So when
he had taken the city, which he did at the first onset, he slew
a thousand of those young men who had not prevented him
by flying away; but he took their families captive, and
permitted his soldiers to plunder them of their effects; after
which he set fire to their houses, and went away to the
adjoining villages, while the men of power fled away, and the
weaker part were destroyed, and what was remaining was all burnt
down. And now the war having gone through all the
mountainous country, and all the plain country also, those that
were at Jerusalem were deprived of the liberty of going out of
the city; for as to such as had a mind to desert, they were
watched by the zealots; and as to such as were not yet on the
side of the Romans, their army kept them in, by
encompassing the city round about on all sides.

2. Now as Vespasian was returned to Cesarea, and was
getting ready with all his army to march directly to Jerusalem,
he was informed that Nero was dead, after he had reigned thirteen
years and eight days. Bnt as to any narration after what manner
he abused his power in the government, and
committed the management of affairs to those vile wretches,
Nymphidius and Tigellinus, his unworthy freed-men; and how he had
a plot laid against him by them, and was deserted by all his
guards, and ran away with four of his most trusty freed-men, and
slew himself in the suburbs of Rome; and
how those that occasioned his death were in no long time
brought themselves to punishment; how also the war in Gall ended;
and how Galba was made emperor (16) and returned
out of Spain to Rome; and how he was accused by the
soldiers as a pusillanimous person, and slain by treachery in
the middle of the market-place at Rome, and Otho was made
emperor; with his expedition against the commanders of
Vitellius, and his destruction thereupon; and besides what
troubles there were under Vitellius, and the fight that was about
the capitol; as also how Antonius Primus and Mucianus slew
Vitellius, and his German legions, and thereby put an end to that
civil war; I have omitted to give an exact account of them,
because they are well known by all, and they are described by a
great number of Greek and Roman
authors; yet for the sake of the connexion of matters, and that
my history may not be incoherent, I have just touched upon every
thing briefly. Wherefore Vespasian put off at first his
expedition against Jerusalem, and stood waiting whither the
empire would be transferred after the death of Nero. Moreover,
when he heard that Galba was made emperor, he
attempted nothing till he also should send him some
directions about the war: however, he sent his son Titus to
him, to salute him, and to receive his commands about the Jews.
Upon the very same errand did king Agrippa sail along with Titus
to Galba; but as they were sailing in their long ships by the
coasts of Achaia, for it was winter time, they heard that Galba
was slain, before they could get to him, after he had reigned
seven months and as many days. After whom Otho took the
government, and undertook the
management of public affairs. So Agrippa resolved to go on to
Rome without any terror; on account of the change in the
government; but Titus, by a Divine impulse, sailed back from
Greece to Syria, and came in great haste to Cesarea, to his
father. And now they were both in suspense about the public
affairs, the Roman empire being then in a fluctuating
condition, and did not go on with their expedition against the
Jews, but thought that to make any attack upon foreigners was now
unseasonable, on account of the solicitude they were in for their
own country.

3. And now there arose another war at Jerusalem. There was a
son of Giora, one Simon, by birth of Gerasa, a young man, not so
cunning indeed as John [of Gisehala], who had already seized upon
the city, but superior in strength of body and courage; on which
account, when he had been driven away
from that Acrabattene toparchy, which he once had, by
Ananus the high priest, he came to those robbers who had seized
upon Masada. At the first they suspected him, and only permitted
him to come with the women he brought with him into the lower
part of the fortress, while they dwelt in the upper part of it
themselves. However, his manner so well agreed with theirs, and
he seemed so trusty a man, that he went out with them, and
ravaged and destroyed the country with them about Masada; yet
when he persuaded them to
undertake greater things, he could not prevail with them so to
do; for as they were accustomed to dwell in that citadel, they
were afraid of going far from that which was their
hiding-place; but he affecting to tyrannize, and being fond of
greatness, when he had heard of the death of Ananus, he left
them, and went into the mountainous part of the country. So he
proclaimed liberty to those in slavery, and a reward to those
already free, and got together a set of wicked men from all

4. And as he had now a strong body of men about him, he
overran the villages that lay in the mountainous country, and
when there were still more and more that came to him, he ventured
to go down into the lower parts of the country, and since he was
now become formidable to the cities, many of the men of power
were corrupted by him; so that his army was no longer composed of
slaves and robbers, but a great many of the populace were
obedient to him as to their king. He then overran the Acrabattene
toparchy, and the places that reached as far as the Great Idumea;
for he built a wall at a certain village called Nain, and made
use of that as a fortress for his own party's security; and at
the valley called Paran, he enlarged many of the caves, and many
others he found ready for his purpose; these he made use of as
repositories for his treasures, and receptacles for his prey,
and therein he laid up the fruits that he had got by rapine; and
many of his partizans had their dwelling in them; and he made no
secret of it that he was exercising his men
beforehand, and making preparations for the assault of

5. Whereupon the zealots, out of the dread they were in of his
attacking them, and being willing to prevent one that was growing
up to oppose them, went out against him with their weapons. Simon
met them, and joining battle with them, slew a considerable
number of them, and drove the rest before him into the city, but
durst not trust so much upon his forces as to make an assault
upon the walls; but he resolved first to subdue Idumea, and as he
had now twenty thousand armed
men, he marched to the borders of their country. Hereupon the
rulers of the Idumeans got together on the sudden the most
warlike part of their people, about twenty-five thousand in
number, and permitted the rest to be a guard to their own
country, by reason of the incursions that were made by the
Sicarii that were at Masada. Thus they received Simon at their
borders, where they fought him, and continued the
battle all that day; and the dispute lay whether they had
conquered him, or been conquered by him. So he went back to Nain,
as did the Idumeans return home. Nor was it long ere Simon came
violently again upon their country; when he pitched his camp at a
certain village called Thecoe, and sent Eleazar, one of his
companions, to those that kept garrison at Herodium, and in order
to persuade them to surrender that fortress to him. The garrison
received this man readily, while they knew nothing of what he
came about; but as soon as he talked of the surrender of the
place, they fell upon him with their drawn swords, till he found
that he had no place for flight, when he threw himself down from
the wall into the valley beneath; so he died immediately: but the
Idumeans, who were already much afraid of Simon's power, thought
fit to take a view of the enemy's army before they hazarded a
battle with them.

6. Now there was one of their commanders named Jacob,
who offered to serve them readily upon that occasion, but had
it in his mind to betray them. He went therefore from the village
Alurus, wherein the army of the Idumeans were gotten together,
and came to Simon, and at the very first he agreed to betray his
country to him, and took assurances upon oath from him that he
should always have him in
esteem, and then promised him that he would assist him in
subduing all Idumea under him; upon which account he was feasted
after an obliging manner by Simon, and elevated by his mighty
promises; and when he was returned to his own men, he at first
belied the army of Simon, and said it was manifold more in number
than what it was; after which, he dexterously persuaded the
commanders, and by degrees the whole multitude, to receive Simon,
and to surrender the
whole government up to him without fighting. And as he was
doing this, he invited Simon by his messengers, and promised him
to disperse the Idumeans, which he performed also; for as soon as
their army was nigh them, he first of all got upon his horse, and
fled, together with those whom he had
corrupted; hereupon a terror fell upon the whole multitude; and
before it came to a close fight, they broke their ranks, and
every one retired to his own home.

7. Thus did Simon unexpectedly march into Idumea, without
bloodshed, and made a sudden attack upon the city Hebron, and
took it; wherein he got possession of a great deal of prey, and
plundered it of a vast quantity of fruit. Now the people of the
country say that it is an ancienter city, not only than any in
that country, but than Memphis in Egypt, and
accordingly its age is reckoned at two thousand and three
hundred years. They also relate that it had been the
habitation of Abram, the progenitor of the Jews, after he had
removed out of Mesopotamia; and they say that his posterity
descended from thence into Egypt, whose monuments are to this
very time showed in that small city; the fabric of which
monuments are of the most excellent marble, and wrought
after the most elegant manner. There is also there showed, at
the distance of six furlongs from the city, a very large
turpentine tree (17) and the report goes, that this tree has
continued ever since the creation of the world. Thence did Simon
make his progress over all Idumen, and did not only ravage the
cities and villages, but lay waste the whole country; for,
besides those that were completely armed, he had forty thousand
men that followed him, insomuch that he had not provisions enough
to suffice such a multitude. Now, besides this want of provisions
that he was in, he was of a barbarous disposition, and bore great
anger at this nation, by which means it came to pass that Idumea
was greatly depopulated; and as one may see all the woods behind
despoiled of their leaves by locusts, after they have been there,
so was there nothing left behind Simon's army but a desert. Some
places they burnt down, some they utterly demolished, and
whatsoever grew in the country, they either trod it down or fed
upon it, and by their marches they made the ground that was
cultivated harder and more untractable than that which was
barren. In short, there was no sign remaining of those places
that had been laid waste, that ever they had had a being.

8. This success of Simon excited the zealots afresh; and though
they were afraid to fight him openly in a fair battle, yet did
they lay ambushes in the passes, and seized upon his wife, with a
considerable number of her attendants;
whereupon they came back to the city rejoicing, as if they had
taken Simon himself captive, and were in present
expectation that he would lay down his arms, and make
supplication to them for his wife; but instead of indulging any
merciful affection, he grew very angry at them for seizing his
beloved wife; so he came to the wall of Jerusalem, and, like wild
beasts when they are wounded, and cannot overtake
those that wounded them, he vented his spleen upon all
persons that he met with. Accordingly, he caught all those that
were come out of the city gates, either to gather herbs or
sticks, who were unarmed and in years; he then tormented them and
destroyed them, out of the immense rage he was
in, and was almost ready to taste the very flesh of their dead
bodies. He also cut off the hands of a great many, and sent them
into the city to astonish his enemies, and in order to make the
people fall into a sedition, and desert those that had been the
authors of his wife's seizure. He also enjoined them to tell the
people that Simon swore by the God of the universe, who sees all
things, that unless they will restore him his wife, he will break
down their wall, and inflict the like punishment upon all the
citizens, without sparing any age, and without making any
distinction between the guilty and the innocent. These
threatenings so greatly affrighted, not the people only, but the
zealots themselves also, that they sent his wife back to him;
when he became a little milder, and left off his perpetual

9. But now sedition and civil war prevailed, not only over
Judea, but in Italy also; for now Galba was slain in the midst of
the Roman market-place; then was Otho made emperor,
and fought against Vitellius, who set up for emperor also; for
the legions in Germany had chosen him. But when he gave
battle to Valens and Cecinna, who were Vitellius's generals, at
Betriacum, in Gaul, Otho gained the advantage on the first day,
but on the second day Vitellius's soldiers had the victory; and
after much slaughter Otho slew himself, when he had
heard of this defeat at Brixia, and after he had managed the
public affairs three months and two days. (18) Otho's army also
came over to Vitellius's generals, and he came himself down to
Rome with his army. But in the mean time
Vespasian removed from Cesarea, on the fifth day of the
month Deasius, [Sivan,] and marched against those places of
Judea which were not yet overthrown. So he went up to the
mountainous country, and took those two toparchies that
were called the Gophnitick and Acrabattene toparchies. After
which he took Bethel and Ephraim, two small cities; and
when he had put garrisons into them, he rode as far as
Jerusalem, in which march he took many prisoners, and many
captives; but Cerealis, one of his commanders, took a body of
horsemen and footmen, and laid waste that part of Idumea which
was called the Upper Idumea, and attacked Caphethra, which
pretended to be a small city, and took it at the first onset, and
burnt it down. He also attacked Caphatabira, and laid siege to
it, for it had a very strong wall; and when he expected to spend
a long time in that siege, those that were within opened their
gates on the sudden, and came to beg pardon, and surrendered
themselves up to him. When
Cerealis had conquered them, he went to Hebron, another
very ancient city. I have told you already that this city is
situated in a mountainous country not far off Jerusalem; and when
he had broken into the city by force, what multitude and young
men were left therein he slew, and burnt down the city; so that
as now all the places were taken, excepting Herodlum, and Masada,
and Macherus, which were in the
possession of the robbers, so Jerusalem was what the Romans at
present aimed at.

10. And now, as soon as Simon had set his wife free, and
recovered her from the zealots, he returned back to the
remainders of Idumea, and driving the nation all before him
from all quarters, he compelled a great number of them to retire
to Jerusalem; he followed them himself also to the city, and
encompassed the wall all round again; and when he
lighted upon any laborers that were coming thither out of the
country, he slew them. Now this Simon, who was without the wall,
was a greater terror to the people than the Romans themselves, as
were the zealots who were within it more
heavy upon them than both of the other; and during this time
did the mischievous contrivances and courage [of John]
corrupt the body of the Galileans; for these Galileans had
advanced this John, and made him very potent, who made
them suitable requital from the authority he had obtained by
their means; for he permitted them to do all things that any of
them desired to do, while their inclination to plunder was
insatiable, as was their zeal in searching the houses of the
rich; and for the murdering of the men, and abusing of the women,
it was sport to them. They also devoured what spoils they had
taken, together with their blood, and indulged
themselves in feminine wantonness, without any disturbance,
till they were satiated therewith; while they decked their hair,
and put on women's garments, and were besmeared over with
ointments; and that they might appear very comely, they had
paints under their eyes, and imitated not only the ornaments, but
also the lusts of women, and were guilty of such
intolerable uncleanness, that they invented unlawful pleasures
of that sort. And thus did they roll themselves up and down the
city, as in a brothel-house, and defiled it entirely with their
impure actions; nay, while their faces looked like the faces of
women, they killed with their right hands; and when their gait
was effeminate, they presently attacked men, and became warriors,
and drew their swords from under their
finely dyed cloaks, and ran every body through whom they
alighted upon. However, Simon waited for such as ran away from
John, and was the more bloody of the two; and he who had escaped
the tyrant within the wall was destroyed by the other that lay
before the gates, so that all attempts of flying and deserting to
the Romans were cut off, as to those that had a mind so to do.

11. Yet did the army that was under John raise a sedition
against him, and all the Idumeans separated themselves from the
tyrant, and attempted to destroy him, and this out of their envy
at his power, and hatred of his cruelty; so they got together,
and slew many of the zealots, and drove the rest before them into
that royal palace that was built by Grapte, who was a relation of
Izates, the king of Adiabene; the
Idumeans fell in with them, and drove the zealots out thence
into the temple, and betook themselves to plunder John's effects;
for both he himself was in that palace, and therein had he laid
up the spoils he had acquired by his tyranny. In the mean time,
the multitude of those zealots that were
dispersed over the city ran together to the temple unto those
that fled thither, and John prepared to bring them down
against the people and the Idumeans, who were not so much
afraid of being attacked by them (because they were
themselves better soldiers than they) as at their madness, lest
they should privately sally out of the temple and get among them,
and not only destroy them, but set the city on fire also. So they
assembled themselves together, and the high priests with them,
and took counsel after what manner they should avoid their
assault. Now it was God who turned their
opinions to the worst advice, and thence they devised such a
remedy to get themselves free as was worse than the disease
itself. Accordingly, in order to overthrow John, they
determined to admit Simon, and earnestly to desire the
introduction of a second tyrant into the city; which resolution
they brought to perfection, and sent Matthias, the high priest,
to beseech this Simon to come ill to them, of whom they had so
often been afraid. Those also that had fled from the
zealots in Jerusalem joined in this request to him, out of the
desire they had of preserving their houses and their effects.
Accordingly he, in an arrogant manner, granted them his
lordly protection, and came into the city, in order to deliver
it from the zealots. The people also made joyful acclamations to
him, as their savior and their preserver; but when he was come
in, with his army, he took care to secure his own
authority, and looked upon those that had invited him in to be
no less his enemies than those against whom the invitation was

12. And thus did Simon get possession of Jerusalem, in the
third year of the war, in the month Xanthicus [Nisan];
whereupon John, with his multitude of zealots, as being both
prohibited from coming out of the temple, and having lost their
power in the city, (for Simon and his party had
plundered them of what they had,) were in despair of
deliverance. Simon also made an assault upon the temple, with
the assistance of the people, while the others stood upon the
cloisters and the battlements, and defended themselves from their
assaults. However, a considerable number of
Simon's party fell, and many were carried off wounded; for the
zealots threw their darts easily from a superior place, and
seldom failed of hitting their enemies; but having the
advantage of situation, and having withal erected four very
large towers aforehand, that their darts might come from higher
places, one at the north-east corner of the court, one above the
Xystus, the third at another corner over against the lower city,
and the last was erected above the top of the Pastophoria, where
one of the priests stood of course, and gave a signal beforehand,
with a trumpet (19) at the
beginning of every seventh day, in the evening twilight, as
also at the evening when that day was finished, as giving notice
to the people when they were to leave off work, and when they
were to go to work again. These men also set their engines to
cast darts and stones withal, upon those towers, with their
archers and slingers. And now Simon made his
assault upon the temple more faintly, by reason that the
greatest part of his men grew weary of that work; yet did he not
leave off his opposition, because his army was superior to the
others, although the darts which were thrown by the
engines were carried a great way, and slew many of those that
fought for him.


How The Soldiers, Both In Judea And Egypt, Proclaimed Vespasian
Emperor;And How Vespasian Released Josephus From His Bonds.

1. Now about this very time it was that heavy calamities
came about Rome on all sides; for Vitellius was come from
Germany with his soldiery, and drew along with him a great
multitude of other men besides. And when the spaces allotted for
soldiers could not contain them, he made all Rome itself his
camp, and filled all the houses with his armed men; which men,
when they saw the riches of Rome with those eyes
which had never seen such riches before, and found
themselves shone round about on all sides with silver and gold,
they had much ado to contain their covetous desires, and were
ready to betake themselves to plunder, and to the slaughter of
such as should stand in their way. And this was the state of
affairs in Italy at that time.

2. But when Vespasian had overthrown all the places that were
near to Jerusalem, he returned to Cesarea, and heard of the
troubles that were at Rome, and that Vitellius was
emperor. This produced indignation in him, although he well
knew how to be governed as well as to govern, and could not, with
any satisfaction, own him for his lord who acted so madly, and
seized upon the government as if it were
absolutely destitute of a governor. And as this sorrow of his
was violent, he was not able to support the torments he was
under, nor to apply himself further in other wars, when his
native country was laid waste; but then, as much as his
passion excited him to avenge his country, so much was he
restrained by the consideration of his distance therefrom;
because fortune might prevent him, and do a world of
mischief before he could himself sail over the sea to Italy,
especially as it was still the winter season; so he restrained
his anger, how vehement soever it was at this time.

3. But now his commanders and soldiers met in several
companies, and consulted openly about changing the public
affairs; and, out of their indignation, cried out, how "at Rome
there are soldiers that live delicately, and when they have not
ventured so much as to hear the fame of war, they ordain whom
they please for our governors, and in hopes of gain make them
emperors; while you, who have gone through so many labors, and
are grown into years under your helmets, give leave to others to
use such a power, when yet you have among yourselves one more
worthy to rule than any whom
they have set up. Now what juster opportunity shall they ever
have of requiting their generals, if they do not make use of this
that is now before them? while there is so much juster reasons
for Vespasian's being emperor than for Vitellius; as they are
themselves more deserving than those that made the other
emperors; for that they have undergone as great wars as have the
troops that come from Germany; nor are they
inferior in war to those that have brought that tyrant to Rome,
nor have they undergone smaller labors than they; for that
neither will the Roman senate, nor people, bear such a lascivious
emperor as Vitellius, if he be compared with their chaste
Vespasian; nor will they endure a most barbarous
tyrant, instead of a good governor, nor choose one that hath no
child (20) to preside over them, instead of him that is a father;
because the advancement of men's own children to dignities is
certainly the greatest security kings can have for themselves.
Whether, therefore, we estimate the capacity of governing from
the skill of a person in years, we ought to have Vespasian, or
whether from the strength of a young man, we ought to have Titus;
for by this means we shall have the advantage of both their ages,
for that they will afford strength to those that shall be made
emperors, they having already three legions, besides other
auxiliaries from the neighboring kings, and will have further all
the armies in the east to support them, as also those in Europe,
so they as they are out of the distance and dread of Vitellius,
besides such auxiliaries as they may have in Italy itself; that
is, Vespasian's brother, (21) and his other son [Domitian]; the
one of whom will bring in a great many of those young men that
are of dignity, while the other is intrusted with the government
of the city, which office of his will be no small means of
Vespasian's obtaining the government. Upon the whole, the case
may be such, that if we ourselves make further delays, the senate
may choose an emperor, whom the soldiers, who are the saviors of
the empire, will have in contempt."

4. These were the discourses the soldiers had in their several
companies; after which they got together in a great body, and,
encouraging one another, they declared Vespasian
emperor, (22) and exhorted him to save the government,
which was now in danger. Now Vespasian's concern had been for a
considerable time about the public, yet did he not intend to set
up for governor himself, though his actions showed him to deserve
it, while he preferred that safety which is in a private life
before the dangers in a state of such dignity; but when he
refused the empire, the commanders
insisted the more earnestly upon his acceptance; and the
soldiers came about him, with their drawn swords in their hands,
and threatened to kill him, unless he would now live according to
his dignity. And when he had shown his
reluctance a great while, and had endeavored to thrust away
this dominion from him, he at length, being not able to
persuade them, yielded to their solicitations that would salute
him emperor.

5. So upon the exhortations of Mucianus, and the other
commanders, that he would accept of the empire, and upon that
of the rest of the army, who cried out that they were willing to
be led against all his opposers, he was in the first place intent
upon gaining the dominion over Alexandria, as knowing that Egypt
was of the greatest consequence, in order to obtain the entire
government, because of its supplying of corn [to Rome]; which
corn, if he could be master of, he hoped to dethrone Vitellius,
supposing he should aim to keep the empire by force (for he would
not be able to support himself, if the multitude at Rome should
once be in want of food); and because he was desirous to join the
two legions that were at Alexandria to the other legions that
were with him. He also considered with himself, that he should
then have that country for a defense to himself against the
uncertainty of fortune; for Egypt (23) is hard to be entered by
land, and hath no good havens by sea. It hath on the west the dry
deserts of Libya; and on the south Siene, that divides it from
Ethiopia, as well as the cataracts of the Nile, that cannot be
sailed over; and on the east the Red Sea extended as far as
Coptus; and it is fortified on the north by the land that reaches
to Syria, together with that called the Egyptian Sea, having no
havens in it for ships. And thus is Egypt walled about on every
side. Its length between Pelusium and Siene is two thousand
furlongs, and the passage by sea from Plinthine to Pelusium is
three thousand six hundred furlongs. Its river Nile is navigable
as far as the city called Elephantine, the forenamed cataracts
hindering ships from going any
farther, The haven also of Alexandria is not entered by the
mariners without difficulty, even in times of peace; for the
passage inward is narrow, and full of rocks that lie under the
water, which oblige the mariners to turn from a straight
direction: its left side is blocked up by works made by men's
hands on both sides; on its right side lies the island called
Pharus, which is situated just before the entrance, and
supports a very great tower, that affords the sight of a fire
to such as sail within three hundred furlongs of it, that ships
may cast anchor a great way off in the night time, by reason of
the difficulty of sailing nearer. About this island are built
very great piers, the handiwork of men, against which, when the
sea dashes itself, and its waves are broken against those
boundaries, the navigation becomes very troublesome, and the
entrance through so narrow a passage is rendered
dangerous; yet is the haven itself, when you are got into it, a
very safe one, and of thirty furlongs in largeness; into which is
brought what the country wants in order to its happiness, as also
what abundance the country affords more than it
wants itself is hence distributed into all the habitable earth.
6. Justly, therefore, did Vespasian desire to obtain that
government, in order to corroborate his attempts upon the whole
empire; so he immediately sent to Tiberius Alexander, who was
then governor of Egypt and of Alexandria, and
informed him what the army had put upon him, and how he, being
forced to accept of the burden of the government, was desirous to
have him for his confederate and supporter. Now as soon as ever
Alexander had read this letter, he readily obliged the legions
and the multitude to take the oath of fidelity to Vespasian, both
which willingly complied with him, as already acquainted with the
courage of the man, from that his conduct in their neighborhood.
Accordingly Vespasian, looking upon himself as already intrusted
with the
government, got all things ready for his journey [to Rome]. Now
fame carried this news abroad more suddenly than one could have
thought, that he was emperor over the east, upon which every city
kept festivals, and celebrated sacrifices and oblations for such
good news; the legions also that were in Mysia and Pannonia, who
had been in commotion a little
before, on account of this insolent attempt of Vitellius, were
very glad to take the oath of fidelity to Vespasian, upon his
coming to the empire. Vespasian then removed from Cesarea to
Berytus, where many embassages came to him from Syria, and many
from other provinces, bringing with them from
every city crowns, and the congratulations of the people.
Mucianus came also, who was the president of the province, and
told him with what alacrity the people [received the news of his
advancement], and how the people of every city had taken the oath
of fidelity to him.

7. So Vespasian's good fortune succeeded to his wishes every
where, and the public affairs were, for the greatest part,
already in his hands; upon which he considered that he had not
arrived at the government without Divine Providence, but that a
righteous kind of fate had brought the empire under his power;
for as he called to mind the other signals, which had been a
great many every where, that foretold he should obtain the
government, so did he remember what Josephus
had said to him when he ventured to foretell his coming to the
empire while Nero was alive; so he was much concerned that this
man was still in bonds with him. He then called for Mucianus,
together with his other commanders and friends, and, in the first
place, he informed them what a valiant man Josephus had been, and
what great hardships he had made
him undergo in the siege of Jotapata. After that he related
those predictions of his (24) which he had then suspected as
fictions, suggested out of the fear he was in, but which had by
time been demonstrated to be Divine. "It is a shameful thing
(said he) that this man, who hath foretold my coming to the
empire beforehand, and been the minister of a Divine
message to me, should still be retained in the condition of a
captive or prisoner." So he called for Josephus, and
commanded that he should be set at liberty; whereupon the
commanders promised themselves glorious things, froth this
requital Vespasian made to a stranger. Titus was then present
with his father, and said, "O father, it is but just that the
scandal [of a prisoner] should be taken off Josephus, together
with his iron chain. For if we do not barely loose his bonds, but
cut them to pieces, he will be like a man that had never been
bound at all." For that is the usual method as to such as have
been bound without a cause. This advice was agreed to by
Vespasian also; so there came a man in, and cut the chain to
pieces; while Josephus received this testimony of his integrity
for a reward, and was moreover esteemed a person of credit as to
futurities also.


That Upon The Conquest And Slaughter Of Vitellius Vespasian
Hastened His Journey To Rome; But Titus His Son Returned To
1. And now, when Vespasian had given answers to the
embassages, and had disposed of the places of power justly,
(25) and according to every one's deserts, he came to
Antioch, and consulting which way he had best take, he
preferred to go for Rome, rather than to march to
Alexandria, because he saw that Alexandria was sure to him
already, but that the affairs at Rome were put into disorder by
Vitellius; so he sent Mucianus to Italy, and committed a
considerable army both of horsemen and footmen to him; yet was
Mucianus afraid of going by sea, because it was the
middle of winter, and so he led his army on foot through
Cappadocia and Phrygia.

2. In the mean time, Antonius Primus took the third of the
legions that were in Mysia, for he was president of that
province, and made haste, in order to fight Vitellius;
whereupon Vitellius sent away Cecinna, with a great army,
having a mighty confidence in him, because of his having beaten
Otho. This Cecinna marched out of Rome in great
haste, and found Antonius about Cremona in Gall, which city is
in the borders of Italy; but when he saw there that the enemy
were numerous and in good order, he durst not fight them; and as
he thought a retreat dangerous, so he began to think of betraying
his army to Antonius. Accordingly, he assembled the centurions
and tribunes that were under his command, and persuaded them to
go over to Antonius, and
this by diminishing the reputation of Vitellius, and by
exaggerating the power of Vespasian. He also told them that
with the one there was no more than the bare name of
dominion, but with the other was the power of it; and that it
was better for them to prevent necessity, and gain favor, and,
while they were likely to be overcome in battle, to avoid the
danger beforehand, and go over to Antonius willingly; that
Vespasian was able of himself to subdue what had not yet
submitted without their assistance, while Vitellius could not
preserve what he had already with it.

3. Cecinna said this, and much more to the same purpose, and
persuaded them to comply with him; and both he and his army
deserted; but still the very same night the soldiers repented of
what they had done, and a fear seized on them, lest perhaps
Vitellius who sent them should get the better; and drawing their
swords, they assaulted Cecinna, in order to kill him; and the
thing had been done by them, if the
tribunes had not fallen upon their knees, and besought them not
to do it; so the soldiers did not kill him, but put him in bonds,
as a traitor, and were about to send him to Vitellius. When
[Antonius] Primus heard of this, he raised up his men
immediately, and made them put on their armor, and led
them against those that had revolted; hereupon they put
themselves in order of battle, and made a resistance for a
while, but were soon beaten, and fled to Cremona; then did Primus
take his horsemen, and cut off their entrance into the city, and
encompassed and destroyed a great multitude of them before the
city, and fell into the city together with the rest, and gave
leave to his soldiers to plunder it. And here it was that many
strangers, who were merchants, as well as
many of the people of that country, perished, and among
them Vitellius's whole army, being thirty thousand and two
hundred, while Antonius lost no more of those that came
with him from Mysia than four thousand and five hundred: he
then loosed Cecinna, and sent him to Vespasian to tell him the
good news. So he came, and was received by him,
and covered the scandal of his treachery by the unexpected
honors he received from Vespasian.

4. And now, upon the news that Antonius was approaching,
Sabinus took courage at Rome, and assembled those cohorts of
soldiers that kept watch by night, and in the night time seized
upon the capitol; and, as the day came on, many men of character
came over to him, with Domitian, his brother's son, whose
encouragement was of very great weight for the compassing the
government. Now Vitellius was not much
concerned at this Primus, but was very angry with those that
had revolted with Sabinus; and thirsting, out of his own natural
barbarity, after noble blood, he sent out that part of the army
which came along with him to fight against the
capitol; and many bold actions were done on this side, and on
the side of those that held the temple. But at last, the soldiers
that came from Germany, being too numerous for
the others, got the hill into their possession, where Domitian,
with many other of the principal Romans, providentially
escaped, while the rest of the multitude were entirely cut to
pieces, and Sabinus himself was brought to Vitellius, and then
slain; the soldiers also plundered the temple of its ornaments,
and set it on fire. But now within a day's time came
Antonius, with his army, and were met by Vitellius and his
army; and having had a battle in three several places, the last
were all destroyed. Then did Vitellius come out of the palace, in
his cups, and satiated with an extravagant and luxurious meal, as
in the last extremity, and being drawn along through the
multitude, and abused with all sorts of torments, had his head
cut off in the midst of Rome, having retained the
government eight months and five days (26) and had he lived
much longer, I cannot but think the empire would not have been
sufficient for his lust. Of the others that were slain, were
numbered above fifty thousand. This battle was fought on the
third day of the month Apelleus [Casleu]; on the next day
Mucianus came into the city with his army, and ordered Antonius
and his men to leave off killing; for they were still searching
the houses, and killed many of Vitellius's soldiers, and many of
the populace, as supposing them to be of his party, preventing by
their rage any accurate distinction between them and others. He
then produced Domitian, and
recommended him to the multitude, until his father should come
himself; so the people being now freed from their fears, made
acclamations of joy for Vespasian, as for their emperor, and kept
festival days for his confirmation, and for the destruction of

5. And now, as Vespasian was come to Alexandria, this good news
came from Rome, and at the same time came embassies from all his
own habitable earth, to congratulate him upon his advancement;
and though this Alexandria was the greatest of all cities next to
Rome, it proved too narrow to contain the multitude that then
came to it. So upon this confirmation of Vespasian's entire
government, which was now settled, and upon the unexpected
deliverance of the public affairs of the Romans from ruin,
Vespasian turned his thoughts to what
remained unsubdued in Judea. However, he himself made
haste to go to Rome, as the winter was now almost over, and
soon set the affairs of Alexandria in order, but sent his son
Titus, with a select part of his army, to destroy Jerusalem. So
Titus marched on foot as far as Nicopolis, which is distant
twenty furlongs from Alexandria; there he put his army on board
some long ships, and sailed upon the river along the Mendesian
Nomus, as far as the city Tumuis; there he got out of the ships,
and walked on foot, and lodged all night at a small city called
Tanis. His second station was
Heracleopolis, and his third Pelusium; he then refreshed his
army at that place for two days, and on the third passed over the
mouths of the Nile at Pelusium; he then proceeded one station
over the desert, and pitched his camp at the temple of the Casian
Jupiter, (27) and on the next day at Ostracine. This station had
no water, but the people of the country make use of water brought
from other places. After this he rested at Rhinocolura, and from
thence he went to Raphia, which was his fourth station. This city
is the beginning of Syria. For his fifth station he pitched his
camp at Gaza; after which he came to Ascalon, and thence to
Jamnia, and after that to Joppa, and from Joppa to Cesarea,
having taken a resolution to gather all his other forces together
at that place.


(1) Here we have the exact situation of of Jeroboam's "at the
exit of Little Jordan into Great Jordan, near the place called
Daphne, but of old Dan. See the note in Antiq. B. VIII. ch. 8.
sect. 4. But Reland suspects flint here we should read Dan
instead of there being no where else mention of a place called

(2) These numbers in Josephus of thirty furlongs' ascent to the
top of Mount Tabor, whether we estimate it by winding and
gradual, or by the perpendicular altitude, and of twenty-six
furlongs' circumference upon the top, as also fifteen furlongs
for this ascent in Polybius, with Geminus's perpendicular
altitude of almost fourteen furlongs, here noted by Dr. Hudson,
do none of' them agree with the authentic testimony of Mr.
Maundrell, an eye-witness, p. 112, who says he was not an hour in
getting up to the top of this Mount Tabor, and that the area of
the top is an oval of about two furlongs in length, and one in
breadth. So I rather suppose Josephus wrote three furlongs for
the ascent or altitude, instead of thirty; and six furlongs for
the circumference at the top, instead of twenty-six,--since a
mountain of only three furlongs perpendicular altitude may easily
require near an hour's ascent, and the circumference of an oval
of the foregoing quantity is near six furlongs. Nor certainly
could such a vast circumference as twenty-six furlongs, or three
miles and a quarter, at that height be encompassed with a wall,
including a trench and other fortifications, (perhaps those still
remaining, ibid.) in the small interval of forty days, as
Josephus here says they were by himself.

(3) This name Dorcas in Greek, was Tabitha in Hebrew or Syriac,
as Acts 9:36. Accordingly, some of the manuscripts set it down
here Tabetha or Tabeta. Nor can the context in Josephus be made
out by supposing the reading to have been this: "The son of
Tabitha; which, in the language of our country, denotes Dorcas"
[or a doe].

(4) Here we may discover the utter disgrace and ruin of the high
priesthood among the Jews, when undeserving, ignoble, and vile
persons were advanced to that holy office by the seditious; which
sort of high priests, as Josephus well remarks here, were
thereupon obliged to comply with and assist those that advanced
them in their impious practices. The names of these high priests,
or rather ridiculous and profane persons, were Jesus the son of
Damneus, Jesus the son of Gamaliel, Matthias the son of
Theophilus, and that prodigious ignoramus Phannias, the son of
Samuel; all whom we shall meet with in Josephus's future history
of this war; nor do we meet with any other so much as pretended
high priest after Phannias, till Jerusalem was taken and

(5) This tribe or course of the high priests, or priests, here
called Eniachim, seems to the learned Mr. Lowth, one well versed
in Josephus, to be that 1 Chronicles 24:12, "the course of
Jakim," where some copies have" the course of Eliakim;" and I
think this to be by no means an improbable conjecture.

(6) This Symeon, the son of Gamaliel, is mentioned as the
president of the Jewish sanhedrim, and one that perished in the
destruction of Jerusalem, by the Jewish Rabbins, as Reland
observes on this place. He also tells us that those Rabbins
mention one Jesus the son of Gamala, as once a high priest, but
this long before the destruction of Jerusalem; so that if he were
the same person with this Jesus the son of Gamala, Josephus, he
must have lived to be very old, or they have been very bad

(7) It is worth noting here, that this Ananus, the best of the
Jews at this time, and the high priest, who was so very uneasy at
the profanation of the Jewish courts of the temple by the
zealots, did not however scruple the profanation of the "court of
the Gentiles;" as in our Savior's days it was very much profaned
by the Jews; and made a market-place, nay, a "den of thieves,"
without scruple, Matthew 21:12, 13; Mark 11:15-17. Accordingly
Josephus himself, when he speaks of the two inner courts, calls
them both hagia or holy places; but, so far as I remember, never
gives that character of the court of the Gentiles. See B. V. ch.
9. sect. 2.

(8) This appellation of Jerusalem given it here by Simon, the
general of the Idumeans, "the common city" of the Idumeans, who
were proselytes of justice, as well as of the original native
Jews, greatly confirms that maxim of the Rabbins, here set down
by Reland, that "Jerusalem was not assigned, or appropriated, to
the tribe of Benjamin or Judah, but every tribe had equal right
to it [at their coming to worship there at the several
festivals]." See a little before, ch. 3. sect. 3, or "worldly
worship," as the author to the Hebrews calls the sanctuary, "a
worldly sanctuary."

(9) Some commentators are ready to suppose that this" Zacharias,
the son of Baruch," here most unjustly slain by the Jews in the
temple, was the very same person with "Zacharias, the son of
Barachias," whom our Savior says the Jews "slew between the
temple and the altar," Matthew 23:35. This is a somewhat strange
exposition; since Zechariah the prophet was really "the son of
Barachiah," and "grandson of Iddo, Zechariah 1:1; and how he
died, we have no other account than that before us in St.
Matthew: while this "Zacharias" was "the son of Baruch." Since
the slaughter was past when our Savior spake these words, the
Jews had then already slain him; whereas this slaughter of
"Zacharias, the son of Baruch," in Josephus, was then about
thirty-four years future. And since the slaughter was "between
the temple and the altar," in the court of the priests, one of
the most sacred and remote parts of the whole temple; while this
was, in Josephus's own words, in the middle of the temple, and
much the most probably in the court of Israel only (for we have
had no intimation that the zealots had at this time profaned the
court of the priests. See B. V. ch. 1. sect. 2). Nor do I believe
that our Josephus, who always insists on the peculiar sacredness
of the inmost court, and of the holy house that was in it, would
have omitted so material an aggravation of this barbarous murder,
as perpetrated in. a place so very holy, had that been the true
place of it. See Antiq. B. XI. ch. 7. sect. 1, and the note here
on B. V. ch. 1. sect. 2.

(10) This prediction, that the city (Jerusalem) should then "be
taken, and the sanctuary burnt, by right of war, when a sedition
should invade Jews, and their own hands should pollute that
temple;" or, as it is B. VI. ch. 2. sect. 1, "when any one should
begin to slay his countrymen in the city;" is wanting in our
present copies of the Old Testament. See Essay on the Old Test.
p. 104--112. But this prediction, as Josephus well remarks here,
though, with the other predictions of the prophets, it was now
laughed at by the seditious, was by their very means soon exactly
fulfilled. However, I cannot but here take notice of Grotius's
positive assertion upon Matthew 26:9, here quoted by Dr. Hudson,
that "it ought to be taken for granted, as a certain truth, that
many predictions of the Jewish prophets were preserved, not in
writing, but by memory." Whereas, it seems to me so far from
certain, that I think it has no evidence nor probability at all.

(11) By these hiera, or "holy places," as distinct from cities,
must be meant "proseuchae," or "houses of prayer," out of cities;
of which we find mention made in the New Testament and other
authors. See Luke 6:12; Acts 16:13, 16; Antiq. B. XIV. ch. 10.
sect. 23; his Life, sect. 51. "In qua te quero proseucha?"
Juvenal Sat. III. yet. 296. They were situated sometimes by the
sides of rivers, Acts 16:13, or by the sea-side, Antiq. B. XIV.
ch. 10. sect. 23. So did the seventy-two interpreters go to pray
every morning by the sea-side before they went to their work, B.
XII. ch. 2. sect. 12.

(12) Gr. Galatia, and so everywhere.

(13) Whether this Somorrhon, or Somorrha, ought not to be here
written Gomorrha, as some MSS. in a manner have it, (for the
place meant by Josephus seems to be near Segor, or Zoar, at the
very south of the Dead Sea, hard by which stood Sodom and
Gomorrha,) cannot now be certainly determined, but seems by no
means improbable.

(14) This excellent prayer of Elisha is wanting in our copies, 2
Kings 2:21, 22, though it be referred to also in the Apostolical
Constitutions, B. VII. ch. 37., and the success of it is
mentioned in them all.

(15) See the note on B. V. ch. 13. sect. 6.

(16) Of these Roman affairs and tumults under Galba, Otho, and
Vitellius, here only touched upon by Josephus, see Tacitus,
Suelonius, and Dio, more largely. However, we may observe with
Ottius, that Josephus writes the name of the second of them not
Otto, with many others, but Otho, with the coins. See also the
note on ch. 11. sect. 4.

(17) Some of the ancients call this famous tree, or grove, an oak
others, a turpentine tree, or grove. It has been very famous in
all the past ages, and is so, I suppose, at this day; and that
particularly for an eminent mart or meeting of merchants there
every year, as the travelers inform us.

(18) Puetonius differs hardly three days from Josephus, and says
Otho perished on the ninety-fifth day of his reign. In Anthon.
See the note on ch. 11. sect. 4.

(19) This beginning and ending the observation of the Jewish
seventh day, or sabbath, with a priest's blowing of a trumpet, is
remarkable, and no where else mentioned, that I know of. Nor is
Reland's conjecture here improbable, that this was the very place
that has puzzled our commentators so long, called "Musach
Sabbati," the "Covert of the Sabbath," if that be the true
reading, 2 Kings 16:18, because here the proper priest stood dry,
under a "covering," to proclaim the beginning and ending of every
Jewish sabbath.

(20) The Roman authors that now remain say Vitellius had
children, whereas Josephus introduces here the Roman soldiers in
Judea saying he had none. Which of these assertions was the truth
I know not. Spanheim thinks he hath given a peculiar reason for
calling Vitellius "childless," though he really had children,
Diss. de Num. p. 649, 650; to which it appears very difficult to
give our assent.

(21) This brother of Vespasian was Flavius Sabinus, as Suetonius
informs us, in Vitell. sect. 15, and in Vespas. sect. 2. He is
also named by Josephus presently ch. 11. sect; 4.

(22) It is plain by the nature of the thing, as well as by
Josephus and Eutropius, that Vespasian was first of all saluted
emperor in Judea, and not till some time afterward in Egypt.
Whence Tacitus's and Suetonius's present copies must be correct
text, when they both say that he was first proclaimed in Egypt,
and that on the calends of July, while they still say it was the
fifth of the Nones or Ides of the same July before he was
proclaimed in Judea. I suppose the month they there intended was
June, and not July, as the copies now have it; nor does Tacitus's
coherence imply less. See Essay on the Revelation, p. 136.

(23) Here we have an authentic description of the bounds and
circumstances of Egypt, in the days of Vespasian and Titus.

(24) As Daniel was preferred by Darius and Cyrus, on account of
his having foretold the destruction of the Babylonian monarchy by
their means, and the consequent exaltation of the Medes and
Persians, Daniel 5:6 or rather, as Jeremiah, when he was a
prisoner, was set at liberty, and honorably treated by
Nebuzaradan, at the command of Nebuchadnezzar, on account of his
having foretold the destruction of Jerusalem by the Babylonians,
Jeremiah 40:1-7; so was our Josephus set at liberty, and
honorably treated, on account of his having foretold the
advancement of Vespasian and Titus to the Roman empire. All these
are most eminent instances of the interposition of Divine
Providence. and of the certainty of Divine predictions in the
great revolutions of the four monarchies. Several such-like
examples there are, both in the sacred and other histories, as in
the case of Joseph in Egypt. and of Jaddua the high priest, in
the days of Alexander the Great, etc.

(25) This is well observed by Josephus, that Vespasian, in order
to secure his success, and establish his government at first,
distributed his offices and places upon the foot of justice, and
bestowed them on such as best deserved them, and were best fit
for them. Which wise conduct in a mere heathen ought to put those
rulers and ministers of state to shame, who, professing
Christianity, act otherwise, and thereby expose themselves and
their kingdoms to vice and destruction.

(26) The numbers in Josephus, ch. 9. sect. 2, 9, for Galba seven
months seven days, for Otho three months two days, and here for
Vitellius eight months five days, do not agree with any Roman
historians, who also disagree among themselves. And, indeed,
Sealiger justly complains, as Dr. Hudson observes on ch. 9. sect.
2, that this period is very confused and uncertain in the ancient
authors. They were probably some of them contemporary together
for some time; one of the best evidences we have, I mean
Ptolemy's Canon, omits them all, as if they did not all together
reign one whole year, nor had a single Thoth, or new-year's day,
(which then fell upon August 6,) in their entire reigns. Dio
also, who says that Vitellius reigned a year within ten days,
does yet estimate all their reigns together at no more than one
year, one month, and two days.

(27) There are coins of this Casian Jupiter still extant.


Containing The Interval Of Near Six Months.

From The Coming Of Titus To Besiege Jerusalem, To The
Great Extremity To Which The Jews Were Reduced.


Concerning The Seditions At Jerusalem And What Terrible
Miseries Afflicted The City By Their Means.

1. When therefore Titus had marched over that desert
which lies between Egypt and Syria, in the manner
forementioned, he came to Cesarea, having resolved to set his
forces in order at that place, before he began the war. Nay,
indeed, while he was assisting his father at
Alexandria, in settling that government which had been
newly conferred upon them by God, it so happened that the
sedition at Jerusalem was revived, and parted into three
factions, and that one faction fought against the other; which
partition in such evil cases may be said to be a good thing, and
the effect of Divine justice. Now as to the attack the zealots
made upon the people, and which I esteem the beginning of the
city's destruction, it hath been already explained after an
accurate manner; as also whence it
arose, and to how great a mischief it was increased. But for
the present sedition, one should not mistake if he called it a
sedition begotten by another sedition, and to be like a wild
beast grown mad, which, for want of food from abroad, fell now
upon eating its own flesh.

2. For Eleazar, the son of Simon, who made the first
separation of the zealots from the people, and made them retire
into the temple, appeared very angry at John's
insolent attempts, which he made everyday upon the
people; for this man never left off murdering; but the truth
was, that he could not bear to submit to a tyrant who set up
after him. So he being desirous of gaining the entire power and
dominion to himself, revolted from John, and took to his
assistance Judas the son of Chelcias, and Simon the
son of Ezron, who were among the men of greatest power.
There was also with him Hezekiah, the son of Chobar, a
person of eminence. Each of these were followed by a
great many of the zealots; these seized upon the inner
court of the temple (1) and laid their arms upon the holy
gates, and over the holy fronts of that court. And because they
had plenty of provisions, they were of good courage, for there
was a great abundance of what was consecrated
to sacred uses, and they scrupled not the making use of
them; yet were they afraid, on account of their small
number; and when they had laid up their arms there, they did
not stir from the place they were in. Now as to John, what
advantage he had above Eleazar in the multitude of
his followers, the like disadvantage he had in the situation he
was in, since he had his enemies over his head; and as he could
not make any assault upon them without some
terror, so was his anger too great to let them be at rest; nay,
although he suffered more mischief from Eleazar and his party
than he could inflict upon them, yet would he not leave off
assaulting them, insomuch that there were
continual sallies made one against another, as well as darts
thrown at one another, and the temple was defiled every
where with murders.

3. But now the tyrant Simon, the son of Gioras, whom the people
had invited in, out of the hopes they had of his
assistance in the great distresses they were in, having in his
power the upper city, and a great part of the lower, did now make
more vehement assaults upon John and his
party, because they were fought against from above also; yet
was he beneath their situation when he attacked them, as they
were beneath the attacks of the others above them. Whereby it
came to pass that John did both receive and
inflict great damage, and that easily, as he was fought
against on both sides; and the same advantage that
Eleazar and his party had over him, since he was beneath them,
the same advantage had he, by his higher situation, over Simon.
On which account he easily repelled the
attacks that were made from beneath, by the weapons
thrown from their hands only; but was obliged to repel
those that threw their darts from the temple above him, by his
engines of war; for he had such engines as threw darts, and
javelins, and stones, and that in no small number, by which he
did not only defend himself from such as fought against him, but
slew moreover many of the priests, as they were about their
sacred ministrations. For notwithstanding these men were mad with
all sorts of impiety, yet did they still admit those that desired
to offer their sacrifices, although they took care to search the
people of their own country beforehand, and both suspected and
them; while they were not so much afraid of strangers, who,
although they had gotten leave of them, how cruel soever they
were, to come into that court, were yet often destroyed by this
sedition; for those darts that were thrown by the engines came
with that force, that they went over all the buildings, and
reached as far as the altar, and the temple itself, and fell upon
the priests, and those (2) that were about the sacred offices;
insomuch that many persons who came thither with great zeal from
the ends of the earth, to offer sacrifices at this celebrated
place, which was
esteemed holy by all mankind, fell down before their own
sacrifices themselves, and sprinkled that altar which was
venerable among all men, both Greeks and Barbarians,
with their own blood; till the dead bodies of strangers were
mingled together with those of their own country, and those of
profane persons with those of the priests, and the blood of all
sorts of dead carcasses stood in lakes in the holy courts
themselves. And now, "O must wretched city, what
misery so great as this didst thou suffer from the Romans, when
they came to purify thee from thy intestine hatred! 'For thou
couldst be no longer a place fit for God, nor
couldst thou long continue in being, after thou hadst been a
sepulcher for the bodies of thy own people, and hadst
made the holy house itself a burying-place in this civil war of
thine. Yet mayst thou again grow better, if perchance thou wilt
hereafter appease the anger of that God who is the author of thy
destruction." But I must restrain myself from these passions by
the rules of history, since this is not a proper time for
domestical lamentations, but for historical narrations; I
therefore return to the operations that follow in this sedition.

4. And now there were three treacherous factions in the
city, the one parted from the other. Eleazar and his party,
that kept the sacred first-fruits, came against John in their
cups. Those that were with John plundered the populace,
and went out with zeal against Simon. This Simon had his supply
of provisions from the city, in opposition to the seditious.
When, therefore, John was assaulted on both
sides, he made his men turn about, throwing his darts upon
those citizens that came up against him, from the cloisters he
had in his possession, while he opposed those that
attacked him from the temple by his engines of war. And if at
any time he was freed from those that were above him, which
happened frequently, from their being drunk and
tired, he sallied out with a great number upon Simon and his
party; and this he did always in such parts of the city as he
could come at, till he set on fire those houses that were full of
corn, and of all other provisions. (4) The same thing was done by
Simon, when, upon the other's retreat, he
attacked the city also; as if they had, on purpose, done it to
serve the Romans, by destroying what the city had laid up against
the siege, and by thus cutting off the nerves of their own power.
Accordingly, it so came to pass, that all the places that were
about the temple were burnt down, and
were become an intermediate desert space, ready for
fighting on both sides of it; and that almost all that corn was
burnt, which would have been sufficient for a siege of many
years. So they were taken by the means of the famine,
which it was impossible they should have been, unless they had
thus prepared the way for it by this procedure.

5. And now, as the city was engaged in a war on all sides, from
these treacherous crowds of wicked men, the people
of the city, between them, were like a great body torn in
pieces. The aged men and the women were in such
distress by their internal calamities, that they wished for the
Romans, and earnestly hoped for an external war, in order to
their delivery from their domestical miseries. The citizens
themselves were under a terrible consternation and fear; nor had
they any opportunity of taking counsel, and of
changing their conduct; nor were there any hopes of
coming to an agreement with their enemies; nor could such as
had a mind flee away; for guards were set at all places, and the
heads of the robbers, although they were seditious one against
another in other respects, yet did they agree in killing those
that were for peace with the Romans, or were suspected of an
inclination to desert them, as their common enemies. They agreed
in nothing but this, to kill those that were innocent. The noise
also of those that were fighting was incessant, both by day and
by night; but the
lamentations of those that mourned exceeded the other; nor was
there ever any occasion for them to leave off their
lamentations, because their calamities came perpetually
one upon another, although the deep consternation they
were in prevented their outward wailing; but being
constrained by their fear to conceal their inward passions,
they were inwardly tormented, without daring to open their lips
in groans. :Nor was any regard paid to those that were still
alive, by their relations; nor was there any care taken of burial
for those that were dead; the occasion of both which was this,
that every one despaired of himself; for those that were not
among the seditious had no great desires of any thing, as
expecting for certain that they should very soon be destroyed;
but for the seditious themselves, they fought against each other,
while they trod upon the dead bodies as they lay heaped one upon
another, and taking up a mad rage from those dead bodies that
were under their feet,
became the fiercer thereupon. They, moreover, were still
inventing somewhat or other that was pernicious against
themselves; and when they had resolved upon any thing,
they executed it without mercy, and omitted no method of
torment or of barbarity. Nay, John abused the sacred
materials, (5) and employed them in the construction of his
engines of war; for the people and the priests had formerly
determined to support the temple, and raise the holy house twenty
cubits higher; for king Agrippa had at a very great expense, and
with very great pains, brought thither such materials as were
proper for that purpose, being pieces of timber very well worth
seeing, both for their straightness and their largeness; but the
war coming on, and interrupting the work, John had them cut, and
prepared for the building him towers, he finding them long enough
to oppose from
them those his adversaries that thought him from the
temple that was above him. He also had them brought and
erected behind the inner court over against the west end of the
cloisters, where alone he could erect them ; whereas the other
sides of that court had so many steps as would not let them come
nigh enough the cloisters.

6. Thus did John hope to be too hard for his enemies by
these engines constructed by his impiety; but God himself
demonstrated that his pains would prove of no use to him, by
bringing the Romans upon him, before he had reared
any of his towers; for Titus, when he had gotten together part
of his forces about him, and had ordered the rest to meet him at
Jerusalem, marched out of Cesarea. He had
with him those three legions that had accompanied his
father when he laid Judea waste, together with that twelfth
legion which had been formerly beaten with Cestius; which legion,
as it was otherwise remarkable for its valor, so did it march on
now with greater alacrity to avenge themselves
on the Jews, as remembering what they had formerly
suffered from them. Of these legions he ordered the fifth to
meet him, by going through Emmaus, and the tenth to go
up by Jericho; he also moved himself, together with the
rest; besides whom, marched those auxiliaries that came
from the kings, being now more in number than before,
together with a considerable number that came to his
assistance from Syria. Those also that had been selected out of
these four legions, and sent with Mucianus to Italy, had their
places filled up out of these soldiers that came out of Egypt
with Titus; who were two thousand men, chosen
out of the armies at Alexandria. There followed him also three
thousand drawn from those that guarded the river
Euphrates; as also there came Tiberius Alexander, who
was a friend of his, most valuable, both for his good-will to
him, and for his prudence. He had formerly been governor of
Alexandria, but was now thought worthy to be general of the army
[under Titus]. The reason of this was, that he had been the first
who encouraged Vespasian very lately to
accept this his new dominion, and joined himself to him with
great fidelity, when things were uncertain, and fortune had not
yet declared for him. He also followed Titus as a
counselor, very useful to him in this war, both by his age and
skill in such affairs.


How Titus Marched To Jerusalem, And How He Was In
Danger As He Was Taking A View O The City Of The
Place Also Where He Pitched His Camp

1. Now, as Titus was upon his march into the enemy's
country, the auxiliaries that were sent by the kings marched
first, having all the other auxiliaries with them; after whom
followed those that were to prepare the roads and measure out the
camp; then came the commander's baggage, and
after that the other soldiers, who were completely armed to
support them; then came Titus himself, having with him
another select body; and then came the pikemen; after
whom came the horse belonging to that legion. All these
came before the engines; and after these engines came the
tribunes and the leaders of the cohorts, with their select
bodies; after these came the ensigns, with the eagle; and before
those ensigns came the trumpeters belonging to
them; next these came the main body of the army in their ranks,
every rank being six deep; the servants belonging to every legion
came after these; and before these last their baggage; the
mercenaries came last, and those that
guarded them brought up the rear. Now Titus, according to the
Roman usage, went in the front of the army after a
decent manner, and marched through Samaria to Gophna,
a city that had been formerly taken by his father, and was then
garrisoned by Roman soldiers; and when he had
lodged there one night, he marched on in the morning; and when
he had gone as far as a day's march, he pitched his camp at that
valley which the Jews, in their own tongue, call "the Valley of
Thorns," near a certain village called Gabaothsath, which
signifies "the Hill of Saul," being distant from Jerusalem about
thirty furlongs. (6) There it was that he chose out six hundred
select horsemen, and went to
take a view of the city, to observe what strength it was of,
and how courageous the Jews were; whether, when they
saw him, and before they came to a direct battle, they
would be affrighted and submit; for he had been informed what
was really true, that the people who were fallen under the power
of the seditious and the robbers were greatly
desirous of peace; but being too weak to rise up against the
rest, they lay still.

2. Now, so long as he rode along the straight road which led to
the wall of the city, nobody appeared out of the
gates; but when he went out of that road, and declined
towards the tower Psephinus, and led the band of
horsemen obliquely, an immense number of the Jews
leaped out suddenly at the towers called the "Women's
Towers," through that gate which was over against the
monuments of queen Helena, and intercepted his horse;
and standing directly opposite to those that still ran along
the road, hindered them from joining those that had
declined out of it. They intercepted Titus also, with a few
other. Now it was here impossible for him to go forward, because
all the places had trenches dug in them from the wall, to
preserve the gardens round about, and were full of gardens
obliquely situated, and of many hedges; and to
return back to his own men, he saw it was also impossible, by
reason of the multitude of the enemies that lay between them;
many of whom did not so much as know that the king was in any
danger, but supposed him still among them. So he perceived that
his preservation must be wholly owing to his own courage, and
turned his horse about, and cried out aloud to those that were
about him to follow him, and ran with violence into the midst of
his enemies, in order to force his way through them to his own
men. And hence we may
principally learn, that both the success of wars, and the
dangers that kings (7) are in, are under the providence of God;
for while such a number of darts were thrown at Titus, when he
had neither his head-piece on, nor his breastplate, (for, as I
told you, he went out not to fight, but to view the city,) none
of them touched his body, but went aside
without hurting him; as if all of them missed him on
purpose, and only made a noise as they passed by him. So he
diverted those perpetually with his sword that came on his side,
and overturned many of those that directly met him, and made his
horse ride over those that were
overthrown. The enemy indeed made a shout at the
boldness of Caesar, and exhorted one another to rush upon him.
Yet did these against whom he marched fly away, and go off from
him in great numbers; while those that were in the same danger
with him kept up close to him, though
they were wounded both on their backs and on their sides; for
they had each of them but this one hope of escaping, if they
could assist Titus in opening himself a way, that he might not be
encompassed round by his enemies before he
got away from them. Now there were two of those that
were with him, but at some distance; the one of which the enemy
compassed round, and slew him with their darts,
and his horse also; but the other they slew as he leaped down
from his horse, and carried off his horse with them. But Titus
escaped with the rest, and came safe to the
camp. So this success of the Jews' first attack raised their
minds, and gave them an ill-grounded hope; and this short
inclination of fortune, on their side, made them very
courageous for the future.

3. But now, as soon as that legion that had been at
Emmaus was joined to Caesar at night, he removed
thence, when it was day, and came to a place called
Seopus; from whence the city began already to be seen,
and a plain view might be taken of the great temple.
Accordingly, this place, on the north quarter of the city, and
joining thereto, was a plain, and very properly named
Scopus, [the prospect,] and was no more than seven
furlongs distant from it. And here it was that Titus ordered a
camp to be fortified for two legions that were to be together;
but ordered another camp to be fortified, at three furlongs
farther distance behind them, for the fifth legion; for he
thought that, by marching in the night, they might be tired, and
might deserve to be covered from the enemy, and with less fear
might fortify themselves; and as these were now beginning to
build, the tenth legion, who came through
Jericho, was already come to the place, where a certain
party of armed men had formerly lain, to guard that pass into
the city, and had been taken before by Vespasian.
These legions had orders to encamp at the distance of six
furlongs from Jerusalem, at the mount called the Mount of Olives
(8) which lies over against the city on the east side, and is
parted from it by a deep valley, interposed between them, which
is named Cedron.

4. Now when hitherto the several parties in the city had been
dashing one against another perpetually, this foreign war, now
suddenly come upon them after a violent manner, put the first
stop to their contentions one against another; and as the
seditious now saw with astonishment the
Romans pitching three several camps, they began to think of an
awkward sort of concord, and said one to another,
"What do we here, and what do we mean, when we suffer
three fortified walls to be built to coop us in, that we shall
not be able to breathe freely? while the enemy is securely
building a kind of city in opposition to us, and while we sit
still within our own walls, and become spectators only of what
they are doing, with our hands idle, and our armor laid by, as if
they were about somewhat that was for our good and advantage. We
are, it seems, (so did they cry out,)
only courageous against ourselves, while the Romans are
likely to gain the city without bloodshed by our sedition."
Thus did they encourage one another when they were
gotten together, and took their armor immediately, and ran out
upon the tenth legion, and fell upon the Romans with great
eagerness, and with a prodigious shout, as they were fortifying
their camp. These Romans were caught in
different parties, and this in order to perform their several
works, and on that account had in great measure laid aside their
arms; for they thought the Jews would not have
ventured to make a sally upon them; and had they been
disposed so to do, they supposed their sedition would have
distracted them. So they were put into disorder
unexpectedly; when some of hem left their works they were
about, and immediately marched off, while many ran to
their arms, but were smitten and slain before they could turn
back upon the enemy. The Jews became still more
and more in number, as encouraged by the good success
of those that first made the attack; and while they had such
good fortune, they seemed both to themselves and to the
enemy to be many more than they really were. The
disorderly way of their fighting at first put the Romans also
to a stand, who had been constantly used to fight skillfully in
good order, and with keeping their ranks, and obeying the orders
that were given them; for which reason the
Romans were caught unexpectedly, and were obliged to
give way to the assaults that were made upon them. Now
when these Romans were overtaken, and turned back upon
the Jews, they put a stop to their career; yet when they did
not take care enough of themselves through the
vehemency of their pursuit, they were wounded by them;
but as still more and more Jews sallied out of the city, the
Romans were at length brought into confusion, and put to fight,
and ran away from their camp. Nay, things looked as though the
entire legion would have been in danger, unless Titus had been
informed of the case they were in, and had sent them succors
immediately. So he reproached them for their cowardice, and
brought those back that were running away, and fell himself upon
the Jews on their flank, with those select troops that were with
him, and slew a
considerable number, and wounded more of them, and put
them all to flight, and made them run away hastily down the
valley. Now as these Jews suffered greatly in the declivity of
the valley, so when they were gotten over it, they turned about,
and stood over against the Romans, having the
valley between them, and there fought with them. Thus did they
continue the fight till noon; but when it was already a little
after noon, Titus set those that came to the assistance of the
Romans with him, and those that belonged to the
cohorts, to prevent the Jews from making any more sallies, and
then sent the rest of the legion to the upper part of the
mountain, to fortify their camp.

5. This march of the Romans seemed to the Jews to be a
flight; and as the watchman who was placed upon the wall gave a
signal by shaking his garment, there came out a
fresh multitude of Jews, and that with such mighty violence,
that one might compare it to the running of the most terrible
wild beasts. To say the truth, none of those that opposed them
could sustain the fury with which they made their
attacks; but, as if they had been cast out of an engine, they
brake the enemies' ranks to pieces, who were put to flight, and
ran away to the mountain; none but Titus himself, and a few
others with him, being left in the midst of the acclivity. Now
these others, who were his friends, despised the
danger they were in, and were ashamed to leave their
general, earnestly exhorting him to give way to these Jews that
are fond of dying, and not to run into such dangers before those
that ought to stay before him; to consider what his fortune was,
and not, by supplying the place of a
common soldier, to venture to turn back upon the enemy so
suddenly; and this because he was general in the war, and lord of
the habitable earth, on whose preservation the
public affairs do all depend. These persuasions Titus
seemed not so much as to hear, but opposed those that
ran upon him, and smote them on the face; and when he
had forced them to go back, he slew them: he also fell
upon great numbers as they marched down the hill, and
thrust them forward; while those men were so amazed at
his courage and his strength, that they could not fly directly
to the city, but declined from him on both sides, and
pressed after those that fled up the hill; yet did he still
fall upon their flank, and put a stop to their fury. In the mean
time, a disorder and a terror fell again upon those that were
fortifying their camp at the top of the hill, upon their seeing
those beneath them running away; insomuch that the whole legion
was dispersed, while they thought that the sallies of the Jews
upon them were plainly insupportable, and that
Titus was himself put to flight; because they took it for
granted, that, if he had staid, the rest would never have fled
for it. Thus were they encompassed on every side by a kind of
panic fear, and some dispersed themselves one way,
and some another, till certain of them saw their general in the
very midst of an action, and being under great concern for him,
they loudly proclaimed the danger he was in to the entire legion;
and now shame made them turn back, and
they reproached one another that they did worse than run away,
by deserting Caesar. So they used their utmost force against the
Jews, and declining from the straight declivity, they drove them
on heaps into the bottom of the valley.
Then did the Jews turn about and fight them; but as they were
themselves retiring, and now, because the Romans
had the advantage of the ground, and were above the
Jews, they drove them all into the valley. Titus also pressed
upon those that were near him, and sent the legion again to
fortify their camp; while he, and those that were with him
before, opposed the enemy, and kept them from doing
further mischief; insomuch that, if I may be allowed neither to
add any thing out of flattery, nor to diminish any thing out of
envy, but to speak the plain truth, Caesar did twice
deliver that entire legion when it was in jeopardy, and gave
them a quiet opportunity of fortifying their camp.


How The Sedition Was Again Revived Within Jerusalem
And Yet The Jews Contrived Snares For The Romans. How
Titus Also Threatened His Soldiers For Their Ungovernable

1. As now the war abroad ceased for a while, the sedition
within was revived; and on the feast of unleavened bread, which
was now come, it being the fourteenth day of the
month Xanthicus, [Nisan,] when it is believed the Jews were
first freed from the Egyptians, Eleazar and his party opened the
gates of this [inmost court of the] temple, and admitted such of
the people as were desirous to worship God into it. (9) But John
made use of this festival as a cloak for his treacherous designs,
and armed the most inconsiderable of his own party, the greater
part of whom were not purified, with weapons concealed under
their garments, and sent
them with great zeal into the temple, in order to seize upon
it; which armed men, when they were gotten in, threw their
garments away, and presently appeared in their armor.
Upon which there was a very great disorder and
disturbance about the holy house; while the people, who
had no concern in the sedition, supposed that this assault was
made against all without distinction, as the zealots thought it
was made against themselves only. So these left off guarding the
gates any longer, and leaped down from
their battlements before they came to an engagement, and fled
away into the subterranean caverns of the temple;
while the people that stood trembling at the altar, and about
the holy house, were rolled on heaps together, and
trampled upon, and were beaten both with wooden and with iron
weapons without mercy. Such also as had differences with others
slew many persons that were quiet, out of their own private
enmity and hatred, as if they were opposite to the seditious; and
all those that had formerly offended any of these plotters were
now known, and were now led away
to the slaughter; and when they had done abundance of
horrid mischief to the guiltless, they granted a truce to the
guilty, and let those go off that came cut of the caverns. These
followers of John also did now seize upon this inner temple, and
upon all the warlike engines therein, and then ventured to oppose
Simon. And thus that sedition, which
had been divided into three factions, was now reduced to two.

2. But Titus, intending to pitch his camp nearer to the city
than Scopus, placed as many of his choice horsemen and
footmen as he thought sufficient opposite to the Jews, to
prevent their sallying out upon them, while he gave orders for
the whole army to level the distance, as far as the wall of the
city. So they threw down all the hedges and walls which the
inhabitants had made about their gardens and
groves of trees, and cut down all the fruit trees that lay
between them and the wall of the city, and filled up all the
hollow places and the chasms, and demolished the rocky
precipices with iron instruments; and thereby made all the
place level from Scopus to Herod's monuments, which
adjoined to the pool called the Serpent's Pool.

3. Now at this very time the Jews contrived the following
stratagem against the Romans. The bolder sort of the
seditious went out at the towers, called the Women's
Towers, as if they had been ejected out of the city by those
who were for peace, and rambled about as if they were
afraid of being assaulted by the Romans, and were in fear of
one another; while those that stood upon the wall, and seemed to
be of the people's side, cried out aloud for
peace, and entreated they might have security for their lives
given them, and called for the Romans, promising to open the
gates to them; and as they cried out after that manner, they
threw stones at their own people, as though they
would drive them away from the gates. These also
pretended that they were excluded by force, and that they
petitioned those that were within to let them in; and rushing
upon the Romans perpetually, with violence, they then
came back, and seemed to be in great disorder. Now the
Roman soldiers thought this cunning stratagem of theirs
was to be believed real, and thinking they had the one
party under their power, and could punish them as they
pleased, and hoping that the other party would open their gates
to them, set to the execution of their designs
accordingly. But for Titus himself, he had this surprising
conduct of the Jews in suspicion; for whereas he had
invited them to come to terms of accommodation, by
Josephus, but one day before, he could then receive no
civil answer from them; so he ordered the soldiers to stay
where they were. However, some of them that were set in
the front of the works prevented him, and catching up their
arms ran to the gates; whereupon those that seemed to
have been ejected at the first retired; but as soon as the
soldiers were gotten between the towers on each side of
the gate, the Jews ran out and encompassed them round,
and fell upon them behind, while that multitude which stood
upon the wall threw a heap of stones and darts of all kinds at
them, insomuch that they slew a considerable number,
and wounded many more; for it was not easy for the
Romans to escape, by reason those behind them pressed
them forward; besides which, the shame they were under
for being mistaken, and the fear they were in of their
commanders, engaged them to persevere in their mistake;
wherefore they fought with their spears a great while, and
received many blows from the Jews, though indeed they
gave them as many blows again, and at last repelled those that
had encompassed them about, while the Jews pursued
them as they retired, and followed them, and threw darts at
them as far as the monuments of queen Helena.

4. After this these Jews, without keeping any decorum,
grew insolent upon their good fortune, and jested upon the
Romans for being deluded by the trick they bad put upon
them, and making a noise with beating their shields, leaped for
gladness, and made joyful exclamations; while these
soldiers were received with threatenings by their officers, and
with indignation by Caesar himself, [who spake to them thus]:
These Jews, who are only conducted by their
madness, do every thing with care and circumspection; they
contrive stratagems, and lay ambushes, and fortune gives success
to their stratagems, because they are obedient,
and preserve their goodwill and fidelity to one another; while
the Romans, to whom fortune uses to be ever
subservient, by reason of their good order, and ready
submission to their commanders, have now had ill success by
their contrary behavior, and by not being able to restrain their
hands from action, they have been caught; and that which is the
most to their reproach, they have gone on
without their commanders, in the very presence of Caesar.
"Truly," says Titus, "the laws of war cannot but groan
heavily, as will my father also himself, when he shall be
informed of this wound that hath been given us, since he who is
grown old in wars did never make so great a
mistake. Our laws of war do also ever inflict capital
punishment on those that in the least break into good order,
while at this time they have seen an entire army run into
disorder. However, those that have been so insolent shall be made
immediately sensible, that even they who conquer among the Romans
without orders for fighting are to be
under disgrace." When Titus had enlarged upon this matter
before the commanders, it appeared evident that he would execute
the law against all those that were concerned; so these soldiers'
minds sunk down in despair, as expecting to be put to death, and
that justly and quickly. However, the other legions came round
about Titus, and entreated his
favor to these their fellow soldiers, and made supplication to
him, that he would pardon the rashness of a few, on
account of the better obedience of all the rest; and
promised for them that they should make amends for their
present fault, by their more virtuous behavior for the time to

5. So Caesar complied with their desires, and with what
prudence dictated to him also; for he esteemed it fit to punish
single persons by real executions, but that the
punishment of great multitudes should proceed no further than
reproofs; so he was reconciled to the soldiers, but gave them a
special charge to act more wisely for the
future; and he considered with himself how he might be
even with the Jews for their stratagem. And now when the space
between the Romans and the wall had been leveled,
which was done in four days, and as he was desirous to
bring the baggage of the army, with the rest of the
multitude that followed him, safely to the camp, he set the
strongest part of his army over against that wall which lay on
the north quarter of the city, and over against the
western part of it, and made his army seven deep, with the
foot-men placed before them, and the horsemen behind
them, each of the last in three ranks, whilst the archers stood
in the midst in seven ranks. And now as the Jews
were prohibited, by so great a body of men, from making
sallies upon the Romans, both the beasts that bare the
burdens, and belonged to the three legions, and the rest of the
multitude, marched on without any fear. But as for Titus himself,
he was but about two furlongs distant from the
wall, at that part of it where was the corner (10) and over
against that tower which was called Psephinus, at which
tower the compass of the wall belonging to the north
bended, and extended itself over against the west; but the
other part of the army fortified itself at the tower called
Hippicus, and was distant, in like manner, by two furlongs from
the city. However, the tenth legion continued in its own place,
upon the Mount of Olives.


The Description Of Jerusalem.

1. The city of Jerusalem was fortified with three walls, on
such parts as were not encompassed with unpassable
valleys; for in such places it had but one wall. The city was
built upon two hills, which are opposite to one another, and have
a valley to divide them asunder; at which valley the
corresponding rows of houses on both hills end. Of these hills,
that which contains the upper city is much higher, and in length
more direct. Accordingly, it was called the
"Citadel," by king David; he was the father of that Solomon who
built this temple at the first; but it is by us called the "Upper
Market-place." But the other hill, which was called "Acra," and
sustains the lower city, is of the shape of a moon when she is
horned; over against this there was a
third hill, but naturally lower than Acra, and parted formerly
from the other by a broad valley. However, in those times when
the Asamoneans reigned, they filled up that valley
with earth, and had a mind to join the city to the temple. They
then took off part of the height of Acra, and reduced it to be of
less elevation than it was before, that the temple might be
superior to it. Now the Valley of the
Cheesemongers, as it was called, and was that which we
told you before distinguished the hill of the upper city from
that of the lower, extended as far as Siloam; for that is the
name of a fountain which hath sweet water in it, and this in
great plenty also. But on the outsides, these hills are
surrounded by deep valleys, and by reason of the
precipices to them belonging on both sides they are every where

2. Now, of these three walls, the old one was hard to be taken,
both by reason of the valleys, and of that hill on which it was
built, and which was above them. But besides that great
advantage, as to the place where they were
situated, it was also built very strong; because David and
Solomon, and the following kings, were very zealous about this
work. Now that wall began on the north, at the tower called
"Hippicus," and extended as far as the "Xistus," a place so
called, and then, joining to the council-house, ended at the west
cloister of the temple. But if we go the other way westward, it
began at the same place, and
extended through a place called "Bethso," to the gate of the
Essens; and after that it went southward, having its bending
above the fountain Siloam, where it also bends again
towards the east at Solomon's pool, and reaches as far as a
certain place which they called "Ophlas," where it was joined to
the eastern cloister of the temple. The second wall took its
beginning from that gate which they called
"Gennath," which belonged to the first wall; it only
encompassed the northern quarter of the city, and reached as
far as the tower Antonia. The beginning of the third wall was at
the tower Hippicus, whence it reached as far as the north quarter
of the city, and the tower Psephinus, and then was so far
extended till it came over against the
monuments of Helena, which Helena was queen of
Adiabene, the daughter of Izates; it then extended further to a
great length, and passed by the sepulchral caverns of the kings,
and bent again at the tower of the corner, at the monument which
is called the "Monument of the Fuller,"
and joined to the old wall at the valley called the "Valley of
Cedron." It was Agrippa who encompassed the parts added
to the old city with this wall, which had been all naked
before; for as the city grew more populous, it gradually crept
beyond its old limits, and those parts of it that stood northward
of the temple, and joined that hill to the city, made it
considerably larger, and occasioned that hill, which is in number
the fourth, and is called "Bezetha," to be
inhabited also. It lies over against the tower Antonia, but is
divided from it by a deep valley, which was dug on purpose, and
that in order to hinder the foundations of the tower of Antonia
from joining to this hill, and thereby affording an opportunity
for getting to it with ease, and hindering the security that
arose from its superior elevation; for which reason also that
depth of the ditch made the elevation of the towers more
remarkable. This new-built part of the city was called "Bezetha,"
in our language, which, if interpreted in the Grecian language,
may be called "the New City."
Since, therefore, its inhabitants stood in need of a covering,
the father of the present king, and of the same name with him,
Agrippa, began that wall we spoke of; but he left off building it
when he had only laid the foundations, out of the fear he was in
of Claudius Caesar, lest he should suspect that so strong a wall
was built in order to make some
innovation in public affairs; for the city could no way have
been taken if that wall had been finished in the manner it was
begun; as its parts were connected together by stones twenty
cubits long, and ten cubits broad, which could never have been
either easily undermined by any iron tools, or shaken by any
engines. The wall was, however, ten cubits wide, and it would
probably have had a height greater than that, had not his zeal
who began it been hindered from
exerting itself. After this, it was erected with great
diligence by the Jews, as high as twenty cubits, above which it
had battlements of two cubits, and turrets of three cubits
altitude, insomuch that the entire altitude extended as far as
twenty-five cubits.

3. Now the towers that were upon it were twenty cubits in
breadth, and twenty cubits in height; they were square and solid,
as was the wall itself, wherein the niceness of the joints, and
the beauty of the stones, were no way inferior to those of the
holy house itself. Above this solid altitude of the towers, which
was twenty cubits, there were rooms of great magnificence, and
over them upper rooms, and
cisterns to receive rain-water. They were many in number, and
the steps by which you ascended up to them were
every one broad: of these towers then the third wall had
ninety, and the spaces between them were each two
hundred cubits; but in the middle wall were forty towers, and
the old wall was parted into sixty, while the whole
compass of the city was thirty-three furlongs. Now the third
wall was all of it wonderful; yet was the tower Psephinus
elevated above it at the north-west corner, and there Titus
pitched his own tent; for being seventy cubits high it both
afforded a prospect of Arabia at sun-rising, as well as it did of
the utmost limits of the Hebrew possessions at the sea westward.
Moreover, it was an octagon, and over against it was the tower
Hipplicus, and hard by two others were
erected by king Herod, in the old wall. These were for
largeness, beauty, and strength beyond all that were in the
habitable earth; for besides the magnanimity of his nature, and
his magnificence towards the city on other occasions, he built
these after such an extraordinary manner, to gratify his own
private affections, and dedicated these towers to the memory of
those three persons who had been the
dearest to him, and from whom he named them. They were
his brother, his friend, and his wife. This wife he had slain,
out of his love [and jealousy], as we have already related; the
other two he lost in war, as they were courageously
fighting. Hippicus, so named from his friend, was square; its
length and breadth were each twenty-five cubits, and its height
thirty, and it had no vacuity in it. Over this solid building,
which was composed of great stones united
together, there was a reservoir twenty cubits deep, over which
there was a house of two stories, whose height was twenty-five
cubits, and divided into several parts; over which were
battlements of two cubits, and turrets all round of three cubits
high, insomuch that the entire height added together amounted to
fourscore cubits. The second tower, which he named from his
brother Phasaelus, had its
breadth and its height equal, each of them forty cubits; over
which was its solid height of forty cubits; over which a cloister
went round about, whose height was ten cubits, and it was covered
from enemies by breast-works and bulwarks. There was also built
over that cloister another tower, parted into magnificent rooms,
and a place for bathing; so that this tower wanted nothing that
might make it appear to be a
royal palace. It was also adorned with battlements and
turrets, more than was the foregoing, and the entire altitude
was about ninety cubits; the appearance of it resembled the tower
of Pharus, which exhibited a fire to such as sailed to
Alexandria, but was much larger than it in compass. This was now
converted to a house, wherein Simon exercised
his tyrannical authority. The third tower was Mariamne, for
that was his queen's name; it was solid as high as twenty cubits;
its breadth and its length were twenty cubits, and were equal to
each other; its upper buildings were more
magnificent, and had greater variety, than the other towers
had; for the king thought it most proper for him to adorn that
which was denominated from his wife, better than
those denominated from men, as those were built stronger than
this that bore his wife's name. The entire height of this tower
was fifty cubits.

4. Now as these towers were so very tall, they appeared
much taller by the place on which they stood; for that very old
wall wherein they were was built on a high hill, and was itself a
kind of elevation that was still thirty cubits taller; over which
were the towers situated, and thereby were
made much higher to appearance. The largeness also of
the stones was wonderful; for they were not made of
common small stones, nor of such large ones only as men
could carry, but they were of white marble, cut out of the
rock; each stone was twenty cubits in length, and ten in breadth,
and five in depth. They were so exactly united to one another,
that each tower looked like one entire rock of stone, so growing
naturally, and afterward cut by the hand of the artificers into
their present shape and corners; so little, or not at all, did
their joints or connexion appear. low as these towers were
themselves on the north side of the wall, the king had a palace
inwardly thereto adjoined, which exceeds all my ability to
describe it; for it was so very curious as to want no cost nor
skill in its construction, but was entirely walled about to the
height of thirty cubits, and was adorned with towers at equal
distances, and with large bed-chambers, that would contain beds
for a hundred
guests a-piece, in which the variety of the stones is not to be
expressed; for a large quantity of those that were rare of that
kind was collected together. Their roofs were also
wonderful, both for the length of the beams, and the
splendor of their ornaments. The number of the rooms was also
very great, and the variety of the figures that were about them
was prodigious; their furniture was complete, and the greatest
part of the vessels that were put in them was of silver and gold.
There were besides many porticoes, one beyond another, round
about, and in each of those
porticoes curious pillars; yet were all the courts that were
exposed to the air every where green. There were,
moreover, several groves of trees, and long walks through them,
with deep canals, and cisterns, that in several parts were filled
with brazen statues, through which the water ran out. There were
withal many dove-courts (11) of tame
pigeons about the canals. But indeed it is not possible to give
a complete description of these palaces; and the very remembrance
of them is a torment to one, as putting one in mind what vastly
rich buildings that fire which was kindled by the robbers hath
consumed; for these were not burnt by the Romans, but by these
internal plotters, as we have
already related, in the beginning of their rebellion. That fire
began at the tower of Antonia, and went on to the palaces, and
consumed the upper parts of the three towers


A Description Of The Temple.

1. Now this temple, as I have already said, was built upon a
strong hill. At first the plain at the top was hardly sufficient
for the holy house and the altar, for the ground about it was
very uneven, and like a precipice; but when king Solomon, who was
the person that built the temple, had built a wall to it on its
east side, there was then added one cloister
founded on a bank cast up for it, and on the other parts the
holy house stood naked. But in future ages the people
added new banks, (12) and the hill became a larger plain. They
then broke down the wall on the north side, and took in as much
as sufficed afterward for the compass of the
entire temple. And when they had built walls on three sides of
the temple round about, from the bottom of the hill, and had
performed a work that was greater than could be
hoped for, (in which work long ages were spent by them, as well
as all their sacred treasures were exhausted, which were still
replenished by those tributes which were sent to God from the
whole habitable earth,) they then
encompassed their upper courts with cloisters, as well as they
[afterward] did the lowest [court of the] temple. The lowest part
of this was erected to the height of three
hundred cubits, and in some places more; yet did not the entire
depth of the foundations appear, for they brought earth, and
filled up the valleys, as being desirous to make them on a level
with the narrow streets of the city; wherein they made use of
stones of forty cubits in magnitude; for the great plenty of
money they then had, and the liberality of the people, made this
attempt of theirs to succeed to an incredible degree; and what
could not be so much as hoped for as ever to be accomplished,
was, by perseverance and length of time, brought to perfection.

2. Now for the works that were above these foundations,
these were not unworthy of such foundations; for all the
cloisters were double, and the pillars to them belonging were
twenty-five cubits in height, and supported the
cloisters. These pillars were of one entire stone each of them,
and that stone was white marble; and the roofs were adorned with
cedar, curiously graven. The natural
magnificence, and excellent polish, and the harmony of the
joints in these cloisters, afforded a prospect that was very
remarkable; nor was it on the outside adorned with any
work of the painter or engraver. The cloisters [of the
outmost court] were in breadth thirty cubits, while the entire
compass of it was by measure six furlongs, including the tower of
Antonia; those entire courts that were exposed to the air were
laid with stones of all sorts. When you go
through these [first] cloisters, unto the second [court of the]
temple, there was a partition made of stone all round,
whose height was three cubits: its construction was very
elegant; upon it stood pillars, at equal distances from one
another, declaring the law of purity, some in Greek, and some in
Roman letters, that "no foreigner should go within that
sanctuary" for that second [court of the] temple was called "the

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