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Rabbinic Sources For Historical Study

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Chapter Summary

This chapter begins with an introduction by raising a question that with what assumption does one start. One must start from the genuine contemporary documents (and, of course, contemporary literary texts, like Josephus). The chapter discusses parallels between Rabbinic literature and Josephus. Josephus is, moreover, at least a century older than the recording of the earliest rabbinic source. An example where information from rabbinic literature may be useful in confirming and supplementing data from other sources is the account of the conversion of the Adiabenians. There are at least seven details where the rabbinic sources confirm or supplement what one find in Josephus. This chapter talks about the Jewish war against the Romans. Finally, it discusses the story of Abba Kolon and the founding of Rome.

Keywords: Jewish war; Josephus; Rabbinic literature; Romans

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