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The Celebration Of The Passover In Graeco-Roman Alexandria

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Chapter Summary

This chapter determines how Greek-speaking Jews in antiquity celebrated the festival called Passover, and what the festival represented in their lives. The period in question runs from the third or second century BCE to the first half of the first century CE. This was a period of immense political, social and cultural change in Judaism. There is an enormous bibliography on the Passover in antiquity, but most studies touch on the Greek sources either from the somewhat later viewpoint of rabbinic Judaism or from that of early Christianity. The principal text relating to the observance of the Passover is Exodus 12.1-20. The sources examined her include: the Exagoge, Wisdom and Philo's Special Laws. One thing that emerges very clearly from these sources is the authority of the Greek Pentateuch in Alexandrian Judaism.

Keywords: Exagoge; Alexandrian Judaism; Graeco-Roman Alexandria; Greek Pentateuch; Passover; Philo of Alexandria

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