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Josephus On Herod’s Spring From The Shadows Of The Parthian Invasion

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Chapter Summary

In late 41 BCE, impelled by the great Parthian invasion, a massive political upheaval took place in Syria and Palestine. Ostensibly, the incursion wreaked havoc on Herods aspirations to the royal throne after his engagement to Mariamme the Hasmonean. When the Parthian forces poured into Syria, eventually reaching Judea and Jerusalem, Phasael and Herod found themselves under siege by the Parthian commander Barzapharanes in the Hasmonean palace. During his flight from Jerusalem, Herod tried to head in the same direction, or, more precisely, to the fortress at Masada, which he had conquered from Malichus brother only a short while earlier. It appears that he also felt unsafe in western Idumaea for fear that the Parthian divisions, together with Antigonus, would swarm the area in pursuit of himwhich indeed was the case.

Keywords: Herod; Jerusalem; Josephus; Masada; Parthian Invasion; Rome



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