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Die Drei Jüdischen Schulrichtungen Nach Josephus Und Hippolyt Von Rom: Zu den Paralleltexten Josephus, B.J. 2,119-166 und Hippolyt, Haer. IX 18,2-29,4

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A solid literary analysis of all the ancient texts referring to the Essenes leads to the conclusion that common sources are needed to explain the similarities between the different accounts of the group. So the correspondences between Philo's accounts and those of Josephus are best explained by the thesis of a common Hellenistic Jewish source on the Essaeans. Further, we have to pay attention to the fact that the longest account of the Essenes is a composite text, partly referring to a three-school description, i.e. the Pharisees, the Sadducees, and the Essenes. Whenever Josephus speaks of the Essenes as determined in B.J. 2.119-161 he uses references to this text. Some scholars believe that this Josephan text and Hippolytus, Haer. 9.18-28, go back to a common source, too. But the validity of this thesis cannot be proved. First of all, these two texts must not be reduced to the description of the Essenes. All in all (B.J. 2.119-166; Haer. 9.18.2-29.4) they are three-school descriptions and this in the same manner and sequence, with the same lacks, and often by the same words. The correspondences between Philo's accounts and those of Josephus are no longer present in Hippolytus' version. The additional and unparalleled features in Hippolytus' text are no older core material that was lost in the Josephus version but contributions of the Church Father himself which bear all signs of his apologetic interests, his style and his theology. So Josephus, B.J. 2.119-166, was the very source of Hippolytus. Contra E. Puech, the sayings of the Church Father cannot give evidence of the eschatology of the Qumran community.


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