Judean independence/ Sanhedrin - Jewish exilic communities - Pharisees, Saduccees

Year/Time Frame



Canaan/Eretz Israel



Jews Elsewhere



Jewish Culture



General History















































































































2nd Century  BCE


























































































































































































1st Century BCE

































In midst of continuing power struggles, Antiochus VII grants Simon privilege to mint coins. [d] Later, refusing to restore cities to Seleucids and pay tribute, Simon's sons defeat Seleucid army.



Simon killed: John suppresses coup. The Great Assembly ratifies John's regime. Also known as John Hyrcanus.


















John Hyrcanus [a] solidifies domain. Conquers Bet She'an, Shechem- razes Samaritan temple.



Forcibly converts the Idumeans.




































John Hyrcanus sides with the Sadducees.















Aristobulus I succeeds his father, conquers Galilee, circumcises populace, including many Jews.



Aristobulus dies. Widow marries brother Alexander Jannai- appoints him king and high priest. This relationship offends traditionalist Pharisees.






King establishes control over both sides of Jordan and Mediterranean coast.






Jews in Rome erect public altars to G-d, hoping to spread religion.




















































































Alexandria- Jews live in separate quarters under own ethnarch. Worshipped in temple of Orias IV.






In Greek Cities of Asia Minor, Mediterranean area, several important Jewish communities. Generally recognized as citizens, maintained faith, and paid taxes to Jerusalem.






Romans generally lenient towards their subjects outside of Judea (Eretz Israel)






Babylonian center, second to Judea. Jews lived in large settlements: many towns with only Jewish inhabitants.






Jews of Nehardea enjoyed self-government  - developed communal life. They did not intermarry: flourishing schools, religious institutions, and family life.






Exilarchs [b] furnished from House of David who remained in Babylon after return of Exiles.



During period of independence: Jerusalem capital: 3 administrative areas- Judea, Galilee, Transjordan- surrounded by Hellenistic cities.



Villager's occupation: farming, cattle rearing.



Local courts (Sanhedrin) in all towns- small (23 members) and Great Sanhedrin in Jerusalem (71 members)



Language- Aramaic. Hebrew used in synagogues and learned circles.






(132) Ben Sira translated into







































Samaritans remain a separate group: they write their own version of the Torah.


















Pharisees and Sadducees involved in civil strife. Joshua B. Perachyah, head of Sanhedrin, flees to Egypt.



























During reign of Alexander Jannai, Shimon B. Shetach, a Pharisee scribe, strengthens Pharisee control of Sanhedrin.






















































Book of Maccabee I composed in Hebrew: survived only in Greek. Relates story of the Revolt and its aftermath.





















(140-87) Wu-ti, King of China.


































































(130) 1st Roman province in the East.

























































Parthians now control trade routes from M. East to China (Silk Route).
























Pompeii (106-43)








































































Rome completes conquest of E. Mediterranean coastlands






Julius Caesar (102-44)









Camel reaches Africa Germanic tribes (orig. from Scandinavia) settle near the Rhine.









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23 Aug 2005 / 18 Av 5765 0