5 Maccabees Chapter 42 (from The Five Books of Maccabees)


Cotton H.Sir : 

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P. 379 – 382 Book 5 B.C. 52 [PDF: 429/432 of p.524]

CHAPTER 42.1)Foot note p. 379 a. Compare Joseph. Antiq. XIV. 14, 15. Bell. I. 7.

(i) The history of Caesar, king of the Romans.

1 It is reported that there was at Rome a certain woman who was pregnant, [B.C. 52.] who, being near to her delivery, and racked with most 2 violent pains of childbirth, died : but as the child was in motion, the belly of the mother was opened, and it was brought forth thence and lived, and grew, and was named Julius, because he was born in the fifth 3 month ; and was called Caesar2)Foot note p. 379 b. On this point, which has been contested, see Suidas, in voce  ; and for the various accounts given of the name, consult Hoffmann’s lexicon, and the authors there cited., because the belly of his mother, from whence he was extracted, was 4 ripped open. (Lat. ccesa.) But when the elder of Rome sent Pompey into the east, he likewise sent Caesar into the west, to subdue certain 5 nations which had revolted from the Romans. And Caesar went, and conquered them, and reduced them to obedience to the Romans, and returned to p. 380 Rome with great glory : and his fame increased, 6 and his affairs became much renowned, and excessive pride took hold on him ; wherefore he requested the Romans to name him king. But the 7 elder and governors answered him, ” Truly our fathers took an oath in the days of Tarquin the king,—who had taken by force another man’s wife, who laid hands on herself that he might not enjoy her,—that they would not give the 8 title of king to any of those who should be placed at the head of their affairs ; on account of which oath (said they) we are not able to gratify you in this particular.” Wherefore he 9 stirred up seditions, and waged furious battles at Rome, slaying many people, until he seized on the throne of the Romans, and entitled himself king, putting a diadem on his head. From 10 thenceforth they were called kings of the Romans, from their kingdom : they were also called Caesars. When therefore Pompey heard this news of [B.C 49.]

11 Caesar, and that he had slain the three hundred and twenty3)Foot note p. 380 c. See above, 2 Mace. viii. 15 ; also 5 Mace. xii. and xiii. governors, he collected his armies and marched into Cappadocia : and Caesar 12 going to meet him engaged him, conquered4)Foot note p. 380 d. At the battle of Pharsalia. Shortly afterwards Pompey was treacherously murdered on the coast of Egypt, whither he was fleeing for succour. and slew him, and gained possession of the whole territory of the Romans. After this, Caesar went into the 13 province of Syria ; whom Mithridates5)Foot note p. 380 e. Namely, king of Pergamus ; not one of the kings of Parthia. the Armenian met with his army, assuring him that he was come with peaceful designs, and was ready to p. 381 attack whatsoever enemies he should command. 14 Caesar ordered him to depart into Egypt; and Mithridates marched till he came to Ascalon. 15 Now Hyrcanus feared Caesar very much, because his submission to Pompey,whom Caesar had 16 slain, was known. [B.C 48.] Wherefore he despatched hastily Antipater with a brave army to assist Mithridates : and Antipater marched to him, and aided him against a certain one of the cities of 17 Egypt6)Foot note p. 381 f. Namely, Pelusium., and they took it. But as they departed thence, they found an army of the Jews who dwelled in Egypt, making a stand at the entrance, to prevent Mithridates from entering Egypt. 18 And Antipater produced to them a letter from Hyrcanus, commanding them to desist, and not oppose Mithridates, the friend of Caesar. And 19 they forbore. But the others marched till they came to the city of the then reigning king7)Foot note p. 381 g. Namely Ptolemy Dionysius II, together with Cleopatra.; who came out to them with all the armies of the Egyptians, and when they engaged with him, he 20 conquered and routed them ; and Mithridates turned his back and fled ; whom, when he was surrounded by the Egyptian troops, Antipater saved 21 from death : and Antipater and his men ceased not to resist the Egyptians in battle, whom he routed and conquered, and won the whole country of Egypt.

22 And Mithridates wrote to Caesar, shewing him what Antipater had done, and what battles he had endured, and what wounds he had received; 23 and that the winning of the country was to be ascribed not to him but to Antipater, and that p. 382 he had reduced the Egyptians to obedience unto Caesar. And when Caesar had read the letter of 24 Mithridates, he commended Antipater for his exploits, and resolved to advance and exalt him. After these acts, Mithridates and Antipater went 25 to Caesar, who then was at Damascus ; and he obtained from Caesar whatsoever he liked, and he promised him whatever he wished for.


Original Source: Transcribed from PDF copy of Book "The Five Books of Maccabees in English. With Notes and Illustrations", by HENRY COTTON, D.C.L.(Sir) Archdeacon of Cashel, and Late Student of Christ Church, Oxford. Publication date 1832 | PDF


References   [ + ]

1. Foot note p. 379 a. Compare Joseph. Antiq. XIV. 14, 15. Bell. I. 7.
2. Foot note p. 379 b. On this point, which has been contested, see Suidas, in voce  ; and for the various accounts given of the name, consult Hoffmann’s lexicon, and the authors there cited.
3. Foot note p. 380 c. See above, 2 Mace. viii. 15 ; also 5 Mace. xii. and xiii.
4. Foot note p. 380 d. At the battle of Pharsalia. Shortly afterwards Pompey was treacherously murdered on the coast of Egypt, whither he was fleeing for succour.
5. Foot note p. 380 e. Namely, king of Pergamus ; not one of the kings of Parthia.
6. Foot note p. 381 f. Namely, Pelusium.
7. Foot note p. 381 g. Namely Ptolemy Dionysius II, together with Cleopatra.

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