Jewish Coin of the First Jewish-Roman. War "Great Revolt" Bronze Prutah 18mm Struck Year 2 of the Jewish War at the Jerusalem. Mint, April 67 - March 68 A.
Reference: Hendin 1360 (5th Edition); Hendin 661 (3rd Edition) Certification: NGC Ancients. Ch VF 5872970-126 Jewish Amphora with broad rim and two handles; around Hebrew inscription for Year 2. Vine leaf on a branch and the Hebrew inscription:'The Freedom of Zion'. Authentic ancient coin struck by the Jews revolting in Jerusalem, which culminated in the sacking and destruction of the Second Temple by the Romans. After their victory, the Romans celebrated the victory over the Jewish people on coinage known as Judaea Capta.With several variants, most wide-spread one being a mourning Jewish woman under a military trophy. Meshorer, an authority and author who wrote many books on Jewish coins, writes that the amphoras on the Jewish issues may symbolize the sacred libations of wine made in the Temple.
The vessels depicted on the coins of the revolt are not copies of the Roman amphoras; they are Jewish and of different style than the classical Greco-Roman models represented on the coinage of Valerius Gratus. Historically significant and important piece of history, especially to those of Jewish heritage.
An amphora (plural: amphorae or amphoras) is a type of vase-shaped, usually ceramic (specimens in materials such as metal occur occasionally) container with two handles and a long neck narrower than the body. The word amphora is Latin, derived from the Greek amphoreus , an abbreviation of amphiphoreus , a compound word combining amphi- ("on both sides", "twain") plus phoreus ("carrier"), from pherein ("to carry"), referring to the vessel's two carrying handles on opposite sides. Further, the term also stands for an ancient Roman unit of measurement for liquids. The volume of a Roman amphora was one cubic foot, ca. Amphorae were used in vast numbers to transport and store various products, both liquid and dry, in the ancient Mediterranean world and later the Roman Empire, and in some periods the shape was also used for luxury pottery, which might be elaborately painted.
Stoppers of perishable materials which have rarely survived were used to seal the contents. Two principal types of amphorae existed: the neck amphora , in which the neck and body meet at a sharp angle; and the one-piece amphora , in which the neck and body form a continuous curve.
Neck amphorae were commonly used in the early history of ancient Greece but were gradually replaced by the one-piece type from around the 7th century BCE onwards. Most were produced with a pointed base to allow upright storage by being partly embedded in sand or soft ground.
In kitchens and shops amphorae could be stored in racks with round holes in them. Amphorae varied greatly in height. The largest could stand as much as 1.5 metres (5 ft) high, while some were under 30 centimetres (12 in) high - the smallest were called amphoriskoi (literally "little amphorae").Most were around 45 centimetres (18 in) high. There was a significant degree of standardisation in some variants; the wine amphora held a standard measure of about 39 litres (41 US qt), giving rise to the amphora quadrantal as a unit of measure in the Roman Empire. In all, around 66 distinct types of amphora have been identified.
The first Jewish-Roman War (66-70), sometimes called The Great Revolt (Hebrew: , ha-Mered Ha-Gadol), was the first of three major rebellions by the Jews of the Iudaea Province (Judea Province), against the Roman Empire (the second was the Kitos War in 115-117 CE; the third was Bar Kokhba's revolt, 132-135)CE. It began in the year 66 initially because of Greek and Jewish religious tensions but grew with anti-taxation protests and attacks upon Roman citizens. It ended when legions under Titus besieged and destroyed the centre of rebel resistance in Jerusalem, and defeated the remaining Jewish strongholds. According to Josephus, the revolt, which began at Caesarea in 66, was provoked by Greeks sacrificing birds in front of a local synagogue.
The Roman garrison did not intercede and the long-standing Greek and Jewish religious tensions took a downward spiral. In reaction, the son of Kohen Gadol (High priest) Eliezar ben Hanania ceased prayers and sacrifices for the Roman Emperor at the Temple.
Protests over taxation joined the list of grievances and random attacks on Roman citizens and perceived'traitors' occurred in Jerusalem. Fearing the worst, the pro-Roman king Agrippa II and his sister Berenice fled Jerusalem to Galilee. Cestius Gallus, the legate of Syria, brought a legion, the XII Fulminata, and auxiliary troops as reinforcements to restore order.
They were defeated in an ambush at the Battle of Beth Horon, a result that shocked the Roman leadership. Emperor Nero appointed general Vespasian instead of Gallus to crush the rebellion.Vespasian, along with legions X Fretensis and V Macedonica , landed at Ptolemais in April 67. There he was joined by his son Titus, who arrived from Alexandria at the head of Legio XV Apollinaris, as well as by the armies of various local allies including that of king Agrippa II. Fielding more than 60,000 soldiers, Vespasian began operations by subjugating the Galilee. Many towns gave up without a fight, although others had to be taken by force. Of these, Josephus provides detailed accounts of the sieges of Yodfat and Gamla. By the year 68, Jewish resistance in the North had been crushed, and Vespasian made Caesarea Maritima his headquarters and proceeded to methodically clear the coast. The leaders of the collapsed Northern revolt, John of Giscala and Simon Bar Giora, managed to escape to Jerusalem. Brutal civil war erupted, the Zealots and the fanatical Sicarii executed anyone advocating surrender, and by 68 the entire leadership of the southern revolt was dead, killed by Jewish hands in the infighting, some at the Zealot Temple Siege. While the war in Judea was being won, great events were occurring in Rome. In the middle of 68 AD, the emperor Nero's increasingly erratic behaviour finally lost him all support for his position. The Roman Senate, the praetorian guard and several prominent army commanders conspired for his removal.
When the senate declared Nero an enemy of the people, he fled Rome and committed suicide. The newly installed emperor Galba was murdered after just a few months by a rival, triggering a civil war that came to be known as the Year of the Four Emperors. In 69 AD, though previously uninvolved, the popular Vespasian was also hailed emperor by the legions under his command. He decided, upon gaining further widespread support, to return to Rome to claim the throne from the usurper Vitellius, leaving his son Titus to finish the war in Judea.
The siege of Jerusalem, the capital city, had begun early in the war, but had turned into a stalemate. Unable to breach the city's defenses, the Roman armies established a permanent camp just outside the city, digging a trench around the circumference of its walls and building a wall as high as the city walls themselves around Jerusalem. Anyone caught in the trench attempting to flee the city would be captured, crucified, and placed in lines on top of the dirt wall facing into Jerusalem. The two Zealot leaders, John of Gischala and Simon Bar Giora, only ceased hostilities and joined forces to defend the city when the Romans began to construct ramparts for the siege.
Those attempting to escape the city were crucified, with as many as five hundred crucifixions occurring in a day. Titus Flavius, Vespasian's son, led the final assault and siege of Jerusalem. During the infighting inside the city walls, a stockpiled supply of dry food was intentionally burned by Jewish leaders to induce the defenders to fight against the siege instead of negotiating peace; as a result many city dwellers and soldiers died of starvation during the siege. Zealots under Eleazar ben Simon held the Temple, Sicarii led by Simon Bar Giora held the upper city.Titus eventually wiped out the last remnants of Jewish resistance. The treasures of Jerusalem taken by the Romans (detail from the Arch of Titus).
By the summer of 70, the Romans had breached the walls of Jerusalem, ransacking and burning nearly the entire city. The Romans began by attacking the weakest spot which was the third wall. It was built shortly before the siege so it did not have as much time invested in its protection. They succeeded towards the end of May and shortly afterwards broke through the more important second wall.
The Second Temple (the rennovated Herod's Temple) was destroyed on Tisha B'Av (29 or 30 July 70). All three walls were destroyed and in turn so was the Temple, some of whose overturned stones and their place of impact can still be seen. John of Giscala surrendered at Agrippa II's fortress of Jotaphta and was sentenced to life imprisonment. The famous Arch of Titus still stands in Rome: it depicts Roman legionaries carrying the Temple of Jerusalem's treasuries, including the Menorah, during Titus's triumphal procession in Rome. Remnants of one of several legionary camps at Masada in Israel, just outside the circumvallation wall which can be seen at the bottom of the image.
During the spring of 71, Titus set sail for Rome. A new military governor was then appointed from Rome, Lucilius Bassus, whose assigned task was to undertake the "mopping-up" operations in Judaea. He used X Fretensis to besiege and capture the few remaining fortresses that still resisted. Bassus took Herodium, and then crossed the Jordan to capture the fortress of Machaerus on the shore of the Dead Sea.
Because of illness, Bassus did not live to complete his mission. Lucius Flavius Silva replaced him, and moved against the last Jewish stronghold, Masada, in the autumn of 72. He used Legio X, auxiliary troops, and thousands of Jewish prisoners, for a total of 10,000 soldiers.
After his orders for surrender were rejected, Silva established several base camps and circumvallated the fortress. According to Josephus, when the Romans finally broke through the walls of this citadel in 73, they discovered that the 967 defenders had all committed suicide, preferring death over defeat. Josephus claims that 1,100,000 people were killed during the siege, a sizeable portion of these to illnesses brought about by hunger. A pestilential destruction upon them, and soon afterward such a famine, as destroyed them more suddenly.97,000 were captured and enslaved and many others fled to areas around the Mediterranean. The Jewish Encyclopedia article on the Hebrew Alphabet states: Not until the revolts against Nero and against Hadrian did the Jews return to the use of the old Hebrew script on their coins, which they did from similar motives to those which had governed them two or three centuries previously; both times, it is true, only for a brief period. Titus reportedly refused to accept a wreath of victory, as there is "no merit in vanquishing people forsaken by their own God". Before Vespasian's departure, the Pharisaic sage and Rabbi Yohanan ben Zakkai obtained his permission to establish a Judaic school at Yavne.
Zakkai was smuggled away from Jerusalem in a coffin by his students. Later this school has become a major center of Talmudic study. The main account of the revolt comes from Josephus, the former Jewish commander of Galilee, who after capture by the Romans, attempted to end the rebellion by negotiating with the Judeans on Titus's behalf. Josephus and Titus became quite close friends and later Josephus was granted Roman citizenship and a pension.
He wrote two works, The Jewish War c. 79 and Jewish Antiquities c. These are the only surviving source materials containing information on specific events occurring during the fighting. But the material has been questioned because of claims that cannot be verified by secondary sources.Only since the discovery of the Dead Sea scrolls has some solid confirmation been given to the events he describes. Judea (Latin: IVDAEA), sometimes spelled in its original Latin forms of Judæa , Judaea or Iudaea to distinguish it from Judea proper, is a term used by historians to refer to the Roman province that incorporated the geographical regions of Judea, Samaria, and Idumea, and which extended over parts of the former regions of the Hasmonean and Herodian kingdoms of Israel. It was named after Herod Archelaus's Tetrarchy of Judea, of which it was an expansion, the latter name deriving from the Kingdom of Judah of the 6th century BCE.
Rome's involvement in the area dated from 63 BCE, following the end of the Third Mithridatic War, when Rome made Syria a province. In that year, after the defeat of Mithridates VI of Pontus, the proconsul Pompeius Magnus (Pompey the Great) sacked Jerusalem and entered the Jerusalem Temple. Subsequently, during the 1st century BCE, the Herodian Kingdom was established as a Roman client kingdom and then in 6 CE parts became a province of the Roman Empire. Judea province was the scene of unrest at its founding during the Census of Quirinius and several wars were fought in its history, known as the Jewish-Roman wars.
The Temple was destroyed in 70 as part of the Great Jewish Revolt resulting in the institution of the Fiscus Judaicus, and after Bar Kokhba's revolt (132-135 CE), the Roman Emperor Hadrian changed the name of the province to Syria Palaestina and Jerusalem to Aelia Capitolina , which certain scholars conclude was done in an attempt to remove the relationship of the Jewish people to the region. Relations with Hasmonean and Herodian dynasties. Pompey in the Temple of Jerusalem , by Jean Fouquet. The first intervention of Rome in the region dates from 63 BCE, following the end of the Third Mithridatic War, when Rome made a province of Syria. After the defeat of Mithridates VI of Pontus, Pompey (Pompey the Great) remained there to secure the area.
The region at the time was not a peaceful place. The Queen of Judaea Salome Alexandra had recently died and her sons, Hyrcanus II and Aristobulus II, divided against each other in a civil war.In 63 BCE, Aristobulus was besieged in Jerusalem by his brother's armies. He sent an envoy to Marcus Aemilius Scaurus, Pompey's representative in the area.
Aristobulus offered a massive bribe to be rescued, which Pompey promptly accepted. Afterwards, Aristobulus accused Scaurus of extortion. Since Scaurus was Pompey's brother in law and protégée, the general retaliated by putting Hyrcanus in charge of the kingdom as Ethnarch and High Priest, but he was denied the title of King. When Pompey was defeated by Julius Caesar, Hyrcanus was succeeded by his courtier Antipater the Idumaean, also known as Antipas, as the first Roman Procurator.
In 57-55 BCE, Aulus Gabinius, proconsul of Syria, split the former Hasmonean Kingdom of Israel into five districts of the Sanhedrin. Both Caesar and Antipater were killed in 44 BCE, and the Idumean Herod the Great, Antipater's son, was designated "King of the Jews" by the Roman Senate in 40 BCE. He didn't gain military control until 37 BCE.
During his reign the last representatives of the Maccabees were eliminated, and the great port of Caesarea Maritima was built. He died in 4 BCE, and his kingdom was divided among his sons, who became tetrarchs ("rulers of a quarter part").
One of these quarters was Judea corresponding to the region of the ancient Kingdom of Judah. Herod's son Herod Archelaus, ruled Judea so badly that he was dismissed in 6 CE by the Roman emperor Augustus, after an appeal from his own population. Another, Herod Antipas, ruled as tetrarch of Galilee and Perea from 4 BCE to 39 CE, being then dismissed by Caligula. The Roman empire in the time of Hadrian (ruled 117-138 CE), showing, in western Asia, the Roman province of Iudaea. 1 legion deployed in 125.In 6 CE Judea became part of a larger Roman province, called Iudaea , which was formed by combining Judea proper (biblical Judah) with Samaria and Idumea (biblical Edom). Even though Iudaea is simply derived from the Latin for Judea , many historians use it to distinguish the Roman province from the previous territory and history. Iudaea province did not include Galilee, Gaulanitis (the Golan), nor Peraea or the Decapolis. Its revenue was of little importance to the Roman treasury, but it controlled the land and coastal sea routes to the bread basket Egypt and was a border province against the Parthian Empire because of the Jewish connections to Babylonia (since the Babylonian exile). The capital was at Caesarea, not Jerusalem, which had been the capital for King David, King Hezekiah, King Josiah, the Maccabees and Herod the Great. Iudaea was not a Senatorial province, nor exactly an Imperial province, but instead was a "satellite of Syria" governed by a prefect who was a knight of the equestrian order (as was Roman Egypt), not a former consul or praetor of senatorial rank. Pontius Pilate was one of these prefects, from 26 to 36 CE. Caiaphas was one of the appointed High Priests of Herod's Temple, being appointed by the Prefect Valerius Gratus in 18.
Both were deposed by the Syrian Legate Lucius Vitellius in 36 CE. The'Crisis under Caligula' (37-41) has been proposed as the first open break between Rome and the Jews.Between 41 and 44 CE, Iudaea regained its nominal autonomy, when Herod Agrippa was made King of the Jews by the emperor Claudius, thus in a sense restoring the Herodian Dynasty, though there is no indication Iudaea ceased to be a Roman province simply because it no longer had a prefect. He elevated Iudaeas's procurator whom he trusted to imperial governing status because the imperial legate of Syria was not sympathetic to the Judeans. Agrippa's son Marcus Julius Agrippa was designated King of the Jews in 48. He was the seventh and last of the Herodians. From 70 CE until 135 CE, Iudaea's rebelliousness required a governing Roman legate capable of commanding legions. Judaea was the stage of three major rebellions against Roman rule. 66-70 CE - first rebellion, followed by the destruction of Herod's Temple and the siege of Jerusalem (see Great Jewish Revolt, Josephus).
115-117 CE - second rebellion, called Kitos War. 132-135 CE - third rebellion, Bar Kokhba's revolt. Following the suppression of Bar Kokhba's revolt, the emperor Hadrian changed the name of the province to Syria Palaestina and Jerusalem became Aelia Capitolina which Hayim Hillel Ben-Sasson states was done to erase the historical ties of the Jewish people to the region. Under Diocletian (284-305) the region was divided into Palaestina Prima (Judea, Samaria, Idumea, Peraea and the coastal plain with Caesarea as capital), Palaestina Secunda (Galilee, Decapolis, Golan with Beth-shean as capital) and Palaestina Tertia (the Negev with Petra as capital).
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