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Headword: Ἀντίοχος
Adler number: alpha,2693
Translated headword: Antiochus, Antiochos
Vetting Status: high
[Antiochus], a king.[1] This man seemed at first to be an attempter of great things and daring and able to follow through on his what had been begun, but as he moved along in life he proved much inferior to himself and the general expectation.[2]
For[3] from the sons of Alexander of Macedon came a sinful root, this Epiphanes, son of Seleukos Philopator.[4] He was a terrible man and greedy and he committed many ravagings and lootings and acquired a lot of money and from intemperance and mad passion he fell to mimicking himself in the sight of everyone and doted madly after women. He seized Egypt with a heavy mob and chariots and elephants and a great army and took control of it. Turning back after losing all sense he took Jerusalem and slaughtered 180000. So he dared to go even into the sanctuary and set up an altar and an abominable idol of desolation and defiled the temple with unclean sacrifices and called it the shrine to Olympian Zeus.[5] And thus enthroned on high and with his armed soldiers stationed around him in a circle he commanded the mercenaries to drag in each and every Hebrew and give him pork meat and force him to sacrifice to idols; unless they would eat the forbidden meat, they tortured and killed them. So many were seized, and a certain Eleazar, [one] of the foremost scholars, already advanced in age, would not eat the abominable meat and was flogged and slain with his seven children and their mother Solomonis. (Concerning these matters the Theologian too makes mention in his What the Maccabees did.) The king, struck rather mad and driven out of his senses, took all the sacred vessels and plundered the whole city and butchered its flocks and made slaughter and he returned boasting to Antioch. And after two years of fighting the Persians, he dispatched a commander to levy tribute from the city of Jerusalem. [The commander] neared the city and spoke words of peace to Jerusalem and went in -- and dealt the city a huge blow: he tore down the walls and set the whole city alight, and defiled the temple and killed many and went away with prisoners, having left a commander behind to torture the Jews. A certain Matthias, a priest,[6] had five sons, of which Judas Maccabeus was one; he was full of zeal and struck out against the commander and killed him and tore up the altars of the Greeks. So Antiochus came against him with great force. As the war went on, Eleazar, a brother of Judas, showed courage when he was crushed by the elephant. For he sneaked up on the elephant and struck it in the belly with his sword, hoping to take the king above him. So Antiochos marched out against the Persians and turned out the loser and lost his life foully.
This same Antiochos, when the Jewish people were in revolt against the regular tribute, again enslaved them: he pillaged the offerings of the temple and tracked them all down and found a holy book which held [---] in his hands, and a deep beard-offering;[7] there, of course, a gold-wrought lampstand stood. He smeared these things with pig blood and left them in the temple; and having imposed on the Jewish inhabitants a fine of many talents for extracting the tribute he returned to Syria.
Greek Original:
Ἀντίοχος, βασιλεύς: οὗτος ἐδόκει κατὰ τὰς ἀρχὰς γεγονέναι μεγαλεπήβολος καὶ τολμηρὸς καὶ τοῦ προτεθέντος ἐξεργαστικός, προβαίνων δὲ κατὰ τὴν ἡλικίαν ἐφάνη πολὺ καταδεέστερος αὑτοῦ καὶ τῆς τῶν ἐκτὸς προσδοκίας. ἐκ γὰρ τῶν παίδων τοῦ Ἀλεξάνδρου τοῦ Μακεδόνος ἐξῆλθε ῥίζα ἁμαρτωλὸς, οὗτος ὁ Ἐπιφανὴς, υἱὸς Σελεύκου τοῦ Φιλοπάτορος, ὃς ὑπάρχων δεινὸς ἀνὴρ καὶ πλεονέκτης καὶ πολλὰς ἁρπαγὰς καὶ λεηλασίας ποιήσας συνῆξε χρήματα πολλὰ καὶ ἐκ πολλῆς ἀκολασίας καὶ οἰστρηλασίας εἰς μίμους ἑαυτὸν καθεὶς ἐν ὄψει πάντων ταῖς γυναιξὶν ἐπεμαίνετο. καὶ καταλαβὼν τὴν Αἴγυπτον ἐν ὄχλῳ βαρεῖ καὶ ἅρμασι καὶ ἐλέφασι καὶ στόλῳ μεγάλῳ ταύτης ἐκράτησεν. ὑποστρέψας δὲ μετὰ ἀπονοίας εἷλε καὶ τὴν Ἱερουσαλὴμ δορυάλωτον καὶ κατέσφαξε μυριάδας ιη#. κατατολμήσας οὖν καὶ εἰς τὸ ἁγίασμα εἰσελθὼν καὶ στήσας βωμὸν καὶ εἴδωλον βδέλυγμα ἐρημώσεως καὶ τὸν ναὸν μιάνας δι' ἀκαθάρτων θυσιῶν ἱερὸν Διὸς Ὀλυμπίου προσηγόρευσεν. οὕτω τε ἐφ' ὑψηλοῦ καθίσας καὶ τῶν στρατιωτῶν αὐτοῦ κύκλῳ παρεστηκότων ἐνόπλων ἐκέλευσε τοῖς δορυφόροις ἕνα ἕκαστον Ἑβραῖον ἐπισπάσασθαι καὶ κρεῶν χοιρείων καὶ εἰδωλοθύτων ἀναγκάζειν ἀπογεύεσθαι: εἰ δὲ μὴ θέλοιεν μιαροφαγῆσαι, ἀναιρεῖσθαι τροχισθέντας. πολλῶν οὖν συναρπασθέντων, καὶ Ἐλεάζαρ τις τῶν πρώτων γραμματέων, ἤδη προβεβηκὼς τὴν ἡλικίαν, μὴ μιαροφαγήσας, μαστιγωθεὶς ἀναιρεῖται σὺν ἑπτὰ παισὶ μετὰ μητρὸς Σολομωνίδος. περὶ ὧν καὶ ὁ Θεολόγος ἐν τῷ, τί δαὶ οἱ Μακκαβαῖοι, μνημονεύει. ἐκπλαγεὶς δὲ ὁ τύραννος καὶ μᾶλλον ἐκμανεὶς καὶ τὰ ἱερὰ σκεύη πάντα λαβὼν καὶ πᾶσαν τὴν πόλιν λαφυραγωγήσας καὶ τὰ κτήνη κρεουργήσας καὶ φονοκτονίαν ποιήσας καὶ μεγαλορημονήσας ἀνεχώρησεν εἰς Ἀντιόχειαν. καὶ μετὰ δύο ἔτη κατὰ Περσῶν ἐπιστρατεύσας ἀπέστειλεν ἄρχοντα φορολογῆσαι τὰς πόλεις Ἱερουσαλήμ. ὃς παραγενόμενος καὶ λαλήσας εἰρηνικοὺς λόγους πρὸς τὴν Ἱερουσαλὴμ καὶ εἰσελθὼν ἐπάταξεν αὐτὴν πληγῇ μεγάλῃ, καὶ καθελὼν τὰ τείχη πᾶσαν αὐτὴν ἐνέπρησε, καὶ τὸ ἱερὸν μιάνας καὶ πολλοὺς ἀνελὼν καὶ αἰχμαλωτεύσας ἀπῄει, ἄρχοντα καταλιπὼν εἰς τὸ βασανίζειν τοὺς Ἰουδαίους. Ματθίας δέ τις ἱερεὺς, ἔχων υἱοὺς πέντε, ἀφ' ὧν Ἰούδας ὁ Μακκαβαῖος ἐτύγχανε, ζήλου πλησθεὶς καὶ ὁρμήσας κατὰ τοῦ ἄρχοντος ἀνεῖλεν αὐτὸν καὶ σκάπτει τοὺς τῶν Ἑλλήνων βωμούς. ἐπέρχεται οὖν αὐτῷ Ἀντίοχος μετὰ πολλῆς δυνάμεως. ὡς δὲ ἐπέτεινεν ὁ πόλεμος, Ἐλεάζαρ ἀδελφὸς Ἰούδα ἀριστεύσας συντρίβεται ὑπὸ τοῦ ἐλέφαντος. ὑπεισῆλθε γὰρ τὸν ἐλέφαντα καὶ ξίφει τὴν γαστέρα αὐτοῦ ἔτυψεν ἐλπίσας ἐπάνω αὐτοῦ τὸν τύραννον φέρεσθαι. ἐκστρατεύσας οὖν Ἀντίοχος κατὰ Περσῶν ὑπέστρεψεν ἡττημένος καὶ κακῶς τὸν βίον ἀπαλλάττει. ὅτι ὁ αὐτὸς Ἀντίοχος τὸ τῶν Ἰουδαίων ἔθνος στασιάσαν πρὸς τὸν συνήθη φόρον αὖθις κατεδούλωσε: συλήσας τε τὰ τοῦ ἱεροῦ ἀναθήματα καὶ διερευνήσας ἅπαντα εὗρεν ἀγαλμάτιον βιβλίον ἐν ταῖς χερσὶ κατέχον πώγωνά τε ἐπιφερόμενον βαθύν: ᾧ δὴ καὶ λυχνίδιον παρειστήκει διάχρυσον. ταῦτα χοιρείοις αἵμασιν ἀναλαβὼν ἐν τῷ ἱερῷ κατέλιπε: καὶ πολλοῖς ταλάντοις ζημιώσας πρὸς ὑπαγωγὴν φόρου τοὺς ἐνοικοῦντας Ἰουδαίους ἐπὶ τὰς Συρίας ἐπανῆλθεν.
[1] Antiochus III ("the Great"), c.242-187. See generally OCD(4) p.105.
[2] Polybius 15.37; abridged at mu 356.
[3] This long central paragraph of the entry consists of excerpts from the Chronicon of George the Monk; they concern a later homonym, Antiochus IV Epiphanes (c.215-162), on whom see generally OCD(4) p.105.
[4] Incorrect: younger brother of SP. (They were both sons of Antiochus III.)
[5] cf. alpha 132, beta 202, iota 194. For a modern discussion, in historical context, see Graham Shipley, The Greek World After Alexander (London 2000) 307-312.
[6] mu 282.
[7] There is evidently textual corruption here.
Keywords: biography; children; Christianity; economics; ethics; food; gender and sexuality; geography; historiography; history; military affairs; religion; women; zoology
Translated by: Jennifer Benedict on 23 July 2000@01:55:33.
Vetted by:
David Whitehead (modified translation; augmented notes and keywords; cosmetics) on 14 August 2002@10:03:54.
Catharine Roth (typo identified by Andrew Smith) on 10 October 2004@18:58:59.
David Whitehead (more keywords) on 16 November 2005@07:59:26.
David Whitehead (typo in n.3) on 9 August 2006@04:39:24.
Catharine Roth (added keyword and italics) on 13 August 2006@22:56:41.
David Whitehead (tweaked tr; x-ref) on 23 January 2007@02:59:54.
David Whitehead (more keywords; tweaks and cosmetics) on 18 March 2012@10:43:56.
David Whitehead (another x-ref; another keyword) on 23 January 2014@08:21:56.
David Whitehead (updated 2 refs) on 30 July 2014@07:06:56.


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