ARAMAIC OSTRACA OF THE FOURTH CENTURY...

The 201 of containing in the book Aramaic ostraca dating 361-311 BC are almost exclusive source for the study of the ethnic structure and the economic life for end of the Persian rule in the Land of Israel and the beginning of the Hellenistic period.

Introduction in fact, among all the kings who ruled in Palestine in the 6th- 4th centuries BC) whose reign lasted until his 46th regnal year was Artaxerxes II ( 404- 359/ 8 BC). The ruling periods in Palestine of the kings who followed him before the beginning of the Seleucid era in 311 BC, which brought to an end the reckoning of regnal years in date formulae, are as follows ( the length of the rule in Palestine of some of these kings was shorter than their general reign): Ruler Period of Rule Dates of Rule Artaxerxes III Arses Darius III Alexander III ( the Great) Philip Arrhidaeus Alexander IV until his 21st regnal year until his 2nd regnal year6 ruled in Palestine until his 4th regnal year7 ruled in Palestine between his 4th- 14th regnal years8 until his 7th regnal year9 until his 5th regnal year10 359/ 8- 338/ 7 BC 338/ 7- 336/ 5 336/ 5- 332 332- 323 323- 317 317- 311 In year 1: Nos. 6- 8. In year 2: Nos. 9- 12, 28. In year 4: Nos. 13 ( reign of Artaxerxes), 14, 15, 17. 6 Arses reign ended before the end of his 2nd regnal year; Samaria Papyrus 1, dated 19.3.335, has the date formula  20 Adar year 2 ( of Arses), accession year of Darius the king ( see Cross 1985: 8*- 10*). 7 Darius Ills reign in Babylonia lasted until 1.10.331 ( i. e., until his 5th regnal year), when the battle of Gaugamela took place. In Palestine and Egypt, however, it ended earlier, in his 4th regnal year, following Alexanders conquest of Tyre and his invasion of Egypt in 332. 8 Alexander the Great ascended the throne in Macedonia in 336 and his reign lasted 14 years. However, his reign over Palestine and Egypt, starting in 332, was shorter. The Babylonian documents reckon his regnal years according to the Macedonian system— i. e., they start with his 7th regnal year ( see Oelsner 1974: 131f.; 1986: 270). If the same practice was customary in Palestine, then the ostraca dated according to Alexanders regnal years — the surviving years in them are 1- 5 — should be attributed to his son, Alexander IV. 9 After the death of Alexander the Great the political attachment of Palestine changed several times: Ptolemy I Soter maintained control over it from 319 to 315, when he lost it to Antigonus Monophthalmus. Ptolemy took over once again in 312 ( following his victory over Demetrius, son of Antigonus, in the Battle of Gaza) but was forced to withdraw in 311 before the approaching army of Antigonus. These political changes, however, did not affect the year reckoning, since both Philip Arrhidaeus and Alexander IV were recognised as kings, while Antigonus was designated rab uqu (= στρατηγός, general) and Ptolemy was considered satrap. ( On time reckoning in the period under discussion, see Oelsner: 1974: 129- 51; Skeat: 1937, esp. pp. 19,28- 30; Samuel 1962: 3- 24.) 10 Alexander IVs reign lasted until 306/ 5, his 11th regnal year. The Seleucid era starts in his 6th regnal year. [ 1 7 ] Chapter Home | TOC  | Index

ARAMAIC OSTRACA OF THE FOURTH CENTURY BC FROM IDUMAEA


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Front Matter Half Title Page Title Page Copyright Page Table Of Contents Preface INTRODUCTIONREFERENCESABBREVIATIONSContents TEXTS, TRANSLATIONS AND COMMENTARYBack Matter GLOSSARYINDICES OF NAMESPersonal Names in Nos. 1-199 ToponymsPersonal Names in Nos. 200-201 Back Cover
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