The Hellenistic period of Jewish history began

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The Hellenistic period of Jewish history began

Post by jancancook on Thu Mar 24, 2011 2:10 am

The Hellenistic period of Jewish history began when Alexander the Great conquered Persia in 332 BCE. The rift between the priests and the sages developed at this time, when Jews faced new political and cultural struggles. After Alexander's death in 323 BCE, Judea was ruled by the Egyptian-Hellenic Ptolemies until 198 BCE, when the Syrian-Hellenic Seleucid Empire, under Antiochus III, seized control. Then, in 167 BCE, Antiochus IV invaded Judea, entered the Temple, and stripped it of money and ceremonial objects. He imposed a program of forced hellenization, requiring Jews to abandon their own laws and customs, and precipitating the Maccabean Revolt. Jerusalem was liberated in 165 BCE and the Temple was restored. In 141 BCE an assembly of priests and others affirmed Simon Maccabeus as high priest and leader, in effect establishing the Hasmonean dynasty.

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