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The Essenes, the Scrolls, and the Dead Sea$
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Joan E. Taylor

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199554485

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199554485.001.0001

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Christian and Jewish Writings from the Second to Fifth Centuries

Christian and Jewish Writings from the Second to Fifth Centuries

(p.167) 7 Christian and Jewish Writings from the Second to Fifth Centuries
The Essenes, the Scrolls, and the Dead Sea

Joan E. Taylor

Oxford University Press

Justin Marytyr, Hegesippus, Epiphanius, Eusebius and other patristic writings of the 2nd to 5th centuries ce indicate the continuing relevance of all the Jewish legal societies, including the Essenes, through to the Bar Kokhba Revolt (132-35 ce). These societies were joined by others that became important at the time of the First Revolt (the ‘Galileans’, or Zealots), Boethusians and Hemerobaptists (disciples of John the Baptist), but Christian authors tidied these up into a ‘seven school’ model of Judaism. Both Justin and Epiphanius indicate the loose use of the term Perushim, ‘separated ones’, possibly in some cases meaning Essenes. This raises the question of how accurate the equation is between rabbinic Perushim and the Pharisees of the New Testament and Josephus.

Keywords:   Essenes, Justin Martyr, Hegesippus, Epiphanius, Eusebius, Bar Kokhba, Galileans, Zealots, John the Baptist, Perushim

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