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122 The Jercish Quarterly Revier.


For the history and science of Judaism, and especially for a full understanding of the Agada, the study of the Church Fathers undeniably possesses considerable im- portance. Naturally all of them are not of the same value. Those who lived in Italy, Spain, or Gaul, and had little communication with Jews, are of minor signi- ficance for Jewish literature, compared with the Fathers of Palestine, Syria, and Egypt. I shall therefore pay the most attention to those Fathers whose writings promise the richest results, and we can herein confidently follow the lead of Jerome, who, in his reply to his oppo- nent Rufinus’s charge, that he associated too much with Jews, quoted the examples of Origen, Clement, and Eusebius, none of whom disdained to receive: instruction from teachers of the Hebrew race (Lib. IL, adv. Ruff, c. 13, vol. ii, p. 469, Ed. Vallarsi). If the first notable Father, Justin, and Ephraem Syrus, Jerome’s younger contemporary, be added, we obtain the following list of Ecclesiastics, whose writings are of especial interest to us :—Justin Martyr, Clemens Alexandrinus, Origen, Eusebius, Ephraem Syrus, and Jerome.

In the last four decades, since the importance of Patristic literature has obtained a gradually increasing recognition in Jewish circles, students have always sought in the Fathers for Agadic elements which they might collate with Hebrew sources. The fact has, however, been lost sight of, that these Agadas have not always come direct from the Jews. Many of those found in the Church literature must be regarded as the product of independent develop- ment. The Agadic exegesis of the Scriptures was peculiar

The Jews in the Works of the Church Fathers. 123

to the spirit of the times, and flourished among the Christians as exuberantly as among the Jews. The accounts in the Church Fathers of Judaism and of Jewish conditions and modes of life are, in my opinion, no less worthy of regard than the Agadic elements there pre- served. I shall, therefore, direct my main attention to this class of notices, and only speak of such Agadas as were expressly and explicitly borrowed from the Jews.

For the works of Justin, Clement, Origen and Eusebius, I have used Migne’s Patrologie (M.); for Ephraem, the Roman edition (R.) of 1732-43; for Jerome, Vallarsi’s edition (V.), Verona, 1734-42. Other editions will be quoted occasionally.


Justin Martyr was born about 100 aD, in Flavia Neapolis, formerly called Sichem, in the country of the Samaritans. He terms himself a Samaritan, which does not, however, mean that he belonged to the religious sect of the Samaritans, but that they were his countrymen,’ He, indeed, expressly states that he was one of the uncircumcised.” At a later period he came to Ephesus, the scene of his dialogue with the Jew, Tryphon (Eusebius H. £., iv. 18); and here he zealously propagated Christianity among the Jews.> The date of the Dialogue coincides with the period of the revolt under Bar Cochba (132—135). That obstinate contest is frequently mentioned in it;* and Tryphon is described as a fugitive who escaped from the turmoil of Palestine to peaceful Ephesus.’

1 Dial. ec. 120 (vi. 755, M.), . . . . amd rod yévoug rov ipod, Aé&yw CE Trev Lapapiwy.

2 Tb. c. 29 (vi. 537, M.), rig ody Ere roe weptropiic Adyog . . .

3 This follows from several passages of the Dialogue ; v. Wetzer-Welte’s Kirchenlewicon, vi. 2067.

4 Eg. Dial. ¢. 108 (vi. 725, M.), ep. Apol. I. 31 (vi. 376, M.).

5 At the beginning of the Dialogue,

124 The Jewish Quarterly Review.

These data alone should have sufficed to prove the historical character of the Dialogue. Nevertheless, scholars have apparently favoured the theory that it is only a literary framework for presenting Justin’s views, and is purely imaginary. Emphasis is laid upon the fact that Tryphon makes concessions to Justin such as no faithful Jew would possibly have made! The obvious expla- nation is that politeness induced Tryphon to adopt a conciliatory and yielding tone. Throughout the Dia- logue he appears as an enlightened Jew, imbued with Hellenistic culture, who is anxious to exhibit extreme courtesy towards his adversary. He is introduced as a man of education and a philosopher. When Justin re- marks, in the course of the interview, that he has no oratorical ability, the Jew replies with tact: You must be jesting ; your conversation proves you a past master in rhetoric.” Tryphon’s concessions are, moreover, in most cases, only hypothetical ; and Justin very often imitates him in this respect, admitting even once for instance, for the sake of argument, that Jesus was nothing more than a Magus.’ Besides, details are given which are unsuitable to a ficti- tious dialogue, but have a meaning if we assume that the writer reports events which actually took place. On the first day, we are told, no strangers were present at the interview ; on the second day, however, Tryphon is joined by some Jews of Ephesus, who take a part in the dis- cussion.* One of them begs that a remark which had pleased him might be repeated, and Justin complies with the request.? Another of those who had accompanied Tryphon on the second day, called Mnaseas, also joing in

! Weizsaecker, Jahrb. fiir Theologie XII. (1867), p. 63.

2 Dial. c. 58 (vi. 606, M.), od earacxeniy Adywy év pivy réyvy imideixvuc- Oat amevow.... Kai 6 Totgwy’ etpwvevecPar por doxeic, AEywy Sbvapiy Adyww rexvinwy pr KEKTI}COar.

3 Apol, I. c. 30 (vi. 273, M.).

4 Dial. c. 118. (vi. 749, M.), dea rove onpepov chy cor dgrypéivoug....

5 Ib. c. T4 (vi. 649, M.D.

The Jews in the Works of the Church Fathers. 125

the debate. This circumstance suggests the inference that not only Tryphon, who from the first inspired Justin with respect as a man of Hellenic culture, but that other members of the Jewish community of Ephesus were also sufficiently well educated to be able to stand their ground against the learned Church Father. Occasionally they give audible token of their satisfaction or disapproval,’ even applauding and hissing, just as in a theatre® Justin repeatedly, in the course of the disputation, bears testi- mony to the respect he feels for his learned opponent, and promises, when the Dialogue appears in its written form, to truthfully present Tryphon’s views.* At the close of the debate, Jew and Christian confess that they have learnt much from one another, and part with expressions of mutual goodwill® These details can only be reminiscences of a real event.

That Tryphon was the famous sage Tarphon (7157%) is more justly discredited. Justin’s description of his an- tagonist does not tally with what we know of R. Tarphon. The Tanaite was certainly not a philosopher of Tryphon’s type. Though Tarphon and Tryphon are not identical, Graetz thinks the name was purposely chosen by the Father, so that he might be able to boast that he had won over the eminent teacher, Tarphon, to Christianity® But it is questionable whether the Hebrew }127% really cor-

1 Tb. c. 85 (vi. 677, M.), 0d wai madey txmvyaOjcopat Oud Todrou, TodE ph} Kai x0i¢ cbvovrag iypiv.... Kai Mvacéiag O€ rig dvépare Tov ouveNOdyrwr abroic ry Oevréog tuing etme...

2 Tb. c. 38 (vi. 557, M.), pay rapdooeoOe ci, GAG padAoy mpobvpdrepor yevopevoe dxpoarai xai eracrai péivere katappovorvres Tig mapaddcews THY bpetipwy Sidackddrwy.

3 1b. c. 122 (vi. 760, M.), nai Gorep iv Osarpy avixpaydy tiveg THY TY Gevripg dgtypivwr,

4 Tb. c. 80 (vi. 664. M.), rv yeyevnpivwy djpiv Adywy awavrwy. . . cbvrakiv momsopat iv ul¢ xai retro dpodoyotvra pe 5 Kal mpdcg ipac Gpodoye, Eyypayw.

5 Ib. ad’ fin.

& Gnosticismus u. Judenth., p. 17.

126 The Jewish Quarterly Review.

responds to the Greek Tpudwy, in which case only could Justin have intended yipnw by his Tpvder. Jerome, in his list of the oldest Tanaim, calls pian» Telphon.! He would have probably written Tpvdwv had the two names been equivalent.? Goldfahn’s theory that Tryphon was selected by Justin, because it sounded like dpvmrw, needs no refutation.®

Accepting the historical character of the Dialogue, we naturally cannot seek for covert allusions in the name Try- phon. It was probably in common use among the Jews of that age, and there is nothing remarkable in the fact of Justin’s having happened to meet a Jew with this name. The same is the case with Mnaseas, which was also fre- quent from an early period. We find it in Josephus (Conf. Apion. i. 23). Myo. ya PNW ‘9, of a subsequent date, is frequently mentioned in Mishna, Tosefta, Talmud and Midrash ; in T. Babli (Beza 30) the name is spelt sw3%, Zunz quotes a Mnasea, grandson of a Mnasea, from the Seder-ha-doroth, fol. 686 (Gesammelte Schriften IT., p. 28). Tryphon and Mnasea were thus ordinary names among the Jews; and nothing is less surprising than that Justin’s chief opponent in the Dialogue, and another Jew of Ephesus, should have borne them.

Justin’s writings constitute the first attempt which has come down to us to justify Christianity before the bar of the ancient religious powers, Heathenism and Judaism. Early Christendom still clung somewhat nervously to the old faith. Christians still practised many Jewish customs,* and Justin feels the need of offering an excuse for the

1 In Is. viii. 11.

2 A. Geiger, Jiid. Zeitschrift v.173, proposes to read instead of Delphon (a variant of Telphon) simply Zarphon; this is surely inadmissible ; 71D is perhaps the same as Teprwy (Fick, Griech. Personennamen, p. 81), which corresponds more closely to the form Telphon.

3 Goldfahn, Justin Martyr und die Agada in Graetz’s Monatsschrift XXII. (1873), p. 49, et seq.

4 Smith-Wace, Dict. of Christian Biography, III. 581.

The Jews in the Works of the Church Fathers. 127

Christian transference of the Sabbath-day to Sunday.! Judaism has no right, the Father thinks, to thrust out its daughter Christianity, for it has also produced other heresies which it does not disown. The Sadducees, Genis- tae, Meristae, Galilaei, Helleniani, Pharisaei and Baptistae are all Jewish sects, so that it becomes a matter of some difficulty to decide which among them represents the real Judaism.? To this argument Justin attaches special im- portance, deeming it expedient at the same time to apolo- gise to the Jews for the harshness of his words.? The Jews, he urges, had sent emissaries in all directions to calumniate the new sect.* This charge recurs in almost every Church Father ; it is also frequently asserted that the Hebrews were zealously engaged in proselytizing. Thus in Justin’s time, we may conclude with a high degree of probability, Judaism still retained its power of expansion. The prophetic promise that the Word of God would reach distant nations the Hebrews saw fulfilled in the accession of proselytes to their ranks, the Christians, in the spread of their own creed.?

1 Dial. c. 24 (vi. 528, M.).

2 The names of these sects are cited by Eusebius, H. H. iv. 22 (xx. 381, M.), from the work of an older author, Hegesippus. There they are called »Eooaior, TadtXatot, ‘HyspoBdrriorat, MacBo8aior, Dapapeirar, Laddovcaior, Papiooaion. In the Indiculum Haereseon, which is ascribed to Jerome, the Hemerobaptistae, qui quotidie corpora sua et domum et supellectilem

lavant figure as the tenth sect. We recognise this sect a3 the NMINY Saw of Berach, Ill. 6e; they must not be confused with the Essenes. Justin’s Baptistae are very likely the same as these Hemerovaptistae. Con- cerning the Genistae, Meristae, Galilaei and Helleneiani the views of scholars are widely divergent, and we will leave the question open. It is remarkable, however, that the Hssacans are mentioned neither by Justin nor by Eusebius, and not even by Isodorus, Ovig. libr. VIII. ; the Chris- tians probably felt that they themselves had taken their origin from this sect, and were, therefore, unwilling to designate them as heretics.

3 Dial. c. 80 (vi. 665, M.), wai uy andic adeobonréi pou wavra & ppovad Aéyovrog. 4 Ib. c. 108 (vi. 725, M.).

5 1b. c. 122 (vi. 760, M.), concerning Is. xlix. 6, ratra ipetc piv sic rov epee cai rovg mpoonrtrove sipioOat vouitere.—C'ydpa is either DI or mid.

128 The Jewish Quarterly Review.

Jewish religious teachers are frequently mentioned by Justin, usually under the title of Rabbi,’ sometimes also simply as d:ddcxador;? in a few instances, as heads of the Synagogue, apyovvdywyor ;* an insulting epithet is invariably added. The Rabbinical teachings are termed traditions, rapadoceis.* Instruction was given at the con- clusion of divine worship.’ Disputations between learned Christians and Jewish Rabbis were the order of the day. Numerous specimens are found in Hebrew literature. Justin ridicules the tactics of the Jewish controversialists, who always hunted up their opponents’ weak points, like the fly which settles on sore places. If, at a disputation, a multitude of well-considered and well-weighed argu- ments are adduced, the Jews will always discover a neg- lected point open to attack. Such controversies might sometimes prove disadvantageous to Judaism, where expert Christian dialecticians overwhelmed ignorant Jews with arguments which they were not prepared to answer, and by which they would have to acknowledge themselves beaten. Justin strove personally for the conversion of the Jews; his efforts were, however, futile, owing to the accident that he met his match in his opponents at Ephe- sus. Ordinary Jews, not specially skilled in controversy, were strictly enjoined to avoid polemics with Christians.’ And even Tryphon, who presented so bold a front to his opponent, regretted his breach of this rule.’ By this we

1 Dial c. 112 (vi. 736, M.), Oerdvrwy ‘PaBBi, ‘PaGPi cadeicOat.

2 Ib. c. 110 (vi. 729, M.), et passim. 3 Ib. c. 137 (vi. 792, M.).

4 Ib. c. 38 (vi. 557, M.), et passim.

5 Ih. c. 137 (vi. 792, M.), dedioxovow .... werd Ti mpoceuyny.

6 Jb. c. 115 (vi. 744, M.), “Qomep yap ai puiac imi ra EAcn mpoorpéyxere sai iginracOe. xdv yap puoia rig tity Kxaddc, tv 08 ouixpdy Sriody eirry pr) evdpecroy tpi, i) my voovpevoy i} yo} mpdg To axpiBic, TOY wey ToAdAGY Kahoy ov mEegpovrixare, Tov O€ pixpod Pypariov imtAapBavecGe, Kai Karaoxev- alev abrd we doiBnua cai ddienpa omovddZere.

7 Tb. c. 112 (vi. 736, M.), i) wai ypav iEnyoupévww mapayyéddovow bpiv pndé we exaiery, pydé sic Kowwwviav Adywv EdAOeiv,

8 Tb. c. 38 (vi. 556, M.), cai 6 Todgwy simev. . . . waddv qv mwacbivrag yidg Tote SugKdrorg vopnOersace pydevi & dpwy prety. .

The Jews in the Works of the Church Fathers. 129

may gather how the Rabbinic regulations were respected by the people at Iarge. A Jew of Ephesus tells us that for the solution of his doubts and difficulties he often referred to the Rabbis, whom the people regarded as their appointed leaders.’

The differences between the Synagogue and the Church turn mostly on the exegesis of Holy Writ; a large por- tion of the Agada in the Midrash and Talmud is a polemic against Christianity. The text of the Scriptures also constituted an important subject of controversy; the Christians usually read into the Bible more than it con- tained. Moreover, instead of admitting that their copies were often incorrect, they cherished the delusion that the Jews had falsified and mutilated the text for polemical purposes. This charge already occurs in Justin, who accuses the Jews of altering map6évos in Is. vii. 14 into veavis, in order to nullify a Christological argument.? He quotes many passages which, he alleges, are only to be found in the old texts, but have been omitted from the new editions.2 But he is honest enough to reject a manifest Christological gloss interpolated in the Greek version, and gives the preference in this case to the Hebrew text.‘

In Justin we also meet with a charge which, as far as we know, does not recur in any other Church Father. He accuses the Rabbis of encouraging immorality by sanctioning polygamy among their co-religionists, and

1 Tb. c. 94 (vi. 701, M.). 2 Tb. c. 68 (vi. 633, M.).

3 Ib. c. 72 (vi. 645), on Jerem. xi. 19, cai imesdy 1) wepiucom) yy ix rey Adywy Tod "lepepion Ere ioriv tyyeyoappévy Ev Tis dvTitypagore Tay éy ovva- ywyatg lovdaiwy’ xpd yap ddiyou xpovou radra iécopay. He cites similar passages to the same effect.

4 This gloss is the notorious da7o rod ZuAov which was said to be the reading in Ps. xcvi. (xcv.). Besides occurring in Justin, Dial. c. 73 (vi 645, M.), this interpolation is found only in Latin Fathers, such as Ter- tullian, Ambrosius, Augustinus, Leo and Gregorius Magnus, who manage to talk a great deal of nonsense concerning the “a ligno.”


130 The Jewish Quarierly Review.

permitting them to lust after fair women.’ He blames the facility with which marriages are contracted. When a Jew is abroad, the first thing he does is to take another wife? This matrimonial liberty was indeed, as a matter of fact, a painful characteristic of Talmudic times.

Justin, too, is the first who imputes to the Jews the crime of mocking at and insulting Jesus. This accusation was fraught with terrible consequences for them. It is repeated by all the Fathers of the first four centuries, and though the accounts have been frequently examined, the precise character and truth of this charge have never yet been definitely established. I take the liberty, there- fore, of discussing this branch of our subject in some detail.

Although the Fathers are clear as to the fact of a curse pronounced by the Jews, they differ widely as to the object of the curse. Some assert that Jesus was cursed; others that the malediction was directed against Christianity or the Christians. Starting from this point of difference, we classify the weightier statements bearing on this subject under three heads.

I. Malediction against Jesus. Justin, Dialogue, c. 103 (vi. 720, M.), (ep. vi. 553, M.), eal pddiota rods ev rtais ovvaywyais, katavabepaticavras Kat xatavabeparivovtas én’ avtov TodTov Tov Xpiotov ; Origen, Hom. in Jerem. xviii. 12 (xiii. 487, M.), Eiced@e eis tas tov Tovsaiwy cuvaywyas, kal ide tov Incobv xa? jyépay it’ abtav Th yooon TIS Bracdnpias pactiyoupevoy.

II. Against Christians and Christianity. Justin, Dia- dogue, c. 16 (vi. 512, M.), xatapmpevor év tais cuvaywyais buoy Tovs motevovtas eri tov Xpictov. Similarly 7b. c¢.

1 Dial. c. 134 (vi. 785, M.), rotc dovvirose cai rupdoicg Sidacnddore oper, oirivec Kal péxpe vir Kai riccapag Kai wévre ExEy Uae Exacroy svyywpove cai idy eipopddy ric idwy EmOupijcy atric.

2 Tb, c. 141 (vi. 800, M.), nai Scag Bobderat AapBavey yuvaicac, droioy Rparrovaty ot ard Tov yévouvc tpay dvOpwro, card wacay yijv, iva av emcdnunowow | mpooreng0aory, dydpevor dvipart ydpov yuvaixac.

The Jews in the Works of the Church Fathers. 181

93, (vi. 700, M.)'; Origen, Hom. in Jerem. xviii. 12 (xiii. 485, M.), xat pwéypt viv, tro rapavopouv apytepéws Adyou Tpoctaccopevo, "ERBtwwvaio.? tumtover tov Amdotonov Incov Xpitrov royous Svagypors.

III. Against the Nazarenes. Epiphanius, Haeres., xxix. 9, ITavu obtot éyOpol trois Tovdaious brrdpyovow. Ov povov yap of TaV Tovbaiwy Taides mpos ToUTOUS KéKTHVTAL wiGoS, GX aviotdpevot Erwbev (1. Ewbev) Kai péons tpépas Kal teplt tiv éomépav, Tpls THs Huépas,bte Tas evyas émiTehodaww ev Tais a’ta@v ouvaywyais, éemapm@vtat avtois Kal avabepatifover ddcxovres, brt éwixatapdcat 6 Geos rovs Nafwpatovs. Jerome in Isaiah ii. 18, Sub nomine Nazarzeorum anathematizant vocabulum Christianum. Jb. 49, 7, Christo sub nomine Nazareeorum maledicunt. Jb. 52, 4, sub nomine, ut saepe dixi, Nazarzorum ter die in Christianos congerunt male- dicta, etc., etc.

This last group is in various ways most instructive. We learn from it that the curse was pronounced thrice daily ; the eighteen Benedictions are obviously suggested. Epi- phanius has further the important notice that it was re- cited dre Tas edxyas émtTedovowv, which does not mean at the conclusion of the prayers,”* but “while they read the prayers.” The commination was thus a portion of the daily service, and has long since been justly identified with the mr M272, “the prayer against heretics.” That this blessing differed in Talmudic times from its present form is quite clear. It must then have explicitly named the Nazarenes, for Epiphanius gives us the definite formula, “May God curse the Nazarenes.” The Talmud, which fully discusses this blessing,” nowhere hints that the Nazarenes

1 On this v. Goldfahn, ibid, p. 56.

2 The Ebionites, as is the case in many other respects, are here placed on a level with the Jews; what is predicated about them applies also to the Jews.

3 This is Schuerer’s opinion: Geschichte des jiid. Volkes im Zeitalter Jesu Christi, II. 387, The passage of Justin adduced there is not exactly in place.


132 The Jewish Quarterly Review,

figured in it. Indeed, although several Christian sects are named in that extensive literature, the Nazarenes do not once occur in it. This by no means proves that this name was unknown to the Talmudic doctors. Probably x very often occurred in the Talmud, but has been erased by the medizval censors. There were sufficient grounds for this. Catholic Christendom hated other Christian heresies as much as Judaism did, and therefore tolerated ulusions to them in the Talmud. But it would not permit mention of the Nazarenes, for these, at an earlier period, were synonymous with the Christians. The Chris- tians were called Nazarenes,? a name which they have re- tained in Jewish literature to this day. Our quotation from Jerome now becomes clear: The Jews curse the Christians or Christ under the name of Nazarenes, t.c., the malediction in the liturgy is nominally directed against the Nazarenes but really against the Christians. From the turn of the phrase, it is evident that Jerome thought he had made a discovery, How artful the Jews are,” he seems to say, “they curse the Nazarenes when they mean the Christians.” This then is established, that the so-called Benediction of the Minim contained, in ancient times, the term 2; and, in fact, a gloss of Rashi, which escaped the censors, and is still preserved in later authorities, makes it clear that, in his days even, the Blessing still retained the term 33.5 The problem still remains, Which expression is it that has replaced the original "212? What word has been substituted for it by the censors or out of fear of them? J. Derenbourg assumes that the original form of the Benediction consisted of the following three parts: boy Tas yr yw ony day mpnonn by orwhabdy

1 That "DISS in b. Sabb. 116a is the same as ‘IN¥I°3 is only a con- jecture of several scholars, which, however, cannot be defended.

2 Cp. Tertullian in Marc. vi. 8, unde.... nos Judaei Nazaraeos appel- lant. Jerome, On Sacr., 143, 16 (ed. Lagarde II. p. 175): et nos.... apud veteres Nazaraei dicebamur.

3 'V. M. Bloch, Znstitutionen des Judenthums, I, 193.

The Jews in the Works of the Church Fathers. 1388

YD) om Ds, and that, instead of oxwhnds, the word o2s>) or omwn) was substituted in R

Gamaliel’s days, while, at a still later date, o»1m was added against the Romans.’ I consider this supposition highly improbable. We can hardly believe that the tem mwah) would have been dropped, when we

reflect how much cause there was in every age for the retention of a commination against the dangerous Dela- tores. Besides, the Christians cannot, in this prayer, be designated by the term m2", which is manifestly the same as puvaio. or Minaei; for the Christians regarded this sect as damnable heretics, and would not have had the slightest objection to their being cursed by the Jews. The truth seems to be that the covert reference lies in the phrase mywn owiy b>. It is with regard to these words that the Codices of the Liturgy exhibit such numerous variations, which proves that they were not part of the original form of the prayer. Maimonides does not read mywn wwiy 45, but moO nDSN 4D»? This passage, then, is the one directed against the heretics. The modern mywn wy 525, which looks so innocent, must have been adopted as a cover for the far more suspicious and dangerous expression D312. So, too, in another passage (Jerusalem Berachot, 5d, ed. Kro- toschin) the expression ywr is used as the designation of a sect oT ase Oye Sw) oe bw Soy oon. Tosefta Berachot iv. 25 has, instead of myywn, the more forcible myywip. Massechet Derech Erets Rabba (beginning of chap. ii.) has DywaM AMOAM opr; Exodus Rabba, c. 19, Samm. yyw) yTawn) ovo. In all these passages the word mo’ywn can only refer to a sect. I believe that the second phrase read originally ym> onan 55) y1ax. As, however, 39 was primarily the title of Jesus, the earlier Fathers were correct in asserting that the Jews cursed Jesus, inasmuch as the expression may refer equally

1 Revue des Etudes Juives, xiv. 30. ? Derenbourg, ibid.

134 The Jewish Quarterly Review.

to Jesus or to Christianity. As in their time Christians and Nazarenes were still identical, they had no need to explain the difference of designation. In Epiphanius’ and Jerome’s days the Nazarenes were only a sect, and no longer formed the whole of Catholic Christendom. These Fathers found it, therefore, necessary to say that the Jews in their formula of malediction cursed the Nazarenes, but meant the Christians.

Thus the accounts of the Church Fathers on this head are harmonised.

Returning to Justin, we note that Agadic elements are to be found in his writings in considerable quantity ; most of them have been thoroughly discussed by Goldfahn in his essay, “Justin Martyr and the Agada.” (Graetz’s Monats- schrift xxii., 1873, and in a separate reprint.)



The writings of Titus Flavius Clemens of Alexandria offer but few materials of interest for Jewish literature. His distinguishing excellence consisted in a sound know- ledge of Hellenic literature rather than of theology. His information about Judaism he seems to have derived exclusively from Greek writings, particularly from Philo and Josephus. A persecution of the Christians, which raged in Alexandria in the years 202 and 203, drove Clement to seek safety in flight, and he appears to have taken up his residence for a short while in Syria (Euseb. H, £., VI. 11). Here he may have gleaned something from the Jews at first hand. Of Hebrew he was not altogether ignorant. Most of his explanations of terms are indeed unfortunate, and argue little for an intimate knowledge of the language. But that he possessed a certain acquaintance with Hebrew is proved by the prolix remarks found in his writings on the

The Jews in the Works of the Church Fathers. 135

characteristics which distinguish Hebrew from other lan- guages! It should also be borne in mind that his quo- tations sometimes differ from the Septuagint, and this variation would seem to show that he consulted the ori- ginal text? Only on the supposition that Clement had a command of Hebrew can we account for the fact that he criticises adversely those who, when reading Scripture, pervert its plain meaning by their tones, and place a forced construction on clear and wise laws by their trans- position of points and accents? That this reproach is aimed at the Jews is obvious. And it is a valuable testimony, from a comparatively early period, to the free and unrestricted manner in which the text of Holy Writ was handled for Agadic purposes.

Hostile expressions against the Jews are not found in his writings. His essay Kavav éxxdnovaoriKds if mpos TOUS TovSaitovras (Euseb. H. E., VI., 13) may have contained some ; but the work, with the exception of a few fragments, is lost. He argues that the Jews have no right to twit Christianity with its numerous sects, seeing that Judaism is also rent by factions, but that nevertheless its professors strive their hardest to win converts* He betrays his contempt by the anxiety which he expresses in his exposi- tion not to be confounded with the vulgar Jews.’ Apart

1 Strom. vi.15 (viii. 353, M.), “Exec 0 ody kai dAdag tide idiérnrag 7 “EBpaiwy duddexroc, xaQarep cai ixdorn THY NotTOY..

2 A striking deviation in the translation of Leviticus xi. 13, 14 (Deut xiv. 12) is noticeable, AAA’ odd" kriva webmrepoy pacrogayh i deroy gayciv gnoiv . .. . Paced. iii. 11 (viii. 653, M.). The words wcimrepov pacropayy are wanting in the LXX.

3 Strom. iii. 4, end (viii. 1144), OUroe elowy of card rijy dvdywow guwvijg révp dtastpipovrec rag Toapag mpdg rac iSiag ydovag, Kai Twwy Tpoopduay cai oriypay peradion ta wapayytAOivra cwppdvug re Kai ovppepdvTwe BraZoperoe mpdc 10uTabeiag rag éavTwr.

4 7b. viii. 15 (ix. 524, M.), mode ré& rd ‘FAXjvwr Kai lovdaiwy ém-

Gepdpeva apiv éyeAquara dwodoynodoBa .... Mpdc odc papéiv? “Ore wai map’ iptv roig lovdaing. . . . mapmoddat yeysvacty aipicec* Kal ob Onmov gare deiv dxvety . . . . tovdatlev.

5 Tb, vii. 8 (ix. 553, M.), "Iovdaiwy rav xviaiwy.

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from these isolated instances, he is a defender of Judaism rather than an antagonist. In his Stromata an endeavour is made to prove that the Greek philosophers obtained their wisdom from Jewish teachers, and that the Jewish law stands higher than Hellenic law.

Agadic elements are more plentiful in Clement’s writ- ings than the course of his studies would naturally lead us to expect. He lays great value on the traditions of the true and hidden sense of Scripture’ preserved by Jewish teachers, whom he knows as the wvoras, a term probably current in Alexandria.? As he, however, usually quotes traditions without naming the pvora: in connection with them, it is a matter of some difficulty to distinguish in his writings those elements which are of specifically Jewish origin. But asa proof that his works do contain genuine Jewish traditions I quote the following specimens. He tells us (Strom. I. 23, viii. 900 M.) on the authority of the plotat, that Moses slew the Egyptian with a “mere” word, gaci S& of potas AOyO povm avereiv tov Aiyvrriov. This is identical with the well-known tradition which explains the text (Exod. ii. 14) s2mbn 218 TINS as meaning that Moses pronounced the Ineffable Name, and thereby destroyed the Egyptian task- master. (See Exodus Rabba, and Rashi ad locum.)

Clement notes (ibid. viii., 897 M.), that the law-giver had several Hebrew names besides his Egyptian one—Moses ; his parents called him at his circumcision oyp1T1;* and after his death he received, according to the Mystae, a new name, Maeryxi (1340 2). This is undoubtedly a genuine Jewish Agada; though I cannot, at present, trace its parallel in

1 Strom. i, 12 (viii. 753, M.), rag droxpigoug rijg dAnD0t¢ yywsiwg wapa- Coote...

2 Vide infra.

3 This observation is also noteworthy from a sociological point of view ; we are thereby informed that already in the second century it was customary among the Jews to give their sons names on the occasion of their circumcision (but see Luke i., 59).

The Jews in the Works of the Church Fathers. 137

Jewish sources. There is a discussion in T. B. Sota,.12a, and Exod. R.1, between some Tanaites on the name Moses! ; but there is no hint of Jehojakim, or of the name conferred upon the leader after his death. It should also be noticed that the phrase wera tv advan uv implies another Agada ; that Moses, like Enoch and Elijah, did not die, but was translated to heaven. This legend is clearly alluded to in Jude, verses 8,9. It is also found in detail in Deut. R., ad finem Babylonian Talmud Sota 13d, nwo ma ND. Cp. also Baba Bathra, 17a, where it is said that Moses belonged to those against whom the angel of death was powerless, nian qm oma wow NS. Maimonides quotes the legend at the beginning of his Introduction to the Talmud.

After these undoubted specimens of Jewish Agadas we feel ourselves justitied in ascribing a Jewish origin to some of Clement’s obscurer legends. Clement notes, in con- nection with Genesis xv. 5, that Abraham, according to the opinions of some, perceived the divine wonders of the Creation and the beautiful order of nature. This exegesis is opposed to the Christian interpretation, which sees in the text a reference to Jesus, the Son of God (Strom. v. 1, ix. 20 M.): “Lorepov &é, dvaBrépas. eis Tov ovpavov, elite Tov viov ev TH Trvevpats dav, ws eEnyoovras TuveEs, elTe dyyehov ebSofov, elite Kal dds errvyvods Ocov xpeitTova THs Toujoews, Kal Taons THY a’TH TAEEws.

The Midrash, commenting on the same verse (Gen. R., c. 44), says that the contemplation of the star-spangled firma- ment made the patriarch feel himself an astrologer, which agrees with his having realised the crder of nature.? Even the added touch that Abraham saw an angel is not merely invented by Clement; for the Midrash remarks (on verse 7) that Michael was the saviour of Abraham and would

DDN MON DY Iw WIN AAD wy 2D WIN PND 49 minvaad p07.


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become ultimately the saviour of his posterity. Clement had doubtless heard this Agada, but reproduced it in the wrong place. Clement states that Buzzi, Urias the son of Samaia, and Habakkuk were Jeremiah’s contemporaries. mpopnrevouat kai Bovti cai Ovdpias 6 vids Zapaiov kai ApBaxoip atv aire. Strom. i, 21 (viii, 849). Cp. Strom. i. 21 (viii., 872 M.), where Yodwvias Bovti follow after Jeremiah. This notice is evidently based on an Agada. And, in fact, Seder Olam R., c. xx. ad finem, collates the following passages :—727 “19 TIDY ON ‘TT TAT Mr ws on 427 SOS ‘A aT mT aws Ipor yo pa sn. 72 bmp obs ‘aa nomen 459 ‘7 pw. Non yam qyaD waz oD 4D.

According to this quotation, Zephaniah, Jeremiah, Uriah (Jerem. xvi. 20), and Ezekiel were contemporary prophets ; this is in complete agreement with Clement. We aré thus also in a position to identify Clement’s enigmatic Buzi— who has given this Father's editors so much trouble—with Ezekiel, son of Busi. Either Ezekiel” has dropped out, or his father is really meant, in accordance with the tradition that where a prophet’s father is named, he too was a prophet.

Graetz, in his Hagadische Elementen bei den Kirchenvatern (Frankel’s Monatsschrift, III., 1854, p. 311), first drew attention to the agreement between Clement and the Seder Olam Rabbi. I will give one more striking instance. Clement says, Strom. i., 21 (vill, 842 M.), that Elisha commenced to prophesy at the age of forty, and pro- phesied for a period of six years. Whence is this state- ment, which is given with as much emphasis as if it rested on Scriptural authority, derived? The Seder Olam R., ¢. xix., says :—DIND Dw MHD AWM TNS IND mw owes any Ose os pws. Undoubtedly we ought to read in the Greek, not é, but é&jxovra (instead of £’, equal to 60, ¢, equal to 6, was written by mistake). This tradition, then, Clement has in common with the Seder Olam. That Elisha commenced his prophetic career at the

The Jews in the Werks of the Church Fathers. 189

age of forty we do not find in any of the Jewish sources ; it must nevertheless have been a common tradition, and the same supposition would account for many other of Clement’s statements. In conclusion, we may note that this Father was acquainted with many more traditions than he gives. He, for example, alludes to an exposition of the Mystae in connection with the sacrificial ritual, but does not say anything more definite about it.


Origen was born, probably, in Alexandria, about 185 or 186 aD. It is generally assumed that his parents were Christians, but this was probably the case on one side only. His father’s name, Leonides, has been preserved, but not that of his mother. This omission is not accidental, but is due to the reverence of pious Christian writers for Origen’s memory, which led them to suppress his mother’s name on account of her Jewish descent.' The fact that she knew enough of Hebrew to teach her son,’ and that he occupied himself with the study of that language, contrary —according to Jerome—to the usage of his nation and age, are strong evidence in favour of this view.* His impulse to Hebrew studies he probably received from his Jewish mother.t In his capacity as Bishop of Cesarea, in Palestine, Origen must have come into frequent contact with learned Jews, as indeed appears from his writings. He mentions again and again his Magister Hebraeus, on whose authority he gives several Agadas.° His depen-

1 Strom. ii. 20 (viii. 872, M.), é¢ airiag dc tcacw ot piorat

2 Jerome, Hp. xxxix. ad Paulam, c. 1, Tum vero quod in Origine quoque illo Graecia tota miratur, in paucis non dicam mensibus, sed diebus, ita Hebraeae linguae vicerat difficultates, ut in discendis canen- disque Psalmis cum matre contenderet.

3 Cp. Smith-Wace, op..cit., iv. 976.

4 Jerome, De viris illustr. 54, contra aetatis gentisque suae naturam.

5 De Prine.,1, 3, 4, iv. 26 ; in the Greek Fragment, 6‘ESpatoc. I may

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dence on Jewish masters is already emphatically noted by Jerome.! He often mentions the views of the Jews, by which phrase he refers not to the teaching of certain individuals, but to the method of exegesis universally prevalent among the Hebrews of his time.? Those of them with whom he cultivated personal intercourse were dis- tinguished by their scientific attainments. The one Jew whom he names is no less considerable a personage than Hillel, the Patriarch’s son, or Jullos, as Origen calls him.* His other Jewish acquaintances were either closely related to the patriarch’s family or occupied a high position on account of their erudition* No wonder that with such opponents Origen carefully avoids, in his polemic, offensive expressions ; forming, in this respect, a noble exception to the usual practice of the Church fathers. Origen fights principles, not their representatives or exponents. Occa- sionally, however, a harsh sentence against his Jewish antagonists escapes him.’ He even ventures to assert that the Jews of his time could no longer boast of men of real knowledge. Consistently with this adverse judgment, Origen labours chiefly to refute the scriptural exposition of Jewish teachers, and to establish in lieu thereof his own exegesis. He not only had private interviews with Jewish

remark here that I give my quotations in Greek when the original writings of Origen remain, and in Latin when only the Latin translation has survived.

1 Jerome, Lid. i. adv. Ruff., c. 13; cp. the Introduction supra.

2 Eg., Ep. ad Africanus § 12, gaoi 2 ot ‘RSpato. For other quotations see infra.

3 My especial authority for this is Graetz's Hillel, the son of the Patriarchs” (Monatsschrift xxx., 1881, p. 433, etc.). My revered teacher, Professor W. Bacher, in his Hagada of the Palestinian Amoraim, i. 92 and 107 § 2, suggests the hypothesis that Origen also had intercourse with Hoschja.

4 Gritz, op. cit.

5 Hom. x. in Jerem. § 8 (xiii. 368, M.), Bdéwere atray rac xapdiag Gtecbtopivac b7d rév Suvdpewy avrixempivwr.

6 Ib. § 3 (xvii. 361, Gr. Text is not clear), Neque magistri neque doc- tores in Judaea aliqui remanserunt: et licet sint innumerabiles qui sibi sapientiam vindicent, non est jam sermo Dei in eis,

The Jews in the Works of the Church Fathers. 141

teachers, but also engaged in public disputations in the presence of large audiences, which included among their ranks competent controversialists. This we gather from several expressions in his writings.! The principal topics discussed at these meetings may be summarised as fol- lows :—

1. The Scriptural Text.—The copies of the Bible that circulated among the Christians were, as we have already had occasion to remark, corrupt in several passages. At a disputation between Jews and Christians, the former, naturally enough, alluded to these mistakes, and mocked their opponents for allowing such obvious blunders. This kind of argument, the first beginnings of which we have traced in Justin, plays an important part in Origen. The wish to free the Church from the just reproaches of the Jews on this score, led him to undertake that gigantic enterprise, the fruit of which is the Hexapla.’

2. The Apocrypha.—Another point of difference was the

1 Contra Celswm I, 45 (xi. 744, M.), Mépvnpar 6& wore tv rim mpg ’Iov- Eatwy deyouévoug aogpodc dtadisee ypnoduevog rowdry Adyw, mrEiovwy xowwovrwy Td Aeyspevov. Ib. I. 55 (xi. 761, M.), Mépynvar wore, ev rive mpoc Tovg AEyopévoug mapa "lovdaiorg cogode ivonrnce raig mpogdyreiac ravrac (Jesaja liii.) ypnodpevog’ eg’ ol¢ Edtyev 6 "Iovdaiog.... Ib. i. 56 (xi. 764, M.), cat pépynpai ye wdve Odipac Tov "Tovdatoy vourZopevoy aopay éx rig Aeewe Tabryc’ bo mpde abriy dropur, ele Ta TY EavTOD "Tovdaiopy axoXov8a, etc., etc.

3 Epiphanius, De ponderibus ct mensuris, c. 2, Qoryévng ... . amoxa- riornse TH exaorp Tromp Tov idAdeirovTa Aoyoy ... . iva pi Taparsipy "Lovdaiog nai Lapapeirace ériapBaverOa trav iv raic dyiatg ’Excdnotatc Gciwy Toagav—Ruffinus lib. v. Invect. adv. Hieronymum, c. 4, Apostatae quidem et Judaei interpretati sunt ea, quorum lectione Judaei maxime utuntur. Et quia frequenter si disputatio incidisset, vel immutata esse aliquanta, vel deesse, vel abundare in nostris Scripturis mentiebantur, voluit Origenes nostris ostendere, qualis apud Judaeos Scripturarum lectio teneretur .... ut sciremus non quid nobie, sed quid Judaeis adversum nos certantibus aut deesse, aut abundare videntur. Origen recurs frequently to the Jewish method of reading, ¢g., Hom. in Num. xvi. 4, Hebraei habere se scriptum dicunt.— Comm. in Hp. ad Rom. lib. ii. § 13 (xiv. 909, M.), ipsi in Hebraeis exemplaribus habere se dicunt....

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Apocrypha, to which the Church attached an exaggerated importance, notwithstanding its frequent want of taste and silliness, over which the Jews could only make merry. The history of Susanna was always derided by them for this reason.1_ The Jews had an Apocrypha of their own, which they valued; but this seems to have been dis- tinguished from what we term Agada only in as far as it was already written down, while most other Agadas were still orally circulated? Origen