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Old 08-18-2004, 02:26 AM   #1
Ted Hoffman
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Default Bernard's Sources: Muller's reliance on Eusebius wrt Hegessipus

Bernard writes:
Quote:
16.4 The "Nazarenes" and Jesus' message:
....
Eusebius' "the History of the Church", 2, 23, quoting Hegesippus, a second century Jewish Christian writer:
"James, the brother of the Lord, succeeded to the government of the Church
[the proto-Christian community of Jerusalem and the very first one anywhere]
` in conjunction with the apostles [note: here is evidence the "Nazarenes" did not start the "Church" in Jerusalem. Who did it? That will be explained later]."
I have noted that Muller mentions Eusebius at least four times in his 'reconstruction'.

Jay Raskin has argued that Eusebius made up Hegessipus to lend credence to his edited 'history'.

This is the short of the argument (you can read the long version below if you are interested):

From Church History 3.23.3: Eusebius writes regarding the death of James the Just: "3 The manner of James' death has been already indicated by the above-quoted words of Clement, who records that he was thrown from the pinnacle of the temple, and was beaten to death with a club. But Hegesippus,who lived immediately after the apostles, gives the most accurate account in the fifth book of his Memoirs"

He then quotes Hegesipus from Hegessipus' alleged memoirs: (2.23.18) "And one of them, who was a fuller, took the club with which he beat out clothes and struck the just man on the head. And thus he suffered martyrdom.And they buried him on the spot, by the temple, and his monument still remains by the temple."

This means Hegessipus is writing his memoirs between c. 62 (the time James died) and c.70 (the time the temple was destroyed. For argument's sake, lets say he was writing his memoirs from c.67.

Later, Eusebius writes (4.11.6) that during the episcopate of Anicetus, "Hegesippus records that he himself was in Rome at this time, and that he remained there until the episcopate of Eleutherus."

The Episcopate of Anicetus was between 154 and 167. Eleutherus was Pope 174-189. If we take the earliest date that Hegesippus finnished writing his memoirs, that would be c.174. Thus, Hegessipus wrote his memoirs for 107 years. (assuming he started c.64)

This is simply impossible. Thus any evidence from Eusebius based on Hegessipus, is not reliable.

This is Jay Raskin's full argument:
Quote:
My recent discovery of Eusebius' extreme editing of at least chapters 18 and 20 of "Antiquities" has led me to begin to reexamine his text with an understanding that he was not so much reconstructing early Christian History as literally inventing it.

It now seems certain to me that the "Hebrew" historian Hegesippus is a pure fiction of Eusebius. Here is the simple proof.

from Church History 3.23.3

***
3 The manner of James' death has been already indicated by the above-quoted words of Clement, who records that he was thrown from the pinnacle of the temple, and was beaten to death with a club.But Hegesippus,who lived immediately after the apostles, gives the most
accurate account in the fifth book of his Memoirs
***

Eusebius is talking about the death of Paul and James in the 60's. He wants us to believe that Hegesippus is living and writing just after this time (immediately) in the late 60's. He quotes this passage from Hegesippus:

***
(2.23.18)
And one of them, who was a fuller, took the club with which he beat out clothes and struck the just man on the head. And thus he suffered martyrdom.And they buried him on the spot, by the temple, and his monument still remains by the temple.
***

It is quite clear that Hesesippus is writing before the destruction of the temple. The statement "his monument still remains by the temple" must be coming from a person writing between the death of James in 62 and the destruction of the temple in 70.

Hegesippus is writing his "memoirs" around this time. That is why the event happens in the "fifth" and last book of his memoirs. Yet, later in book 3 (chapters 11-12)of his History, Eusebius tells us
that Hegesippus wrote:

***
Vespasian after the conquest of Jerusalem gave orders that all that belonged to the lineage of David should be sought out, in order that none of the royal race might be left among the Jews; and in consequence of this a most terrible persecution again hung over the Jews.
***

This indicates that book 5 of his memoirs must have continued into at least the year 70 after Vespasian conquered Jerusalem. (Note that Josephus has not bothered to tell us about this "most terrible persecution that "again hung over the Jews".

Domitian did not pass judgment against them, but, despising them as of no account, he let them go, and by a decree put a stop to the persecution of the Church.

Apparently this decree against the relatives of Jesus was not successful and neither was the decree of the Emperor Domitian who also ordered the death of Jesus' relatives as Eusebius tells us later (3.20.7.) that in the Fifteenth Year of Domitian's reign (96 C.E.) He himself released some grandchildren of Jude, Jesus' brother:

***
But when they were released they ruled the churches because they were witnesses and were also relatives of the Lord.And peace being established, they lived until the time of Trajan. These things are related by Hegesippus.
***

My goodness, Book 5 of Hegesippus' work must have covered all the way from 62 C.E. and the death of James to Domitian's release of Jesus' relatives in 96. Now recall that Hegeisippus wrote that James' "monument still remains by the Temple" He must have written this in 69
or earlier. This means Hegesippus must have been working on book five of his memoirs in 69 C.E.(or earlier) and continued working on them over the next 27 years till 96 C.E.

We must salute the dedication of this amazing author, the only one in history to my knowledge to write a single book of "memoirs" covering at least 34 years (62-96)and taking at least 27 years to do it. But Hegesippus is not done yet. Eusebius gives us this quote (3.32.6):

"They came, therefore, and took the lead of every church as witnesses and as relatives of the Lord. And profound peace being established in every church, they remained until the reign of the Emperor Trajan" Trajan started to reign in 98. We must add at least two years to how
long Hegesippus wrote. This means he covered at least 36 years and took at least 29 years to do it. Eusebius here has Hegesippus tell us about (3.32.6) about Symeon, son of Clopas, an uncle of the Lord who died after being tortured at the age of 120. One might snicker at this, given that the oldest man alive today is about 114 years old, but how much more fantastic is this than hearing that a man spent at least 29 years writing a fifth book of memoirs that covered at least a
36 year period.
But unlike the poor Symeon, Hegesippus is not done yet. In book 4 (4.8.2.)Eusebius tells us this about Hegesippus:
***
He records in five books the true tradition of apostolic doctrine in a most simple style, and he indicates the time in which he flourished when he writes as follows concerning those that first set up idols: "To whom they erected cenotaphs and temples, as is done to the present day. Among whom is also Antinoüs,a slave of the Emperor Adrian, in whose honor are celebrated also the Antinoian games, which were instituted in our day. For he [i.e. Adrian] also founded a city named
after Antinoüs
***

Hadrian ruled from 117-138. The city of Aninoopolis founded in honor of his lover Antinous, was established in 130 C.E.. We now find that Hegesippus started his "memoirs" at least 61 years earlier writing about events that occured 68 years earlier. If this was not Saint Eusebius telling us this, I might start to be a bit skeptical. The term "flourished" usually means around age 40. This means at age 40, Hegesippus had been writing his memoirs for at 61 years. We will be apologists for Eusebius at this point and suggest that he made a slight slip of the pen in using the word "flourished."

Eusebius later tells us (4.11.6) that during the episcopate of Anicetus, "Hegesippus records that he himself was in Rome at this time, and that he remained there until the episcopate of Eleutherus."

The Episcopate of Anicetus was between 154 and 167. We must believe that it was closer to 154 for this means Hegesippus had only been writing his memoirs for some 85 years at this point. He certainly deserved a trip to Rome. Apparently he finished his memoirs during the time that Eleutherus was Pope 174-189. We may take the earliest possible date of 174. This means that Hegesippus was working at least 105 years on book five of his memoirs, recording accurately events that took place over at least the last 112 years of his life.

I hate it when people give me either/or choices, but in this case, I am afraid I have an either or/choice of believing that Hegesippus was hard at work on the fifth book of his Memoirs for over 105 years, or believing that Eusebius made up the character and writings of Hegesippus to help tell a history of Christianity that Eusebius invented from his own mind.
Bernard, based on the above arguments, why should we rely on anything Eusebius tells us is coming from Hegessipus?
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Old 08-18-2004, 01:37 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jacob Aliet
This is Jay Raskin's full argument:

Bernard, based on the above arguments, why should we rely on anything Eusebius tells us is coming from Hegessipus?
Jacob,

Even by the standards of the JesusMysteries group, Raskin's argument is truly pathetic.

All that we need to do is realise that the reference to James's memorial means it is still there in 160AD by the remains of the Temple (which you can still see some of today). All the other references are consistant with a date of Hegessipus of about 160AD.

The alternative is to believe that Eusebius made this guy up without realising that he would have to live for well over a hundred years. Also, he fooled Jerome into thinking he existed. And most amazing of all, Eusebius seems to have actually written the 5 volumes of memoirs himself as
Quote:
Zahn has shown that the work of Hegesippus was still extant in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries in three Eastern libraries.
(from here.

I hate either/ors too, but there is no doubt Raskin is either barking mad, utterly lazy or totally dishonest.

Yours

Bede

Bede's Library - faith and reason
 
Old 08-18-2004, 03:51 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bede
Zahn has shown that the work of Hegesippus was still extant in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries in three Eastern libraries
Hi Bede, thanks for gracing our forum with your colorful rhetoric.

I tried to track down the Zahn reference, and I found this on Roger Pearse's site:

The Greek Irenaeus and the complete Hegesippus in the 16th century

It is a little vague. But the question deserves more research.
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Old 08-18-2004, 05:29 PM   #4
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Quote:
Zahn has shown that the work of Hegesippus was still extant in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries in three Eastern libraries.
Hmmm....looking over Pearse' site, we can see that the "showing" is based on the unsubstantiated claims of a 16th century writer. That's a low standard, even for an apologist like Zahn. But I guess low standards are OK, if it is in the service of Gawd.

Quote:
I hate either/ors too, but there is no doubt Raskin is either barking mad, utterly lazy or totally dishonest.
...or simply wrong.

Vorkosigan
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Old 08-18-2004, 06:08 PM   #5
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Or Raskin could be right.

I don't know if it is fair to him to reproduce a JM post, which is more in the way of a preliminary idea floated to see how it works. But he has developed the idea here.
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Old 08-18-2004, 07:25 PM   #6
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It seems to me that, given the otherwise explicit dating Eusebius provides, this passage is best understood as either sloppy writing by Hegesippus or sloppy copying by Eusebius.

Even left as a question mark, it hardly seems enough to hold the weight of total fabrication.

The most relevant fact is that Hegesippus cannot be considered a reliable source of information. Even Bede's source (Catholic Encyclopedia) recognizes that his account of the death of James is "apparently legendary".

Hegesippus, like Papias and many other ancient sources, is too willing to repeat legends and myths as fact to be considered reliable.
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Old 08-18-2004, 11:26 PM   #7
Ted Hoffman
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Default My Last Instalment on Muller's Alleged Reconstruction

Bede,
Quote:
All that we need to do is realise that the reference to James's memorial means it is still there in 160AD by the remains of the Temple (which you can still see some of today).
Hegessipus' quote is not consistent with a temple that is in ruins. If you can demonstrate that Hegessipus is referering to a monument next to a ruined temple, we will have a starting point.

The rest of your post does not address Raskin's argument.

Quote:
Zahn has shown that the work of Hegesippus was still extant in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries in three Eastern libraries.
How has Zahn done this?
Note: I have read the article by Th. Zahn in Kiel. as transcribed by Roger Pearse
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Old 08-19-2004, 12:25 AM   #8
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Bede,
Quote:
...Raskin's argument is truly pathetic....Raskin is either barking mad, utterly lazy or totally dishonest.
This is uncalled for. How about we stick to Kirby's request for a polite exchange?
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Old 08-19-2004, 03:26 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jacob Aliet
Bede,

This is uncalled for. How about we stick to Kirby's request for a polite exchange?
True. I have had unpleasant encounters with Raskin and other JM group groupees so I probably jumped into his rubbish heap a little too enthusiastically. While I was right to point out he was wrong (and it might help JA's credibility if he exercised a bit of quality control rather than buying every idea that might support the MJ thesis) I shouldn't let my personal animosity get the better of me.

Jacob, I am banned from the JM group as I rocked the boat too much and the mods then lied about why they banned me. As they have yet to mention that the JM amulet was denounced as a fake, why not post that there and see what they make of it. It would be interesting to see how they react to their very own ossary.

Yours

Bede

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Old 08-19-2004, 08:27 AM   #10
Ted Hoffman
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Bede,

Please don't refer to our discussion as a 'rubbish heap'. You are becoming quite a spectacle now. Get a grip on yourself - you are falling apart for Christs sake!
Besides your insults and seeking sympathy for being banned at Jesus mysteries, I note that, thus far, you have made no effort to address Ruskin's argument. Perhaps you find it unassailable?

I emailed Ruskin and he asked me to post his response here. He seems to show more maturity as he doesn't find it necessary to insult you while making his point. He is busy and may not be able to participate directly.

In this post, Ruskin particularly decimates Bede's following argument:
Quote:
All that we need to do is realise that the reference to James's memorial means it is still there in 160AD by the remains of the Temple (which you can still see some of today). All the other references are consistant with a date of Hegessipus of about 160AD.
This is what he asked me to post [he echoes my ealier sentiments and fortifies the argument]:

"Jacob Aliet's point that "Hegessipus' quote is not consistent with a temple that is in ruins" is quite correct. Hegesippus is locating a building that he
claims exists next to a building that does not exist, (according to the second century dating of Hegesippus) This is quite funny. We are used to comical dialogs in which a rural character gives directions to strangers by telling them things like, "Go to the Old Firehouse that burned down ten years ago and make a left," but there is little likelihood that Hegesippus is trying to add humor here.

Instead of changing the line from reading "the Temple" to reading "the Temple Site, to fit a second century Hegesippus theory" we need to examine the surrounding text. Eusebius indicates that Hegesippus' description of James' death is more trustworthy than Clement's description. The implied basis for this is that he had better access to the truth and he is recording it from
his "Memoirs" earlier.

2.23.3:
***
The manner of James' death has been already indicated by the above-quoted words of Clement, who records that he was thrown from the pinnacle of the temple, and was beaten to death with a club.But Hegesippus, who lived immediately after the apostles, gives the most accurate account in the fifth book of his Memoirs. He writes as follows:
***
If Hegesippus wrote in 160, this would mean that Clement wrote later. But at 3.23, we read:
***
In the third year of the reign of the emperor mentioned above, Clement committed the episcopal government of the church of Rome to Evarestus, and
departed this life
after he had superintended the teaching of the divine word nine years in all.
***
the above named emperor is Trajan and the third year of his reign is the year 100 C.E. So Clement died in 100 C.E. according to Eusebius. This would be consistent with Eusebius giving the inference that Hegesippus wrote about James before him circa 70 C.E. It would not be consistent with the concept that Hegesippus lived into the Second Century and Clement lived after him. One has to ask, if Hegesippus wrote in 160 and Clement before 100, why would Eusebius believe that Hegesippus was more accurate?

Now, just as one may change "Temple" to "Temple Site," one may ignore the inference in 2.23.3 that Hegesippus is writing earlier than Clement. But I try to stick to the most probable and obvious meanings and not propound wild meanings to fit preconceived and desired ends. This will help us to understand both the History that Eusebius created and the rather different actual History of Christianity.

I apologize for not having time at the moment to join this fascinting discussion group. Hopefully my rather busy personal schedule will let up and I will be able to do so in the future."

Emphasis mine.
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