'The Jewish Encyclopedia' by Funk and Wagnall's (1901-1906)

French Jews of the Middle Ages, The Jewish Encylopedia, 1901-1906

Map showing 'Percentage of Jews in Governments' in Western Russia from The Jewish Encylopedia

About twenty-five years ago, there was no greater desert, as far as Jewish life and learning, than the English-speaking countries, and English of all languages was the least serviceable for such a Jewish work of reference. To contemporary European reviewers of the Jewish Encyclopedia, the undertaking seemed then like an effort wasted on half-clad Zulus in South Africa and Jewish tailors in New York. Those who were then really in need of such a work and could benefit thereby would have been better served if it were put out in Hebrew, German or Russian.
Harry Wolfson (1926)

A selection from The Jewish Encyclopedia by Funk and Wagnalls (1901-1906).

List of entries:

  • Alcholism
  • Nervous Diseases
  • Anglo-Israelism
  • Anti-Semitism
  • Chamerlain, Houston Stewart
  • Messiah:
  • Zionism
  • Hess, Moses
  • Herzl, Theodor
  • Caesar, Caius Julius

    [Work in Progress]

Entry for Alcholism:

Rarity Among Jews.

Alcoholism prevails all over the world, and is probably increasing, more especially among the northern nations. But among the Jews it is almost an unknown affection. Their sobriety is proverbial; and the experience among Jewish medical practitioners is unanimously to the effect that occasion to observe the disease in the person of a Jew is of excessive rarity. The Jews are undoubtedly subject to nervous diseases to a greater extent than the general community; but this is due to the social and hygienic conditions under which many of them live, and not to Alcoholism.

Entry for Nervous Diseases:

Frequency of Hysteria Among Jews.

The Jews are more subject to diseases of the nervous system than the other races and peoples among which they dwell. Hysteria and neurasthenia appear to be most frequent. Some physicians of large experience among Jews have even gone so far as to state that most of them are neurasthenic and hysterical. Tobler claims that all the Jewish women in Palestine are hysterical; and Raymond says that in Warsaw, Poland, hysteria is very frequently met with among both Jewish men and Jewish women. The Jewish population of that city alone is almost exclusively the inexhaustible source for the supply of hysterical males for the clinics of the whole Continent ("L'Etude des Maladies du Système Nerveux en Russie," p. 71, Paris, 1889). As regards Austria and Germany the same neurotic taint of the Jews has been emphasized by Krafft Ebing, who states that nervous diseases, and especially neurasthenia, affect the Jews with exceptional severity ("Nervosität und Neurasthenische Zustände," p. 54, Vienna, 1895). Binswanger, Erb, Jolly, Möbius, Löwenfeld, Oppenheim Féré, Charcot, Bauveret, and most of the other specialists in nervous diseases, speak of this in their monographs on neurasthenia and hysteria, and point out that hysteria in the male, which is so rare in other races, is quite frequent among the Jews. In New York city it has been shown by Collins that, among 333 cases of neurasthenia which came under his observation, more than 40 per cent were of Jewish extraction, although his clientele was not conspicuously foreign ("Medical Record," March 25, 1899).


The following causes are usually assigned for the nervousness of the Jews: (1) The fact that they are town-dwellers, and that diseases of this kind are most frequently observed in the populations of the modern large urban centers. (2) The peculiar occupations of the Jews: neurasthenia is seen most often among the commercial classes, bankers, and speculators. This view is not sustained by the fact that neurasthenia and hysteria are met with in the poorer classes of Jews, in laborers and artisans, just as often as in the richer classes. (3) Consanguineous marriages are also blamed by many physicians; but the modern view that such marriages, when contracted between healthy individuals, are not at all detrimental to the health of the offspring contradicts this theory. (4) The repeated persecutions and abuses to which the Jews were subjected during the two thousand years of the Diaspora are to be considered when speaking of their neurotic taint. Such massacres as occurred in Kishinef in 1903 were of frequent occurrence during the Middle Ages; and their effect on the nervous system of the Jews could not be other than an injurious one. Organic as well as functional derangements of the nervous system are transmitted hereditarily from one generation to another.

Entry for Anglo-Israelism:

A theory which identifies the Anglo-Saxon race with the Lost Ten Tribes. Its adherents, who claim that the promises given to Israel will be fulfilled with regard to England and America, are said to number 2,000,000 in England and the United States; and at one time they included in their ranks a member of the English House of Lords and a colonial bishop of the Church of England. They have issued several weeklies in defense of their views; and there is one publisher in London whose publications are devoted entirely to the cause. Strictly speaking, the believers in Anglo-Israelism do not form a sect, as most of its members retain communion with the Church of England, and they only hold their views as a supplementary pious opinion.

History of Movement.

The first person who seems to have broached these views was the eccentric Richard Brothers (1757-1824), who styled himself "Nephew of the Almighty," and, in his "Revealed Knowledge" (1794), claimed to be descended from David and prophesied that he would be revealed as prince of the Hebrews on Nov. 19, 1795. In 1822 Brothers published his "Correct Account of the Invasion of England by the Saxons, Showing the English Nation to be Descendants of the Lost Ten Tribes," which may be regarded as the foundation of the movement. He was followed by J. Wilson ("Our Israelitish Origin," 1845), who placed the theory upon its present basis; by W. Carpenter ("Israelites Found"), and by F. R. A. Glover ("England the Remnant of Judah"); and the movement obtained a somewhat distinguished adherent in C. Piazzi Smith, astronomer royal for Scotland, who in his bizarre work, "Our Inheritance in the Great Pyramid," attempted to prop up the cause by showing the identity of British weights and measures with those of the ancient Egyptians and Hebrews. The chief representative, however, in England was Edward Hine, of whose "Identification of the British Nation with Lost Israel," London, 1871, a quarter million copies are said to have been sold. He also published for several years a weekly journal, "The Nation's Leader," and a monthly magazine, "Life from the Dead." In America the chief leaders of the movement appear to have been G. W. Greenwood, who published a monthly journal, "Heir of the World," New York, 1880, and Rev. W. H. Poole, of Detroit, Mich. The theory has even extended to Germany, though it does not appear to have attracted much notice there. A work by S. Backhaus, "Die Germanen ein Semitischer Volksstamm," appeared in Berlin in 1878.

Entry for Anti-Semitism:

A modern word expressing antagonism to the political and social equality of Jews.

The term "Anti-Semitism" has its origin in the ethnological theory that the Jews, as Semites, are entirely different from the Aryan, or Indo-European, populations and can never be amalgamated with them. The word implies that the Jews are not opposed on account of their religion, but on account of their racial characteristics. As such are mentioned: greed, a special aptitude for money-making, aversion to hard work, clannishness and obtrusiveness, lack of social tact, and especially of patriotism. Finally, the term is used to justify resentment for every crime or objectionable act committed by any individual Jew.

History of the Term.

It is, however, impossible to trace with certainty the first use of the word. It does not appear to have been coined before the end of the seventies, when the German empire entered upon a course widely different from its former policy. The nature of the word implies the preexistence of the word and idea of Semitism, which has itself a history that must be traced. August Ludwig von Schlüzer (1735-1809) and Johann Gottfried Eichhorn (1752-1827), both professors in Göttingen, were the first to use the term "Semitic nations" (Eichhorn, "Historisch-Kritische Einleitung in das Alte Testament," 2d ed., 1787, p. 45; idem, "Repertorium," 1781, i. 61; "Ausland," 1872, p. 1034) in a philological sense; but the ethnical distinctness of Semitic nations was not a generally accepted theory until Franz Bopp (1791-1867), in his "Comparative Grammar" (1833-52), had created the correlative term of "Indo-Germanic languages," called by the French school "Indo-European," and by the English "Aryan." What was originally a merely linguistic term soon became an ethnical designation based on the results of comparative philology. The first who attempted to draw a picture of the ethnical character of the Semites as contradistinguished from the Aryans seems to have been Christian Lassen (1800-76), professor at Bonn, who, in his "Indische Altertumskunde," Bonn, 1844-61, i. 414, says:

"Civilization has been the gift of but a few nations. Of other races only Egyptians and Chinese, and of the Caucasian only Semites and Aryans, have built up human civilization. History proves that Semites do not possess the harmony of psychical forces which distinguishes the Aryans. The Semite is selfish and exclusive. He possesses a sharp intellect which enables him to make use of the opportunities created by others, as we find it in the history of the Phenicians and, later on, of the Arabs."

Renan on the Jews.

Independently of Lassen, Ernest Renan (1823-92) asserted the same principle of the inferiority of the Semites, which inferiority he claims to have been the first to recognize ("Histoire Générale et Système Comparé des Langues Sémitiques," 5th ed., 1878, p. 4). "The two words," he says, "which have served until now as a symbol for the progress of the human mind toward truth, science, and philosophy, were foreign to them" (ib. p. 3). Stronger still are Renan's expressions in his essays on the history of religion ("Études d'Histoire Religieuse," 5th ed., Paris, 1862). Therein he claims for the Aryans all the great military, political, and intellectual movements in the world's history; while the Semites must be credited with the religious movements (p. 85). The Semites have never had any comprehension of civilization in the sense in which we understand the word; they were at no time public-spirited (p. 88). Intolerance was the natural consequence of their monotheism (p. 87), which, if not imported from the Semitic world, would have remained foreign to the Aryans, who were impressed with the variety of the universe (p. 85). The Jewish people, while not progressive, claimed that the future was theirs; and this illogical position accounts for the hatred which eighteen centuries were unable to mitigate (p. 130).

Application to Ethnology.

While Renan, in the preface to his history of the Semitic languages, warned against wresting individual passages from the context, and insisted that the racial element was counterbalanced by many other influences; while he said that the Jews of our age are not Semites, but modern men; and while he even denied the existence of a Jewish race ("Le Judaïsme comme Race et comme Religion," Paris, 1883), it was, nevertheless, he who had forged the arms which the anti-Semites used in their attacks on Jews and Judaism. For they could refer to the testimony of a scholar and a freethinker, when they repeated in reference to the Jews what he had said of the Semites—namely, that they lacked personal courage; that their moral ideal was different from "ours"; that they were selfish, chiefly negative, and altogether "une race incomplète." Many other representatives of the young science of ethnology—which was constantly advanced by the development of comparative philology—proceeded to draw lines of demarcation between Semitic and Aryan civilization (Philippson, "Weltbewegende Fragen," i. 31, Leipsic, 1868). Of the immense literature on the subject an article, published in the "Ausland," a weekly edited by Friedrich von Hellwald, 1872, pp. 901 et seq. and 957 et seq., seems to have exercised a great influence upon the growth of the anti-Semitic movement, although the anonymous author (afterward acknowledged by von Hellwald to be himself) is in no way original, but has mainly copied the words of Renan. He says:

"The Jews are not merely a different religious community, but—and this is to us the most important factor—ethnically an altogether different race. The European feels instinctively that the Jew is a stranger who immigrated from Asia. The so-called prejudice is a natural sentiment. Civilization will overcome the antipathy against the Israelite who merely professes another religion, but never that against the racially different Jew. The Jew is cosmopolitan, and possesses a certain astuteness which makes him the master of the honest Aryan. In eastern Europe the Jew is the cancer slowly eating into the flesh of the other nations. Exploitation of the people is his only aim. Selfishness and lack of personal courage are his chief characteristics; self-sacrifice and patriotism are altogether foreign to him."

It is claimed that, although the Jews have amalgamated to a considerable extent with their surroundings, they no longer adopt commercial pursuits exclusively, have their children educated in the public schools, and are eager to give up their peculiarities, the Jew remains a separate individuality, and, while he participates in the spiritual and political work of the nation, his desire is to make it subservient to the rule of Judaism (Roeder, "Zeitschrift für die Gesammten Staatswissenschaften," 1871, No. 3; Jules Richard, in "Le Constitutionnel," Nov. 24, 1872).

The Old Hatred of the Jews.

While the term Anti-Semitism should be restricted in its use to the modern movements against the Jews, in its wider sense it may be said to include the persecution of the Jews at all times and among all nations as professors of a separate religion or as a people having a distinct nationality. Its history begins with the period of the Book of Esther, when the charge was first made that the Jews are a "people scattered abroad and dispersed among the people in all the provinces of thy kingdom; and their laws are diverse from all people; neither keep they the king's laws; therefore it is not for the king's profit to suffer them" (Esth. iii. 8). The Jews, having met with nations who disputed their claim of superiority, were, in the Hellenized Orient and later on in the Roman world, the targets of hatred combined with contempt. The charges preferred against them were that they hated all other men; that they were clannish (ἀμιζία) and irreligious (ἀθεότης); that they had not participated in the work of civilization; that they had become a menace to the Roman empire; that their bodies emitted a peculiar odor; that they sacrificed annually a Greek; and that they were descendants of lepers, who had been expelled from Egypt (Schürer, "Gesch." 3d ed., iii. 397-420, Leipsic, 1898; Reinach, "Textes d'Auteurs Grecs et Romains Relatifs auJudaïsme," 1895; Vogelstein and Rieger, "Gesch. der Juden in Rom," Berlin, 1896).

Entry for Chamerlain, Houston Stewart:

Anglo-German musical critic and anti-Semitic writer; born Sept. 9, 1855, at Portsmouth, England; son of Admiral W. C. Chamberlain. He received his early education abroad, being sent to France, where he went to school at Versailles. Subsequently he removed to Switzerland and studied science at Geneva University, and finally he settled in Austria, where he became privat-docent in philosophy at the University of Vienna.
Besides several works on Richard Wagner, from whom he probably imbibed much of his anti-Semitism, he has attracted attention by his chief work, "Die Grundlagen des 19. Jahrhunderts," [Foundation of the 19th Century] Munich, 1899; 4th ed., 1902. In this he regards all history as a conflict between the Aryans and the Semites; the latter being regarded as a special genus, "homo Syriacus," of which the Jew, "homo Judaicus," is a typical species. Race rules history; and the influence of the Semites in the early forms of Christianity broke down the ancient world, which had to be revived by the new blood of Germanism against which the Roman Catholic Church is perpetually struggling in order to introduce once more the abstract universalism of the Semite. Chamberlain dreads a world-supremacy on the part of the Jews, and attacks in every way their intellectual, moral, and religious qualities. While evincing great admiration for the character and views of Jesus, so great is his anti-Semitic bias that he denies Jesus' Jewish origin.
Chamberlain's journalistic style and wide generalizations have attracted considerable attention, especially in German-Jewish journalism... .

Entry for Messiah:

Entry for Zionism:

Movement looking toward the segregation of the Jewish people upon a national basis and in a particular home of its own; specifically, the modern form of the movement that seeks for the Jews "a publicly and legally assured home in Palestine," as initiated by Theodor Herzl in 1896, and since then dominating Jewish history. It seems that the designation, to distinguish the movement from the activity of the Chovevei Zion, was first used by Matthias Acher (Birnbaum) in his paper "Selbstemancipation," 1886 (see "Ost und West," 1902, p. 576; Aḥad ha-'Am, "'Al Parashat Derakim," p. 93, Berlin, 1903).

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Entry for Hess, Moses:

Entry for Herzl, Theodor:

Entry for Caesar, Caius Julius:

Roman dictator, consul, and conqueror; born July 12, 100 B.C. (according to Mommsen, 102 B.C.); assassinated March 15, 44 B.C. Cæsar's attitude toward the Jews is manifest from the many enactments issued in their favor by him and by the senate.
The first decree, dated probably July, 47 B.C., registered in both Greek and Latin on a table of brass and preserved in the public records, concerns Hyrcanus, the son of Alexander, high priest and ethnarch of the Jews. Julius Cæsar, with the approbation of the senate, recognizes the services rendered by Hyrcanus to the empire, both in peace and in war. He mentions the aid given by Hyrcanus with his 1,500 soldiers in the Alexandrian war, and speaks of the personal valor of Hyrcanus. In recognition of these services he grants Hyrcanus and the Jews certain privileges (Josephus, "Ant." xiv. 10, § 2).
In another decree of probably the same date, Cæsar determines "That the Jews shall possess Jerusalem, and may encompass that city with walls; and that Hyrcanus, the son of Alexander, the high priest and ethnarch of the Jews, retain it in the manner he himself pleases; and that the Jews be allowed to deduct out of their tribute, every second year the land is let [in the Sabbatical period], a corus of that tribute; and that the tribute they pay be not let to farm, nor that they pay always the same tribute" (ib. xiv. 10, § 5).
The next decree, dated before Dec., 47 B.C., ordains that all the country of the Jews pay a tribute to the city of Jerusalem except during the Sabbatical year, with permanent exemption for Joppa, which, as formerly, is to belong to them. It also prohibits the raising of auxiliaries and the exacting of money for winter quarters within the bounds of Judea. This decree provides for an annual tribute to Hyrcanus and his sons, the Sabbatical yearexcepted. It ordains that the original ordinances in regard to the high priests of the Jews shall remain in force, and that Hyrcanus and the Jews retain those places and countries which belonged to the kings of Syria and Phenicia. The following two decrees confirm the privileges granted to Hyrcanus and his children. As the ally of Rome he is to send and receive ambassadors (ib. § 6).
The following two decrees are of the same date: "That Hyrcanus and his children bear over the nation of the Jews, and have the profits of the places to them bequeathed; and that he, as the high priest and ethnarch of the Jews, defend those that are injured; and that ambassadors be sent to Hyrcanus, the son of Alexander, the high priest of the Jews, that may discourse with him about a league of friendship and mutual assistance; and that a table of brass containing the promises be openly proposed in the capitol, and at Sidon, and Tyre, and Ascalon, and in the temple, engraven in Roman and Greek letters: that this decree may also be communicated to the questors and pretors of the several cities, and to the friends of the Jews; and that the ambassadors may have presents made them, and that these decrees be sent everywhere" (ib. § 3).
"Caius Cæsar, imperator, dictator, consul, hath granted, That out of regard to the honor, and virtue, and kindness of the man, and for the advantage of the senate, and of the people of Rome, Hyrcanus, the son of Alexander, both he and his children, be high priests and priests of Jerusalem, and of the Jewish nation, by the same right, and according to the same laws, by which their progenitors have held the priesthood" (ib. § 4).
The last decree of Cæsar, dated Feb., 44 B.C., again mentions the services rendered by Hyrcanus and the Jews, and calls for suitable recognition on the part of the Senate and the people of Rome (ib. § 7).
Following is a summary of the decrees of the consuls during the rule of Julius Cæsar, as recorded in Josephus:
  • Sept. 19, 49 B.C.: Report on the public proceedings at Ephesus concerning the exemption of the Jews of Asia Minor from military service on account of their religion, and the decree in this sense of the consul Lucius Lentulus ("Ant." xiv. 10, § 19).
  • Sept. 19, 49 B.C.: Short report on the preliminary proceedings on the same question on the part of the military authorities (ib. § 18).
  • Sept. 19, 49 B.C.: Short declaration of the consul Lucius Lentulus concerning the exemption of the Jews from military service (ib. § 16).
  • Sept. 20, 49 B.C.: Communication of Titus Appius Balbus to the magistrate of Ephesus, to the effect that on his intercession for them, the consul Lucius Lentulus agreed to the exemption, and that the high Roman officials Lucius Antonius and Phanius sanctioned the decree (ib. § 13).
  • Probably 49 B.C.: Message of Lucius Antonius to the magistrates of Sardes, to the effect that the Jews of that city having an assembly of their own, according to the laws of their forefathers, he gives order that their privileges be preserved (ib. § 17).
  • May, 48 B.C.: Proclamation of the magistrates of the island of Delos, that, according to the decree of the consul Lentulus, the Jews shall be exempted from entering the army (ib. § 14).
  • Probably at the beginning of 46 B. C.: Reprimand of a proconsul to the people of Parium on account of their hostile attitude toward their Jewish fellow-citizens concerning their public assemblies and their contributions to the Temple (ib. § 8).
  • 46-45 B.C.: Admonitory letter of the proconsul Publius Servilius to the magistrate of Miletus that the Jews should not be disturbed in the execution of their religious customs (ib. § 21).
  • 46-45 B.C.: Reply of the Laodiceans to the proconsul of Asia, that, in obedience to injunctions received from him, they will not disturb the religious customs and assemblies of the Jews (ib.§ 20).
  • 46-45 B.C.: Decree of the Sardians, upon the representation of the pretors, granting the Jews religious liberty, setting apart for them a place for public worship, and even directing those that have charge of the provisions of the city to "take care that such sorts of food as they esteem fit for their eating may be imported into the city" (ib. § 24).
  • 46-45 B.C.: Decree of the people of Halicarnassus to the effect that, in accordance with privileges granted by the Romans, they shall not disturb the religious customs and assemblies of Jews (ib. § 23).
  • Feb., 44 B.C.: Testimony of the twelve questors, that the Senate had passed a decree in favor of the Jews, but that this decree had not hitherto been brought into the treasury, and that now the Senate and the consuls Dolabella and Marcus order that these decrees shall be "put into the public tables" and be "put upon the double tables" (ib. § 10).(For a critical survey of these edicts see Grätz, "Gesch. der Juden," 3d ed., iii., note 9, pp. 660-668; Schürer, "Gesch." 3d ed., iii. 56 et seq., 67, note 30).
These decrees show clearly that Julius Cæsar in his broad and statesmanlike manner fully recognized the rights and claims of the Jews as an important element of the Roman empire.
"This Judaism," says Mommsen ("Römische Gesch." iii. 549-555), "although not the most pleasing feature in the nowhere pleasing picture of the mixture of nations which then prevailed, was nevertheless a historical element developing itself in the natural course of things, which the statesman could neither ignore nor combat, and which Cæsar on the contrary, just like his predecessor, Alexander, with correct discernment of the circumstances, fostered as far as possible. While Alexander, by laying the foundation of Alexandrian Judaism, did not much less to found the Jewish nation than its own King David by planning the Temple of Jerusalem, Cæsar also advanced the interests of the Jews in Alexandria and in Rome by special favors and privileges, and protected in particular their peculiar worship against the Roman as well as against the Greek local priests." "Cæsar's extraordinary keenness as a statesman," says F. Rosenthal (in "Monatsschrift," 1879, p. 321), "recognized in the Jews most useful collaborators in his extensive plans for the creation of a great Roman body politic. Distributed as they were over the greatest part of the Roman empire, yet acting in harmony with one another, they were as much on this account as by reason of their commercial instincts the intermediators between Orient and Occident."
"The Jews were destined to play no insignificant part in the new state of Cæsar," says Mommsen (ib.). Even later, when by a decree of Cæsar all religious or political associations (collegia) were forbidden, except those which had existed from very remote times, the same decree permitted the Jews, "our friends and confederates . . . to gather themselves together according to the customs and laws of their forefathers, to bring in their contributions, and to make their common suppers" (Josephus, "Ant." xiv. 10, § 8; Suetonius, "Cæsar," 42). By these and other edicts of Cæsar the Jewish religion was recognized in the Roman empire as "religio licita" (Tertullian, "Apologia," xxi.; Schürer, "Gesch." 3d ed., iii. 69).
"When Cæsar attained the power," says Huidekoper("Judaism in Rome," p. 6), "we find a procession annually of Roman dignitaries, on the first day of the Passover, for the purpose of throwing away idol-images; and at his funeral Jews were conspicuous." Mommsen quotes a contemporary orator (Cicero) as saying that Roman officials in the provinces had to be extremely careful not to offend a Jew, otherwise they were liable to be hissed on their return to Rome by the plebeians.
During the Pompeian wars Cæsar, without associates (Mommsen, l.c. iii. 8, 374), surrounded only by military aids and political agents, made use of the brilliant abilities of Aristobulus II., and, out of hatred to Pompey, gave the former his freedom and sent him with two legions into Syria to create a diversion in Cæsar's favor (Josephus, "Ant." xiv. 7, § 4). Macrobius hints ("Saturnaliorum Conviviorum," i.) that during the Pompeian wars the Jewish contingent in Cæsar's army was by no means an unimportant one; that at his court and in his councils the Jews were influential in political and financial matters. The great historical significance of Cæsar's relations with the Jews is brought out strikingly by their military services under him during the Egyptian campaign.
For all his daring and energy, and notwithstanding the importance of his entering Egypt, Cæsar would not have landed had he not been certain of support from the Jews of the country. His resources were scanty—scarcely two legions of infantry and a small detachment of cavalry—in all about 5,000 men. With such a handful of soldiers even Cæsar could not expect a successful conflict with the powerful Egyptian army. There is historical evidence that organized local bands of Jews came to his assistance. The Jews of Egypt, numbering at that time, according to Manfrin, about a million, were evidently on his side before he came to Egypt; and, in order to render him efficient service, they suspended their party quarrels. With Mithridates there entered Egypt under the leadership of Antipater a detachment of troops numbering 1,500, or, according to Josephus (l.c. xiv. 8, § 1), 3,000, composed exclusively of Jews.
According to the testimony of Josephus, the taking of Pelusium, which, from the Syrian side, was the key to Egypt, was largely due to the personal bravery and skill of Antipater, who destroyed a portion of the city wall. With his Jewish followers he was the first to enter the city, thus clearing the way for Mithridates' army. As a reward for his services Cæsar gave to Antipater the privilege of a citizen of Rome, and made him procurator of Judea (Josephus, ib. 8, § 3).
After the Alexandrian campaign Cæsar granted many favors and privileges to Judea and to the Jews in general. He gave the former the right of "status clientis"—the broadest autonomy that countries subject to Rome could enjoy. Besides this right Cæsar allowed Judea to utilize the city of Joppa and its harbor, since the latter was indispensable to Jerusalem for intercourse with its colonies.
Cicero's defense of Flaccus, who confiscated the gold collected for the Temple in Jerusalem, shows that the Oligarchic party stood in fear of Cæsar's connection with the Jewish colonies. They suspected that the money collected for the Temple was, in part at least, used for the carrying out of Cæsar's political plans. In fact, the whole defense ("Pro Flacco") was an indirect accusation of Cæsar. By the prohibition of all but Jewish associations, he apparently expressed his belief in the favorable influence of the political principle of Judaism and in its superiority over the other Eastern religions that had been brought to Rome.
But while the mass of the Roman population favored Cæsar, that was not sufficient for his election. Large sums of money were required for this purpose, and Cæsar had hardly any means of his own. When he was leaving for Spain his debts amounted to $3,400,000 (according to some historical documents, $4,800,000); and it appears that a few of his creditors importuned him. Possibly the Jewish colonies supplied funds. These colonies extended all over Egypt, in Asia from the shores of the Pontus Euxinus to the Euphrates, and in Europe as far as Prague and into Gallia.
On the other hand, the Cæsarean period produced an ill-will toward the Jews that gradually grew to hatred and has survived to the present day.
Reference can be here made to the work of Manfrin concerning the important rôle Cæsar assigned to monotheistic Judaism in his new empire, but his views are open to question.
Renan ascribes to Cæsar very broad and liberal views. "He truly conceived," he says, "liberty of conscience in a sense of absolute neutrality in the state, as enlightened nations now do. He desired the freedom of all provincial worship, and, if he had lived, he doubtless would have prevented the reaction toward strictness which, from the days of Tiberius, led the central government to insist on too much preponderance for the Roman worship. The Jews in Alexandria had their privileges confirmed. The free exercise of Jewish worship was stipulated in the principal towns of Asia Minor. The Jews throughout the world regretted the death of the dictator. Among the numerous provincials who mourned the Ides of March, it was remarked that Jews for several months came to make final lamentation over his burial-place" ("Histoire du Peuple d'Israel," v. 196, 197).