Skip to main content Accessibility help
  • Print publication year: 2006
  • Online publication date: March 2008

2 - The Diaspora from 66 to c. 235 ce

This chapter describes cultural differences and Roman administrative boundaries that distinguished the Jewish communities of Egypt from those in Cyrenaica. Recent works on Diaspora Judaism have said little about western North Africa. The physical remains for the period 66-235 CE are meager compared to the richness of evidence from Egypt and Cyrenaica. The earliest extant synagogue, at Hammam-Lif, dates from the late fourth or early fifth century. Evidence for Jewish communities in Asia Minor begins in the third century BCE and continues through the sixth century CE and beyond. Sources preserved by Josephus attest to the role of individual Babylonian Jews in local politics before 70. For the years 70-235, the issue of Jewish self-government in Babylonia is reduced to the question of whether one can find evidence of the exilarchate in this era. Relatively ample evidence is available on the Babylonian Exilarch from the amoraic through Islamic eras.
Recommend this book

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this book to your organisation's collection.

The Cambridge History of Judaism
  • Online ISBN: 9781139055130
  • Book DOI:
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to *
Ameling, W., “Die jüdischen Gemeinden im antiken Kleinasien,” in Jütte, R. and Kustermann, A. P. (eds.), Jüdische Gemeinden und Organisationsformen {JW1} von der Antike bis zur Gegenwart (Vienna, 1996).
Applebaum, S., Jews and Greeks in Ancient Cyrene (Leiden, 1979).
Bagnall, R. S., and Frier, B. W., The Demography of Roman Egypt (Cambridge, 1994).
Barclay, J. M. G., Jews in the Mediterranean Diaspora from Alexander to Trajan (323 BCE–117 CE) (Edinburgh, 1996).
Barnes, T. D., “Trajan and the Jews,” Journal of Jewish Studies 40 (1989).
Barnes, T. D., Tertullian (Oxford, 1971, issued with corrections and postscript, 1985).
Baron, S. W., A Social and Religious History of the Jews, 2nd ed., II (New York, 1952).
Bauer, W., Orthodoxy and Heresy in Earliest Christianity, 2nd ed. (Philadelphia, 1971).
Bauer, W., Orthodoxy and Heresy in Earliest Christianity, ed. Kraft, R. A. and Krodel, G. (Philadelphia, 1971).
Bivar, A. D. H., “The Political History of Iran under the Arsacids,” in Yarshater, E. (ed.), Cambridge History of Iran, III/I (Cambridge, 1983)
Bobertz, C., “For the Vineyard of the Lord of Hosts was the House of Israel: Cyprian of Carthage and the Jews,” Jewish Quarterly Review 82 (1991).
Bonz, M. P., “The Jewish Community of Ancient Sardis: A Reassessment of Its Rise to Prominence,” Harvard Studies in Classical Philology 93 (1990).
Brody, R., The Geonim of Babylonia and the Shaping of Medieval Jewish Culture (New Haven, 1998).
Broeck, R., “Juden und Christen in Alexandrien im 2. und 3. Jahrhundert,” in Amersfoort, J. and Oort, J. (eds.), Juden und Christen in der Antike (Kampen, 1990).
Brooks, R., “Straw Dogs and Scholarly Ecumenism,” in Kannengiesser, C. and Peterson, W. L. (eds.), Origen of Alexandria (Notre Dame, 1988).
Brooten, B. J., Women Leaders in the Ancient Synagogue: Inscriptional Evidence and Background Issues (Chico, 1982).
Crawford, J. S., “Jews, Christians and Polytheists in Late-Antique Sardis,” in Fine, S. (ed.), Jews, Christians, and Polytheists in the Ancient Synagogue: Cultural Interaction in the Graeco-Roman Period (London, 1999).
Cross, F. M., “The Hebrew Inscriptions from Sardis,” Harvard Theological Review 95 (2002).
Delattre, A. -L., Gamart ou la nécropole juive de Carthage (Lyons, 1895).
Efroymsen, D., “Tertullian’s Anti-Jewish Rhetoric: Guilt by Association,” Union Seminary Quarterly Review 36 (1980).
Feldman, L. H., Jew and Gentile in the Ancient World: Attitudes and Interactions from Alexander to Justinian (Princeton, 1993).
Ferron, J., “Inscriptions juives de Carthage,” Cahiers de Byrsa 32 (1951).
Fikhman, I. F., “Les Juifs d’Egypte à l’époque byzantine d’après les papyrus publiés depuis la parution du Corpus Papyrorum Judaicarum III,” Scripta Classica Israelica 15 (1996).
Fine, S. (ed.), Sacred Realm: The Emergence of the Synagogue in the Ancient World (New York, 1996).
Frankfurter, D., “Lest Egypt’s City be Deserted,” Journal of Jewish Studies 43 (1992).
Frye, R., The History of Ancient Iran (Munich, 1983).
Gafni, I. M., “The Institution of Marriage in Rabbinic Times,” in Kraemer, D. (ed.), The Jewish Family: Metaphor and Memory (New York, 1989).
Gafni, I. M., Babylonian Jewry and Its Institutions in the Period of the Talmud (Jerusalem, 1975) (Hebrew).
Gafni, I. M., Land, Center, and Diaspora: Jewish Constructs in Late Antiquity, JSPSS 21 (Sheffield, 1997).
Gafni, I. M., The Jews of Babylonia in the Talmudic Era: A Social and Cultural History (Jerusalem, 1990) (Hebrew).
Goodblatt, D., “Judaea between the Revolts,” in Oppenheimer, A. (ed.), Jüdische Geschichte in hellenistisch-römischer Zeit: Wege der Forschung: Vom alten zum neuen Schürer (Munich, 1999).
Goodblatt, D., Rabbinic Instruction in Sasanian Babylonia (Leiden, 1975).
Goodenough, E. R., Jewish Symbols in the Greco-Roman Period, IXXI (New York, 1964).
Goodman, M., “Nerva, the Fiscus Judaicus and Jewish Identity,” Journal of Roman Studies 79 (1989).
Goodman, M. (ed.), Jews in a Graeco-Roman World (Oxford, 1998).
Griggs, C. W., Early Egyptian Christianity (Leiden, 1990).
Gutmann, J. (ed.), The Dura-Europos Synagogue: A Re-evaluation (1932–1992) (Atlanta, 1992).
Haas, C. C., Alexandria in Late Antiquity (Baltimore, 1997).
Habermann, W., Zur Wasserversorgung einer Metropole im kaiserzeitlichen Ägypten (Munich, 2000).
Hachlili, R., Ancient Jewish Art and Archaeology in the Diaspora (Leiden, 1998).
Haelst, J., Catalogue papyrus littéraires juifs et chrétiennes (Paris, 1976).
Hengel, M., “Messianische Hoffnung und politischer ‘Radikalismus’ in der jüdisch- hellenistischen Diaspora: Zur Frage der Voraussetzungen der jüdischen Aufstandes unter Trajan 115–7 n.Chr.,” in Hellholm, D. (ed.), Apocalypticism in the Ancient Mediterranean World and the Near East, Proceedings of the International Colloquium at Uppsala 1979 (Tübingen, 1989).
Henten, J. W., and Horst, P. W. (eds.), Studies in Early Jewish Epigraphy (Leiden, 1994).
Hirschberg, H. Z., A History of the Jews of North Africa, 2 vols. (Leiden, 19741981).
Horbury, W., “The Beginnings of the Jewish Revolt under Trajan,” in Schäfer, P. (ed.), Geschichte–Tradition–Reflexion: Festschrift für Martin Hengel zum 70 Geburstag I (Tübingen, 1996).
Horbury, W., Jews and Christians in Contact and Controversy (Edinburgh, 1998).
Isaac, B., and Oppenheimer, A., Studies on the Jewish Diaspora in the Hellenistic and Roman Periods (Tel-Aviv, 1996).
Jakab, Attila, “Le Judaïsme hellénisé d’Alexandrie depuis la fondation de la ville jusqu’à la révolte sous Trajan,” Henoch 21 (1999).
Le Bohec, Y., “Juifs et judaisants dans l’Afrique romaine. Remarques onomastique,” Antiquités africaines 17 (1981).
Kasher, A., The Jews in Hellenistic and Roman Egypt (Tübingen, 1985).
Kasher, A., “Some Comments on the Jewish Uprising in Egypt in the Time of Trajan,” Journal of Jewish Studies 27 (1976).
Kee, H. C. and Cohick, L. H. (eds.), Evolution of the Synagogue: Problems and Progress (Harrisburg, 1999)
Kerkeslager, A., “Maintaining Jewish Identity in the Greek Gymnasium: A ‘Jewish Load,’ in CPJ 3.519,” Journal for the Study of Judaism in the Persian, Hellenistic and Roman Period 28 (1997).
Kerkeslager, A., “Maintaining Jewish Identity in the Greek Gymnasium,” Journal for the Study of Judaism in the Persian, Hellenistic and Roman Period (Supplements) 28 (1997).
Klein-Franke, F., “A Hebrew Lamentation from Egypt,” Zeitschrift für Papyrologie und Epigraphik 51 (1983)
Koester, H., History and Literature of Early Christianity, 2nd ed. (New York, 2000).
Kotansky, R., Greek Magical Amulets (Opladen, 1994).
Kraeling, C. H., The Excavations at Dura-Europos, Final Reports, VIII/I: The Synagogue (New Haven, 1956; augmented ed., New York, 1979).
Kroll, J. H., “The Greek Inscriptions of the Sardis Synagogue,” Harvard Theological Review 94 (2001).
Lange, N. R. M., Origen and the Jews (Cambridge, 1976).
Laronde, A., Cyrène et la Libye hellénistique: Libykai historiai de l’époque républicaine au principat d’Auguste (Paris, 1987).
Le Bohec, Y., “Inscriptions juives et judaisant de l’Afrique romaine,” Antiquités africaines 17 (1981).
Bohec, Y., “Les Sources archéologique du Judaisme Africain sous l’empire romain,” in Iancu, C. and Lassere, J. -M. (eds.), Juifs et judaisme dans l’Afrique du Nord dans l’antiquité et le haut moyen-âge (Montpelier, 1985).
Levine, L. I., “Synagogue Leadership: The Case of the Archisynagogue,” in Goodman, M. (ed.), Jews in a Graeco-Roman World (Oxford, 1998).
Levine, L. I., The Ancient Synagogue: The First Thousand Years (New York, 2000).
Levinskaya, I., The Book of Acts in its Diaspora Setting (Grand Rapids, 1996).
Lieu, J., Image and Reality: The Jews in the World of the Christians in the Second Century (Edinburgh, 1996).
Lund, J., “A Synagogue at Carthage? Menorah Lamps from the Danish Excavation,” JRA 8 (1995).
Meir, O., Rabbi Judah the Patriarch: Palestinian and Babylonian Portrait of a Leader (Tel-Aviv, 1999).
Mélèze-Modrzejewski, J., The Jews of Egypt: From Ramses II to Hadrian (Philadelphia, 1995).
Miranda, E., “La comunità giudaica di Hierapolis di Frigia,” in Epigraphica Anatolica 31 (1999).
Modrzejewski, J. M., “Ioudaioi apheremenoi: La Fin de la communauté juive d’É gypte (115–117 de n.è),” in Thuer, G. (ed.), Symposion 1985. Vorträge zur griechischen und hellenistischen Rechtsgeschichte (Ringberg, 24–26 July 1985) (Cologne, 1989).
Musurillo, H., Le Martyre de Pionios, eds. Robert, L. with Bowersock, G. W. and Jones, C. P. (Washington, DC, 1994).
Neusner, J., A History of the Jews in Babylonia, I: The Parthian Period, Studia Post-Biblica XI, 2nd printing, rev. (Leiden, 1969).
Neusner, J., A History of the Jews in Babylonia, 5 vols. (Leiden, 19651970).
Oppenheimer, A., Babylonia Judaica in the Talmudic Period, Beihefte zum Tübinger Atlas des vorderen Orients, Reihe B, Nr. 47 (Weisbaden, 1983).
Overman, J. A., and MacLennan, R. S. (eds.), Diaspora Jews and Judaism: Essays in Honor of, and in Dialogue with, A. Thomas Kraabel (Atlanta, 1992).
Paget, J. C., “Clement of Alexandria and the Jews,” Scottish Journal of Theology 51 (1998).
Pearson, B. A., Gnosticism, Judaism, and Egyptian Christianity (Minneapolis, 1990).
Pearson, B. A., and Goehring, J. E. (eds.), The Roots of Egyptian Christianity (Philadelphia, 1986).
PucciZeev, M., Jewish Rights in the Roman World (Tübingen, 1998).
Pucci, M., La Rivolta Ebraica al Tempo di Traiano (Pisa, 1981).
Pucci Ben Zeev, M., Jewish Rights in the Roman World (Tübingen, 1998).
Rajak, T., and Noy, D., “Archisynagogoi: Office Titles and Social Status in the Graeco-Roman Synagogue,” Journal of Roman Studies 83 (1993).
Rajak, T., The Jewish Dialogue with Greece and Rome: Studies in Cultural and Social Interaction (Leiden, 2001).
Reynolds, J., and Tannenbaum, R., Jews and Godfearers at Aphrodisias (Cambridge, 1987).
Rives, J., Religion and Authority in Roman Carthage from Augustus to Constantine (Oxford, 1995).
Roberts, C. H., Manuscript, Society and Belief in Early Christian Egypt (London, 1979).
Rutgers, L. V., The Hidden Heritage of Diaspora Judaism (Leuven, 1998).
Salvaterra, C., “L’amministrazione fiscale in una societa multietnica,” in Mooren, L. (ed.), Politics, Administration and Society in the Hellenistic and Roman World (Leuven, 2000).
Schürer, E. (ed.), Schürer, E. (ed.), The History of the Jewish People in the Age of Jesus Christ, rev. and ed. by Vermes, G., Millar, F., and Black, M., 3 vols. (Edinburgh, 19731987).
Segal, J. B., “The Jews of North Mesopotamia,” in Grintz, J. M. and Liver, J. (eds.), Studies in the Bible Presented to Professor M. H. Segal (Jerusalem, 1964).
Setzer, C., “Jews, Jewish Christians and Judaizers in North Africa,” in Wiles, V., Brown, A., and Snyder, G. (eds.), Putting Body and Soul Together. Essays in Honor of Robin Scroggs (Valley Forge, 1997).
Sirat, C. et al., Les Papyrus en caractères Hébraiques trouvés en É gypte (Paris, 1985), 22
Smallwood, E. M., The Jews under Roman Rule (Leiden, 1976).
Solin, H., “Juden und Syrer im westlichen Teil der römischen Welt: Eine ethnische-demographische Studie mit besonderer Berucksichtigung der sprachlichen Zustande,” Aufstieg und Niedergang der römischen Welt 2/29/2 (1983).
Strack, H. L., and Stemberger, G. Introduction to the Talmud and Midrash, trans. Brockmuehl, M. (Minneapolis, 1992).
Trebilco, P. R., Jewish Communities in Asia Minor (Cambridge, 1991).
Wander, B., Gottesfürchtige und Sympathisanten (Tübingen, 1998).
White, L. M., “Synagogue and Society in Imperial Ostia: Archaeological and Epigraphic Evidence,” Harvard Theological Review 90 (1997).
Williams, M. H., “The Jews and Godfearers Inscription from Aphrodisias: A Case of Patriarchal Interference in Early Third Century Caria?Historia 41 (1992).
Williams, M. H., The Jews among the Greeks and Romans: A Diaspora Sourcebook (London, 1998).