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Jewish-Roman Rebellions

Decent Essays
There is no question that throughout the history of Rome its rulers sought to expand its empire. Even long after the period of Jewish-Roman conflict, when Rome had dramatically decreased its holdings due to the Goths, Justinian still sought to expand Rome to the point of bankrupting the falling empire. Power, therefore, is a visible cause of all conflicts between Rome and their subjects. In terms of the Jewish-Roman rebellions, however, taxation, is arguably a deeper cause. Appian of Alexandria, a Roman historian, explained that the taxes on the Jewish subjects surpassed those of the other Roman subjects in other territories.[15] His discussion of these taxes directly follows an explanation of the period with which these taxes were…show more content…
Retaliatory governance is simply defined as implementing officers and laws to intentionally oppress those who resist a regime. Trajan and his correspondence with one of his magistrates, Pliny the Younger, provide a prime example of this poor governance. Throughout the the letters there are references to advantageous taxation, where the pair discussed manipulating the law through older ordinances to benefit the empire and the ensuing but necessary confusion that could be expected.[18] These letters also included citizenship requests and discussions of appointments, another source of great contention between the Romans and their Jewish subjects. The mere system of Roman rule was oppressive toward the Jews. They were not a part of the government and leaders were chosen with no regard to their culture or faith. Arguably, due to the conflicts between the Romans and the Jews the appointments to their territories, while logical for Rome, were hostile toward the Jews. In particular, the appointment of Titus, the son of Vespasian, after the First Jewish-Roman War and the appointment of Parthamaspatas, a pro-Roman, during the Kitos War. Vespasian was a Roman military leader that conquered a significant amount of territory with his son, Titus, around Jerusalem and enslaved or killed roughly a hundred thousand Jews with his own army of sixty thousand.[19]…show more content…
Hadrian’s Greco-Romanization and influence of Judaea and its surrounding regions were argued to be particularly easier to analyze through architecture, inscriptions, and statutes because they still exist.[22] By applying this analysis to census data, Speller could then discuss both the erasure and diaspora of Jews during his reign, including discussion of Hadrian’s behaviors and displeasures toward the revolts because they were seen as an inconvenience.[23] One example in this text include the expansion of his architecture that displayed two policies, the banning of circumcision and the increase of taxes.[24] Meanwhile, others focus on how particular scholars approached the Jewish plight. To illustrate, Philo’s In Flaccum was examined in terms of ethnicity and public spaces, again particularly focusing on the Greco-Romanization of the spaces that were once filled with Jewish temples and culture.[25] What both of these similar but slightly different analyses of the Jewish-Roman conflicts show is that scholars are approaching the subject by gathering bits of information and physical evidence and incorporating the primary sources to support their arguments. Even when scholars approach the subject in terms of Jews as subjects to many regimes over time they still point to the same themes as and punishments of the
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