1. Now it so fell out, that about this very time the affairs of Syria were in great disorder, and this on the occasion following: Cecilius Bassus, one of Pompey's party, laid a treacherous design against Sextus Caesar, and slew him, and then took his army, and got the management of public affairs into his own hand; so there arose a great war about Apamia, while Caesar's generals came against him with an army of horsemen and footmen; to these Antipater also sent succors, and his sons with them, as calling to mind the kindnesses they had received from Caesar, and on that account he thought it but just to require punishment for him, and to take vengeance on the man that had murdered him. And as the war was drawn out into a great length, Marcuscame from Rome to take Sextus's government upon him. But Caesar was slain by Cassius and Brutus in the senate-house, after he had retained the government three years and six months. This fact however, is related elsewhere.
2. As the war that arose upon the death of Caesar was now begun, and the principal men were all gone, some one way, and some another, to raise armies, Cassius came from Rome into Syria, in order to receive the [army that lay in the] camp at Apamia; and having raised the siege, he brought over both Bassus and Marcus to his party. He then went over the cities, and got together weapons and soldiers, and laid great taxes upon those cities; and he chiefly oppressed Judea, and exacted of it seven hundred talents: but Antipater, when he saw the state to be in so great consternation and disorder, he divided the collection of that sum, and appointed his two sons to gather it; and so that part of it was to be exacted by Malichus, who was ill- disposed to him, and part by others. And because Herod did exact what is required of him from Galilee before others, he was in the greatest favor with Cassius; for he thought it a part of prudence to cultivate a friendship with the Romans, and to gain their goodwill at the expense of others; whereas the curators of the other cities, with their citizens, were sold for slaves; and Cassius reduced four cities into a state of slavery, the two most potent of which were Gophna and Emmaus; and, besides these, Lydia and Thamna. Nay, Cassius was so very angry at Malichus, that he had killed him, [for he assaulted him,] had not Hyrcanus, by the means of Antipater, sent him a hundred talents of his own, and thereby pacified his anger against him.
3. But after Cassius was gone out of Judea, Malichus laid snares for Antipater, as thinking that his death would-be the preservation of Hyrcanus's government; but his design was not unknown to Antipater, which when he perceived, he retired beyond Jordan, and got together an army, partly of Arabs, and partly of his own countrymen. However, Malichus, being one of great cunning, denied that he had laid any snares for him, and made his defense with an oath, both to himself and his sons; and said that while Phasaelus had a garrison in Jerusalem, and Herod had the weapons of war in his custody, he could never have a thought of any such thing. So Antipater, perceiving the distress that Malichus was in, was reconciled to him, and made an agreement with him: this was when Marcus was president of Syria; who yet perceiving that this Malichus was making a disturbance in Judea, proceeded so far that he had almost killed him; but still, at the intercession of Antipater, he saved him.
4. However, Antipater little thought that by saving Malichus he had saved his own murderer; for now Cassius and Marcus had got together an army, and intrusted the entire care of it with Herod, and made him general of the forces of Celesyria, and gave him a fleet of ships, and an army of horsemen and footmen; and promised him, that after the war was over they would make him king of Judea; for a war was already begun between Antony and the younger Caesar: but as Malichus was most afraid of Antipater, he took him out of the way; and by the offer of money, persuaded the butler of Hyrcanus, with whom they were both to feast, to kill him by poison. This being done, and he having armed men with him, settled the affairs of the city. But when Antipater's sons, Herod and Phasaelus, were acquainted with this conspiracy against their father, and had indignation at it, Malichus denied all, and utterly renounced any knowledge of the murder. And thus died Antipater, a man that had distinguished himself for piety and justice, and love to his country. And whereas one of his sons, Herod, resolved immediately to revenge their father's death, and was coming upon Malichus with an army for that purpose, the elder of his sons, Phasaelus, thought it best rather to get this man into their hands by policy, lest they should appear to begin a civil war in the country; so he accepted of Malichus's defense for himself, and pretended to believe him that he had had no hand in the violent death of Antipater his father, but erected a fine monument for him. Herod also went to Samaria; and when he found them in great distress, he revived their spirits, and composed their differences.
5. However, a little after this, Herod, upon the approach of a festival, came with his soldiers into the city; whereupon Malichus was aftrighted, and persuaded Hyrcanus not to permit him to come into the city. Hyrcanus complied; and, for a pretense of excluding him, alleged, that a rout of strangers ought not to be admitted when the multitude were purifying themselves. But Herod had little regard to the messengers that were sent to him, and entered the city in the night time, and aftrighted Malichus; yet did he remit nothing of his former dissimulation, but wept for Antipater, and bewailed him as a friend of his with a loud voice; but Herod and his friends though, it proper not openly to contradict Malichus's hypocrisy, but to give him tokens of mutual friendship, in order to prevent his suspicion of them.
6. However, Herod sent to Cassius, and informed him of the murder of his father; who knowing what sort of man Malichus was as to his morals, sent him back word that he should revenge his father's death; and also sent privately to the commanders of his army at Tyre, with orders to assist Herod in the execution of a very just design of his. Now when Cassius had taken Laodicea, they all went together to him, and carried him garlands and money; and Herod thought that Malichus might be punished while he was there; but he was somewhat apprehensive of the thing, and designed to make some great attempt, and because his son was then a hostage at Tyre, he went to that city, and resolved to steal him away privately, and to march thence into Judea; and as Cassius was in haste to march against Antony, he thought to bring the country to revolt, and to procure the government for himself. But Providence opposed his counsels; and Herod being a shrewd man, and perceiving what his intention was, he sent thither beforehand a servant, in appearance indeed to get a supper ready, for he had said before that he would feast them all there, but in reality to the commanders of the army, whom he persuaded to go out against Malichus, with their daggers. So they went out and met the man near the city, upon the sea-shore, and there stabbed him. Whereupon Hyrcanus was so astonished at what had happened, that his speech failed him; and when, after some difficulty, he had recovered himself, he asked Herod what the matter could be, and who it was that slew Malichus; and when he said that it was done by the command of Cassius, he commended the action; for that Malichus was a very wicked man, and one that conspired against his own country. And this was the punishment that was inflicted on Malichus for what he wickedly did to Antipater.
7. But when Cassius was marched out of Syria, disturbances arose in Judea; for Felix, who was left at Jerusalem with an army, made a sudden attempt against Phasaelus, and the people themselves rose in arms; but Herod went to Fabius, the prefect of Damascus, and was desirous to run to his brother's assistance, but was hindered by a distemper that seized upon him, till Phasaelus by himself had been too hard for Felix, and had shut him up in the tower, and there, on certain conditions, dismissed him. Phasaelus also complained of Hyrcanus, that although he had received a great many benefits from them, yet did he support their enemies; for Malichus's brother had made many places to revolt, and kept garrisons in them, and particularly Masada, the strongest fortress of them all. In the mean time, Herod was recovered of his disease, and came and took from Felix all the places he had gotten; and, upon certain conditions, dismissed him also.
1. NowPtolemy, the son of Menneus, brought back into Judea Antigonus, the son of Aristobulus, who had already raised an army, and had, by money, made Fabius to be his friend, add this because he was of kin to him. Marion also gave him assistance. He had been left by Cassius to tyrannize over Tyre; for this Cussiris was a man that seized on Syria, and then kept it under, in the way of a tyrant. Marion also marched into Galilee, which lay in his neighborhood, and took three of his fortresses, and put garrisons into them to keep them. But when Herod came, he took all from him; but the Tyrian garrison he dismissed in a very civil manner; nay, to some of the soldiers he made presents out of the good-will he bare to that city. When he had despatched these affairs, and was gone to meet Antigonus, he joined battle with him, and beat him, and drove him out of Judea presently, when he was just come into its borders. But when he was come to Jerusalem, Hyrcanus and the people put garlands about his head; for he had already contracted an affinity with the family of Hyrcanus by having espoused a descendant of his, and for that reason Herod took the greater care of him, as being to marry the daughter of Alexander, the son of Aristobulus, add the granddaughter of Hyrcanus, by which wife he became the father of three male and two female children. He had also married before this another wife, out of a lower family of his own nation, whose name was Doris, by whom he had his eldest son Antipater.
2. Now Antonius and Caesar had beaten Cassius near Philippi, as others have related; but after the victory, Caesar went into Gaul, [Italy,] and Antony marched for Asia, who, when he was arrived at Bithynia, he had ambassadors that met him from all parts. The principal men also of the Jews came thither, to accuse Phasaelus and Herod; and they said that Hyrcanus had indeed the appearance of reigning, but that these men had all the power: but Antony paid great respect to Herod, who was come to him to make his defense against his accusers, on which account his adversaries could not so much as obtain a hearing; which favor Herod had gained of Antony by money. But still, when Antony was come to Ephesus, Hyrcanus the high priest, and our nation, sent an embassage to him, which carried a crown of gold with them, and desired that he would write to the governors of the provinces, to set those Jews free who had been carried captive by Cassius, and this without their having fought against him, and to restore them that country, which, in the days of Cassius, had been taken from them. Antony thought the Jews' desires were just, and wrote immediately to Hyrcanus, and to the Jews. He also sent, at the same time, a decree to the Tyrians; the contents of which were to the same purpose.
3. "Marcus Antonius, imperator, to Hyrcanus the high priest and ethnarch of the Jews, sendeth greeting. It you be in health, it is well; I am also in health, with the army. Lysimachus, the son of Pausanias, and Josephus, the son of Menneus, and Alexander, the son of Theodorus, your ambassadors, met me at Ephesus, and have renewed the embassage which they had formerly been upon at Rome, and have diligently acquitted themselves of the present embassage, which thou and thy nation have intrusted to them, and have fully declared the goodwill thou hast for us. I am therefore satisfied, both by your actions and your words, that you are well-disposed to us; and I understand that your conduct of life is constant and religious: so I reckon upon you as our own. But when those that were adversaries to you, and to the Roman people, abstained neither from cities nor temples, and did not observe the agreement they had confirmed by oath, it was not only on account of our contest with them, but on account of all mankind in common, that we have taken vengeance on those who have been the authors of great injustice towards men, and of great wickedness towards the gods; for the sake of which we suppose it was that the sun turned away his light from us,as unwilling to view the horrid crime they were guilty of in the case of Caesar. We have also overcome their conspiracies, which threatened the gods themselves, which Macedonia received, as it is a climate peculiarly proper for impious and insolent attempts; and we have overcome that confused rout of men, half mad with spite against us, which they got together at Philippi in Macedonia, when they seized on the places that were proper for their purpose, and, as it were, walled them round with mountains to the very sea, and where the passage was open only through a single gate. This victory we gained, because the gods had condemned those men for their wicked enterprises. Now Brutus, when he had fled as far as Philippi, was shut up by us, and became a partaker of the same perdition with Cassius; and now these have received their punishment, we suppose that we may enjoy peace for the time to come, and that Asia may be at rest from war. We therefore make that peace which God hath given us common to our confederates also, insomuch that the body of Asia is now recovered out of that distemper it was under by the means of our victory. I, therefore, bearing in mind both thee and your nation, shall take care of what may be for your advantage. I have also sent epistles in writing to the several cities, that if any persons, whether free-men or bond-men, have been sold under the spear by Caius Cassius, or his subordinate officers, they may be set free. And I will that you kindly make use of the favors which I and Dolabella have granted you. I also forbid the Tyrians to use any violence with you; and for what places of the Jews they now possess, I order them to restore them. I have withal accepted of the crown which thou sentest me."
4. "Marcus Antonius, imperator, to the magistrates, senate, and people of Tyre, sendeth greeting. The ambassadors of Hyrcanus, the high priest and ethnarch [of the Jews], appeared before me at Ephesus, and told me that you are in possession of part of their country, which you entered upon under the government of our adversaries. Since, therefore, we have undertaken a war for the obtaining the government, and have taken care to do what was agreeable to piety and justice, and have brought to punishment those that had neither any remembrance of the kindnesses they had received, nor have kept their oaths, I will that you be at peace with those that are our confederates; as also, that what you have taken by the means of our adversaries shall not be reckoned your own, but be returned to those from whom you took them; for none of them took their provinces or their armies by the gift of the senate, but they seized them by force, and bestowed them by violence upon such as became useful to them in their unjust proceedings. Since, therefore, those men have received the punishment due to them, we desire that our confederates may retain whatsoever it was that they formerly possessed without disturbance, and that you restore all the places which belong to Hyrcanus, the ethnarch of the Jews, which you have had, though it were but one day before Caius Cassius began an unjustifiable war against us, and entered into our province; nor do you use any force against him, in order to weaken him, that he may not be able to dispose of that which is his own; but if you have any contest with him about your respective rights, it shall be lawful for you to plead your cause when we come upon the places concerned, for we shall alike preserve the rights and hear all the causes of our confederates."
5. "Marcus Antonius, imperator, to the magistrates, senate, and people of Tyre, sendeth greeting. I have sent you my decree, of which I will that ye take care that it be engraven on the public tables, in Roman and Greek letters, and that it stand engraven in the most illustrious places, that it may be read by all. Marcus Antonius, imperator, one of the triumvirate over the public affairs, made this declaration: Since Caius Cassius, in this revolt he hath made, hath pillaged that province which belonged not to him, and was held by garrisons there encamped, while they were our confederates, and hath spoiled that nation of the Jews that was in friendship with the Roman people, as in war; and since we have overcome his madness by arms, we now correct by our decrees and judicial determinations what he hath laid waste, that those things may be restored to our confederates. And as for what hath been sold of the Jewish possessions, whether they be bodies or possessions, let them be released; the bodies into that state of freedom they were originally in, and the possessions to their former owners. I also will that he who shall not comply with this decree of mine shall be punished for his disobedience; and if such a one be caught, I will take care that the offenders suffer condign punishment."
6. The same thing did Antony write to the Sidonians, and the Antiochians, and the Aradians. We have produced these decrees, therefore, as marks for futurity of the truth of what we have said, that the Romans had a great concern about our nation.