Was Julius Caesar the real Jesus Christ?

Alana

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dantem said:
Just finished to revise that article, hoping is more readable now, at least it'll remain as it is until next revision.
For the greek quotes with correct words and accents, see the original pdf in the previous post.

dantem, here's the list of all greek text missing from yours. Can you replace it and repost your doc? Also let me know if I missed anything. By reading the Greek ancient text within your translation I might understand better the meaning. I write next to each sentence what I understand or think I understand now:

κατάλογος τῶν αὐτοκρατόρων ὦν μνήμην ἐπί τε τοῖς ὅρκοις καὶ ἐπί ταῖς εὐχαῖς ποιούμεθα (something about the list of emperors which we remember/memorialize over the promises and the wishes we make - It's some Ionian form of ancient Greek)

ἡρῷον (heroes)

ἐς τοὺς ἣρωας εἱσγράφειν (enlisted in the heroes)

πλανώμενον δὲ πολλὰ καὶ περιτρέχοντα τὸν Καίσαρα κατελεήσας ὁ μὲγας Ἄρης ἥ τε Ἀφροδίτη παρ’ἐαυτούς ἐκαλεσάτην (something about being errant and surrounded Caesar was blessed by Ares and Aphrodite when called)

καὶ νεὼν ἐπῳκοδόμησαν τῇ πυρᾷ καὶ θύουσιν ὡς θεῷ (and they collected the wood and built the fire and they sacrificed as if for god)

κατάλογος τῶν αὐτοκρατόρων (list of the emperors)

εὐχαί (wishes)

ἐν ταῖς θεωρίαις ταῖς ἐν τῷ Παλατίῳ ἤρωσι πεποιημέναις (something about the theories/observations of the Palace convinced about heroes ????)

Τύχη (Luck)

τἀ τε πραχθέντα ὐπ’αὐτοῦ πάντα ἐν αὐτῇ Ἰανουαρίου νουμηνίᾳ ὄρκοις ἐβεβαιώσαντο (all that was accomplished under this January date confirm the vows)

καί οί ὅρκοι περί μὲν τῶν ὑπό τοῦ Τιβερίου πραχθέντων οὐκ ἐπήχθησαν καὶ διὰ τοῦτο οὐδέ νῦν γίγνονται… τοῦ Αὐγούστου τοῦ τε Γαΐου… ὤμοσαν, τάς τε εὐχάς ὐπὲρ πάντων αὐτῶν ὁμοίως ἐποιήσαντο. (no clue yet, I'll have a look a bit later)
 

edgitarra

Jedi Council Member
What was also strange was that Julius Caesar, right before he died, he planned a campaign agains the Dacian territory, which in that period was ruled by Burebista. Caesar didn't manage to start his campaign, as he was assasinated. The strange thing is that right after Caesar was assasinated, Burebista was also assasinated by the rich people under his lead(plot).

From wiki:

"In 48 BC, Burebista sided with Pompey during his struggle against Julius Caesar in the Roman civil war,[2] sending Akornion as an ambassador and a military adviser. After Caesar emerged as victor, he planned on sending legions to punish Burebista,[9] but he was assassinated in the Senate before he could do so, on March 15, 44 BC."

Right after Caesar, Burebista was next to be killed.
 

Approaching Infinity

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Found an interesting blogger who has written a few series of posts on crucifixions. I haven't read them all yet (there are lots), but these few stand out:

_http://ifpeakoilwerenoobject.blogspot.fr/2011/10/romans-never-crucified-way-we-think.html
_http://ifpeakoilwerenoobject.blogspot.fr/2011/10/romans-never-crucified-way-we-think_25.html
_http://ifpeakoilwerenoobject.blogspot.fr/2012/10/it-appears-mark-based-jesus-passion-on.html
_http://ifpeakoilwerenoobject.blogspot.fr/2010/06/crucifixion-bodily-support-part-3.html

Here are some of the interesting bits. The first one nicely collects all the relevant quotes about Caesar's funeral, and shows a tradition (stemming from Caesar) of placing an effigy of a deified ruler on a 'cross':

As we have seen in Part 4, various Ante-Nicene Church Fathers noted that certain deceased emperors were deified at their funerals with their wax images suspended on cruciform tropaea. Just a little rehash here:

And with this form you consecrate the images of your emperors when they die, and you name them gods by inscriptions.

Justin Martyr, First Apology 55

Your victorious trophies not only imitate the appearance of a simple cross, but also that of a man affixed to it.

Minucius Felix, Octavius 29

He had them hanged 'on the very trees of their temple, in the shadow of which they had committed their crimes, as though on consecrated crosses.'

Tertullian, Apoligeticus 9.2

Consecrated crosses here would have been called tropaea by the Nonchristians.

You put Christians on crosses and stakes: what image is not formed from the clay in the first instance, set on cross and stake? The body of your god is first consecrated on the gibbet.

Tertullian, Apoligeticus 12.3

Nota bene: "clay" here is the Latin argilla which means white clay, which could have been Tertullian's mistaken identification of wax -- as we shall later see below. And as we have seen before in Part 4, "gibbet" is patibulum, meaning an execution pole's crossarm, a door-bar or a Y-shaped forked gibbet.

We have shown before that your deities are derived from shapes modelled from the cross. But you also worship victories, for in your trophies the cross is the heart of the trophy.

Tertullian, Apologeticus 16.7

Obviously, from these three ancient apologists alone, we can see that certain Emperors were deified at their funerals with their images - simulacra - modelled in argilla (white clay) or probably wax instead and mounted with nails on cruciform tropaea. And they were proclaimed gods with inscriptions.

So when did this Emperor-deification all get started? It must have been with Gaius Julius Caesar. After all, he is the first one to be deified as "Divus Iulius."


[...]

C. The Funerary Tropaeum of Julius Caesar.

We have an immense debt to Francesco Carotta who has rediscovered the origins of the Roman Imperial Cult and quite possibly the origin or one of the origins of Christianity.

But the exposition of the wax simulacrum of Julius Caesar's body, complete with its twenty-three stab wounds on a cross, that is, a frame of a tropaeum, was no fiction and its veracity has been easily proven by Francesco Carotta and others looking into recorded historic chronicles preserved against all odds through the mists of time.

Of the original Greek and Latin quotes of the historians I shall cite, you may view in Part D below.

The first historian I shall quote is Cassius Dio, who lived about 155 or 163/164 to 229+ CE.

And Antony aroused them [the people] still more by bringing the body most inconsiderately into the Forum, exposing it all covered with blood as it was and with gaping wounds, and then delivering over it a speech, which was very ornate and brilliant, to be sure, but out of place on that occasion.

Cassius Dio Roman History 44.35.4

Cassius Dio thought Mark Anthony, when he solemnized Julius Caesar's funeral, has actually exposed the body to public view. This is probably mistaken, for Caesar was cremated and bodies are typically lain flat for the purpose. It would be difficult for people to see an exposed body if it was laying flat. Exposing it to public view in front of a crowd would probably entail making a simulacrum of it and raising the effigy on high.

To verify this we must refer to earlier historians who described Julius Caesar's funeral and how his image appeared before the public.

The earliest to report on Caesar's death is Nicolaus Damascenus, who lived from 64 BCE to 14/15 CE.

A little later, three slaves, who were nearby, placed the body on a litter and carried it home through the Forum, showing where the covering was drawn back on each side, the hands hanging limp and the wounds on the face. Then no-one refrained from tears, seeing him who had lately been honoured as a god. Much weeping and lamentation accompanied them from either side, from mourners on the roofs, in the streets, and in the vestibules. When they approached his house, a far greater wailing met their ears, for his wife rushed out with a number of women and servants, calling on her husband and bewailing her lot that she had in vain counseled him not to go out that day. But he had met with a fate far worse than she had ever expected.

Nicolaus Damascenus, Bios Kaisaros = Life of Augustus, tr. C. M. Hall, FGrH F 130 (26) [fin]

What we learn from here is that when Caesar was assasinated, he fell right where he was murdered, possibly with (1) both his arms unfurled to his side and laying on the floor, because when his slaves were porting the body home, (2) both hands were hanging out the sides.

Next to report is the historian Appian, Bellae Civile (95 - 165 CE), 2.146-147 Julius Caesar's Funeral 17 March 44 BCE

[146] Having spoken thus, he [Mark Anthony] gathered up his garments like one inspired, girded himself so he might have the free use of his hands, took his position in front of his bier...

...Carried away by extreme passion he uncovered the body of Caesar, lifted his robe on the point of a spear and shook it aloft, pierced with dagger-thrusts and red with the dictator's blood.

Whereupon the people, like a chorus, mourned with him in the most lugubrious manner, and from sorrow become again filled with anger.

Somewhere from the midst of those lamentations Caesar himself was supposed to speak, recounting the benefits he had conferred upon his enemies by name, and speaking of the murderers themselves, exclaiming, as it were, "Oh that I should have spared these men to slay me!" The people could endure it no more.

Appian, The Civil Wars ed. H. White, 2.146
[147] While they were in this temper and were already near to violence, somebody raised above the bier an image of Caesar himself made of wax. The body itself, as it lay on its back on the couch, could not be seen. The image was turned round and round by a mechanical device, showing the twenty-three stab wounds in all parts of the body and on the face, which gave him a shocking appearance. The people could no longer bear the pitiful sight presented to them. They groaned, and, girding themselves, they burned the senate-chamber where Cæsar was slain, and ran hither and thither searching for the murderers, who had fled some time previously.

Appian, The Civil Wars ed. H. White, 2.147

What Appian is telling us here is that (3) Mark Anthony removed the blood-stained toga of Julius Caesar from his body and (4) raised the blood-stained and dagger-torn garment aloft. When the masses attending the funeral saw it, (5) they all moaned with grief and became very, very, angry. (6) An actor playing Caesar and wearing his wax death mask exclaims, "Oh that I should have spared these men to slay me!" Then (7) someone raises [ἀνέσχε = exalts (LSJ & Middle Liddell A.4.)] a wax image of his body on a mechanical device which could be spun 'round and 'round so everybody can see it. In the meantime, (8) the real body was lying on its couch and nobody could see that. To compensate, (9) the wax image was given a shocking appearance so the twenty-three stab wounds all over his body and on his face could be plainly seen -- this mannekin was probably painted realistically and given a minimal covering (a loincloth and quite possibly a crown of acanthus leaves). (10) And the masses found this intolerable.

The next historian to report on this is Suetonius (69/75 - 130+ CE).

All the conspirators made off, and he lay there lifeless for some time, and finally three common slaves put him on a litter and carried him home, with one arm hanging down.

Suetonius, The Lives of the Twelve Caesars, Julius Caesar, 82.3

When the funeral was announced, a pyre was erected in the Campus Martius near the tomb of Julia, and on the rostra a gilded shrine was placed, made after the model of the temple of Venus Genetrix; within was a couch of ivory with coverlets of purple and gold, and at its head a pillar [tropaeum = votive cross] hung with the robe in which he was slain. Since it was clear that the day would not be long enough for those who offered gifts, they were directed to bring them to the Campus by whatsoever streets of the city they wished, regardless of any order of precedence.

Suetonius, Lives of the Twelve Caesars, Julius Caesar, 84.1

What Suetonius reports here is that when Julius Caesar's corpse was being ferried home to his wife, (2) one arm was hanging out. Then on the day of the funeral (8) a simulacrum of the Temple of Venus was parked on the Rostra. The funeral couch with the body on it was inside, surrounded or fenced in by columns made from logs: i.e., poles [being fenced in with poles = σταυρούμενος], and (7) there was a cruciform tropaeum already erected (3) with Caesar's robe on it.

So, to sum up, we have:

After he was killed, Julius Caesar was found laying on the ground, possibly with both arms out to the side.
Both hands were hanging out the sides (Nicolaus Damascenus); one arm was hanging out (Suetonius).
Mark Anthony removed the blood-stained toga of Julius Caesar from his body at his funeral (Appian). Caesar's robe was on the tropaeum (Suetonius).
He raises the blood-stained and dagger-torn garment aloft.
The masses attending the funeral saw it all and moaned with grief and became very, very, angry.
An actor playing Caesar and wearing his wax mask exclaims, "Oh that I should have spared these men to slay me!"
Someone exalts a wax image of the body of Julius Caesar on a mechanical device so everybody can see it (Appian). A cruciform tropaeum was already erected (Suetonius).
The real body was lying on its couch and nobody could see the body (Appian). A simulacrum of the Temple of Venus was parked on the Rostra, and the funeral couch with the body on it was inside (Suetonius).
The wax image was given a shocking appearance so the twenty-three stab wounds all over his body and on his face could be plainly seen.
The masses found this intolerable.


We have some contradictions here, but they are minor and quibbling. They concern the number of hands hanging out of Caesar's sedan when his body was being borne home, where the robe was, when the display device was lifted.

The hands -- unless rigor mortis had set in or the body cast was made while the body was no longer in rigor mortis, it doesn't matter. Otherwise both hands would be hanging out.

Where the robe was probably depended on when the wax image was raised. It is probable that the wax image was already aloft on the cross (tropaeum) with the toga on it because there could very well not have been enough room to keep the image on the ground away from the crowds.

So there you have it. For at least part of the funeral or its whole duration, there was a mannekin of Julius Caesar displayed on a cruciform tropaeum or a cross and when Mark Anthony removed the toga from where it was, the people could see an intolerable display of the likeness of Caesar's wounded body.

So there you have it, the first crucifix.

The third link reproduces an article arguing that the crucifixion in Mark is modeled on a Roman triumph. While the author sees this as a stylistic choice, it's probably the opposite: it points to the original Roman source of the crucifixion story, Caesar's funeral:

Thomas Schmidt, “Jesus’ Triumphal March to Crucifixion: The Sacred Way as Roman Procession,” Bible Review, Feb 97: 30-37.

Thomas Schmidt’s thesis in “Jesus’ Triumphal March to Crucifixion: The Sacred Way as Roman Procession,” is that the crucifixion procession is modeled on a Roman triumphal march, with Jerusalem’s Via Dolorosa replacing the Sacra Via [sic] of Rome. Schmidt’s rhetorical purpose is to convince us that Mark presents Jesus’ defeat and death, the moment of his greatest suffering and humiliation, as both literally and figuratively a triumph.

Arguments:

1. Schmidt argues, from source criticism, that Mark’s gospel was probably written for gentile Christians living in Rome.

2. Mark’s crucifixion narrative contains a number of striking parallels to the Roman triumphal march. The parallels in Mark follow.

a. The “praetorium” – a common designation for the place and personnel of the imperial guard – gathers early in the morning to proclaim the triumphator.

b. The description of Jesus’ clothing. The triumphator is introduced clad in a ceremonial purple robe and crown. In [Mark], the soldiers dress Jesus in the purple triumphal garb and place a crown of laurel on his head. The crown of thorns is a ceremonial detail, not an historical fact.

c. The soldiers’ mock homage of Jesus. The soldier’s accolades are represented by the mock homage in Mk 15.18. The soldiers shout in acclamation of his lordship (“Hail, King of the Jews”) and they salute him as they accompany him through the streets of the city.

d. Another carries the implement of the victim’s death. Simon of Cyrene carrying the cross parallels the official who walks alongside the bull.

e. The translation of “Golgotha” – “the place of the head.” Golgotha was the Capitolium (head) to which the triumphator ascended. Jesus’ procession ascends to the place of the head (death), where the sacrifice is to take place.

f. The ceremonial wine poured on the altar. The wine signifies the precious blood of the victim, and links between triumphator, wine and victim signify their connection. The sacrifice is the god who dies and appears as the victor in the person of the triumphator. Jesus does not drink the wine; instead, he pours it out on the altar at the moment of sacrifice.

g. The acclamation of Jesus as Lord (“The King of the Jews” [Mk 15.26]), and his vice-regents appear with him in confirmation of his glory.)

h. The crucifixion of criminals on either side of Jesus is a conscious expression of the mockery of his kingship on the part of the soldiers. Mk tells us that there were 2 bandits – one on his right and one on his left.

i. The epiphany of the triumphator is accompanied by divine portents (“The curtain of the Temple was torn in two” [Mk 15.38]), confirming that he is one with the gods.)

Mark presents the crucifixion as an “anti-triumph” – with Jesus mocked and killed – to show that the seeming scandal of the cross is actually an exaltation of Christ. Mark’s anti-triumph was composed in reaction to the self-deification of the emperors Gaius (37-41 AD) and especially Nero (54-68 AD).

For Mark, it is the mocked Jesus, not the gaudy Roman emperor, who is the true epiphanic triumphator.

I stumbled upon this summary and had to admit - I think the author's right here. This might be useful for mythicists because it presents the story as highly embellished. Again, I think he's basically right about this. I don't know how you argue against what he is saying here.

This too on 2 Corinthians 2:14: 4

_http://books.google.com/books?id=tej...riumph&f=false 5

Here is an article Schmidt wrote for BAR on the subject:

_http://www.bib-arch.org/online-exclusives/easter-05.asp

I think this is one of the most convincing things I have ever read. The problem for me was its literary purpose. Why would Mark develop the narrative this way?

... If, as he claims the gospel was written for a Roman audience, they would have immediately recognized the 'Christ in the place of Caesar' reference. They would also have undoubtedly recognized the irony or some sort of disparaging reference to the ruler of the world. I still accept his identification of the Roman triumph imagery. I just don't see how this could have been written for a Roman audience.

Of course the question would naturally arise - who was written for? Still an open question.

... Here's perhaps the best argument to connect Schmidt's argument with the war of 70 CE. The rebel leader Simon was thrown off the Tarpeian Rock (Latin, Rupes Tarpeia or Saxum Tarpeium) which was a steep cliff of the southern summit of the Capitoline Hill, overlooking the Roman Forum.

You don't have this occurring after the Bar Kochba revolt.

As such on the one hand you have Jerusalem being renamed Aelia Capitolina. That's significant. But claiming the gospel was written as a triumph procession clearly references an impending military victory where - {in my opinion]- the Romans think they have triumphed but really it was Christ victorious.... ... The idea that the revolt was inspired by Jesus is also implied in the Little Apocalypse (many will come saying 'I am he' etc.) ...

I still think that the revolts (which are never properly explained) may well have some underlying connection to a primitive Palestine faith.

[Only] that where the evidence is suspect, nothing can be said with any certainty. The only thing I am sure of in all my years of looking at this stuff is that Schmidt is right about the context. There can be no doubt and as such the idea that the gospel narrative = history implodes. One can argue that Jesus 'must have been' actually crucified or that there 'must have been' a real Jesus. But the gospel doesn't prove anything because it is obviously arranged to fit a theological contrivance. This is NOT how history unfolded.

Exactly! That the forced march out of the city to the crucifixion field would lead to a place called Gologotha = Κρανίου Τόπος = Calvaria (Mount Calvary) which are mere diversions to hide the fact that it was Capitoline Hill in Rome or its Jerusalemian equivalent, the Temple Mount (for that is where that other most famous temple to Jupiter Capitolinus was built), shows clearly that whosoever wrote this scene in Mark was at the very least copying off of an Emperor's (Vespasian's?) triumphus and the funeral of Julius Caesar. On the other hand, a crucifixion field would more likely be called an "Akeldama:" a field of blood. Even if crucifixion was relatively a bloodless punishment, as some scholars claim.

Indeed, an early, though out-of-order, depiction of his procession and crucifixion is on the Sarcophagus Domatilla, where Jesus is crowned not with a helmet of thorns, but with a laurel wreath, or maybe a coronet of acapanthus leaves, and he is toting his cross around as if he were Romulus carrying a tropaeum. What's even more strange is that his resurrection is depicted as going directly from his cross, which itself was constructed just like a tropaeum.
 

dantem

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Alana said:
dantem said:
Just finished to revise that article, hoping is more readable now, at least it'll remain as it is until next revision.
For the greek quotes with correct words and accents, see the original pdf in the previous post.

dantem, here's the list of all greek text missing from yours. Can you replace it and repost your doc? Also let me know if I missed anything. By reading the Greek ancient text within your translation I might understand better the meaning. I write next to each sentence what I understand or think I understand now:

Thanks Alana! I'll rework that as soon as possible.
 

dantem

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Here it is with Alana's corrections.
 

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latulipenoire

Jedi Master
FOTCM Member
Hello!

I've tried to send a personal message to Alana but when I click upon her name I go to a page telling me I'm not authorized to do that, so I'll post here some ideas on the greek excerpts of the file sent by Dantem. Before I forget, Dantem, is it my version of the word processor or some greek citations appear as non-unicode in the file that you sent? (See lines in bold below)

"The data proposed in the same context, on divo Julio’s Temple and his own cult (B.c., 1,17: xat vEWv É7ccpxo66pi7vav r11 7CUpí xait búOUmv wS DECP), lies there to mark that the historiographic cononization on the political role of Caesar is autonomous in respect of the history of his cult."

- page 23 (717) note 46

and

"69. From A.F.A. result the meetings of the fratres Arvales in aede divorum in Palatio on year 145 (CIL VI 32379,24: every divus has his own edicola: in templo divorum in aede divi Titi), 153 (CIL VI 10234,8.10.23), under Antonino Pio (CIL VI 2087,4) and year 218 (CIL VI 2104,6). The data is confirmed by Cassio Dione on year 203 d.C.: fv ra $ewpdaic vràS iv -Q IIakatih4) ijpwot iteaowgpévass (76,3,3)."

- page 35 note 69

Also, I think where it's written "19" on page 39 it should instead be "79" (note number). Now I'll post what I could translate:

κατάλογος τῶν αὐτοκρατόρων ὦν μνήμην ἐπί τε τοῖς ὅρκοις καὶ ἐπί ταῖς εὐχαῖς ποιούμεθα
A literal translation would be:
"[the] catalogue of the absolute rulers which we make a memory/remembrance/recollection in [our] oaths and votive offerings (prayers, vows)"

If we try to make sense of it:
"we remember those listed in the catalogue in our oaths and vows"

Gary Courtney, in his book "Et tu, Judas? Then fall Jesus!", cites Suetonius (The Twelve Caesars):

"All Roman citizens had to make vows to Caesar while he was still living, and Suetonius reported that a marble column was set up in the Forum after his death inscribed "to the Father of his Country" where sacrifices were performed, disputes settled and oaths taken in his name." (op. cit. p. 57)

ἡρῷον (heroes)

ἐς τοὺς ἣρωας εἱσγράφειν (inscribe/write in the heroes)

πλανώμενον δὲ πολλὰ καὶ περιτρέχοντα τὸν Καίσαρα κατελεήσας ὁ μὲγας Ἄρης ἥ τε Ἀφροδίτη παρ’ἐαυτούς ἐκαλεσάτην (Ceasar, often being led astray/wandering about and running around, was called by the great Ares and Aphrodite, for they had compassion for him)

καὶ νεὼν ἐπῳκοδόμησαν τῇ πυρᾷ καὶ θύουσιν ὡς θεῷ ([they] (the young) built up funeral-pyres (lit. altars for burnt-sacrifices) and they make a sacrifice as they would make for a god)

κατάλογος τῶν αὐτοκρατόρων (catalogue of the absolute rulers)

εὐχαί (prayers, vows) I prefer to translate thus because 'euxomai' means "to pray"

ἐν ταῖς θεωρίαις ταῖς ἐν τῷ Παλατίῳ ἤρωσι πεποιημέναις (made observations in the Palatium/the Palatine Hill between/among heroes) Had some doubts about this line, but seeing that "heroes" is in dat. pl, that would be at least a workable translation

Τύχη (Luck, Fortune) - Fortuna is the Latin equivalent

τἀ τε πραχθέντα ὐπ’αὐτοῦ πάντα ἐν αὐτῇ Ἰανουαρίου νουμηνίᾳ ὄρκοις ἐβεβαιώσαντο (all [the things] that were done in this January, in the first of the month/in the time of the new moon were confirmed by these vows ('orkois' = dat.pl)

καί οί ὅρκοι περί μὲν τῶν ὑπό τοῦ Τιβερίου πραχθέντων οὐκ ἐπήχθησαν καὶ διὰ τοῦτο οὐδέ νῦν γίγνονται… τοῦ Αὐγούστου τοῦ τε Γαΐου… ὤμοσαν, τάς τε εὐχάς ὐπὲρ πάντων αὐτῶν ὁμοίως ἐποιήσαντο. (and the vows taken upon what has been accomplished by Tiberius weren't brought forward and because of them nothing happened. For [they] swore (made an oath) by Augustus and Gaius, and [they] made vows by all those in the same manner.

Alana, as you'll see, I tried to translate as literally as possible (for example, 'autokrator' as absolute ruler and 'euxai' as prayers or vows). I guess we can discuss further, please let me know what you think! I used "A lexicon abridged from Liddel and Scott's greek lexicon" and this valuable website: http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/
 

stardust

Jedi Master
... If, as he claims the gospel was written for a Roman audience, they would have immediately recognized the 'Christ in the place of Caesar' reference. They would also have undoubtedly recognized the irony or some sort of disparaging reference to the ruler of the world. I still accept his identification of the Roman triumph imagery. I just don't see how this could have been written for a Roman audience.

Of course the question would naturally arise - who was written for? Still an open question.

This question is very well detailed in an other article from Francesco Carotta : FULVIA, MOTHER OF CHRISTIANITY ?

Fulvia was the wife of Mark Antony and became later the first opponent of Augustus and his cult of Divi Iulius. It was a powerful woman (one of the richest of Rome, descending from the Gracchi). As women were not allowed to have a public fonction at this time, it is mainly through her husband Antony that she played her part in Rome. And as demonstrated by Carotta, she played an essential role in Caesar's funeral, but as she was very few mentionned in texts, as if every historian of this time wanted to erase her name from History, it is only after a long research that we can today discover again an incredible woman, (and you will see further in the article how she coud be in fact Mary Magdala!) who has surely "written" the beginning of Christianity.

Carotta said:
This question may be surprising. For today, Fulvia, the first woman, to have her portrait imprinted on Roman coins —as a comparison the first man to have this honor was no one less than Caesar, her contemporary and ally—has been at best forgotten, or vilified to the point of demonization. Plutarch wrote, not without irony, that after her death Antonius and Octavian agreed she alone was responsible for the war with Octavian over the allotment of farmland to veterans, while Drumann, the same great scholar who con-cealed the date of Caesar’s funeral —blatantly accused her of starting the war. He indiscriminately and without any form of critique follows those re-maining, one-sided sources which simply describe her as a greedy and lustful, if not overbearing and murderous woman. Those who have tried to diminish this devastating verdict have only succeeded in trivializing her, ta-king away together with the blame unfortunately also her power. She was, however, much greater than hoped and much worse than feared. Indeed, the surprising result of our investigation is that Christianity exists due to her.

In retrospect, there was indeed a reason to conceal Fulvia, especially for Nicolaus, Augustus’ court historian, because she had waged war on Octa-vianus in the bellum Perusinum. But there was also a reason for the Anto-nian sources, since Antonius, who abandoned her, later also blamed her for the war against Octavianus, so that after her death, public memory of her was either negative or completely erased and her great moments readily forgotten. If knowledge of her earlier deeds is preserved, it is indirectly and almost as if by mistake.


Full English version
http://www.carotta.de/subseite/texte/articula/Fulvia_en.pdf


Deutch version
http://www.carotta.de/subseite/texte/articula/Fulvia_de.pdf


French version is coming soon ;)



Extract explaining the question of the diegetic transposition of the gospels :

The true soul of Christianity is contained in the oldest Gospel, the one of Mark. The others have only been dragged along because they were the versions of those liturgical texts used in the colonies founded by Augustus. That, however, at least the synoptics, Matthew and Luke, experienced a certain de-Augustization, is shown by the genealogies, which were rewritten so thoroughly that, unlike in the childhood story, it is no longer recognizable that it originally was the one of Octavianus-Augustus.

The persistent—even if not always consistent —opposition of Christianity against the emperor cult, against the Divi, traces back to Fulvia’s—and initially also Antonius’—opposition against the name Divus Iulius and the dynastic claims of the Divi filius connected with it. If an amalgam seems to have taken place, it is because in the Gospel of Mark we find that formula—«Truly this man was the Son of God» —which fit Caesar because he was regarded as the son of Venus, which, however, Fulvia would have never accepted for Octavianus.

The diegetic transposition from Gallia to Galilaea, which occurred under the Flavii in the colonies of Caesar’s veterans founded by Herod, mostly Gauls and Germans, whom he had received from Antonius, made it possible that the rewritten sacred accounts about their revered imperator, founder of the empire, land distributor and martyr could be used in the attempt to convert the Jews, who had been defeated by Vespasianus and Titus, to the new religion, and to thus better integrate them into the empire.
This relocation of the original historical account was from the start been prepared by the fact, that Iulius Caesar had been the one, who had settled the veterans of Pompeius—with whom Pompeius had captured Jerusalem together with the temple, whom, however, he could not provide the promised land allotments—into colonies in Campania. A favor, by which he won over his political opponent as well as his veterans. In their view, because they had not just simply fought against the Jews, but for the Jewish high priest Hyrcanus in Jerusalem against the usurpator Aristobulos—therefore themselves took sides in inner-Jewish throne conflicts and thus had been part of Jewish history—the Hierosolymarius (as Cicero had called Pompeius) who had not been able to give them the promised land, had to appear to them as a new Moses. The Roman High Priest Caesar, however, who had finally led them into the promised land, had to appear as a new Jesus—thus the name of Joshua used in the Greek bible translation, the Septuanginta. Herod, who by adoption of his father through Caesar had become a Iulius himself, had continued in his area what Caesar had begun in Campania and which seemed like a repetition of the same story in a different place so that the holy texts of the founder could easily be adopted.

The adaptation was conducted so accurately, with substitution of the geographical names—Gallia becomes Galilaea, Corfinium Cafarnaum, Bithynia Bethania etc.—as well as the personal names—(Cassius) Longinus becomes (miles) Longinus, Iunius (Brutus) Iudas, Nicomedes Nicodemus, etc.—some of which are actual historical figures—e. g. Pilatus and Herodes, with whom Lepidus and an Egyptian Rhetor respectively were confused—that it created the impression of the story having originated there rather than having been relocated there. That there were some unavoidable inconsistencies such as the fact that Nazareth had never been a big town with a synagogue, that the Sea of Galilee is not a sea, or—a bagatelle!— the fact that Jesus is not mentioned by any historian of the epoch—the alleged written evidence like the testimonium Flavianum are late and look like interpolations—did not disturb anybody for almost two millennia because the historical existence of Christ was not questioned by anybody, not even by the opponents of the Christians.
 

Alana

SuperModerator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
latulipenoire said:
Hello!

I've tried to send a personal message to Alana but when I click upon her name I go to a page telling me I'm not authorized to do that, so I'll post here some ideas on the greek excerpts of the file sent by Dantem.

Members have to have a specific number of posts and participation in general in order to send PMs. But It is better that you posted it here, others might be interested in ancient Greek translation!


latulipenoire said:
Before I forget, Dantem, is it my version of the word processor or some greek citations appear as non-unicode in the file that you sent? (See lines in bold below)

The file linked to in the post just above yours comes through fine to me.

latulipenoire said:
Alana, as you'll see, I tried to translate as literally as possible (for example, 'autokrator' as absolute ruler and 'euxai' as prayers or vows). I guess we can discuss further, please let me know what you think! I used "A lexicon abridged from Liddel and Scott's greek lexicon" and this valuable website: http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/

Geez, I think I should be getting me one of those dictionaries too! I just ordered a couple plus a syntax and verb ancient greek-modern greek books. When I read them and get a better understanding I'll be able to have a conversation with you, now I agree with all you wrote :lol:

Thank you for your help and I will keep you in mind for any other translations from ancient Greek!
 

dantem

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
latulipenoire said:
Hello!

I've tried to send a personal message to Alana but when I click upon her name I go to a page telling me I'm not authorized to do that, so I'll post here some ideas on the greek excerpts of the file sent by Dantem. Before I forget, Dantem, is it my version of the word processor or some greek citations appear as non-unicode in the file that you sent? (See lines in bold below)

- page 23 (717) note 46

and

- page 35 note 69

Also, I think where it's written "19" on page 39 it should instead be "79" (note number). Now I'll post what I could translate:

Thanks latulipenoire, can see the glitches now, minor glitches I can't even notice. That was shades of the first OCR sweep going *tilt* :)
 

latulipenoire

Jedi Master
FOTCM Member
Thanks latulipenoire, can see the glitches now, minor glitches I can't even notice. That was shades of the first OCR sweep going *tilt* :)

You're welcome, Dantem! Thank you for posting the article! Now I'm trying to catch up with all 50+ pages of this topic! :rolleyes:


Members have to have a specific number of posts and participation in general in order to send PMs. But It is better that you posted it here, others might be interested in ancient Greek translation!

Ah! I see! I agree that it's better if we discuss it here too!

Geez, I think I should be getting me one of those dictionaries too! I just ordered a couple plus a syntax and verb ancient greek-modern greek books. When I read them and get a better understanding I'll be able to have a conversation with you, now I agree with all you wrote :lol:

Thank you for your help and I will keep you in mind for any other translations from ancient Greek!

Alana, you've made me curious about which dictionaries and syntax you ordered! Also, can you suggest some material on modern Greek? :)
 

Laura

Administrator
Administrator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
While laid up with the injury, I've been reading a book called "Judas the Galilean" which was recommended here on the forum but I've forgotten where or by who.

http://www.amazon.com/Judas-Galilean-Flesh-Blood-Jesus/dp/0595321976

It's quite interesting in exposing the fraud of the book of Acts and the related "Lukan" gospel. At the same time, I'm reading A Commentary on the Acts of the Apostles by Hans Conzelmann.

This is right after reading Nock's "Conversion" and "Cities of God: The Real Story of How Christianity Became an Urban Movement and Conquered Rome" by Rodney Stark.

Taken together with what we know via my own research and Carotta's, AND Atwill's "Caesar's Messiah" (which has some valuable elements despite the fact that he drew the wrong conclusions), the picture is beginning to clarify as to how this whole thing played out.

Yeah, it seems that Josephus is very much implicated in something or other, but I'm not sure that it is exactly how Atwill portrays it.

Unterbrink has some definitely interesting pieces of the puzzle about Saul/Paul but he tends to think that the Jewish Jesus was the real deal. He misses the idea that it was Julius Caesar and that this was the "messiah" that Paul preached/knew. He denigrates Paul's Herodian connections, but as we see from the remarks by Carotta cited above about Fulvia and Herod, that is actually the true source of the worship: the Caesarean veterans.

Anyway, I'm getting some work done on this despite being away from the computer most of the time. Speaking of which, I've been here already too long this morning and the pain is getting bad so have to stop.

Back to the books, but did want to suggest the ones that seem to have some very useful clues.
 

stardust

Jedi Master
More about Fulvia, her role in Caesar's funeral and the veterans







Carotta - note8 said:
This is not the place to write a biography of Fulvia. We shall only list the points that should be taken into account in a possible rewriting of her biography. In any case, when it is written about her that she was the first wife of a ruler in Rome who felt and behaved as such (MÜNZER, RE VII 284) that is still an understatement. Because she was not only the wife of Antonius, but earlier also of Clodius and of Curio, and Fulvia helped them to achieve, more than her husbands helped her. Since women were excluded from public offices in Rome, they could only make politics through the men of their families, which meant their fathers, their brothers or their children—like Cornelia, the mother of the Gracchi—some also through their husbands—like Porcia, the wife of Brutus, who is said to have encouraged him to the murder.

With Fulvia, however, we observe something very special. Belonging to the highest nobility of the Populares, the people’s party—on her father’s side she originated from the Fulvii, of which two had lost their lives together with the Gracchi in the struggles for a more just distribution of the farmland; on the side of her mother Sempronia she even originated from the Gracchi themselves—she was predestined to become the Pasionaria of the Populares. Rich (Cicero in Phil. 3.16: locupletis, «propertied»), unprejudiced and self-confident, already with her first husband, Clodius, she chose the most audacious bearer of hope of the counter-party, the Optimates, paid his debts—in those times, in order to make one’s career an ambitioned prospective Roman politician had to borrow enormous amounts of money—reconciled him with Caesar, and brought him to become the spearhead of the Populares, as tribune of the people.

When Clodius was murdered, she instigated a people’s revolt by exposing his defiled body—before repeating the same with the next one, Curio, who also was a bearer of hope of the counter-party, whose even greater debts Caesar paid (whom she probably indemnified with the plot of the old basilica Sempronia he used for his larger new basilica Iulia at the Forum), and helped also him to the office of people’s tribune. He wasn’t murdered, this time, only because he fled early enough, together with Antonius, to Caesar at the Rubicon; instead, he then died in the campaign in Africa. Now Fulvia married Antonius, who already sticked by Caesar but had gotten off the straight and narrow, and brought him back on track so that he became the right-hand man of Caesar. (How she managed it, has not been handed down explicitly, but it is easy to imagine.

She would have paid Antonius’ debts. Antonius, namely had bought up Pompeius’ palace in Rome which had been put up for auction after his defeat. However, he was, to his great amazement, required by an angry Caesar to pay the full purchase price, as was everyone else, Plut. Ant. 10. He did, even if reluctantly. Suddenly he could. Which funds could he have used, when not the dowry Fulvia brought to the marriage they contracted at that time?) When Caesar, as once Clodius, was murdered, Fulvia repeated what she had accomplished with Clodius, and even more successfully by exposing his martyred body: She not only achieved a people’s revolt, but also the expulsion of the murderers from the city.

With her politics of amnesty she had saved the essential part of Caesar’s legacy: the agricultural laws, the distribution of the latifundia to the veterans and proletarians, the new sowing of that small peasantry that had made Rome great and which was to sustain it for a few more centuries. When Antonius then joined the triumvirate, she tried to repeat with Octavianus what she had succeeded to do three times, by giving him her daughter Clodia as wife. This failed due to Octavianus’ rejection of Fulvia’s token of love. He repudiated her and sent the young girl back to her mother, untouched, in order to unimpededly wage war against the mother-in-law, to distribute the land only to his own veterans, in the process expropriating many blameless peasants, sometimes just to create new latifundia.

Instead of standing by Fulvia, Antonius, who meanwhile stayed with Cleopatra in Egypt, let her down. Solely supported by Lucius, the brother of Antonius, she finally lost the war, fell ill and died soon thereafter. Antonius and Octavianus blamed her for the war, her memory was dammed, her offspring gradually liquidated by Octavianus. End of the passed down, known story.
But we now want to follow the blurred, yet not completely erased, traces and show that her behavior is only understandable within the Dionysian mystery religion and that therefore her legacy is nevertheless preserved—even if in a different, unexpected form: that of Christianity, which, against any expectation, we no doubt essentially owe to her.



Carotta -p2-4 said:
As we have seen, the staging of Caesar’s funeral has to be attributed to Fulvia, then the wife of Antonius. Antonius held the eulogy, and Fulvia had Caesar’s bloodstained garments, and even his bloody, defiled corpse on display for the people, using an effigy fastened to a cross-shaped tropaeum raised above the bier. This incited the people to revolt and thus, we thank Fulvia for the original performance of Easter, as it is reflected in Christian Easter, i. e. the most important, and for a long time, only Christian celebration.

This is hardly surprising. Certainly, sources do not name her by name, but comments by Plutarch, stating that Caesar’s funeral turned into a reproduction of Publius Clodius’ funeral are telling. Fulvia had been the wife of Clodius, who turned from adversary to friend of Caesar, and was murdered in a street fight. Fulvia displayed his dagger-pierced, blood drenched corpse to the people, thus provoking a rebellion. By the time of Caesar’s funeral she had become the wife of Antonius, who held the eulogy. Since Caesar’s dagger-pierced, bloody corpse was shown to the people, even though in effigy, and likewise provoked a rebellion, one can assume that Fulvia was again involved. The difference between Clodius, whose wounded body Fulvia exhibited and the wax effigy of Caesar with reproductions of his wounds instead of his actual body, is explained by the fact that Fulvia’s second husband, Curio also died, while in service to Caesar in the African War. For Curio she could only arrange a funus imaginarium in Rome, at which, according to custom, a life-sized imago, a wax effigy was displayed in place of the missing body. At Caesar’s funus both rituals were combined, that of Clodius and that of Curio, being both present, the corpse and the imago: Cae-sar’s corpse laid unseen, because it had been placed flat on a bier on the ro-trum, within a shrine modeled after the temple of Venus Genetrix. Someone lifted a complete, true to life replica of Caesar above the shrine for the crowd, already agitated, to see. Then with the help of a rotating device, the wax figure was turned in all directions, displaying twenty-three horrendous wounds over the entire body and face. This lamentable sight was heart-breaking and the people were furious and pursued the murderers and devas-tated the curia where Caesar had been killed. Caesar’s body was cremated on the Forum itself, on an improvised pyre, made up of wood found lying around, and people ran wildly while carrying burning torches towards the houses of the conspirators in order to burn them down. Only the pleas of frightened neighbors, fearing for their own homes deterred the crowd from setting the fires—apparently the memory of Clodius’ funeral, where the cu-ria burned along with his body was still fresh in their minds.
In any event, the modus operandi bears the distinctive mark of Fulvia. The only difference is that at the earlier funeral, that of Clodius, the people were shown the real body, and at Caesar’s they were shown an effigy, which was absolutely true to life, as expressed in the original word, ἀνδρείκελον, indicating a flesh-colored «image of a man». It was a wax figure, on which the bloody wounds were painted deceptively realistically; the figure was moveable, so that it could be raised and fastened to something, which had a mêchanê, a rotary device, that could have been mounted on the foot of an idol of Dionysus or else of the tropaeum, on which Caesar’s blood-stained garments hung. Since all the wounds had to be shown, including the deadly one on his side, a figure with moveable joints would have been used, something already known to the Romans and often used in funerals. It was likely fastened to the tropaeum with outstretched arms, so that the wounds on the side could be seen, and not hidden as they would have been if the arms hung downwards.

Fulvia is not mentioned by name. It is noteworthy, however, that in reading the documents, names are generally not used: τις, «someone» raised the wax figure over the bier, duo quidam, «two unknowns» lit Caesar’s bier. Here, it might have actually been unknown or unnamed people from the crowd, but names are missing also where they are expected to be found, such as Nicolaus Damascenus, who in his report on the deliberations of the Caesarians after Caesar’s murder, says, only vaguely, that οἱ, «some» prepared Caesar’s funeral. Surprising, because shortly thereafter he reports on the funeral and states that Atia, Octavian’s mother, who had been en-trusted by will to prepare the funeral, could not, prevented by the people who violently forced the funeral: ὁ ὄχλος, «the crowd, the people», they are the ones—and Nicolaus thus avoids again mentioning names. It was also the people that acted at the funeral of Publius Clodius: «the people […] took the body of P. Clodius into the Curia and cremated it»; but on that occasion it was also mentioned why the people acted as they did: «The indignation about the deed grew, as Clodius’ wife, Fulvia, displayed his wounds, while wailing passionately». In Caesar’s case, however no wailing woman was named; only that Atia was not present. Calpurnia, Caesar’s wife, is not men-tioned as attending the funeral, although it was her father, Calpurnius Piso, who in the Senate had ensured the funeral of the Pontifex Maximus and then had the body of his son-in-law carried to the Forum. One only hears of Calpurnia’s lament on the day of the murder, when her husband’s body was brought home. On the day of the funeral—on which, as Quintilian reported, the grieving people were not simply shown that Caesar had been murdered, but his blood soaked garments suggested he was being murdered there, on that spot, at that moment — there is no mention of Calpurnia. Apparently it was not her day.

It was the day of Antonius. He is mentioned, as eulogist. He had been chosen for that task not only as the consul, but also because he was related to Caesar. In the absence of other women of Caesar’s family, Fulvia, as the wife of Antonius, the consul and eulogist —who furthermore was the designated flamen Divi Iulii, therefore high priest of the god to whom Caesar was to be posthumously elevated, and which made Fulvia the designated flaminica —could well habe been in charge of the funeral and all the more act as praefica, as mourner, for which the precedent of Clodius and her position predestined her. Antonius held the eulogy so that Caesar’s funeral became similar to that of Clodius. Fulvia had been Clodius’ wife, and was now the wife of Antonius. Decisive moments were staged by unknown persons: «a few», «someone», «some». Were they not known, or purposedly undefined? Did one, first and foremost, want to conceal the name of their patroness?
In retrospect, there was indeed a reason to conceal Fulvia, especially for Nicolaus, Augustus’ court historian, because she had waged war on Octavianus in the bellum Perusinum. But there was also a reason for the Antonian sources, since Antonius, who abandoned her, later also blamed her for the war against Octavianus, so that after her death, public memory of her was either negative or completely erased and her great moments readily forgotten. If knowledge of her earlier deeds is preserved, it is indirectly and almost as if by mistake.

p22 said:
That Fulvia is to be regarded as the possible author and patroness of the Gospel of Mark, is also not contradicted by the fact that it is the Historiae of Asinius Pollio, which (though lost), in the form adopted by Appian and Plutarchus, enable us to place the Caesar story side by side with the Gospels—as we saw in WarJesusCaesar?(1999). For Asinius Pollio was an Antonian and was close to Fulvia—at her behest, he had tried to relieve Lucius Antonius who was besieged in Perusia. Although he was often an eye-witness—e. g. at the Rubicon, in Pharsalos or in Munda—, at the time of Caesar’s murder and funeral he was in Spain so that he received his information regarding the events which, as passion story, constitute the heart of the Gospel, from his friends who were present in Rome, Antonius and Fulvia in primis.
Even the childhood story, which the two other synoptics, Matthew and Luke, include, and which is evidently borrowed from the one of Octavian Augustus, could derive from Fulvia. For, although she later clashed with Octavian, she had at first, at the formation of the triumvirate with Antonius and Lepidus, as a pledge of peace given him her daughter with Clodius, Clodia as his wife. That he then cast her out in order to be free to wage war against the mother-in-law without any moral inhibitions, does not change the fact that Fulvia at first meant him well and was serious towards her son-in-law. Thus, one may think that the childhood story of the Christ child Octavianus did not necessarily find its way into those two synoptics against Fulvia’s will but with her consent—otherwise, assuming an Augustan last hand, the pericopes stemming from Publius Clodius about gouty and company would have likewise been erased. Those were probably inserted when she still nourished hope that she might manage to do the same thing as previously with Clodius and Curio: turn enemies into friends through marriage. Octavianus, however, incapable of any love, was unresponsive to her embrace as well and represented the limit of Fulvia’s Dionysian efficacy through love. After the fall of Perusia in 40 BC, at the latest after the sea battle of Actium, 31 BC, the purely Augustan copy for the Gospel of John came into existence, in which there was no room for such puerilities, it is all about inheriting, the only thing that the born-under-oxen[iv] Octavianus Augustus understood.





[iv]He was born in Rome in a region of the Palatine called ad capita bubula«at the Ox-heads»—where later stood his sacrarium (Suet. Aug. 5). The ox was later joined by the donkey as second symbol-animal because he met one called Nikon, «victor», complete with donkey driver Eutychos, «bringer of good fortune», before the battle of Actium. He interpreted that as an omen of victory (Plut. Ant. 65). Both animals, ox and donkey, stand in the Christian manger, where traditionally among the sheep there is always a billy goat to be seen also, in memory of the Capricorn, which Augustus chose as his sign of the zodiac.



It is really necessary to distinguish the two sides of Gospels to understand their origin (and at the same time, one can understand better some incompatibility or strange attitudes of Jesus) : the Fulvian/Antonian one (Jesus as Jules Caesar - dyonisian tendencies- and the Acta Caesaris (Caesar's Clementia, "Love your enemies", give the land to small peasants and veterans instead of great latifundists - which was already the politics of Fulvia's ancestors, the Gracchi - etc) and the Augustian one (Jesus as Octavian and his appolonian tendencies ("the one who is not with us is against us", Divi Iulius who is calling for vengence - and it was important for Octavian that people consider Jules Caesar as a son of God(ess) to be considered himself de facto as a son of God-, the land only for his veterans and latifundists etc).


So we could imagine that liturgic texts from both sides were in circulation : among Caesar's veterans (Mark's (= Mark Antony/Fulvia) Gospel, the oldest one) and among Octavian's veterans, the pure augustian one, John's Gospel, the recentest one apparently. The two others synoptics are a mix of these two tendencies.
Maybe were they rewritten directly in Galilea, under Herod, and combine at the same time pure translation errors/deformations from scribes AND a real willpower to change them and use them for a politic or religious purpose. And as the time have passed away, and old veterans died, no one could ever make the distinction neither between Caesar's cult VS Octavian cult, nore -later- the two Caesars (father and adoptive's son) VS Jesus.


IMO
 

Alana

SuperModerator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
latulipenoire said:
Alana, you've made me curious about which dictionaries and syntax you ordered! Also, can you suggest some material on modern Greek? :)

I created a new thread here so that we don't take this one any more :offtopic:

https://cassiopaea.org/forum/index.php/topic,36177.0.html#new
 

Palinurus

The Living Force
Laura said:
While laid up with the injury, I've been reading a book called "Judas the Galilean" which was recommended here on the forum but I've forgotten where or by who.

http://www.amazon.com/Judas-Galilean-Flesh-Blood-Jesus/dp/0595321976

It's quite interesting in exposing the fraud of the book of Acts and the related "Lukan" gospel. At the same time, I'm reading A Commentary on the Acts of the Apostles by Hans Conzelmann.

This is right after reading Nock's "Conversion" and "Cities of God: The Real Story of How Christianity Became an Urban Movement and Conquered Rome" by Rodney Stark.

Taken together with what we know via my own research and Carotta's, AND Atwill's "Caesar's Messiah" (which has some valuable elements despite the fact that he drew the wrong conclusions), the picture is beginning to clarify as to how this whole thing played out.

Yeah, it seems that Josephus is very much implicated in something or other, but I'm not sure that it is exactly how Atwill portrays it.

Unterbrink has some definitely interesting pieces of the puzzle about Saul/Paul but he tends to think that the Jewish Jesus was the real deal. He misses the idea that it was Julius Caesar and that this was the "messiah" that Paul preached/knew. He denigrates Paul's Herodian connections, but as we see from the remarks by Carotta cited above about Fulvia and Herod, that is actually the true source of the worship: the Caesarean veterans.

Unterbrink published yet another book this year: Judas of Nazareth: How the Greatest Teacher of First-Century Israel Was Replaced by a Literary Creation

He also authored earlier two other titles on the same subject matter:

The Three Messiahs: The Historical Judas the Galilean, The Revelatory Christ Jesus, and The Mythical Jesus of Nazareth (2010)

New Testament Lies: The Greatest Challenge to Traditional Christianity (2006)

And he got himself a new website.


While researching for additional info to complete the narrative of Flavius Josephus and to smooth out his glaring inaccuracies, I also stumbled upon yet another fictional --but according to the reviews well researched-- account about the same period:

The Gospel According to the Romans: a non-believer's view (2011) written by Robin Helweg-Larsen.

Might be a worthwhile read for those who want a lighter inroad into the problems of that specific historical period and related subject matter.

From _https://www.createspace.com/3507307 :

"Forget the legends. Jesus was a Jew, and he hated the Romans. I know, because I lived with him and his followers for a year."

The man we call Saint Matthew, being the tax collector "sitting at the receipt of custom" in Capernaum, is by definition a Roman agent appointed by Pontius Pilate. As such, he has the additional function of keeping an eye on the Zealots and other religious fanatics who head the insurgency against the Roman occupation. 'Ragheads', the Romans call them. After Jesus recruits Matthew to help purify Israel and overthrow the Romans - 'Pigs', the Jews call them - Matthew continues to feed information to Pilate.

Matthew himself tells the story. He is a Greek-speaking Jew, born and educated in Damascus, with a skeptical fascination for religion and politics. He is an irreligious opportunist and has friends on both sides in the conflict. He dines with the Roman military, spies for them, and wants Roman citizenship. But he also lives with Jesus, preaches for him, and falls in love with Mary of Bethany. Whichever way he turns he will cause the death of people he likes, and, in either camp, whoever suspects him will kill him.

By contextualizing the words and actions of Jesus within the Roman Occupation of Palestine and the repeated Jewish insurrections, a strangely modern picture emerges: a charismatic religious fundamentalist, opposing an occupying superpower.

"Matthew is a fascinating narrator who assesses all parties with equal skepticism, and Matthew's conflicts and ploys become increasingly complex as his allegiances to his livelihood with the Roman Empire, and his friendship with Jesus and the other disciples, clash with greater frequency and intensity. Matthew's conflicted narration will engage even readers minimally familiar with the source material." - Publishers Weekly


Just to illustrate this subject matter is getting even more and new alternative traction almost by the day...
 

ka

Padawan Learner
Hi, Palinurus and all:

I’ve been following this thread with great excitement from its inception, having read on my own in various related directions on and off for many years.

So, when Palinurus mentioned the Varus War in a response to the Cassiopaean Session of 10/11/2014, I recognized that it was something I needed to know about. When I did an internet search on it, the ONLY thing it fetched up that actually addressed the subject was on a website put out by the Association for Scriptural Knowledge:

http://www.askelm.com/star/star012.htm

This link brings up a chapter about the Varus War; the book it’s from, The Star of Bethlehem, by author Ernest L. Martin, has lots of other related information. I can’t imagine the Cass research team isn’t aware of this, but just in case, I thought I’d mention it.

Another of Martin’s books is posted, The People That History Forgot; it treats the mélange of religious practices going on in the Near East along with early Christianity, with demographic information about the people practicing them, as well as an account of how these people emigrated into Rome and further into Europe.

I’ve only begun to read the material. But the author seems NOT to be a slave to any Big Agenda. What I’ve read so far seems like honest scholarship, and the historical sources he uses are solid. He discusses the chronological difficulties, and he has a background in astronomy that he brings to the material.

We may not come to the same conclusions he does, but his work seems worth looking into.
 
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