Shim 'on ha-Şadiq in his historical contexts

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The identity and chronology of Shim'on ha-şadiq have been a subject of ongoing controversy for centuries. Three possible candidates have been suggested as Shim'on ha-şadiq: Shim'on I and Shim'on II - şadoqite high-priests at both ends of the third century BC, as well as Shim'on the Hasmonean. A re-examination of the evidence shows that the rabbinic Shim'on ha-şadiq cannot be identified exclusively with any of these candidates. Rather, he is a mythical persona based, to varying degrees, on all three. Rabbinic Shim'on ha-şadiq thus represents the swansong of the şado-qite dynasty in Jerusalem, and the rare respite from major violent conflict, enjoyed by the inhabitants of Eretz-Israel for the most part of the third century. It is the mythical nature of Shim'on that enabled later rabbinic authors to connect his name with other, much later, historical events.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)236-249
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Jewish Studies
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • History
  • Religious studies
  • Literature and Literary Theory


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