[b-hebrew] GDD (was not: Self-mutilation)

Harold R. Holmyard III hholmyard at ont.com
Sun Oct 17 07:23:52 EDT 2004

Dear Dave,

I sent this on Monday the 11th, and it lacked the "b" before 
"-hebrew." It was never delivered and was returned this morning. A 
apologize for its lateness. Here are a few of Bar Kochba's letters in 
a translation. They are about everyday matters.

Texts on Bar Kochba:
The letters

	Simon ben Kosiba, surnamed Simon bar Kochba ('son of the 
star') was a Jewish Messiah. Between 132 and 135, he was the leader 
of the last resistance against the Romans. After the end of the 
disastrous rebellion, the rabbis called him 'Bar Koziba', which means 
'son of the lie'.

In the 1960's, several letters written by Bar Kochba were discovered 
in caves at Wadi Murabba`at and Nahal Hever. They show that Bar 
Kochba was a rather authoritarian man. All translations were taken 
from Yigael Yadin, Bar-Kokhba. The rediscovery of the legendary hero 
of the last Jewish revolt against Imperial Rome (1971 London).

Letters from Simon bar Kochba
Shimeon bar Kosiba to Yehonathan and to Masabala.
Let all men from Tekoa and other places who are with you, be sent to 
me without delay. And if you shall not send them, let it be known to 
you, that you will be punished.

Letter of Shimeon bar Kosiba to Yehonathan, son of Be'ayan:
Peace! My order is that whatever Elisha tells you, do to him and help 
him and those with him. Be well.

Shimeon to Yehudah bar Menashe in Qiryath 'Arabaya.
I have sent to you two donkeys, and you must send with them two men 
to Yehonathan, son of Be'ayan and to Masabala, in order that they 
shall pack and send to the camp, towards you, palm branches and 
citrons. And you, from your place, send others who will bring you 
myrtles and willows. See that they are tithed and sent them to the 
camp. The request is made because the army is big. Be well.

>From Shimeon bar Kosiba to the men of En-gedi.
To Masabala and to Yehonathan bar Bey'ayan, peace!
In comfort you sit, eat and drink from the property of the House of 
Israel, and care nothing for your brothers.

This last letter seems to be a repproach to the men of En-gedi, 
because they had failed to take part in a battle.

				Harold Holmyard


More information about the b-hebrew mailing list