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Document Details :
Title: The Last Six Kings of Israel According to Josephus
Author(s): BEGG, C.T.
Journal: Ephemerides Theologicae Lovanienses
Volume: 72 Issue: 4 Date: Dec. 1996
2 Kgs 15,8–17,6 (cf. 18,9-12) tells a sorry tale of the last quarter century of the kingdom of Israel’s existence. During this period Israel had no less than six rulers, of whom four (Zechariah, Shallum, Pekahiah and Pekah) die by assassination, the last (Hoshea) is deposed by the Assyrians and only one (Menahem) reigns until death and passes on the kingship to his son, i.e., Pekahiah. The purpose of this essay is to examine Josephus’ account (Ant. 9,228-278) of the above kings in comparison with its Biblical source as this is represented by the following major textual witnesses: MT (BHS), Codex Vaticanus (hereafter B) and the Lucianic (hereafter L) or Antiochene recension and Targum Jonathan on the Former Prophets (hereafter TJ). My comparison will attempt to answer a variety of questions: which text form(s) of the Biblical material did Josephus have available in composing Ant. 9,228-278? How, why and with effect has he dealt with the data of his source?
I shall treat in turn the four parallel segments into which the material may be divided: (1) Zechariah and Shallum (Ant. 9,228 // 2 Kgs 15,8-13.15); (2) Menahem (Ant. 9,229-233a // 2 Kgs 15,14.16-22); (3) Pekahiah and Pekah (Ant. 9,233b-235 // 2 Kgs 15,23-29.31) and (4) Hoshea (Ant. 9,258-260.277-278 // 2 Kgs 15,30; 17,1-6, cf. 18,9-12).