Flavian Signature Verification project -- progress report

Richard Stanley

Administrator
“…Josephus… had dreamed in the night time, whereby God had signified to him beforehand both the future calamities of the Jews, and the events that concerned the Roman emperors. Now Josephus was able to give shrewd conjectures about the interpretation of such dreams as have been ambiguously delivered by God. Moreover, he was not unacquainted with the prophecies contained in the sacred books, as being a priest himself, and of the posterity of priests: and just then was he in an ecstasy; and setting before him the tremendous images of the dreams he had lately had, he put up a secret prayer to God, and said, "Since it pleaseth thee, who hast created the Jewish nation, to depress the same, and since all their good fortune is gone over to the Romans, and since thou hast made choice of this soul of mine to foretell what is to come to pass hereafter, I willingly give them my hands, and am content to live. And I protest openly that I do not go over to the Romans as a deserter of the Jews, but as a minister from thee."
– Josephus, Wars of the Jews, Book III, 8:3​
"...I got all those that I remembered as among my own friends and acquaintances to be set free, being in number about one hundred and ninety; and so I delivered them without their paying any price of redemption, and restored them to their former fortune...”
– The Life Of Flavius Josephus, 1:75​
What an asshole, I would make fun of him if I were Greek also. Like, "oooh, Jesus, you really saved and redeemed your people, didn't you? Now they're all dead" (read that with a sarcastic voice).
Despite whatever validity of your parallels, your analytic model is wrong as for drawing your underlying conclusion. To correct it, you should examine what Jerry and I have labeled the SSSM model that forms the basis of Western Civilization. This is substantially different that Joe's model which we label the CCM, which is a variant of the bankrupt Jew versus Gentile model that Judeo-Christianity entrains.

Here, perhaps it might be useful for you to examine the narrative relationship between Josephus Flavius and his namesake, Joseph - son of Jacob (aka Israel), son of the favorite wife, using the narrative at the end of Genesis 47. Joseph collaborates with pharaoh to manipulate the Egyptian markets such that all Egyptians sell themselves into slavery, after selling their crops, livestock, and land to Joseph and pharaoh. And a few generations later, after Joseph has done such a great service for 'pharaoh', all the so-called Hebrews end up as slaves.

What an asshole, I would make fun of him if I were Greek also. Like, "oooh, Joseph, you really saved and redeemed your people, didn't you? Now they're all slaves" (read that with a sarcastic voice)

In our SSSM (for Shepherds, Sheepdogs, and Sheep Model) we claim that Western society is functionally organized along the lines of collaborating elites with the result that the tribe of Judah functions as a mostly unwitting and vanity driven Sheepdog buffer class that protects the gentil Shepherds. As I clearly laid out in my Isaac and the Fortunate Scions post Judah must pay obeisance to Ephraim, the favored son of Joseph. He must do so at least till the "two sticks become one", likely signaled by Pope Pius XII in the last century when he proclaimed himself Joseph to the Jews. Furthermore Ephraim's mother was hand picked for Joseph by 'pharaoh' from Egyptian priestly stock.

In the earlier posts on the OT we have addressed the differences in Jewish and 'Greek' culture, as laid out by Moses Hadas in his Hellenistic Culture, Fusion and Diffusion. As Hadas details in depth, their respective literary and other aspects of their wider cultures used the same sources, with the differences of satire and comedy, as you pointed out, and their treatment of time. Here, we assert that the reason for this being the case is that both the Judaic Temple culture and the culture of Classical Greece are because they are 'designer' societies, enabled by the massive regional chessboard clearing that occurred with the end of the Late Bronze Age. The classical Greeks stated emphatically that their concepts derived from Egypt, and as we are learning from the Sabbah rabbi brothers in their Secrets of the Exodus, that Judaism mainly derived from Egypt as well, Atenism reformulated. One must accept this latter being the case as a consequence, in that without the 613 Mosaic laws of cultural inversion that the people who became the Jews would otherwise be typical pagans.

With the Greeks, a centuries long dark age occurred with the collapse of the Late Bronze Age where Mycenae was unpopulated for centuries before the rise of Classical Greece, where the latter state that they got everything from Egypt. These are designer societies and cultures, just like modern day Mormonism and similar. They were created to achieve particular geopolitical objectives that were expedient in their day.

You also need to deal with the aspect of Esau's Edomites viz-a-viz the Romans and the Herodians, and why the Jewish corpus would allow that Esau would reclaim his inheritance, and why Gittin 56 seems to allow for exactly such.

Josephus delivered and restored his friends, because this is the manner in which the Shepherd and Sheepdog system works. The old model is what we are supposed to follow, because this forces one to twist themselves into a logic pretzel and come up with such as the CCM (the Cuckoo Coup Model).

Jerry and I have written quite a bit on this, but we are forced to spend a lot of redundant time explaining this because the old model is so pervasive.
 

Josephson

Member
Hi Jerry and Richard,
thanks for reading, you are my first audience. I have no idea where I would go to look for an audience with an open mind for this if not here. I am not very concerned with the Old Testament and its origins. I mean it is an interesting question, but I don't want to get into that right now except as far as the OT typology influences NT.

As far as chronology, there are times when the Gospels or Revelation follow the Chronology of Josephus for a while, but there are times when they go in reverse order or jump around a bit. These short distances of same or reverse chronology still serve to strengthen textual dependence for those passages because they very strongly reduce the probability of chance coincidence, but we should not let that stop us from recognizing parallels that are out of sequence because there are so many. I am concerned with textual dependence between NT and Josephus and when I read the NT, all I see is joke after joke about Josephus and his writings, exaggerating and laughing at him and his choice of words, laughing at the way he sees himself as a messenger from God and the Romans as doing God's work, then repurposed into Flavian Vanity.

I don't see any contradiction between vanity, and use of satire.
The point is that if Josephus himself was motivated primarily by Flavian Vanity, why would he include so many things that make the Romans look like horrible committers of genocide, that brought such miseries on the Jews, it does not inspire faith in the Romans but terror. But how it got into Josephus is less interesting than how it got into a "religious" work. As you mentioned, why would someone motivated by FV put several parallels to Cannibal Mary into the Gospels, it is again not faith inspiring and threatens to take down the entire scam if it is discovered, and it is a huge attention grabber. How it got into Josephus, I do not want to theorize, maybe it is even a valid story, but finding it in the Gospels I think can only be explained by satire which was then repurposed into FV. The original authors must not have been afraid of these parallels being discovered, but rather wanted them to be discovered, if you are good enough at understanding satire (if it has been given to you to understand the mysteries of the kingdom of God). Those stupid Jews thought their God would save them from the Romans, little did they know, as Josephus points out to them, the Romans are their Gods, which point the Gospels satirically make again.
 

Josephson

Member
BTW, can I ask if you are reading on a kindle or the cloud? I don't have a kindle and I find the cloud version terrible. The format is not very appropriate with these short pages when you constantly need to refer back and forth between the passages. Unfortunately that is still the only format I have it in, besides posting here which I think is easier to see, and still working on finishing the formatting there. Have you caught up with the end of my switch to color coding yet? If so, I should probably work harder on finishing that.
 

Josephson

Member
I think one thing to keep in mind while reading these parallels is that Greek satire is a strange place, where buildings come alive and talk to you, where a character that is paralleling a passage in Josephus can jump out of the page and take you by the hand and lead you back up the page to show you another passage to compare and comment that way. It is a place where a water fountain can be a fertility goddess. You need a cartoonish imagination to get a lot of these.
 

Jerry Russell

Administrator
Staff member
Despite whatever validity of your parallels, your analytic model is wrong as for drawing your underlying conclusion.
In fairness to Josephson, I have to point out that if his evidence supports his hypothesis rather than ours, then we're going to have to change our views. The question is, whether these new parallels really do force a new conclusion? That is, in Bayesian terms: if H1 is the SSSM hypothesis, H2 is Josephson's "Greek Satire" hypothesis, and E is the evidence from the new parallels: is it really true that P(E|H2) > P(E|H1), or are the likelihoods really equal, or even greater for our hypothesis?

BTW, can I ask if you are reading on a kindle or the cloud?
I have Kindle for Mac, and I also took a look at the cloud version. I don't have an actual Kindle hardware device.

If you're working on updates, I'm not seeing them: what I see on Amazon is the version published Oct. 3, with no color coding.
 
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Josephson

Member
Oh, that's not good, that will be much harder to read. The formatting was all messed up. It doesn't offer you to download the new version? I will try to test it out...
 

Richard Stanley

Administrator
I am not very concerned with the Old Testament and its origins. I mean it is an interesting question, but I don't want to get into that right now except as far as the OT typology influences NT.
And Jesus said to not build your house on sand.

I just provided you a radically different framework for you to place the elite players in, and that applies both forward and backwards in time from the time of Christ. Literary parallels aside, the implications, of such as the Sabbah brothers (from the 'Jewish' side) and Fideler (from the Greek side), and Hadas's detailed discussion of the common influences into the Classical Greeks (who stated they also got everything from Egypt) and the Temple Cult Jews, upon the resulting Christian product is an ingenious amalgam of Greek esoterica with a Jewish surface gloss. The primary motivation of which was not to satisfy select individuals' vanity, but was to fulfill a project started long before. That wider project is the repeated subtext of the canons of the Jews, the Christians and the pagan Romans.

Just as today where the elites that ultimately sponsor the Clintons and Trump don't share the values of their fellow citizens, this has been the case from time immemorial. So from my POV there can be not so much profit in reading Josephus's stated feelings about his fellow countrymen or what and how he characterizes the genocide. Besides which, people all the time rationalize such genocides, case in point being the Conquest of Canaan and all those that were biblically inspired after that.

For all we know the numbers of Jews killed in the war(s) may have been grossly exaggerated, and yes, Palestine was in a remote corner of the empire, and there was no electronic news media covering the event. That Josephus was allowed to transfer so many of his elite kin, and considering that he was of Hasmonean (Maccabee) descent, only speaks more to the incestuous relationship of such elite Jews to the elite Sabine Romans. And why there were suspicions about the Livy (the Levite? and Livy's laws paralleling Moses's) and Horace being Jews.

It is for these reasons that I think the term Flavian Vanity is unfortunate and distractionary. And incidentally, that my term of the Cuckoo Coup is misleading as applied to Joe's notion of more recent Jewish revenge, as I feel that the concept of the Cuckoo Coup appears to be the main modus operandi of the elites in question taking the covert reigns of Western civilization, via the marital bedroom.

So, as I tried to state before, even if your parallels are perfectly valid, how can you come to a correct conclusion about who is doing what to whom, and why, if you don't understand where these people came from and their mindsets? You have to think like they did, not like you do'od.

Those stupid Jews thought their God would save them from the Romans, little did they know, as Josephus points out to them, the Romans are their Gods, which point the Gospels satirically make again.
Which stupid Jews? As I stated above, you must distinguish between the shepherds and the sheep, and between the sheepdogs.

Finally, perhaps I have missed something in your discussion here, but the major strength of Joe's CM analysis, in my opinion, is that of the intertwined nature of the gospels with Josephus. It is not that the gospels are wrapped around a pre-existing Josephan work, but that the works of Josephus answer oddities in the gospels, and vice-versa. Thus Josephus was collaboratively working with a Roman propaganda team to prepare what became the Christian corpus, initially the Chrestian corpus if Bartram is correct. Outside of the gospels, that Jewish Roman citizen, Paul rides into Rome on the Castor and Pollux. These two were the prior saviors of the Greco-Roman world. Paul's name had been changed from Saul, which in the Bible means that there is some synthetic legerdemain of the 'lords' that be. And the use of this name, Saul, is significant as well in a millennial sense.

So, here we can find a problem with so-called reductionism in the approach you are taking, in that you will not be able to see the globalist's forest for the Flavian trees.
 

Richard Stanley

Administrator
In fairness to Josephson, I have to point out that if his evidence supports his hypothesis rather than ours, then we're going to have to change our views. The question is, whether these new parallels really do force a new conclusion? That is, in Bayesian terms: if H1 is the SSM hypothesis, H2 is Josephson's "Greek Satire" hypothesis, and E is the evidence from the new parallels: is it really true that P(E|H2) > P(E|H1), or are the likelihoods really equal, or even greater for our hypothesis?
I reject the premise that Jews such as Josephus and the associated team of cynical imperial Roman propagandists could not collectively write dark satire. Thus I don't see where there is a basis to start making such a statistical comparison of any validity.

Hilariously, since we now know that the Tribe of Dan were previously the Greek Danoi (who claim to have also originated in Egypt), I think that this further throws the notion in question into strong doubt. We need to put new wine into new wineskins, not relabeled wineskins.
 

Josephson

Member
I reject the premise that Jews such as Josephus and the associated team of cynical imperial Roman propagandists could not collectively write dark satire. Thus I don't see where there is a basis to start making such a statistical comparison of any validity.

Hilariously, since we now know that the Tribe of Dan were previously the Greek Danoi (who claim to have also originated in Egypt), I think that this further throws the notion in question into strong doubt. We need to put new wine into new wineskins, not relabeled wineskins.
Hilariously, that parable you mention about the wineskins is actually a satire of what happens when you fast too much until you become "swelled as men in a dropsy" and then overfill those bottles with too great abundance among the Romans:
http://postflaviana.org/community/index.php?threads/the-parable-of-the-patches-and-wineskins.1939/

So, I'm not quite sure what you meant with that analogy.
The point is, that if we can demonstrate that 80% of the NT is a satire of a genocide, then the NT is primarily a satire of a genocide. If there was a beverage on the table and we show that it is at least 80% alcohol, we would conclude that it is an alcoholic drink, whether it was prepared for us by the Romans, the Greeks or the Jews. I want to emphasize that I do not see this as being mutually exclusive with CM or FV or SSSM or what ever you want to call the motivation of turning this into a Rome friendly and Rome centric religion. Because obviously that is what happened in the end, that is history, it became a Rome centered religion. All I am suggesting is that you cannot motivate the inclusion of things passages like "Patches and Wineskins" or a satire of Cannibal Mary purely with FV or CM. And I have about 400 such parallels that cannot be motivated by much of anything except making fun of Josephus and his writting. See also "Jesus Heals Bartimaeus":
http://postflaviana.org/community/index.php?threads/jesus-heals-bartimaeus.1943/

There is no way to motivate the inclusion of that into the Gospels by just FV or CM. They are just satires and that is the only way they really make sense. So the sanitization and repurposing of the NT into a Rome favoring religion must have happened after their writing. Also, if the Gospels all use very different language, some with Latin influence, some with Hebraic influence, appearing at different times in different locations, then it is hard to argue in favor of one small tightly knit group of collaborators, but it would appear to be more like a loose conglomeration of satirists competing to make the best satire of Josephus ("a strange accusation and calumny this!", to quote Josephus). When, where, how and by who it got turned into a Rome centric religion is a separate question from its origin as a satire. Who added the fruit juice and other ingredients to make this glass of alcohol into a cocktail drinkable by the masses is not my primary concern right now, but to identify the main ingredient in this drink which is enough to make you drunk regardless of the flavorings added.

And by "those stupid Jews", I mean those that Josephus saw as blind fools "For God had blinded their minds for the transgressions they had been guilty of, nor could they see how much greater forces the Romans had than those that were now expelled, no more than they could discern how a famine was creeping upon them". For they have eyes but they cannot see, they have ears but they cannot hear. He thought they were blind fools to believe that their God would save them from the Romans. Because, as Josephus informs us, "God, when he had gone round the nations with this dominion, is now settled in Italy".
 
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Richard Stanley

Administrator
Hilariously, that parable you mention about the wineskins is actually a satire of what happens when you fast too much until you become "swelled as men in a dropsy" and then overfill those bottles with too great abundance among the Romans:
http://postflaviana.org/community/index.php?threads/the-parable-of-the-patches-and-wineskins.1939/
I was aware of you making that analysis, however, for my limited and mundane purposes I was using that reference in the more traditional sense. I think that you are capable of retaining both interpretations in your head at the same time -- and then figuring out what I meant.

The point is, that if we can demonstrate that 80% of the NT is a satire of a genocide, then the NT is primarily a satire of a genocide. If there was a beverage on the table and we show that it is at least 80% alcohol, we would conclude that it is an alcoholic drink, whether it was prepared for us by the Romans, the Greeks or the Jews.
Some alcoholic drinks, say cheap wine, are prepared merely to allow the imbiber to get drunk, while others, like a fine wine, are more geared towards the enjoyment of the unique flavors brought out by the 20% that differentiates the otherwise identical alcohol.

And maybe in this case the satire was included as an additional layer of obscurantism .... further veiling what was rally important -- than some writers merely getting their rocks off. Not that too many people put ice in wine.
 

Jerry Russell

Administrator
Staff member
It has been called to my attention, that according to the Postflavian nomenclature, SSM stands for "Shakespeare's Secret Messiah". The cultural theory formerly known as SSM has been renamed as SSSM, the "Sheep-Shepherd-Sheepdog Model." We had never intended to cuckold Joe's book title. I have no excuse for my error, other than that old habits are hard to erase. So now I'm a bad influence on the newcomers. I'm fixing the errors above, and will try to do better in the future.
 

Richard Stanley

Administrator
Jerry, are you trying to create a revolutionary Postmodernist subliminal suggestion, via "pride of place" that the Sheep take precedence over the Shepherds and Sheepdogs? With our initial conflating use of the SSM acronym, it was the Shepherd and Sheepdog Model, with the presence of the sheep being implied.

And we should announce that the CCM will likely be altered (perhaps branched) as well, as it is not really specific enough to Joe's variant model of Jewish / goy dynamics -- as we understand it. The literal and figurative cuckholding of foreigners into the leadership of a country is more commonplace than Joe is asserting with his position.
 

Jerry Russell

Administrator
Staff member
Jerry, are you trying to create a revolutionary Postmodernist subliminal suggestion
I'm glad we're all being hilarious. It was purely unconscious and unintentional, but now that you mention it: YES! My subconscious mind came up with a brilliant plan to subvert everyone else's subconscious mind.

About Josephson's two parallels mentioned above, I have very different reactions to the two of them.

The "Parable of the Patches and Wineskin" parallel has several exact or very close word-level parallels 'fill/filled', 'burst/break', 'preserved/preserved', 'cut up/rent', 'famine/fast', 'swelled/fill it up', and 'dissected/perish'. It's all very interpretable in exactly the way that's suggested, with the strong conceptual parallel between starving Jews bursting from dropsy, and old bottles filled with wine. The parallel between new bottles and Romans is a logical conclusion, and in this case the Romans are filled with gold as much as wine. I score this as a very strong parallel, which we hadn't discovered before. The satire is in the portrayal of the Jews who are bursting or being sliced apart, whose plight is described satirically or euphemistically as bursting wine bottles and torn clothes. I don't see it as a satire of Josephus at all, it falls exactly into the 'Flavian vanity' model. The joke is on anyone who interprets this as spiritual wisdom, rather than a sardonic description of a genocide.

The "Jesus Heals Bartimaeus" only has one exact word-level match, the name Timaeus. The conceptual parallel is that the blind man's lack of sight corresponds to the Greek authors' lack of knowledge, and the healing corresponds to Thucydides' improved history. This seems much weaker: Timaeus is a common Greek name, and Josephus gives many names in his paragraph. Thucydides is damned with very faint praise, and there's nothing obvious that has happened to make him even a little better than anyone else. Most of the relationships implied by the color coding look pretty random to me, compared to the exactness of the wineskin example. And as a joke, it falls flat.

Josephson, do you see the difference in strength between these two examples? Or do you think I'm being obtuse?
 

Jerry Russell

Administrator
Staff member
The synoptic parallel to Matthew 9:14-17 in Luke is Luke 5:33-39. Joe didn't identify any parallel to the passage, but Giles has JW IV, chapter 1, paragraph 8, verses 18 + 49-59, which is in the "Flavian sequence" order. Giles' parallel strikes me as weaker than Josephson's discovery for that NT passage, but stronger than the "Jesus Heals Bartimaeus" example.

Giles' parallel is here: http://postflaviana.org/community/index.php?threads/the-flavian-signature-broken-through-lack-of-food-and-other-essentials.1461/

Also, speaking of "obtuse", I had read the Josephus passage V, 13:4 before, and of course I've seen the parable of wineskins. But, the match never occurred to me. Now that it's been pointed out, it seems obvious.
 

Josephson

Member
I will try to explain the Bartimaeus parallel.
-First the name Timaeus gives a pretty strong candidate for a match already because the names Timaeus or similar appear exactly once in both Josephus and the NT.
-But then Josephus says "Timaeus and those that came after" which allegorically would be the son of Temaeus or Bartimaeus. Since Timaeus and "those that came after him" are mentioned in both, that strengthens the name association further.
-Then Josephus, a Jew, is accusing all of these Greek writers as having "so great contradictions" and to have "told lies in the greatest part of their histories" and so Jesus calls them blind.
-He insults a great many Greek writers by name so in Mark we have "a great number of people" following Bartimaeus.
-Josephus says he should spend his time to little purpose if were to try and teach the Greeks about writing so Greek Bartimaeus sarcastically says "Oh, Thou, son of David (read Jew), have mercy on me (and show me the light)!"
-Then Josephus asks "what need I say more?" and Mark answers that question with "a great many people charged him (Josephus) to hold his peace, but he cried out the more". Remember that the Gospels are elegantly written to allow you to think one person is saying something when if you know the parallel you see it is the other person saying it. In this case, Josephus cried out a great deal more even though the Greeks charged him to hold his peace and stop insulting the Greeks, so Bartimaeus also cries out a great deal more for mercy. This question answer also kind of gives a matching chronology between the two.
-Josephus keeps insulting the Greek writers more and so Bartimaeus says again "ooh, thou son of David (Jew), have mercy on me, nyah!"
-So Josephus tells them all who wrote the best of histories and suddenly Bartimaeus saw everything clearly.

It is a very conceptual parallel, the only very obvious parts at first glance are Timaeus and those that came after him. But if you put yourself in the mind of an ancient Greek with a proud tradition of writing and some Jew comes to tell you what a horrible tradition you have then he would probably react sarcastically just like that: "oooh, I'm so offended, some son of David thinks he can show me the light, wow, what a miracle worker sent from God!"

Totally in isolation, this is a pretty strong parallel already. Timeus may be a common Greek name but not so common in Israel at that time, even less likely that a blind Greek guy would be wandering around Israel looking for help. And since Bartimaeus calls Jesus "son of David" it seems to be a euphemism for "Jew" implying that Bartimaeus is a Greek.

But if you view this within the common thread of every passage from the Gospels being all satires of the writings of Josephus, then it becomes incredibly strong because "Timeus" and those that came after appear exactly once in all of the writings of Josephus in Against Apion and Timaeus and Bartimaeus appear exactly once in the Gospels and these two passages fit together into a beautiful joke, if you happen to be a proud Greek writer who thinks that a son of a slave nation could never teach him anything about writing and histories.

If we are searching for textual dependence, the statistical question we need to ask is not what are the chances it could have some similarities with some document on the internet today, but what are the chances it could have similarities with texts from their time, obviously a text written yesterday can't have textual dependence with the Gospels except in the forward time direction. And the only texts surviving written about Israel in the first century are the works of Josephus and the NT (with small exceptions, i.e. the dead sea scrolls). Now if we have a set of over 400 derisive parallels which seem to show some kind of textual dependence covering nearly every passage of the Gospels and the book of Revelation and correlating them to virtually every passage of Josephus where he himself appears and most of the Wars of the Jews, then we have to ask the statistical question of whether these are not virtually the same book, just one is a slightly reshuffled satire of the other.
 
If you'll forgive me for being a killjoy, it seems to me the experimental design has a fundamental limitation until the original Greek can be analyzed
 

Josephson

Member
If by that you mean that some of the satire could be lost in translation, that is a concern. These documents were translated into English at different times. However, since the satire relies on imagery it is less dependant on specific words and seems to a large extent to translate well. And if I have 400 satirical parallels that is enough to establish its identity as a satire.
 

Jerry Russell

Administrator
Staff member
If you'll forgive me for being a killjoy, it seems to me the experimental design has a fundamental limitation until the original Greek can be analyzed
This was a fundamental objection from both Richard Carrier and Acharya S, that none of us have any business doing this analysis because we don't know Greek. So we're supposed to wait until some Biblical scholar think this is interesting enough to be worth the time of day. With the political situation in academia being what it is, that's not going to happen.

I looked into getting a classical Greek equivalent for the Spacy parser and context vector utilities, and the problem is that there isn't enough surviving classical Greek text to train those tools. The machine learning algorithms require massive gigabytes of data. The tools can be used for basic word counting in classical Greek, but I think a better approach is to use modern translations and take advantage of the trained models.

I believe that with all ancient languages, the amount of surviving examples is small enough that the exact meaning of many words and texts is actually uncertain, perhaps more so than the experts like to admit.
 
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Jerry Russell

Administrator
Staff member
I will try to explain the Bartimaeus parallel.
Thanks, Josephson, for the additional explanation. You pointed out some additional analogies that I didn't see in my first take.

I agree there are conceptual parallels 'say any more'/'cry out the more' and 'Hellanicus, Acusilius, Hesiod... etc.' and 'a great number of people'. And we've already both mentioned 'writing histories from conjectures / blindness' and 'Thucydides...exactest history' / 'received his sight'.

Imagining a dialog between the two sides of the parallel is an interesting interpretive scheme. I think Joe has done some of the same.

As to the punch line, I still don't understand what's special about Thucydides, or why Greek people would see this as funny -- more so than Jews, or Greek-speaking Roman members of the Flavian court. In other words, given H1 and H2 as I mentioned in my post up above, I don't see how this helps us discriminate between the two hypotheses.

And I stand by my ground that these almost entirely conceptual parallels are harder to defend from an objective point of view, than the parallels with word-level support. Conceptual parallels might be completely valid and intentional, yet the judgment of that seems highly subjective.

if you view this within the common thread of every passage from the Gospels being all satires of the writings of Josephus, then it becomes incredibly strong
I think from a logical point of view, trying to construct a mathematical proof that we're on the right track, this is going about it backwards. We need to start from a basis of defensible stand-alone parallels, and see what conclusions we can draw from that set.
 

Josephson

Member
I agree there are conceptual parallels 'say any more'/'cry out the more' and 'Hellanicus, Acusilius, Hesiod... etc.' and 'a great number of people'. And we've already both mentioned 'writing histories from conjectures / blindness' and 'Thucydides...exactest history' / 'received his sight'.

Imagining a dialog between the two sides of the parallel is an interesting interpretive scheme. I think Joe has done some of the same.

As to the punch line, I still don't understand what's special about Thucydides, or why Greek people would see this as funny -- more so than Jews, or Greek-speaking Roman members of the Flavian court. In other words, given H1 and H2 as I mentioned in my post up above, I don't see how this helps us discriminate between the two hypotheses.
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Yes, anyone might find this funny who thinks that Josephus, a Jew, could never tell the Greek writers anything they don't already know or tell them how to do their job. It's like they are saying "oh, thank you Josephus for showing us the truth, that simple statement about who was the best writer cleared up all the questions they had in their literary tradition". What a miracle worker. Nothing is special about Thucydides except for the fact that Josephus informs those Greeks that he was the best, now everything is cleared up. Probably the least likely person to find this humorous is Josephus himself, since he is the object of the joke. That son of David thinks he can tell the Greeks how to write.

And I stand by my ground that these almost entirely conceptual parallels are harder to defend from an objective point of view, than the parallels with word-level support. Conceptual parallels might be completely valid and intentional, yet the judgment of that seems highly subjective.

I think from a logical point of view, trying to construct a mathematical proof that we're on the right track, this is going about it backwards. We need to start from a basis of defensible stand-alone parallels, and see what conclusions we can draw from that set.
Well, if you require only parallels with word-level support, that might be the simplest objective test, but I fear you will miss a very large number of parallels that way because they are mostly conceptual and rarely use the exact same words (maybe also because of translations). I don't know the details of how you do your search and compare "similar" words, or how you choose your window size (by paragraph or by sentence number, etc.?) although I would be curious to hear more about your efforts in that direction. However, I have noticed that these conceptual images are sometimes repeated many times, like Jesus' body being the temple, "sat at meat" or "a feast" or "eat" usually mean a battle or a slaughter of some kind. The emperor is God and so the son of God (Jesus) is the one doing his work, that means that when Nero is God, Vespasian is Jesus and that is why Vespasian had his face set go to Jerusalem. Later, when Vespasian is God and Titus and Josephus are the ones doing God's work they are represented as Josephus. There is a kind of code and I was wondering if it is possible to incorporate that into your tests. So, for example, you could equate Jesus and Josephus and Titus and test for how much the parallels are strengthened as compared to equating Jesus with a word that has equal frequency in Wars of the Jews. If it very much improves the associations more than accidental probability could account then we can establish this way a lexicon and when you equate the lexical items then you have the same story between the two passages. I don't know what statistical method you are using or if it is easy to define a significance test or score on that, but to me, that could be one approach to a mathematical proof.

Jesus Heals Bartimaeus is a very strong stand alone. But I think there is much to be learned from continuing thread parallels which use the same imagery again and again. For example, everyone that gets conquered in war or "taken alive" is normally considered a woman in the NT. That little association helps you to understand so many other parallels again and again. This is what makes the significance of those associations high, although I am not myself trying to put a number on that right now. But if you can, I would applaud that.
 
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