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1 It must here be diligently noted, that Josephus's copy of the First Book of Maccabees, which he had so carefully followed, and faithfully abridged, as far as the fiftieth verse of the thirteenth chapter, seems there to have ended. What few things there are afterward common to both, might probably be learned by him from some other more imperfect records. However, we must exactly observe here, what the remaining part of that book of the Maccabees informs us of, and what Josephus would never have omitted, had his copy contained so much, that this Simon the Great, the Maccabee, made a league with Antiochus Soter, the son of Demetrius Soter, and brother of the other Demetrius, who was now a captive in Parthis: that upon his coming to the crown, about the 140th year before the Christian sets, he granted great privileges to the Jewish nation, and to Simon their high priest and ethnarch; which privileges Simon seems to have taken of his own accord about three years before. In particular, he gave him leave to coin money for his country with his own stamp; and as concerning Jerusalem and the sanctuary, that they should be free, or, as the vulgar Latin hath it, "holy and free," 1 Macc. 15:6, 7, which I take to be the truer reading, as being the very words of his father's concession offered to Jonathan several years before, ch. 10:31; and Antiq. B, XIII. ch. 2. sect. 3. Now what makes this date and these grants greatly remarkable, is the state of the remaining genuine shekels of the Jews with Samaritan characters, which seem to have been (most of them at least) coined in the first four years of this Simon the Asamonean, and having upon them these words on one side, "Jerusalem the Holy ;" and on the reverse, "In the Year of Freedom," 1, or 2, or 3, or 4; which shekels therefore are original monuments of these times, and undeniable marks of the truth of the history in these chapters, though it be in great measure omitted by Josephus. See Essay on the Old Test. p. 157, 158. The reason why I rather suppose that his copy of the Maccabees wanted these chapters, than that his own copies are here imperfect, is this, that all their contents are not here omitted, though much the greatest part be.
2 How Trypho killed this Antiochus the epitome of Livy informs us, ch. 53, viz. that he corrupted his physicians or surgeons, who falsely pretending to the people that he was perishing with the stone, as they cut him for it, killed him, which exactly agrees with Josephus.
3 That this Antiochus, the son of Alexader Balas, was called "The God," is evident from his coins, which Spanheim assures us bear this inscription, "King Antiochus the God, Epiphanes the Victorious."
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