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[441] When therefore he was about to take a journey abroad, he committed his wife to Joseph, his sister Salome's husband, as to one who would be faithful to him, and bare him good-will on account of their kindred; he also gave him a secret injunction, that if Antony slew him, he should slay her. But Joseph, without any ill design, and only in order to demonstrate the king's love to his wife, how he could not bear to think of being separated from her, even by death itself, discovered this grand secret to her; upon which, when Herod was come back, and as they talked together, and he confirmed his love to her by many oaths, and assured her that he had never such an affection for any other woman as he had for her, - " Yes," says she, "thou didst, to be sure, demonstrate thy love to me by the injunctions thou gavest Joseph, when thou commandedst him to kill me." 1

1 Here is either a defect or a great mistake in Josephus's present copies or memory; for Mariamne did not now reproach Herod with this his first injunction to Joseph to kill her, if he himself were slain by Antony, but that he had given the like command a second time to Soemus also, when he was afraid of being slain by Augustus. Antiq. B. XV. ch. 3. sect. 5, etc.

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