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M.Besant E.Walter
Jerusalem, the city of Herod and Saladin

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M.Besant E.Walter
Jerusalem, the city of Herod and Saladin
page 50



triumph at Rome was the execution of the general of the vanquished army. Titus had both generals to grace his procession. He assigned to Simon the post of honour. At the foot of the Capitoline Hill the intrepid Jew was led to the block, with a halter round his neck, and scourged cruelly. He met his death with the same undaunted courage as he had defended his city. John of Giscala remained a prisoner for life. No historian, except perhaps Milman, whose sympathies are ever with the fallen cause, seems to its to have done justice, not only to the bravery and heroism of the Jews, but also to the heroism of their leaders. Their leaders have been described by an enemy and a rival—that Jcsephus, son of Matthias, who, after making an heroic resistance at Jotapata, obtained his life by pretending to be a prophet, and continued in favour with the conquerors by exhorting his fellow-countrymen to submission. That Simon and Jobn were men stained with blood, violent, headstrong, we know well; but it does not seem to us that they were so bad and worthless as Josephus would have us to believe. After the siege fairly began they united their forces : we hear no more of the faction-fights. If their soldiers committed excesses and cruelties, they were chiefly for food ; and everything was to give way to the preservation of the defenders. Moreover, discipline was not thought of among the Jews, whose notion of fighting was chiefly a blind and headlong rush. But we must again recall the religious side of the defence. To the Jew his Temple was more, far more, than Mecca can ever be to a Mohammedan. It had traditions far higher and more divine. The awful presence of Jehovah had filled the sanctuary as with a cloud. His angels had been seen on the sacred hill. There, for generation after generation, the sacrifice had been offered, .the feast kept, the unsullied faith maintained. The Temple was a standing monument to remind them by whose aid they had escaped captivity ;


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