Josephus: noble sicarii suicide or mass-slaughter at Mount Masada? / Nicholas Peter Legh Allen
Allen, Nicholas Peter Legh
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An attempt is made to ratiocinate historical events at Mount Masada in c. 74 C.E. as related by Josephus Flavius. Cohen (1982:393) clearly sees Josephus as a mostly dishonest historian, one who happily exaggerates and embellishes his accounts. As a consequence of this rhetorical straight-jacket that he places Josephus within, Cohen (for one) cannot accept Josephus’ Masada account as being an “unalloyed version of the truth”. The author analyses Josephus’ track record apropos his recording of other historical events and submits that, rhetorical strategies aside, the historian can largely trust Josephus’ accounts.