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get back again to the town; and as often as this was attempted by any of them, the horse soldiers under his command interposed to prevent the carrying their scheme into execution. They killed with their lances such of them as were within their reach, and did every thing in their power to intercept the rest. Some, however, who possessed more strength and swiftness than their companions, reached the walls; and now the guard were puzzled in the highest degree to kuiow whom to admit and whom to ex. clude ; for they thought it would be extremely unreasonable to open the gates to their townsmen, and shut them against those of Gadara ; and, on the contrary, they were fearful that if they opened them indifferently to all, the loss of the place miglit be endangered ; as, in the end, it had like to have happened : for the Romans having pursued some fugitives even to the wall, had nearly fallen into the town with them; but with great difficulty the gates were shut, and the ingress prevented. Hercupon Placidus made a vigorous attack on the place, which he urged with so great a resolution, that he became master of it, and took possession of the wall on the afternoon of the same day. The common people, who had no means of defending themselves, were put to the sword, and the others sought their safety in flight, carrying with them, wherever they went through the country, the melancholy news of what had happened. In the interim, the victorious party first plundered the houses, and then reduced the place to ashes.
It is true, that the misery hereby occasioned was sufficiently great ; but the matter of fact was abundantly exceeded by the account of the reporters, who, wherever they went, circulated a rumour that the whole army of the Romans was in pursuit of them. This report alarmed the inhabitants of the country to such a degree, that almost all of them abandoned their houses, retiring towards Jericho in immense numbers, as they thought it the most safe retreat they could make, from its natural strength and its populousness. Placidus pursued the fugitives as far as the river Jordan, bis forces destroying, without distinction, as many of them as they could overtake. When they arrived near the banks of that river, they found it impassable, as the waters had been swelled by an uncommon fall of rain ; and it was equally impossible to fly farther : wherefore, in this situation, it became necessary to abide the event of a battle. Hereupon the Jews planted themselves along the banks of the river, where, for some time, they maintained their ground ; but their ranks being once broken, their loss, including the drowned with those who were slain, became almost incredible. It was estimated that fifteen hundred were killed on the spot, about two thousand made prisoners, and a vast booty acquired in camels, oxen, and sheep.
The Jews had never before experienced a defeat so capital as the present, which may be more easily conceived than described. The public roads where they had passed were almost covered with the dead ; and the bodies of the slain so choked up by the river Jordan, as to render it impassable, while great numbers floated down the several streams that ran into the lake Asphaltites.
A series of success now attending Placidus, he proceeded to the reduction of Besemoth, Julias, Abila, and other places, even down to the lake. In these he placed garrisons of the most able, and those he could best trust, of the deserters from the enemy. This being done, he embarked his troops, having first cleared the lake of all those who had fled thither for refuge ; and this he did in so effectual a manner, that the Romans were soon in absolute possession of every place beyond the river Jordan, eyon down to Macbæras.
While these events were taking place in Judea, Vespasian received accounts that Vindex had revolted in Gaul, and therefore determined to put a speedy period to the war. With this resolution, he marched with his army from Cæsarea to Antipatris,
Josephus was set at liberty for having predicted his prosperity, and Titus was send by his father to terminate the Jewish war. From Alexandria, where he parted with his father, Titus went by land to Nicopolis, where he embarked his forces in long boats, and sailed down the Nile on the banks of the Mendesian Canton, to the city of Thmuis, and landed at Tanis. Hence he proceeded to Heracleopolis, and thence to Pelusium, where he remained two days to refresh his troops : then he marched across the desert, and encamped near the temple of Jupiter Cassius. On the following day he proceeded to Ostracine, which is so remarkable for its drought, that the inhabitauts have no water but what they procure from other places : thence he went to Rinocorura, where he remained some time. Raphia, the first city on the confines of Syria, was his fourth stage, and Gaza his fifth ; from which he went to Ascalon, Jamaia, and Joppa ; and from Joppa to Cæsarea, in the view of adding some reinforcement to the troops under his command.
At Cæsarea he reviewed his army, and made the necessary regulations for the further prosecution of his designs. He led his forces into the country in the following order : the auxiliaries marched first ; they were followed by the pioneers, to whom succeeded the troops appointed to mark out the ground where the camp was to be formed : next came the baggage of the officers attended by a convoy ; and then followed Titus, escorted by his guards and other chosen troops, and attended by the ensign bearers : these were succeeded by the tribunes and other officers, with a number of selected men under their command : the next in course was the Roman eagle surrounded by the ensigns of the legions, and preceded by trumpets : then marched the body of the army in rank and file, the men being drawn up six in front, and followed by the domestics with their baggage : the rear was formed by the victuallers, artizans, and other mercenaries, escorted by their guard. Thus, according to the military discipline of the Romans, Titus led his arıny by the way of Samaria to Gophna, which Vespasian had formerly subdued, and therein cstablished a garrison. On the following morning he proceeded towards a place called by the Jews the Valley of Thorns, situated near thirty furlongs from Jerusalem, and adjacent to the village of Gabath Saul, or the Valley of Saul, where he arrived and encamped his army the same evening.
He had, beside the three legions which had served under his father, the fifth legion, which had been so roughly handled by the Jews in Cestius's time, and now burned with a desire of revenge. Besides these, Agrippa, Soemus, and Antiochus, (the two former of whom accompanied him in person) and some allied cities, had furnished him with twenty regiments of foot and eight of horse, besides vast multitudes of Arabs, and a choice number of persons of distinction from Italy and other places, who came to signalize themselves under his standards. Titus ordered the fifth legion to take the road of Emmaus, the tenth that of Jericho, the other two legions followed bim. It was now the beginning of April, and near the feast of the passover, to which there was a greater resort of the Jews than had ever been known, even from beyond the Euphrates. Titus, having advanced so near the city, went himself to take a view of its fortifications, accompanied by only six hundred horsemen : he seemed even to flatter himself, that, upon his first appearance, the peaceable part of the Jews would open the gates to him; but, to his great surprize, the factions made so sudden and vigorous 8 sally against him, that he found himself quite surrounded with enemies in a parrow defile, and cut off from his cavalry. He had therefore now no other way left to escape their fury, but to make a desperate push, and cut his way through them ; a purpose which be at length effected without receiving a wound or losing more than two of his
After this narrow escape; he caused his men to draw nearer to Scopas, within seven stadia of the city, that they might besiege it in form ; whilst the factions within only of slaves and vagabonds. These successes indueed him to make several iocursious into the toparclay of Acrabetana and the greater Idumea, and at length he fixed his retreat in the town of Nain, a place which he had before walled and fortified. He found in the valley of Pharan a number of caverns admirably adapted to his purpose ; and he enlarged others, and converted them into magazines, stores, and granaries, for the reception of such articles as he obtained by plunder. Thus provided with forces and provisions, it seemed to be the prevailing opinion that the principal view of Simon was to make an attack on Jerusalem. In this opinion the zealots coincided ; and, thinking that ill consequences might arise from the permitting him thus daily to increase in numbers and power, they determined to make one vigorous effort to suppress him while it were yet possible to effect it. With this view they advanced in a body to attack him at the head of his forces; but he received them in a manner that equally demonstrated his courage and skill, and routed them with great slaughter.
Simon did not yet think his force equal to the attack of Jerusalem, but determined to begin with an assault on Idumea, towards the borders of which country he immediately marched an army of twenty thousand men. Instantly hereupon, the principal people of the Iduineans assembled an army of almost twenty-five thousand select troops, leaving likewise a sufficient number to protect the country against the inroads of the banditti of Massada. With the forces above-mentioned the Idumeans waited for Simon on the borders of their country; and, on his approach, a battle ensued, which continued from the morning till evening, the destruction on each side being so equal, that it was impossible to determine which party had the advantage. Both of them, however, were sufficiently weary of the contest ; for Sinon withdrew his forces to Nain, and the Idumeans retreated to their respective habitations.
Simon, having received considerable reinforcements to his army, took the field again in a short time, being now stronger than on any former occasion ; and, having encamped near the village of Thecne, dispatched one of his associates, named Eleazar, with a message to the commander of Herodion, demanding that the castle of that name should be delivered up to him. On his first arrival, he was received by the officers with every testimony of military honour and respect ; but when they became acquainted with the nature of his commission, they all drew their swords on him in a moment ; whereupon, finding his escape impossible, he threw himself from the precipice of the wall, and was killed on the spot.
The idea of the courage and power of Simon had now struck the Idumeans in so forcible a manner, that they were by no means disposed to engage him, till they were first well acquainted with the strength and situation of his army. On this occasion, one of their commanders, named James, voluntarily undertook the office of a spy or informer : and this he did with a generous appearance of public spirit, but, in fact, with the most treacherous intentions. At this time, the Idumean party was encamped at Olurus ; and James being commissioned to act for them, he repaired to Simon, When some conversation had passed between them, he made a solemn compact with Simon to deliver up the whole country to him, on the consideration, that, in returi for this obligation, he should be considered as his first minister and favourite, and that he should likewise possess the whole country of Idumea. This infamous bargain was succeeded by Simon's entertaining James in the most splendid manner, and gratifying bis ambition by the most liberal promises. This being done, James returned to those wbo bad sent him on the embassy, to whom he magnified the situation of Simou greatly beyond the truth with regard to his numbers and strength, and the admirable disposition of his forces. This representation had a great influence ou the minds of the people in general : and, at length, the officers of the army began to listen to the intelligence, so that they determined it would be a vain attempt to contest the matter further by force of arms, but that they would surrender to Simon lest worse consequences should ensue. At this juncture, James sent repeated messengers, requesting that Simon would advance without loss of time, and take possession of Iduinea, which he would pledge himself should submit to him without bloodshed or opposition, if he would not lose the present favourable opportunity. All this was accordingly verified : for Simon advancing with his army, James immediately mounted his horse and fled with the utmost rapidity, being followed by those who adhered to his principles. This proceeding had such influence on the people in general, that they likewise fled in the utmost confusion, each consulting his own safety ; so that the whole army was dispersed, and an absolute victory gained without the least effort on the part of the enemy.
Idumea having been thus in a most astonishing manner subjected to Simon without bloodshed, he advanced to the city of Hebron, which be took by surprize, and found in it an abundance of corn and treasure. From Hebron, he proceeded through the whole country of Idumea, being followed by above forty thousand people, exclusive of his regular forces. He destroyed towns and villages, and depopulated the whole country in the course of his progress. ' A fight of locusts through a wood could not have destroyed more effectually than his army: they rendered the country a perfect desert, destruction marking every part of their course. It was not possible that the necessaries of life should be furnished for such an immense multitude; and the misfortunes of want were still aggravated by the natural violence of Simon's iemper, and his peculiar avimosity against the people of Idumea. In a word, in a country which had been heretofore fruitful and well cultivated, not a trace was left of its former happy situation, owing to the waste and devastation made by the troops under the command of Simon.
The zealots were exceedingly' shocked at the inhumanity of the above-mentioned proceeding> ; but they were yet afraid to engage in an open war, contentivg themselves with such advantages as they could gain by occasional surprizes ; and, at length, they obtained a prize which they deemed of the utmost importance; for, happening to take prisoner the wife of Simon, with a number of his domestics, they hurried her away to Jerusalem with as many tokens of triumphant joy as if Simon himself had been their captive; for they did not entertain the least doubt but that he would willingly lay down his arms on his wife being restored to him. The effect, however, was contrary to their expectation ; for the violence offered to the wife transported the husband to the most extravagant degree of rage.
This extravagance was evidenced by the future conduct of Simon. He advanced without loss of time to the gates of Jerusalem, where his behaviour was as furious as that of a wild beast which is wounded, and finds himself incapable of reaching the party who has injured him. He sought vengeance on every thing that fell in his way: men, women, and children, were equally the objects of his fury. Those who went from the city only to pick herbs or gather sticks, were, by his order, apprehended and whipped to death, the antient suffering equally with the young ; and it was remarked, as something extraordinary, that he did not eat the flesh of those he caused to be destroyed. The hands of many of these inoffending people were cut off as a terror to his enemies, and to prevent other persons adhering to their party. Thus maimed, he sent them into the city, instructing them to say that Simon made an oath in the name of that God who governs the world, that if his wife was not immediately restored to him, he would make an assault on their walls, and treat all the inhabitants, old or young, guilty or ipnocent, with the same severity that the messengers experienced. The people in general were
terrified hy these threatenings, which had likewise such an effect on the zealots, that they sent Simon's wife back to him ; on which his anger was so far appeased, that the cruelties which he had hitherto committed began now in some degree to subside.
Vespaeian had not yet abandoned his determination to reduce Judea ; he made suck progress in this design, that Massada, Machærus, and Herodion, were now the only castles which remained in the hands of the faction : and, after those, the taking of Jerusalem by Vespasian seemed to be the only circumstance necessary to the putting a total end to this horrid and destructive war.
The successes of the Romans seemed now to be threatening the destruction of Simon's authority : but an event soon after took place which raised it much higher than before. John of Giscala having wearied out with his tyranny the Idumeans and others wlio were not of his party, they revolted against him, killed many of his followers, plundered his palace, and forced him to retire into the temple. In the mean time, the people, entertaining an opinion tbat he would sally forth in the night and set fire to the city, held a council, in which they resolved upon a remedy that proved in the end abundantly worse than the disease under which they laboured. They determined to open the city gates, and to let in Simon with his troops to oppose those of John and his zealots. Matthias, who was at that time the high-priest, against whom the zealots had set up an obscure prièst for a rival, warmly promoted the design, and was appointed ambassador to Simon. Simon was accordingly admitted into the city, where his chief care was to render his strength as great and his authority as permanent as possible. He looked indifferently upon those who had invited him, and those against whom bis assistance bad been requested ; but made them both feel the same weight of his tyranny, though the former had received him with great honours and universal acclamations as their future deliverer. He made, however, a bold assault upon John ; but meeting with a rough reception, was obliged to content himself with keeping the zealots besieged in the temple.
The Jews soon became more divided. Eleazar, the son of another Simon, a person of the sacerdotal order, and of great sense and courage, found means to form a new party, and draw to himself a considerable number of the followers of John. With this new party he seized upon the court of the priests, and confined John in that of the Israelites. Eleazar kept the avenues so well guarded, that none were admitted inte that part of the temple but those who came thither to offer sacrifices; and it was by these offerings chiefly that he maintained himself and his men. John now found himself hemmed in by two powerful enemies, Eleazar above, and Simon below. He defended himself against the former by his engines, out of which he threw vast numbers of stones into the court of Eleazar ; and when he sallied out against the partizans of Simon, he set all on fire wherever he could reach, destroying vast quantities of coru and other provisions, which would otherwise have enabled them to sustain a very long siege. Thus were these three factions perpetually watching all advantages against each other. Sinon had the greatest oumber of troops, and the best store of arins and provisions ; but he was the most disadvantageously situated of the three. To oppose the ten thousand zealots and five thousand Idumeans which were commanded by Simon, John had only six thousand men, for whom he was obliged to provide by making sallies upon Simon. Eleazar had but two thousand four hundred followers ; but his situation was much the strongest of the three, and he was constantly supplied with provision by the offerings whieh were brought into the temple, and which his followers oftentimes abused by luxury and drunkenness.
While Jerusalem was in this distracted state, Vespasian was advanced to the empire