Antigonus the Hasmonean

Antigonus the Hasmonean

Obv: Menorah with Greek insription "Basileus Antignus" (King Antignus).
Rev: Table ("Shulchon") with Hebrew incription "Matisyahu HaKohen" (Matisyahu the High Priest).

Antigonus the Hasmonean was the son of King Aristobulus II of Judea. In 40 BC he led, along with Barzapharnes, a Parthian-supported invasion of Judea, seized Jerusalem, and sent his uncle Hyrcanus II to Babylon in chains (after biting or cutting off his ears to render him ineligible for the office of High Priest).

In 37 BC, Herod the Great took back Judea with Roman support and beheaded Antigonus [Jewish War 1.357] , ending the rule of the Hasmonean dynasty. Antigonus II Mattathias was the last legitimate King of Judaea of the Hasmonean dynasty, which had recovered Jewish independence from the Hellenistic Seleucid monarchy of Syria.

Antigonus was handed over by Herod to the Romans for execution in 37 BC, after a short reign of three years during which he had led a fierce struggle of the people for independence against the Romans and Romanizers such as Herod.

Antigonus II Mattathias was the only anointed King of the Jews (messiah) historically recorded to have been scourged and crucified by the Romans. Cassius Dio's Roman History records: "These people [the Jews] Antony entrusted to a certain Herod to govern; but Antigonus he bound to a cross and scourged, a punishment no other king had suffered at the hands of the Romans, and so slew him." (Cassius Dio Cocceianus, Roman History, book xlix, c.22).

External links

* [ Antigonus] entry in historical sourcebook by Mahlon H. Smith


Cassius Dio Cocceianus, Roman History, book xlix, c.22

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