Justus of Tiberias.
A Jewish historian.
Chronicle of the Kings of the Jews.
Commentaries on the Scriptures.
None. Summaries on site (present page).
Justus of Tiberias was a Jewish historian who flourished late in
century I. Refer also to Josephus.
Jerome, On Famous Men 14:
Iustus Tiberiensis, de provincia Galilaea,
conatus est et ipse Iudaicarum rerum historiam texere, et quosdam
commentariolos de scripturis componere. sed hunc Iosephus arguit mendacii.
constat autem illum eo tempore scripsisse quo et Iosephus.
Justus of Tiberias, from the province Galilee,
also attempted to weave a history of Jewish affairs, as well as to compose
certain brief commentaries on the scriptures. But Josephus accuses him of
lying. It is established, moreover, that he also wrote at the same time as
Photius, Bibliotheca 33:
I read the chronicle of Justus of Tiberias, of which the title is
[Chronicle] of the Kings of the Jews in Their [Genealogical]
Stemma by Justus of Tiberias. He hailed from the city of Tiberias in Galilee.
Now, he begins his history from Moses, and brings it down until the demise of the seventh
Agrippa of those from the house of Herod, and [Agrippa was] the last among the kings of
the Jews, who received his rule from Claudius, and was augmented by Nero, and still more
by Vespasian; but he came to his end in the third year of Trajan, where the history also
ceases. Justus is abbreviated in his phrasing and he runs past very many necessary things.
And, in accordance with the sicknesses of the Jews, he himself belonging to the Jews by
race, he makes no mention at all of the advent of Christ, the things fulfilled concerning
him, or the miracles performed by him. He was the child of a Jew named Pistus, and was a
most wicked man, as Josephus says, with a weakness for goods and pleasure. He played
political opponent to Josephus, and it is said that he stitched together many plots
against him, but that Josephus, although he often had taken his enemy in hand, only
reproached him with words and let him go, insensitive to the wicked. They say that
the history which he wrote is for the most part invented, and especially in the
things by which he details the Roman war against the Jews and the capture of
Photius, Bibliotheca 33
in the translation of J. H.
Freese (footnotes his, but renumbered):
Read the Chronicle of Justus of Tiberias,1
entitled A Chronicle of the Kings of the Jews in the form of a genealogy,
by Justus of Tiberias.2 He came from Tiberias in Galilee,
from which he took his name. He begins his history with Moses and carries
it down to the death of the seventh Agrippa of the family of Herod3
and the last of the kings of the Jews. His kingdom, which was bestowed upon
him by Claudius, was extended by Nero, and still more by Vespasian. He died
in the third year of the reign of Trajan, when the history ends. Justus's
style is very concise, and he omits a great deal that is of the utmost
importance. Suffering from the common fault of the Jews, to which race
he belonged, he does not even mention the coming of Christ, the events of
His life, or the miracles performed by Him. His father was a Jew named
Pistus; Justus himself, according to Josephus, was one of the most abandoned
of men, a slave to vice and greed. He was a political opponent of Josephus,
against whom he is said to have concocted several plots; but Josephus,
although on several occasions he had his enemy in his power, only chastised
him with words and let him go free. It is said that the history which he
wrote is in great part fictitious, especially where he describes the
Judaeo-Roman war and the capture of Jerusalem.
1 Contemporary of Josephus, by whom his character
and works are violently attacked. He was condemned to death by Vespasian, but
his life was spared by Agrippa. He also wrote a history of the Jewish war.
2 The Greek phrase is
usually translated "crowned kings," but
more probably here means a genealogical tree.
3 Agrippa II, before whom St. Paul made his defence. The statement
that he died in the third year of Trajan's reign (100) is objected to on the
ground that Josephus' Autobiography, which gives an account of Justus,
was published immediately after the Antiquities (in the reign of