Remembered for Good: A Jewish Benefaction System in Ancient Palestine
This is the first monograph devoted to the system of community benefaction practised by Jews in Palestine from the second century BCE to the sixth century CE.
This is the first monograph devoted to the system of community benefaction practised by Jews in Palestine from the second century BCE to the sixth century CE. Principal is the evidence from synagogue inscriptions erected to patrons and donors from the second century CE onwards. All these inscriptions are reviewed, together with a re-examination of how they are to be translated.
Sorek is especially interested in the motivation for benefactions, and concludes that the Jewish system attested in the inscriptions is specific to the Jewish community. It was not merely a copy of the well-known Graeco-Roman system of euergetism, in which rich citizens contributed from their wealth to public expenses. But neither was the Jewish system properly an expression of charity, as has often been thought. Sorek argues that the benefaction system is best understood as an expression of hesed , the meaning of which she explores in detail.
|Table of Contents||
1. GRAECO–ROMAN EUERGETISM
2. BENEFACTORS AND BENEFACTIONS IN THE LATE SECOND TEMPLE PERIOD
3. POST-TEMPLE BENEFACTIONS: SYNAGOGUE INSCRIPTIONS FROM PALESTINE
4. ‘REMEMBERED FOR GOOD’: SYNAGOGUE DEDICATORY INSCRIPTIONS
5. LIVING DONORS
6. ‘REMEMBERED FOR GOOD’ AND ANONYMOUS DONORS
7. THE BLESSING FORMULA
8. WOMEN AS BENEFACTORS
9. CONCLUDING REMARKS ON THE EMPIRICAL EVIDENCE
10. ‘NUGGETS OF IDEOLOGY’: THE MOTIVATIONAL FORCE BEHIND A JEWISH BENEFACTION SYSTEM
11. THE WORD HESED
12. TYPES OF HESED
13. A BENEFACTION SYSTEM BASED ON HESED
14. HESED AND RAHAM IN THE LXX
15. THE APPLICATION OF HESED
16. CHARITY IN THE SECOND TEMPLE PERIOD
17. THE DEVELOPMENT OF TSEDAKAH
18. WOMEN AND HESED