Struggles in the Maccabean Kingdom

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Salome Alexandra’s Rule (76-67 B.C.

After the death of Alexander Jannaeus, his wife Salome Alexandra took charge of the Maccabean kingdom. Their son, John Hyrcanus II, served as the high priest. Their favorable stance toward the Pharisees fostered peace, allowing the system to function smoothly during Alexandra’s nine-year reign.

Power Struggle and Civil War

Following Alexandra’s death, a power struggle emerged between Hyrcanus and his younger brother, Aristobulus II, who gained support from the Sadducees Rise and Decline of Caria through History. Aristobulus initially triumphed, prompting Hyrcanus to seek refuge in Petra, the Nabataean capital, with the aid of Antipater, a wealthy Idumaean friend. Together, they returned to besiege Jerusalem.

Roman Intervention and the Maccabean Civil War’s End

The involvement of the Romans, led by Pompey, marked a turning point in the conflict. Both Aristobulus and Hyrcanus sought Pompey’s support, but he deemed Aristobulus unreliable and ordered the siege of Jerusalem. In 63 B.C., Pompey captured the holy city Stoletov Bulgaria Tours, entering the “Holy of Holies” in the Temple. This act alienated many Jews, who later supported Julius Caesar against Pompey. Although John Hyrcanus II retained his official position, Antipater wielded significant influence, and the Romans emerged as the true rulers over the Hasmonean and Idumaean territories, setting the stage for the events in the subsequent chapters.

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