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The Nᵊtzâr•im On:

The Bi•rᵊk•at ha-Min•im, The Nō•tzᵊr•im and Jerome

© Yi•rᵊmᵊyâhu Bën-Dâ•wid 1996-1998, 2006

Origin of the Bi•rᵊk•at ha-Min•im

"Prevailing scholarly opinion, based upon [Qō•hëlët] 36:7, holds that this [imprecation] originated during the Syrian- Hellenistic oppression in the time of the Second Temple [sic]" (Meir Ydit, Encyclopedia Judaica).

In other words, the Bi•rᵊk•at ha-Min•im, the 12th bᵊrâkh•âh of the weekday Shᵊmōn•ëh Ësᵊr•eih, originated not with Rab•ân Ga•mᵊl•iy•eil Jr. ("Gamliel II") Bën-Shi•mᵊōn Bën-Ga•mᵊl•iy•eil ha-Za•qein in ca. 80 C.E. but in B.C.E. 175-164, nearly 3 centuries earlier – and almost two centuries before Ribi Yᵊho•shua was even born!!! The Bi•rᵊk•at ha-Min•im was introduced in response to, and directed against, Hellenist Jews, centuries (nearly half a millennium) before (Hellenist) Christians even came into existence! This imprecation was composed to expose Hellenist Jews who collaborated with the Hellenist Roman occupiers.

This is reinforced by the description given in the Jewish Encyclopedia: "The Bi•rᵊk•at ha-Min•imor "ha- Tzᵊdoq•im" (Ma•sëkët Bᵊrâkh•ōt 28b; Ma•sëkët Mᵊgil•âh 17b; Yᵊru•sha•lᵊm•i, Bᵊrâkh•ot iv.), the [imprecation] against heretics and Tzᵊdoq•im (and traducers, informers, and traitors): (Dembitz, l.c. p. 132)."

"At that time, the [imprecation] was known as the 'Benediction to Him Who humbles the arrogant.' A century later the imprecation was directed against the Tzᵊdoq•im, and it was designated as the "Benediction concerning the Tzᵊdoq•im." Under Rab•ân Ga•mᵊl•iy•eil Jr. ("Gamliel II") this [imprecation] was invoked against the the [Hellenist Ëvᵊyōn•im] and Gnostic sects and other heretics who were called by the general term min (plural min•im)· The formulation of this [imprecation] is ascribed to Shᵊmu•eil ha-Qâ•tân [during the last two decades of the 1st century C.E., under Ga•mᵊl•iy•eil Jr. in Yavᵊn•ëh], who revised its text after it had fallen into oblivion (Ma•sëkët Bᵊrâkh•ōt 28b). The many different historical situations in which this [imprecation] was used are reflected in the variant readings still extant. The text has been further confused as a result of censorship during the Middle Ages" (Meir Ydit, Encyclopedia Judaica).

The earliest extant formulation of this benediction is found in the Si•dur Tei•mân•i No•sakh Ba•lad•i:

; . ‑‑ ‫.

The 4th-century C.E. Italian-Catholic Church historian, Jerome, was the first Christian to notice that the Jews cursed informers and sectarians in their bât•ei kᵊnësët using the term Nō•tzᵊr•im in the Bi•rᵊk•at ha-Min•im. Though Jerome didn't correctly understand the distinction between Nō•tzᵊr•im and Nᵊtzâr•im, he did recognize that the Jews intended Nō•tzᵊr•im (miso-Tor•âh goy•im Christians, see WAN) and not Nᵊtzâr•im (halakhic Pᵊrush•im Nᵊtzâr•im Jews)!

Gᵊniz•âh documents, which specify Nᵊtzâr•im, date only from the 10th century C.E., many centuries after Hellenist gentile Roman Christians had extirpated the genuine Nᵊtzâr•im, and the two terms had become conflated. The gᵊniz•âh documents demonstrate only that the imprecation targeted Christians only centuries after Ëvᵊyōn•im, and Nᵊtzâr•im had both disappeared from every beit kᵊnësët; but provide no indication of the original vowelization of "Nō•tzᵊr•im."

At some point after the genuine Nᵊtzâr•im were extirpated in 333 C.E., Eusebius confirms that these terms became conflated. Klein demonstrates that, in post-Biblical Hebrew (PBH), the two were conflated as variant spellings of the same word and meant "of Nâ•tzᵊr•at". By the time of the 10th century gᵊniz•âh documents, they could not be taken to reflect any more than this comparatively modern conflating.

The Jews had deliberately reformulated the imprecation against min•im to specify Nō•tzᵊr•im (Krauss, Samuel, p. 132-3.) permitting Jews to curse the Nō•tzᵊr•im in the beit kᵊnësët without cursing the Nᵊtzâr•im.

"The term was widely applied to cover many different types of 'heretics' or sectarians… there is also abundant evidence to show that the term was applied to non-Jews as well… Any attempt to identify min•im with one single sectarian group is thus doomed to failure" ("Min," Ency. Jud., 12.1). It is specifically applied to the Hellenist pseudo-Tzᵊdoq•im Ko•hein -Rësha in the Hellenized "Second Temple" (EJ, 12.2).

"…nonetheless," EJ continues (12.3), "it is possible to distinguish historically two semantic phases in the use of the term." In the first century C.E., it referred to "heretic Jews" (Hellenist pseudo-Tzᵊdoq•im Ko•hein -Rësha in the Hellenized "Second Temple"). After 135 C.E., however, the term referred primarily to misojudaic Gnostics and gentile Christians in the Gâ•lil during the time of Hadrian (117-138 C.E.) "when the Jews were forbidden to study Tor•âh and the [Christians under the 1stPope, Markus, in Aelia Capitolina, the city dedicated to Ζεύς] were accused of betraying those who [secretly] studied [Tor•âh, contrary to the law of the Hellenist Roman occupiers,] to the Hellenist Roman [occupiers]" (Parkes, p. 110).

Contrary to the premise asserted without basis in Ency. Jud. (12.3) and elsewhere, Jerome, Schechter and Krauss conclusively demonstrate that the Bi•rᵊk•at ha-Min•im was, about the 3rd century C.E., redirected against Hellenist Roman (i.e., gentile) Christians who were being planted by the nascent gentile Hellenist Roman Church in bât•ei kᵊnësët as informers. These informers were gentile Hellenist Christians posing as Hellenist Jewish converts (paralleling today's Reform Jewish converts) and they ensured that the liturgy was conducted exclusively in Greek and read exclusively from the Hellenized Greek LXX. The term could not have been directed against the no-longer-existent Ëvᵊyōn•im they had never heard of; nor their fellow Pᵊrush•im Nᵊtzâr•im, whom the Hellenist Roman Christian occupiers—and informers—had nearly finished extirpating!

In [the times of the Gᵊōn•im (7th-11th centuries C.E.)], this imprecation was invoked against pō•shᵊim or, as Ram•ba"m read it, against the Επικούρειου, whereas in the Ma•kha•zōr Salonika and in the Roman Ma•kha•zōr it refers to mᵊshu•mâd•im. This term was further changed into , which later became " (Meir Ydit, Encyclopedia Judaica).

In some versions other expressions were substituted for the word min•im: e.g., "all doers of iniquity," regardless of origin and nationality. The Sᵊphâ•râd•i ritual retained min•im. Instead of the passage "and all the enemies of Thy people," as in older versions, the modified Ash•kᵊnazi and Roman rites read: "and they all." The phrase by which the Roman Empire was meant, was changed by Amᵊrâm Bën-Sheshna (Amᵊrâm Gâ•ōn) into "the arrogant," as in most rites. The concluding phrase "who breakest the enemies and humblest the arrogant" (Si•dur Amᵊrâm Gâ•ōn) was replaced in some versions, by: "who breakest the evildoers" ( Si•dur Saadya Gâ•ōn and Ram•ba"m).

As the late Oxford scholar Parkes noted, although the Bi•rᵊk•at ha-Min•im benediction was introduced c. 100 CE, "we know of no actual persecution of [Nᵊtzâr•im] by the Jews between the death of [Ya•a•qov, at the hands of a Pseudo-Tzᵊdoq•im Ko•hein -Rësha ca. 62 C.E.] and the outbreak of the revolt in the time of Trajan [115 C.E.]." (Parkes, pp. 92-25).

According to 3rd-century C.E. Palestinian (!) Church historian Eusebius, the Christians, who were goy•im, loathed all Jews—which included the Nᵊtzâr•im, viewing them all as belonging to the "wicked demon" Sâ•tân (EH III, xxvii.1ff.). The Jews took advantage of the Nō•tzᵊr•im hatred of the Nᵊtzâr•im to curse the Nō•tzᵊr•im so cleverly that they escaped the wrath of the Nō•tzᵊr•im Church!!! This demonstrates that the Jews aimed the Bi•rᵊk•at ha-Min•im not at the Nᵊtzâr•im; but rather at the Hellenist Nō•tzᵊr•im.

Often spelled without the helpful , Nō•tzᵊr•im and Nᵊtzâr•im appear identical in a scroll or codex – . When the Church read the benediction against the , (confirmed in other scrolls where it was actually spelled ) the Church understood it as a imprecation against the Nᵊtzâr•im Jews, not realizing the Jews were instead cursing Hellenist Nō•tzᵊr•im who had been planted by the Hellenist Roman occupiers as spies (Schechter, p. 657).

If the Church had realized that the Jews were cursing Nō•tzᵊr•im they would have immediately persecuted the Jews and put a stop to the practice. That the Church didn't expunge the Bi•rᵊk•at ha-Min•im from Ta•lᵊmud along with all other criticisms of Christianity, of course, proves that the Church was convinced that the Jews were cursing Nᵊtzâr•im and not the Hellenist Nō•tzᵊr•imJews of the Church. Thus. the Jews, taking advantage of the Church's ignorance of Hebrew and Judaism, succeeded in using the Bi•rᵊk•at ha-Min•im to alienate the Hellenist Nō•tzᵊr•im Church-informers from their bât•ei kᵊnësët without triggering the wrath of the Church.

Conversely, the Nᵊtzâr•im are proven not to be the object of the Bi•rᵊk•at ha-Min•im since history documents that the Nᵊtzâr•im continued to live in harmony within the Pᵊrush•im community (even defended from the Hellenists by the Pᵊrush•im) and praying unopposed in the bât•ei kᵊnësët – and as enemies of the misojudaic Hellenist Nō•tzᵊr•im Church (vilified as enemies of the Church, sons of Sâ•tân who were under 'the law of sin and death') – into the fourth century (viz., 333 C.E., when the Nō•tzᵊr•im Church – not the Jews – extirpated the Nᵊtzâr•im).

Commenting on Jerome's discovery in 1893, Krauss still didn't see the subtle distinction between Nō•tzᵊr•im and Nᵊtzâr•im. While Ta•lᵊmud a number of times warns against and polemicizes Nō•tzᵊr•im (Christians) min•im, Ta•lᵊmud has no criticism whatsoever of the original Pᵊrush•im Jewish Nᵊtzâr•im, which Jerome and Krauss (wrongly) expected to equate to Ναζωραιος (Angliized to "Nazarenes"), as they understood the term after the Church had already arrogated the term, redefining it to refer to themselves—Christians, not "sons of Sâ•tân" Jews who were anathema to them.

"Indeed, although [the names of] several Christian sects are mentioned in [Ta•lᵊmud], the 'Nazarenes' do not once occur in it." (By this, Krauss wrongly assumed that Nō•tzᵊr•im meant the original Nᵊtzâr•im.)

While Nō•tzᵊr•im (Christians) aren't mentioned in Ta•lᵊmud, that can be no surprise since the Church made criticism of Christianity by Jews a capital offense! There are rare earlier mss. that either mentioned Nō•tzᵊr•im or, some argue, alluded to Nō•tzᵊr•im. By contrast (not comprehended by Jerome or Krauss), there is no mention, not even any allusion to Nᵊtzâr•im (Hellenized to "Nazarenes") anywhere, in any early ms., of Ta•lᵊmud. The Church, which made criticism of Christianity by Jews a capital offense, would have massacred any Jews who would dare argue that the Nᵊtzâr•im Pᵊrush•im Judaizers ("anathema"!) were the true followers of Ribi Yᵊho•shua and not the misojudaic, the Apostate Pauline, ("antinomian") counterfeit, idolatrous, gentile Hellenist Nō•tzᵊr•im of the Roman-occupier Church!

Beyond that, it was the same Pᵊrush•im who wrote Ta•lᵊmud who were fellows and protectors, not opponents, of the Nᵊtzâr•im! (E.g., inter alia, the Pᵊrush•im came to the defense of the Nᵊtzâr•im in the court the Roman King Agrippa against the Hellenist pseudo-Tzᵊdoq•im after the Hellenist pseudo-Tzᵊdoq•im "high priest" Ananias murdered the first Nᵊtzâr•im Pâ•qid Ya•a•qov "ha-Tza•diq", Bën-Yo•seiph; Josephus, Ant. xx, ix, 1). They had no glaring problems with the Nᵊtzâr•im in the first place; certainly not justifying bringing the wrath of the Roman-occupiers' idolatrous Nō•tzᵊr•im Church on themselves.

Possible mentions of Nō•tzᵊr•im (not Nᵊtzâr•im) in Ta•lᵊmud
  1. is found in reliable mss. of Ma•sëkët Ta•an•it 27b, though it may represent an instance of reconstructing earlier mss. in which the term was thought to have been purged by the church.

    The intention is also evident from its context. By the time of the codifying of Ta•lᵊmud, this passage discusses the rotation of Hellenized pseudo-Tzᵊdoq•im "priestly" (Di•vᵊr•ei-ha-Yâm•im Âlëph 24; PBH ), who conducted the liturgy in the "Temple." Since the "priestly" divisions comprised far more than the number needed to conduct the liturgy in the "Temple," and were dispersed all over Yᵊhudâh, only the number needed in the "Temple" were chosen, by lot, to serve. They were called the (Jewish Virtual Library, 2016.07.03).

    Those of the active , who had not been chosen by lot to stand for service as a in the "Temple", prayed and fasted in their local bât•ei kᵊnësët for scheduled topics during days 2-5, inclusive, of their week of . It is in this context that "Our rabbis" asked, Though we don't fast on Sha•bât nor on the (preceding) preparation day (namely, Day 6), "Why did [the non- Hellenist pseudo-Tzᵊdoq•im "priests" of the ] not fast [in their respective local bât•ei kᵊnësët] on Firstday?"

    "Rav Yokhâ•nân said, 'Because of the Nō•tzᵊr•im!' Rav Shᵊmu•eil Bën Na•khᵊmâni said: 'Because it is the third day after the creation of man.' Reish Lâ•qish said…"

    Now the Hellenist Nō•tzᵊr•im loathed "Judaizing" Jews, by which they specifically meant the few remaining (whom they would soon extirpate completely) Nᵊtzâr•im Pᵊrush•im! However, the pseudo-Tzᵊdoq•im "Temple priests", being fellow Hellenists and sycophants of their patron gentile Hellenist Roman Nō•tzᵊr•im occupiers, were careful to avoid conflicting with the Hellenist Roman-occupier Nō•tzᵊr•im. Thus, they dared not continue the ancient tradition of fasting on firstday for fear of offending their Hellenist Nō•tzᵊr•im Roman-occupier patrons.

    In 250 C.E., Hellenist Roman Nō•tzᵊr•im Ignatius issued a Church order that, "If any one fasts on the Lord's Day [viz., Firstday]… he is a murderer of Christ!" (The Epistle of Ignatius to the Philippians, chapter 8). Nō•tzᵊr•im fasted on the 4th and 6th days explicitly to reject sharing "Sha•bât with Jews." Of course, it's well documented that the Nᵊtzâr•im remained sho•meir Sha•bât, living in the Pᵊrush•im, not Nō•tzᵊr•im, community and enjoying Pᵊrush•im protection vis-à-vis the pseudo-Tzᵊdoq•im and Nō•tzᵊr•im (Josephus, Ant. xx, ix, 1).

  2. In Ma•sëkët Git•in 57a, a minority have asserted the wishful thinking that should be understood as a misreading of .

  3. There are two instances in which (viz., … ) is thought by a few particularly creative reformers to be a "cacophemistic disguise" of Nō•tzᵊr•ei… ("Christians of…; the plural connective form of Nō•tzᵊr•im) at Ma•sëkët Sha•bât 116a and Ma•sëkët Avod•âh Zâr•âh 48a.

  4. The Munich Codex of Ta•lᵊmud includes the term in Ma•sëkët Bᵊrâkh•ōt 17b but this is not included in the preferred mss.)

This by no means proves that the term Nō•tzᵊr•im was unknown to the Talmudic Rabbis. On the other hand, there is no basis for the assertion that "probably very often occurred in the Ta•lᵊmud". There is every reason to conclude the opposite!

Christians have argued that, since Catholic Christendom hated other Christian heresies as much as Judaism did, they would, therefore, have tolerated allusions to them in the Ta•lᵊmud. But Christians are ignorant of ancient Judaism, which regarded Christianity as one big Hellenist a•vod•âh zâr•âh. Judaism hated Hellenist Jews and mᵊshu•mâd•im, of course. But this had no connection to the Nᵊtzâr•im and Judaism had absolutely no interest in discussing anything about the Nō•tzᵊr•im or their heresies except as apologists responding to the polemics of Nō•tzᵊr•im. So there is no reason to expect to find them discussed in Ta•lᵊmud.

Jerome's Understanding

The quotation from Jerome now becomes clear: The Jews cryptically curse the Nō•tzᵊr•im or Christ under the name of Nō•tzᵊr•im, which both Jerome and Krauss confused with Nᵊtzâr•im. Though Jerome realized that the Jews were really cursing the Christians, he still does not see that Nō•tzᵊr•im means Christians, not Nᵊtzâr•im.

The imprecation in the liturgy is directed against the Nō•tzᵊr•im. From the turn of the phrase, it is evident that Jerome realized that he had discovered something; but didn't know exactly what. How artful the Jews are, he seems to say, they curse the Nazarenes [Nō•tzᵊr•im] when they mean the Christians.' Jerome and Krauss never figured out that the Nō•tzᵊr•im "is" the Christians! (Not Nᵊtzâr•im, which Jerome and Krauss assumed to be synonymous with "Nazarenes.")

This, then, is established, that the so-called Imprecation of the Min•im, in ancient times, may have rarely used the term Nō•tzᵊr•im; but in no case did Ta•lᵊmud ever contain the term Nᵊtzâr•im ('Nazarene' Jews)!

The gloss of Rash"i, which escaped the censors, and is preserved in later authorities, ony makes it clear that, in his days, they believed that the Blessing "still retained" the term Nō•tzᵊr•imstill not Nᵊtzâr•im!!! Krauss quotes here: "V.M. Bloch, Institutionen des Judenthums, I. 193." Cf. also notes at The Nᵊtzâr•im Reconstruction of Hebrew Ma•ti•tᵊyâhu (NHM, in English) 3.7.1.

If Krauss had preserved Rash"i's distinction between Nᵊtzâr•i and Nō•tzᵊr•im, his point would more accurately read, "The Jews curse the Christians or Christ under the name of Nō•tzᵊr•im."

Nevertheless, Krauss basic observation is correct: Jerome discovered that the early Jewish community indeed distinguished the Nᵊtzâr•im from the Nō•tzᵊr•im [Christians]."

See also notes in The Nᵊtzâr•im Reconstruction of Hebrew Ma•ti•tᵊyâhu (NHM, in English) 1.0.1, 3.7.1. For example:

, pl. ; αιρεσις, min The use of to describe the rabbinic of Pᵊrush•im dates back to 255 C.E.in 𝔓45 and is found in as well. It appears from Ta•lᵊmud that was applied only to Judaic sects, by virtually all Judaic sects, to mean "all sects other than mine" (Ma•sëkët Khul•in 13b; cf. To•sëphᵊtâ Sha•bât 13.5). Any attempt to identify min•im as distinguishing one single sectarian group is thus doomed to failure ("Min EJ, 12:1-3). Tzᵊdoq•im are also described as min•im in Ta•lᵊmud (Ma•sëkët Bᵊrâkh•ōt 9.5) and in Ma•a•vâr 5:17. According to Rav Yokhâ•nân, Am Yi•sᵊr•â•eil did not go into exile until they had become 24 different min•im (Ta•lᵊmud Yᵊru•sha•lᵊm•i, Ma•sëkët Συνέδριον 10:6, 29c).

The primary source quoted by many scholars is Kahle. It is clear from Kahle's work, and his mistakes, that compared to the Beit ha-Mi•qᵊdâsh-era orientation of the Nᵊtzâr•im focus, the gᵊniz•âh documents display far more recent influences.

Before presenting Kahles work, however, the text of the Bi•rᵊk•at ha-Min•im from the Cairo gᵊniz•âh is given with translation. Kahles work must be compared and contrasted to this 10th-century C.E. (!) text (184):

Kahle writes, "The large amount of this poetry preserved in the gᵊniz•âh enables us to understand much better than before the historical background and the conditions under which it was composed. There can be no doubt that some of its characteristics are due to certain restrictions laid upon the Jews in [Israel] at that time [553 C.E.] and that these restrictions were the consequences of the Edict Περὶ Ὲβραίων, issued in the name of Justinian Sr. as Novellæ 146 in 553 C.E… These texts show the effects of the Novellæ on the Jewish liturgy in [Judea]. When the Jews were forbidden to engage in the study of the law, we must take this as prohibiting the study of Ta•lᵊmud and Mishᵊnâh, i.e., the 'Δευτύρωσις', regarded as particularly suspicious by the Novellæ. The study of the [Hellenized LXX "Bible"] was certainly not forbidden them. [However, the Hebrew Ta•na"kh was forbidden to them!] When we are told that they were forbidden to pray the [tᵊphil•âh], we must remember that the [Israeli] form of this imprecation contained the following petition:

() () , , () . ‑‑ () ‫.

Kahle adds here the following note: "This form of [imprecation], disclosed by Krauss (p. 133), has been verified by the gᵊniz•âh fragment published by Schechter (p. 657). Cf. Dalman.

When we go back to the sources Kahle quotes we find that this Bi•rᵊk•at ha-Min•im derives from the 10th century Egyptian Tᵊphutz•âh gᵊniz•âh fragments (Schechter, p. 657-8.), not any early Israeli form of this imprecation. Not only are the Nᵊtzâr•im never mentioned in Ta•lᵊmud, Krauss established in 1893 that the term found in the Bi•rᵊk•at ha-Min•im was Nō•tzᵊr•im, not Nᵊtzâr•im (Krauss, p. 132-3). Krauss' work was based on even earlier work by Bloch and "a gloss of Rash"i, which escaped the censors and is still preserved in later authorities.

These documents were found in the gᵊniz•âh of the Ëzᵊr•â Synagogue, built in 882 C.E. on the ruins of a Coptic church in Cairo, Egypt. The oldest document found in the Cairo gᵊniz•âh is dated to 1062 C.E. Superimposing an 11th century Egyptian Tᵊphutz•âh spelling back onto "Temple"-era Israeli prayers is not justified. Kahle's real point, which remains true, is that the gᵊniz•âh documents corroborate that the ancient tradition of the Bi•rᵊk•at ha-Min•im was at some earlier time redirected at the Christians. It doesn't seem likely that either Kahle or the Egyptian Tᵊphutz•âh recognized any distinction between Nō•tzᵊr•im and the long-extinct Nᵊtzâr•im they had never heard of, much less intended to specify the latter as distinguished from the former. Certainly the sources do not support any recognition of this distinction.

The imprecation in the Cairo gᵊniz•âh document corroborates that as late as the 11th century C.E., Christians remained known in the Jewish community as Nō•tzᵊr•im, just as they are today.

"At the outset, a very clear distinction must be drawn between the pre-and post-70 situations. For what was one of several different sectarian responses within Judaism prior to the revolt was afterwards to become identified with normative Judaism. Naturally, the later rabbinic sources tend to blur that distinction and transpose backwards onto the earlier period concepts and attitudes of its own situation, thereby appropriating [Pᵊrush•im] Judaism for itself" (Freyne, pp. 305-6).

Gentile Hellenist sects of Nō•tzᵊr•im (Christians) first emerged among the Roman occupiers originating not from the Nᵊtzâr•im but, rather, exclusively from the Hellenist teachings of the Apostate Paul. These first Nō•tzᵊr•im (Christians) achieved predominance over the Nᵊtzâr•im—whom the first, founding, gentile Christians labeled "Judaizers,' 'sons of Sâ•tân' and enemies of the Church—in C.E. 135. Only after the Roman Nō•tzᵊr•im (Christians) had extirpated the Nᵊtzâr•im in 333 C.E. could the confusion of Nᵊtzâr•im with the gentile Hellenist Roman Nō•tzᵊr•im, and the latter's collaborations with their Hellenist patrons among the Roman occupiers, begin. Therefore, even if the document had read Nᵊtzâr•im, this term could only have been back-substituted for "min•im" by the authors of the Cairo gᵊniz•âh document between 333 C.E. and the tenth century C.E. since no one in that interim had ever heard of Nᵊtzâr•im—and would not until I began researching and writing in 1972!. Between the 2nd century B.C.E. and the emergence of the Nᵊtzâr•im, the term min•im was applied primarily to the Hellenized, pseudo-Tzᵊdoq•im collaborators with the gentile Hellenist Roman occupiers..

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