Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Review of Regev, The Hasmoneans

Eyal Regev, The Hasmoneans: Ideology, Archaeology, Identity. Journal of Ancient Judaism. Supplements, 10. Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2013. Pp. 340. ISBN 9783525550434. €99.99.

Reviewed by Friedrich T. Schipper, University of Vienna (


Although the Second Temple period is an intensively researched period of Jewish history and although the Hasmonean rulers were key players for one and a half centuries within this period, only a few comprehensive portraits of the Hasmoneans and their time have been published in the past 10 years. Eyal Regev, professor of archaeology at Bar Ilan University, provides a very solid overview of various aspects of the Hasmonean rule and legacy, concentrating on ideology and identity and thereby filling a thematic gap in research on the Hasmoneans. Regev strives for a twofold interdisciplinary approach – historical and archaeological as well as text-oriented historical-critical and comparative socio-anthropological – “in order to see more clearly WHO the Hasmoneans actually were” and “HOW they ruled the Jewish people”.