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Rabbinic Texts and the History of Late-Roman Palestine$
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Martin Goodman and Philip Alexander

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780197264744

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197264744.001.0001

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Politics and Administration

Politics and Administration

(p.377) 20 Politics and Administration
Rabbinic Texts and the History of Late-Roman Palestine


British Academy

This chapter evaluates the use of rabbinic literature in the study of politics and administration in Roman Palestine. It focuses on the relationship between Severan activities in the field of cities and urbanisation in talmudic sources which include actions and rulings of Rabbi Judah haNasi. The findings reveal that even though the Romans did not force, or even request it, Rabbi Judah haNasi joined in the Severan urbanisation policy, and exempted mixed cities from tithes and the sabbatical laws in order to strengthen the Jewish basis there.

Keywords:   rabbinic literature, politics and administration, Roman Palestine, Severan activities, urbanisation, Rabbi Judah haNasi, tithes, sabbatical laws

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