DCHindley wrote: ↑Sun Jan 01, 2023 8:37 am
How confident can we be about the content, much less the date, of specifics of Hecataeus’s work considering it comes from a paraphrase by Diodorus 250+ years later?
This is all copied & pasted from Wikipedia articles, with a little modification by me to iron out inconsistencies and scattered data:
Hecataeus of Abdera … (Greek: Ἑκαταῖος ὁ Ἀβδηρίτης), was a Greek historian and Pyrrhonist philosopher who flourished in the 4th century BC. … No complete works of Hecataeus have survived, and our knowledge of his writing exists only in fragments located in various ancient Greek and Latin authors' works.
Diodorus Siculus (Bibliotheca historica, i.46.8, ca 60 BCE) tells us that Hecataeus visited Thebes in the times of Ptolemy I Soter [who was pharaoh of Ptolemaic Egypt from 305/304 BCE to his death ca 282 BCE], and composed a history of Egypt, [the Aegyptiaca] … [mentioning Moses and Jerusalem, this also being] the first mention of them in Greek literature.
[However] Diodorus mostly paraphrases Hecataeus, [making] it … difficult to extract Hecataeus' actual writings … ([reference is made to] Karl Wilhelm Ludwig Müller's Fragmenta Historicorum Graecorum).
IMHO, because a paraphrase sort of brings the original “up to date,” it can contain materials that are anachronistic. There is that possibility that the digression about the Jewish nation is Diodorus’ own contribution.
In this context it may be worth quoting a passage from Gmirkin's first book (2006) (I did not use it in my first reply to Andrew partly because Gmirkin himself appears not to have repeated it in his later works). Berossus and Genesis, Manetho and Exodus
is available at Scribd
The undisputed fragments of Hecataeus in Diodorus Siculus, Library Book 1 display no awareness of the Pentateuch, while the account of the Jews in Book 40 is so divergent from the Pentateuch34 as to guarantee that Hecataeus did not have access to Jewish writings, translated or otherwise.35
These difficulties are usually overcome by postulating that Hecataeus learned about the Pentateuch from Jewish priests living in Alexandria.36 But a second difficulty is that in Diodorus Siculus, Library Book 1, Hecataeus repeatedly named Egyptian priests as his sources;37 nowhere did he claim to have had contact with Jews. If Hecataeus had contact with Jewish priests or had access to Jewish writings, he would doubtless have said so to enhance the authority of his account. But Hecataeus made no such claims in undisputed fragments.
Third, the detailed information Hecataeus allegedly presented about the Jews in Book 40 was not quoted or utilized by any author from 320 BCE to the time of Posidonius and Diodorus Siculus in the first century BCE. That Theophrastus read Hecataeus is certain,38 yet the description of heterodox Jews in Theophrastus's On Piety markedly differed from the detailed knowledge of orthodox Judaism in the allegedly Hecataean passage in Book 40,39 Manetho's dependence on Hecataeus of Abdera is certain, yet his knowledge of the Jews was limited to their location in Jerusalem and the name of their founder, Moses.40 Second-century BCE Alexandrian Jewish writers such as Aristobulus and Pseudo-Aristeas41 did extensive research in the classics—including Hecataeus of Abdem'sAegyptiaca— but failed to discover a single passage in which an early Hellenistic author of Hecataeus's time or earlier quoted Jewish scripture.42 That so many writers on the Jews who were familiar with Hecataeus knew nothing of the contents of Diodorus Siculus, Library 40.3.1-8 suggests that the latter passage did not derive from Hecataeus.
Fourth and finally, the account of the Jews in Book 40 seriously contradicts the briefer, unquestionably Hecataean passage on the Jews in Book I.43 Book 1 was favorable in tone towards both Jews and Egyptians and considered the Jews (as well as Greeks and others) to have been descendants of Egyptians. By contrast, Book 40 labeled Jews, Greeks and others as non-Egyptians—foreigners expelled from Egypt—and recorded traditions moderately hostile to the Jews.44
For these reasons, the Hecataean authorship of Diodorus Siculus, Library 40.3.1-8 should be (but rarely has been) questioned.45. (pp. 39-40)
. . . .
4. Analysis of Diodorus Siculus, Library 40.3.1-8
The detailed analysis that follows confirms that Diodorus Siculus, Library 40.3 derived from a book written by Theophanes of Mytilene in 62 BCE, not Hecataeus of Abdera two and a half centuries earlier. A major objective of this source-critical analysis is to determine how much of 40.3.1-8 came from eyewitness observations by Theophanes and how much drew on Hecataeus or other literary sources. Another important objective is to evaluate how much Hecataeus knew about the Jews, and whether Hecataeus knew or utilized Jewish written sources, namely, the Pentateuch. (p. 44)
34. Bar-Kochva, Pseudo-Hecataeus, 33-34, 41; J. Gager, Moses in Greco-Roman Paganism (SBLMS 16; Nashville: Abingdon Press, 1972), 76; Wacholder, Eupolemus, 91; Diamond, Hecataeus of Abdera, 155; Gabba, "Greek Knowledge of Jews," 12; E. Gruen, Heritage and Hellenism: The Reinvention of the Jewish Tradition (Hellenistic Culture and Society 30; Berkeley: University of California Press, 1998), 52.
35. Wacholder, Eupolemus, 76; Gager, Moses, 76; Diamond, Hecataeus ofAbdera,+155.
36. See n. 137 below.
37. See n. 14 above.
38. See n. 194 below.
39. The relative dating of Theophrastus and Hecataeus is discussed in §6 below.
40. See Chapter 7.
41. Actually, Pseudo-Aristeas is to be identified with Aristobulus; see the discussion in Chapter 4, §3.
42. Aristobulus, writing ca. 150 BCE, would likely have cited the source behind Diodorus Siculus, Library 40.3 if it existed in his time. This suggests the source postdated 150 BCE. Josephus, in conducting a similar search of ancient writings for references to the Jews, had to resort to the Jewish forgery Pseudo-Hecataeus (Josephus, Apion 1.183-204).
43. Cf. Diamond, Hecataeus of Abdera, 151,155-56. Jacoby believed Hecataeus recorded two variants of the story of Jewish origins from Egypt. Diamond recognized that the traditions in Diodorus Siculus, Library Books 1 and 40 were divergent and could not have come from the same author. But Diamond presumed that Book 40 contained the authentic Hecataean account. Consequently, Diamond drew exactly the wrong conclusion, namely, that Book 1 represented a tradition other than Hecataeus (Hecataeus of Abdera, 26-27, 32, 157).
44. Jacoby, FGrH Ilia Comm. on 264; Diamond, Hecataeus of Abdera, 151, 155-56, 221. Gabba ("Greek Knowledge of Jews," 12) claimed there was nothing negative in the accusation of Jewish misanthropy at Diodorus Siculus, Library 40.3.4. This was heavily debated in the panel discussion recorded in E. Gabba et al., "Minutes of the Colloquy," in Gabba, Greek Knowledge of Jews up to Hecataeus of Abdera, 33-45 (34-35).
45. Occasionally it is suggested that Pseudo-Hecataeus and Diodorus Siculus, Library 40.3 came from the same late Hasmonean Era Jewish author; see J. Lebram, "Der Idealstaatdes Juden,"in Josephus-Studien: Untersuchungen zu Josephus, dem antiken Judentum und dem Neuen Testament, O. Michel zum 70. Geburrtstag gewidmet (ed. O. Betz, K. Haacker and M. Hengel; Gottingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1974), 233-53; a "forthcoming" article by D. Schwartz mentioned at Gruen, Heritage and Hellenism, 55 n. 48; and K. Sacks, "Response," in Gabba, Greek Knowledge of Jews up to Hecataeus of Abdera, 26-32 (26 n. 1) (although Sacks considered Pseudo-Hecataeus to be authentically Hecataean).