1. The Peshitta versions of Second Maccabees (2 Macc) and Fourth Maccabees (4 Macc) will be designated as Pesh2Macc and Pesh4Macc, or simply PeshMacc, when the context is unambiguous. The text of Pesh4Macc is also found in Bensly-Barnes.

2. The basis for the characterization will be examined in more detail in various places below. Briefly,

These points will be discussed in detail with appropriate references as this study proceeds.

3. Sebastian Brock, "Dramatic Dialogue Poems" IV Symposium Syriacum 1984: Literary Genres in Syriac Literature, Orientalia Christiana Analecta 229 (Rome: Pontifical Institutum Studiorum Orientalium, 1987) 136, 143.

4. Robert A. Kraft, Barnabas and the Didache, vol. 3 of Robert M. Grant, Ed., The Apostolic Fathers; a new translation and commentary (NY: T. Nelson, 1965) 1.

5. In SyrMacc and most of the later Syriac literature about the martyrdoms, the mother of seven sons is given the name Shamuni, perhaps derived from Hashmonai. She is termed Martha Shamuni in another Jewish Syriac poem found in Bensly-Barnes, which most clearly designates her as "the Hasmonean Lady."

6. Antiochus Epiphanes enters the scene at this point, in 2 Macc, while he has been present all along in SyrMacc and 4 Macc. The CNT is common only to SyrMacc and 4 Macc, however.

7. The point about rhyme scheme here is that the device of a repeated end rhyme, like verses in Rap music, continues through all of the material related to the second son, from the speech of his mother, Martha Shamuni, through his torture and dialogue with AE, to his death. The segment spans lines 261--291. Thus one function of rhyming may be to serve as a coherence device for the separate perspectives of the poem. This point is discussed further below.

8. Bensly-Barnes, Fourth Macc, xxi.

9. These references are inadequate as indicators of the congruence between the two texts, nor do they indicate exact correspondence with the Peshitta translation of 4 Macc (PeshMacc). Barnes translated the piece from Bensly's text.

10. Bensly-Barnes, Fourth Macc, xxiv f.

11. The earliest of these known to us are 2 Macc, 4 Macc, and SyrMacc. However, the picture of the development of the text given by SyrMacc, and the other "kindred documents" from Bensly-Barnes, together suggest there would have been many more texts adapting the story to specific purposes, ideologies, and communities.

12. Dropsie College Edition, Jewish Apocryphal Literature. Ed. and tr. by Moses Hadas (New York: Ktav, 1976). Reprinted from the 1953 ed. in the series Jewish Apocryphal Literature (New York: Harper).

13. Gerson D. Cohen, "Hannah and Her Seven Sons in Hebrew Literature," Studies in the Variety of Rabbinic Cultures, JPS Scholar of Distinction Series (Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society, 1991) 39-60.

14. Les livres des Maccabees, Traduction de F.-M. Abel ; introduction de F. M. Abel et Jean Starcky ; notes de Jean Starcky. 3. ed. rev. Bible de Jérusalem. La Sainte Bible, traduite en francais sous la direction de l'Ecole biblique de Jerusalem. (Paris: Editions du Cerf, 1961).

15. Downey, Glanville, A history of Antioch in Syria: from Seleucus to the Arab conquest (Princeton, N.J: Princeton University Press, 1961) @@@.

16. "The `Woman with the Soul of Abraham': Traditions about the Mother of the Maccabean Martyrs," in "Women Like This": New Perspectives on Jewish Women in the Greco-Roman World, ed. by Amy-Jill Levine, SBL Early Judaism and Its Literature 01, series ed. William Adler (Atlanta, GA: Scholars Press, 1991) 67-81.

17. See the text above at note 4.

18. This is my observation, based on a number of examples of the prosody of Late Antiquity, in Hebrew, Aramaic, Syriac, Greek, and Latin. Articles that were specifically informative on this point follow. More such articles are listed in the bibliography on poetry, below in Section 2, note @@. I am indebted to David Stern for allowing me to sit in on his course on Siddur and Piyyut, in the Autumn of 1997 at the University of Pennsylvania. The first two of the following references came from discussions with him at that time. Jefim Schirmann, "Hebrew Liturgical Poetry and Christian Hymnology" JQR XLIV, 123-161. Articles "Piyyut," "Poetry," and "Prosody" in Encyclopaedia Judaica (Jerusalem: Encyclopaedia Judaica [New York], Macmillan, 1971-72). Paul Maas "Das Kontakion" Byzantinische Zeitschrift 19 (1910), 285--306. Sebastian Brock, "Syriac and Greek Hymnography: Problems of Origin" Studia Patristica XVI, ed. E. A. Livingstone. Texte und Untersuchungen 129 (Berlin: Akademie-Verlag, 1985) 77-81. Reprinted in Sebastian Brock, Studies in Syriac Christianity: History, Literature, Theology. Collected Studies Series CS357 (Hampshire, UK: Variorum ed. from Ashgate Publishing, 1992) VI. Same pagination in both editions. Comparative examples of Late Antique and Byzantine poetry exist in immense variety. I have identified prosodic elements in the piyyutim of Yannai and others in the Jewish liturgy for the Ninth of Av; the Syriac poetry of Babai, Jacob of Serug, and Ephraim; and the Syriac poetry in The Acts of Thomas and Odes of Solomon. I have closely examined all of the Psalms of Solomon, and the Hebrew of Ben Sira 44. In addition, I have looked at the Greek of Peri Pascha, and am aware that Augustine was fond of rhyming in Latin. I have failed to find dialogue partners for any discussion of this material. From the criteria I have been able to glean, SyrMacc is Jewish poetry--hence the similarity to Hebrew and Aramaic piyyutim--based on either hexameter that has been adopted from the Greeks and put into rhyme, or on an early form of the dodecasyllabic meter primarily known to have been used by Jacob of Serug (451--521), a Syriac Christian writer following Ephraim by a century. The problem is that, according to Sebastian Brock's article on Hymnography referenced above, Syriac writers tended to canonize the meters used by Ephraim at the end of the fourth century CE, and Ephraim did not use dodecasyllabic meters.Jacob of Serug, therefore, was going his own way. SyrMacc could not, however, be from the pen of Jacob of Serug as R or, more likely, P, since Jacob wrote in a floridly and explicitly Christian imagery. His poetry lacks the ambiguity of SyrMacc, and is much smoother in overall effect.

19. See F. Fallon, OTP II, 861-872, for an introduction and ET of the surviving fragments of Eupolemus.

20.Sebastian Brock, "From Antagonism to Assimilation: Syriac Attitudes to Greek Learning," in Syriac Perspectives on Late Antiquity, Variorum Reprints Collected Studies Series (London: Variorum Reprints, 1984) V:17-34

21. Bensly-Barnes, Fourth Book. The Syriac text of SyrMacc is a true eclectic text, with variant readings given. Bensly developed the critical text, however, from three mss that do not, apparently, show a great deal of variation. However, since only one of the mss used by Bensly was located by Barnes, we do not know exactly what governed Bensly's selection of variants.

22. I appreciate Bob Kraft's comment as a reader that the dilemmas of the text fit well with its character, and preservation, as a liturgical work.

23. Sigrid Peterson, "Fourth Maccabees and the Asia Minor Hypothesis," paper presented to the Hellenistic Judaism Section of the Society for Biblical Religion, Chicago, November 1994. Available electronically at the following URL: http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/~petersig/macc4sbl.htm

24. Robert A. Kraft, Barnabas, 2.

25. Alexander Rofé, Joshua, paper presented at the University of Pennsylvania (@@).

26. Such literal translation is quite apparent in the Greek of First Maccabees (1 Macc), where few would dispute that the Greek represents a translation from a Semitic original. It is a somewhat different phenomenon from the repeated poetic use of "and" to begin a line, found in the poetry of The Acts of Thomas, as well as SyrMacc. Such a repetition seems to be related to a Greek rhetorical device that flourished during the Second Sophistic.

27. This is quite apparent in the history Eupolemus gives of Solomon in his History of the Kings of Israel (@@).

28. Eupolemus (ca. 160 bce) termed God as Hypsistos (perhaps) and Megistos, 'the greatest or mightiest god, and often added the phrase "who created Heaven and Earth." The sections of Syriac Macc which show the earliest poetic style also show a consistency and terminology in the designation of God that is similar to that of Eupolemus. Such regularity of referencing is not found in other authors. @@ (From research using the Thesaurus Linguae Grecae CD Rom.

29. Assuming the analysis of Doran that 2 Macc was constructed as Temple Propaganda, and following the reasoning given here; that is, underlying the sequence in 2 Macc, where Antiochus Epiphanes suddenly appears to preside over the second set of martyrdoms, would be two hypotheses. First, that the actual story is a reflex of an oppression carried out by Antiochus Epiphanes in Antioch, either affecting resident Jews, as Eleazar was known to the soldiers/officials conducting his torture, or those captives who were carried away with the army that plundered Jerusalem, or both. Second, one would have to suppose that the propagandistic intent of those who fashioned 2 Maccabees required that they appropriate Eleazar, a name associated with priests, by associating him with events taking place in Jerusalem, carried out by deputies of Antiochus Epiphanes. The non-Jerusalem origins of the story would then be indicated by the notation that those conducting the torture were known to Eleazar, which would presumably not be the case in Jerusalem.

30. This characterization of the language of SyrMacc is commentary on its text from Michael Sokoloff (Personal Communication, December 1995). I understood him to mean that the poem is in idiomatic Syriac, without mannerisms that betray translation Syriac.

31. Schirmann and Maas articles cited in note 18 above.

32. The Historical Dictionary of the Hebrew Language. The Book of Ben Sira: Text, Concordance, and an Analysis of the Vocabulary (Jerusalem: The Academy of the Hebrew Language and The Shrine of the Book, 1973) 53.

33. Han W. Drijvers, @@.; Segal, Edessa@@.

34. For editions, see bibliography.

35. Sebastian Brock, Antagonism to Assimilation, 17-18; Han J. W. Drijvers, "Apocryphal Literature in the Cultural Milieu of Osrhoëne," Apocryphe. Le Champ des Apocryphes I: La Fable Apocryphe (Turnhout: Brepols, 1990). Reprinted as III in H. W. Drijvers, History and Religion in Late Antique Syria. Collected Studies Series CS464 (Aldershot, Hampshire, UK: Variorum Reprints of Ashgate Publishing, 1994). Both are paged 231--247.

36. Jonathan A. Goldstein, I Maccabees: A New Translation with Introduction and Commentary. The Anchor Bible 41 (NY: Doubleday, 1976) and II Maccabees: A New Translation with Introduction and Commentary. The Anchor Bible 41A (NY: Doubleday, 1983).

37. See among others Albert I. Baumgarten, The Flourishing of Jewish Sects in the Maccabean Era: An Interpretation. Supplements to the Journal for the Study of Judaism, Formerly Studia Post-Biblica, ed. by J. J. Collins (Leiden: Brill, 1997) and George W. E. Nickelsburg, Jr., Resurrection, Immortality, and Eternal Life in Intertestamental Judaism. Harvard Theological Studies XXVI (Cambridge, MA:Harvard University Press, 1972).

38. See Baumgarten, Jewish Sects, 88-91.

39. SyrMacc 54 and 57. See also 4 Macc @@. In fact, the Syriac referring to Jason as "This man changed the Jews' religion," is identical in SyrMacc 57 and Pesh4Macc.