Pappus and Julianus

views updated


PAPPUS AND JULIANUS (Lulianus ; second century c.e.), patriot brothers, perhaps from Laodicea. According to rabbinic tradition the two brothers, "when the government ordered the Temple to be rebuilt," set up (exchange-?) tables from Acre to Antioch to provide for those who came from the Exile (Gen. R. 64). It is also related that they were captured in Laodicea and condemned to death by *Trajan, the sentence being carried out immediately (Ta'an. 18b; Sifra, Emor, 9:5) or, according to an alternative account (Mekh. SbY to 21:13; Sem. 8:15), only after their judge – either Trajan or Lusius *Quietus, governor of Judea – had himself been killed. Rashi, who identifies Pappus and Julianus with the "Martyrs of Lydda" mentioned in the Talmud, indicated that they sacrificed themselves by claiming to have killed a princess for whose murder the whole of Jewry was held responsible (Sefer ha-Arukh, s.v. גרה; Rashi, Ta'an. 18b). Despite attempts to make them appear to transgress the commandments, Pappus and Julianus chose death rather than comply (tj, Sanh. 3:6, 21b; tj. Shev, 42:2, 35a). From these various sources it would seem that Trajan gave permission to rebuild the Temple, in commemoration of which a holiday was instituted. Later, after the execution of Pappus and Julianus, which might coincide with the Trajanic persecutions of 117 c.e., the holiday was abolished.


Lieberman, in: jqr, 36 (1945/46), 243–6; Allon, Toledot, 1 (19583), 260f.; L. Finkelstein, Akiba (Eng., 1936), 231–4, 313–6.

[Lea Roth]