Social History of Palestine in the Herodian Period- the Land is Mine

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A study of land ownership in first-century Palestine with emphasis on the Little Tradition vis-à-vis the Great Tradition. Under the former, land was viewed in a somewhat traditional and egalitarian sense as a gift of God; in the latter, land was seen in an entrepreneurial, capitalistic light. The concepts of the Great Tradition led the Ptolemies, Seleucids, Herods, and Romans to form large estates. This movement cost many peasants their patrimonial farm plots, reducing them to day laborers and tenants and causing deterioration of the extended family. Shows that Palestine in the Herodian period was a typically agrarian ancient society with a very small group of wealthy and powerful aristocrats and rural masses that barely achieved subsistence.


"This is an excellent book. Its chief merit is the fact that it gathers and sets forth clearly and judiciously nearly all the evidence on the subject of land and land tenure in Palestine during the Herodian period. For this reason alone, it is a worthwhile addition to the social history of the region and the period." -- Bruce J. Malina in Journal for the Study of Judaism

". . . a significant and welcome addition to the growing list of works focussing on the economic and social structure of peasant society in Roman Palestine." -- IOUDAIOS Review

". . . this work is surely one of the best treatments available of the social context of the origins of Christianity and Judaism. It deserves to be in every good university library." -- Religious Studies Review

". . . a wonderful contribution. Fiensy has provided an extensive collection and thorough analysis of the major works in the field, making good, clear judgments about most of the major issues." - John Kampen in Proceedings EGL MWBS

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