CASA Essay - Domitian's attitude to the Jews and Judaism

Ursula Westwood


The emperor Domitian has the reputation of being the ‘decided enemy of the
Jews’.1 The information from which this conclusion can be drawn is found in a
passage in Suetonius and one in Dio. As well as this, Roman writings of the time,
such as those of Martial and Quintilian, support a view of Domitian as anti-
Semitic. By examining the main literary accounts of his treatments of the Jews as
well as contemporary writings, it will be possible to establish to what extent
Suetonius and Dio give an accurate portrayal of his attitude towards the Jews.

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ISSN 2079-2883 (online); ISSN 0303-1896 (print)

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