Background of the Middle East by Ernest Jackh

By Ernest Jackh

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The Jewish Community, 3 vols. (Philadelphia, 1942). Wolfson, H. , Philo: Foundations of Religious Philosophy in Judaism, Christianity and Islam, 2 vols. , 1947). Baron, Pf eiffer, R. , History of 42 New Testament Times (New York, 1949). CHAPTER VI Influence of Hellenism on the Middle East BY ANDRE MICHALOPOULOS HELLENISM is the term used to denote the civilization of the Greeks. In his book Alexander the Great, Charles A, Robinson writes: The true legacy of Greece consists not of art and literature, beautibut of a mental attitude, the insistence on the primacy ful as they are, Rome nor the Middle Ages nor Asia (ancient or modern) has made the mind the controlling factor in human affairs, but ancient Greece did, and as the originator of what we call of reason.

However, it was inherent in its originated from disparate civilizations, engender or, at least, lead up to new civilizations. Indeed, Hellenism became the soil from which Byzantine and very nature that, just as so it had it to Islamic civilizations sprang. Empire The originality of the immediate heir of Hellenism and its Byzantine faithful treasurer lay in the fact that state and culture were impregnated with Eastern Christianity. This fact gave Byzantium the atmosphere of a theocratic state. Its almighty bureaucracy regulated prices, organized public works for the unemployed, watched over pubhygiene, and established orphan asylums.

37 THE MIDDLE EAST After the fall of Samaria, a large portion of the northern Ten Tribes was deported into distant lands. Although the majority of these exiles was sooner or later assimilated by their neighbors (the subsequent legends concerning these Lost Ten Tribes made them ancestors of many nations from the British and Japanese American Indians), a minority doubtless persisted until they were joined by the new deportees from Judea after the of to the From that time on, it appears, Diaspora Jewry always exceeded in number the Jews of Palestine, with the sole fall of Jerusalem.

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