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The Jews in Their Land in the Talmudic Age

The Jews in Their Land in the Talmudic Age

70–640 CE

Gedaliah Alon

Edited and translated by Gershon Levi

ISBN 9780674474956

Publication date: 05/01/1989

This is a masterly narrative of the land of Israel from 70 to 640 CE by an eminent Israeli historian. It is a comprehensive record of Jewish life under Roman rule: economic conditions and social welfare; Jewish law and courts; political repression and resistance; religious controversies; the Diaspora and relations between the national center in Palestine and the communities abroad. Gedaliah Alon describes the rebuilding of national life after the defeat in 70; the emergence of the Sages as community leaders; the extent of autonomy under the Roman Empire; the towns and cities of Jewish Palestine; armed uprisings and the Bar Kokhba Revolt; the decades of decline and large-scale emigration; the traditions of learning that produced the Mishnah and Talmud. It is a rich, vividly told story.

This paperback reproduces in one volume the two-volume translation of Alon’s classic work published in Jerusalem in 1980 and 1984.


  • Gedaliah Alon’s study is the magnum opus of one of the very few scholars whose command of both rabbinic and classical literature provided him with the tools to approach an unusually challenging, almost forbidding field of historical inquiry… Alon’s stimulating history…will take its place among the standard studies of an obscure but pivotal age.

    —David Berger, New York Times Book Review

Book Details

  • 824 pages
  • 5-1/2 x 9 inches
  • Harvard University Press