ALEXANDER


ALEXANDER
ALEXANDER (c. 36–7 B.C.E.), son of herod and mariamne . As Herod's heir presumptive, Alexander was educated in Rome with his younger brother Aristobulus from c. 23–17 B.C.E. On his return to Judea he married Glaphyra, the daughter of Archelaus, king of Cappadocia. His arrival aroused the fears of those members of Herod's retinue who had been responsible for the death of Mariamne, for they assumed Alexander would avenge his mother's death. salome – who had been chiefly to blame – incited the king against Alexander, insinuating that he and his brother intended to take revenge on him for their mother's death. Influenced by these slanders, Herod recalled antipater , his son by his first marriage, to support him. In 12 B.C.E. the king took both princes with him to Italy to arraign them before Augustus on charges of conspiracy. At their meeting in Aquileia, the emperor managed to effect a reconciliation between the father and the sons. However, the intrigues against the princes continued, and relations with their father deteriorated irrevocably. Alexander was put in irons and his life threatened. As a result of the intervention of Archelaus, Herod was pacified and Alexander released. The machinations against him continued, however. This time it was the Spartan Eurycles, a guest at Herod's court, who incited the king against him after accepting a bribe from Antipater. Herod then suspected two men of plotting with Alexander to kill him. Alexander was again imprisoned, together alexander   with his brother. After Alexander confessed that they wanted to escape to Italy to take refuge from their accusers, Herod again lodged a complaint about his sons' conduct to Augustus. The emperor granted Herod permission to judge them as he saw fit, but advised him to try them in a court composed of Roman well-wishers and officials. The trial took place in Berytus (Beirut). Alexander and his brother were sentenced to death and sent to Caesarea. There a commander of the garrison, Tiro, a veteran in Herod's service, attempted to gain them a reprieve. His plea that if the executions took place riots would erupt only served to incense Herod further. Tiro was put to death together with other friends of Alexander. The two brothers were brought to Sebaste (Samaria) where they were executed by strangling. -BIBLIOGRAPHY: Jos., Ant., 15:342; 16:78–129, 189 ff., 230 ff., 244 ff., 30 1 ff., 356 ff.; Klausner, Bayit Sheni, 4 (19502), 153 ff.; A. Schalit, Hordos ha-Melekh (19643), 286 ff.; Schuerer, Gesch, 1 (19014), 369 ff., 407 ff.; Graetz, Hist, 2 (1893), 112–3. (Abraham Schalit)

Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.

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