Psalms of Solomon

A collection of 18 non-canonical psalms composed in Hebrew but preserved only in Greek & Syriac translation. The author was probably a Pharisee [or Essene], judging from his characterization of the "sons of Jerusalem" as "wicked" & its rulers as usurpers of the high priesthood & kingship [a description that best fits the descendents of Johanan Hyrcanus].  Psalm 2 was most likely composed soon after the death of Pompey (48 BCE), since it describes a proud foreigner who enters Jerusalem, desecrates the temple but is slain & left unburied in Egypt.  As there is no hint of the temple's destruction in any psalm, all were probably composed prior to the destruction of the temple (70 CE). Aside from illustrating the views & values of some pious Jews who were alienated by current events & their own leaders, this collection of poems contains the most detailed articulation of Jewish messianic expectations near the beginning of the common era.  

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