Herod the Great
|Herod the Great|
|Died||4 BCE (aged 70)|
|Place of death||Jericho, Samaria|
|Buried||Possibly the Herodium|
|Predecessor||Antigonus II Mattathias|
and Philip the Tetrarch
Cleopatra of Jerusalem
Prince Aristobulus IV
Herod Philip I
Olympias the Herodian
Herod Philip II
|Father||Antipater the Idumaean|
|Religious beliefs||Second Temple Judaism|
Herod (Hebrew: הוֹרְדוֹס, Hordos, Greek: Ἡρῴδης, Hērōdēs), (73/74 BCE – 4 BCE), also known as Herod the Great and Herod I, was a Roman client king of Judea. He has been described as "a madman who murdered his own family and a great many rabbis", "the evil genius of the Judean nation", "prepared to commit any crime in order to gratify his unbounded ambition" and "the greatest builder in Jewish history". He is known for his colossal building projects throughout Judea, including his expansion of the Second Temple in Jerusalem (Herod's Temple), the construction of the port at Caesarea Maritima, the fortress at Masada and Herodium. Vital details of his life are recorded in the works of the 1st century CE Roman–Jewish historian Josephus.
Upon Herod's death, the Romans divided his kingdom among three of his sons—Archelaus became ethnarch of the tetrarchy of Judea, Herod Antipas became tetrarch of Galilee and Peraea, and Philip became tetrarch of territories east of the Jordan.
- 1 Biography
- 2 Reign of Judea
- 3 Architectural achievements
- 4 New Testament references
- 5 Death
- 6 Herod's tomb
- 7 Chronology
- 8 Wives and children
- 9 Family trees
- 10 See also
- 11 Herod and the Great Revolt
- 12 References
- 13 Further reading
- 14 External links
Herod was born around 74 BCE in Idumea, south of Judea. He was the second son of Antipater the Idumaean, a high-ranked official under Ethnarch Hyrcanus II, and Cypros, a Nabatean. Herod practiced Judaism, as many Edomites and Nabateans had been commingled with the Jews and adopted their customs. These "Judaized" Edomites were not considered Jewish by the dominant Pharisaic tradition, so even though Herod may have considered himself of the Jewish faith, he was not considered Jewish by the observant and nationalist Jews of Judea. A loyal supporter of Hyrcanus II, Antipater appointed Herod governor of Galilee at 25, and his elder brother, Phasael, governor of Jerusalem. He enjoyed the backing of Rome but his brutality was condemned by the Sanhedrin.
Two years later Antigonus, Hyrcanus' nephew, took the throne from his uncle with the help of the Parthians. Herod fled to Rome to plead with the Romans to restore him to power. There he was elected "King of the Jews" by the Roman Senate. Josephus puts this in the year of the consulship of Calvinus and Pollio (40 BCE), but Appian places it in 39 BCE. Herod went back to Judea to win his kingdom from Antigonus and at the same time he married the teenage niece of Antigonus, Mariamne (known as Mariamne I), in an attempt to secure a claim to the throne and gain some Jewish favor. However, Herod already had a wife, Doris, and a three-year-old son, Antipater, and chose therefore to banish Doris and her child.
Three years later, Herod and the Romans finally captured Jerusalem and executed Antigonus. Herod took the role as sole ruler of Judea and the title of basileus (Βασιλεύς, "king") for himself, ushering in the Herodian Dynasty and ending the Hasmonean Dynasty. Josephus reports this as being in the year of the consulship of Agrippa and Gallus (37 BCE), but also says that it was exactly 27 years after Jerusalem fell to Pompey, which would indicate 36 BCE. Cassius Dio also reports that in 37 "the Romans accomplished nothing worthy of note" in the area. According to Josephus, Herod ruled for 37 years, 34 of them after capturing Jerusalem.
As Herod's family had converted to Judaism, his religious commitment had come into question by some elements of Jewish society. When John Hyrcanus conquered the region of Idumaea (the Edom of the Hebrew Bible) in 140–130 BCE, he required all Idumaeans to obey Jewish law or to leave; most Idumaeans thus converted to Judaism, which meant that they had to be circumcised. While Herod publicly identified himself as a Jew and was considered as such by some, this religious identification was undermined by the decadent lifestyle of the Herodians, which would have earned them the antipathy of observant Jews.
Reign of Judea
Herod’s rule marked a new beginning in the history of Judea. Judea was under the rule of the Hasmonean Dynasty from 140 BCE until 37 BCE. Herod overthrew Antigonus and established the Herodian Dynasty. Herod ruled until his death in 4 BCE.
Although Herod was granted the title of king of Judea, like other vassal kings serving the Roman Empire, he too knew that he must serve the interests of his Roman patrons. Not long after he assumed control of Judea, Herod needed to show his worthiness as king of Judea to the new emperor, Augustus (who was known as Octavian), after he showed support for Augustus’ opponent Mark Antony. Herod was able to win the support of Augustus and continue to rule his people as he saw fit. Despite the freedom afforded to Herod in his reign over Judea, he was still a servant of the Roman Empire. This was shown by the restrictions placed upon him in his dealings with other kingdoms, as well as his support of Roman involvement within Judea.
Herod’s support from the Roman Empire played a major role in allowing him to maintain his authority over Judea. There has been mixed interpretations concerning Herod’s popularity during his reign. In The Jewish War by Josephus, Josephus characterizes Herod’s rule generally in favorable regards and gives him the benefit of the doubt for the infamous events that took place during his reign. However, in Josephus’s later work, Jewish Antiquities, Josephus emphasizes the tyrannical authority that many scholars have come to associate with Herod’s reign.
Herod’s tyrannical authority has been demonstrated by many of his security measures aimed at suppressing the contempt his people, especially Jews, had towards him. For instance, it has been suggested that Herod used secret police to monitor and report the feelings of the general populace towards him. In order to prevent people from expressing their disdain for him, he sought to prohibit people protesting, and in severe cases, he had people taken away by force.
Herod was known to spend lavish sums on his various building projects and generous gifts to other kingdoms, including Rome. The buildings that Herod built were very large projects and very extravagant for his time. Herod was responsible for the construction of the Temple Mount, a portion of which remains today as the Western Wall. In addition, Herod also built the harbor at Caeserea. While Herod's zeal for building transformed Judea, his motives were far from selfless. All these vast projects were aimed to gain himself support from the Jews and help better his reputation as a leader. However, in order to fund these expenses, Herod utilized a Hasmonean taxation system that weighed heavily on the people of Judea. Despite the burden of paying for Herod’s extravagant building projects and gifts, these projects may have helped offset these burdens in that they provided many opportunities for people to provide for themselves and their families. In some instances, Herod took it upon himself to provide for his people during times of need, such as during a severe famine that occurred in 25 BCE.
In regards to religious policies, Herod experienced a mixed response from the Jewish populace. Although Herod considered himself the King of Jews, he let it be known that he also represented the non-Jews living in Judea. The pagan temples he built outside of Jewish areas of the kingdom have shown this. Many Jews questioned whether he was truly Jewish due to his Idumean background and the infamous murders he committed against members of his family. However, despite his questionable faith, Herod often sought to respect traditional Jewish observances in his public life. Some notable examples were the minting of coins without human images to be used in Jewish areas. Another important example of this was illustrated by his acknowledgement of the sanctity of the Second Temple as shown by employing priests in the construction of the Temple.
Despite some of Herod’s attempts at conforming traditional Jewish laws, there were many instances where Herod was insensitive to these laws. As highlighted in Jewish Antiquities, one of the major complaints from Jews towards Herod was exactly this. In Jerusalem, he introduced foreign forms of entertainment and also had a golden eagle erected at the entrance of the Temple, suggesting he did not truly represent the interests of the Jewish populace.The taxes Herod put in place earned him self a bad reputation as well. Because of his constant concern of his reputation, Herod was always donating expensive gifts and ultimately spending rash amounts of money that were not his to spend. Herod’s leadership methods upset the Jews because they were forced from his lavish spending with the steep costs. The two major Jewish sects during his reign, the Pharisees and the Sadducees, also showed opposition to Herod. The Pharisees were angry with Herod because he disregarded many of the demands they made for the construction of the Temple. On the other hand, the Sadducees, who were known for their priestly responsibilities in the Temple, were opposed to Herod because he replaced the high priests with priests from Babylonia and Alexandria in an attempt to gain support from Jews in the diaspora. Unfortunately for Herod, his efforts did not satisfy his intentions. At the end of Herod’s reign, anger and dissatisfaction was a common feeling amongst the Jews. Heavy outbreaks of violence such as riots occurred following Herod’s death in multiple cities one being Jerusalem. All the grievances the Jews had toward Herod caused during his reign such as heavy taxes and rule breakage were built up until now. Because of the treatment the Jews were receiving at the time, they were ready to break free from Roman Rule. Herod’s leadership sparked such anger and revolt that eventually led to be one of the causes of the Great Revolt of 70 C.E.
Herod's most famous and ambitious project was the expansion of the Second Temple in Jerusalem.
In the eighteenth year of his reign (20–19 BCE), Herod rebuilt the Temple on "a more magnificent scale". Although work on out-buildings and courts continued another eighty years, the new Temple was finished in a year and a half. To comply with religious law, Herod employed 1,000 priests as masons and carpenters in the rebuilding. The finished temple, which was destroyed in 70 CE, is sometimes referred to as Herod's Temple. Today, only the four retaining walls remain standing, including the Western Wall. These walls created a flat platform (the Temple Mount) upon which the Temple was then constructed.
Some of Herod's other achievements include the development of water supplies for Jerusalem, building fortresses such as Masada and Herodium, and founding new cities such as Caesarea Maritima and the enclosures of Cave of the Patriarchs and Mamre in Hebron. He and Cleopatra owned a monopoly over the extraction of asphalt from the Dead Sea, which was used in shipbuilding. He leased copper mines on Cyprus from the Roman emperor.
New Testament references
Herod the Great appears in the Gospel according to Matthew (2:1-23), which describes an event known as the Massacre of the Innocents. According to this account, after the birth of Jesus, "wise men from the East" visited Herod to inquire the whereabouts of "the one having been born king of the Jews", because they had seen his star in the east and therefore wanted to pay him homage. Herod, as King of the Jews, was alarmed at the prospect of a usurper. Herod assembled the chief priests and scribes of the people and asked them where the "Anointed One" (the Messiah, Greek: Ο Χριστός (ho christos)) was to be born. They answered, in Bethlehem, citing Micah 5:2. Herod therefore sent the "wise men" to Bethlehem, instructing them to search for the child and, after they had found him, to "report to me, so that I too may go and worship him". However, after they had found Jesus, the Magi were warned in a dream not to report back to Herod. Similarly, Joseph was warned in a dream that Herod intended to kill Jesus, so he and his family fled to Egypt. When Herod realized he had been outwitted by the Magi, he gave orders to kill all boys of the age of two and under in Bethlehem and its vicinity. Joseph and his family stayed in Egypt until Herod's death, then moved to Nazareth in Galilee in order to avoid living under Herod's son Archelaus.
Regarding the Massacre of the Innocents, although Herod was guilty of many brutal acts including the killing of his wife and two of his sons, no other source from the period refers to the massacre. Since Bethlehem was a small village, the number of male children under the age of two might not exceed 20, and this may be the reason for the lack of other sources for this history. Modern biographers of Herod tend to doubt the event took place.
Herod died in Jericho. Since the work of Emil Schürer in 1896 most scholars have agreed that Herod died at the end of March or early April in 4 BCE. However, Schürer's consensus has not gone unchallenged in the 20th century, with several scholars endorsing 1 BCE as the year of Herod's death.
Evidence for the 4 BCE date is provided by the fact that Herod's sons, between whom his kingdom was divided, dated their rule from 4 BCE, and Archelaus apparently also exercised royal authority during Herod's lifetime. Josephus states that Philip the Tetrarch's death took place after a 37-year reign, in the 20th year of Tiberius (34 CE).
Josephus tells us that Herod died after a lunar eclipse. He gives an account of events between this eclipse and his death, and between his death and Passover. A partial eclipse took place on March 13, 4 BCE, about 29 days before Passover, and this eclipse is usually taken to be the one referred to by Josephus. There were however three other, total, eclipses around this time, and there are proponents of both 5 BCE—with two total eclipses, and 1 BCE.
Josephus wrote that Herod's final illness—sometimes named "Herod's Evil"—was excruciating. Based on Josephus's descriptions, one medical expert has diagnosed Herod's cause of death as chronic kidney disease complicated by Fournier's gangrene. Similar symptoms attended the death of his grandson Agrippa I in 44 CE.
Modern scholars agree he suffered throughout his lifetime from depression and paranoia.[dead link] Josephus stated that Herod was so concerned that no one would mourn his death, that he commanded a large group of distinguished men to come to Jericho, and he gave an order that they should be killed at the time of his death so that the displays of grief that he craved would take place. Fortunately for them, Herod's son Archilaus and sister Salome did not carry out this wish.
After Herod's death, his kingdom was divided among three of his sons by Augustus. The Romans made Herod's son, Herod Archelaus, ethnarch of Judea, Samaria, and Idumea (biblical Edom) from 4 BCE to 6 CE, referred to as the tetrarchy of Judea. Archelaus was judged incompetent by the Roman emperor Augustus who then combined Samaria, Judea proper and Idumea into Iudaea province under rule of a prefect until age 41. Herod's other son Herod Antipas was tetrarch of Galilee from 4 BCE–39 CE and Philip became tetrarch of territories east of the Jordan.
The location of Herod's tomb is documented by Josephus, who writes, "And the body was carried two hundred furlongs, to Herodium, where he had given order to be buried." Josephus provides more clues about Herod's tomb which he calls Herod's monuments:
So they threw down all the hedges and walls which the inhabitants had made about their gardens and groves of trees, and cut down all the fruit trees that lay between them and the wall of the city, and filled up all the hollow places and the chasms, and demolished the rocky precipices with iron instruments; and thereby made all the place level from Scopus to Herod's monuments, which adjoined to the pool called the Serpent's Pool.
Professor Ehud Netzer, an archaeologist from Hebrew University, read the writings of Josephus and focused his search on the vicinity of the pool and its surroundings at the Winter Palace of Herod in the Judean desert. An article of the New York Times states,
Lower Herodium consists of the remains of a large palace, a race track, service quarters, and a monumental building whose function is still a mystery. Perhaps, says Ehud Netzer, who excavated the site, it is Herod's mausoleum. Next to it is a pool, almost twice as large as modern Olympic-size pools.
It took 35 years for Netzer to identify the exact location, but on May 7, 2007, an Israeli team of archaeologists of Hebrew University led by Netzer, announced they had discovered the tomb. The site is located at the exact location given by Josephus, atop of tunnels and water pools, at a flattened desert site, halfway up the hill to Herodium, 12 kilometers (7.5 mi) south of Jerusalem. The tomb contained a broken sarcophagus but no remains of a body.
In October 2013, archaeologists Joseph Patrich and Benjamin Arubas challenged the identification of the tomb as that of Herod. According to Patrich and Arubas, the tomb is too modest to be Herod's and has several unlikely features. Roi Porat, who replaced Netzer as excavation leader after the latter's death, stood by the identification.
- 39–37 BCE – War against Antigonus. After the conquest of Jerusalem and victory over Antigonus, Mark Antony executes him.
- 36 BCE – Herod makes his 17-year-old brother-in-law, Aristobulus III, high priest, fearing that the Jews would appoint Aristobulus III as "King of the Jews" in his place.
- 35 BCE – Aristobulus III is drowned at a party on Herod's orders.
- 32 BCE – The war against Nabatea begins, with victory one year later.
- 31 BCE – Judea suffers a devastating earthquake. Octavian defeats Mark Antony, so Herod switches allegiance to Octavian, later known as Augustus.
- 30 BCE – Herod is shown great favor by Octavian, who at Rhodes confirms him as King of Judea.
- 29 BCE – Josephus writes that Herod had great passion and also great jealousy concerning his wife, Mariamne I. She learns of Herod's plans to murder her, and stops sleeping with him. Herod puts her on trial on a charge of adultery. His sister, Salome I, was chief witness against her. Mariamne I's mother Alexandra made an appearance and incriminated her own daughter. Historians say her mother was next on Herod's list to be executed and did this only to save her own life. Mariamne was executed, and Alexandra declared herself Queen, stating that Herod was mentally unfit to serve. Josephus wrote that this was Alexandra's strategic mistake; Herod executed her without trial.
- 28 BCE – Herod executed his brother-in-law Kostobar (husband of Salome, father to Berenice) for conspiracy. Large festival in Jerusalem, as Herod had built a theatre and an amphitheatre.
- 27 BCE – An assassination attempt on Herod was foiled. To honor Augustus, Herod rebuilt Samaria and renamed it Sebaste.
- 25 BCE – Herod imported grain from Egypt and started an aid program to combat the widespread hunger and disease that followed a massive drought. He also waives a third of the taxes.
- 23 BCE – Herod built a palace in Jerusalem and the fortress Herodion (Herodium) in Judea. He married his third wife, Mariamne II, the daughter of the priest Simon Boethus; immediately Herodes deprived Jesus the son of Phabet, of the high priesthood, and conferred that dignity on Simon.
- 22 BCE – Herod began construction on Caesarea Maritima and its harbor. The Roman emperor Augustus granted him the regions Trachonitis, Batanaea, and Auranitis to the northeast.
- Circa 20 BCE – Expansion started on the Temple Mount; Herod completely rebuilt the Second Temple of Jerusalem.
- Circa 18 BCE – Herod traveled for the second time to Rome.
- 14 BCE – Herod supported the Jews in Anatolia and Cyrene. Owing to the prosperity in Judaea he waived a quarter of the taxes.
- 13 BCE – Herod made his first-born son Antipater (his son by Doris) first heir in his will.
- 12 BCE – Herod suspected his sons from his marriage to Mariamne I, Alexander and Aristobulus, of threatening his life. He took them to Aquileia to be tried. Augustus reconciled the three. Herod supported the financially strapped Olympic Games and ensured their future. Herod amended his will so that Alexander and Aristobulus rose in the royal succession, but Antipater would be higher in the succession.
- Circa 10 BCE – The newly expanded temple in Jerusalem was inaugurated. War against the Nabateans began.
First decade BCE
- 9 BCE –Caesarea Maritima was inaugurated. Owing to the course of the war against the Nabateans, Herod fell into disgrace with Augustus. Herod again suspected Alexander of plotting to kill him.
- 8 BCE – Herod accused his sons Alexander and Aristobulus of high treason. Herod reconciled with Augustus, who also gave him the permission to proceed legally against his sons.
- 7 BCE – The court hearing took place in Berytos (Beirut) before a Roman court. His sons Alexander and Aristobulus were found guilty and executed. The succession changed so that Antipater was the exclusive successor to the throne. In second place the succession incorporated (Herod) Philip, his son by Mariamne II.
- 6 BCE – Herod proceeded against the Pharisees.
- 5 BCE – Antipater was brought before the court charged with the intended murder of Herod. Herod, by now seriously ill, named his son (Herod) Antipas (from his fourth marriage with Malthace) as his successor.
- 4 BCE – Young disciples smashed the golden eagle over the main entrance of the Temple of Jerusalem after the Pharisee teachers claimed it was an idolatrous Roman symbol. Herod arrested them, brought them to court, and sentenced them. Augustus approved the death penalty for Antipater. Herod then executed his son, and again changed his will: Archelaus (from the marriage with Malthace) would rule as ethnarch over the tetrachy of Judea, while Antipas (by Malthace) and Philip (from the fifth marriage with Cleopatra of Jerusalem) would rule as tetrarchs over Galilee and Peraea (Transjordan), also over Gaulanitis (Golan), Trachonitis (Hebrew: Argob), Batanaea (now Ard-el-Bathanyeh) and Panias. Salome I was also given a small toparchy in the Gaza region. As Augustus did not confirm his will, no one received the title of King; however, the three sons were granted rule of the stated territories.
Wives and children
|Mariamne I, daughter of Hasmonean Alexandros,
executed 29 BCE
|Mariamne II, daughter of High-Priest Simon||
|Cleopatra of Jerusalem||
|a cousin (name unknown)||
|a niece (name unknown)||
It is very probable that Herod had more children, especially with the last wives, and also that he had more daughters, as female births at that time were often not recorded.
Marriages and descendants
Herod the Great + Doris | Antipater II d. 4 BCE?
Herod the Great + Mariamne I, d. 29 BCE?, dt. of Alexandros. | ————————————————————————————————————————————— | | | | Aristobulus Alexander Salampsio + Phasael II Cypros d. 7 BCE? d. 7 BCE? | m. Antipater(2) m. Berenice Cypros | ———————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————— | | | | | Mariamne III Herod V Herodias Herod Agrippa Aristobulus V m. her uncle King of Chalcis + King of Judea | Archelaus ? m. 1. Herod II Boethus Herod Agrippa II her uncle 2. Herod Antipas her uncle
Herod the Great + Mariamne II, dt. of Simon the High-Priest. | Herod II Boethus
Herod the Great + Malthace (a Samaritan) | ———————————————————————————————————————————————— | | | Herod Antipas Archelaus Olympias b. 20 BCE? + Phasaelis, dt. of Aretas IV, king of Arabia "divorced" to marry: + Herodias, dt. of Aristobulus (son of Herod the Great)
Herod the Great + Cleopatra of Jerusalem | Philip the Tetrarch d. 34 CE
- Herod's Family Tree
- Antipater(2) was the son of Joseph and Salome
- Dates with ? need verifying against modern findings
Antipater the Idumaean + Cypros, Princess from Petra, Jordan in Nabatea. | ————————————————————————————————————————————— | | | | | Phasael Herod the Great Joseph Pheroras Salome I (74-4 BCE)
|Sign & Meaning|
|+ = married|
|| = descended from|
|../——— = sibling|
|dt. = daughter|
|b. = born|
|d. = died|
|m. = was married to|
|? = not included here or unknown|
Alexandros + Alexandra | ——————————————————————————————————— | | Aristobulus III Mariamne, dt. (d. 35 BCE) m. Herod the Great (last Hasmonean scion; appointed high priest; drowned)
Herod and the Great Revolt
Herod died in 4 BCE without leaving a designated successor, which caused Judea, Jerusalem, Galilee and Transjordan to break out into rebellion and riots. Many rebellious leaders hoped to gain power. This outbreak of rebellion demonstrated the distress of the people that resulted from poverty within the nation.  Herod's death left a nation in social distress leading to an outbreak of riots due to the lack of a leader. During the first century CE Roman administration utilized vassal kings. However, beginning in 6 CE the use of vassal kings ended and prefects, or procurators, became common. Procurators were Roman civil service men. There are accounts of brutal and corrupt Roman procurators, like Pontius Pilate, who strained the lives of the Jews. Procurators caused many issues like stealing from non-Romans and allowing chaos by releasing people from prison.  The use of procurators became problematic due to the cultural barriers between the Jews and the Roman authorities. The procurators were Roman and did not understand many of the struggles of the Jewish people, for they did not live among the Jews. Therefore, procurators were not effective in maintaining a peaceful environment in the lands that they ruled shown by continued chaos. In about 66 CE the lack of leadership that caused chaos allowed talents to be stolen from the Temple in order to pay for unpaid taxes. This led to revolt and war among priestly revolutionaries and eventually violent revolutionaries.  The leadership vacuum created no stable leadership in the nation at the time. This caused the Romans to utilize procurators. However, these procurators were ineffective in restoring order to the lands they ruled because they were not sympathetic to the Jews and their situation. Procurators often contributed to creating chaos. Chaos and anger that resulted from the Roman procurators led the Jews to revolt. Especially, anger that resulted from heavy taxes on Jews that led Roman authorities to seek compensation from the Temple. Herod's death left the nation in a state of distress that was made worse by the Roman procurators implemented due to the leadership vacuum eventually infuriated the Jews causing them to revolt.
- Richardson, Peter. Herod: King of the Jews and friend of the Romans, (Continuum International Publishing Group, 1999) pp. xv–xx.
- Knoblet, Jerry. Herod the Great (University Press of America, 2005), p. 179.
- Rocca, Samuel. Herod's Judaea: a Mediterranean state in the classical world (Mohr Siebeck, 2008) p. 159.
- Millar, Fergus; Schürer, Emil; Vermes, Geza. The History of the Jewish People in the Age of Jesus Christ (Continuum International Publishing Group, 1973) p. 327.
- Wright, N. T. The New Testament and the People of God (SPCK, 1992), p. 172.
- McGonigle, Thomas C.; McGonigle, Thomas D.; Quigley, James F. (1988). A History of the Christian Tradition: From its Jewish Origins to the Reformation Volume 1 of A History of the Christian Tradition. Paulist Press.
- Peters, Francis E. (2005). The Monotheists: Jews, Christians, and Muslims in Conflict and Competition, Volume II: The Words and Will of God The Words And Will of God. Princeton University Press.
- Kasher, Aryeh; Witztum, Eliezer (2007). King Herod: a persecuted persecutor : a case study in psychohistory and psychobiography. Translation by Karen Gold. Walter de Gruyter.
- Spino, Ken (Rabbi) (2010). "History Crash Course #31: Herod the Great (online)". Crash Course in Jewish History. Targum Press. ISBN 978-1-5687-1532-2. Retrieved 7 May 2013.
- Tierney, John. "Herod: Herod the Great", Catholic Encyclopedia (1910): "Herod, surnamed the Great, called by Grätz "the evil genius of the Judean nation" (Hist., v. II, p. 77).
- Herod I at Jewish Encyclopedia: "above all, he was prepared to commit any crime in order to gratify his unbounded ambition"
- Perowne, Stewart H. (2013). "Herod". Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 8 May 2013.
- Steinmann, Andrew. "When Did Herod the Great Reign?", Novum Testamentum, Volume 51, Number 1, 2009, pp. 1–29.
- "Herod I". Encyclopaedia Judaica. (CD-ROM Edition Version 1.0). Ed. Cecil Roth. Keter Publishing House. ISBN 965-07-0665-8
- Josephus. Antiquities of the Jews, 14.15.2.
- Herod I at Jewish Encyclopedia: "He was of commanding presence; he excelled in physical exercises; he was a skillful diplomatist; and, above all, he was prepared to commit any crime in order to gratify his unbounded ambition."
- Josephus. The Wars of the Jews 1.14.4: Mark Antony "then resolved to get him made king of the Jews…told them that it was for their advantage in the Parthian war that Herod should be king; so they all gave their votes for it. And when the senate was separated, Antony and Caesar went out, with Herod between them; while the consul and the rest of the magistrates went before them, in order to offer sacrifices [to the Roman gods], and to lay the decree in the Capitol. Antony also made a feast for Herod on the first day of his reign".
- Dio, Roman History 49.23.1–2.
- Atkinson, Kenneth (October 1996). "Herod the Great, Sosius, and the Siege of Jerusalem (37 B.C.E.) in Psalm of Solomon 17". Novum Testamentum (Brill) 38: 312–322. JSTOR 1560892.
- Circumcision: Circumcision Necessary or Not? at Jewish Encyclopedia: "The rigorous Shammaite view, voiced in the Book of Jubilees (l.c.), prevailed in the time of King John Hyrcanus, who forced the Abrahamic rite upon the Idumeans, and in that of King Aristobulus, who made the Itureans undergo circumcision (Josephus, "Ant." xiii. 9, § 1; 11, § 3)."
- Josephus, Wars, 2.13. "There was also another disturbance at Caesarea, - those Jews who were mixed with the Syrians that lived there rising a tumult against them. The Jews pretended that the city was theirs, and said that he who built it was a Jew, meaning King Herod. The Syrians confessed also that its builder was a Jew; but they still said, however, that the city was a Grecian city; for that he who set up statues and temples in it could not design it for Jews."
- Herod I: Opposition of the Pious at Jewish Encyclopedia: "All the worldly pomp and splendor which made Herod popular among the pagans, however, rendered him abhorrent to the Jews, who could not forgive him for insulting their religious feelings by forcing upon them heathen games and combats with wild animals".
- Losch, Richard R. All the People in the Bible, (Eerdmans, 2008) p. 155.
- Cohen, Shaye. “Roman Domination: The Jewish Revolt and the Destruction of the Second Temple,” in Ancient Israel, ed. Hershel Shanks. (Biblical Archaeology Society, 1999), p. 270.
- Cohen, Shaye. “Roman Domination: The Jewish Revolt and the Destruction of the Second Temple,” in Ancient Israel, ed. Hershel Shanks. (Biblical Archaeology Society, 1999), p. 271.
- Cohen, Shaye. “Roman Domination: The Jewish Revolt and the Destruction of the Second Temple,” in Ancient Israel, ed. Hershel Shanks. (Biblical Archaeology Society, 1999), p. 269-273.
- Levine, Amy-Jill. “Visions of Kingdoms: From Pompey to the First Jewish Revolt,” in The Oxford History of the Biblical World, ed. Michael D. Coogan. (New York: Oxford University Press, 1998), p. 357.
- Jagersma, Henk. A History of Israel from Alexander the Great to Bar Kochba, trans. John Bowden (London: SCM Press Ltd, 1985), p. 107.
- Cohen, Shaye. “Roman Domination: The Jewish Revolt and the Destruction of the Second Temple,” in Ancient Israel, ed. Hershel Shanks. (Biblical Archaeology Society, 1999), p. 272.
- Schiffman, Lawrence H. “The Jewish-Christian Schism,” in From Text to Tradition: A History of Second Temple and Rabbinic Judaism (Hoboken: Ktav Publishing House, 1991), p. 145.
- Temple of Herod at Jewish Encyclopedia
- Sanders, E. P. (1994). The Historical Figure of Jesus. Viking Adult. pp. 87–88.
- Hagner, Donald A. (1993). Matthew 1–13, Word Biblical Commentary, Vol. 33a. Thomas Nelson. p. 35.
- Maier, Paul L. (1998). "Herod and the Infants of Bethlehem". Chronos, Kairos, Christos II. Mercer University Press. p. 170. "most recent biographies of Herod the Great deny it entirely"
- Schürer, Emil. A History of the Jewish People in the Time of Jesus Christ, 5 vols. New York, Scribner’s, 1896.
- Barnes, Timothy David. “The Date of Herod’s Death,” Journal of Theological Studies ns 19 (1968), 204–219
- Bernegger, P. M. “Affirmation of Herod’s Death in 4 B.C.”, Journal of Theological Studies ns 34 (1983), 526–531.
- Edwards, Ormond. “Herodian Chronology”, Palestine Exploration Quarterly 114 (1982) 29–42
- Filmer, W. E. “Chronology of the Reign of Herod the Great”, Journal of Theological Studies ns 17 (1966), 283–298.
- Keresztes, Paul. Imperial Rome and the Christians: From Herod the Great to About 200 AD (Lanham, Maryland: University Press of America, 1989), pp.1–43.
- Vardaman, Jerry; Yamauchi, Edwin M., eds. (1989). "The Nativity and Herod's Death". Chronos, Kairos, Christos: Nativity and Chronological Studies Presented to Jack Finegan (Winona Lake, Indiana: Eisenbrauns): 85–92.
- Finegan, Jack. Handbook of Biblical Chronology, Rev. ed. (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 1998) 300, §516.
- Josephus, Wars, 1.631–632.
- Josephus, Wars, 2.26.
- Hoehner, Harold. Herod Antipas, (Zondervan, 1980) p.251.
- Josephus, Antiquities, 17.6.4
- NASA catalog, only 37 % of the moon was in shadow
- NASA lunar eclipse catalog Lunar Eclipses: -0099 to 0000 (100 BCE to 1 BCE)
- What loathsome disease did King Herod die of?, The Straight Dope, November 23, 1979
- Josephus, Antiquities, 17.6.5
- CNN.com – Health (25 January 2002). Mystery of Herod's death 'solved' CNN Archives, 2002. Accessed 30 January 2013.
- http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/876330.htm[dead link]
- Josephus, Antiquities, 17.6.174–175.
- Josephus, Antiquities, 17.8.193.
- Josephus, Antiquities, 17.12.317–319. Augustus "appointed Archelaus, not indeed to be the king of the whole country, but ethnarch or one half of that which had been subject to Herod, and promised to give him the royal dignity hereafter, if he governed his part virtuously. But as for the other half, he divided it into two parts, and gave it to two other of Herod's sons, to Philip and to Herod Antipas, that Herod Antipas who disputed with Archelaus for the whole kingdom. Now, to him it was that Perea and Galilee paid their tribute, which amounted annually to two hundred talents, while Batanea with Trachonitis, as well as Auranitis, with a certain part of what was called House of Lenodorus, paid the tribute of one hundred talents to Philip; but Idumea, and Judea, and the country of Samaria, paid tribute to Archilaus, but had now a fourth part of that tribute taken off by the order of Caesar, who decreed them that mitigation, because they did not join in this revolt with the rest of the multitude."
- Ben-Sasson, H. H. A History of the Jewish People, Harvard University Press, 1976, ISBN 0-674-39731-2, p. 246: "When Archelaus was deposed from the ethnarchy in 6 CE, Judea proper, Samaria and Idumea were converted into a Roman province under the name Iudaea."
- Josephus, Wars, 5.33.1.
- Josephus, Wars, 5.3.2.
- Rosovsky, Nitza. (24 April 1983) "Discovering Herod's Israel", The New York Times. Accessed 7 May 2013.
- Haaretz Staff; Barkat, Amiram (7 May 2007). "Archeologist: King Herod's tomb desecrated, but discovery 'high point'". Haaretz. Retrieved 7 May 2013.
- Associated Press (7 May 2007). "Israeli Archaeologist Finds Tomb of King Herod", FOX News, Accessed 7 May 2013.
- "Herod's Tomb Discovered" IsraCast, May 8, 2007. Accessed 7 May 2013.
- Kalman, Matthew (8 May 2007). "Herod's tomb reportedly found inside his desert palace" The Boston Globe, Accessed 7 May 2013.
- Weizman, Steve (8 May 2007). "Archaeologists Find Tomb of King Herod". USA Today. Associated Press. Retrieved 7 May 2013.
- Hasson, Nir (29 January 2012). "Top archaeologists condemn Israeli plan to rebuild ancient tomb", Haaretz. Accessed 8 May 2013.
- Nir Hasson (October 11, 2013). "Archaeological stunner: Not Herod's Tomb after all?". Haaretz.
- Josephus, Antiquities, 15.7.8
- Josephus, Antiquities, 15.9.3
- Josephus, Antiquities, 18.1.2–3.
- Family Tree of Herod
- Cohen, Shaye. Ancient Israel From Abraham to the Roman Destruction of the Temple. Prentice Hall. p. 273.
- Cohen, Shaye. Ancient Israel From Abraham to the Roman Destruction of the Temple. Prentice Hall. p. 273-274.
- Cohen, Shaye`. Ancient Israel From Abraham to the Roman Destruction of the Temple. Prentice Hall. p. 288-289.
- Brandon, S. G. F. (1962). "Herod the Great: Judaea's Most Able but Most Hated King". History Today 12: 234–242.
- Grant, Michael (1971). Herod the Great. New York: American Heritage Press. ISBN 0-07-024073-6.
- Günther, Linda-Marie (hg.) Herodes und Jerusalem (Stuttgart: Franz Steiner Verlag, 2009).
- Günther, Linda-Marie (hg.) Herodes und Rom (Stuttgart: Franz Steiner Verlag, 2007).
- Jacobson, David M. and Nikos Kokkinos (еds). Herod and Augustus: Papers Held at the Institute of Jewish Studies Conference, University College London, 21–23 June 2005 (Leiden, Brill, 2009) (IJS Studies in Judaica, 6).
- Kokkinos, Nikos. The Herodian Dynasty: Origins, Role in Society and Eclipse (Sheffield: Sheffield Academic,1998).
- Marshak, Adam Kolman (2006). "The Dated Coins of Herod the Great: Towards a New Chronology". Journal for the Study of Judaism 37 (2): 212–240. doi:10.1163/157006306776564700.
- Netzer, Ehud. The Architecture of Herod, the Great Builder (Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2006).
- Perowne, Stewart (1956). The Life and Times of Herod the Great. New York: Abingdon Press.
- Richardson, Peter. Herod the King of the Jews and Friend of the Romans (Edinburgh: 1999).
- Roller, Duane W. (1998). The Building Program of Herod the Great. Berkeley: University of California Press. ISBN 978-0-520-91935-8.
- Sandmel, Samuel (1967). Herod: Profile of a Tyrant. Philadelphia: Lippincott.
- Schwentzel, Christian-Georges (2011). Hérode le Grand. Paris: Pygmalion.
- Witztum, Eliezer. King Herod: A Persecuted Persecutor. A Case Study in Psychohistory and Psychobiography (Berlin and New York, Walter de Gruyter, 2006).
- Zeitlin, Solomon (1963). "Herod: A Malevolent Maniac". Jewish Quarterly Review 54: 1–27. doi:10.2307/1453457.
- Zeitlin, Solomon (1962–1978). The Rise and Fall of the Judean State. Philadelphia: The Jewish Publication Society.
- "Herod the Great: The King’s Final Journey", The Israel Museum, Jerusalem, February 13, 2013-October 5, 2013. Curators: Dudi Mevorach and Silvia Rozenberg.
- Herod and the Herodian Dynasty The Jewish History Resource Center - Project of the Dinur Center for Research in Jewish History, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem
- "Herod I" in the Jewish Encyclopedia.
Herod the Great
House of HerodDied: 4 BCE
|King of the Jews
37 BCE – 4 BCE
|Ruler of Galilee
37 BCE – 4 BCE
|Ruler of Batanea
37 BCE – 4 BCE
Herod Philip II