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ISBE: GORGIAS
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Gorgias

GORGIAS [ISBE]

GORGIAS - gor'-ji-as (Gorgias): A general in the service of Antiochus Epiphanes (1 Macc 3:38; 2 Macc 8:9). Lysias, who had been left as regent during the absence of Antiochus in Persia, appointed Gorgias to take the command against Judea in 166 BC. In 1 Macc 4:1-24 is recorded a night attack by Gorgias with 5,000 foot and 1,000 horse upon the camp of Judas Maccabeus in the neighborhood of Emmaus, in which Judas was completely victorious. The victory was all the more striking as the force of Judas was considerably smaller in number and had "not armor nor swords to their minds" (1 Macc 4:6). Later on (164 BC) he held a garrison in Jamnia, and gained a victory over the forces of Joseph and Azarias who, envying the glory of Judas and Jonathan, in direct disobedience to the orders of Judas, attacked Gorgias and were defeated.

Jamnia as given in Josephus, Ant, XII, viii, 6, is probably the correct reading for Idumaea in 2 Macc 12:32. The doings of Gorgias in 2 Macc are recorded with some confusion. He was regarded with special hostility by the Jews. In 2 Macc 12:35 he is described as "the accursed man."

J. Hutchinson




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