Historical Reprints Philosophical Works of Philo Judaeus Vol. 3

Works of Philo Judaeus Vol. 3

Works of Philo Judaeus Vol. 3
Catalog # SKU1397
Publisher TGS Publishing
Weight 2.00 lbs
Author Name Philo Judaeus


The Works of
Philo Judaeus

Volume 3

Philo Judaeus
Translator: C.D. Yonge

Volume 3 of The Works of Philo,
the root of the word Philosophy,
republished in three volumes.


I. THE treatise before this one has contained our opinions on those visions sent from heaven which are classed under the first species; in reference to which subject we delivered our opinion that the Deity sent the appearances which are beheld by man in dreams in accordance with the suggestions of his own nature. But in this treatise we will, to the best of our power, describe those dreams which come under the second species.

Now the second species is that in which our mind, being moved simultaneously with the mind of the universe, has appeared to be hurried away by itself and to be under the influence of divine impulses, so as to be rendered capable of comprehending beforehand, and knowing by anticipation some of the events of the future. Now the first dream which is akin to the species which I have been describing, is that which appeared on the ladder which reached up to heaven, and which was of this kind.

"And Jacob dreamed, and behold a ladder was firmly planted on the earth, the head of which reached up to heaven; and the angels of God were ascending and descending on it. And behold there was a ladder firmly planted on the earth, and the Lord was standing steadily upon it; and he said, I am the God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: be not afraid. The earth on which thou art sleeping I will give unto thee and unto thy seed, and thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and it shall be multiplied as the sand on the seashore, and shall spread to the south, and to the north, and to the east; and in thee shall all the kindreds of the earth be blessed, and in thy seed also. And, behold, I am with thee, keeping thee in all thy ways, by whichever thou goest, and I will bring thee again into this land; because I will not leave thee until I have done everything which I have said thee." [Genesis xxviii. 12.]

But the previous consideration of the circumstances of this vision require that we should examine them with accuracy, and then perhaps we shall be able to comprehend what is indicated by the vision. What, then, are the previous circumstances? The scripture tells us, "And Jacob went up from the well of the oath, and came to Charran, and went into a place and lay down there until the sun arose. And he took one of the stones of the place and placed it at his head, and went to sleep in that place." And immediately afterwards came the dream. Therefore it is well at the outset to raise a question on these three points:- One, What was the well of the oath, [Genesis xxvi. 33] and why was it called by this name? Secondly, What is Charran, and why, after Jacob had departed from the well before-mentioned, did he immediately go to Charran? Thirdly, What was the place, and why, when he was in it, did the sun at once set, and did he go to sleep?

II. Let us then at once begin and consider the first of these points. To me, then, the well appears to be an emblem of knowledge; for its nature is not superficial, but very deep. Nor does it lie in an open place, but a well is fond of being hidden somewhere in secret. Nor is it found with ease, but only after great labor and with difficulty; and this too is seen to be the case with sciences, not only with such as have great and indescribable subjects of speculation, but even with respect to such as are the most insignificant. Choose, therefore, whichever art you please; not the most excellent, but even the most obscure of all, which perhaps no one who has been bred a free man in the whole city would ever study of his own accord, and which scarcely any servant in the field would attend to, who, against his will, was a slave to some morose and illtempered master who compelled him to do many unpleasant things.

For the matter will be found to be not a simple one, but rather one of great complications and variety, not easy to be seized upon, but difficult to discover, difficult to master, hostile to delay, and indolence and indifference, full of earnestness and contention, and sweat, and care. For which reason "those who dig in this well say that they cannot find even water in it;" because the ends of science are not only hard to discover, but are even altogether undiscoverable; and it is owing to this that one man is more thoroughly skilled in grammar or in geometry than another, because of its being impossible to circumscribe, increase, and extend one within certain limits; for there is always more that is left behind than what comes to be learnt; and what is left watches for and catches the learner, so that even he who fancies that he has comprehended and mastered the very extremities of knowledge would be considered but half perfect by another person who was his judge, and if he were before the tribunal of truth would appear to be only beginning knowledge; for life is short, as some one has said, but art is long; of which that man most thoroughly comprehends the magnitude, who sincerely and honestly plunges deeply into it, and who digs it out like a well. And such a man, when he is at the point of death, being now grey-headed and exceedingly old, it is said, wept, not that he feared death as being a coward, but out of a desire for instruction, as feeling that he was now, for the first time, entering upon it when he was finally departing from life.

For the soul flourishes for the pursuit of knowledge when the prime vigor of the body is withering away from the lapse of time; therefore, before one has arrived at one's prime and vigor by reason of a more accurate comprehension of things, it is not difficult to be tripped up. But this accident is common to all people who are fond of learning, to whom new subjects of contemplation are continually rising up and striving after old ones, the soul itself producing many such subjects when it is not barren and unproductive. And nature, also, unexpectedly and spontaneously displaying a great number to those who are gifted with acute and penetrating intellects. Therefore the well of knowledge is shown to be of this kind, having no boundary and no end.


Doctrine That Dreams Are Sent From God.
Book I.
Book II.
The Allegories Of The Sacred Laws
Book 1
Book 2
Book 3
The Special Laws Of The Decalogues Third, Fourth, And Fifth
A Treatise On The Number Seven.
The Festivals Are Ten In Number
The First Festival.
The Second Festival.
The Third Festival.
The Fourth Festival.
The Fifth Festival.
The Sixth Festival.
The Seventh Festival.
The Eighth Festival.
The Ninth Festival.
The Tenth Festival.
On The Festival Of The Basket Of First-Fruits.
Honor Commanded To Be Paid To Parents.
Those Special Laws Of The Decalogues Sixth And Seventh
The Law Concerning Murderers.
Concerning Those Brute Beasts Which Are The Causes Of A Man's Death.
Concerning Pits.
About Women Not Behaving Immodestly.
Those Special Laws Of The Decalogue Eighth And Ninth, And Tenth
On Theft.
Concerning Housebreakers.
About The Theft Of A Sheep Or An Ox.
Concerning Kidnappers.
Concerning Damage.
Concerning Not Setting Fire To Brambles Inconsiderately.
Concerning Deposits.
Thou Shalt Not Bear False Witness.
On The Office And Character Of A Judge.
On Coveting.
Concerning Animals.
What Quadrupeds Are Clean.
What Beasts Are Not Clean.
What Aquatic Animals Are Clean.
About Reptiles.
Concerning Flying Creatures.
Concerning Carcasses And Bodies Which Have Been Torn By Wild Beasts.
Concerning The Soul Or Life Of Man
A Treatise On Justice
That It Is Not Lawful To Add Anything To Or To Take Anything From The Law
About Not Moving Land-Marks
A Treatise on the Creation of Magistrates.
A Treatise On Three Virtues,
On Courage.
On Humanity.
On Repentance.
A Treatise On Rewards And Punishments.
On Curses.
Wages Of A Harlot Are Not To Be Received
What The Rewards And Honors Are Which Belong To The Priests.
On Animals Fit For Sacrifice, Or On Victims.
A Treatise On Those Who Offer Sacrifice
A Treatise On Circumcision.

370+ pages - 10.5 x 7.5 inches SoftCover


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