Cecil Roth Annual Lecture: Jews, Money and Religion in Roman Times

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29 May, 2019 @ 7.00 pm - 8.00 pm

Silver coin with pomegranate plant centre and wording around the edge

The Annual Cecil Roth Lecture welcomes Martin Goodman, Professor of Jewish Studies at the University of Oxford, to present a talk entitled: Jews, Money and Religion in Roman Times.

This lecture will focus on the story of Jesus’s overturning of the tables of money changers in the Jerusalem Temple which is found in all four Gospels in the New Testament.  The Gospels themselves make clear the charge that commercial activity in the Temple could be seen as turning a ‘house of prayer’ into ‘a den of thieves’ (Matt. 21:12-13), and the episode featured frequently in later Christian polemic against Jews and in Christian art.  The lecture will explain the centrality of the Temple in the economy of Judaea in the first century CE, and the role of money changers in facilitating international pilgrimage.  The great crowds of pious Jewish visitors who flocked to Jerusalem three times a year from all over the diaspora turned Jerusalem into ‘by far the most famous city of the East’ (Pliny, Natural History 5.70).

About the Speaker

Martin Goodman is Professor of Jewish Studies at the University of Oxford and a former President of the Oxford Centre for Hebrew and Jewish Studies.  Among his many publications are Rome and Jerusalem: the clash of ancient civilizations (2007) and A History of Judaism (2017), both published by Penguin.

About Cecil Roth

This annual lecture is funded by the Cecil Roth Trust, Cecil Roth was one of the greatest Jewish historians of the 20th century. The museum is privileged to host these thought-provoking lectures. He was also one of the original founders of the Jewish Museum in 1932.

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29 May, 2019
7.00 pm - 8.00 pm
£6.50 – £8.50
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