The Roman Empire left many things to the West, from marble columns to an ineffectual Senate, the names of days and months, and a certain martial ideal of masculinity. Perhaps the most important imperial export, and one of pointed import for the birth of Judaism, was the law. Roman law was a marvel, and Rome was committed to both the fact and the idea of legal justice as a central component of their successful ruling strategy. But in a world lit only by fire, how did people get their laws?
The current issue of JQR includes a set of short essays on particular years of import in the history of Israel and Zionism—all of which, as it happens, end in seven. The essays themselves, linked below, are available with a subscription. Here on the blog, we excerpt JQR coeditor David N. Myers’s introduction to the lot.
Just in time for Thanksgiving, JQR 108.4 is now available, online* and in print. This issue features essays on Roman and rabbinic law, the Cairo genizah, and Solomon Schechter, plus a cornucopia of short-form scholarship. Read up now, and have something fascinating to talk about around the holiday table.