Re: The 600 soldiers in John's gospel?

Timothy T. Dickens (
Fri, 1 Nov 1996 09:32:00 -0500 (EST)

On Thu, 31 Oct 1996, Carl W. Conrad wrote:
> LSJ s.v. SPEIRA first says, under the heading, "military sense," that this
> is equivalent to the Latin MANIPULUS, but that it later is equivalent to
> the Latin COHORS. The COHORS was one tenth of a legion, and as a legion at
> full strength was 6,000 men, the cohort at full strength would be 600.
> However, legions were often enough NOT at full strength, and that might be
> true of the cohort also.

Carl, you seem to be saying that it MIGHT not have been the case that 600
soilders were present when Jesus was arrested. Do you have any REASON to
think that in this passage? Was there something particular about the
'cohort' during this time that any author tells us about to think that 600
soilders were not present in John 18?

It would seem, however, that whatever the exact
> number, John's account assumes a sizable body of troops coming along with
> the Jewish authorities and Judas.

TTD: If I go by what your saying, 'sizable body' could mean almost
anything from 100, 300, or 600; in other words, we can't be sure. Is this
what you are saying?

> Carl W. Conrad
> Department of Classics, Washington University
> One Brookings Drive, St. Louis, MO, USA 63130
> (314) 935-4018
> OR
> WWW:
Waiting for your response.

Peace and Love,

Tim Dickens Home School

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