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The Jewish population numbered between 100,000 and 200,000, which was between 10-12% of the entire population. The Jews were semi-autonomous and had full freedom of religion.

132 - 135 BAR KOCHBA REVOLT (Eretz Israel)

According to the Talmud the revolt was a reaction to the decree of the Roman governor of Judea, Tinneius Rufus, banning circumcision. Others believe it was provoked by the establishment of a temple to Jupiter on the site of the Temple.

134 September 10, (5 Tishrei) RABBI AKIVA WAS IMPRISONED

For teaching Judaism. According to tradition, he was killed on Yom Kippur in the Caesarea stadium . He is one of what came to be known as the ten martyrs “Asarah Haruge Malkut”. Although they did not all live at the same time, they are traditionally believed to have been killed for ignoring the Roman edicts regarding Jewish practices.

135 (9 Av 3895) BETAR (Eretz Israel)

The last major stronghold in Judea fell against overwhelming Roman forces. Simon bar Kochba (bar Kosiba) the leader of the revolt was killed. An estimated half a million Jews perished in this revolt which left over 985 villages and 50 fortresses in ruins. So great were the Roman losses that the emperor in his annual report to the Senate left out the customary: "I and my army are well."


Rabbi Hanania (nephew of Rabbi Joshua) had arrived in Babylon a few years earlier prior to the Bar Kochba revolt. In the wake of the persecutions and the weakening of the Sanhedrin, he decided to institute a calendar to be used in the Diaspora. His move was vigorously opposed by the Rabbis of Eretz Israel (Judah b. Bathyra), fearing that it would lead to a decline in the importance and centrality of the scholars in Israel

136 JERUSALEM (Eretz Israel)

Hadrian built a pagan temple on the site of the destroyed Temple. He renamed the city Aelia Capatolina and forbade Jews to enter into the city.

138 - 161 ANTONINUS PIUS (Roman Empire)

Roman emperor and successor to Hadrian. Antoninus (86-161) repealed most of Hadrian's harsher decrees, including the ban on circumcision at the onset of his reign.

138 - C. 220 (15 Kislev 3980) JUDAH THE PRINCE (Judah HaNasi) (Eretz Israel)

Known simply as Rabbi. He was the first acknowledged Patriarch (Nasi) responsible for both the Sanhedrin and for acting as the political head of the community. For the most part, Patriarchs like Judah the Prince were chosen from descendents of Hillel. The last Hillelite Patriarch was Gamliel VI (b.370- d.425). Judah HaNasi's greatest contribution was collecting and codifying the Mishna.

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