Onias’ Temple in Leontopolis as a Sign of Hellenization in the Jewish Diaspora in Egypt in Hellenistic Times

Author: Mateusz Zawadzki

DOI: https://doi.org/10.26142/stgd-2018-027

Download: PDF


The temple in Leontopolis is one of the few sensations appearing in the Jewish tradition due to the dominant view of the unity of worship in the temple in Jerusalem. The article analyses historical sources about Onias’ temple. It is also an attempt to outline changes in the religious identity of the Jewish Diaspora in Egypt. A sign of this may be the lack of larger dispute between the diaspora in Egypt and the community in Jerusalem. The communities limited themselves to emphasising their positions on worship involving burnt offerings, but nothing was mentioned in regard to condemnation or prohibition of the cult in the temple of Onias. The temple in Leontopolis functioned for many years and emphasised the changes in the approach to the law and tradition of the ancestors. The Egyptian diaspora was focused on topics related to the apocalyptic, which encouraged sacrificial worship outside Jerusalem.


Temple in Leontopolis, Leontopolis, Onias IV, diaspora