Greco-Roman Period
Among the documents brought to the caves on the shore of the Dead Sea during Bar Kokhba revolt was this divorce document, prepared in accord with tannaitic practice. The couple had lived at Masada.


On the first of Marheshvan, the year six, 158 at Masada- I divorce and repudiate of my
own free will today, I Joseph, son of Naqsan, from [ ]h, living at Masada, you, my wife,
Miriam, daughter of Jonathan, [fro]m Hanablata, living at Masada, who have been up to
this (time) my wife, so that you are free on your part to go and become a wife of any
Jewish man that you please. And n[ow] you have from me a bill of repudiation and a writ
of divorce. Now I give (back) [the dow]ry, and (for) allruined and damaged goods and…
[I reimbur]se you. So let it be determined and paid fourfold. And at (any) ti[me] that you
say to me, I shall replace for you the document, as long as I am alive.


Joseph, son of Naq[san] , for himself[f].

Eliezer, [son] of Malka, witness.

Joseph, son of Malka, witness.

Eleazar, son of Hanana, witness.

157. Trans. J. A. Fitzmeyer and D. J. Harrington, A Manual of Palestinian Aramaic Texts (Rome- Biblical
Institute Press, 1978), pp. 139, 141.

158. This document has been dated to either the sixth year of Provincia Arabia, 111 C.E., or to the sixth
year of the Great Revolt, 71/2 C.E.