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Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament


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After the decision of Festus to send St. Paul to Rome, he was entrusted to the care of a ‘centurion named Julius of the Augustan cohort’ (Acts 27:1-3). The Apostle was treated with kindness and consideration by the centurion, who, although he disregarded St. Paul’s advice as to the place of wintering (Acts 27:9-11), deferred to his recommendation regarding cutting away the boat (Acts 27:31), and, in order to save him, refused to allow the soldiers to kill the prisoners (Acts 27:42). On arriving in Rome Julius handed over his prisoner to the ‘captain of the guard’ (Acts 28:16). Much discussion has gathered round the phrase ‘Augustan cohort’ to which Julius belonged. Ramsay regards it as probable that Julius belonged to the corps of official couriers, employed as emissaries to various parts of the Empire-the peregrini; and the ‘captain of the guard’ is supposed to have been their commanding officer (see articles Band, Augustan Band).

As Julius was the family name of the members of the Roman Imperial house, it was assumed by many of the vassal kings from the days of Julius Caesar onwards. It was borne by all the Jewish princes from Antipater, the father of Herod the Great. Josephus mentions a Julius Archelaeus, son-in-law of Agrippa I. (Ant. xix. ix. 1; cf. Schürer, i. 561, also index, p. 69).

Literature.-R. J. Knowling, Expositor’s Greek Testament , ‘Acts’, 1900, p. 516; W. M. Ramsay, St. Paul the Traveller, 1895, p. 315; E. Schürer, GJV [Note: JV Geschichte des jüdischen Volkes (Schürer).] 4 i. [1901] 460-462.

W. F. Boyd.

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These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.

Bibliography Information
Hastings, James. Entry for 'Julius'. Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament. 1906-1918.

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