Maccabees, The Books of (Catholic Encyclopedia)

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The title of four books, of which the first and second only are regarded by the Church as canonical; the third and fourth, as Protestants consider all four, are apocryphal. The first two have been so named because they treat of the history of the rebellion of the Machabees, the fourth because it speaks of the Machabee martyrs. The third, which has no connection whatever with the Machabee period, no doubt owes its name to the fact that like the others it treats of a persecution of the Jews. For the canonicity of I and II Mach. see CANON OF THE OLD TESTAMENT

Portions of this entry are taken from The Catholic Encyclopedia, 1907.
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