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"At The Last Gasp"

(Magill's Quotations in Context)

Context: The author of II Maccabees, though unknown, planned his treatise as an epitome of a five-volume history by Jason of Cyrene. In II Maccabees, Jerusalem is captured by Antiochus IV, King of Syria. Antiochus, in his attempt to supplant Judaism with the worship of Greek god, commits many atrocities against the Jewish people, including the martyrdom of seven brothers and their mother because of their refusal to eat pork, which is considered unclean in the Jewish law. The persecutors scalp, cut off the extremities, and finally fry in a tremendous frying pan each of the brothers and the mother. In the narrative, the sorrowful family watches the...

(The entire section is 237 words.)