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Essenes

The Essenes were a Jewish sect during the Second Temple period that flourished from the 2nd century BCE to the 1st century CE. The Jewish historian Josephus records that Essenes existed in large numbers, thousands lived throughout Roman Judaea, but they were fewer in number than the Pharisees and the Sadducees, the other two major sects at the time; the Essenes lived in various cities but congregated in communal life dedicated to voluntary poverty, daily immersion, asceticism. Most scholars claim; the Essenes have gained fame in modern times as a result of the discovery of an extensive group of religious documents known as the Dead Sea Scrolls, which are believed to be the Essenes' library. These documents preserve multiple copies of parts of the Hebrew Bible untouched from as early as 300 BCE until their discovery in 1946. Most scholars dispute the notion. Rachel Elior questions the existence of the Essenes; the first reference to the sect is by the Roman writer Pliny the Elder in his Natural History.

Pliny relates in a few lines that the Essenes possess no money, had existed for thousands of generations, that their priestly class do not marry. Unlike Philo, who did not mention any particular geographical location of the Essenes other than the whole land of Israel, Pliny places them somewhere above Ein Gedi, next to the Dead Sea. Josephus gave a detailed account of the Essenes in The Jewish War, with a shorter description in Antiquities of the Jews and The Life of Flavius Josephus. Claiming firsthand knowledge, he lists the Essenoi as one of the three sects of Jewish philosophy alongside the Pharisees and the Sadducees, he relates the same information concerning piety, the absence of personal property and of money, the belief in communality, commitment to a strict observance of Sabbath. He further adds that the Essenes ritually immersed in water every morning, ate together after prayer, devoted themselves to charity and benevolence, forbade the expression of anger, studied the books of the elders, preserved secrets, were mindful of the names of the angels kept in their sacred writings.

Pliny a geographer, located them in the desert near the northwestern shore of the Dead Sea, where the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered. Josephus uses the name Essenes in his two main accounts but some manuscripts read here Essaion. In several places, Josephus has Essaios, assumed to mean Essene. Josephus identified the Essenes as one of the three major Jewish sects of that period. Philo's usage is Essaioi, although he admits this Greek form of the original name, that according to his etymology signifies “holiness”, to be inexact. Pliny's Latin text has Esseni. Gabriele Boccaccini implies that a convincing etymology for the name Essene has not been found, but that the term applies to a larger group within Palestine that included the Qumran community, it was proposed before the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered that the name came into several Greek spellings from a Hebrew self-designation found in some Dead Sea Scrolls,'osey hatorah, “observers of torah”. Although dozens of etymology suggestions have been published, this is the only etymology published before 1947, confirmed by Qumran text self-designation references, it is gaining acceptance among scholars.

It is recognized as the etymology of the form Ossaioi and Essaioi and Esseni spelling variations have been discussed by VanderKam and others. In medieval Hebrew Hassidim replaces “Essenes”. While this Hebrew name is not the etymology of Essaioi/Esseni, the Aramaic equivalent Hesi'im known from Eastern Aramaic texts has been suggested. Others suggest that Essene is a transliteration of the Hebrew word chitzonim, which the Mishna uses to describe various sectarian groups. Another theory is that the name was borrowed from a cult of devotees to Artemis in Asia Minor, whose demeanor and dress somewhat resembled those of the group in Judaea. Flavius Josephus in Chapter 8 of “The Jewish War” states: 2. For there are three philosophical sects among the Jews; the followers of the first of which are the Pharisees. These last are Jews by birth, seem to have a greater affection for each other than other sects have." According to Josephus, the Essenes had settled “not in one city” but “in large numbers in every town”.

Philo speaks of "more than four thousand" Essaioi living in “Palestine and Syria”, more “in many cities of Judaea and in many villages and grouped in great societies of many members”. Pliny locates them “on the west side of the Dead Sea, away from the coast... the town of Engeda”. Some modern scholars and archaeologists have argued that Essenes inhabited the settlement at Qumran, a plateau in the Judean Desert along the Dead Sea, citing Pliny the Elder in support, giving credence that the Dead Sea Scrolls are the product of the Essenes; this theory, though not yet conclusively proven, has come to dominate the scholarly discussion and public perception of the Essenes. Part of the Dead Sea Scrolls that have been discovere

Upper Paleolithic

The Upper Paleolithic is the third and last subdivision of the Paleolithic or Old Stone Age. Broadly, it dates to between 50,000 and 10,000 years ago, according to some theories coinciding with the appearance of behavioral modernity in early modern humans, until the advent of the Neolithic Revolution and agriculture. Anatomically modern humans are believed to have emerged out of Africa around 200,000 years ago, although these lifestyles changed little from that of archaic humans of the Middle Paleolithic, until about 50,000 years ago, when there was a marked increase in the diversity of artefacts; this period coincides with the expansion of modern humans from Africa throughout Asia and Eurasia, which contributed to the extinction of the Neanderthals. The Upper Paleolithic has the earliest known evidence of organized settlements, in the form of campsites, some with storage pits. Artistic work blossomed, with cave painting, petroglyphs and engravings on bone or ivory; the first evidence of human fishing is found, from artefacts in places such as Blombos cave in South Africa.

More complex social groupings emerged, supported by more varied and reliable food sources and specialized tool types. This contributed to increasing group identification or ethnicity; the peopling of Australia most took place before c. 60 ka. Europe was peopled after c. 45 ka. Anatomically modern humans are known to have expanded northward into Siberia as far as the 58th parallel by about 45 ka; the Upper Paleolithic is divided during about 25 to 15 ka. The peopling of the Americas occurred during this time, with East and Central Asia populations reaching the Bering land bridge after about 35 ka, expanding into the Americas by about 15 ka. In Western Eurasia, the Paleolithic eases into the so-called Epipaleolithic or Mesolithic from the end of the LGM, beginning 15 ka; the Holocene glacial retreat begins 11.7 ka, falling well into the Old World Epipaleolithic, marking the beginning of the earliest forms of farming in the Fertile Crescent. Both Homo erectus and Neanderthals used the same crude stone tools.

Archaeologist Richard G. Klein, who has worked extensively on ancient stone tools, describes the stone tool kit of archaic hominids as impossible to categorize, he argues that everywhere, whether Asia, Africa or Europe, before 50,000 years ago all the stone tools are much alike and unsophisticated. Firstly among the artefacts of Africa, archeologists found they could differentiate and classify those of less than 50,000 years into many different categories, such as projectile points, engraving tools, knife blades, drilling and piercing tools; these new stone-tool types have been described as being distinctly differentiated from each other. The invaders referred to as the Cro-Magnons, left many sophisticated stone tools and engraved pieces on bone and antler, cave paintings and Venus figurines; the Neanderthals continued to use Mousterian stone tool technology and Chatelperronian technology. These tools disappeared from the archeological record at around the same time the Neanderthals themselves disappeared from the fossil record, about 40,000 cal BP.

Settlements were located in narrow valley bottoms associated with hunting of passing herds of animals. Some of them may have been occupied year round, though more they appear to have been used seasonally. Hunting was important, caribou/wild reindeer "may well be the species of single greatest importance in the entire anthropological literature on hunting."Technological advances included significant developments in flint tool manufacturing, with industries based on fine blades rather than simpler and shorter flakes. Burins and racloirs were used to work bone and hides. Advanced darts and harpoons appear in this period, along with the fish hook, the oil lamp and the eyed needle; the changes in human behavior have been attributed to changes in climate, encompassing a number of global temperature drops. These led to a worsening of the bitter cold of the last glacial period; such changes may have reduced the supply of usable timber and forced people to look at other materials. In addition, flint may not have functioned as a tool.

Some scholars argue that the appearance of complex or abstract language made these behavior changes possible. The complexity of the new human capabilities hints that humans were less capable of planning or foresight before 40,000 years, while the emergence of cooperative and coherent communication marked a new era of cultural development; the climate of the period in Europe saw dramatic changes, included the Last Glacial Maximum, the coldest phase of the last glacial period, which lasted from about 26.5 to 19 kya, being coldest at the end, before a rapid warming. During the Maximum, most of Northern Europe was covered by an ice-sheet, forcing human populations into the areas known as Last Glacial Maximum refugia, including modern Italy and the Balkans, parts of the Iberian Peninsula and areas around the Black Sea; this period saw cultures such as the Solutrean in Spain. Human life may have continued on top of the ice sheet, but we know next to nothing about it, little about the human life that preceded the European glaciers.

In the early part of the period, up to about 30 kya, the Mousterian Pluvial made northern Afr

44th Airborne Division (India)

The 44th Indian Airborne Division was an airborne forces division of the Indian Army during World War II, created in 1944. It provided a parachute battalion for one minor airborne operation, but the war ended before the complete formation could take part.. The division's creation was a protracted affair; the division was first converted from the 9th Airborne Division, at Secunderabad in India, on 15 April 1944. Within a fortnight, the division HQ and such supporting units as had been allocated were used to form the 21st Indian Infantry Division, as an emergency measure during the Japanese invasion of India. By 15 July, the crisis was over, the airborne division's formation was resumed. On 15 September 1944, the existing 50th Indian Parachute Brigade was allocated to the division. In the year, it was decreed that the Chindit formations were to be broken up and some of them were to be converted to airborne formations; the 14th British Airlanding Brigade became part of the division on 1 November 1944, the Indian 77th Indian Parachute Brigade on 1 March 1945.

The conversion of 77th Brigade to a parachute formation was accompanied by the creation of the Indian Parachute Regiment, which absorbed the existing Indian and Gurkha parachute battalions, the formation of two British battalions of the Parachute Regiment around the cadre of troops that had fought as Glider infantry during the Chindit campaign. The division was still in the midst of formation and training when it was called upon to provide a parachute force to take part in Operation Dracula; this was an amphibious operation intended to capture Rangoon, the capital and principal port of Burma, reinstated at short notice after being earlier cancelled. A composite Gurkha parachute battalion was formed from the two Gurkha battalions of the Indian Parachute Regiment, landed behind Japanese coastal defences at the mouth of the Rangoon river on 1 May 1945. During the Battle of Elephant Point, they cleared Japanese rearguards from the defences, but the main Japanese garrison had evacuated Rangoon several days previously.

The subsequent landings from the sea were unopposed. The division was preparing to take part in the projected invasions of Malaya and Singapore when the war ended unexpectedly; the division provided small airborne parties that landed in Japanese-occupied territories ahead of the main Allied forces, locating camps containing Allied prisoners of war and interned civilians, delivering emergency relief supplies. The 44 Indian Airborne Division moved to Bilaspur in June 1945; the division was redesignated the 2nd Indian Airborne Division, was retained until the Partition of India, when it was disbanded on 14/15 August 1947. One parachute brigade and some divisional units went to Pakistan, the other two brigades and the remaining units went to India. General Officer Commanding - Major General Earnest Edward Down Commander, Royal Artillery - Brigadier Reginald John Kirton14th British Airlanding Brigade - Brigadier Francis William Gibb 2nd Battalion, Black Watch 4th Battalion, 6th Rajputana Rifles 6th Battalion, 16th Punjab Regiment50th Indian Parachute Brigade - Brigadier Edward Galbraith Woods 16th Battalion, Parachute Regiment 1st Battalion, Indian Parachute Regiment 3rd Battalion, Indian Parachute Regiment77th Indian Parachute Brigade - Brigadier Claude John Wilkinson 15th Battalion, Parachute Regiment 2nd Battalion, Indian Parachute Regiment 4th Battalion, Indian Parachute RegimentDivisional Units 123rd Field Regiment, Royal Artillery 159th Field Regiment, Royal Artillery 23rd Light Anti-Aircraft / Anti-Tank Regiment, Royal Artillery "44 Airborne Division".

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