Bar Kokba, Simon


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Bar Kokba, Simon,

or

Simon Bar Cochba

(kōk`bə) [Heb.,=son of the star], d. A.D. 135, Hebrew hero and leader of a major revolt against Rome under Hadrian (132–135). He may have claimed to be a Messiah; the Talmud relates that Akiba ben Joseph credited him with this title. His personality and the facts of his life are surrounded by legend. He is sometimes called Simon the Prince of Israel. At first he successfully defeated the Roman armies, but the tide turned against him with the victories of the Roman general Julius Severus, and he was killed at Bether. Israeli archaeologists have found a number of letters in his handwriting.