Sicarii(redirected from Sicarian)
members of the radical wing of the Zealots, a religious and political group in the Roman province of Judea (first century A.D.). Expressing the interests of the most downtrodden social strata, the Sicarii were implacable opponents of Roman rule and of oppression by their own propertied classes. The Sicarii destroyed debt documents en masse, freed slaves, and called on the freed slaves to join their ranks. The leaders of the Sicarii were Menahem, son of the Zealot leader Judah the Galilean, Eleazar ben Jair, and Simeon bar Giora. In A.D. 66, early in the Jewish War of 66–73, the Sicarii captured the fortress of Masada and held it until A.D. 73. Some groups of the Sicarii fled to Egypt and Cyrene, where they also led a struggle against Rome.