Answers

  1. These books and others like them are part of what is known as the Apocrypha. The Apocrypha are not considered holy, inspired or prophetically written. Therefore, they are not necessarily historically accurate. The Book of Maccabees describes events already discussed in the Talmud and hence is generally considered more accurate than the other books of the apocrypha. Another account is the Scroll of Antiochus, which is printed in the Siddur Otzar Hatefillot. Some communities used to read the Scroll of Antiochus during Chanukah on Shabbat afternoon.

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