That the Maccabean high-priests are here designed cannot be reasonably doubted.
Such accommodation, though sometimes purely literary or stylistic, generally has the definite purpose of instruction, and is frequently used both in the New Testament and in pulpit utterances in all periods as a means of producing a reasonably accurate impression of a complicated idea in the minds of those who are for various reasons unlikely to comprehend it otherwise.
This could only have been a somewhat rough affair, but its originator maintained reasonably that it would be of interest if some indication of the daily movements could be obtained.
The internal peculiarities show that the compilations are the much edited remains of a larger body of literature, and it may reasonably be supposed that the older sources did not at once perish.
In the use of the ancient versions for the purposes of textual criticism there are three precautions which must always be observed; we must reasonably assure ourselves that we possess the version itself in its original integrity; we must eliminate such variants as have the appearance of originating merely with the translator; the remainder, which will be those that are due to a difference of text in the MS. (or MSS.) used by the translator, we must then compare carefully, in the light of the considerations just stated, with the existing Hebrew text, in order to determine on which side the superiority lies."