Courtesy Israel Antiquities Authority

Sectarian writings among the Dead Sea Scrolls are the best tools for identifying their original owners. The Rule of the Community (known by the siglum 1QS) describes many practices that resemble those of the Essenes, according to Philo’s and Josephus’s descriptions. The scroll known as 4QMMT also discusses very strict sectarian rules and refers to the “horrible priest,” indicating that it was probably written by opponents of the Jerusalem Temple establishment.