The Aramaic Component and Aramaisms in the Arabic Column of Ms. BL OR7562

In: Aramaic Studies
Author: Tamar Zewi 1
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  • 1 Department of Hebrew Language, University of Haifa, Haifa, Israel

The article analyzes the Aramaic component and Aramaisms embedded in the first hand’s stage of the Arabic column of Ms. BL OR7562 (c. 1300),1 which mainly conveys a Samaritan version of Saadya Gaon’s translation of the Pentateuch. While Aramaic words are known to feature in all versions of Saadya’s Tafsīr, Ms. BL OR7562 evinces examples of Aramaic loan words and various kinds of Aramaisms that are found neither in other versions of Saadya’s Tafsīr, nor in the other two main Samaritan Arabic versions, namely the early Samaritan Arabic translation and its later revision.

  • 3

    According to A.D. Crown, A Catalogue of the Samaritan Manuscripts in the British Library (London: The British Library, 1998), this type of script was common between 1000 and 1300, and continued to the 16th century.

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  • 11

    E.g. H. Malter, Saadia Gaon: His Life and Works (Philadelphia: The Jewish Publication Society of America, 1921) p. 144; R. Brody, Rav Seʻadya Gaon (Jerusalem: The Zalman Shazar Center, 2006); Y. Ratzaby, A Dictionary of Judaeo-Arabic in R. Saadya’s Tafsir (Ramat-Gan: Bar-Ilan University Press, 1985) pp. 27–28.

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  • 12

    E.g. Ratzaby, Dictionary of Judaeo-Arabic, 150–151.

  • 25

    Also see Bassal, Syriac Aramaic Words, 31–32. On a similar use in late Jewish and Christian Arabic translations see Y. Avishur, ‘Foreign and Rare Words from the Realm of Realia in the Translation of Saʿadia Gaʿon to the Pentateuch and their Reflexes and Replacements in Judeo-Arabic Bible Translations in the East and West’ in A. Maman, S.E. Fassberg, and Y. Breuer (eds.) Shaˁarei Lashon: Studies in Hebrew, Aramaic and Jewish Languages Presented to Moshe Bar-Asher (Jerusalem: The Bialik Institute, 2007), pp. 227–243 [229] (in Hebrew).

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  • 29

    Bassal, Hebrew and Aramaic Words, 151; Idem, Syriac Aramaic Words, 25.

  • 34

    J.G. Hava, al-farâʾid Arabic–English Dictionary (Beirut: Dar el-Mashreq, 1970) p. 510, for this root in the first verbal stem, and see J. Blau, A Dictionary of Mediaeval Judaeo-Arabic Texts (Jerusalem: The Academy of the Hebrew Language and The Israel Academy of sciences and Humanities, 2006) p. 469 for this use in Judeo-Arabic in the fourth verbal stem.

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  • 43

    Tal and Florentin, The Pentateuch, 685.

  • 45

    Blau, Dictionary of Mediaeval Judaeo-Arabic Texts, 207.

  • 47

    Ratzaby, Dictionary of Judaeo Arabic, 150. On its use in Judeo-Arabic see Blau, Dictionary of Mediaeval Judaeo-Arabic Texts, 224.

  • 49

    Blau, Dictionary of Mediaeval Judaeo-Arabic Texts, 224.

  • 53

    Ratzaby, Dictionary of Judaeo Arabic, 150–151.

  • 55

    Ratzaby, Dictionary of Judaeo Arabic, 150–151.

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