Biblical characters underwent certain ‘transformations’ as they were received in targumic literature. Although previous studies of Joseph have considered his image in the extant Targums, it seems that scholars have passed over some of his salient features present in Targum Neofiti, such as his relationship with his father, his brothers, Esau, and the Egyptians, along with a detailed and overall evaluation of his moral conduct. On the basis of particular interpretations that appear in Targum Neofiti, it is possible to describe some of the exegetical traditions about Joseph that were circulating in early Judaism.
A. SamelyThe Interpretation of Speech in the Pentateuch Targums: A Study of Method and Presentation in Targumic Exegesis (Texte und Studien zum antiken Judentum, 27, Tübingen: J.C.B. Mohr [Paul Siebeck]1992) p. 70 n. 12.
SyrénBlessings p. 80; R. Le Déaut and J. Robert Targum du Pentateuque: Traduction des deux recensions palestiniennes complètes avec introduction parallèles notes et index; tome I; Genèse (Sources Chrétiennes 245 Paris: Éditions du Cerf 1978) p. 435.
Aberbach and GrossfeldTargum Onkelos p. 263. TgPsJ provides another explanation: Joseph shows his brothers his mark of circumcision [גזירת מהולתי] in order to reveal his origin and identity (Gen. 45.4).