A Jewish Targum in a Christian World


What is the use of a Targum in a cultural setting where Aramaic is not a common language anymore? And why would Christians be interested in a typically Jewish text in an otherwise anti-Jewish milieu? These and related questions have served as guides for Alberdina Houtman, Eveline van Staalduine-Sulman and Hans-Martin Kirn in bringing together the articles for the present book, which consists of three parts: 1. Uses and Functions of Targum in Europe; 2. Editing Targums and their Latin Translations; 3. Targums and Christianity. A number of the articles deal with the codicological and paratextual aspects of the relevant manuscripts and editions as witnesses of their cultural historical situations. The intended readership includes specialists in Targum, Jewish and medieval studies, (church) historians, codicologists and (Christian) theologians.

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Alberdina Houtman, Ph.D. (1995), Utrecht University (the Netherlands), is lecturer of Semitic Languages and professor of Jewish studies at the Protestant Theological University Amsterdam/Groningen, location Amsterdam. she has published extensively on rabbinic literature, especially Targum.

Eveline van Staalduine-Sulman, Ph.D. (2002), Protestant Theological University Kampen (the Netherlands), is assistant professor of Old Testament at the VU University Amsterdam. She has published on Targum Samuel, both regarding theology and the history of manuscripts, as well as on other Old Testament topics.

Hans-Martin Kirn, Ph.D. (1989), Eberhard-Karls-Universität Tübingen (Germany), is professor of Church History at the Protestant Theological University Amsterdam/Groningen, location Groningen. He has published monographs and many articles on the history of the Reformation, Pietism and Enlightenment, with special attention to Jewish-Christian relations.
"This is an excellent volume [...].The quality of the research is clear throughout, and the volume contains ... papers that are excellent. [...] the project A Jewish Targum in a Christian World was very well conceived and has been very well executed. Again, this is not a surprise—we have been fortunate to witness excellent research on the targumim from this group of scholars for a number of years."

– Siam Bhayro, University of Exeter, United Kingdom, in: RBL 03/2016

"Der Band ist sowohl für Bibelwissenschaftler und Judaisten als auch für Kirchengeschichtler hoch interessant, da er das Augenmerk auf eine bislang kaum beachtete Fragestellung der Auslegungsgeschichte und Rezeption der hebräischen Bibel lenkt und gleichzeitig wichtige Beispiele für die interreligiöse Dynamik zwischen Judentum und Christentum gibt. Der Band gibt aber auch interessante Einblicke in die Geschichte der jüdischen und Christilichen Schrift- und Buchkultur. Mit der hier vorliegende Publikation, die gleichzeitig die Vielseitigkeit der aktuellen Targumforschung zeigt, ist ein wichtiger Schritt getan und man kann dem Autorenteam für seine Initiative danken."

-- Beate Ego, Bochum, Theologische Literaturzeitung 141 (2016) 7/8
Alberdina Houtman, Introduction

Part 1: Uses and Functions of Targum in Europe

Eveline van Staalduine-Sulman, A Variety of Targum Texts
Peter Sh. Lehnardt, The Role of Targum Samuel in European Jewish Liturgy
Hector M. Patmore and Johanna M. Tanja, Initial Observations Concerning the Text of Targum 2 Samuel 22 As Preserved in European Liturgical Manuscripts
Alberdina Houtman, The Role of the Targum in Jewish Education in Medieval Europe
Elodie Attia, Targum Layouts in Ashkenazi Manuscripts. Preliminary Methodological Observations

Part 2: Editing Targums and their Latin Translations

Geert W. Lorein, The Latin Versions of the Old Testament from Jerome to the Editio Clementina
Jésus de Prado Plumet, The Commission of Targum Manuscripts and the Patronage of Christian Hebraism in Sixteenth-Century Castile
Johanna M. Tanja and Eveline van Staalduine-Sulman, A Jewish Targum in a Remarkable Paratext. Paratextual Elements in Two Targum Manuscripts of Alfonso de Zamora
Hans van Nes and Eveline van Staalduine-Sulman, The ‘Jewish’ Rabbinic Bibles versus the ‘Christian’ Polyglot Bibles
Eveline van Staalduine-Sulman and Johanna M. Tanja, Christian Arguments for Including Targums in Polyglot Bibles

Part 3: Targum and Christianity

Judith Olszowy-Schlanger, The Study of the Aramaic Targum by Christians in Medieval France and England
Stephen G. Burnett, The Targum in Christian Scholarship to 1800
Hans Martin Kirn, Traces of Targum Reception in the Work of Martin Luther
Yaacov Deutsch, ‘And Their Laws Are Diverse From All People’: Haman’s Protests against the Jews in Targum Sheni to Esther
Theologians, medievalists, semitists, judaists, church historians, historians of the early modern period
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