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Volume Editor: Igor Dorfmann-Lazarev
Apocryphal traditions, often shared by Jews and Christians, have played a significant role in the history of both religions. The 26 essays in this volume examine regional and linguistic developments in Ethiopia, Egypt, Syria, Armenia, the Balkans, and Italy. Dissenting groups, such as the Samaritans, followers of John the Baptist, and mediæval dualists are also discussed. Furthermore, the book looks at interactions of Judaism and Christianity with the religions of Iran.
Seldom verified or authorized, and frequently rejected by Churches, apocryphal texts had their own process of development, undergoing significant transformations. The book shows how apocryphal accounts could become a medium of literary and artistic elaboration and mythological creativity. Local adaptations of Biblical stories indicate that copyists, authors and artists conceived of themselves as living not in a post-Biblical era, but in direct continuity with Biblical personages.
Volume Editors: Ryan D. Giles and José Manuel Hidalgo
The New Companion to the Libro de buen amor provides a platform for exploring current, innovative approaches to this classic poem. It is designed for specialists and non-specialists from a variety of fields, who are interested in investigating different aspects of Juan Ruiz’s poem and developing fruitful new paths for future research. Chapters in the volume show how the book engages with Christian, Jewish and Muslim cultures, and delve into its legacy in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Part One sheds light on intersecting cultural milieux, from the Christian court of Castile, to the experience of Jewish and Muslim communities. Part Two illustrates how the poem’s meaning through time can be elucidated using an array of theoretical and interdisciplinary approaches.
Contributors are Nora C. Benedict, Erik Ekman, Denise K. Filios, Ryan D. Giles, Michelle Hamilton, Carlos Heusch, José Manuel Hidalgo, Gregory S. Hutcheson, Veronica Menaldi, Simone Pinet, Michael R. Solomon.
A Critical Edition of a Manuscript from 1720
Author: Michał Németh
This volume offers the critical edition and an English translation of the oldest translation of the Pentateuch into Western Karaim copied in 1720 by Simcha ben Chananel (died 1723). The manuscript was compared against several other Karaim translations of the Torah as well as with the standard text of the Hebrew Bible. The author provides a description of the manuscript’s language and an outline of the history of Western Karaim translations of the Torah to better understand the its philological and historical background.
Author: Sergey Minov
In Memory and Identity in the Syriac Cave of Treasures: Rewriting the Bible in Sasanian Iran Sergey Minov examines literary and socio-cultural aspects of the Syriac pseudepigraphic composition known as the Cave of Treasures, which offers a peculiar version of the Christian history of salvation. The book fills a lacuna in the history of Syriac Christian literary creativity by contextualising this unique work within the cultural and religious situation of Sasanian Mesopotamia towards the end of Late Antiquity. The author analyses the Cave’s content and message from the perspective of identity theory and memory studies, while discussing its author’s emphatically polemical stand vis-à-vis Judaism, the ambivalent way in which he deals with Iranian culture, and the promotion in this work of a distinctively Syriac-oriented vision of the biblical past.
Divinatory Practices Among Jews Between Qumran and the Modern Period
In Unveiling the Hidden—Anticipating the Future: Divinatory Practices Among Jews Between Qumran and the Modern Period, Josefina Rodríguez-Arribas and Dorian Gieseler Greenbaum collect ten studies based on primary sources ranging from Qumran to the modern period and covering Europe and the Mediterranean basin. The studies show Jews practising divination (astrology, bibliomancy, physiognomy, dream requests, astral magic, etc.) and implementing the study and practice of the prognostic arts in ways that allowed Jews to make them "Jewish," by avoiding any conflict with Jewish law or halakhah. These studies focus on the Jewish components of this divination, providing specific firsthand details about the practices and their practitioners within their cultural and intellectual contexts—as well as their fears, wishes, and anxieties—using ancient scrolls and medieval manuscripts in Hebrew, Aramaic, and Judaeo-Arabic.
Contributors include Michael D. Swartz, Helen R. Jacobus, Alessia Bellusci, Blanca Villuendas Sabaté, Shraga Bar-On, Josefina Rodríguez-Arribas Josefina Rodríguez-Arribas and Amos Geula, Dov Schwartz, Joseph Ziegler, and Charles Burnett.
Language and Politics of the Ummah in the Qurʾan
Author: Hamza Zafer
In Ecumenical Community, Hamza M. Zafer explores the language and politics of community-formation in the Qurʾan. Zafer proposes that ecumenism, or the inclusivity of social difference, was a key alliance-building strategy in the western Arabian proto-Muslim communitarian movement (1st/7th century). The Proto-Muslims imagined that their pietistic community—the ummah—transcended but did not efface prior social differences based in class, clan, and custom. In highlighting the inclusive orientation of the Qurʾan's ummah-building program, Zafer provides new insights into the development of early Islam and the period preceding the Arab conquests.
Jerusalem and Other Holy Places as Foci of Multireligious and Ideological Confrontation brings together the papers that were read at an international conference at the Schechter Institute in Jerusalem in May 2018. The contributions to this volume develop a multi-disciplinary perspective on holy places and their development, rhetorical force, and oft-contested nature. Through a particular focus on Jerusalem, this volume demonstrates the variety in the study of holy places, as well as the flexibility of geographic and historical aspects of holiness.
Space and Religious Hierarchy in Ibn al-Qayyim’s Aḥkām ahl al-dhimma
Antonia Bosanquet’s Minding Their Place is the first full-length study of Ibn al-Qayyim’s (d. 751/1350) collection of rulings relating to non-Muslim subjects, Aḥkām ahl al-dhimma. It offers a detailed study of the structure, content and authorial method of the work, arguing that it represents the author’s personal composition rather than a synthesis of medieval rulings, as it has often been understood. On this basis, Antonia Bosanquet analyses how Ibn al-Qayyim’s presentation of rulings in Aḥkām ahl al-dhimma uses space to convey his view of religious hierarchy. She considers his answer to the question of whether non-Muslims have a place in the Abode of Islam, how this is defined and how his definition contributes to Ibn al-Qayyim’s broader theological world-view.
From the early phases of modern missions, Christian missionaries supported many humanitarian activities, mostly framed as subservient to the preaching of Christianity. This anthology contributes to a historically grounded understanding of the complex relationship between Christian missions and the roots of humanitarianism and its contemporary uses in a Middle Eastern context. Contributions focus on ideologies, rhetoric, and practices of missionaries and their apostolates towards humanitarianism, from the mid-19th century Middle East crises, examining different missionaries, their society’s worldview and their networks in various areas of the Middle East. In the early 20th century Christian missions increasingly paid more attention to organisation and bureaucratisation (‘rationalisation’), and media became more important to their work. The volume analyses how non-missionaries took over, to a certain extent, the aims and organisations of the missionaries as to humanitarianism. It seeks to discover and retrace such ‘entangled histories’ for the first time in an integral perspective.

Contributors include: Beth Baron, Philippe Bourmaud, Seija Jalagin, Nazan Maksudyan, Michael Marten, Heleen (L.) Murre-van den Berg, Inger Marie Okkenhaug, Idir Ouahes, Maria Chiara Rioli, Karène Sanchez Summerer, Bertrand Taithe, and Chantal Verdeil
Newly Discovered Hebrew Binding Fragments in Context. European Genizah Texts and Studies, Volume 5
This volume includes contributions presented at two conferences, in Mainz and Jerusalem, and presents new discoveries of binding fragments in several European libraries and archives and abroad. It presents newly discovered texts with unknown Jewish writings from the Middle Ages and analyses fragments of well-known texts, such as textual witnesses of Midrashim. One chapter overviews recent discoveries in certain collections, some of them far beyond the geographical horizon of the original project, but certainly all of European origin. Other chapters study palaeographical and codicological issues of manuscript fragments and Ashkenazic inscriptions. A final article refers to the beginnings of scholarly interest in Hebrew binding fragments in Germany and sheds light on the part played by Christian Hebraists in its development.