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Pieter B. Hartog

In Pesher and Hypomnema Pieter B. Hartog compares ancient Jewish commentaries on the Hebrew Bible with papyrus commentaries on the Iliad. Hartog shows that members of the movement which produced and preserved the Dead Sea Scrolls adopted classical commentary writing and adapted it to their own needs.
The connection between the Qumran Pesharim and Hypomnemata on the Iliad resulted from exchanges of scholarly knowledge across Hellenistic-Roman Egypt and Palestine. Analysing the effects of these knowledge exchanges, Pesher and Hypomnema demonstrates that members of the Qumran movement were thoroughly embedded within their Hellenistic and Roman environment.
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Die biblisch-hebräische Partikel נָא im Lichte der antiken Bibelübersetzungen

Unter besonderer Berücksichtigung ihrer vermuteten Höflichkeitsfunktion

Series:

Peter Juhás

English:
In Die biblisch-hebräische Partikel נָא im Lichte der antiken Bibelübersetzungen Peter Juhás addresses the function of the much-debated particle -nā in Biblical Hebrew from the point of view of the most important ancient Bible translations (Greek, Syriac, Latin). His research combines textual criticism, translation technique, discourse pragmatics, and the study of politeness in language.

A systematic and comprehensive investigation of the evidence shows that the pragmatic function of this particle is strongly conditioned by the context and cannot be explained by a simple unified denominator. Hence an approach applying a differentiation of various discourse levels proves oneself to be very helpful for the interpretation of this complex particle.

Deutsch:
In der vorliegenden Monographie untersucht Peter Juhás die Funktion der viel diskutierten biblisch-hebräischen Partikel -nā im Lichte der wichtigsten antiken Bibelübersetzungen (LXX, Pšīṭtā und Vulgata). Dabei werden Textkritik, Übersetzungswissenschaft, Diskurspragmatik und Höflichkeitsforschung kombiniert.

Eine systematische und umfassende Untersuchung der textuellen Evidenz zeigt, dass die pragmatische Funktion dieser Partikel von jeweiligem Kontext stark konditioniert ist und mit einem einfachen gemeinsamen Nenner nicht erklärt werden kann. Ein Zugang, der verschiedene Diskursebenen unterscheidet, erweist sich daher für die Interpretation dieser komplexen Partikel als sehr hilfreich.
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The Proselyte and the Prophet

Character Development in Targum Ruth

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Chr.M.M. Brady

The Proselyte and the Prophet: Character Development in Targum Ruth by Christian M. M. Brady is an exegetical study of Targum Ruth with a focus upon the transformation of the biblical characters into exemplars of rabbinic piety. Ruth becomes the ideal proselyte while Boaz is presented as a judge, a scholar of the Law, and a prophet. Brady demonstrates that the Targumist follows standard Targumic practice, rendering each Hebrew word of the biblical text into Aramaic, while making additions that further his agenda of presenting Ruth as a rabbinic model to be emulated.

In addition to the character analysis Brady provides a transcription of the manuscript Valmadonna 1, a new translation into English, and a verse-by-verse commentary of Targum Ruth.
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Edited by J.T.A.G.M. van Ruiten and George van Kooten

Issues such as the immortality of the soul, the debate about matter versus life, and whether one was capable of knowing the outside world were all being extensively discussed in many religions and cultures in both East and West. The present volume addresses the concept of an immortal soul in a mortal body, and focuses on early Judaism and Christianity, where this issue is often related to the initial chapters of the book of Genesis. The papers are devoted to the interpretation of Gen 2:7 in relation to the broader issue of dualistic anthropology. They show that the dualism was questioned in different ways within the context of early Judaism and Christianity.
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Alexandria Frisch

In The Danielic Discourse on Empire in Second Temple Literature, Alexandria Frisch asks: how did Jews in the Second Temple period understand the phenomenon of foreign empire? In answering this question, a remarkable trend reveals itself—the book of Daniel, which situates its narrative in an imperial context and apocalyptically envisions empires, was overwhelmingly used by Jewish writers when they wanted to say something about empires. This study examines Daniel, as well as antecedents to and interpretations of Daniel, in order to identify the diachronic changes in perceptions of empire during this period. Oftentimes, this Danielic discourse directly reacted to imperial ideologies, either copying, subverting, or adapting those ideologies. Throughout this study, postcolonial criticism, therefore, provides a hermeneutical lens through which to ask a second question: in an imperial context, is the Jewish conception of empire actually Jewish?
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Edited by Hindy Najman, Jean-Sébastien Rey and Eibert J.C. Tigchelaar

This volume is intended to problematize and challenge current conceptions of the category of “Wisdom” and to reconsider the scope, breadth and Nachleben of ancient Jewish sapiential traditions. It considers the formal features and conceptual underpinnings of wisdom throughout the corpus of the Hebrew Bible, the Dead Sea Scrolls, Hellenistic Jewish texts, Rabbinic texts, and the Cairo Geniza. It also situates ancient Jewish Wisdom in its Near Eastern context, as well as in the context of Hellenistic conceptions of the Sage.
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Hermann Samuel Reimarus (1694-1768)

Classicist, Hebraist, Enlightenment Radical in Disguise

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Ulrich Groetsch

Over the course of thirty years, Hermann Samuel Reimarus (1694-1768) secretly drafted what would become the most thorough attack on revelation to date, ushering the quest for the historical Jesus and foreshadowing the religious criticism of the new atheism of the twentieth century. Peeling away the layers of Reimarus’s radical work by looking at hitherto unpublished manuscript evidence, Ulrich Groetsch shows that the Radical Enlightenment was more than just an international philosophical movement. By demonstrating the importance philology, antiquarianism, and Semitic languages played in Reimarus’s upbringing, scholarship, and teaching, this new study provides a vivid portrayal of an Enlightenment radical at the cusp of the secular age, whose debt to earlier traditions of scholarship remains undisputed.
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Edited by Ronit Nikolsky and Tal Ilan

In this book various authors explore how rabbinic traditions that were formulated in the Land of Israel migrated to Jewish study houses in Babylonia. The authors demonstrate how the new location and the unique literary character of the Babylonian Talmud combine to create new and surprising texts out of the old ones. Some authors concentrate on inner rabbinic social structures that influence the changes the traditions underwent. Others show the influence of the host culture on the metamorphosis of the traditions. The result is a complex study of cultural processes, as shaped by a unique historical moment.
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YHWH is King

The Development of Divine Kingship in Ancient Israel

Series:

Shawn W. Flynn

Amidst various methodologies for the comparative study of the Hebrew Bible, at times the opportunity arises to improve on a method recently introduced into the field. In YHWH is King, Flynn uses the anthropological method of cultural translation to study diachronic change in YHWH’s kingship. Here, such change is compared to a similar Babylonian development to Marduk’s kingship. Based on that comparison and informed by cultural translation, Flynn discovers that Judahite scribes suppressed the earlier YHWH warrior king and promoted a creator/universal king in order to combat the increasing threat of Neo-Assyrian imperialism. Flynn thus opens the possibility, that Judahite scribes engaged in a cultural translation of Marduk to YHWH, in order to respond to the mounting Neo-Assyrian presence.