1 The Problem: Unresolved Issues Regarding Corrections to the Masoretic Text of Samuel

in 4QSamuela and the Text of Samuel
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Abstract

The study opens with a discussion of an unresolved problem: although the need for corrections to mt Samuel and the validity of the use of non-mt texts in correcting mt have come to be widely accepted among scholars, the implementation of such corrections varies. This issue is exemplified through a comparison of three English translations that have made use of the Qumran scroll 4QSamuela (a non-mt text) in various ways in 1 Sam 10:27–11:1. The example is but one instance of a widespread phenomenon: when the different ancient manuscripts bearing witness to the text of Samuel do not agree, translators must opt for a reading of their choice for translation as well as decide whether or not to make marginal reference to the other, non-mt texts. Corrections to mt Samuel and the resulting differences in translations of the books of Samuel vary because scholarly opinions vary on the nature and textual character of the non-mt Samuel texts—most notably 4QSamuela and the Septuagint (G).