Translation and Style in the Old Greek Psalter

What Pleases Israel's God


While some describe the Greek Psalter as a “slavish” or “interlinear” translation with “dreadfully poor poetry,” how would its original audience have described it? Positioning the translation within the developing corpus of Jewish-Greek literature, Jones analyzes the Psalter’s style based on the textual models and literary strategies available to its translator. She demonstrates that the translator both respects the integrity of his source and displays a sensitivity to his translation’s performative aspects. By adopting recognizable and acceptable Jewish-Greek literary conventions, the translator ultimately creates a text that can function independently and be read aloud or performed in the Jewish-Greek community.

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Jennifer Brown Jones, Ph.D. (2020), McMaster Divinity College, is an Instructor of Old Testament with Liberty University. She has published articles on the Minor Prophets and the Septuagint and has a forthcoming volume, Psalms 90-106: A Handbook on the Greek Text, with Baylor University Press.

1 “Dreadfully Poor Poetry”: Style in the Greek Psalter
 1  Translational Approaches to the Greek Psalter
 2  Polysystem Theory and Septuagintal Translation
 3  Excursus: Polysystem Theory and English Septuagintal Translations
 4  The Style of the Old Greek Psalter

2 “True Eloquence”: Literary Style and the Greek Psalter
 1  Greek Literary Conventions
 2  Jewish Literary Conventions
 3  Text Selection and Methodological Approach

3 Psalm 8: “What Is Humanity?”
 1  An Overview of Greek Psalm 8
 2  A Verse-by-Verse Analysis of Greek Psalm 8
 3  Conclusion

4 Psalm 46(47): “Make Music to Our God”
 1  An Overview of Greek Psalm 46(47)
 2  A Verse-by-Verse Analysis of Greek Psalm 46(47)
 3  Conclusion

5 Psalm 110(111): “His Righteousness Endures Forever and Ever”
 1  An Overview of Greek Psalm 110(111)
 2  A Verse-by-Verse Analysis of Greek Psalm 110(111)
 3  Conclusion

6 What Pleases Israel’s God: Translating the Psalms
 1  Stylistic Profiles
 2  G’s Translation Technique
 3  Conclusion

Appendix 1: Greek Stylistic Features and Terminology
Appendix 2: Stylistic Features in Demetrius
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