The Dead Sea Scrolls from Qumran provide the oldest, best, and most direct witness we have to the origins of the Hebrew Bible. Prior to the discovery of the Scrolls, scholars had textual evidence for only a single, late period in the history of the biblical text, leading them to believe that the text was uniform. The Scrolls, however, provide documentary evidence a thousand years older than all previously known Hebrew manuscripts and reveal a period of pluriformity in the biblical text prior to the stage of the uniformity.
In this important collection of studies, copublished by Eerdmans and Brill, one of the world's foremost experts on the Dead Sea Scrolls outlines a comprehensive theory that reconstructs the complex development of the ancient texts that eventually came to form the Old Testament. Eugene Ulrich, who has examined all the texts closely, is the pioneer of the "multiple literary editions" theory that is replacing older views of the origins of the Bible. His work in this volume represents the leading edge of research in the exciting field of Scrolls studies.