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The King James Version (KJV), commonly known as the Authorized Version (AV) or King James Bible (KJB), is an English translation of the Christian Bible for the Church of England begun in 1604 and completed in 1611. First printed by the King's Printer Robert Barker, this was the third translation into English to be approved by the English Church authorities. The first was the Great Bible commissioned in the reign of King Henry VIII, and the second was the Bishops' Bible of 1568. In January 1604, King James I of England convened the Hampton Court Conference where a new English version was conceived in response to the perceived problems of the earlier translations as detected by the Puritans, a faction within the Church of England. King James gave the translators instructions intended to guarantee that the new version would conform to the ecclesiology and reflect the episcopal structure of the Church of England and its belief in an ordained clergy. The translation was done by 47 scholars, all of whom were members of the Church of England. In 2

common with most other translations of the period, the New Testament was translated from Greek, the Old Testament was translated from Hebrew text from Origens HEXAPLA, while the Apocrypha were translated from the Greek and Latin. In the Book of Common Prayer (1662), the text of the Authorized Version replaced the text of the Great Bible for Epistle and Gospel readings and as such was authorized by Act of Parliament. By the first half of the 18th century, the Authorized Version was effectively unchallenged as the English translation used in Anglican and Protestant churches. Over the course of the 18th century, the Authorized Version supplanted the Latin Vulgate as the standard version of scripture for English speaking scholars. Today, the most used edition of the King James Bible, and often identified as plainly the King James Version or King James Version, especially in the United States, remains the standard text of 1769, edited by Benjamin Blayney and Francis Sawyer Parris at Oxford. The title of the first edition of the translation was "THE HOLY BIBLE, Containing the Old Testament, AND THE NEW: Newly Translated out of the Original tongues: & with the former Translations diligently compared and revised, by his Majesties special Commandment". The titlepage carries the words 'Appointed to be read in Churches' and F.F. Bruce suggests it was "probably authorized by order in council" but no record of the authorization survives "because the Privy Council registers from 1600 to 1613 were destroyed by fire in January 1618/19". For many years it was common not to give the translation any specific name. In his Leviathan of 1651, Thomas Hobbes referred to it as the English Translation made in the beginning of the Reign of King James. A 1761 "Brief Account of the various Translations of the Bible into English" refers to the 1611 version merely as a new, compleat, and more accurate Translation, despite referring to the Great Bible by that name, and despite using the name "Rhemish Testament" for the DouayRheims Bible version. Similarly, a "History of England", whose fifth edition was published in 1775, writes merely that [a] new translation of the Bible, viz., that now in Use, was begun in 1607, and published in 1611. King James's Bible is used as the name for the 1611 translation (on a par with the "Genevan Bible" or the "Rhemish Testament") in Charles Butler's Horae Biblicae (first published 1797). Other works from the early 19th century confirm the widespread use of this name on both sides of the Atlantic: it is found both in a "Historical sketch of the English translations of the Bible" published in Massachusetts in 1815, and in an English publication from 1818, which explicitly states that the 1611 version is "generally known by the name of King James's Bible". This name was also found as King James' Bible (without the final "s"): for example in a book review from 1811. The phrase "King James's Bible" is used as far back as 1715, although in this case it is not clear whether this is a name or merely a description. The use of Authorized Version or Authorised Version, capitalized and used as a name, is found as early as 1814. For some time before this descriptive phrases such as "our present, and only publicly authorized version" (1783), "our authorised version" (1792), and "the authorized version" (1801, uncapitalized) are found. The Oxford English Dictionary records a usage in 1824. In Britain, the 1611 translation is generally known as the "Authorized Version" today. As early as 1814, we find King James' version, evidently a descriptive phrase, being used. "The King James Version" is found, unequivocally used as a name, in a letter from 1855. The next year King James Bible, with no possessive, appears as a name in a Scottish source. In the United States, the "1611 translation" (actually the standard text of 1769, see below) is generally known as the King James Version or King James Version today. The followers of John Wycliffe undertook the first complete English translations of the Christian scriptures in the 15th century. These translations were banned in 1409 due to their association with the Lollards. The Wycliffe Bible pre-dated the printing press but was circulated very widely in manuscript 3

form, often inscribed with a date earlier than 1409 to avoid the legal ban. As the text translated in the various versions of the Wycliffe Bible was the Latin Vulgate, and as it contained no heterodox readings, there was in practice no way by which the ecclesiastical authorities could distinguish the banned version; consequently many Catholic commentators of the 15th and 16th centuries (such as Thomas More) took these manuscript English Bibles to represent an anonymous earlier orthodox translation. In 1525, William Tyndale, an English contemporary of Martin Luther, undertook a translation of the New Testament. Tyndale's translation was the first printed Bible in English. Over the next ten years, Tyndale revised his New Testament in the light of rapidly advancing biblical scholarship, and embarked on a translation of the Old Testament. Despite some controversial translation choices, the merits of Tyndale's work and prose style made his translation the ultimate basis for all subsequent renditions into Early Modern English. With these translations lightly edited and adapted by Myles Coverdale, in 1539, Tyndale's New Testament and his incomplete work on the Old Testament became the basis for the Great Bible. This was the first "authorized version" issued by the Church of England during the reign of King Henry VIII. When Mary I succeeded to the throne in 1553, she returned the Church of England to the communion of the Roman Catholic faith and many English religious reformers fled the country, some establishing an English-speaking colony at Geneva. Under the leadership of John Calvin, Geneva became the chief international centre of Reformed Protestantism and Latin biblical scholarship. These English expatriates undertook a translation that became known as the Geneva Bible. This translation, dated to 1560, was a revision of Tyndale's Bible and the Great Bible on the basis of the original languages. Soon after Elizabeth I took the throne in 1558, the flaws of both the Great Bible and the Geneva Bible (namely, that the Geneva Bible did not "conform to the ecclesiology and reflect the episcopal structure of the Church of England and its beliefs about an ordained clergy") became painfully apparent. In 1568, the Church of England responded with the Bishops' Bible, a revision of the Great Bible in the light of the Geneva version. While officially approved, this new version failed to displace the Geneva translation as the most popular English Bible of the age in part because the full Bible was only printed in lectern editions of prodigious size and at a cost of several pounds. Accordingly, Elizabethan lay people overwhelmingly read the Bible in the Geneva Version small editions were available at a relatively low cost. At the same time, there was a substantial clandestine importation of the rival Douay Rheims New Testament of 1582, undertaken by exiled Roman Catholics. This translation, though still derived from Tyndale, claimed to represent the text of the Latin Vulgate. In May 1601, King James VI of Scotland attended the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland at St Columba's Church in Burntisland, Fife, at which proposals were put forward for a new translation of the Bible into English. Two years later, he ascended to the throne of England as King James I of England.


is pronounced YAHWEH-shua by Legitimate Levite Priest

Ang pangalan ni YAHWEH-shua ang Messiah ng Nazareth ay pangalang Hebreo ay binibigkas na Yahshua at isinulat sa Aramaic na Yeshua na ang pagbigkas ay Yah-shua. Ang Aramaic ang umiiral na pangkalahatang wika sa Yahrusalem noong panahong iyon at umiiral parin ang pagbabawal sa pagbigkas ng pangalang Yahweh kaya ito ay naging Yahshua imbis na Yahweh-shua. Mula sa Aramaic ay isinalin ito sa wikang Grego na IESOUS na binibigkas na Yeh -soos at nang maisalin ang Gregong pangalan sa Latin ay naging IESUS na binibigkas sa Latin na Yay-soos. Nang maimbento ang letrang J ay naging JESUS na bigkas ay Jey-zus, sa Tagalog ay Hesus.

BAKIT ANG PANGALAN NG MESSIAH AY YAHWEH shua Ang Ayon sa mga Tao na Mapagkakakilanlan na Pangalan ng Messiah Ang itinuro ng Tao na pangalan ng Messiah ay Yahshua na naisulat na Yeshua sa wikang Aramaic at naisalin sa wikang Grego na Iesous na binibigkas na Yehsous. Itong pangalan na naisalin sa wikang Grego ay naisalin naman sa wikang Latin na Iesus na binibigkas na Yaysus at naisalin naman sa wikang sina-unang English na Iesus na mababasa sa King James Bible 1611 A.D. (King Iames Bible 1611). Nang naimbento ang Letrang J ay ang pangalang Iesus ay isinulat na Jesus na hanggang sa ngayon ay kilalang-kilala pa na naisalin naman sa wikang Tagalog na Hesus.

Samakatwid ang itinuro ng Tao na pangalan ng Messiah na Yahshua naisalin ng maraming beses sa ibat-ibang wika ay naging Jesus sa English at Hesus sa Tagalog. Ano Naman ang Inihayag ng Amang YAHWEH na nasa Langit na Mapagkakakilanlan na Pangalan ng Messiah ? Mateo 16:13-17 Nang dumating si YAHWEH-shua sa lupain ng Caesaria ng Filipos, tinanong niya ang kanyang mga alagad, sino raw ang Anak ng Tao, ayon sa mga tao? At sumagot sila, ang sabi po ng ilan ay si YahYah Bautista, sabi naman ng iba ay si EliYah, at may nagsabi pang si YeremiYah o isa sa mga propeta. Kayo naman, ano ang sabi ninyo sino ako? Tanong niya sa kanila. Sumagot si Simon Pedro, kayo po ang Messiah ang Anak ni Yahweh na buhay, sinabi sa kanya ni YAHWEH-shua, mapalad ka Simon na anak ni Yonas, sapagkat ang katotohanang itoy hindi inihayag sa iyo ng sinumang tao kundi ng aking Ama na nasa langit. Kayo po ang Messiah ang Anak ni YAHWEH na buhay. Sinabi ba na siya ay anak ni YAH? Siya ay Anak ni YAHWEH hindi siya anak ni Yah, Sino ba itong si Yah? Exodus 23:13 huwag babanggitin o mamutawi man sa ating mga labi ang pangalan ng mga sinasamba ng mga taga ibang bansa. Si Yah ay isa sa maraming istatwa na sinasamba ng Bansang Egypto. Yah, the Other Egyptian Moon God Many topics in ancient Egyptian religion can be fraught with complexities. Trying to understand the changing roles of gods such as Re, Osiris and Amun are difficult if not impossible with the limited text available to us today. However, there are none of these more difficult, or certainly more controversial than the Moon God, Yah.

It is interesting that the earliest references to the name Yah (Yaeh) refer to the moon as a satellite of the earth in its physical form. From this, the term

becomes conceptualized as a lunar deity, pictorially anthropomorphic but whose manifestations, from hieroglyphic evidence, can include the crescent of the new moon, the ibis and the falcon, which is comparable to the other moon deities, Thoth and Khonsu.

Of course, the complexity and controversy of Yah stem from the term's similarity to the early form of the name for the modern god of the Jews (Yahweh), Christians and Muslims, as well as the fact that their ancestors were so intermingled with those of the Egyptians. In fact, this distinctive attribute of this god makes research on his ancient Egyptian mythology all the more difficult. Little is really know of this god's cult, and there is no references to actual temples or locations where he may have been worshipped. Paano naman ang HalleluYah? Ang salitang Alleluiah ay wikang Grego na binibigkas na halleluyah. Ang 72 Hebrew Scholars na Translators ng Septuagint ay hindi sila Levita na lahi ni Aaron. Sa wikang Hebreo ang papuri ay HALAL YAHWEH ngunit dahil umiiral sa kapanahunang iyon ang pagbabawal sa pagbigkas ng pangalang YAHWEH naisulat ito sa Grego na iah o Ye o jah, Yo (Je, Jo) makikita sa Ezra 3:2.

Paano naman ang mga pangalan ng mga propeta kagaya ni Zechariah, Isaiah, Yeremiah na may Yah sa pangalan nila? Ang mga propeta na may iah o YAH sa kanilang pangalan ay mga Tao. sino raw ang Anak ng Tao, ayon sa mga tao? At sumagot sila, ang sabi po ng ilan ay si YahYah Bautista, sabi naman ng iba ay si EliYah, at may nagsabi pang si YeremiYah o isa sa mga propeta. Ang Messiah ay hindi Anak ng Tao kundi siya ay Anak ni YAHWEH, ang anak ng Tao ay iba sa Anak ni YAHWEH. Ibinilin ng Messiah na naisulat ni Lukas sa Luke 24:44 na ang patungkol sa kanya ay makikita sa mga isinulat ni Moses at ng mga Propeta at sa Psalmo ni Haring David. Sa isinulat ni Moses sa Genesis 19:24 ay dalawang YAHWEH na nagpapatunay lamang na ang isa sa YAHWEH ay ang nagpaulan ng apoy at asupre na siyang nakausap pa ni Abraham at ang isa pang YAHWEH ay pinagmulan ng apoy at asupre na nagmula sa langit. Alam naman ng lahat ng nakakilala kay Yahshua na ang pangalang iyan ibig sabihin ay YAHWEH-shua na ang shua ang ibig sabihin ay Tagapagligtas, YahYah (John) 5:43, Matthew 1:21. Ang konsyensya natin ang magpapaliwanag na ang Yah sa Yahshua ay Yahweh. Kagaya sa panahon ng mga Pekeng Pari na siyang pumalit sa mga tunay na mga Levitang Pari ay Ipinagbawal Banggitin ang pangalang YAHWEH na mababasa sa Encyclopedia Judaica, vol.7, page 680 at least until the destruction of the First Temple in 586 B.C.E. this name was regularly pronounced with its proper vowels, as is clear from Lachish Letters, written shortly before that date. Maliwanag na bago (before) masakop ang huling depensa ng mga Hudyo sa Lachish ay HINDI ipinagbabawal ang pagbigkas sa pangalang YAHWEH . Ang pagbabawal sa pagbigkas ng pangalang YAHWEH ay umiral hanggang madatnan sa kapanahunan ng ina ng Messiah na si Mirriam. Sa palagay ninyo susundin ng Tunay na Levitang si Mirriam na ina ng Messiah ang utos ng mga Pekeng Pari na bawal banggitin ang pangalang YAHWEH. Ang mga Translators ng Septuagint na 72 Hebrew scholars ay hindi naman mga Levita ay sumunod sa ganitong patakaran at itinago ang pangalang YAHWEH na mababasa sa Ezra 3:2 na Yeshua ang isinulat, imbes na Yahweh ay ginawa itong iah, jah, Ye o Yo na naisulat naman ang letrang Y na J kaya naging Je o Jo sa Jeshua.

Walang tanging pangalan sa silong ng langit na sukat nating ikaligtas kundi sa Kanyang pangalan, samakatwid Wala Siyang KAPANGALAN sa lupa. Kung Yeshua ang kanyang pangalan ay paano na ang Yeshua sa Ezra 3:2 at kung Yahshua naman ay paano na ang Yahshua Son of Nun na siyang humalili kay Moses. Samakatwid lumalabas na hindi tutuo ang Gawa 4:12 na naisulat ni Lukas kung may kapangalan ang Messiah? Napakahalaga na Tama at Tunay na Pangalan ng Messiah dahil ipadadala ang Banal na Ispiritu ni YAHWEH na siya ring Banal na Ispiritung iyan ang siyang Magtuturo at Magpapa-alala sa ating ng LAHAT ng mga bagay na itinuro ng Messiah na mababasa sa YahYah (John) 14:26. Ang konsyensya natin sa tulong ng Banal na Ispiritu ni YAHWEH ang magpapa-unawa at magpapaliwanag na ang Yah sa Yahshua ay Yahweh, at upang hindi mabanggit ang pangalan ng Istatwa ng ibang bansa na si Yah ay ang tamang pangalang YAHWEH ang dapat itatawag sa Messiah na si YAHWEH-shua o YAHWEH Tagapagligtas. Ano ang itinuro ng Tao na pangalan ng Messiah ? Yahshua, Yeshua, naging Iesous, Iesus, Jesus. Ano naman ang Itinuro ni Amang YAHWEH sa langit na HINDI itinuro ng Tao ? kayo po ang Messiah ang Anak ni Yahweh na buhay, sinabi sa kanya ni YAHWEH-shua, mapalad ka Simon na anak ni Yonas, sapagkat ang katotohanang itoy hindi inihayag sa iyo ng sinumang tao kundi ng aking Ama na nasa langit Pinahayagan ka na ba ni Amang YAHWEH na nasa langit ? Samakatwid Hindi siya Anak ni YAH kundi siya ay Anak siya ni YAHWEH. Dumating siya sa pangalan ng kanyang Ama na si YAHWEH YahYah (John) 5:43. Luke 24:44 makikita ang patungkol sa kanya sa mga sinulat ni Moses sa Genesis 19:24 ay dalawang YAHWEH ang isa ang nagpaulan ng apoy at asupre mula kay YAHWEH doon sa langit. Sa mga aklat ng Awit ni David ay ang YAHWEH na Tagapagligtas ay binanggit din siya.

The Mystery of the Magi

We usually dont think about it, but our Lords name was not always Jesus. It was in fact originally the popular Aramaic name Yeshua. In first century Judea and Galilee, the name Yeshua was very common and shared fifth place with Eleazar (Lazarus) in popularity as a name for Jewish men. The most popular male names at that time were Shimeon (Simon), Yosef (Joseph), Yehuda (Judah or Judas) and Yochanan (John).

In the Holy Land at the time of Christ, Aramaic had replaced Hebrew in everyday conversation, but Hebrew remained the holy language and was used in worship and daily prayers. The rabbis also used Hebrew when instructing


their disciples. The two languages were closely related, however, as close as Italian is to Spanish, and both used the same alphabet.

Yeshua was the Aramaic version of the Hebrew name Yehoshua (Joshua), and means Yahweh saves. Throughout Christs lifetime in Galilee, Samaria and Judea of course the name Yeshua presented no problem for those who spoke Aramaic and read the Bible and prayed in Hebrew. But outside the Holy Land it become a different story as Good News spread. The Gentiles of the Roman Empire spoke Greek and Latin and simply could not pronounce Yeshua. It contained sounds that did not exist in their language. When the Gospels were written in Greek, therefore, the Evangelists had a real problem regarding how they might render our Lords name into acceptable Greek. The initially Y (Hebrew and Aramaic letter yod) was easy. The Evangelists could use the Greek letter iota, written I, since it was pronounced like the y in yet. The next sound was a vowel, and that was a little more difficult. Unlike Greek, all the letters of the Aramaic-Hebrew alphabet are consonants. The marks for the vowels were not invented until some centuries after Christ and were simple dots and dashes, placed above or beneath the letters. At the time of Christ apparently, the first vowel in our Lords name was pronounced like the a in gate. And the Evangelists believed they could approximate that sound by using the Greek letter eta. (The capital Greek letter looks just like our English letter H).

Then followed the first of two almost insurmountable problems with Hebrew and Aramaic pronunciation. There was no letter for the sh sound in the Greek alphabet. Such a familiar name as Solomon was actually Shlomo in

Hebrew, Samson was Shimson and Samuel was Shmu-El. Like the Greek translators of these Old Testament Hebrew names, the Evangelists used the Greek sigma (s) for the Hebrew shin (sh) when rendering Christs name. The first three Greek letters iota, eta, and sigma, moreover came to be used in early Byzantine religious art as an abbreviation of Jesus name. As they look very much like the Latin letters IHS, the letters were adapted in Western European religious paintings and church architecture as a symbol for Christs name. The next letter in the Aramaic name Yeshua was the Hebrew letter waw, which here represents the sound oo, as in too. It was easy for the Evangelists to duplicate this sound in Greek. It takes two letters, however, the omicron (o) and upsilon (u). But that easy substitution was followed by the biggest problem of all: the final a sound. In Greek, there was no substitute for the Hebrew letter aiyin. Though the aiyin has no sound of its own, it causes the vowel that it controls to be pronounced deep in the throat. The Greek couldnt do that, and neither could the Romans when speaking in Latin. Usually, a Greek or Roman would pronounce an aiyin-controlled a like the a in father. A final a on a name however was most commonly feminine in both Greek and Latin. Thus it was decided to drop the Hebrew aiyin completely and replace it with the final Greek sigma (s) which most often indicates the masculine gender in nouns. Throughout the Roman Empire then our Lords Aramaic name Yeshua, had become the Greek name Iesous, pronounced yeh-SOOS. And this remained Christs name throughout the Roman Empire as long as Greek remained the dominant language. But after some centuries Greek lost its favored position and Latin took its place. In the last quarter of the fourth century, the Bible was translated from Greek into Latin by *St. Jerome who had no trouble rendering the Greek Iesous into Latin, it became Iesus. The accent, however, was moved to the first syllable


and the name pronounced YAY-soos, since the Romans liked to accent the second from the last syllable. In about 14th century, in the scriptoria of the monasteries where Bibles were copied by hand, Monks began to elongate the initial I of the words into a J. (The pronounciation remained the same-like the y in yet but the Monks thought a J looked better). Probably the first Monks to do this were Germans because the letter j in that language sounds the same as the y in English. The name Iesus, consequently, evolved into the familiar written form of Jesus by the 17th century. Everyone still pronounced it YAY-soos, however, as it was in the official liturgical Latin. Way back in the fifth and sixth centuries, some pagan Germanic tribes called the Angles and Saxons invaded England. St Augustine of Canterbury came to convert them to Christianity in A.D.396. Of course St. Augustine established Jeromes Latin translation as Englands official Bible. The Anglo-Saxon learned that our Lords official Latin name was Iesus. Naturally the Germanic AngloSaxon converted the initial Latin I into the German J. They pronounced the name, however, as YAY-zoos, since a single s between two vowels is sounded like our z in Germanic languages. When the Normans invaded England in A.D.1066 they brought with them the French language. Since neither the Anglo-Saxons nor the Normans would surrender their language to the other, the two become wedded and eventually evolved into Modern English. The Normans did influence the pronunciation of the first letter of Our Lords name, though, they brought the French pronunciation of j (jh), which evolved into our English sound of j. When King James commissioned the first official translation of the Bibles into English in the early 17th century, the Latin Iesus was carried over unchanged into the new English Bible. The average English citizen of the day probably pronounced the name JAY-zus which ultimately evolved into our modern English JEE-zus.

The long process was now complete. A name that began as the Aramaic **Yeshua would remain written in English as it was in Medieval Latin, but now would be pronounced in English speaking countries as the familiar and loving name of the One who is our Savior, JESUS.

* St. Jerome name is Eusebius Hieronymus A.D.347 A.D.419 **Aramaic Name Yeshua is teaching of man is pronounced Yahshua in Hebrew, but for Legitimate Levites they pronounced the nameYAHWEH-shua


Torah Chumash Samaritan Pentateuch Masoretic text Targum Babylonian Talmud Peshitta Text Septuagint (LXX)

Hexapla Hexaplar Recension Vulgate Gothic Bible Vetus Latina Luther Bible English Bible Douai King James Dead Sea Scroll


Torah (/tr/; Hebrew: , "Instruction", "Teaching") is a central concept in the Jewish tradition. It has a range of meanings: it can most specifically mean the first five books of the Tanakh, it can mean this, plus the rabbinic commentaries on it, it can mean the continued narrative from Genesis to the end of the Tanakh, it can even mean the totality of Jewish teaching and practice. Common to all these meanings, Torah consists of the foundational narrative of the Jewish people: their call into being by Yahweh (euphemistically called HaShem by Jews and denoted in English translations of the Bible as the LORD), their trials and tribulations, and their covenant with their God, which involves following a way of life embodied in a set of religious obligations and civil laws (halakha). In its most specific meaning, it consists of the first five books of the Tanakh written in Biblical Hebrew. The names of each of these books in Hebrew are taken from the first phrase in each book: Bereshit ("In [the] beginning", Genesis), Shemot ("Names", Exodus), Vayikra ("He called", Leviticus), Bamidbar ("In the desert", Numbers) and Devarim ("Words", Deuteronomy). In rabbinic literature the word Torah denotes both these five books, Torah Shebichtav ( , "Torah that is written"), and an Oral Torah, Torah Shebe'al Peh ( , "Torah that is spoken"). The Oral Torah consists of the traditional interpretations and amplifications handed down by word of mouth from generation to generation and now embodied in the Talmud and Midrash. According to religious tradition, all of the teachings found in the Torah, both written and oral, were given by God to Moses, some of them at Mount Sinai and others at the Tabernacle, and all the teachings were written down by Moses, which resulted in the Torah we have today. According to a Midrash, the Torah was created prior to the creation of the world, and was used as the blueprint for Creation. The majority of Biblical scholars believe that the written books were a product of the Babylonian exilic period (c. 600 BCE) and that it was completed by the Persian period (c. 400 BCE). Traditionally, the words of the Torah are written on a scroll by a sofer on parchment in Hebrew. A Torah portion is read publicly at least once every three days, in the halachically prescribed tune, in the presence of a congregation. Reading the Torah publicly is one of the bases for Jewish communal life. The word "Torah" in Hebrew is derived from the root , which in the hifil conjugation means "to guide/teach" (cf. Lev 10:11). The meaning of the word is therefore "teaching", "doctrine", or "instruction"; the commonly accepted "law" gives a wrong impression. Other translational contexts in the English language include custom, theory, guidance, or system. The term "Torah" is used in the general sense to include both Rabbinic Judaism's written law and oral law, serving to encompass the entire spectrum of authoritative Jewish religious teachings throughout history, including the Mishnah, the Talmud, the Midrash and more, and the inaccurate rendering of "Torah" as "Law" may be an obstacle to understanding the ideal that is summed up in the term talmud torah ( , "study of Torah").

The earliest name for the first part of the Bible seems to have been "The Torah of Moses". This title, however, is found neither in the Torah itself, nor in the works of the pre-Exilic literary prophets. It appears in Joshua (8:3132; 23:6) and Kings (I Kings 2:3; II Kings 14:6; 23:25), but it cannot be said to refer there to the entire corpus. In contrast, there is every likelihood that its use in the post-Exilic works (Mal. 3:22; Dan. 9:11, 13; Ezra 3:2; 7:6; Neh. 8:1; II Chron. 23:18; 30:16) was intended to be comprehensive. Other early titles were "The Book of Moses" (Ezra 6:18; Neh. 13:1; II Chron. 35:12; 25:4; cf. II Kings 14:6) and "The Book of the Torah" (Neh. 8:3), which seems to be a contraction of a fuller name, "The Book of the Torah of God" (Neh. 8:8, 18; 10:2930; cf. 9:3). Scholars usually refer to the first five books of the Hebrew Bible as the Pentateuch, a term first used in the Hellenistic Judaism of Alexandria,[11] meaning five books, or as the Law, or Law of Moses. Muslims refer to the Torah as Tawrat (, "Law"), an Arabic word for the revelations given to the Islamic prophet Musa (, Moses in Arabic).

The Hebrew term Chumash (also umash) (Hebrew: , pronounced [uma] or pronounced [uma] or Yiddish: pronounced [m]) is a term for Torah in printed form as opposed to the Torah scroll. The word comes from the Hebrew word for five, amesh (). A more formal term is amishah umshei Torah, "five fifths of Torah". It is a Hebrew name for the Five Books of Moses, also known by the Latinised Greek term Pentateuch in common printed editions. The word "umash" may be a misreading of omesh, meaning "one-fifth", alluding to any one of the five books: as the Hebrew has no vowel signs, it could be read either way. It could also be regarded as a back-formed singular of umashim/umshei (which is in fact the plural of omesh). In early scribal practice there was a distinction between a Sefer Torah, containing the entire Pentateuch on a parchment scroll, and a copy of one of the five books on its own, which was generally bound in codex form, like a modern book, and had a lesser degree of sanctity. The term omesh strictly applies to one of these. Thus, omesh B'reshit strictly means "the Genesis fifth", but was misread as umash, B'reshit and interpreted as meaning "The Pentateuch: Genesis", as if "umash" was the name of the book and "Bereshit" the name of one of its parts. Compare the misunderstanding of "Tur" to mean the entirety of the Arba'ah Turim. In the legal codes, such as Maimonides' Mishneh Torah, it is laid down that any copy of the Pentateuch which does not comply with the strict rules for a Sefer Torah, for example because it is not a parchment scroll or contains vowel signs, has only the same sanctity as a copy of an individual book (omesh). In this way, the word omesh (or umash) came to have the extended sense of any copy of the Pentateuch other than a Sefer Torah.


The Samaritan Pentateuch, sometimes called Samaritan Torah, (Hebrew: torah shomroniyt), is a version of the Hebrew language Pentateuch, the first five books of the Bible, traditionally written in the Samaritan alphabet and used by the Samaritans. It constitutes their entire biblical canon. Samaritan practices are based on their version of the Five Books of Moses, which is slightly different from the Masoretic text or the Greek Septuagint texts. Some six thousand differences exist between the Samaritan and the Masoretic text. Most are minor variations in the spelling of words or grammatical constructions, but others involve significant semantic changes such as the uniquely Samaritan commandment to construct an altar on Mount Gerizim. Nearly two thousand textual variations from the Masoretic text agree with the Septuagint and some are shared with the Latin Vulgate. Throughout their history, Samaritans have made use of translations of the Samaritan Pentateuch into Aramaic, Greek and Arabic as well as liturgical and exegetical works based upon it. Its value for determining the original text of the Pentateuch has been a subject of contentious debate especially after the publication of a manuscript of the Samaritan Pentateuch in Europe in the 17th century. Some Pentateuchal manuscripts discovered among the Dead Sea Scrolls have been identified as bearing a "pre-Samaritan" text type. Wide agreement now exists among textual critics that the Samaritan Pentateuch represents an authentic ancient textual tradition despite the presence of some unique variants introduced by the Samaritans. Samaritans believe that God authored their Pentateuch and gave Moses the first copy along with the two tablets containing the Ten Commandments. They believe their copies preserve this divinely composed text uncorrupted to the present day. Samaritans commonly refer to their Pentateuch as "( The Truth"). They trace their descent via the northern Kingdom of Israel, which had parted ways with the southern Kingdom of Judah after the death of King Solomon (see 1 Kings 12). (Jews have traditionally connected their origin with the later events described in 2 Kings 17:24-41). Samaritans receive only the Pentateuch into their biblical canon. They do not recognize divine authorship or inspiration in any other book in the Jewish Tanakh. A Samaritan Book of Joshua partly based upon the Tanakh's Book of Joshua exists, but Samaritans regard it as a noncanonical secular historical chronicle.


Scholarly perspective
Modern scholarship connects the formation of the Samaritan community and their Pentateuch as a distinctive sectarian textual tradition with events which followed the Babylonian Captivity. According to The Interpreter's Bible (Volume 1), The usual assumption is that it was made somewhere around 432 B.C., when Manasseh, the son-in-law of Sanballat, went off to found a community in Samaria, as related in Neh. 13:28 and Josephus Antiquities XI.7.2; 8.2. Josephus himself, however, dates this event in the days of Alexander the Great, and though there is a notorious confusion in Josephus at this point, he may be right about the Gerizim temple dating from 332, and that may have been the date of the copying of their Pentateuch. Recent scholarship, however, is inclined to think that the real schism between the peoples did not take place until Hasmonean times when the Gerizim temple was destroyed in 128 B.C. The script of the Samaritan Pentateuch, its close connections at many points with the Septuagint, and its even closer agreements with our present Hebrew text, all suggest a date about 122 B.C. The adoption of the Pentateuch as the sacred text of the Samaritans before their final schism with the Palestinian Jewish community provides evidence that it was already widely accepted as a canonical authority in that region. Manuscripts of the Samaritan Pentateuch are written in a different Hebrew script than is used in other Hebrew Pentateuchs. Samaritans employ the Samaritan alphabet which is derived from the paleo-Hebrew alphabet used by the Israelite community prior to the Babylonian captivity. Afterwards Jews adopted a script based on the Aramaic alphabet that developed into the Hebrew alphabet. Originally all manuscripts of the Samaritan Pentateuch consisted of unvocalized text written using only the letters of the Samaritan alphabet. Beginning in the 12th century, some manuscripts show a partial vocalization resembling the Jewish Tiberian vocalization used in Masoretic manuscripts. More recently a few manuscripts have been produced with full vocalization. However, many extant manuscripts show no tendency towards vocalization. The Pentateuchal text is divided into 904 paragraphs. Divisions between sections of text are marked with various combinations of lines, dots or an asterisk; a dot is used to indicate the separation between words. The critical apparatus accompanying the London Polyglot's publication of the Samaritan Pentateuch lists six thousand instances where the Samaritan differs from the Masoretic text. However, as different printed editions of the Samaritan Pentateuch are based upon different sets of manuscripts, the precise number varies significantly from one edition to another. Only a minority are significant; most can be categorized as one of the following types:

More matres lectionis in the Samaritan Pentateuch to indicate vowels compared with the Masoretic. Loss of the gutturals in spoken Samaritan Hebrew influenced how Samaritan scribes transcribed words containing these letters. Scribal errors caused by the mistaking of one Hebrew letter for another with a similar appearance. 19

Scribal errors resulting in the transposition of letters in a word, or words in a sentence. Replacement of archaic Hebrew grammatical constructions with more modern ones. Textual adjustments to resolve grammatical difficulties and replace rare grammatical forms with more common ones. A variety of minor grammatical variations such as the Samaritan's preference for the Hebrew preposition 'al where the Masoretic has 'el.

Among the most notable semantic variations reflecting deliberate scribal intention are those related to the Samaritan place of worship on Mount Gerizim. The Samaritan version of the Ten Commandments commands that an altar be built on Mount Gerizim on which all sacrifices should be offered. This commandment is absent from the corresponding text of the Ten Commandments in the Masoretic. However Deuteronomy 27:4 in the Masoretic commands an altar to be constructed on Mount Ebal (which is changed to Gerizim in the Samaritan). The Samaritan's inclusion of the Gerizim variation within the Ten Commandments places additional emphasis on the divine sanction given to that community's place of worship. This variation is supported by changes to the verbal tense in the Samaritan text of Deuteronomy indicating that God has already chosen this place. The future tense ("will choose") is used in the Masoretic. Several other types of theologically motivated variants are found in the Samaritan Pentateuch. It shows a tendency to remove anthropomorphic language describing God and introduce intermediaries to perform actions the Masoretic attributes directly to God. Where the Masoretic describes Yahweh as a "man of war" (Exodus 15:3), the Samaritan has "hero of war", a phrase applied to spiritual beings, and in Numbers 23:4, the Samaritan reading "The Angel of God found Balaam" replaces the Masoretic "And God met Balaam." A few variations reflect Samaritan notions of propriety, such as the alteration in Genesis 50:23 of the Masoretic "upon the knees of Joseph" to "in the days of Joseph." Samaritan scribes, who interpreted this verse literally, found it improper that the mother of Joseph's grandchildren would give birth on his knees. Distinctive variants in the Samaritan are also found in certain legal texts where Samaritan practice varies from that prescribed within rabbinical halachic texts. In about thirty-four instances, the Samaritan Pentateuch imports text from parallel or synoptic passages in other parts of the Pentateuch. These textual expansions record conversations and events that are implied or presupposed by other parts of the narrative, but not explicitly recorded in the Masoretic text. For example, the Samaritan text in the Book of Exodus on multiple occasions records Moses repeating to Pharaoh exactly what both the Samaritan and Masoretic record God instructing Moses to tell him. The result is repetitious, but the Samaritan makes it clear that Moses spoke exactly as God commanded him. In addition to these substantial textual expansions, the Samaritan Pentateuch on numerous occasions adds subjects, prepositions, particles, appositives, and the repetition of words and phrases within a single passage to clarify the meaning of the text.

Comparison with the Septuagint and Latin Vulgate

The Septuagint (LXX) agrees with the Samaritan in approximately 1900 of the six thousand variations from the Masoretic. Many of these agreements reflect inconsequential grammatical


details, but some are significant. For example, Exodus 12:40 in the Samaritan and the LXX reads:
"Now the sojourning of the children of Israel and of their fathers which they had dwelt in the land of Canaan and in Egypt was four hundred and thirty years."

In the Masoretic text, the passage reads:

"Now the sojourning of the children of Israel, who dwelt in Egypt, was four hundred and thirty years."

Some passages in the Latin Vulgate show agreements with the Samaritan against the Masoretic. For example, Genesis 22:2 in the Samaritan has "land of Moreh" (Hebrew: )while the Masoretic has "land of Moriah" (Hebrew: ). "Land of Moreh" is considered to be a Samaritan variant because "Moreh" describes the region around Shechem, where Mount Gerizim is situated. The Vulgate translates this phrase as in terram visionis ("in the land of vision") which implies that Jerome was familiar with the reading "Moreh", a Hebrew word whose consonants suggest "vision."

Evaluations of its relevance for textual criticism

The earliest recorded assessments of the Samaritan Pentateuch are found in rabbinical literature and Christian patristic writings of the first millennium CE. The Talmud records Rabbi Eleazar b. Simeon condemning the Samaritan scribes: "You have falsified your Pentateuch...and you have not profited aught by it." Some early Christian writers found the Samaritan Pentateuch useful for textual criticism. Cyril of Alexandria, Procopius of Gaza and others spoke of certain words missing from the Jewish Bible, but present in the Samaritan Pentateuch. Eusebius of Caesarea wrote that the "Greek translation [of the Bible] also differs from the Hebrew, though not so much from the Samaritan" and noted that the Septuagint agrees with the Samaritan Pentateuch in the number of years elapsed from Noah's Flood to Abraham. Christian interest in the Samaritan Pentateuch fell into neglect during the Middle Ages. The publication of a manuscript of the Samaritan Pentateuch in 17th century Europe reawakened interest in the text and fueled a controversy between Protestants and Roman Catholics over which Old Testament textual traditions are authoritative. Roman Catholics showed a particular interest in the study of the Samaritan Pentateuch on account of the antiquity of the text and its frequent agreements with the Septuagint and the Latin Vulgate, two Bible translations to which Catholics have traditionally ascribed considerable authority. Some Catholics including Jean Morin, a Jesuit-convert from Calvinism to Catholicism, argued that the Samaritan Pentateuch's correspondences with the Latin Vulgate and Septuagint indicated that it represents a more authentic Hebrew text than the Masoretic. Several Protestants replied with a defense of the Masoretic text's authority and argued that the Samaritan text is a late and unreliable derivation from the Masoretic. The 18th century Protestant Hebrew scholar Benjamin Kennicott's analysis of the Samaritan Pentateuch stands as a notable exception to the general trend of early Protestant research on the

text. He questioned the underlying assumption that the Masoretic text must be more authentic simply because it has been more widely accepted as the authoritative Hebrew version of the Pentateuch:
"We see then that as the evidence of one text destroys the evidence of the other and as there is in fact the authority of versions to oppose to the authority of versions no certain argument or rather no argument at all can be drawn from hence to fix the corruption on either side".

Kennicott also states that the reading Gerizim may actually be the original reading, since that is the mountain for proclaiming blessings, and that it is very green and rich of vegetation (as opposed to Mt. Ebal, which is barren and the mountain for proclaiming curses) amongst other arguments. German scholar Wilhelm Gesenius published a study of the Samaritan Pentateuch in 1815 which biblical scholars widely embraced for the next century. He argued that the Septuagint and the Samaritan Pentateuch share a common source in a family of Hebrew manuscripts which he named the "Alexandrino-Samaritanus". In contrast to the proto-Masoretic "Judean" manuscripts carefully preserved and copied in Jerusalem, he regarded the Alexandrino-Samaritanus as having been carelessly handled by scribal copyists who popularized, simplified, and expanded the text. Gesenius concluded that the Masoretic text is almost invariably superior to the Samaritan. In 1915 Paul Kahle published a paper which compared passages from the Samaritan text to Pentateuchal quotations in the New Testament and pseudepigraphal texts including the Book of Jubilees, the First Book of Enoch and the Assumption of Moses. He concluded that the Samaritan Pentateuch preserves "many genuine old readings and an ancient form of the Pentateuch." Support for Kahle's thesis was bolstered by the discovery of biblical manuscripts among the Dead Sea Scrolls, approximately five percent of which contain a text similar to the Samaritan Pentateuch. Apart from the sectarian variants unique to the Samaritan Pentateuch such as the reference to the worship of God on Mount Gerizim, the Dead Sea Scroll texts have demonstrated that a Pentateuchal text type resembling the Samaritan Pentateuch goes back to the second century BCE and perhaps even earlier. Other Dead Sea Scroll Pentateuchal manuscripts show a close affinity to the later Masoretic text. These discoveries have demonstrated that manuscripts bearing a "pre-Samaritan" text of at least some portions of the Pentateuch such as Exodus and Numbers circulated alongside other manuscripts with a "pre-Masoretic" text. One Dead Sea Scroll copy of the Book of Exodus, conventionally named 4QpaleoExodm, shows a particularly close relation to the Samaritan Pentateuch:
The scroll shares all the major typological features with the SP, including all the major expansions of that tradition where it is extant (twelve), with the single exception of the new tenth commandment inserted in Exodus 20 from Deuteronomy 11 and 27 regarding the altar on Mount Gerizim.

Frank Moore Cross has described the origin of the Samaritan Pentateuch within the context of his local texts hypothesis. He views the Samaritan Pentateuch as having emerged from a manuscript tradition local to Palestine. The Hebrew texts that form the underlying basis for the Septuagint branched from the Palestinian tradition as Jews emigrated to Egypt and took copies of

the Pentateuch with them. Cross states that the Samaritan and the Septuagint share a nearer common ancestor than either does with the Masoretic, which he suggested developed from local texts used by the Babylonian Jewish community. His explanation accounts for the Samaritan and the Septuagint sharing variants not found in the Masoretic and their differences reflecting the period of their independent development as distinct Egyptian and Palestinian local text traditions. On the basis of archaizing and pseudo-archaic forms, Cross dates the emergence of the Samaritan Pentateuch as a uniquely Samaritan textual tradition to the post-Maccabaean age. Scholars have tended to presuppose that the Samaritan Pentateuch consists of two "layers", one composed of the sectarian variants introduced by Samaritan scribes and a second layer reflecting the text's earlier transmission history as a "pre-Samaritan" Palestinian local text. In light of recent research "it is now clear that the Samaritan layer is very thin." Although the majority of scholars continue to favor the Masoretic as a superior text, many other scholars have now adopted Kahle's thesis. Scholars now widely agree though that many textual variants previously classified as "Samaritan" actually derive from even earlier phases of the Pentateuch's textual history. Kennicott's claim that Gerizim is the original reading continues to be a subject of discussion. Dead Sea Scroll fragment 4Q41(981) contains a text of Deuteronomy 5:1-25 which makes no reference to Mount Gerizim, but matches the Masoretic Text. The New Testament also agrees with the Masoretic version designating Jerusalem as the "chosen place". However, some scholars hold that Deuteronomy 27:4-7 constitutes one occasion where the Samaritan's "Gerizim" may be the original reading." The Samaritan Targum, composed in the Samaritan dialect of Aramaic, is the earliest translation of the Samaritan Pentateuch. Its creation was motivated by the same need to translate the Pentateuch into the Aramaic language spoken by the community which led to the creation of Jewish Targums such as Targum Onkelos. Samaritans have traditionally ascribed the Targum to Nathanael, a Samaritan priest who died circa 20 BCE. The Samaritan Targum has a complex textual tradition represented by manuscripts belonging to one of three fundamental text types exhibiting substantial divergences from one another. Affinities that the oldest of these textual traditions share with the Dead Sea Scrolls and Onkelos suggest that the Targum may originate from the same school which finalized the Samaritan Pentateuch itself. Others have placed the origin of the Targum around the beginning of the third century or even later. Extant manuscripts of the Targum are "extremely difficult to use" on account of scribal errors caused by a faulty understanding of Hebrew on the part of the Targum's translators and a faulty understanding of Aramaic on the part of later copyists. Scholia of Origen's Hexapla and the writings of some church fathers contain references to "the Samariticon" (Greek: )., a work that is no longer extant. Despite earlier suggestions that it was merely a series of Greek scholia translated from the Samaritan Pentateuch, scholars now concur that it was a complete Greek translation of the Samaritan Pentateuch either directly translated from it or via the Samaritan Targum. It may have been composed for the use of a Greek-speaking Samaritan community residing in Egypt. With the displacement of Samaritan Aramaic by Arabic as the language of the Samaritan community in the centuries following the Muslim conquest of Syria, they employed several

Arabic translations of the Pentateuch. The oldest was an adaptation of Saadia Gaon's Arabic translation of the Jewish Torah. Although the text was modified to suit the Samaritan community, it still retained many unaltered Jewish readings. By the 11th or 12th centuries, a new Arabic translation directly based upon the Samaritan Pentateuch had appeared in Nablus. Manuscripts containing this translation are notable for their bilingual or trilingual character; the Arabic text is accompanied by the original Samaritan Hebrew in a parallel column and sometimes the Aramaic text of the Samaritan Targum in a third. Later Arabic translations also appeared; one featured a further Samaritan revision of Saadia Gaon's translation to bring it into greater conformity with the Samaritan Pentateuch and others were based upon Arabic Pentateuchal translations used by Christians. In 2012, a complete English translation of the Samaritan Pentateuch was published

The Masoretic Text (MT, , or ) is the authoritative Hebrew text of the Jewish Bible. While the Masoretic Text defines the books of the Jewish canon, it also defines the precise lettertext of these biblical books, with their vocalization and accentuation known as the Masorah. The MT is also widely used as the basis for translations of the Old Testament in Protestant Bibles, and in recent years (since 1943) also for some Catholic Bibles, although the Eastern Orthodox continue to use the Septuagint, as they hold it to be divinely inspired.[1] In modern times the Dead Sea Scrolls have shown the MT to be nearly identical to some texts of the Tanakh dating from 200 BCE but different from others. The MT was primarily copied, edited and distributed by a group of Jews known as the Masoretes between the 7th and 10th centuries CE. Though the consonants differ little from the text generally accepted in the early 2nd century (and also differ little from some Qumran texts that are even older), it has numerous differences of both greater and lesser significance when compared to (extant 4th century) manuscripts of the Septuagint, a Greek translation (made in the 3rd to 2nd centuries BCE) of the Hebrew Scriptures that was in popular use in Egypt and Israel (and that is often quoted in the New Testament, especially by the Apostle Paul). The Hebrew word mesorah (, alt. )refers to the transmission of a tradition. In a very broad sense it can refer to the entire chain of Jewish tradition (see Oral law), but in reference to the Masoretic Text the word mesorah has a very specific meaning: the diacritic markings of the text of the Hebrew Bible and concise marginal notes in manuscripts (and later printings) of the Hebrew Bible which note textual details, usually about the precise spelling of words. The oldest extant manuscripts of the Masoretic Text date from approximately the 9th century CE, and the Aleppo Codex (once the oldest complete copy of the Masoretic Text, but now missing its Torah section) dates from the 10th century. The Talmud (and also Karaite mss.) states that a standard copy of the Hebrew Bible was kept in the court of the Temple in Jerusalem for the benefit of copyists; there were paid correctors of

Biblical books among the officers of the Temple (Talmud, tractate Ketubot 106a). This copy is mentioned in the Aristeas Letter ( 30; comp. Blau, Studien zum Althebr. Buchwesen, p. 100); in the statements of Philo (preamble to his "Analysis of the Political Constitution of the Jews") and in Josephus (Contra Ap. i. 8). Another Talmudic story, perhaps referring to an earlier time, relates that three Torah scrolls were found in the Temple court but were at variance with each other. The differences were then resolved by majority decision among the three.

Second Temple period

The discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls at Qumran, dating from c. 150 BCE-75 CE, shows however that in this period there was not always the scrupulous uniformity of text that was so stressed in later centuries. The scrolls show numerous small variations in orthography, both as against the later Masoretic text, and between each other. It is also evident from the notings of corrections and of variant alternatives that scribes felt free to choose according to their personal taste and discretion between different readings. However, despite these variations, most of the Qumran fragments can be classified as being closer to the Masoretic text than to any other text group that has survived. According to Shiffman, 60% can be classed as being of proto-Masoretic type, and a further 20% Qumran style with bases in proto-Masoretic texts, compared to 5% proto-Samaritan type, 5% Septuagintal type, and 10% non-aligned. Joseph Fitzmyer noted the following regarding the findings at Qumran Cave Four in particular; "Such ancient recensional forms of Old Testament books bear witness to an unsuspected textual diversity that once existed; these texts merit far greater study and attention than they have been accorded till now. Thus, the differences in the Septuagint are no longer considered the result of a poor or tendentious attempt to translate the Hebrew into the Greek; rather they testify to a different pre-Christian form of the Hebrew text". On the other hand, some of the fragments conforming most accurately to the Masoretic text were found in Cave 4.

Rabbinic period
An emphasis on minute details of words and spellings, already used among the Pharisees as bases for argumentation, reached its height with the example of Rabbi Akiva (died 135 CE). The idea of a perfect text sanctified in its consonantal base quickly spread throughout the Jewish communities via supportive statements in Halakha, Aggada, and Jewish thought; and with it increasingly forceful strictures that a deviation in even a single letter would make a Torah scroll invalid. Very few manuscripts are said to have survived the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 CE. This both drastically reduced the number of variants in circulation, and gave a new urgency that the text must be preserved. New Greek translations were also made. Unlike the Septuagint, largescale deviations in sense between the Greek of Aquila and Theodotion and what we now know as the Masoretic text are minimal. Detailed variations between different Hebrew texts in use still clearly existed though, as witnessed by differences between the present-day Masoretic text and versions mentioned in the Gemara, and often even Halachic midrashim based on spelling versions which do not exist in the current Masoretic text. (Mostly, however, these variations are limited to whether particular words should be written plene or defectively - i.e. whether a mater


lectionis consonant to represent a particular vowel sound should or should not be included in a particular word at a particular point. There is no difference in meaning.)

The Age of the Masoretes

The current received text finally achieved predominance through the reputation of the Masoretes, schools of scribes and Torah scholars working between the 7th and 11th centuries, based primarily in the Land of Israel in the cities of Tiberias and Jerusalem, and in Babylonia. These schools developed such prestige for the accuracy and error-control of their copying techniques that their texts established an authority beyond all others. Differences remained, sometimes bolstered by systematic local differences in pronunciation and cantillation. Every locality, following the tradition of its school, had a standard codex embodying its readings. In Babylonia the school of Sura differed from that of Nehardea; and similar differences existed in the schools of the Land of Israel as against that at Tiberias, which in later times increasingly became the chief seat of learning. In this period living tradition ceased, and the Masoretes in preparing their codices usually followed the one school or the other, examining, however, standard codices of other schools and noting their differences.
ben Asher and ben Naphtali

In the first half of the 10th century Aaron ben Moses ben Asher and Moshe ben Naphtali (often just called ben Asher and ben Naphtali) were the leading Masoretes in Tiberias. Their names have come to symbolise the variations among Masoretes, but the differences between ben Asher and ben Naphtali should not be exaggerated. There are hardly any differences between them regarding the consonants, though they differ more on vocalization and accents. Also, there were other authorities such as Rabbi Pinchas and Moshe Moheh, and ben Asher and ben Naphtali often agree against these others. Further, it is possible that all variations found among manuscripts eventually came to be regarded as disagreements between these figureheads. Ben Asher wrote a standard codex (the Aleppo Codex) embodying his opinions. Probably ben Naphtali did too, but it has not survived. It has been suggested that there never was an actual "ben Naphtali"; rather, the name was chosen (based on the Bible, where Asher and Naphtali are the younger sons of Zilpah and Bilhah) to designate any tradition different from Ben Asher's. This is unlikely, as there exist lists of places where ben Asher and ben Naphtali agree against other authorities. Ben Asher was the last of a distinguished family of Masoretes extending back to the latter half of the 8th century. Despite the rivalry of ben Naphtali and the opposition of Saadia Gaon, the most eminent representative of the Babylonian school of criticism, ben Asher's codex became recognized as the standard text of the Bible. See Aleppo Codex, Codex Cairensis. Most of the secular scholars conclude that Aaron ben Asher was a Karaite, though there is evidence against this view.


The Middle Ages

The two rival authorities, ben Asher and ben Naphtali, practically brought the Masorah to a close. Very few additions were made by the later Masoretes, styled in the 13th and 14th centuries Nadanim, who revised the works of the copyists, added the vowels and accents (generally in fainter ink and with a finer pen) and frequently the Masorah. Considerable influence on the development and spread of Masoretic literature was exercised during the eleventh, twelfth, and 13th centuries by the Franco-German school of Tosafists. R. Gershom, his brother Machir, Joseph ben Samuel Bonfils (Tob 'Elem) of Limoges, R. Tam (Jacob ben Mer), Menahem ben Perez of Joigny, Perez ben Elijah of Corbeil, Judah of Paris, Mer Spira, and R. Mer of Rothenburg made Masoretic compilations, or additions to the subject, which are all more or less frequently referred to in the marginal glosses of Biblical codices and in the works of Hebrew grammarians.

Tiberian vocalization

A page from the Aleppo Codex, showing the extensive marginal annotations.

By long tradition, a ritual Torah scroll shall contain only the Hebrew consonantal text - nothing may be added, nothing taken away. However, perhaps because they were intended for personal study rather than ritual use, the Masoretic codices provide extensive additional material, called masorah, to show correct pronunciation and cantillation, protect against scribal errors, and annotate possible variants. The manuscripts thus include vowel points, pronunciation marks and stress accents in the text, short annotations in the side margins, and longer more extensive notes in the upper and lower margins and collected at the end of each book.


The Hebrew word masorah is taken from Ezekiel 20:37 and means originally "fetter". The fixation of the text was considered to be in the nature of a fetter upon its exposition. When, in the course of time, the Masorah had become a traditional discipline, the term became connected with the verb ( = "to hand down"), and acquired the general meaning of "tradition."

Language and form

The language of the Masoretic notes is primarily Aramaic but partly Hebrew. The Masoretic annotations are found in various forms: (a) in separate works, e.g., the Oklah we-Oklah; (b) in the form of notes written in the margins and at the end of codices. In rare cases, the notes are written between the lines. The first word of each Biblical book is also as a rule surrounded by notes. The latter are called the Initial Masorah; the notes on the side margins or between the columns are called the Small (Masora parva or Mp) or Inner Masorah (Masora marginalis); and those on the lower and upper margins, the Large or Outer Masorah (Masora magna or Mm[Mas.M]). The name "Large Masorah" is applied sometimes to the lexically arranged notes at the end of the printed Bible, usually called the Final Masorah (Masora finalis), or the Masoretic Concordance. The Small Masorah consists of brief notes with reference to marginal readings, to statistics showing the number of times a particular form is found in Scripture, to full and defective spelling, and to abnormally written letters. The Large Masorah is more copious in its notes. The Final Masorah comprises all the longer rubrics for which space could not be found in the margin of the text, and is arranged alphabetically in the form of a concordance. The quantity of notes the marginal Masorah contains is conditioned by the amount of vacant space on each page. In the manuscripts it varies also with the rate at which the copyist was paid and the fanciful shape he gave to his gloss.

There was accordingly an independent Babylonian Masora which differed from the Palestinian in terminology and to some extent in order. The Masora is concise in style with a profusion of abbreviations, requiring a considerable amount of knowledge for their full understanding. It was quite natural that a later generation of scribes would no longer understand the notes of the Masoretes and consider them unimportant; by the late medieval period they were reduced to mere ornamentation of the manuscripts. It was Jacob ben Chayyim who restored clarity and order to them.

In most manuscripts, there are some discrepancies between the text and the masorah, suggesting that they were copied from different sources or that one of them has copying errors. The lack of such discrepancies in the Aleppo Codex is one of the reasons for its importance; the scribe who copied the notes, presumably Aaron ben Moses ben Asher, probably wrote them originally.


Numerical Masorah
In classical antiquity, copyists were paid for their work according to the number of stichs (lines of verse). As the prose books of the Bible were hardly ever written in stichs, the copyists, in order to estimate the amount of work, had to count the letters. For the Masoretic Text, such statistical information more importantly also ensured accuracy in the transmission of the text with the production of subsequent copies that were done by hand. Hence the Masoretes contributed the Numerical Masorah. These notes are traditionally categorized into two main groups: the marginal Masorah and the final Masorah. The category of marginal Masorah is further divided into the Masorah parva (small Masorah) in the outer side margins and the Masorah magna (large Masorah), traditionally located at the top and bottom margins of the text. The Masorah parva is a set of statistics in the outer side margins of the text. Beyond simply counting the letters, the Masorah parva consists of word-use statistics, similar documentation for expressions or certain phraseology, observations on full or defective writing, references to the Kethiv-Qere readings and more. These observations are also the result of a passionate zeal to safeguard the accurate transmission of the sacred text. Even though often cited as very exact, the masoretic "frequency notes" in the margin of Codex Leningradiensis contain several errors. The Masorah magna, in measure, is an expanded Masorah parva. It is not printed in BHS. The final Masorah is located at the end of biblical books or after certain sections of the text, such as at the end of the Torah. It contains information and statistics regarding the number of words in a book or section, etc. Thus (Leviticus 8:23) is the middle verse in the Pentateuch; all the names of Divinity mentioned in connection with Abraham are holy except (Genesis 18:3); ten passages in the Pentateuch are dotted; three times the Pentateuch has the spelling where the reading is . The collation of manuscripts and the noting of their differences furnished material for the Text-Critical Masorah. The close relation which existed in earlier times (from the Soferim to the Amoraim inclusive) between the teacher of tradition and the Masorete, both frequently being united in one person, accounts for the Exegetical Masorah. Finally, the invention and introduction of a graphic system of vocalization and accentuation gave rise to the Grammatical Masorah. The most important of the Masoretic notes are those that detail the Kethiv-Qere that are located in the Masorah parva in the outside margins of BHS. Given that the Masoretes would not alter the sacred consonantal text, the Kethiv-Qere notes were a way of "correcting" or commenting on the text for any number of reasons (grammatical, theological, aesthetic, etc.) deemed important by the copyist. [Reference: Pratico and Van Pelt, Basics of Biblical Hebrew, Zondervan. 2001. p406ff]


Fixing of the text

The earliest labors of the Masoretes included standardizing division of the text into books, sections, paragraphs, verses, and clauses (probably in the chronological order here enumerated); the fixing of the orthography, pronunciation, and cantillation; the introduction or final adoption of the square characters with the five final letters (comp. Numbers and Numerals); some textual changes to guard against blasphemy and the like (though these changes may pre-date the Masoretes - see Tikkune Soferim below); the enumeration of letters, words, verses, etc., and the substitution of some words for others in public reading. Since no additions were allowed to be made to the official text of the Bible, the early Masoretes adopted other expedients: e.g., they marked the various divisions by spacing, and gave indications of halakic and haggadic teachings by full or defective spelling, abnormal forms of letters, dots, and other signs. Marginal notes were permitted only in private copies, and the first mention of such notes is found in the case of R. Mer (c. 100-150 CE).

Scribal emendations - Tikkune Soferim

Early rabbinic sources, from around 200 CE, mention several passages of Scripture in which the conclusion is inevitable that the ancient reading must have differed from that of the present text. The explanation of this phenomenon is given in the expression ("Scripture has used euphemistic language", i.e. to avoid anthropomorphism and anthropopathy). Rabbi Simon ben Pazzi (3rd century) calls these readings "emendations of the Scribes" (tikkune Soferim; Midrash Genesis Rabbah xlix. 7), assuming that the Scribes actually made the changes. This view was adopted by the later Midrash and by the majority of Masoretes. In Masoretic works these changes are ascribed to Ezra; to Ezra and Nehemiah; to Ezra and the Soferim; or to Ezra, Nehemiah, Zechariah, Haggai, and Baruch. All these ascriptions mean one and the same thing: that the changes were assumed to have been made by the Men of the Great Synagogue. The term tikkun Soferim ( ) has been understood by different scholars in various ways. Some regard it as a correction of Biblical language authorized by the Soferim for homiletical purposes. Others take it to mean a mental change made by the original writers or redactors of Scripture; i.e. the latter shrank from putting in writing a thought which some of the readers might expect them to express. The assumed emendations are of four general types:

Removal of unseemly expressions used in reference to God; e.g., the substitution of ("to bless") for ("to curse") in certain passages. Safeguarding of the Tetragrammaton; e.g. substitution of "Elohim" for "YHVH" in some passages. Removal of application of the names of pagan gods, e.g. the change of the name "Ishbaal" to "Ishbosheth." Safeguarding the unity of divine worship at Jerusalem.


Mikra and ittur

Among the earliest technical terms used in connection with activities of the Scribes are the mikra Soferim and ittur Soferim. In the geonic schools, the first term was taken to signify certain vowel-changes which were made in words in pause or after the article; the second, the cancellation in a few passages of the "vav" conjunctive, where it had by some been wrongly read. The objection to such an explanation is that the first changes would fall under the general head of fixation of pronunciation, and the second under the head of Qere and Ketiv (i.e. "What is read" and "What is written"). Various explanations have, therefore, been offered by ancient as well as modern scholars without, however, succeeding in furnishing a completely satisfactory solution.

Suspended letters and dotted words

There are four words having one of their letters suspended above the line. One of them, (Judges 18:30), is due to an alteration of the original out of reverence for Moses; rather than say that Moses' grandson became an idolatrous priest, a suspended letter nun ( ) was inserted to turn Mosheh into Menasheh (Manasseh). The origin of the other three (Psalms 80:14; Job 38:13, 38:15) is doubtful. According to some, they are due to mistaken majuscular letters; according to others, they are later insertions of originally omitted weak consonants. In fifteen passages in the Bible, some words are stigmatized; i.e., dots appear above the letters. (Genesis 16:5, 18:9, 19:33, 33:4, 37:12, Numbers 3:39, 9:10, 21:30, 29:15, Deuteronomy 29:28, 2 Samuel 19:20, Isaiah 44:9, Ezra 41:20, 46:22, Psalms 27:13) The significance of the dots is disputed. Some hold them to be marks of erasure; others believe them to indicate that in some collated manuscripts the stigmatized words were missing, hence that the reading is doubtful; still others contend that they are merely a mnemonic device to indicate homiletic explanations which the ancients had connected with those words; finally, some maintain that the dots were designed to guard against the omission by copyists of text-elements which, at first glance or after comparison with parallel passages, seemed to be superfluous. Instead of dots some manuscripts exhibit strokes, vertical or else horizontal. The first two explanations are unacceptable for the reason that such faulty readings would belong to Qere and Ketiv, which, in case of doubt, the majority of manuscripts would decide. The last two theories have equal probability.

Inverted letters
In nine passages of the Bible are found signs usually called "inverted nuns", because they resemble the Hebrew letter nun ( ) written in some inverted fashion. The exact shape varies between different manuscripts and printed editions. In many manuscripts, a reversed nun is foundreferred to as a nun hafucha by the masoretes. In some earlier printed editions, they are shown as the standard nun upside down or rotated, because the printer did not want to bother to design a character to be used only nine times. The recent scholarly editions of the Masoretic Text show the reversed nun as described by the masoretes. In some manuscripts, however, other


symbols are occasionally found instead. These are sometimes referred to in rabbinical literature as simaniyot (markers). The primary set of inverted nuns is found surrounding the text of Numbers 10:35-36. The Mishna notes that this text is 85 letters long and dotted. This demarcation of this text leads to the later use of the inverted nun markings. Saul Lieberman demonstrated that similar markings can be found in ancient Greek texts where they are also used to denote 'short texts'. During the Medieval period, the inverted nuns were actually inserted into the text of the early Rabbinic Bibles published by Bomberg in the early 16th century. The talmud records that the markings surrounding Numbers 10:35-36 were thought to denote that this 85 letter text was not in its proper place. Bar Kappara considered the Torah known to us as composed of seven volumes in the Gemara "The seven pillars with which Wisdom built her house (Prov. 9:1) are the seven Books of Moses". Genesis, Exodus and Leviticus and Deuteronomy as we know them but Numbers was really three separate volumes Numbers 1:1-10:35 followed by Numbers 10:35-36 and the third text from there to the end of Numbers. The 85 letter text is also said to be denoted because it is the model for the least number of letters which constitute a 'text' which one would be required to save from fire due to its holiness.

History of the Masorah

The history of the Masorah may be divided into three periods: (1) creative period, from its beginning to the introduction of vowel-signs;)(2) reproductive period, from the introduction of vowel-signs to the printing of the Masorah (1525); (3) critical period, from 1525 to the present time. The materials for the history of the first period are scattered remarks in Talmudic and Midrashic literature, in the post-Talmudical treatises Masseket Sefer Torah and Masseket Soferim, and in a Masoretic chain of tradition found in ben Asher's Didue ha-e'amim, 69 and elsewhere.

The targumim (singular: "targum", Hebrew: ), were spoken paraphrases, explanations, and expansions of the Jewish scriptures that a Rabbi would give in the common language of the listeners, which during the time of this practice was commonly, but not exclusively, Aramaic. This had become necessary near the end of the last century before the Christian era, as the common language was in transition and Hebrew was used for little more than schooling and worship. Eventually it became necessary to give explanations and paraphrases in the common language after the Hebrew scripture was read. The noun Targum is derived from early semitic quadriliteral root 'trgm', and the term 'Targummanu' refers to "translator". It occurs in the Hebrew Bible in Ezra 4:18 "The document which you sent us has been read in translation (Aramaic - 'mepares') before me". Besides denoting the translations of the bible, the term

Targum also denote the oral rendering of Bible lections in synagogue, while the translator of the Bible was simply called as hammeturgem (he who translates). Other than the meaning "translate" the verb Tirgem also means "to explain". The word Targum refers to "translation" and argumentation or "explanation" Writing down the targum was prohibited, nevertheless some targumatic writings appeared as early as the middle of the first century AD. These were not recognized as authoritative by the religious leaders at that time, however. Some subsequent Jewish traditions (beginning with the Babylonian Jews) did accept the written targumim as authoritative, and eventually this became a matter of debate. Today, only Jews from the republic of Yemen continue to use the targumim liturgically. As translations, the targumim largely reflect midrashic interpretation of the Tanakh from the time they were written, and are notable for eschewing anthropomorphisms in favor of allegorical readings. (Maimonides, for one, notes this often in The Guide.) This is true both for those targumim that are fairly literal, as well as for those that contain many midrashic expansions. In 1541, Elia Levita wrote and published Sefer Meturgeman, explaining all the Aramaic words found in the Targum. An Aramaic Bible is also used in the Syriac Church (see Peshitta). In addition, targumim are used today as sources in text-critical editions of the Bible (BHS refers to them with the abbreviation ). The two most important targumim for liturgical purposes are:[citation needed]

Targum Onkelos on the Torah (Written Law) Targum Jonathan ben Uzziel on the Nevi'im (Prophets)

These two targumim are mentioned in the Babylonian Talmud as targum dilan ("our Targum"), giving them official status. In the synagogues of talmudic times, Targum Onkelos was read alternately with the Torah, verse by verse, and Targum Jonathan was read alternately with the selection from Nevi'im (i.e. the Haftarah). This custom continues today in Yemenite Jewish synagogues. The Yemenite Jews are the only Jewish community to continue the use of Targum as liturgical text, as well as to preserve a living tradition of pronunciation for the Aramaic of the targumim (according to a Babylonian dialect). Besides its public function in the synagogue, the Babylonian Talmud also mentions targum in the context of a personal study requirement: "A person should always review his portions of scripture along with the community, reading the scripture twice and the targum once" (Berakhot 8a-b). This too refers to Targum Onkelos on the public Torah reading and to Targum Jonathan on the haftarot from Nevi'im. Medieval biblical manuscripts of the Tiberian mesorah sometimes contain the Hebrew text interpolated, verse-by-verse, with the targumim. This scribal practice has its roots both in the public reading of the Targum and in the private study requirement.


The two "official" targumim are considered eastern (Babylonian). Nevertheless, scholars believe they too originated in the Land of Israel because of a strong linguistic substratum of western Aramaic. Though these targumim were later "easternized", the substratum belying their origins still remains. In post-talmudic times, when most Jewish communities had ceased speaking Aramaic, the public reading of Targum along with the Torah and Haftarah was abandoned in most communities. In Yemen, however, rather than abandoning the Aramaic targum during the public reading of the Torah, it was supplemented by a third version, namely the translation of the Torah into Arabic by Saadia Gaon (called the Tafsir, though this Gaon was born in prominently Jewish at the time Sura Iraq, Babylon, moved to Egypt, arguably lead those two communities, and died in Jaffa ancestral Israel, he was not known to have ever been to the Jewish villages of Yemen. However his rulings on Mizrachi Jewish study had). Thus, in Yemen each verse was read three times. The private study requirement to review the Targum was never entirely relaxed, even when Jewish communities had largely ceased speaking Aramaic, and the Targum never ceased to be a major source for Jewish exegesis. For instance, it serves as a major source in the Torah commentary of Shlomo Yitzhaki, "Rashi", and therefor has always been the standard fare for Ashkenaz's (French, central European, and German) Jews. For these reasons, Jewish editions of the Tanakh which include commentaries still almost always print the Targum alongside the text, in all Jewish communities. Nevertheless, later halakhic authorities argued that the requirement to privately review the targum might also be met by reading a translation in the current vernacular in place of the official Targum, or else by studying an important commentary containing midrashic interpretation (especially that of Rashi). The Talmud (Hebrew: talmd "instruction, learning", from a root lmd "teach, study") is a central text of Rabbinic Judaism, considered second to the Torah. It is also traditionally referred to as Shas (), a Hebrew abbreviation of shisha sedarim, the "six orders" of the Oral Law of Judaism. The Talmud has two components: the Mishnah (Hebrew: , c. 200 CE), the first written compendium of Judaism's Oral Law, and the Gemara (c. 500 CE), an elucidation of the Mishnah and related Tannaitic writings that often ventures onto other subjects and expounds broadly on the Hebrew Bible. The terms Talmud and Gemara are often used interchangeably, though strictly speaking that is not accurate. The whole Talmud consists of 63 tractates, and in standard print is over 6,200 pages long. It is written in Tannaitic Hebrew and Aramaic. The Talmud contains the opinions of thousands of rabbis on a variety of subjects, including law, ethics, philosophy, customs, history, theology, lore and many other topics. The Talmud is the basis for all codes of rabbinic law and is much quoted in other rabbinic literature. Originally, Jewish scholarship was oral. Rabbis expounded and debated the law (the written law expressed in the Hebrew Bible) and discussed the Tanakh without the benefit of written works (other than the Biblical books themselves), though some may have made private notes ( megillot setarim), for example of court decisions. However, this situation changed drastically, mainly as the result of the destruction of the Jewish commonwealth and the Second Temple in the year 70

CE and the consequent upheaval of Jewish social and legal norms. As the Rabbis were required to face a new realitymainly Judaism without a Temple (to serve as the center of worship and prayer) and Judea without at least partial autonomythere was a flurry of legal discourse and the old system of oral scholarship could not be maintained. It is during this period that Rabbinic discourse began to be recorded in writing. The earliest recorded oral law may have been of the midrashic form, in which halakhic discussion is structured as exegetical commentary on the Pentateuch. But an alternative form, organized by subject matter instead of by biblical verse, became dominant about the year 200 CE, when Rabbi Judah haNasi redacted the Mishnah (). The Oral Law was far from monolithic; rather, it varied among various schools. The most famous two were the School of Shammai and the School of Hillel. In general, all valid opinions, even the non-normative ones, were recorded in the Talmud. The oldest full manuscript of the Talmud is from 1342, known as the Munich Talmud (Cod.hebr. 95), which is available online.

The structure of the Talmud follows that of the Mishnah, in which six orders (sedarim; singular: seder) of general subject matter are divided into 60 or 63 tractates (masekhtot; singular: masekhet) of more focused subject compilations, though not all tractates have Gemara. Each tractate is divided into chapters (perakim; singular: perek), 517 in total, that are both numbered according to the Hebrew alphabet and given names, usually using the first one or two words in the first mishnah. A perek may continue over several (up to tens of) pages. Each perek will contain several mishnayot with their accompanying exchanges that form the "building-blocks" of the Gemara; the name for a passage of gemara is a sugya ( ;plural sugyot). A sugya, including baraita or tosefta, will typically comprise a detailed proof-based elaboration of a Mishnaic statement, whether halakhic or aggadic. A sugya may, and often does, range widely off the subject of the mishnah. The sugya is not punctuated in the conventional sense used in the English language, but by using specific expressions that help to divide the sugya into components, usually including a statement, a question on the statement, an answer, a proof for the answer or a refutation of the answer with its own proof. In a given sugya, scriptural, Tannaic and Amoraic statements are cited to support the various opinions. In so doing, the Gemara will highlight semantic disagreements between Tannaim and Amoraim (often ascribing a view to an earlier authority as to how he may have answered a question), and compare the Mishnaic views with passages from the Baraita. Rarely are debates formally closed; in some instances, the final word determines the practical law, but in many instances the issue is left unresolved. There is a whole literature on the procedural principles to be used in settling the practical law when disagreements exist: see under #Logic and methodology below.


The Mishnah is a compilation of legal opinions and debates. Statements in the Mishnah are typically terse, recording brief opinions of the rabbis debating a subject; or recording only an unattributed ruling, apparently representing a consensus view. The rabbis recorded in the Mishnah are known as Tannaim. Since it sequences its laws by subject matter instead of by biblical context, the Mishnah discusses individual subjects more thoroughly than the Midrash, and it includes a much broader selection of halakhic subjects than the Midrash. The Mishnah's topical organization thus became the framework of the Talmud as a whole. But not every tractate in the Mishnah has a corresponding talmud. Also, the order of the tractates in the Talmud differs in some cases from that in the Mishnah.

Targum Ketuvim
The Talmud explicitly states that no official targumim were composed besides these two on Torah and Nevi'im alone, and that there is no official targum to Ketuvim ("The Writings"). An official targum was in fact unnecessary for Ketuvim because its books played no fixed liturgical role. The Talmud (Megilah 3a) states The Targum of the Pentateuch was composed by Onkelos the proselyte under the from the mouths of R. Eleazar and R. Joshua. The Targum of the Prophets was composed by Jonathan ben Uzziel under the guidance of Haggai, Zechariah and Malachi (Jonathan b. Uzziel was a disciple of Hillel, so he had traditions handed down from them-Maharsha), and the land of Israel [thereupon] quaked over an area of four hundred parasangs by four hundred parasangs, and a Bath Kol (heavenly voice) came forth and exclaimed, Who is this that has revealed My secrets to mankind? Jonathan b. Uzziel thereupon arose and said, It is I who have revealed Thy secrets to mankind. It is fully known to Thee that I have not done this for my own honour or for the honour of my father's house, but for Thy honour l have done it, that dissension may not increase in Israel. He further sought to reveal [by] a targum [the inner meaning] of the Hagiographa, but a Bath Kol went forth and said, Enough! What was the reason? Because the date of the Messiah is foretold in it". [A possible reference to the end of the book of Daniel.] But did Onkelos the proselyte compose the targum to the Pentateuch? Has not R. Ika said, in the name of R. Hananel who had it from Rab: What is meant by the text, Neh. VIII,8 "And they read in the book, in the law of God, with an interpretation. and they gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading? And they read in the book, in the law of God: this indicates the [Hebrew] text; with an interpretation: this indicates the targum,..." (which shows that the targum dates back to the time of Ezra). Nevertheless, most books of Ketuvim (with the exceptions of Daniel and Ezra-Nehemiah, which both contain Aramaic portions) have targumim, whose origin is mostly western (Land of Israel) rather than eastern (Babylonia). But for lack of a fixed place in the liturgy, they were poorly preserved and less well known. From the Land of Israel, the tradition of targum to Ketuvim made its way to Italy, and from there to medieval Ashkenaz and Sepharad. The targumim of Psalms, Proverbs, and Job are generally treated as a unit, as are the targumim of the five scrolls

(Esther has a longer "Second Targum" as well.) The targum of Chronicles is quite late, possibly medieval, and is attributed to a Rabbi Joseph.

Other Targumim on the Torah

There are also a variety of western targumim on the Torah, each of which was traditionally called Targum Yerushalmi ("Jerusalem Targum"). An important one of these was mistakenly labeled "Targum Jonathan" in later printed versions (though all medieval authorities refer to it by its correct name). The error crept in because of an abbreviation: the printer interpreted the abbreviation T Y ( )"to stand for Targum Yonathan ( ) instead of the correct Targum Yerushalmi () . Scholars refer to this targum as Targum Pseudo-Jonathan. To attribute this targum to Jonathan ben Uzziel flatly contradicts the talmudic tradition (Megillah 3a), which quite clearly attributes the targum to Nevi'im alone to him, while stating that there is no official targum to Ketuvim. In the same printed versions, a similar fragment targum is correctly labeled as Targum Yerushalmi. The Western Targumim on the Torah, or Palestinian Targumim as they are also called, consist of three manuscript groups: Targum Neofiti I, Fragment Targums, and Cairo Geniza Fragment Targums. Of these Targum Neofiti I is by far the largest. It consist of 450 folios covering all books of the Pentateuch, with only a few damaged verses. The history of the manuscript begins 1587 when the censor Andrea de Monte (d.1587) bequeathed it to Ugo Boncompagni which presents an oddity, since Boncompagni, better known as Pope Gregory XIII, died in 1585. The route of transmission may instead be by a certain "Giovan Paolo Eustachio romano neophito." Before this de Monte had censored it by deleting most references to idolatry. In 1602 Boncompagni's estate gave it to the Collegium Ecclesiasticum Adolescentium Neophytorum (or Pia Domus Neophytorum, a college for converts from Judaism and Islam) until 1886, when the Vatican bought it along with other manuscripts when the Collegium closed (which is the reason for the manuscripts name and its designation). Unfortunately, it was then mistitled as a manuscript of Targum Onkelos until 1949, when Alejandro Dez Macho noticed that it differed significantly from Targum Onkelos. It was translated and published during 196879, and has since been considered the most important of the Palestinian Targumim, as it is by far the most complete and, apparently, the earliest as well. The Fragment Targums (formerly known as Targum Yerushalmi II) consist of a large number of fragments that have been divided into ten manuscripts. Of these P, V and L were first published in 1899 by M Ginsburger, A, B, C, D, F and G in 1930 by P Kahle and E in 1955 by A Dez Macho. Unfortunately, these manuscripts are all too fragmented to confirm what their purpose were, but they seem to be either the remains of a single complete targum or short variant readings of another targum. As a group, they often share theological views and with Targum Neofiti, which has led to the belief that they could be variant readings of that targum. The Cairo Genizah Fragment Targums originate from the Ben-Ezra Synagogues genizah in Cairo. They share similarities with The Fragment Targums in that they consist of a large number of fragmented manuscripts that have been collected in one targum-group. The manuscripts A and

E are the oldest among the Palestinian Targum and have been dated to around the seventh century. Manuscripts C, E, H and Z contain only passages from Genesis, A from Exodus while MS B contain verses from both as well as from Deuteronomium.

The Peshitta (Classical Syriac: pt for "simple, common, straight, vulgate", sometimes called the Syriac Vulgate) is the standard version of the Bible for churches in the Syriac tradition. The Old Testament of the Peshitta was translated into Syriac from the Hebrew, probably in the 2nd century AD. The New Testament of the Peshitta was translated from the Greek.[1] This New Testament, originally excluding certain disputed books (2 Peter, 2 John, 3 John, Jude, Revelation), had become a standard by the early 5th century. The five excluded books were added in the Harklean Version (616 AD) of Thomas of Harqel.[2] However the 1905 United Bible Society Peshitta used new editions prepared by the Irish Syriacist John Gwynn for the missing books. The name 'Peshitta' is derived from the Syriac mappaqt pt () , literally meaning 'simple version'. However, it is also possible to translate pt as 'common' (that is, for all people), or 'straight', as well as the usual translation as 'simple'. Syriac is a dialect, or group of dialects, of Eastern Aramaic, originating in and around Assuristan (Persian ruled Assyria). It is written in the Syriac alphabet, and is transliterated into the Latin script in a number of ways: Peshitta, Peshitt, Pshitta, Pitt, Pshitto, Fshitto. All of these are acceptable, but 'Peshitta' is the most conventional spelling in English.


History of the Syriac versions

Peshitta text of Exodus 13:1416 produced in Amida in the year 464.

Analogy of Latin Vulgate

We have no full and clear knowledge of the circumstances under which the Peshitta was produced and came into circulation. Whereas the authorship of the Latin Vulgate has never been in dispute, almost every assertion regarding the authorship of the Peshitta, and the time and place of its origin, is subject to question. The chief ground of analogy between the Vulgate and the Peshitta is that both came into existence as the result of a revision. This, indeed, has been strenuously denied, but since Dr. Hort in his Introduction to Westcott and Hort's New Testament in the Original Greek, following Griesbach and Hug at the beginning of the 19th century, maintained this view, it has gained many adherents. So far as the Gospels and other New Testament books are concerned, there is evidence in favor of this view which has been added to by recent discoveries; and fresh investigation in the field of Syriac scholarship has raised it to a high degree of probability. The very designation, "Peshito," has given rise to dispute. It has been applied to the Syriac as the version in common use, and regarded as equivalent to the Greek koine and the Latin Vulgate.

The Designation "Peshito" ("Peshitta")

The word itself is a feminine form, meaning "simple," "easy to be understood." It seems to have been used to distinguish the version from others which are encumbered with marks and signs in

the nature of a critical apparatus. However this may be, the term as a designation of the version has not been found in any Syriac author earlier than the 9th or 10th century. As regards the Old Testament, the antiquity of the Version is admitted on all hands. The tradition, however, that part of it was translated from Hebrew into Syriac for the benefit of Hiram in the days of Solomon is a myth. That a translation was made by a priest named Assa, or Ezra, whom the king of Assyria sent to Samaria, to instruct the Assyrian colonists mentioned in 2 Kings 17, is equally legendary. That the translation of the Old Testament and New Testament was made in connection with the visit of Thaddaeus to Abgar at Edessa belongs also to unreliable tradition. Mark has even been credited in ancient Syriac tradition with translating his own Gospel (written in Latin, according to this account) and the other books of the New Testament into Syriac.

Syriac Old Testament

Amen in East Syriac Aramaic

But what Theodore of Mopsuestia says of the Old Testament is true of both: "These Scriptures were translated into the tongue of the Syriacs by someone indeed at some time, but who on earth this was has not been made known down to our day". F. Crawford Burkitt concluded that the translation of the Old Testament was probably the work of Jews, of whom there was a colony in Edessa about the commencement of the Christian era. The older view was that the translators were Christians, and that the work was done late in the 1st century or early in the 2nd. The Old Testament known to the early Syrian church was substantially that of the Palestinian Jews. It contained the same number of books but it arranged them in a different order. First there was the Pentateuch, then Job, Joshua, Judges, 1 and 2 Samuel, 1 and 2 Kings, 1 and 2 Chronicles, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Ruth, Canticles, Esther, Ezra, Nehemiah, Isaiah followed by the Twelve Minor Prophets, Jeremiah and Lamentations, Ezekiel, and lastly Daniel. Most of the apocryphal books of the Old Testament are found in the Syriac, and the Wisdom of Sirach is held to have been translated from the Hebrew and not from the Septuagint.

Syriac New Testament

Of the New Testament, attempts at translation must have been made very early, and among the ancient versions of New Testament Scripture the Syriac in all likelihood is the earliest. It was at Antioch, the capital of Syria, that the disciples of Christ were first called Christians, and it seemed natural that the first translation of the Christian Scriptures should have been made there. The tendency of recent research, however, goes to show that Edessa, the literary capital, was more likely the place.

If we could accept the somewhat obscure statement of Eusebius that Hegesippus "made some quotations from the Gospel according to the Hebrews and from the Syriac Gospel," we should have a reference to a Syriac New Testament as early as 160-80 AD, the time of that Hebrew Christian writer. One thing is certain, that the earliest New Testament of the Syriac church lacked not only the Antilegomena 2 Peter, 2 and 3 John, Jude, and the Apocalypse but the whole of the Catholic Epistles. These were at a later date translated and received into the Syriac Canon of the New Testament, but the quotations of the early Syrian Fathers take no notice of these New Testament books. From the 5th century, however, the Peshitta containing both Old Testament and New Testament has been used in its present form only as the national version of the Syriac Scriptures. The translation of the New Testament is careful, faithful and literal, and the simplicity, directness and transparency of the style are admired by all Syriac scholars and have earned for it the title of "Queen of the versions."

Old Syriac texts

It is in the Gospels, however, that the analogy between the Latin Vulgate and the Syriac Vulgate can be established by evidence. If the Peshitta is the result of a revision as the Vulgate was, then we may expect to find Old Syriac texts answering to the Old Latin. Such texts have actually been found. Three such texts have been recovered, all showing divergences from the Peshitta, and believed by competent scholars to be anterior to it. These are, to take them in the order of their recovery in modern times, (1) the Curetonian Syriac, (2) the Syriac of Tatian's Diatessaron, and (3) the Sinaitic Syriac.
Details on Curetonian

The Curetonian consists of fragments of the Gospels brought in 1842 from the Nitrian Desert in Egypt and now in the British Museum. The fragments were examined by Canon Cureton of Westminster and edited by him in 1858. The manuscript from which the fragments have come appears to belong to the 5th century, but scholars believe the text itself to be as old as the 100's AD. In this recension the Gospel according to Matthew has the title Evangelion da-Mepharreshe, which will be explained in the next section.
Details on Tatian's Diatessaron

The Diatessaron is the work which Eusebius ascribes to Tatian, an early Christian author considered by some to have been a heretic. Eusebius called it that "combination and collection of the Gospels, I know not how, to which he gave the title Diatessaron." It is the earliest harmony of the Four Gospels known to us. Its existence is amply attested in the churches of Mesopotamia and Syria, but it had disappeared for centuries, and not a single copy of the Syriac work survives. A commentary upon it by Ephraem the Syrian, surviving in an Armenian translation, was issued by the Mechitarist Fathers at Venice in 1836, and afterward translated into Latin. Since 1876 an Arabic translation of the Diatessaron itself has been discovered; and it has been ascertained that the Cod. Fuldensis of the Vulgate represents the order and contents of the Diatessaron. A

translation from the Arabic can now be read in English in Dr. J. Hamlyn Hill's The Earliest Life of Christ Ever Compiled from the Four Gospels. Although no copy of the Diatessaron has survived, the general features of Tatian's Syriac work can be gathered from these materials. It is still a matter of dispute whether Tatian composed his Harmony out of a Syriac version already made, or composed it first in Greek and then translated it into Syriac. But the existence and widespread use of a Harmony, combining in one all four Gospels, from such an early period (172 AD), enables us to understand the title Evangelion daMepharreshe. It means "the Gospel of the Separated," and points to the existence of single Gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, in a Syriac translation, in contradistinction to Tatian's Harmony. Theodoret, bishop of Cyrrhus in the 5th century, tells how he found more than 200 copies of the Diatessaron held in honor in his diocese and how he collected them, and put them out of the way, associated as they were with the name of a heretic, and substituted for them the Gospels of the four evangelists in their separate forms.
Sinaitic Syriac

In 1892 the discovery of the third text, known, from the place where it was found, as the Sinaitic Syriac, comprising the four Gospels nearly entire, heightened the interest in the subject and increased the available material. It is a palimpsest, and was found in the monastery of Catherine on Mt. Sinai by Mrs. Agnes S. Lewis and her sister Mrs. Margaret D. Gibson. The text has been carefully examined and many scholars regard it as representing the earliest translation into Syriac, and reaching back into the 2nd century. Like the Curetonian, it is an example of the Evangelion da-Mepharreshe as distinguished from the Harmony of Tatian.
Relation to Peshitta

The discovery of these texts has raised many questions which it may require further discovery and further investigation to answer satisfactorily. It is natural to ask what is the relation of these three texts to the Peshitta. There are still scholars, foremost of whom is G. H. Gwilliam, the learned editor of the Oxford Peshito, who maintain the priority of the Peshitta and insist upon its claim to be the earliest monument of Syrian Christianity. But the progress of investigation into Syriac Christian literature points distinctly the other way. From an exhaustive study of the quotations in the earliest Syriac Fathers, and, in particular, of the works of Ephraem Syrus, Professor Burkitt concludes that the Peshitta did not exist in the 4th century. He finds that Ephraem used the Diatessaron in the main as the source of his quotation, although "his voluminous writings contain some clear indications that he was aware of the existence of the separate Gospels, and he seems occasionally to have quoted from them. Such quotations as are found in other extant remains of Syriac literature before the 5th century bear a greater resemblance to the readings of the Curetonian and the Sinaitic than to the readings of the Peshitta. Internal and external evidence alike point to the later and revised character of the Peshitta.


Brief History of the Peshitta

The Peshitta had from the 5th century onward a wide circulation in the East, and was accepted and honored by all the numerous sects of the greatly divided Syriac Christianity. It had a great missionary influence, and the Armenian and Georgian versions, as well as the Arabic and the Persian, owe not a little to the Syriac. The famous Nestorian tablet of Sing-an-fu witnesses to the presence of the Syriac Scriptures in the heart of China in the 7th century. It was first brought to the West by Moses of Mindin, a noted Syrian ecclesiastic, who sought a patron for the work of printing it in vain in Rome and Venice, but found one in the Imperial Chancellor at Vienna in 1555Albert Widmanstadt. He undertook the printing of the New Testament, and the emperor bore the cost of the special types which had to be cast for its issue in Syriac. Immanuel Tremellius, the converted Jew whose scholarship was so valuable to the English reformers and divines, made use of it, and in 1569 issued a Syriac New Testament in Hebrew letters. In 1645 the editio princeps of the Old Testament was prepared by Gabriel Sionita for the Paris Polyglot, and in 1657 the whole Peshitta found a place in Walton's London Polyglot. For long the best edition of the Peshitta was that of John Leusden and Karl Schaaf, and it is still quoted under the symbol Syrschaaf, or SyrSch. The critical edition of the Gospels recently issued by Mr. G. H. Gwilliam at the Clarendon Press is based upon some 50 manuscripts. Considering the revival of Syriac scholarship, and the large company of workers engaged in this field, we may expect further contributions of a similar character to a new and complete critical edition of the Peshitta.

Old Testament Peshitta

The inter-relationship between various significant ancient manuscripts of the Old Testament (some identified by their siglum). LXX here denotes the original septuagint.

The Peshitta version of the Old Testament is an independent translation based largely on a Hebrew text similar to the Proto-Masoretic Text. It shows a number of linguistic and exegetical similarities to the Aramaic Targums but is now no longer thought to derive from them. In some passages the translators have clearly used the Greek Septuagint. The influence of the Septuagint is particularly strong in Isaiah and the Psalms, probably due to their use in the liturgy. Most of the Deuterocanonicals are translated from the Septuagint, and the translation of Sirach was based on a Hebrew text.

The choice of books included in the Old Testament Peshitta changes from one manuscript to another. Usually most of the Deuterocanonicals are present. Other Biblical apocryphas, as 1 Esdras, 3 Maccabees, 4 Maccabees, Psalm 151 can be found in some manuscripts. The manuscript of Biblioteca Ambrosiana, discovered in 1866, includes also 2 Baruch (Syriac Apocalypse of Baruch).

The Septuagint (pron.: /sptjudnt/), (/sptudnt/), (/sptudnt/), (/sptudnt/), (or "LXX", or "Greek Old Testament") is an ancient translation of the Hebrew Bible and some related texts into Koine Greek, dated as early as the late 2nd century BCE. It is quoted in the New Testament, particularly in the writings of Paul the Apostle, and also by the Apostolic Fathers and later Greek Church Fathers, and continues to serve as the Eastern Orthodox Old Testament. The traditional story is that Ptolemy II sponsored the translation for use by the many Alexandrian Jews who were not fluent in Hebrew but fluent in Koine Greek, which was the lingua franca of Alexandria, Egypt and the Eastern Mediterranean from the death of Alexander the Great in 323 BCE until the development of Byzantine Greek around 600 CE. The Septuagint should not be confused with the seven or more other Greek versions of the Old Testament, most of which did not survive except as fragments (some parts of these being known from Origen's Hexapla, a comparison of six translations in adjacent columns, now almost wholly lost). Of these, the most important are "the three:" those by Aquila, Symmachus, and Theodotion. The Septuagint derives its name from the Latin versio septuaginta interpretum, "translation of the seventy interpreters," (Greek: , h metphrasis tn hebdomkonta, "translation of the seventy ". However, it was not until the time of Augustine of Hippo (354430 CE) that the Greek translation of the Jewish scriptures came to be called by the Latin term Septuaginta. The Roman numeral LXX (seventy) is commonly used as an abbreviation, as are or G.

These titles refer to a legendary story, according to which seventy or seventy-two Jewish scholars were asked by the Greek King of Egypt Ptolemy II Philadelphus to translate the Torah from Biblical Hebrew into Greek, for inclusion in the Library of Alexandria. This legend is first found in the pseudepigraphic Letter of Aristeas to his brother Philocrates, and is repeated with


embellishments by Philo of Alexandria, Josephus and by various later sources, including St. Augustine. A version of the legend is found in the Tractate Megillah of the Babylonian Talmud: King Ptolemy once gathered 72 Elders. He placed them in 72 chambers, each of them in a separate one, without revealing to them why they were summoned. He entered each one's room and said: "Write for me the Torah of Moshe, your teacher." God put it in the heart of each one to translate identically as all the others did. Philo of Alexandria, who relied extensively on the Septuagint, says that the number of scholars was chosen by selecting six scholars from each of the 12 tribes of Israel. This legend, with its miraculous details, underlines the fact that some Jews in antiquity wished to present the translation as authoritative. A 2012 issue of Free Inquiry magazine argued that this legend was a fabrication.

The date of the 3rd century BCE, given in the legend, is confirmed (for the Torah translation) by a number of factors, including the Greek being representative of early Koine, citations beginning as early as the 2nd century BCE, and early manuscripts datable to the 2nd century. After the Torah, other books were translated over the next two to three centuries. It is not altogether clear which was translated when, or where; some may even have been translated twice, into different versions, and then revised. The quality and style of the different translators also varied considerably from book to book, from the literal to paraphrasing to interpretative. The translation process of the Septuagint can be broken down into several distinct stages, during which the social milieu of the translators shifted from Hellenistic Judaism to Early Christianity. The translation began in the 3rd century BCE and was completed by 132 BCE, initially in Alexandria, but in time elsewhere as well. The Septuagint is the basis for the Old Latin, Slavonic, Syriac, Old Armenian, Old Georgian and Coptic versions of the Christian Old Testament.

Some sections of the Septuagint may show Semiticisms, or idioms and phrases based on Semitic languages like Hebrew and Aramaic. Other books, such as the Daniel and Proverbs, show Greek influence more strongly. Jewish Koine Greek exists primarily as a category of literature, or cultural category, but apart from some distinctive religious vocabulary is not distinct from other varieties of Koine Greek to be counted a separate dialect of Greek.


The Septuagint is also useful for elucidating pre-Masoretic Hebrew: many proper nouns are spelled out with Greek vowels in the LXX, while contemporary Hebrew texts lacked vowel pointing. One must, however, evaluate such evidence with caution since it is extremely unlikely that all ancient Hebrew sounds had precise Greek equivalents.

Disputes over canonicity

As the work of translation progressed, the canon of the Greek Bible expanded. The Torah (Pentateuch in Greek) always maintained its pre-eminence as the basis of the canon; but the collection of prophetic writings, based on the Jewish Nevi'im, had various hagiographical works incorporated into it. In addition some newer books were included in the Septuagint: those called anagignoskomena in Greek, because they are not included in the Jewish canon. Among these are the Maccabees and the Wisdom of Ben Sira. Also, the Septuagint version of some Biblical books, like Daniel and Esther, are longer than those in the Jewish canon. Some of these "apocryphal" books (e.g. the Wisdom of Solomon, and the second book of Maccabees) were not translated, but composed directly in Greek. The canonicity of the larger group of "writings" (the Jewish ketuvim) had not yet been established, although some sort of selective process must have been employed because the Septuagint did not include other well-known Jewish documents such as Enoch or Jubilees or other writings that are not part of the Jewish canon. (These are now classified as Pseudepigrapha). Since Late Antiquity, once attributed to a Council of Jamnia, mainstream rabbinic Judaism rejected the Septuagint as valid Jewish scriptural texts. Several reasons have been given for this. First, some mistranslations were claimed. Second, the Hebrew source texts used for the Septuagint differed from the Masoretic tradition of Hebrew texts, which was chosen as canonical by the Jewish rabbis. Third, the rabbis wanted to distinguish their tradition from the newly emerging tradition of Christianity. Finally, the rabbis claimed for the Hebrew language a divine authority, in contrast to Aramaic or Greek - even though these languages were the lingua franca of Jews during this period (and Aramaic would eventually be given the same holy language status as Hebrew). In time the LXX became synonymous with the "Greek Old Testament", i.e. a Christian canon of writings which incorporated all the books of the Hebrew canon, along with additional texts. The Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Churches use most of the books of the Septuagint; however, Protestant churches usually do not. After the Protestant Reformation, many Protestant Bibles began to follow the Jewish canon and exclude the additional texts, which came to be called "Apocrypha" (i.e. of questionable authenticity). The Apocrypha are included under a separate heading in the King James Version of the Bible, the basis for the Revised Standard Version.


Final form
All the books of western canons of the Old Testament are found in the Septuagint, although the order does not always coincide with the Western ordering of the books. The Septuagint order for the Old Testament is evident in the earliest Christian Bibles (4th century). Some books that are set apart in the Masoretic text are grouped together. For example the Books of Samuel and the Books of Kings are in the LXX one book in four parts called ("Of Reigns"). In LXX, the Books of Chronicles supplement Reigns and it is called Paraleipomnon (things left out). The Septuagint organizes the minor prophets as twelve parts of one Book of Twelve. Some scripture of ancient origin are found in the Septuagint but are not present in the Hebrew. These additional books are Tobit, Judith, Wisdom of Solomon, Wisdom of Jesus son of Sirach, Baruch, Letter of Jeremiah (which later became chapter 6 of Baruch in the Vulgate), additions to Daniel (The Prayer of Azarias, the Song of the Three Children, Susanna and Bel and the Dragon), additions to Esther, 1 Maccabees, 2 Maccabees, 3 Maccabees, 4 Maccabees, 1 Esdras, Odes, including the Prayer of Manasseh, the Psalms of Solomon, and Psalm 151. The canonical acceptance of these books varies among different Christian traditions, and there are canonical books not derived from the Septuagint. For more information regarding these books, see the articles Biblical apocrypha, Biblical canon, Books of the Bible, and Deuterocanonical books.
Incorporations from Theodotion

In most ancient copies of the Bible which contain the Septuagint version of the Old Testament, the Book of Daniel is not the original Septuagint version, but instead is a copy of Theodotion's translation from the Hebrew, which more closely resembles the Masoretic text. The Septuagint version was discarded in favour of Theodotion's version in the 2nd to 3rd centuries CE. In Greek-speaking areas, this happened near the end of the 2nd century, and in Latin-speaking areas (at least in North Africa), it occurred in the middle of the 3rd century. History does not record the reason for this, and St. Jerome reports, in the preface to the Vulgate version of Daniel, This thing 'just' happened. One of two Old Greek texts of the Book of Daniel has been recently rediscovered and work is ongoing in reconstructing the original form of the book. The canonical Ezra-Nehemiah is known in the Septuagint as "Esdras B", and 1 Esdras is "Esdras A". 1 Esdras is a very similar text to the books of Ezra-Nehemiah, and the two are widely thought by scholars to be derived from the same original text. It has been proposed, and is thought highly likely by scholars, that "Esdras B" the canonical Ezra-Nehemiah is Theodotion's version of this material, and "Esdras A" is the version which was previously in the Septuagint on its own.


Jewish use
Starting approximately in the 2nd century CE, several factors led most Jews to abandon use of the LXX. The earliest gentile Christians of necessity used the LXX, as it was at the time the only Greek version of the Bible, and most, if not all, of these early non-Jewish Christians could not read Hebrew. The association of the LXX with a rival religion may have rendered it suspect in the eyes of the newer generation of Jews and Jewish scholars. Instead, Jews used Hebrew/Aramaic Targum manuscripts later compiled by the Masoretes; and authoritative Aramaic translations, such as those of Onkelos and Rabbi Yonathan ben Uziel. What was perhaps most significant for the LXX, as distinct from other Greek versions, was that the LXX began to lose Jewish sanction after differences between it and contemporary Hebrew scriptures were discovered (see above). Even Greek-speaking Jews tended less to the LXX, preferring other Jewish versions in Greek, such as that of the 2nd-century Aquila translation, which seemed to be more concordant with contemporary Hebrew texts. While Jews have not used the LXX in worship or religious study since the 2nd century CE, recent scholarship has brought renewed interest in it in the field of Judaic Studies.

Christian use
The Early Christian Church used the Greek texts since Greek was a lingua franca of the Roman Empire at the time, and the language of the Greco-Roman Church (Aramaic was the language of Syriac Christianity, which used the Targums). The relationship between the apostolic use of the Old Testament, for example, the Septuagint and the now lost Hebrew texts (though to some degree and in some form carried on in Masoretic tradition) is complicated. The Septuagint seems to have been a major source for the Apostles, but it is not the only one. St. Jerome offered, for example, Matt 2:15 and 2:23, John 19:37, John 7:38, 1 Cor. 2:9. as examples not found in the Septuagint, but in Hebrew texts. (Matt 2:23 is not present in current Masoretic tradition either, though according to St. Jerome it was in Isaiah 11:1.) The New Testament writers, when citing the Jewish scriptures, or when quoting Jesus doing so, freely used the Greek translation, implying that Jesus, his Apostles and their followers considered it reliable. In the Early Christian Church, the presumption that the Septuagint was translated by Jews before the era of Christ, and that the Septuagint at certain places gives itself more to a christological interpretation than 2nd-century Hebrew texts was taken as evidence that "Jews" had changed the Hebrew text in a way that made them less christological. For example, Irenaeus concerning Isaiah 7:14: The Septuagint clearly writes of a virgin that shall conceive. While the Hebrew text was, according to Irenaeus, at that time interpreted by Theodotion and Aquila (both proselytes of the Jewish faith) as a young woman that shall conceive. According to Irenaeus, the Ebionites used this to claim that Joseph was the (biological) father of Jesus. From Irenaeus' point of view that was pure heresy, facilitated by (late) anti-Christian alterations of the scripture in Hebrew, as evident by the older, pre-Christian, Septuagint.


When Jerome undertook the revision of the Old Latin translations of the Septuagint, he checked the Septuagint against the Hebrew texts that were then available. He broke with church tradition and translated most of the Old Testament of his Vulgate from Hebrew rather than Greek. His choice was severely criticized by Augustine, his contemporary; a flood of still less moderate criticism came from those who regarded Jerome as a forger. While on the one hand he argued for the superiority of the Hebrew texts in correcting the Septuagint on both philological and theological grounds, on the other, in the context of accusations of heresy against him, Jerome would acknowledge the Septuagint texts as well. With the passage of time, acceptance of Jerome's version gradually increased until it displaced the Old Latin translations of the Septuagint. The Eastern Orthodox Church still prefers to use the LXX as the basis for translating the Old Testament into other languages. The Eastern Orthodox also use LXX untranslated where Greek is the liturgical language, e.g. in the Orthodox Church of Constantinople, the Church of Greece and the Cypriot Orthodox Church. Critical translations of the Old Testament, while using the Masoretic Text as their basis, consult the Septuagint as well as other versions in an attempt to reconstruct the meaning of the Hebrew text whenever the latter is unclear, undeniably corrupt, or ambiguous. For example, the Jerusalem Bible Foreword says, "... only when this (the Masoretic Text) presents insuperable difficulties have emendations or other versions, such as the ... LXX, been used." The Translator's Preface to the New International Version says: "The translators also consulted the more important early versions (including) the Septuagint ... Readings from these versions were occasionally followed where the MT seemed doubtful ..

Table of books
The Orthodox Old Testament N Greek-based name Law Gnesis xodos Leuitikn Arithmo Deuteronmion History Isous Nau Krita Roth I Reigns II Reigns III Reigns IV Reigns I Paralipomenon Joshua Judges Ruth I Samuel II Samuel I Kings II Kings I Chronicles Genesis Exodus Leviticus Numbers Deuteronomy Conventional English name


o o '

II Paralipomenon I Esdras II Esdras Tobit Ioudith Esther I Makkabees II Makkabees III Makkabees Wisdom Psalms Psalm 151 Prayer of Manasseh Ib Proverbs Ecclesiastes Song of Songs Wisdom of Solomon Wisdom of Jesus the son of Seirach Psalms of Solomon Prophets The Twelve I. Ose II. ms III. Michaias IV. Ioel V. Obdias VI. Ionas VII. Naoum VIII. Ambakum IX. Sophonias X. ngaios XI. Zacharias XII. Messenger Hesaias Hieremias Baruch Lamentations Epistle of Jeremiah

II Chronicles 1 Esdras Ezra-Nehemiah Tobit or Tobias Judith Esther with additions 1 Maccabees 2 Maccabees 3 Maccabees Psalms Psalm 151 Prayer of Manasseh Job Proverbs Ecclesiastes Song of Solomon or Canticles Wisdom Sirach or Ecclesiasticus Psalms of Solomon

Minor Prophets Hosea Amos Micah Joel Obadiah Jonah Nahum Habakkuk Zephaniah Haggai Zachariah Malachi Isaiah Jeremiah Baruch Lamentations Letter of Jeremiah



Iezekil Danil Appendix IV Makkabees

Ezekiel Daniel with additions

4 Maccabees

Modern scholarship holds that the LXX was written during the 3rd through 1st centuries BCE. But nearly all attempts at dating specific books, with the exception of the Pentateuch (early- to mid-3rd century BCE), are tentative and without consensus. Later Jewish revisions and recensions of the Greek against the Hebrew are well attested, the most famous of which include the Three: Aquila (128 CE), Symmachus, and Theodotion. These three, to varying degrees, are more literal renderings of their contemporary Hebrew scriptures as compared to the Old Greek. Modern scholars consider one or more of the 'three' to be totally new Greek versions of the Hebrew Bible. Around 235 CE, Origen, a Christian scholar in Alexandria, completed the Hexapla, a comprehensive comparison of the ancient versions and Hebrew text side-by-side in six columns, with diacritical markings (a.k.a. "editor's marks", "critical signs" or "Aristarchian signs"). Much of this work was lost, but several compilations of the fragments are available. In the first column was the contemporary Hebrew, in the second a Greek transliteration of it, then the newer Greek versions each in their own columns. Origen also kept a column for the Old Greek (the Septuagint) and next to it was a critical apparatus combining readings from all the Greek versions with diacritical marks indicating to which version each line (Gr. ) belonged. Perhaps the voluminous Hexapla was never copied in its entirety, but Origen's combined text ("the fifth column") was copied frequently, eventually without the editing marks, and the older uncombined text of the LXX was neglected. Thus this combined text became the first major Christian recension of the LXX, often called the Hexaplar recension. In the century following Origen, two other major recensions were identified by Jerome, who attributed these to Lucian and Hesychius.
Septuagint manuscripts

The oldest manuscripts of the LXX include 2nd century BCE fragments of Leviticus and Deuteronomy (Rahlfs nos. 801, 819, and 957), and 1st century BCE fragments of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy, and the Minor Prophets (Alfred Rahlfs nos. 802, 803, 805, 848, 942, and 943). Relatively complete manuscripts of the LXX postdate the Hexaplar rescension and include the Codex Vaticanus from the 4th century CE and the Codex Alexandrinus of the 5th century. These are indeed the oldest surviving nearly complete manuscripts of the Old Testament in any language; the oldest extant complete Hebrew texts date some 600 years later, from the first half of the 10th century. The 4th century Codex Sinaiticus also partially survives, still containing many texts of the Old Testament. While there are differences between these three codices, scholarly consensus today holds that one LXX that is, the original pre-Christian translation underlies all three. The various Jewish and later Christian revisions and recensions are largely responsible for the divergence of the codices.

Differences with the Latin Vulgate and the Masoretic text

The sources of the many differences between the Septuagint, the Latin Vulgate and the Masoretic text have long been discussed by scholars. Following the Renaissance, a common opinion among some humanists was that the LXX translators bungled the translation from the Hebrew and that the LXX became more corrupt with time. The most widely accepted view today is that the original Septuagint provided a reasonably accurate record of an early Hebrew textual variant that differed from the ancestor of the Masoretic text as well as those of the Latin Vulgate, where both of the latter seem to have a more similar textual heritage. These issues notwithstanding, the text of the LXX is generally close to that of the Masoretes and vulgate. For example, Genesis 4:16 is identical in both the LXX, Vulgate and the Masoretic Text. Likewise, Genesis 4:8 to the end of the chapter is the same. There is only one noticeable difference in that chapter, at 4:7, to wit:
Genesis 4:7, Masoretic and English Translation from MT (Judaica Press)

Genesis 4:7, LXX (NETS)

Genesis 4:7, Latin Vulgate (Douay-Rheims)

If you offer correctly but do not divide correctly, have you not sinned? Be still; his recourse is to you, and you will rule over him.

Is it not so that if you improve, it will be forgiven you? If you do not improve, however, at the entrance, sin is lying, and to you is its longing, but you can rule over it.

If thou do well, shalt thou not receive? but if ill, shall not sin forthwith be present at the door? but the lust thereof shall be under thee, and thou shalt have dominion over it.

This instance illustrates the complexity of assessing differences between the LXX and the Masoretic Text as well as the Vulgate. Despite the striking divergence of meaning here between the Septuagint and later texts, nearly identical consonantal Hebrew source texts can be reconstructed. The readily apparent semantic differences result from alternative strategies for interpreting the difficult verse and relate to differences in vowelization and punctuation of the consonantal text. The differences between the LXX and the MT thus fall into four categories.
1. Different Hebrew sources for the MT and the LXX. Evidence of this can be found throughout the Old Testament. Most obvious are major differences in Jeremiah and Job, 52

where the LXX is much shorter and chapters appear in different order than in the MT, and Esther where almost one third of the verses in the LXX text have no parallel in the MT. A more subtle example may be found in Isaiah 36.11; the meaning ultimately remains the same, but the choice of words evidences a different text. The MT reads " tedaber yehudit be-'ozne ha`am al ha-homa" [speak not the Judean language in the ears of (or which can be heard by) the people on the wall]. The same verse in the LXX reads according to the translation of Brenton "and speak not to us in the Jewish tongue: and wherefore speakest thou in the ears of the men on the wall." The MT reads "people" where the LXX reads "men". This difference is very minor and does not affect the meaning of the verse. Scholars at one time had used discrepancies such as this to claim that the LXX was a poor translation of the Hebrew original. With the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, variant Hebrew texts of the Bible were found. In fact this verse is found in Qumran (1QIsaa) where the Hebrew word "haanashim" (the men) is found in place of "haam" (the people). This discovery, and others like it, showed that even seemingly minor differences of translation could be the result of variant Hebrew source texts. 2. Differences in interpretation stemming from the same Hebrew text. A good example is Genesis 4.7, shown above. 3. Differences as a result of idiomatic translation issues (i.e. a Hebrew idiom may not easily translate into Greek, thus some difference is intentionally or unintentionally imparted). For example, in Psalm 47:10 the MT reads "The shields of the earth belong to God". The LXX reads "To God are the mighty ones of the earth." The metaphor "shields" would not have made much sense to a Greek speaker; thus the words "mighty ones" are substituted in order to retain the original meaning. 4. Transmission changes in Hebrew or Greek (Diverging revisionary/recensional changes and copyist errors)

The Vulgate is a late 4th-century Latin translation of the Bible. It was largely the work of St. Jerome, who was commissioned by Pope Damasus I in 382 to make a revision of the old Latin translations. By the 13th century this revision had come to be called the versio vulgata, that is, the "commonly used translation", and ultimately it became the definitive and officially promulgated Latin version of the Bible in the Roman Catholic Church. Its widespread adoption led to the eclipse of earlier Latin translations, which are collectively referred to as the Vetus Latina. The Vulgate has a compound text that is not entirely the work of Jerome. Its components include:

Jerome's independent translation from the Hebrew: the books of the Hebrew Bible, usually not including his translation of the Psalms. This was completed in 405. Translation from the Greek of Theodotion by Jerome: The three additions to the Book of Daniel; Song of the Three Children, Story of Susanna, and The Idol Bel and the Dragon. The Song of the Three Children was retained within the narrative of Daniel, the other two additions Jerome moved to the end of the book.


Translation from the Septuagint by Jerome: the Rest of Esther. Jerome gathered all these additions together at the end of the book of Esther. Translation from the Hexaplar Septuagint by Jerome: his Gallican version of the Book of Psalms. Jerome's Hexaplaric revisions of other books of Old Testament continued to circulate in Italy for several centuries, but only Job and fragments of other books survive. Free translation by Jerome from a secondary Aramaic version: Tobias and Judith. Revision by Jerome of the Old Latin, corrected with reference to the oldest Greek manuscripts available: the Gospels. Old Latin, more or less revised by a person or persons unknown: Baruch, Letter of Jeremiah, 3 Esdras,[3] Acts, Epistles, and the Apocalypse. Old Latin, wholly unrevised: Epistle to the Laodiceans, Prayer of Manasses, 4 Esdras, Wisdom, Ecclesiasticus, and 1 and 2 Maccabees.

Saint Jerome in his Study, Domenico Ghirlandaio

Jerome did not embark on the work with the intention of creating a new version of the whole Bible, but the changing nature of his program can be tracked in his voluminous correspondence. He had been commissioned by Damasus I in 382 to revise the Old Latin text of the four Gospels from the best Greek texts, and by the time of Damasus' death in 384 he had thoroughly completed this task, together with a more cursory revision from the Greek Septuagint of the Old Latin text of the Psalms in the Roman Psalter which is now lost. How much of the rest of the New Testament he then revised is difficult to judge today, but little of his work survived in the Vulgate text. In 385, Jerome was forced out of Rome, and eventually settled in Bethlehem, where he was able to use a surviving manuscript of the Hexapla, likely from the nearby Theological Library of Caesarea Maritima, a columnar comparison of the variant versions of the Old Testament undertaken 150 years before by Origen. Jerome first embarked on a revision of the Psalms, translated from the revised Septuagint Greek column of the Hexapla, which later came to be called the Gallican version. He also appears to have undertaken further new translations into Latin from the Hexaplar Septuagint column for other books. But from 390 to 405, Jerome translated anew from the Hebrew all 39 books in the Hebrew Bible, including a further version of the Psalms. This new translation of the Psalms was labelled by him as "iuxta Hebraeos" (i.e. "close to the Hebrews", "immediately following the Hebrews"), and was commonly found in the Vulgate, until it was widely replaced by his Gallican psalms beginning in the 9th century. The Vulgate is usually credited as being the first translation of the Old Testament into Latin directly from the Hebrew Tanakh, rather than the Greek Septuagint. Jerome's extensive use of exegetical material written in Greek, on the other hand, as well as his use of the Aquiline and Theodotiontic columns of the Hexapla, along with the somewhat paraphrastic style in which he translated makes it difficult to determine exactly how direct the conversion of Hebrew to Latin was. As Jerome completed his translations of each book of the Bible, he recorded his observations and comments in an extensive correspondence with other scholars; and these letters were subsequently collected and appended as prologues to the Vulgate text for those books where they survived. In these letters, Jerome described those books or portions of books in the Septuagint

that were not found in the Hebrew as being non-canonical: he called them apocrypha. Jerome's views did not, however, prevail; and all complete manuscripts and editions of the Vulgate include some or all these books. Of the Old Testament texts not found in the Hebrew, Jerome translated Tobit and Judith anew from the Aramaic; and from the Greek, the additions to Esther from the Septuagint, and the additions to Daniel from Theodotion. Other books; Baruch, Letter of Jeremiah, Wisdom, Ecclesiasticus, 1 and 2 Maccabees[8] are variously found in Vulgate manuscripts with texts derived from the Old Latin; sometimes together with Latin versions of other texts found neither in the Hebrew Bible, nor in the Septuagint, 4 Esdras, the Prayer of Manasses and Laodiceans. Their style is still markedly distinguishable from Jerome's. In the Vulgate text, Jerome's translations from the Greek of the additions to Esther and Daniel are combined with his separate translations of these books from the Hebrew.

Critical value
In translating the 39 books of the Hebrew Bible, Jerome was relatively free in rendering their text into Latin, but it is possible to determine that the oldest surviving complete manuscripts of the Masoretic Text, which date from nearly 600 years after Jerome, nevertheless transmit a consonantal Hebrew text very close to that used by Jerome. Consequently, these books of the Vulgate though of high literary quality have little independent interest in text critical debate.] Jerome translated the books of Judith and Tobit under sufferance, engaging a Jewish intermediary to render the Aramaic into oral Hebrew, for him then to paraphrase into Latin. Their textual value is small.] The Vulgate Old Testament texts that were translated from the Greek whether by Jerome himself, or preserving revised or unrevised Old Latin versions are however early and important secondary witnesses to the Septuagint. Damasus had instructed Jerome to be conservative in his revision of the Old Latin Gospels, and it is possible to see Jerome's obedience to this injunction in the preservation in the Vulgate of variant Latin vocabulary for the same Greek terms. Hence, "high priest" is rendered "princeps sacerdotum" in Vulgate Matthew; as "summus sacerdos" in Vulgate Mark; and as "pontifex" in Vulgate John. Comparison of Jerome's Gospel texts with those in Old Latin witnesses, suggests that his revision was substantially concerned with redacting the expanded phraseology characteristic of the Western text-type, in accordance with Alexandrian, or possibly early Byzantine, witnesses. Given Jerome's conservative methods, and that manuscript evidence from outside Egypt at this early date is very rare; these Vulgate readings have considerable critical interest. More interesting still because effectively untouched by Jerome are the Vulgate books of the rest of the New Testament; which demonstrate rather more of supposed "Western" expansions, and otherwise transmit a very early Old Latin text. Most valuable of all from a textcritical perspective is the Vulgate text of the Apocalypse, a book where there is no clear majority text in the surviving Greek witnesses.

In addition to the biblical text the Vulgate contains 17 prologues, 16 of which were written by Jerome. Jerome's prologues were written not so much as prologues than as cover letters to specific individuals to accompany copies of his translations. Because they were not intended for a general audience, some of his comments in them are quite cryptic. These prologues are to the

Pentateuch, to Joshua, and to Kings, which is also called the Prologus Galeatus. Following these are prologues to Chronicles, Esdras, Tobias, Judith, Esther, Job, The Gallican Psalms, Solomon, Isaias, Jeremias, Ezechiel, Daniel, Minor prophets, the Gospels, and the final prologue which is to the Pauline Epistles and is better known as Primum quaeritur. Related to these are Jerome's Notes on the Rest of Esther and his Prologue to the Hebrew Psalms. In addition to the Jerome's prologue to the Gallican version of the Psalms, which is commonly found in Vulgate manuscripts, his prologues also survive for the translations from the Hexaplar Septuagint of the books of Job, Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs and Chronicles. A recurring theme of the Old Testament prologues is Jerome's preference for the Hebraica veritas (i.e., Hebrew truth) to the Septuagint, a preference which he defended from his detractors. He stated that the Hebrew text more clearly prefigures Christ than the Greek. Among the most remarkable of these prologues is the Prologus Galeatus, in which Jerome described an Old Testament canon of 22 books, which he found represented in the 22-letter Hebrew alphabet. Alternatively, he numbered the books as 24, which he described as the 24 elders in the Book of Revelation casting their crowns before the Lamb. Also of note is the Primum quaeritur, which defended the Pauline authorship of the Epistle to the Hebrews, and compared Paul's ten letters to the churches with the ten commandments. The author of the Primum quaeritur is unknown. The editors of the Stuttgart Vulgate remark that this version of the epistles first became popular among the Pelagians. In addition to Primum quaeritur, many manuscripts contain brief notes to each of the epistles indicating where they were written, with notes about where the recipients dwelt. Adolf von Harnack, citing De Bruyne, argued that these notes were written by Marcion of Sinope or one of his followers.

Relation with the Old Latin Bible Vetus Latina

The Latin Biblical texts in use before the Latin Vulgate are usually referred to collectively as the Vetus Latina, or "Old Latin Bible", or occasionally the "Old Latin Vulgate". (Here "Old Latin" means that they are older than the Vulgate and written in Latin, not that they are written in Old Latin. Likewise the Latin Vulgate was so named because it was the Latin counterpart to the Greek Vulgate; it was not written in Vulgar Latin.) The translations in the Vetus Latina had accumulated piecemeal over a century or more; they were not translated by a single person or institution, nor uniformly edited. The individual books varied in quality of translation and style, and different manuscripts witness wide variations in readings. Jerome, in his preface to the Vulgate gospels, commented that there were "as many [translations] as there are manuscripts". The Old Testament books of the Vetus Latina were translated from the Greek Septuagint, not from the Hebrew. Jerome's earliest efforts in translation, his revision of the four Gospels, was dedicated to Damasus; but his version had little or no official recognition. Jerome's translated texts had to make their way on their own merits. The Old Latin versions continued to be copied and used

alongside the Vulgate versions. Bede, writing in 8th century Northumbria, records Abbot Ceolfrid quoting Genesis 1:16 according to both the Vulgate and the Old Latin text, as the new and former editions. Nevertheless, the superior quality of the Vulgate texts led to their increasingly superseding the Old Latin; although the loss of familiar phrases and expressions still aroused hostility in congregations; and, especially in North Africa and Spain, favourite Old Latin readings were often re-introduced by copyists, while individual books within Spanish Vulgate Bibles are sometimes found to retain the Old Latin text. Spanish biblical traditions, with many Old Latin borrowings, were influential in Ireland; while both Irish and Spanish influences are found in Vulgate texts in northern France. In Italy and southern France, by contrast, a much purer Vulgate text predominated; and this is the version of the Bible that became established in England following the mission of Augustine of Canterbury. As late as the 13th century, the Codex Gigas retained an Old Latin text for the Apocalypse and the Acts of the Apostles. Throughout Late Antiquity and most of the Middle Ages, the name Vulgata was applied to the Greek Vulgate and the Vetus Latina, but as the acceptance of Jerome's version overtook that of the Vetus Latina in the Western church, it too began to be called an editio vulgata, a Latin analogue to the older Greek editio vulgata. The earliest known use of the term Vulgata to describe the new Latin translation was made by Roger Bacon in the 13th century. Wordsworth and White suggested that Jerome used Old Latin text close to Codex Brixianus as the basis for his New Testament and corrected it with the Alexandrian manuscripts.

Influence on Western culture

Codex Amiatinus

For over a thousand years (c. AD 4001530), the Vulgate was the definitive edition of the most influential text in Western European society. Indeed, for most Western Christians, it was the only

version of the Bible ever encountered. The Vulgate's influence throughout the Middle Ages and the Renaissance into the Early Modern Period is even greater than that of the King James Version in English; for Christians during these times the phraseology and wording of the Vulgate permeated all areas of the culture. Aside from its use in prayer, liturgy and private study, the Vulgate served as inspiration for ecclesiastical art and architecture, hymns, countless paintings, and popular mystery plays.

While the Genevan Reformed tradition sought to introduce vernacular versions translated from the original languages, it nevertheless retained and extended the use of the Vulgate in theological debate. In both the published Latin sermons of John Calvin, and the Greek New Testament editions of Theodore Beza, the accompanying Latin reference text is the Vulgate; and where Protestant churches took their lead from the Genevan example as in England and Scotland the result was a broadening appreciation of Jerome's translation in its dignified style and flowing prose. The closest equivalent in English, the King James Version or Authorized Version, shows a marked influence from the Vulgate, especially by comparison with the earlier vernacular version of Tyndale, in respect of Jerome's demonstration of how a technically exact Latinate religious vocabulary may be combined with dignified prose and vigorous poetic rhythms. The Vulgate continued to be regarded as the standard scholarly Bible throughout most of the 17th Century. Walton's London Polyglot of 1657 disregards the English Language entirely. Walton's reference text throughout is the Vulgate. The Vulgate Latin is also found as the standard text of scripture in Thomas Hobbes Leviathan of 1651, indeed Hobbes gives Vulgate chapter and verse numbers (i.e. Job 41:24; not Job 41:33) for his head text. In Chapter 35: 'The Signification in Scripture of Kingdom of God', Hobbes discusses Exodus 19:5, first in his own translation of the 'Vulgar Latin', and then subsequently as found in the versions he terms "...the English translation made in the beginning of the reign of King James", and "The Geneva French" (i.e. Olivetan). Hobbes advances detailed critical arguments why the Vulgate rendering is to be preferred. It remained the assumption of Protestant scholars that, while it had been of vital importance to provide the scriptures in the vernacular for ordinary people, nevertheless for those with sufficient education to do so, biblical study was best undertaken within the international common medium of the Latin Vulgate.

Council of Trent
The Vulgate was given an official capacity by the Council of Trent (15451563) as the touchstone of the Biblical canon concerning which parts of books are canonical. When the council listed the books included in the canon, it qualified the books as being "entire with all their parts, as they have been used to be read in the Catholic Church, and as they are contained in the old Latin vulgate edition". There are 76 books in the edition authorized by the council: 46 in the Old Testament, 27 in the New Testament, and three in the Apocrypha. This decree was clarified somewhat by Pope Pius XI on June 2, 1927, who allowed that the Comma Johanneum was open to dispute, and it was further explicated by Pope Pius XII's encyclical Divino Afflante Spiritu.

The council cited Sacred Tradition in support of the Vulgate's magisterial authority:
Moreover, this sacred and holy Synod,considering that no small utility may accrue to the Church of God, if it be made known which out of all the Latin editions, now in circulation, of the sacred books, is to be held as authentic,ordains and declares, that the said old and vulgate edition, which, by the lengthened usage of so many years, has been approved of in the Church, be, in public lectures, disputations, sermons and expositions, held as authentic; and that no one is to dare, or presume to reject it under any pretext whatever.

Before the publication of Pius XII's Divino Afflante Spiritu, the Vulgate was the source text used for many translations of the Bible into vernacular languages. In English, the interlinear translation of the Lindisfarne Gospels as well as other Old English Bible translations, the translation of John Wycliffe, the Douay-Rheims Bible, the Confraternity Bible, and Ronald Knox's translation were all made from the Vulgate.

Influence on the English language

The Vulgate had a large influence on the development of the English language, especially in matters of religion. Many Latin words were taken from the Vulgate into English nearly unchanged in meaning or spelling: creatio (e.g. Genesis 1:1, Heb 9:11), salvatio (e.g. Is 37:32, Eph 2:5), justificatio (e.g. Rom 4:25, Heb 9:1), testamentum (e.g. Mt 26:28), sanctificatio (1 Ptr 1:2, 1 Cor 1:30), regeneratio (Mt 19:28), and raptura (from a noun form of the verb rapiemur in 1 Thes 4:17). The word "publican" comes from the Latin publicanus (e.g., Mt 10:3), and the phrase "far be it" is a translation of the Latin expression absit (e.g., Mt 16:22 in the King James Bible). Other examples include apostolus, ecclesia, evangelium, Pascha, and angelus. A number of early manuscripts containing or reflecting the Vulgate survive today. Dating from the 8th century, the Codex Amiatinus is the earliest surviving manuscript of the complete Vulgate Bible. The Codex Fuldensis, dating from around 545, contains most of the New Testament in the Vulgate version, but the four Vulgate gospels are harmonized into a continuous narrative derived from the Diatessaron. Over the course of the Middle Ages, the Vulgate had succumbed to the inevitable changes wrought by human error in the countless copies made of the text in monasteries across Europe. From its earliest days, readings from the Old Latin were introduced. Marginal notes were erroneously interpolated into the text. No one copy was the same as any other as scribes added, removed, misspelled, or miscorrected verses in the Latin Bible. Alcuin of York oversaw efforts to make an improved Vulgate, which he presented to Charlemagne in 801; although he concentrated mainly on correcting inconsistencies of grammar and orthography, many of which were in the original text. More scholarly attempts were made by Theodulphus, Bishop of Orlans (787?821); Lanfranc, Archbishop of Canterbury (10701089); Stephen Harding, Abbot of Cteaux (11091134); and Deacon Nicolaus Maniacoria (about the

beginning of the 13th century). The University of Paris, the Dominicans, and the Franciscans following Roger Bacon assembled lists of correctoria; approved readings where variants had been noted. Many of the readings that were recommended were later found to be interpolations, or survivals of the Old Latin text, since medieval correctors commonly sought to adjust the Vulgate text into consistency with Bible quotations found in Early Church Fathers. Though the advent of printing greatly reduced the potential of human error and increased the consistency and uniformity of the text, the earliest editions of the Vulgate merely reproduced the manuscripts that were readily available to the publishers. Of the hundreds of early editions, the most notable today is Mazarin edition published by Johann Gutenberg and Johann Fust in 1455, famous for its beauty and antiquity. In 1504 the first Vulgate with variant readings was published in Paris. One of the texts of the Complutensian Polyglot was an edition of the Vulgate made from ancient manuscripts and corrected to agree with the Greek. Erasmus published an edition corrected to agree better with the Greek and Hebrew in 1516. Other corrected editions were published by Xanthus Pagninus in 1518, Cardinal Cajetan, Augustinus Steuchius in 1529, Abbot Isidorus Clarius (Venice, 1542), and others. In 1528, Robertus Stephanus published the first of a series of critical editions, which formed the basis of the later Sistine and Clementine editions. The critical edition of John Hentenius of Louvain followed in 1547. In 1550, Stephanus fled to Geneva where in 1555 he issued his final critical edition of the Vulgate, which was the first complete Bible with full chapter and verse divisions, and which became the standard Biblical reference text for late 16th century Reformed theology.

Clementine Vulgate


Vulgata Sixtina

Prologue of the gospel of John, Clementine Vulgate, 1922 edition

The Clementine Vulgate (Biblia Sacra Vulgat Editionis Sixti Quinti Pontificis Maximi iussu recognita atque edita) is the edition most familiar to Catholics who have lived prior to the liturgical reforms following Vatican II. After the Reformation, when the Catholic Church strove to counter the attacks and refute the doctrines of Protestantism, the Vulgate was reaffirmed in the Council of Trent as the sole, authorized Latin text of the Bible. To fulfill this declaration, the council commissioned the pope to make a standard text of the Vulgate out of the countless editions produced during the Renaissance and manuscripts produced during the Middle Ages. The actual first manifestation of this authorized text did not appear until 1590. It was sponsored by Pope Sixtus V (158590) and known as the Sistine Vulgate. It was based on the edition of Robertus Stephanus corrected to agree with the Greek, but it was hurried into print and suffered from many printing errors. The Sixtine edition was soon replaced by Clement VIII (15921605) who had ordered Franciscus Toletus, Augustinus Valerius, Fredericus Borromaeus, Robertus Bellarmino, Antonius Agellius, and Petrus Morinus to make corrections and a revision. This new revised version was based more on the Hentenian edition. It is called today the Sixto-Clementine Vulgate, or simply the Clementine, although it is Sixtus' name which appears on the title page. Clement published three printings of this edition, in 1592, 1593 and 1598. The Clementine differed from the manuscripts on which it was ultimately based in that it grouped the various prefaces of St. Jerome together at the beginning, and it removed 3 and 4 Esdras and the Prayer of Manasses from the Old Testament and placed them as Apocrypha into an appendix following the New Testament. The Psalter of the Clementine Vulgate, like that of almost all earlier printed editions, is the Gallicanum, omitting Psalm 151. It follows the Greek numbering of the Psalms, which differs from that in versions translated directly from the Hebrew.


The Clementine Vulgate of 1592 became the standard Bible text of the Roman Rite of the Roman Catholic Church until 1979, when the Nova Vulgata was promulgated.
Later printings

After Clement's 1598 printing of the Vulgate, the Vatican issued no other official printings, leaving the task to other printers. Although the other printers of the Clementine Vulgate faithfully reproduced the words of the official edition, they were often quite free in matters of spelling, punctuation, capitalization, and paragraph boundaries. In 1906, Capuchin friar Fr. Michael Hetzenauer produced an edition restoring the original Clementine text while taking into account variations in Clement's three printings as well as correctoria officially issued by the Vatican. In 1982, Biblioteca de Autores Cristianos issued a printing of the Clementine Vulgate (ISBN 847914-021-6) omitting the Clementine Apocrypha, but containing excerpts from various magisterial documents and the Piana version of the psalms in addition to the vulgate version.

Newer critical editions

After the publication of the Clementine Vulgate, few critical editions were published. In 1734 Vallarsi published a corrected edition of the Vulgate. Most other later editions limited themselves to the New Testament, most notably Fleck's edition of 1840, Constantin von Tischendorf's edition of 1864, and the Oxford edition of Bishop John Wordsworth and Henry Julian White in 1889. In 1906 Eberhard Nestle published Novum Testamentum Latine, which presented the Clementine Vulgate text with a critical apparatus comparing it to the editions of Sixtus V (1590), Wordsworth and White (1889), Lachman (1842), and Tischendorf (1854), as well as the manuscripts Codex Amiatinus and Codex Fuldensis. In 1907 Pope Pius X commissioned the monks of the Benedictine Abbey of St. Jerome in Rome to prepare a critical edition of Jerome's Vulgate as a basis for a revision of the Clementine. Only the Old Testament was ever completed, which however complemented the New Testament edition of Wordsworth and White; the fruit of this labour led to the creation of the Nova Vulgata. The Benedictine critical edition was used as a basis for much of the Old Testament of the Stuttgart Vulgate.


Prologue of the gospel of John, Clementine Vulgate, 1922 edition

The Wulfila Bible consists of a number of manuscripts from the 6th to 8th century containing a large part of the New Testament and some parts of the Old Testament, largely written in Italy. The remaining codices are Codex Argenteus, which is kept in Uppsala, the Codex Ambrosianus A through Codex Ambrosianus E containing the epistles Skeireins, Nehemiah 57), the Codex Carolinus (Romans 1114), the Codex Vaticanus Latinus 5750 (Skeireins), the Codex Gissensis (fragments of the Gospel of Luke) and the Fragmenta Pannonica, fragments of a 1mm thick metal plate with verses of the Gospel of John.


During the third century, the Goths lived on the northeast border of the Roman Empire, in what is now Ukraine, Bulgaria and Romania. During the fourth century, the Goths were converted to Christianity, largely through the efforts of Bishop Ulfilas, who invented the Gothic alphabet and translated the Bible into the Gothic language in Nicopolis ad Istrum in today's northern Bulgaria. Portions of this translation survive, affording the main surviving text written in the Gothic language. Gothic Christianity differed from Catholic doctrine as to the divinity of Jesus, with the Gothic Christians maintaining that Jesus was of a lesser creation than God. The Goths rejected the Holy Trinity (see Arianism). During the fifth century, the Goths overran parts of the Western Roman Empire, including Italy, southern France, and Spain. Gothic Christianity reigned in these areas for two centuries, before the re-establishment of the Catholic Church, and, in Spain, the advent of Islam.

Modern importance
The Wulfila Bible, although fragmentary, is the only extensive document in an ancient Eastern Germanic language. Since the other texts are of very limited extent, except maybe Skeireins, its significance for the study of these languages can hardly be overstated.

A page of the Codex Vercellensis, an example of the Vetus Latina. This section contains the Gospel of John, 16:23-30 Vetus Latina (also called the Vetus Itala or Old Italic) is a collective name given to the Biblical texts in Latin that were translated before St Jerome's Vulgate Bible (382-405 AD) became the standard Bible for Latin-speaking Western Christians. The phrase Vetus Latina is Latin for Old Latin, and the Vetus Latina is sometimes known as the Old Latin Bible. It was, however, written in Late Latin, not the early version of the Latin language known as Old Latin. It is sometimes also known as the Itala (as in the Quedlinburg Itala fragment).



There was no single "Vetus Latina" Bible; there are, instead, a collection of Biblical manuscript texts that bear witness to Latin translations of Biblical passages that preceded Jerome's. After comparing readings for Luke 24:4-5 in Vetus Latina manuscripts, Bruce Metzger counted "at least 27 variant readings in the Old Latin manuscripts that have survived" To these witnesses of previous translations, many scholars frequently add quotations of Biblical passages that appear in the works of the Latin Fathers, some of which share readings with certain groups of manuscripts. As such, many of the Vetus Latina "versions" were generally not promulgated in their own right as translations of the Bible to be used in the whole Church; rather, many of the texts that form part of the Vetus Latina were prepared on an ad hoc basis for the local use of Christian communities, to illuminate another Christian discourse or sermon, or as the Latin half of a diglot manuscript (e.g. Codex Bezae). There are some Old Latin texts that seem to have aspired to greater stature or currency; several manuscripts of Old Latin Gospels exist, containing the four canonical Gospels; the several manuscripts that contain them differ substantially from one another. Other Biblical passages, however, are extant only in excerpts or fragments. The language of the Old Latin translations is uneven in quality, as Augustine of Hippo lamented in De Doctrina Christiana (2, 16). Grammatical solecisms abound; some reproduce literally Greek or Hebrew idioms as they appear in the Septuagint. Likewise, the various Old Latin translations reflect the various versions of the Septuagint circulating, with the African manuscripts (such as the Codex Bobiensis) preserving readings of the Western text-type, while readings in the European manuscripts are closer to the Byzantine text-type. Many grammatical idiosyncrasies come from the use of Vulgar Latin grammatical forms in the text. With the publication of Jerome's Vulgate, which offered a single, stylistically consistent Latin text translated from the original tongues, the Vetus Latina gradually fell out of use. Jerome, in a letter, complains that his new version was initially disliked by Christians who were familiar with the phrasing of the old translations. However, as copies of the complete Bible were infrequently found, Old Latin translations of various books of the Bible were copied into manuscripts alongside Vulgate translations, inevitably exchanging readings; Old Latin translations of single books can be found in manuscripts as late as the 13th century. However, the Vulgate generally displaced the Vetus Latina and was acknowledged as the official Bible of the Roman Catholic Church at the Council of Trent. Below are some comparisons of the Vetus Latina with text from critical editions of the Vulgate. The following comparison is of Luke 6:1-4, taken from the Old Latin text in the Codex Bezae:


The Luther Bible is a German language Bible translation from Hebrew and ancient Greek by Martin Luther, of which the New Testament was published in 1522 and the complete Bible, containing the Old and New Testaments and Apocrypha, in 1534. The project absorbed Luther's later years. The new translation was widely disseminated thanks to the printing press, and it became a force in shaping the modern High German language.

1 Luther's New Testament translation

2 Publication of the complete Bible translation 3 Theology 4 View of canonicity 5 Impact 6 Memorable verses 7 See also 8 References o 8.1 Notes o 8.2 Additional reading 9 External links

Luther's New Testament translation

While he was sequestered in the Wartburg Castle (152122) Luther began to translate the New Testament from ancient Greek into German in order to make it more accessible to all the people of the "Holy Roman Empire of the German nation." He translated from the Greek text, using Erasmus' second edition (1519) of the Greek New Testament, known as the Textus Receptus. Luther did not translate from the Latin Vulgate translation, which is the Latin translation officially used by the Roman Catholic Church. Both Erasmus and Luther had learned Greek at the Latin schools led by the Brethren of the Common Life (respectively in Deventer (Netherlands) and in Magdeburg). These lay brothers added late 15th century Greek as a new subject to their curriculum. At that time Greek was seldom taught even at universities. To help him in translating into contemporary German, Luther would make forays into nearby towns and markets to listen to people speaking. He wanted to ensure their comprehension by translating as closely as possible to their contemporary language usage. His translation was published in September 1522, six months after he had returned to Wittenberg. In the opinion of the 19th century theologian and church historian Philip Schaff,
The richest fruit of Luther's leisure in the Wartburg, and the most important and useful work of his whole life, is the translation of the New Testament, by which he brought the teaching and example of Christ and the Apostles to the mind and heart of the Germans in life-like reproduction. It was a republication of the gospel. He made the Bible the people's book in church, school, and house.


Publication of the complete Bible translation

The translation of the entire Bible into German was published in a six-part edition in 1534, a collaborative effort of Luther and many more such as; Johannes Bugenhagen, Justus Jonas, Caspar Creuziger, Philipp Melanchthon, Matthus Aurogallus, and Georg Rrer. Luther worked on refining the translation up to his death in 1546: he had worked on the edition that was printed that year. There were 117 original woodcuts included in the 1534 edition issued by the Hans Lufft press in Wittenberg. They reflected the recent trend (since 1522) of including artwork to reinforce the textual message.

Luther added the word "alone" (allein in German) to Romans 3:28 controversially so that it read: "So now we hold, that man is justified without the help of the works of the law, alone through faith" The word "alone" does not appear in the Greek texts, but Luther defended his translation by maintaining that the adverb "alone" was required both by idiomatic German and the apostle Paul's intended meaning.

View of canonicity
Initially Luther had a low view of the Old Testament book of Esther and of the New Testament books of Hebrews, James, Jude, and the Revelation of John. He called the Letter of James "an epistle of straw," finding little in it that pointed to Christ and His saving work. He also had harsh words for the Revelation of John, saying that he could "in no way detect that the Holy Spirit produced it." In his translation of the New Testament, Luther moved Hebrews and James out of the usual order, to join Jude and the Revelation at the end, and differentiated these from the other books which he considered "the true and certain chief books of the New Testament. The four which follow have from ancient times had a different reputation." His views on some of these books changed in later years. Luther chose to place the Biblical apocrypha between the Old and New Testaments. These books and addenda to Biblical canon of the Old Testament are found in the ancient Greek Septuagint but not in the Hebrew Masoretic text. Luther left the translating of them largely to Philipp Melanchthon and Justus Jonas. They were not listed in the table of contents of his 1532 Old Testament, and in the 1534 Bible they were given the well-known title: "Apocrypha: These Books Are Not Held Equal to the Scriptures, but Are Useful and Good to Read". See also Biblical canon, Development of the Christian Biblical canon, and Biblical Apocrypha. The Luther Bible was not the first German Bible translation, but it was the most influential. Luther's German Bible and its widespread circulation facilitated the emergence of a standard, modern German language for the German-speaking peoples throughout the Holy Roman Empire, an empire extending through and beyond present-day Germany. It is also considered a landmark

in German literature, with Luther's vernacular style often praised by modern German sources for the forceful vigor ("kraftvolles Deutsch") with which he translated the Holy Scripture. A large part of Luther's significance was his influence on the emergence of the German language and national identity. This stemmed predominantly from his translation of the Bible into the vernacular, which was potentially as revolutionary as canon law and the burning of the papal bull. Luther's goal was to equip every German-speaking Christian with the ability to hear the Word of God, and his completing his translation of the Old and New Testaments from Hebrew and Greek into the vernacular by 1534 was one of the most significant acts of the Reformation. Although Luther was not the first to attempt such a translation, his was superior to all its predecessors. Previous translations had contained poor German, and had been from the Vulgate Latin translation, i.e. translations of a translation rather than a direct translation into German from the originals. Luther sought to translate as closely to the original text as possible, but at the same time his translation was guided by how people spoke in the home, on the street and in the marketplace. Luther's faithfulness to the language spoken by the common people was to produce a work which they could relate to. This led German writers such as Goethe and Nietzsche to praise Luther's Bible. Moreover, the fact that the vernacular Bible was printed also enabled it to spread rapidly and be read by all. Hans Lufft, the Bible printer in Wittenberg, printed over one hundred thousand copies between 1534 and 1574, which went on to be read by millions. Luther's vernacular Bible was present in virtually every German-speaking Protestants home; and there can be no doubts regarding the Biblical knowledge attained by the German common masses. Luther even had large-print Bibles made for those who had failing eyesight. German humanist Johann Cochlaeus complained that Luther's New Testament was so much multiplied and spread by printers that even tailors and shoemakers, yea, even women and ignorant persons who had accepted this new Lutheran gospel, and could read a little German, studied it with the greatest avidity as the fountain of all truth. Some committed it to memory, and carried it about in their bosom. In a few months such people deemed themselves so learned that they were not ashamed to dispute about faith and the gospel not only with Catholic laymen, but even with priests and monks and doctors of divinity." The spread of Luther's Bible translation had implications for the German language. The German language had developed into so many dialects that German speakers from different states could barely understand each other. This led Luther to conclude that I have so far read no book or letter in which the German language is properly handled. Nobody seems to care sufficiently for it; and every preacher thinks he has a right to change it at pleasure and to invent new terms." Scholars preferred to write in the Latin which they all understood. Luther popularized the Saxon dialect of German and adapted it for theology and religion; which subsequently made it the common literary language used in books. He enriched the vocabulary with that of German poets and chroniclers. For this accomplishment a contemporary of Luther's, Erasmus Alberus, labeled him the German Cicero, as he reformed not only religion but the German language also. Luther's Bible has been hailed as the first German 'classic', comparable to the English King James version of the Bible, which became one of the first English 'classics'. German-speaking Protestant writers and poets such as Klopstock, Herder and Lessing owe stylistic qualities to Luther's vernacular Bible. Luther adapted words to the capacity of the German public and through the pervasiveness of his German Bible created and spread the modern German language.


Luther's vernacular Bible also had a role in the creation of a German national identity. Because it penetrated every German-speaking Protestant home, the language of his translation became part of a German national heritage. Luther's program of exposure to the words of the Bible was extended into every sphere of daily life and work, illuminating moral considerations for Germans. It gradually became infused into the blood of the whole nation and occupied a permanent space in a German history. The popularity and influence of his translation gave Luther confidence to act as a spokesperson of a nation and as the leader of an anti-Roman movement throughout Germany. It made it possible for him to be a prophet of a new German national identity and helped form the spirit of a new epoch in German history. In a sense the vernacular Bible also empowered and liberated all Protestants who had access to it. The existence of the translation was a public affirmation of reform, such as might deprive any elite or priestly class of exclusive control over words, as well as over the word of God. Through the translation Luther was intending to make it easier for "simple people" to understand what he was teaching. In some major controversies of the time, even some evangelicals, let alone the commoners, did not understand the reasons for disagreement; and Luther wanted to help those who were confused to see that the disagreement between himself and the Roman Catholic Church was real and had significance. So translation of the Bible would allow the common people to become aware of the issues at hand and develop an informed opinion. The common individual would thus be given the right to have a mind, spirit and opinion, to exist not as an economic functionary but as subject to complex and conflicting aspirations and motives. In this sense, Luther's vernacular Bible acted as a force towards the liberation of the German people. The combination of Luther's social teachings and the vernacular Bible undoubtedly had a role in the slow emancipation of western European society from a long phase of clerical domination. Luther gave men a new vision of perhaps the exaltation of the human self. Luther's vernacular Bible broke the domination and unity of the Roman Catholic Church in Western Europe. He had claimed Holy Scripture to be the sole authority, and through his translation every individual would be able to abide by its authority, and might nullifying his or her need for a monarchical pope. As Bishop Fisher put it, Luther's Bible had stirred a mighty storm and tempest in the church empowering the no longer clerically dominated public. Although not as significantly as on German linguistics, Luther's Bible also made a large impression on educational reform throughout Germany. Luther's goal of a readable, accurate translation of the Bible became a stimulus towards universal education, since everyone should be able to read in order to understand the Bible. Luther believed that mankind had fallen from grace and was ruled by selfishness, but had not lost moral consciousness: all were sinners and needed to be educated. Thus his vernacular Bible could become a means of establishing a form of law, order and morality which everyone could abide by, if all could read and understand it. The possibility of understanding the vernacular Bible allowed Luther to found a State Church and educate his followers into a law-abiding community. The Protestant states of Germany became educational states, which encouraged the spirit of teaching which was ultimately fueled by Luther's vernacular Bible. Finally, Luther's translated Bible also had international significance in the spread of Christianity. Luther's translation influenced the English translations by William Tyndale and Myles Coverdale who in turn inspired many other translations of the Bible such as the Bishops' Bible of 1568, the

DouayRheims Bible of 15821609, and the King James Version of 1611. It also inspired translations as far as Scandinavia and the Netherlands. In a metaphor, it was Luther who 'broke the walls' of translation in western Europe and once such walls had fallen, the way was open to all, including some who were quite opposed to Luther's beliefs. Luther's Bible spread its influence for the remolding of Western European culture in the ferment of the sixteenth century. The worldwide implications of the translation far surpassed the expectations of even Luther himself. In the United States of America, the Luther Bible is still in use by the Amish, who are more fluent in German than English.

Partial translations of the Bible into languages of the English people can be traced back to the end of the 7th century, including translations into Old English and Middle English. More than 450 versions have been created over time. Although John Wycliffe is often credited with the first translation of the Bible into English, there were, in fact, many translations of large parts of the Bible centuries before Wycliffe's work. The English Bible was first translated from the Latin Vulgate into Old English by a few select monks and scholars. Such translations were generally in the form of prose or as interlinear glosses (literal translations above the Latin words). Very few complete translations existed during that time. Rather, most of the books of the Bible existed separately and were read as individual texts. Thus, the sense of the Bible as history that often exists today did not exist at that time. Instead, an allegorical rendering of the Bible was more common] and translations of the Bible often included the writers own commentary on passages in addition to the literal translation. Toward the end of the 7th century, the Venerable Bede began a translation of scripture into Old English (also called Anglo-Saxon). Aldhelm (c. 639709) translated the complete Book of Psalms and large portions of other scriptures into Old English. In the 10th century an Old English translation of the Gospels was made in the Lindisfarne Gospels: a word-for-word gloss inserted between the lines of the Latin text by Aldred, Provost of Chester-le-Street. This is the oldest extant translation of the Gospels into the English language. The Wessex Gospels (also known as the West-Saxon Gospels) are a full translation of the four gospels into a West Saxon dialect of Old English. Produced in approximately 990, they are the first translation of all four gospels into English without the Latin text. In the 11th century, Abbot lfric translated much of the Old Testament into Old English. The Old English Hexateuch is an illuminated manuscript of the first six books of the Old Testament without lavish illustrations and including a translation of the Book of Judges in addition to the 5 books of the Pentateuch.


Middle English Bible translations

The Ormulum is in Middle English of the 12th century. Like its Old English precursor from lfric, an Abbot of Eynsham, it includes very little Biblical text, and focuses more on personal commentary. This style was adopted by many of the original English translators. For example the story of the Wedding at Cana is almost 800 lines long, but fewer than 40 lines are the actual translation of the text. An unusual characteristic is that the translation mimics Latin verse, and so is similar to the better known and appreciated 14th century English poem, Cursor Mundi. Richard Rolle (12901349) wrote an English Psalter. Many religious works are attributed to Rolle, but it has been questioned how many are genuinely from his hand. Many of his works were concerned with personal devotion, and some were used by the Lollards. The 14th century theologian John Wycliffe is credited with translating what is now known as Wyclif's Bible, though it is not clear how much of the translation he himself did. This translation came out in two different versions. The earlier text is characterised by a strong adherence to the word order of Latin, and might have been difficult for the layperson to comprehend. The later text made more concessions to the native grammar of English.
Early Modern English Bible translations

Early Modern English Bible translations are those translations of the Bible which were made between about 1500 and 1800, the period of Early Modern English. This was the first major period of Bible translation into the English language. It began with the dramatic introduction of the Tyndale Bible. The early 16th century Tyndale Bible differs from the others since Tyndale used the Greek and Hebrew texts of the New Testament (NT) and Old Testament (OT) in addition to Jeromes Latin translation. Tyndale is also unique in that he was the first of the Middle English translators to use the printing press to help distribute several thousand copies of this translation throughout England. This period continued with the introduction of the first "authorised version", known as the Great Bible (1539); the Geneva Bible (1560), notable for being the first Bible divided into verses; and the Bishop's Bible (1568), which was an attempt by Elizabeth I to create a new authorised version. It concluded with the release of the DouayRheims Bible (NT in 1582, OT during 1609-1610), and the landmark Authorized King James Version of 1611. The Douay-Rheims Bible was the first complete Roman Catholic Bible in English. It is called Douay-Rheims because the New Testament portion was first completed in Rheims, France, in 1582, followed by the Old Testament, finished in 1609-1610 in Douay (or Douai), France. In this version, the 7 Deuterocanonical books are mingled with the other books, rather than kept separate in an appendix. Early English Bibles were generally based on Greek texts or Latin translations. Modern English translations of the Bible are based on a wider variety of manuscripts in the original languages (Greek and Hebrew). The translators put much scholarly effort into cross-checking the various sources such as the Septuagint, Textus Receptus, and Masoretic Text. Relatively recent discoveries such as the Dead Sea scrolls provide additional reference information. There is some

controversy over which texts should be used as a basis for translation, as some of the alternate sources do not include phrases (or sometimes entire verses) which are found only in the Textus Receptus. Some say the alternate sources were poorly representative of the texts used in their time, whereas others claim the Textus Receptus includes passages that were added to the alternate texts improperly. These controversial passages are not the basis for disputed issues of doctrine, but tend to be additional stories or snippets of phrases. Many modern English translations, such as the New International Version, contain limited text notes indicating where differences occur in original sources.[4] A somewhat greater number of textual differences are noted in the New King James Bible, indicating hundreds of New Testament differences between the Nestle-Aland, the Textus Receptus, and the Hodges edition of the Majority Text. The differences in the Old Testament are less well documented, but do contain some references to differences between consonantal interpretations in the Masoretic Text, the Dead Sea Scrolls, and the Septuagint. Even with these hundreds of differences, however, a more complete listing is beyond the scope of most single volume Bibles (see Critical Translations below). Modern translations take different approaches to the rendering of the original languages of approaches. The approaches can usually be considered to be somewhere on a scale between the two extremes:

Formal equivalence translation (sometimes literal translation or formal correspondence) in which the greatest effort is made to preserve the meaning of individual words and phrases in the original, without regard for its understandability by modern readers. Dynamic equivalence, sometimes called Paraphrastic translation, in which the translator attempts to render the sense and intent of the original. Examples of these versions include The Living Bible and The Message.

Origen (pron.: /rdn/; Greek: rigns), or Origen Adamantius (184/185 253/254), was a scholar, early Christian theologian and Church Father, who was born and spent the first half of his career in Alexandria. He was a prolific writer in multiple branches of theology, including textual criticism, biblical exegesis and hermeneutics, philosophical theology, preaching, and spirituality. Some of his reputed teachings, such as the pre-existence of souls, the final reconciliation of all creatures, including perhaps even the devil (the apokatastasis), and the subordination of the Son of God to God the Father, later became controversial among Christian theologians. A later group of Egyptian monks who came to be known as Origenists, and who believed in the preexistence of souls and the apokatastasis, were declared anathema in 553 AD. This condemnation is attributed to the Second Ecumenical Council of Constantinople, though it does not appear in the council's official minutes. For this reason Origen was and is not called a "saint" in either the Catholic or Orthodox churches. Origen was born in Alexandria to Christian parents. He was educated by his father, Leonides of Alexandria, who gave him a standard Hellenistic education, but also had him study the Christian Scriptures. The name of his mother is unknown.

In 202, Origen's father was martyred in the outbreak of the persecution during the reign of Septimius Severus. A story reported by Eusebius has it that Origen wished to follow him in martyrdom, but was prevented only by his mother hiding his clothes. The death of Leonides left the family of nine impoverished when their property was confiscated. Origen, however, was taken under the protection of a woman of wealth and standing; but as her household already included a heretic named Paul, the strictly orthodox Origen seems to have remained with her only a short time.

Origen allegedly studied under Clement of Alexandria and was influenced by his thought. Eusebius, our chief witness to Origen's life, says that in 203 Origen revived the Catechetical School of Alexandria where Clement of Alexandria had once taught but had apparently been driven out during the persecution under Severus. Many modern scholars, however, doubt that Clement's school had been an official ecclesiastical institution as Origen's was and thus deny continuity between the two. But the persecution still raged, and the young teacher visited imprisoned Christians, attended the courts, and comforted the condemned, himself preserved from persecution because the persecution was probably limited only to converts to Christianity. His fame and the number of his pupils increased rapidly, so that Bishop Demetrius of Alexandria, made him restrict himself to instruction in Christian doctrine alone.

Asceticism and Castration

Origen, to be entirely independent, sold his library for a sum which netted him a daily income of 4 obols, on which he lived by exercising the utmost frugality. Teaching throughout the day, he devoted the greater part of the night to the study of the Bible and lived a life of rigid asceticism. Eusebius reported that Origen, following Matthew 19:12 literally, castrated himself. This story was accepted during the Middle Ages and was cited by Peter Abelard in his letters to Heloise. Edward Gibbon, in his work The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, also accepts this story as true. During the past century, scholars have often questioned this, surmising that this may have been a rumor circulated by his detractors. Henry Chadwick points out that, while the story may be true, it seems unlikely, given that Origen's exposition of Matthew 19:12 "strongly deplored any literal interpretation of the words". However, many noted historians, such


as Peter Brown and William Placher, continue to find no reason to deny the truth of Eusebius' claims.

During the reign of emperor Caracalla, about 211-212, Origen paid a brief visit to Rome, but the relative laxity during the pontificate of Zephyrinus seems to have disillusioned him, and on his return to Alexandria he resumed his teaching with zeal increased by the contrast. But the school had far outgrown the strength of a single man; the catechumens pressed eagerly for elementary instruction, and the baptized sought for interpretation of the Bible. Under these circumstances, Origen entrusted the teaching of the catechumens to Heraclas, the brother of the martyr Plutarch, his first pupil. His own interests became more and more centered in exegesis, and he accordingly studied Hebrew, though there is no certain knowledge concerning his instructor in that language. From about this period (212-213) dates Origen's acquaintance with Ambrose of Alexandria, whom he was instrumental in converting from Valentinianism to orthodoxy. Later (about 218) Ambrose, a man of wealth, made a formal agreement with Origen to promulgate his writings, and all the subsequent works of Origen (except his sermons, which were not expressly prepared for publication) were dedicated to Ambrose. In 213 or 214, Origen visited Arabia at the request of the prefect, who wished to have an interview with him; and Origen accordingly spent a brief time in Petra, after which he returned to Alexandria. In the following year, a popular uprising at Alexandria caused Caracalla to let his soldiers plunder the city, shut the schools, and expel all foreigners. The latter measure caused Ambrose to take refuge in Caesarea, where he seems to have made his permanent home; and Origen left Egypt, apparently going with Ambrose to Caesarea, where he spent some time. Here, in conformity with local usage based on Jewish custom, Origen, though not ordained, preached and interpreted the Scriptures at the request of the bishops Alexander of Jerusalem and Theoctistus of Caesarea. When, however, the confusion in Alexandria subsided, Demetrius recalled Origen, probably in 216. Of Origen's activity during the next decade little is known, but it was probably devoted to teaching and writing. The latter was rendered the more easy for him by Ambrose, who provided him with more than seven stenographers to take dictation in relays, as many scribes to prepare long-hand copies, and a number of girls to multiply the copies. At the request of Ambrose, he now began a huge commentary on the Bible, beginning with John, and continuing with Genesis, Psalms 1-25, and Lamentations, besides brief exegeses of selected texts (forming the ten books of his Stromateis), two books on the resurrection, and the work On First Principles.

Conflict with Demetrius and removal to Caesarea

Demetrius, the bishop of Alexandria, at first supported Origen but later opposed him, disputing his ordination in another diocese (Caesarea Maritima in Palestine).[16] This ecclesiastical turmoil eventually caused Origen to relocate to Caesarea, a move which he characterized as divine deliverance from Egypt akin to that the ancient Hebrews received. About 230, Origen entered on

the fateful journey which was to compel him to give up his work at Alexandria and embittered the next years of his life. Sent to Greece on some ecclesiastical mission, he paid a visit to Caesarea, where he was heartily welcomed and was ordained a priest, that no further cause for criticism might be given Demetrius, who had strongly disapproved his preaching before ordination while at Caesarea. But Demetrius, taking this well-meant act as an infringement of his rights, was furious, for not only was Origen under his jurisdiction as bishop of Alexandria, but, if Eastern sources may be believed, Demetrius had been the first to introduce episcopal ordination in Egypt. The metropolitan accordingly convened a synod of bishops and presbyters which banished Origen from Alexandria, while a second synod declared his ordination invalid. Origen accordingly fled from Alexandria in 231-2, and made his permanent home in Caesarea in Palestine, where his friend Theoctistus was bishop. A series of attacks on him seems to have emanated from Alexandria, whether for his self-castration (a capital crime in Roman law) or for alleged heterodoxy is unknown; but at all events these fulminations were heeded only at Rome, while Palestine, Phoenicia, Arabia, and Achaia paid no attention to them. At Alexandria, Heraclas became head of Origen's school, and shortly afterward, on the death of Demetrius, was consecrated bishop. During this time at Caesarea in Palestine (232-5), he resumed work on the Commentary on John, composing at least books 6-10, wrote the treatise On Prayer, and, some time in the first half of the year 235, composed his Exhortation to Martyrdom. Approximately three years after his arrival in Caesarea in Palestine, Origen's life as a scholar was again interrupted by the persecution of Maximinus Thrax(AD235-8). He took refuge at Caesarea in Cappadocia. At Caesarea, Origen was joyfully received, was the guest of Firmilian, bishop of Caesarea in Cappadocia, and perhaps also of the empress-dowager Julia Avita Mamaea. After the death of Maximinus, Origen resumed his life in Caesarea of Palestine. Little is known of the last twenty years of Origen's life. He founded a school where Gregory Thaumaturgus, later bishop of Pontus, was one of the pupils. He preached regularly on Wednesdays and Fridays, and later daily. He taught dialectics, physics, ethics, and metaphysics. He evidently, however, developed an extraordinary literary productivity, broken by occasional journeys; one of which, to Athens during some unknown year, was of sufficient length to allow him time for research. After his return from Athens, he succeeded in converting Beryllus, bishop of Bostra, from his adoptionistic (i.e., belief that Jesus was born human and only became divine after his baptism) views to the orthodox faith; yet in these very years (about 240) probably occurred the attacks on Origen's own orthodoxy which compelled him to defend himself in writing to Pope Fabian and many bishops. Neither the source nor the object of these attacks is known, though the latter may have been connected with Novatianism (a strict refusal to accept Christians who had denied their faith under persecution). After his conversion of Beryllus, however, his aid was frequently invoked against heresies. Thus, when the doctrine was promulgated in Arabia that the soul died and decayed with the body, being restored to life only at the resurrection (see soul sleep), appeal was made to Origen, who journeyed to Arabia, and successfully battled this doctrine.


There was second outbreak of the Antonine Plague, which at its height in 251 to 266 took the lives of 5,000 a day in Rome. This time it was called the Plague of Cyprian. Emperor Decius, believing the plague to be a product of magic, caused by the failure of Christians to recognize him as Divine, began Christian persecutions. This time Origen did not escape the Decian persecution. Eusebius recounted how Origen suffered "bodily tortures and torments under the iron collar and in the dungeon; and how for many days with his feet stretched four spaces in the stocks" Though he did not die while being tortured, he died three years later due to injuries sustained at the age of 69. A later legend, recounted by Jerome and numerous itineraries, places his death and burial at Tyre, but to this little value can be attached. Origen excelled in multiple branches of theological scholarship. For instance, he was the greatest textual critic of the early Church, directing the production of the massive Hexapla ("Sixfold"), an Old Testament in six columns: Hebrew, Hebrew in Greek characters, the Septuagint, and the Greek versions of Theodotion, Aquila of Sinope, and Symmachus. He was one of the greatest biblical scholars of the early Church, having written commentaries on most of the books of the Bible, though few are extant. He interpreted scripture both literally and allegorically. Origen was largely responsible for the collection of usage information regarding the texts which became the New Testament. The information used to create the late-fourth-century Easter Letter, which declared accepted Christian writings, was probably based on the Ecclesiastical History [HE] of Eusebius of Caesarea, wherein he uses the information passed on to him by Origen to create both his list at HE 3:25 and Origens list at HE 6:25. Eusebius got his information about what texts were accepted by the third-century churches throughout the known world, a great deal of which Origen knew of firsthand from his extensive travels, from the library and writings of Origen. In fact, Origen would have possibly included in his list of inspired writings other texts which were kept out by the likes of Eusebius, including the Epistle of Barnabas, Shepherd of Hermas, and 1 Clement. "Origen is not the originator of the idea of biblical canon, but he certainly gives the philosophical and literary-interpretative underpinnings for the whole notion." As a theologian, in De principiis (On First Principles), he articulated one of the first philosophical expositions of Christian doctrine. Having been educated in classical and philosophical studies, some of his teachings were influenced by and engaged with aspects of Neo-Pythagorean, NeoPlatonist, and other strains of contemporary philosophical thought. An ordained priest in Palestine, he has left posterity numerous homilies on various books of the Bible. Finally, he has also been regarded as a spiritual master for such works as An Exhortation to Martyrdom and On Prayer. In 2012, 29 unpublished homilies by Origen were discovered in the Bavarian State Library.

Exegetical writings
According to Epiphanius, Origen wrote about 6,000 works (i.e., rolls or chapters). A list was given by Eusebius in his lost Life of Pamphilus, which was apparently known to Jerome. These fall into four classes: textual criticism; exegesis; systematic, practical, and apologetic theology; and letters; besides certain spurious works. By far the most important work of Origen on textual criticism was the Hexapla, a comparative study of various translations of the Old Testament.

The full text of the Hexapla is no longer extant. Some portions were discovered in Milan indicating that at least some individual parts existed much longer than was previously thought. The Hexapla has been referred to by later manuscripts and authors, and represented the precursor to the parallel bible. The Tetrapla was an abbreviation of the Hexapla in which Origen placed only the translations (Aquila, Symmachus, Theodotion, and the Septuagint) in parallels. He was likewise keenly conscious of the textual difficulties in the manuscripts of the New Testament, although he never wrote definitely on this subject. In his exegetical writings he frequently alludes to the variant readings, but his habit of making rough citations in his dictation, the verification being left to the scribes, renders it impossible to deduce his text from his commentaries. Eusebius in Ecclesiastical History 6.25.7 strongly implies Origen disputed the authenticity of the Letters of Paul when he wrote that Paul did not write to all the churches that he taught and even to the ones he wrote he only sent a few lines. However, Origen's own writings refer often to the words of Paul. The exegetical writings of Origen fall into three classes:

scholia, or brief summaries of the meaning of difficult passages homilies "books", or commentaries in the strict sense of the term.

Jerome states that there were scholia on Leviticus, Psalms i.-xv., Ecclesiastes, Isaiah, and part of John. The Stromateis were of a similar character, and the margin of Codex Athous Laura, 184, contains citations from this work on Rom. 9:23; I Cor. 6:14, 7:31, 34, 9:20-21, 10:9, besides a few other fragments. Homilies on almost the entire Bible were prepared by Origen. There are 205, and possibly 279, homilies of Origen that are extant either in Greek or in Latin translations. The homilies preserved are on Genesis (16), Exodus (13), Leviticus (16), Numbers (28), Joshua (26), Judges (9), I Sam. (2), Psalms 36-38 (9), Canticles (2), Isaiah (9), Jeremiah (7 Greek, 2 Latin, 12 Greek and Latin), Ezekiel (14), and Luke (39). The homilies were preached in the church at Caesarea, with the exception of the two on 1 Samuel which were delivered in Jerusalem. Nautin has argued that they were all preached in a three-year liturgical cycle some time between 238 and 244, preceding the Commentary on the Song of Songs, where Origen refers to homilies on Judges, Exodus, Numbers, and a work on Leviticus. It is not improbable that Origen gave no attention to supervising the publication of his homilies, for only by such a hypothesis can the numerous evidences of carelessness in diction be explained. The exegesis of the homilies was simpler than that of the scientific commentaries, but nevertheless demanded no mean degree of intelligence from the auditor. Origen's chief aim was the practical exposition of the text, verse by verse; and while in such barren books as Leviticus and Numbers he sought to allegorize, the wealth of material in the prophets seldom rendered it necessary for him to seek meanings deeper than the surface afforded.


On June 11, 2012, the Bavarian National Library announced the discovery by philologist Marina Molin Pradel of unknown original texts of homilies by Origenes in a twelfth-century Greek manuscript. The attribution to Origen has been confirmed by experts like Prof. Lorenzo Perrone of the Bologna University.

Extant commentaries of Origen

The object of Origen's commentaries was to give an exegesis that discriminated strictly against historical significance, in favour of a "hidden" spiritual truth. At the same time, he neglected neither philological nor geographical, historical nor antiquarian material, to all of which he devoted numerous excursuses. In his commentary on John he constantly considered the exegesis of the Valentinian Heracleon (probably at the insistence of Ambrose), and in many other places he implied or expressly cited Gnostic views and refuted them. Unfortunately, only meagre fragments of the commentaries have survived. Three commentaries on New Testament books survive in large measure. Of the 32 books in the Commentary on John, only nine have been preserved. The Commentary on Romans is extant only in the abbreviated Latin translation of Rufinus, though some Greek fragments also exist. The eight books preserved of the Commentary on Matthew (Books 10-17) cover Matthew 13.36-22.33. There also exists a Latin translation of the commentary by an unknown translator which covers Matthew 16.1327.66 One commentary on a book of the Old Testament, the Commentary on the Song of Songs, has also been preserved in part, in a Latin translation of Rufinus. Fragments of some other commentaries survive. Citations in Origen's Philocalia include fragments of the third book of the commentary on Genesis. There is also Ps. i, iv.1, the small commentary on Canticles, and the second book of the large commentary on the same, the twentieth book of the commentary on Ezekiel, and the commentary on Hosea. Of the non-extant commentaries, there is limited evidence of their arrangement.

Dogmatic, practical, and apologetic writings

Study of On First Principles has occupied centre stage in studies of Origen since the fourth century. It is perhaps written for his more advanced pupils at Alexandria and probably composed between 212 and 215. It is extant only in the free translation of Rufinus of 397, except for fragments (books 3.1 and 4.1-3) preserved in Origen's Philocalia, and smaller citations in Justinian's letter to Mennas. In the first book the author considers God, the Logos, the Holy Ghost, reason, and the angels; in the second the world and man (including the incarnation of the Logos, the soul, free will, and eschatology); in the third, the doctrine of sin and redemption; and in the fourth, the Scriptures;

the whole being concluded with a rsum of the entire system. The work is noteworthy as the first endeavor to present Christianity as a complete theory of the universe, and was designed to remove the difficulties felt by many Christians concerning the essential basis of their faith. Between 232-235, while in Caesarea in Palestine, Origen wrote On Prayer. This is preserved entire in Greek. After an introduction on the object, necessity, and advantage of prayer, ends with an exegesis of the Lord's Prayer, concluding with remarks on the position, place, and attitude to be assumed during prayer, as well as on the classes of prayer. On Martyrdom, or the Exhortation to Martyrdom, also preserved entire in Greek, was written some time after the beginning of the persecution of Maximinus in the first half of 235. In it, Origen warns against any trifling with idolatry and emphasizes the duty of suffering martyrdom manfully; while in the second part he explains the meaning of martyrdom. Against Celsus, preserved entire in Greek, was Origen's last treatise, written about 248. Ambrose had requested that Origen provide an answer to a book entitled The True Doctrine which attacked Christianity, and had been written some time in the second century by an unknown Middle Platonic philosopher named Celsus. In Against Celsus, Origen drew freely on the Greek philosophers and poets as well as the Bible to provide a rational basis for holding the Christian faith. The papyri discovered at Tura in 1941 contained the Greek text of two previously unknown works of Origen. Neither work can be dated precisely, though both were probably written after the persecution of Maximinus in 235. One is On the Pascha. The other is Dialogue of Origen with Heraclides and the Bishops with him concerning the Father and the Son and the soul. Lost works include two books on the resurrection, written before On First Principles, and also two dialogues on the same theme dedicated to Ambrose. Eusebius had a collection of more than one hundred letters of Origen, and the list of Jerome speaks of several books of his epistles. Except for a few fragments, only three letters have been preserved. The first, partly preserved in the Latin translation of Rufinus, is addressed to friends in Alexandria. The second is a short letter to Gregory Thaumaturgus, preserved in the Philocalia. The third is an epistle to Sextus Julius Africanus, extant in Greek, replying to a letter from Africanus (also extant), and defending the authenticity of the Greek additions to the book of Daniel. Forgeries of the writings of Origen made in his lifetime are discussed by Rufinus in De adulteratione librorum Origenis. The Dialogus de recta in Deum fide, the Philosophumena of Hippolytus of Rome, and the Commentary on Job by Julian of Halicarnassus have also been ascribed to him. Origen, allegedly trained in the school of Clement and by his father, has long been considered essentially a Platonist with occasional traces of Stoic philosophy. Patristic scholar Mark J Edwards has argued that many of Origen's positions are more properly Aristotelian than strictly Platonic (for instance, his philosophical anthropology). Nonetheless, he was thus a pronounced

idealist, as one regarding all things temporal and material as insignificant and indifferent, the only real and eternal things being comprised in the idea. He therefore regards as the purely ideal center of this spiritual and eternal world, God, the pure reason, whose creative powers call into being the world with matter as the necessary substratum. Origen's cosmology is complicated and controverted, but he seems to have held to a hypothesis of the preexistence of souls, before the world we know was created by God, God created a great number of spiritual intelligences. At first devoted to the contemplation and love of their creator, almost all of these intelligences eventually grew bored of contemplating God, their love for him cooling off. Those whose love for God diminished the most became demons. Those whose love diminished moderately became human souls, eventually to be incarnated in fleshly bodies. Those whose love diminished the least became angels. One, however, who remained perfectly devoted to God became, through love, one with the Word (Logos) of God. The Logos eventually took flesh and was born of the Virgin Mary, becoming the God-man Jesus Christ. The diverse conditions in which human beings are born is actually dependent upon what their souls did in this pre-existent state. Thus what seems unfair, some being born poor and others wealthy, some sick and others healthy, and so forth, is, Origen insists, actually in a by-product of the free-will of souls. Thus, material creation is at least implicitly of a lesser ontological category than the immaterial, or spiritual, and the heavy material bodies that man assumes after the fall will eventually be cast off. Origen, however, still insisted on a bodily resurrection, but in contrast to Athenagoras, who believed that earthly bodies would be precisely reconstituted in the hereafter, Origen argued that Paul's notion of a flourishing spiritual body is more appropriate. He was, indeed, a rigid adherent of the Bible, making no statement without adducing some Scriptural basis. To him the Bible was divinely inspired, as was proved both by the fulfilment of prophecy and by the immediate impression which the Scriptures made on those who read them. Since the divine Logos spoke in the Scriptures, they were an organic whole and on every occasion he combatted the Gnostic tenet of the inferiority of the Old Testament. In his exegesis, Origen sought to discover the deeper meaning implied in the Scriptures. One of his chief methods was the translation of proper names, which enabled him, like Philo, to find a deep meaning even in every event of history (see hermeneutics), but at the same time he insisted on an exact grammatical interpretation of the text as the basis of all exegesis. A strict adherent of the Church, Origen yet distinguished sharply between the ideal and the empirical Church, representing "a double church of men and angels", or, in Platonic phraseology, the lower church and its celestial ideal. The ideal Church alone was the Church of Christ, scattered over all the earth; the other provided also a shelter for sinners. Holding that the Church, as being in possession of the mysteries, affords the only means of salvation, he was indifferent to her external organization, although he spoke sometimes of the office-bearers as the pillars of the Church, and of their heavy duties and responsibilities. More important to him was the idea borrowed from Plato of the grand division between the great human multitude, capable of sensual vision only, and those who know how to comprehend the hidden meaning of Scripture and the diverse mysteries, church organization being for the former only.

It is doubtful whether Origen possessed an obligatory creed; at any rate, such a confession of faith was not a norm like the inspired word of Scripture. The reason, illumined by the divine Logos, which is able to search the secret depths of the divine nature, remains as the only source of knowledge.

Theological and dogmatic

Origen's conception of God is apophaticGod is a perfect unity, invisible and incorporeal, transcending all things material, and therefore inconceivable and incomprehensible. He is likewise unchangeable, and transcends space and time. But his power is limited by his goodness, justice, and wisdom; and, though entirely free from necessity, his goodness and omnipotence constrained him to reveal himself. This revelation, the external self-emanation of God, is expressed by Origen in various ways, the Logos being only one of many. Revelation was the first creation of God (cf. Prov. viii. 22), in order to afford creative mediation between God and the world, such mediation being necessary, because God, as changeless unity, could not be the source of a multitudinous creation. The Logos is the rational creative principle that permeates the universe. Since God eternally manifests himself, the Logos is likewise eternal. He forms a bridge between the created and uncreated, and only through him, as the visible representative of divine wisdom, can the inconceivable and incorporeal God be known. Creation came into existence only through the Logos, and God's nearest approach to the world is the command to create. While the Logos is substantially a unity, he comprehends a multiplicity of concepts, so that Origen terms him, in Platonic fashion, "essence of essences" and "idea of ideas". The defense of the unity of God against the Gnostics led Origen to maintain the subordination of the Logos to God, and the doctrine of the eternal generation is later. Origen distinctly emphasised the independence of the Logos as well as the distinction from the being and substance of God. The term "of the same substance with the Father" was not employed. The Logos (and the Holy Spirit also) however, does share in the divinity of God. He is an image, a reflex of God, in which God communicates his divinity, as light radiating from the sun.

The Logos doctrine and cosmology

The activity of the Logos was conceived by Origen in Platonic fashion, as the world soul, wherein God manifested his omnipotence. His first creative act was the divine spirit, as an independent existence; and partial reflexes of the Logos were the created rational beings, who, as they had to revert to the perfect God as their background, must likewise be perfect; yet their perfection, unlike in kind with that of God, the Logos, and the divine spirit, had to be attained. The freedom of the will is an essential fact of the reason, notwithstanding the foreknowledge of God. The Logos, eternally creative, forms an endless series of finite, comprehensible worlds,

which are mutually alternative. Combining the Stoic doctrine of a universe without beginning with the Biblical doctrine of the beginning and the end of the world, he conceived of the visible world as the stages of an eternal cosmic process, affording also an explanation of the diversity of human fortunes, rewards, and punishments. The material world, which at first had no place in this eternal spiritual progression, was due to the fall of the spirits from God, the first being the serpent, who was imprisoned in matter and body. The ultimate aim of God in the creation of matter out of nothing was not punishment, but the upraising of the fallen spirits. Man's accidental being is rooted in transitory matter, but his higher nature is formed in the image of the Creator. The soul is divided into the rational and the irrational, the latter being material and transitory, while the former, incorporeal and immaterial, possesses freedom of the will and the power to reascend to purer life. The strong ethical import of this cosmic process can not remain unnoticed. The return to original being through divine reason is the object of the entire cosmic process. Through the worlds which follow each other in eternal succession, the spirits are able to return to Paradise. God so ordered the universe that all individual acts work together toward one cosmic end which culminates in himself. Likewise as to Origen's anthropology, man conceived in the image of God is able by imitating God in good works to become like God, if he first recognizes his own weakness and trusts all to the divine goodness. He is aided by guardian angels, but more especially by the Logos who operates through saints and prophets in proportion to the constitution of these and man's capacity.

The culmination of this gradual revelation is the universal revelation of Christ. In Christ, God, hitherto manifest only as the Lord, appeared as the Father. The incarnation of the Logos, moreover, was necessary since otherwise he would not be intelligible to sensual man; but the indwelling of the Logos remained a mystery, which could be represented only by the analogy of his indwelling in the saints; nor could Origen fully explain it. He speaks of a "remarkable body", and in his opinion that the mortal body of Jesus was transformed by God into an ethereal and divine body, Origen approximated the Docetism that he otherwise abhorred. His concept of the soul of Jesus is likewise uncertain and wavering. He proposes the question whether it was not originally perfect with God but, emanating from him, at his command assumed a material body. As he conceived matter as merely the universal limit of created spirits, so would it be impossible to state in what form the two were combined. He dismissed the solution by referring it to the mystery of the divine governance of the universe. More logically did he declare the material nature of the world to be merely an episode in the spiritual process of development, whose end should be the annihilation of all matter and return to God, who should again be all in all. The doctrine of the resurrection of the body he upholds by the explanation that the Logos maintains the unity of man's existence by ever changing his body into new forms, thus preserving the unity and identity of personality in harmony with the tenet of an endless cosmic process. Origen's concept of the Logos allowed him to make no definite statement on the redemptive work of Jesus. Since sin was ultimately only negative as a lack of pure knowledge, the activity of Jesus was essentially example and instruction, and his human life was only incidental as contrasted with the immanent cosmic activity of the Logos. Origen regarded the death of Jesus as a sacrifice, paralleling it with other cases of self-sacrifice for the general good. On this, Origen's accord with the teachings of the Church was merely superficial.


His idealizing tendency to consider the spiritual alone as real, fundamental to his entire system, led him to combat the "rude" or "crude" Chiliasm (see Christian eschatology) of a sensual beyond. His position on the literal resurrection of physical bodies is difficult, but in both the Contra Celsum and On First Principles, Origen affirms some form of bodily resurrection, but eschews the notion that earthly bodies will be raised, on account of their gross materiality. Yet he constrained himself from breaking entirely with the distinct celestial hopes and representations of Paradise prevalent in the Church. He represents a progressive purification of souls, until, cleansed of all clouds of evil, they should know the truth and God as the Son knew him, see God face to face, and attain a full possession of the Holy Spirit and union with God. The means of attainment of this end were described by Origen in different ways, the most important of which was his concept of a purifying fire which should cleanse the world of evil and thus lead to cosmic renovation. By a further spiritualization Origen could call God himself this consuming fire. In proportion as the souls were freed from sin and ignorance, the material world was to pass away, until, after endless eons, at the final end, God should be all in all, and the worlds and spirits should return to a knowledge of God; in Greek this is called Apokatastasis.

In Origen the Christian Church had its first theologian. His teaching was not merely theoretical, but was also imbued with an intense ethical power. To the multitude to whom his instruction was beyond grasp, he left mediating images and symbols, as well as the final goal of attainment. In Origen Christianity blended with the pagan philosophy in which lived the desire for truth and the longing after God. Origen had many admirers and followers, one in particular, Dionysius of Alexandria, who caused controversy throughout Libya in 259 due to his theology in regards to the unity of the trinity. Three centuries later his very name was stricken from the books of the Church; yet in the monasteries of the Greeks his influence still lived on, as the spiritual father of Greek monasticism.

Origen's influence on the later church

Anathemas (544, 553)

Origen and a form of apocatastasis were condemned at the Synod of Constantinople (543) by the Patriarch Mennas of Constantinople and the condemnation was ratified in 553 by the Fifth Ecumenical Council. Many heteroclite views became associated with Origen, and the 15 anathemas attributed to the council condemn a form of apocatastasis along with the pre-existence of the soul, animism (a heterodox Christology), and a denial of real and lasting resurrection of the body. Some authorities believe these anathemas belong to an earlier local synod. The anathema against him in his person, declaring him (among others) a heretic, reads as follows:
If anyone does not anathematize Arius, Eunomius, Macedonius, Apollinaris, Nestorius, Eutyches and Origen, as well as their impious writings, as also all other heretics already condemned and anathematized by the Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church, and by the aforesaid four Holy Synods 83

and [if anyone does not equally anathematize] all those who have held and hold or who in their impiety persist in holding to the end the same opinion as those heretics just mentioned: let him be anathema.

As a result of this condemnation, the writings of Origen supporting his teachings in these areas were destroyed. They were either outright destroyed, or they were translated with the appropriate adjustments to eliminate conflict with orthodox Christian doctrine. Therefore, little direct evidence remains to fully confirm or disprove Origens support of the nine points of anathema against him. The Fifth Ecumenical Council addressed what was called "The Three Chapters"[58] and was against a form of Origenism which truly had nothing to do with Origen and Origenist views. In fact, Popes Vigilius, Pelagius I (556-61), Pelagius II (579-90), and Gregory the Great (590-604) were only aware the Fifth Council specifically dealt with the Three Chapters and make no mention of Origenism or Universalism, nor spoke as if they knew of its condemnation even though Gregory the Great was opposed to the belief of universalism. The Emperor Justinian denied apocatastasis.

Origen in the 1970s

The book Reincarnation in Christianity, by the theosophist Geddes MacGregor (1978) asserted that Origen believed in reincarnation. MacGregor is convinced that Origen believed in and taught about reincarnation but that his texts written about the subject have been destroyed. He admits that there is no extant proof for that position. The allegation was also repeated by Shirley MacLaine in her book Out On a Limb. Whether or not Origen believed in reincarnation is a contentious subject. He wrote about the Greeks' transmigration of the soul, with which he did not agree. This can be confirmed from the extant writings of Origen. He was cognizant of the concept of transmigration (metensomatosis transformation, and loses what it once was, the human soul will not be what it was ) from Greek philosophy, but it is repeatedly stated that this concept is not a part of the Christian teaching or scripture. In his Comment on the Gospel of Matthew, which stems from a 6th-century Latin translation, it is written: "In this place [when Jesus said Elijah was come and referred to John the Baptist] it does not appear to me that by Elijah the soul is spoken of, lest I fall into the doctrine of transmigration, which is foreign to the Church of God, and not handed down by the apostles, nor anywhere set forth in the scriptures" (ibid., 13:1:4653). Conversely, in Against Celsus, Origen says: . . . .but we know that the soul, which is immaterial and invisible in its nature, exists in no material place, without having a body suited to the nature of that place. Accordingly, it at one time puts off one body which was necessary before, but which is no longer adequate in its changed state, and it exchanges it for a second; and at another time it assumes another in addition to the former, which is needed as a better covering, suited to the purer ethereal regions of heaven. When it comes into the world at birth, it casts off the integuments which it needed in the womb; and before doing this, it puts on another body suited for its life upon earth.

Origen is regarded as a Church Father, but not a Saint. His thought on the Old Testament was an important link in the development of the medieval system of typology.

Hexapla (: Gr. for "sixfold") is the term for an edition of the Bible in six versions. Especially it applies to the edition of the Old Testament compiled by Origen of Alexandria, which placed side by side: 1. 2. 3. 4. Hebrew Secunda Hebrew transliterated into Greek characters Aquila of Sinope Symmachus the Ebionite


5. A recension of the Septuagint, with (1) interpolations to indicate where the Hebrew is not represented in the Septuagintthese are taken mainly from Theodotion's text and marked with asterisks, and (2) indications, using signs called obeloi (singular: obelus), of where words, phrases, or occasionally larger sections in the Septuagint do not reflect any underlying Hebrew. 6. Theodotion Origen's eclectic recension of the Septuagint had a significant influence on the Old Testament text in several important manuscripts, such as the Codex Sinaiticus. The original work, which is said to have had about 6000 pages in 50 volumes and which probably only ever existed in a single complete copy, seems to have been stored in the library of the bishops of Caesarea for some centuries, but it was destroyed during the Muslim invasion of the year 638 at the latest. The subsisting fragments of partial copies have been collected in several editions, for example that of Frederick Field (1875). The fragments are now being re-published (with additional materials discovered since Field's edition) by an international group of Septuagint scholars. This work is being carried out as The Hexapla Project under the auspices of the International Organization for Septuagint and Cognate Studies, and directed by Peter J. Gentry (Southern Baptist Theological Seminary), Alison G. Salvesen (Oxford University), and Bas ter Haar Romeny (Leiden University). The name given to Origen's edition of the Old Testament in Hebrew and Greek, the most colossal critical production of antiquity. This work was urgently demanded by the confusion which prevailed in Origen's day regarding the true text of Scripture. The Church had adopted the Septuagint for its own; this differed from the Hebrew not only by the addition of several books and passages but also by innumerable variations of text, due partly to the ordinary process of corruption in the transcription of ancient books, partly to the culpable temerity, as Origen called it, of correctors who used not a little freedom in making "corrections", additions, and suppressions, partly to mistakes in translation, and finally in great part to the fact that the original Septuagint had been made from a Hebrew text quite different from that fixed at Jamnia as the one standard by the Jewish Rabbis, under Akiba the founder of Rabbinical Judaism. Aquila, a proselyte from Christianity, gave (c. A.D. 130) a very accurate translation of this text, aiming above all at being literal; still he borrows quite freely from the Septuagint when its rendering is consistent with his own chief aim. Symmachus and Theodotion both flourished towards the end of the second century, but it is uncertain which had priority as translator. Symmachus, who was an Ebionite according to Eusebius and Jerome, a Jewish proselyte from Samaritanism according to Epiphanius, gave a new translation which was to a considerable extent a more idiomatic and elegant rendering of Aquila. It was followed extensively by Jerome in his own work as translator of the Old Testament. Both Aquila and Symmachus produced two editions to which Jerome refers. Theodotion, who was an Ebionite or a Jew, and perhaps had been a Christian, gave a version much closer than the others to the Septuagint. The circulation of these versions, each so insistent in its claim to superiority, in so many instances differing from the Septuagint and yet so close to it in many others, made a comparison between them and the Septuagint imperative for a knowledge of the true text of Holy Scripture. The Hexapla, the concept of a great genius executed with unexampled patience and industry, is

Origen's attempt to show the exact relations of the Septuagint to these versions and especially to the Hebrew text. The work itself has perished; its character, however, has been pretty well known to scholars through statements in early Church writers, through scholia on numerous manuscripts of the Bible, and through chance quotations found in the works of certain Fathers. Quite recently (1896 and 1900) fragments of the Hexaplar Psalms were fortunately discovered, which give us our only specimens of connected portions of Origen's work and afford a good idea of its general appearance. Our earliest authorities, Eusebius of Csarea, St. Epiphanius, and St. Jerome, agree that Origen made a collection into one work of texts and versions of the entire Old Testament, arranging them in parallel columns according to the following order: First, the Hebrew text in Hebrew characters; second, the Hebrew text transliterated into Greek characters; third, the version of Aquila; fourth, that of Symmachus; fifth, the Septuagint; sixth, the version of Theodotion. The recovered fragments corroborate this testimony, though they lack the first column. Aquila's version was placed next to the Hebrew, most probably because it was the most literal rendering; Symmachus next to Aquila, because his version was largely a revision of the other; for a similar reason, Theodotion's version came after the Septuagint. To these six columns, according to the same testimony, Origen added, but for certain books only, a seventh and an eighth column containing two more Greek versions, which were called respectively the Quinta and the Sexta, because they were the fifth and sixth versions in Origen's arrangement. Eusebius and Jerome mention a seventh Greek version, however nothing seems to be known of the character of the Septima. It may have been a very fragmentary version, a collection of variant readings which later editors did not consider worth preserving. Concerming the Quinta and Sexta, St. Jerome tells us that their authors were Jews. Field finds traces of the Quinta not only in Psalms, Job, Proverbs, and the Canticle of Canticles, but also in the Pentateuch and IV Kings, though, in regard to IV Kings, Burkitt has advanced good reasons for considering the Quinta a collection of variant readings, probably rejected from the Septuagint. The Sexta is quoted for Exodus, III Kings, Psalms, Job, Canticle of Canticles, Amos, and Habacuc. The presence of these two additional versions in the Hexapla has led to a discussion of that term and of others applied to Origen's work. By some the "six-fold" Bible was considered so called because it contained six Greek versions of certain books; but the common opinion has been that the name designates probably the six columns (the two of Hebrew and the four of the chief Greek versions, which consititute the bulk of the work), and came to be extended to the entire work. The terms Pentapla, Heptapla, Octapla, were also used of Origen's work, according as it contained five, seven, or eight columns. Since the six or seven columns, as the case might be, were visible at every opening of the Hexapla, each column must have been quite narrow. The fragments show, in fact, that one or at most two Hebrew words were placed on each line, with the transliteration in the adjoining column and the various renditions in the succeeding columns, all on the same level. This arrangement would naturally necessitate, at times, a shifting of the Greek words from their proper order, although this was not always done. An arrangement so minute and liberal must produce a work of enormous bulk. Swete estimated 3250 leaves, or 6500 pages, but Nestle considers 6000 leaves not far beyond the number. In addition to these columns of texts and versions, Origen copied out on the margins or between the lines other readings which he cited as given by 'o 'Ebrios, 'o Eros, t Samareitikn, the meaning of which is obscure. Field considers "the Hebrew" to be the Hebrew author of a Greek version, otherwise unknown, of certain books; "the Syrian", the author of another Greek version made in Syria; while "the Samaritan" gives Greek readings taken, not from the current Hebrew text, but from

the Samaritan Pentateuch (thirty-six out of forty-three readings agree with that text). Loisy's opinion, not the mention many others, is that "the Hebrew" denotes citations from a Targum, "the Syrian", from the Peschito. Origen's purpose, as regards the Septuagint, was to indicate very clearly its exact relation to the Hebrew text, and incidentally to the other Greek versions. With this in view, he adopted (and placed in the Septuagint column only) the symbols used by Aristarchus in his edition of Homer. "As employed by Origen in the fifth column of the Hexapla, the obelus was prefixed to words or lines which were wanting in the Hebrew, and therefore, from Origen's point of view, of doubtful authority, while the asterisk called attention to words or lines wanting in the Septuagint, but present in the Hebrew. The close of the context to which the obelus or asterisk was intended to apply was marked by another sign known as the metobelus" (Swete). The fifth column, therefore, contained not the mere text of the Septuagint only, but in addition a translation taken generally from Theodotion (occasionally from Aquila) of these words or lines of the Hebrew which were lacking in the Septuagint. In certain instances, where the Septuagint translation differed widely from the Hebrew meaning, Origen inserted the true rendering (from Theodotion or Aquila) alongside the false; he deleted nothing from the Septuagint text. By this arrangement and these symbols, any reader, even if ignorant of Hebrew, could generally tell at a glance the exact relation of the Septuagint text to the Hebrew. The principles which guided Origen in his work as textual critic are partly explained by Origen himself. He began by assuming the correctness of the current Hebrew textus receptus, and considered the Septuagint as more or less pure according to the degree in which it approximated to the Hebrew. He frequently changed the spelling of proper names to conform with the Hebrew. The symbols were intended not only to indicate a difference between the two texts, but to mark a departure from the Hebrew verity or genuine text. These principles are rightly discredited by modern scholars, who recognize that the Septuagint often bears plain witness to a Hebrew original different from the textus receptus and older than it in some parts. Moreover, of two readings, one a free, the other a literal, translation of the Hebrew, the free is more likely to be the original rendering of the Septuagint translator, while the literal is more apt to represent the effort of correctors, who very frequently endeavoured to bring the Greek into greater conformity with the Hebrew. Origen's critical principles were at fault, then, but his use of symbols ought to have guarded others from being led by his work into error. Unfortunately, the symbols were not reproduced in many copies which were taken of the fifth column - the Septuagint together with the readings from Theodotion and Aquila. After the completion of the Hexapla, Origen prepared a minor edition, or extract from it, consisting of the four principal versions, Aquila, Symmachus, the Septuagint, and Theodotion; this is the Tetrapla. It has been sometimes maintained, however, that the Tetrapla is the earlier work and was expanded into the Hexapla, principally on the ground that the Hexapla, which in a few instances has a superior reading, as at Ps. lxxxvi, 5, presents light missing to Origen when he composed the Tetrapla, a very unstable ground, we judge, for the Hexapla did not leave the hand of Origen as a printed work becomes independent of a modern author, but received occasional additions and corrections with the progress of his knowledge. The language of Eusebius implies that the Tetrapla was the later work. The dates of the two works, however, cannot be definitely


fixed; all we know, says Field, is that the Hexapla or the Tetrapla was composed before Origen's letter to Africanus (c. 240). No copy of the entire Hexapla, on account of the immense labour and expense involved, seems ever to have been made, but the Psalter, minus the first column, was copied, as the two fragments prove. A reading in Isaias is quoted from the Pentapla, which possibly (though very doubtfully) implies the existence of a similar copy. Shortly after the beginning of the fourth century, Pamphilus, the martyr, and Eusebius, Bishop of Csarea, gave out an edition of the fifth column of the Hexapla, containing the Septuagint, the insertions from Theodotion and Aquila, and the symbols, together with variant readings on the margin, in the belief that they were bestowing on the Church the purest text. It was through the reproduction of this edition by later scribes, without Origen's critical signs, that arose the Hexaplar text which so greatly increased the confusion of Septuagint manuscripts. However, it hardly circulated outside of Palestine. It was translated into Syriac, "with the Origenic signs scrupulously retained", by Paul, Bishop of Tella, in Mesopotamia, who accomplished the work at Alexandria about 616-17. Several books and large portions of this Syro-Hexaplar text survive, and are the source, in a very great measure, of our knowledge of Origen's work. The Hexaplar text also influenced St. Jerome very strongly in his first two translations of the Psalter into Latin, the Psalterium Romanum and (particularly) the Gallicanum. Saint Jerome also followed the Hexaplar text, for which he had a very high regard, as the basis of his translations, no longer extant, of other books. The same influence is further seen in the Coptic (Sahidic), the Arabic, and the Armenian versions. If the original Septuagint text be taken as the standard, it is unquestionable that Origen's influence, both upon the Septuagint and its daughter versions, ultimately availed, through the negligence of copyists, to remove them further from the pristine purity of the Biblical text; but by all those who regard the Hexaplar text, by reason of its insertions and corrections from the textus receptus, as nearer to the original Hebrew than is the Septuagint, his influence must be judged to have worked, on the whole, for the spread of a truer text. The Hexaplar MS. was kept at Csarea in Palestine, where it was consulted by Eusebius, Epiphanius, and Jerome; it disappeared from sight shortly after the beginning of the seventh century. The first attempt to collect its disjecta membra, scattered over Biblical manuscripts and patristic writings, was made by Drusius (Driesch) in his work "In Psalmos Davidis Veterum Interpretum qu extant Fragmenta", Antwerp, 1581 (so Mercati). Additions were made by Peter Morin in his notes to the Greek Bible authorized by Sixtus V (158), as also in the posthumous work of Drusius (1622), and the monumental work of Montfaucon (1713). The publication of the SyroHexaplar text by Ceriani and others gave back to the world a great part of Origen's work. Frederick Field in his "Origenis Hexaplorum qu supersunt fragmenta" (Oxford, 1875) collected into one grand work the results of two centuries of investigation and discovery. Since his day, Pitra's "Analecta Sacra", III (Venice, 1883), Klosterman's "Analecta zur Hexapla" (Leipzig, 1895), and Dom Morin's "Anecdota Maredsolana", III, i, have given the world further discoveries. Add to these, to complete the history of the Hexapla's recovery, the palimpsest fragments of several of the psalms discovered by Mercati in the Ambrosian Library of Milan (1896), and the palimpsest fragment of Ps. xxii recovered from a genizah of Cairo (1900), which reproduce almost the exact form of Origen's work. Though much has been lost, including most of the versions of Aquila, Symmachus, and Theodotion, still, by these patient, untiring labours, vast materials have been gathered for the reconstruction of a purer Sacred Text.

The King James Version (KJV), commonly known as the Authorized Version (AV) or King James Bible (KJB), is an English translation of the Christian Bible for the Church of England begun in 1604 and completed in 1611. First printed by the King's Printer Robert Barker, this was the third translation into English to be approved by the English Church authorities. The first was the Great Bible commissioned in the reign of King Henry VIII, and the second was the Bishops' Bible of 1568. In January 1604, King James I of England convened the Hampton Court Conference where a new English version was conceived in response to the perceived problems of the earlier translations as detected by the Puritans, a faction within the Church of England. James gave the translators instructions intended to guarantee that the new version would conform to the ecclesiology and reflect the episcopal structure of the Church of England and its belief in an ordained clergy. The translation was done by 47 scholars, all of whom were members of the Church of England. In common with most other translations of the period, the New Testament was translated from Greek, the Old Testament was translated from Hebrew text, while the Apocrypha were translated from the Greek and Latin. In the Book of Common Prayer (1662), the text of the Authorized Version replaced the text of the Great Bible for Epistle and Gospel readings and as such was authorized by Act of Parliament. By the first half of the 18th century, the Authorized Version was effectively unchallenged as the English translation used in Anglican and Protestant churches. Over the course of the 18th century, the Authorized Version supplanted the Latin Vulgate as the standard version of scripture for English speaking scholars. Today, the most used edition of the King James Bible, and often identified as plainly the King James Version or King James Version, especially in the United States, remains the standard text of 1769, edited by Benjamin Blayney and Francis Sawyer Parris at Oxford. The title of the first edition of the translation was "THE HOLY BIBLE, Containing the Old Testament, AND THE NEW: Newly Translated out of the Original tongues: & with the former Translations diligently compared and revised, by his Majesties special Commandment". The titlepage carries the words 'Appointed to be read in Churches' and F.F. Bruce suggests it was "probably authorized by order in council" but no record of the authorization survives "because the Privy Council registers from 1600 to 1613 were destroyed by fire in January 1618/19". For many years it was common not to give the translation any specific name. In his Leviathan of 1651, Thomas Hobbes referred to it as the English Translation made in the beginning of the Reign of King James. A 1761 "Brief Account of the various Translations of the Bible into English" refers to the 1611 version merely as a new, compleat, and more accurate Translation, despite referring to the Great Bible by that name, and despite using the name "Rhemish Testament" for the DouayRheims Bible version. Similarly, a "History of England", whose fifth edition was published in 1775, writes merely that [a] new translation of the Bible, viz., that now in Use, was begun in 1607, and published in 1611. King James's Bible is used as the name for the 1611 translation (on a par with the "Genevan Bible" or the "Rhemish Testament") in Charles Butler's Horae Biblicae (first published 1797). Other works from the early 19th century confirm the widespread use of this name on both sides of the Atlantic: it is found both in a "Historical sketch of the English translations of the Bible"

published in Massachusetts in 1815, and in an English publication from 1818, which explicitly states that the 1611 version is "generally known by the name of King James's Bible". This name was also found as King James' Bible (without the final "s"): for example in a book review from 1811. The phrase "King James's Bible" is used as far back as 1715, although in this case it is not clear whether this is a name or merely a description. The use of Authorized Version or Authorised Version, capitalized and used as a name, is found as early as 1814. For some time before this descriptive phrases such as "our present, and only publicly authorized version" (1783), "our authorised version" (1792), and "the authorized version" (1801, uncapitalized) are found. The Oxford English Dictionary records a usage in 1824. In Britain, the 1611 translation is generally known as the "Authorized Version" today. As early as 1814, we find King James' version, evidently a descriptive phrase, being used. "The King James Version" is found, unequivocally used as a name, in a letter from 1855. The next year King James Bible, with no possessive, appears as a name in a Scottish source. In the United States, the "1611 translation" is generally known as the King James Version or King James Version today. The followers of John Wycliffe undertook the first complete English translations of the Christian scriptures in the 15th century. These translations were banned in 1409 due to their association with the Lollards. The Wycliffe Bible pre-dated the printing press but was circulated very widely in manuscript form, often inscribed with a date earlier than 1409 to avoid the legal ban. As the text translated in the various versions of the Wycliffe Bible was the Latin Vulgate, and as it contained no heterodox readings, there was in practice no way by which the ecclesiastical authorities could distinguish the banned version; consequently many Catholic commentators of the 15th and 16th centuries (such as Thomas More) took these manuscript English Bibles to represent an anonymous earlier orthodox translation. In 1525, William Tyndale, an English contemporary of Martin Luther, undertook a translation of the New Testament. Tyndale's translation was the first printed Bible in English. Over the next ten years, Tyndale revised his New Testament in the light of rapidly advancing biblical scholarship, and embarked on a translation of the Old Testament. Despite some controversial translation choices, the merits of Tyndale's work and prose style made his translation the ultimate basis for all subsequent renditions into Early Modern English. With these translations lightly edited and adapted by Myles Coverdale, in 1539, Tyndale's New Testament and his incomplete work on the Old Testament became the basis for the Great Bible. This was the first "authorized version" issued by the Church of England during the reign of King Henry VIII. When Mary I succeeded to the throne in 1553, she returned the Church of England to the communion of the Roman Catholic faith and many English religious reformers fled the country, some establishing an English-speaking colony at Geneva. Under the leadership of John Calvin, Geneva became the chief international centre of Reformed Protestantism and Latin biblical scholarship. These English expatriates undertook a translation that became known as the Geneva Bible. This translation, dated to 1560, was a revision of Tyndale's Bible and the Great Bible on the basis of the original languages. Soon after Elizabeth I took the throne in 1558, the flaws of both the Great Bible and the Geneva Bible (namely, that the Geneva Bible did not "conform to the ecclesiology

and reflect the episcopal structure of the Church of England and its beliefs about an ordained clergy") became painfully apparent. In 1568, the Church of England responded with the Bishops' Bible, a revision of the Great Bible in the light of the Geneva version. While officially approved, this new version failed to displace the Geneva translation as the most popular English Bible of the age in part because the full Bible was only printed in lectern editions of prodigious size and at a cost of several pounds. Accordingly, Elizabethan lay people overwhelmingly read the Bible in the Geneva Version small editions were available at a relatively low cost. At the same time, there was a substantial clandestine importation of the rival DouayRheims New Testament of 1582, undertaken by exiled Roman Catholics. This translation, though still derived from Tyndale, claimed to represent the text of the Latin Vulgate. In May 1601, King James VI of Scotland attended the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland at St Columba's Church in Burntisland, Fife, at which proposals were put forward for a new translation of the Bible into English. Two years later, he ascended to the throne of England as King James I of England.

Considerations for a new version

The newly crowned King James convened the Hampton Court Conference in 1604. That gathering proposed a new English version in response to the perceived problems of earlier translations as detected by the Puritan faction of the Church of England. Three examples of problems the Puritans perceived with the Bishops' and Great Bibles were: First, Galatians iv. 25 (from the Bishops' Bible). The Greek word susoichei is not well translated as now it is, bordereth neither expressing the force of the word, nor the apostle's sense, nor the situation of the place. Secondly, psalm cv. 28 (from the Great Bible), They were not obedient; the original being, They were not disobedient. Thirdly, psalm cvi. 30 (also from the Great Bible), Then stood up Phinees and prayed, the Hebrew hath, executed judgment. Instructions were given to the translators that were intended to limit the Puritan influence on this new translation. The Bishop of London added a qualification that the translators would add no marginal notes (which had been an issue in the Geneva Bible). King James cited two passages in the Geneva translation where he found the marginal notes offensive: Exodus 1:19, where the Geneva Bible had commended the example of civil disobedience showed by the Hebrew midwives, and also II Chronicles 15:16, where the Geneva Bible had criticized King Asa for not having executed his idolatrous grandmother, Queen Maachah. Further, the King gave the translators instructions designed to guarantee that the new version would conform to the ecclesiology of the Church of England. Certain Greek and Hebrew words were to be translated in a manner that reflected the traditional usage of the church. For example, old ecclesiastical words such as the word "church" were to be retained and not to be translated as "congregation". The new translation would reflect the episcopal structure of the Church of England and traditional beliefs about ordained clergy. James' instructions included several requirements that kept the new translation familiar to its listeners and readers. The text of the Bishops' Bible would serve as the primary guide for the translators, and the familiar proper names of the biblical characters would all be retained. If the

Bishops' Bible was deemed problematic in any situation, the translators were permitted to consult other translations from a pre-approved list: the Tyndale Bible, the Coverdale Bible, Matthew's Bible, the Great Bible, and the Geneva Bible. In addition, later scholars have detected an influence on the Authorized Version from the translations of Taverner's Bible and the New Testament of the DouayRheims Bible. It is for this reason that the flyleaf of most printings of the Authorized Version observes that the text had been "translated out of the original tongues, and with the former translations diligently compared and revised, by His Majesty's special command." The task of translation was undertaken by 47 scholars, although 54 were originally approved. All were members of the Church of England and all except Sir Henry Savile were clergy. The scholars worked in six committees, two based in each of the University of Oxford, the University of Cambridge, and Westminster. The committees included scholars with Puritan sympathies, as well as High Churchmen. Forty unbound copies of the 1602 edition of the Bishops' Bible were specially printed so that the agreed changes of each committee could be recorded in the margins. The committees worked on certain parts separately and the drafts produced by each committee were then compared and revised for harmony with each other. The scholars were not paid directly for their translation work, instead a circular letter was sent to bishops encouraging them to consider the translators for appointment to well paid livings as these fell vacant. Several were supported by the various colleges at Oxford and Cambridge, while others were promoted to bishoprics, deaneries and prebends through royal patronage. The committees started work towards the end of 1604. King James I of England, on 22 July 1604, sent a letter to Archbishop Bancroft asking him to contact all English churchmen requesting that they make donations to his project. Right trusty and well beloved, we greet you well. Whereas we have appointed certain learned men, to the number of 4 and 50, for the translating of the Bible, and in this number, divers of them have either no ecclesiastical preferment at all, or else so very small, as the same is far unmeet for men of their deserts and yet we in ourself in any convenient time cannot well remedy it, therefor we do hereby require you, that presently you write in our name as well to the Archbishop of York, as to the rest of the bishops of the province of Cant.[erbury] signifying unto them, that we do well and straitly charge everyone of them ... that (all excuses set apart) when a prebend or parsonage ... shall next upon any occasion happen to be void ... we may commend for the same some such of the learned men, as we shall think fit to be preferred unto it ... Given unto our signet at our palace of West.[minister] on 2 and 20 July , in the 2nd year of our reign of England, France, and of Ireland, and of Scotland xxxvii." They had all completed their sections by 1608, the Apocrypha committee finishing first. From January 1609, a General Committee of Review met at Stationers' Hall, London to review the completed marked texts from each of the six committees. The General Committee included John Bois, Andrew Downes and John Harmar, and others known only by their initials, including "AL" (who may be Arthur Lake), and were paid for their attendance by the Stationers' Company. John Bois prepared a note of their deliberations (in Latin) which has partly survived in two later transcripts. Also surviving is a bound-together set of marked-up corrections to one of the forty Bishops' Bibles covering the Old Testament and Gospels, and also a manuscript translation of

the text of the Epistles, excepting those verses where no change was being recommended to the readings in the Bishops' Bible. Archbishop Bancroft insisted on having a final say, making fourteen changes, of which one was the term "bishopricke" at Acts 1:20. The original printing of the Authorized Version was published by Robert Barker, the King's Printer, in 1611 as a complete folio Bible. It was sold looseleaf for ten shillings, or bound for twelve. Robert Barker's father, Christopher, had, in 1589, been granted by Elizabeth I the title of royal Printer, with the perpetual Royal Privilege to print Bibles in England. Robert Barker invested very large sums in printing the new edition, and consequently ran into serious debt, such that he was compelled to sub-lease the privilege to two rival London printers, Bonham Norton and John Bill. It appears that it was initially intended that each printer would print a portion of the text, share printed sheets with the others, and split the proceeds. Bitter financial disputes broke out, as Barker accused Norton and Bill of concealing their profits, while Norton and Bill accused Barker of selling sheets properly due to them as partial Bibles for ready money. There followed decades of continual litigation, and consequent imprisonment for debt for members of the Barker and Norton printing dynasties, while each issued rival editions of the whole Bible. In 1629 the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge successfully managed to assert separate and prior royal licences for Bible printing, for their own university presses and Cambridge University took the opportunity to print revised editions of the Authorized Version in 1629, and 1638. The editors of these editions included John Bois and John Ward from the original translators. This did not, however, impede the commercial rivalries of the London printers, especially as the Barker family refused to allow any other printers access to the authoritative manuscript of the Authorized Version. Two editions of the whole Bible are recognized as having been produced in 1611, which may be distinguished by their rendering of Ruth 3:15; the first edition reading "he went into the city", where the second reads "she went into the city."; these are known colloquially as the "He" and "She" Bibles. However, Bibles in all the early editions were made up using sheets originating from several printers, and consequently there is very considerable variation within any one edition. It is only in 1613 that an edition is found, all of whose surviving representatives have substantially the same text. The original printing was made before English spelling was standardized, and when printers, as a matter of course, expanded and contracted the spelling of the same words in different places, so as to achieve an even column of text. They set v for initial u and v, and u for u and v everywhere else. They used long for non-final s. The glyph j occurs only after i, as in the final letter in a Roman numeral. Punctuation was relatively heavy, and differed from current practice. When space needed to be saved, the printers sometimes used ye for the, (replacing the Middle English thorn with the continental y), set for an or am (in the style of scribe's shorthand), and set & for and. On the contrary, on a few occasions, they appear to have inserted these words when they thought a line needed to be padded. Current printings remove most, but not all, of the variant spellings; the punctuation has also been changed, but still varies from current usage norms. The first printing used a black letter typeface instead of a roman typeface, which itself made a political and a religious statement. Like the Great Bible and the Bishops' Bible, the Authorized Version was "appointed to be read in churches". It was a large folio volume meant for public use,

not private devotion; the weight of the type mirrored the weight of establishment authority behind it. However, smaller editions and roman-type editions followed rapidly, e.g. quarto roman-type editions of the Bible in 1612 (Herbert #313/314). This contrasted with the Geneva Bible, which was the first English Bible printed in a roman typeface (although black-letter editions, particularly in folio format, were issued later). In contrast to the Geneva Bible and the Bishops' Bible, which had both been extensively illustrated, there were no illustrations at all in the 1611 edition of the Authorized Version, the main form of decoration being the historiated initial letters provided for books and chapters together with the decorative title pages to the Bible itself, and to the New Testament. The original printing of the Authorized Version used roman type to distinguish text supplied by translators, or thought needful for English grammar but not present in the Greek or Hebrew. In the first printing, the device of having different type faces to show supplied words was used sparsely and inconsistently. This is perhaps the most significant difference between the original text and the current text. When, from the later 17th century onwards, the Authorized Version began to be printed in roman type, the typeface for supplied words was changed to italics. The original printing contained two prefatory texts; the first was a formal Epistle Dedicatory to "the most high and mighty Prince" King James. Many British printings reproduce this, while most non-British printings fail to include it. The second preface was called The Translators to the Reader, a long and learned essay that defends the undertaking of the new version. It observes the translators' stated goal, that they, "never thought from the beginning that [they] should need to make a new translation, nor yet to make of a bad one a good one, ... but to make a good one better, or out of many good ones, one principal good one, not justly to be excepted against; that hath been [their] endeavour, that [their] mark." They also give their opinion of previous English Bible translations, stating, "We do not deny, nay, we affirm and avow, that the very meanest translation of the Bible in English, set forth by men of our profession, (for we have seen none of theirs [Roman Catholics] of the whole Bible as yet) containeth the word of God, nay, is the word of God." As with the first preface, some British printings reproduce this, while most non-British printings fail to include it. Almost every printing that includes the second preface also includes the first. The first printing contained a number of other apparatus, including a table for the reading of the Psalms at matins and evensong, and a calendar, an almanac, and a table of holy days and observances. Much of this material became obsolete with the adoption of the Gregorian Calendar by Britain and its colonies in 1752, and thus modern editions invariably omit it. So as to make it easier to locate a particular passage, each chapter was headed by a brief precis of its contents with verse numbers. Later editors freely substituted their own chapter summaries, or omit such material entirely. Pilcrow marks are used to indicate the beginnings of paragraphs in the Gospels and Acts, but rarely elsewhere.


Authorized Version
The Authorized Version was meant to replace the Bishops' Bible as the official version for readings in the Church of England. No record of its authorization exists; it was probably effected by an order of the Privy Council but the records for the years 1600 to 1613 were destroyed by fire in January 1618/19 and it is commonly known as the Authorized Version in the United Kingdom. The King's Printer issued no further editions of the Bishops' Bible, so necessarily the Authorized Version replaced it as the standard lectern Bible in parish church use in England. In the 1662 Book Of Common Prayer, the text of the Authorized Version finally supplanted that of the Great Bible in the Epistle and Gospel readings though the Prayer Book Psalter nevertheless continues in the Great Bible version. The case was different in Scotland, where the Geneva Bible had long been the standard church bible. It was not until 1633 that a Scottish edition of the Authorized Version was printed in conjunction with the Scots coronation in that year of Charles I. The inclusion of illustrations in the edition raised accusations of Popery from opponents of the religious policies of Charles and William Laud, Archbishop of Canterbury. However, official policy favoured the Authorized Version, and this favour returned during the Commonwealth as London printers succeeded in re-asserting their monopoly of Bible printing with support from Oliver Cromwell and the "New Translation" was the only edition on the market. F.F. Bruce reports that the last recorded instance of a Scots parish continuing to use the "Old Translation" (i.e. Geneva) as being in 1674. The Authorized Version's acceptance by the general public took longer. The Geneva Bible continued to be popular, and large numbers were imported from Amsterdam, where printing continued up to 1644 in editions carrying a false London imprint. However, few if any genuine Geneva editions appear to have been printed in London after 1616, and in 1637 Archbishop Laud prohibited their printing or importation. In the period of the English Civil War, soldiers of the New Model Army were issued a book of Geneva selections called "The Soldiers' Bible" (1643, Herbert #577). In the first half of the 17th century the Authorized Version is most commonly referred to as "The Bible without notes", thereby distinguishing it from the Geneva "Bible with notes". There were several printings of the Authorized Version in Amsterdam one as late as 1715 (Herbert #936) which combined the Authorized Version translation text with the Geneva marginal notes; one such edition was printed in London in 1649. During the Commonwealth a commission was established by Parliament to recommend a revision of the Authorized Version with acceptably Protestant explanatory notes, but the project was abandoned when it became clear that these would be nearly double the bulk of the Bible text. After the English Restoration, the Geneva Bible was held to be politically suspect and a reminder of the repudiated Puritan era. Furthermore, disputes over the lucrative rights to print the Authorized Version dragged on through the 17th century, so none of the printers involved saw any commercial advantage in marketing a rival translation. TheAuthorized Version became the only current version circulating among English speaking people. Slowest of all was acceptance of the text by Biblical Scholars. Hugh Broughton, the most highly regarded English Hebraist of his time (but who had been excluded from the panel of translators because of his utterly uncongenial temperament), issued in 1611 a total condemnation of the new

version, criticizing especially the translators' rejection of word-for-word equivalence and stated that "he would rather be torn in pieces by wild horses than that this abominable translation (KJV) should ever be foisted upon the English people". Walton's London Polyglot of 1657 disregards the Authorized Version (and indeed the English Language) entirely. Walton's reference text throughout is the Vulgate. The Vulgate Latin is also found as the standard text of scripture in Thomas Hobbes's Leviathan of 1651, indeed Hobbes gives Vulgate chapter and verse numbers (e.g., Job 41:24, not Job 41:33) for his head text. In Chapter 35: 'The Signification in Scripture of Kingdom of God' , Hobbes discusses Exodus 19:5, first in his own translation of the 'Vulgar Latin' , and then subsequently as found in the versions he terms "...the English translation made in the beginning of the reign of King James", and "The Geneva French" (i.e. Olivtan). Hobbes advances detailed critical arguments why the Vulgate rendering is to be preferred. For most of the 17th century the assumption remained that, while it had been of vital importance to provide the scriptures in the vernacular for ordinary people, nevertheless for those with sufficient education to do so, Biblical study was best undertaken within the international common medium of Latin. It was only in 1700 that modern bilingual Bibles appeared in which the Authorized Version was compared with counterpart Dutch and French Protestant vernacular Bibles. In consequence of the continual disputes over printing privileges, successive printings of the Authorized Version were notably less careful than the 1611 edition had been compositors freely varying spelling, capitalization and punctuation and also, over the years, introducing about 1,500 misprints (some of which, like the omission of "not" from the commandment "Thou shalt not commit adultery" in the "Wicked Bible" (1631, Herbert #444), became notorious). The two Cambridge editions of 1629 and 1638 attempted to restore the proper text while introducing over 200 revisions of the original translators' work, chiefly by incorporating into the main text a more literal reading originally presented as a marginal note. A more thoroughly corrected edition was proposed following the Restoration, in conjunction with the revised 1662 Book of Common Prayer, but Parliament then decided against it. By the first half of the 18th century, the Authorized Version was effectively unchallenged as the sole English translation in current use in Protestant churches, and was so dominant that the Roman Catholic Church in England issued in 1750 a revision of the 1610 DouayRheims Bible by Richard Challoner that was very much closer to the Authorized Version than to the original. However, general standards of spelling, punctuation, typesetting, capitalization and grammar had changed radically in the 100 years since the first edition of the Authorized Version, and all printers in the market were introducing continual piecemeal changes to their Bible texts to bring them into line with current practice and with public expectations of standardized spelling and grammatical construction. Over the course of the 18th century, the Authorized Version supplanted the Latin Vulgate as the standard version of scripture for English speaking scholars and divines, and indeed came to be regarded by some as an inspired text in itself so much so that any challenge to its readings or textual base came to be regarded by many as an assault on Holy Scripture. By the mid-18th century the wide variation in the various modernized printed texts of the Authorized Version, combined with the notorious accumulation of misprints, had reached the proportion of a scandal, and the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge both sought to produce an

updated standard text. First of the two was the Cambridge edition of 1760, the culmination of twenty-years work by Francis Sawyer Parris, who died in May of that year. This 1760 edition was reprinted without change in 1762 (Herbert #1142) and in John Baskerville's fine folio edition of 1763. This was effectively superseded by the 1769 Oxford edition, edited by Benjamin Blayney (Herbert #1196), though with comparatively few changes from the 1760 edition, which became the Oxford standard text, and is reproduced almost unchanged in most current printings. Parris and Blayney sought consistently to remove those elements of the 1611 and subsequent editions that they believed were due to the vagaries of printers, while incorporating most of the revised readings of the Cambridge editions of 1629 and 1638, and each also introducing a few improved readings of their own. They undertook the mammoth task of standardizing the wide variation in punctuation and spelling of the original, making many thousands of minor changes to the text; although some of these updates do alter the ostensible sense as when the original text of Genesis 2:21 "in stead" ("in that place") was updated to read "instead" ("as an alternative"). In addition, Blayney and Parris thoroughly revised and greatly extended the italicization of "supplied" words not found in the original languages by cross-checking against the presumed source texts. Unfortunately, Blayney assumed that the translators of the 1611 New Testament had worked from the 1550 Stephanus edition of the Textus Receptus, rather than from the later editions of Beza; accordingly the current standard text mistakenly "corrects" around a dozen readings where Beza and Stephanus differ. Like the 1611 edition, the 1769 Oxford edition included the Apocrypha, although Blayney consistently removed cross-references to the Books of the Apocrypha from the margins of their Old and New Testaments wherever these had been provided by the original translators. Altogether, Blayney's 1769 text differed from the 1611 text in around 24,000 places. Since that date, only six further changes have been introduced to the standard text although 30 of Blayney's proposed changes have subsequently been reverted. The Oxford University Press paperback edition of the "Authorized King James Version" provides the current standard text, and also includes the prefatory section "The Translators to the Reader". The 1611 and 1760 texts of the first three verses from I Corinthians 13 are given below, respectively. 1. Though I speake with the tongues of men & of Angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brasse or a tinkling cymbal. 2 And though I have the gift of prophesie, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge: and though I have all faith, so that I could remoove mountaines, and have no charitie, I am nothing. 3 And though I bestowe all my goods to feede the poore, and though I give my body to bee burned, and have not charitie, it profiteth me nothing. 1. Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. 2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing. 3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing. In these three verses, there are eleven changes of spelling, nine changes of typesetting, three changes of punctuation, and one variant text where "not charity" is substituted for "no charity" in verse two, in the erroneous belief that the original reading was a misprint.


A particular verse for which Blayney's 1769 text differs from Parris's 1760 version is Matthew 5: 13, where Parris (1760) has Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing but to be cast out, and to be troden under foot of men. Blayney (1769) changes 'lost his savour' to 'lost its savour', and troden to trodden. For a period, Cambridge continued to issue Bibles using the Parris text, but the market demand for absolute standardization was now such that they eventually fell into line. Since the beginning of the 19th century, almost all printings of the Authorized Version have derived from the 1769 Oxford text generally without Blayney's variant notes and cross references, and commonly excluding the Apocrypha. One exception to this was a scrupulous original-spelling, page-forpage, and line-for-line reprint of the 1611 edition (including all chapter headings, marginalia, and original italicization, but with Roman type substituted for the black letter of the original), published by Oxford in 1833. Another important exception was the 1873 Cambridge Paragraph Bible, thoroughly revised, modernized and re-edited by F. H. A. Scrivener, who for the first time consistently identified the source texts underlying the 1611 translation and its marginal notes. Scrivener, however as Blayney had done did adopt revised readings where he considered the judgement of the 1611 translators had been faulty. In 2005, Cambridge University Press released its New Cambridge Paragraph Bible with Apocrypha, edited by David Norton, which modernized Scrivener's spelling again to present-day standards and introduced quotation marks, while restoring the 1611 text, so far as possible, to the wording intended by its translators, especially in the light of the rediscovery of some of their working documents. This text has been issued in paperback by Penguin books. From 1769, the text of the Authorized Version remained unchanged and since, due to advances in printing technology, it could now be produced in very large editions for mass sale, it established complete dominance in public and ecclesiastical use in the English-speaking Protestant world. Academic debate over the next hundred years, however, increasingly reflected concerns about the Authorized Versionshared by some scholars: (a) that subsequent study in oriental languages suggested a need to revise the translation of the Hebrew Bible both in terms of specific vocabulary, and also in distinguishing descriptive terms from proper names; (b) that the Authorized Version was unsatisfactory in translating the same Greek words and phrases into different English, especially where parallel passages are found in the synoptic gospels; and (c) in the light of subsequent ancient manuscript discoveries, the New Testament translation base of the Greek Textus Receptus could no longer be considered to be the best representation of the original text. Responding to these concerns, the Convocation of Canterbury resolved in 1870 to undertake a revision of the text of the Authorized Version, intending to retain the original text "except where in the judgement of competent scholars such a change is necessary". The resulting revision was issued as the Revised Version in 1881 (New Testament), 1885 (Old Testament) and 1894 (Apocrypha); but, although it sold widely, the revision did not find popular favour, and it was only reluctantly in 1899 that Convocation approved it for reading in churches.


The Authorized Version maintained its effective dominance throughout the first half of the 20th century. New translations in the second half of the 20th century displaced its 250 years of dominance (roughly 1700 to 1950), but groups do exist sometimes termed the King James Only movement that distrust anything not in agreement with ("that changes") theAuthorized Version. Like Tyndale's translation and the Geneva Bible, the Authorized Version was translated primarily from Greek, Hebrew and Aramaic texts, although with secondary reference both to the Latin Vulgate, and to more recent scholarly Latin versions; two books of the Apocrypha were translated from a Latin source. Following the example of the Geneva Bible, words implied but not actually in the original source were distinguished by being printed in distinct type (albeit inconsistently), but otherwise the translators explicitly rejected word-for-word equivalence. F.F Bruce gives an example from Romans Chapter 5: 2 By whom also wee have accesse by faith, into this grace wherein wee stand, and rejoyce in hope of the glory of God. 3 And not onely so, but we glory in tribulations also, knowing that tribulation worketh patience: The English terms "rejoice" and "glory" stand for the same word in the Greek original. In Tyndale, Geneva and the Bishops' Bibles, both instances are translated "rejoice". In the Douay Rheims New Testament, both are translated "glory". Only in the Authorized Version does the translation vary between the two verses. In obedience to their instructions, the translators provided no marginal interpretation of the text, but in some 8,500 places a marginal note offers an alternative English wording. The majority of these notes offer a more literal rendering of the original (introduced as "Heb", "Chal", "Gr" or "Lat"), but others indicate a variant reading of the source text (introduced by "or"). Some of the annotated variants derive from alternative editions in the original languages, or from variant forms quoted in the fathers. More commonly, though, they indicate a difference between the original language reading and that in the translators' preferred recent Latin versions: Tremellius for the Old Testament, Junius for the Apocrypha, and Beza for the New Testament. A few more extensive notes clarify Biblical names, units of measurement or currency, and in a very few places (e.g. Luke 17:36) record that a verse is absent from most Greek manuscripts. Modern reprintings rarely reproduce these annotated variants although they are to be found in the New Cambridge Paragraph Bible. In addition, there were originally some 9,000 scriptural crossreferences, in which one text was related to another. Such cross-references had long been common in Latin Bibles, and most of those in the Authorized Version were copied unaltered from this Latin tradition. Consequently the early editions of the KJV retain many Vulgate verse references e.g. in the numbering of the Psalms. At the head of each chapter, the translators provided a short prcis of its contents, with verse numbers; these are rarely included in complete form in modern editions. In the Old Testament the translators render the Tetragrammaton YHWH by "the LORD" (in later editions in small capitals as LORD), or "the LORD God" (for YHWH Elohim), and in four places by "IEHOVAH" (Exod. 6:3, Psalm 83:18, Isaiah 12:2 and 26:4).


Old Testament

For their Old Testament, the translators used a text originating in the editions of the Hebrew Rabbinic Bible by Daniel Bomberg (1524/5), but adjusted this to conform to the Greek LXX or Latin Vulgate in passages to which Christian tradition had attached a Christological interpretation. For example, the Septuagint reading "They pierced my hands and my feet" was used in Psalm 22:16 (vs. the Masoretes' reading of the Hebrew "like lions my hands and feet"). Otherwise, however, the Authorized Version is closer to the Hebrew tradition than any previous English translation especially in making use of the rabbinic commentaries, such as Kimhi, in elucidating obscure passages in the Masoretic Text; earlier versions had been more likely to adopt LXX or Vulgate readings in such places.
New Testament

For their New Testament, the translators chiefly used the 1598 and 1588/89 Greek editions of Theodore Beza, which also present Beza's Latin version of the Greek and Stephanus's edition of the Latin Vulgate. Both of these versions were extensively referred to, as the translators conducted all discussions amongst themselves in Latin. F.H.A. Scrivener identifies 190 readings where the Authorized Version translators depart from Beza's Greek text, generally in maintaining the wording of the Bishop's Bible and other earlier English translations. In about half of these instances, the Authorized Version translators appear to follow the earlier 1550 Greek Textus Receptus of Stephanus. For the other half, Scrivener was usually able to find corresponding Greek readings in the editions of Erasmus, or in the Complutensian Polyglot. However, in several dozen readings he notes that no printed Greek text corresponds to the English of the Authorized Version, which in these places derives directly from the Vulgate. For example, at John 10:16, the Authorized Version reads "one fold" (as did the Bishops' Bible, and the 16th century vernacular versions produced in Geneva), following the Latin Vulgate "unum ovile", whereas Tyndale had agreed more closely with the Greek, "one flocke" ( ). The Authorized Version New Testament owes much more to the Vulgate than does the Old Testament; still, at least 80% of the text is unaltered from Tyndale's translation.

Unlike the rest of the Bible, the translators of the Apocrypha identified their source texts in their marginal notes. From these it can be determined that the books of the Apocrypha were translated from the Septuagint primarily, from the Greek Old Testament column in the Antwerp Polyglot but with extensive reference to the counterpart Latin Vulgate text, and to Junius's Latin translation. The translators record references to the Sixtine Septuagint of 1587, which is substantially a printing of the Old Testament text from the Codex Vaticanus Graecus 1209, and also to the 1518 Greek Septuagint edition of Aldus Manutius. They had, however, no Greek texts for 2 Esdras, or for the Prayer of Manasses, and Scrivener found that they here used an unidentified Latin manuscript.



The translators appear to have otherwise made no first-hand study of ancient manuscript sources, even those that like the Codex Bezae would have been readily available to them. In addition to all previous English versions (including, and contrary to their instructions, the Rheimish New Testament which in their preface they criticized); they made wide and eclectic use of all printed editions in the original languages then available, including the ancient Syriac New Testament printed with an interlinear Latin gloss in the Antwerp Polyglot of 1573. In the preface the translators acknowledge consulting translations and commentaries in Chaldee, Hebrew, Syrian, Greek, Latin, Spanish, French, Italian, and German. The translators took the Bishop's Bible as their source text, and where they departed from that in favour of another translation, this was most commonly the Geneva Bible. However, the degree to which readings from the Bishop's Bible survived into final text of the King James Bible varies greatly from company to company, as did the propensity of the King James translators to coin phrases of their own. John Bois's notes of the General Committee of Review show that they discussed readings derived from a wide variety of sources and versions, including explicitly both Henry Savile's 1610 edition of the works of John Chrysostom, and also the Rheims New Testament, which was the primary source for many of the literal alternative readings provided for the marginal notes.

Variations from recent translations

A number of Bible verses in the King James Version of the New Testament are not found in recent Bible translations based on modern critical texts. In the early seventeenth century printed Greek texts of the New Testament depended on manuscripts of the late Byzantine text-type and with minor variations contained what is known as the Textus Receptus. With the discovery of many early manuscripts, most modern textual scholars value the evidence of manuscripts belonging to the Alexandrian family as better witnesses to the original text of the biblical authors, without giving it, or any family, automatic preference.

Style and criticism

A primary concern of the translators was to produce a Bible that would be appropriate, dignified and resonant in public reading. Although the Authorized Version's written style is an important part of its influence on English, research has found only one verse Hebrews 13:8 for which translators debated the wording's literary merits. While they stated in the preface that they used stylistic variation, finding multiple English words or verbal forms in places where the original language employed repetition, in practice they also did the opposite; for example, 14 different Hebrew words were translated into the single English word "prince". In a period of rapid linguistic change the translators avoided contemporary idioms, tending instead towards forms that were already slightly archaic, like verily and it came to pass. The pronouns thou/thee and you are consistently used as singular and plural respectively, even though by this time you was often found as the singular in general English usage, especially when addressing a social superior (as is evidenced, for example, in Shakespeare). For the possessive of

the third person pronoun, the word its, first recorded in the Oxford English Dictionary in 1598, is avoided. The older his is usually employed, as for example at Matthew 5:13: "if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted?"; in other places of it, thereof or bare it are found. Another sign of linguistic conservativism is the invariable use of -eth for the third person singular present form of the verb, as at Matthew 2:13: "the Angel of the Lord appear eth to Joseph in a dreame". The rival ending -(e)s, as found in present-day English, was already widely used by this time (for example, it predominates over -eth in the plays of Shakespeare and Marlowe). Furthermore, the translators preferred which to who or whom as the relative pronoun for persons, as in Genesis 13:5: "And Lot also which went with Abram, had flocks and heards, & tents" although who(m) is also found. The Authorized Version is notably more Latinate than previous English versions, especially the Geneva Bible. This results in part from the academic stylistic preferences of a number of the translators several of whom admitted to being more comfortable writing in Latin than in English but was also, in part, a consequence of the royal proscription against explanatory notes. Hence, where the Geneva Bible might use a common English word and gloss its particular application in a marginal note the Authorized Version tends rather to prefer a technical term, frequently in Anglicized Latin. Consequently, although the King had instructed the translators to use the Bishops' Bible as a base text, the New Testament in particular owes much stylistically to the Catholic Rheims New Testament, whose translators had also been concerned to find English equivalents for Latin terminology. In addition, the translators of the New Testament books habitually quote Old Testament names in the renderings familiar from the Vulgate Latin, rather than in their Hebrew forms (e.g. "Elias", "Jeremias" for "Elijah", "Jeremiah"). While the Authorized Version remains among the most widely sold, modern critical New Testament translations differ substantially from it in a number of passages, primarily because they rely on source manuscripts not then accessible to (or not then highly regarded by) early 17th-century Biblical scholarship. In the Old Testament, there are also many differences from modern translations that are based not on manuscript differences, but on a different understanding of Ancient Hebrew vocabulary or grammar by the translators. For example, in modern translations it is clear that Job 28: 111 is referring throughout to mining operations, which is not at all apparent from the text of the Authorized Version.

Despite royal patronage and encouragement, there was never any overt mandate to use the new translation. It was not until 1661 that the Authorized Version replaced the Bishops Bible in the Epistle and Gospel lessons of the Book of Common Prayer, and it never did replace the older translation in the Psalter. In 1763 The Critical Review complained that "many false interpretations, ambiguous phrases, obsolete words and indelicate expressions...excite the derision of the scorner". Blayney's 1769 version, with its revised spelling and punctuation, helped to change the public perception of the Authorized Version to a masterpiece of the English language. By the 19th century, F. W. Faber could say of the translation, "It lives on the ear, like music that can never be forgotten, like the sound of church bells, which the convert hardly knows how he can forego."


The Authorized Version has been called "the most influential version of the most influential book in the world, in what is now its most influential language", "the most important book in English religion and culture", and "the most celebrated book in the English-speaking world". It has contributed 257 idioms to English, more than any other single source, including Shakespeare; examples include feet of clay and reap the whirlwind. Although the Authorized Version's former monopoly in the English-speaking world has diminished for example, the Church of England recommends six other versions in addition to it it is still the most popular translation in the United States, especially among Evangelicals.

Copyright status
The Authorized Version is in the public domain in most of the world. However, in the United Kingdom, the right to print, publish and distribute it is a Royal prerogative and the Crown licenses publishers to reproduce it under letters patent. In England, Wales and Northern Ireland the letters patent are held by the Queen's Printer, and in Scotland by the Scottish Bible Board. The office of Queen's Printer has been associated with the right to reproduce the Bible for centuries, the earliest known reference coming in 1577. In the 18th century all surviving interests in the monopoly were bought out by John Baskett. The Baskett rights descended through a number of printers and, in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, the Queen's Printer is now Cambridge University Press, who inherited the right when they took over the firm of Eyre & Spottiswoode in 1990. Other royal charters of similar antiquity grant Cambridge University Press and Oxford University Press the right to produce the Authorized Version independently of the Queen's Printer. In Scotland the Authorized Version is published by Collins under licence from the Scottish Bible Board. The terms of the letters patent prohibit any other than the holders, or those authorized by the holders, from printing, publishing or importing the Authorized Version into the United Kingdom. The protection that the Authorized Version, and also the Book of Common Prayer, enjoy is the last remnant of the time when the Crown held a monopoly over all printing and publishing in the United Kingdom. All provisions granting copyright in perpetuity were abolished by the Copyright, Designs and patents Act 1988, but under transitional arrangements (Schedule I, section 13(1)) these printing rights do not fully expire until 2039. English-language Protestant Bibles in the 16th century included the books of the Apocrypha generally in a separate section between the Old and New Testaments and there is evidence that these were widely read as popular literature, especially in Puritan circles.[150][151] However, starting in 1630, volumes of the Geneva Bible were occasionally bound with the pages of the Apocrypha section excluded. In 1644 the Long Parliament forbade the reading of the Apocrypha in Church and in 1666 the first editions of the King James Bible without Apocrypha were bound. The standardization of the text of the Authorized Version after 1769 together with the technological development of Stereotype printing made it possible to produce Bibles in largeprint runs at very low unit prices. For commercial and charitable publishers, editions of the Authorized Version without the Apocrypha reduced the cost, while having increased market appeal to non-Anglican Protestant readers.


With the rise of the Bible societies, most editions have omitted the whole section of Apocryphal books. The British and Foreign Bible Society withdrew of subsidies for bible printing and dissemination in 1826, under the following resolution: "That the funds of the Society be applied to the printing and circulation of the Canonical Books of Scripture, to the exclusion of those Books and parts of Books usually termed Apocryphal;" The American Bible Society adopted a similar policy. Both societies eventually reversed these policies in light of twentieth century ecumenical efforts on translations, the ABS doing so in 1964 and the BFBS in 1966.

The DouayRheims Bible (pronounced /due/ or /da.e rimz/) (also known as the Rheims Douai Bible or Douai Bible, and abbreviated as DR and DV) is a translation of the Bible from the Latin Vulgate into English made by members of the English College, Douai, in the service of the Catholic Church. The New Testament portion was published in Reims, France, in 1582, in one volume with extensive commentary and notes. The Old Testament portion was published in two volumes thirty years later by the University of Douai. The first volume, covering Genesis through Job, was published in 1609; the second, covering Psalms to 2 Machabees plus the apocrypha of the Clementine Vulgate was published in 1610. Marginal notes took up the bulk of the volumes and had a strong polemical and patristic character. They also offered insights on issues of translation, and on the Hebrew and Greek source texts of the Vulgate. The purpose of the version, both the text and notes, was to uphold Catholic tradition in the face of the Protestant Reformation which up till then had ovewhelmingly dominated Elizabethan religion and academic debate. As such it was an impressive effort by English Catholics to support the Counter-Reformation. The New Testament was reprinted in 1600, 1621 and 1633, while both the Old Testament volumes were reprinted in 1635, but neither thereafter for another hundred years. In 1589, William Fulke produced a refutation of the Rheims New Testament, setting out the complete Rheims text and notes in parallel columns with those of the Bishops' Bible. This work sold widely in England, being re-issued in three further editions to 1633; and it was predominantly through Fulke's editions that the Rheims New Testament came to exercise a significant influence on the development of 17th Century English. Much of the text of the 1582/1610 bible, however, employed a densely latinate vocabulary, to the extent of being in places unreadable; and consequently this translation was replaced by a revision undertaken by bishop Richard Challoner; the New Testament in three editions 1749, 1750, and 1752; the Old Testament (minus the Vulgate apocrypha), in 1750. Although retaining the title DouayRheims Bible, the Challoner revision was in fact a new version, tending to take as its base text the King James Bible rigorously checked and extensively adjusted for improved readability and consistency with the Clementine edition of the Vulgate. Subsequent editions of the Challoner revision, of which there have been very many, reproduce his Old Testament of 1750 with very few changes. Challoner's New Testament was, however, extensively revised by Bernard MacMahon in a series of Dublin editions from 1783 to 1810; and these various Dublin versions

are the source of some Challoner bibles printed in the United States in the 19th Century. Subsequent editions of the Challoner bible printed in England most often follow Challoner's earlier New Testament texts of 1749 and 1750; as do most 20th-century printings, and on-line versions of the DouayRheims bible circulating on the internet. Although the Jerusalem Bible, New American Bible/New American Bible Revised Edition (in the United States), the Revised Standard Version, the New Revised Standard Version and the New Jerusalem Bible are the most commonly used in English-speaking Catholic churches, the Challoner revision of the DouayRheims is still often the Bible of choice of more traditional English-speaking Catholics. The English exiles for religious causes, or recusants, were not all Catholic. There were Catholic refugees on the European mainland as well as Puritan, and from the one, as from the other, there proceeded an English version of the Bible. The center of English Catholicism was the English College at Douai (University of Douai, France) founded in 1568 by William Allen, formerly of Queen's College, Oxford, and Canon of York, and subsequently cardinal, for the purpose of training priests to convert the English again to Catholicism. And it was here where the Catholic translation of the Bible into English was produced. A run of a few hundred or more of the New Testament, in quarto form (not large folio), was published in the last months of 1582 (Herbert #177), during a temporary migration of the college to Rheims; consequently, it has been commonly known as the Rheims New Testament. Though he died in the same year as its publication, this translation was principally the work of Gregory Martin, formerly Fellow of St. John's College, Oxford, close friend of Saint Edmund Campion. He was assisted by others at Douai, notably Allen himself, Richard Bristow, and Thomas Worthington, who proofed and provided notes and annotations. The Old Testament is stated to have been ready at the same time, but for want of funds it could not be printed until later, after the college had returned to Douai; it is commonly known as the Douay Old Testament. It was issued as two quarto volumes dated 1609 and 1610 (Herbert #300). Surprisingly these first New Testament and Old Testament editions followed the Geneva Bible not only in their quarto format but also in the use of Roman type.


Title page from the 1582 DouaiRheims New Testament, "specially for the discouerie of the CORRVPTIONS of diuers late translations, and for cleering the CONTROVERSIES in religion."

As a recent translation, the Rheims New Testament had an influence on the translators of the King James Version. Afterwards it ceased to be of interest in the Anglican church. The city is now spelled Douai, but the Bible continues to be published as the DouayRheims Bible, and has formed the basis of some later Catholic Bibles in English. The title page runs: The Holy Bible, faithfully translated into English out of the authentic Latin. Diligently conferred with the Hebrew, Greek and other Editions. The cause of the delay was our poor state of banishment, but there was also the matter of reconciling the Latin to the other editions. William Allen went to Rome and worked, with others, on the revision of the Vulgate. The Sixtine Vulgate edition was published in 1590. The definitive Clementine text followed in 1592. These revisions of the Vulgate allowed Dr Worthington, in the preface, to say: "we have again conferred this English translation and conformed it to the most perfect Latin Edition." Title page from the 1582 DouaiRheims New Testament, "specially for the discouerie of the CORRVPTIONS of diuers late translations, and for cleering the CONTROVERSIES in religion."


As a recent translation, the Rheims New Testament had an influence on the translators of the King James Version. Afterwards it ceased to be of interest in the Anglican church. The city is now spelled Douai, but the Bible continues to be published as the DouayRheims Bible, and has formed the basis of some later Catholic Bibles in English. The title page runs: The Holy Bible, faithfully translated into English out of the authentic Latin. Diligently conferred with the Hebrew, Greek and other Editions. The cause of the delay was our poor state of banishment, but there was also the matter of reconciling the Latin to the other editions. William Allen went to Rome and worked, with others, on the revision of the Vulgate. The Sixtine Vulgate edition was published in 1590. The definitive Clementine text followed in 1592. These revisions of the Vulgate allowed Dr Worthington, in the preface, to say: "we have again conferred this English translation and conformed it to the most perfect Latin Edition."

DEAD SEA SCROLL FOUND IN 1947 The Dead Sea Scrolls are a collection of 972 texts discovered between 1947 and 1956 at Khirbet Qumran in the West Bank. They were found on the northwest shore of the Dead Sea, from which they derive their name. The texts are of great historical, religious and linguistic significance because they include the earliest known surviving manuscripts of works later included in the Hebrew Bible canon, along with extra-biblical manuscripts which preserve evidence of the diversity of religious thought in late Second Temple Judaism. The texts are written in Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek, and Nabataean, mostly on parchment but with some written on papyrus and bronze. The manuscripts have been dated to various ranges between 408 BCE and 318 CE. Bronze coins found on the site form a series beginning with John Hyrcanus (135-104 BCE) and continuing until the First Jewish-Roman War (6673 CE). The scrolls have traditionally been identified with the ancient Jewish sect called the Essenes, although some recent interpretations have challenged this association and argue that the scrolls were penned by priests in Jerusalem, Zadokites, or other unknown Jewish groups. The Dead Sea Scrolls are divided into three groups; copies of texts from the Hebrew Bible, which comprise roughly 40% of the identified scrolls, texts from the Second Temple Period like the Book of Enoch, Jubilees, the Book of Tobit, the Wisdom of Sirach, Psalms 152155, etc., that ultimately were not canonized in the Hebrew Bible, which comprise roughly 30% of the identified scrolls, and sectarian manuscripts (previously unknown documents that shed light on the rules and beliefs of a particular group or groups within greater Judaism) like the Community Rule, the War Scroll, the Pesher on Habakkuk and the The Rule of the Blessing, which comprise roughly 30% of the identified scrolls. The initial discovery, by Bedouin shepherd Muhammed Edh-Dhib, his cousin Jum'a Muhammed, and Khalil Musa, took place between November 1946 and February 1947. The shepherds discovered 7 scrolls (See Fragment and scroll lists) housed in jars in a cave at what is now known as the Qumran site. John C. Trever reconstructed the story of the scrolls from several

interviews with the Bedouin. Edh-Dhib's cousin noticed the caves, but edh-Dhib himself was the first to actually fall into one. He retrieved a handful of scrolls, which Trever identifies as the Isaiah Scroll, Habakkuk Commentary, and the Community Rule, and took them back to the camp to show to his family. None of the scrolls were destroyed in this process, despite popular rumor. The Bedouin kept the scrolls hanging on a tent pole while they figured out what to do with them, periodically taking them out to show people. At some point during this time, the Community Rule was split in two. The Bedouin first took the scrolls to a dealer named Ibrahim 'Ijha in Bethlehem. 'Ijha returned them, saying they were worthless, after being warned that they might have been stolen from a synagogue. Undaunted, the Bedouin went to a nearby market, where a Syrian Christian offered to buy them. A sheikh joined their conversation and suggested they take the scrolls to Khalil Eskander Shahin, "Kando", a cobbler and part-time antiques dealer. The Bedouin and the dealers returned to the site, leaving one scroll with Kando and selling three others to a dealer for GBP7 (US$29 in 2003). The original scrolls continued to change hands after the Bedouin left them in the possession of a third party until a sale could be arranged. In 1947 the original seven scrolls caught the attention of Dr. John C. Trever, of the American Schools of Oriental Research (ASOR), who compared the script in the scrolls to that of The Nash Papyrus, the oldest biblical manuscript then known, and found similarities between them. In March the 1948 Arab-Israeli War prompted the move of some of scrolls to Beirut, Lebanon for safekeeping. On 11 April 1948, Miller Burrows, head of the ASOR, announced the discovery of the scrolls in a general press release.

Search for the Qumran caves (19481949)

Early in September 1948, Mar brought Professor Ovid R. Sellers, the new Director of ASOR, some additional scroll fragments that he had acquired. By the end of 1948, nearly two years after their discovery, scholars had yet to locate the original cave where the fragments had been found. With unrest in the country at that time, no large-scale search could be undertaken safely. Sellers attempted to get the Syrians to assist in the search for the cave, but he was unable to pay their price. In early 1948, the government of Jordan gave permission to the Arab Legion to search the area where the original Qumran cave was thought to be. Consequently, Cave 1 was rediscovered on 28 January 1949, by Belgian United Nations observer Captain Phillipe Lippens and Arab Legion Captain Akkash el-Zebn.

Qumran caves rediscovery and new scroll discoveries (19491951)

The rediscovery of Cave 1 prompted the initial excavation of the site from 15 February to 5 March 1949 by the Jordanian Department of Antiquities. The excavation was led by Lancaster Harding, director of the Palestine Archaeological Museum, and Roland de Vaux, the President of the Trustees of the museum. The Cave 1 site yielded discoveries of additional Dead Sea Scroll fragments, linen cloth, jars, and other artifacts.

Excavations of Qumran (19511956)

In November 1951, Roland de Vaux and his team from the ASOR began a full excavation of Qumran. In February 1952, the Bedouin people discovered 30 fragments in what was to be

designated Cave 2. These included fragments of Jubilees and Ben Sira written in Hebrew. The following month, the ASOR team discovered Cave 3 and the Copper Scroll. Between September and December 1952 the fragments and scrolls of Caves 4, 5, and 6 were subsequently discovered by the ASOR teams. With the monetary value of the scrolls rising as their historical significance was made more public, the Bedouins and the ASOR archaeologists accelerated their search for the scrolls separately in the same general area of Qumran, which was over 1 kilometer in length. Between 1953 and 1956, Roland de Vaux led four more archaeological expeditions in the area to uncover scrolls and artifacts. The last cave, Cave 11, was discovered in 1956 and yielded the last fragments to be found in the vicinity of Qumran.

Cave 1

The War Scroll, found in Qumran Cave 1.

A portion of the second discovered copy of the Isaiah scroll, 1QIsab.


Cave 1 was discovered in the winter or spring of 1947. It was first excavated by Gerald Lankester Harding and Roland de Vaux from 15 February to 5 March 1949. In addition to the original seven scrolls, Cave 1 produced jars and bowls whose chemical composition and shape matched vessels discovered at the settlement at Qumran, pieces of cloth, and additional fragments that matched portions of the original scrolls, thereby confirming that the original scrolls came from Cave 1. The original seven scrolls from Cave 1 are:

1QIsaa (the Great Isaiah Scroll, a copy of the Book of Isaiah) 1QIsab (a second copy of Isaiah) 1QS (the Community Rule) cf. 4QSa-j = 4Q255-64, 5Q11 1QpHab (the Pesher on Habakkuk) 1QM (the War Scroll) cf. 4Q491, 4Q493 1QH (the Thanksgiving Hymns) 1QapGen (the Genesis Apocryphon)

Cave 2
Cave 2 was discovered in February 1952. It yielded 300 fragments from 33 manuscripts, including Jubilees and the Wisdom of Sirach in the original Hebrew.

Cave 3
Cave 3 was discovered on 14 March 1952. The cave yielded 14 manuscripts including Jubilees and the curious Copper Scroll, which lists 67 hiding places, mostly underground, throughout the ancient Roman province of Judea (now Israel). According to the scroll, the secret caches held astonishing amounts of gold, silver, copper, aromatics, and manuscripts.

Caves 4a and 4b
Cave 4 was discovered in August 1952, and was excavated from 2229 September 1952 by Gerald Lankester Harding, Roland de Vaux, and Jzef Milik. Cave 4 is actually two hand-cut caves (4a and 4b), but since the fragments were mixed, they are labeled as 4Q. Cave 4 is the most famous of Qumran caves both because of its visibility from the Qumran plateau and its productivity. It is visible from the plateau to the south of the Qumran settlement. It is by far the most productive of all Qumran caves, producing ninety percent of the Dead Sea Scrolls and scroll fragments (approx. 15,000 fragments from 500 different texts), including 910 copies of Jubilees, along with 21 tefillin and 7 mezuzot.

The Damascus Document Scroll, 4Q271Df, found in Cave 4

Cave 5
Cave 5 was discovered alongside Cave 6 in 1952, shortly after the discovery of Cave 4. Cave 5 produced approximately 25 manuscripts.

Cave 6
Cave 6 was discovered alongside Cave 5 in 1952, shortly after the discovery of Cave 4. Cave 6 contained fragments of about 31 manuscripts. List of groups of fragments collected from Wadi Qumran Cave 6:

Cave 7
Cave 7, along with caves 8 and 9, was one of the only caves that is accessible by passing through the settlement at Qumran. Carved into the southern end of the Qumran plateau, archaeologists excavated cave 7 in 1957. Cave 7 yielded fewer than 20 fragments of Greek documents, including 7Q2 (the "Letter of Jeremiah" = Baruch 6), 7Q5 (which became the subject of much speculation in later decades), and a Greek copy of a scroll of Enoch. Cave 7 also produced several inscribed potsherds and jars.

Dead Sea Scroll fragments 7Q4, 7Q5, and 7Q8 from Cave 7 in Qumran, written on papyrus.

A view of part of the Temple Scroll that was found in Qumran Cave 11.

List of groups of fragments collected from Wadi Qumran Cave 7:

Cave 8
Cave 8, along with caves 7 and 9, was one of the only caves that is accessible by passing through the settlement at Qumran. Carved into the southern end of the Qumran plateau, archaeologists excavated cave 8 in 1957.


Cave 8 produced five fragments: Genesis (8QGen), Psalms (8QPs), a tefillin fragment (8QPhyl), a mezuzah (8QMez), and a hymn (8QHymn). Cave 8 also produced several tefillin cases, a box of leather objects, tons of lamps, jars, and the sole of a leather shoe. List of groups of fragments collected from Wadi Qumran Cave 8:

Cave 9
Cave 9, along with caves 7 and 8, was one of the only caves that is accessible by passing through the settlement at Qumran. Carved into the southern end of the Qumran plateau, archaeologists excavated cave 9 in 1957. There was only one fragment found in Cave 9:

Cave 10
In Cave 10 archaeologists found two ostraca with some writing on them, along with an unknown symbol on a grey stone slab:

Cave 11
Cave 11 was discovered in 1956 and yielded 21 texts, some of which were quite lengthy. The Temple Scroll, so called because more than half of it pertains to the construction of the Temple of Jerusalem, was found in Cave 11, and is by far the longest scroll. It is now 26.7 feet (8.15 m) long. Its original length may have been over 28 feet (8.75 m). The Temple Scroll was regarded by Yigael Yadin as "The Torah According to the Essenes". On the other hand, Hartmut Stegemann, a contemporary and friend of Yadin, believed the scroll was not to be regarded as such, but was a document without exceptional significance. Stegemann notes that it is not mentioned or cited in any known Essene writing. Also in Cave 11, an escatological fragment about the biblical figure Melchizedek (11Q13) was found. Cave 11 also produced a copy of Jubilees. According to former chief editor of the DSS editorial team John Strugnell, there are at least four privately owned scrolls from Cave 11, that have not yet been made available for scholars. Among them is a complete Aramaic manuscript of the Book of Enoch. List of groups of fragments collected from Wadi Qumran Cave 11:

Fragments with unknown provenance


Some fragments of scrolls do not have significant archaeological and provenance records that reveal which designated Qumran cave area they were found in. They are believed to have come from Wadi Qumran caves, but are just as likely to have come from other archaeological sites in the Judaean Desert area. These fragments have therefore been designated to the temporary "X" series.

A view of the Dead Sea from a cave at Qumran in which some of the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered.

There has been much debate about the origin of the Dead Sea Scrolls. The dominant theory remains that the scrolls were the product of a sect of Jews living at nearby Qumran called the Essenes, but this theory has come to be challenged by several modern scholars.

QumranEssene Theory The view among scholars, almost universally held until the 1990s, is the "QumranEssene" hypothesis originally posited by Roland Gurin de Vaux and Jzef Tadeusz Milik, though independently both Eliezer Sukenik and Butrus Sowmy of St Mark's Monastery connected scrolls with the Essenes well before any excavations at Qumran. The QumranEssene theory holds that the scrolls were written by the Essenes, or by another Jewish sectarian group, residing at Khirbet Qumran. They composed the scrolls and ultimately hid them in the nearby caves during the Jewish Revolt sometime between 66 and 68 CE. The site of Qumran was destroyed and the scrolls never recovered. A number of arguments are used to support this theory.

There are striking similarities between the description of an initiation ceremony of new members in the Community Rule and descriptions of the Essene initiation ceremony mentioned in the works of Flavius Josephus a JewishRoman historian of the Second Temple Period. Josephus mentions the Essenes as sharing property among the members of the community, as does the Community Rule. During the excavation of Khirbet Qumran, two inkwells and plastered elements thought to be tables were found, offering evidence that some form of writing was done there. More inkwells were discovered in nearby loci. De Vaux called this area the "scriptorium" based upon this discovery. Several Jewish ritual baths (Hebrew: miqvah = )were discovered at Qumran, which offers evidence of an observant Jewish presence at the site. Pliny the Elder (a geographer writing after the fall of Jerusalem in 70 CE) describes a group of Essenes living in a desert community on the northwest shore of the Dead Sea near the ruined town of 'Ein Gedi.

The QumranEssene theory has been the dominant theory since its initial proposal by Roland de Vaux and J.T. Milik. Recently, however, several other scholars have proposed alternative origins of the scrolls.

Christian Origin Theory

Spanish Jesuit Jos O'Callaghan Martnez has argued that one fragment (7Q5) preserves a portion of text from the New Testament Gospel of Mark 6:5253. In recent years, Robert Eisenman has advanced the theory that some scrolls describe the early Christian community. Eisenman also attempted to relate the career of James the Just and Paul the Apostle to some of these documents.

Jerusalem Origin Theory

Some scholars have argued that the scrolls were the product of Jews living in Jerusalem, who hid the scrolls in the caves near Qumran while fleeing from the Romans during the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 CE. Karl Heinrich Rengstorf first proposed that the Dead Sea Scrolls originated at the library of the Jewish Temple in Jerusalem. Later, Norman Golb suggested that the scrolls were the product of multiple libraries in Jerusalem, and not necessarily the Jerusalem Temple library. Proponents of the Jerusalem Origin theory point to the diversity of thought and handwriting among the scrolls as evidence against a Qumran origin of the scrolls. Several archaeologists have also accepted an origin of the scrolls other than Qumran, including Yizhar Hirschfeld and most recently Yizhak Magen and Yuval Peleg, who all understand the remains of Qumran to be those of a Hasmonean fort that was reused during later periods.

QumranSectarian Theory
QumranSectarian theories are variations on the QumranEssene theory. The main point of departure from the QumranEssene theory is hesitation to link the Dead Sea Scrolls specifically with the Essenes. Most proponents of the QumranSectarian theory understand a group of Jews


living in or near Qumran to be responsible for the Dead Sea Scrolls, but do not necessarily conclude that the sectarians are Essenes.

QumranSadducean Theory
A specific variation on the QumranSectarian theory that has gained much recent popularity is the work of Lawrence H. Schiffman, who proposes that the community was led by a group of Zadokite priests (Sadducees).[43] The most important document in support of this view is the "Miqsat Ma'ase Ha-Torah" (4QMMT), which cites purity laws (such as the transfer of impurities) identical to those attributed in rabbinic writings to the Sadducees. 4QMMT also reproduces a festival calendar that follows Sadducee principles for the dating of certain festival days.

Physical characteristics

Radiocarbon dating Main article: Carbon dating the Dead Sea Scrolls

Parchment from a number of the Dead Sea Scrolls have been carbon dated. The initial test performed in 1950 was on a piece of linen from one of the caves. This test gave an indicative dating of 33 CE plus or minus 200 years, eliminating early hypotheses relating the scrolls to the mediaeval period. Since then two large series of tests have been performed on the scrolls themselves. The results were summarized by VanderKam and Flint, who said the tests give "strong reason for thinking that most of the Qumran manuscripts belong to the last two centuries BCE and the first century CE."
Paleographic dating

Analysis of handwriting, a path of study known as palaeography, was applied to the text on the Dead Sea Scrolls by a variety of scholars in the field. Major linguistic analysis by Cross and Avigad dates fragments from 225 BCE to 50 CE.[46] These dates were determined by examining the size, variability, and style of the text.[47] The same fragments were later analyzed using radiocarbon date testing and were dated to an estimated range of 385 BCE to 82 CE with a 68% accuracy rate.


Ink and parchment

Shown here are gall powder (top left) and Iron(II) Oxide (bottom left), two of the key ingredients in IronGall Ink, one of the three inks used to make the Dead Sea Scrolls. The Isaiah Scroll, which has been shown to use Iron-Gall Ink, is pictured on the right.

The scrolls were analyzed using a cyclotron at the University of California, Davis, where it was found that two types of black ink were used: iron-gall ink and carbon soot ink. In addition, a third ink on the scrolls that was red in color was found to be made with cinnabar (HgS, mercury sulfide). There are only four uses of this red ink in the entire collection of Dead Sea Scroll fragments. The black inks found on the scrolls that are made up of carbon soot were found to be from olive oil lamps. Gall nuts from oak trees, present in some, but not all of the black inks on the scrolls, was added to make the ink more resilient to smudging common with pure carbon inks. Honey, oil, vinegar and water were often added to the mixture to thin the ink to a proper consistency for writing. In order to apply the ink to the scrolls, its writers used reed pens.

Shown here is a closeup of the ink and text of two of the fragments of the Dead Sea Scrolls. The two fragments, fragments 1 and 2 of 7Q6, are written on papyrus.

The Dead Sea scrolls were written on parchment made of processed animal hide known as vellum (approximately 85.5 - 90.5% of the scrolls), papyrus (estimated at 8.0 - 13.0% of the scrolls), and sheets of bronze composed of about 99.0% copper and 1.0% tin (approximately 1.5% of the scrolls). For those scrolls written on animal hides, scholars with the Israeli Antiquities Authority, by use of DNA testing for assembly purposes, believe that there may be a

hierarchy in the religious importance of the texts based on which type of animal was used to create the hide. Scrolls written on goat and calf hides are considered by scholars to be more significant in nature, while those written on gazelle or ibex are considered to be less religiously significant in nature. In addition, tests by the National Institute of Nuclear Physics in Sicily, Italy, have suggested that the origin of parchment of select Dead Sea Scroll fragments is from the Qumran area itself, by using X-ray and Particle Induced X-ray emission testing of the water used to make the parchment that were compared with the water from the area around the Qumran site.

Deterioration, storage, and preservation

Two examples of the pottery that held some of the Dead Sea Scrolls documents found at Qumran.

The Dead Sea Scrolls that were found were originally preserved by the dry, arid, and low humidity conditions present within the Qumran area adjoining the Dead Sea. In addition, the lack of the use of tanning materials on the parchment of the Dead Sea Scrolls and the very low airflow in the Qumran caves also contributed significantly to their preservation. Some of the scrolls were found stored in clay jars within the Qumran caves, further helping to preserve them from deterioration. The original handling of the scrolls by archaeologists and scholars was done inappropriately, and, along with their storage in an uncontrolled environment, they began a process of more rapid deterioration than they had experienced at Qumran. During the first few years in the late 1940s and early 1950s, adhesive tape used to join fragments and seal cracks caused significant damage to the documents. The Government of Jordan had recognized the

urgency of protecting the scrolls from deterioration and the presence of the deterioration among the scrolls. However, the government did not have adequate funds to purchase all the scrolls for their protection and agreed to have foreign institutions purchase the scrolls and have them held at their museum in Jerusalem until they could be "adequately studied". In early 1953, they were moved to the Palestine Archaeological Museum in East Jerusalem and through their transportation suffered more deterioration and damage. The museum was underfunded and had limited resources with which to examine the scrolls, and, as a result, conditions of the "scrollery" and storage area were left relatively uncontrolled by modern standards. The museum had left most of the fragments and scrolls lying between window glass, trapping the moisture in with them, causing an acceleration in the deterioration process. During a portion of the conflict during the 1956 Arab-Israeli War, the scrolls collection of the Palestinian Archaeological Museum was stored in the vault of the Ottoman Bank in Amman, Jordan. Damp conditions from temporary storage of the scrolls in the Ottoman Bank vault from 1956 to the Spring of 1957 lead to a more rapid rate of deterioration of the scrolls. The conditions caused mildew to develop on the scrolls and fragments, and some of the fragments were partially destroyed or made illegible by the glue and paper of the manila envelopes in which they were stored while in the vault. By 1958 it was noted that up to 5% of some of the scrolls had completely deteriorated. Many of the texts had become illegible and many of the parchments had darkened considerably. Until the 1970s, the scrolls continued to deteriorate because of poor storage arrangements, exposure to different adhesives, and being trapped in moist environments. Fragments written on parchment (rather than papyrus or bronze) in the hands of private collectors and scholars suffered an even worse fate than those in the hands of the museum, with large portions of fragments being reported to have disappeared by 1966. In the late 1960s, the deterioration was becoming a major concern with scholars and museum officials alike. Scholars John Allegro and Sir Francis Frank were some of the first to strongly advocate for better preservation techniques. Early attempts made by both the British and Israel Museums to remove the adhesive tape ended up exposing the parchment to an array of chemicals, including "British Leather Dressing," and darkening some of them significantly. In the 1970s and 1980s, other preservation attempts were made that included removing the glass plates and replacing them with cardboard and removing pressure against the plates that held the scrolls in storage; however, the fragments and scrolls continued to rapidly deteriorate during this time. In 1991, the Israeli Antiquities Authority established a temperature controlled laboratory for the storage and preservation of the scrolls. The actions and preservation methods of Rockefeller Museum staff were concentrated on the removal of tape, oils, metals, salt, and other contaminants. The fragments and scrolls are preserved using acid-free cardboard and stored in solander boxes in the climate-controlled storage area.


Photography and assembly

Najib Albina working on the Dead Sea Scrolls in the photo lab of the Palestine Archaeological Museum, Circa 19551960.

Since the Dead Sea Scrolls were initially held by different parties during and after the excavation process, they were not all photographed by the same organization nor in their entirety.

First photographs by the American Schools of Oriental Research (1948)

The first individual to photograph a portion of the collection was John C. Trever (19162006), a biblical scholar and archaeologist, who was a resident for the American Schools of Oriental Research. He photographed three of the scrolls discovered in Cave 1 on 21 February 1948, both on black-and-white and standard color film. Although an amateur photographer, the quality of his photographs often exceeded the visibility of the scrolls themselves as, over the years, the ink of the texts quickly deteriorated after they were removed from their linen wrappings.

Infrared photography and plate assembly by the Palestinian Archaeological Museum (19521967)
A majority of the collection from the Qumran caves was acquired by the Palestine Archeological Museum. The Museum had the scrolls photographed by Najib Albina, a local Arab photographer trained by Lewis Larsson of the American Colony in Jerusalem,[65] Between 1952 and 1967, Albina documented the five stage process of the sorting and assembly of the scrolls, done by the curator and staff of the Palestine Archeological Museum, using infrared photography. Using a process known today as broadband fluorescence infrared photography, or NIR photography, Najib and the team at the Museum produced over 1,750 photographic plates of the scrolls and

fragments. The photographs were taken with the scrolls laid out on animal skin, using large format film, which caused the text to stand out, making the plates especially useful for assembling fragments. These are the earliest photographs of the museum's collection, which was the most complete in the world at the time, and they recorded the fragments and scrolls before their further decay in storage, so they are often considered the best recorded copies of the scrolls.

Israel Antiquities Authority and NASA digital infrared imaging (19932012)

A previously unreadable fragment of the Dead Sea Scrolls photographed by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory at NASA in the early 1990s using digital infrared technology. The fragment, translated into English, reads "he wrote the words of Noah."

Beginning in 1993, the United States National Aeronautics and Space Administration used digital infrared imaging technology to produce photographs of Dead Sea Scrolls fragments. In partnership with the Ancient Biblical Manuscript Center and West Semitic Research, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory successfully worked to expand on the use of infrared photography previously used to evaluate ancient manuscripts by expanding the range of spectra at which images are photographed. NASA used this multi-spectral imaging technique, adapted from its remote sensing and planetary probes, in order to reveal previously illegible text on fragments of the Dead Sea Scrolls. The process uses a liquid crystal tunable filter in order to photograph the scrolls at specific wavelengths of light and, as a result, image distortion is significantly diminished. This method was used with select fragments of the Dead Sea Scrolls to reveal text and details that cameras that take photographs using a larger light spectrum could not reveal. The camera and digital imaging assembly was developed by Greg Berman, a scientist with NASA, specifically for the purpose of photographing illegible ancient texts. On December18-2012 the first output of this project was launched together with Google on a dedicated site The site contains both digitizations of old images taken in the 1950s and about 1000 new images taken with the new NASA technology.

Israel Antiquities Authority and DNA scroll assembly (20062012)

Scientists with the Israeli Antiquities Authority have used DNA from the parchment on which the Dead Sea Scrolls fragments were written, in concert with infrared digital photography, to assist in the reassembly of the scrolls. For scrolls written on parchment made from animal hide and papyrus, scientists with the museum are using DNA code to associate fragments with

different scrolls and to help scholars determine which scrolls may hold greater significance based on the type of material that was used. Israel Museum of Jerusalem and Google digitization project (20112016, Estimated) In partnership with Google, the Museum of Jerusalem is working to photograph the Dead Sea Scrolls and make them available to the public digitally, although not placing the images in the public domain. The lead photographer of the project, Ardon Bar-Hama, and his team are utilizing the Alpa 12 MAX camera accompanied with a Leaf Aptus-II back in order to produce ultra-high resolution digital images of the scrolls and fragments. With photos taken at 1,200 megapixels, the results are digital images that can be used to distinguish details that are invisible to the naked eye. In order to minimize damage to the scrolls and fragments, photographers are using a 1/4000th of a second exposure time and UV-protected flash tubes. The digital photography project, estimated in 2011 to cost approximately 3.5 million U.S. dollars, is expected to be completed by 2016.

Scholarly examination

Scholar Eleazar Sukenik examining one of the Dead Sea Scrolls in 1951.

Early study by scholars

After most of the scrolls and fragments were moved to the Palestinian Archaeological Museum in 1953, scholars began to assemble them and log them for translation and study in a room that became known as the "Scrollery".

Language and script

The text of the Dead Sea Scrolls is written in four different languages: Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek, and Nabataean.


Language Hebrew Hebrew Biblical Hebrew Biblical Hebrew Aramaic Greek Nabataean

Script Assyrian block script

Percentage of Documents Estimated 76.0-79.0%

Centuries of Known Use 3rd century BCE to present Unknown

Cryptic scripts "A" "B" and Estimated 0.9%-1.0% "C" Paleo-Hebrew script Estimated 1.0-1.5% Paleo-Hebrew scribal script Aramaic square script Greek uncial script Nabataean script Estimated 16.0-17.0% Estimated 3.0% Estimated 0.2%

10th century BCE to the 2nd century CE

8th century BCE to present 3rd century CE to 8th centuries CE 2nd century BCE to the 4th century CE


Scholars assembling and examining the Dead Sea Scrolls fragments in what became known as the "Scrollery" room of the Palestine Archaeological Museum.

Physical publication and controversy

Some of the fragments and scrolls were published early. Most of the longer, more complete scrolls were published soon after their discovery. All the writings in Cave 1 appeared in print between 1950 and 1956; those from eight other caves were released in 1963; and 1965 saw the publication of the Psalms Scroll from Cave 11. Their translations into English soon followed.



Publication of the scrolls has taken many decades, and delays have been a source of academic controversy. The scrolls were controlled by a small group of scholars headed by John Strugnell, while a majority of scholars had no access neither to the scrolls nor even to photographs of the text. Scholars such as Hershel Shanks, Norman Golb and many others argued for decades for publishing the texts, so that they become available to researchers. This controversy only ended in 1991, when the Biblical Archaeology Society was able to publish the "Facsimile Edition of the Dead Sea Scrolls", after an intervention of the Israeli government and the Israeli Antiquities Authority (IAA). In 1991 Emanuel Tov was appointed as the chairman of the Dead Sea Scrolls Foundation, and publication of the scrolls followed in the same year.
Physical description

The majority of the scrolls consist of tiny, brittle fragments, which were published at a pace considered by many to be excessively slow. During early assembly and translation work by scholars through the Rockefeller Museum from the 1950s through the 1960s, access to the unpublished documents was severely limited to the editorial committee.
Discoveries in the Judean Desert (19552009)

Emanuel Tov (1941-) who was Editor-in-Chief of the Dead Seas Scrolls Publication Project and, as a result, responsible for the publication of 32 volumes of the Discoveries in the Judean Desert series. He also worked to publish a six-volume printed edition with a majority of the non-Biblical Dead Sea Scrolls and make the same volumes available electronically on CD in a collection titled "The Dead Sea Scrolls Reader".

The content of the scrolls was published in a 40 volume series by Oxford University Press published between 1955 and 2009 known as Discoveries in the Judean Desert. In 1952 the Jordanian Department of Antiquities assembled a team of scholars to begin examining, assembling, and translating the scrolls with the intent of publishing them. The initial publication, assembled by Dominique Barthlemy and Jzef Milik, was published as Qumran Cave 1 in 1955. After a series of other publications in the late 1980s and early 1990s and with the appointment of the respected Dutch-Israeli textual scholar Emanuel Tov as Editor-in-Chief of the Dead Sea Scrolls Publication Project in 1990 publication of the scrolls accelerated. Tov's team

had published five volumes covering the Cave 4 documents by 1995. Between 1990 and 2009, Tov helped the team produce 32 volumes. The final volume, Volume XL, was published in 2009.
A Preliminary Edition of the Unpublished Dead Sea Scrolls (1991)

In 1991, researchers at Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio, Ben Zion Wacholder and Martin Abegg, announced the creation of a computer program that used previously published scrolls to reconstruct the unpublished texts. Officials at the Huntington Library in San Marino, California, led by Head Librarian William Andrew Moffett, announced that they would allow researchers unrestricted access to the library's complete set of photographs of the scrolls. In the fall of that year, Wacholder published 17 documents that had been reconstructed in 1988 from a concordance and had come into the hands of scholars outside of the International Team; in the same month, there occurred the discovery and publication of a complete set of facsimiles of the Cave 4 materials at the Huntington Library. Thereafter, the officials of the Israel Antiquities Authority agreed to lift their long-standing restrictions on the use of the scrolls.
A Facsimile Edition of the Dead Sea Scrolls (1991)

After further delays, attorney William John Cox undertook representation of an "undisclosed client", who had provided a complete set of the unpublished photographs, and contracted for their publication. Professors Robert Eisenman and James Robinson indexed the photographs and wrote an introduction to A Facsimile Edition of the Dead Sea Scrolls, which was published by the Biblical Archaeology Society in 1991. Following the publication of the Facsimile Edition, Professor Elisha Qimron sued Hershel Shanks, Eisenman, Robinson and the Biblical Archaeology Society for copyright infringement of one of the scrolls, MMT, which he deciphered. The District Court of Jerusalem found in favor of Qimron in September 1993. The Court issued a restraining order, which prohibited the publication of the deciphered text, and ordered defendants to pay Qimron NIS 100,000 for infringing his copyright and the right of attribution. Defendants appealed the Supreme Court of Israel, which approved the District Court's decision, in August 2000. The Supreme Court further ordered that the defendants hand over to Qimron all the infringing copies. The decision met Israeli and international criticism from copyright law scholars.
The Facsimile Edition by Facsimile Editions Ltd, London, England (20072008)

In November 2007 the Dead Sea Scrolls Foundation commissioned the London publisher, Facsimile Editions Limited, to produce a facsimile edition of The Great Isaiah Scroll (1QIsa), The Order of the Community (1QS), and The Pesher to Habakkuk (1QpHab). The facsimile was produced from 1948 photographs, and so more faithfully represents the condition of the Isaiah scroll at the time of its discovery than does the current condition of the real Isaiah scroll. Of the first three facsimile sets, one was exhibited at the Early Christianity and the Dead Sea Scrolls exhibition in Seoul, South Korea, and a second set was purchased by the British Library in London. A further 46 sets including facsimiles of three fragments from Cave 4 (now in the collection of the National Archaeological Museum in Amman, Jordan) Testimonia (4Q175), Pesher Isaiahb (4Q162) and Qohelet (4Q109) were announced in May 2009. The edition is

strictly limited to 49 numbered sets of these reproductions on either specially prepared parchment paper or real parchment. The complete facsimile set (three scrolls including the Isaiah scroll and the three Jordanian fragments) can be purchased for $60,000. The facsimiles have since been exhibited in Qumrn. Le secret des manuscrits de la mer Morte at the Bibliothque Nationale, Paris, France (2010) and Verbum Domini at the Vatican, Rome, Italy (2012) and Google

Digital publication
Olive Tree Bible Software (20002011)

The text of nearly all of the non-biblical scrolls has been recorded and tagged for morphology by Dr. Martin Abegg, Jr., the Ben Zion Wacholder Professor of Dead Sea Scroll Studies at Trinity Western University located in Langley, British Columbia, Canada. It is available on handheld devices through Olive Tree Bible Software - BibleReader, on Macs and Windows via emulator through Accordance with a comprehensive set of cross references, and on Windows through Logos Bible Software and BibleWorks.
The Dead Sea Scrolls Reader (2005)

The text of almost all of the non-Biblical texts from the Dead Sea Scrolls was released on CDROM by publisher E.J. Brill in 2005. The 2400 page, 6 volume series, was assembled by an editorial team led by Donald W. Parry and Emanuel Tov. Unlike the text translations in the physical publication, Discoveries in the Judean Desert, the texts are sorted by genres that include religious law, parabiblical texts, calendrical and sapiental texts, and poetic and liturgical works.
Israel Antiquities Authority and Google digitization project (20102016)

High-resolution images, including infrared photographs, of some of the Dead Sea scrolls are now available online at the Israel Museum's website. On 19 October 2010, it was announced that Israeli Antiquities Authority (IAA) would scan the documents using multi-spectral imaging technology developed by NASA to produce highresolution images of the texts, and then, through a partnership with Google, make them available online free of charge, on a searchable database and complemented by translation and other scholarly tools. The first images, which according to the announcement could reveal new letters and words, are expected to be posted online in the few months following the announcement, and the project is scheduled for completion within five years. According to IAA director Pnina Shor, "from the minute all of this will go online there will be no need to expose the scrolls anymore", referring to the dark, climate-controlled storeroom where the manuscripts are kept when not on display. On 25 September 2011 the Israel Museum Digital Dead Sea Scrolls this site went online. Google and the Israel Museum teamed up on this project, allowing users to examine and explore these most ancient manuscripts from Second Temple times at a level of detail never before

possible. The new website gives users access to searchable, high-resolution images of the scrolls, as well as short explanatory videos and background information on the texts and their history. As of May 2012, five complete scrolls from the Israel Museum have been digitized for the project and are now accessible online. These include the Great Isaiah Scroll, the Community Rule Scroll, the Commentary on Habakkuk Scroll, the Temple Scroll, and the War Scroll. All five scrolls can be magnified so that users may examine texts in detail.

Biblical significance
Before the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, the oldest Hebrew language manuscripts of the Bible were Masoretic texts dating to the 10th century, such as the Aleppo Codex. (Today, the oldest known extant manuscripts of the Masoretic Text date from approximately the 9th century.) The biblical manuscripts found among the Dead Sea Scrolls push that date back a millennium to the 2nd century BCE. Before this discovery, the earliest extant manuscripts of the Old Testament were manuscripts such as Codex Vaticanus Graecus 1209 and Codex Sinaiticus (both dating from the 4th century) that were written in Greek. According to The Oxford Companion to Archaeology:
The biblical manuscripts from Qumran, which include at least fragments from every book of the Old Testament, except perhaps for the Book of Esther, provide a far older cross section of scriptural tradition than that available to scholars before. While some of the Qumran biblical manuscripts are nearly identical to the Masoretic, or traditional, Hebrew text of the Old Testament, some manuscripts of the books of Exodus and Samuel found in Cave Four exhibit dramatic differences in both language and content. In their astonishing range of textual variants, the Qumran biblical discoveries have prompted scholars to reconsider the once-accepted theories of the development of the modern biblical text from only three manuscript families: of the Masoretic text, of the Hebrew original of the Septuagint, and of the Samaritan Pentateuch. It is now becoming increasingly clear that the Old Testament scripture was extremely fluid until its canonization around A.D. 100.

At the time of their writing the area was transitioning between the Greek Macedonian Empire and Roman dominance as Roman Judea. The Jewish qahal (society) had some measure of autonomy following the death of Alexander and the fracturing of the Greek Empire among his successors. The country was long called or Juda at that time, named for the Hebrews that returned to dwell there, following the well-documented diaspora. The majority of Jews never actually returned to Israel from Babylon and Persia according to the Talmud, oral and archeological evidence.

Biblical books found

There are 225 Biblical texts included in the Dead Sea Scroll documents, or around 22% of the total, with deutercanonical books the number increases to 235. The Dead Sea Scrolls contain parts of all but one of the books of the Tanakh of the Hebrew Bible and the Old Testament protocanon. They also include four of the deuterocanonical books included in Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Bibles: Tobit, Ben Sirach, Baruch 6, and Psalm 151. The Book of Esther has

not yet been found and scholars believe Esther is missing because, as a Jew, her marriage to a Persian king may have been looked down upon by the inhabitants of Qumran, or because the book has the Purim festival which is not included in the Qumran calendar. Listed below are the sixteen most represented books of the Bible found among the Dead Sea Scrolls in the 1970s, including the number of translatable Dead Sea texts that represent a copy of scripture from each Biblical book:
Book Psalms Deuteronomy 1 Enoch Genesis Isaiah Jubilees Exodus Leviticus Numbers Minor Prophets Daniel Jeremiah Ezekiel Job 1 & 2 Samuel Sirach Tobit Number found 39 33 25 24 22 21 18 17 11 10 8 6 6 6 4 1 Fragments


Non-biblical books
The majority of the texts found among the Dead Sea Scrolls are non-biblical in nature and were thought to be insignificant for understanding the composition or canonization of the Biblical books, but a different consensus has emerged which sees many of these works as being collected by the Essene community instead of being composed by them. Scholars now recognize that some of these works were composed earlier than the Essene period, when some of the Biblical books were still being written or redacted into their final form.

Museum exhibitions and displays

Temporary public exhibitions

Small portions of the Dead Sea Scrolls collections have been put on temporary display in exhibitions at museums and public venues around the world. The majority of these exhibitions took place in 1965 in the United States and the United Kingdom and from 1993 to 2011 in locations around the world. Many of the exhibitions were co-sponsored by either the Jordanian government (pre-1967) or the Israeli government (post-1967). Exhibitions were discontinued after 1965 due to the Six-days War conflicts and have slowed down in post-2011 as the Israeli Antiquities Authority works to digitize the scrolls and place them in permanent cold storage. A list of major temporary public exhibitions can be found here:

Individuals examining part of the Israeli Antiquities Authority's Dead Sea Scrolls collection on display at the Shrine of the Book, a wing of the Israel Museum in Jerusalem.

Long-term museum exhibitions

Display at the Shrine of the Book at the Israel Museum, Jerusalem

Since its completion in April 1965, the majority of the Dead Sea Scrolls collection has been moved to the Shrine of the Book, a part of the Israel Museum, located in Jerusalem. The museum falls under the auspices of the Israel Antiquities Authority, an official agency of the Israeli government. The permanent Dead Sea Scrolls exhibition at the museum features a reproduction of the Great Isaiah Scroll, surrounded by reproductions of other famous fragments that include Community Rule, the War Scroll, and the Thanksgiving Psalms Scroll.
Display at the Jordan Museum, Amman, Jordan

Some of the Dead Sea Scrolls collection held by the Jordian government prior to 1967 was stored in Amman rather than at the Palestinian Archaeological Museum in East Jerusalem. As a consequence, that part of the collection remained in Jordanian hands under their Department of Antiquities. Parts of this collection are anticipated to be on display at the Jordan Museum in

Amman after the documents move. They were moved there in between June 2011 and August 2011 from the National Archaeological Museum of Jordan. Among the display items are artifacts from the Qumran site and the Copper Scroll.


Past ownership

Advertisement in the Wall Street Journal dated 1 June 1954 for four of the "Dead Sea Scrolls."

Arrangements with the Bedouin left the scrolls in the hands of a third party until a profitable sale of them could be negotiated. That third party, George Isha'ya, was a member of the Syrian Orthodox Church, who soon contacted St. Mark's Monastery in the hope of getting an appraisal of the nature of the texts. News of the find then reached Metropolitan Athanasius Yeshue Samuel, better known as Mar Samuel. After examining the scrolls and suspecting their antiquity, Mar Samuel expressed an interest in purchasing them. Four scrolls found their way into his hands: the now famous Isaiah Scroll (1QIsaa), the Community Rule, the Habakkuk Pesher (a commentary on the book of Habakkuk), and the Genesis Apocryphon. More scrolls soon surfaced in the antiquities market, and Professor Eleazer Sukenik and Professor Benjamin Mazar, Israeli archaeologists at Hebrew University, soon found themselves in possession of three, The War Scroll, Thanksgiving Hymns, and another, more fragmented, Isaiah scroll (1QIsab). Four of the Dead Sea Scrolls went up for sale eventually, in an advertisement in the 1 June 1954, Wall Street Journal. On 1 July 1954, the scrolls, after delicate negotiations and accompanied by three people including the Metropolitan, arrived at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York. They were purchased by Professor Mazar and the son of Professor Sukenik, Yigael Yadin, for $250,000, approximately $2.14 million in 2012, and brought to Jerusalem.


Dating the Bible With the exception of a few sections in the biblical section known as the Prophets, virtually no biblical text is contemporaneous with the events it describes, and every part was subject to revision by later authors. The oldest surviving Hebrew Bible manuscripts date to about the 2nd century BCE (fragmentary). The oldest record of the complete text survives in a Greek translation called the Septuagint, dating to the 4th century CE (Codex Sinaiticus). The oldest extant manuscripts of the vocalized Masoretic text, which modern editions are based upon, date to the 9th century CE. From the internal testimony of the texts, the individual books of the 27-book New Testament canon are likely dated to the 1st century CE. The first book written was probably 1 Thessalonians, written at around 50 CE. The last book of the canon is the Book of Revelation said to be written by John of Patmos during the reign of Domitian (81-96). Since the original writing of the scriptures, huge volumes of copies have been made of the originals, which are no longer extant, and copies have been made of those copies, resulting in several text types. Archaeologists have recovered about 5,500 New Testament manuscripts, being fragments or complete books. The earliest extant fragment of the New Testament is the Rylands Library Papyrus P52, a piece of the Gospel of John dated to the first half of the 2nd century. Dating the composition of the texts relies primarily on internal evidence, including direct references to historical events, as resorting to textual criticism, philological and linguistic evidence is very subjective.

Mosaic authorship and Documentary hypothesis

The first five books of the bible have no special status in Christianity, but in Judaism they are called the Torah, meaning "law" or "instruction", and are regarded as the most important section of the Scriptures, traditionally thought to have been written between the 16th century and the 12th century BCE by Moses himself. Followers of the Copenhagen School place its origins in 5th century Yehud Medinata. Deuteronomy is treated separately from Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus and Numbers. The process of its formation probably took several hundred years, from the 8th century to the 6th BCE. It began as no more than the set of religious laws which today make up the bulk of the book; later it was extended in order to be used as the introduction to the comprehensive history of Israel written in the early part of the 6th century; and later still it was detached from the history, extended yet again, and used to conclude the story told in GenesisExodus-Leviticus-Numbers.


Nevi'im (Prophets)
Nevi'im Book of Nevi'im Book of Joshua Book of Judges Books of Samuel Books of Kings Scholarly dating ca. 625 BCE by the Deuteronomist (called D) working with traditional materials ca. 625 BCE by the Deuteronomist (called D) working with traditional materials ca. 625 BCE by the Deuteronomist (called D) working with traditional materials ca. 625 BCE by the Deuteronomist (called D) working with traditional materials Three main authors and an extensive editing process: Book of Isaiah

Isaiah 1-39 "Historical Isaiah" with multiple layers of editing, 8th century BCE Isaiah 40-55 Exilic(Deutero-Isaiah), 6th century BCE Isaiah 56-66 post-exilic(Trito-Isaiah), 6th-5th century BCE

Book of Jeremiah late 6th century BCE or later Book of Ezekiel Book of Hosea Book of Joel Book of Amos Book of Obadiah Book of Jonah Book of Micah Book of Nahum 6th century BCE or later 8th century BCE or later unknown 8th century BCE or later 6th century BCE or later 6th century BCE or later mid 6th century BCE or later 8th century BCE or later

Book of Habakkuk 6th century BCE or later Book of Zephaniah 7th century BCE or later Book of Haggai 5th century BCE or later


Book of Zechariah 5th century BCE or later Book of Malachi Early 5th century BCE or later

Ketuvim (Writings)
Ketuvim Book of Ketuvim Scholarly dating] The bulk of the Psalms appear to have been written for use in the Temple, which existed from around 950-586 BCE and, after rebuilding, from the 5th century BCE until 70 CE. Some old material from the ancient sages, some later material from the 6th century BCE or later, some material borrowed from the ancient Egyptian text called the Instructions of Amenemopet 5th century BCE scholarly estimates vary between 950 BCE to 200 BCE 6th century BCE or later 6th century BCE or later 4th century BCE or later 4th century BCE or later ca. 165 BCE


Book of Proverbs

Book of Job Song of Songs or Song of Solomon Book of Ruth Lamentations Ecclesiastes Book of Esther Book of Daniel

Book of Ezra-Book of 4th century BCE or slightly later Nehemiah Chronicles 4th century BCE or slightly later


Deuterocanonical books
Deuterocanonical books are books considered by the Roman Catholic Church and Eastern Orthodoxy to be canonical parts of the Christian Old Testament but are not present in the Tanakh (Hebrew Bible) and Protestant Bible.
Book of Deuterocanon Tobit Judith 1 Maccabees 2 Maccabees 3 Maccabees 4 Maccabees Wisdom Sirach ca. 100 BCE ca. 124 BCE 1st century BCE or 1st century CE 1st century BCE or 1st century CE during the Jewish Hellenistic period 2nd century BCE 2nd century BCE Scholarly dating

Letter of Jeremiah unknown Additions to Daniel 2nd century BCE Baruch during or shortly after the period of the Maccabees

The New Testament

The following table gives the most widely accepted dates for the composition of the New Testament books, together with the earliest preserved fragment for each text.
Book Gospel of Matthew Gospel of Mark Dates determined by scholars 60-85 CE 60-70 CE

Earliest Known Fragment

(150200 CE)


(350 CE)


Book Gospel of Luke Gospel of John Acts Romans Corinthians Galatians Ephesians Philippians Colossians 1 Thessalonians 2 Thessalonians Timothy Titus Philemon Hebrews James First Peter Second Peter Epistles of John Jude

Dates determined by scholars 60-90 CE 80-95 CE 60-90 CE 5758 CE 57 CE 45-55 CE 65 CE 5762 CE 60 CE 50 CE 50-54 CE 60-100 CE 60-100 CE 56 CE 63-90 CE 50-200 CE 60-96 CE 60-130 CE 90-110 CE 66-90 CE

Earliest Known Fragment ,


(175250 CE)


(125160 CE)





(250 CE)


(late 2nd century or 3rd century CE) (late 2nd century or 3rd century CE) (late 2nd century or 3rd century CE) (late 2nd century or 3rd century CE) (late 2nd century or 3rd century CE) (late 2nd century or 3rd century CE) (late 2nd century or 3rd century CE) (300 CE)








Codex Sinaiticus (350 CE)


(200 CE) (3rd century CE) (late 2nd century or 3rd century CE)




(early 3rd century CE)


(3rd/4th century CE) (3rd/4th century CE)


, Uncial 0232, Codex Sinaiticus (3rd/4th century CE)


(3rd/4th century CE)


Book Revelation

Dates determined by scholars 68-100 CE


Earliest Known Fragment (150200 CE)