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Volume 22 (2017)


Anneli Aejmelaeus, What Happened to the Text in Jer 25:1–7?

Abstract: The two versions of the text—the MT and the Septuagint—diverge from each other so radically in Jer 25:1–7 that deliberate editing of the text in one direction or the other must have taken place. Revisiting the passage (after VT 52 [2002]: 459–82), I would like to go through the text in detail as well as discuss methodological questions concerning the relationship between textual criticism and literary criticism in dealing with the two editions of the book of Jeremiah.

See also an appendix to this article.

Ville Mäkipelto, Timo Tekoniemi, and Miika Tucker, Large-Scale Transposition as an Editorial Technique in the Textual History of the Hebrew Bible

Abstract: This article examines the editorial technique of large-scale transpositions through three case studies from the Hebrew Bible. There is documented evidence from various textual witnesses that Josh 8:30–35, 1 Kgs 22:41–51, and the oracles against the nations in Jeremiah have been transposed during the transmission of these books. Insights gained from these cases illuminate the use of this editorial technique. All three transpositions reflect theological motivations related to meanings attributed to certain places, events, people, and revered texts. Transpositions of large textual units were generally achieved by two scribal methods: swapping the order of two sequential textual units or relocating a textual unit to a new context. The latter procedure led to compensatory revisions both within and around the texts. The article also discusses the methodology of studying transpositions and their text-critical evaluation.

Emanuel Tov, Textual Harmonization in Exodus 1–24

Abstract: Of all the textual features in the manuscripts of all the witnesses of the Torah books, harmonization is probably the most prominent feature. The author has studied this phenomenon in the other books of the Torah and now devotes attention to Exod 1–24. This study is limited to chapters 1–24 because the special complications of the tabernacle chapters do not relate to their internal harmonizations but rather to their editorial changes both large and small. More than the other sources, including the Sam. Pent., LXX-Exod is harmonizing, including some very intriguing changes. Often the LXX and Sam. Pent. go together in their harmonizing tendencies, but more often the LXX reflects such changes (especially pluses) alone among the textual witnesses. Also the pre-Samaritan texts, the tefillin and the liturgical scrolls harmonized to a great degree. The paper presents all the data subdivided into categories of textual relations, in Hebrew and Greek, together with statistics. The paper substantiates the thesis that the harmonizing changes and pluses were made in the Hebrew text from which the Greek translation was made and not by the translator.

Raimund Wirth, Die griechische Übersetzung der Samuelbücher: Die Samuel-Septuaginta als Herausforderung für die alttestamentliche Textforschung

This paper is about the translation of the Septuagint of Samuel (1–2 Kingdoms) and its recensions. It starts with an overview of the current state of research, including aspects of the books’ Hebrew textual history. An outline of the translation technique in the Greek books of Samuel follows. The author points out that the translator often worked quite literally, even though there are instances of free renderings as well. Regarding the use of tenses, the translation is characterized as intuitive and widely independent of the Hebrew Vorlage. Since the style in the books of Samuel is not very literary overall and falls short when compared with the translation of the Pentateuch, the author argues that the translation was made as a “private undertaking” and not for liturgical purposes. Finally, the author describes the special text-critical challenges in the so-called kaige section (2 Sam 10–24). As the Greek text in these chapters is solely transmitted in two recensional forms (kaige and Lucianic), careful reflection on the methodology of reconstructing the original translation (Old Greek) is needed. In this connection, the author pleads for a reassessment of the role of conjectures, which he considers necessary to match the character of the Old Greek in the area of verbal syntax.


J. K. Elliott, A Bibliography of Greek New Testament Manuscripts (3rd edition; Thomas J. Kraus, reviewer)
Simon Gathercole, The Gospel of Thomas: Introduction and Commentary (Thomas J. Kraus, reviewer)
Stefan C. Reif and Renate Egger-Wentzel, eds., Ancient Jewish Prayers and Emotions: Emotions Associated with Jewish Prayer in and around the Second Temple Period (Karl Olav Sandnes, reviewer)
Dieter T. Roth, The Text of Marcion’s Gospel (Thomas J. Kraus, reviewer)
W. Dennis Tucker Jr., Constructing and Deconstructing Power in Psalms 107–150 (Andrew W. Dyck, reviewer)