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Hebrew Studies 41 (2000) 316 Reviews enormously erudite and thoroughly engaging work will be a stimulating read. Harold W. Attridge Yale Divinity School New Haven, CT 06511 harold.attridge@yale.edu THE DEAD SEA SCROLLS AND THE ORIGINS OF THE BIBLE. By Eugene Ulrich. Studies in the Dead Sea Scrolls and Related Literature. pp. xviii + 309. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1999. Paper, $25.00. Eugene Ulrich's work on the editing of the Qumran biblical scrolls has earned him an international reputation as a scholar specializing in the textual study of the bible. Given that the aim of the general editors of the series in which this volume appears (P. W. Flint and Martin G. Abegg, Jr.) "is to seek to clarify how the Scrolls revise and help shape our understanding of the Bible..." (p. i). a contribution from Ulrich would seem indispensable. The present volume, although not apparent at first sight, is in fact a collection of essays written for "various conferences and collections" (p. ix). They offer a selection of approaches to the history of the biblical text gathered together under two primary headings: The Scrolls and the Hebrew Bible (part 1) and The Scrolls. The Septuagint, and the Old Latin (Part 2). The essays are presented as chapters of a book which endeavors to provide a unified approach. The time span (1980-1998) over which the material has been compiled makes such an endeavor difficult to achieve without thorough revision. The fact that such a revision does not appear to have taken place leaves one with the sense of discomfort. The quality of the content aside, the book remains a collection of essays pretending to be a monograph. Chapter 1 ("The Community of Israel and the Composition of the Scriptures") successfully endeavors to locate the biblical scrolls from Qumran within the much broader context of the process which ultimately gave birth and nurture to the biblical books. Ulrich's hypothesis of multiple literary editions of the biblical books as the key to understanding this process of 'composition-by-stages' is introduced at this stage and further developed (with some overlap) in chapter 2 ("The Bible in the Making: The Scriptures at Qumran"). On the basis of a number of convincing examples. Hebrew Studies 41 (2000) 317 Reviews Chapter 3 ("Double Literary Editions of Biblical Narratives") focuses further on the phenomenon of double literary editions of several biblical books and raises questions concerning the 'primacy' of the MT. especially with respect to modern translation. The chapter concludes with an appeal for systematic comparison of the textual traditions and the establishment of a shared set of principles upon which choices can be made. Chapter 4 ("The Canonical Process. Textual Criticism and Latter Stages in the Composition of the Bible") attempts to relate the process of literary growth discussed in the preceding chapters to the canonical process which gave rise to the Bible as we know it. With primarily theological motivations. the latter. Ulrich maintains. shaped and reshaped the biblical texts up to and long after they had been accepted as part of the canon. In Chapter 5 ("Pluriformity in the Biblical Text, Text Groups and Questions of Canon"), the author defends his emerging theory of multiple literary editions against the theories of Frank Moore Cross (local text types). Shemaryahu Talmon (Gruppentexte) and Emanuel Tov (denial of text types) on the history of the text. Points of harmony and contrast are presented in a balanced and highly respectful manner. The chapter concludes with a proposal for clarifying the terminology employed with respect to the various texts which form the basis of textual criticism (text family; text type; text tradition; text group). Chapter 6 ("Multiple Literary Editions: Toward a Theory of the History of the Biblical Text") endeavors to further substantiate and establish Ulrich's emerging theory. Arguing on the basis of 11QPsa , among other texts, Ulrich maintains that variant editions of the biblical books "had full claim to being authoritative Scripture" (p. 120). Chapters 7 ("The Palaeo-Hebrew Biblical Manuscripts from Qumran Cave 4") and 8 ("Orthography and Text in 4QDana and 4QDanb and in the Received Masoretic Text") constitute applications of the theory. demonstrating the value of the Qumran...

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Additional Information

ISSN
2158-1681
Print ISSN
0146-4094
Pages
pp. 316-318
Launched on MUSE
2011-10-05
Open Access
No
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