Translation and Survival: The Greek Bible and the Ancient Jewish Diaspora

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Tessa Rajak, "Translation and Survival: The Greek Bible and the Ancient Jewish Diaspora"
Ox...d Uni....ity P...s, ..A | 2009-06-15 | ISBN: 0199558671 | 420 pages | PDF | 2,3 MB
The translation of the Hebrew Bible into Greek was the first major translation in Western culture. Its significance was far-reaching but largely forgotten. Without a Greek Bible, European history would have been entirely different - no Western Jewish diaspora and no Christianity. Translation and Survival is a radical new study of the ancient creators and receivers of the translations and of their impact. The Greek Bible sustained Jews who spoke Greek and made the survival of the first Jewish diaspora possible: indeed, the translators invented the term 'diaspora'. The translations were a tool for the preservation of group identity and for the expression of resistance. They devised a new kind of language: many of the words they coined are still with us. The Greek Bible translations ended up as the Christian Septuagint, taken over along with the entire heritage of Hellenistic Judaism when the Church parted from the Synagogue. Here, a brilliant creation is restored to its first owners, and to its historical context among Jews, Greeks and Christians.

"admirably clear" - Gabriel Josipovici, Times Literary Supplement

"It is to be hoped that Rajak's judicious work will encourage further research; for, as she has shown, the importance of the Septuagint can hardly be exaggerated. For too long it has been largely lost to both Jewish and Christian communities. It is to be hoped that Rajak's judicious work will encourage further research; for, as she has shown, the importance of the Septuagint can hardly be exaggerated. For too long it has been largely lost to both Jewish and Christian communities. Rajak dispays a remarkable talent to present a highly complex and broad topic very clearly" - Canon Anthony Phillips, Church Times

"provides a sterling account of one of the most extraordinary scholarly enterprises of the ancient world" - Jonathan Wright, Catholic Herald

"an eminently readable, elegantly written, well-researched and fascinating book on the first Jewish Greek Bible translation as a cultural artefact and icon" - Piet van der Horst, Studia Philonica Annual


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