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Document of Wifehood (3.71)
(2,087 words)

Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Egyptian Aramaic


This record of a free man-handmaiden marriage presents a unique opportunity to reconstruct the haggling that went on between groom and master regarding the status of the bride and the rights of the parties to the contract. Tamet’s status may be described as comparable to the biblical “slave woman designated for a man” for the purpose of marriage (Lev 19:20). In rabbinic terms she was “part slave and part fre…

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Porten, Bezalel, “Document of Wifehood (3.71)”, in: Context of Scripture Online, Editor in Chief: W. Hallo. Consulted online on 05 December 2021 <>

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