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Text Criticism of the Bible

(3,783 words)

Author(s): Schenker, Adrian | Aland, Barbara
[German Version] I. Old Testament The aim of text criticism in general is to determine the original wording of a text that no longer survives in its original author copy but only in various late scribal copies. Text criticism compares the copies (called witnesses) to distinguish inaccurately copied passages (called readings) from accurately copied passages. What makes the Old Testament a special case is that most of its writings never had an original; they were never completed and published by a sing…


(2,217 words)

Author(s): Auffarth, Christoph | Derlien, Jochen | Schenker, Adrian | Wall, Heinrich de | Frey, Christofer
[German Version] I. History of Religions – II. Greco-Roman Antiquity – III. Biblical – IV. Law – V. Ethics I. History of Religions It was not until after the Second World War, in the course of which whole peoples had been murdered and critics persecuted, that in 1948 the UN proclaimed asylum to be a human right; not however in terms of the right of every persecuted human being to seek protection from others,…

Chapter and Verse Divisions

(624 words)

Author(s): Schenker, Adrian
[German Version] I. Old Testament – II. New Testament I. Old Testament Parallel to the earliest segmentation of the Pentateuch, its division into approx. 154 sedarim (sections) already reflected in the LXX (3rd cent. bce), and the cycle of 53 or 54 parashim (8th cent.), a division into sentences or verses (   pasuq = verse; cf. Meg. IV, 4) emerged. The Masoretes harmonized several earlier systems of verse division. The Masoretic system does not always agree with the division of verses and sentences of earlier textual witnesses (L…

Polyglot Bibles

(623 words)

Author(s): Schenker, Adrian
[German Version] are synoptic presentations of multiple Bible texts in at least three languages – in the narrower sense, the original text and the oldest translations: Septuagint (Bible translations: I, 1.a), targums (Bible translations: I, 4), Peshitta, and Vulgate (Bible translations: I, 2.c). I. The first polyglot was the Complutensian Polyglot (Alcalà de Henares, Lat. Complutum, 1514–1517). It was financed and planned by Cardinal F. Jiménes de Cisneros and edited jointly by the Jewish conversos Alfonso de Zamora, Pablo Coronel, and Alfonso de Alcalà, and the Human…