[b-hebrew] One Original OT Text?

George F. Somsel gfsomsel at juno.com
Thu Jun 24 00:45:07 EDT 2004

On Thu, 24 Jun 2004 3:51:55 +0000 <david.kimbrough at charter.net> writes:
> Phillip,
> According to tradtion, the LXX (the first Greek translation 
> of the OT but not the last) was translated by 70 scholars, 
> each of whom brought their own set of scrolls.  Without 
> taking that number too literally, the point is that these 
> scholars brought together many different scrolls so they 
> could compare them because there were many different 
> versions of the OT in circulation.  So by the 2nd Century 
> BC there was no single OT text.  The differences between 
> the MT, DSS, LXX, and other Greek translations attest to 
> this.

It has been almost universally recognized that the "Letter of Aristeas"
is not a genuine historical document; but even if it were considered to
be genuinely historical, I would have problems with your understanding of
it.  The claim is made that ** A ** copy of the law was brought from
Jerusalem written in letters of gold.  It is not to my recollection
claimed that each brought his own copy (72 copies of even the Pentateuch
at that time being taken out of country is virtually unthinkable.  Would
many copies be left in Judea?).  Fortunately, we need not argue the point
since the letter itself is pseudepigraphical.


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