[b-hebrew] Relative ages of LXX, DSS and proto-MT texts

Peter Kirk peterkirk at qaya.org
Sat Mar 6 07:01:20 EST 2004


On 05/03/2004 23:52, Philip Engmann wrote:

>>3.      The Dead Sea Scrolls (DSS) are discovered manuscripts from
>
>>Qumran, which date from around 168 BC to about 68 AD.[4]
>
>>4.      So LXX is older than the DSS by about 100 years.
>
>>
>
> Date of oldest MSS: Large parts of the Hebrew Bible are preserved in the
>
> DSS. Only a few scraps of the LXX are preserved; the earliest MSS of
>
> substantial parts of the LXX are 4th-5th centuries CE if I remember 
> rightly.
>
>  
>
> So the Hebrew text clearly wins on both comparisons of age, for what
>
> it's worth.
>
>  
>
> The oldest witnesses to the LXX include a 2nd century BC fragments of 
> Leviticus and Deuteronomy (Rahlfs nos. 801, 819, and 957), and 1st 
> century BC fragments of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, 
> Deuteronomy, and the Minor Prophets (Rahlfs nos. 802, 803, 805, 848, 
> 942, and 943).
>
> http://www.fact-index.com/s/se/septuagint.html
>
>  
>
>  
>
Indeed - fragments or "scraps" as I mentioned before. Nothing to compare 
with the complete scrolls of biblical books in Hebrew found at Qumran.

I don't deny that LXX scrolls of complete books did exist in the last 
centuries BCE, and it is accidental that only fragments have been 
preserved. Hebrew scrolls of complete books also existed, and by 
accident have been better preserved. The point here is not priority but 
quality of evidence. I have already answered the question of priority by 
arguing that an original always has priority over a translation.

-- 
Peter Kirk
peter at qaya.org (personal)
peterkirk at qaya.org (work)
http://www.qaya.org/




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