[b-hebrew] Aramaic in Babylonia

Karl Randolph kwrandolph at email.com
Tue Jul 5 17:16:21 EDT 2005


You’re right, the example that I know of dates from the Persian period. The only clue that we have that Aramaic and Akkadian were the same comes from Daniel, who lived from before the start of the Babylonian Captivity and into the Persian period—his writing in Aramaic may be a clue, though at the same time it could reflect the lingua Franca of the Persian period as he could have written it when he was an old man.

But wasn’t Aramaic a lingua Franca before the Babylonian Captivity? As such, wouldn’t that have been a factor, so that the Babylonians, like the Persians after them, would use Aramaic as the official language for the empire even through they used a different language in Babylonia?

But my question remains, is there any evidence that _spoken_ Akkadian and Aramaic were different languages?

Karl W. Randolph.

----- Original Message -----
From: "Yigal Levin" <leviny1 at mail.biu.ac.il>
> Hi Karl,
> That Aramaic was the lingua franca in the west during the Persian Period is
> well documented. Do you know of official documents in Aramaic from Egypt
> during the Saite period, before the Persian conquest?
> Yigal
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Karl Randolph" <kwrandolph at email.com>
> To: "b-hebrew" <b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org>;
> <biblical-studies at yahoogroups.com>; <archaeology2 at yahoogroups.com>;
> <neareasternarchaeology at yahoogroups.com>
> Sent: Tuesday, July 05, 2005 8:23 PM
> Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] Aramaic in Babylonia
> Yigal:
> Was there any _spoken_ difference between Akkadian and Aramaic during the
> Neo-Babylonian period? That what appear to be differences may actually be
> related to our faulty understanding of pronunciation?
> All I can say definitely is that all the history sources I have read
> indicate that Aramaic was the lingua Franca from the Neo-Babylonian period
> through the end of the Persian empire. Further, official documents were
> found in Egypt written in Aramaic from that period.
> Karl W. Randolph.

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