CLASS 9 NOTES - CLASS 9 NOTES The Letter of Aristeas and...

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CLASS 9 NOTES 9/16/08 The Letter of Aristeas and the Septuagint Letter: composed ca 100 B.C. set in Alexandria Describes the translation of the Torah into Greek Aristeas (a fictional name): presents himself as someone in court of Ptolemy II Philadelphus who was sent by the king as an embassy The book is presented as a report or letter to Aristeas’ brother Philacrates Demetrius of Phaleron – keeper of the royal library of Alexandria – aimed at collecting all possible books in world… wanted to include Torah o Ptolemaic kings funded education and sciences o Zoo – all animals in world Find men who could translate o 6 men from each of the 12 tribes = 72 men = Septuagint (LXX) Letter is fiction – some truth in the fact that the Torah was translated into Greek circa 200 B.C. Jim VanderKam: torah is 1 st scripture to be translated (Christians) Elias Bickerman: torah was considered law, so not that special because had been done before (Jew) After 70 A.D. , Jews began to deny the authority of the Septuagint and turned to other translations, such
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