By Paul V. M. Flesher, Bruce D. Chilton
The worth and importance of the targums—translations of the Hebrew Bible into Aramaic, the language of Palestinian Jews for hundreds of years following the Babylonian Exile—lie of their method of translation: inside a commonly literal rendering of a textual content, they comprise wide exegetical fabric, additions, and paraphrases that show very important information regarding moment Temple Judaism, its interpretation of its bible, and its beliefs.
This striking survey introduces serious wisdom and insights that experience emerged over the last 40 years, together with targum manuscripts came upon this century and targums recognized in Aramaic yet only in the near past translated into English. Prolific students Flesher and Chilton advisor readers in knowing the improvement of the targums; their dating to the Hebrew Bible; their dates, language, and position within the background of Christianity and Judaism; and their theologies and techniques of interpretation.
“With transparent presentation of present examine and the problems concerned, together with the Targums and the hot testomony, and a wealthy bibliography, this is often the main complete—and up-to-date—introduction to the Targums. a great, hugely prompt achievement.”
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Additional info for The Targums: : A Critical Introduction
This criterion looks at the extent to which one-to-one correspondence is reproduced in the same order as the original. The closer the translation is to the original’s order, the more literal it is considered. Here is where Aramaic has the advantage over an Indo-European language such as Greek. Aramaic generally follows or can follow the same word order as Hebrew, whereas Greek’s natural syntax differs significantly at times from that of Semitic languages. If a Greek translation follows the Hebrew order too closely, the sentence may make little sense to native Greek-speakers.
More catastrophic, however, their religious and civil capital Jerusalem had been razed and the temple that stood at the center of their religious life for a thousand years had been destroyed. Without the Jerusalem temple, Jews could not offer sacrifices to God, even though that is the main mode of worship described in the Torah; most tasks required of the priests could not be performed; and the people Israel could not purify themselves or atone for their sins in key ways laid down in the Torah.
Most importantly, we discovered different techniques Targums use to blend the addition with the translation in a seamless manner. No one who did not know the underlying Hebrew text would have any indication that material foreign to the scriptural text had been added to it, although even non-Hebrew speakers would have noticed the discrepancy in the size of a Targum as compared to its putative Hebrew original. Conclusion The key goal of this chapter was to lay out a definition of Targum that emphasized the distinctive, internal characteristics of its approach to translation.