A Critical Edition of the Jewish Manuscripts of the Aramaic Book of Enoch from Qumran


The topic undertaken in my basic research deals with several areas of scientific research which often have an interdisciplinary character. The starting point is the present problematic lack of a critical edition of the Jewish manuscripts of the Aramaic Book of 1 Enoch from Qumran. Although an Ethiopic translation of this pseudepigraphic book of the Old Testament has been known from the beginning of the 19th century, discoveries of its Aramaic fragments in 1952 led to a preliminary and non-critical edition of these fragments by J. T. Milik (The Books of Enoch, 1976). From the purely scientific point of view it is simply impossible to explain the birth and development of Aramaic Enochic literature without a critical edition of the most ancient manuscripts of this tradition that reach back to the third century B.C. Only thanks to my critical edition of the first four manuscripts of that tradition from Qumran (The Aramaic Astronomical Book (4Q208-4Q211) from Qumran: Text, Translation, and Commentary, Oxford: Oxford University Press) was the formulation of a preliminary theory concerning reasons for the creation of that literature made possible. There still remain seven manuscripts that are not critically edited and analyzed (4Q201, 4Q202; 4Q204, 4Q205, 4Q206, 4Q207, 4Q212). The reasons for their creation and the place from which that tradition originated have not yet been convincingly elaborated. Also because of the non-existence of any critical edition of the Aramaic fragments, no detailed commentary exclusively dedicated to this Jewish scientific and religious tradition has ever been written. My project intends to remedy these deficiencies, and eventually leads to the production of the first critical edition of Aramaic manuscripts of 1 Enoch, and to the creation of a critical commentary to the preserved Aramaic text. The undertaking of such a scientific endeavor is linked to and dependent upon my paleographic skills acquired during my studies of Jewish literature from Qumran and upon my philological competence in the field of Semitic languages, such as ancient Hebrew, Aramaic, ancient Ethiopic (Ge'ez), Syriac, and Akkadian. A similar project has not yet been undertaken and accomplished mainly because of of high philological and paleographic standards and competence needed to deal with the Enochic multiform and multilingual tradition. A good knowledge of Second Temple Judaism and ancient Mesopotamia is also required.

Autor: Marcin Zieliński
Ostatnia aktualizacja: 21.11.2017, godz. 08:09 - Marcin Zieliński