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Title: Studies on translation and interpretation in the Targum to the Books of Kings
Author: Dray, C. A.
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 2000
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This thesis undertakes a systematic examination of the Books of Kings, revealing significant divergences between the Targum and the underlying Hebrew text. These divergences are compared with renderings in other Targums, in the other ancient versions and in the writings of Josephus. In addition, the thesis explores exegetical material in this Targum in the light of relationships with rabbinic texts, particularly from the Tannaitic and Amoraic periods. Many cases of contemporization relating to vocabulary, customs and historical events are uncovered in this Targum. An examination of place names reveals that those that changed over the course of time are often rendered by their 'modern' names, but many are left unaltered and yet others are rendered interpretatively. Frequent instances are observed of modifications to the biblical text made by the Targumist in order to incorporate his own theology. Emphasis on the uniqueness of God and the service of the Lord, and the avoidance of blasphemy are shown to be important concerns for him. The use of divine titles that are not present in the biblical text demonstrates the importance the Targumist places on reverence. His regard for halakic practice is also apparent in some renderings. The thesis highlights the great emphasis on prophecy in this Targum. The biblical 'prophet' is rendered in three ways, as the true prophet, the lying prophet and the scribe. While this last rendering may simply be a case of contemporization, it is nevertheless examined for traces of self-promotion. Did the Targumist hope to emphasize his own pedagogical role in the community? Research undertaken here suggests that the Targumist's treatment of figures of speech demonstrates that his modifications are made not merely in the pursuit of clarity, but to further his own perception of what he considered acceptable language and to address theological concerns, particularly with regard to 'indelicate' language and rhetorical questions. The conclusion is drawn that the Targumist did not see figurative language in itself as a barrier to understanding since some figures of speech are retained and new ones introduced.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available