Other Supposedly Solomonic Books

David M. Carr

in The Formation of the Hebrew Bible

Published in print October 2011 | ISBN: 9780199742608
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199918737 | DOI:
Other Supposedly Solomonic Books

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This chapter adopts criteria developed in chapter 15 (on Proverbs) to assess the extent to which two other purportedly Solomonic books, Song of Songs and Qohelet, might contain early pre-exilic materials. The conclusion is that the evidence for this is better for Song of Songs than for Qohelet. Though elements of Song of Songs may have been added over time, it shows unambivalent dependence on New Kingdom period Egyptian love poetry, and appears to have been the source of several formulations found in Hosea and Deuteronomy. In contrast, the main link of Qohelet to a demonstrable non-Israelite tradition, its links to the song of the alewife in the Old Babylonian edition of Gilgamesh, is relatively isolated. In addition, Qohelet’s orientation to monarchal institutions and other indicators suggest a more likely post-exilic date.

Keywords: Song of Songs; Qohelet; Egyptian love poetry; Gilgamesh; Hosea; Deuteronomy

Chapter.  14301 words. 

Subjects: Biblical Studies

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