Article

Textual Criticism

Arie Van der Kooij

in The Oxford Handbook of Biblical Studies

Published in print February 2008 | ISBN: 9780199237777
Published online September 2009 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199237777.003.0033

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Religion and Theology

 Textual Criticism

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Since, as is generally assumed, the biblical books in Hebrew (and Aramaic) go back to a period of a much earlier date – that of the seventh to the second centuries BCE – the question arises as to whether the text of the biblical books has been transmitted, through the ages up to its attestation in the early Middle Ages, accurately, or not. It is the task of textual criticism to examine the text's reliability from the perspective of the transmission history. This article discusses the following: the reasons why textual criticism is needed, text-critical research methods, the purpose of textual criticism, and how to realize the goal of textual criticism.

Keywords: Hebrew Bible; biblical texts; Masoretic text; biblical history

Article.  5839 words. 

Subjects: Religion ; Religious Studies ; Religion in the Ancient World ; Judaism and Jewish Studies ; Christianity

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