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Ουρανος And Ουρανοι In The Septuagint And Second Temple Literature

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Chapter Summary

One of the four elements of Matthew's idiolectic use of heaven language is his preference for the uncommon plural forms of οὐρανός. This chapter explores the possible precedents for this important aspect of Matthew's linguistic style through an examination of plural forms of οὐρανός in the Septuagint and the Second Temple literature. Matthew's frequent use of οὐρανοί stands out not only relative to the rest of NT documents, but also to nearly all of the preceding literature. A close examination of the LXX as well as other Greek Second Temple literature reveals that plural forms of οὐρανός were quite uncommon. When they do appear, the reason is neither because of a belief in multiple heavens nor because of morphological influence of plural heaven in Hebrew and Aramaic. Instead, in the case of the LXX, the syntax of Hebrew verbs and poetic factors give rise to occasional plural forms of οὐρανός.

Keywords: οὐρανοί; οὐρανός; heaven language; linguistic style; LXX; Matthew; Second Temple Literature; Septuagint



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