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Towards Assessing The Latin Text Of "5 Ezra": The Christian Connection

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Chapter Summary

"5 Ezra" is a curious and challenging little work, crying out for detailed examination. It exists only in Latin, which presumedly was translated from Greek. The text has received minimal attention (as of 1986) from modern scholarship, despite its presence on the fringes of the Latin Christian canonical scriptures. This chapter focuses on a set of problems that is absolutely basic to the study of any writing, but with reference to 5 Ezra has been left "for dessert," as it were - the question of establishing the text. The consensus of modern scholarship seems to be that 5 Ezra was composed in Greek by a (Jewish) Christian in the second half of the second century at an unknown but perhaps "western" location and that it exudes "anti-Jewish" polemics in a prophetic-apocalyptic presentation with a special reverence for Christian martyrs.

Keywords: 5 Ezra; Christian martyrs; Greek; Latin text

10.1163/ej.9789004170100.i-314.45
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