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“Closer To The Hebrew”: Herbert Of Bosham’s Interpretation Of Literal Exegesis

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Chapter Summary

Herbert of Bosham, whose life spans most of the twelfth century, made a name for himself in both ecclesiastical politics and in biblical exegesis. This chapter discusses three aspects of Herbert of Boshams commentaries. It is worth noting that Herbert uses Hughs image of the layered foundation of historia to clarify his intention of focusing on the sensus litteralis. His interpretation of the literal sense encapsulates not just historical context but also, sometimes, messianism. First, the chapter assesses Herberts definition and application of the literal sense of Scripture. Since he follows Jerome in his references to the authority of the hebraica veritas to justify his rendering of the Psalms, the chapter examines to what extent his exegetical method was shaped by his knowledge of Hebrew and Jewish exegesis, and by contacts with Jewish scholars. Finally, the chapter discusses how the notions of prophecy and messianism are understood in Herberts work.

Keywords: biblical exegesis; ecclesiastical politics; hebraica veritas; Hebrew; Herbert of Bosham; Jerome; messianism; scripture; sensus litteralis



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