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The Date Of Targum Pseudo-Jonathan: Some Comments

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Chapter Summary

Of the Targums of the Pentateuch, Pseudo-Jonathan is most famous for its rich aggadic traditions and remarkable consistency and internal unity. The detailed analysis of Ps-Jon's traditions by Avigdor Shinan, whose major study of the Pentateuchal Targumim against their social, religious, and political background leads him to suggest that Ps-Jon is less of a Targum, more of an Aramaic 're-written Bible'. Among Shinan's many important conclusions, his understanding of Ps-Jon as primarily a literary construction stands out clearly. This chapter evaluates some of the claims and conclusions which scholars have urged for Ps-Jon over the last twenty-five years. It examines Ps-Jon's version of Genesis 27, a text chosen at random, scrutinizing verses which include Targumic interpretation. It then offers a detailed analysis and explication of them, reserving treatment of Ps-Jon's language for another essay. It focuses on analysis of Ps-Jon's traditions by Shinan.

Keywords: aggadic traditions; Avigdor Shinan; Bible; Genesis; Pentateuchal Targumim; Pseudo-Jonathan



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