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The Epistle of Baruch and Its Role in 2Baruch

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Chapter Summary

This chapter investigates the role of the Epistle of Baruch and the narrative presentation of Baruch as letter writer in 2Baruch. It first revisits the macrostructure of 2Baruch in conversation with recent proposals. It argues that the epistle is an integral part of the composition and forms, together with its narrative frame, the concluding section of the work. It then summarizes the thematic development in 2Baruch 1:1-77:17 and suggests a microstructure for the epistle and its literary context that considers both formal and content-based features. Both prepare us for the central discussion of the epistle's thematic and pragmatic-hermeneutic contribution to 2Baruch. The chapter argues that the Epistle of Baruch is structurally well integrated into the composition of 2Baruch. It functions both as a complementation of the last, brief speech to the entire people and as a summary of the entire apocalypse.

Keywords: 2Baruch; apocalypse; epistle of Baruch; letter writer; macrostructure; pragmatic-hermeneutic contribution; thematic development



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