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The Role of Targum Samuel in European Jewish Liturgy

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Chapter Summary

In the age of Hebrew literarization of European Jewry in the 9th and 10th centuries, the liturgical books were arranged in different scrolls and booklets. The siddur, a book of halakhic instructions detailing the proper way to use the right texts in prayer, was intended for study and not for recitation of prayers. The Targum of the haftarah was introduced to the liturgy of European Judaism by liturgical transmission in booklets for the liturgy of some festivals; one would expect to find the text of these pericopes as a distinctive branch in the stemma of textual attestation of e.g. Targum Samuel in its European context. One concludes that the tradition of reading the Targum of the haftarah in Europe is an implementation, albeit very partial, of the requirement imposed by the growing influence of Babylonian halakhah on the Jewish communities in Christian Europe during the 10th and 11th centuries.

Keywords: European Jewry; halakhic instructions; Hebrew literarization; siddur; Targum Samuel

10.1163/9789004267824_004
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