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Decoration, Destruction and Debauchery: Reflections on 1 Enoch 8 in Light of 4QEnb

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This article takes up the distinctive text of Synkellos for 1 En. 8:1 and asks whether it offers the preferred reading or at least may be defended as an early variant rather than as an interpolation of the Byzantine chronographer. To that end, the article examines the Greek translation featured in Synkellos's Chronography and compares the text to other manuscript traditions, especially to the Aramaic fragments of Enoch found in Cave 4 of Qumran. Close examination leaves the author reluctant to dismiss the reading of Synkellos. Further, the author argues that Genesis 4 and 6 might have provided a warrant for this sort of interpretative tradition inasmuch as culture bringers (i.e. the Cainites) precede the account of the angels' descent and mating with women as one finds in Synkellos's version of 1 En. 8:1.

Affiliations: 1: St. Edward's University


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