- DEAD SEA SCROLLS
- DEAD SEA SCROLLS, the popular designation given to collections of manuscript material found in 1947 and the following years in various caves west of the Dead Sea, notably at qumran , Murabbaʿāt , Khirbat Mird, together with en-gedi and masada . This entry concentrates on those found in the Qumran region (by far the greatest in bulk and probably in importance); those found at En-Gedi, Masada, and Murabbaʿāt are treated under these respective headings. For the Bar Kokhba Letters found in the Judean Desert see bar kokhba , and for the tefillin of the Dead Sea Scrolls see tefillin . -The Qumran Discoveries Discovered by chance in 1947, the first scrolls, of which there were seven, some almost complete, came into the hands of dealers in antiquities, who offered them to scholars. The first scholar to recognize their antiquity was E.L. Sukenik , who succeeded in acquiring three of them (the second Isaiah Scroll , the thanksgiving hymns , the war scroll ) for the Hebrew University. Between 1948 and 1950 he published specimens of them, his editio princeps of these scrolls appearing posthumously in 1955. The four other scrolls had been bought from a Bethlehem dealer (known as Kando) by Mar Athanasius Samuel, the Metropolitan of the Syrian Christian community, who had at first taken them to the American School of Oriental Research, where their importance was also recognized, in the absence of the school's director, Millar Burrows, by John Trever and William Brownlee. During the Israel War of Independence of 1948, these were brought to the United States, where they were studied by a group of scholars led by M. Burrows (d. 1980), who in 1950–51 published three of them – the first Isaiah Scroll, the pesher (Commentary) on Habakkuk, and the Manual of discipline . Subsequently the Israel government bought these four scrolls, and thus all seven came to their permanent abode in the Israel Museum's Shrine of the Book in Jerusalem. Only after it reached Jerusalem wasit possible to open the one hitherto unpublished scroll among the seven, the Genesis Apocryphon, which was published in 1956 by N. Avigad and Y. Yadin . In the meantime, with the West Bank now under Jordanian administration, the scrolls cave had been sought and identified, and, under the Jordanian Department of Antiquities, its director G. Lankester Harding and R. de Vaux of the Ecole Biblique (in the then Jordanian part of Jerusalem) excavated it along with some 40 other caves in the vicinity of Khirbat Qumran and Ein Fashkha. Two years later, excavations began at the nearby ruins of Qumran, continuing until 1956, during which time the connections between the caves and the ruins became evident. Eleven more caves were discovered, some by the archeologists and some by the Bedouin, which contained scrolls, many of them highly fragmented. Many of these caves were man-made and lay on the edge of the plateau on which the settlement itself stood. By 1958 most of the material taken by the Bedouin had been purchased for the scholars, some through dealers in antiquities and sometimes with the assistance of overseas institutions. In view of the large quantity of material from cave 4, an international committee (understandably but regrettably excluding Jews) was appointed, under de Vaux, to publish the newly acquired materials in possession. Due to difficulties in deciphering, lack of funding and a declining level of enthusiasm, progress was slow, though a concordance of the Cave 4 scrolls was in fact completed in the late 1950s and early 1960s, yet was not made available, and then only to a limited circle of scholars, until 1989. Some texts were partly published in provisional articles in scholarly journals, and then gradually began to appear in definitive editions, in the series Discoveries in the Judaean Desert (Oxford). The first three volumes (1955, 1960, 1962) included the fragments from Cave 1, the documents from Murabba'at and the contents of caves 2–3 and 5–10 respectively. The intriguing and controversial copper scroll had been unrolled in Manchester in 1956 and published, unofficially, by Allegro in 1960 (it has since resided in Amman). The disagreement between Allegro and his colleagues on the editorial committee foreshadowed disagreements that would later dog Scrolls scholarship. Allegro believed in rapid publication, even in provisional form, but also held controversial views about the Scrolls' significance, which he eagerly popularized. As a result he was marginalized. His views (for example, that the Scrolls helped to unmask Christianity as a fraud) have subsequently been rejected, though they have not perished; but his criticisms of the publication policy and practice of the editorial team were largely vindicated. In 1966, Sanders published the Psalms scrolls from Cave 11 (DJD 4) and in 1968 the first official edition of texts from Cave 4 appeared (Allegro, with Andersen: DJD 5). In 1967, the majority of the scrolls and fragments, which were held in Jerusalem's Rockefeller Museum, became available to Israeli scholars, and Y. Yadin also obtained a further important document, the temple scroll , which he published in 1977 (English 1983). In 1971 De Vaux died and was succeeded as chief editor by Pierre Benoit, also of the Ecole Biblique, while further DJD volumes of Cave 4 texts appeared very slowly (de Vaux (posthumously) and Milik in 1977 and Baillet in 1982). Meanwhile, those outside the editorial team were denied access to the contents of unpublished material. When Benoit resigned in 1984, the Israeli Department of Antiquities appointed John Strugnell, one of the members of the original editorial team, to oversee a more rapid publication, and several new members, including Jewish and Israeli scholars, were co-opted. But although some Harvard doctoral students published editions entrusted to their dissertation directors, wider access remained forbidden to others. Increasing protest over this situation was answered in a series of dramatic developments that began in 1990. Strugnell was replaced by Emanuel Tov as editor in chief, and in the following year a computer-generated reconstruction from the concordance of cave 4 texts (which Strugnell had released) was published, followed by an unauthorized facsimile edition of plates of all the scrolls and, finally, a decision by the Huntington Library in California, which owned a set of plates of the unpublished scrolls, to make them publicly available broke the embargo. Since then, the DJD series has been completed, and Tov was able to resign, with his job done, in 2002. (Jacob Licht) -Description The Qumran manuscripts were mostly written on parchment, some on papyrus. Most are in Hebrew, some in Aramaic, a handful in Greek. The Qumran caves are numbered serially, 1 to 11, in the order in which the manuscript treasure contained in them came to light. A manuscript is defined as a single scroll, usually represented by one or more fragments. A document may be represented by one or several manuscripts, and the manuscripts may contain different versions of that document. Hence the designation "Community Rule" cannot refer simply, as it once did, to the cave 1 manuscript. A more accurate method of designation is the cave number and location, such as 1QS ( = Serekh (ha-Yahad). However, there are several different manuscripts of this document from Cave 4, givingrise to the labels 4QSa, 4QSb, etc. But the preferred method of designation is by cave, location and a unique number. Some of these numbers have changed over time, so that different manuscripts of the same document may form a sequence. Hence the document popularly referred to as the Halakhic Letter is also known as 4QMMT, but is strictly a (hypothetical, in this case\!) reconstruction from fragments of the six manuscripts 4Q394–99. In addition, manuscripts in Aramaic have "ar" added (6QApoc ar), and pesharim have a "p" inserted (1QpHab). Scrolls are written in columns, and the method of citation is by column and line (CD ( = Cairo Damascus) is an exception, being represented by two codices, having pages). However, in the case of a fragment of a manuscript that cannot be fitted into its place in the original scroll, individual column numbers are assigned. Thus, a citation from 4QPseudo-Jubileesa, or 4Q225, might read 4Q225 frag. 22, col. 3 line 6 – or, more simply, 4Q225 22 iii 16. As more fragments become assigned to manuscripts and documents, either the enumeration will change, or, more probably, anomalies will enter the system. Indeed, the reordering of fragments of the Cave 1 Hodayoth manuscript (1QH) has already resulted in changes to the column numbering given in Sukenik's original edition. Six caves (3, 5, 7, 8, 9, and 10) were discovered by archaeologists; the other five (and these included the most important in respect of their contents) were discovered by Bedouin of the Taʿamira tribe. There is strong evidence to connect these caves closely with the neighboring ruin of Khirbat Qumran; a reasonable assumption is that their contents formed part of the library belonging to a community, or a movement, to which the inhabitants of Khirbat Qumran belonged (see qumran ). The nearly 900 manuscripts are commonly thought to have been hidden during the war with Rome from 66 to 70 C.E.; but they may not have been deposited in all 11 caves on the same occasion, for, whereas those in Cave 1 were carefully placed in covered cylindrical jars, those in other caves, and especially in Cave 4, which contained the greatest quantity of manuscripts, appear to have been dumped in haste. News of their discovery aroused intense interest throughout the world and considerable controversy, especially with regard to their dating. But paleographical and radiocarbon indications, together with the few historical allusions in the texts, point clearly to the 2nd century B.C.E.–1st century C.E. as the time of their writing, with a few manuscripts (according to radiocarbon dating) as early as the 4th century B.C.E. These dates mostly fit well with the period of occupation of the Qumran site in the Hellenistic era, which began in about 100 B.C.E. and ended in 68 C.E. The manuscripts were written over a period of several generations; in several cases (including the Damascus Document, Community Rule, and War Scroll) different recensions of the same work have been found (even in the same cave), enabling some deductions to be made concerning their history, and thus possibly the history of the sect that produced them. The Qumran scrolls are generally classified in three categories: "sectarian" works (200+ manuscripts); "biblical" manuscripts (also 200+); and other Jewish writings, whether previously known or otherwise (400+). An extensive list of Qumran scrolls with their publications in English or Hebrew (including scrolls not mentioned in this article) appears in the Index Volume of this Encyclopaedia, in the list of bibliographical abbreviations under the letter Q. -Language, Orthography, and Spelling The Dead Sea scrolls are mostly written in Hebrew, with some in Aramaic (a few fragments of a Greek translation of the Bible have also been found). Aspects of the evolution of ancient Hebrew from classical to Mishnaic remain disputed, in particular the relationship between written and spoken forms, and the question of dialects. The Hebrew of the non-biblical scrolls is not uniform: the majority of texts may represent a Judean dialect of spoken Hebrew or possibly a literary (scribal) language; the Damascus Document exhibits a Hebrew closer to biblical, while the Copper Scroll (and to some extent the Halakhic Letter) is very similar to Mishnaic Hebrew. As to orthography generally, the writing is often plene, characteristic forms being לוא ,כיא ,אמתכה. Thus the plural form of נגע is נגוּעים (or נגיעים); instead of הוא and היא we find הואה and אנשי=) אנושי ,(מלאות=) מולאת ,(ישר=) יושר ,(קצר=) קצור; היאה),. Whether this points to a system of pronunciation different from that transmitted in the Tiberian masorah is not clear. Indications of weakening of the gutturals, as for example אנשי=) הנשי) probably does: but in other manuscripts, and commonly in the biblical manuscripts, the writing is defective, as in the Masoretic text. It has been suggested by Tov that the plene manuscripts come from a Qumran scribal school, though it is also found in some biblical manuscripts. Generally the square Hebrew script is used, in the stage of its development a little prior to the final one (the present day printed type). Thus the ה is closed and has a cross beam protruding slightly to the left; the ד has no protrusion to the right; the ז is a simple, straight line, sometimes with a small head on the right. The great majority of scribes make no distinction between a ו and a י (both of which resemble the numeral 1), a few however writing the י not shorter but wider. Several phases of the script can be distinguished, the three major categories being "Archaic" (as in First Temple period inscriptions) "Hasmonean" (c. 150–50 B.C.E.), and "Herodian" (50 B.C.E.–70 C.E.). In some scrolls the Divine Names (the Tetragrammaton YHWH and at times also El) are written in the archaic script, this being a characteristic feature of the commentaries, as also of the scroll of the Book of Psalms. The style of handwriting is also divided into formal, cursive, mixed, semicursive, and rounded. Paleography is a useful guide to the dating of the manuscripts, but because of their varied provenance, it cannot be translated into very precise dates, as is sometimes attempted. Scripts cannot be assumed to have developed uniformly in every place. Indeed, the script of an individual scribe does not necessarily change over his lifetime to reflect the latest custom, and if a scribe learns to write from a single teacher rather then in a school, he can only be assumed to continue the script that he was taught. -The Materials Used The scrolls are written on parchment prepared from the hair side of the skin, while tefillin have been found written on parchment prepared from the flesh side of the skin. The skins were washed, soaked, depilated and sometimes tanned, then softened by beating, and cut. The length of a scroll varied, the longest (the Temple Scroll) being almost 9m. Longer scrolls were created by stitching skins together. Papyrus was made by cross-layering strips of the reed at right angles, gluing them together, scrubbing with pumice and cutting. Usually the surface was ruled with lines and margins to aid the scribe. Pens were fashioned from reeds, and about five inkwells (of clay, one of bronze) have been identified as coming from Qumran. The ink is almost invariably carbon-based, but ink of metallic origin was used for one scroll (the Genesis Apocryphon), which is consequently in a poor state of preservation, the inkhaving eaten into the parchment. In some scrolls the writing has become illegible, but various forms of photography, as well as computer enhancement, have recovered considerable areas of text. When completed, the scroll was rolled, with the beginning of the text on the outside. A tab was attached (if this had not been done during manufacture) and the scroll was bound together with a strap. Several scrolls were wrapped in linen, remnants of which have been found, and were placed in jars, some of them then sealed. However, the majority of the Qumran manuscripts were probably placed on shelves or in boxes (there are signs of shelving in Cave 4). They are now in small fragments and only a fraction of their content is preserved. Whether this fragmentary state is due only to the ravages of time and rodents, or human action, whether deliberate or accidental, ancient or more recent, can probably never be known. The matching of fragments and thus the restoration of original manuscripts was originally achieved by recognition of common content and handwriting, but another technique for correctly locating fragments within a manuscript analyzes the shape of damaged areas and matches them with the pattern of damage as reconstructed for the rolled-up scroll. -The Scrolls and Khirbat Qumran The connection between the scrolls and the settlement at nearby Qumran, initially overlooked by the scroll hunters, has been almost universally taken for granted since excavations started there. There is no absolute proof of a connection, since the scrolls do not clearly allude to the site and the site itself contained no scrolls; but the circumstantial evidence is very strong. Two inscribed ostraca found in 1996 were claimed to contain the word yaḥad, the name of the sect in the Community Rule, but this has since been challenged, and no direct relation between these and the scrolls is proven. Evidence for the production and composition of scrolls at Qumran remains slight but not negligible. The suggestion by de Vaux that the nearby site of Ein Fashkha contained a tannery is now generally rejected. His view that an upper floor room of the easternblock of the Qumran settlement, whose floor had collapsed, was a scriptorium is still supported, though his reconstruction of a plaster table and writing benches now seems fanciful. The inhabitants of Qumran probably lived in the nearby caves; these inhabited caves show no evidence of scroll use; but cave 8 contained a collection of leather tabs, of the kind attached to the outer end of a scroll for aid in opening. It is now generally agreed that most of the scrolls were not written at Qumran, but taken there; however, the proximity of several caves to the site implies that their deposit was known to the inhabitants if not carried out by them. Several proposals have nevertheless been made that Qumran was not the site of a religious community but something else: a palace, fortress or trading post. The numerous cisterns are not all for immersion but probably for drinking water; those that were miqva'ot do not necessarily attest to an exceptional level of concern with purity, as the scrolls exhibit, but certainly inhabitants following standard Jewish purification practice. In retrospect, it has emerged that the initial interpretation of the site by de Vaux can be questioned, especially concerning the earliest phase of sectarian occupation and a possible period of abandonment late in the first century B.C.E. But despite several alternative theories about the nature of the settlement, his overall assessment still has its defenders (for further details see qumran ). (Philip Davies (2nd ed.) -A BRIEF HISTORY OF RESEARCH Introduction Initial interest in the Scrolls, in which Christian involvement far outweighed Jewish, mostly for political reasons, focused on the identification and history of the Qumran sect and its relationship to the New Testament and early Christianity. With only the contents of Cave 1 published, it seemed possible to reconstruct with some clarity where and why the sect had been formed and what its major doctrines and its organization were. After a fairly brief period of debate, a consensus quickly emerged that the Dead Sea sect had been the Essenes, as described (though not without some contradictory details) by Philo and Josephus as well as the elder Pliny who, unlike the other two authors, specifically located them near the Dead Sea. It was also agreed that, like the Pharisees and Sadducees, this sect had arisen in the Hasmonean period. The founder of the sect had been a "Teacher of Righteousness" who had, as the Habakkuk pesher in particular described, been persecuted by a "Wicked Priest" and forced to flee to Qumran, where he established a community with his followers. The identity of this "Wicked Priest," was disputed, but the major contenders were the Hasmoneans Jonathan and Simon. During the 1970s this consensus was initially consolidated, and some important new data emerged. From the historical point of view the identification of the Qumran sect with the Essenes was supported by the excavations by P. Bar-Adon at Ein-el-Ghuweir, south of Qumran, uncovering a settlement from the same period as Qumran, also with large buildings suitable for communal activities. (Y. Hirschfeld has more recently claimed to find the Essene settlement to which Pliny refers overlooking En-Gedi.) The cemetery adjacent to the site displays the same peculiar form of burial found in the Qumran cemetery (or cemeteries), including skeletons of women and children. The ongoing analysis of the Qumran literary documents received new impetus with the initial publication of several major texts. The most important of these is undoubtedly the Temple Scroll, the longest scroll yet found. Its publication marked the beginning of several important changes: Israeli and Jewish interest in the scrolls increased as the scrolls were now almost all now under Israeli control in Jerusalem, while the text itself, edited and published rapidly and expertly by Yigael Yadin, illustrated the importance of halakhah in understanding the Dead Sea scrolls, taking a good deal of emphasis away from Christian origins. However, Yadin's conclusion that the scroll was a product of the yaḥad provoked strong disagreement and reinvigo-rated discussion of the relationship between that community and the wider movement described in the Damascus Document. This in turn led to revised theories about the origins of the Qumran community, more complex than the Cave 1 scrolls had suggested. In particular, it began to be recognized that the yaḥad itself arose from a wider movement with well-established roots. Because of this, the problem of speaking simply of the "Qumran community" or "the sect" or even of "sectarian writings" has been more keenly appreciated. The publication of the fragments of 1 Enoch by Milik proved that the work was indeed originally composed in Aramaic and also highlighted the Enochic character of much of the scrolls' content. The question of the origins of the sect was to be complicated further by the Halakhic Letter, whose contents were revealed (originally as a "Letter from the Teacher of Righteousness") and discussed long before its official publication in 1994. In fact the editing and publication of this document were at the center of a controversy: a draft text and translation that had been informally circulating were printed and published by Z.J. Kapera of Cracow, who, under some kind of threat, had to destroy the remaining copies. But the Biblical Archaeology Review had printed a page from this edition, and E. Qimron, one of the official editors, sued that journal's editor for breach of copyright. His claim to be, effectively, the "author" of the Qumran document by virtue of his reconstruction was upheld on appeal and has set an unfortunate precedent. The Halakhic Letter lists a number of disagreements between its author and the recipient, who is apparently a Jewish ruler (king, high priest or both?). It prompts the suggestion that the origins of the sectarian movement may lie in conflicts between differing priestly traditions, which were debated before the decision to segregate into a sectarian lifestyle. A comparison of the Qumran halakhah with rulings ascribed to ẓeduqim in the rabbinic literature has also prompted some scholars to suggest that the sect may have been Sadducee rather than Essene, though the claim is based on a restricted number of cases. The publication of multiple texts of the Damascus Document and Community Rule has shown, too, how their complicated recensional history must be taken into account in any reconstruction of the history of the communities they describe. With each new publication of texts, it also became more difficult to fit all the contents of the scrolls into neat doctrinal systems. In general, the confident consensus that reigned between the 1950s and early 1970s has given way to a number of competing theories, to which doubts about the nature of the site of Qumran itself have added further confusion. The availability of all the texts has, nevertheless, led to a resurgence of interest in the texts, with a growing number of younger scholars now reexamining the very broad range of questions that the scrolls are generating. Much more knowledge has been accumulated, but with it rather less overall understanding of the phenomenon of Qumran and a better appreciation of the religious climate from which both rabbinic Judaism and Christianity grew. Contents and Character of the Qumran Scrolls SECTARIAN WRITINGS It would be rash to conclude that all the books in any communal or private library reflect the beliefs and practices of the community or individual to whom they belong. It is also sometimes difficult to distinguish sectarian writings from those that come from the particular milieu (represented by such works as Enoch and Jubilees) from which they emerged. The sectarian scrolls can be classified generically (or functionally) as "Rules," "Halakhic," "Exegetical," "Parabiblical" "Wisdom" and "Liturgical". "Sectarian" writings are identified as those that share a common ideology and vocabulary with three of the "Rules" that explicitly describe a sectarian community: the Community Rule (Manual of Discipline), the Damascus (or "Zadokite") Document and Rule of the Congregation (though it is perhaps a description of an idealized future Israel). These further texts comprise the Thanksgiving Psalms, the War Scroll (another "Rule"), the Temple Scroll, the Halakhic Letter, the pesharim (biblical commentaries), some other midrashic (the Florilegium, the Melchizedek fragments) and halakhic (Ordinances, Tohorot) compositions, and perhaps the Angelic Liturgy (Songs of the Sabbath Sacrifice). The wisdom texts are an especially interesting category: they exhibit many of the terms and themes of biblical wisdom books, but their traditional virtues and rewards, the materialistic ethic and the empirical basis of knowledge have been imbued with an esoteric flavor: there are "secrets" and an eschatological reward. These texts are not necessarily strictly of sectarian origin (the book of Daniel exhibits similar features) but they do indicate movement towards what is the clearly sectarian ethic of other scrolls. In the case of liturgical works, it is sometimes difficult to determine whether the contents are strictly sectarian. They are in any case steeped in biblical language and ideas, especially from the Psalms. The case of the Thanksgiving Hymns (Hodayoth) seems clear, however, as these are imbued throughout with a consistent, dominant sectarian ideology, including dualistic language. The main themes are that mankind is evil, its flesh polluted, but the author has been elected by God, rescued from destruction, purged, endowed with wisdom and placed among the "holy ones" (angels). He has also founded a community and suffered persecution, elements that prompt many scholars to regard them – or some of them – as compositions of a spiritual leader, such as the Teacher of Righteousness, the persecuted hero of the pesharim who, according to the Damascus Document, founded, or more strictly, refounded the sect. It is highly likely that they were used in the sectarian liturgy and may have provided some of the biographical data used in the pesharim. The Pseudepigraphic Psalms, by contrast, contain some terminology characteristic of the sectarian writings, but no distinctive sectarian ideology is present. There is a high degree of dependence on, and quotation from, the biblical psalms; one manuscript (4Q236) even contains a highly variant version of Psalm 89. There are fragments of four manuscripts containing prayers for festivals, and three manuscripts of "Words of the Lights", apparently designed for each day of the week, and another manuscript containing morning and evening prayers (4Q503). It is a reasonable guess that the sectarians inherited a rich Jewish liturgical tradition of which we would otherwise be unaware, and in this respect the Qumran scrolls make an important contribution to our understanding of the evolution of Jewish worship. From Cave 11 comes a manuscript containing four psalms apparently designed for a healing liturgy (11QPsApa). Finally, a number of hymn fragments (4Q434–39) contain the phrase barki nafshi, "Bless, o my soul," one of which (4Q434a) displays similarities with rabbinic blessings after meals and so may have fulfilled this function. Given the importance of the communal meal in the yaḥad, this is a plausible suggestion. Finally, a controversial hymn (contained within 4Q448) asks for blessing on "King Jonathan and for all the congregation of your people Israel who are in the four corners of heaven." This Jonathan was identified by the text's editors as the Hasmonean Alexander Jannaues (Jannai) who ruled from 103–76 B.C.E. However, he is generally considered to have been a likely enemy of the sect. G. Vermes has therefore proposed the Hasmonen Jonathan, brother of Judas (ruled 160–142 B.C.E.), who, he argues, may have once been favored by them. Alternatively, the text could be seen as originating from outside the sect: in which case, why was it copied and kept by them? The Damascus Document, which was already known from two mediaeval manuscripts found in the Cairo Genizah as well as several Qumran copies, describes the origin, history and beliefs, together with its halakhah and organization and its rules of life, of a sectarian movement that is clearly related to, but not identical with, that described in the Community Rule. The latter contains mostly the doctrines, organization and disciplinary rules of a sect calling itself the yaḥad ("Union"), but without any account of its origins or history. Both texts are composite, and the various copies betray a recensional history. (For more details, see Yaḥad ; dead sea sect ; Book of Covenant of damascus .) One common feature of the sectarian texts seems to be the 364-day calendar that is also presented in 1 Enoch and Jubilees; the Temple Scroll in particular is constructed on this basis, and texts known as the Mishmarot (priestly courses) show the services of the priestly orders regulated according to a six-year cycle, which harmonizes the 26 annual courses of this calendar with the 24 of the lunar calendar. Another common thread is (temporary) alienation from the Jerusalem temple as a result of disagreement over the calendar and halakhah with its governing priesthood. The Angelic Liturgy (Serekh Shirot Olat ha-Shabbat) illustrates not only how the yaḥad maintained the ethos of the temple cult despite its (temporary, as it believed) abandonment of the Jerusalem sanctuary, but also throws important light on the community's beliefs about angels and its own mystical tradition in addition to four manuscripts from Cave 4 and a further one that came to light during the excavations at Masada. The document describes a weekly sabbath liturgy, over 13 weeks, in the heavenly temple. This text has opened up a new dimension in Jewish literature and religion of not only late Second Temple times, but subsequent Jewish mystical and angelic traditions while the Melchizedek midrash from Cave 11 features an angelic high priest who leads the struggle against Belial and his associates, but also effects the redemption of Israel at the end of the final era of history on the Day of Atonement. This work shows how the Genesis figure was interpreted in some circles (similar, but not identical, to the treatment in the Epistle to the Hebrews) and also sheds light on later Jewish speculation about heavenly redeemer figures: Melchizedek was later to be identified with both michael and metatron as the highest angelic figure below God. A further characteristic of the scrolls as a whole is a belief in the angelic origin of sin, as described in the Enochic "Book of Watchers," as a result of which humans remain subject to evil angelic powers, which will be destroyed at the end of days. The Flood that was sent upon the earth as a divine response to the angelic descent seems to have functioned as a prototype of the punishment to come, and Noah is prominent as the prototype of the righteous person (his illustrious birth is described in the Genesis Apocryphon). This view of the origin of sin, the differences in calendrical and halakhic matters, and the consequent breach with the Temple cult (minimal participation by the community in the Damascus Document, complete rejection in the case of the yaḥad) seem to combine into a kind of Judaism that has been called "Enochic" or "apocalyptic," but in fact it probably reflects very closely the views of the Priestly source within the Torah. The solar calendar is reflected in the P material in the Flood story (thirty-day months), and in the notion, expressed in that story, of a corruption of the earth by bloodshed (rectified in the Noachic covenant), P's doctrine of sin as a universal contagion and not just disobedience of the Torah, and the inclusion of the fallen angel 'Azazel in the Day of Atonement ritual (Lev. 16:21). If this observation is correct, the unresolved problem is to explain why this ideology came to be represented in a sectarian form in the second century B.C.E. The answer may lie in the intricacies of Hasmonean politics, but we cannot be certain. Yet it is evident that the ideology adopted by the writers of the scrolls is not a sudden reaction but the outcome of a longer process betraying differences within a Second Temple Judaism that was, before the discovery of the Scrolls, thought to be rather monolithic. Nevertheless, attempts to represent the so-called "apocalyptic" character of the Scrolls as in some way a forerunner of Christianity as against rabbinic Judaism have been frustrated by the prominence given in the scrolls to scrupulous observance of Torah, a high veneration of the temple, and an emphasis on a life of ritual purity. Biblical Manuscripts Most of these have survived only as fragments: all but two of the 24 books of the Jewish Scriptures are represented, the exceptions being Esther and Nehemiah (it cannot be said with certainty whether their absence is accidental or significant). The number of manuscripts of each books ranges from 36 (Psalms) to I (Chronicles). A few are written in the archaic Hebrew script. In addition, some Septuagint fragments have been identified: Cave 4 yielded fragments of two Septuagint manuscripts of Leviticus and one of Numbers; Cave 7, fragments of the Septuagint text of Exodus and of the Epistle of Jeremiah, a pseudepigraph commonly appended to the Book of Baruch. The most important Septuagint find made in the Dead Sea region comes not from Qumran but from the "Cave of Letters" in Naḥal Ḥever (see judean desert caves ): It is a fragmentary copy of a Greek version of the Twelve Minor Prophets, identified as a new Greek revision, (now known as the Kaige or Proto-Theodotion revision), which apparently aimed at revising the LXX according to a Hebrew text close to the MT. Fragments of a Leviticus Targum were also found in Cave 4. A further contribution to the biblical material from Qumran is made by commentaries (see pesher ) and parabiblical compositions, or rewritings of the scriptural contents. Whereas the biblical texts from caves farther south which were occupied during the Bar Kokhba Revolt (132–5 C.E.) uniformly belong to the "proto-masoretic" type (the consonantal text to which the masorah was added from the sixth to the ninth centuries C.E.), those found in the Qumran caves reflect a variety of text-types (see below). BIBLICAL TEXT AND CANON As evidenced by the Minor Prophets scroll from Nahal Hever (see above), between 70 C.E. and the Bar Kokhba Revolt, the biblical text appears to have been standardized during the first century C.E. But at Qumran there existed no uniformity of text. At first it had been concluded that the Hebrew biblical texts at Qumran fell into three types, corresponding to the forerunners of the Masoretic, Septuagint, and Samaritan texts, each originating from three regions: Babylonian, Egypt, and Palestine respectively. But the "local text" theory and the theory of "text types' have now been abandoned. Yet a more careful analysis shows that no such grouping is possible. There is too much variation even within the different textual types; for instance, the MT uses the short text for the Pentateuch but the longer one for the Later Prophets and Writings, while the LXX employs the longer text for the Pentateuch but a short one for Jeremiah. Again, MT and LXX Jeremiah are not so much different text types as variant editions. As for the Qumran manuscripts, the textual variations reflect much more a spectrum than a set of textual types, while the Psalms manuscripts display, like Jeremiah, a variant edition rather then a different text type. The problem was perhaps more acute as long as the scrolls were all thought to emanate from a small isolated community, but if, as now believed, they originated in different places, the variety is less surprising. Whether there was a fixed canon is also disputed: While all but two books of the Masoretic canon (Esther and Nehemiah) are represented, the number of manuscripts of each book preserved (see above) may suggest that not all books were equally venerated. There are numerous manuscripts of Deuteronomy, Isaiah, and Psalms, but Chronicles and Ezra are extant in only one copy. The Halakhic Letter (C10) runs "… in the book (sic) of Moses, and the books of the Prophets and in David…," the last referring probably to a collection of Psalms. However, other works may have been regarded within the sect as of a similar status and authority, such as the Book of Jubilees (cited in the Damascus Document as "The Book of the Divisions of Times into their Jubilees and Weeks" (CD xvi:4) or the Enochic writings or even the Temple Scroll. The biblical manuscripts were usually copied in the regular square Hebrew script, except for the Holy Name being occasionally written in paleo-Hebrew characters. However, some biblical manuscripts were copied in this ancient script in their entirety, as for instance, Job and Leviticus (4QpaleoJob, 4QpaleoLev). PENTATEUCH Of the biblical manuscripts 86 are books of the Pentateuch, 30 of which are copies of Deuteronomy. While the Genesis and Leviticus manuscripts exhibit a stable text and a single manuscript tradition, Exodus is represented in two editions, one close to the MT and LXX, the other similar to the Samaritan text (but without the two most distinctive Samaritan variants relating to the Gerizim altar (Exodus 20:17 and Deut. 12:5, etc.)). The case of Numbers is similar to Exodus, though the non-MT edition is not specifically Samaritan, but only shares some features. Deuteronomy, the best represented of the Pentateuch, exists in a wider range of texts, and, in addition, there are some manuscripts apparently consisting of excerpts, presumably for liturgical purposes. In a few cases a Qumran reading is clearly superior to the MT: thus, for example, 4QDtq reads for Deuteronomy 32:8 bny'l, as does the LXX, instead of bny ysr'l of the MT. FORMER PROPHETS Joshua is represented by 2 (possibly 3) manuscripts, one of which (4QJosha) has some interesting differences from the MT: the altar-building in Josh. 8:30 (in MT) comes before ch. 5 – a sequence also followed by Josephus. Samuel likewise includes some variant passages, for example, in the Goliath story (1 Sam. 17–18). The most ancient manuscript, 4QSaam mb, is dated as the mid-third century B.C.E. and is related to the LXX of Samuel. The books of Judges and Kings have survived in small fragments only. LATTER PROPHETS The 21 manuscripts of Isaiah present a more complex picture than was initially drawn by the two cave 1 examples, where Isaiah A is reasonably close to the MT and Isaiah B even closer. But several manuscripts also support LXX readings. Both the MT and the shorter proto-LXX editions of Jeremiah are attested. Given its ideological influence on Qumran, Ezekiel is surprisingly poorly represented with three short manuscripts, on which little can be said, while the eight manuscripts of the Minor Prophets exhibit little diversity, though they do not betray the same conformity to the MT as the Naḥal Ḥever scroll. WRITINGS The 36 manuscripts of Psalm collections from Qumran make this the best represented of the scriptural books numerically. This is not surprising, given their influence on the other liturgical texts found in the caves. But none of the Psalms manuscripts' various sequences unambiguously supports the MT (and basically LXX) sequence. The best-preserved of the Psalms manuscripts from cave 11 (11QPsa) includes nine psalms not found in the MT, including what is Psalm 151 in the Septuagint, and also includes a list of "David's compositions," which attribute to him 3,600 psalms, 364 other songs, plus 52 for Sabbath offerings and yet more for festivals. (Perhaps these refer also to the so-called "Apocryphal Psalm" collections also found at Qumran.) The other Cave 11 Psalm manuscripts probably support this alternative sequence. Job has only four manuscripts, but, curiously, one is written in the archaic script, 4Qpaleo Job. The eight Qumran fragments of Daniel do not include the apocryphal additions known from the LXX, and the points of transition from Hebrew to Aramaic and back are the same in the Qumran manuscripts as in the MT (Daniel 2:4 preserved in 1QDana and 8:1 in 4QDana,b).These manuscripts are, of course, likely to be fairly close in time to the autograph, probably composed in about 164 B.C.E. PARABIBLICAL TEXTS The quantity of Qumran texts that range between (but not including) biblical manuscripts and midrash is considerable, and the term "parabiblical" has been coined to denote them. They are excerpts, rewritings, paraphrases or compilations of biblical texts. To this category can be assigned mezuzot (8) and tefillin (30); these sometimes contain a text differing slightly from the MT. Another category is targums: a Targum to Job (Cave 11 with an additional fragment in Cave 4) and Leviticus, also from Cave 4 (it may be wondered why a community that read, and possibly spoke, Hebrew needed targums.) Both of these avoid the midrashic amplifications so common in other Targums. By contrast, the Genesis Apocryphon is reminiscent of the more expansionary targums, though it is not usually classified as such. The Cave 4 Testimonia is almost entirely biblical quotation (from Deuteronomy, Numbers and Joshua), apparently on the theme of leadership. The so-called "Genesis Commentary" (4Q252) is neither paraphrase nor commentary, but mixes both as it moves through the Genesis story, while the "Reworked Pentateuch" (four, maybe five manuscripts) combined topical juxtaposition with free composition. The Temple Scroll reorders biblical legislation (with some additions) into a more systematic form. A further text of this kind is a paraphrase of Joshua (4Q123), while the "New Jerusalem" text, difficult to fit easily into any of the categories, is perhaps best understood as a systematization of part of the contents of Ezekiel 40–48. While these are not biblical texts as such, they represent ways in which the biblical material was reorganized, sometimes to emphasize aspects of sectarian belief. The Book of Jubilees, also found in Hebrew at Qumran, is an excellent example. It is not believed to be sectarian, but it does emanate from the circles from which the sect emerged. Other Jewish Writings These may be divided (though the distinction is often accidental) between works previously known and those unknown. Among those known are a Greek portion of the Epistle of Jeremiah from Cave 7, fragments of Tobit from Cave 4 (three in Aramaic and one in Hebrew) and of Ecclesiasticus (the Wisdom of Ben Sira) from Cave 2 (in Hebrew). Fragments of this work were also found at Masada. The Book of Jubilees (ten Hebrew manuscripts from Caves 1, 2, and 4) and four of the five sections that make up 1 Enoch: The Parables or Similitudes are absent, but there is in addition an Enochic "Book of Giants" (eight Aramaic manuscripts from Cave 4). Both of these maintain the solar calendar that the sectarian writings also follow. Some of the Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs – works extant in their entirety in a Greek recension exhibiting Christian influence – have also been identified: the Testament of Levi by some scraps from Cave 1 and fragments of three manuscripts from Cave 4 (all in Aramaic, with a text similar to that of fragments from the Cairo Genizah) and the Testament of Naphtali in Hebrew fragments from Cave 4. The Qumran text of both these Testaments is longer than the corresponding passages in the Greek recension. The number of hitherto unknown works, attached to biblical figures, is impressive. They attest to a previously unsuspected richness and variety in Jewish literature during the Second Temple period. A group of writings is associated with the figure of Daniel: the Aramaic Prayer of Nabonidus (4QprNab) is assigned to the second century B.C.E. It relates events similar to Daniel 4, except that the central figure is that of Nabonidus (nbny) and the name Daniel does not occur. Another Aramaic work, a Daniel Apocryphon (4QpsDanara,b,c), recounts the history of Israel. A number of works are ascribed to patriarchal figures: An Aramaic work, the so-called Visions of Amram (4QAmrama–e) tells about Amram's visions in which a figure called Milki-Resa' appears. In another Hebrew fragment (4Q280 2) the said Milki-Resa' is denounced as the head of the "Sons of Darkness." The name (unknown outside the Scrolls) is the opposite counterpart of Milki-Ṣedek, the eschatological judge who is the subject of another Hebrew work, the Midrash on melchizedek (11QMelch). Another Aramaic work, the Testament of Qahat (4QTQaahat hat), is ascribed to Qahat the son of Levi. The Apocryphon of Joshua (previously known as the Psalms of Joshua) may represent a farewell speech ascribed to the hero, and it shares with the Testimonia Joshua's curse on the man who would rebuild Jericho. The Copper Scroll This most unusual document, found in Cave 3, consists of a single roll of almost pure copper, broken in antiquity into two parts, each of which was rolled before storage. Identified by K.G. Kuhn, even before opening, as a list of buried treasure, the rolls were brought to Manchester, England, by J. Allegro and sliced open. The identification of the contents was then confirmed, but despite Allegro's anxiety to publish it, the task was assigned to Milik and delayed. The delay may have been occasioned by fear of what sort of treasure hunt the disclosure of its contents might provoke, and Milik aired the view that the list was fictional. The general opinion today is that the treasure was real and must have belonged to the Temple. If so – and nothing suggests that its deposit was independent of the other scrolls – the presence of this document in a Qumran cave requires some explanation, and it supports the suggestion that at least some of the scrolls may have originally come from Jerusalem (the "chief of the (sectarian) camps" according to the Halakhic Letter). (Philip Davies (2nd ed.) Khirbat Mird Khirbat Mird is a ruined Christian monastery of the Byzantine period, on the site of the earlier fortress of Hyrcanion, north of Wadi al-Nār. Here, in July 1952, the Taʿāmira Bedouin discovered manuscript material of great interest but of considerably later date than the finds at Qumran and other sites near the western shore of the Dead Sea. It included papyrus fragments of private letters in Arabic from the seventh and eighth centuries C.E., a Syriac letter on papyrus written by a Christian monk, a fragment of Euripides' Andromache in Greek, and a number of Old and New Testament texts in Greek and Palestinian Syriac. The Greek texts included fragments of uncial codices of Wisdom, Mark, John, and Acts (fifth–eighth centuries C.E.); those in Palestinian Syriac included fragments of Joshua, Luke, John, Acts, and Colossians (many of these were palimpsests). All the Khirbat Mird manuscripts are of Christian origin. (Frederick Fyvie Bruce) -BIBLIOGRAPHY: EDITIONS: Discoveries in the Judaean Desert, 39 vols. (1955–2002) M. Burrows, J.C. Trever and W.H. Brownlee, Dead Sea Scrolls of St. Mark's Monastery, 2 vols. (1950–51); E.L. Sukenik, Dead Sea Scrolls of the Hebrew University (1955); N. Avigad and Y. Yadin, Genesis Apocryphon (Eng. and Heb., 1956); Y. Yadin, The War of the Sons of Light against the Sons of Darkness (ET 1962); J.T. Milik, The Books of Enoch (1976); Y. Yadin, The Temple Scroll (ET 1983); J.H. Charlesworth (ed.), The Dead Sea Scrolls: Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek Texts with English Translations (1994-); F. García Martínez and E.J.C. Tigchelaar, The Dead Sea Scrolls Study Edition (2 vols. 1997–98). TRANSLATIONS: G. Vermes, The Complete Dead Sea Scrolls in English (1997); M. Abegg, Jr., P. Flint and E. Ulrich, The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible (1999); M. Wise. M. Abegg, Jr., and E. Cook, The Dead Sea Scrolls: A New Translation. BIBLIOGRAPHIES: W.S. LaSor, Bibliography of the Dead Sea Scrolls, 1948–1957 (1958); C. Burchard, Bibliographie zu den Handschriften vom Toten Meer (1959); C. Burchard, Bibliographie zu den Handschriften vom Toten Meer II (1965); M. Yizhar, Bibliography of Hebrew Publications on the Dead Sea Scrolls, 1948–1964 (1967); B. Jongeling, A Classified Bibliography of the Finds in the Desert of Judah 1958–69 (1971); F. García Martínez and D.W. Parry, A Bibliography of the Finds in the Desert of Judah 1970–95 (1996); J.A. Fitzmyer, The Dead Sea Scrolls, Major Publications and Tools for Study (1990); A Pinnick, The Orion Center Bibliography of the Dead Sea Scrolls (1995–2000) (2001). See also the regularly updated bibliography at <http://orion.mscc.huji.ac.il> . See also the Encyclopedia of the Dead Sea Scrolls (2 vols: 2000). The following journals are devoted to Qumran: Revue de Qumrân (Paris); Dead Sea Discoveries (Leiden), The Qumran Chronicle (Cracow). INTRODUCTIONS: H. Stegemann, The Library of Qumran (ET 1998); J.C. VanderKam, The Dead Sea Scrolls Today (1994); L.H. Schiffman, Reclaiming the Dead Sea Scrolls (1994); N. Golb, Who Wrote the Dead Sea Scrolls? (1995); J.G. Campbell, Deciphering the Dead Sea Scrolls (2002); P.R. Davies, G.J. Brooke and P.R. Callaway, The Complete World of the Dead Sea Scrolls (2002). On the history of discovery and interpretation: N.A. Silberman, The Hidden Scrolls. Christianity, Judaism, and the War for the Dead Sea Scrolls (1994); on the archaeology: J. Magness, The Archaeology of Qumran and the Dead Sea Scrolls (2002); Y. Hirschfeld, Qumran in Context: Reassessing the Archaeological Evidence (2004); on the ostraca, F.M. Cross and E. Eshel, "Ostraca from Khirbet Qumran," IEJ, 47 (1997), 17–28 (1997); A. Yardeni, "A Draft of a Deed on an Ostracon from Khirbet Qumran," IEJ 47 (1997), 233–37; on the Jewish background: G. Boccaccini, Beyond the Essene Hypothesis (1998). For a review of major trends, see R.A. Kugler and E.M. Schuller (eds), The Dead Sea Scrolls at Fifty (1999). BIBLICAL TEXT AND CANON: F.M. Cross and Sh. Talmon (eds.), Qumrān and the Story of the Biblical Text (1975); E. Ulrich, The Dead Sea Scrolls and the Origins of the Bible (1999); P. Flint, The Bible at Qumran (2001); E. Tov, Textual Criticism of the Hebrew Bible (2001). OTHER STUDIES: Script: F.M. Cross, 'the Development of the Jewish Scripts' in G.E. Wright, The Bible and the Ancient Near East 170–264 (1965); Language: E. Qimron, The Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls (1986); Damascus Document: P.R. Davies, The Damascus Covenant (1983); C. Hempel, The Damascus Texts (2000); Community Rule: J. Pouilly, La Règle de la Communauté: son evolution littéraire (1976); S. Metso, The Textual Development of the Qumran Community Rule (1997); Rule of the Congregation: L.H. Schiffman, The Eschatological Community of the Dead Sea Scrolls (1989); War Scroll: P.R Davies, 1QM, the War Scroll from Qumran (1977); J. Duhaime, The War Texts (2004); Pesharim: M. Horgan, The Pesharim (1979); T. Lim, The Pesharim (2002); Temple Scroll: M.O. Wise, A Critical Study of the Temple Scroll (1990); S. White Crawford, The Temple Scroll and Related Texts (2000); Halakhic Letter (4QMMT); J. Kampen and M.J. Bernstein (eds.), Reading 4QMMT. New Perspectives on Qumran Law and History (1996); Florilegium: A. Steudel, Der Midrasch zur Eschatologie aus der Qumrangemeinde (4QMidrescha,b) (1994); Copper Scroll: J. Lefkovits, The Copper Scroll (3Q15); A Re-Evaluation (1999); G.J. Brooke and P.R. Davies (eds.), Copper Scroll Studies (2002); Melchizedek: P. Kobelski, Melchizedek and Melchiresvac (1981);see also C.A. Newsom, The Songs of the Sabbath Sacrifice (1985); E. Schuller, Non-Canonical Psalms from Qumran: A Pseudepigraphic Collection (1986); J.G. Campbell, The Exegetical Texts (2004); H.K. Harrington, The Purity Texts (2004); D. Harrington, The Wisdom Texts from Qumran (1996); B. Nitzan, Qumran Pyare and Religious Poetry (1994); J.C. VanderKam, Calendars in the Dead Sea Scrolls (1998). On the Essenes: G. Vermes and M.D. Goodman, The Essenes According to the Classical Sources (1989).
Encyclopedia Judaica. 1971.
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Dead Sea Scrolls — Dead′ Sea′ Scrolls n. pl. ara a number of leather, papyrus, and copper scrolls dating from c100 b.c. to a.d. 135, containing partial texts of Old Testament books and some non Biblical scrolls, in Hebrew and Aramaic, and including apocryphal… … From formal English to slang
Dead Sea Scrolls — Dead Sea Scrolls, the a collection of ancient Jewish ↑scrolls (=rolls of paper containing writing) from around the time of Christ. They contain the oldest copies of parts of the Old Testament of the Bible, and were found near the Dead Sea between … Dictionary of contemporary English
Dead Sea Scrolls — n. a number of scrolls dating from about 100 B.C. to about A.D. 70 discovered at various times since 1947 in caves near the Dead Sea: they contain Jewish Scriptural writings and religious writings of an Essene community … English World dictionary
Dead Sea Scrolls — Coordinates: 31°44′27″N 35°27′31″E / 31.74083°N 35.45861°E / 31.74083; 35.45861 … Wikipedia
Dead Sea scrolls — The Dead Sea Scrolls consist of roughly 1,000 documents, including texts from the Hebrew Bible, discovered between 1947 and 1979 in eleven caves in and around the Wadi Qumran (near the ruins of the ancient settlement of Khirbet Qumran, on the… … Wikipedia
Dead Sea Scrolls — a number of leather, papyrus, and copper scrolls dating from c100 B.C. to A.D. 135, containing partial texts of some of the books of the Old Testament and some non Biblical scrolls, in Hebrew and Aramaic, and including apocryphal writings,… … Universalium
Dead Sea scrolls — noun (Old Testament) a collection of written scrolls (containing nearly all of the Old Testament) found in a cave near the Dead Sea in the late 1940s the Dead Sea Scrolls provide information about Judaism and the Bible around the time of Jesus •… … Useful english dictionary
Dead Sea scrolls — Documents first discovered accidentally in 1947 on the west side of the Dead Sea, in what was the country of Jordan and which has been the Israeli occupied West Bank, where a Jewish monastic community was established near Qumran in the 1st cents … Dictionary of the Bible
DEAD SEA SCROLLS — a collection of early manuscripts of the HEBREW BIBLE discovered in a cave in 1948 near the Dead Sea. In addition to Biblical texts, the scrolls contain other documents relating to the RITUALS and discipline of an unnamed religious SECT often… … Concise dictionary of Religion
Dead Sea Scrolls — ancient Hebrew manuscripts discovered near the Dead Sea … English contemporary dictionary