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HTS Theological Studies

On-line version ISSN 2072-8050
Print version ISSN 0259-9422


VAN ROOY, Herrie F.. Lamentations at Qumran: A second edition?. Herv. teol. stud. [online]. 2012, vol.68, n.1, pp.1-7. ISSN 2072-8050.

The four Qumran manuscripts of Lamentations presented the Hebrew text of the book from a period of about one hundred years before the standardisation of the Hebrew consonantal text. These manuscripts were studied to answer the question whether they, or one or more of them, presented a different edition of the Hebrew text than the one preserved in the Masoretic Text. The current consensus is that the Masoretic Text was well preserved and that the ancient versions, the Septuagint, Targum, Peshitta and Vulgate, were translated from Hebrew texts close to the Masoretic tradition. The four manuscripts were firstly described in this article. They all dated from the last part of the first century BCE. They were then studied in detail with regard to the variants they contain, their agreement with the Masoretic Text and the ancient versions. Only a few parts of 3QLam and 5QLamb had been preserved. These sections agreed mostly with the Masoretic Text, but no definite conclusions could be made on account of their bad state of preservation. 4QLamª agreed frequently with the Masoretic Text where one or more of the versions disagreed from it. 4QLam did not agree often with the Masoretic Text when it differed from the ancient versions, but frequently went its own way. These manuscripts contained a number of variants pointing to a different edition of the book. The most important variants occurred in Lamentations 1:7, 13, 14 and 16. The different order of verses 16 and 17 against the Masoretic Text was also important in this regard. This manuscript pointed to a different textual tradition than the one occurring in the Masoretic Text.

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