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The End of the Psalter

Psalms 146-150 in the Masoretic Text, the Dead Sea Scrolls, and the Septuagint

Psalms 146-150, sometimes called “Final Hallel” or “Minor Hallel”, are often argued to have been written as a literary end of the Psalter. However, if sources other than the Hebrew Masoretic Text are taken into account, such an original unit of Psalms 146-150 has to be questioned.

“The End of the Psalter” presents new interpretations of Psalms 146-150 based on the oldest extant evidence: the Hebrew Masoretic Text, the Hebrew Dead Sea Scrolls, and the Greek Septuagint. Each Psalm is analysed separately in all three sources, complete with a translation and detailed comments on form, intertextuality, content, genre, and date. Comparisons of the individual Psalms and their intertextual references in the ancient sources highlight substantial differences between the transmitted texts.

The book concludes that Psalms 146-150 were at first separate texts which only in the Masoretic Text form the end of the Psalter. It thus stresses the importance of Psalms Exegesis before Psalter Exegesis, and argues for the inclusion of ancient sources beyond to the Masoretic Text to further our understanding of the Psalms.

Author Information

Alma Brodersen, University of Munich, Germany.


"[...] the book will undoubtedly become a very useful scholarly tool for future students of the study of the shape and shaping of Psalter [...]"
Nancy L. deClaissé-Walford in: Review of Biblical Literature (01/2019)

"Dr Alma Brodersen [...] has indeed given us a careful, meticulous and above all objective analysis of these poems using a novel approach. lt could well be emulated and applied to other biblical or ancient texts as transmitted by different traditions."
Wilfreid G.E. Watson in: Folia Orientalia (2018), 441

"[Brodersen's] book is a welcome contribution to the discussion about the origin and textual transmission of the Psalter."
Thomas Heike in: BN 181 (2019), 112-113

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Audience: All those interested in Theology and Religious Studies (Old Testament / Hebrew Bible)