Skip to content
BY-NC-ND 3.0 license Open Access Published by De Gruyter Open Access June 14, 2016

Why Was the New Testament Translated into Hebrew?

An Introduction to the History of Hebrew Translations of the New Testament

Eran Shuali
From the journal Open Theology

Abstract

After offering a short overview of the history of Hebrew translations of the New Testament from the Middle Ages to our time, this article focuses on the purposes of the different translations as reflected in what has been written and said about them by the translators themselves and by other people involved in their dissemination. Five such purposes are identified: 1. Jewish polemics against Christianity in the Middle Ages. 2. Christian study of the Hebrew language. 3. The quest for the Hebrew “original” of the New Testament. 4. The mission to the Jews. 5. The needs of the Christian communities in the State of Israel. Concluding remarks are then made regarding the way in which Hebrew translations of the New Testament were perceived throughout the ages and regarding the role they played.



References

Ben Reuben, Jacob. Wars of the Lord [in Hebrew: יעקב בן ראובן. מלחמות השם ], edited by Judah Rosenthal. Jerusalem: Mossad Harav Kook, 1963. Search in Google Scholar

Burnett, Stephen G. Christian Hebraism in the Reformation Era (1500-1660): Authors, Books, and the Transmission of Jewish Learning. Library of the Written Word 19. The Handpress World 13. Leiden ‒ Boston: Brill, 2012. 10.1163/9789004222496Search in Google Scholar

Carmignac, Jean. The Birth of the Synoptics, translated by Michael J. Wrenn. Chicago: Franciscan Herald Press, 1987. Search in Google Scholar

Carmignac, Jean. The Four Gospels Translated into Hebrew by William Greenfield in 1831. Traductions hébraïques des Évangiles rassemblées par Jean Carmignac, volume 1. Turnhout: Brépols, 1982. Search in Google Scholar

Carmignac, Jean. Évangiles de Matthieu et de Marc traduits en hébreu en 1668 par Giovanni Battista Iona retouchés en 1805 par Thomas Yeates. Traductions hébraïques des Évangiles rassemblées par Jean Carmignac, volume 2. Turnhout: Brépols, 1982. Search in Google Scholar

Carmignac, Jean. Évangiles de Luc et de Jean traduits en hébreu en 1668 par Giovanni Battista Iona retouchés en 1805 par Thomas Yeates. Traductions hébraïques des Évangiles rassemblées par Jean Carmignac, volume 3. Turnhout: Brépols, 1982. Search in Google Scholar

Carmignac, Jean. Die vier Evangelien ins Hebräische übersetzt von Franz Delitzsch (1877–1890–1902). Introduction par Jean Carmignac. Kritischer Apparat der zwölf Auflagen von Hubert Klein. Traductions hébraïques des Évangiles rassemblées par Jean Carmignac, volume 4. Turnhout: Brépols, 1984. Search in Google Scholar

Carmignac, Jean. The Four Gospels Translated into Hebrew by the London Society for Promoting Christianity amongst the Jews (1838+1864). Traductions hébraïques des Évangiles rassemblées par Jean Carmignac, volume 5. Turnhout: Brépols, 1985. Search in Google Scholar

Carmignac, Jean. “Hebrew Translations of the Lord’s Prayer: An Historical Survey.” In Biblical and Near Eastern Studies: Essays in Honor of William Sanford LaSor, edited by Gary A. Tuttle. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Eerdmans, 1978. Search in Google Scholar

Cinqarbres, Jean. תּוֹרַת הַמָּשִיחַ: Sanctum Domini nostri Iesu Christi Hebraicum Euangelium secundum Matthaeum. Paris: Martin le Jeune, 1551. Search in Google Scholar

Curtiss, Samuel Ives. Franz Delitzsch: A Memorial Tribute. Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1891. Search in Google Scholar

Delitzsch, Franz. The Hebrew New Testament of the British and Foreign Bible Society. A Contribution to Hebrew Philology. Leipzig: Dörffling & Franke, 1883. Search in Google Scholar

Delitzsch, Franz. Paulus des Apostels Brief an die Römer aus dem griechischen Urtext auf Grund des Sinai-Codex in das Hebräische übersetzt und aus Talmud und Midrasch erläutert. Leipzig: Dörffling und Franke, 1870. Search in Google Scholar

Dunlop, John. Memories of Gospel Triumphs among the Jews during the Victorian Era. London: S. W. Partridge, John Snow, 1894. Search in Google Scholar

Du Tillet, Jean and Jean Mercier. בשורת מתי: Evangelium Hebraicum Matthaei, recèns è Iudaeorum penetralibus erutum, cum interpretatione Latina, ad vulgatam quoad fieri potuit, accommodata. Paris: Martin le Jeune, 1555. Search in Google Scholar

Fassberg, Steven E. “Which Semitic Language Did Jesus and Other Contemporary Jews Speak?” The Catholic Biblical Quarterly, 74:2 (2012), 263‒280. Search in Google Scholar

Friedman, Jerome. The Most Ancient Testimony: Sixteenth-Century Christian-Hebraica in the Age of Renaissance Nostalgia. Athens, OH: Ohio University Press, 1983. Search in Google Scholar

Garshowitz, Libby. “Shem Ṭob ben Isaac Ibn Shapruṭ’s Gospel of Matthew.” In The Frank Talmage Memorial Volume 1, edited by Barry Walfish, 297‒322. Haifa: Haifa University Press, 1993. Search in Google Scholar

Horbury, William. “The Hebrew Text of Matthew in Shem Tob ibn Shaprut’s Eben Boḥan.” In Davies, W. D. and Dale C. Allison, A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Gospel According to Saint Matthew, 729‒738. Vol. 3. London – New Delhi – New York – Sydney: Bloomsbury, 1997. Search in Google Scholar

Howard, George. Hebrew Gospel of Matthew. Macon, GA: Mercer University Press, 1995. Search in Google Scholar

Klijn, A. F. J. Jewish-Christian Gospel Tradition. Supplements to Vigiliae Christianae 17. Leiden – New York – København – Köln: Brill, 1992. 10.1163/9789004312838Search in Google Scholar

Lapide, Pinchas E. Hebrew in the Church: The Foundations of Jewish-Christian Dialogue, translated by Erroll F. Rhodes. Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1984. Search in Google Scholar

Lasker, Daniel J. and Sarah Stroumsa, The Polemic of Nestor the Priest: Qiṣṣat Mujādalat al-Usquf and Sefer Nestor Ha-Komer. Jerusalem: Ben-Zvi Institute, 1996. Search in Google Scholar

Lindsey, Robert Lisle. A Hebrew Translation of the Gospel of Mark: Greek-Hebrew Diglot with English Introduction. Jerusalem: Dugit Publishers, Baptist House, [1969]. Search in Google Scholar

Marx, Alexander. “The Polemical Manuscripts in the Library of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America with Appendices on the Eben Bohan and on the Earlier Hebrew Translations of Matthew.” In Studies in Jewish Bibliography and Related Subjects, in Memory of Abraham Solomon Freidus (1867-1923), Late Chief of Jewish Division, New York Public Library, 247‒278. New York: The Alexander Kohut Memorial Foundation, 1929. Search in Google Scholar

Münster, Sebastian. תּוֹרַת הַמָּשִיחַ Euangelium secundum Matthaeum in lingua Hebraica, cum uersione Latina atque succinctis annotationibus Sebastiani Munsteri. Basel: Heinrich Petri, 1537. Search in Google Scholar

Neander, Conrad. Epistolæ Anniversariæ, quæ Dominicis diebus ac Sanctorum festis præcipuis in Ecclesia præleguntur Ebraeae iam recens ex Græco textu ac Syra Paraphrasi factæ; breuibusque scholijs, sed tamen haud pœnitendis illustratæ, à M. Conrado Neandro Bergensi. Et nunc demum τετραγλώττως Ebraice, Graece, Latine, ac Germanice. Editæ opera ac cum præfatione clarissimi ac doctißimi viri D. M. Michælis Neandri Soraviensis. Leipzig: Georg Defner, 1586. Search in Google Scholar

Neuhaus, David. “Contemporary Jewish Israeli Views on Christianity and Christians.” In Christianity and Jerusalem: Studies in Modern Theology and Politics in the Holy Land, edited by Anthony O’Mahony, 1‒30. Herefordshire: Gracewing, 2010. Search in Google Scholar

Neuhaus, David. “Qehilla, l’Église et le people juif.” Proche-Orient Chrétien 56 (2006), 53‒65. Search in Google Scholar

Niclós, José Vicente. “L’Evangile en hébreu de Shem Tob Ibn Shaprut: Une traduction d’origine judéo-catalane due à un converti, replacée dans son Sitz im Leben.” Revue biblique, 106 (1999), 358‒407. Search in Google Scholar

Petersen, William L. “The Vorlage of Shem-Tob’s ‘Hebrew Matthew’.” New Testament Studies, 44 (1998), 490‒512. Search in Google Scholar

Rosenthal, Judah. “The Translation of the Gospel of Matthew by Jacob ben Reuben” (in Hebrew) .Tarbiz, 32 (1962), 48‒66. Search in Google Scholar

Scolnicov, Hanna. “The Hebrew who Turned Christian: The First Translator of Shakespeare into the Holy Tongue.” Shakespeare Survey: An Annual Survey of Shakespeare Studies and Production, 54 (2001), 182–190. Search in Google Scholar

Shuali, Eran. “Les deux versions de l’Évangile de Matthieu en hébreu publiées par Sebastian Münster (1537) et par Jean du Tillet et Jean Mercier (1555): un réexamen des textes et de la question de leurs auteurs.” In Les hébraïsants chrétiens en France au XVIe siècle, edited by Gilbert Dahan and Annie Noblesse-Rocher. Bibliothèque d’Humanisme et Renaissance. Geneva: Droz, in press. Search in Google Scholar

Shuali, Eran. “György Thúri’s Hebrew Translation of Paul’s Epistles to the Galatians and the Ephesians (Wittenberg, 1598).” In Christian Hebraism in Eastern Central Europe, edited by József Zsengellér. Forthcoming. Search in Google Scholar

Thúri, György. Epistolæ Pauli Apostoli ad Galatas et Ephesios: è Græcâ in purè Hebræam linguam translatæ: gratique animi ac sempiternæ memoriæ testificandæ ergo Spectabili ac Magnifico Domino Domino Sigismundo Rakotzi, Comiti Comitatuum Thorna & Munkats, noc non Sacr: Cæs: Regiæque Maiest: Consiliario & c.Mecœnati studiorum suorum benignissimo dicatæ à Georgio Thurio Alumno humilimo. Wittenberg: Iohannes Crato, 1598. Search in Google Scholar

Tichit, Agnès. L’Évangile de Marc en hébreu: Étude de la langue et enjeux théologiques des traductions de Franz Delitzsch (1877) et de Joseph Atzmon (1976). Langues et cultures anciennes 20. Brussels: Éditions Safran, 2012. Search in Google Scholar

Vermeer, Hans J. “Skopos and Commission in Translational Action,” translated by Andrew Chesterman. In The Translation Studies Reader, edited by Lawrence Venuti, 221‒232. London ‒ New York: Routledge, 2000. Search in Google Scholar

.כהן, ישראל. “יצחק אדוארד זלקינסון: חייו ומפעלו הספרותי.” בתוך כהן, ישראל. כתבים, כרך ג‘: מונוגראפיות, 333 ‒ 420 . תל אביב: עקד, 1976 Search in Google Scholar

Received: 2016-4-20
Accepted: 2016-5-2
Published Online: 2016-6-14

©2016 Eran Shuali

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 License.

Downloaded on 5.12.2022 from frontend.live.degruyter.dgbricks.com/document/doi/10.1515/opth-2016-0041/html
Scroll Up Arrow