- Hardcover: 1184 pages
- Publisher: United Bible Societies; Reprint edition (June 1 1979)
- Language: Greek
- ISBN-10: 3438051214
- ISBN-13: 978-3438051219
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 4.4 x 19.7 cm
- Shipping Weight: 1 Kg
- Average Customer Review: 1 customer review
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,706,066 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Septuaginta (Greek) Hardcover – Jun 1 1979
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"The current edition is not a rewrite of Rahlfs' text, but new textual discoveries have come to light and there have been significant changes in the science of textual criticism since Rahlfs first compiled his edition. . . . The revision of Hanhart . . . includes (1) removing errors and misprints; (2) making several cosmetic changes to the text concerning accentuation, a correction to a perfect participle in Isa 5.17, and a conjectural emmandation in Isa 53.2; and (3) concerning the critical apparatus Hanhart eliminates several mistakes arising from comparison with the Gottingen edition, corrections to misleading simplifications of the textual transmission, and the inclusion of the uncials Q, C, and V and the recensions O and L with variants where Rahlfs only mentioned B, S, or A.
"This revised 'pocket-edition' (I use that term very loosely given its size and weight) remains true to Rahlfs' purpose: 'The aim of this work is to provide ministers and students with a reliable edition of the Septuagint at a moderate price, and thus to supply an important companion and aid to the study not only of the Old Testament, but also of the New Testament'. While Rahlfs' text is available in electronic form. . . there is still no substitute for having a good and updated critical apparatus as well. Those serious about biblical study or are interested in how the NT interprets the OT, should consider getting one."
"Rahlfs (1865-1935) published in 1935 the two-volume critical standard edition of the Septuagint. The present edition represents a revision, though a minimalist one. largely restricted to correcting and improving the readability of the critical apparatus. The revisions have been made by Robert Hanhart, a noted expert on the Septuagint; see R. Hanhart in VT 55, 2005, 450-460. This most welcome edition is designed to place the Greek text of the OT into the hands of all those who wish to work critically with the now proliferating vernacular translations of the Septuagint in English, French, and German.
- Highly recommended as a basic tool for biblical research."
--International Review of Biblical Studies --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.
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Sir Lancelot Brenton's edition of the LXX (The Septuagint with Apocrypha ISBN: 0913573442 )is based upon a single source, codex Vaticanus, with some variants from codex Alexandrinus mentioned in the footnotes, but not affecting, I believe, the translation, except in a few cases where the Vaticanus manuscript was mutilated and Alexandrinus provided the next best text (and these cases are enumerated in an appendix)...
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I became interested in reading the LXX after mastering enough Koine Greek to be able to read the Greek New Testament (GNT). It took me only a few verses to realize that there are many more vocabulary words in the Septuagint than in the GNT. As this is the case, I recommend Lust, Eynikel, and Hauspie's "Greek-English Lexicon of the Septuagint" (available on Amazon). There are few LXX tools available at the moment, and this lexicon covers every word in the LXX; Muraoka's lexicon, for instance, only covers the Pentateuch and the Prophets. This lexicon is not to the LXX what BDAG is to the GNT, but it is the best there is right now.
The LXX has a mix of classical Greek, Semitisms, and (mostly) Koine Greek that makes it a more difficult read than the GNT. The versification is also different in some of the books than in English translations of the Bible (most of which are based on the Hebrew Masoretic Text [MT], which differs from the Septuagint in the just-mentioned instances). Karen Jobes and Moises Silva have written an excellent volume, titled "Invitation to the Septuagint" (also available on Amazon), that anyone should read before actually attempting to read the LXX itself. In addition, they supply a helpful appendix that gives the differences in versification between the LXX and English translations; the version of the LXX they use is Rahlfs' edition, which is why I mention the book here.
I believe the Septuagint receives short shrift in biblical studies circles. The usual assertion is that it is likely to be less reliable than the Hebrew text because there are so many different versions that were written and revised by so many different people (Jobes and Silva discuss the multiple texts of the LXX). However, the Dead Sea Scrolls (DSS) have shown that the Septuagint may actually be more reliable than people previously thought, since many passages in the DSS agree with the Septuagint over the Masoretic Text (that is, in cases where there is a discrepancy); it appears to be obvious that the Hebrew text underwent some changes as well before it was standardized into the Masoretic Text (although Jobes and Silva provide useful and necessary information about the dangers inherent in trying to use the LXX for textual criticism of the MT). If you are interested in this line of study, I recommend purchasing a copy of the "The Dead Sea Scrolls Bible" by Martin G. Abegg et al. (again, available on Amazon) and comparing passages from the DSS, the LXX, and a Masoretic-Text based English translation (or, better yet, the Masoretic Text itself, if you also read Hebrew).
Additionally, there is a group in Oregon that completed a new interlinear translation of the Greek Bible in 2006 that includes both the LXX and the GNT. Their "Apostolic Bible" includes both a Lexical Concordance and an English-Greek Index, which are invaluable tools for study of the LXX (they are currently working on an Analytical Lexicon, which also will be immensely useful since Bernard Taylor's "Analtyical Lexicon to the Septuagint" is no longer in print). This work does have two unfortunate shortcomings: 1) The LXX is missing the apocryphal books, and 2) They translated both the Old and New Testaments from the Complutensian Polyglot (rather than using Rahlfs' edition for the LXX and NA27/UBS4 for the GNT; the Complutensian Polyglot, like the Textus Receptus, contains many erroneous readings in the NT). Their volume (which is also available on disc) is only available on their website (sorry, Amazon, but I'm trying to help folks out here), which can easily be found through any internet search engine.
Other books which may be of varying degrees of usefulness are: 1) "Concordance to the Septuagint Versions of the O.T. (including the Apocryphal Books)" by Edwin Hatch and Henry Redpath (this concordance is in Greek only, so it is meant for those who are fully versed in the language); 2) "Grammar of the Septuagint Greek with Selected Readings from the Septuagint" by F.C. Conybeare and St. George Stock (see my review on Amazon); and 3) the newly-released "A New English Translation of the Septuagint" edited by Albert Pietersma and Benjamin G. Wright (see my review on Amazon). Of course, there is also the older "Septuagint with Apocrypha: Greek and English" by Sir Lancelot C.L. Brenton to help the reader who wants/needs an English translation alongside the Greek text.
There are additional books available that look at the history of the Septuagint and its use by both Jews and Christians, but there is a still a dearth of study resources on the LXX at this time (unless you are a professional scholar and have access to all of the scholarly literature); however, there are some helpful websites that are available to all. Again, internet search engines will enable you to locate such sites. I hope that both LXX websites and this review will be of help to those interested in studying the Old Testament in Greek.