Ancient Aramaic and Hebrew Letters
This book presents an up-to-date translation of seventy-nine letters and fragments, virtually the complete corpus of surviving letters in Aramaic and Hebrew down to the time of Alexander, omitting only the most fragmentary and the most formulaic. This includes the correspondence from ancient Jewish writers at Yavneh-Yam (7th Century), Arad and Lachish (6th), and Elephantine (5th). There are also administrative letters from Persian bureaucrats, private commercial and family correspondence from Egypt, and other scattered letters from Assyria, Egypt, Philistia, and Idumaea. Also included are short notes in Edomite, Ammonite, and Phoenician (one in each language). The revised edition is supplemented by an additional nine texts, some of them published very recently, not found in the 1994 edition. Translations are now provided with line numbers, and some have been improved in the light of recent studies. Each letter appears alongside the original text in square script. Brief introductions set each group of letters into its historical and social context. The arrangement within each language group is roughly chronological. Paperback edition available from the Society of Biblical Literature (www.sbl-site.org).
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