Bookish Circles: Teaching and learning in the ancient Mediterranean

Videos are available from a colloquium held at Heythrop College, University of London from 29th-30th July 2016 on the topic of literacy and education in the ancient world: “Bookish Circles: Teaching and learning in the ancient Mediterranean”.

Friday 29th July 2016

Jonathan Norton, Director of the Heythrop Centre for Textual Studies, Introduction

Sacha Stern, University College London, “Literacy, teaching and learning in Rabbinic Judaism”

Jonathan Gorsky, Heythrop College London, “Torah piety: The development of Torah learning as a focal religious endeavour” [no video]

Ingo Kottsieper, Westphalian Wilhelms University, Münster,   “Literacy and Aramaic as written language in the Achaemenid Empire”

James K. Aitken, University of Cambridge, “Learning among Jewish social groups in Ptolemaic Egypt”

Joan Taylor, King’s College London, “4Q341: A Writing Exercise Remembered”

Saturday 30th July 2016 

Sean Adams, University of Glasgow, “Sympotic learning: Symposia literature and cultural education”

Sean Ryan, Heythrop College London, “Greco-Roman education, ‘mental libraries’, and the Book of Revelation”

Steve Smith, University of Chichester, “Reading the New Testament in the Context of Other Texts: a Relevance Theory Perspective”

Jonathan Norton, “…not beyond what is written:  How Paul uses literacy to manipulate social differential”

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Coptic Scriptorium

coptic-scriptorium

Coptic SCRIPTORIUM is a platform for interdisciplinary and computational research in texts in the Coptic language, particularly the Sahidic dialect.  As an open-source, open-access initiative, our technologies and corpus facilitate a collaborative environment for digital research for all scholars working in Coptic. We provide:

  • tools to process Coptic texts
  • a searchable, richly-annotated corpus of texts using the ANNIS search and visualization architecture
  • visualizations of Coptic texts
  • a collaborative platform for scholars to use and contribute to the project
  • research results generated from the tools and corpus

Coptic SCRIPTORIUM is a collaborative, digital project created by Caroline T. Schroeder (University of the Pacific) and Amir Zeldes (Georgetown University).

The Coptic Scriptorium is now available in a beta version.

Robert Alter on Translation of the Bible

The following are videos of lectures given by Robert Alter on translation of the Bible.

1. ‘Translating Biblical Poetry: Ancient Hebrew Verse and the Constraints of English’ (University of California, September 19, 2014)

2. ‘The Pleasure & Perils of Translating the Bible’ (University of California, March 26, 2012)

3. ‘Lost in Translation: The Challenge of Translating the Bible’ (Villanova University, September 15, 2008)

Na’ama Pat-El: The Syriac Particle lam

pat-el

Professor Na’ama Pat-El gives a lecture on the Syriac particle lam, delivered on April 10, 2014 at The University of Texas at Austin:

The Syriac particle LAM has been assumed to be a marker of direct speech by grammarians and linguists. Several scholars has traced its history to an infinitive of the verb to say in Aramaic. In this talk I will take a fresh look at the function of the particle in Syriac texts of various genres and periods and its possible etymology. The results will shock and amaze you, and will serve as a reminder of what happens when one does not read ancient texts carefully.

The lecture is available in mp3 audio format.

Na’ama Pat-El is an Assistant Professor, focusing on Semitic historical linguistics. She is the author of Studies in the Historical Syntax of Aramaic (Gorgias, 2012) and a co-author of Language and Nature: papers presented to John Huehnergard (Oriental Institute, 2012). She has published on language contact and historical syntax.

See also: Na’ama Pat-El, “The Function and Etymology of the Aramaic Particle LM”

R. Steven Notley on Hebrew in the New Testament

On October 25, 2014, Professor R. Steven Notley, of Nyack College, delivered a lecture claiming that Jesus spoke Hebrew and participated in a panel discussion on Hebraisms in Greek with Weston Fields, (executive director of the Dead Sea Scrolls Foundation and biblical scholar, Alaska), Peter Davids (professor of New Testament and Greek at Houston Baptist University, Houston), Jeff Peterson (professor of New Testament and faculty chariman at Austin Graduate School of Theology, Austin), and Mark Lanier (founder of the Lanier Theological Library).

Lecture:

Panel discussion:

Theo van den Hout: “A is for Anatolia: Writing and Literacy in the Hittite Kingdom”

Theo van den Hout delivers a lecture examining the chronological development of writing and literacy in the Hittite Kingdom, Brown University,  April 11, 2013. The lecture commences at 3:45.

Theo van den Hout is Professor of Hittite and Anatolian Languages in the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations at the University of Chicago.

He received his PhD in Hittite and Anatolian languages from the University of Amsterdam in 1989 after a BA and MA in Classics, Comparative Indo-European linguistics and Anatolian studies at both Leiden and Amsterdam. Currently he is Professor of Hittite and Anatolian Languages at the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago, and editor-in-chief of the Chicago Hittite Dictionary (CHD) since 2000. He is the author of several books, most recently “The Elements of Hittite”(Cambridge UP 2011) and many articles.

While interested in all aspects of Late Bronze and Iron Age Anatolia his work focuses on Hittite culture, history, and language. Besides his work on the dictionary his recent personal interests are ancient record management, literacy and writing in Hittite society.

SBL Fonts – Biblical Languages

BibLit Font

The Society of Biblical Literature (SBL) provides free unicode-compliant fonts for Hebrew and Greek, as well as the “BibLit” font which offers a combination of Hebrew, Greek, transliteration diacritics, and Latin type.

SBL fonts are made available without cost to individual scholars for non-profit use.

In addition, legacy SP fonts, designed by James R. Adair, are available for Coptic, Aramaic/Hebrew, Greek, and Syriac, as well as for transliteration diacritics and textual critical diacritics.

Excerpt from James M. Robinson Lecture on Nag Hammadi (2009)

The following video is an excerpt from James M. Robinson lecture from 2009 courtesy of the Westar Institute/Jesus Seminar.

How were the Nag Hammadi discovered? James M. Robinson explains the history behind Coptic culture, scrolls, papyrus and ancient writing, as they relate to the Nag Hammadi discovery.
James M. Robinson (Ph.D., Princeton Theological Seminary) is the Director Emeritus of the Institute for Antiquity and Christianity and Professor of Religion Emeritus at Claremont Graduate University. He is best known for his work on the Nag Hammadi Codices and as the General Editor of The Nag Hammadi Library in English (1977)
This lecture was originally presented at the Westar Institute Fall 2009 Meeting, “The Nag Hammadi Library.”

Payne Smith, A Compendious Syriac Dictionary

J. Payne Smith (ed.), A Compendious Syriac Dictionary Founded upon the Thesaurus Syriacus of R. Payne Smith (Oxford: Clarendon 1903) is available online through Tyndale Archive of Biblical Studies (Tyndale House).

The Tyndale Archive also includes Gesenius’ 1906 Hebrew and Aramaic dictionary, Wilson’s 1850 Hebrew dictionary, Lane’s 1860 Arabic lexicon, Crum’s Coptic dictionary, and Jastrow’s rabbinic Hebrew and Aramaic dictionary.

Marcus Jastrow, Dictionary of Targumim, Talmud and Midrashic Literature (1926)

A complete 1926 edition of Marcus Jastrow, Dictionary of Targumim, Talmud and Midrashic Literature is available online through Tyndale Archive of Biblical Studies (Tyndale House).

The Tyndale Archive also includes Gesenius’ 1906 Hebrew and Aramaic dictionary, Wilson’s 1850 Hebrew dictionary, Lane’s 1860 Arabic lexicon, Payne Smith’s Syriac dictionary, and Crum’s Coptic dictionary.

W.E. Crum, A Coptic Dictionary

W.E. Crum et al, A Coptic Dictionary (Oxford: Clarendon, 1939), is available online through Tyndale Archive of Biblical Studies (Tyndale House).

The Tyndale Archive also includes Gesenius’ 1906 Hebrew and Aramaic dictionary, Wilson’s 1850 Hebrew dictionary, Lane’s 1860 Arabic lexicon, Payne Smith’s Syriac dictionary, and Jastrow’s rabbinic Hebrew and Aramaic dictionary.

Ancient Near East Monographs: SBL Open Access Series

Ancient Near East Monographs/Monografías sobre el Antiguo Cercano Oriente is an open access series from the Society of Biblical Literature (SBL):

The focus of this ambitious series is on the ancient Near East, including ancient Israel and its literature, from the early Neolithic to the early Hellenistic eras. Studies that are heavily philological or archaeological are both suited to this series, and can take full advantage of the hypertext capabilities of “born digital” publication. Multiple author and edited volumes as well as monographs are accepted. Proposals and manuscripts may be submitted in either English or Spanish. Manuscripts are peer reviewed by at least two scholars in the area before acceptance. Published volumes will be held to the high scholarly standards of the SBL and the Centro de Estudios de Historia del Antiguo Oriente. The partnership between the SBL and the Centro de Estudios de Historia del Antiguo Oriente was initiated under the auspices of SBL’s International Cooperation Initiative (ICI) and represents the type of international scholarly exchange that is the goal of ICI.

The General Co-editors are Ehud Ben Zvi and Roxana Flammini.

PDFs of the titles include:

Israel Finkelstein, The Forgotten Kingdom: The Archaeology and History

Lester L. Grabbe and Martti Nissinen (eds.), Constructs of Prophecy in the Former and Latter Prophets and Other Texts

Alan Lenzi, Reading Akkaddian Prayers and Hymns: An Introduction

Graciela Gestoso Singer, El Intercambio de Bienes entre Egipto y Asia Anterior: Desde el reinado Tuthmosis III hasta el de Akhenaton

Juan Manuel Tebes, Centro y periferia en el mundo antiquo: El Negev y sus interacciones con Egipto, Asiria, y el Levante an la Edad del Hierro (1200-586 a.C)

Alan Lenzi has also written an accompanying article ‘Why You Should Submit Your Manuscript or Proposal to the Online, Open-Access Ancient Near East Monograph Series’