The Question of St. Jerome’s Translation ex Hebraica veritate: the Example of Deut. 8:15

  • Łukasz Krzyszczuk University of Wrocław, Institute of Classical, Mediterranean and Oriental Studies, Department of Ancient Near East and Biblical Tradition, 21, ul. Komuny Paryskiej, Wrocław, 50–451, Poland https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4026-8354
  • Krzysztof Morta University of Wrocław, Institute of Classical, Mediterranean and Oriental Studies, Department of Ancient Near East and Biblical Tradition, 21, ul. Komuny Paryskiej, Wrocław, 50–451, Poland https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4719-6904

Аннотация

This article offers yet another opinion concerning the 18th-century controversy surrounding St. Jerome’s level of knowledge of Hebrew and his Old Testament translation from the Hebrew truth (ex Hebraica veritate). Assurances that Jerome’s Latin rendition is based directly on the Hebrew biblical books made by the monk himself and by his contemporaries are widely challenged. Jerome’s testimony is not entirely credible as he tended to confabulate and prevaricate. Having retraced this dispute about the Stridon-born scholar, the authors of this article subject verse 8:15 of the Book of Deuteronomy to a thorough analysis. It is a peculiar and important fragment for the ongoing discussion due to the appearance of the Hebrew word צִמָּאוֹן . In the Greek version (LXX), it had been translated as δίψα (“dry land”). What is crucial here is the fact that a similar form, διψάς, exists in the Greek language. It is a term used for a venomous snake. Potentially mistaking “dry land” for a “snake” in the Hebrew language is not possible. That is why in Jerome’s translation of the Bible from the Hebrew truth such an error should not have occurred. Meanwhile, we can find exactly that mistake in the scholar’s rendition. In his Latin translation Jerome introduced the dipsas snake in lieu of the Hebrew צִמָּאוֹן (“dry land”). This article aims to explain why, in this very spot, the translator departed from the Hebrew original.

Ключевые слова:

St. Jerome, Vulgate, Book of Deuteronomy, translation studies, snakes, Hebraica veritas

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Опубликован
2021-12-30
Как цитировать
Krzyszczuk, Łukasz, & Morta, K. (2021). The Question of St. Jerome’s Translation ex Hebraica veritate: the Example of Deut. 8:15. Philologia Classica, 16(2), 241-261. https://doi.org/10.21638/spbu20.2021.207
Раздел
Orbis Romanus