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Document Details :
Title: The Book of Baruch
Subtitle: A Note on 'Magisterial' Monograph
Author(s): LUST, J.
Journal: Ephemerides Theologicae Lovanienses
Volume: 74 Issue: 1 Date: April 1998
The Book of Baruch does not often receive the full attention of the commentators. Monographs devoted to this work are scarce. Two reasons may help to explain this phenomenon: first, the book has never been recognized as belonging to the Canon of Holy Scriptures by the Jews, although in the Catholic Church it is listed among the books of the Deutero-Canon, and second, most of its contents are not new, but borrowed from the canonical writings. One of the major topics under discussion in the rare commentaries and essays on Baruch are the unity of its composition and the identity of its author or authors. Since the era of critical scholarship, it has been traditionally defended that the booklet falls apart into several major sections, each differing from the others in a number of crucial ways. It is generally assumed that at least two sections should be distinguished and ascribed to different authors: a prophetic composition written in a prosaic style (1,1–3,8), and a wisdom composition (3,9–4,4) combined with prophetic elements (4,5–5,9) written in a poetic style. No Hebrew manuscript of Baruch has been preserved, but the language of the Old Greek translation is clearly characterized as translation-Greek, especially in the prosaic part. The more elegant Greek of the second part has often been seen as betraying the hand of a different translator, or even of an author writing directly in Greek.