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Document Details :

Title: Abimelech, King of Shechem according to Josephus
Author(s): BEGG, C.T.
Journal: Ephemerides Theologicae Lovanienses
Volume: 72    Issue: 1   Date: April 1996   
Pages: 146-164
DOI: 10.2143/ETL.72.1.504860

Abstract :
No one less than the arch-critic J. Wellhausen himself expressed admiration, if not for the person of the villain Abimelech, then at least for the story about him as told in Judges 9. In this study I purpose to investigate Josephus’ retelling of the Abimelech story in Antiquitates Judaicae (hereafter Ant.) 5,233-253 in comparison with its Biblical source as exemplified by the following major witnesses: MT (BHS), the Codices Alexandrinus (hereafter A) and Vaticanus (hereafter B) and the Lucianic (hereafter L) of LXX, plus Targum Jonathan on the Former Prophets (hereafter TJ)7. I undertake this comparative study with the following questions in mind: Which text-form(s) of Judges 9 did Josephus utilize in composing his own Abimelech story? How and why has he modified the data of the source narrative? What is the overall, cumulative effect of his various modifications upon Josephus’ version of the Abimelech episode vis-à-vis the Biblical one?

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