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Document Details :

Title: Israel's Demand for a King According to Josephus
Author(s): BEGG, C.
Journal: Le Muséon
Volume: 110    Issue: 3-4   Date: 1997   
Pages: 329-348
DOI: 10.2143/MUS.110.3.525790

Abstract :
Within the sequence of the Former Prophets, 1 Sam. 8, the story of Israel's demand for a king, constitutes a pivotal chapter, marking, as it does, the transition to the monarchical period of the nation's history1. In the following essay I wish to examine Josephus' version, in Antiquitates Judaicae (hereafter Ant.) 6. 32-442, of this key Biblical passage. My investigation will involve, first of all, a detailed comparison between the Josephan rendition and its Vorlage as represented by the following major textual witnesses: MT (BHS), 4QSama3, Codex Vaticanus (hereafter B) 4, the Lucianic (hereafter L) or Antiochene MSS5 of the LXX, and Targum Jonathan on the Former Prophets (hereafter TJ) 6. My treatment of Ant. 6. 32-44 will likewise take into account the post-Biblical developments of 1 Sam. 8 found in Rabbinic tradition, Pseudo-Philo's Liber Antiquitatum Biblicarum (hereafter LAB) 56. 1-38, and the “Samaritan Chronicle No. II”. By way of this two-sided comparison I aim to find answers to the following questions: Which text-form(s) of 1 Sam. 8 did Josephus utilize in composing Ant. 6. 32-44? What sort of rewriting techniques did he apply to the source's data and what were his reasons for and the effects of their application? In its divergences from the Biblical account does Josephus' rendition evidence any points of contact with the other post-Biblical writings cited above? Finally, how, overall, does the Josephan story of Israel's demand for a king compare with Scripture's own narrative of the episode?

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