Theories of The Origin of The Septuagint

  • Rodoljub Kubat Faculty of Orthodox Theology, University of Belgrade
The Septuagint, translation, text, Ur-text, Targums, law, Alexandria, Judaea, synagogue


In this paper the author presents and critically assesses scholarly theories tackling the issue of the Septuagint's origin. The most prominent theories shape the course of research into the Septuagint's origin. The basic questions which these theories aspire to answer are: the wayof emergence of the translation, the reason for, and the origin of the translation, and the place of its origin. There are two basic theories dealing with the way of emergence of the translation: these are the Urtext theory and the Targum theory. The first one still represents the basis of textual criticism methodology. Other theories predominantly tackle the question of what led to the translation in the first place. Two most dominant theories in this respect are the theory of liturgical use and the theory of codification. The former is more widely spread and has its different variations. The third question focuses on the location of the translation. Historical sources and the majority of scholars claim that the translation originated in Alexandria. One of the opposing theories claims the Judaean origin of the Septuagint. There is a significant number of opinions which fit somewhere in between the two. At the very end of the paper two research principles (criteria) have been more thoroughly investigated and presented. The first - internal criticism is based on the analysis of the translation itself, while the second deals with the research of external sources which can shed additional light on the topic.


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How to Cite
Kubat, Rodoljub. 2021. “Theories of The Origin of The Septuagint”. Issues in Ethnology and Anthropology 16 (1), 271–281.
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