Review of Basics of Classical Syriac

Steven C. Hallam. Basics of Classical Syriac: Complete Grammar, Workbook, and Lexicon. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2016. Pb. 318 pp. US $49.99.

The fact of the matter is that there is a noticeable lack of choice when it comes to Syriac grammars. For most, the immediate choice is Coakley’s Robinson’s Paradigms and Exercises (6th ed. Oxford: Oxford, 2013). However, since Robinson’s first edition appeared in 1915, much has changed in our understanding of language acquisition and instruction. For this simple reason, a new option for Syriac instructors is welcome news.

Like Zondervan’s other Basics of grammars, Hallam adopts an integrated approach […]

Review of The Israelite Samaritan Version of the Torah

Benyamim Tsedaka and Sharon Sullivan, eds. The Israelite Samaritan Version of the Torah: First English Translation Compared with the Masoretic Version. Trans. by Benyamim Tsedaka. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2013. xxxvi + 558 pp. Hb. $100.

Very little is known about the history and nature of the Samaritan version of the Pentateuch (SP). However, what is becoming increasingly clear is the importance of this textual tradition to the study and textual criticism of the Pentateuch. Previously, there has been much speculation about the value of the SP, however, this former assumption is slowly giving way in biblical studies. Indeed, this review, […]

Review of Old Testament Textual Criticism: A Practical Introduction

Ellis R. Brotzman and Eric J. Tully. Old Testament Textual Criticism: A Practical Introduction. 2d. ed. Grand Rapids: Baker, 2016. xvi + 256. Pb. $24.99.

From the time it was first published in 1994, Ellis Brotzman’s Old Testament Textual Criticism: A Practical Introduction, has maintained its place of primacy when it comes to introducing young biblical scholars in the field of Old Testament textual criticism (TC). However, the author and publisher were right to recognize the need for an updated edition. This need is the result of new developments in Old Testament TC, chief among these being the inauguration of […]

Review of Making the Biblical Text: Textual Studies in the Hebrew and Greek Bible

Innocent Himbaza, ed., Making the Biblical Text: Textual Studies in the Hebrew and Greek Bible. Orbis Biblicus et Orientalis 275. Publications of the Institute Dominique Barthélemy 1. Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht / Fribourg: Academic Press, 2015. xiv + 192. Hb. €65.00.

The Orbis Biblicus et Orientalis (OBO) series is a well-established scholarly series specializing in Archaeological, Egyptological, ancient Near Eastern, and Biblical studies; its volumes are currently published with cooperation from the Universities of Fribourg, Basel, Bern, Lausanne, and Zurich. The present volume represents the 275th publication in the OBO series as well as the inaugural publication in the series […]

Review of The Latin New Testament

H.A.G. Houghton. The Latin New Testament: A Guide to its Early History, Texts, and Manuscripts. Oxford: Oxford, 2016. xx + 366 pp. + 16 images. Hb. £25.

H.A.G. Houghton is Reader in New Testament Textual Scholarship at the University of Birmingham, where he is also Deputy Director of the Institute for Textual Scholarship and Electronic Editing. The University of Birmingham is at present one of — if not the — most important center for the textual criticism of the Bible in the United Kingdom. This establishes Houghton as one of the most experienced and authoritative voices on the subject with […]

Review of Gorgias Concise Syriac-English English-Syriac Dictionary

Brock, Sebastian P. and George A. Kiraz, eds. Gorgias Concise Syriac-English English-Syriac Dictionary. Gorgias Handbooks. Piscataway: Gorgias, 2015. Pp. x + 457. ISBN 9781463202248. (hb). US $48.

As Brock points out in the preface to this dictionary, “Syriac is the best provided of all the Aramaic dialects for dictionaries, and so one might wonder why another is needed” (vii). However, a few minutes’ use with this dictionary immediately shows the reader its worth. This is a simplified dictionary. Indeed, “concise” is an apt word, but as Brock points out, “The prime reason for the present dictionary is a practical one, […]