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Review of Biblical Literature Blog

Jewish Fictional Letters from Hellenistic Egypt: The Epistle of Aristeas and Related Literature
White, L. Michael and G. Anthony Keddie

Atlanta: SBL Press, 2018 pp. xxiii + 462. $59.00

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Description: The Greek text Epistle of Aristeas is a Jewish work of the late Hellenistic period that recounts the origins of the Septuagint. Long recognized as a literary fiction, the Epistle of Aristeas has been variously dated from the third century BCE to the first century CE. As a result, its epistolary features, and especially those in which the putative author, Aristeas, addresses his brother and correspondent, Philocrates, have largely been ignored. In light of more recent scholarship on epistolary literature in the Greco-Roman world, however, this volume presents for the first time a complete Greek text and English Translation with introduction, notes, and commentary of the Epistle of Aristeas with key testimonia from Philo, Josephus, and Eusebius, as well as other related examples of Jewish fictional letters from the Apocrypha and Pseudepigrapha.

Subjects: Ancient Near East, Egyptian Literature, Literature, Methods, Linguistics, Translation and Translation Theory, Historical Approaches, History, History of Judaism, Literary Approaches

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Review by Maren Niehoff
Published 8/27/2020
Citation: Maren Niehoff, review of L. Michael White and G. Anthony Keddie, Jewish Fictional Letters from Hellenistic Egypt: The Epistle of Aristeas and Related Literature, Review of Biblical Literature [http://www.bookreviews.org] (2020).


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