Monday, September 19, 2011

An Online Samaritan Pentateuch


Contrary to one of my previous posts, I was able to compile this list of places where you can find the Samaritan Pentateuch online. These resources will allow you to read and/or download the manuscripts for free. I have also included non-free versions that may be useful to those who seriously study the Bible, as they are more precise and include the latest research.   

Free resources:
  1. 1657 Walton's Polyglot (aka London Polyglot). Uses 7th century Samaritan Manuscript. Samaritan Text in the original Samaritan script.
  2. Vetus Testamentum Hebraicum cum variis lectionibus, (Parallel Samaritan Pentateuch - Hebrew Samaritan), by Benjaminus Kennicott, 1780 [main page here]
  3. Pentateuchus Hebreao-Samaritanus, Benjamin Blayney, 1790
  4. Targum Shomroni 'al hatorah, by Adolf Brüll, 1873-76.
  5. Bibliotheca Samaritana, Volumes 1-3, Moritz Heidenheim, Marqah, Otto Schulze, 1884
  6. Torah Nevi'im u-Khetuvim. Biblia hebraica adjuvantibus professoribus G. Beer [et al.] Edidit Rud. Kittel, 1906 [for reference only - Samaritan Pentateuch variants in footnotes]
  7. Der Hebraische Pentateuch der Samaritaner, (critical edition of the Samaritan Pentateuch) August Freiherrn von Gall,Verlag von Alfred Topelmann, Giessen, 1918
  8. Normalized Interlinear Pentateuch (includes Samaritan Pentateuch with basic morphology, idiomatic translation and separate English and Russian translation). Translations are FIRST IN THE WORLD.
Please note that I was the FIRST IN THE WORLD to publish Samaritan Torah translation in English and Russian. Samaritan Ben Tsedaka's translation was SECOND after mine. Not only he published his translation 1 year after mine, but he intentionally mistranslates the text and even ADDS words to the Torah. See Exodus 4:25 for example. His translation is of extremely poor quality and it does not faithfully represent Samaritan Torah text as it was WRITTEN. Not to mention that Tsedaka is not even fluent in English. So if you are looking for accurate translation of the Samaritan Torah text in English, please read my translation.

Limited resources: 
For-Purchase Only resources:
  1. Jewish and Samaritan Version of the Pentateuch with particular stress on the differences between both texts. Exodus (Hamishe Humshei Torah: Nusach Yehudi, Nusach Shomroni im me-duyakot shel ha-shinu'im bein shtei ha-nusachot. Sefer Shemot lefi ktav yad Shomroni atik min hameah ha 11)
A brief note on one of the above  resources, namely - the von Gall critical edition of the Samaritan Pentateuch:

Even though up to this day it is still the only comprehensive and complete critical editions of the Samaritan Pentateuch available, some scholars believe it to be outdated and inaccurate. Even though I personally do not agree with such opinions, I would like to present one by Emanuel Tov, from his book "Textual Criticizm of the Hebrew Bible" (this is from p.84): 
"The edition of von Gall reflects all then known; thus, it does not include the important Abisha' scroll which was published later. The Edition is detailed and accurate, but the main text is often adapted to M: i.e., from the variety of the readings of the Samaritan manuscripts the editor often chose that particular reading which was identical with M. The editor also declared that he preferred defective to plene readings. Thus in Gen 2:11 he chose the reading hsbb(=M) as against hswbb, the majority reading of the Samaritan manuscripts.
I hope you will find this information useful. I will try to updated this page with new (if any) resources of the Samaritan Pentateuch become available online.

Last, but not least, here is a nice image of the page from the Samaritan Torah (Samaritan MS dated 1211CE from Rylands Collection):

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