Targum


Valmadonna Collection Purchased by the National Library of Israel 2

This is very good news! It appears the entire collection has been purchased by the Israeli National Library. As I shared several years ago Sotheby’s was exhibiting and the family seeking to sell this incredibly important collection. It is particularly important for Targum scholars because it includes Valmadonna 1 (formerly Sassoon 282). The Sotheby’s catalogue described […]


What is Targum?

It occurred to me this morning that I have never offered a definition or description of Targum and the Targumim on this site. Here is the entry I wrote for the Dictionary for Theological Interpretation of the Bible. The Hebrew term “targum” (plural “targumim”) literally means “translation,” but in the rabbinic period (c. 1st century – 7th century AD) the term came to refer specifically […]


Targum Ruth Book Cover Proof!

Every step gets us a little closer! Here is the cover sent by Brill. They will soon begin publishing it and taking preorders. The description of the book on the back cover is [This book] is an exegetical study of Targum Ruth with a focus upon the transformation of the biblical characters into exemplars of […]


Transcription of TgRuth from Valmadonna No. 1 on Targuman

The transcription of TgLam from the MS Urbanis Hebr. 1 has been available on Targuman for quite some time. Today I have made available my transcription of TgRuth from the Valmadonna No. 1 MS. This will also be included in my forthcoming book, The Proselyte and the Prophet
: Character Development in Targum Ruth (Brill, 2016). Transcription of TgRuth […]


Shavuot and Ruth 1

This weekend was my daughter’s high school graduation so my plan of reminding everyone of the role of the Book of Ruth in Shavuot was set aside. There does remain one more day of observance so for my observant Jewish friends, yom tov and hag sameach! Shavuot is the Feast of Weeks, the seven weeks of the counting […]


Transcription of TgLam from Urb. 1 Available on Targuman 1

I finally got around to posting the transcription I made years ago of TgLam for my doctorate and the subsequent book. The text is from the MS Urb. 1, represented without the vocalization. There may be some new errors introduced with the copying and pasting process (and Unicode transitions) but I think I cleaned it all up. Please let […]


The Curious Case of the Targum by Willem Smelik

A great introductory piece by my friend and colleague Willem Smelik. It contains thoughtful reflections on the task of translating sacred writ and the uniqueness of Targum. Not least of which is that it was never to stand on its own. A targum (an Aramaic translation of Scripture) is a translation that does not come alone: […]


Boaz’s Shoe (or Glove) 1

More from my commentary. This time it is all about personal articles of clothing. (Being in Germany as I write this I chuckle about the debate of shoe v. glove since the German word for glove is Handschuh.) Again, no footnotes have been carried over from the book. Ruth 4:7  This custom was observed in former […]


Boaz’s Turnips – Or Boaz Wakes Up By a Pile of Barley 4

I just finished this section and I thought it curious (bizarre, amusing) enough to share this snippet. This is from my commentary on Tg. Ruth. No footnotes are reproduced. The Targumist follows the beginning of verse 8 very closely until he reaches the point where Boaz “was startled and turned over” וַיֶּחֱרַד הָאִישׁ וַיִּלָּפֵת. The […]


Targum Ruth: “Judge” or “Leader”

Believe it or not, I am still working on my book on Targum Ruth. One of the interesting bits that I came across while doing my translation a few years ago was the translation of MT’s וַיְהִ֗י בִּימֵי֙ שְׁפֹ֣ט הַשֹּׁפְטִ֔ים The Targum chooses to use the term נגיד. The oldest MS, Valmadonna (V) does not represent both […]