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History of the Bible

{sep' - too - uh - jint}

General Information

The Septuagint, commonly designated LXX, is the oldest Greek version of the Old Testament of the Bible, the title "seventy" referring to the tradition that it was the work of 70 translators (or 72 in some traditions). The translation was made from the Hebrew Bible by Hellenistic Jews during the period 275 - 100 BC at Alexandria. Initially the Septuagint was widely used by Greek - speaking Jews, but its adoption by the Christians, who used it in preference to the Hebrew original, aroused hostility among the Jews, who ceased to use it after about 70 AD. It is still used by the Greek Orthodox church. 

The Septuagint contains the books of the Hebrew Bible, the deuterocanonical books - that is, those not in the Hebrew version but accepted by the Christian church - and the Apocrypha. Ancient manuscripts from Qumran suggest that the Septuagint often followed a Hebrew text different from the present authoritative Hebrew text. Thus its value for textual criticism has been enhanced. The Septuagint provides an understanding of the cultural and intellectual settings of Hellenistic Judaism.

Norman K Gottwald 

C H Dodd, The Bible and the Greeks (1935); S Jellicoe, The LXX and Modern Studies (1968).

Article by Believe Project
Septuagint - General Information II