Thursday, June 15, 2006

Peshitta of Psalms

Just announced on the Hugoye List:

Ignacio Carbajosa, Las características de la versión siríaca de los Salmos (Sal 90-150 de la Peshitta) (Analecta Biblica 162; Editrice Pontificio Istituto Biblico, Roma 2006).


  1. Why stop at 150?
    Doesn't the Peshitta go all the way to Psalm 154?

  2. That five so-called ‘apocryphal psalms’ are attested in the Syriac Psalter first caught the attention of scholars in the 18th C. when a catalogue of Vatican manuscripts made mention of them (S. E. & J. E. Assemanus, /Bibliothecae Apostolicae Vaticanae Codicum Manuscriptorum Catalogus Partis Primae/. /Tomus Tertius/ [Rome, 1756], 285-86). However, it was W. Wright in 1887 (W. Wright, “Some Apocryphal Psalms in Syriac,” /Proceedings of the Society of Biblical Archaeology/ 9 [1887] 257-66) who first published them with critical editions to follow in 1930 (M. Noth, “Die fünf syrisch überlieferten apokryphen Psalmen,” /ZAW/ 48 [1930] 1-23) and 1972 (W. Baars, /The Old Testament in Syriac/, part 6, Apocryphal Psalms [Leiden: Brill, 1972]). While Ps. 151 gained notoriety from its attestation in the Septuagint, the others were known solely from the Syriac Psalter until the discover of 11QPsa which contained not only Ps. 151, albeit in a form distinct from its Greek counterpart, but also Pss. 154 and 155.

    Along with the aforementioned it should be remembered that Ps. 151 does not appear in any Peshitta ms before the 10th Century, with the exception of 6h22 (6th Century), a Syriac translation of Athanasius’ longer Psalm commentary, which has, as an addendum, Ps. 151. In post 10th C. manuscripts it seems that Ps. 151 makes it way into the Syriac ecclesiastical tradition by means of the Syro-Hexaplaric Psalter and the fondness bestowed the LXX by the Syrian church between the 5th and 7th Centuries. Pss. 154 and 155 surface only in the 12th Century manuscript 12t4, while Pss. 151-155 appear appended to the prophetic books in ms 19d1. Still later, these extra-canonical Psalms are attested in various manuscripts of the 14th C. and between the first and second part of the Nestorian Bishop, Eliah of al-Anbār’s theological works.

    Paraphrasing the words of one scholar (I believe it was H. F. Van Rooy), the Syriac apocryphal Psalms deserve only a “footnote” when one considers the textual profile and history of the Peshitta Psalter.

  3. Can you give me a link to all Psalms in original Aramaic translieration in electronic text ?