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The Formation of the Hebrew BibleA New Reconstruction$
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David M. Carr

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199742608

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199742608.001.0001

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The Persian Period

The Persian Period

Textuality of Persian-Sponsored Returnees

(p.204) 7 The Persian Period
The Formation of the Hebrew Bible

David M. Carr

Oxford University Press

Once again, this chapter opens with a historical survey of the Persian period (including brief treatment of the order of Ezra and Nehemiah) and discussion of the question of broader Persian sponsorship for restoration of returnee community. Next comes a survey of texts likely dated to this period, from the Nehemiah Memoir and Rebuilding-Ezra narrative to early portions of Haggai and Zechariah, to Psalm 107 (in its present form) and the poetry of Job. This leads into discussion of the formation of the P/Non-P Hexateuch through combination of P and non-P traditions (possibly supported in some way by Persian governmental authorization) and the rise of a “Pentateuch” to prominence by the end of the period. Though the probability of other Persian-period reshaping of yet other biblical traditions is affirmed, questions are raised in the conclusion about their extent (especially given the limited scale of the scribal apparatus at the time) and identifiability (given the fact that they are modelled on and molded into older materials).

Keywords:   Ezra, Nehemiah, Job, Persian period, Psalm 107, Pentateuch, Hexateuch, governmental authorization

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