Conference on the Aramaic Manuscripts of 1 Enoch

Organized by the Institute of Biblical Studies (KUL, Lublin, Poland) in cooperation with The Enoch Seminar.

Date: 21-22 October 2020
Location: John Paul II Catholic University of Lublin (Poland)

From the Books of Enoch to Genesis Apocryphon: Aramaic Manuscripts of 1 Enoch and Related Aramaic Traditions from Qumran

The 1947 Qumran discovery of the Aramaic fragments of early Jewish apocalyptic traditions ascribed to the prediluvian patriarch Enoch arose new hopes for a better understanding of the apocalyptic literature, its origin and development in the late Second Temple period in Israel. The acclaimed, although at times harshly criticised, publication by Milik of the Aramaic books of Enoch (1976) has been justly considered as a watershed in the study of this thematically unusual and at times excruciatingly difficult strand of Jewish apocalyptic tradition that arose in the late Second Temple period. Milik’s publication has begun the long process of scholarly reflection on Jewish apocalyptic and ‘scientific’ literature in light of the new manuscript evidence.

Although in 2009 there appeared the last volume of the Discoveries in the Judaean Desert series (DJD XL), for reasons unknown the Aramaic manuscripts of 1 Enoch published by Milik were not included therein, leaving thus the Enochic lore without a reliable critical edition that would present the text according to the standards set for the series. In the meantime, there appeared additional manuscript publications that evidently tried to remedy that situation. The edition of the Book of Giants by Stuckenbruck (1997) began the process of a fresh appreciation of the Aramaic manuscripts of the apocalyptic book apparently related to 1 Enoch. Most of the material published by Prof. Stuckenbruck was later included in the DJD series. The edition of the Aramaic Astronomical Book (Drawnel 2011) and the subsequent publication of the remaining seven manuscripts (Drawnel 2019) has offered an innovative presentation of the Qumran material of 1 Enoch together with some new interpretive perspectives concerning the origin, meaning, and development of early Enochic apocalyptic literature. Much progress has been done, especially in the explanation of Enochic astronomy and related calendric traditions.

The conference offers a platform for all scholars to reflect on, and deepen the understanding of, the linguistic, philological, literary, and exegetical aspects of Enochic apocalyptic literature whose most ancient layer of tradition is readily available in its Aramaic manuscripts from Qumran.

Please email Henryk Drawnel to propose a paper.

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