The Ancient ‘Library’ of Qumran between Urban and Rural Culture


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    The scrolls found in the caves near Qumran are archaeological artefacts that belong to the settlement, but the question is what the exact significance is of the scrolls lying in those caves. Is it a coincidence and did the scrolls somehow end up there during the revolt against Rome, at which moment the inhabitants of Qumran helped because they were around? Or is it less of a coincidence that the scrolls ended up in those caves? If some scrolls were present at the site before the revolt broke out and if some of the inhabitants were collectors and copyists of scrolls then the site of Qumran in combination with the nearby caves in which the scrolls were found represents a fascinating mixture of rural and regional material culture on the one hand and, on the other hand, urban and high literary culture. Comparative analysis of the text finds in the Judaean Desert highlights two issues.1 First, the find sites indicate the spread of literary texts within various strata of ancient Jewish society, outside of urban centres such as Jerusalem. Second, the context, number of literary texts, and character of texts of the Judaean Desert text finds reveal a differentiated engagement with literary texts by different kinds of people in Jewish society at the time.
    Originele taal-2English
    TitelThe Scrolls from Qumran and the Concept of a Library
    RedacteurenSidnie White Crawford, Cecilia Wassén
    Plaats van productieLeiden
    UitgeverijBrill Academic Publisher
    HoofdstukPart 3
    Aantal pagina's13
    ISBN van elektronische versie9789004305069
    ISBN van geprinte versie9789004301825
    StatusPublished - 2015

    Publicatie series

    NaamStudies on the Texts of the Desert of Judah
    UitgeverijBrill Academic Publishers


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