• will acquire elementary knowledge of Aramaic grammar;
• will acquire an insight into the main differences and points of
agreement between Aramaic and Hebrew;
• will acquire a basic vocabulary of Aramaic;
• will be able to apply the acquired knowledge of grammar and
to translate a simple Aramaic text with the help of a dictionary and
By cooperating with others, students will be able to optimize
Course ContentAramaic was 'the English of the ancient Near East' in the centuries
leading up to Alexander's conquests, and to some extent it was able to
maintain this status even later. This course is an introduction to the
Aramaic of the Persian and early Hellenistic periods. The main corpus
treated is the Aramaic of the biblical book of Daniel. This forms an
excellent basis for further explorations of the language.
We will discuss the basic grammar of the older forms of Aramaic
(Biblical Aramaic and Old Aramaic / Official Aramaic) and read a number
of Aramaic texts (including passages from the biblical book of Daniel,
the letter on the Temple from Elephantine, and some inscriptions).
Method of AssessmentMid-term test (30%) and written exam (70%)
Entry RequirementsHebrew 1 (G_HEBR1JB) and Hebrew 2 (G_HEBR2JB) or similar level, to be
assessed by the teaching staff.
LiteratureFr. Rosenthal, A Grammar of Biblical Aramaic, Wiesbaden 2006 (or earlier
edition). Additional literature will be made available in class or
Target AudienceStudents in Ancient Studies or Theology at VU University and other
interested parties who meet the entry requirements. The study of Aramaic
is essential to students of the history of the Persian and Hellenistic
periods and biblical scholars alike.
Additional InformationAttendance is compulsory.
|Language of Tuition||English|
|Faculty||Faculty of Humanities|
|Course Coordinator||prof. dr. R.B. ter Haar Romeny|
|Examiner||prof. dr. R.B. ter Haar Romeny|
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