Course Objective

• 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
grammar book.

By cooperating with others, students will be able to optimize

Course Content

Aramaic 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).

Teaching Methods


Method of Assessment

Mid-term test (30%) and written exam (70%)

Entry Requirements

Hebrew 1 (G_HEBR1JB) and Hebrew 2 (G_HEBR2JB) or similar level, to be
assessed by the teaching staff.


Fr. Rosenthal, A Grammar of Biblical Aramaic, Wiesbaden 2006 (or earlier
edition). Additional literature will be made available in class or
through Canvas.

Target Audience

Students 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 Information

Attendance is compulsory.

General Information

Course Code L_GOBAALG009
Credits 6 EC
Period P2
Course Level 300
Language of Tuition English
Faculty Faculty of Humanities
Course Coordinator
Examiner prof. dr. R.B. ter Haar Romeny
Teaching Staff

Practical Information

You need to register for this course yourself

Last-minute registration is available for this course.

Teaching Methods Seminar
Target audiences

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