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By George Steiner

The decline of formal spiritual platforms has left an ethical and emotional vacancy in Western tradition. George Steiner, the world over popular philosopher and student, pursues this and examines the choice "mythologies" of Marxism, Freudian psychology, Lévi-Straussian anthropology, and fads of irrationality.

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Writing in this series, Brayford in her Genesis commentary (2007, 25–26) expresses the latter philosophy and seeks to determine how the text may have been understood and read as a Greek text by readers who did not have access to the Hebrew. Likewise Aejmelaeus (1991) makes an excellent plea for understanding the Greek text on its own terms. For Baruch and the Epistle of Jeremiah such a focus is even more compelling, as there is no Hebrew text to consult. Although the number of retroversions indicates that many scholars have treated Baruch as a translation, and have sought to tease out the Hebrew grammar and syntax behind the Greek text, this commentary will not take that approach.

There is a tendency for the first scribe to write ει in stead of ι. 35). Such itacisms and corrections are well documented in introduction to baruch 2. 3. 4. 5. 27 manuscripts (Ropes 1926, xxxviii–xxxix; Milne and Skeat 1938, 89; Gignac 1976, 189–191). For this edition, I have retained the original spelling. It appears, however, that a later scribe did not like this spelling practice and either erased the offending “ε” or did not “reinforce” it when recopying the text. This is confirmed by the indication that a scribe between the ninth and eleventh centuries (Skeat 1984, 461) traced over the original ink of every letter/word, except those that were suspected of being in error (Payne and Canart 2000, 106; Metzger and Ehrman 2005, 68).

1131; col. 2, line 12; p. 1132, col. 3, line 14), but one of these was corrected and spelled out in full (see p. 1130; col. 3, line 32). Also, the original scribe of Vaticanus raised the “N” at the end of lines consistently if the N was the last letter of the word, and sporadically if it was in the middle of a word. The rare exception is when the scribe had to squeeze in extra letters, and then he used the raised line for N. All of these abbreviations have been written out in full in the text below.

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