The International Organization for
Septuagint and Cognate Studies

Septuaginta Deutsch
Annual Report to IOSCS, October 2005

First, let me say thanks to the IOSCS for the opportunity to give this report.

Since the last report, dating from July 2004, the progress of "Septuaginta Deutsch" (abbreviated LXX.D) can be summarized as follows.

1. The translation of the Septuagint into German

The translation (volume one of the forthcoming publication) has proceeded very well also in this year. All biblical books of the translation volume are now finally elaborated, most of them are already also corrected. The redaction process will be finished by December 31. We thank the translators, co-editors, advisors and correctors for their intensive engagement.

The translation follows the Greek text of Septuaginta Gottingensis wherever possible, otherwise Rahlfs. In addition, we use Margolis (Joshua) and Fernández Marcos (1-4 Reigns). Therefore, the German translation will show a double text in more parts of the historical books than Rahlfs.

Short footnotes will give information regarding

    • the differences between the critical editions,
    • alternative translations,
    • special readings of the Orthodox Christianity.

The translation is intended for readers in the universities and in the German-speaking public. It is written in a German style as near as possible to the Greek and in this way encourages ongoing scientific work on the Septuagint.

Some readers will therefore gain a special feeling for the Greek. Others will miss the beauty of "normal" Bible translations in the target language. Nevertheless not only intellectuals and students are interested in the work. It seems also possible that Orthodox Christianity in German-speaking countries will use the translation in religious education.

2. The introductions and annotations accompanying the translation

The work on the annotations (volume two of the forthcoming publication) is in final progress. The redaction will be finished in the winter of 2005-2006.

The annotations will

    • give introductions to the Biblical Books,
    • note selected peculiarities of the LXX translation,
    • explain the decisions in the German translations,
    • give hints regarding the reception of the texts, parallels and so on.

3. Scientific publications and congresses

a.    The publication of the Congress-Volume of Bangor 2002 that we announced in the last report has been delayed. It will be published in the next few days (in the Septuagint and Cognate Studies), edited by Glenn Wooden, Acadia, and Wolfgang Kraus, Saarbrücken.

b.    In the well-known journal Theologische Literaturzeitung the following article appeared which characterizes the LXX.D project:

Kraus, W., "Hebräische Wahrheit und griechische Übersetzung. Überlegungen zum Übersetzungsprojekt Septuaginta Deutsch (LXX.D.)," ThLZ (2004), 989-1007.

c.    In cooperation with La Bible d'Alexandrie, we held a conference in Strasbourg in October 2004. It was entitled, "Les textes de la Septante à tradition double et les textes de la Septante à traduction très littérales." The papers will be published in the OBO series (Fribourg / Suisse, Göttingen), edited by Olivier Munnich, Paris, and Wolfgang Kraus, Saarbrücken.

d.    In spring 2005, the "Voces Biblicae" conference in Strasbourg was dedicated to the lexicography of the Septuagint. The papers (by Martin Karrer and others) will also be published, in Contributions to Biblical Exegesis and Theology (Leuven: Peeters).

e.    In September 2005, a Colloquium Hermeneuticum at the University of Zürich dealt with "La traduction et ses défis hérméneutiques /Die Übersetzung und ihre hermeneutischen Herausforderungen." Septuaginta Deutsch was represented by Wolfgang Kraus.

4. Cooperation with CJHNT

The work on the Corpus Judaeo-Hellenisticum Novi Testamenti (CJHNT) is making good progress. CJHNT resumes a work lying nearly fallow in Germany since the 1920s. Nikolaus Walter generated many impulses for CJHNT as well as for LXX.D. Nowadays Karl William Niebuhr and Roland Deines in Jena (besides many editors) are especially engaged in CJHNT. During the annual convention of CJHNT in January 2005 Florian Wilk, translator of Isaias in LXX.D, read a paper on translation problems. Contacts and co-operation with CJHNT are going smoothly.

5. Perspectives

In the next year, the translation and annotation volumes of Septuaginta Deutsch will be presented to the public. We will hold an important Septuagint congress in Wuppertal, July 20-23 and invite you to participate in it. You will find a sketch of the program online.

Submitted by
Prof Dr W. Kraus
Prof Dr M. Karrer

Edited by Jay Treat