Team 2. Text and Authority

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Team 2 examines the processes of transmission of biblical texts and the scribal practices prior to the stabilization of the text of the Hebrew Bible (HB). The sources are the manuscripts from Qumran (2nd BCE–1st c. CE), the Septuagint (Greek translation of the HB, 3rd–2nd c. BCE), and the later standard text (Masoretic text, 2nd c. CE onwards). Observation of changes in textual witnesses until fairly late (1st BCE–1st CE) raises questions concerning the development of scriptural authority and the immutability of authoritative writings. The group provides case studies on the Pentateuch, historical books, Jeremiah, Minor Prophets, and Psalms. The method is textual criticism understood broadly and complemented with the translation technical approach, which enables the use of translations as witnesses of the HB. The status of these texts is studied through their use as sources in other writings of Second Temple Judaism and the New Testament (intertextuality, rewriting, exegesis).


Team Leader
Anneli Aejmelaeus Anneli Aejmelaeus, Professor emerita in Old Testament and Ancient Near Eastern Culture and Literature

Expertise: Textual criticism of the Septuagint as well as of the Hebrew Bible, translation-technique and origins of the Septuagint, emergence of textual authority and formation of the canon
Profiles: University of Helsinki

Vice-Team Leader
kauhanen-t Tuukka Kauhanen, Senior Member

Project: The Septuagint of 2 Samuel
Expertise: Textual criticism; Samuel-Kings; Septuagint; Latin witnesses; indirect evidence
Profiles: University of Helsinki   |

Jessi Orpana, Post-Doctoral Researcher

Project: Transferring Authority: Literary Strategies of Authorization and Contemporizing in Late Second Temple Period
Expertise: Second Temple Judaism, Qumran, Apocrypha, Pseudepigrapha, Reception of Traditions
Profile: University of Helsinki

Katja Kujanpää Katja Kujanpää, Post-Doctoral Researcher

Project: Scriptures and Authority in the Identity Formation of Early Christians
Expertise: Scriptural authority; Intertextuality; Paul; 1 and 2 Clement; The Septuagint
Profile: University of Helsinki
Interview: Silmät auki sitaateille: Haastattelussa Katja Kujanpää

Paavo Huotari, Doctoral Student

Project: The Antiochian Recension in the Book of 2 Samuel; The Septuagint of 2 Samuel
Expertise: Textual criticism; Intertextuality; Septuagint; The Books of Samuel
Profile: University of Helsinki |

Marika Pulkkinen, Doctoral Student

Project: Paul’s Use of Psalms: Quotations, Allusions, and Psalm Clusters in Romans and First Corinthians
Expertise: Paul; Reception of psalms, Septuagint translation of the Psalms; Dead Sea Scrolls psalms manuscripts; Use of psalms and prayers in the late Second Temple Judaism; Intertextuality.
Profile: University of Helsinki

Christian Seppänen Christian Seppänen, Post-Doctoral Researcher

Project: Ethiopic Text of 2 Samuel
Expertise: Dead Sea Scrolls; Septuagint; Textual Criticism; Manuscripts; Translation Technique; Hebrew and Greek Linguistics
Profiles: University of Helsinki |

Miika Tucker Miika Tucker, Doctoral Student

Project: The Septuagint Translation of Jeremiah
Expertise: The Book of Jeremiah; Textual criticism; Septuagint Studies; Translation technique
Profile: University of Helsinki


Hanne von Weissenberg Hanne von Weissenberg, Associate Member

Expertise: Dead Sea Scrolls; Formation of the canon and canonical processes; Authority and sacrality of scriptures; The Twelve Minor Prophets; Poverty and justice in the Hebrew Bible
Profiles: University of Helsinki |
Interview: Dosentti päivystää henkimaailman asioita: Haastattelussa Hanne von Weissenberg

Elina Perttilä Elina Perttilä, Associate Member

Project: Coptic Versions of the Book of Job
Expertise: Coptic Language; Septuagint; Translation Technique
Profile: University of Helsinki

Marketta Liljeström Marketta Liljeström, Associate Member

Project: The Syrohexaplaric 1 Samuel
Expertise: Syriac Language; Textual Criticism; Septuagint
Profile: University of Helsinki

Drew Longacre Drew Longacre, Associate Member
University of Groningen

Project: Fragmentary Greek Manuscripts of the Book of Exodus
Expertise: Dead Sea Scrolls; Septuagint; Textual Criticism; Manuscript Studies
Profiles: University of Groningen |


The Academy of Finland's Centre of Excellence, Faculty of Theology, University of Helsinki