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At 12:11 PM 11/11/96 -0800, you wrote:
>I would be very much obliged if someone could perhaps take some time to
>answer the following questions?
>1) Is it always assumed that the _purpose_ of all the caves was the same?
>Could not cave 4 have been used for a different reason than the others?
>Has any paper been written covering that point?
The caves were evidently all used for the purpose of storage.
>2) Has the ganiza theory (especially with regard to cave 4..see above)
>been totally dropped or have papers been written pro and con in the last
>ten years? Was the fact that nothing from the book of Esther was found
>taken into consideration in these discussions?
No theory is ever really dropped- someone somewhere holds it.
>3) If the community was such a devout one, how is the very, very close
>proximity of the cemetry explained especially as so much emphasis is
>placed on "purity"?
The cemetary was an appropriate distance for the purity laws.
>4) Whilst very, very few people still accept the Talmudic chronology has
>any paper been written using that chronology as it applies to the "390"
>5) Could you recommend three books in print that most accurately describe
>for the non-academic the present consensus regarding Qumran and the DSS?
>Are there academic papers which do a better job?
See VanderKam; he has further bibliography.
>Your help would be very much appreciated.
Jim West, ThD
Professor of Biblical Languages