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Re: SV: orion Essenes = 'osey hatorah?

2 responses:

1. Greg Doudna.
This time you dropped the claim that Philo is of "no real weight." That
helps; Philo is, after all, the earliest extant writer to use Essaioi,
though he was himself drawing on an earlier source. Whatever he wrote on
Essenes is of historical significance, even if he is, in part, wrong, which
he, in part, is. Then you wrote that it "happens to have been" that
"Philo's 1st century CE view" is "that the name "Essene" is a Greek
transliteration of an Aramaic pronunciation of 'hasids.'"
But your question's assertion is quite doubtful. It is not safe to assume
that Philo knew the (Eastern) Aramaic relative of a Hebrew term
transliterated into Greek--which osios isn't anyway!
	Previously, you raised Hasidim from Psalms and asked whether,
hypothetically, it could have been a source for a group name. Well,
Asidaioi. As I wrote yesterday, medieval and early modern writers
mixed--and, alas, some today still mix--Maccabees' Asidaioi with "Essenes,"
	Before Qumran, various scholars suggested 'asah as the source
(Melanchthon, Jost, Oppenheim, Landsberg, Ginsburg...). After Qumran,
simply compare the usages of the proposed sources. When the two Aramaic
favorites did not appear in any useful way, two false assertions were
spread: (1) the etymological source is not in the scrolls; (2) outsiders
must have named them.
	Outsiders may have provided the Greek forms, but from a
self-designation amply attested in these ancient Essene documents.

2. Jack Kilmon.
Do you accept Murphy-O'Connor's proposal that Essenes came from Babylonia?
Does 4QLevi read sensibly to you and in a manner that gives us an etymology
Do you have any evidence for your suggested popular name in Eastern
Aramaic--i.e., any ancient text use of it for Essenes?
Do you equate Asidaioi and Essenes, relying on Maccabees, as you relied on
an incorrect reading of De Vita Contemplativa when you periodically
switched to Aramaic "healers"?
Do you have examples of other words with Greek -aioi and -hnoi endings
which are agreed to have come from the proposed plural emphatic and
absolute Aramaic forms?

best wishes,

For private reply, e-mail to stephen goranson <goranson@duke.edu>
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