A New Edition of DJPA


Just a brief note to alert readers to the appearance of a “Third Revised and Expanded Edition” of Sokoloff’s A Dictionary of Jewish Palestinian Aramaic by Bar-Ilan University Press, Ramat Gan, 2017.

The major changes would seem to be the incorporation of or reactions to comments by reviewers to the earlier edition and the incorporation of material from Genizah magical texts published after the appearance of the first edition. Citations of forms from Syriac and CPA are now in the “native” fonts of those dialects, though the use of the latter is unlikely to be of help to most users of this dictionary.

I am not quite sure, though, why he calls it an “expanded” edition. Indeed it is “contracted,” inasmuch as there is no index of passages, an invaluable feature of the earlier editions.  One may assume that Press pressures may be responsible both for the subtitle and the lack.

2 thoughts on “A New Edition of DJPA”

  1. Steve Kaufman Post Author

    My review of this edition and its emphasis on additional material from the magical texts, primarily those published in the series Magische Texte aus der Kairoer Geniza, has prompted me to look again at that material, categorized by Sokoloff, following Naveh, Shaked, Bohak and others as Palestinian Aramaic. I find this highly misleading. As I did a while back with text 81700, at least some of these are going to be reclassified as LJLA magic, i.e. basically based on the same magical language as the JBA bowls in “koine”, albeit somewhat later and composed in the west. But such material should not be seen to reflect Palestinian Aramaic.

    A preliminary overview shows that almost all of the non-Geniza amulets from Syria-Palestine are indeed in Palestinian Aramaic or at least in a Palestinian orthography but of those from the Cairo Geniza the majority are in literary Aramaic, in both language and orthography. Eastern/JLA lexemes found in that material, e.g. פתכר, should not be added to the Palestinian dictionary. In a subsequent post I will provide the distinctive orthographic, lexical, and grammatical features that separate the three groupings of Jewish Aramaic magical texts, i.e. Babylonian, Palestinian, and LJLA. As is the case with the Testament of Levi from the Geniza, some of the LJLA material may actually reflect models from late Second Temple times.

  2. Steve Kaufman Post Author

    While working through some of the material supposed added in DJPA3, I am finding that there remain lacunae, i.e., it seems that not all of the Palestinian material published since DJPA2 has been incorporated (while some of the non-Palestinian material — see previous comment — has been). For example note the expression גמי֯ל{ה֯}< ת֯> חסדא in T.S. K 1.26 1a:2 (MTKG II p. 267, a clearly Palestinian amulet cited elsewhere in DJPA3, e.g. s.v. עטף.

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