Prof. Aline Canellis talks about Saint Jerome at the Biblindex seminar

20 May 2023

The last session of the Biblindex seminar took place in Lyon and was led by Aline Canellis, professor at the Université Jean Monnet in Saint-Etienne, to whom we owe in particular the extraordinary volume of Sources Chrétiennes on the Prefaces of Saint Jerome (SC 592), on the following subject:

Jerome and the translations of the prophet Joel

Jerome, who planned to comment in full on the sixteen prophets of the Old Testament, began with the Twelve “Little Ones”. In 406, he wrote his Commentary on Joel, dedicated to his friend Pammachius. Following a well-honed exegetical method, In Ioel almost systematically proposes a double biblical lemma: first the translation based on the Hebrew by Jerome, then the personal translation of the Septuagint, or the retouched Latin Old Testament. The translation of the prophets, based on the Hebrew, i.e. the text of the future Vulgate, was produced before 393. In his Prologue to the Twelve Prophets, Jerome even states that “Joel at the beginning is clear, but becomes obscure at the end”. Repeated in the In Ioel with a few differences, this translation, which already reveals certain characteristics of Hieronymian practice, presents notable variants with the translation of the LXX, and even with other Greek predecessors, all of which inevitably have an impact on the exegesis of Joel.

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