Jan/ Feb 2011

Vol.  X - No 3

In This Issue

·      Stereoview

·      update letter

·     Archaeology

·      Crown

·      Talmon

·       Writ

·       Separation

·       New Articles

·       Curiosity

·       Links

·      New Biblio


The Samaritan Update, is a Bi-Monthly Internet Newsletter


Editor: Larry Rynearson


Contact information:

The Editor 


The Samaritan Update is trying something new. Please give us your feedback!

Choose a language to translate this page!


Your link to the Update Index

  • Subscribe To the Newsletter -The Samaritan Update.

    Sign Up !

    Name & Last Name:

    Email Address:

    For More Information

     The Samaritans call themselves

    Bene-Yisrael (“Children of Israel”), or Shamerim (“Observant Ones”)

    Hebrew: שומרונים‎ Shomronim,

    Arabic: السامريون‎






    Studies and Related Conferences:

    The Eighth Congress, Erfurt

    July 15, 2012 – July 20, 2012

    The Eighth Congress of the Société d'Études Samaritaines will take place in Erfurt, Germany, July 15.-20., 2012.


    2011 International Meeting

    London, United Kingdom

    Meeting Begins: 7/3/2011
    Meeting Ends: 7/8/2011

    Call For Papers Opens: 10/1/2010
    Call For Papers Closes: 1/31/2011

    View the 2011 International Meeting Program Units >>
    Requirements to Submit a Paper Proposal


    2011 Annual Meeting

    San Francisco, CA

    Meeting Begins: 11/19/2011
    Meeting Ends: 11/22/2011

    Call For Papers Opens: 1/25/2011
    Call For Papers Closes: 3/5/2011


    Call for papers: The 2011 Aramaic Studies section will have an open call for papers in any area relating to the various aspects of Aramaic language, literature, and context. Previous paper topics have included aspects of the Targumim, Qumran Aramaic, Peshitta, Samaritan papyri, and Elephantine Aramaic.



    Book mark the

    Samaritan Studies (EABS)



    Keep Up with the Samaritan Basketball team on FANS of Samaritan basketball team

    Community Youth Club Samaritan on Facebook.com


    سطورة السامرية

    האגדה השומרונית الا

    A group of young Samaritans people who is interested in their culture, heritage and the future of their small community, we establish an association which is called Samaritan myth. This association is aimed on the definition of Samaritan's culture and heritage the internal and external one.

    Security Mount Gerizim

    A group of young people keen on the security of Mount Gerizim

    Both groups can be found on Facebook.com

    and see




    Important Links


    Samaritan Museum on Mount Gerizim.

    New Samaritans-

    A DOCUMENTARY on Samaritan brides from the Ukraine



     Have you purchased your book lately?


    Notices Of The Modern Samaritans: Illustrated By Incidents In The Life Of Jacob Esh Shelaby (1855) by Jacob Esh Shelaby and Edward Thomas Rogers (Paperback - Mar 20, 2009) 


    Forth Coming Books


    The English Translation of the Samaritan Pentateuch


    Update on the English Translation of the Samaritan Pentateuch  publication date

    June 15, 2011


      The first-ever English translation of the Samaritan Pentateuch, prepared by Benyamin Tsedaka WILL be published by Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company  



  • Mount Gerizim. Place of Abraham’s Offering of Isaac, c. 1915

    In the Stereoview is  Ab-Hisda b. High Priest Jacob, is the father of today's  High Priest Aaron b. Ab-Hisda b. High Priest Jacob

    Photo of as the young priest on page 15 from the article , The Last Israelitish Blood Sacrifice, by John D. Whiting in The National Geographic Magazine, January 1920, vol. XXXVII, No. 1


    Upcoming Festivals

    Paschal Sacrifice - Sunday, April 17, 2011

    Pesach Festival - Monday, April 18, 2011

    The Festival of Unleavened Bread - Sunday. April 24, 2011

    The Sinai Assembly Day - Wednesday. June 8, 2011

    The Festival of Weeks - Sunday, June 12, 2011



    Update on the Letter by the Editor

    In the last Samaritan Update, we had a section on a Letter of the Samaritans of India to those of Nablous found in the book, Journal of a Tour in the Holy Land in May and June, 1840 by Lady Francis Egerton. We decided to find out more information, asking Benny Tsedaka for his help. He was very interested and responded with the following email. We understand that he is a busy man and as soon as we learn more we will post the information.


    Dear Larry, I saw once a letter from "The Samaritans in Bombay", India written in Hebrew letters. It is part of the Library of the late High Priest Yusef b. Ab-Hisda whose brother is the current High Priest Aaron. I hope to find it for you. The article attached which I see for the first time is very important. Thank you for sending the Samaritan reference.
    It is p[art of the efforts of scholars to have Samaritan Manuscripts as it done before 1840 by European scholars. These efforts [and from Bombay as well] continued till the beginning of the 20Th century. Till 1840 they succeeded to have by this cheating way 40 Samaritan Manuscripts. After then started the big sale of Samaritan Mss that increased the number to almost 4000[!] Since the 1960's with the great change for good in the economical life of the Samaritans they stopped to sell Handwritten Mss. Fondly, Benny Tsedaka




    Biblical Archaeology Review announces its March/April 2011 Issue

    There’s even more on our Web site ( www.biblicalarchaeology.org ) as scholars respond in droves to debates about the authenticity of “Secret Mark,” the dating of the Samaritan temple on Mt. Gerizim, the origins of the alphabet, and more in the Scholar’s Study section. We also feature a fascinating E-Feature about Amelia Edwards, a 19th-century pioneer of Egyptology, to compliment our story about the Oxyrhynchus Papyri.



    Alan D. Crown Ph.D. (1932–2010)

     Alan D. Crown, was emeritus professor of Semitic studies at the University of Sydney (Australia), died last November 2010, after suffering a stroke at age of 78.

    Alan Crown, born in Leeds, England 9/28/1932 studied Talmud Torah to age 18. His Masters Thesis on Samaritan Studies was prepared under Professor John Bowman. Crown trained as a teacher, instructor in the Royal Army Educational Corps, a schoolmaster at Bramley County Secondary School, Leeds. Migrating to Austria, he taught at Mount Scopus College, Melbourne, Appointed as a lecturer in the Department of Semitic Studies at Sydney University in 1962 under Prof. E.C.B. Maclaurin. He earned his B.A. in Leeds and his Ph.D. in Sydney in 1967. He was professor and head of the Department of Semitic Studies at the University of Sydney.

    Crown retired in 1996, still continuing to inspire, encouraged and wrote. He held many scholarly and honorary appointments. His books, translations, chapters and contributions to books and articles will always be with us. Among his greatest works were The Samaritans (Edited by Alan Crown), Samaritan Scribes and Manuscripts, A Bibliography of the Samaritans (continued today by friend Reinhard Pummer).

    Alan was the husband of Sadie, loving father of Aviva and Jacqui, and father-in-law of David and Kevin. Adored grandfather of Carolyn, Stacey, Richard, Julia, Emma and Ben, and Michael.

    Professor Emeritus Alan Crown http://www.onlinetributes.com.au/Alan_Crown

    We will miss this man, a such dedicated, and inspiring scholar! We are all appreciative of his work that has educated us of so much in the past and that will live on for future generations.

    The Editor


    Shemaryahu Talmon (1920-2010)

     Prof. Shemaryahu Talmon (1920-2010) passed away on Dec. 15th. Prof. Talmon (90) was the chief editor of the Hebrew University Bible Project for many years.

    Prof. Shemaryahu Talmon, renowned for his Biblical study, was born in Germany in 1920.

     A detainee at Buchenwald concentration camp during the Holocaust, his parents and two sisters tragically killed, he managed to escape and made aliyah as soon as the war ended. He was already participating in public affairs, and was appointed supervisor of the educational system at Cyprus before the State of Israel was even established.

    Talmon spent time pursuing research on the Samaritans at Leeds with John Bowman, a field of research that interested him greatly in his early career. This led him later to undertake the edition of Sepher ha-Shomronim, a comprehensive study of the Samaritans begun by the late Yitzhak Ben-Zvi.

    We extend deepest sympathies to his wife, Penina Talmon, and to the entire
    family. He is a great loose!
    Cont'd reading:


    also see http://h-net.msu.edu/cgi-bin/logbrowse.pl?trx=vx&list=H-Judaic&month=1012&week=c&msg=fwv3d0KIwtgHfSRVF6U5Aw&user=&pw=

    also see  http://www.sbl-site.org/publications/article.aspx?ArticleId=869


    The Israelite Samaritan Version of the Torah: First English Translation Compared with the Masoretic Version [Hardcover]

    Sharon Sullivan (Editor), Benyamim Tsedaka (Translator), James H. Charlesworth (Introduction), Emanuel Tov (Foreword)

    Pre-order now for $61.75 List Price: $100.00

    Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company (June 15, 2011)




    GEO International Spanish Article & Photos





    A New Samaritan Website

    Guy Joshua from the Samaritan community in Israel has 2 web sites, one in Hebrew and one in English about the Samaritan community.





    ANCIENT HEBRAIC WRIT : Boston Evening Transcript,

    Feb 4, 1903, Page 11

    Recent Discovery in Egypt of Importance

    One Passage of the Manuscript Translated

    It Differs from the Present Hebrew Scriptures

    Additional Passage Immediately Follows the Decalogue

       Cairo, Feb 4- The extraordinary Biblical find, the discovery of which already has been reported, is a manuscript of four books of the Pentateuch, written in Samaritan characters on parchment. The manuscript contains 255 folios in excellent state of preservation with the exception of the first page, which has been restored. The folios are 38 centimetres long, containing twenty-four lines to a page. A page containing the date, 116 Moslem era, which is equivalent to A.D. 735, is well preserved. The manuscript is the oldest of any of the Hebrew manuscripts of the Bible yet discovered. The owner is reported as already negotiating the sale of it to Mr. Ayer of Chicago Museum.

       Comparing the present Hebrew Bible with this manuscript there are found several notable differences. Immediately after the Decalogue there is a passage of some fifteen lines not in the actual version. These lines translated into English are as follows:

       “It shall come to pass when the Lord your God, shall bring you into the land of Canaan, whither ye are journeying and which ye are to inherit, that ye shall set up for yourselves large stones, built together with lime, and shall write upon these stones all the words of this book, and it shall come to pass that after the passage of the River Jordan ye shall also set up the same memorial as I have already commanded you on Mount Gerizim, and ye shall build there to the Lord your God an altar of stones rough hewn and not touched with iron tools.”

       George Zeldan, a member of the Royal Asiatic Society, a noted author and historian, is temporary custodian of the manuscript, which belongs to Khale el Sabra. Pending its final disposition Biblical scholars are offered all opportunity to study it.


    Just Interesting

    The use of numbers, imported from India, was known in late eighth century Baghdad, spreading to Muslim Spain by the end of the tenth and from there into the Christian world.

    The system of numbering in use all round the world is probably Indian in origin but the style of the numerals is Arabic and first appears in print in the work of the Muslim mathematicians al- Khwarizmi and al-Kindi around 825. Read more: http://wiki.answers.com/Q/What_did_the_Arabs_invent#ixzz1A1YeuP97


    Samaritans Separation?

    'When the Samaritans separated from the Jews during the 5th -4th century ...' This statement has been written over and over again. Another phrase used, is Samaritan Jews" Another typical sentence, 'The Samaritan faith and that of other Jews diverged over a millennium ago.' And let us not forget the most used words,, "Samaritan schism." Are there any truths to these statements?

       First, the Samaritan never have and never will say they were once Jews. Since the Jews originated from the southern kingdom known as Judea, it would therefore be incorrect to say that the origins the Samaritans were Jewish, since the Samaritan beginnings derived from the Northern Kingdom of Israel. In the fourth century CE most all of Israel belonged to the northern kingdom except for the territory of Judea (see the The Survey of Western Palestine from the Palestine Exploration Fund 1881). at this time there was over 1,200,000 people of the Northern Kingdom.

       The division of Israel 1st come about with Eli, this is the most important issue on the splitting of Israel. Israel has been split from this time, even under Solomon there were those that apposed the original location of the Tabernacle. It is therefore can be said since the Northern Kingdom remained faithful to the location where Joshua pitched the Tabernacle and built the Altar as instructed. If this location was incorrect then, would not the God of the Israelites informed him or the High Priest? Since the Samaritan can prove that they are of the Northern Kingdom, then there cannot be a schism that came from them!

       The Jewish version of say in 2 Kings 17 that the Samaritans intermarried with foreigners. There were only 27, 290 people taken from the Northern Kingdom, a small percentage of the populous of the land. One must admit that there were some pagans living in the land at the time and even some Jews in the north. But still today the Samaritans do not marry outside of the faith except when taking Jewish wives that convert to their faith.

       Most scholars other than Samaritan Scholars and many authors do not investigate when making statements concerning the Samaritans but revert to old statements made by uninformed age old articles.

    By Shomron


    Samaritan Resources

    New Articles


    Modern Samaritans Sacramento Daily Record-Union -Monday July 10, 1882  

    At the Congregational Church yesterday Rev. H.E. Jewitt, of Redwood City, officiated in the absence of Rev. Dr. Dwinell, the pastor. In the evening a missionary concert was held, and on that occasion Mr. Jewitt, who has the advantage of extended personal observation in Palestine, spoke of “The Modern Samaritans, as Seen by an Eye-witness.”


    Pharmaceutical Record And Weekly Market Review  1891

    There are at Neapolis two very ancient copies of the Samaritan Bible which were written before the time of Solomon. We happened to arrive there on Saturday, and therefore were enabled to attend their services and to see these copies of the Old Testament. The Scripture parchment is rolled on two round sticks covered with carved silver.


    THE CHURCHMAN: (1839) Printed by Leonard Seeley, Thames Ditton, Surrey. (Page 48d)  With respect to the Samaritans, Mr. Elliott states that, at Nablus, they are reduced to eighty persons, and in their physiognomy exhibit proofs or not being of the same blood as Israel. Yet the remains of Jewish opinions were very discernible in the requisition that a party entering the Temple should take the shoes from their feet, and in their veneration of the burial-place of Jacob and Joseph. Two copies of the Pentateuch were shown to Mr. Elliott; but we have doubts whether the ancient Samaritans, as it is commonly reported, received no other part of the Sacred Books:


    The Cradle of Christianity: Chapters on Modern Palestine by Rev. D. M. Ross, M.A. Hodder and Stoughton (1891) In the time of our Lord the Samaritans occupied parts of the central district of Palestine between the Plain of Esdraelon and Judaea, and must have numbered many thousands. The feud between the Samaritans and Jews was fiercer than that between Romanists and Orangemen in Ireland. The Jews of Jerusalem could think of nothing more contemptuous to say to Christ than this: “Thou art a Samaritan.”


    The Fringe of the East a Journey Through Past and Present Provinces of Turkey by Harry Charles Lukach (1913) In the south-west part of the town is the little Samaritan quarter. There, in a small whitewashed house which contains synagogue, school, and High Priest’s residence, we were received by the High Priest and his family. The High Priest’s name was Jacob, the son of Aaron, the son of Solomon; he was a tall, thin man of 70, whose sad and dignified mien betrayed weariness and dejection.


    Curiosity sometimes gets the best of me by the Editor

       I recently found some information on a Samaritan and conversion in the Inventory of the of Oriental manuscripts of the Library of the University of Leidon, vol 1, compiled by Jan Just Witkam, Ter Lugt Press, Lieden 2007.

       Among the manuscripts, some Samaritan, is an Arabic manuscript, Or. 789 (page 330) arranged with collections of letters with questions and answers. (29) ff 104b-154 a gives "a question and answer on 'a Samaritan who had freely converted to Islam and then continued with his former ugly religion', as it says.

    It would be interesting to read more about this section!!!!


    Want to translate something!

    Use http://translate.google.com/



    Samaritan Pentateuch Font Needed


    Anyone that has a Samaritan font for Mac, please contact the editor




    Population Gain to 345 is shown by Samaritans by Bruce Conde





    Proud Samaritans Hold to their Faith by George W. Cornell





    142 Israeli Samaritans Enter Jordan for Passover; Jordan Announces Grant By LAWRENCE FELLOWS Special to The New York Times. April 18, 1962,



    Dwindled Flock of Samaritans Lives on in Strange Isolation

     Hartford Courant - Jan 20, 1962 by George W. Cornell

    Samaritans Have Treasured Scroll Of Scripture .

    Montreal Gazette - Jan 27, 1962

    World's Oldest Book . Ottawa Citizen - Jan 13, 1962


    New Biblios

    Gaunbaum, M. Einige Bemerkungen in Bexug auf die mitgetheilten Aufsatze Uber die Samaritaner. (In Zeitschr. D. D. morg Ges., v16. 1862

     Nachtrage zu den ‘Bemerkungen unber die Samaritaner’ In Zeitschr.d. D. morg. Ges., v. 23, 1869




    THE CHURCHMAN: FEBRUARY 1839 Printed by Leonard Seeley, Thames Ditton, Surrey


    Pharmacy in Palestine Pharmaceutical Record And Weekly Market Review Vol. XII July to December 1891 P.W. Bedford-Editor New York: Pharmaceutical Record Company, 96, 98, 100 and 102 Reade Street. Thursday, November 26, 1891. Vol XII: No. 22.

    Modern Samaritans Sacramento Daily Record-Union -Monday July 10, 1882  


     TheSamaritanupdate.com . Copyright 2011

    Credit is given to the author or website of the internet link and is only displaced here for educational reasons.