The Samaritan Update

“Mount Gerizim,

All the Days of Our Lives”

May / June 2013                                                                                                                 Vol.  XII - No 5

In This Issue

·         Oldest Works

·         Synagogues

·         Samaritan Manuscript

·         Samaritan Exegesis

·         Meeting in Paradise

·         Translation

·         SES

·         Family History

·         Samaritan Pentateuch

·         Samaritan Keyboard

·         Dynamics of Coexistence

·         Tel Baruch

·         The Other Torah

·         Coming soon

·         Biblio

·         From Editor

·         Lectures

·         Links

·         Books for sale

·         Biblio

·         In Memoriam



Your link to the Update Index


Future Events


The Fourth Month 3651 - Sunday Evening July 7, 2013
The Fifth Month 3651 - Tuesday Evening, August 6, 2013
The Sixth Month 3652 - Wednesday Evening, September 4
The Seventh Month 3652 - Friday Evening, October 4, 2013

The Festival of the Seventh Month, 3652 - Saturday, October 5,

The Day of Atonement - Monday, Oct. 14, 2013

The Festival of Succoth. 3rd Pilgrimage. - Saturday, Oct. 19

The Eighth Day - Saturday, Oct. 26, 2013

Oldest Samaritan Works

1.    Abisha Scroll, very old, never checked, Moses Gaster estimated it to the 1st century, other scholars: 11-14Th centuries. The Israelite Samaritans: 3638 years ago, the 13th year after "the entrance of the People of Israel to the Sacred Land of Israel"

2.    Nablus, Yishmael the Priest, a scroll, 1064 A.D.

3.    Abi Barakatta codexes, 1195-1203- two in Nablus', one in the National Library in Jerusalem' and in the British Library and one in Chester Bitty Library in Dublin.

Yet, there are claims of older complete Jewish scrolls:


Old Samaritan and Jewish Synagogues and What Distinguishes Them from One Another

THREE FACTORS The question that aroused recently was how we can distinguish between Jewish synagogue to a Samaritan synagogue when it is discovered in an excavation in places where Jews and Samaritans lived together, community beside community in common places during the Hellenistic, Roman and Byzantine periods in the Land of Israel and its neighboring countries?
In my opinion there are three major differences between them that help to identify if the site that found is Jewish or Samaritan synagogue to identify the neighborhood too, and in case of villages if the village that found if it is Jewish or Samaritan.

1- Orientation of the synagogue - The orientation of a Samaritan Synagogue is the direction of Mount Gerizim, the sole sacred place for the Israelite Samaritans. All Samaritan synagogues orientation is to direction of Mount Gerizim no matter if the synagogue built in the east, west, north or south of the country, in Damascus, Cairo, Gaza, Salt, Beit Shean, Islands in the Reed Sea, Thessaloniki, Rome, Delos, Crete, Cicily, Haifa, Caesarea, Ramleh, Yavneh etc. From any place the direction of the front of the Samaritan Synagogue was Mount Gerizim. At the same time the orientation of the Jewish Synagogue was to the direction of Jerusalem.

2- Location of the Synagogue - Sometimes the direction of the Synagogue does not help to identify it as a Samaritan or Jewish place of worship, because Temple Mountain in Jerusalem and Mount Gerizim are on the same length line from North to South of the country with 40 miles distance between them, Mount Gerizim in the North and Temple Mountain in the South. In this case Samaritan and Jewish synagogues South to Jerusalem or North to Mount Gerizim it is hard to identify them as Jewish or Samaritan ones because their direction is the same.

In this case the cardinal difference is the location of the synagogue in place. If the synagogue found out of the neighborhood or the village all chances are that it is a Samaritan synagogue. If the synagogue found as built inside the neighborhood or the village - It was a Jewish synagogue.
This special location of the Samaritan synagogue outside the place of living is proved in Samaritan places like: Chirbet Samara, Zur Nathan, ElChirbeh, Shechem, Mount Gerizim summit, Thessaloniki, Cicily and recently in Beth Shean. 
It came from the fact that the Israelite Samaritans always kept the commandment of building the place of worship outside the camp of living [EXODUS, 33:7 – "…And everyone who seeks Shehmaa [the Almighty] will go out to the Tent of Meeting which is out of the camp"].
Antonius of Placentia a Christian pilgrim that visited Samaria villages in the year 579 testified that when Saturday comes the Samaritans wore white cloths and went out of the village to pray at the synagogue where was a priest replying to visitors.

Even in modern times when the Samaritans of Nablus forced to leave their old neighborhood Jasmine in the old part of Shechem in 1933 due to the earthquake of 1927 that destroyed their houses, the moved to the west of Nablus to a new neighborhood, there the have built in 1947 their synagogue beside their neighborhood.

When the Israelite Samaritans established their second center outside of Nablus, in Holon, Israel in 1955, they built their first synagogue in the State of Israel in the years 1959-1963 in the outside of their neighborhood in Holon. Later on due to the limited space of their neighborhood in Holon they forced to expand their neighborhood to build the new houses on three sides of the synagogue's yard.

Also when they built their common synagogue on Mount Gerizim in 1964 for the entire community, Holon and Nablus communities together, they built the synagogue outside the Kiriat Luza neighborhood. Since then the neighborhood developed and became very close to the synagogue due the limited place of living.
3- Style of decoration – The third factor that distinguished in the old times between Jewish to
Samaritan synagogue was the style of the inside decoration of the synagogue, specially the decoration of the ground mosaic of the synagogue. Very influenced by pagan symbols the Jews never hesitated to adopt pagan symbols in their mosaic of their synagogues: the Zodiac, heads of impure animals like lions and tigers, pagan symbols, etc.
The mosaic of Samaritan synagogues even in the most complicated ones in all of then was pure of pagan symbols. The Israelite Samaritan artists were careful to concentrate only in symbols mentioned in the Torah: The Tabernacle utensils forms mainly the Menorah, Shofar, trumpets, heads of pure animals and birds like sheep, goats and doves. In this regard there is the factor that up the ground the inside of the Samaritan synagogue looked so simple and modest.


In general Samaritan synagogues were built much earlier to the Jewish ones since till the year 70 CE the Jews still had their temple in Jerusalem, while in fact the Israelite Samaritans had not a central temple when they considered the Temple of Moses as the only true temple ever made. The oldest testimonies we have from Samaritan sources about prayers at synagogues and style of singing of the poems and hymns are of the Hellenistic period.

Before then they surely gathered in public yards to pay their prayers as they did each year on Mount Gerizim in Passover and pilgrimages.

By Benyamim Tsedaka.
Pictures: Ancient and Modern Israelite Synagogues and Mosaic

Samaritan Manuscript

This is the Hebrew Version of the Stories of Balam, the war with Median and the land occupation by Joshua and the later stories till the fourth Century A.D. Composed by the Samaritan sages of late 19Th century, Specially for foreign scholars and seekers of the history of the Bible and the Samaritans. There are many copies of it.  This copy was copied by the priest Abisha b. Phinas in the year 1326 Hijra [Moslim Calendar] 1909 C.E.. Probably by its original owner that dedicated it to his family, presumed, in 1212, three years after his visit to Nablus. The copyists did it in less than 24 hours to sell it quickly to make money and save themselves from hunger. Attached are couple photos, approx. 200 pages of full page were hand written in the book.


This is the inscription from the purchaser to his friend. The names are difficult to make out. Appears to have a date of Oc. 22, 1912 and it may have been Philadelphia.



Samaritan Exegesis: A Compilation Of Writings From The Samaritans 

Amram son of Isaac , Jacob son of Aaron , Abdallah ben Kori 

 March 15, 2013

This paperback book is a compilation of writings from two Samaritan High Priests of the early 20th century. Both works layout the doctrine of the Samaritans with detailed explanations from the Torah. Mount Gerizim: The One True Sanctuary The Samaritans hold to the belief that Mount Gerizim is the sacred place which their worship and pilgrimage is to be directed to the rejection of the Jebusite mount of Jerusalem. Mount Gerizim plays a prominent role in the lives of the Patriarchs: Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; is the place described in the Torah as the Mountain of Blessing; and was part of the inheritance of Jacob’s favored son Joseph. Samaritan High Priest Amram son of Isaac lays out their claim that it is “The One True Sanctuary.” (Originally published in the early 1900’s) The Book Of Enlightenment For The Instruction Of The Inquirer Samaritan High Priest Jacob son of Aaron set out to answer twenty-five questions most frequently asked of him by outsiders as well as of those among his own community. He also set forth two arguments for his opponents - the Jews - which show the distance in doctrine between these two Israelite sects. (Originally published in 1913)

You can find these articles at the Samaritan Update resources for free.




Meeting in Paradise – Lecture by Abisha b. Phinhas

Ben Sedaka to Steven Dunn,
Steven Dunn: And I hope our friendship is a long one.
Ben Sedaka: Even in next world too

Steven Dunn: Not sure what lies in the afterlife but hopefully we get the opportunity to meet.
Ben Sedaka: Then meet me please in Cafe Angels in the corner of Abraham and Moses main roads. 
An electronic chariot will wait to pick you up for our meeting from 10024 Joshua St. in the year 2062, 17Th of the Third Month 15:00 PM Paradise time. I have ordered for a jar of Manna as a starter, Ambrosia as main course and juicy nectar as desert. 
Bring with you your great great grandfather, my grandfathers and grandmothers and Mom and Pap like to attend too. 
I heard it will be a fascinating lecture by our Rabban Abisha b. Yusef about how successfully the great priest of his time on earth [14Th century AD Earth time] Abed Ela b. Shalma [will be present too] edited his poems. 
Don't bother, my excellent camera and sensitive recorder always with me. 
Will be nice to me to write an article about the lecture subject for my magazine "A.B. - Next World Good News".
Don't be late. The lecturer is going to sing on of his short poems before the lecture.
Best Regards from Miraim my wife that looks like a queen again after the last diet. She likes red roses.

Productive Persons Tower
33422 Baba Rabba Avenue
Apt. 546782


The First English Translation of the Israelite Samaritan Version of the Pentateuch is published in April 2013, by Eerdmans Publishing House, Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA. The version is translated, edited and authored by Benyamim Tsedaka with the help of co-editor, Ms. Sharon J. Sullivan. 

Three leading scholars wrote introductions to the book: Professor James Charlsworth of Princeton University, USA; Professor Emanuel Tov of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and Professor Steven Fine of Yeshiva University in New York City. The translator and Editor of the book, Benyamim Tsedaka wrote a comprehensive introduction about the book and its editing. 

On the back cover of the book there are endorsements by Professor Martin Abegg from Canada, Reinhard Pummer from Canada Haseeb Shehadeh from Finland, Etiene Nodet from Jerusalem, Terry Giles and Robert Anderson from USA.

In the 560 pages of the book the Samaritan Torah, an English translation, and the accepted English translation of the traditional Jewish traditional (Masoretic) version are presented in parallel columns emphasizing the 3000 significant differences between the two versions. In the left margin are Benyamim’s explanations for the most prominent differences, based on the Israelite Samaritan wisdom. All names in the Torah are given in the original Hebrew pronunciation, and all are listed in an appendix. Two other appendices show how close the Samaritan Pentateuch is to the Translation of the Seventy [LXX], and to some of the Dead Sea Scrolls [DSS].

On 27 November 2012, in the Theological Seminary in Princeton, NJ, USA, after an introduction by Professor Charlesworth, Benyamim Tsedaka led a seminar on the importance of the Israelite Samaritan Version of the Pentateuch. Scholars and advanced students of Princeton University Theological Research Department attended, along with other interested individuals. Princeton's Theological Seminary was an appropriate venue, having a strong reputation in Biblical Research. At this special event the first pre-publication copies of Benyamim’s long-awaited book were presented, to the delight of Benyamim and Professor Charlesworth.

On November 24, 2013, 9-11AM in the conference of SBL [Society of Biblical Literature] in Baltimore will take place a panel on this subject by four experts: Prof. Emanuel Tov, Peof. Terry Giles, Prof. Stefan Schorch and Benyamim Tsedaka. The panel will be followed by discussion with the public.

For the past two years this significant theological work has been available online for pre-sale at and - Following publication, an electronic e-book edition and translations to other languages are planned.

The book is in the market since April 2013. Now it is easy to order it in and 3 days delivery within USA and Canada, 14 days other countries.

To All who have the first edition [2013] of my book The Israelite Samaritan Version of the Torah

I am grateful to my nephew Be‘eri [Bury] Tsedaka who forwarded me to a mistake in my translation that not showing exactly the correct translation due to the Israelite Samaritan tradition:

The verb and the source RGZ= 
רגז appears 5 times in the Torah: Gen. 45:24; Ex. 15:14; Nu. 21:20+; Deut. 2:25, 28:65. In all places its original significance due to the Israelite Samaritan commentary is ”Fear“ or ”Afraid“. Only in later periods and different language – The Samaritan dialect of the Aramaic, its significance has chaged to ”Anger“. 

Therefore in all places in the left side of my translation of the Torah shows the Israelite Samaritan text it should be read with the meanings: Fear or afraid. 

In three of the five places I have translated correctly and in the other two it should be corrected to the following translations:

Genesis, 45:24 – [No change]
Exodus 15:14: ”The nations have heard and they became afraid...“
Numbers, 21:20c – [No change]
Deuteronomy 2:25 – ”... they will be afraid and be in anguish...“
Deuteronomy 28:65 – [No change].

The publisher has asked me to give him full list of the corrections of typing or meaningful mistakes fell in the first edition of my translation [2013] to be prepared before the publishing of the second edition soon.

I beg your pardon.
Benyamim Tsedaka



Table Ronde in Paris, 1985


Rothschild, Jean-Pierre and Guy Dominique Sixdenier, eds. Études samaritaines. Pentateuque et Targum, exégèse et mphasize, chroniques. Actes de la table ronde: “Les manuscrits samaritains. Problèmes et méthodes“ (Paris, Institut de Recherche et d‘Histoire des Textes, 7-9 octobre 1985). Collection de la Revue des Études Juives, 6. Louvain-Paris: E. Peeters, 1988

[Although in effect the first conference on Samaritanism, it was not counted as a congress]


Congresses of the SES

1. Tel Aviv: April 11-13, 1988

2. Oxford: August 6-10, 1990

3. Paris: 1992

4. Milan: July 8-12, 1996

5. Helsinki: August 1-4, 2000

6. Haifa: July 5-8, 2004

7. Pápa: July 17-25, 2008

8. Erfurt: July 15-20, 2012



Tal, Abraham and Moshe Florentin, eds. Proceedings of the First International Congress of the Société d’Études Samaritaines, Tel Aviv, April 11-13, 1988. Tel Aviv: Chaim Rosenberg School for Jewish Studies, Tel Aviv University, 1991

Crown, Alan David and Lucy Davey, eds. New Samaritan Studies of the Société d’Études Samaritaines. Vols. III and IV: Essays in Honour of G.D. Sixdenier. Studies in Judaica, 5. Sydney: Mandelbaum Publishing, 1996

[Proceedings of the 2nd Congress in Oxford 1990, Yarnton Manor, and the 3rd  Congress in Paris 1992, Collège de France]

Morabito, Vittorio, Alan D. Crown, and Lucy Davey, eds. Samaritan Researches Volume V. Mandelbaum Studies in Judaica, 10. Sydney: Mandelbaum Publishing, 2000

[Proceedings of the 4th Congress held in Milan, July 8-12, 1996]

Shehadeh, Haseeb and Habib Tawa, eds., with the collaboration of Reinhard Pummer. Proceedings of the Fifth International Congress of the Société d’Études Samaritaines, Helsinki, August 1-4, 2000: Studies in Memory of Ferdinand Dexinger. Paris: Librairie Orientaliste Paul Geuthner, 2005

Mor, Menachem and Friedrich V. Reiterer, eds. Samaritans: Past and Present: Current Studies. Studia Judaica, 53; Studia Samaritana, 5. Berlin; New York: De Gruyter, 2010

[Proceedings of the 6th Congress held in Haifa, July 2004 and of the sessions on Samaritans at the International Meeting of SBL in Vienna, 2007]

Zsengellér, József, ed. Samaria, Samarians, Samaritans: Studies on Bible, History and Linguistics. Studia Judaica, 66; Studia Samaritana, 6. Berlin; New York: De Gruyter, 2011

[Proceedings of the 7th Congress held in Pápa, Hungary, 2008]



Family History Note: On the Samaritan Diaspora in Croatia

by Jacob Christopher-Lee Moak (Notes)

Our family has strong ancestral ties to Hrvatska (Croatia), having descent from two separate Dalmatian families on my mother’s side. At least one of these two lines has a connection to the ancient Samaritan diaspora that was scattered around the Adriatic during the 2nd to the 6th century A.D. Nearly all of the Samaritans who remained in the region converted to Christianity, whether by force or by choice, and married into the local population. They ultimately shed their Samaritan identity and assimilated into the general Hrvat population of Dalmatia. 

Evidence of Samaritans around the Adriatic comes mainly from synagogue remains and inscriptions, Roman records, and epitaphs. Most of the Samaritan diaspora in ancient Dalmatia was concentrated in Salona, where they had migrated from either Roma, Thessalonica, or Delos–three of the main hubs of Samaritan activity outside of the Holy Land. The most well-known and documented pieces of evidence for a Samaritan presence in Salona (Dalmatia) is the epitaph of a Samaritan woman who lived there, which dates to the year A.D. 539. Her epitaph is written in Greek; the main part of it reads as follows:

(Original GreekJ

ἐνθάδε κῖτε Σαμαρείτισσα...ἀπὸ κώμης Πιτο...θυγάτ...τελευ...ἐν εἰρήν...θεοῦ πρὸ δεκαπέντε καλενδῶν Σεπτεμβρίων ζήσασα καλῶς ἔτη εἴκοσι καὶ ἑπτὰ ὑπ(ατίας) Ἀππίωνος τοῦ λαμπροτάτου ἰνδικτιῶνος β

(My Transliteration
“enthade kite samareitissa...apo komes Pito...thugat...teleu...en eiren theou pro dekapente kalendon Septembrion zesasa kalos ete eikosi kai epta up(atias) Appionos tou lamprotatou indiktionos B”

(My English translation
“Here lies a Samaritan (woman) from village of Pito, daughter (of)...died in peace (of/from) God before fifteen calends September..lived well...year twenty and seven, by (the authority) of Appionos of the brightness (of) indiction B”

Deuteronomy 30:1-10 is clear that God promises to restore us and regather us, even from the ends of the earth (such as Indonesia, where my family is currently located). Our Hebrew blood may be diluted, but it hasn’t disappeared. It runs through our veins even now. And so, we await the Taheb (Restorer), to come and restore all things. 



Lot 24: Hebrew manuscript.- Samaritan Pentateuch, scroll,

Printed Books, Manuscripts, Ephemera and Original Artwork

by Bloomsbury Auctions   SOLD

June 12, 2013- London, United Kingdom – Auction


Realized Price: £400 Verified

Estimated Price: £500 - £700

Description: Hebrew manuscript.- Samaritan Pentateuch, scroll, on 31 joined paper sheets, in Samaritan script, 120 columns, c. 80 lines, outer end little frayed, little spotting, c. 42 x 1690 cm., [19th century].






The Samaritan keyboard for OS X 10.* is something I produced for my own research using the excellent free software package Ukelele. As Samaritan Elder Sameer Yousef Sarrawi demonstrates below, there is already excellent support for Samaritan writing on Windows:


The Dynamics of Coexistence in the Middle East: Negotiating Boundaries Between Christians, Muslims, Jews and Samaritans in Palestine (Library of Modern Middle East Studies)      Julia Droeber (Author) About the Author

Julia Droeber is a social anthropologist at An-Najah University in Nablus, Palestine. She is the author of Dreaming of Change: Young Middle Class Women and Social Transformation in Jordan and has taught at universities in the UK, Germany, Kyrgyzstan, and Jordan.

Book Description

 November 26, 2013  1780765274  978-1780765273

Palestine is often viewed, from afar, through the frame of insurmountable difference and violent conflict along religious and ethnic lines. Julia Droeber looks beyond this, as she draws out the way in which sameness and difference is constructed and dealt with in the day to day relationships and practices of different religious communities in the West Bank town of Nablus. She follows the reality of coexistence and the constant negotiation of boundaries between Christians, Muslims and one of the last remaining Samaritan communities worldwide, and how these relationships are complicated by an occupier perceived as ‘Jewish’. 
This is a sensitive and nuanced study of cultural and religious space in a much-contested region. It illustrates how differences are reconciled, accommodated and emphasized, while existing alongside a common sense of belonging. Droeber’s findings resonate beyond the town of Nablus, and the West Bank, and into the broader fields of Middle East Studies, Anthropology, Comparative Religion and Peace and Conflict Resolution Studies.


Tel Baruch Samaritan burial site

 Samaritan Burial Site Tel Aviv-Yafo

Also known as Afeka caves.

Located south of Ramat Aviv Gimel neighborhood and next to the Ayalon Highway, this Samaritan cemetery was used in the 4-5 centuries C.E. The burials stopped here after the failed Samaritan Rebellion in 529 C.E.



The Other Torah, A new English translation of the Samaritan Torah offers scholars a different version of the sacred text

By Chavie Lieber May 14, 2013

While Jews study a number of religious books—from the Talmud to the Shulchan Aruch—the text that provides the religion’s very foundation is the Torah. And the version of the Torah most commonly studied by Jews is known as the Masoretic text, the most authoritative Hebrew version of the Torah.

But it is not the only one.

A small, ancient sect known as the Samaritans rely on the Torah, and the Torah alone, as their sole religious text—and the Samaritans use a somewhat different version. Two weeks ago, the first English translation of this Hebrew text was published by Samaritan historian and scholar Binyamin Tsedaka: The Israelite Samaritan Version of the Torah. There are some 6,000 instances where this version of the Torah differs from the Masoretic text; the question for scholars is which version is more complete, or more accurate.

As an ancient Semitic people, the Samaritans abide by a literal version of Torah law. 

Continued :


From the Editor

In the last issue of the Samaritan Update, I had promised to add the archives the booklet, The Joseph Cycle (Genesis 37-45) in the Samaritan-Arabic Commentary of Meshalma ibn Murjan, edited and Translated by Gladys Levine Rosen. While attempting to do this with what resources I have at my disposal, I am having difficulty of achieving a good image to display from the 1951 typewritten work, so please bear with me while I try to resolve the problem.

Concerning the recent publication of the The Israelite Samaritan Version of the Torah, I was stuck with owe concerning Genesis 2:18, where as it says in the Samaritan, “I will make him a helper, suitable for him.” The Jewish version has, “I will make him a help meet for him.” I never noticed the words, ‘help meet’ before but low and behold it is in other Jewish versions as well. I cannot understand why they translated the Hebrew word to English, that is of course, the word meet? I always thought it should have been helpmate. But I guess the word meet is a Verb, meaning, come into the presence or company of (someone) by chance or arrangement.

Well, Benyamim Tsedaka has given us his rough dates on his overseas trips.

First, In July 7-11 he will be lecturing at the SBL conference in St. Andrews, Scotland concerning the story of Moses and his Wife from the Samaritan perspective.

In July 28-August 2, he will be with the Israelite-Samaritan Choir to a festival of Coral Music in Girona, Spain.

His next Europe-USA annual tour, starts in Europe in Oct. 27 till Nov. 14 [Austria, Germany and England] and continued in Nov. 14 to USA till December that divides as follows:
November 14-30 : East Coast [New York, Boston, New Town/Connecticut, Washington D.C., Baltimore]
December 1-15: Mideast, [Cincinnati, Florida]
Dec. 15-26: Midwest, Northeast [ Vegas, Dallas, SF, Seattle].
Any of my friend who likes to host a lecture about the Israelite Samaritans and their culture is welcomed to be in touch with me through my address:


Future Lectures

2013 INTERNATIONAL MEETING- St. Andrews, Scotland- July 7-11, 2013


2013 ANNUAL MEETING- Baltimore, MD Nov. 23-26, 2013


Leipzig 2013 Programme (Aug. 2, 2013)

If you find any mistake, please contact the Information Officer. Early Afternoon Sessions (1:00-3:45 PM) Session 3.6

Samaritan Studies

Room: Colorado I

Thomas L. Thompson (University of Copenhagen, emeritus) Chair

·         Viktor Rebrik, Entsprechungen zwischen der Samaritanischen Tora und der Septuaginta im Buche Leviticus (Sankt-Petersburg) – 25 min. [Abstract]

·         Ingrid Hjelm, Portraits of Moses in the Samaritan Pentateuch and the fourth century Samaritan Midrash Memar (M.M.) or Tibat Marqah (T.M.) (University of Copenhagen) – 25 min. [Abstract]

Break 15 min.

·          Joshua Abdallah Sabih, The figure of the villain Samaritan in the Qur´an Q. 20:87-99 (University of Copenhagen) – 25 min. [Abstract]

·         Haroutun Jamkochian (Institute of Oriental Studies, Armenia), St. Peterburg Fragments Of the Continuatio of the Samaritan Chronicle of Abu l-Fath al-Samiri al -Danafi  (to be read by Ingrid Hjelm) – 25 min. [Abstract]


The Xth Congress of the EAJS will take place in Paris, on 20-24 July 2014.

Individual applications and panel proposals in all fields of Jewish Studies are welcome.

The keynote theme of the Xth Congress is: "Jewish and Non-Jewish Cultures in Contact: New Research Perspectives"

Invitation and call for papers:

Material Philology and the Dead Sea Scrolls: New Approaches for New Text Editions

April 3-5, 2014, University of Copenhagen, Denmark



Past, in case you missed it

Seminar English - Halle-Tel Aviv Research Seminary in Ancient Hebrew Language und Literature , Early Samarita, Jewish and Christian Texts 3.-7. Feb. 2013, Halle (Saale)


Loans of relevant antiquities for temporary display are welcome; the museum currently

has on loan from Mrs J. L’Amie a Samaritan Pentateuch…

The Weingreen Museum of Biblical Antiquities is located in the Arts and Social Sciences Building, in Trinity College, Dublin



Genetics, Jewish studies cross-fertilize at Stanford

By SAM SOKOL 03/07/2013

Course combining two fields touches on dating practices, Jewish disease treatment and assisted reproduction.

European women marry, give hope to Samaritans

DALIA NAMMARI | March 17, 2013 | 

MOUNT GERIZIM, West Bank — The Samaritans, a rapidly dwindling sect dating to biblical times, have opened their insular community to brides imported from eastern Europe in a desperate quest to preserve their ancient culture.


Israeli, Palestinian politics blamed for neglect of Holy Land archaeological site Sebastia

By The Associated Press


parshablog, by Achrei Mos:




The Samaritan Update


‘Swiss Treasures’ exhibition closes Dec. 14

Posted on  by Special Collections Research Center

Liber Psalmorum, Medieval Bible in Latin and German, ca. 1200. Courtesy of Martin Bodmer Foundation in Cologny (Geneva)

Situated in the heart of Europe, Switzerland has long been a center for Biblical studies and transformative contributions to Judeo-Christian culture. The exhibition Swiss Treasures: From Biblical Papyrus and Parchment to Erasmus, Zwingli, Calvin, and Barth explores the importance of Swiss religious influences across a range of traditions and historical personalities. Papyri, parchments, first editions, early printings, and modern manuscripts represent treasures in Swiss institutions that link these and other religious thinkers to the philosophical, theological, and political movements that have shaped the modern world.

The rare historical treasures on display from September 21 to December 14 in the Special Collections Research Center Exhibition Gallery have been gathered from seven distinguished Swiss archives and libraries: Basel University Library (Basel), State and University Library (Fribourg), Abbey Library of St. Gall (St. Gall), Central Library (Zurich), the Martin Bodmer Foundation (Cologny), Karl Barth Archive (Basel), and Library of Geneva (Geneva). The exhibition also displays a rare volume from the Special Collections Research Center of the University of Chicago Library.   

Among the manuscripts shown in the exhibition are texts of the Psalms from the Epistle of Jude (fourth century); fragments of the world’s oldest Vulgate version of the Gospels (fifth century); and leaves from one of the few remaining examples of a Samaritan Pentateuch (ca. 1495-96).



Articles from the Past

Ancient Samaritan Ritual Of Passover Is Observed .

by Wilton Wynn, Meriden Journal - Apr 11, 1960

Priest Amran Ishak stands on a boulder atop the sacred Mount Gerizim chanting the He brew scriptures The sun sinks behind him as ...


Israeli Soldiers Find Old Mosaics

Newburgh News - Oct 27, 1949

Sukenik depicted two candelabras flanking Mt. Gerizim. It was this mosaic that identified the synagogue as Samaritan. The Samaritans, who claim to be ...


Books for sale


British Museum. Department of Oriental Printed Books and Manuscripts. Publisher: London : Trustees of the British Museum, Author: G. Margoliouth; Jacob Leveen; 1965.

Vol. 4 edited by J. Leveen.

Vol. 1-3 reprint of 1899-1915 ed.

            4 volumes : facsimiles ; 29 cm


924 Berlin Samaritan Torah, edited by Haim Heller, beautiful copy, looking for $65 + shipping


Contact: Mizrahi Book Store
  3114 Quentin Rd
  Brooklyn NY 11234

 Antique, used, rare & out of print Jewish Books   


Introductio in Librum Talmudicum De Samaritanis In Hebrew

This book is an introduction to Tractate Kutim – the Talmudic book dealing with Jewish Laws concerning the Samaritans. This is a reprint of the original.

By Raphael Kirchheim. He was a scholar who resided in Frankfurt am Main. He worked as a ritiual slaughterer (shochet) for Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch’s community (IRG) but then he joined the reform movement. Printed in Jerusalem in 1977 by the Magnes Press.



“Vestiges of Karaite translations in the Arabic translation(s) of the Samaritan Pentateuch: Fact or Fiction?” by Gregor Schwarb, INTELLECTUAL HISTORY OF THE ISLAMICATE WORLD

Volume One (2012) “Bible in Arabic among Jews, Christians and Muslims” Edited by Camilla Adang, Meira Polliack, Sabine Schmidtke


Journal of Biblical Literature, 2012, Volume 131, No. 3

“Judah Comes to Shiloh: Genesis 49”10ba, One more Time,” by Serge Frolov, Southern Methodist University, Dallas, TX, pp. 417- 422.

“The Four Moses Death Accounts” by Philip Y. Yoo -University of Oxford, Oxford OX1 3LD, United Kingdom, pp. 423- 441.

Journal of Biblical Literature, 2011, Volume 130, No. 2

“Differentiation in Genesis 1: An Exegetical Creation ex nihilo, by Richard Neville, Laidlaw College, Papanui, New Zealand, pp. 209-226




The Construction of Samari (t) an Identity from the Inside and from the Outside

S Schorch - Between Cooperation and Hostility: Multiple Identities …, 2013 -

... 1. From Samarians to Samaritans Samaritan identity as opposed to a general Jewish identity
is characterized by especially and at least the following three points: —The veneration of Mount
Gerizim as the central place of worship. —The use of a distinctive version of the Torah. 


COUSIN MARRIAGE IN SOUTH-WESTERN ENGLAND IN THE NINETEENTH CENTURY C Day, M Smith - Journal of biosocial science, 2013 - Cambridge Univ Press

... The same phenomenon has been observed in 'classic' genetic isolates, such as the Amish
(Khoury et al., 1987), the 
Samaritans (Bonné-Tamir, 1980) and in Tristan da Cunha (Roberts,
... Bonné-Tamir, B. (1980) The Samaritans: a living ancient isolate. ...

[PDF] Tylor vs. Westermarck: Explaining the Incest Taboo

GC Leavitt - Sociology, 2013 -

... About 85 percent of all Samaritan marriages are to first or second cousins. Not only does the
Samaritans si- tuation challenge the notion that close inbreeding is detrimental, but it also disputes
Westermarck's hypothesis that children raised together trigger an inherent 


When the Past becomes the Present

NP Lemche - Scandinavian Journal of the Old Testament, 2013 - Taylor & Francis

... Recent studies of the schism between Jerusalem and Gerizim have caused the history of the
Samaritan conflict to be rewritten. Brought up with the idea that the Samaritans deliberately
broke with Jerusalem, recent schol- arship has pointed out that it is more likely that 


[PDF] Some Historiographical Remarks on Medieval and Early-Modern Scholarship of Biblical Versions in Arabic: A Status Quo

R Vollandt - 2013 -

... Among the first group we find Saadia for the Jews, an unspecified Samaritan scholar (probably
Abu Saʿīd b. Abī l-Ḥusayn b. Abī Saʿīd, 13th cent., Egypt), al-Ḥārith b. Sinān (active before 956 
Finally, for the 
Samaritans, he mentions Sadaqa b. Munajjā al-Mutaṭabbib (d. 1223). ...


(PDF) “Bi-Directional Forced Deportations in the Neo-Assyrian Empire and the Origins of the Samaritans: Colonialism and Hybridty,” by Yigal Levin, Bar-Ilan University, Archaeological Review from Cambridge, 2013, pp. 217-240


Inference of human continental origin and admixture proportions using a highly discriminative ancestry informative 41-SNP panel

Caroline M Nievergelt, Adam X Maihofer, Tatyana Shekhtman, Ondrej Libiger, Xudong Wang, Kenneth K Kidd and Judith R Kidd


Before the God in this Place for Good Remembrance: A Comparative Analysis of the Aramaic Votive Inscriptions from Mount Gerizim

AKH Gudme - 2013 -

... this Place for Good Remembrance : A Comparative Analysis of the Aramaic Votive Inscriptions
from Mount 
Gerizim. Authors. Gudme, Anne Katrine de Hemmer Københavns Universitet,. Faculty
of Theology,. Afdelinger,. Department of Biblical Exegesis. Host publication information 




Frank Moore Cross 1921-2012

His work in the textual criticism of the Hebrew Bible, informed by his work on the biblical manuscripts found among the Dead Sea Scrolls, resulted in his theory of “local texts,” in which he argued that the forerunners of the three main exemplars of the Hebrew Bible, i.e. the Masoretic Text, the Septuagint, and the Samaritan Pentateuch, developed from a common ancestor, but then evolved in different ways in geographic isolation from one another.

Although parts of this theory have been questioned, it is still very influential in the field of textual criticism today.


A rabbi’s legacy June 20, 2013

The sad news that Rabbi Herbert Weiner passed away recently came to my attention through the fine coverage in New Jersey Jewish News  (“A ‘powerful speaker, gracious teacher,’” June 13). Rabbi Weiner was among the original faculty of Seton Hall’s master’s program in Jewish-Christian Studies. He was invited by Msgr. John Oesterreicher to teach the course in Jewish mysticism. He collaborated with us for several years and he contributed an essay “On the Mystery of Eating” to the volume Standing Before God, edited by Rabbi Asher Finkel and me in 1981. It was appropriate that Rabbi Weiner and I met on Mount Gerizim for the Samaritan Passover in 1983. By Rev. Lawrence E. Frizzell
Director- Institute of Judaeo-Christian Studies- Seton Hall University - South Orange


The Samaritan Update is open to any articles that are relative to Samaritan Studies. Submit your work to the Editor. The Editor 

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Editor: Larry Rynearson. Contact: The Editor

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