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Date of Award

10-1975

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Religion

Supervisor

A. Baumgarten

Co-Supervisor

B.F. Meyer

Abstract

The Song of Moses (Deut. 32:1-43) has been variously dated in the critical literature of the past 160 years. Scholars have proposed dates ranging from pre-monarchial Israel to the post-Exilic community. The effort of the present thesis is to present a critical review of the arguments on dating and, more important, to make a positive, concrete proposal for dating and, more important, to make a positive, concrete proposal for dating the Song. This proposal is based, first, on a new philological analysis; second, on the converging evidence of other analyses (genre, structure, style, and historical allusions). The conclusion is that the date of the Song's original composition is the late ninth century, B.C.

The sequence of treatment is as follows: a review of the history of research on dating; presentation of text and translation with supporting notes; philological analysis (including consideration of some stylistic as well as linguistic traits); analysis of rhetorical and strophic structure and so, finally, of the sense of the Song, in particular of those elements of the sense which are indicative of the date of composition.

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