Definitions for dead sea scrolls

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Random House Webster's College Dictionary

Dead′ Sea′ Scrolls`(n.pl.)

  1. a number of leather, papyrus, and copper scrolls dating from c100 b .c . to a .d . 135, containing partial texts of Old Testament books and some non-Biblical scrolls, in Hebrew and Aramaic, and including apocryphal writings, commentaries, hymns, and psalms: found in caves near the Dead Sea beginning in 1947.

    Category: Archaeology

Princeton's WordNet

  1. Dead Sea scrolls(noun)

    (Old Testament) a collection of written scrolls (containing nearly all of the Old Testament) found in a cave near the Dead Sea in the late 1940s

    "the Dead Sea Scrolls provide information about Judaism and the Bible around the time of Jesus"

Freebase

  1. Dead Sea Scrolls

    The Dead Sea Scrolls are a collection of 972 texts discovered between 1946 and 1956 at Khirbet Qumran in the West Bank. They were found in caves about a mile inland from the northwest shore of the Dead Sea, from which they derive their name. The texts are of great historical, religious and linguistic significance because they include the earliest known surviving manuscripts of works later included in the Hebrew Bible canon, along with extra-biblical manuscripts which preserve evidence of the diversity of religious thought in late Second Temple Judaism. The texts are written in Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek, and Nabataean, mostly on parchment but with some written on papyrus and bronze. The manuscripts have been dated to various ranges between 408 BCE and 318 CE. Bronze coins found on the site form a series beginning with John Hyrcanus and continuing until the First Jewish-Roman War. The scrolls have traditionally been identified with the ancient Jewish sect called the Essenes, although some recent interpretations have challenged this association and argue that the scrolls were penned by priests in Jerusalem, Zadokites, or other unknown Jewish groups. The Dead Sea Scrolls are divided into three groups; copies of texts from the Hebrew Bible, which comprise roughly 40% of the identified scrolls, texts from the Second Temple Period like the Book of Enoch, Jubilees, the Book of Tobit, the Wisdom of Sirach, Psalms 152–155, etc., that ultimately were not canonized in the Hebrew Bible, which comprise approximately 30% of the identified scrolls, and sectarian manuscripts like the Community Rule, the War Scroll, the Pesher on Habakkuk and the The Rule of the Blessing, which comprise roughly 30% of the identified scrolls.

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