Translations of Josephus

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ericbwonder
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Translations of Josephus

Post by ericbwonder » Tue Jan 24, 2017 5:52 pm

What are some of the best translations of Josephus's writings and whose translation does Kirby's site use for Josephus?

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DCHindley
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Re: Translations of Josephus

Post by DCHindley » Tue Jan 24, 2017 8:38 pm

ericbwonder wrote:What are some of the best translations of Josephus's writings and whose translation does Kirby's site use for Josephus?
Off hand I only know of

*William Whiston, who published his translations of Josephus' works waaaay back in 1737(!!!). I think that this would be the edition he would use because it is in the public domain.

*Loeb Classical Library translations (1926-1965). Library catalog references are very confused due to changes in editions at Loeb causing headaches for the poor librarians. I only own the original set, so this is the best I can make of it:
Book
Loeb Vol
Year
ISBN
Translator
9 v.
10 v.
13 v.
The Life and Against Apion 186 1926 0-674-99205-9 H. St John Thackeray 1 1 1
The Jewish War, Books I-III 203 1927 0-674-99223-7 H. St John Thackeray 2 2
The Jewish War, Books IV-VII 210 1928 0-674-99232-6 H. St John Thackeray 3 3
The Jewish War, Books I-II 203 0-674-99568-6 H. St John Thackeray 2
The Jewish War, Books III-IV 487 0-674-99536-8 H. St John Thackeray 3
The Jewish War, Books V-VII 210 0-674-99569-4 H. St John Thackeray 4
Jewish Antiquities, Books I-IV 242 1930 0-674-99267-9 H. St John Thackeray 4 4
Jewish Antiquities, Books V-VIII 281 1934 0-674-99310-1 H. St John Thackeray and Ralph Marcus 5 5
Jewish Antiquities, Books IX-XI 326 1937 0-674-99360-8 Ralph Marcus 6 6
Jewish Antiquities, Books XII-XIV 365 1943 0-674-99402-7 Ralph Marcus 7 7
Jewish Antiquities, Books XV-XVII 410 1963 0-674-99451-5 Ralph Marcus and Allen Wikgren 8 8
Jewish Antiquities, Books XVIII-XX 433 1965 0-434-99433-2 Louis H. Feldman 9
Jewish Antiquities, Books XVIII-XIX 433 0-674-99477-9 Louis H. Feldman 9
Jewish Antiquities, Book XX 456 0-674-99502-3 Louis H. Feldman 10
Jewish Antiquities, Books I-III 242 0-674-99575-9 H. St John Thackeray 5
Jewish Antiquities, Books IV-VI 490 0-674-99539-2 H. St John Thackeray and Ralph Marcus 6
Jewish Antiquities, Books VII-VIII 281 0-674-99576-7 H. St John Thackeray and Ralph Marcus 7
Jewish Antiquities, Books IX-XI 326 0-674-99360-8 Ralph Marcus 8
Jewish Antiquities, Books XII-XIII 365 0-674-99577-5 Ralph Marcus 9
Jewish Antiquities, Books XIV-XV 489 0-674-99538-4 Ralph Marcus 10
Jewish Antiquities, Books XVI-XVII 410 0-674-99578-3 Ralph Marcus and Allen Wikgren 11
Jewish Antiquities, Books XVIII-XIX 433 0-674-99477-9 Louis H. Feldman 12
Jewish Antiquities, Books XX 456 0-674-99502-3 Louis H. Feldman 13

*There may be other more recent translations about, at least of some of the books, like War, translated by G. A. Williamson, published as a Penguin book in 1959.

DCH

Edit 1/26/17: Found an error for the ISBN for volume 433 (older edition), and corrected. It appears to have a completely different series (0-434-) than all the other volumes (0-674-), and I got this number from several used book dealers, so I cannot vouch for the accuracy. There could be a corrupted index in a database out there. A lot of sites use the ISBN for the 433 volume that has Ant XVIII-IX for the one that originally had XVIII-XX, but they must be different. When all the problems with different editions are sorted out, I get a 9 Volume Series, a 10 Volume Series, and finally the 13 Volume Series now available. The Josephan books were arranged differently in many volumes as the changes were implemented, so make sure you check what you are ordering. When the 10 & 13 volume series were first introduced is a complete mystery to me, as no Loeb website or any other website I could find provides this, golly I would say critical, information. Why not? Inducement for libraries to buy new series to replace the old ones, I suppose.

Edit 2/19/17: Now that I have the original Loeb 9 volume set in my grubby little hands, I've updated the publication dates of the original series (changes in red) and removed publication dates for the re-ordered volumes, as they are mixed. The original series titles are now also in red.
Last edited by DCHindley on Sun Feb 19, 2017 12:45 pm, edited 6 times in total.

StephenGoranson
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Re: Translations of Josephus

Post by StephenGoranson » Wed Jan 25, 2017 1:29 am

There's also a series in progress, Flavius Josephus, Translation and Commentary (Brill, starting in 2000 and continuing), editor Steve Mason, with various translators, including Louis H. Feldman. Publisher page: Brill.nl
Some Loeb Classical Library volumes have been translated twice. Current volumes listed here:
http://www.hup.harvard.edu/results-list ... mit=Search
and all, past and present, in WorldCat.

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Re: Translations of Josephus

Post by DCHindley » Wed Jan 25, 2017 3:24 am

Hello Stephen,

Oh, I went to the site all right. The problem is that over the years, the content of some volumes has been rearranged and in some cases updated by Feldman and earlier editors. For instance, when first translated in 1927, volume 203 used to contain War books 1-3 and 210 had books 4-7. In 1965, when Feldman came into the picture, the War was changed from two volumes to three, and 203 was revised to only have books 1 & 2, 487 was dedicated to books 3-4, and 210 was revised to contain books 5-7.

I'm not sure the reason, but again in 1965 the order of the books of Antiquities was changed, and the series expanded to from 9 volumes to 10, with Ant book 20 & the Index moved from volume 433 to the newly created volume 456. Based on the numbering system used, this probably occurred shortly before the War volumes were expanded, so my dates may be messy, as they are really guesses.

Finally, we have their present lineup, instituted sometime in the 1980's (I think):

186 Life & Against Apion.
203 War bks 1-2
487 War bks 3-4
210 War bks 5-7
242 Ant bks 1-2
490 Ant bks 4-6
281 Ant bks 7-8
326 Ant bks 9-11
365 Ant bks 12-13
489 Ant bks 14-15
410 Ant bks 16-17
433 Ant bks 18-19
456 Ant bk 20 & Index

I don't think I found even one website that was up to date with the current editions, and what they did have were full of inconsistencies and outright errors, and referred to earlier lineups (9 vol & 10 vol series). Hey, it's been at least 18 years or so that the current lineup has been available, but if the amount of sheer confusion I encountered is any indication, I suppose it was too much trouble. However, it can perhaps lead someone to order the wrong volume, especially used, and find themselves missing some chapters when they open them up.

DCH

PS: That is a lot of books! If each one costs $20 (used, remaindered, etc.) then you'd have to shell out at least US $260, which is a lot for many of us out in the real work-a-day world. Most of us cannot trek to a university library whenever we have a question or want to research something. I do have the two 2 volume Loeb sets for Apostolic Fathers and Eusebius' Church History, but they didn't cost me $260!
StephenGoranson wrote:There's also a series in progress, Flavius Josephus, Translation and Commentary (Brill, starting in 2000 and continuing), editor Steve Mason, with various translators, including Louis H. Feldman. Publisher page: Brill.nl
Some Loeb Classical Library volumes have been translated twice. Current volumes listed here:
http://www.hup.harvard.edu/results-list ... mit=Search
and all, past and present, in WorldCat.
Last edited by DCHindley on Thu Jan 26, 2017 11:24 am, edited 4 times in total.

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spin
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Re: Translations of Josephus

Post by spin » Thu Jan 26, 2017 5:16 am

This search will bring up digital copies of the first seven of nine Loeb volumes of Josephus' works. Volumes 8 & 9 (Antiquities 15-20) don't seem to be available.
Dysexlia lures • ⅔ of what we see is behind our eyes

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DCHindley
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Re: Translations of Josephus

Post by DCHindley » Thu Jan 26, 2017 10:42 am

Rooted out an ISBN error and some formatting issues.

There were 3 series published over the years: a 9 volume series, a 10 volume series, and now the current 13 volume series.

I believe I have corrected an error in the ISBN of vol 433 as originally published.

The original post has been updated.

DCH

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Re: Translations of Josephus

Post by DCHindley » Tue Jan 31, 2017 4:22 am

After checking, it seems that Loeb puts translations into the public domain only after the death of the translator. While Marcus is deceased, Allen Wikgren (vol 8 of the 9 volume series) and Louis H Feldman (volume 9 of the 9 volume series) are not, so this is why no copy is to be found.

Thank you spin for the link above to the first 7 volumes that are now in the public domain. I have downloaded them.

I was thinking of just ordering volume 8 & 9 (of the 9 vol series) from used book sellers, but then I found a source in the Netherlands which had a full set of the 9 volume series for EU 125, so I bit. With a hefty EU 24 shipping charge I shelled out US $164. For some reason I like to have a printed set of books, as the Greek never scans properly anyways, so all I really get with online PDF files is the translation.

Now, if I could only find a way to get Tesseract to scan ancient Greek, accents and all, correctly. There is a terribly large file that is available to allow this, at least with certain fonts, but the process seems unusually complicated with lots of unexplained technical talk. I'll have to look at this again, as I do have a few public domain Greek texts that I'd like to scan (the Hermetica mainly, but other texts are on my radar).

Maybe I'm a sucker, but I had wanted a full set since I started to become interested in serious biblical and early Christian studies around 1990.

DCH

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Re: Translations of Josephus

Post by ficino » Thu Feb 02, 2017 3:01 am

Many universities and some learned societies provide access to digitized volumes of the entire Loeb Classics series. You have to have access through the institution, though.

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Re: Translations of Josephus

Post by jbejon » Thu Feb 09, 2017 1:47 pm

Perhaps too late to be useful as a response, but I've personally found Whiston's translation to be preferable to the LOEB editions. It's a bit more literal, which makes it a bit more clunky, but it captures some important details which, if I recall correctly, are sometimes glossed over in the LOEB edition. The LOEB edition, however, has useful references to relevant papers etc. in the footnotes, particularly in the case of chronological info.

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Re: Translations of Josephus

Post by DCHindley » Thu Feb 09, 2017 10:54 pm

jbejon wrote:Perhaps too late to be useful as a response, but I've personally found Whiston's translation to be preferable to the LOEB editions. It's a bit more literal, which makes it a bit more clunky, but it captures some important details which, if I recall correctly, are sometimes glossed over in the LOEB edition. The LOEB edition, however, has useful references to relevant papers etc. in the footnotes, particularly in the case of chronological info.
Loeb translations sometimes seem to be paraphrases and there is a lot of compaction of the narrative to remove the redundant phrases that are characteristic of Semitic thinking. But in other cases you can see the eisegesis. My favorite example is something that I noticed when researching Augustus Maximin Daia's publication of Pilate's purported "Acta" (personal diary) about Jesus (circa 305+ CE).

The Loeb translation of a passage from Eusebius speaks of "the crime of the Savior's passion" (tr. by Kirsopp Lake) where the translation of the same passage in the Nicene and Post Nicene series 2 vol 1 (tr. by Arthur Cushman McGiffert) has "the passion of the Saviour". The word in question is πάθος (pathos), which LSJ lexicon defines as "that which happens to a person or thing." Where is "crime" in that? About as close one comes to that might be "unfortunate incident, accident".

As for Whiston's translation of Josephus, I recently compared passages in it related to the patriarchs from Adam to Jacob with those in Thackeray's Loeb translation. It will be posted on a new thread once I determine their relevance to Whiston's descriptions of the ages of these figures between Josephus; Lxx & Masoretic & Samaritan Pentateuch; and Jubilees.

Something may get posted this weekend, but I return to work Monday Feb. 13 and time will be more limited.

Here is a sample:

Niece's Greek Text
Whiston's translation
Thackeray's Loeb translation
Ant 1.80 Συνέβη δὲ τοῦτο τὸ πάθος κατὰ τὸ ἑξακοσιοστὸν ἔτος ἤδη Νώχου τῆς ἀρχῆς ἐν μηνὶ δευτέρῳ Δίῳ μὲν ὑπὸ Μακεδόνων λεγομένῳ, Μαρσουάνῃ δ᾽ ὑπὸ Ἑβραίων˙ οὕτω γὰρ ἐν Αἰγύπτῳ τὸν ἐνιαυτὸν ἦσαν διατεταχότες Ant 1.80 This calamity happened in the six hundredth year of Noah's government [age], in the second month, {d} called by the Macedonians Dios, but by the Hebrews Marchesuan; for so did they order their year in Egypt; [37] [1.80] (I.III.3) This catastrophe [of the flood, Gen 7.11] happened in the six hundredth year of Noah’s rulership, in what was once the second month, called by the Macedonians Dius and by the Hebrews Marsuan, according to the arrangement of the calendar which they followed in Egypt.
81 Μωυσῆς δὲ τὸν Νισᾶν, ὅς ἐστι Ξανθικός, μῆνα πρῶτον ἐπὶ ταῖς ἑορταῖς ὥρισε κατὰ τοῦτον ἐξ Αἰγύπτου τοὺς Ἑβραίους προαγαγών˙ οὗτος δ᾽ αὐτῷ καὶ πρὸς ἁπάσας τὰς εἰς τὸ θεῖον τιμὰς ἦρχεν ἐπὶ μέντοι γε πράσεις καὶ ὠνὰς καὶ τὴν ἄλλην διοίκησιν τὸν πρῶτον κόσμον διεφύλαξε˙ τὴν δ᾽ ἐπομβρίαν ἄρξασθαί φησιν ἑβδόμῃ τοῦ προειρημένου μηνὸς καὶ εἰκάδι. 81 but Moses [in later times] appointed that Nisan [April], which is the same with Xanthikos, should be the first month for their festivals, because he brought them [i.e., the Hebrews] out of Egypt in that month: so that this month began the year as to all the solemnities they observed to the honour of God, although he preserved the original order of the months as to selling and buying, and other ordinary affairs. Now he says that this flood began on the twenty-seventh day [Hebrew says "seventeenth" day] of the before mentioned month; [1.81] Moses, however, [in later times] appointed Nisan, that is to say Xanthicus, [39] as the first month for the festivals, because it was in this month that he brought the Hebrews out of Egypt; he also reckoned this month as the commencement of the year for everything relating to divine worship, but for selling and buying and other ordinary affairs he preserved the ancient order. It was, he tells us, on the seven and twentieth c day [Hebrew says "seventeenth" day] of the said month that the deluge began.
82 χρόνος δὲ οὗτος ἀπὸ Ἀδάμου τοῦ πρώτου γεγονότος ἐτῶν ὑπῆρχε δισχιλίων διακοσίων ἑξηκονταδύο [two-thousand two-hundred sixty-two, with varient δισχιλίων ἑξακοσίων πεντηκονταέξ, two thousand six-hundred fifty-six, per SPL Lat.]. ἀναγέγραπται δὲ ὁ χρόνος ἐν ταῖς ἱεραῖς βίβλοις σημειουμένων μετὰ πολλῆς ἀκριβείας τῶν τότε καὶ τὰς γενέσεις τῶν ἐπιφανῶν ἀνδρῶν καὶ τὰς τελευτάς 82 and this was two thousand six hundred and fifty-six years [Niese has here two-thousand two-hundred sixty two, but Whiston follows the variant in SPL Lat.] from Adam, the first man; and the time is written down in our sacred books, those who then lived having noted down, with great accuracy, both the births and deaths of illustrious men. [1.82] The time of this event was 2262 years after the birth of Adam, the first man; the date is recorded in the sacred books, it being the custom of that age to note with [41] minute care the birth and death of the illustrious men.
83 Ἀδάμῳ μὲν τριακοστῷ ἤδη καὶ διακοσιοστῷ ἔτει γεγονότι παῖς Σῆθος γίνεται ὃς ἐνακόσια καὶ τριάκοντα ἔτη ἐβίωσε Σῆθος δὲ κατὰ πέμπτον καὶ διακοσιοστὸν ἔτος ἐγέννησεν Ἄνωσον ὃς πέντε ζήσας ἔτη καὶ ἐνακόσια Καϊνᾷ τῷ παιδὶ τὴν τῶν πραγμάτων ἐπιμέλειαν δίδωσι τεκνώσας αὐτὸν περὶ ἐνενηκοστὸν καὶ ἑκατοστὸν ἔτος οὗτος ἐβίωσεν ἔτη δώδεκα πρὸς τοῖς ἐνακοσίοις 83 For indeed Seth was born when Adam was in his two hundred and thirtieth year, who lived nine hundred and thirty years. Seth begat Enos in his two hundred and fifth year; who, when he had lived nine hundred and twelve years, delivered the government to Cainan his son, whom he had in his hundred and ninetieth year. He lived nine hundred and five years. [1.83] (I.III.4) For Adam was 230 years old when his son Seth was born and a lived (in all) 930 years. Seth at the age of 205 begat Anos, who when aged 905 years delivered the care of affairs to his son Cainas, whom he had begotten when he was about 190 years old; Seth lived in all 912 years.
84 Καϊνᾶς δὲ βιοὺς δέκα καὶ ἐνακόσια Μαλαῆλον υἱὸν ἔσχεν ἔτει γενόμενον ἑβδομηκοστῷ καὶ ἑκατοστῷ οὗτος ὁ Μαλαῆλος ζήσας πέντε καὶ ἐνενήκοντα καὶ ὀκτακόσια ἔτη ἐτελεύτησεν Ἰάρεδον καταλιπὼν υἱόν ὃν ἔτος πέμπτον ἑξηκοστὸν καὶ ἑκατοστὸν γενόμενος ἐγέννησε 84 Cainan, when he had lived nine hundred and ten years, had his son Mahalaleel, who was born in his hundred and seventieth year. This Mahalaleel, having lived eight hundred and ninety-five years, died, leaving his son Jared, whom he begat when he was in his hundred and sixty-fifth year. [1.84] Cainas lived 910 years and in his 170th year had a son Malael. This Malael died aged 895 years, leaving a son Jared, whom he begat at the age of 165.
85 τοῦτον εἰς ἐννέα [Niese, δύο, but BW edited to follow mss O & Lat. as did Thackeray] καὶ ἑξήκοντα πρὸς τοῖς ἐνακοσίοις βιώσαντα Ἄνωχος υἱὸς διαδέχεται γεννηθεὶς περὶ ἔτη δύο καὶ ἑξήκοντα καὶ ἑκατὸν τοῦ πατρὸς αὐτῷ τυγχάνοντος οὗτος ζήσας πέντε καὶ ἑξήκοντα πρὸς τοῖς τριακοσίοις ἀνεχώρησε πρὸς τὸ θεῖον ὅθεν οὐδὲ τελευτὴν αὐτοῦ ἀναγεγράφασι 85 He lived nine hundred and sixty-two years [following text of Niese, δύο]; and then his son Enoch succeeded him, who was born when his father was one hundred and sixty-two years old. Now he, when he had lived three hundred and sixty-five years, departed and went to God; where it is that they have not written down his death. [1.85] Jared lived 969 years [following the variant of mss. O & Lat.] and was succeeded by his son Anoch f born when his father was in his 162nd year; Anoch lived 365 years and then returned to the divinity, g whence it comes that there is no record in the chronicles of his death.
86 Μαθουσάλας δὲ Ἀνώχου παῖς κατὰ ἔτος αὐτῷ γεγονὼς πέμπτον καὶ ἑξηκοστὸν καὶ ἑκατοστὸν Λάμεχον υἱὸν ἔσχε περὶ ἔτη γεγονὼς ἑπτὰ καὶ ὀγδοήκοντα καὶ ἑκατόν ᾧ τὴν ἀρχὴν παρέδωκεν αὐτὸς αὐτὴν κατασχὼν ἐννέα καὶ ἑξήκοντα καὶ ἐνακοσίοις 86 Now Methuselah, the son of Enoch, who was born to him when he was one hundred and sixty-five years old, had Lamech for his son when he was one hundred and eighty-seven years of age; to whom he delivered the government, when he had retained it nine hundred and sixty-nine years. [1.86] Mathusalas h the son of Anoch was born when his father was 165, and at the age of 187 had a son Lamech, to whom he transmitted the rulership which he had held for 969 years.
87 Λάμεχος δὲ ἄρξας ἑπτὰ καὶ ἑπτακοσίοις ἔτεσι Νῶχον τῶν πραγμάτων ἀποδείκνυσι προστάτην υἱόν ὃς Λαμέχῳ γενόμενος ὄγδοον καὶ ὀγδοηκοστὸν καὶ ἑκατοστὸν ἔτος ἠνυκότι πεντήκοντα καὶ ἐνακοσίοις ἔτεσιν ἦρξε τῶν πραγμάτων 87 Now Lamech, when he had governed seven hundred and seventy-seven years [Whiston deviates from Niese's text here, which has seven hundred and seven years], appointed Noah, his son, to be ruler of the people, who was born to Lamech when he was one hundred and eighty-two years old [Whiston does not follow Niese's edition, which has one hundred and eighty eight], and retained the government nine hundred and fifty years. [1.87] Lamech bare rule for 707 years and put at the head of affairs his son Noah, who was born when his father was 188, and for 950 years held the reins of power.
88 ταῦτα συναγόμενα τὰ ἔτη τὸν προαναγεγραμμένον πληροῖ χρόνον ἐξεταζέτω δὲ μηδεὶς τὰς τελευτὰς τῶν ἀνδρῶν τοῖς γὰρ αὐτῶν παισὶ καὶ τοῖς ἐκείνων ἀπογόνοις παρεξέτεινον τὸν βίον ἀλλὰ τὰς γενέσεις αὐτῶν μόνον ὁράτω 88 These years collected together make up the sum before set down; but let no one inquire into the deaths of these men; for they extended their lives along together with their children and grandchildren; but let him have regard to their births only. [1.88] These years, [43] added together, give the total above mentioned. The reader should not examine the ages of the individuals at death, for their life-times extended into those of their sons and of their sons’ descendants, but should confine his attention to their dates of birth.

DCH

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