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Gender Issues in Ancient and Reformation Translations of Genesis 1-4$
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Helen Kraus

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199600786

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199600786.001.0001

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Jerome and The Latin Vulgate

Jerome and The Latin Vulgate

(p.67) Chapter 4 Jerome and The Latin Vulgate
Gender Issues in Ancient and Reformation Translations of Genesis 1-4

Helen Kraus

Oxford University Press

Known as vir trilinguis (trilingual Hebrew, Greek and Latin), Jerome is the first sole translator in this study. A convert to Christianity, much of Jerome's early adulthood seems overshadowed by a libido not conquered by the solitary desert life. Seeking diversion, Jerome, already a skilled Greek linguist, began to learn Hebrew. Later, in Rome, under the auspices of Pope Damasus, he translated the Hebrew Bible into Latin. While in Rome, Jerome also became spiritual guide to a community of celibate women, with whom he eventually settled near Jerusalem. Origen's hexaplar edition is frequently cited by Jerome in the latter's Quaestiones Hebraicae in Genesim. Jerome's first woman is named virago and he is the first translator to distinguish between ‘woman’ (mulier) and ‘wife’ (uxor). His renderings are largely according to the Hebraica veritas but, interestingly, Jerome seems to offer no comment on gender issues where they occur in the text.

Keywords:   vir trilinguis, libido, desert life, Hebrew, Latin, celibacy, Origen, hexaplar, Quaestiones Hebraicae in Genesim, virago, Hebraica veritas

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