The Hebrew Bible or Tanakh (//; Hebrew: תַּנַ״ךְ, pronounced [taˈnaχ] or [təˈnax]), is the canonical collection of Hebrew scriptures, including the Torah. These texts are almost exclusively in Biblical Hebrew, with a few passages in Biblical Aramaic (in the books of Daniel and Ezra, the verse Jeremiah 10:11, and some single words).
|Period||8th/7th centuries BCE – 2nd/1st centuries BCE|
|Hebrew Bible at Hebrew Wikisource|
|Old Testament (Christianity)|
The form of this text that is authoritative for Rabbinic Judaism is known as the Masoretic Text (MT) and consists of 24 books, and is sorted and numbered using perek and pasuk (Chapters and verses of the Bible). The contents of the Hebrew Bible is similar to the Protestant Christian Old Testament, in which the material is divided into 39 books and arranged in a different order. Catholic Bibles, Eastern / Greek Orthodox Bibles and Ethiopian Orthodox Bibles contain additional materials, derived from the Septuagint (texts translated into Koine Greek) and other sources.
In addition to the Masoretic Text, modern scholars seeking to understand the history of the Hebrew Bible use a range of sources. These include the Septuagint, the Syriac language Peshitta translation, the Samaritan Pentateuch, the Dead Sea Scrolls collection and quotations from rabbinic manuscripts. These sources may be older than the Masoretic Text in some cases and often differ from it. These differences have given rise to the theory that yet another text, an Urtext of the Hebrew Bible, once existed and is the source of the versions extant today. However, such an Urtext has never been found, and which of the three commonly known versions (Septuagint, Masoretic Text, Samaritan Pentateuch) is closest to the Urtext is debated.