The Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Tov, Emanuel - Emeritus

Emanuel Tov 

Editor-in-Chief, Dead Sea Scrolls Publication Project
J. L. Magnes Professor of Bible, Dept. of Bible
Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem 91905, Israel

Born in 1941 in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, where he finished the classical gymnasium in 1959, Emanuel Tov emigrated to Israel in 1961. He began his academic studies at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, where he completed his B.A. degree in Bible and Greek literature in 1964, and his M.A. degree in Bible in 1967. He continued his studies at the Dept. of Near Eastern Languages and Literatures at Harvard University between 1967 and 1969. He completed the requirements for the Ph.D. degree of the Hebrew University in 1973 with a thesis on the Septuagint translation of Jeremiah (summa cum laude).

     Since 1986 Emanuel Tov has been a professor in the Dept. of Bible of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, where he began his career as a teaching instructor. In 1990 he was given the J. L. Magnes chair in Bible. He also served as a teaching fellow at Harvard University and as a guest professor at the University of Pennsylvania and Dropsie University in Philadelphia, as well as at the Universities of Stellenbosch (South Africa), Macquarie (Sydney), Sydney University, the Vrije Universiteit (Amsterdam), and Uppsala University. Between 1982 and 1988 he gave annual series of lectures at Oxford University as the Grinfield Lecturer on the Septuagint. In 1989-90, together with Prof. M. Weinfeld, he convened a research group on the Qumran scrolls at the Institute for Advanced Studies of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and in 1990-91 he was a fellow at the Netherlands Institute for Advanced Studies. In 2000 he was a fellow at the Center for Jewish Studies at Harvard University (winter and spring).

     He received several research awards, among them the Warburg Award of the Hebrew University for 1969–1971, a Lady Davis Fellowship for study at Oxford University in 1974-5, a D.A.A.D. Summer Scholarship for work in Göttingen in 1977, a Wexler Fellowship from the Penn-Israel Foundation in 1980–81, and the Humboldt Research Prize, Germany (1999–2004). In September 2003, the Ubbo Emmius Medal was awarded to him by the University of Groningen in a ceremony at the beginning of the academic year.

     Over the years Prof. Tov has specialized in various aspects of the textual criticism of Hebrew and Greek Scripture as well as in the Qumran Scrolls. He has written eleven books, edited fourteen books, edited two electronic databases, and authored more than 170 studies on the Septuagint, the Qumran texts, and the text of the Hebrew and Greek Bible, as well as other aspects of biblical studies. Among his major works so far are his Textual Criticism of the Hebrew Bible, published first in Hebrew in 1989, then in English in 1992 by Fortress Press and Van Gorcum -- revised editions in German in 1998 with Kohlhammer (Der Text der Hebräischen Bibel—Handbuch der Textkritik), in Russian in 2001 (Andrews Theological Seminary, Moscow, 2000) and in English in 2001. This work was awarded the Prize for the Best Book Relating to the Old Testament in 1992 by the Biblical Archaeological Society in Washington. Another major publication, The Dead Sea Scrolls on Microfiche (with the collaboration of S. J. Pfann), was published in 1993 by E. J. Brill and IDC of Leiden (second revised edition: 1995). His earlier publication, The Greek Minor Prophets Scroll from Nahal Hever, DJD VIII (in collaboration with R. A. Kraft), was awarded the Shkupp Prize for the Best Book in Biblical Studies written in 1990 at the Hebrew University. His Kleine Schriften on the Septuagint, The Greek and Hebrew Bible—Collected Essays on the Septuagint (Supplements to Vetus Testamentum 72; Leiden/Boston/Köln: Brill, 1999) were released in 2000.

In 2003 a Festschrift was presented to him: Emanuel, Studies in Hebrew Bible, Septuagint, and Dead Sea Scrolls in Honor of Emanuel Tov (ed. S. M. Paul, R. A. Kraft, L. H. Schiffman, and W. W. Fields, with the assistance of E. Ben-David; VTSup 94; Leiden/Boston: Brill, 2003).

     Prof. Tov is involved in several research projects. Since 1964 he has been active, first as assistant and later as editor, in the Hebrew University Bible Project, a research project which produces a critical edition of the Hebrew Bible. Since 1977 he has served as one of the four editors of that project, which so far has produced two editions and twenty-five monographs. Since 1981 he has directed the CATSS project (Computer Assisted Tools for Septuagint Studies) together with Prof. R. A. Kraft of the University of Pennsylvania, in Jerusalem and Philadelphia. This project has produced several monographs as well as a module for comparing the Hebrew and Greek texts of the Bible incorporated in the Accordance computer program (version 5.6, 2003).

     Since 1990, most of his energy is invested in directing the Dead Sea Scrolls Publication Project. The Israel Antiquities Authority and the International Committee publishing the Dead Sea Scrolls appointed him to serve as the editor-in-chief of that project in 1990. Prof. Tov was in charge of a team of sixty scholars worldwide which was involved in the preparation for publication of the Dead Sea Scrolls in the Discoveries in the Judaean Desert series, published by Oxford University Press. This activity, completed in 2002, involved the reorganization of the international team, redistribution of the texts, inventorization of the fragments and photographs, publication of a microfiche edition of photographs, organization of the publication efforts carried out in three continents, and finally, the actual production of the camera-ready editions themselves. Under his guidance thirty volumes appeared in 1992-2003, including an overall concordance. Prof. Tov participated in a  news conference announcing the completion of the project in November 2001 in New York.

     Prof. Tov serves on several academic boards and he participated in numerous conferences. He also organized and co-organized three conferences: the Second International Congress on the Bible and the Computer (Jerusalem, 1988); the Summer Session of the Qumran Research Group, Institute for Advanced Studies, Hebrew University, 1994; and The Dead Sea Scrolls: Fifty Years After Their Discovery (Jerusalem, July 20-25, 1997).

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