Hebrew Aramaic Peshitta

Hebrew Aramaic Peshitta

The Peshitta Tanakh is the ancient Scriptures translated into Lishana Aramaya (Aramaic language) from the original Hebrew text which pre-dated the Greek Septuagint text (LXX). The Peshitta New Testament is the ancient Aramaic Scriptures which was a precursor to the Greek texts of the New Covenant Scriptures. The Hebrew-Aramaic speaking churches received the Peshitta New Testament text between 50 and 70 C.E. The twenty-two books of the New Testament were originally written in Aramaic using K'tav Ashuri (square Hebrew script). It was translated into Greek soon after. The Peshitta is still used by Assyrian, Syrian Orthodox and other Aramaic/Syriac speaking peoples in both Bible reading and liturgy.

The purpose of this site is to freely offer the Aramaic Peshitta text (Tanakh and New Testament/Covenant) in the square Hebrew script. It is my prayer that offering the Peshitta in this format will make our Holy Text accessible to more people who are able to read the Hebrew script but who are unable to read Aramaic (Syriac). Many people in the West are just now coming to a knowledge of the ancient Peshitta. Many of these individuals are not able to read the Aramaic text in the Estrangelo script but often already have a working knowledge of the "modern Hebrew alphabet." I have received volumes of emails asking if this is a "Hebrew translation" of the Peshitta. This is not a "Hebrew translation", rather, the Aramaic text is rendered with the square Hebrew script.

Comparison of Estrangelo and "Square Hebrew" from the Gospel of Matthew
(Read from Right to Left)

Estrangelo Script:
Gospel Matthew Peshitta Aramaic

"Square Hebrew" Script:
Gospel Matthew Hebrew Aramaic

The text used in the "Hebrew Aramaic Peshitta" comes from Codex Ambrosianus ("7a1") from Bibliotheca Ambrosiana external link (5th-7th century) for the Tanakh (Old Testament) and "Deuterocanonical" books. The text used for the New Testament Peshitta is the same as that used within the Assyrian Church of the East for Bible reading and liturgical use, which is comparable to the Khabouris Codex.

Various manuscript reproductions are offered from time to time which utilize other editions or versions of the Scriptures, such as miscellaneous Targumim and Judeo-Aramaic external link writings. On the site you will also find translations of Targum Onqelos (Onkelos) in English, Spanish translations of the Peshitta, Damkhaltey (Diatessaron), study notes on various verses and daily and weekly reading schedules to encourage the regular reading and study of the Peshitta.

-- Yaaqub Younan-Levine,
Bibliotheca Aramaica

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