Theodotion (/ˌθiːəˈdoʊʃən/; Greek: Θεοδοτίων, gen.:
Θεοδοτίωνος; died c. 200) was a Hellenistic Jewish
scholar, perhaps working in Ephesus, who in c. AD 150 translated
Hebrew Bible into Greek. Whether he was revising the Septuagint,
or was working from Hebrew manuscripts that represented a parallel
tradition that has not survived, is debated. In the 2nd century
Theodotion's text was quoted in
The Shepherd of Hermas
The Shepherd of Hermas and in Justin
Martyr's Dialogue with Trypho.
His finished version, which filled some lacunae in the Septuagint
version of the
Book of Jeremiah
Book of Jeremiah and Book of Job, formed one column in
Origen of Alexandria's Hexapla, c. AD 240. (The Hexapla, now only
extant in fragments, presented six Hebrew and Greek texts
side-by-side: two Greek versions, by Aquila and Symmachus, and
Theodotion's version following it, apparently reflecting a
contemporary understanding of their historical sequence.)
Theodotion's translation was so widely copied in the Early Christian
church that its version of the
Book of Daniel
Book of Daniel virtually superseded the
Jerome (in his preface to Daniel, AD 407) records the
rejection of the Septuagint's version of that book in Christian usage.
Jerome's preface also mentions that the
Hexapla had notations in it,
indicating several major differences in content between the Theodotion
Daniel and the earlier versions in Greek and Hebrew. However,
Theodotion's Daniel is closer to the modern Hebrew Masoretic Text
version (the Hebrew text said to have been finalized c. AD 130), that
is the basis for most modern translations. Theodotion's Daniel is also
the one embodied in the authorised edition of the
Sixtus V in 1587.
Theodotion's caution in transliterating Hebrew words for plants,
animals, vestments and ritual regalia, and words of uncertain meaning,
rather than adopting a Greek rendering, gave him a reputation of being
"unlearned" among more confident post-Renaissance editors, such as
Bernard de Montfaucon.
Aquila of Sinope
Symmachus the Ebionite
On Weights and Measures (Epiphanius)
^ The only contemporary reference to him is that of
Haereses, III.xxi.1), who ranks him with Aquila of Pontus, another
translator, as "Jewish proselytes" in the course of taking exception
to their rendering of the "virgin" prophesied in
Isaiah vii. 14 as
"damsel",[clarification needed] "following whom the
that he was begotten of Joseph."
^ "Theodotian of Ephesus" in Irenaeus
Septuagint Daniel survives in only a two known mss., including
Codex Chisianus 88 (rediscovered in the 1770s), and Papyrus 967
^ Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)
Jewish Encyclopedia: "Theodotion" Details of Theodotion's insertions.
Moses Gaster, 1894. The Unknown Aramaic Original of Theodotion's
Additions to Daniel in Proceedings of the Society for Biblical
Archaeology Vol. xvi. Demonstrating that the existing Aramaic text is
itself an adaptation from the Greek of Theodotion, not its original.
Emil Schürer in Herzog-Hauck, Real-Encyclopädie für protestantische
Theologie i. 639 (1909)
Dictionary of Christian Biography and Literature to the End of the
Sixth Century (1911)
Theodotion's version - The Greek text and English translation of
Theodotion's Greek version of the Old Testament.