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date: 17 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

The nature of groups named in classical sources as ‘Essenes’ was considered in scholarship of Second Temple Judaism long before the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, but discussion of the Essenes has intensified greatly during the last sixty years. This article reviews the classical sources on the Essenes. It notes propositions on how the Essenes may relate to the scrolls communities and considers how variant opinions may be resolved, with particular reference to the Serekh.

Keywords: Second Temple Judaism, Serekh, Dead Sea Scrolls, Essenes, scrolls communities

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