The Social Location of the Visions of Amram (4Q543-547)

by Robert R. Duke (Author)
©2010 Monographs XII, 174 Pages
Series: Studies in Biblical Literature, Volume 135


The Visions of Amram (4Q543–547), five copies of an Aramaic text found among the Dead Sea Scrolls, stems from the pre-Hasmonean period and provides evidence of a highly variegated society in early Judaism. In this book, Robert R. Duke offers a new reading of all the fragments and an in-depth discussion of their significance, illuminating a time period in Jewish history that needs more understanding and culminating in a suggested social location for its production. Duke concludes that 4Q543–547 was written by a disenfranchised group of priests who resided in Hebron. The importance of the patriarchal burials, chronology, endogamy, the figure of Moses, and angelology argue for a priestly group, whose members were also influenced by apocalyptic thinking. The suggestion of Hebron as the geographical location for this group is based on the theories of George Nickelsburg’s and David Suter’s work on 1 Enoch. Pre-Hasmonean Judaism was an intense time of dialogue and disagreement, and 4Q543–547 is one more item to consider in reconstructing these social realities.


XII, 174
ISBN (Hardcover)
Publication date
2010 (August)
Judaism history significance
New York, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt am Main, Oxford, Wien, 2010. XII, 174 pp., num. ill.

Biographical notes

Robert R. Duke (Author)

Robert R. Duke, received his PhD in Near Eastern languages and cultures from the University of California, Los Angeles. He is currently Assistant Professor in the Division of Religion and Philosophy at Azusa Pacific University. During the 2000-2001 academic year, a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholarship made it possible for him to study at Hebrew University, and in 2005 he was a Fellow at the Albright Institute for Archaeological Research. His research interests include Second Temple Judaism and the Dead Sea Scrolls. He is also interested in ways to incorporate community-engaged pedagogical practices in the field of biblical studies.


Title: The Social Location of the Visions of Amram (4Q543-547)