The 18th World Congress of Jewish Studies

The Exaltation Hymns of YHWH

In a series of articles that I published in the past, I analyzed the affinity between the so-called “exaltation hymns” in Mesopotamian literature and several passages in the Hebrew Bible: Isaiah 2:6-21, Deuteronomy 32, Psalm 82 and Psalm 47. In these articles, I suggested that hymns belonging to this genre, or parts of them, have been preserved in various ways in the Biblical books, and that it is, in principle, possible to reconstruct the existence of ancient “Exaltation Hymns of Yhwh,” which described the apotheosis of Yhwh in the presence of the other gods. I also pointed out that in those passages we recognize the hand of scribes who modified the form and content of the ancient hymns and adapted them to the monotheistic view dominant toward the end of the Biblical period. In the proposed paper, I plan to expand on the subject, by studying further examples that shed light on the development of this literary genre.