German Critics

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Author's Bias | Interpretation: conservative

Analyzing the Pentateuch

As Source Criticism developed, it spawned various approaches such as the Fragmentary and Supplementary Approach.

The Germans led in the development of Source Criticism.

Johann Eichhorn, Oriental professor of Gottingen, published his work Einleitung in das Alte Testament (1780), whose approach of a fragment theory influenced many, and his work gave birth to the discipline of Higher Criticism (such as Form and Tradition Criticism).

He felt that the Pentateuch was carelessly composed of fragments from various sources by a single editor.

Following him were others such as A. Geddes (1792), K. Ilgen (1798), J. Vater (1805), W. De Wette (1806), W. Vatke (1835), V. Humfeld (1853), K. Graf (1865), and A Kuenen (1874-77) who all published and developed the documentary theories further.

While all were either professors of philosophy and / or theology, they largely held that the Pentateuch was mythical or legendary and denied any possibility of the supernatural.

Series: Did Moses author the Pentateuch?
History of the Critics: Dutch-French

Series: Did Moses author the Pentateuch?
History of the Critics: Graf-Wellhausen

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