The East Syriac Psalm headings reflect the exegesis of the Antiochine school, with the most important stimuli the commentaries of Diodore of Tarsus and Theodore of Mopsuestia. The latter's commentary on the Psalms was translated into Syriac. Abridged versions of that commentary were also compiled. Theodore's exegesis had a profound influence on East Syriac interpretation of the Bible, and especially on the study of the Psalms. The East Syriac headings contain a summary of Theodore's exegesis and this exegesis had an important influence on the work of Syriac interpreters such as Ishodad of Merv and Bar Hebraeus.
This edition of the East Syriac Psalm headings describes the history of research on these headings, beginning with the first publications from the nineteenth century, with special attention given to the work of Baethgen, Vosté, Devreesse and Bloemendaal. It presents a new critical edition of these headings, using unpublished manuscripts not previously utilised. This includes the headings in the important manuscript 12t4, presently in Baghdad, containing at least four different sets of headings. This edition contains a translation and a detailed discussion of these headings.
Harry van Rooy is Research Professor in the Faculty of Theology at the North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa. He has a PhD from the sameuniversity. He has published extensively, especially on the Peshitta Psalter and on the text and translation of the book of Ezekiel.