However, there are many other Jewish writings from the Second Temple Period which were excluded from the Tanakh; these are known as the Apocrypha and the Pseudepigrapha.The Apocrypha (Greek, "hidden books") are Jewish books from that period not preserved in the Tanakh, but included in the Latin (Vulgate) and Greek (Septuagint) Old Testaments.It was this spread of Hebrew writing in ancient Palestine that democratized the written word and allowed it to gain religious authority in the book we now call "the Bible." When the Bible became a book, the written word supplanted the living voice of the teacher. This textualization marked one of the great turning points in human history, namely the movement from an oral culture towards a written culture.We tend to read the Bible from our own viewpoint—that is, we tend to think of the Bible as if it came from a world of texts, books, and authors. As the great French scholar Henri-Jean Martin has observed, the role of writing in society has changed dramatically through history, yet modern analyses of biblical literature often depend on the perspective of the text in modern society.The significance of this breakthrough relates to the fact that at least some of the biblical scriptures were composed hundreds of years before the dates presented today in research and that the Kingdom of Israel already existed at that time. Gershon Galil of the University of Haifa who deciphered the inscription: "It indicates that the Kingdom of Israel already existed in the 10th century BCE and that at least some of the biblical texts were written hundreds of years before the dates presented in current research." A breakthrough in the research of the Hebrew scriptures has shed new light on the period in which the Bible was written. Gershon Galil of the Department of Biblical Studies at the University of Haifa has deciphered an inscription dating from the 10th century BCE (the period of King David's reign), and has shown that this is a Hebrew inscription.
After the destruction of Jerusalem and its temple by the Romans in 70 C.In (Cambridge University Press, 2004), he explores when and why the ancient Israelite accounts—once conveyed only orally—came to be written down and attain the status of Scripture.Here, Schniedewind offers an overview of his findings.So how and why did such a pastoral-agrarian society come to write down and give authority to the written word?How and why did writing spread from the closed circles of royal and priestly scribes to the lay classes?