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The Hebrew/Aramaic word tefillin refers to a pair of small leather cases, whose parchment contents are inscribed, according to rabbinic convention, with four passages from the Torah (Exod. 13:1-10; 13:11-16; Deut. 6:4-9; 11:13-21). Each passage includes one verse that has traditionally been understood by Jews as exhorting adherence to the practice of wearing one of these cases strapped to the head and the other to the left arm. Arm tefillin and head tefillin contain identical passages, but the former includes the entire text on a single parchment roll, while the latter holds four separate pieces of parchment (in distinct compartments inside their case).
Qumran phylactery, 1st. c. C.E.
Tangled up in Text: Tefillin and the Ancient World by Yehudah Cohn
See: Yonatan Adler, “The Distribution of Tefillin Finds among the Judean Desert Caves,” pp. 161–173.
This volume presents the proceedings of an international conference (Lugano 2014) dedicated entirely to the caves of Qumran. The papers deal with both archaeological and textual issues, comparing the caves in the vicinity of Qumran between themselves and their contents with the other finds in the Dead Sea region. The relationships between the caves and the settlement of Qumran are re-examined and their connections with the regional context are investigated. The original inventory of the materials excavated from the caves by Roland de Vaux is published for the first time in appendix to the volume.
Halakhah in Light of Epigraphy by Albert I. Baumgarten (Editor); Hanan Eshel (Editor); Ranon Katzoff (Editor); Shani Tzoref (Editor)
See: Yonatan Adler, “The Content and Order of the Scriptural Passages in Tefillin: A Reexamination of the Early Rabbinic Sources in. Light of the Evidence from the Judean Desert,” pp. 205-229.
This volume contains the proceedings of the conference entitled "Halakhah in Light of Epigraphy" held on 29 May 2008 under the auspices of the David and Jemima Jeselsohn Center for Epigraphy at Bar-Ilan University. Epigraphic finds, here interpreted broadly to include papyri, scrolls, and the like, have immeasurably enriched our knowledge of the ancient Jewish past while at the same time posing a challenge to modern scholarship: how does one integrate old knowledge, based on previously known sources, with new information? We now recognize that Rabbinic texts are normative: they tell us how their authors believed life should be lived, rather than the details of ordinary, everyday, experience. What weight, then, should be given to traditional halakhic texts in evaluating the contents of newly discovered written remains? And what light can be shed by these new finds, especially those inscriptions and documents that record small moments of ancient Jewish life, upon the long-familiar normative texts? The conference on "Halakhah in Light of Epigraphy" was intended to generate discussion on these broad issues, as well as to provide a forum for exploration of specific matters of halakhah reflected in the epigraphic sources. The papers in this volume tend to emphasize the centrality of halakhah in ancient Judaism.
Tefillin from Qumran : (X Q Phyl 1-4) by Yigael Yadin