Edward William Grinfield (1785–1864) was an Oxford graduate and Anglican clergyman. Grinfield’s work on the text of the New Testament led him to believe that the Septuagint—the collection of Greek translations of the Hebrew Bible carried out by Jewish translators between c. 250 BCE-100 CE, mostly in Egypt—was for Christians the most authoritative and inspired version of Scripture. In 1861, therefore, a Lecturership was endowed in his name funding three lectures in each academic year “on the LXX version of the Hebrew Scriptures, its history, its philological character, its bearing on the criticisms of the New Testament, and its value as an evidence of the authenticity of the Old and New Testaments.” Over the course of the last 150 years, Grinfield Lectures have been presented by many highly regarded scholars, and subsequently published (however, Edward Grinfield would not always approve of the findings!).
Traditionally, the lectures have been presented in the Examination Schools at Oxford, though in recent years additional venues in the University have been used. In 2021, restrictions due to the pandemic meant that the current Grinfield Lecturer, Dr James Aitken of Cambridge University, gave his lectures online via Zoom. However, this proved to be an exciting opportunity for Septuagint studies: the lectures reached a global audience averaging over 100 each time, and are now available through the OCHJS for many more to view.
Below are recordings of the 2021 Grinfield Lectures, given by Dr James Aitken (Cambridge).
15 February 2021: ‘The Septuagint—A Translation Among Translations’
16 February 2021: ‘The Septuagint, Editing, and Textual Production in Ancient Judaism’
24 February 2021: ‘The Septuagint and Scribal Creativity in Egypt’