The two apocryphal books, Tobit and Judith, are Jewish legends presumably created in the 3rd or 2nd century BCE, the first in the Eastern Diaspora, the other in Palestine. The events related are placed in the Assyrian epoch in the 7th century BCE. This text discusses the problems between real history and historical fiction, the genres and purposes of the two books, and the literary and religious motives of the tales. The book also deals with textual problems (the Greek text in the Septuagint versus Hebrew and Aramaic Tobit-fragments from Qumran).
Benedikt Otzen is Professor of Old Testament Exegesis, University of Aarhus, Denmark.