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The Oxford Bible Commentary Line-by-line commentary for the New Revised Standard Version Bible.

The Impact of the Apocrypha.

The books of the Apocrypha have been little read in any tradition over recent centuries, particularly because they are no longer printed in most translations of the Bible, but their influence is pervasive (Metzger 1957: 205–38). In particular, European art, literature, and music contain numerous allusions to the stories of Tobit, Judith, Susanna, Judas Maccabee, and the Maccabean martyrs, and sententious sayings culled from Sirach have become clichés in many languages. Among Jews the most obvious impact of the Apocrypha, apart from the festival of Hanukkah which celebrates the events described in 1 and 2 Maccabees (but without most Jews knowing the original books), has been in the popularity among Jews from medieval to modern times of the names Judah, Susanna, Judith, and Raphael.

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Oxford University Press

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