I note with satisfaction that Lexham Press has just produced a new translation of the Septuagint in English. It is of course not the only translation of the LXX on the market. As noted in the book’s Introduction, Lancelot Brenton produced a translation in the middle of the nineteenth century; NETS (or the New English Translation of the Septuagint) produced a volume recently under the supervision of my old Greek prof, Albert Pietersma, the Grand Old Man of LXX studies; and of course the Orthodox Study Bible has its own translation of the LXX. All translations have their own strengths and weaknesses, and none should be disdained. This new translation, bound in a handsome hardcover, proudly takes its place among the others.
The Brenton version is quite old, and was based on now out-dated MSS, and relies on older views of the meaning of some words. The NETS uses a modified New Revised Standard Version, and transliterates the proper names, making it difficult to use for some readers—e.g. “David” becomes “Dauid”, “Shiloh” becomes “Selo”. The Orthodox Study Bible is a revision of the New King James Version, and draws some vocabulary from Brenton. The Lexham book retains the traditional rendering of proper names and is a fresh translation directly from the Greek which does not utilize existing English versions for its base.
Like the NETS version, it aims at producing a clunky English rendering when the original Greek was clunky, and a smooth English rendering when the original Greek was smooth. It also aims at consistency of translation, using the same English word for cognates when the Greek uses the same word in Greek. I also note with satisfaction that it avoids the use of what is sometimes called “inclusive language” regarding gender, opting instead for accuracy of translation. Thus, for example, uios in the plural is translated as “sons of Israel” rather than “descendants of Israel”, since uios almost never referred to both genders in the original. It was used when sons were contrasted with daughters.
As I have written elsewhere, I think that junking the Hebrew text of the Old Testament in favour of the LXX is a mistake. But it would be equally mistaken to ignore the LXX. Its use by the New Testament writers and many of the Fathers means that a volume of the LXX should find a place on our scholarly shelf today. The Lexham book would make a fine addition to such a shelf.