A bit more than a quarter of a century has passed since the publication of Thomas Thompson's landmark The Historicity of the Patriarchal Narratives, inaugurating what has been called the Copenhagen School, typified by the works of Thompson and Niels Peter Lemche, who now both teach at the University of Copenhagen. Few works have changed the face of biblical scholarship so completely. In conjunction with John Van Seters' Abraham in History and Tradition, Thompson's book sounded the death knell for those who insisted on the historicity of the patriarchal period, a relatively common position up to that point, especially in America. By illustrating that details of the Genesis narratives reflect first rather than second millennium institutions, contrary to the claims of Albright, Gordon, Speiser, and others, Thompson began a revolution in biblical scholarship.
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