Prof. F. García Martínez, professor of Religion and Literature of Early Judaism and Director of the Qumran Institute, has been made a Knight in the Order of the Dutch Lion.
García Martínez will receive his decoration during an international congress in honour of his retirement to be held in Groningen on 28 and 29 April 2008.
The presentation, by Frank de Vries, Deputy Mayor of the municipality of Groningen, will take place on 29 April 2008 at 5 p.m. in the Aula of the Academy Building.
Florentino García Martínez (Mochales, Spain, 1942) has been attached to the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies since 1980, first as a research fellow, later as professor of the Religion and Literature of Early Judaism, with special attention for the Qumran manuscripts.
In addition, from 1992 until 2008 he was director of the Qumran Institute of the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies of the University.
For the past five years he has also been professor of the literature of early Judaism at the University of Leuven (Belgium).
García Martínez has devoted his entire academic career to the Dead Sea Scrolls, found in 1947 near Qumran.
His numerous publications, editorial and coordinating work have made a significant contribution to the study and interpretation of the Dead Sea Scrolls, which thanks to his work have become one of the most important instruments for understanding Early Christendom in the Jewish and Graeco-Roman world.
His academic research is thus very tangible – it concentrates on the creation of an understanding of the religious systems on which our European culture is founded.
From 1992, García Martínez was the academic face of the Qumran Institute, which owns the publication rights of a number of the scrolls.
Under him the institute became world famous.
Through the Qumran Institute, García Martínez took on the academic and practical responsibility for two international journals, two monograph series and the international organization for Qumran studies.
With the latter he brought together scholars of different religious and political backgrounds from all over the world.
He has influenced an entire generation of younger scholars, who invited him to be their external examiner or who sent articles or books to him to assess.
In addition, he has explained the content and value of the Dead Sea Scrolls for both the Jewish and the Christian tradition in a very appealing way to interested lay audiences in both the Anglo-Saxon and Romance linguistic areas.
García Martínez has thus demonstrated a unique productivity and is known as the only scholar who is master of the whole field, in both the linguistic and the historical sense, and who has made substantial contributions to the development of the field in all its aspects.
He has had an immeasurable influence on the development of the international study of the Dead Sea Scrolls into an independent academic discipline.
His significant international reputation is illustrated, for example, by the fact that in 2003, in Venice at the Enoch conference, an entire session was devoted to his work, and by the numerous keynote lectures he has given at congresses at dozens of universities all over the world.
In 2004 he was appointed a foreign member of the Royal Dutch Academy of Arts and Sciences.
- please see the press release for information about the congress
- contact with García Martínez: v
ia the Communication Office, tel. 050 – 363 4444,
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