238 Egypt and Israel the Greek-speaking Jews; their ignorance of both Hebrew and Aramaic rendered this necessary. The Aramaic-speaking Jews of Palestine, also for the most part ignorant of Hebrew, had their interpreter (meihurgemati) to explain the readings of their Scrip- tures in the synagogues; but as the Alexandrian Jews did not know Aramaic, it was nec&sary for these readings to be in Greek. A discussion on the date of this version would be out of place here; it will suffice to quote Swete's words: elt may fairly be argued that a version, which at the beginning of the third cen- tury had won its way to acceptance among the literary Jews of Alexandria, probably saw the light not later than the reign of Philadelphus'1 (i.e. Ptolemy II, 285-245). At first only the Pentateuch was translated; the whole Old Testament was com- pleted probably by the beginning of the Christian era. It became the Bible of the early Church, and for this reason fell into discredit among the Jews. IV A brief consideration is called for regarding the question as to whether any Egyptian influence on the religion of the Hebrews is to be discerned. It is certain that no lasting signs of such influence are to be discovered; but it may be asked whether in the early periods of the history of the Hebrews, during the close relationship between Egypt and Syria-Palestine, religious influences may not have been brought to bear upon the subject-peoples by the dominating Power. On the face of it, this might have been expected; 'abundant evidence', says $. A. Cook, cfor the prevalence of Egyptian religious ideas in Palestine is afforded by the innumerable seals and scarabs, and by repre- sentations of Osiris, Isis, Ptah, Anubis, Sebek, Bes (with moulds), Hathor etc. . . . Not only did Egyptian and Semitic thought share much in common, but a considerable amount of religious 1 Introduction to the Old Testament in Greek, p. 18 (1900, 4th ed. 1920).