Quest to Find World's Oldest Bible Begins and Ends at SF State

Monday, April 11, 2016
Photo of Chanan Tigay leaning against a brick wall

SF STATE NEWS -- Chanan Tigay’s quest to find the oldest Bible scrolls in the world and unearth the story of the antiquities dealer accused of forging them took him to eight countries on four continents and spanned four years. Meanwhile, the clue that would help him solve the mystery was just footsteps away from his office, safely ensconced in San Francisco State University’s J. Paul Leonard Library.

Tigay, an award-winning journalist and assistant professor of Creative Writing at SF State, traces the steps of his incredible journey and discovery in his first book, The Lost Book of Moses: The Hunt for the World’s Oldest Bible, published by Ecco/HarperCollins.

The book is best described as “historical drama and a modern-day quest narrative,” Tigay said, and its genesis can be traced to his own family roots. His father, Jeffrey H. Tigay, a Bible scholar, rabbi and now-retired professor, spent 16 years writing a 600-page commentary about the Book of Deuteronomy.

Photo by Emanuele Dello Strologo