Richard Jude Thompson, PhD

Richard Jude Thompson, PhD

Biblical Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek Teacher

A Few Words About Me

Richard Jude Thompson is the academic director for Aramaic and teaches Biblical Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek in English, Spanish, French, and German at all levels. He grew up in a prairie town in Canada with fifteen siblings, then backpacked and worked around the world, discovered Israel, read the Great Books of the Western World, and lived in a Jewish-Christian community based on the Gospels and the Torah together. The Harvard Extension Alumni Bulletin published a profile of his adventures under the title “Independent Study.”


He finished four degrees at Harvard University including the ALB (1991) and ALM (1993) Liberal Arts at Harvard Extension School with a senior thesis on the Gospel of Thomas and a master’s thesis translation of the Dead Sea Scrolls Fragments of Sapiential Works numbered 4Q416-418. He assisted Professors Emanuel Tov, John Strugnell, and Daniel Harrington SJ in the publication of those documents as volume 34 of the series Discoveries in the Judaean Desert (Oxford University Press, 1999). At the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at Harvard University, his AM (2005) and PhD (2011) research concerned the influence of the Neo-Assyrian imperial military ideology on the authors of the Deuteronomistic History (Nebi’im). The series Orbis Biblicus et Orientalis published the revised version of the dissertation under the title Terror of the Radiance: Aššur Covenant to YHWH Covenant (OBO 258; Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2013). He has copy-edited and proofread the Harvard Theological Review and contributed articles to the Encyclopedia of the Bible and Its Reception (De Gruyter, 2016).

Professional Experience

Richard has taught and tutored biblical Hebrew and Greek at Harvard Divinity School. He has presented chapters of his book at the national meetings of the American Schools of Oriental Research and the Society of Biblical Literature. In addition to those professional associations, he belongs to the American Oriental Society and the International Association for Assyriology.