For some two hundred years, Old Testament criticism has wrestled with the problem of the Hexateuch. The commonly accepted view is based on the Wellhausen Hypothesis, which has held saw over the mids of scholars, save for a conservative few, for nearly seventy years. According to the theory of Wellhausen, the Hexateuch is a combination of fource literary sources, J, E, D, and P, with numerous additions and retouchings by the symbols Rje, Rd and Rp.
Professor Winnett's view is that the Books of Exodus and Numbers constitute one primary source, the Mosaic Tradition, which has been supplemented and rearranged by P. Dr. Winnett shows that shortly after the fall or the Northern Kingdom in 722 B.C. the Southern Kingdom under Hezekiah took advantage of the extinction of its rival to issue a revised version of the national tradition.
PROFESSOR WINNETT is a native of Oil Springs in Western Ontario. He received the B.A. degree in Oriental Languages at Toronto in 1923, and graduated in theology at Knox College in 1927. After completing the work for the doctorate in Semitics at Toronto in 1928, he spent a year doing advanced work in the field of Arabic at the Hartford Seminary Foundation, Hartford, Conn., U.S.A. In 1929 he joined the staff of the Department of Oriental Languages at University College, specializing in the fields of Hebrew, Arabic, Syriac and History of the Near East. He has travelled extensively in teh Near and Middle East, including India. He is best known for his contributions to the decipherment of early Arabic inscriptions.