I understand that the book of Daniel is comprised of two languages: Aramaic from chapter 2:4 to 7:25, the narrative part, and Hebrew in chapters 8 to 12, the prophetic and apocalyptic part. I understand also that the Aramaic is debated as to the age but is generally dated around the 4th century (though some say earlier) and the Hebrew is classed as post exilic Hebrew.

I’ve read that some scholars theorise that Daniel was written in two periods: first in Aramaic around 4th century or earlier and the Hebrew section, chapters 8 to 12, was added on around the Maccabean period in the second century. I am aware that there are, indeed, lots of different theories as to the development of the book.

I cannot find, however, anywhere that gives a satisfactory argument for the unification of the book of Daniel. I presume there must be one and so I ask here: what is the evidence, internal and/or external, that Daniel was comprised by a single author?

  • Whether the Book of Daniel was composed by a single of multi author, did it affect the credibility of the book? While it has honor to be a scholar, it is a blessing to be a believer. Jul 17, 2022 at 3:37
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    The book of Daniel explicitly notes of the change in the language in verse 2:4
    – Kapandaria
    Oct 11, 2022 at 10:02

1 Answer 1


Ellis Skolfield argued that the two languages were used because two audiences were in mind. Hebrew prophecies were to the Jews, while Aramaic / Syriac prophecies were to Gentile audiences.

In addition, he claimed that the book had a bifid structure, which pairs early chapters to later chapters along similar themes. Within the halves of the bifid are chiasms. The structural connections among the several parts of the book show that they were written by one author, not added later.

See https://www.slideshare.net/PulpArk/ellis-skolfields-teaching-outline-09-bifids-chiasms

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    Jews in the second temple could speak both Aramaic and Hebrew. In the Torah reading every Shabbat they read in hebrew and had a man to translate for the audience into Aramaic. The book of Ezra also compromized from these two languages and meant to be read by jews.
    – Kapandaria
    Oct 11, 2022 at 9:57

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