We are not likely ever to place a secure date on the origins of the Song of Songs. Since erotic literature is available to many societies and at all periods of their culture, the content of the Song is especially impervious to acceptable methods of dating; note how often unconvincing cases have been made to date the Song by comparing it to similar delights from the biblical, classical (Giovanni Garbini, “Poesia alessandrina e ‘Cantico dei Cantici,” Alessandria e il Mondo Ellenistico-Romano: Studi Onore di Achille Adriani Università di Palermo Istituto di Archeologia: Studi e Materiali 4 [L“Errna” di Bretschneider: Rome. 1983], pp. 25–29), and—in one startling example that seems to have pleased Pope—the Asian subcontinent civilizations. Scholars have, therefore, turned to linguistic criteria to find a more plausible context for the origin of the Song. This method is very unreliable, however, and I direct the reader to my treatment of linguistic criteria used to date the Book of Ruth (Ruth: A New Translation with a Philological Commentary and a Formalist-Folklorist Interpretation [The Johns Hopkins University Press: Baltimore, 1979], pp 243–246), a treatment that is equally applicable here. One other dating criterion, one that depends on evaluating the Song’s rich vocabulary for aromatics and perfume, is more promising; see Athalia Brenner, “Aromatics and Perfumes in the Song of Songs,” Journal for the Study of the Old Testament 25 (1983), pp. 75–81. But it meets with the difficulty of properly evaluating the movements of trade and of cultural words. S. Saviv, “The Antiquity of the Song of Songs,” Beth Mikra 26 (1981), pp. 344–352, affirms an early monarchic date (i.e. Solomonic and traditional) for the Song by offering the fragile claim that Isaiah paraphrased its contents in his pardble of the vineyard (at 5:1–7).