British Library

Isaiah 7:14—“A virgin shall conceive and bear a child”—appears in the tinted area above, from the Codex Sinaiticus, a fourth-century C.E. manuscript of the Septuagint. The Gospel of Matthew apparently relied on this third- or second-century B.C.E. Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible in applying Isaiah’s prophecy to Jesus (Matthew 1:18–23). As Freedman points out, however, the Septuagint’s use of the word parthenos (virgin) is an interpretative rendering of the Hebrew almah, a generic term for young woman. Matthew’s use of Isaiah in connection with Jesus is a notable example of the practice of interpreting the Bible in light of later events.