Public condolences to the family of David J.A. Clines may be offered here, either by posting a comment or by completing this form or emailing

Athalya Brenner-Idan (Colleague and friend)
So sorry. And so grateful for David’s mentorship and friendship for many years.

Flavia Soldano-Deheza (I know David and Heather from SBL)
I will always remember how kind and nice was David, always encouraging our work. He will be always in my heart.

Scott Callaham (Acquaintance through 2016 International SBL in Seoul, Korea)
I am grateful for the opportunity to meet Dr. Clines and to appreciate his kind and affable personality. I grieve for his family in this time of loss. May David Clines’s name be found written in the book (Daniel 12:1).

June Dickie (Heather is a friend through the Psychological Hermeneutics subgroup)
Dear Heather and family, I am so sorry to hear of your big loss with the passing of David. I was so happy to see him in Salzburg recently, and when I asked him if he was coming to support you, he said “No, she is here to support/help me.” So gracious always, and how amazing that right to the end of his academic career, he was thinking and presenting engaging papers. I remember him too at Groningen, and again he was so kind, and always very supportive of you. 

With much love to you at this difficult time, and praying the many happy memories you have in your treasure bank will sustain you in the months ahead. 

Emmanuel Tov (Colleague—biblical scholar, Jerusalem, Israel)
I was shocked to read about David’s passing away. On the picture and in real life he always was so full of positive energy. a few months ago, at the Salzburg summer conference we had lunch, together with his daughter-in-law, and he told about his projects and his work for the publishing company that he had started and that was now directed by his son and daughter-in-law. I always admired David’s scholarly achievements, his opinions, and his lexicon, and that admiration only grew when I realized that David combined his scholarly and editorial work with editorial work for the press. his memory will live on in his publications and projects!

Ellen van Wolde (Colleague and friend)
Dear Heather and family,
The loss of David is for me more than just a loss of someone close to your heart and work. At the beginning of my career he was an example and mentor for me. Someone with bright new ideas, humorous, not just an obligatory read, but an invitation to join in, to think anew, to change your perspective.

After my visiting professorship at Sheffield, on the invitation of David, I discovered the academic and family environment in which David lived. The Arts Tower with its ever moving pater noster lift seemed to me a metaphor of his work: it keeps on moving, you have to jump in on the right moment, and of course jump out again on time also. It brought me to David’s overloaded office, where he worked with endless energy. With his mind always in motion, his support as a teacher, writer, and publisher, he himself is the pater noster of biblical scholars.

After these first contacts many new ones came: work on his Festschrift, sharing the editorship for Cheryl Exum’s Festschrift, his visit to Tilburg (the pleasure to see Heather riding a horse, not only hear her talking about it!) and Nijmegen, and our family gatherings, with Heather as chef in the kitchen. The last, very memorable meeting was this summer: we shared a taxi from Sheffield to Nottingham; it was a great and intense sharing of ideas and, as it turned out, a farewell.

David died on my birthday, on that day his probably last article published in the Festschrift to me, was handed over to me. A perfect circle of a great friendship. Hope to continue that with you, Heather. In warm friendship. Ellen

Adrian Curtis (My links with David were in various contexts relating to the study of the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament, in particular the Society for Old Testament Study in which organisation I succeeded him as Home Secretary. Many years later, as a former President of SOTS, he was one of the first to send kind congratulations to me when it became known that I was to serve as President for 2016.)

I was very sad to learn of David’s death and want to associate myself with this expression of condolence to Heather and to David’s family and friends. His contribution to the study of the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament has been outstanding in ways too numerous to mention in a brief message. I am just one of many who are immensely grateful for his scholarship and his friendship.

If I can be forgiven an anecdote, a particular recollection is of the day in 1983 when David drove from Sheffield to Manchester, his car transporting not just the two of us but the somewhat battered filing cabinet which, in those pre-computer days, was the nearest thing to a badge of office of the Secretary of SOTS and to whose contents (such things as headed note-paper, members’ addresses, minutes of business-meetings and sub-committees etc) he had just introduced me. I appreciated the sense of relief he must have felt when, after six years, I delivered the artefact to Paul Joyce in Oxford.

J. Cheryl Exum (colleague and friend)
I share your grief and your gratitude for a life extraordinarily lived. David had a spirit of adventure about life and a desire to share this sense of adventure with others in discussion and debate and convivial conversation. I was fortunate to have known him well, not only as a brilliant scholar and ideal colleague but also as a remarkable individual, longstanding conversation partner and close friend. I shall miss his laser-sharp and subtle wit, ability to ask the penetrating question and to skewer nonsense when it paraded as scholarship, his pursuit of excellence, his infectious enthusiasm for life and the life of the mind. I wish he could have written more of the many books he still wanted to write.

A few memories: how eagerly he showed visitors around Sheffield and the Peak District, pointing out the historical significance of places and providing etymologies of place names. His excitement when he discovered a new word in ancient Hebrew or solved a textual conundrum like: ‘What do animals eat in the eschaton (Isa. 30.23)?’ (answer: chick peas). Or when he heard a new recording of a well-known piece of classical music in which he found new richness and expressiveness (and thus had to buy it at once).

Helen Jacobus (The Society for Old Testament Study)
I am very sorry to hear this news. David and Heather always lit up SOTS meetings with their friendship. His scholarship and lectures, the Dictionary of Classical Hebrew, and books he sold (with a generous discount for students!) from the Sheffield/Phoenix bookstall, are valued belongings, and good memories. My sincere condolences.

Barbara Mei Leung Lai (Professor Clines was my doctoral advisor, Heather had been my coworker at the Psychology and the Bible Group at SBL.)
My condolence goes to Heather and the extended family. Professor Clines will be dearly missed in the field of biblical and interdisciplinary studies.

The kind of empowerment Professor Clines has imparted to me is the most significant gift that one can ever receive from a teacher. “The realm of biblical studies is diminished by his death…” (Obituary), yet his students can carry on his passion — to ever expanding and enlarging the terrain of biblical studies through our scholarship.

Alan Millard (When David came to Cambridge in 1961, I was living at Tyndale House where he often came to use the Library and stimulate and amuse everyone in conversation. It was a pleasure to include one of his earliest publications, ‘The Image of God in Man’ in Tyndale Bulletin 1968.)
David’s mark on biblical studies will endure; for those who knew him the memory of diligence, humour and breadth of knowledge will remain, with the joy of friendship.

Laurence Turner (David was my PhD supervisor 1985-1988.)
My sincere condolences to David’s family.

Sheffield had always been my first choice of university and to have David as a supervisor was a dream come true. He stretched me in every direction academically. He would dismiss any nonsense or half-baked ideas I came up with. But was unfailingly generous when I formulated a novel question or came to an innovative conclusion. No student could have wished for a better person to mentor them through the doctoral process. He provided a model for me to emulate with my own students. He visited my college and gave a memorable presentation on Job. I had often mentioned David to my students but after that visit more than one said, “Now we know what you mean!”. His death is a great sadness for all who knew him, especially his family. My time with David marked a life-changing experience for which I will be forever grateful.

David Gunn (friend and colleague)
It is with profound sadness that I join with so many others in expressing my condolences to Heather and to David’s family — I have fond memories of Miriam and Jeremy as young children growing up in Sheffield.

As others have said, too, it is hard to put words to the depth and breadth of the extraordinary person that was David. He lent himself and his keen intellect to so many people. For me, his support and friendship were pivotal. No one had such key influence in shaping the early direction of my working life as he did. 

It was David, over fifty years ago, who was key to my appointment at Sheffield. (Perhaps the fact that we both came from Australian universities — and classics — played a tiny part?) We became fast friends. I was a total novice teaching Old Testament — he was always encouraging without being uncritical. I wrote with him — and he taught me to be a better writer. We constantly talked about biblical studies, what it was and what it could be. We brainstormed. We cultivated contacts beyond the U.K. And, with Philip Davies, also sadly no longer with us, we ventured into the adventure of academic publishing. Without David’s energy and unfailingly keen eye, none of this would have happened.

The nature of biblical studies has changed drastically in my lifetime, and David played a significant role in that change. He was a brilliant and untiring researcher, writer, teacher, mentor, presenter — not to speak of a prodigious editor and publisher. His like is not readily found.

Fiona and family (friend of Miriam and Finn)
We are so very sorry for your loss and hope the memories of your dad comfort you.
Lots of love from all of us xx

Stephen Bywater (long time hairdresser)
My Deepest Sympathies to Heather and all David’s family and friends.

Although on a totally different intellectual level, David always made me feel very at ease in his presence.

We had great conversations and debates about all things in the world, and I think he was genuinely interested in my thoughts and opinions.

David will be sorely missed by myself and many others.

Kirsi Cobb (I know David and Heather from various conferences)
Dear Heather and family. My condolences for your loss. David was one of the first scholars I met and spoke with during my very first SOTS meeting in Sheffield. I remember him being so kind and encouraging which really gave me confidence as a young scholar. Just yesterday I was using some of David’s material in a Bible study I was teaching and got a little choked up when I saw his picture turn up on my PowerPoint. I will miss him dearly and thank you Heather also for your continued encouragement, advice and support. Kirsi

Jacqueline C.R. de Roo (I was a Research Associate at the University of Sheffield (2002-2009) for The Dictionary of Classical Hebrew of which Professor David Clines was the Editor.)
I would like to express my sincere condolences to the family of David. I am so sad to learn of your loss. It must be a great loss indeed, because David was a very special person. I am so grateful for the opportunity he gave me to work as a Research Associate for the Dictionary of Classical Hebrew. David was a very impressive scholar and a wonderful person to work with. I learned a lot from him and have always much appreciated his gentle guidance. These years working with David on the Hebrew Dictionary were some of the most inspiring and enjoyable years of my life. Wishing you all much strength in this time of grief, hoping you will find comfort in the memories and celebration of his remarkable life.

Meir and Edith Lubetski
We were very sorry to hear of the family’s loss. We were very fond of David. We remember vividly the first SBL meeting we attended in Sheffield. David was the chair of the program and spoke beautifully at the opening. He was always gracious and extremely helpful and it was a pleasure working with him. In Hebrew we say, חבל על דאבדין ולא משתכחין. It is sad to lose someone, but he will [certainly] not be forgotten.
Special condolences to our dear friend Heather, a woman of valor.