The four tables give the most commonly accepted dates or ranges of dates for the Old Testament/Hebrew Bible, the Deuterocanonical books (included in Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox bibles, but not in the Hebrew and Protestant bibles) and the New Testament, including, where possible, hypotheses about their formation-history.
Table I is a chronological overview. Table II treats the Old Testament/Hebrew Bible books, grouped according to the divisions of the Hebrew Bible with occasional reference to scholarly divisions. Table III gives the Deuterocanonical books. Table IV gives the books of the New Testament, including the earliest preserved fragments for each.
This table summarises the chronology of the main tables and serves as a guide to the historical periods mentioned. Much of the Hebrew Bible or the Protocanonical Old Testament may have been assembled in the 5th century BCE. The New Testament books were composed largely in the second half of the 1st century CE. The Deuterocanonical books fall largely in between.
The five books are drawn from four "sources" (distinct schools of writers rather than individuals): the Priestly source, the Yahwist and the Elohist (these two are often referred to collectively as the "non-Priestly" source), and the Deuteronomist. There is general agreement that the Priestly source is post-exilic, but there is no agreement over the non-Priestly source(s).
The Book of Jeremiah exists in two versions, Greek (the version used in Orthodox Christian Bibles) and Hebrew (Jewish, Catholic and Protestant Bibles), with the Greek representing the earlier version. The Greek version was probably finalised in the early Persian period and translated into Greek in the 3rd century BCE, and the Hebrew version dates from some point between then and the 2nd century BCE.