There are two prominent translations that are out of print from the middle 1800’s. One was by James Murdock and the other by J. W. Etheridge. Murdock based his work on the western text and Etheridge on the eastern text. Both of them are still very useful in studying the Peshitta. In the 1930’s, Dr. George Lamsa, a native speaker of Aramaic, completed a translation of the eastern manuscripts of the Peshitta and began to travel extensively in the United States, teaching about the value of studying Aramaic. From that time until the present, there has been a renewed interest in fundamental Christianity to know about the language of Jesus and what it has to contribute to biblical study.
The Aramaic language has its beginning with the sons of Noah. The first biblical clue to the origin of Aramaic is found in Genesis 10:22, which informs us that Aram was the youngest son of Shem. What Aram spoke has been called “the Mesopotamian language.” This was the language that was then transmitted down to Abraham. It is the precursor of all the Semitic languages.
Abraham left his home in Ur of the Chaldeans and traveled with his father Terah and his brother Nahor to Haran in Syria. The son of Nahor was also called Aram (Genesis 22:21). This area of land in Syria became known as the land of the Arameans, or Aram. By 1000 BC, the people lived in strong city-states and had developed a cursive version of the North Semitic alphabet. The language and alphabet has continued in use until the present.
There are several Syriac Lexicons that are available to use to study the Aramaic words:
Etheridge, J.W., A Literal Translation of the Four Gospels From the Peshito, London: Longman, Green, Brown & Longmans, 1846.
Etheridge, J.W., The Apostolical Acts & Epistles From the Peshito, or Ancient Syriac, London: Longman, Green, Brown & Longmans, 1849.
Lewis, Agnes Smith, Some Pages of The Four Gospels Re-transcribed from The Sinaitic Palimpsest with a Translation of the Whole Text, London: C.J. Clay and Sons, 1896.