In the News (from lenta.ru): “Pottery shards found in a small Israeli fortress reveal an answer to one of the most important issues of Biblical studies—whether basic texts of the Old Testament were written before the Babylonian exile or after it. Inscriptions on potshards attesting to the literacy of the Jews speak in favor of the first version. This was reported in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. …
“However, Israeli archaeologists have studied the inscription (in Hebrew) on the clayshards from the fortress of Arad (southern Judah), dating from about 600 BC – and found a high level of literacy among the Jews of that era.
“It turned out that the text on 16 potsherds belong to a minimum of six authors, who did not need the help of scribes. Among the records were instructions to the deputy quartermaster of the fortress about the issue of provisions for a detachment of Greek mercenaries. The literacy of junior officers far from Jewish centers of culture indicates that Jews could read the sacred texts long before the Babylonian exile.”
My Comment: From the days of Abraham, comprehensive learning and education were practiced in his group, as well as reading of books written by him. The books from more ancient Kabbalists, from Adam to Abraham, as Rambam wrote, just didn’t reach us. But it indicates that in the period of the First Temple there was no uneducated child who did not know how to read and write and did not know all the sacred texts by heart.