G. J Spurrell.

Notes on the text of the book of Genesis : with an appendix online

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7. irn^I^^I. Cf. 1^?oyn in P with rvn in ver. 2 in J.

*7nil''T, as in 2 Kings 4, 29, used of greeting any one;
cf. 2 Sam. 16, 16.

II. DD^y"^. Cf. on 45, 10, DDDyi (only here and
LXX, 46, 28) is the name of the district, so called from the
town DDt^yn mentioned in Ex. i, 11 (built by the children
of Israel). 12, 37. Num. 33, 3. 5 (the starting-point of the
Exodus). The position of the town is uncertain, possibly it
was situated near Phacusa, not far from the modern Tel-
el-Kebir. Cf. Naville, Goshen, p. 20 ; Exodus, p. 7.

12. Qn^ . . . vnb^ n^ . . . h:hy'^. On h:h^ with a

double ace, see Ewald, § 283 b, and note on 26, 15.

?ltOn *'QT', lit. ' accoi'ding to the little children* i.e. ^accord-
ing to their 7iumher ajtd wants', ' little children being mentioned
because they would require much food, and also because
people would be less willing to see them in want/ Del. ^27
as in Lev. 25, 16. 27, 16.

13. nT^m, a-na^ Xeyoju. Imperf. apoc. Qal of nn? for nN7 ;
on the form of the imperf. apoc, see Ges., § 75. Rem. 3 b.

14. ^^!^^2^. Cf. riN^'Djn, 19, 15.

15. DDb^ occurs only in this and the next verse in the
Pent.; it is also found in Is. i6, 4. 29, 20. Ps. 77, 9 (all).

16. After D3^ insert Onb, with LXX, Sam.,Vulg., as mnxi
requires an obj.

17. DT'n^'^l. ' And he sustained them! ^n?. is only used
in this passage in the sense, '■sustain^ ' nourish;' cf. Ps. 23, 2,
LXX (eKTpecjieiv). Elsewhere it means 'to lead' or 'guide;''
so Is. 4O5 II. Ps. 23, 2, and Cheyne, crit. note.

CHAP. 47, VERS. 7-21. 357

18. ''^:^ ^:3"(^^D ir\D^ ^h. 'We ivUl mt Imk it from
my lord^ thai if the money is spent, and the cattle we own he my
tardus, there is tiothing I ft* etc.; D^? ^2 being taken separately,
according to the accentuation. Del. prefers to render, ' We
cannot conceal it from my lord, hut [must say), the money and
the cattle we oivn are all my lord's, there is left' etc., taking
DN ''D together and comparing 2 Sam. 15, 21. i Kings 20, 6.
2 Kings 5, 20 (where QS ^"2 is preceded by a protestation),
which are not quite parallel to this passage. Others (Kn.,
Ges.) render DS ""D ' hut^ since,' or ' hut, hecause,' which render-
ings assign to D^< a meaning it can hardly bear. Di., following
Kn., renders the words from DX '^2 down to ''ni< slightly
differently, ^ that if our money, and the cattle we own, are
entirely at an end, {and come) to my lord,' comparing for the
pregnant construction 14, 15. 42, 28. 43, 33, a rendering
that seems somewhat harsh and unnatural. "'JHi^ is used
here, as in Num. 32, 25. 27. 36, 2, where more than one
person is speaking. Del. compares the French ' Monsieur.'

1^n"^1^ — ' our hodies,' i. e. ' ourselves,' IT'ia being used of
living beings, as in Ez. i, 11. 23. Dan. 10, 6. Neh. 9, 37;
elsewhere it is only used of a corpse.

19. Notice that niDJ is zeugmatically connected with

ijnmx , cf. 4, 20 njproi br\^ 2v^\

i:nnib^ an l:m^^ l^X D:i . , . na = ' hoth . . . and; as
in vers. 3 and 19. 24, 25. 44. 43, 8. 44, 16. 46, 34; Dav.,
S., § 136; Ges., § 154. foot-note c; M. R., § 148. R. b.

Dtrri, impf. Qal (intrans.) from U'OV;; cf. Ges., § 67. Rem.
3; Stade, § 509. 2; see on 16, 4 {p?J^)). With this use of

uc^, cf. Ez. 12, 19 nvnx DK^n \v^h; 19, 7 hn^di ps* nrm.

21. "i:n ins l^'nyn DV7\ nSl, usually rendered, 'and

the people, he removed them into the towns;' but such a removal


of all the people into the towns would be scarcely possible,
and it is very doubtful whether n^ayn can mean this. It is
better, if the text is left unchanged, to render, ' and the people
he caused to pass over to the toitms' Dyn riNI being a casus
pendens; cf. the notes on 13, 15. 21, 13. The meaning
being, the people were brought to the towns so that they
might be fed from the stores of grain that were there ;
cf. 41, 48. Tuch interprets the Mass. text as meaning,
' he moved the people from one city into another throughout
the whole land;' possibly to remove them from the districts
in which the land they formerly owned lay. But this
would require "^""y^ '^''y^; cf. 2 Chron. 30, 10. The LXX,

KCLi Tov \a6v KaT(bovXd)(TaTO avTw (Is Traidas, SO the Sam.

!i5ar?SVZ . ^SV . ^^V^ . ^iav . Am\, and Vulg.
'' Suhjecitque eam {pvmem tcrraiii) Pharaoni, et cimctos populos
ejus' which point to a reading onaySj inx n"'3yn Dyn flNl
(cf. Jer. 17, ^) = ' the people he made serve him {the king) as
slaves! Di. adopts this reading, following Knobel ; so Del.^
Onq. has '^ph nptp n-'n; nayx m^_ n:i, and the Pesh. )>ft fidiiriirn insians, see on 6, 17.

5. on ''S . . ♦ "J^::! ••^l!? nnV^ . On the casus pendens,
see on 34, 21.

6. "jniT'"lt:!l . 'And thy offspring;' m^D, as in Lev. 18,
9. II. For construction cf. note on 41, 57.

W Drrri^^ D\2} 717. 'According to the name of their
brethre?i shall they he called in their ijiheritance^ i.e. their
descendants shall dwell among the posterity of Ephraim and
Manasseh, and be reckoned as belonging to them, and not
as separate tribes.

CHAP. 48, VERS. I-I2. 361

7. ]"lCtD. Everywhere else P calls Mesopotamia DIN pa;
cf. on 25, 20. Possibly the omission of D"\X is due to a copyist's
mistake. The Sam. has DIN p2.

^/^ nn^. 'Died, to my sorrow! For this use of py, cf.
Eccl. 2, 17 nb'yon h^ yi ^D. See also 33, 13 and the note
on that passage.

Y^^ nnn!3. Cf. the note on 35, 16.

9. TKVl 'here;' so 38, 21.

^^^ ^Xyp . Ewald, § 253 a, and Stade, § 631 e, compare
On^ here with DVi*^ (Amos 9, i), the suffix being attached to
the word ending in a guttural, the tone being placed on the
penult. Dnp, however, here has no accent at all, as it is con-
nected with ^{: by Maqqef, and so deprived of its accent ;

and the -^ of ^-^ is consequently shortened into D-r- : and

in Amos 1. c. the tone on Dy^*3 is drawn back on to the

penult, to avoid two tone-syllables coming together, the next
word being tJ'N'iIl.

D^^lt^l. For the pausal seghol, cf. 21, 9 pni'D and the
note there ; also the frequent "ryj DPiVp, Ges., § 58. 3. Rem. i;
Konig, Lehrg., p. 232. In Num. 6, 27 we find ^5"]??S. in pause,
also in ordinary editions in this passage.

11. n^^~l for niS-), like S^V, for nib^j; in 31, 28 (see the
note on that passage), and nby for TWV., 50, 20.

^nb v5. According: to Ben Asher in the Dikduke Hai^a-
mini, ed. Baer and Slrack, Leipzig, 1879, § 49, the -^ in the
first person perf. Pi'el is always preserved in pause, except in
this word; "n^^n, Ps. 38, 7; ^^^n^, Ps. 119, 43, etc.; 'r^rsf^
Ps. 119, 128.

12. Vi:^^7, as in Num. 22, 31. In 19, i. 42, 6 we find
D''DN alone used after ^nnm and linn::'^'! respectively.


14. VT^ rit^ vDiZ?. ^Crossing his hands;' the construc-
tion is the same as in 44, 12 ; cf. the note on 21, 14. This
rendering is the same as that of the LXX, Pesh., Vulg.,
and most moderns, and is suitable to the context; cf.
ver. 13. Cf the Arab. JjCl ^plexm't,' ^ ligavit! Onq. and
Saadiah render, ^ he made his hands wise,^ i.e. 'he placed
them so intentionally/ which assigns a doubtful meaning to
b'Sp (=7''3b'n); moreover with this rendering VT'^ would be
more natural, as Di. points out. With this verse cf. Matt.
19, 13 f. Mark 10, 16, where Christ in blessing lays His
hands on those whom He blessed.

15. ry^ri DVn 1^ ^^^V^. This phrase is only found
once again in the O.T., viz. Num. 22, 30 nm D1^■^ "ly "ITiyc

16. ^^\d nnn ^'^p^\ Cf. 21, 12 and the note there.
' J71 them let my na?7ie be named ^ i.e. ' be made famous through
their oifspring.' Del.^ renders, ' On them let 7ny name be called!
Onn = D.Ti^y, i.e. 'let them be regarded as my children, and
sharers of the promises made to me and mine.'

I^T'. nn is only found in this passage in the O.T.

17. n^'t!}^. Notice the tense, ' was placing ;' Jacob had
not actually placed his hands on the heads of Ephraim and
Manasseh, but was in the act of placing them ; cf. Driver,
§ 39 iS, and note on 43, 25. The imperfects with waw conv.
give details of Jacob's blessing which have been omitted,
though the actual blessing is given in the preceding verses;
cf. note on 27, 24.

19. D^'IZin b^7D (cf Is. 31, 4) = D''13 pD.-l in 17, 5.

22. n^^r\\?< hv inb^ DDti? "fS Tin: ••Ji^^r 'And i

give thee one mountain slope above thy bi'ethren! D3l^=
''shoulder I then applied to the slope of a mountain, like ?]nD,

CHAP. 48, VERS. 14-22. 363

Num. 34, II. Josh. 15, 8. 10, 18, 12. 13. Is. 11, 14; see
Ges., Thes., 1407. The word D^K* is chosen with an obvious
allusion to the well-known town of Shechem (of. on 12, 6)
in the territory of Ephraim (Josh. 24, i. 25. 32. Judg. 9, i.
I Kings 12, I. 25). Cf. the LXX rendering (jiKi^ia f^aipeTov.
This Shechem Jacob gives to Joseph, in preference to his
other sons. Joseph would therefore take precedence of his
brethren ; as the possessor of a mountain tract, in addition
to his other territory, he would, as it were, be a ' shoulder '
above them. IHt^ is s/a/us absolutiis with the vocalisation
of the status cofistrucius, the shorter pronunciation being
sometimes chosen in the flow of speech; see note on 3, 22,
and cf Ewald, § 276b; Ges., § 130. 6; and Is. 27, 12

ins nnxh; Zech. n, 7 ^^>^y, ^nsbi . . .™"}5 nnN^b. D3c>

is taken by Onq. and Pesh. in the sense 'portion,' a translation
that is too indefinite. Tuch and others consider that iribJ D3C'
means that two portions of territory should be assigned to
Ephraim and Manasseh (cf. ver. 5), as contrasted with the
one portion that the other tribes were to receive. But Mtr
nnx can hardly mean * one portion,' as one portion of land
would embrace more than one mountain slope, and "inN DDt^
cannot = a district in which Shechem was situated, Di., p. 452.
Tinp^ nU?^5, Tuch, Kn., Keil, and Del. take >nnp^ as
prophetic perfect; but cf. Di., I.e., who points out that if a future
capture of Shechem is referred to, there is no reason why
this particular town should have been selected by Jacob, and
that we would rather expect n|5n or IHipn. The account of
the acquisition of Shechem in this chapter is probably from E.
It varies from that given in chap. 34 P and J (Driver, Introd.,
p. 15; Di., p. 452). In 33, 19 and Josh. 24, 32, both E,
Jacob is reported to have purchased the plot of ground at


"^ntrpn ''D,"^n2 are curiously rendered in some Vss., cf.
Onq. ''n^ynni '•nvif^ 'with my prayer and entreaty' (Berliner's
text follows the Mass. text, see the notes in his edition,
part ii, p. 17). Another curious paraphrase is proposed by
Hieron. [Quaes t., ed. Lagarde, p. 66), ' dabo tibi Sicimam,
quam emi in forlitudine mea, hoc est in pecunia quam multo
labore et sudore quaesivi.' In his translation, however, he
follows the Heb. text.


In this chapter is contained the so-called ' Blessing of
Jacob,' a name which owes its origin to ver. 28^^, which
however probably belongs, not to the ' Blessing,' but to the
following narrative 28^-33, which comes from P. This
designation cannot be regarded as a suitable one, as in point
of fact only two of the tribes are really blessed, viz. Judah
and Joseph, the utterances of the patriarch in the case of
Reuben, Simeon, and Levi being full of reproach, and a
future predicted for them the reverse of prosperous. It would
be better designated by the title Del. gives it, ' The prophetic
sayings of Jacob concerning the Twelve.' The six sons of
Leah are first mentioned, then Bilhah's eldest son, Zilpah's
two sons (the eldest first), Bilhah's second son, and Rachel's
two sons, Joseph the eldest first. The order in which they
occur is partly that in which they were born, and partly that
in which the territories represented by them geographically
stand, starting from the south of Canaan and going northwards
(Ewald, Hist?^ ii. p. 435 ; Eng. trans., ii. p. 308). Thus the
four elder sons come first, Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah ;
but then the order of birth is abandoned, and Leah's other
two sons, Zebulun (Jacob's tenth son) and Issachar (Jacob's

CHAP. 49. 365

ninth son), are inserted, Zebulun being placed before Issachar,
as the future that Jacob predicts for him is more prosperous
and honourable than that of Issachar (Di.). Cf. Deut. 33, 18,
where Zebulun and Issachar come together, but Zebulun
first, as here. The four last sons are cited according to their
geographical position; Benjamin, Joseph, Naphtali, Asher
(from south to north), Joseph and Benjamin also being in
the proper order of their birth. Dan is probably placed after
Issachar, as being the first son of Jacob by his wives' hand-
maidens (in order of birth he follows Judah, but as the order
of birth is abandoned to enumerate Leah's six sons, Dan, the
fifth, is mentioned first, after the six sons of Leah). Gad
would then be placed after Dan, and before Naphtali, who was
born before him, so as not to disturb the geographical arrange-
ment — Benjamin, Joseph, Naphtali, Asher — and possibly to
keep Zilpah's two sons together. In Deut. 33, the ' Blessing
of Moses,' — which has many points of contact with this
chapter, both in the figures it employs and the language
used, — the order is varied; viz. Reuben, Judah, Levi (whose
blessing contrasts strangely with Jacob's words in ver. 5),
Benjamin, Joseph (Ephraim and Manasseh are mentioned by
name), Zebulun, Issachar, Gad, Dan, Naphtali, Asher, while
Simeon in the text as we now have it is not mentioned at all.
The language of this chapter should be noticed. In its
elevated tone, in vigour and force, and in the numerous
figurative expressions employed, it surpasses the other poetical
passages in Genesis (9, 25 ff. 14, 19 ff. 24, 60. 25, 23. 27,
27 ff". 39 f.). Many of the expressions employed are rare, and
unusual in the later stages of the language, e.g. THQ (ana^ Xey.)
and iTlin, ver. 4; ni^D, ver. 5 (a ana^ Xey. of uncertain
meaning); \?pnD, ver. 10 (occurring again in the poetical
fragment Num. 21, 18. Deut. 33, 21. Judg. 5, 14. Ps. 60, 9) ;


niD, ver. II (arra^ \(y.) ; ''b'^b^n, ver. 12 {awa^ ^^7-)', D^nSK^D,
ver. 14 (only found once again, Judg. 5, 16); ja'^s:^, ver. 17
(ana^ Xey.) ; nv^ (only used thus in this passage), and "^2^^
(a7ra| Xey.) ver. 21 ; ni2, ver. 22 (observe the archaic fern,
ending), only in this passage for n"l3 ; U"l, ver. 23 (2^"i is
perhaps found again in Ps. 18, 15 l"i D''pn3, see the note on
ver. 23); intJ'P . ♦ ♦ 3K^ni, ver. 24, etc; also the archaic
ending \ (the old binding vowel) in |D3^ nD«, l^nx >Jn; the
suffix n for i, in ril^y and nniD, and possibly in riP^K^ (cf. the
note on this word) ; the poetical vV for bv ; 1113, poetical for
K^DJ, with which it is here parallel, ver. 6; n?^^. The
Heb.-Sam. has J^JD?, and the other Vss. render as though
ritna stood instead of tnsi ; but it is not necessary to suppose
that the text they translated from actually had the second
pers. of the verb, their renderings are probably chosen to
express THQ with greater clearness. ^''THS, part, of THQ, occurs
twice in the O. T., Judg. 9, 4. Zeph. 3,4; in the sense of
'wanton in Judg. I.e., and ^ boasti77g' in Zeph. I.e., of false
prophets. Other renderings are suggested in Ges., § 147. 3,
' a bubbling up like water wast thou' nriS being understood as
subject; or as an exclamation, ^a bubbling up like water V
the predicate being suppressed.

imn 75 ^^, i.e. with reference to the "in^ mentioned in
ver. 3. Render, ^Do not thou excel' (the jussive, with a nega-
tive, expressing a desire or wish, Driver, § 50 7), i.e. 'mayest
thou lose the privileges that belong to thee as firstborn,' viz.
those mentioned in ver. 3. LXX, /L117 eV^eV?;? (cf. Lagarde's
Genesis Graece, p. 202, notes), which Geiger, Urschrift,
p. 373, regards, not as indicating a different reading, but as
a paraphrase on the part of the LXX, who refer "inin back
to Tns, the paraphrase being due to a desire to mitigate the
effects of Reuben's sin. The Pesh. has jk^asl JJ, reading
the text as T-1^ •


-|"^nb^ ••n^tTD txhv ^"2. n^y is here construed with
the ace, as in Num. 13, 17 "inn nx Dn^'^JJl. ^2^m, Di.

CHAP. 49, VERS. 5-7. 369

explains the plural as meaning a double bed ; Del. explains
it by Ges.j § 124. i a (nouns denoting extension of space or
time^ used in the plural); Dav., S., § 17. R. 2, as a poetical
usage. With the plural here, Vn^^ ^'^yi\ of i Chron. 5, i may
be compared, Reuben also being referred to.

n 7^ *'^"^2^'^ . These words are addressed, in astonishment
at Reuben's sin, by Jacob to his other sons; therefore the
third pers.; cf. Is. 42, 20. 51, 18. 52, 14. The LXX, Pesh.,
Onq. render as though the text had ^vV^ possibly an attempt
to amend the Heb. text, which is not necessary, while the
Vulg. leaves ni?y untranslated, and makes ""Vl^^ the obj. of
Tvhx\. Geiger, Urschri/i, p. 374, supposes that these words
were not the real text, but that nnpn ''W^ was written
originally, which afterwards was changed into TOV ^i?1^*N as
being too clear. He objects to our present text because
everywhere else V1^^ is used in the plural, and only in this
passage in the singular. Di. describes his emendation, which
is very needless, as 'the purest prose.' Ewald, History^,
i. p. 535, Eng. trans., i. p. 373, foot-note, renders, ^ my couch
of highness' ' my lofty couch' pointing TOV as npj^ = ' a step,'
a rendering that can scarcely be justified. In i Chron. 1. c.
the right of firstborn, which Reuben lost, is given to Joseph,
while Judah received his (Reuben's) privilege of royalty. In
Deut. 33, 6 Reuben's blessing is as follows: 7N1 p1N"i ^rT*
"ISDD VriD \"T'1 T\tT 'Let R, live and not die, so that his men
become few.'

5-7. ^Simeon and Levi, brethren;

Weap07is ofviokfice are their shepherds staves.

Lnto their council, let not my soul come;

With their assembly, let ?iot my ho7iour be united;

For in their anger they slew men,

And in their wantonness houghed oxe?i.
B b


Cursed be their anger, for it was fierce;
And their wrath^/or it was cruel:
I will divide them in Jacob,
And scatter them in Israel.'

5. D"^n^^, Kn. and Del. take D'TI^^ as predicate, better as
in apposition to ^lh JiyiDtJ'. Simeon and Levi are brothers,
not only as sons of the same parents, but as being alike in

Online LibraryG. J SpurrellNotes on the text of the book of Genesis : with an appendix → online text (page 30 of 35)