Imagens das páginas
PDF
ePub

prey (ver. 4). When the trumpet is blown in the city, we know that the city is in danger (ver. 6). The fifth verse contains a similar argument from the correspondence of cause and effect:

לה
התפול צפור על פח הארץ ומוקש אין

היעלה פח מן האדמה ולכוד לא ילכוד

'Will a bird light upon a trap in the earth, if it has no bait? Will a trap spring up from the ground, when there is no bird on it to catch?'

יקשתי לך וגם נלכדת ;(13 .Is

. viii . 15 , xxvii) ונוקשו ונלכדו

II. That the root op does not refer properly to being caught or taken in a trap, may be gathered from its being used in this and other places as complementary to 735. Thus,

) (. ; (Jer. 1. 24); which agrees with the conjecture that wpi means to lure, as distinct from 706, to catch.

This is further borne out by the fact that wpia is complementary to AD a trap. Thus, wpraby mob (Jos. xxiii

. 13; Is. viii. 15). In Ps. lxix. 22 the idea of a bait is appropriate : * Let their table become a trap (nb) before them; and a snare (wpia), when they are at peace.” In the preceding verse the stupefying 287 is spoken of; and in the verses following, its effects: 'Let their eyes be darkened, &c.'

III. The word op: is usually taken to mean a fowler. But this involves the use of a passive instead of an active form; and that, when there is a form wip?, for fowler. In Ps. xci. 3 it is usual to render w3927 no by, '“spare of the fowler:' but the meaning, baited (= prepared, or set) trap, seems equally appropriate. If wip be thus explained it might also not unnaturally stand alone, with no understood, and thus signify not a fowler but a trap. At first sight Prov. vi. 5 seems to require that it should mean a fowler, in accordance with our Authorized Version: Deliver thyself as a roe from the hand [of the hunter), and as a bird from the hand of the fowler

[ocr errors]

(vyp: 79). But the occurrence of 79 does not imply personality; and 70 may mean simply out of the power of, or out of. It happens moreover that this form of expression occurs in connexion with another word for trap, in Ps. cxli. 9: 15 '7'2

yop', 'out of the hands of the trap they have set for me.” In accordance with this analogy it would seem better to replace fowler by trap in Prov. vi. 5, supra.

IV. The plural of wap occurs in Jer. v. 26, and is there again explained of fowlers: but, in order to adapt this rendering to the context, it is assumed further that ye, instead of being a participle (from 750 to settle down, subside), is an infinitive of unusual form. Thus Gussetius (quoted by Rosenmüller) :

Speculatur improbus quisque populi mei ut aucupum quiescere, h.e. ut id aucupes faciunt, quando sedati ac immoti tacitique sedent, expectantes num avis aliqua in retia sese induat, nolentes eas inde avertere strepitu.'

Assuming the general accuracy of this explanation we may yet demur to the actual translation to the words 100 Dwip? 709, as involving, (1) the use of the passive form wip for an active; and (2) the use of the participle 7 for an infinitive. This latter would seem to mean a croucher, i.e. a fowler in the act of crouching down (as described by Gussetius) and watching his traps. In default of a better word we may render it broadly by fowler. The word b'xip? may be taken, as above, in the sense traps; and that, in connexion with 7921, as its governing verb; seeing that 790 may be followed by an accu

, (. 5); (. xxiii. 9). The meaning of the clause from Jer. v. 26 would thus be that they watch as a fowler WATCHES HIS TRAPS. This gives the same general result as that which is commonly adopted, while yet avoiding the introduction of grammatical anomalies.

.Numb) מגבעות אשורנו ;(5 .Job xxxv) שור שחקים sative

,
as in

1 Or, baited. Compare v. 4, 'and let me not eat of their dainties.'

V. In the passage 1 Sam. xviii. 21 the meaning lure or decoy suits wpis better than that of trap. Michal is there put forward as a bait to draw David into the hands of the Philistines, who are the trap: 'And Saul said, I will give him her, that she may be a snare (opia) to him, and that the hand of the Philistines may be against him. The word is applied in Ex. xxiii. 33 to the enticement of idolatry; and in Deut. vii. 25 to that of the gold or silver that is on them.' Compare Ex. xxiv. 12, Deut. vii. 16, Jud. ii. 3, viii. 27. In Prov. xx. 25 the similitude of a bait swallowed thoughtlessly seems to be used. This is suggested with sufficient clearness by the Authorized Version: “It is as a snare to the man who devoureth that which is holy, and after vows to make enquiry. In Prov. xxii. 25 the expression oplo mp), and get (lit. take) a snare,' is used. Here the idea of taking a BAIT, with the implied consequences, is appropriate: but if wpis meant properly a snare or trap, without reference to the bait, the expression would need further explanation.

VI. Thus far an attempt has been made to shew that the meaning bait is specially appropriate in certain passages for derivatives of wp'

. In others the same derivatives might of course be used more directly of the trap itself. But it may be well to state that the former meaning is not here assumed to be of necessity primary. The first reference might be to the arrangement of the trap in the vicinity of the bait; to the spring perhaps. Thus wp', the root of wpia, might be cognate

, , , 110jp? ( xxix. 20) is referred. The primary reference in hop might be (1) to its shape, or (2) to its tension. But, in either case, a snare,' having for its spring a bent or bowed twig, might be derived from a root cognate with hop, a bow. Be this as it may, it seems that the meaning bait is suitable to wpia in certain contexts, and might be said to be required in Amos ii. 5.

VII. The supposed infinitive e in Jer. v. 26 is referred to by Gesenius in connexion with his rendering of DW) (Gen. vi. 3), of which in fact it is the main support.

Rosenmüller (ed. 1821) quotes with apparent approbation the grammatical blunder of J. F. Bernd, who makes va an infinitive piel, with prefix and affix, from W. Thus (the reference being to the Rabbinic rendering adopted in the English Bible) :

Pluribus refutavit illam de voce bwsententiam J. F. Bernd in peculiari de hoc vocabulo ejusque significatu Exercitat. crit. philol. Hal. 1732. 4., docuitque referendum esse ad radicem niv erravit, ita ut bara sit Infinitivus Pihel cum Prefixo et Affixo, et cum verbis X1 vertendum: dum errare eos facit caro.

Gesenius, who notices the error of Bernd, assumes an infinitive , from w, and renders, 'propter lapsum, s. delicta eorum.' But this is inappropriate to the context, seeing that the singular, he is flesh,' follows immediately; and it would thus be open to serious objection, even if it were granted that w was an infinitive. We may conclude then with Fürst, lex. s.v. DIN (without adopting his own unsound conjecture): the construction that it is an infinitive with suffix - is unsuitable, because of the following X377.

CHARLES TAYLOR

ON A SUPPOSED FINANCIAL OPERATION OF

JULIUS CÆSAR'S.

THERE is a stroke of finance described in the following passage:

SUETONIUS, de vita Divi Julii, cap. 42. ed. Teubner.

De pecuniis mutuis, disjecta novarum tabularum exspectatione, quæ crebro movebatur, decrevit tandem, ut debitores creditoribus satis facerent per æstimationem possessionum, quanti quasque ante civile bellum comparassent, deducto summæ æris alieni, si quid usuræ nomine numeratum aut perscriptum fuisset ; qua condicione quarta pars fere crediti deperibat.

This passage is thus interpreted by Mommsen, Book v. Chap 11:

“Two important concessions were made to the debtors and that as early as 705. First, the interest in arrear was struck off, and that which was paid was deducted from the capital. Secondly, the creditor was compelled to accept the moveable and immoveable property of the debtor in lieu of payment at the estimated value which his effects had before the civil war and the general depreciation which it had occasioned. The latter enactment was not unreasonable ; if the creditor was to be looked on de facto as the owner of the property of his debtor to the amount of the sum due to him, it was doubtless proper that he should bear his share in the general depreciation of the property." There is nothing perhaps very astonishing in Cæsar's being praised for that application of the sponge to debts, which when recommended by an American President is treated as a freak of craziness. To deduct from the capital sum owed by the debtor all that he has ever paid as interest is

« AnteriorContinuar »