TL Phillips tiphillips at InfoAve.Net
Sat Oct 31 00:33:33 EST 1998

Peter_Kirk at SIL.ORG wrote:

> This sounds a great idea in theory but how far do you take it? Idioms
> from the original often just don't communicate properly. I guess )FP
> taken alone doesn't mean "anger" any more than it means "face", and
> )EREK )APPAYIM is just an idiom... but would you really translate (in
> Exodus 34:6 etc) that YHWH has a long nose?! :-)
> Peter Kirk
> ______________________________ Reply Separator _________________

Well, of course, He does have a long nose. But while I admit that the phrase is a
little cumbersome, and remembering I said "[idioms] should be retained **as much as
possible** there can be surely a way to bring out the meaning without divorcing the
original color.

First of all, I am not sure that )eReK )aPPaYiM means "long-nosed" literally  or
otherwise by the context. Emotions can be displayed by the manner of breathing ('np)
and the nose(breather?)/  'p and the speed/length of its breathing  is the indicator.
Can all of that get put in a translation?

YHWH 'El gentle and giving, slow of breaths (or slow of nostrils ; or "easy-breathing"
:-), full of loving-devotion and faithfulness.

Soooo,  maybe this is not as literal as one requires, but it still gives
breathing/nostrils and the correct amount of operation of them to indicate there is no
angry snorting going on, and instead calmness. This at least gives a little more of
what was being said than just "slow to anger." I would like to see xariy 'af brought
across with "burning" breath, or even burning nose/nostrils. You get the idea. We
don't have to break ears, but a little insight to the expression of the authors' world
is nice too.  Shakespeare it ain't, but it ain't Shakespeare or even European. :-)

Now whatever I say about translation must be taken in context of a zillion
translations and translators, and that one that sounds perhaps awkward to
English-speaking ears is no threat. A thought ran through my mind today---there are no
translations, just commentaries. (Two thoughts a day!---B-Hebrew has really helped

Shabbat Shalom,
Peace on you,

> ________________
> Subject: Re: Translation
> Author:  tiphillips at at internet
> Date:    28/10/1998 11:17
> This has been my problem with (English) translations, and also Fox but to a
> lesser extent. I would like to see the Tanak presented as the non-English,
> non-Western document(s) it/they are. Idioms say a lot of how the writers and
> their culture thought. They should be retained as much as possible. That's
> why I began working on my own translation again. Won't be perfect, maybe not
> "flowing verse" but beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Fox still makes
> too many accommodations.
> Shalom,
> Tim

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