Agency in Daniel 7

c stirling bartholomew cc.constantine at
Tue Mar 6 16:23:37 EST 2001

Doing another study of the Apocalypse of Daniel, using the LXX (OG)
primarily but also Theodotian and the MT.

My question has to do with agency. Particularly how is agency encoded in
biblical Aramaic? The particular agency I have in mind is the agency which
other throws and destroys the fourth beast and the little (11th) horn.

I have made a few preliminary observations about this agency in the OG and
Theodotian. The agent of vengeance in Daniel 7 is not specified. The evil
kingdoms and evil kings are removed from power using passive verb
constructions where the agent is not given. The Ancient of Days appears at
the time of the removal of the fourth beast and the little horn. The
court/tribunal (of heaven?) which sits also appears at the time of the
removal. But nowhere is either the agent or the means of removal from power
and destruction made explicit. (One exception is the burning of the body of
the fourth beast). 

The kingdoms and kings prior to the fourth beast and little horn are all
(implicitly) removed from power buy other kingdoms and kings. The  little
horn is specifically mentioned as the agent of removing three previous
horns. Aside from this the notion of agency in the overthrow of kingdoms is
more or less left implicit.

Here is my question again. How is agency encoded in biblical Aramaic? Does
this passive construction in the OG and Theod. obscure some Aramaic idiom in
such a manner that I am being mislead into thinking that there is no agency
specified in the MT of Daniel 7?


Clayton Stirling Bartholomew
Three Tree Point
P.O. Box 255 Seahurst WA 98062

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