[b-hebrew] 22nd Psalm & Lions

David Kimbrough (CLWA) dkimbrough at clwa.org
Wed Dec 3 19:24:58 EST 2003

In you previous comment you indicate that perhaps the word Ka'ari (like a
lion) might be attached to the previous phrase rendering the verse as the
JPS did in 1917:

"For dogs have encompassed me; a company of evil-doers have enclosed me;
like a lion, they are at my hands and my feet."

Initially I did not find this very satisfying as I tried to imagine how a
single lion would "enclose" a single man in some fashion analogous to a band
villains or a pack of dogs who by virtue of their numbers can surround a
single man.  Further how would a lion that has enclosed a single man,
however that was achieved, then be "at my hands and my feet", as opposed to
some other part of the human body.  However upon further reflection if a
shepherd were indeed surprised by a lion he might himself backed up to a
cliff-face or some rocks.  It would only be natural to force himself as far
back as possible with his feet forward and hand out front in an attempt at
self-defense.   Here "enclose" might be "cornered" or "pinned in".

However the "atnah" is beneath "cornered" which would seem to clearly put
the lion as the subject of the next (verbless) sentence.  That reading would
seem to require an emendation, moving the atnah.  Do you agree or am miss
reading the role of the atnah here?

dkimbrough at clwa.org

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