[b-hebrew] Dahood on `ecah, derek, mow$ab

B. M. Rocine brocine at twcny.rr.com
Wed Oct 1 16:45:46 EDT 2003

Hi Peter,

I don't see what Qumran has to do with Dahood's Ps. 1:1.  Perhaps you have
misunderstood.  I wrote:

> >Why is it that Dahood's work on Psalms (Anchor, 1965!) is not impacting
> >recent translations, commentaries, lexicons?
> >
> >For instance, he suggests the following for 1:1--
> >
> >"...has not entered the council (`ecah) of the wicked,/ Nor in the
> >(derek) of sinners stood,/ nor in the session (mow$ab) of scoffers sat."
> >
> >He says `ecah can mean council as well as counsel.  That's easy enough to
> >take, right?
> >
> >For derek, he points out a Ug. cognate drkt, meaning throne, and says
> >Hb. derek can mean throne (or seat of power) in the Tanakh in passages
> >as Ps 110:7 (and I might add Hos. 10:13, Pro 31:3, Ps 138:5, Jer 3:13, Ps
> >119:37).   The idea has barely snuck into HALOT.
> >
> >He says mow$ab may have a political nuance as in Ps 107:32 (and I add Gen
> >36:43, 1 Ki 10:5, Job 29:7, Ps 132:13).
> >

and you wrote:
> Perhaps it is because other scholars do not accept that speculative
> reconstructions from a cognate language, many centuries remote from the
> Psalms, take priority over all the other evidence from DSS, Rabbinic
> commentaries, ancient versions etc, all of which is probably closer in
> time to the Psalms than is any of the Ugaritic material.
> Dahood's proposed meaning of "throne" for DRK seems to me just about as
> speculative and unnecessary as Karl's "unknown" for (LMH.

He doesn't suggest an emendation or reconstruction (at least in this verse
;-)  ).  He reads derek as derek and mow$ab as mow$ab.  So there is no
relevance to Qumran here unless there is a pesher on Psa 1:1 that I haven't
seen.  I would think, if anything, Qumran supports Dahood's emphasis on
place, given the cult's general devotion to their community.  In one Pesher
Psalms that I know of (1QH XVI. 4-6) we read 'wd[kh 'dwny] ky nttny bmqwr
nwzlym byb$h wmbw` mym b'rc cyh...`cy xyym bm`yn rz mxwb'ym btwk `cy mym "I
thank [you, Lord] because you placed me at the source of streams in a dry
land, at a spring of water in a parched land...trees of life in the secret
source, hidden among the watered trees."

BTW, did you look at the other vv. I cited for derek meaning "seat of
power"?  NIV did translate some of those as "strength," "vitality" or some


B. M. Rocine
Living Word Church
6101 Court St. Rd.
Syracuse, NY 13206

ph: 315.437.6744
fx: 315.437.6766

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