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

Peter Kirk peterkirk at qaya.org
Wed Oct 1 17:18:30 EDT 2003

On 01/10/2003 13:45, B. M. Rocine wrote:

>Hi Peter,
>I don't see what Qumran has to do with Dahood's Ps. 1:1. ...
My mention of Qumran was not concerned with this verse, but more general 
in that, generally speaking, the DSS confirm our traditional 
understanding of the Hebrew lexicon; they confirm the consonantal text 
of the HB; and they provide a range of interpretations of the Psalms 
which, if I am not mistaken, do not generally support Dahood's thesis of 
widespread Ugaritic links.

Meanwhile, from even earlier than the DSS, the LXX confirms the 
traditional understanding of Psalm 1. It seems unlikely that Ugaritic 
senses of words which, by Dahood's hypothesis, survived for many 
centuries over a wide area including Ugarit and Israel were within a 
relatively short time so entirely forgotten that a verse as prominent, 
well-known and memorable as the very first verse of the psalter would be 
so entirely misunderstood.

>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
I don't accept NIV as an authority. Were they right to translate like 
this? Probably not.

Psa 110:7: obscure but no reason to reject "way".
Hos 10:13: probably "way" here means something like "strategy".
Pro 31:3: the BHS margin suggests a reading YAREK which makes good 
sense; or DEREK would fit well with 30:19 which we have just discussed, 
at least with my interpretation, although this makes the parallel with 
HAYIL slightly strained.
Psa 138:5: are the ways/methods of YHWH not worth singing about?
Jer 3:13: see Pro 31:3, this  could again be YAREK or a euphemistic 
sense of DEREK.
Psa 119:37: the text is doubtful, but "way" makes very good sense.

So I really see no reason to abandon the sense "way" and no evidence for 
a second sense of DEREK.

Peter Kirk
peter at qaya.org (personal)
peterkirk at qaya.org (work)

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