[b-hebrew] Re: Malachi 2:16

Peter Kirk peterkirk at qaya.org
Mon Sep 1 09:43:18 EDT 2003

On 01/09/2003 04:47, Harold R. Holmyard III wrote:

> ...
>It is possible that another reading, given in some translations, may be
>"For He hates divorce, says the Lord God of Israel. One covers violence
>over his garment, says the Lord of Hosts.
>This translation depnds on several understandings. First, in Mal 2:16 the
>Lord would speak of Himself in the third person, as He does in 1:9. Second,
>2:16 would continue the reference to God in the third person that occurs in
>2:13-15. And third, it requires a reader's understanding that the verb
>about covering oneself with violence could not refer to God, even though
>there would be no outward change in subject.
>However, 2:13-15 is probably not the Lord speaking directly, but the
>prophet, for the prophet seems to be speaking beginning in verse 10.
>				Yours,
>				Harold Holmyard
>				translator, HCSB
Are  you in effect suggesting that we have indirect speech in the first 
line of v.16? After all, if the line read "'amar yhwh 'elohey  yisra'el 
kiy-sane' shallax", then we would have no qualms about translating as 
indirect speech, "the LORD God of Israel says that he hates divorce". 
And the first two lines of this verse seem to be poetic parallels, which 
may explain the departure from the normal word order.

Are there any unambiguous cases of an indirect speech introducer like 
'amar XXX following the speech? Cynthia Miller writes "the frame of 
indirect speech necessarily appears only initially since the quotation 
is syntactically subordinate to the frame" ("Introducing Direct 
Discourse in Biblical Hebrew Narrative", p.203 of R.D. Bergen (ed) 
"Biblical Hebrew and Discourse Linguistics", SIL 1994), but this is a 
non sequitur as it is by no means necessarily always true that 
subordinate clauses follow their main clauses.

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

More information about the b-hebrew mailing list