[b-hebrew] Migdal-Eber

George F. Somsel gfsomsel at juno.com
Fri Jun 4 19:34:09 EDT 2004

The JPS Tanak translates

And you, O Migdal-eder,
Outpost of Fair Zion,
It shall come to you:
The former monarchy shall return—
The kingship of Fair Jerusalem.
By their capitalization they seem to indicate that it is a name of a
location whether or not it was "a tower . . . where shepherds kept guard
over the animals . . ."

_ The Archaeological Encyclopedia of the Holy Land _ by Avraham Negev
MIGDAL-EDER The place where Jacob sojourned after the death of Rachel
(Gen. 35:21; Authorized Version: ‘tower of Eder’), known also in the
Roman period. In the Septuagint it is located between Beth-El and
Rachel’s tomb. In the time of the Mishna the place was still known, and
it is there that the Messiah will make himself known. Eusebius (Onom.
43:12) and other early Christian sources identify Migdal-Eder with
Shepherd’s Field 1 1/2 miles east of Bethlehem. Identified with Siyan
al-Ghanam, southwest of Jerusalem. 
There is some thought that Eder which is mentioned in Josh 15.22 may be
Arad (metathesis).  This was in the south of Judah "toward Edom."  In
this case, Migdol-Eder could be "Tower of Eder (Arad)" rather than "Tower
of the Flock."  There is a tendency to give aetiological accounts of
place names such as is the case with Beersheba which has more than one
aetiological story ("oath" or "seven").  At this point, however, we can
do no more than speculate so I would recommend not taking a firm position
regarding this.


On Fri, 4 Jun 2004 21:59:47 +0200 "wattswestmaas"
<wattswestmaas at eircom.net> writes:
> Dear all,
> Can anyone tell me if there is evidence that Migdal-Eber was a 
> tower
> situated on the road to Jersusalem north of Bet-lechem (Bethlehem) 
> where
> shepherds kept guard over the animals that were to be used for the 
> temple
> sacrifices.
> This is in connection with Micah 4:8 where the word can be written 
> as a
> place name instead of: "tower of the flock". The other occurence to 
> be found
> in genesis just after Jacob buried his beloved Rachel.
> Finally I would just like to know if the verb: Aleph-Tav-Heh used in 
> this
> sentence (Sometime Aleph-Tav-Aleph) belongs to the 'Lamed-aleph' or 
> the
> 'Lamed-heh' conjugation.
> Thankyou - chris
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