[b-hebrew] The islands

VC vadim_lv at center-tv.net
Tue Jun 8 06:13:02 EDT 2004


Dear Reinier,

I'm not sure how do you read Is23:2, but it seems to me that Zidonians
crossed the sea to replenish the islanders. So the islands are offshore. cf.
big waters in the next verse.

Hebrew is not a dead language, nor it had ever been. A line of
Hebrew-speaking Jews never ceased in millennia. This is the oldest living
language. Consider that Masorets knew even the cantillations; how much more
certainly they knew the meaning of the words! If for millennia islands were
islands, then there is a very high burden, indeed, to translate them as
coastland.

I don't take an appeal to the translation authorities, such as NJPS, as an
argument.

I mean, I'm not pushing any other translation. I really don't know what was
the problem with these islands - unless, of course, these are the much later
inserts in Isaiah about the Greeks, but then there is no evidence of inserts
in the two relevant psalms.


Best regards,

Vadim


> In the case of a dead language there is no such thing as an established
> meaning. Who establishes the meaning of a word? The native speaker. In
> this case we have no native speakers, only a limited amount of data. The
> only reliable way to find out what a word (probably) means is by
> studying it within its context, and that is what I have done.
>
> If you want more proof I can refer you to Isaiah 23:2 where the traders
> of Sidon and the inhabitants of the COASTLAND/ISLAND seem to be
> identical.
>
> Moreover, most recent English translations translate the Hebrew word )IY
> with coastland, including the NJPS.
>
> Best wishes,
>
> Reinier
>
>
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: b-hebrew-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org
> > [mailto:b-hebrew-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org] On Behalf Of VC
> > Sent: dinsdag 8 juni 2004 9:06
> > To: b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
> > Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] The islands
> >
> >
> > Dear Reinier,
> >
> > The translation of "coastland" is perfectly reasonable.
> > However, can we disregard the established meaning of the word
> > and attach it the sense, which we think suits it better? This
> > approach can lead as far away. Besides, the Tanakhic authors
> > had pretty good grasp on geography. They probably could
> > distinguish between an island and a coastland, even more so
> > since a large part of their country was a coastland or very
> > close to it.
> >
> > Best regards,
> >
> > Vadim Cherny
> >
> >
> > > Let us not be misled by the term "islands". The Hebrew word
> > probably
> > > has a wider meaning than that. Coastland may be a much better
> > > translation. Think of Isa. 20:6, for example, which
> > probably refers to
> > > Philistea, Tyrus, or Sidon, some place near Israel. In the later
> > > chapters of Isaiah it may refer to all kinds of Greek and/or
> > > Phoenician colonies in the Mediterranean.
> > >
> > > Let us not forget that we have good maps these days. For us the
> > > distinction between islands, peninsulas, and coastlands is
> > relevant. I
> > > doubt whether it had the same relevance for the writer of
> > > deutero-Isaiah.
> > >
> > > Best wishes,
> > >
> > > Reinier de Blois
> > >
> > >
> > > > -----Original Message-----
> > > > From: b-hebrew-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org
> > > > [mailto:b-hebrew-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org] On Behalf Of
> > Noam Eitan
> > > > Sent: dinsdag 8 juni 2004 1:09
> > > > To: b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
> > > > Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] The islands
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > Peter Kirk <peterkirk at qaya.org> wrote:
> > > > On 07/06/2004 12:39, VC wrote:
> > > >
> > > > >Dear Listmembers,
> > > > >
> > > > >Just wanted to share a thought. What always puzzled me in
> > > > the Tanakh -
> > > > >and this turn is most often encountered in Isaiah - is the
> > > > reference to
> > > > >certain islands. They are clearly hostile to the Jews, ...
> > > > >
> > > >
> > > > >Where does it say this?
> > > >
> > > > Many of the 36 references to Islands in the Tanakh are hostile,
> > > > particularly in the prophets. But it's not so much that
> > there is any
> > > > evidence they were hostile to the Judeans, but rather that the
> > > > prophets were hostile to them, and even this hostility was not
> > > > specific but often part of a generalized Yahwistic hostility to
> > > > other nations who will be taught a lesson one day about Yahweh's
> > > > superiority. I think Jeremiah 31:10 is emblematic -
> > 'Islands' stand
> > > > for the remotest corners of the earth (and Yahweh's message and
> > > > score settling will reach EVEN as far as the islands.) - Noam
> > > > Eitan, Brooklyn, NY
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > ---------------------------------
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