[b-hebrew] question re: Tel Dan stela

Uri Hurwitz uhurwitz at yahoo.com
Mon May 24 20:16:22 EDT 2004

Scott, there is no word divider between the two words; otherwise words in this inscription and many other  - but certainly not all  -- inscriptions are sometimes divided by a dot or another sign indicating that they are separate from each other.
 That this need not always be the case was shown by the occurrence of other words or phrases that are written together as are BYTDWD here. The clear meaning of the phrase here is not effected  as  is clear from a. two dozen or more of occurrence of this very phrase in the HB in the sense of  "house of David" b. the use of this same formula BYT...plus name of antoher ruler of say an Aramaeic state such as Beit Adini , if memory serves.
  Another extra-biblical exammple of such combination of two words is found in the Ammonite Tel Siran inscription: ....MLK   BN(AMN ... the king(of) the children of Ammon,
 meaning the the Ammonite people.
   There are other examples of such two words combinatioins in the inscription.
   Some people have a different interpetation of this phrase.
   I can not comment on Lemche's position here because I'm not familiar with it. It is known that intially he regarded the Beit David inscription as fraud, but later changed his mind.
  Perhaps others can add to the above.

Scott Needham <jsn at hwhome.com> wrote:

N.P. Lemche, "'House of David': The Tel Dan Inscription(s)",
_Jerusalem in Ancient History and Tradition_, ed. Thomas L. Thompson,
2003, pp. 46-67, [and, I guess, with TLT in the 'Biran Killing David'
article some years ago] asserts (1) that the "byt dwd" part of the
inscription actually appears as "bytdwd" and (2)that the two word
usage would in BH carry significantly different implications than the
one word version.

Regarding (1), one specific question: If this is so, why do 99% of the
writers on the stela present the two word version?

Generally: Anyone care to explicate?

Regards and Happy Trails,

Scott Needham
Boulder, Colorado, USA

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