[b-hebrew] Hos 7:4 (was The Pesach prohibition )

Harold Holmyard hholmyard at ont.com
Sat Sep 23 14:44:27 EDT 2006

I apologize for sending this twice, but it was 
wrongly titled, so for the archives I send it again.

Vadim Cherny wrote:

>> Hos. 7:4 They are all adulterers, burning like an
>> oven whose fire the baker need not stir from the
>> kneading of the dough till it rises.
> Probably you know Hebrew sufficiently to see that that translation is
> divorced from the Hebrew text

HH: That was the NIV. Here is the NRSV:

Hos. 7:4 They are all adulterers;
	they are like a heated oven,
whose baker does not need to stir the fire,
from the kneading of the dough until it is leavened.

HH: These translations are produced by teams of
scholars and do represent the Hebrew. A literal
translation could be:

All of them are adulterers, like a burning oven a
baker ceases from stirring from the kneading of
dough until it is leavened.

HH: The idea is that the oven is so hot the baker
   does not need to do anything to preserve its
heat from the kneading until the dough is fully
leavened. This is a time consuming process, so if
the oven is hot the whole time, it is very hot.

>>> In any case, the dough is in the oven, and does not leaven anymore, but
> is
>>> baked. (Any woman here on the list who ever tried to bake?) "from
> kneading
>>> until humtzato" cannot mean "from kneading until leavening", that's
> absurd.
>>> It could only mean, "from kneading until being baked."

>> HH: I have made bread. There is a kneading
>> process, and afterwards the dough is left to rise.
> In the oven??

HH: Neither the kneading nor the leavening is done
with the dough in the oven. But the oven has to be
heated to be ready for the dough when it is
leavened. In Hos 7:4 the oven is already hot when
the kneading begins and needs no further
attention, since it remains hot when the leavening
is complete.

Harold Holmyard
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