[b-hebrew] The Name "Reuben"
yitzhaksapir at gmail.com
Wed Dec 5 14:24:51 EST 2007
The pun on misery may have to do with the different traditions
preserved in the Peshitta and Josephus, of reading the name
with a final -l, not -n. If we do so, we get (W)BL for the final
consonants. These present much more reasonable roots
from which "misery" may be derived: BLH "worn out", NBL
wither -- initial N- verbs had a tendency to develop initial Y-
counterparts in NWS, YBLT "wart", )BL "dry". Also, so long
as the name has a final -n, the most likely interpretation of
the name has to do with a root R)B, whatever that might mean.
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