[b-hebrew] virginity

Lisbeth S. Fried lizfried at umich.edu
Mon Jul 16 19:39:42 EDT 2007


Dear All,
The tokens of virginity are the blood stains on the sheet.
There is no other token, that is, no other proof, possible.

A friend of mine who studies such things told me that there are several
cases in the Medieval period, where fathers brought their daughters to a
doctor to have their hymens sewed up (!)
prior to marriage.

Liz Fried
Ann Arbor

> -----Original Message-----
> From: b-hebrew-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org
[mailto:b-hebrew-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org] On
> Behalf Of dwashbur at nyx.net
> Sent: Monday, July 16, 2007 7:19 PM
> To: b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
> Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] virginity
>
> You are arbitrarily redefining "virginity" to mean "intact hymen" whereas
in the biblical
> text it
> clearly means "not having had intercourse."  I have yet to see anything
anywhere in the
> textual or linguistic context that makes this redefinition valid.
>
> On 16 Jul 2007 at 15:19, Isaac Fried wrote:
>
> > Tory,
> >
> > There is no, and there can not be, any reference in the Hebrew bible
> > to physical virginity as it MEANS NOTHING. We know, and the ancient
> > Hebrews certainly knew as well, that a girl may inadvertently lose
> > her virginity for no fault of her own. Some girls are born non
> > virgins, some girls need a certain medical intervention to facilitate
> > their blood flow during menstruation which may lead to virginity
> > loss, and a good number of girls loose their virginity by some common
> > non sexual activities. Lack of physical virginity is surely no
> > admissible evidence against any woman. You can rest assured that the
> > ancient Hebrews never stoned a woman to death for sheer lack of
> > virginity.
> >
> > Isaac Fried, Boston University
> >
> > On Jul 16, 2007, at 2:10 PM, Tory Thorpe wrote:
> >
> > > On Jul 16, 2007, at 8:51 AM, K Randolph wrote:
> > >
> > >> Tory:
> > >>
> > >> You are guilty of pushing a particular reading for what historically
> > >> have been ideological reasons.
> > >
> > > I disagree that the reading "young woman" in Isa. vii 14 is
> > > ideologically driven. In fact, I have never heard or read any modern
> > > Hebrew scholar make that claim. This reading allows for physical
> > > virginity.
> > >
> > >> It is my understanding that there was no problem among Jews with the
> > >> understanding of (LMH meaning "virgin" until after the Christian
> > >> claim
> > >> that Jesus was born of such. The belief that Messiah would be born of
> > >> a virgin continued among some Jews as late as the 1400s AD (mentioned
> > >> in Rafael Patai "The Messiah Texts", I'm citing from memory having
> > >> read the book decades ago
> > >
> > > I have this book and I've been searching but cannot find where a
> > > belief in a virginal conception and birth of the Jewish Messiah was
> > > maintained in Judaism from ? down to the 15th century. And you must
> > > understand, saying there was "no problem among Jews with the
> > > understanding of (LMH meaning 'virgin' until after the Christian
> > > claim that Jesus was born of such" is unfounded and highly offensive.
> > > It reminds one of a similar libelous claim that Jews altered their
> > > Bible in response to Christian claims.
> > >
> > >> The reasons that I and many others claim that (LMH means "virgin" are
> > >> both linguistic and ideological:
> > >
> > > The reason for reading "young woman" is simply linguistic and does
> > > not exclude your ideology. That's why the reading "young woman" is
> > > nonpartisan.
> > >
> > >> The claim that Mariam the mother of Jesus was a virgin at the time
> > >> she
> > >> got pregnant and gave birth.
> > >
> > > I am not disputing this claim.
> > >
> > >> By prior agreement, we are enjoined from pushing the ideologic
> > >> reasons
> > >> (the only reason I mention them above is to admit that they exist and
> > >> that they are not linguistic), but we can mention the linguistic
> > >> reasons which, contrary to your claims, is not "pushing our
> > >> ideology".
> > >
> > > If you translate almah as "virgin" in Isa. vii 14 you leave no room
> > > for much else. That is why it is a partisan translation. The "young
> > > woman" is not because physical virginity is not ruled out.
> > >
> > >> For you to deny that the linguistic reasons exist can only be
> > >> understood as pushing your ideology,
> > >
> > > I don't think this part of your argument can be taken seriously. I
> > > have not denied that you have linguistic reasons for your reading.
> > > However, your reading, which you yourself admit is part ideology,
> > > denies me mine. I stand by my claim that "young woman" cannot be
> > > construed as an ideological reading.
> > >
> > > Tory Thorpe
> > > _______________________________________________
> > > b-hebrew mailing list
> > > b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
> > > http://lists.ibiblio.org/mailman/listinfo/b-hebrew
> > >
> >
> >
> > _______________________________________________
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> >
>
>
> Dave Washburn
> But I can't say Sylvester, George!
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