[b-hebrew] Definite Article 7:14 - HNH (Isaac Fried)

trepp at telus.net trepp at telus.net
Thu Jul 19 16:28:09 EDT 2007

Issac Fried wrote:

> Message: 3
> Date: Wed, 18 Jul 2007 18:45:31 -0400
> From: Isaac Fried <if at math.bu.edu>
> Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] Definite Article 7:14 - HNH
> To: JoeWallack at aol.com
> Cc: b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
> Message-ID: <3F47D22B-0F3B-4E3A-994C-4B000B48EE6A at math.bu.edu>
> Content-Type: text/plain;	charset=UTF-8;	delsp=yes;	format=flowed
> Joseph,
> 1. I agree with Harold that HINEH does not require physical presence.
> 2. The Hebrew "definite article" does not require the defined to be  
> mentioned earlier in the discourse if he is known otherwise.
> 3. Virgin is a theological code word that has no correspondence in  
> the Hebrew bible, and hence the discussion (ALMAH/virgin is vain.
> 4. Things would look and sound much better if you replace "definite  
> article" by "non-arbitrary article".
> 5. The fact that the prophet said HA-(ALMAH [like saying HA-MALKAH]  
> implies that he was referring to a known person. The rest is theology.

I am not arguing with Isaac, but simply commenting on his point .5.

Has anyone considered that in Genesis 3:15, that although Chawwah is the only 
woman named beforehand, and in the immediate context as well, that there is no 
clear indication that "ha)ishshah" is referring back to that particular known 
figure, if to any previously known at all? In the context, we see a noble 
contrast between woman and serpent, in contrast to the failing of the only 
previously named woman. Apart from a traditional bias, one could easily see how 
from the very first hearing of this tradition of "the woman" that this figure 
could be thought of as set apart to fulfill some role Chawwah failed in. 
Because Chawwah was a singular mother, as the first, perhaps it could be easily 
deduced from the context that here too a unique mother is spoken of (whether 
one believed it would have to be Chawwah or some future woman. After all, it 
speaks here only of a woman's seed, as opposed to a father's seed. 

Now, without religious argument, can we not concede that the king addressed by 
Yesha(yahu might have heard of the Prophecetic Statement about "the woman" 
and "her seed" before? If so, might not "ha(almah" put all hearing in mind 
of "ha)ishshah"?

Travis Jackson

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