[b-hebrew] HQBH and QBTH in Numbers 25:8

David Kolinsky yishalom at sbcglobal.net
Sun Aug 17 16:48:21 EDT 2008

  The essence of the root QWB / QBH means "to channel (drive with vigour)  into something;" hence the expansions on this root:
  QBL - to receive (channel s.th into one's hand)
  QBA/ - to rob (take into one's possession)
  QBTs - to gather (channel together)
  QBR - to bury (channel into a large hole)
  NQB - to bore out, pierce, perferate (channel into a small hole)
  In Arabic QWB - to dig a shallow, to hollow out
  In Syriac - QWBH - be dug into, be arched
  when one digs just under the surface of a thing the result is an arching of the roof of the channel, hence this root comes to mean "something arched":
  Arabic QBH - dome
  Hebrew QWBH - tent, canopy
  Hebrew QBH - stomach
  Hebrew QB / YQB - vat
  Not only is there an intentional play on words in the particular sentence that you point out, but also throughout Numbers / B'Midbar chapters 22, 23, and 24, just preceding it, where the essence of the word QWB "to channel (drive with vigour)  into something" is used to mean "to curse."
  There is no doubt in my mind that this wordplay is all very intentional.
  thanks for your time and interesting question,
  d kolinsky

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Today's Topics:

1. Re: how many time reish has a dagesh? (Yitzhak Sapir)
2. HQBH and QBTH in Numbers 25:8 (Yaakov Stein)


Message: 1
Date: Sat, 16 Aug 2008 22:31:09 +0000
From: "Yitzhak Sapir" 
Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] how many time reish has a dagesh?
To: b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org

Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1

On Fri, Aug 15, 2008 at 6:38 AM, Yodan wrote:
> Does any one know how many times the letter Reish appears in the Tanakh with
> a Dagesh?
> (Example: LeShorekha in Proverbs 3:8).

What is the purpose of this? (If we knew the purpose, we might be able to help
you better).

Yitzhak Sapir


Message: 2
Date: Sun, 17 Aug 2008 06:50:14 +0300
From: Yaakov Stein 
Subject: [b-hebrew] HQBH and QBTH in Numbers 25:8
To: "b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org" 
<424CDC689E5CEF4D9FEADE56A378D9221F85C1D2 at exrad4.ad.rad.co.il>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset="us-ascii"

The word QBH appears twice in one sentence,
yet the classical commentaries relate to them as two completely unlrealted words.

Rashi says that the first "HQBH" means "the tent"
while the second "QBTH" (of the woman) is some bodily organ,
probably the stomach (relating the word to QYBH).

Most of the commentaries and translations don't seem to notice
that this is the same word, used once for the man and once for the woman.

The only exceptions are those that hint at miracles,
implying that Pinhas somehow managed to strike
the genitals of both Zimri and Cozby.

Another possibility is that HQBH means the man's "room" or "chamber"
and the same word is used for stomach
(similar to the modern usage of chamber for various internal organs).

Does anyone know of other possibilities ?

Yaakov (J) Stein


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