[b-hebrew] 2 Samuel 12:31 MLKN or MLBN?

K Randolph kwrandolph at gmail.com
Thu Sep 15 15:34:05 EDT 2011

B-Hebrew haburim:

In 2 Samuel 12:31 I find the word במלכן used only here with no clue as to
its meaning.

However, here there is a ketib/qere pair, with the qere being במלבן meaning
“brick kiln” with a prefixed ב. The LXX seems to agree, using the word

Two questions:

Is there any evidence from the DSS that could clarify this?

Is there any archaeological evidence that King David used fired bricks in
any of his building projects?

The only other use of מלבן is in Jeremiah 43:9, referring to a royal brick
kiln in Egypt.

Seeing as only one pharaoh used fired bricks before the Greek era, and that
was Raamesis II, is that not a clue that Raamesis II was a contemporary of
Jeremiah, known also by his Biblical name Necho?

Karl W. Randolph.

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