[b-hebrew] L) YD( )TW (gen 43)

Isaac Fried if at math.bu.edu
Tue Dec 11 09:07:30 EST 2012


1. It is a good point, and is possibly what prompted Rash"i to equate  
wife and bread.

2. Sorry, but I can not accept the poisoning argument (yet I admit  
that it is a decision of the heart not of the head). I just can not  
believe that the Hebrew bible would hint, even remotely, as to the  
possibility that the noble Joseph (the son of Jacob and Rachel!)  
harbored an intention to harm his master. It appears that the Master  
had also an unlimited confidence in his Hebrew servant. He did not  
even believe the fabricated accusations of his wife. Had he thought  
his venomous wife speaking the truth he would have undone the boy  
right there and then, but instead merely took him into protective  
custody.

3. So,

  ולא ידע אתו מאומה כי אם הלחם אשר הוא  
אוכל

remains enigmatic. One may say that it refers to the master going  
over with Joseph over the daily menu (a variation on the combination  
of humus + tahini + pita + fish?), but even this, I feel, is tenuous.

Isaac Fried, Boston University

On Dec 10, 2012, at 10:26 AM, Nir cohen - Prof. Mat. wrote:

> 2) it would make no sense the minister inspecting JOSEPH's meal -  
> if he wanted to poisen joseph a simple
> execution would do. so, "he" cannot be joseph.
>
> observe that joseph's reply is of identical pattern, except that  
> THE MINISTER's meal is replaced
> with THE MINISTER's wife. the didactical point of doing so is to  
> dissociate joseph (and his power of
> authority) from the woman.
>
> in the second phrase the wife is clearly THE MINISTER's. by  
> analogy, it makes sense to assume that
> in the first phrase the meal is also THE MINISTER's.

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