[b-hebrew] When did )NK in Amos 7:7f become interpreted as "plumb line"?

K Randolph kwrandolph at gmail.com
Mon Mar 26 18:17:46 EDT 2012


The question here, what was the tool used for?

The advantage of lead, in modern usage, is its density, but any weight can
be used and the tool is stil functional. It doesn’t matter what the tool’s
weight is made of, if it holds the line straight, it does its job. If it is
true as you say that the original weight was made of tin, hence its name in
Akkadian, it is best to translate it not by the name “tin” rather as
“ plumb-line” in English, even though “plumb” refers to lead.

It is function that we look for, not form.

Karl W. Randolph.

On Sat, Mar 24, 2012 at 6:20 AM, Daniel Lundsgaard Skovenborg <
waldeinburg at yahoo.com> wrote:

> Hi Yigal,
> Thanks!
> Of course tin or a wooden brick or whatever could have been used for such
> a tool, but if the Akkadian word gave name to the tool, I think it must
> mean "lead" (tin is normally בְדִיל and lead עֹפֶרֶת, so maybe אֲנָךְ was
> used only as a technical term, if we suppose it is a tool). Or to put it
> another way: if annaku means "tin" I don't think it would give name to this
> tool, unless it through "usage mistakes" came to mean "lead" when entering
> Hebrew:
> 1. Lead is special because it has a high density (tin is similar to iron
> in this regard). You want as much inertia as possible for this tool – if it
> is not stable it does not work properly.
> 2. According to Landsberger lead is way cheaper than tin.
> Regards,
> Daniel Lundsgaard Skovenborg

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