[b-hebrew] 1kgs10

JimStinehart at aol.com JimStinehart at aol.com
Mon Jul 1 12:13:38 EDT 2013


 
Nir Cohen:   
You wrote:  “where did you get the strange idea that solomon exported 
horses?  certainly not from 1 kings 10. all it says is 1) solomon accrued horses; 
2) the  origin of
the horse IMPORT (not EXPORT, mind you!) was so-ans-so; 3) horses  and 
chariots 
were very expensive. the rest is deduction which is not in the  text.” 
I got that from I Kings 10: 29.  The prior verse, I Kings 10: 28, tells  
where King Solomon got horses.  Then  I Kings 10:29 says that King Solomon YC( 
horses to Hurrian [XTY : H-XT-YM]  rulers and other rulers in Syria.  YC( 
means “to exit, go forth, or go  out”, and hence can mean “export”, but 
could not mean “import”.  Most translations use the word  “exported” here, 
including New International Version, English Standard Version,  and the Jewish 
Publication Society (1985).  As one typical translation, here is the 
English Standard Version  translation of I Kings 10: 28-29:   
“28 And Solomon's import of horses was from  Egypt and Kue, and the king's 
traders  received them from Kue at a price. 29 A chariot could be imported 
from  Egypt for 600 shekels of  silver and a horse for 150, and so through 
the king's traders they were exported  to all the kings of the Hittites and 
the kings of Syria.” 
You at least agree that I  Kings 10 is talking about “overspending and 
luxury”.  So then why in the world mention  small-time, oh-so-modest Que/Kue in 
southeast Anatolia?  If  one is talking about “overspending and luxury” in 
almost mythical proportions  here, then to me, in that context, it’s more 
likely that QW-H is referring to  the semi-legendary place where domesticated 
horses may have originated:  Qijia in truly ancient  China.  Que is way too 
prosaic for this  passage.  Moreover, I don’t think  Que was ever associated 
with horses anyway.  If you’re going to brag that King  Solomon was so 
great that he was in position to export horses to “Hurrians”,  that is, to the 
successors to the ancient Hurrians who had been world-famous in  their 
bygone day (the Late Bronze Age) for being the finest horsemen in the  world, 
with the finest horses for their state-of-the-art horse-drawn chariots,  then 
you wouldn’t say that Solomon got those excellent horses from small-time,  
oh-so-modest Que, would you?   
I understand that Que was in historical existence in the  10th century BCE, 
whereas the Qijia culture, which is sometimes  credited with bringing the 
domesticated horse to the Eurasian steppe (Hurrian  country), was many 
centuries in the past by then.  But a Biblical author who is using XTY :  H-XT-YM 
as a colorful reference to the modern-day successors to the Hurrians,  who 
were already 400 years in the past by the time of King Solomon, could also  
refer to the semi-legendary reputed home of domesticated horses, in far-off  
China, as allegedly being the place where Solomon got the world’s finest  
horses.  To me, that fits this  passage’s theme of “overspending and luxury”  
better than does a prosaic reference to historical Que. 
Last but not least, consider linguistics.  At the Late Bronze Age Hurrian 
province  of Nuzi, the Hurrian personal name Qa-we-enni is attested;  -enni 
is a standard Hurrian suffix, and  the root Qa-we is not a Hurrian common 
word or otherwise known in Hurrian.  Is Qa-we in Hurrian coming from the same  
place as QW-H in Hebrew [where -H may likely be a Hebrew ending]?  Qa-we in 
Hurrian, and the Biblical  Hebrew letters QW/qof-vav, are a perfect 
linguistic match, but what are they  referencing?  Are they possibly  referencing 
the long-gone, semi-legendary place of origin of all domesticated  horses, 
namely the Qijia culture in truly ancient China?  To me, that meaning would 
make perfect  sense, in context, (i) for a Hurrian name, with the Hurrians 
being the premier  horsemen of their day, and (ii) for I Kings 10: 28-29, where 
an integral part of  the “overspending and luxury” for which King  Solomon 
was duly famous/infamous was that Solomon allegedly got the world’s  finest 
horses from the very place where horses had first been domesticated, and  
then Solomon exported those fine horses to the modern-day successors in Syria 
of  the people who formerly had been the finest horsemen in the world:  the 
Hurrians.   
Who cares about small-time historical Que and the  small-time historical 
Neo-Hittite kingdoms [which the academic community says  are the intended 
references here]?  In my opinion, King Solomon is being portrayed here at I 
Kings 10: 28-29  as being much bigger and grander than that.  Forget Que.  Think 
big.  After all, it’s King Solomon we’re  talking about here. 
Jim Stinehart 
Evanston,  Illinois
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