The fable of an insect and a mouse (or some other animal), who marry and embark on a life together, only to end in tragedy, is widely disseminated from the Mediterranean region to India. One version involving a beetle (Ṭuroyo keze, Kurmanji kêz) circulates throughout Anatolia and Iraq. The following Ṭuroyo and Kurmanji version was recorded during the 2020 summer field season of the Russian expedition to Ṭur Abdin in the village of Dērqube from a speaker of the Bequsyone dialect. She relates the narrative portions of the fable in Ṭuroyo, but switches to Kurmanji for its versified portions. In addition to the text and a translation, this study includes an interlinear glossing. It also discusses the motifs of the fable according to the standard classification scheme, as well as its relationship to other attested versions collected in various languages including Arabic, Kurmanji, and Turkish.
The article identifies the text and location of two unidentified 4Q14 fragments (frags. 37 and 41) in the 4Q14 manuscript. It adds to 4Q14 two fragments from PAM 43.677 that previously had not been identified as belonging to 4Q14 and calls attention to three lost sections of 4Q14 fragments that can be found on the earliest photographs. The new photographs also enable the reading of a few variants that were not recognized by the editor.
This paper focuses on a fragmentary copy of Exodus from Qumran that has not so far received sufficient attention—4Q11 (4QpaleoGen-Exodl). The paper proposes a material reconstruction of the scroll and discusses its contribution to the textual classification of the scroll. Although 4Q11 apparently reflects the short literary form of MT and LXX Exodus, which does not include the major expansions characteristic of the pre-Samaritan tradition, an examination of individual readings reveals that the scroll includes some minor exegetical variants. Thus, 4Q11 demonstrates the necessity of exploring the scribal approach reflected in scriptural Qumran scrolls, in addition to their classification into textual traditions. Only such a holistic investigation can allow for an improved understanding of the text and processes that took place during its transmission.
In Isa 3:24 there is a hapax legomenonפְּתִיגִיל, which so far could not be explained convincingly. This short note suggests to explain the word’s etymology from Napatan tgr “chain” in combination with the Egyptian article pꜣ.
The literary unit Sir 42:1–8 opens with the instruction not to be ashamed of keeping the Torah and commandments (42:2), and proceeds to list a series of actions that one should perform without embarrassment. Oddly enough, the second half of 42:2 instructs not to be ashamed “of rendering judgment to acquit the wicked,” על משפט להצדיק רשע. While this verse cannot be explained by the hermeneutic maneuver of changing the simple meaning of the Hebrew term רשע or the syntactic function of the lamed in להצדיק, I propose employing a text-critical approach in order to resolve the difficulty it presents. The emendation suggested in this paper subsequently helps us identify the biblical verses that served as the source of inspiration for the verse in Sirach (Ps 82:2–3), and the midrashic interpretation this verse was given in a later text (Rom 4:5).
This article responds to M. J. Albanese, “What the Holy Seed Defiled: The Textual Problem of Genesis 49:4,” VT 69 (2019): 1‒18. Instead of proposing textual emendation to solve the so-called “problem” in Gen 49:4, the present article uses a literary-stylistic approach to argue in favour of the Masoretic Text (MT).
In this essay, I explore the literary background of 2 Sam 8:1b–14. The Old Sabaic royal summary inscription RES 3945/3946 exhibits significant structural and compositional parallels to the summary account of David’s achievements. I argue that the quantity and quality of such similarities firmly locates the writing practices underlying the literary history of 2 Sam 8:1b–14 within a scribal tradition of narrating royal accomplishments shared in Israel and Ancient South Arabia. Based on this historical approximation, it is possible to revisit the problem of the passage’s literary shape and position within the book of Samuel.
In a fascinating article, Michael L. Barré noted the topos of “wandering about” as a symptom of depression and mourning in world literature in general, and in the literature of the ancient Near East and the Bible in particular. Building on his insights, this paper argues that the phrase “he went there” (וילך שם) from Ezra 10:6 builds another instance of the topos of “wandering about.” Thus, there is no need to emed MT to “he spent the night there” (וילן שם), as has often been suggested.