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In: The Texts and Versions of the Book of Ben Sira
In: Studies in the Book of Ben Sira


This paper deals with the use of lunar imagery in the book of Ben Sira. The scribe of Jerusalem refers to the moon on four occasions: Sir 27,11; 39,12; 43,6-8 and 50,6. With the exception of Sir 43,6-8, in the other texts he refers to it metaphorically. While in Sir 39,12 and 50,6 he shows a positive image of the moon, in Sir 27,11 it serves a negative one. From the analysis of these texts the author draws the following conclusion: lunar imagery, which at first sight might seem a mere ornamental embellishment of the text, constitutes a powerful tool used by the sage to transmit his teaching convincingly and to enhance his authority as a teacher of wisdom.

In: Vetus Testamentum