From: Carl W. Conrad (email@example.com)
Date: Sun Nov 01 1998 - 06:41:31 EST
At 2:30 PM -0600 10/31/98, martin.arhelger wrote:
>How is the LXX of 1Sam 1:5 to be translated in the context?
>a) Is MERIDA MIAN = "only one portion" or is it = "a prime portion" (as
>Brenton has it).
>b) What meaning has PLHN hOTI here?
>c) Is the last KAI of the verse adversative ("but") or conjunctive ("and")?
I suspect that one really needs to consider the MT here and know the
circumstances better; what I'm offering is only guesswork--intelligent
guesswork, I hope, but nothing more--, and that only because nobody else
has yet taken a stab at the question.
KAI THi ANNA EDWKEN MERIDA MIAN hOTI OUK HN AUTHi PAIDION PLHN hOTI THN
ANNAN HGAPA ELKANA hUPER TAUTHN KAI KURIOS APEKLEISEN TA PERI THN MHTRAN
How is the LXX of 1Sam 1:5 to be translated in the context? a) Is MERIDA
MIAN = "only one portion" or is it = "a prime portion" (as Brenton has it).
--"prime portion" would be justified, it seems to me, on grounds that the
Hebrew does not have a distinct ordinal form of "one" but uses the cardinal
number for both cardinal and ordinal functions. On the other hand, "only
one portion" might be justified on grounds that the hOTI OUK HN clause
explains why he didn't give her more. I don't know whether MERIDA MIAN here
could be equivalent to a standard Greek MERIDA TINA, "a portion," but if
the Hebrew might have that sense, it's possible that Hannah is given a
share by Elkanah DESPITE the fact that she is childless, in which case we'd
understand the whole sequence beginning with hOTI as explaining WHY Elkanah
gave her a portion (and the other questions--(b) and (c) would be answered
accordingly: he gave Hannan a portion despite the fact that she was
childless because Elkanah loved her more than Penninnah and the Lord had
made her barren. That is, on this interpretation, other men might not give
a childless wife a portion, but Elkanah did so because he esteemed her
mother than his other wife and felt compassion on her, deeming her
childlessness to be God's will. If that is right, then--
b) What meaning has PLHN hOTI here?
I would understand PLHN hOTI to mean "except that" and to imply, "but even
so (though she was childless) because (he loved her more (than Penninnah)
and deemed her childlessness to be God's will)."
c) Is the last KAI of the verse adversative ("but") or conjunctive ("and")?
I don't know that it makes a lot of difference: the clause adds an
additional fact to the PLHN hOTI clause of explanation. I'm reading it as
conjunctive so that two reasons are given for Elkanah's giving Hannah a
portion despite her childlessness, BUT it could be read as adversative if
one reads MERIDA TINA as "only one portion," and in that case the whole
explanation would be understood differently: he gave Hannah "only one
portion" because she was childless DESPITE THE FACT that he preferred her
to Penninnah and the Lord had made her barren.
Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics/Washington University
One Brookings Drive/St. Louis, MO, USA 63130/(314) 935-4018
Home: 7222 Colgate Ave./St. Louis, MO 63130/(314) 726-5649
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