Re: 1Sam 1:5 (LXX)

From: Ben Crick (
Date: Sun Nov 01 1998 - 22:38:52 EST

On Sun 1 Nov 98 (16:06:30), wrote:
> The problem in 1Sam 1.5 is not 'aHat "one", but the following word
> appayim 'nostrils, two noses--face, anger'. If it means 'double' like
> the idiom pi-shtayim 'mouth of two' or pa`amayim 'two beats', then this
> would be the only place with this meaning and idiom for appayim.
> M.H. Segal's commentary on appayim concludes:
> " ... It appears that we have here an ancient difficulty that we cannot
> interpret or correct."

 SR Driver, /Notes on the Hebrew Text of the Books of Samuel/, Oxford, 1890,
 observes on 1 Samuel 1:5:
 "The Hebrew text does not admit of a sensible rendering. In the LXX
 'aPPaYiM is represented by PLHN, i.e. 'ePeS. This reading at once relieves
 the difficulty of the verse, and affords a consistent and grammatical
 sense. 'ePeS KiY restricts or qualifies the preceding clause, precisely
 as in Numbers 13:28. 'But unto Hannah he used to give one portion:' this,
 following the /portions/ of verse 4, might seem to imply that Elqanah felt
 less affection for her than for Peninnah. To obviate such a misconception,
 the writer adds: '/Howbeit/ he loved Hannah; but Jehovah had shut up her
 womb,' the last clause assigning the reason why Hannah received but one
 portion. This reading is followed by Reinke, Wellhausen and Stade /Gesch.
 des V. Isr./ i.199), and is rightly represented on the margin of R.V.: the
 words /because she had no child/, however, though found in LXX, formed
 probably no part of the text used by the translators, but were added by
 them as an explanatory comment." (page 7).

 The apparatus criticus in my BHS gives 'ePeS as a correction based on
 the LXX evidence for the KeTiB 'aPPaYiM. The Hebrew letter S and the
 terminal form of the letter M are very similar in appearance, and easily
 confused. This gives point to our Lord's observation in Matthew 6:18,
 "one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be
 fulfilled". The "jot" is probably the smallest Hebrew letter Yod (Y);
 the "tittle" KERAIA could well be the little sharp corner at the bottom
 right corner of the M which distinguishes it from an S; or the little
 projection which distinguishes D from R. In Greek, it would be the sharp
 point which distinguishes Nu "v" from Upsilon "u".

 Does this help, Martin?



 Revd Ben Crick, BA CF
 232 Canterbury Road, Birchington, Kent, CT7 9TD (UK)

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