[b-greek] racist overtones in Hermas

From: Harold R. Holmyard III (hholmyard@ont.com)
Date: Mon Sep 04 2000 - 11:47:58 EDT

Dear Bart,

After I suggested a translation for the Hermas passage in Sim. 9, somebody
suggested off-list that there might be the need for a footnote in a
translation of Hermas explaining how black was used symbolicly of the

Perhaps a footnote could mention that the color black in the Bible
sometimes designates that which is marked by death or judgment. For
example, the black horse in Rev 6:5-6 was associated with famine. The sun
turning black in Rev 6:12 is a sign of divine judgment. The blackness of
darkness is reserved for terrible sinners in Jude 13. In Lamentations black
is associated with famine due to judgment (Lam 4:8; 5:10). In Jeremiah
black is symbolic of divine judgment or mourning (Jer 4:28; 8:21; 14:2).
The same thing is true in Job 3:5 and Isa 50:3.

                                Harold Holmyard


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