Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Milot HaYom

We happened across a hapax legomenon in my Bible class today today (a word that appears only once in the course of the Bible).

It turns out that said word made its way into modern Hebrew. Quite a journey, no?

תרגלתי, tirgalti, from Hosea 11:3:

א) כִּי נַעַר יִשְׂרָאֵל וָאֹהֲבֵהוּ וּמִמִּצְרַיִם קָרָאתִי לִבְנִי
ב) קָרְאוּ לָהֶם כֵּן הָלְכוּ מִפְּנֵיהֶם לַבְּעָלִים יְזַבֵּחוּ וְלַפְּסִלִים יְקַטֵּרוּן
ג) וְאָנֹכִי תִרְגַּלְתִּי לְאֶפְרַיִם קָחָם עַל זְרוֹעֹתָיו וְלֹא יָדְעוּ כִּי רְפָאתִים

The New JPS translation suggests this word is "pamper," the 1917 version "taught." The more recent translation takes a more liberal interpretation of teaching, of God taking the people Israel in God's arms and instructing them. In either case, the verse stresses the parent instructing a child.

Here is the translation of New JPS for verse 3:
3. I have pampered Ephraim, Taking them in My arms; But they have ignored My healing care.

And I, I taught Ephraim to walk, taking them by their arms; but they knew not that I healed them.

Meanwhile the modern definition:

תרגל, tirgel (בניין פיעלֹ, piel verb construction): to train (someone)

And a fun phrase from class, as well.

אין לי ידיים כפולות, ain li yadayim k'fulot: literally, "I don't have hands which are doubled," ie. I can only do one thing at a time. I have one set of hands

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