Showing posts with label shadal. Show all posts
Showing posts with label shadal. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Acharei Mos: Why is the esnachta on לַפָּרֹכֶת?

The placement of the etnachta on the second pasuk in Acharei Mot seems a bit odd:

The etnachta usually marked the logical midpoint of the pasuk, yet this does not seem to be the case here. Namely, the etnachta is at the place of the double-dashes, [--]:
and the LORD said unto Moses: 'Speak unto Aaron thy brother, that he come not at all times into the holy place within the veil [--] before the ark-cover which is upon the ark; that he die not; for I appear in the cloud upon the ark-cover.
We should expect that it would appear after the word "ark", or after the phrase "that he die not", rather than in the middle of the description of the holy place.

Rabbi Yaakov Tzvi Mecklenburg, in his sefer haKsav vehaKabbalah, asks this very question:

He writes:

haKsav vehaKabbalah
"within the veil -- the author of the trup connected אֶל-פְּנֵי הַכַּפֹּרֶת [namely, the phrase immediately following the etnachta] with the end of the verse, rather than putting the break in the statement via the etnachta upon וְלֹא יָמוּת, for the primary reason that he should not come [there] is because of the revelation of the Divine Presence, and that is upon the ark-cover [kapores] between the cherubs. Therefore he placed the etnacha on the word לַפָּרֹכֶת."

I am not sure who רל"ש is. Anyone know?

Meanwhile, here is how Shadal addresses the issue:

"וְאַל-יָבֹא בְכָל-עֵת אֶל-הַקֹּדֶשׁ -- The trup assigned here is quite strange, for the etnachta should properly be under וְלֹא יָמוּת. [Josh: Here he rewrites the trup as it would be were the etnachta moved over.] And perhaps the position of the author of the trup is like Rabbi Yehuda [in Menachot 27b], that within the veil is a prohibition [punishable by lashes] while before the ark-cover is [punishable] by death:

 רבי יהודה אומר כל היכל כולו ומבית לפרכת בארבעים ואל פני הכפרת במיתה

'Rabbi Yehuda said: the entire heical as well as mibeit laparochet is with forty [lashes], while el penei hakapores is [punished] with death'. 

And it is further possible to say that perhaps, in the Second Temple, there was one who said that nowadays, that there is no ark and no ark-cover, it is fitting that it would be permitted to enter into the Holy of Holies. Therefore the Sages saw fit to split the statement in the verse as if it were two statements, namely 

  1. "that he come not at all times into the holy place within the veil" (even if there is no ark or ark-cover there, it is forbidden to approach there, and still)
  2. "before the ark-cover which is upon the ark" (do not come at all times) - "lest you die" -- 

[Thus] during the time that the ark is there, there is death, and at the time the ark is not there, there is not death, but there is still a prohibition [warning]. And the authors of the trup (who were after the closing of the Talmud) appointed the trup based on the reading which was received orally from the Sages of the Second Temple era."

I would note that the Chachamim in the gemara, as per the gemara's parsing, also separate the pasuk in an odd way:
רבנן סברי אל הקודש בלא יבא מבית לפרכת ואל פני הכפרת בלא ימות
ור' יהודה סבר אל הקודש ומבית לפרכת בלא יבא ואל פני הכפרת בלא ימות

The Malbim has the same idea as Shadal. In his commentary on the Sifra, HaTorah veHamitzvah, he writes the following.

"And the position of Rabbi Yehuda that מִבֵּית לַפָּרֹכֶת relates to the earlier part [of the verse], and also it is only with a warning [prohibition], and אֶל-פְּנֵי הַכַּפֹּרֶת alone falls under 'lest he die'. (And the author of the trup who pointed the etnachta upon the word לַפָּרֹכֶת, it appears that his position was like Rabbi Yehuda."
Meanwhile, William Wickes, in his book on the system of trup, on page 41-42, considers this pasuk to be one instance of many of a trup pattern which occurs during specification:

The red arrow points to where he mentions the specific pasuk:

In a lengthy footnote, #21, he discusses this pasuk and argues with Shadal, Malbim, Geiger and Dillman in attributing the trup to the interpretation of Rabbi Yehuda in Menachos. While he is not unwilling to say that trup, particularly strange trup, was influenced by Rabbinic interpretation, here he does not think it likely since Rabbi Yehuda is a daas Yachid. On the contrary, he suggests that perhaps Rabbi Yehuda drew on the trup (really caused by reason Wickes gave) in order to support his own unique position.

See also Rashi on Yoma 52b, d"h vayaalu olot kevasim:

If there is a nafka mina in disputes as to the proper trup, and if as Malbim and Shadal say, the trup is like Rabbi Yehuda, and if Rambam paskens like the Chachamim, should we change our trup to match?

Monday, March 17, 2014

Shadal, that rabbits ruminate and hide in rocks

On Vayikra 11:5, regarding the shafan and arneves,

ShaDaL writes:
"The shafan: It is the coniglio, and it dwells in rocks (Tehillim 104:18, M
ishlei 30:27). And so too in Latin, cuniculus, which means shafan, its meaning is as well "burrowing in the dirt". And perhaps also in Hebrew the word shafan comes from צפן, so named because it is hidden (נצפן) and concealed in the cracks of rocks. And know that Scheuzer in his book Physique sacree as well as Valmont de Bomaf in the book Dictionnaire d'Histoire naturelle say that the coniglio is a ruminant.
The arneves: It is the lepre, and it is a ruminant, and so wrote Linnaeus and others. Even though it does not have a doubled stomach like other ruminants."
This is mystifying, at first glance.
  1. He says it is the coniglio, which appears to be the contemporary Italian for rabbit.
  2. He gives the Latin etymology, which shows it burrows in dirt; this matches the rabbit.
  3. Yet he cites pesukim in Mishlei and Tehillim that it hides in rocks, which does not match the rabbit.
  4. And he conjectures a Hebrew etymology based on the pesukim, that it is concealed in rocks, which does not match the rabbit.
  5. He ends by citing naturalists that the coniglio is a ruminant. These naturalists were speaking of the rabbit.
This is not mystifying at all, of course. Shadal was no zoologist. He relied on books, and scientific experts of his day. The discrepancy between hiding in rocks and burrowing in the dirt was not one that would be obvious to a non-expert. Especially if Shadal was unaware of any other candidate, such as the hyrax, which unlike the rabbit was native to Eretz Yisrael and does hide in rocks, next to the ibexes in Ein Gedi.

This is a good example, I think, of how you cannot simply rely on descriptions of habits given by non-expert rabbinic persons.

We should not take this as evidence that rabbits ruminated in his day, or hid in rocks in his day (and nishtaneh hateva).

One of the two naturalists he mentions, by the way, is Valmont de Bomare. I posted what I think is the relevant quote last year:
On prétend qu`ils ont , ainsi que le lievre, la propriété de ruminer. 
Or, in English:
It is claimed that they [rabbits] have, and the hare, the property ruminating.
See my brief discussion there.

Jean Jacques Scheuchzer
The other author is Jean Jacques Scheuchzer, a Swiss scientist. The work, Physique Sacree, appears to be a running scientific commentary on the Bible (that is, Tanach plus the Christian books). I could not find the volume for Vayikra online, and thus was unable to find the precise quote.

Anyone reading this post is welcome to try to track this down. Maybe I could make this into another post.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Moshe offered the incense? Or did Aharon?

Consider this pasuk and Rashi, towards the end of Pekudei (Shemot 40:27):
 He made the incense go up in smoke upon it as the Lord had commanded Moses.כז. וַיַּקְטֵר עָלָיו קְטֹרֶת סַמִּים כַּאֲשֶׁר צִוָּה ה אֶת משֶׁה:
He made the incense go up in smoke upon it: in the morning and in the evening, as it is said: “every morning when he sets the lamps in order [he shall make it go up in smoke]” (Exod. 30:7).ויקטר עליו אהרון קטרת: שחרית וערבית, כמו שנאמר (שמות ל ז) בבקר בבקר בהיטיבו את הנרות וגו':

Who is "he"? Read the context. The most straightforward answer would be Moshe, since Moshe was mentioned as the actor in pasuk 17, and was the presumed actor in every pasuk, and every verb, that followed it. It would be very strange to introduce a new actor here. Unless we say that each of these, or even just the וַיַּקְטֵר עָלָיו, is al yedei shaliach.

Shadal notes something interesting about this Rashi:
כז) ויקטר עליו : ברש"י כתב-יד שבידי: "אהרן שחרית וערבית"; וכן מצא גם הרמב"ן, ואמר "ולא ידעתי אם הוא טעות סופרים (כלומר אין טעות רש"י, כי אמנם אין ספק שהעבודה היתה במשה) וע' ספר הזכרון.
"וַיַּקְטֵר עָלָיו -- in a manuscript of Rashi I possess: "Aharon morning and evening". And so found the Ramban, and said 'I don't know' if it is a scribal error (that is to say that it not an error on Rashi [the man]'s part, for regardless, there is no doubt that the service was done by Moshe). And see Sefer Hazikaron.
Indeed, there is a curious interrupt between the Hebrew and English in the Judaica Press (at Chabad) translation above. The English does not specify Aharon as the actor, while the Hebrew does. This because they pull the Hebrew and English text of Rashi from two different sources, such that they often don't match up.

I would point out that early texts of Rashi were not written together with the chumash. So even though the next comment of Rashi is on a pasuk a bit later, one can and perhaps should read the two comments together. Rashi's next comment (d"h  וַיַּעַל עָלָיו)  is:

The altar of the burnt offering he placed in front of the entrance of the Mishkan of the Tent of Meeting, and he offered up the burnt offering and the meal offering upon it as the Lord had commanded Moses.כט. וְאֵת מִזְבַּח הָעֹלָה שָׂם פֶּתַח מִשְׁכַּן אֹהֶל מוֹעֵד וַיַּעַל עָלָיו אֶת הָעֹלָה וְאֶת הַמִּנְחָה כַּאֲשֶׁר צִוָּה יְהֹוָה אֶת משֶׁה:
and he offered up the burnt offering and the meal offering upon it: Even on the eighth day of the investitures-which was the day of the setting up of the Mishkan-Moses officiated and offered up the communal sacrifices, with the exception of those that Aaron was commanded [to offer up] on that day, as it is said: “Approach the altar” (Lev. 9:7).ויעל עליו וגו': אף ביום השמיני למלואים, שהוא יום הקמת המשכן, שמש משה והקריב קרבנות צבור, חוץ מאותן שנצטוו בו ביום, שנאמר (ויקרא ט ז) קרב אל המזבח וגו':
the burnt offering: The daily burnt offering.את העלה: עולת התמיד:
and the meal offering: [This refers to] the meal offering of the libations of the daily burnt offering, as it is said: “And one-tenth of fine flour, thoroughly mixed with… oil” (Exod. 29:40).ואת המנחה: מנחת נסכים של תמיד, כמו שנאמר (שמות כט מ) ועשרן סלת בלול בשמן וגו':

which explicitly notes that Aharon performed certain sacrifices on this day, as well as that Moshe was offering these sacrifices (Mincha and Olah), to the exclusion of (perhaps) the preceding. In light of this, perhaps one can argue that Rashi considered (or the erring scribe considered) that the pasuk in Shemot 30:7, in context, to be a requirement for Aharon to light it even on the eighth day of the miluim.

ה  וְעָשִׂיתָ אֶת-הַבַּדִּים, עֲצֵי שִׁטִּים; וְצִפִּיתָ אֹתָם, זָהָב.5 And thou shalt make the staves of acacia-wood, and overlay them with gold.
ו  וְנָתַתָּה אֹתוֹ לִפְנֵי הַפָּרֹכֶת, אֲשֶׁר עַל-אֲרֹן הָעֵדֻת--לִפְנֵי הַכַּפֹּרֶת, אֲשֶׁר עַל-הָעֵדֻת, אֲשֶׁר אִוָּעֵד לְךָ, שָׁמָּה.6 And thou shalt put it before the veil that is by the ark of the testimony, before the ark-cover that is over the testimony, where I will meet with thee.
ז  וְהִקְטִיר עָלָיו אַהֲרֹן, קְטֹרֶת סַמִּים; בַּבֹּקֶר בַּבֹּקֶר, בְּהֵיטִיבוֹ אֶת-הַנֵּרֹת--יַקְטִירֶנָּה.7 And Aaron shall burn thereon incense of sweet spices; every morning, when he dresseth the lamps, he shall burn it.

because the instruction to burn incense was juxtaposed with the instruction to place the constructed altar in a specific place. Or alternatively, because it stated baboker baboker.

However, I think that really Rashi was explaining the details: namely, just where there had been a command to Moshe about this vayakter, to justify the statement כַּאֲשֶׁר צִוָּה ה אֶת משֶׁה. That is, the commands of what to do appear earlier in this perek, in pasuk 4 and 5. And there in this perek, there is no command about the incense. However, Rashi is explaining that the offering of the incense is associated with the lighting of the lamp. And Moshe had been commanded in pasuk 4 to kindle the lamps.

Let us see if we can locate some manuscripts of Rashi which match what Shadal had:

I have one Ktav Yad of Rashi from Rome, 1490, whi.

Here are some interesting features of this.
  1. It interjects אהרן before the word ketores, not after it, as Shadal had it. This "ruins", or rather modifies the quote of the pasuk a bit.
  2. It cites two prooftexts, not just Shemot 30:7 for the morning, but Shemot 30:8, for the evening.
  3. There is no dibbur hamatchil for the next comment of Rashi. Whereas we should have ויעל עליו וגו from pasuk 29, this does not appear. And so it appears as if this a continuation of his comment on וַיַּקְטֵר עָלָיו.
I have another Ktav Yad from Munich, 1233, which does not have the interjection of Aharon:

You have to read across the lines. Some interesting things about this one:

  1. No interjection of Aharon
  2. Cites both pasuk 7 and pasuk 8
  3. Entirely skips the first comment by Rashi regarding the miluim. That is, the Rashi on pasuk 27 begins on the top line, ויקטר and ends on the third line, אהרן וגומר. On that third line, I underlined in red the dibbur hamatchil, את העולה. And so this manuscript entirely skips the dibbur hamatchil of וַיַּעַל עָלָיו, together with the assertion that certain acts were performed by Aharon on that eighth day, and instead it skips to the next, innocuous comment.
If this is original, then maybe the interjection of Aharon and the next comment of Rashi go hand in hand.

The last manuscript I have access to is Cod Hebr 3, from I don't know when:

  1. does not have the interjection of Aharon, 
  2. does cite both pesukim and 8
  3. has Rashi's first comment on pasuk 29, though without a dibbur hamatchil.
Here is the Ramban on this:

כז): ויקטר עליו קטורת סמים - משה הקטיר עליו כל שבעת ימי המילואים. ואע"פ שלא אמר בצואה (בפסוק ה): והקטיר עליו קטורת סמים, הבין זה משאר העבודות כלן, שהרי ציוה אותו בכאן (בפסוק ד): שיסדר הלחם ויעלה הנרות. וכן ויעל עליו את העולה ואת המנחה (להלן פסוק כט), משה הוא המעלה, שכן נצטווה (לעיל כט לח): וזה אשר תעשה על המזבח, שיתחיל הוא לעשות כן בעבדו בימי המילואים, כי הצואות כולן שם (מפסוק א ואילך): על עבודת משה. ואמר אחרי כן (בפסוק מב): עולת תמיד לדורותיכם, שיעשו כן הכוהנים לדורות. ולכך אמר בה בסדר פנחס (במדבר כח ו): עולת תמיד העשויה בהר סיני, שהתחיל אותה משה שם:

והנה משה רבנו בכל העבודות הכהן הראשון, ולפיכך הקטיר גם הקטרת. ואולי בכלל ונתת את מזבח הזהב לקטורת (פסוק ה): שתקטירנו עליו מיד. ומה שאמר בצואה (לעיל ל ו ז): ונתת אותו לפני הפרוכת והקטיר עליו אהרן קטורת סמים, להורות על ענינו מיום שהתחיל אהרן בכהונתו ולעולם, שכך אמר (שם ל ח): ובהעלות אהרן את הנרות בין הערבים, ואין הדבר אלא מיום זה ואילך, כי בכאן (בפסוק ד): ציוה למשה בפירוש והעלית את נרותיה. 

ובפירוש רש"י (בפסוק שלפנינו): ראיתי: 

ויקטר עליו אהרן קטורת שחרית וערבית, כמה שנאמר (לעיל ל ז ח): בבקר בבקר בהטיבו את הנרות וגו', ובהעלות אהרן את הנרות בין הערבים וגו'. 
ולא ידעתי אם הוא טעות סופרים:

"He made the incense go up in smoke upon it: Moshe made the incense go up upon it all seven days of the miluim. And although it does not state in the commandment (in pasuk 5)  "and cause incense to go up upon it", understand this from all the other services, for behold He commanded him here (in pasuk 4): that he should arrange the bread and kindle the lamps. And so too in "and he offered the olah and the mincha offering (pasuk 29), it was Moshe who offered it, for so was he commanded (earlier 29:38), "and this is what you shall make upon the altar", that he should start to do so in service before the miluim, for all the commands there (from pasuk 1 and on): are regarding the service of Moshe. And it states after this (in pasuk 42) "a continual olah for your generations", that the kohanim should do this for generations. And therefore it stated regarding it in the sidra of Pinchas (Bemidbar 28:6) "the continual olah which was made on Har Sinai", that Moshe began it there.
And behold, Moshe Rabbenu in all services was the first kohen, and therefore he offered also the incense. And perhaps because of "and you shall place the golden altar for incense (in pasuk 5), the implication was that incense should be offered upon it immediately. And that which it stated in the command (earlier, Shemot 30:6-7) "and you shall place it before the curtain and Aharon shall burn incense upon it, that was to inform regarding the matter that from the day that Aharon began his service as kohen and forever after" [Josh: but not immediately upon placement, as I suggested above regarding Rashi or the errant scribe]. For so it stated (there, 30:8) "and when Aharon kindles the lamps at dusk", and this matter was only from this day and on, for here (in pasuk 4) He commanded Moshe explicitly "and you shall kindle the lamps:
And in the commentary of Rashi (in the pasuk before us) I have seen ... [then Ramban cites the Rashi with the interjected Aharon and both proof texts] ... And I do not know if it is a scribal error.
Now, Shadal also instructed us to look at Sefer HaZikaron, by Rabbi Avraham ben Shlomo Bakrat.

"ויעל עליו וגו': אף ביום השמיני וכו -- since there are several different nuschaot in the commentary of the Rav [Rashi] in these verses, I saw fit to record his language letter for letter.
ויקטר עליו אהרן קטרת סמים: שחרית וערבית, כמו שנ' (שמות ל ז) בבקר בבקר בהיטיבו את הנרות וגו'. ובהעלות אהרן וגו'. 
ויעל עליו: אף ביום השמיני למלואים, שהוא יום הקמת המשכן, שמש משה וכו' ש 
But the Ramban za'l desired that the one who offered the incense was Moshe, and went on at length in his proofs, and wrote at the end of his words: "In the commentary of Rashi I have seen ויקטר עליו אהרן וכו'ש, and I don't know if it is a scribal error." End quote. 
And since the Rav [Rashi] explained that the one who offered the incense was Ahraon , even though the entire parsha deals with Moshe, 'and he placed; and he took; and he put', he [Rashi] says now regarding ויעל עליו [the next dibbur hamatchil] refers to Moshe himself just like the rest of the parasha, and not to Aharon. And even though from the Scriptures it seems that Moshe served only the seven days of the miluim and no further, for it states (Shemot 29:35):
לה  וְעָשִׂיתָ לְאַהֲרֹן וּלְבָנָיו, כָּכָה, כְּכֹל אֲשֶׁר-צִוִּיתִי, אֹתָכָה; שִׁבְעַת יָמִים, תְּמַלֵּא יָדָם.35 And thus shalt thou do unto Aaron, and to his sons, according to all that I have commanded thee; seven days shalt thou consecrate them.
, he [Rashi] says, "know ye that even on the seventh day, which is the day of the erection of the Mishkan, Moshe served in the public offerings, which were the olah, the mincha, and the tamid which are mentioned here. 
And if it is a scribal error as the Ramban za"l said, the Rav [Rashi] intended to say: it should not be difficult to you how Moshe offered incense and brought offerings after the seven, for even on the eighth day Moshe served for communal offerings, while Aharon only brought on that day his sin-offering and his burnt-offering, that is to say private offerings."
End quote from Rabbi Avraham ben Shlomo Bakrat.

I'll end by repeating a paragraph I penned above, which is what I feel to be the case. Namely, Aharon should not be interjected there. The purpose of Rashi's comment on vayakter is as follows:
However, I think that really Rashi was explaining the details: namely, just where there had been a command to Moshe about this vayakter, to justify the statement כַּאֲשֶׁר צִוָּה ה אֶת משֶׁה. That is, the commands of what to do appear earlier in this perek, in pasuk 4 and 5. And there in this perek, there is no command about the incense. However, Rashi is explaining that the offering of the incense is associated with the lighting of the lamp. And Moshe had been commanded in pasuk 4 to kindle the lamps.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Mishpatim -- "Then his wife shall go out with him" -- when did she enter servitude?!

In the beginning of parashat Mishpatim, we see the following law:

ג  אִם-בְּגַפּוֹ יָבֹא, בְּגַפּוֹ יֵצֵא; אִם-בַּעַל אִשָּׁה הוּא, וְיָצְאָה אִשְׁתּוֹ עִמּוֹ.3 If he come in by himself, he shall go out by himself; if he be married, then his wife shall go out with him.
ד  אִם-אֲדֹנָיו יִתֶּן-לוֹ אִשָּׁה, וְיָלְדָה-לוֹ בָנִים אוֹ בָנוֹת--הָאִשָּׁה וִילָדֶיהָ, תִּהְיֶה לַאדֹנֶיהָ, וְהוּא, יֵצֵא בְגַפּוֹ.4 If his master give him a wife, and she bear him sons or daughters; the wife and her children shall be her master's, and he shall go out by himself.

What does it mean that his wife goes out with him? When did she go into servitude? According to established halacha only a minor girl can be a maidservant. Thus the (perhaps midrashic) explanation that this means that the master is obligated in her support during the duration.

To bolster the idea, I would note that the function of pasuk 3 is as the general principle spelled out in more detail in pasuk 4. That is, there is a different type of wife his master may give him, namely a slavewoman. Such a woman is not his real wife but just functions as a breeder for permanent slaves. And so he must leave this wife, and by explicit extension, his children, to his master. However, if he comes in to servitude with a wife already, any children born to him during this duration are his own and are not slaves. And his wife is obviously his wife.

It is still not absolutely precise, since it gives the implication that in the duration of his servitude, his wife has the status of slave. But it might be argued that it is precise enough to convey the intended point. That she doesn't leave him, but is part of the eved's household, during which she gets support, and so she accompanies him as would be entirely expected.

If so, the midrash might be argued to be the peshat as well.

Shadal takes a different tack towards peshat and derash, and Written Law and Oral Law, and writes:

"If he be the husband of a wife -- according to the peshat, his wife also comes with him into the household of the master, and works in the house. And this would be correct regarding one who sells himself, for he is able to be sold together with his wife. However, according to the position of Rashi and some of Chazal, who explained this parasha regarding one [a thief] who was sold by Bet Din, it is not correct that the wife should be sold for the sin of her husband who stole. And therefore they said "now who brought her in that she should go out? Rather Scriptures is informing that one who acquires a Hebrew servant is required in sustaining the fellow's wife and children." And all this is to increase to trait of chessed and rachamim in Israel.

And also regarding one who sold himself, the Chachamim [J: rather than by Biblical fiat] did not permit that the woman comes to the household of the master, but rather they required the master to support her and her children, while she stayed in her own home, with her handiwork for herself and not for the master -- so rules the Rambam. (However according to the Ramban the master takes the handiwork of the wife and children, yet she is still is in her own home and does not come to his house to work his work.)

And therefore, upon the pasuk (Vayikra 25:41):
מא  וְיָצָא, מֵעִמָּךְ--הוּא, וּבָנָיו עִמּוֹ; וְשָׁב, אֶל-מִשְׁפַּחְתּוֹ, וְאֶל-אֲחֻזַּת אֲבֹתָיו, יָשׁוּב.41 Then shall he go out from thee, he and his children with him, and shall return unto his own family, and unto the possession of his fathers shall he return.

which without a doubt speaks about one who sells himself because of his poverty, Rabbi Shimon said (and Rashi brings him down) that "if he be sold, who sold his children?!" However, the Torah, just as it permits a father to sell his minor daughter, so too permits that he sells himself together with his wife and minor children.

And behold it is known that in days of old the father was ruler upon the members of his household and their lives were in his hand (as is apparent from the words of Yehuda, "Take her out and burn her!"). And the Torah cancelled from him this rulership and did not permit the death of the Ben Sorer UMoreh except via the decree of the judges. And so too the sale of the wife and chldren, the Written Torah permitted it, and it was forbidden in the Oral Torah. And further they added (Kiddushin daf 20) that the master cannot assign him a Canaanite maidservant [to procreate with to produce more slaves] unless he already has a wife and children, and this (like the words of my student Moshe Kohen Porto) is because it is not fitting that he father slaves for his master prior to his fulfilling the mitzvah of piryah verivyah and produce children to establish his name in Israel."

An interesting approach, in which Oral Law, or perhaps Rabbinic law, functions as a series of further ordinances and reforms on top of the Written Law, extended ideas, values and approaches already present in the Written Law. Perhaps as society progressed?

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Where did Aharon die?

Here is a fascinating variant text that the Samaritans have, in Ekev (Devarim 10): The text on the right is our Masoretic text, while the text on the left is the Samaritan text.
The Samaritan text is obviously not the original. It is a harmonizing effort, to bring in the material from Bemidbar 33 and make it harmonious.

That is, we have in Bemidbar 33:
לא  וַיִּסְעוּ, מִמֹּסֵרוֹת; וַיַּחֲנוּ, בִּבְנֵי יַעֲקָן.31 And they journeyed from Moseroth, and pitched in Bene-jaakan.
which on a surface level seems the opposite direction than in Ekev. And in Bemidbar, it is clear that Aharon died at a much later encampment, at Mt. Hor, rather than in Mosera.

לז  וַיִּסְעוּ, מִקָּדֵשׁ; וַיַּחֲנוּ בְּהֹר הָהָר, בִּקְצֵה אֶרֶץ אֱדוֹם.37 And they journeyed from Kadesh, and pitched in mount Hor, in the edge of the land of Edom.--
לח  וַיַּעַל אַהֲרֹן הַכֹּהֵן אֶל-הֹר הָהָר, עַל-פִּי ה--וַיָּמָת שָׁם:  בִּשְׁנַת הָאַרְבָּעִים, לְצֵאת בְּנֵי-יִשְׂרָאֵל מֵאֶרֶץ מִצְרַיִם, בַּחֹדֶשׁ הַחֲמִישִׁי, בְּאֶחָד לַחֹדֶשׁ.38 And Aaron the priest went up into mount Hor at the commandment of the LORD, and died there, in the fortieth year after the children of Israel were come out of the land of Egypt, in the fifth month, on the first day of the month.
לט  וְאַהֲרֹן, בֶּן-שָׁלֹשׁ וְעֶשְׂרִים וּמְאַת שָׁנָה, בְּמֹתוֹ, בְּהֹר הָהָר.  {ס}39 And Aaron was a hundred and twenty and three years old when he died in mount Hor. {S}

(So too in Bemidbar 20, the first recording of Aharon's death.)

The Samaritans seem untroubled by it, and just insert the intervening encampments, and put Aharon's death at Mt. Hor.

The contradiction between these two texts (Devarim and Bemidbar) is indeed a difficult one. Someone raised it in the comment section on my previous post, "Deuteronomy based on a different Biblical tradition? Simple vs. Simplistic", as evidence that Devarim was based on different source material.

But Shadal writes something very important, and instructive, about it:
פסוק זה ושלאחיו קשים מאד. 
It is OK to admit that something presents a great difficulty.

Shadal writes:

ו, ז ובני ישראל נסעו וגו ': פסוק זה ושלאחיו קשים מאד. כי לא ידענו מה ענינם במקום הזה. ורשב " ם וראב " ע אמרו שהם להודיע כי אהרן לא מת מיד, וזה לא יועיל ולא יציל, כי יודעים היו ישראל כי אהרן לא מת רק זה זמן מועט, ואם היה משה רוצה להזכירם זאת, למה לו להזכיר המסעות ולא אמר כי חי עד שנת הארבעים? ולדברי האומרים כי נוספו אחר זמן, לא הרווחנו מאומה, כי לא יובן מה ראה המוסיף להוסיפם. ואם בטעות לוקחו ממקום אחר, לא נודע מהיכן נלקחו ואיה מקומם. והשומרונים הוסיפו: ובני ישראל נסעו ממוסרות ויחנו בבני יעקן. משם נסעו ויחנו ביטבתה ארץ נחלי מים. משם נסעו ויחנו בעברונה. משם נסעו ויחנו בעציון גבר, משם נסעו ויחנו במדבר סין היא קדש. משם נסעו ויחנו בהר ההר. וימת שם אהרן ויקב שם ויכהן אלעזר בנו תחתינו . - כל זה להשוות הענין למה שכתוב בפרשת מסעי, אבל מה ענין כל זה לכאן?
"And the Israelites traveled...: this verse, and the one after it, are extremely difficult. For we do not know what their function is in this place. And Rashbam and Ibn Ezra said that they are to inform that Aharon did not die immediately. And this does not help or save, for the Israelites knew that Aharon had only died a short while before; and if Moshe wanted to mention this, why should he mention the traveled and not say that he lived until the fortieth year?
And according to those who say that this [text] was added after a time, we gain nothing, for it is not understood what the added saw to addthem.
And if they were taken from another place, we do not know from whence they were taken and where is their [proper] place.
And the Shomronim add [Josh: as above, see text that they add]. And all this is to make the matter equal to what was written in parashat Masei. But what relevance is this matter here?"

End quote.

In my prior post, I discussed many of the supposed contradictions between Devarim and the rest of Torah. To offer a taste of this, here is one purported contradiction:
2. The Court System 
According to Deuteronomy (1:9-13), the court system devised in the desert was Moses’ idea. However, according to Exodus (18:17-22), the idea was not Moses’ but that of his father-in-law Jethro.
I noted that whether or not one believes in Mosaic authorship of Devarim, it makes good sense that Devarim was written for an audience already familiar with the Torah, and that the author has a religious or political agenda to advance.
Since it is not meant as a parallel first-telling of the Biblical story, but as a retelling of the existing Biblical story, the author of Deuteronomy does not have to retell every single darned historical point...
In Exodus 18, the agenda is Jethro's role as visitor and influencer of the Israelites. And so, Jethro proposes this, and in the end, 18:24, וַיִּשְׁמַע מֹשֶׁה, לְקוֹל חֹתְנוֹ; וַיַּעַשׂ, כֹּל אֲשֶׁר אָמָר. We are not told there Moshe's words in instructing the Israelites.

In Deuteronomy 1, Moses does not claim exclusive credit for the idea. He does not mention Jethro because Jethro is irrelevant. Jethro would be a distraction to Moses' exhortation. Rather, he is reporting what he said to the Israelites when he implemented this action (or even, a portion thereof). And the purpose of mentioning this is not dry history, but of the transitioning of power from Moshe to others, in this cases, lower judges.
 This approach works well in the general case. But it does not work so smoothly when it comes to this Ekev /  Masei divergence.

I cannot claim to be able to solve every single divergence. Still, my general observation, about the lameness of many of the purported divergences, holds true.

Here is how I might begin to approach this divergence:

#1, the Samaritans are right. Not that they have the original text -- of course they falsified their Torah text in order to harmonize. But that the author of Devarim was looking to Masei and pulling in selections of that text. And that even though when read literally and uncompromisingly, the text in Devarim says Aharon died in Moserah while in Bemidbar (20 and 33) the text says he died on Hor HaHar -- that is not what the author of Devarim intended.

Further, Devarim is pulling from both Bemidbar 20 and Bemidbar 33, because Bnei Yaakan is only mentioned in Bemidbar 33 and Eliezer replacing is only mentioned in Bemidbar 20.

#2, Ibn Ezra and Rashbam are right about the agenda of the author of Devarim. In the previous perek, Devarim 9, Hashem was wroth with both the Israelites and Aharon:
יט  כִּי יָגֹרְתִּי, מִפְּנֵי הָאַף וְהַחֵמָה, אֲשֶׁר קָצַף ה עֲלֵיכֶם, לְהַשְׁמִיד אֶתְכֶם; וַיִּשְׁמַע ה אֵלַי, גַּם בַּפַּעַם הַהִוא.19 For I was in dread of the anger and hot displeasure, wherewith the LORD was wroth against you to destroy you. But the LORD hearkened unto me that time also.
כ  וּבְאַהֲרֹן, הִתְאַנַּף ה מְאֹד--לְהַשְׁמִידוֹ; וָאֶתְפַּלֵּל גַּם-בְּעַד אַהֲרֹן, בָּעֵת הַהִוא.20 Moreover the LORD was very angry with Aaron to have destroyed him; and I prayed for Aaron also the same time.

Yet Moshe interceded, and both were spared. And Moshe continues in that perek with other times he interceded on behalf of the Israelites. Perek 10 returns us to Har Sinai, "at that time", and the chance of a do-over.

And so, the point in bringing in that Aharon died is that he died later, not just there at Har Sinai.

#3, As to Shadal's objection -- why not just say "and Aharon died in the 40th year"?

Recall that this is not a parallel first-telling, but rather a re-telling. The audience is already familiar with the Biblical text, and by channeling parshat Masei, it is effectively quoting to them parashat Masei. This sounds more Biblical, and is along the lines of "as you well know". Thus also the parallel of שם Aharon died.

#4, If so, one could imagine that there is a "Yada Yada Yada" in play, to introduce that they traveled on to other encampments.

With Aharon's death, and the transition of power to Eleazar being the priority, and the death being specifically in הר ההר not really being relevant. This is then mentioned after the first movement in the chain, and is followed by others in the chain to show the movement continued.

After writing this, I looked at Ibn Caspi, who says it is a sort of yada yada yada. Perhaps I will present him

#5, בעת ההיא in Devarim 10:7 means at Har Sinai, not Yatva, just as it does in the first pasuk of the perekm Devarim 10:1. See Bemidbar 3.

#6, Many times, making too much of divergences does not lead us to peshat but to derash. I don't know that it applies here, but maybe.

At the end of the day, I am not entirely happy with this, but I do think that it may form the beginning of an answer.

Friday, May 24, 2013

וְכִי יָגוּר אִתְּכֶם גֵּר -- Pesach Rishon, Sheni, or the general case?

In parshas Behaalosecha (Bemidbar 9:14), after detailing the laws of Pesach Sheni for those who were impure for Pesach Rishon, the Torah concludes with the following statement (I include Rashi's commentary):

14If a proselyte dwells with you, and he makes a Passover sacrifice to the Lord, according to the statutes of the Passover sacrifice and its ordinances he shall make it. One statute shall apply to you, to the proselyte and to the native-born citizen.יד. וְכִי יָגוּר אִתְּכֶם גֵּר וְעָשָׂה פֶסַח לַה' כְּחֻקַּת הַפֶּסַח וּכְמִשְׁפָּטוֹ כֵּן יַעֲשֶׂה חֻקָּה אַחַת יִהְיֶה לָכֶם וְלַגֵּר וּלְאֶזְרַח הָאָרֶץ:
If a proselyte dwells with you, and he makes a Passover sacrifice: I might think that anyone who converts should immediately make a Passover sacrifice. Therefore, Scripture teaches us, “One statute [shall apply to you, to the proselyte and to the native-born citizen].” And this is its meaning: If a proselyte dwells with you, and he comes (Reggio ed. - and the time comes) to make a Passover sacrifice with his friends,“according to the statutes of the Passover sacrifice and its ordinances he shall make it.” - [Sifrei Beha’alothecha 1:30]וכי יגור אתכם גר ועשה פסח: יכול כל המתגייר יעשה פסח מיד, תלמוד לומר חקה אחת וגו', אלא כך משמעו, וכי יגור אתכם גר ובא עת לעשות פסח עם חביריו כחקה וכמשפט יעשה:

We read the following in Nesivos HaShalom:

"If a ger dwells with you: This is a ger tzedek [convert] and not a ger shaar [of the gate; this is a ger toshav who follows the sheva mitzvos bnei Noach].

He makes a Passover sacrifice: And he wishes to make a Passover sacrifice with all of Israel, then according to the statutes and ordinances of the Passover sacrifice shall he make it. And behold, the commandments upon the gerim [converts] regarding Pesach were already written in parashat Bo: 'And when a ger dwells with you, he shall make a Pesach, etc.'

(The author says: And it is possible that the Scriptures is speaking about Pesach Sheni [Josh: given the preceding context], that the ger who converts prior to Pesach and due to uncontrollable circumstances does not make the Pesach in its set time, that he as well shall make a Pesach Sheni according to all its statutes. And so wrote Ibn Ezra.And so have I found in the Sifrei: Rabbi Shimon ben Eleazer says: Behold, if he converts between the two Pesachs, how do I deduce that he makes Pesach Sheni? Therefore it teaches 'like the native-born citizen'. Just as a native-born citizen who did not make the Pesach Rishon makes the Pesach Sheni, so too a ger who did not make the Rishon should make the Sheni. Thus it is explained as well as about Pesach Sheni.)

And the Ramban write that in Parashat Bo it was stated about the Pesach made in Egypt, and the implication was just regarding the converts who converted when they left Egypt, for they all well were part of the miracle, and were encompassed in 'and we He took out from there'. And here it commands regarding the converts who converted in the Midbar, or in Eretz Yisrael, to obligate them in Pesach Doros."

Note the word וירצה on the first line, "and he wishes". In his translation to German as well, he seems to say that this is optional and up to the ger. Thus:
The red underlined words mit machen will means "wants to do".

Shadal writes about this:

"And makes a Passover sacrifice: Not that he makes it if he wants, as it seems from the Targum of Rambman [=Mendelsohnn], but rather as Rashi explains.

He makes a Pesach for Hashem: There is no doubt that the explanation is only like as Rashi explains it, that when a convert converts, and afterwards, when the time comes to make the Pesach [Rishon] and he makes the Pesach, he needs to make it in accordance with all its statutes and commandments. (Even though neither he nor his ancestors left Egypt.) And this is whether for Pesach Rishon or Pesach Sheni.

And the word וירצה which the מבאר wrote, and the word וילל (Josh: underlined German above, mit machen will) that the Metargem [translator] wrote, are not correct."

I concur with Shadal in this. Yes, the immediately preceding context is the laws of Pesach Sheni, but the character of the pasuk does not suggest that this is limited to Pesach Rishon or Sheni; rather, that it is a general inclusion of the ger in all the laws of Pesach. I am not sure of the reasoning offered, that this is so even though he did not personally leave Egypt he is obligated. We should consider it in light of all the other explicit inclusions of geirim.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Is וְהֵבֵאתָ to be pronounced mile'eil or milera?

Summary: Shadal points to an interesting comment in sefer Yaar, that good manuscripts and Rashi support it being mile'eil, against our present reading.

Post: In parashat Toledot, consider this pasuk:

י  וַיֹּאמֶר אֲבִימֶלֶךְ, מַה-זֹּאת עָשִׂיתָ לָּנוּ; כִּמְעַט שָׁכַב אַחַד הָעָם, אֶת-אִשְׁתֶּךָ, וְהֵבֵאתָ עָלֵינוּ, אָשָׁם.10 And Abimelech said: 'What is this thou hast done unto us? one of the people might easily have lain with thy wife, and thou wouldest have brought guiltiness upon us.'

with the Targum of
כו,י וַיֹּאמֶר אֲבִימֶלֶךְ, מַה-זֹּאת עָשִׂיתָ לָּנוּ; כִּמְעַט שָׁכַב אַחַד הָעָם, אֶת-אִשְׁתֶּךָ, וְהֵבֵאתָ עָלֵינוּ, אָשָׁם.וַאֲמַר אֲבִימֶלֶךְ, מָא דָּא עֲבַדְתְּ לַנָא; כִּזְעֵיר פּוֹן שְׁכֵיב דִּמְיַחַד בְּעַמָּא, עִם אִתְּתָךְ, וְאֵיתִיתָא עֲלַנָא, חוֹבָא.

Shadal, in Ohev Ger, notes as follows:

"And here I see fit to reveal to the public a novel idea that I found in sefer Ya'ar regarding the reading of the word וְהֵבֵאתָ. To cite:
וְהֵבֵאתָ עָלֵינוּ, אָשָׁם -- is milera [with stress on last syllable, which in this case would be future tense], and the Targum of וְאֵיתִיתָא is as if it were written mile'eil [with stress on second to last syllable, which in this case would be past tense]. And Rashi, it seems, had the girsa that it was mile'eil, for he wrote
and you would have brought guilt upon us: Had he had relations, you would have brought guilt upon us.והבאת עלינו אשם: אם שכב, כבר הבאת עלינו אשם:

and so is it in precise sefarim as mile'eil
End quote. And the matter is very true that this word is mile'eil, since the implication of the word is the past tense, and the author of this sefer [Ya'ar] is trustworthy that he saw such in the precise texts in his days, even though in our sefarim it is milera."

The Leningrad Codex has it milera:

I don't know what the precise texts were in the time and place of the author of sefer Ya'ar.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

How to understand כַיּוֹם in Yaakov's request to purchase the birthright

Summary: Shadal notes a girsological variation in Onkelos, and then points us to sefer Yud Aleph Resh, Savyonita, and Rashi and Ramban. Ramban discusses the meaning of the strange phrasing in Onkelos, זַבֵּין כְּיוֹם דִּלְהֵין.  I present and translate these sources.

Post: In parashat Toledot, consider this pasuk and Onkelos:
כה,לא וַיֹּאמֶר, יַעֲקֹב:  מִכְרָה כַיּוֹם אֶת-בְּכֹרָתְךָ, לִי.וַאֲמַר, יַעֲקוֹב:  זַבֵּין כְּיוֹם דִּלְהֵין יָת בְּכֵירוּתָךְ, לִי.

Shadal, in Ohev Ger, notes as follows:

That in sefer Ya'ar, as well as in dfus Savyonita, it is translated as דִּלְהֵי, and so to in Kuf-Ayin-Alef, it is דִּילְהֵי. And so writes the Ramban, that it is so in the inspected and precise manuscripts. And the girsa of Rashi is like the majority of sefarim, namely דִּלְהֵין. And both this and that are closed to comprehension.

Thus far Shadal. Follow the hyperlinks I provided to see these manuscripts and texts inside.

Here is what Rashi had to say:
31. And Jacob said, "Sell me as of this day your birthright."לא. וַיֹּאמֶר יַעֲקֹב מִכְרָה כַיּוֹם אֶת בְּכֹרָתְךָ לִי:
Sell me as of this day: As the Targum renders: כְּיוֹם דִילְהֵן, “like this day” ; just as this day is clear, so sell it to me with a clear sale.מכרה כיום: כתרגומו כיום דילהן, כיום שהוא ברור, כך מכור לי מכירה ברורה:

Here is what Ramban had to say:

(לא): מכרה כיום את בכורתך לי - 
כיום דילהן, כיום שהוא ברור כן מכור לי מכירה גמורה, לשון רש"י 
ופשוטו, כעת הזאת, וכן ואתה עמוד כיום ואשמיעך את דבר אלוהים (ש"א ט כז), אותו כהיום תמצאון אותו (שם יג), קטר יקטירון כיום את החלב (שם ב טז), ולנו בשת הפנים כהיום הזה (דניאל ט ז):

והנראה מדעת אונקלוס,
 כי בעבור היות מכירת הבכורה לאחר מיתת אביהם, אמר, מכרה לי הבכורה לאיזה יום שתפול בו, וזה שמוש "להן" בלשון ארמית, להן את אזיל, לאיזה מקום, מן הן את מודע לי, וכן בפרשת וישלח (ב"ר עח א): ולהן אינון אזלין, מן הן דאתברון. והוא לשון מורגל להם במקומות הרבה. ובדניאל (ב יא): בפתחות הלמד כטעם אלהן, להן אלהין די מדרהון עם בשרא לא איתוהי, וכן להן מלכא מלכי ישפר עלך (שם ד כד). ואונקלוס תרגם זולתי "אלהין", אלא הן. ובנוסחאות בדוקות ומדוקדקות מן התרגום כיום דלהי, והוא כמו שפירשתי, כי הי בלשונם איזה, כמו שאומר בתלמוד (ב"ק צט ב): הי רבי מאיר, הי רבי יהודה (ב"ב קמא א), וזולתן:

ואפשר שעשה אונקלוס "כיום" כאלו הוא "ביום", מכרה ביום שתבא בו הבכורה, כי כן מצאנו השמוש הזה לכ"ף, כאשר ילכו אפרוש עליהם רשתי (הושע ז יב), משפטו באשר, וכדמי בניך אשר נתתה להם (יחזקאל טז לו), כי כארבע רוחות השמים פרשתי אתכם (זכריה ב י):

ויש אומרים (הרד"ק בשם אביו): כי אין מחיר הבכורה הנזיד רק הכתוב יספר כי בבקשו לאכול והוא עיף אמר לו יעקב מכור לי בכורתך בכסף, ואחר כך אכול, וענה לו בפחזותו על האכילה למה זה לי בכורה, הרי היא מכורה לך, ונשבע עליה וישבו לאכול ולשתות, והכתוב לא פירש המחיר. ואין זו דעתי:
First he cites Rashi. Then he writes:
"And its simple meaning is 'at this time' and so too [I Shmuel 9:27]:
כז  הֵמָּה, יוֹרְדִים בִּקְצֵה הָעִיר, וּשְׁמוּאֵל אָמַר אֶל-שָׁאוּל אֱמֹר לַנַּעַר וְיַעֲבֹר לְפָנֵינוּ, וַיַּעֲבֹר; וְאַתָּה עֲמֹד כַּיּוֹם, וְאַשְׁמִיעֲךָ אֶת-דְּבַר אֱלֹהִים.  {פ}27 As they were going down at the end of the city, Samuel said to Saul: 'Bid the servant pass on before us--and he passed on--but stand thou still at this time, that I may cause thee to hear the word of God.' {P}

and [same perek]:
יג  כְּבֹאֲכֶם הָעִיר כֵּן תִּמְצְאוּן אֹתוֹ בְּטֶרֶם יַעֲלֶה הַבָּמָתָה לֶאֱכֹל, כִּי לֹא-יֹאכַל הָעָם עַד-בֹּאוֹ--כִּי-הוּא יְבָרֵךְ הַזֶּבַח, אַחֲרֵי-כֵן יֹאכְלוּ הַקְּרֻאִים; וְעַתָּה עֲלוּ, כִּי-אֹתוֹ כְהַיּוֹם תִּמְצְאוּן אֹתוֹ.13 As soon as ye are come into the city, ye shall straightway find him, before he go up to the high place to eat; for the people will not eat until he come, because he doth bless the sacrifice; and afterwards they eat that are bidden. Now therefore get you up; for at this time ye shall find him.'

and [I Shmuel 2:16]
טז  וַיֹּאמֶר אֵלָיו הָאִישׁ, קַטֵּר יַקְטִירוּן כַּיּוֹם הַחֵלֶב, וְקַח-לְךָ, כַּאֲשֶׁר תְּאַוֶּה נַפְשֶׁךָ; וְאָמַר לו (לֹא), כִּי עַתָּה תִתֵּן--וְאִם-לֹא, לָקַחְתִּי בְחָזְקָה.16 And if the man said unto him: 'Let the fat be made to smoke first of all, and then take as much as thy soul desireth'; then he would say: 'Nay, but thou shalt give it me now; and if not, I will take it by force.'

and [Daniel 9:7]:
ז  לְךָ אֲדֹנָי הַצְּדָקָה, וְלָנוּ בֹּשֶׁת הַפָּנִים כַּיּוֹם הַזֶּה; לְאִישׁ יְהוּדָה, וּלְיֹשְׁבֵי יְרוּשָׁלִַם, וּלְכָל-יִשְׂרָאֵל הַקְּרֹבִים וְהָרְחֹקִים בְּכָל-הָאֲרָצוֹת אֲשֶׁר הִדַּחְתָּם שָׁם, בְּמַעֲלָם אֲשֶׁר מָעֲלוּ-בָךְ.7 Unto Thee, O Lord, belongeth righteousness, but unto us confusion of face, as at this day; to the men of Judah, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and unto all Israel, that are near, and that are far off, through all the countries whither Thou hast driven them, because they dealt treacherously with Thee.

And that which appears from Onkelos' position is that since the sale of the birthright was [to take effect only] after their father's death, he said 'sell to me the birthright for whatever day it falls upon', and this is the function of להן in Aramaic, as in lehein at azeil, 'to what place'? [Josh: thus, like le'an.] And מן הן את מודע לי. And so too in parshat Vayishlach (Bereishit Rabba 78:1), להן אינון אזלין, [to where are they going]מן הן דאתברון. And it is a regular language for them in many places. And in Daniel 2:11, with a patach [Josh: kamatz?] on the lamed:

א  וּמִלְּתָא דִי-מַלְכָּה שָׁאֵל, יַקִּירָה, וְאָחֳרָן לָא אִיתַי, דִּי יְחַוִּנַּהּ קֳדָם מַלְכָּא; לָהֵן אֱלָהִין--דִּי מְדָרְהוֹן, עִם-בִּשְׂרָא לָא אִיתוֹהִי.11 And it is a hard thing that the king asketh, and there is none other that can declare it before the king, except the gods, whose dwelling is not with flesh.'

and so too [Daniel 4:24]:
כד  לָהֵן מַלְכָּא, מִלְכִּי יִשְׁפַּר עליך (עֲלָךְ), וחטיך (וַחֲטָאָךְ) בְּצִדְקָה פְרֻק, וַעֲוָיָתָךְ בְּמִחַן עֲנָיִן; הֵן תֶּהֱוֵה אַרְכָה, לִשְׁלֵוְתָךְ.24 Wherefore, O king, let my counsel be acceptable unto thee, and break off thy sins by almsgiving, and thine iniquities by showing mercy to the poor; if there may be a lengthening of thy prosperity.'

And Onkelos translates besides this the word אלהין as ela hein.

And in precise and investigated nuschaot of the Targum, it is כְּיוֹם דִּלְהֵי. And this is as I explained, for hei in their language means איזה, which, just as is stated in the Talmud (Bava Kamma 99b) "hei Rabbi Meir, hei Rabbi Yehuda" {which position of Rabbi Meir...}, and the like.

And it is possible that Onkelos made kayom as if it was bayom. 'Sell to me on the day on which the birthright comes', for we see this functionality for the kaf, such as in [Hoshea 7:12]
יב  כַּאֲשֶׁר יֵלֵכוּ, אֶפְרוֹשׂ עֲלֵיהֶם רִשְׁתִּי--כְּעוֹף הַשָּׁמַיִם, אוֹרִידֵם; אַיְסִירֵם, כְּשֵׁמַע לַעֲדָתָם.  {ס}12 Even as they go, I will spread My net upon them; I will bring them down as the fowls of the heaven; I will chastise them, as their congregation hath been made to hear. {S}

and [Yechezkel 16:36]:

לו  כֹּה-אָמַר אֲדֹנָי יְהוִה, יַעַן הִשָּׁפֵךְ נְחֻשְׁתֵּךְ וַתִּגָּלֶה עֶרְוָתֵךְ, בְּתַזְנוּתַיִךְ, עַל-מְאַהֲבָיִךְ; וְעַל, כָּל-גִּלּוּלֵי תוֹעֲבוֹתַיִךְ, וְכִדְמֵי בָנַיִךְ, אֲשֶׁר נָתַתְּ לָהֶם.36 Thus saith the Lord GOD: Because thy filthiness was poured out, and thy nakedness uncovered through thy harlotries with thy lovers; and because of all the idols of thy abominations, and for the blood of thy children, that thou didst give unto them;

and Zecharia 2:10:
י  הוֹי הוֹי, וְנֻסוּ מֵאֶרֶץ צָפוֹן--נְאֻם-יְהוָה:  כִּי כְּאַרְבַּע רוּחוֹת הַשָּׁמַיִם, פֵּרַשְׂתִּי אֶתְכֶם--נְאֻם-ה.10 Ho, ho, flee then from the land of the north, saith the LORD; for I have spread you abroad as the four winds of the heaven, saith the LORD.

And some say (the Radak in the name of his father) that the price of the firstborn rights was not the lentil stew, but rather the Scriptures relates that when he desired to eat, and he was tires, Yaakov said to him 'sell me you firstborn rights for money', and afterwards he ate, and answered him in rashness upon the food, 'what need do I have for the firstborn rights, behold it is sold to you', and he swore to him upon it, and they sat to eat and drink, and the verse does not specify the price. And this is not my position.

End quote of the Ramban.


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