Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Jeremiah 8

Gloss choices are everywhere in every translation and they all register nuance in one direction or another. Take שׁאר for example (verse 3). I have searched for words that indicate remains, left over, residue, remnant, surplus etc. Two stems could easily overlap here:
שׁאר: bereft (7), extra (2), residue (137), trace (9 - with a negative, i.e. no trace), still here (20).
And יתר, advantage (11), remnant (2), left (in the sense of left over, 12), leftover (5), remain (133), rest (1), surplus (16).
and the simplest, ינח allow (8) leave (21) left (17)
You can see how these stems could have shared glosses, the very thing I have been trying to avoid to tease out differences. There is no 'theology of a remnant' in my translation. I have used the word only twice so far.  In the KJV remnant is used for 3 or 4 unrelated stems more than 90 times. This may produce an interpretation in the host language (English) that is superfluous to the intent of the guest language (if indeed there was any such intent).

There are other glosses as well for these stems. I'm not at all sure I have the senses perfect. But if I am consistent, at least I have some control over the changes required if I have my mind changed.

In some ways, my teasing out of differences may not make much difference since the senses overlap in English as well. Leave/left/remain are multifaceted in themselves. I could have treated this group as a single group as I have done for words indicating movement, go/walk/bring/come.

Equally, I have to forgive the KJV for their overlaps whether deliberate or accidental, for their translation philosophy included the deliberate exercise of variety in glossing, specifically to avoid nearby repetition of sounds, this being a literary requirement of the style of the day (I remember this from reading years ago part of a preface to the KJV). What follows is not what I remember but it is close:
An other thing we thinke good to admonish thee of (gentle Reader) that wee have not tyed our selves to an uniformitie of phrasing, or to an identitie of words, as some peradventure would wish that we had done, because they observe, that some learned men some where, have beene as exact as they could that way. Truly, that we might not varie from the sense of that which we had translated before, if the word signified the same thing in both places (for there bee some wordes that bee not of the same sense every where) we were especially carefull, and made a conscience, according to our duetie. But, that we should expresse the same notion in the same particular word; as for example, if we translate the Hebrew or Greeke word once by Purpose, never to call it Intent; if one where Journeying, never Traveiling; if one where Thinke, never Suppose; if one where Paine, never Ache; if one where Joy, never Gladnesse, &c. Thus to minse the matter, wee thought to savour more of curiositie then wisedome, and that rather it would breed scorne in the Atheist, then bring profite to the godly Reader. For is the kingdome of God become words or syllables? why should wee be in bondage to them if we may be free, use one precisely when wee may use another no lesse fit, as commodiously?
They were not married to words. But as we have seen in Hebrew poetry, the repetition of sounds is a major component in Hebrew poetry, a repetitious word game rather than a word game of variety. If that thesis is true and I think it has merit, a translation in a host language that misses repetition is obviously in conflict with an original use of words in the guest language.

So - removed from any absolutist position on the meaning of words, but allowing beauty, sound and music, let us continue with verses 4 and 5, a terse play on the word שׁוב, turn, return, occurring 5 times in fewer than 25 words (tch tch very bad style). Backsliding? Maybe. Maybe turncoat would work, but I think just turning and returning works here. JB misses this entirely and uses apostasy for שׁוב. Astonishing!

The problem with the KJV stance is that it gives too much room for political and religious control over the sense of the text. Perhaps they were more married to the words of their cultural organization and privilege than they would like to admit or were even able to see. Fake news is not a new phenomenon.

Jeremiah 8 Fn Min Max Syll
בָּעֵ֣ת הַהִ֣יא נְאֻם־יְהוָ֡ה יוֹצִ֣יאוּ אֶת־עַצְמ֣וֹת מַלְכֵֽי־יְהוּדָ֣ה וְאֶת־עַצְמוֹת־שָׂרָיו֩ וְאֶת־עַצְמ֨וֹת הַכֹּהֲנִ֜ים וְאֵ֣ת ׀ עַצְמ֣וֹת הַנְּבִיאִ֗ים וְאֵ֛ת עַצְמ֥וֹת יוֹשְׁבֵֽי־יְרוּשָׁלִָ֖ם מִקִּבְרֵיהֶֽם 1 At that time, an oracle of Yahweh, they will bring out the bones of the kings of Judah, and the bones of his nobles, and the bones of the priests, and the bones of the prophets, and the bones of inhabitants of Jerusalem, from their tombs. 3d 4B 54
וּשְׁטָחוּם֩ לַשֶּׁ֨מֶשׁ וְלַיָּרֵ֜חַ וּלְכֹ֣ל ׀ צְבָ֣א הַשָּׁמַ֗יִם אֲשֶׁ֨ר אֲהֵב֜וּם וַאֲשֶׁ֤ר עֲבָדוּם֙ וַֽאֲשֶׁר֙ הָלְכ֣וּ אַֽחֲרֵיהֶ֔ם וַאֲשֶׁ֣ר דְּרָשׁ֔וּם וַאֲשֶׁ֥ר הִֽשְׁתַּחֲו֖וּ לָהֶ֑ם
לֹ֤א יֵאָֽסְפוּ֙ וְלֹ֣א יִקָּבֵ֔רוּ לְדֹ֛מֶן עַל־פְּנֵ֥י הָאֲדָמָ֖ה יִֽהְיֽוּ
2 And they will unfold them to the sun and to the moon, and for all the host of the heavens whom they have loved, and whom they have served, and after whom they have walked, and whom they have searched out, and whom they have worshiped.
They will not be gathered and they will not be entombed, for compost over the face of the ground they will be.
3d 4C 53
וְנִבְחַ֥ר מָ֙וֶת֙ מֵֽחַיִּ֔ים לְכֹ֗ל הַשְּׁאֵרִית֙ הַנִּשְׁאָרִ֔ים מִן־הַמִּשְׁפָּחָ֥ה הָֽרָעָ֖ה הַזֹּ֑את
בְּכָל־הַמְּקֹמ֤וֹת הַנִּשְׁאָרִים֙ אֲשֶׁ֣ר הִדַּחְתִּ֣ים שָׁ֔ם נְאֻ֖ם יְהוָ֥ה צְבָאֽוֹת
3 And death will be chosen over life for all the residue of any who are still here from this evil family,
in all the places of any who are still here where I banished them, an oracle of Yahweh of hosts.
3e 4C 27
וְאָמַרְתָּ֣ אֲלֵיהֶ֗ם כֹּ֚ה אָמַ֣ר יְהוָ֔ה הֲיִפְּל֖וּ וְלֹ֣א יָק֑וּמוּ
אִם־יָשׁ֖וּב וְלֹ֥א יָשֽׁוּב
4 And you say to them, Thus says Yahweh, Will they fall and not arise?
If it has turned, then will it not return?
3e 4C 20
מַדּ֨וּעַ שׁוֹבְבָ֜ה הָעָ֥ם הַזֶּ֛ה יְרוּשָׁלִַ֖ם מְשֻׁבָ֣ה נִצַּ֑חַת
הֶחֱזִ֙יקוּ֙ בַּתַּרְמִ֔ית מֵאֲנ֖וּ לָשֽׁוּב
5 Why does this Jerusalem people turn a perpetual turning?
They are resolute in deceit. They will not return.
3d 4B 19
הִקְשַׁ֤בְתִּי וָֽאֶשְׁמָע֙ לוֹא־כֵ֣ן יְדַבֵּ֔רוּ אֵ֣ין אִ֗ישׁ נִחָם֙ עַל־רָ֣עָת֔וֹ לֵאמֹ֖ר מֶ֣ה עָשִׂ֑יתִי
כֻּלֹּ֗ה שָׁ֚ב בִּמְר֣וּצָתָ֔ם כְּס֥וּס שׁוֹטֵ֖ף בַּמִּלְחָמָֽה
6 I paid attention and I heard. They did not so speak. There was no person sighing over its evil, saying, What have I done?
Everyone turned to their own racing like a horse charging into the battle.
3e 4C 26
גַּם־חֲסִידָ֣ה בַשָּׁמַ֗יִם יָֽדְעָה֙ מֽוֹעֲדֶ֔יהָ וְתֹ֤ר וְסִיס֙ וְעָג֔וּר שָׁמְר֖וּ אֶת־עֵ֣ת בֹּאָ֑נָה
וְעַמִּ֕י לֹ֣א יָֽדְע֔וּ אֵ֖ת מִשְׁפַּ֥ט יְהוָֽה
7 Even a stork in the heavens knows her appointed times, and a turtledove, and a crane, and a thrush, they keep the time of their coming,
but my people do not know the framework of Yahweh.
3e 4C 26
אֵיכָ֤ה תֹֽאמְרוּ֙ חֲכָמִ֣ים אֲנַ֔חְנוּ וְתוֹרַ֥ת יְהוָ֖ה אִתָּ֑נוּ
אָכֵן֙ הִנֵּ֣ה לַשֶּׁ֣קֶר עָשָׂ֔ה עֵ֖ט שֶׁ֥קֶר סֹפְרִֽים
8 How do you say we are shrewd, and the instruction of Yahweh is with us?
Nevertheless, behold, for falsehood he acted, the stylus of the falsehood of scribes.
3e 4C 18
הֹבִ֣ישׁוּ חֲכָמִ֔ים חַ֖תּוּ וַיִּלָּכֵ֑דוּ
הִנֵּ֤ה בִדְבַר־יְהוָה֙ מָאָ֔סוּ וְחָכְמַֽת־מֶ֖ה לָהֶֽם
9 Ashamed are the shrewd, dismayed, but they are caught out.
Behold, in the word of Yahweh, they refused, so what is shrewdness for them?
3e 4C 13
לָכֵן֩ אֶתֵּ֨ן אֶת־נְשֵׁיהֶ֜ם לַאֲחֵרִ֗ים שְׂדֽוֹתֵיהֶם֙ לְי֣וֹרְשִׁ֔ים כִּ֤י מִקָּטֹן֙ וְעַד־גָּד֔וֹל כֻּלֹּ֖ה בֹּצֵ֣עַ בָּ֑צַע
מִנָּבִיא֙ וְעַד־כֹּהֵ֔ן כֻּלֹּ֖ה עֹ֥שֶׂה שָּֽׁקֶר
10 Therefore I will give their wives to others, their fields to those who dispossess them, for from the least and to the greatest, all are extorting gain.
From prophet and to priest, all have done falsehood.
3e 4C 34
וַיְרַפּ֞וּ אֶת־שֶׁ֤בֶר בַּת־עַמִּי֙ עַל־נְקַלָּ֔ה לֵאמֹ֖ר שָׁל֣וֹם ׀ שָׁל֑וֹם
וְאֵ֖ין שָׁלֽוֹם
11 And they have healed the shattering of the daughter of my people with a slight, saying, Peace, peace.
And there is no peace.
3e 4C 19
הֹבִ֕שׁוּ כִּ֥י תוֹעֵבָ֖ה עָשׂ֑וּ
גַּם־בּ֣וֹשׁ לֹֽא־יֵבֹ֗שׁוּ וְהִכָּלֵם֙ לֹ֣א יָדָ֔עוּ לָכֵ֞ן יִפְּל֣וּ בַנֹּפְלִ֗ים בְּעֵ֧ת פְּקֻדָּתָ֛ם יִכָּשְׁל֖וּ אָמַ֥ר יְהוָֽה
12 Were they ashamed when they did abomination?
even ashamed? They were not ashamed and humiliation, they do not know. Therefore they will fall with the fallen. At the time of their visitation they will stumble, says Yahweh.
3c 4B 9
אָסֹ֥ף אֲסִיפֵ֖ם נְאֻם־יְהֹוָ֑ה
אֵין֩ עֲנָבִ֨ים בַּגֶּ֜פֶן וְאֵ֧ין תְּאֵנִ֣ים בַּתְּאֵנָ֗ה וְהֶֽעָלֶה֙ נָבֵ֔ל וָאֶתֵּ֥ן לָהֶ֖ם יַעַבְרֽוּם
13 For havoc I will gather them, an oracle of Yahweh.
There are no grapes on the vine, and there are no figs in the fig tree, and the leaf withers, and I will give them what passes away.
3c 4B 10
עַל־מָה֙ אֲנַ֣חְנוּ יֹֽשְׁבִ֔ים הֵֽאָסְפ֗וּ וְנָב֛וֹא אֶל־עָרֵ֥י הַמִּבְצָ֖ר וְנִדְּמָה־שָּׁ֑ם
כִּי֩ יְהוָ֨ה אֱלֹהֵ֤ינוּ הֲדִמָּ֙נוּ֙ וַיַּשְׁקֵ֣נוּ מֵי־רֹ֔אשׁ כִּ֥י חָטָ֖אנוּ לַיהוָֽה
14 To what end are we sitting? Gather yourselves and let us enter into the enclosed cities and be mute there,
for Yahweh our God has muted us and has made us drink the waters of gall, for we have sinned against Yahweh.
3d 4C 23
קַוֵּ֥ה לְשָׁל֖וֹם וְאֵ֣ין ט֑וֹב
לְעֵ֥ת מַרְפֵּ֖ה וְהִנֵּ֥ה בְעָתָֽה
15 We waited for peace and there was no good,
for a time of healing, and behold, alarm.
3e 4B 8
מִדָּ֤ן נִשְׁמַע֙ נַחְרַ֣ת סוּסָ֗יו מִקּוֹל֙ מִצְהֲל֣וֹת אַבִּירָ֔יו רָעֲשָׁ֖ה כָּל־הָאָ֑רֶץ
וַיָּב֗וֹאוּ וַיֹּֽאכְלוּ֙ אֶ֣רֶץ וּמְלוֹאָ֔הּ עִ֖יר וְיֹ֥שְׁבֵי בָֽהּ
16 From Dan was heard the snuffling of his horses. From the voice of the neighing of his mighty ones, all the earth quaked.
And they came and they devoured a land and her fullness, a city and those settled in her.
3e 4C 23
כִּי֩ הִנְנִ֨י מְשַׁלֵּ֜חַ בָּכֶ֗ם נְחָשִׁים֙ צִפְעֹנִ֔ים אֲשֶׁ֥ר אֵין־לָהֶ֖ם לָ֑חַשׁ
וְנִשְּׁכ֥וּ אֶתְכֶ֖ם נְאֻם־יְהוָֽה
17 For note me well sending among you snakes, anaconda that are without their conjurer,
and they will bite you, an oracle of Yahweh.
3e 4A 22
מַבְלִ֥יגִיתִ֖י עֲלֵ֣י יָג֑וֹן
עָלַ֖י לִבִּ֥י דַוָּֽי
18 Why would I smile? against me sadness,
against me is my heart of melancholy.
3e 4B 8
הִנֵּה־ק֞וֹל שַֽׁוְעַ֣ת בַּת־עַמִּ֗י מֵאֶ֙רֶץ֙ מַרְחַקִּ֔ים הַֽיהוָה֙ אֵ֣ין בְּצִיּ֔וֹן אִם־מַלְכָּ֖הּ אֵ֣ין בָּ֑הּ
מַדּ֗וּעַ הִכְעִס֛וּנִי בִּפְסִלֵיהֶ֖ם בְּהַבְלֵ֥י נֵכָֽר
19 Behold the voice of the cry of the daughter of my people from the land of those who are far off. Yahweh is not in Zion? Her king is not in her?
Why have they grieved me with their graven images and alien futility?
3d 4B 25
עָבַ֥ר קָצִ֖יר כָּ֣לָה קָ֑יִץ
וַאֲנַ֖חְנוּ ל֥וֹא נוֹשָֽׁעְנוּ
20 Harvest has passed by, finished is summer,
and we, we are not saved.
3e 4B 8
עַל־שֶׁ֥בֶר בַּת־עַמִּ֖י הָשְׁבָּ֑רְתִּי
קָדַ֕רְתִּי שַׁמָּ֖ה הֶחֱזִקָֽתְנִי
21 Over the shattering of the daughter of my people I am broken.
I mourn. Desolation resolutely holds me.
3e 4A 9
הַצֳרִי֙ אֵ֣ין בְּגִלְעָ֔ד אִם־רֹפֵ֖א אֵ֣ין שָׁ֑ם
כִּ֗י מַדּ֙וּעַ֙ לֹ֣א עָֽלְתָ֔ה אֲרֻכַ֖ת בַּת־עַמִּֽי
22 Balm? Is there none in Gilead? no physician there?
for why does it not come up? the health of the daughter of my people.
3e 4B 12
מִֽי־יִתֵּ֤ן רֹאשִׁי֙ מַ֔יִם וְעֵינִ֖י מְק֣וֹר דִּמְעָ֑ה
וְאֶבְכֶּה֙ יוֹמָ֣ם וָלַ֔יְלָה אֵ֖ת חַֽלְלֵ֥י בַת־עַמִּֽי
23 Who will give my head waters and my eyes a fountain of tears,
that I may weep day and night for the profaned of the daughter of my people?
3e 4C 12

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