Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Psalms 90 and 91

I am recalling things I could do a year ago that I now have to struggle to remember how to do in my database. Strange when you move from words patterns to composing music. Many of my routines are embedded in visual forms, but many were experimental and require me to remember how I was doing the experiment.

Here's an example: comparing word repetition in two Psalms. Some discussion has opened up on Psalms 90 and I remembered it was closely related to Psalms 91, one of several pairings of Psalms. I call this one prayer and response. They share more than 26.6% of their words. This is not among the highest percentages. 35 consecutive pairs of Psalms share more than 40% of their words. The highest shared count is 135, 136 at 54.4%.

Shared Words in Psalms 90,91, excluding: על,יהוה,אלוה,כּי,אל,אתּ
Word / Gloss12345678910123456VsStem
מעון a habitation
90:1מעון
אתה yourself
90:1אתה
אתה you are
90:2אתה
ותאמר and you say
90:3אמר
אלף a thousand
90:4אלף
בעיניך in your eyes
90:4עין
כיום are like a day
90:4יום
ואשׁמורה and a watch
90:4שׁמר
בלילה in the night
90:4ליל
כל all
90:9כל
ימינו our days
90:9יום
ימי the days of
90:10יום
ונעפה and we fly away
90:10עוף
יודע knows
90:11ידע
וכיראתך and according to your fear
90:11ירא
ימינו our days
90:12יום
הודע make us know
90:12ידע
שׂבענו satisfy us
90:14שׂבע
בכל in all
90:14כל
ימינו our days
90:14יום
כימות for days
90:15יום
עניתנו you afflicted us
90:15ענה
ראינו we have seen
90:15ראה
רעה evil
90:15רעע
יראה let appear
90:16ראה
אמר I will say
91:2אמר
תירא you will fear
91:5ירא
לילה by night
91:5ליל
יעוף that flies
91:5עוף
יומם by day
91:5יום
אלף a thousand
91:7אלף
בעיניך with your eyes
91:8עין
תראה you will see
91:8ראה
אתה you
91:9אתה
מעונך as your habitation
91:9מעון
רעה evil
91:10רעע
לשׁמרך to keep you
91:11שׁמר
בכל in all
91:11כל
ידע he has known
91:14ידע
ואענהו and I will answer him
91:15ענה
ימים days
91:16יום
אשׂביעהו I will satisfy him
91:16שׂבע
ואראהו and I will show him
91:16ראה

Analyzing music is much harder and requires time. A few things to note about the sequences of the accents: 90:1, 2, 10, and 17 are unique musical phrases. They each occur exactly once in the whole Bible. (Now who is going to tell you this tidbit without a database?). 91:3, 4, 7, 14, 15 are unique. Verses 3 and 14 stand out since they begin on a high C. Could be emphatic use of the accent. In both psalms, some pairs and trios of verses are connected through the use of an initial g (tifha).

The sheet music is available in the usual places. Performances of the raw data are available here Psalm 90 Psalm 91



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