2. The Syriac Version

Version: Here the printed text is often untrustworthy. An arbitrary change is made in pointing "kingdoms" as plural in Neh· ix. 22 against all the witnesses, while Ndamyahis read for Hebrew I'ramyah and Syriac Nramyah in Neh. xii. 34. Similar mistakes appear in Ezra vii. 5-6, viii. 1; Neh. iv. 23, and elsewhere. Instances occur, however, in which the original Syriac is corrected after the He brew text, se in Neh.viii.15-18 in the alteration of the words" when they heard" to " that they should hear" while inNeh·ii·13the Syriac "hill-fountain" is a slip of the pen for "dragon-fountain." But the Syriac has also a preference for the ending "-el" instead of "-yah" in names compounded with the name of God, e.g., in Neh. xii. 26 "Nehemiah" appears as "Nehemel." Double translations also occur, as in Ezra ix. 7; also paraphrases instead of translations as in vii. 9, 28, viii. 18, 31. The rendering is not consistent, the same word in the original being translated by different words in different passages. Parallels in other books of the Bible are drawn upon for illustration by way of paraphrase, as when hum. xiv. 4 is employed in Neh. ix. 17. Misunderstandings of the original are numerous; as when the plane-name Adrian is translated "at that time" (Ezra ii. 59), or "the tower of the furnaces " is displaced by "the neg lected tower" (Neh. iii. 11), while the figure of "shaking the lap" in Neh. v. 13 is totally mis apprehended. The word "servants" presented such difficulties for the translator that he trans lated it atone time "sons" (N eh. v. lfi), at another time as a proper name (Ezra ii. 58), though in the parallel to the last passage (Neh· vii. 57) he trans lated correctly.

3. The Greek Version

Version: There are many indications that the work of the translators Aquila and Theodotion have been embodied in the text of the Septuagint. But the character of the translation in the two books is so different that evidently two hands have done the work. Nehemiah often shows a strong feeling for the Septuagint method of rendering as opposed to that of Aquila, as when in ix. 7 all the manuscripts read for " Ur 1. its Fi- of the Chaldeea " "the land of the delity to dees·" This tendency is obscured theSebrew.both in Swete's text and in Lagarde's;

and unfortunately Swete's undertaking to give the text of codex B as the groundwork of his text is not consistently carried out, a fault which is somewhat mitigated by the giving of notes which enable one to correct the text. Lagarde'atext is especially full of errors, particularly such as seem due to oversight in proof-reading. A comparison of the texts of codices A B with S from Ezra ix. 9 on shows that in the first there is an endeavor to reproduce the Hebrew or Aramaic with so great fidelity that regard for Greek grammar has often gone by the board, and when even that would fail, the original is transliterated. This attempt at fidelity is especially notable in proper names, as when SbnwrEn is

instead of the usual Greek form Samareia. A further result of this comparison shows that the three codices go back upon a common exemplar. This conclusion is not vitiated by the differences which exist between these codices, since many of them are explicable by mistakes of the eye and the ear, by dittography, or omission caused by catching the sameword in a passage further along. And further, the archetype of these three codices must have exhibited the qualities noted, especially an intelligent and well-directed desire for a faithful reproduction of the Hebrew and Aramaic text. Many of the changes in the individual codices are due to attempts to correct and make intelligible the strange combinations brought about by this desire for fidelity.

Of this class are the corrections noted by Tischendorf and Swete in the St. Petersburg codex, and the source of these corrections has been discovered in a manuscript seen by Pamphilus. These corrections are seen at their best in Neh. xi., 2. The Cor- in which the gaps are filled in which rections mere of the Greek text a mere torso,

Traced to and in Neh. xii. where only the first Their of the four classes of priests were given.


So that the extant Greek text has reached its present condition through processes of smoothing, of correction by comparison with the original and through glosses which have been incorporated into the text. Under the Lucian text moat be seen the text of Origen, and into the latter were taken the additions of Theodotion. In this way can be explained the differences between the Lucian text and that of the manuscript of Pamphilus.

In the Greek, as in the Syrian, there are numerous double renderings, explainable on the ground of glosses brought into the text, a notable case of which is found in which "nor we" is introduced before "kept thy law" (Neh· ix. 34.) Sometimes the lengthened text is due to a comparison of a parallel text or to reference to a passage which was thought illustrative.


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