« ForrigeFortsæt »
Septuagint, to be met with in Philo and Josephus, with the hebrew text (I say, those citations, that it may not be pretended, that the passages which the Seventy have ill translated, have been corrupted); and he will find these interpreters to have had but a very moderate knowledge of the hebrew tongue, and to have proceeded by no certain rules in their translation. .
But by the account given of the Septuagint tranilation in our learned divine and hebrician LIGHTFOOT, no translation was ever more unfaithful, or more remote from its original, than the Septuagint was from the hebrew.
He says, (e) “ That the Seventy did that to work unwillingly, and for fear: for the * scripture was the treasure of the Jews, “ which made them more glorious, than G any nation under heaven. Therefore, to
communicate this their riches to the hea“then, whom they abominated and de"tested, was as much against their heart, « as what was most. So that had not the s fear (f) of the power of PTOLEMY « brought them to the work of the transla6 tion, more than their own good will,
(e) Lightfoot's Works, Vol. 1. p. 488, &c. (f) See UjJerii De Editione Sept. Inter, p. 214, 215.
« there had been no such thing done. PTOSS LEMY Lagus, the father of ProLEMY " PHILADELPHUS, for whom they translated, “ had carry'd away an hundred thousand « Jews captive into Egypt, as faith Ariste« As, fo the fear and dread of that house lay “ upon them, that they durst deny it nothing, “ which otherwise they would most vehe“ mently have done such a thing as this, C to have communicated their fçriptures to “ the heathen in a vulgar tongue. is Secondly, the translation being then un« dertaken for fear, and with so ill a will, “ 'and that they kept a mournful fast every « year, forrowing for the work of that tran« Ilation ; it cannot be expected, that the ç translation will be done without any more “ fidelity, than barely what will keep the
translators out of danger.
« Thirdly, therefore they strive as much " as they can, to conceal the truth and oć treasure of the scripture from the heathen, cc and as much as they dare to delude of them. Their chief means for this is to « use an unprick'd bible, in which the « words written without vowels, might be “ bended divers ways, and into divers fensc ses, and different from the meaning of the “ original, and yet if the translation were question’d, they might prick or vowel
r the word, so as to agree to their transla, « tion, How they have dealt in this kind, 65 there is none that ever laid the hebrew bi« ble and the Septuagint together, but hath. ç obsery'd.
« Fourthly, their differences from the orie “ ginal, which were innumerable, were part, “ ly of ignorance, they themselves not being « able to read the text always true in a copy « unvowelld. But this ignorance was also s voluntary in them, they not caring to mi« stake, so they might do it to their own
“ Their general care was, that since of « necellity they must translate the bible, as ļit“ tle of it might be imparted and reveald by & the transļation as was possible.
“ Their particular and special heed was
also, that those places of the text, which “ translated literally, or according to their “ true meaning, might prove dangerous any
ways to the nation of the Jews, or bring " them into distaste with the potent king, «s for whom they were translated, should be ¢¢ so temper'd and qualify'd that no hazard « might arise, nor any such matter might be < seen."
In fine, there is so great disagreement between the present copies of the Septuagint and the hebreze, (tho’the former (g) has been corrected to the latter) and that to all appearance between the ancient ones ; that many learned men, and particularly our great (1) UşHER, have been mistakenly induc'd to believe, that there were two greek versions of the hebrew before Christ, and that the first, which was an accurate version of the books of Moses only, and was the work of the Seventy under the reign of PTOLEMY PHILADELPHUS, and was conformable to the hebrew, is now lost; but that the second, falsely call'd the Septuagint, and now receiv'd as the true Septuagint, was a subsequent and unfaithful translation made in the fourth year of PTOLEMY PHYSCON.
So that nothing can seem more remote from all appearance of truth, than to suppose, that so ill a version as the present Septuagint version feems to all learned men to be, Thould ever have agreed with the original hebrew,
(g) Whiston's Esay, p. 48, 49.
That the Samaritan Pentateuch is 110t an un
corrupt copy of the books of Moses, and originally deriv'd from the first separation of the ten tribes themselves in the days of JEROBOAM.
TR. WHISTON (1) deems the SamariW tan Pentateuch (which is one of the means, whereby he proposes to restore the true téxt of the books of the Old Testament) an nincorrupted copy of the books of Moses, and to be originally deriv'd from the first feparation of the ten tribes themselves in the days of JEROBOAM.
i. Whereas, if the ten tribes, that under the conduct of JEROBOAM set up a worship at (k) Dan and Bethel, had a Pentateuch among them (which may justly be fufpected and cannot be prov’d): yet that proves nothing in relation to the present Samaritans and those from whom they are deriv’d. For the ten tribes were all carry'd (1) capa tive by SHALMANESSER into Asyria, where
(i) Whiston's Ellay, p. 2, 16, 48, 49, 164, 175, 183, (k) 1 Kings 1 2. 28. (l) 2 Kings 17.6 18.