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can be satisfactorily accounted for. If the Hebrew writers descend, as I have supposed, with the stream of events, and, in order to indicate the progression in time, employ usually the future tense in close connection with the copulative, we easily perceive how, when an object has been already brought prominently before the mind and viewed and spoken of as a present object, the future tense is necessarily superseded by the presentthe design of the writer being, in such case, not so much to indicate the progression of events as to make some affirmation with regard to this particular object. This is still more necessary when there is no succession in time, but only in thought, as in several of the examples given above.

So also with the examples given under the second head. The use of these particles tends, as it were, to bring forward the time, and thus renders the employment of the future unnecessary.

brings the object at once before us. Dy and Dep fix our place, and that at the point spoken of. and involve the idea of futurity. And, which always precedes the verb, and takes from it its positive character, renders the indication of time, in such cases, unnecessary.

There is so great a uniformity in this usage, that we may justly fix upon a proper and satisfactory solution of it as the best test of the various theories which have been proposed.

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From what has been said,' remarks Professor Lee, it must have appeared that the writer, placing both himself and his reader in times contemporary with the events of which he is treating, can supply the deficiency of tenses apparent in the Hebrew paradigm -an expedient often resorted to, indeed, by the Latin and Greek historians without the necessity which presents itself here. We must not suppose, however, from this circumstance that they never recur to the original time from which they set out. This they seem to do optionally, just as we find it done in the Greek and Latin historians.' And here he refers to Gen. i. 5, Exod. xvi. 24, examples similar to those given above, in which p" becomes

.ו - - - - פקד

Now, with the first sentence of this paragraph we agree entirely, believing it to be precisely the principle which the Hebrew writers adopted. But, with all deference to Dr. Lee, we object, in toto, to the latter clause, and cannot but be surprised that Dr. Lee should have written it. To say that the Hebrew writers recur to their own times, just as the Greek and Latin historians do, is certainly a most extraordinary statement. Dr. Lee has given no explanation whatever of the real facts of the

Grammar, Lect. xvii.


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case. He has not hinted at the extreme regularity of the construction. He has given no reason why the form is employed, only when separated from the connecting particle. He has left us to suppose that the Hebrew writers vary the use of the forms optionally; whereas, in almost every case, we are able to perceive and assign the reason of the change. For instance, he translates Gen. i. 5, And God calls & the light day; but the darkness he called night & This might do very well in a few cases scattered here and there, as in the Greek and Roman writers. But why is there such a uniformity in the Hebrew usage? Why is the necessarily joined with 1, and the p form necessarily disjoined from it? On Dr. Lee's theory, ingenious as it unquestionably is, there is no satisfactory reply to this question.

But applying the principle contained in the first sentence of the extract given above to the explanation of this usage, on the supposition that the p and pp forms, instead of past and present, are present and future respectively, we have at once the reason of the change of tense and of the close connection between the p form and the copulative particle.

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Again, Ewald thus adverts to the usage we are considering : There are cases in which these two forms, though possible as to the idea, are nevertheless abrogated, and yield to the simple ones. For, in these forms, the Vav and the verbal form are most intimately and inseparably united. If then another word than the verb is necessarily driven to the beginning of the proposition, so that the copula can only be attached to it, but the verb follows, then that combination is broken up, and the whole form is destroyed at the same time: the members of the combination, therefore, then appear simple and naked; the simple copula and the appropriate simple tense which would be used without this successive consequence.' My only remark on this passage is, that it contains simply a statement of the difficulty, not an explanation of it.

This change likewise takes place

1. When an emphatic word or clause intervenes :- b

. ----- יפקד changed into ופקד .4

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They shall bear the tabernacle . and they [the Levites, they and they only] shall do its service, and round the tabernacle they shall encamp [the prominent idea being their peculiar care of the tabernacle, and

a Grammar, § 614.

b See also Exod. xxv. 21; xxvi. 1; xxix. 4; Num. i. 53; ii. 16; iii. 10, 38; iv. 7, 11; ix. 15; x. 7, 8; xiv. 24; xix. 8; Deut. i. 39, 40; iii. 28; ix. 3; Judg. ii. 2, 4; 1 Sam. i. 13; viii. 13; xxiii. 17.


not the fact of their encamping]; and when the tabernacle setteth forward, the Levites shall take it down.

2. When or some other adverb is connected with :—c

1 Sam. i. 11. If thou shalt look n n on the affliction of thine handmaid and remember me, and shalt not forget

.thine handmaid וְלֹא תִשְׁכַּח

Mal. iii. 1. Ni on and suddenly shall come.

Apply the principle we have unfolded to these forms of construction, the explanation is extremely simple. Usually, when the verb is connected with its futurity is involved in the futurity of the first verb of the series; but, when a more emphatic word is placed between the verb and the connecting particle, then the object denoted by that word is, as it were, brought prominently out before the eye; and, if some future action or state is predicated of that object, the futurity of such object or state must be distinctly marked. In the same manner, when the negative particle is connected with, the time which had been carried along is lost, and the futurity of the action or state must again be marked. Hence, in such cases the future tense must be employed.

In order to point out the regularity of this part of the syntax of the Hebrew language, I shall set down a somewhat lengthened passage, in which we have many examples of the p and

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p forms, and from which we may be able to discover their relation the one to the other. Exod. xxix. 1, &c., Moses receives the following injunctions: Take one young bullock, and two rams without blemish, and unleavened bread and cakes unleavened . . . of wheaten flour shalt thou make nyn (1) them; and put n (2) them into one basket, and bring them And Aaron and his sons thou shalt bring

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1 (3) unto the door of the tabernacle, and wash yO?! (2) them with water.' [In this paragraph we have the various forms of expression above described. (1) Future, because relating to future time; (2) Present, because present in relation to the verb going before; (3) pn, because Aaron and his sons are mentioned for the first time-therefore prominent, therefore placed between the verb and connecting particle.] 6 And thou shalt take p[i. e. then thou takest] the garments, and put a upon Aaron the coat.... and gird him the curious girdle of the ephod, and put p the mitre on his head, and put on the holy crown on the mitre, and take any the anointing oil and pour it on his head, and anoint him

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See also Exod. ix. 4; xxiii. 24; Num. iv. 15; vi. 20; viii. 15, 19; xi. 25; xiv. 35; 1 Sam. i. 11; viii. 18; xii. 14.

and put coats ,---- תַקְרִיב And his sons thou shalt bring .וּמָשַׁחְתָּ

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on them on [In this paragraph the form p is used nearly throughout, because the attention is directed chiefly to the successive actions enjoined. There is, however, one exception, ap, and the obvious reason is that his sons is an emphatic expression, being contrasted with Aaron mentioned immediately before.] For the same reason, the form ¬ is used on to the twelfth verse: And thou shalt take p of the blood of the bullock and put it an on the horns of the altar with thy finger, but all the blood thou shalt pour --- beside the bottom of the altar. And thou shalt take pop all the fat . . . . and burn them on the altar. But the flesh of the bullock dung shalt thou burn

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and his skin and his with fire. Then one ram thou shalt take np1,' &c. [In this paragraph p is three times used: (1) 'all the blood,' or rather the rest of the blood, is placed immediately after 1, because contrasted with the blood sprinkled on the altar: (2) flesh, skin, dung,' put first, because distinguished from the fat mentioned just before; (3) 'one ram' put first, because distinguished from the bullock to which the preceding verses relate. These expressions, being thus prominent and emphatic, are placed each in the beginning of the clause, and the objects denoted by them we thus regard as present-before our eyes; and, therefore, the verbs connected with them must take the future tense, as they describe something yet to be done to the objects thus regarded as present.] This construction is followed with great exactness. I do not by any means assert that it is uniformly followed-that we never

ו - - - - יפקד or with ו ---- יפקד when we should expect ופקד meet with

when we should expect p. But there is sufficient uniformity to constitute the basis of a general rule, and to induce us to search for the principle on which it is founded. I know no principle at all adequate to the explanation of it but the principle which has been applied in this paper to the explanation of many other peculiarities of the Hebrew syntax. That principle furnishes an easy and satisfactory solution in this case also. Consider the writer as going along with the series of events: if it be a past series, we see at once why the historic style should be pp. Consider the writer, when detailing a future series, as viewing them grouped together, we see at once why the prophetic style is 7p7p. The same principle accounts for the apparent anomalies in the construction of the tenses, and furnishes an explanation of other distinguishing peculiarities of the Hebrew language.



By G. M. BELL.

SIX miles south from Jerusalem, on the road to Hebron, is a little city called Bethlehem, more generally, Bethlehem-Judah, celebrated as the scene of the transactions recorded in the book of Ruth and the birthplace of Christ. The number of its inhabitants is said to be about 3000, and at the time to which I shall presently allude it was probably less. Situated in the heart of a fertile country, the surrounding valleys afforded rich and abundant pasture for flocks. The most honourable and general pursuit of the neighbouring people was that of shepherds. Two thousand years before the birth of Christ one of the humble shepherds in this valley was the father of eight sons, three of whom are mentioned as soldiers in the army of Saul, the King of Israel, while the eighth and youngest tended his father's sheep in the valley of Bethlehem.


The seven eldest sons of Jesse were of goodly stature, and comely to look upon, but of David the youngest we have a particular description: He was ruddy, and withal of a beautiful countenance, and goodly to look to' (1 Sam. xvi. 12); 'a comely person' (ver. 18); ruddy and of a fair countenance' (xvii. 42). Such was his appearance when he was brought from the fields, and placed before Samuel, and anointed by that prophet. Upon his first introduction to Saul, the King of Israel, whom in the course of Providence he was destined to supplant in the kingdom, that monarch was immediately prepossessed in his favour, and he loved him greatly.' A still deeper and more enduring feeling of attachment was afterwards entertained for him by Jonathan, the son of Saul; for the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul' (1 Sam. xviii. 1).

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At the period when he is thus introduced to our notice he would probably be about the age of seventeen or eighteen. He is described as 'a youth,' 'a stripling,' contemned by Goliath of Gath on account of his juvenile appearance. Previous to this time he had been occupied solely in the simple and innocent life of a shepherd, tending the flocks of his father Jesse at Bethlehem. His youth had been spent among flocks and herds in the valleys, by the watercourses, and on the sides of the surrounding hills. The city in which his father dwelt was situated on the brow of a hill commanding an extensive view of the surrounding mountainous country, rising in parterres of vineyards, almond-groves, and fig-plantations, watered by gentle rivulets, and diversified by towers and wine


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