1 Enoch 72:5


4 And first there goes forth the great luminary, named the Sun, and his circumference is like the circumference of the heaven, and he is quite filled with illuminating and heating fire. 5 The chariot on which he ascends, the wind drives, and the sun goes down from the heaven and returns through the north in order to reach the east, and is so guided that he comes to the appropriate portal and shines in the face of the heaven. 6 In this way he rises in the first month in the great portal, which is the fourth ⌈those six portals in the cast⌉.

Pirkei DeRabbi Eliezer 6


The aperture which is in the midst of the firmament is named M'zarim and (the sun) does not go forth or set therein except once in its great cycle; (thereon) it goes through it as on the day when it was created. At night the sun is in the west. At the Teḳuphah of Tishri and at the Teḳuphah of Ṭebeth the sun goes on its course in the south quarter and in the waters of the Ocean (which are) between the ends of the heavens and the ends of the earth where it is submerged. For the night is long and the way is long until (the sun) reaches the aperture which is in the east, (even) the aperture through which it desires to go forth, as it is said, "It goeth toward the south, and turneth about unto the north" (Eccles. 1:6). It goes to the south at the Teḳuphah of Tishri and at the Teḳuphah of Ṭebeth, and turns to the north at the Teḳuphah of Nisan and at the Teḳuphah of Tammuz. It goes on its course for six months in the south quarter, and for six months in the north quarter, and owing to its circuits the sun returns to the aperture which is in the east. The sun has three letters of (God's) Name written upon his heart, and the angels lead him; such || as lead him by day do not lead him by night, and such as lead him by night do not lead him by day. The sun rides in a chariot and rises, crowned as a bridegroom, as it is said, "Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber, and rejoiceth as a strong man to run his course" (Ps. 19:5). The sun's rays and face, which are turned downwards (to the earth), are of hail; and were it not for the hail which quenches the flames of fire the world would be consumed by fire, as it is said, "And there is nothing hid from the heat thereof" (Ps. 19:6). In winter (the sun) turns the upper (half of) his face downwards, and were it not for the fire which warms the face of hail the world could not endure because of the ice (cold), as it is said, "Who can stand before his cold?" (Ps. 147:17). These are the ends of the ways of the sun.

 Notes and References

"... There are some parallels offered by Friedlander that may rely upon a different type of source: that of the contemporary, popular understanding of the world, especially astronomy. For instance, Pirkei de Rabbi Eliezer 6 and 1 Enoch (72:37; 78:3) claim that the sun and the moon are of equal size. However, the writer of PRE did not have to read 1 Enoch in order to acquire this information, as it was "common knowledge in ancient astronomy." Similarly, the "day of the full moon" mentioned both in Pirkei de Rabbi Eliezer 7 and 1 Enoch 78:13 must be the day of the month when the moon is full. In the lunar calendar this day falls in the middle of the month, as is described in PRE and all other astronomical literature. The idea of the sun ascending on a chariot, present in Pirkei de Rabbi Eliezer 6 and 1 Enoch 72:5, is not one that would have been believed by the scientists of the day, but is one rooted since Hellenistic times in popular mythology ..."

Kister, Menahem "Observations on Aspects of Exegesis, Tradition, and Theology in Midrash, Pseudepigrapha, and Other Jewish Writings" in Reeves, John C. (ed.) Tracing the Threads: Studies in the Vitality of Jewish Pseudepigrapha (pp. 1-34) Scholars Press, 1994

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