Lamentations 4:3

Hebrew Bible

1 א (Alef) Alas! Gold has lost its luster; pure gold loses value. Jewels are scattered on every street corner. 2 ב (Bet) The precious sons of Zion were worth their weight in gold—Alas!—but now they are treated like broken clay pots, made by a potter. 3 ג (Gimel) Even the jackals nurse their young at their breast, but my people are cruel, like ostriches in the wilderness. 4 ד (Dalet) The infant’s tongue sticks to the roof of its mouth due to thirst; little children beg for bread, but no one gives them even a morsel. 5 ה (He) Those who once feasted on delicacies are now starving to death in the streets. Those who grew up wearing expensive clothes are now dying amid garbage.

LXX Lamentations 4:3


1 (Alph) How gold will grow dim; the good silver will be altered! Consecrated stones were poured out at the beginning of all exits. 2 (Beth) The precious sons of Sion who were lifted up with gold — how they were reckoned as earthen pots, works of a potter’s hands. 3 (Gimel) Indeed, dragons bared their breasts; their whelps sucked; the daughters of my people are incorrigible, like an ostrich in the wilderness. 4 (Daleth) The tongue of the suckling stuck to its throat with thirst; babes begged for food; there was no one to break it up for them. 5 (Hey) Those who eat delicacies were put away in the exits; those nursed in scarlet wrapped themselves in dung.

 Notes and References

"... The Greek text of the verse, in the critical edition prepared by Ziegler (2006:487), reads as follows ... This translation has both “literal” traits and marks of the translator’s initiative. Its text follows the word order of the Masoretic Text and all the clause constituents of the Hebrew consonantal text are represented in the translation ... The translator, however, did not translate all the words and phrases of the verse literally. He adjusted the number of nouns and rendered ןהירוג not as the object of וקיניה, but as the subject of the verb. Furthermore, the two readings δράκοντες and θυγατέρες λαοῦ μου stand out, because they differ from their opposite numbers in the MT and affect the content of the Greek version of the verse. They contribute to the fact that the meaning of LXX Lamentations 4:3 is not the same as its sense in the Masoretic Text ..."

Kotzé, Gideon R. Daughters and Dragons in LXX Lamentations 4:3 (pp. 159-182) Journal of Northwest Semitic Languages 40/2, 2014

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