Sunday, December 31, 2006

Vayigash Discussions

There were several good responses and comments to Vayigash posts, so I thought I'd note them here.

On my post on "When Was Yosef Sold?" David Silverberg pointed out a typo in my counting -- I wrote 30 instead of 39 as Yosef's age where the brothers stood before him. He has further considerations of the post on his blog -- that this could explain Yosef's motivations in having Binyamin brought, whether the story of Yehuda and Tamar co-occurred or happened after, and whether Chevron was the same as Emek Chevron. Ayen Sham. In a separate post (on which I left a comment), he considers whether Yaakov at any point became aware of the sale of Yosef, according to Rashi.

In "Are Reuven's Children Tribbles?" I wonder how Reuven goes from two children to four in such a short timespan, and suggest this is additional proof that habaim mitzrayma does not mean those who physically entered Egypt but rather refers to the generation of entering Egypt as opposed to the generation which left Egypt. Steg suggested that et shnei vanai means not "my two sons" but rather "two of my sons." The parallel would be to Yosef and Binyamin, or perhaps to Shimon and Binyamin. Indeed, this is the classic explanation. To cite Shadal:

[ לז ] את שני בני : שנים מבני ( רד"ק , וכן דעת שאר הקדמונים). הן אמת כי מילת את מורה על דבר מיוחד וידוע, כמו ה"א הידיעה, ומשמעות את שני בני הוא שני בני הידועים, כלו' שלא היו לו אלא שני בנים, וידענו כי היו לו ארבעה בנים ( למטה מ"ו ט' ), לפיכך יש אומרים (י' ש' ריגיו ובוצר עוללות) כי חצרון וכרמי לא נולדו עדיין, ודעתי נוטה לדעת הקדמונים כי בכמה מקומות מצאנו ה"א הידיעה על דבר בלתי מיוחד, כמו למעלה פסוק כ"ז ויפתח האחד את שקו, עיין שם. על ידי : על אחריותי ( ר"ש דובנא ), מליצת על יד נמצאת להוראת הנתינה ביד שומר שאחריות הפיקדון עליו, עיין שמואל א' י"ז כ"ב , מלכים ב' י' כ"ד , י"ב י"ב , וכ"ב ה' וט ' .

Thus, some say that at this point he only had two sons, and others (Radak and so too others). The grammatical justification he gives is that et sometimes functions as a type of definite article, just as the heh hayedia, and the heh hayedia sometimes indeed goes on something that is not meyuchad. Thus, "and the one opened his sack" means one of them, and not specifically one who is meyuchad.

In a comment on "The Ambiguity of וְעָזַב אֶת-אָבִיו וָמֵת," Rabbi Nachman Levine points out how this can be multivalent, deliberately intending both, and shows that Rabbenu Bachya says this and reinforces this. In a comment on "The Three Approaches," he cites the Lubavitcher Rebbe about the implication of Vayigash by Sedom, and how since Avraham already stands before Hashem, Vayigash there must mean prayer or argumentation, and notes how the same applies here.

(Dis-)Like this post? Rate it!

No comments:


Blog Widget by LinkWithin