Thursday, July 05, 2007

Points on Pinchas

Some points that otherwise would not merit individual posts, because I have not yet developed them as such:

1. In the beginning of parshat Pinchas, there is a special crown on the letter kuf in the phrase bekan`o et kin`ati. Bemidbar 25:11:
יא פִּינְחָס בֶּן-אֶלְעָזָר בֶּן-אַהֲרֹן הַכֹּהֵן, הֵשִׁיב אֶת-חֲמָתִי מֵעַל בְּנֵי-יִשְׂרָאֵל, בְּקַנְאוֹ אֶת-קִנְאָתִי, בְּתוֹכָם; וְלֹא-כִלִּיתִי אֶת-בְּנֵי-יִשְׂרָאֵל, בְּקִנְאָתִי. 11 'Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, hath turned My wrath away from the children of Israel, in that he was very jealous for My sake among them, so that I consumed not the children of Israel in My jealousy.
The Baal haTurim points this out, and offers an explanation (that the crowns were given to him because of his zealotry).

2. The pronunciation of הראוביני is interesting. Bemidbar 26:7:
ז אֵלֶּה, מִשְׁפְּחֹת הָראוּבֵנִי; וַיִּהְיוּ פְקֻדֵיהֶם, שְׁלֹשָׁה וְאַרְבָּעִים אֶלֶף, וּשְׁבַע מֵאוֹת, וּשְׁלֹשִׁים. 7 These are the families of the Reubenites; and they that were numbered of them were forty and three thousand and seven hundred and thirty.

in that there is no sheva, not na nor nach, under the resh. This means that the aleph is not pronounced. That means that rather than pronouncing it ha-re-`u-vei-ni, it is pronounced ha-ru-vei-ni.

3. There is a nun rabbasi, that is, an enlarged nun sofit, in the segment about the daughters of Tzelaphchad. Bemidbar 27:5:
ה וַיַּקְרֵב מֹשֶׁה אֶת-מִשְׁפָּטָן, לִפְנֵי ה. {פ} 5 And Moses brought their cause before the LORD. {P}
ו וַיֹּאמֶר ה, אֶל-מֹשֶׁה לֵּאמֹר. 6 And the LORD spoke unto Moses, saying:
ז כֵּן, בְּנוֹת צְלָפְחָד דֹּבְרֹת--נָתֹן תִּתֵּן לָהֶם אֲחֻזַּת נַחֲלָה, בְּתוֹךְ אֲחֵי אֲבִיהֶם; וְהַעֲבַרְתָּ אֶת-נַחֲלַת אֲבִיהֶן, לָהֶן. 7 'The daughters of Zelophehad speak right: thou shalt surely give them a possession of an inheritance among their father's brethren; and thou shalt cause the inheritance of their father to pass unto them.
I would guess a good part of the reason for the larger nun is a stress that it is their law, for the fact that they are female. The nun sofit ending continues in נַחֲלַת אֲבִיהֶן, לָהֶן. Somewhat strangely, mid-pasuk, we have אֲחֵי אֲבִיהֶם rather than avihen.

4. Another interesting curiosity is that throughout the segment in Bemidbar 26, specifically when approaching Tzelophchad, there is repeated use of conjunctive vav to introduce each individual and family, rather than the lamed that is used elsewhere throughout:
כח בְּנֵי יוֹסֵף, לְמִשְׁפְּחֹתָם--מְנַשֶּׁה, וְאֶפְרָיִם. 28 The sons of Joseph after their families: Manasseh and Ephraim.
כט בְּנֵי מְנַשֶּׁה, לְמָכִיר מִשְׁפַּחַת הַמָּכִירִי, וּמָכִיר, הוֹלִיד אֶת-גִּלְעָד; לְגִלְעָד, מִשְׁפַּחַת הַגִּלְעָדִי. 29 The sons of Manasseh: of Machir, the family of the Machirites--and Machir begot Gilead; of Gilead, the family of the Gileadites.
ל אֵלֶּה, בְּנֵי גִלְעָד--אִיעֶזֶר, מִשְׁפַּחַת הָאִיעֶזְרִי; לְחֵלֶק, מִשְׁפַּחַת הַחֶלְקִי. 30 These are the sons of Gilead: of Iezer, the family of the Iezerites; of Helek, the family of the Helekites;
לא וְאַשְׂרִיאֵל--מִשְׁפַּחַת, הָאַשְׂרִאֵלִי; וְשֶׁכֶם, מִשְׁפַּחַת הַשִּׁכְמִי. 31 and of Asriel, the family of the Asrielites; and of Shechem, the family of the Shechemites;
לב וּשְׁמִידָע, מִשְׁפַּחַת הַשְּׁמִידָעִי; וְחֵפֶר, מִשְׁפַּחַת הַחֶפְרִי. 32 and of Shemida, the family of the Shemidaites; and of Hepher, the family of the Hepherites.
לג וּצְלָפְחָד בֶּן-חֵפֶר, לֹא-הָיוּ לוֹ בָּנִים--כִּי אִם-בָּנוֹת: וְשֵׁם, בְּנוֹת צְלָפְחָד--מַחְלָה וְנֹעָה, חָגְלָה מִלְכָּה וְתִרְצָה. 33 And Zelophehad the son of Hepher had no sons, but daughters; and the names of the daughters of Zelophehad were Mahlah, and Noah, Hoglah, Milcah, and Tirzah.


Chaim B. said...

Off topic, but what's with the pictures that go with every post all of a sudden?

joshwaxman said...

it makes the site prettier, and usually has something to do with the post in question.

this particular picture is a monkey wearing a crown, which accords to my statement that there is "a special crown on the letter kuf."


Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...

i like the pictures, in case you were looking for some positive response :-P


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