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division of the verses. But, in the smaller
But, in the smaller verses, this is effected by means of the lesser distinctive accents, which are commonly used to mark the subdivisions. But, although the observance of the accents is useful in determining the rhythmical proportion, yet we are not to follow them in a servile spirit; for, in general, it is doubtful that the authors of the accentuation were clearly conscious of the nature of rhythm. In two psalms (cxi. cxii.) the half-verses are indicated by the initial letters, which follow the order of the alphabet.“
§ 134, b.
STROPHES, OR SYMMETRY OF VERSES.
It would be a very natural occurrence if this same symmetry extended to the larger divisions, to the periods and sections, and formed strophes. Even in prose there is a similar proportion, either more or less distinct."
It has long been known that rhythmical strophes (or such as have definite outward forms) could be found, namely
1. In the alphabetic poems, where single verses are sometimes connected so as to correspond with one. another.
Psalm xxv. “To thee, O Lord, do I lift up my soul ! 2 O my God, I trust in thee! Let me not be put to shame!
Let not my enemies triumph over me! 3 Yea, none that hope in thee shall be put to shame;
They shall be put to shame who wickedly forsake thee.
On this whole subject, see De Wette, in Bib. Repository, vol. iii. p. 470, sqq., [Nordheimer, Heb. Gram. § 1120-1158,) and Carpzov, Int. ii. p. 3, sqq.
6 See Köster, on the Strophes, or Parallelism of the Heb. Poetry, in TheoL St. and Kr., (1831,) p. 40, and his work das B. Hiob u. d. Pred. Salom., &c.; Schlesw. 1831. The author goes too far.
4 Show me thy ways, O Lord,
Teach me thy paths ! 5 Lead me in thy truth, and teach me;
For thou art the God, from whom cometh my help ;
In thee do I trust at all times ! 6 Remember thy kindness, O Lord, and thy mercy,
Which thou hast exercised of old ! 7 Remember not the faults and transgressions of my youth;
According to thy mercy remember thou me,
For thy goodness' sake, O Lord! 8 “Good and righteous is Jehovah;
Therefore showeth he to sinners the way; 9 The humble he guideth in his statutes,
And the humble he teacheth his way. 10 All the doings of Jehovah are mercy and truth,
To those who keep his covenant and his precepts. 11 For thy name's sake, O Jehovah,
Pardon my iniquity, for it is great!” Ps. xxxiv. cxlv. Prov. xxxi. 10, sqq. Lam. i. ii. iv.
Sometimes two or more verses are connected in greater strophes; for example, Ps. xxxvii. cxix.
2. Strophes occur distinguished by the refrain, (or “ burden,”) or something similar.
Isaiah ix. 8x. 4.“
1. 8 “ The Lord sendeth a word against Jacob;
It cometh down to Israel. 9 His whole people shall feel it;
Ephraim, and the inhabitants of Samaria,
Who say, in pride and arrogance of heart, 10 The bricks are fallen down, but we will build with hewn stones; The sycamores are cut down, but we will replace them with
cedars.' 11 Jehovah raiseth up the enemies of Rezin against you,
And armeth your adversaries; 12 The Syrians before, the Philistines behind,
• Noyes's Translation.
Who shall devour Israel with full jaws.
2. 13 “The people turneth not to him that smiteth them;
Neither do they seek Jehovah of hosts. 14 Therefore shall Jehovah cut off from Israel the head and the tail,
The palm-branch, and the rush, in one day; 15 [The aged and the honorable are the head,
And the prophet, that speaketh falsehood, is the tail.] 16 For the leaders of this people lead them astray,
And they that are led by them go to destruction.
And on their orphans and widows he shall have no compassion ;
It consumeth the briers and thorns,
So that it goeth up in columns of smoke.
And the people are food for the fire;
No one spareth another. 20 They consume on the right hand, and yet are hungry;
They devour on the left, and are not satisfied;
Every one devoureth the flesh of his arm. 21 Manasseh is against Ephraim, and Ephraim against Manasseh,
And both together against Judah.
4. 1 “Woe to them that make unrighteous decrees,
That write oppressive decisions ! 2 To turn away the needy from judgment,
And rob the poor of my people of their right.
3 What will ye do in the day of visitation,
And in the desolation which cometh from afar ?
And where will ye deposit your glory?
And fall among the slain.
But his hand is stretched out still."
But there are so few logical strophes,o that we cannot consider them any thing more than the work of unconscious instinct.
* Ps. i. ii, iii. iv. vi. vii. xi. and Job viii.
A VIEW OF THESE BOOKS, AND A CLASSIFICATION OF THEM.
They contain the history of the theocracy; and,
I. The books of Moses and Joshua contain the history of its establishment, together with the theocratic laws.
LIST OF THE BEST AND MOST VALUABLE EXEGETICAL WORKS
ON THE BOOKS OF THE OLD TESTAMENT.
1. RABBINICAL COMMENTARIES. R. Salomo Jarchi, (or R. Salomo Isaac, commonly abbreviated wn, Raschi,) Commentary on the whole Bible, in Buxtorf's Rabb. Bible; Lat., with notes, ed. by Breithaupt; Gotha, 1710-1714, 3 vols. 4to.
Aben Esra, (or Abraham Ben Meir A. E.,) Commentary upon most of the Books of the 0. T., in Buxtorf's Rabb. Bible, wherein, also, is David Kimchi's Comment on the early and later Prophets and the Chronicles, and R. Levi Ben Gerson's Explanation of the first Prophets, the Proverbs of Solomon and Job.
Isaak Abarbanel, Comment on the Pentateuch; Lat., by Henr. van Bashuisen ; Hannov. 1710, fol. On the historical books, by Aug. Pfeiffer ; Leipz. 1686, fol. On the later Prophets; Amst. 1641, fol. On Isaiah ; Lat. by J. H. Majus; Frcf. a. M. 1711, 4to. On Hosea ; Lat. by Fr. von Hasen ; Leid. 1686. On Nahum, Hebr. and Lat. by J. D. Sprecher ; Helmst. 1703. On Malachi, with Commentaries of Aben Esra, Jarchi, and Kimchi ; Lat. by Sam. Bohl ; Rost. 1637, 4to.
R. Salomo Ben Melech, pin 3 m; best editions, Const. 1685, fol., with Abendana's addition. Ex Michlal Jophi, sive Commentario R. Salom. Ben