By Kevin Cathcart, Philip S. Alexander
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Extra info for The Targum of Lamentations (Aramaic Bible 17B)
Lam. does have a genuine vernacular base in Galilean Aramaic: deviations from this can all be plausibly explained by later redaction and copying. This suggests that it is earlier linguistically than Tg. Cant. 2). 2 The Vocabulary of Tg. Lam. The Aramaic vocabulary of Tg. Lam. , which is closer to the original form of the Targum, shows a penchant for learned and recherché words. This increases 16 Introduction the probability that the very rare quadriliteral verb brbq (“spray, splash with water”) is the original West.
The sins in question remain strikingly unspecific. The Targumist heavily reinforces these references to sin and attempts to make them much more concrete. That the disaster was a response to sin is the primary message of his theological prologue (1:1-4). The sins he identifies are both generic violations of the Torah and specific historical sins. The generic include oppression of orphans and widows (1:3), failure to free Israelite slaves (1:3), non-observance of the Pilgrim Festivals (1:3), robberies (3:38), and idolatry (4:13).
Dobbs-Allsopp, Lamentations. Interpretation: A Bible Commentary for Teaching and Preaching (Louisville: Wesminster John Knox, 2002); see also his “Tragedy, Tradition, and Theology in the Book of Lamentations,” JSOT 74 (1997) 29–60; Adele Berlin, Lamentations: A Commentary. Old Testament Library (Louisville and London: Westminster John Knox, 2002). 24 Introduction poems draw on an ancient tradition of dirge and lament (notably the city-lament), they are shot through with real experience. They are not literary conceits: their poets were almost certainly survivors and witnesses of the tragedy of 587, or close to it in time, and they used the conventions of literature to give voice to real grief that they found almost too deep for words.
The Targum of Lamentations (Aramaic Bible 17B) by Kevin Cathcart, Philip S. Alexander