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Lachish 4: Military Reports (3.42C)

(595 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Lachish 4: Military Reports (3.42C) Subject: Jer 36:23; Josh 7:24; Judg 13:19; 1 Kgs 17:19; Jer 39:5; Judg 20:38, 40; Jer 6:1; Jer 34:7 Salutation (lines 1) May Yahweh give you good news at this time. General Statement ( lines 2–4) And now, your servant has done everything my lord sent (me word to do). I have written down j everything you sent me (word to do). Report on Bet-HRPD ( lines 4–6) As regards what my lord said about Bet-HRPD, there is no one there. The Semakyahu Situation ( line…

Arad 24: Military Movements (3.43K)

(470 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Arad 24: Military Movements (3.43K) Subject: 2 Sam 18:2; Jer 40:7; Gen 42:4; Deut 8:19; 32:46; 1Sam22:6; 2 Sam 1:11; 17:12; Jer 41:2, 7 […]1 from Arad five2 and from Qinah […] and send them to Ramat-negeb under j Malkiyahu son of Qerabur. He is to hand them over to k Elisha son of Yirmeyahu at Ramat-negeb3 lest anything happen l to the city. This is an order from the king — a life-and-death matter for you. I send (this message) to warn you now: m The (se) men (must be) with n Elisha4…

Lachish 6: Reactions to Forwarded Correspondence (3.42E)

(301 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Lachish 6: Reactions to Forwarded Correspondence (3.42E) Subject: Jer 38:4 Salutation (line 1) To my lord Yaush. May Yahweh make this time a good one for you.1 Letters that Weaken Resolve ( lines 2–15) Who is your servant (but) a dog that my lord should have sent (him) the king’s letter and those of the officials asking me to read them? The [officials’]2 statements are not good — (they are of a kind) to slacken your courage3  n and to weaken that of the men[…]. Won’t you w…

Arad 21: A Son’s Letter (3.43J)

(92 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Arad 21: A Son’s Letter (3.43J) Subject: 1 Sam 24:20; Prov 13:21; 25:22 Your son Yehukal (hereby) sends greetings to (you) Gedalyahu [son of] Elyair and to your household. I bless you to Yahweh. And now, if my lord had done […] may Yahweh reward i my lord […].1 Biblical References i 1 Sam 24:20 Prov 13:21 25:22 Notes^ back to text1. This letter was originally ten lines long, but only the praescriptio and the beginning of the body are reasonably well preserved.

Lachish 2: Thanks and Good Wishes (3.42A)

(455 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Lachish 2: Thanks and Good Wishes (3.42A) Subject: 1 Sam 2:24; 1 Kgs 10:7; 2 Kgs 19:7; Jer 51:46; Prov 15:30; 25:25; 2 Kgs 8:13 Salutation (lines 1–2) To my lord Yaush.1 May Yahweh2 give you good news3  a at this very time. Humble Thanks for Being Remembered ( lines 3–5) Who is your servant (but) a dog4  b that my lord should remember5 his servant? May Yahweh give my lord first knowledge6 of anything you do not already know. Biblical References a 1 Sam 2:24 1 Kgs 10:7 2 Kgs 19:7 Jer 51…

Lachish 9: Requests (3.42F)

(716 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Lachish 9: Requests (3.42F) Subject: 1 Sam 17:30; 2 Sam 3:11; 1 Kgs 12:6 Salutation (lines 1–2) May Yahweh give my lord the [best] possible news. Release to Bearer ( lines 3–4)1 [And] now, give ten (loaves of) bread and two ( bat-measures?)2 of wine (to bearer). Request for Information ( lines 4–9) Return word o [to] your servant by the intermediary of Shelemyahu regarding what we are to do tomorrow. Bibliographical References Text, translations, and studies: Coats 1970 …

Arad 88: A Fragment of a Copy of a Royal Proclamation (3.43M)

(643 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Arad 88: A Fragment of a Copy of a Royal Proclamation (3.43M) 1 Subject: Prov 31:17; Ps 89:22 I have become king in […]2 STRENGTHEN3 the arm p and […] the King of Egypt […] Bibliographical References Texts, translations and studies: Aharoni 1966 Aharoni 1970 Aharoni and Naveh 1975 Aharoni, Naveh, Rainey, Aharoni, Lifshitz, Sharon, and Gofer 1981 Beit-Arieh and Cresson 1991 Bron and Lemaire 1980 P.-E. Dion, ‛“Review.”  JAOS 103:470–472. ( 1983 ) ’ , P.-E. Dion, ‛“Les KTYM d…

Arad 18: A Letter From One of Elyashib’s Subordinates (3.43I)

(288 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Arad 18: A Letter From One of Elyashib’s Subordinates (3.43I) Subject: Ezra 2:44; Neh 7:47; Neh 13:4–9 To my lord Elyashib. May Yahweh concern himself with your well-being.1 And now, give Shemaryahu a letek-measure (?) (of flour?) and to the Qerosite g give a ḥomer-measure (?) (of flour?).2 A Confidential Matter ( lines 7–10) As regards the matter concerning which you gave me orders: everything is fine now: he is staying in the temple of Yahweh.3  h  Biblical References g E…

Arad 5: Order for Allotment of Supplies Plus a Possible Mention of Tithe (3.43E)

(225 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Arad 5: Order for Allotment of Supplies Plus a Possible Mention of Tithe (3.43E) To Elyashib. And now, send some of the flour which you have left from the [first (batch)], which […] flour [to make] bread for the Kittim […] […] (someone) will [send] you the tithe in it, before the month passes.1 And from the surplus of […] Notes^ back to text1. This text of fifteen lines is poorly preserved, and the presence of the word for “tithe,” only partially preserved ({hmʿ[…

Lachish 5: Thanks and Remarks on the Harvest (3.42D)

(182 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Lachish 5: Thanks and Remarks on the Harvest (3.42D) Salutation (lines 1–2) May [Yahweh] give my lord the best possible [news at this very time]. Humble Thanks for Correspondence ( lines 3–7) Who is your servant (but) a dog that you should have sent to your servant these letters?1 Your servant (herewith) returns the letters to my lord. The Grain Harvest ( lines 7–10) May Yahweh allow my lord to witness a good harvest today. Is Ṭobyahu going to send royal grain to your servant?2 No…

Arad 7: Another Order for Allotment of Supplies (3.43F)

(160 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Arad 7: Another Order for Allotment of Supplies (3.43F) Subject: Josh 8:32; Isa 65:6; 3:16; Est 2:23; 1 Chr 24:6 To Elyashib. And now, give to the Kittim for the (period from) the first (day) of the tenth (month) until the sixth (day) of (that) month three b( at-measures of wine?). [And] make a record (of this) f on the second (day) of the tenth month.1 Also seal (a jar of) oil [and send it …].2 Biblical References f Josh 8:32 Isa 65:6 3:16 Est 2:23 1 Chr 24:6 Notes^ back to text1. This f…

Arad 40: the Edomite Problem (3.43L)

(381 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Arad 40: the Edomite Problem (3.43L) 1 Subject: 1 Kgs 8:58 Your son Gemar[yahu], as well as Neḥemyahu, (hereby) send [greetings to] (you) Malkiyahu.2 I bless [you to Yahweh]. And now, your servant has applied himself o to what you ordered.3 [I (hereby) write] to my lord [everything that the man] wanted. [Eshyahu has come] from you but [he has not given] them any men. You know [the reports from] Edom. I sent them to [my] lord [before] …

Lachish 3: Complaints and Information (3.42B)

(1,194 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Lachish 3: Complaints and Information (3.42B) Subject: Gen 32:6; 2 Sam 11:22; 2 Kgs 5:6; 10:2; Isa 42:20; Isa 1:5; 8:18; 1:22; 5:17; 1 Sam 17:55; 1 Kgs 1:19; Jer 26:22; 37:5–11; Ezek 17:15; 29:1–16; 30:20–26; 31:1–18; Lam 4:17; 2 Kgs 6:9; Isa 7:4 Salutation (lines 1–3) Your servant Hoshayahu (hereby) reports c to my lord Yaush. May Yahweh give you the very best possible news.1 Complaint and Self-Defense ( lines 4–13) And now,2  d please explain e to your servant the meani…

The Widow’s Plea (3.44)

(1,061 words)

Author(s): Pardee, Dennis
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Commentary This text did not come from regular excavations and the question of authenticity arises here as in other such cases. Because there are no irregularities in script or language, I continue to believe (see Bordreuil, Israel, and Pardee 1996 and 1998) that the text is authentic. To believe the opposite requires the hypothesis that the forger was a master epigrapher, a master grammarian (only an …

Arad 2: Order for Allotment of Supplies (3.43B)

(234 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Arad 2: Order for Allotment of Supplies (3.43B) Subject: 1 Sam 7:16; 2 Chr 17:9; 23:2; Ruth 2:14 To Elyashib. And now, give to the Kittim two b( at-measures) of wine for the four days,1 three hundred loaves of bread, and a (nother) full ḥomer-measure of wine.2 Send them out on their rounds3  c tomorrow; don’t wait. If there is any vinegar d left, give (that) to them (also). Biblical References c 1 Sam 7:16 2 Chr 17:9 23:2 d Ruth 2:14 Notes^ back to text1. The Hebrew expression i…

Arad 3: Order for Allotment of Supplies (3.43C)

(270 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Arad 3: Order for Allotment of Supplies (3.43C) Subject: 2 Kgs 5:17 To Elyashib. And now, give three b( at-measures) of wine (to bearer).1 Moreover, Ḥananyahu has given you orders2 concerning Beersheba: you are yourself to load up and convey there two donkey loads e of dough.3 Calculate the (amount of) wheat ([at Arad?]) and count the (loaves of) bread (already made).4 Take […]5 Biblical References e 2 Kgs 5:17 Notes^ back to text1. When the indirect object is not i…

Arad 17: Another Order for Allotment of Supplies, With Postscript (3.43H)

(262 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Arad 17: Another Order for Allotment of Supplies, With Postscript (3.43H) To Naḥum. [And] now, go to the house of Elyashib son of Eshyahu and get from there one (jar of) oil and send (it) to Ziph right away (after) affixing your seal to it. Dated Postscript ( lines 8–9) On the twenty-fourth of the month Naḥum gave oil to the Kitti (for delivery) — one (jar).1 Notes^ back to text1. Naḥum, whose function and identity are unknown and who may have been located anywhere …

Lachish Ostraca (3.42)

(312 words)

Author(s): Pardee, Dennis
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Commentary Some thirty-six inscriptions have been discovered at Tell ed-Duwêr/Tel Lachish, including Proto-Canaanite inscriptions, inscribed seals and weights, several Egyptian inscriptions, and an Aramaic inscription on a Persian-period altar (for a recent overview with bibliography, see Pardee 1997c). The so-called “Lachish Letters,” nineteen inscribed ostraca discovered in 1935 and 1938 and publish…

Arad 4: Order for Allotment of Supplies (3.43D)

(102 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Arad 4: Order for Allotment of Supplies (3.43D) To Elyashib. Give to the Kittim one (jar of) oil.1 Seal (the jar) and send it. Also give them one b( at-measure) of wine. Notes^ back to text1. The text is “ šmn /,” where the oblique stroke indicates the number, but with no indication of the measure. Since the standard abbreviation for bat-measure is not used in these texts when oil is mentioned, it is quite possible that oil was circulated in containers of a different size.

Arad 1: Order for Allotment of Supplies (3.43A)

(901 words)

Contributor(s): Hallo, William W.
Subject: Archival Documents from the Biblical World; West Semitic Archival Documents; Letters; Hebrew Letters Arad 1: Order for Allotment of Supplies (3.43A) Subject: Ezek 24:2; Josh 9:12 To Elyashib.1 And now,2 give to the Kittim3 three b( at-measures)4 of wine and write down the date.5  a From what is left of the first meal, have one ḥomer-measure (?) of flour loaded up so they can make bread for themselves.6  b It is wine from the craters that you are to give (to them).7 Biblical References a Ezek 24:2 b Josh 9:12 Notes^ back to text1. The simple form of address, with no i…
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