English Standard Version
I say I will climb the palm tree and lay hold of its fruit. Oh may your breasts be like clusters of the vine, and the scent of your breath like apples,
King James Bible
I said, I will go up to the palm tree, I will take hold of the boughs thereof: now also thy breasts shall be as clusters of the vine, and the smell of thy nose like apples;
American Standard Version
I said, I will climb up into the palm-tree, I will take hold of the branches thereof: Let thy breasts be as clusters of the vine, And the smell of thy breath like apples,
I said: I will go up into the palm tree, and will take hold of the fruit thereof: and thy breasts shall be as the clusters of the vine: and the odour of thy mouth like apples.
English Revised Version
I said, I will climb up into the palm tree, I will take hold of the branches thereof: let thy breasts be as clusters of the vine, and the smell of thy breath like apples;
Webster's Bible Translation
I said, I will go up to the palm tree, I will take hold of its boughs: now also thy breasts shall be as clusters of the vine, and the smell of thy nose like apples;
Song of Solomon 7:8 Parallel
CommentaryKeil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament
2 Thy navel is a well-rounded basin -
Let not mixed wine be wanting to it
Thy body is a heap of wheat,
Set round with lilies.
In interpreting these words, Hitzig proceeds as if a "voluptuary" were here speaking. He therefore changes שׁררך into שׁררך, "thy pudenda." But (1) it is no voluptuary who speaks here, and particularly not a man, but women who speak; certainly, above all, it is the poet, who would not, however, be so inconsiderate as to put into the mouths of women immodest words which he could use if he wished to represent the king as speaking. Moreover (2) שׁר equals (Arab.) surr, secret (that which is secret; in Arab. especially referred to the pudenda, both of man and woman), is a word that is
(Note: Vid., Tebrzi, in my work entitled Jud.-Arab. Poesien, u.s.w. (1874), p. 24.)
foreign to the Heb. language, which has for "Geheimnis" secret the corresponding word סוד (vid., under Psalm 2:2; Psalm 25:14), after the root-signification of its verbal stem (viz., to be firm, pressed together); and (3) the reference - preferred by Dpke, Magnus, Hahn, and others, also without any change of punctuation - of שׁר to the interfeminium mulieris, is here excluded by the circumstance that the attractions of a woman dancing, as they unfold themselves, are here described. Like the Arab. surr, שׁר ( equals shurr), from שׁרר, to bind fast, denotes properly the umbilical cord, Ezekiel 16:4, and then the umbilical scar. Thus, Proverbs 3:8, where most recent critics prefer, for לשׁרּך, to read, but without any proper reason, לשׁרך equals לשׁארך, "to thy flesh," the navel comes there into view as the centre of the body, - which it always is with new-born infants, and is almost so with grown-up persons in respect of the length of the body, - and as, indeed, the centre. whence the pleasurable feeling of health diffuses its rays of heat. This middle and prominent point of the abdomen shows itself in one lightly clad and dancing when she breathes deeply, even through the clothing; and because the navel commonly forms a little funnel-like hollow (Bttch.: in the form almost of a whirling hollow in the water, as one may see in nude antique statues), therefore the daughters of Jerusalem compare Shulamith's navel to a "basin of roundness," i.e., which has this general property, and thus belongs to the class of things that are round. אגּן does not mean a Becher (a cup), but a Bechen (basin), pelvis; properly a washing basin, ijjanah (from אגן equals ajan, to full, to wash equals כּבּס); then a sprinkling basin, Exodus 24:6; and generally a basin, Isaiah 22:24; here, a mixing basin, in which wine was mingled with a proportion of water to render it palatable (κρατήρ, from κεραννύναι, temperare), - according to the Talm. with two-thirds of water. In this sense this passage is interpreted allegorically, Sanhedrin 14b, 37a, and elsewhere (vid., Aruch under מזג). מזג .)מז is not spiced wine, which is otherwise designated (Sol 8:2), but, as Hitzig rightly explains, mixed wine, i.e., mixed with water or snow (vid., under Isaiah 5:22). מזג is not borrowed from the Greek μίσγειν (Grtz), but is a word native to all the three chief Semitic dialects, - the weaker form of מסך, which may have the meaning of "to pour in;" but not merely "to pour in," but, at that same time, "to mix" (vid., under Isaiah 5:22; Proverbs 9:2). סהר, with אגּן, represents the circular form (from סהר equals סחר), corresponding to the navel ring; Kimchi thinks that the moon must be understood (cf. שׂהרון, lunula): a moon-like round basin; according to which the Venet., also in Gr., choosing an excellent name for the moon, translates: ῥἀντιστρον τῆς ἑκάτης. But "moon-basin" would be an insufficient expression for it; Ewald supposes that it is the name of a flower, without, however, establishing this opinion. The "basin of roundness" is the centre of the body a little depressed; and that which the clause, "may not mixed wine be lacking," expresses, as their wish for her, is soundness of health, for which no more appropriate and delicate figure can be given than hot wine tempered with fresh water.
The comparison in 3b is the same as that of R. Johanan's of beauty, Meza 84a: "He who would gain an idea of beauty should take a silver cup, fill it with pomegranate flowers, and encircle its rim with a garland of roses."
(Note: See my Gesch. d. Jd. Poesie, p. 30 f. Hoch (the German Solomon) reminds us of the Jewish marriage custom of throwing over the newly-married pair the contents of a vessel wreathed with flowers, and filled with wheat or corn (with money underneath), accompanied with the cry, פּרוּ וּרבוּ be fruitful and multiply.)
To the present day, winnowed and sifted corn is piled up in great heaps of symmetrical half-spherical form, which are then frequently stuck over with things that move in the wind, for the purpose of protecting them against birds. "The appearance of such heaps of wheat," says Wetstein (Isa. p. 710), "which one may see in long parallel rows on the thrashing-floors of a village, is very pleasing to a peasant; and the comparison of the Song; Sol 7:3, every Arabian will regard as beautiful." Such a corn-heap is to the present day called ṣubbah, while ‛aramah is a heap of thrashed corn that has not yet been winnowed; here, with ערמה, is to be connected the idea of a ṣubbah, i.e., of a heap of wheat not only thrashed and winnowed, but also sifted (riddled). סוּג, enclosed, fenced about (whence the post-bibl. סיג, a fence), is a part. pass. such as פּוּץ, scattered (vid., under Psalm 92:12). The comparison refers to the beautiful appearance of the roundness, but, at the same time, also the flesh-colour shining through the dress; for fancy sees more than the eyes, and concludes regarding that which is veiled from that which is visible. A wheat-colour was, according to the Moslem Sunna, the tint of the first created man. Wheat-yellow and lily-white is a subdued white, and denotes at once purity and health; by πυρός wheat one thinks of πῦρ - heaped up wheat developes a remarkable heat, a fact for which Biesenthal refers to Plutarch's Quaest. In accordance with the progress of the description, the breasts are now spoken of:
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
Song of Solomon 2:5
Sustain me with raisins; refresh me with apples, for I am sick with love.
Song of Solomon 7:7
Your stature is like a palm tree, and your breasts are like its clusters.
The vine dries up; the fig tree languishes. Pomegranate, palm, and apple, all the trees of the field are dried up, and gladness dries up from the children of man.
Jump to PreviousApples Beloved Boughs Branches Breasts Breath Citrons Climb Clusters Countenance Face Fragrance Fruit Hold Indeed Lay Nose Palm Palm-Tree Scent Smell Stalks Thereof Tree Vine
Jump to NextApples Beloved Boughs Branches Breasts Breath Citrons Climb Clusters Countenance Face Fragrance Fruit Hold Indeed Lay Nose Palm Palm-Tree Scent Smell Stalks Thereof Tree Vine
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