Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Exodus

Possible Exodus RoutesThe book of Exodus is the second book of the Torah (the Pentateuch: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy;) and also the Tanakh (the Hebrew bible), and Christian old testament. The major events of the book concern the exodus, a departure of Hebrew slaves from Egypt, under the leadership of Moses. Jews call the book by its first words ve-eleh shemoth (i.e., "and these are the names") or simply "shemoth" שמות. The septuagint designates the second book of the Pentateuch as "exodus", meaning "departure" or "out-going". The latin translation adopted the name, which thence passed into other languages. As a result of the theme of the first half of the book, the term "an exodus" has come to mean a departure of a great number of people.

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1 comment:

Eta said...

Good description.

Please correct above: the book in Hebrew is called "Shmot", which means "the names of", a form derived from "Shem" which is "name" in Hebrew.

Accordingly, the first word is "Ve-eleh Shmot" from the paragraph "Ve-eleh shmot bney Israel" - literally - "And these are the names of sons of Israel".

Hebrew is a very efficient language in which mildly changing a word - Shem to Shmot - changes the tense, plural/singular form, male/female forms, and so on. Adding "ve" is equivalent to "and".

 

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