Translation of 3 Reigns 1:41-53 (1 Kgs 1:41-53 LXX)

41. And Adonias heard (and all his invited guests. And they were finished eating). And Joab heard the sound of the trumpet and said, “Why is the city’s voice resounding?”
42. Still he was speaking and dude! Jonathan son of Abiathar the priest came. And Adonias said, “Come, for a mighty man are you. And proclaim as good news a good (thing).”
43. And Jonathan answered and said, “And yet, our lord, the king, David has kinged Solomon.
44. “And the king sent with him Sadok the priest and Nathan the prophet and Banaias son of Iodae and the Chrethi and the Phelethi, and they set him upon the king’s mule.
45. “And Sadok the priest and Nathan the prophet anointed him to (be) king in the Gion, and they arose from there rejoicing, and the city resounded. That is the voice you heard.
46. “And Solomon sat upon the throne of the king.
47. “And the servants of the king entered, celebrating our lord, the king, David, saying, ‘May God magnify the name of Solomon, your son, above your name, and make his throne greater than your throne.’ And the king prostrated on his bed.
48. “And also thus spoke the king, ‘Blessed is the Lord, the God of Israel, who gave today from my seed one sitting upon my throne and my eyes have seen.'”
49. And they were amazed and all of Adonias’s invited guests rose up and departed, each on his way.
50. And Adonias was afraid before Solomon and arose and grasped the horns of the altar.
51. And it was reported to Solomon, saying, “Dude! Adonias fears King Solomon and has grasped the horns of the altar, saying, ‘Let his swear to me today, the king, Solomon, that not will he kill his servant with the sword.'”
52. And Solomon said, “If he will turn into a son of might, then [not] will fall from his hairs upon the ground, and if wickedness is found in him, he will be put to death.”
53. And King Solomon sent and brought him down from upon the altar. And he came and prostrated to King Solomon, and Solomon said to him, “Come! To your house (you go)!”

From The Brick Testament.

Comments on the Text

This long passage contains a number of variants from the Hebrew. Verse 42 reads the verb “proclaim” as an imperative in Greek. The indirect object “to Adonias” is missing in the Greek of verse 43, and the conjunction “and” is missing at the beginning of verse 46.

Verse 47 attests several variants. It is missing “also” at the beginning, but includes “your son” after the name Solomon. Finally, it is more precise in the identification of the bed, reading “his [i.e., the king’s] bed” rather than simply “the bed.”

In verse 48, there seems to be more emphasis on David’s dynasty. At any rate, the Greek includes the phrase “from my seed” to clarify who is sitting on the king’s throne after him. It is not just anyone, but his progeny.

Solomon’s threat of capital punishment in v. 52 is passive in Greek (“he will be put to death”), but active in Hebrew (“he will die”). The Hebrew seems to remove some of the king’s culpability, not really saying who will be responsible for his death (it could just be an accident or providence…). At the same time time, the Greek attributes the “bringing” of Adonias from the altar more explicitly to Solomon. It reads “he [i.e., Solomon] brought him” whereas the Hebrew reads “they [i.e., someone] brought him”. These last two considerations make Solomon a more active participant in the Greek version, at least in my reading. The question remains whether the Greek translator is responsible for this, this represent an older understanding of the same Hebrew text, or it represents a distinct Hebrew text. Based on the translation style, I favor the last option as the most likely.

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1 Comment

  1. Now every time you translate “Dude!” I will envision legos recreating the passages.


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