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to prove the faith and obedience of the patriarch, which proof could not be afforded better than by a command against which all his feelings most strongly revolted. In support, however, of this ob jection to the received sense, Mr. Bellamy contends that the words should be thus rendered, “Take now thy son—to the land of Moriah : and cause him to ascend there concerning the offering, upon one of the mountains which I shall mention to thee;' instead of the usual translation, Offer him up for a burnt offering,' &c.
Now, let us consider with what palpable inconsistencies this new interpretation invests the whole narration. It is first stated (v. 1.) that God tempted or proved Abraham, which manifestly implies that some signal trial of his obedience was to follow; then, according to Mr. Bellamy, there merely ensues a command of the plainest kind, and one which involves no trial, viz. to go with his son, and offer sacrifice on a particular mountain. Abraham, however, contrary to the divine command, (still according to Mr. Bellamy's interpretation,) prepares to sacrifice Isaac; the Deity approves of his conduct in so doing, and says " because thou hast vot withheld thine only son, surely blessing I will bless thee,' &c. The mere comparison of such a niass of absurdity with the plain narrative of the received versions, must convince every reader that the one cannot but be right, the other wrong.
To come, however, to the words themselves oos w nobyor. The root by siguifies generally “to ascend. Hence by a burnt offering' from the ascent of the smoke, and nbys sont to cause to ascend (or to offer) for a burnt-offering. But, says Mr. Bellamy, mbps means ' concerning a burnt-offering.'. To this we answer that to give the preposition the sense of 'concerning' is very unusual, if at all admissible; and that every allowed principle of interpretation requires that words in plain passages should be taken in their ordinary sense. We answer further that we can produce a competent authority,--no less, in fact, than his own, to convince him that the received translation is right. For, in the same chapter, the very same words occur; and how does he translate them? not according to his new discovery, but exactly as they have always been rendered by others, and as they are rendered in our received version. Abraham found a ram fastened in a thicket by the horns, and, as Mr. Bellamy translates,' he went and took the ram (7775999 mbps) and offered him for a burnt offering instead of his son.' We have thus another inequivocal proof that Mr. Bellamy does not bimself believe what he asserts respecting tlie error of the received translation; for, within the space of eleven verses, he adopts that as right, which he had before condemned as wrong.
It is unnecessary to trouble the reader with further details. We shall only add therefore that, in every instance where Mr. Bellamy
has pretended to discover a sense of plain historical passages unknown to former translators, the effrontery of his attempt is fully equalled by the ignorance, inconsistency and incapacity which he displays in carrying it into effect.
We now proceed to take a short view of bis success in clothing the meaning of the original in an English dress, in those parts where he allows the sense to be the same as has been always understood. His pretension, we have seen, is to give a close translation of the Hebrew: the consequence is that, while he uses English words, he makes no accommodation whatever to English idiom ; and has, therefore, for the most part, produced strings of words, which scarcely deserve to be called English sentences. He has had predecessors in this way; among others, Henry Ainsworth, who, about the year 1639, published a version of the five books of Moses, the Psalms, &c. on a plan which he calls making Scripture its own interpreter, where, professing to render the Hebrew into English, word for word, he produces a version of so harsh and uncouth a description, that Lewis, in his history of English Translațions, (p. 353.) after giving a specimen, asks whether it can be believed that Ainsworth was an Englishman and understood his own language! The case is precisely the same with Mr. Bellamy.
Gen. ii. 3, 4, 5. • Therefore God blessed the seventh day, and sancțified it; because, before it, he ceased from all his work; for God created, to generate. These are the generations of the heaven and the earth, when he created them : on the day Jehovah finished, earth and heaven. Even every plant of the field, before it was in the earth, and every herb of the field before it grew: for Jehovah God had not caused rain on the earth ; moreover, nor a man, to till the ground.'
Gen. ij. 23, 24. • And the man said; Thus this time, bone after my bone ; also flesh after my flesh; for this he shall call woman; because she was received by the man. Therefore a man will leave, even his father, and his mother: for he will unite with his wife; and they shall be, for one flesh.'
In such passages as these (and we could produce them from every page) it would be often impossible for the English reader to comprehend the meaning of the original, unless he had the authorized version at hand to interpret that of Mr. Bellamy. How infinitely inferior is a translation of this hard and dry nature, to that in use, where there is such an accominodation to the native idiom as to make the language easy and intelligible, and yet no essential departure from the original! But, independently of the general uncouthness of this absurd attempt to preserve the Hebrew idiom, Mr. Bellamy's translation abounds with inconsistencies, improprieties, and alterations of the words of the authorized version manifestly for the worse. We will produce a few passages from the first chapter of Genesis, as specimens of the whole. VOL. XIX. NO. XXXVII.
V. ). . In
V: 1. ' In the beginning God created the substance of the heaven and the substance of the earth.' • The substance of Mr. Bellamy conceives, he says, to be the meaning of the word ns which precedes D'own and 8987, the heavens and the earth.' Now it is the opinion of Hebraists of the first authority that no preceding a Noum,
after active verb, is merely the mark of the accusative
It is true that Parkburst considers ns to mean the very substance of a thing,'' the,'' the very;' but, allowing him to be right, the proper translation would be the very heaven and the very earth,' ipsum coelum et ipsam terram; not the substance of the heaven and the earth,' an expression, from which woald naturally be understood, not that the heaven and earth were created, but that the substance was created from which the heaven and the earth were afterwards formed. But let it be granted that Mr. Bellamy is right in his translation of this passage. We couceive no position will be more generally allowed than that the same word, when similarly applied in different passages, should be rendered in the same sense. Now what is the fact? The word, ns, occurs similarly applied in this very chapter more than a dozen times; and in no one instance, excepting this of v. 1. does he translate it the substance of, or give it any peculiar force. Thus at v. 4. he does not say "God saw that the substance of the light was good,' but God saw that the light was good.' At v. 7. God made the expanse ;' at v. 16. God made the two great lights,' &c. Mr. Bellamy must either be right in the sense he contends for of the word ns, or he must be wrong. If wrong, why does he express it at v. 1.? If right, why does he omit to
express it in all the other passages ? V.3. • Then God said, Be light.' Mr. Bellamy finds fault with
the expression of the received translation, Let there be light, because, there is no authority for the word • let' in the original, and because, as implying permission, it is not applicable to the Creator. We have seldom met with a remark founded on more consummate ignorance. He does not seem to know that the word • let' is auxiliary in the form of the third person imperative in English, and that. Be it and let it be' are forms of expression perfectly synovimous, permission being no more implied in
the one than in the other. V. 5. • So the evening and the morning were the first day.' The
literal translation of the Hebrew is, * The evening was, and the · morning was, the first day.' As he professes to translate with Our version rightly .אשר זרעו בו in the expression אשר pronoun
extreme closeness, why has he deserted his principle here? V. 6. • Be there a division between the waters, &c.' The word
which he translates a division' is Syao, which is manifestly the participle benoui iu Hiphil from 372 to divide; and the literal
rendering is, Be it (or let it be) dividing, or causing to divile, between the waters, &c. This is most properly expressed by our translators, - Let it divide.' Mr. Bellamy evidently, from sheer ignorance of Hebrew, mistakes bugao for a noun substan
tive. V. 10. "The conflur of the waters.' The rendering of our trans
lators the gathering together of the waters,' is niuch more sim
ple and agreeable to the original. V. 11. “The earth shall germinate grass. To say nothing of
Mr. Bellamy's not knowing a neuter verb from an active, how much more simple is our version, the earth shall bring forth grass'! Fruit yielding fruit after his kind, with its seed in it. In the last words is a positive error, for he has wholly omitted the relative expresses it, Whose seed is in it or in itself.' Mr. Bellamy has
made a similar mistake at v. 12. V. 14. Thus they shall endure for signs.' The Hebrew word is
a form of the verb 7'n' to be'; which he translates, indeed, in all the contiguous verses, in the sense of to be'; but which he thinks proper in this place to render' endure.' This, instead of close translation, is more loose than could possibly be approved, even in one who did not make a peculiar boast of giving a close
translation. V. 17. “Then God arranged them.' Our translators, far more
elegantly, God set them. “For the light upon the earth.' Here Mr. Bellamy shewg his ut
ter ignorance of the plainest principles of Hebrew. The word which he renders for the light is 70%, which he evidently supposes to be'a noun substantive 7'8 light, with sofor' and the prefixed. It happens, however, that there is no such substantive as 7'x, signifying light in the Hebrew language. The word, in fact, is a verb, regularly formed in the intinitive in Hiphil, and signifying 'to give or cause light,' as our translators correctly
render it. V. 20. * The water shall bring forth abundantly the soul of life.'
Had Mr. Bellamy endeavoured to translate the verse into nonsense, he could not have succeeded better than he has done. The words 'n wo), which he renders' the soul of life,' evidently mean
the living creature,' the creature, or the 'moving creature that hath life,' as our translation gives it. V. 31. Thus God provided for all that he had made.' Here is
a needless departure from the original; which simply says "God saw all that he had made.' From these examples, all occurring in a single chapter, our reaS 2
ders will be sufficiently enabled to appreciate Mr. Bellamy's pre tensions to au improved travslation of the Bible. In a former pas sage, we alluded to bis assertions respecting the words inserted in italic, as interpolations which obscure the sense, make the Bible speak what it never did speak, &c. As this is a matter of some inportance, we will trace these italics through a considerable part of the first chapter of Genesis ; it will then appear that Mr. Bellamy himself has for the most part inserted the very same words which the authorized translators have done, although, far inferior to them in accuracy, he has often omitted to mark them as insertions; and, in some instances, where he has not made them, left the sense in perfect obscurity. Gen. i. 2. Engl. Transl. · Darkness was upon the face of the deep.'
Here Mr. Bellamy inserts the word was as necessary to the
sense, but does not mark it as such by Italics. V. 4. 10. 12. 18. 21.25. 31. E. T. •God saw—that it was good.'
In all these passages, the original stands God saw 210 'that good. It was obviously necessary to express this Hebrew idiom by the insertion of the words "it was:' and Mr. Bellamy finds it necessary to make precisely the same insertions. At v. 4, he inserts the word was,' that the light was good;' and, in all the other verses, he inserts, as the authorized translators have done, * it was:' but, with a carelessness which is quite inconceivable, he has marked only two out of the seven instances in italics. As the expression in all the cases is precisely the same, there is not a particle of reason for this distinction: we attribute it, in fact, to positive carelessness. But, we must again ask, is this the man to tax others with carelessness and to improve upon
the authorized version ? V.7. E. T. Waters which were under the firmament--waters
which were above, &c.' Here Mr. Bellamy inserts were in each
case, as our translators do, and marks it in italics. V. 29. E.T.' Every herb— hich is upon the face. Every tree
in the which is the fruit.' The word in italics is inserted to make the sense clear in both these clauses. Mr. Bellamy makes the
same insertions, but does not mark them in italics. V. 30. E. T. “Wherein there is life.' Mr. Bellamy inserts the
verb in the same manner as our translators, and in this case, differing from the last, he does notice it in italics.
There remain two instances in which our translators have made insertions of more importance, and which, as will be seen, are clearly necessary to prevent ambiguity. The first is at v. 16. And God made two great lights, the greater light to rule the day and the lesser light to rule the night : he made the stars also. Here the words he inade are obviously inserted to preclude the ambiguity