lethargic_man: "Happy the person that finds wisdom, and the person that gets understanding."—Prov. 3:13. Icon by Tamara Rigg (limmud)
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This sedra contains Moses' farewell poem, and has a large number of divergences betwen the Samaritan text and the Masoretic.

Deuteronomy 32:10 דברים לב י
[God] found [Jacob] in a desert land, and in the waste, a howling wilderness; He compassed him about, He cared for him, He kept him as the apple of His eye. יִמְצָאֵהוּ בְּאֶרֶץ מִדְבָּר          וּבְתֹהוּ יְלֵל יְשִׁמֹן
יְסֹבְבֶנְהוּ יְבוֹנְנֵהוּ          יִצְּרֶנְהוּ כְּאִישׁוֹן עֵינוֹ׃
With the change of a few letters, the Samaritan text completely changes the meaning of the first half of this:
[God] strengthened [Jacob] in the land of the desert, and with praises He fattened him; He compassed him about and He cared for him, and He kept him as the apple of his eye. יאמצהו בְּאֶרֶץ הַמִּדְבָּר      ובתהללות ישמנהו
יְסֹבְבֶנְהוּ וַיְבֹנְנֵהוּ          וַיִצְּרֶנְהוּ כְּאִישֹׁן עֵינוֹ׃
Deuteronomy 32:13 דברים לב יג
He made him ride on the high places of the earth, that he might eat the fruitage of the field; He made him to suck honey out of the rock, and oil out of the flinty rock; יַרְכִּבֵהוּ עַל־בָּמֳותֵי אָרֶץ       וַיֹּאכַל תְּנוּבֹת שָׂדָי
וַיֵּנִקֵהוּ דְבַשׁ מִסֶּלַע       וְשֶׁמֶן מֵחַלְמִישׁ צוּר׃
In place of תְּנוּבֹת "fruitage of", the Samaritan text contains תְּנוּפֹת "wavings of", which is odd. I've a vague feeling I've seen this substitution elsewhere in the text, but I'm not going in search of it now! Though the change ב to פ also occurs below in v.24.
Deuteronomy 32:18 דברים לב יח
Of the Rock that begot you you were unmindful, and you forgot God that bore you. צוּר יְלָדְךָ תֶּשִׁי          וַתִּשְׁכַּח אֵל מְחֹלְלֶךָ׃
The Samaritan text has the curious change, if I've understood it aright:
You carried the Rock that begot you, and you forgot God that praised you. צוּר יְלָדְךָ תשא          וַתִּשְׁכַּח אֵל מהללך׃
The Samaritan text is decidedly wrong in the latter change, as it breaks the parallelism.
Deuteronomy 32:24 דברים לב כד
The wastings of hunger, and the devouring of the fiery bolt, and bitter destruction; and the teeth of beasts will I send upon them, with the venom of crawling things of the dust. מְזֵי רָעָב וּלְחֻמֵי רֶשֶׁף
וְקֶטֶב מְרִירִי          וְשֶׁן־בְּהֵמֹת אֲשַׁלַּח־בָּם
עִם־חֲמַת זֹחֲלֵי עָפָר׃
The changes in the Samaritan text including moving a word across the phrase divide at a line break:
Deuteronomy 32:24 דברים לב כד
The wasting of hunger of his nourishment, a plague of ?pluckings of bitter things; and the teeth of beasts will I send upon them, with the venom of crawling things of the dust. מַזֶה רָעָב לְחֻמוֹ
רֶשֶׁף קטף מְרָרִים          וְשֶׁן־בְּהֵמֹת אֲשַׁלַּח־בָּם
עִם־חֲמַת זֹחֲלֵי עָפָר׃
Deuteronomy 32:28 דברים לב כח
For they are a nation void of counsel, neither is there any understanding in them. כִּי־גוֹי אֹבַד עֵצוֹת הֵמָּה
וְאֵין בָּהֶם תְּבוּנָה׃
The Samaritan text runs עֵצוֹת הֵמָּה into one word, עצותם; I think this changes the meaning to "For a nation has destroyed their counsel, neither is there any understanding in them."
Deuteronomy 32:30 דברים לב ל
How should one chase a thousand, and two put ten thousand to flight, except their Rock had sold them, and the Lord had shut them up? אֵיכָה יִרְדֹּף אֶחָד אֶלֶף
וּשְׁנַיִם יָנִיסוּ רְבָבָה          אִם־לֹא כִּי־צוּרָם מְכָרָם
וַה׳ הִסְגִּירָם׃
The Samaritan text reads אחר in place of אחד—the very misreading (as far as consonants are concerned) the last letter of the Shema is traditionally emphasised to avoid—changing the meaning to "How should he chase a thousand, and two put ten thousand, [etc]?" The Samaritan text is clearly in the wrong here, both because there's no "he" antecedent (the previous verse was about a "they"), and because the parallelism is broken.
Deuteronomy 32:34 דברים לב לד
Is not this laid up in store with me, and sealed up among my treasures? הֲלֹא־הוּא כָּמֻס עִמָּדִי
חָתוּם בְּאוֹצְרֹתָי׃

The Samaritan text reads כנוס for כמס; surprisingly, this doesn't change the meaning much: "Is this not collect with me [etc]."

The following verse reads:
To me belongs vengeance and recompence; their foot shall slide in due time: for the day of their calamity is at hand, and the things that shall come upon them make haste. לִי נָקָם וְשִׁלֵּם
לְעֵת תָּמוּט רַגְלָם          כִּי קָרוֹב יוֹם אֵידָם
וְחָשׁ עֲתִדֹת לָמוֹ׃
The Samaritan text begins with לְיוֹם ("for the day of") rather than לִי ("to me belongs"); this makes no less sense than the Masoretic reading.

[Samaritan Torah] Samaritan Torah notes         Jewish learning notes index


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