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mere human literature, we scruple not to say, that the great ends of its institution are not answered. The youthful mind will be exercised in the subtlety of metaphysical disquisitions, and habituated to require the accuracy of mathematical demonstration, before it is taught to discern the proper and legitimate province of reason in matters of religion, or to estimate the real value of those grounds of probability, upon which the truth of the Gospel rests. The resident members of one university will understand the allusion contained in these remarks. We trust that they will persevere in their endeavours to make religious knowledge a prominent feature of academical instruction, and to take away from their adversaries a great occasion of gainsaying.
ART. XI. A Reply to the Quarterly Review on the New Translation of the Bible from the original Hebrew. By John Bellamy, Author of the History of all Religions.' Svo. London.
HEN we lately undertook to examine Mr. Bellamy's New Translation of the Bible, we found not only that proofs of his utter incompetence to the task crowded upon us at every step, but that his bold pretension of making new discoveries as to the meaning of the plainest passages of the Bible, tended to shake the confidence of the public in the certainty of received scriptural interpretations. In consequence, we felt ourselves called upon to explain, without disguise, the grounds of the opinion which we were led to form respecting this writer and his work. At the same time, we had no wish unnecessarily to wound his feelings, and were therefore desirous of abstaining from the exposure of his blunders to a greater extent than appeared to be required by a just regard to truth and to our public duty.
Whatever may have been the effect of these strictures on our readers, (and we are much mistaken if this be at all doubtful,) their influence on the author himself has not been that which we intended. Instead of teaching him to estimate more justly his qualifications as a biblical critic and translator, they have operated in a most unfortunate manner on the irritability of his temper; and given birth to a Reply,' in which he assails us with the most opprobrious epithets, and boldly contends that we are advocating the cause of errror.
Under these circumstances, we find ourselves compelled to revert to a subject which we thought was set at rest, and to adduce some further confirmation of the opinion already stated respecting this
author's demerits. To his low and vulgar scurrilities we stoop not to reply. To his assertions that we are actuated by malicious and interested motives, we merely answer, that we have no interest in writing against his translation, besides that which all who revere the Bible have in preventing the perversion and degradation of its sacred truths. Let him prove to us that the received sense of Scripture is erroneous, and his new discoveries true; and we will engage to recommend his translation as warmly as we now oppose it.
In conducting his Reply,' Mr. Bellamy adopts, of course, that plan which he deems most advantageous to his defence. He generally keeps in the background the essential part of what we urged against him, and then boasts that he has completely confuted us: often he turns suddenly from one part of the subject to another, so as to make it difficult for the reader to trace the particular point which he is pretending to answer; then again, he strives to draw off attention from his own detected blunders, by dwelling at large on what he is pleased to deem instances of error in the received translation; and, whenever he finds himself entirely at a loss, he bursts out into violent. fits of astonishment and indignation, rails at the dishonesty and incapacity of his reviewers, &c. (pp. 36. 39. &c.) We complain not that he has recourse to all these stratagems; but, in proportion as it is his business to perplex and confuse matters as much as possible, it is ours to place every thing before the reader in the most perspicuous order. To this end, we must request their attention, while we advert particularly to those texts on which we grounded the charge of utter incompetence against him, and consider with what success he has rebutted it. We begin with distinctly affirming that he has not, in any one instance, disproved in the slightest degree the justice of our strictures; nay, that he has now afforded the most valuable of all testimonies, his own, to their truth for, since he has manifestly strained every nerve to confute what we advanced, his total failure amounts in fact to a complete admission of its validity.
The first passage on which we animadverted,* was his translation of Gen. ii. 21, 22. in the following uncouth and novel manner:
'Then he brought one to his side, whose flesh he had inclosed in her place. Then Jehovah God built the substance of the other, which he took for the man, even a woman: and he brought her to the man.'
After stating the entire and absolute concurrence of all versions, and of all interpreters and commentators, in the received sense, we shewed the total want of authority for this barbarous jargon. We will give Mr. Bellamy's answers in detail.
* See our last Number, pp. 262-267.
1. In reply to our remark (p. 264.) that the acknowledged sense of p is cepit, sumpsit, abstulit, he produces (p. 21.) a passage where it is rendered brought.' Numb. xxiii. 28. And Balak brought (mp) Balaam unto the top of Peor.' We insist on our former remark in its full force. The word may be rendered bring' with reference to a person, place, or thing, in which 'take' and 'bring' are in a manner synonimous; but it would be as much a departure from the acknowledged use of words to render cepit or tulit, followed by a or de, in the sense of 'bring to,' as nps, when followed, as it here is, by the preposition n.
2. We maintained (p. 265) that the preposition prefixed to by signifies from' in Hebrew, quite as much as the Latin a or the Greek ano, and that nothing can be considered as established in language, if it can be rendered at will by the opposite sense 'to.' Mr. Bellamy assigned before no reason for his new translation; he assigns none now; and gives not a single word of answer to our remark: thereby admitting that he has used the word in a sense wholly opposed to the true one.
3. We insisted (p. 265) that, although by is used to signify' rib' only in this first chapter of Genesis, yet it always occurs in some cognate sense, and all authorities are agreed in giving this sense here. To this Mr. Bellamy replies, (p. 20.) that all authorities are not so agreed, because 'Origen, in answer to the assertion of Celsus, concerning Eve being made from Adam's rib, says that" these things are to be understood allegorically: and that Philo, Eusebius, and St. Austin say the same." Thus,' continues he, as to this view of the subject I am not alone.' Of what view does he speak? The question now before us is, whether the Hebrew words are rightly construed to mean that God took one of the ribs of the man, &c.; and how does the assertion of Origen, that allegory is concealed under the literal sense, tend to shew that he did not construe the words precisely as others have done? But we can reduce the matter to actual proof. Origen's words are, (Orig. contr. Cels. lib. iv. p. 187. edit. 1677.) Then, since he (Celsus) determined to carp at the Scriptures, he blames also this passage-καὶ ελαβε μιαν των πλευρων αυτ8, καὶ ανεπλήρωσε σαρκα αντ' αυτης, καὶ ῳκοδόμησε την πλευράν---εις γυναικα : hereby proving most fully that he differed not from others in the slightest degree in his construction of the original words. Indeed, his contention for the allegorical sense, proves, of itself, that his interpretation was literally the same as ours.
4. On Mr. Bellamy's rendering of the next clause, whose flesh he had inclosed in her place,' we remarked, (p. 265.) that he unnecessarily departs from the received meaning; that the sense of his
words is quite unintelligible; that he has no authority for rendering the verb in the pluperfect tense, and that there is nothing in the original corresponding to the pronoun relative' whose' which he gratuitously introduces into the translation. To all this, the whole of what we find in reply is a simple observation respecting the last clause. The translators have frequently rendered the by the pronouns relative who, which, also the genitive whose, and the accusative whom.' We will not affirm positively that they have not done so, because we cannot be certain of the fact without a laborious search through every page of the Old Testament. But this we scruple not to affirm most distinctly, that, if they have done so in any particular instance, no authority is thereby afforded for thus rendering the word whenever it occurs. The Hebrew copulative 1 corresponds to the Latin copulative et. It is possible that some translators may have found it convenient, in rendering a Latin sentence into English, to express et by the pronoun relative; but who in his senses would therefore contend that et signifies who, which, whose, and may be rendered by the pronoun relative whenever the translator pleases?
5. On his strange rendering of n n by the substance of the other,' we observed (p. 266. 274.) that ns is simply the mark of the accusative, or, at the most, should merely be expressed by the very,' ipsum, not by the substance of;' and that he might translate na house,' a tree,' or any thing else, with quite as much reason as the other.' With respect to ns, he answers (as far as we understand him) (p. 38.) that he conceives the word should be rendered as he has rendered it,' wherever our idiom will allow of the translation.' We leave the reader then to judge whether our idiom requires it here. As to by, all the answer we can find is (p. 20.) a reference to five passages of Scripture, where (says he) the same word is translated as I have translated it.' Let us see. In two of his passages (Exod. xxvi. 26. 2 Sam. xvi. 13.) the word occurs in the singular, and is translated side'; in two others, (Exod. xxx. 4. xxxvii. 27.) in the plural, sides;' in the remaining one, Ezek. xli. 6. mobyn is translated side chambers.' But the word also occurs in the last-mentioned text in a form more to Mr. Bellamy's purpose, and to ours. 'The side chambers (of the temple) were three, one over another.' The Hebrew of the latter expression is by brby, literally' side to side,'' side upon side,' latus ad latus, correctly expressed by our translators one over another.". And this is Mr. Bellamy's authority for translating by in this passage of Genesis, by the other'! His blunder is portentous. The case is precisely the same as if a person were to find in the description of a building, in Latin, such an expression as latus ad latus
rendered ' one beside the other,' 'one by the other,' and were thence to conclude that latus' is the Latin word for the other"!
6. To his rendering the preposition in the sense of 'for' (the man,) meaning for the use, the help, of man,' we answered (p. 266.) that he had no authority whatever for giving such a sense. On this he is totally silent.
Such is the success with which he has confuted our strictures on his strange translation of this important passage! We proceed to the second text, Gen. ii. 25. rendered by him: Now they were
both of them prudent, the man and his wife.'
In addition to other remarks, founded on the concurrence of every known authority, &c. (p. 267.) we observed, in opposition to his positive denial that ever signifies naked,' that instances occur in which the substitution of the word 'prudent,' would make complete nonsense. Mr. Bellamy is now driven from his first position; and, changing the terms of his affirmation, contends, (Reply, p. 25.) that when this word is written with, or, in its absence, with the vowel holem, pronounced gnaarom, it uniformly signifies naked, but, when the root of this word is applied by the sacred writers to mean prudent, subtle, crafty, it is not written with the holem, or the o, but with the shurik, or long u, pronounced 'gnaaruum.' We decline entering into any discussion as to the authority we would attribute to these vowel points, and, for brevity's sake, will meet him on his own ground. He is right in affirming that D in the singular is pointed with the holem or o (gnaarom) when it has the sense of naked;' but he commits an error of the grossest kind when he asserts (p. 26.) that the word DDY, (gnaaruumim,) the plural of Diy, which the translators have rendered "naked," never means nakedness of the whole body, but throughout the Scriptures signifies, even in the received translation, wisdom, prudence. Either he does not know, or knowing studiously conceals, that, according to the rules of that very masoretic pointing, on which he now places his dependance, or in the plural changes the o into u; it assumes, in fact, in the plural, instead of the holem or o, the shurik or long u, (here used, according to some, for the kibbutz or short u,) and then becomes dageshed, so as to make the word gnaruummim or gnarummim. Thus Simonis gives diy planè nudus, plural □py (for □'py) planè nudi. So Calasio and Buxtorf, y nudus, plural
y nudi. Buxtorf also, in his grammar, (Thes. Gramm. p. 81.) says that some nouns change, euphonia causâ, the holem on the last syllable of the singular, into kibbutz with dagesh in the plural, and he particularly mentions Diy, nudus, as an instance. The word occurs in