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in their form. Indeed the compiler of the later account must necessarily have had the shorter history of the flood in the early document before him; for in this manner alone can the introduction of the interpolations be understood. The compiler feels himself less at liberty here than in the first and larger amplification which he had given in chap. ii.-iv. He here inserts single passages between separate verses of another author; and he necessarily becomes dependent upon the earliest document, and adheres more closely to it, even with respect to diction. In chap. vi. 5–8, he decidedly leads on to the history of the flood, and by the expression hith'acçéb (it grieved him), verse 6, calls to mind the favourite ‘iççabon (sorrow), chap. iii. 16, 17, v. 29; he also quotes God's resolution (vi. 7): “I will destroy ('emcheh) man whom I created' from the earth; from man to the beast, to the creeping thing and to the birds of the heaven," which is the standing formula of the early document?; and in chap. vii. 8, we see the compiler enumerate the various created beings in the same mode of expression. When, in chap. vii, 1–10, he interpolates the precise command of God with respect to the flood, he copies exactly the early document, in order that the result may correspond to the command. In chap. vii. ver. 1, Noah is ordered to enter the ark; and the word for the ark, hat't'ébah (with the article)), means the ark already described in chap. vi. 14-16. Again, in chap. vii. 1, Noah is a man çaddik baddor hazzah (righteous in this generation), and the early document in like manner (chap. vi. 9) calls
1 Bara' created, besides 'as'ah, [' he had made,' in verse 6,] compare chap. vii. 4.
2 Compare vii. 23 with vi. 20; vii. 14, 21 ; viii. 17, 19; ix. 2.
3 Compare chap. vii. 7, 9, and chap. ix. 18, where the same word is used for the ark.
him 'ish çaddik' t'amim bědorothav (a just man, perfect in his generations). When the compiler describes the animals of both sexes, he says in verse 2, 'ish wě 'ishto (man and his wife), but in verses 3 and 9 he says, zakar u něk'ébah (male and female), as the earliest document also continually does. The destruction of all creatures from off the earth is foretold, and God says in chap. vii. 4, U machithi eth kol hayek’um mé’al pěney ha'adamah (I will destroy every living being from off the face of the earth), which is taken word for word from verse 23. Even 'Elohim escapes his pen in verse 91, in a phrase which is closely connected with chap. vi. 22. and vii. 16.
In the six-hundredth year of Noah's life, according to vii. 6, the flood comes on, which is confirmed in verse 11; for forty days and forty nights the rain is ordained to continue (verse 4), and in verse 12 this rain takes place; the number seven recurs frequently both in the command relating to the clean animals (vii. 2 and 3), and in the enumeration of the days up to the approaching flood, verse 4 (compared with verse 10), as well as in the earlier narrative, chap. viii. 10, &c. If the dependence of the compiler on the early document be thus proved, the harmony which under all circumstances may be recognised as intended and as natural, does not prevent the separation of the heterogeneous portions; but it decidedly tends to disprove the hypothesis, which Ranke has strongly urged, of the compilation of this narrative from originally independent documents. There is however no reason for proceeding further in the separation of different portions, and that criticism is erroneous which limits itself to mere external indications, as when Hartmann'observes a later interpolation of some pious Israelite in chap. vii. 2, 3, or when Stähelin? regards chap. vii. verse 9 as an Elohistic portion, and verse 23, on account of verse 4, as Jehovistic, or when he is uncertain respecting chap. viii. verses 6–12. It will not be requisite to notice Ilgen's exaggerated divisions of the text, and other points of difference. On the other hand, criticism has quite as little right to suppose, that it is impossible to discover what portion belongs to the earliest narrative, and what is interwoven with it by the later compiler, which view however Von Bohlen appears inclined to support 3.
| Compare chap. iv. ver. 25, where Elohim also occurs.
The leading idea in the legend of the Flood is clearly expressed by the later compiler, as well as by the author of the early narrative. The human race degenerates, and the holy almighty Ruler of the world must consequently inflict a punishment. Human misfortunes are everywhere regarded by the Hebrew solely as the consequences of sinful conduct; he therefore attributes the general punishment by the flood to the prevailing sinfulness of the human race.
To the Hebrew, therefore, the flood is a real sin-flood (Sündfluth); and the Germans have introduced this idea by a slight alteration of the old word Sintvluot, or great flood. In the later times of the Hebrew nation, the prophet represents Jehovah as again resolving upon a flood of annihilation, because the inhabitants of the earth had trespassed upon the commandment of the Deity and had broken the everlasting covenant“. Noah is described as a just man; and he alone, with his family,
| Historisch-krit. Forschungen (inquiries), p. 212, &c.
escapes destruction; but the inferior animals, although involved in the general calamity of the deluge, are nevertheless not to be totally annihilated. Noah is commanded to take with him a pair of every species, and the animals quietly enter the ark, in order that they may originate a new world after the flood.
The whole of this myth turns upon the leading Hebrew belief in the reward of virtue, and the necessary punishment of sin'; and the poetical narrative, in its childlike simplicity, pays little regard to the means by which the vegetable kingdom could have survived the flood, how Noah could have known and gathered together all the animals and their food?, how such a continued rain was possible over the whole earth, how there could have been such an overflow of the sea (chap. vii. 11), that the waters rose fifteen ells (chap. vii. 20) above the highest mountains, or how many other occurrences happened which have already in some degree puzzled the oldest defenders of the historical explanations of the narrative, and which for a considerable time vainly occupied the attention of commentators and naturalists. All endeavours to establish historical accuracy in the account of the Flood have ended in this conclusion, that we have here a grand mythical description, the noble simplicity of which is inconsistent with any forced and absurd interpretation.
Many legends of a flood are handed down to us from antiquity), which represent the inundation to have been in some cases a partial one, as in the Samothracian flood in Diodorus Siculus, v. 47, explaining geographical relations, and in other cases describe it as a general flood over the whole earth. Several of these accounts were unquestionably derived from a common origin, and they are based on a peculiar development of the same elementary ideas; whereas, in the Biblical narrative, we must observe this striking fact, which is of importance in considering the connection of myths, that a resemblance can be traced between that legend and others only after the lapse of a considerable time, and when the legend itself has partly been modified by foreign compilers. Greece furnishes the accounts of two floods, and, as these are connected with different names, they must be referred to different periods. In one, Ogyges survives a universal flood, which had covered the whole surface of the earth to such a depth, that he conducts his vessel upon the waves through the air? The other Grecian legend which relates to Deucalion is more complete, but, like that of Ogyges, is only narrated by later writers. Neither Homer nor Hesiod makes any mention of a flood; and even Herodotus does not connect the name of Deucalion (i. 56.) with any inundation. Pindar? first mentions Deucalion's flood; and it is given in a more perfect form by Apollodorus 3, Ovid4 and Lucianó. The object of the Hellenic deluge appears to have been the annihilation of the brazen race, which according to Hesiod perished without any flood. In this circumstance of the destruction of human life, there is a similarity between the Grecian and Biblical legends; for the race which was
1 See the Korân, xi. 46.
2 Chapter vi. verse 21. 3 Compare Bauer, p. 213, &c.; Rosenmüller, Alt. und Neu. Morgenl. (Ancient and Modern Asia), i. 22, &c.; Buttmann, Mythologus, i. 180, &c.; Link, Urwelt (Primæval World), ii. 78, &c.; Von Bohlen, Alt. Ind. i. 214, &c.; ii. 296 ; Comment, ut supra, p. 117, in this volume, &c.