Bə-‘ēmeq ha-bākā (Psalms 84:7): non-lachrymose interpretations of the verse in David Qimḥi’s Commentary

The paronymic way of interpreting בָּכָא bākā in בְּעֵמֶק הַבָּכָא bə‘ēmeq ha-bākā (Psalms 84:7) as connected with the root בכי/–ה bky/-h “to cry” is already attested in the Septuagint where the Hebrew phrase is rendered by εἰς τὴν κοιλάδα τοῦ κλαυθμνος. 1 This translation paved the way to the emergence of the notion of the Vale of tears as a place of penitence in the afterworld, as in a word-by-word commentary of the verse in the Talmud of Babylon (‘Eruvin 19a): Continuer la lecture de « Bə-‘ēmeq ha-bākā (Psalms 84:7): non-lachrymose interpretations of the verse in David Qimḥi’s Commentary »

  1. On wordplay in the Hebrew original Book of Psalms and its rendering in the Septuagint, see Backfish E. H. P. Hebrew Wordplay and Septuagint Translation Technique in the Fourth Book of the Psalter. London: T&T Clark, 2019. []