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HAUPT: MASORA 219 



MASORA 

Paul Haupt 
Johns Hopkins University 

Masora is the Hebraization of Aram, mdsortd, deliverance, 
tradition. The form with final t is older than the form with final 
h. 1 If masora were a genuine Hebrew word, it should be 
spelled with s, because it is derived from the same root as Heb. 
massor, saw = Arab, mijisdr. Similarly gezerd, decree (Dan. 
4:14.21) is connected with magzera, ax (2 S 12:31). Syr. 
magzdrd denotes ax, saw and dagger, lancet (JBL 36, 258). 2 
The verb gezdr signifies to cut, tear, circumcise, decree, deter- 
mine. Syr. gezirtd has the meanings split wood and decree, 
while gazdrta is an island (lit. cut off, isolated). Also Heb. 
garzen, ax, is merely a transposition of gazren = gazrinn, just 
as karmel represents a form harmillu, or as oarzel, iron, corre- 
sponds to Assyr. parzillu; but Assyr. qutrinnu, Kviaa (JBL 
36, 91, n. 11) stands for qutrinu = qutrenu = qutrdnu; cf. 
surmenu, cypress = surmdnu (JBL 34, 74, n. 2) . The t in Heb. 
qetort is due to the initial q; cf. Aram, qetdl, to kill = Arab. 
qdtala (SFG73). 

The Hebrew byf orm mdsort is based on Ezek. 20 : 37, but we 
must read there instead of mdsort hab-berit, the bond of the 
covenant: masret hab-borit, the vat of lye (JBL 36, 143 ; JHTJC, 
No. 306, p. 3). Bacher's theory (endorsed by Wildeboer, 
ZAT 29, 73) that masora should be read moserd is untenable. 
If mdsort in Ezek. 20 : 37 meant bond, it would, of course, be 
better to regard it as the singular of moserot, bonds ( = 
ma' sir at). But we must read there masret = masret from sard 
= Syr. terd, to be soaked (JBL 36, 147). Also the misspelling 
(RE 3 12, 394, 39) massord or massort presupposes a derivation 
of mdsort in Ezek. 20 : 37 from asdr, to bind : we find in 1 E 
5 : 25 makkolt, food, from akal, to eat (ZAT 29, 281, n. 2). The 
view advanced in Steuernagel's Einleitung (1912) p. 19, 

1 Cf. Winter und Wiinsehe, Die jiidische Litteratur seit Abschluss des 
Kanons, vol. 2 (Trier, 1894) p. 122, n. 1. 

2 For the abbreviations see this Journal, vol. 36, p. 75. 



220 JOURNAL OF BIBLICAL LITERATURE 

that it would perhaps be better to read mesort (an infinitive 
form like iekolt; GK § § 45, e. d ; 69, n) or mesdrd (a form like 
besord, good news) is untenable. Nor can we combine masora 
with mesura, measure, because this word denotes a liquid 
measure, not a measure of length, so that masora could be 
explained as rule, canon (JBL 36, 257). Canon is derived from 
the Sumer. gin, gi, reed, cane (Mic. 37, n.t ; JHUC, No. 306, 
p. 25; JAOS 38, 67). 

Aram, mdsdrtd is a feminine collective (Mic. 43, below) 
derived from mdsor, deliverer, just as Heb. Iehudd, Jewry, is 
a feminine collective to iehode, he confesses (Mic. 36, n. 38). 
For the original meaning of Jidda, he threw himself down, 
prostrated himself, see the paper on Selah, reverential prostra- 
tion, in Expository Times, vol. 22, p. 375 b , below (May, 1911). 
The form mdsor is distinctly Aramaic (Noldeke, Syr. Gr. § 
107; Barth, § 122, d; VG § 128). Aram, mesdr means to 
deliver — to hand over or to hand down. I pointed out in 
March, 1894 (JAOS 16, cvi; cf. Numbers, 63, 32; OLZ 12, 165) 
that the stem from which the term Masora is derived was iden- 
tical with Assyr. masdru and the verb masdr in the two post- 
Exilic passages Num. 31 : 5.16. Assyr. mussuru has a s 2 (JAOS 
28, 115) which appears in Aramaic as s, and in Hebrew as s; 
Heb. uai-iimmaseru, they were sent forth, and limsor, to abandon 
(with the explanatory gloss me'ol-be, to trespass against, or to 
transgress) represent phonetic spellings like setdu, winter; sa'r, 
storm; harsit, place of deposit for potsherds (see below, the 
paper on the Tophet Gate ; contrast WP 219, 1.9). 

To deliver may mean to release, set free; hand over, pass to 
another ; give up, relinquish ; also to pronounce, utter. Deliver- 
ance may denote an authoritative or official utterance. We say 
also to hand down a decision. Levias has shown that the tech- 
nical term Masora means originally not tradition, but orthog- 
raphy, especially rules for scriptio plena and defectiva (GK 
§ 3, b, n. 1). In some respects the Masora corresponds to the 
official German spelling-books, e. g. the Begeln fur die deutsche 
Bechtschreibung nebst Worterverzeichnis (Berlin, 1902). 

The Assyrian Piel mussuru means to relinquish, abandon, 3 

s Ea said to Xisuthrus (KB 6, 230, 25) : mthssir mesrS, abandon abun- 
dance; for the paronomasia cf. Jensen, Kosmologie, p. 396; Casan.owicz, 
Paronomasia, p. 24. The stem of mesru is sr' = Arab. gdtara. 



HAUPT : MASORA 221 

leave, let loose, release, 4 set free, 5 dismiss, discharge; but the 
Qal masdru signifies to cut, to tear. Aram, nesdr, to saw, repre- 
sents a partial assimilation of the initial m to the s, just as we 
have in Hebrew : nasd, to forget, for Assyr. masu, or in Ethiopic : 
mdnzer, spurious, for Heb. mamzer (JBL 35, 291, below; cf. 
above, p. 216) . Assyr. nasdru, to take off, reduce, has a s ± ; it cor- 
responds to Aram, netdr (GB 16 917 b ) while nasru, eagle (or vul- 
ture) has a s s (JAOS 28, 115). The primary connotation of 
both mesdr, to deliver, and mesdr, to saw, is to cut; a saw is a 
cutting-tool, and to cut may mean also to abandon, give up, 
leave. We say to cut loose from for to sever connection with. 
Arab, qdta'a, to cut, means also ta abandon, relinquish, e. g. 
qdta'a axdhu or qdta'a rdhimahu, he cut loose from his brother 
or his family; qdta'a and uqti'a 'an are used in the same way; 
qati'ah means separation,. Arab, fdcala signifies both to cut, 
sever, and to leave, e. g. fdcala mina-'l-bdladi; we find also 
fdcala sdrikahu, he left his companion; infagala means to be 
separated, depart, leave. Arab, faraqa means to split, and 
fdraqa signifies to separate, depart, leave. 

The reflexive-passive stem of Assyr. mussuru is umtassir or 
(with reciprocal assimilation and with e for i under the influence 
of the following r) undasser, uddasser, udasser, just as 
mumtdxigu, warrior, appears as munddxcu, or salamtu, corpse, 
in Syriac as seldddd = salandu, salamtu (ZDMG 61, 287, 38 ; Nah. 
26 ; GB 16 892) . It is not impossible that the modern Arabic das- 
sar, to leave, dismiss, represents this Assyr. udasser = umtassir, 
just as Arab, tdjir, merchant, is the Assyr. tamkaru (see JBL 
36, 141, n. 3 ; AJP 17, 489, n. 1 ; GB 16 422 b .892 t ). We have in 
Arabic not only Assyrian loanwords, but also Sumerian terms 
(JBL 36, 140, below; JAOS 37, 255). 

'I pointed out in 1883 (BAL 91) that this stem appeared in Arabic 
as mdsara (cf. JAOS 16, cvi). 

5 The Babylonian Noah says (KB 6, 240, 147) : useQi-ma summata 
umassir, I brought out a dove (JSOE 1, 5) and let it go. Sennacherib 
states with reference to the inhabitants of Ekron (KB 2, 94, 8) : ussursun 
aqbi, I ordered their release. In a bilingual incantation (ASKT 85, 40) 
we find: tarttu sa Mrimmusa ussuru, the pregnant woman whose womb is 
released, i. e. prolapsed. For ussuru = uussuru — mussuru see ZA 2, 
270. 286; JAOS 16, cvi; AJP 17, 487, n. 1; and for Mrimmu, womb, lit. 
garden, cf. BL 96; JAOS 36, 419. Liru, the Sumerian equivalent of 
kirimmu, means also enclosure; our garden is a doublet of yard, and Lat. 
hortus is the Greek xopros. Contrast MVAG 21, 217 and JBL 36, 259. 



222 JOURNAL OF BIBLICAL LITERATURE 

In Assyrian we find for Heb. massor, saw (Is. 10:15) the 
reduplicated form sassaru = sarsaru (ef. Arab, sarsara, to cut). 
Meissner 's view (MVAG 9, 236) that Assyr. sassaru is a Saf'el 
formation from the stem nasdru (cf. OLZ 15, 149) is incorrect, 
although we have in Assyrian sapsaqu beside supsuqu (AG 2 
§ 91, No. 33, a) from pasdqu which appears in the OT in the 
transposed Aramaic form taqdf (JBL 34, 62; AJSL 32, 64). 
In Amharic we find sarasara, he sawed; Tigre sarsara and 
masarsar, saw. The Sumerian equivalent of Assyr. Sassaru is 
tag-gam (SAI 2482). According to Meissner (MVAG 9, 235) 
tak means toucher, and gam: feller; but tak signifies to fell 
(SGI 153) and gam (SGI §3) : to bend; so the primary con- 
notation of Sum. tag-gam, saw, is bendable feller. An ax is an 
unbendable feller, but a saw-blade is flexible. In several pas- 
sages we find tag-gam = sassaru, saw, in connection with pdsu, 
ax, and zirmu, pick (ZR 154, nn. 3.6). Assyr. pdsu, ax, is the 
Arab, fa's, Syr. pustd; and zirmu, pick (Arab, minqar) comes 
from a stem zardmu = zamdru, to cut ; cf . izzamer in the gloss 
Is. 5:6 (AJSL 19, 195; 26, 1) and Arab, mdraza = qdta'a; 
also Arab, zdrima, to cease, stop, means originally to be cut off 
(syn. inqata'a). For transposed doublets see JSOR 1, 88; 
AJSL 34, 84. 

The Semitic biconsonantal root (JBL 35, 322) sar, to cut, is 
preserved in a number of Arabic stems, e. g. sarsara, sdrja'a, 
sar r aha, saraxa, sdrrada, sirdimah, sdraza, sdrata, sar 1 aba, 
sdraqa = sdqqa, sdrika, sdrama, sarmata, sdrina, samafa, 
Mrnaqa. Arab, sard, to buy (NBSS 75) means originally to 
release, to redeem from captivity, to buy out of servitude, and 
the primary connotation of sari' ah, law, is decision; cf. Arab. 
sart, incision and stipulation, Assyr. purussu and pargu = Arab. 
fard, also Aram, gezerd, decree (cf. above, p. 219). For another 
Semitic root sar, to shine, which appears in Assyr. sarru, king, 
as well as in Arab, sartf, eminent, and sariq, rising sun, see JBL 
36, 141. Isrd'el may signify God rules, but afterwards this 
name was interpreted to mean He fights God; cf. the remarks 
on the name Gideon in ZDMG 63, 507, 16; see also JAOS 35, 
390. There is a connection between Heb. massor, saw, and Heb. 
sard, to strive, contend, wrestle, just as there is a connection 
between Heb. megerd, saw, and Assyr. girru, campaign, or garu, 
to attack (JBL 32, 141). We need not suppose that the original 



HAUPT : MASOBA 223 

meaning of sard, to strive, was to break with, to rupture friendly 
relations; in Latin we find serram cum aliquo ducere, for to 
strive with some one. Heb. sard, to strive, which corresponds 
to Arab, sard, to strive, to quarrel, means originally to tug. A 
tug of war, which is now used especially of rope-pulling, is a 
severe contest. Heb. megerd, stone-saw, is a form like meqerd, 
coolness, from qardr (AJSL 23, 234.242) : it stands for megirrat, 
from gardr, to run, and denotes a thing which is run or kept in 
motion or operation, just as we say to run an engine. Assyr. 
gardru means to run. The original meaning of Assyr. garu, to 
attack, is to run at (JBL 32, 141). In the same way Arab. 
'aduu, enemy, is derived from 'add, id'du, to run {'add 'aldihi 
= udtaba 'aldihi; cf. JBL 36, 255). Our phrase to run for an 
office means to enter a contest for it. 

We find the stem garar to run, to flow, in Ps. 75 : 9 ; Mic. 
1:6; Lam. 3 : 49 ; 2 S 14 : 14. The forms iagger, higgdrti, 
niggerd, niggarim may all be derived from garar (cf. GK § 67, 
u. y) or we may read nagdrd = nagarrd, negdrim = negarrim, 
and hegdrti (cf. hetdltd, Jud. 16: 10; GK § 67, dd) or hagerotL 
In Ps. 75 : 9 we must read : Ki-Ms be-,idd Iahue ue-iagger 
le-ris'e drg, In Jhvh's hand there is a cup which He pours 
out for the wicked (AJSL 19, 139, n. 32) of the land. Nor is 
muggarim (Mic. 1:4) derived from nagar: it means falling and 
is the participle Pu'al of magar, to fall (see Mic. 58.103). 

Also the stem nagar, to saw, was originally magar, a denom- 
inative verb derived from a noun mager = magirr, saw (cf.. 
below, p. 224) . For the interchange of initial m and n cf . AJSL 
22, 199, 11 ; 28, 95, and above, p. 221. In the Talmud we find 
migri, wickerwork, for nigri (cf. nigra and Heb. negr, Is. 11: 1). 
In modern Arabic we have nduud, to mew, for mduua'a (from 
ma' a, iamu'u). In Assyrian we meet with dunqu for dumqu, 
favor (BA 1, 14, n. 7) from damdqu = maddqu see below, p. 
227) and enqu, wise for emqu (lit. deep, profound; cf. ^aftJs, 
wise). Syr. negdr, to saw, hew, carpenter, is not derived from 
nag gar d, carpenter (contrast Frsenkel, Aram. Fremdworter, 
p. 254). Syr. ndrgd, ax (Noldeke, Syr. Or. § 106) = St ndrgd 
(not ndrgd) is a transposition of ndgerd. The primary connota- 
tion of Syr. negdr, to be long, is to drag = to move slowly (AJP 
27, 160; JAOS 22, 10, n. 2). 

In Assyrian we have naggaru, sawyer, carpenter, and in 1. 24 

15 



224 JOURNAL OF BIBLICAL LITERATURE 

of the Flood tablet (KB 6, 230) we find ugur (= nugur) bita, 
bini elippa, frame a house, build a ship ! The conjecture (AkF 
25) that naggaru or nangaru (H¥ 448 a ) is a Sumerian loan- 
word is untenable; for the Sumerian word for saw see above, 
p. 222. In the OT we have the stem nagar, to saw, to hew, in 
Ezek. 35:5; Jer. 18:21; Ps. 63:11. Uai-iagger otdm 'al-iede 
hdrb does not mean he shed their blood by the force of the sword 
(AV) or he spilled them into the hands of the sword (Cheyne- 
Driver) or he gave them over to the power of the sword (KV; 
cf. GB 16 485 a ) but he hacked them in pieces with the sword. 
Shakespeare (1 Henry IV, ii 4, 164) says: My sword hacked 
like a handsaw; cf. the German phrase in Kochstucke hacken 
or zerhauen (e. g. in c. 21 of Hauff 's Lichtenstem) e and the 
remarks on uai-iasar (1 Chr. 20: 3) below, p. 227. Heb. 'al-iede 
means at the hands of, i. e. by the operation of, by means of (cf. 
2 Chr. 29:27). Similarly we have in Arabic: 'did iddihi or 
'did iaddihi, with his help, through him (cf. Heb. be-iad, and 
OLZ 11, 121). 

The forms tagger, haggirem, iaggiruhu may also be derived 
from a stem garar, to saw, to hew; ef. megordrot bam-megerd, 
sawed with a saw (1 K 7: 9) and GK § 67, y. Hitzig derived 
iaggiruhu (Ps. 63:11) from a stem garar. Michaelis (1778) 
rendered in Jer. 18 : 21 : lass sie vom Schwerte durchstochen 
werden; he seems to have combined higgir with Arab, ajdrrahu 
= td'anahu ua-tdraka 'r-rumha iajurruhu (see his note on 
Ps. 63: 11). We must not substitute hisgir for higgir. 

Noldeke (NBSS 75, n. 3) derives uai-iasar in Hos, 12 : 5 from 
the stem sard which we have in Isrd'el, but the combination of 
the name Israel with sard, to fight, represents merely a popular 
etymology (Pur. 2, 37) : Isrd'el probably meant originally God 
rules (see above, p. 222) and it would be better to read uai-iisr 
(so Skinner, Genesis, 409.411) instead of uai-iasar which could 
only be derived from sur or sardr; cf . uai-iizr (Ex. 32 : 20) from 
zard, to scatter, winnow, or uai-iiqr, he chanced (Euth 2:3). 
We need not suppose that the original reading was tio^iisra with 
final Aleph (GK § 75, rr) which dropped out before the follow- 
ing Aleph of el. Assyr. Sir'ild'a, Israelite (WF 216) shows 

8 Cf. ibid. c. 26 : in Kochstiicke masakerieren, i. e. massakrieren. Cf . also 
German Steinmetz, stone-cutter, stone-hewer, stone-mason, and Metgelei, 
massacre; Metgger, butcher. 



HAUPT : MASORA 225 

that the pronunciation of the name was not Isrd'el, with a after 
the r, but Isr-il or Isvr-il; contrast Assyr. Xazd'ilu (e. g. KB 1, 
140, 97; 142, 103; 2, 130, 3) = Heb. Haza'el. For the vowel 
before the r in Isir-il see BA 1, 294.299, n. 6 ; Nah. 29, below. 
The construct state of Assyr. sidru, array, is sidir; the cuneiform 
script cannot express a form sidr (BAL 90 ; cf. the remarks on 
Heb. ark — Assyr. wik, JBL 35, 320). 

Hos. 12 : 5 a is a gloss to 12 : l a , Jacob repaid me with trickery; 
for sebabuni be-kahs Efrdim at the beginning of c. 12 we must 
read: sillemdni be-kahs Ia'qob. This is the immediate sequel 
of the two genuine lines in c. 11, which have been restored in 
JBL 34, 82. Only six lines in cc. 11.12 are Hoseanic ; all the 
other verses in these chapters are secondary or tertiary. The 
genuine three couplets may be restored as follows : 

11,1 In Israel 's youth I loved it, from Egypt I called my child. 

4 I led it with leading-strings, I bent over it, and fed it. 

12,1a But Jacob repaid me with trickery, Israel 's nation with perfidy. 
2a It craves wind, pursues the east-wind, multiplies fraud and falsehood. 

9 Ephraim said in her heart, I am rich, I have won myself wealth : 

All her pains will not suffice to atone for the guilt she incurred. 

The Hebrew text should be read as follows : 

?pb 'n*op onvaai "irprt'Ni l ?jpip» ip-^ n.i 

^-lt^-rvn njpoDi i$y wnp <xpv 12,1 
:n;rv wtp ap o»-jp ?\"p\ 'nrrj-ruh 2 

For the last line contrast AJSL 7, 215. The final du of 
iegi'du is dissyllabic (Nah. 42, n. *). For the relative pronoun 
sa see WF 217. After okll in the second line a suffix is not 
required; cf. Est. 27, 1. 2; contrast AJSL 7, 212. The glosses 
to the first two lines have been discussed in JBL 34, 80 (cf. 36, 
66; see also AJSL 7, 204.215). The second hemistich of the 
gloss to the second hemistich of the third line is explained in 
WF 208, n. 57. "We must read in Hos. 11': 12 a : 'Im-Gil'ad 



226 JOURNAL OP BIBLICAL LITERATURE 

dun 'asu, bag-Gilgdl las-sorim (not seuarim!) zibbehu, In 
Gilead they wrought mischief, in the cromlech (of Bethel; cf. 
JBL 36, 95) they sacrificed to the Bull. The secondary addition 
to the first hemistich of 1. 3 consists of vv. 4.5 a .13 : 

[brother, 

12,4 In the womb he overreached his in his manhood he fought with gods; 

5a He fought a god and prevailed, so that he wept and asked him for mercy. 

13 Jacob fled to the land of Aram, Israel served for a wife. 

The Hebrew text of this non-Hoseanic triplet should be read 
as follows : 

:D»i/?K-nN tryff ifttoi vnN-riN apy jap 12,4 
jn^Na ■ajnts" -ojn D")N-mis' ajpy* rrjai 13 

For the nota accusativi before elohim, gods, see ZAT 29, 286. 
The god wept, and asked Jacob for mercy, not vice versa, as 
Skinner, Genesis, 411 thinks; cf. E. Meyer's misinterpretation 
of Ex. 4: 25 (AJSL 22, 252, n. 9). Mal'dk, angel, after el, god, 
in the second line, is a tertiary gloss, and in v. 6 we have an 
additional tertiary gloss : Jahveh is His name, Jahveh, the God 
of Hosts. The secondary triplet, which may be an illustrative 
quotation (BL 26) from an ancient poem, was perhaps added 
in the period in which Pss. 78. 105. 106 originated. According 
to Frazer the deity referred to in Gen. 32:29 was the spirit 
of the river Jabbok (cf. Skinner, Gen. 411). Angel has often 
been substituted for ancient local deities (WF 212, n. 90). 

The form wj^wsar is found also in 1 Chr. 20 : 3, but there 
we must read uaisirem, a form like uaisirem (1 S 17 : 39 ; 2 K 
17:18) from sur; so we need not cancel the stem sur in our 
dictionaries (OLZ 4, 192, n. 3). In the parallel passage 2 S 
11 : 31 the suffix m is preserved, while the r has dropped out. 
The reading uai-jasem is untenable: we might say uaisimem 
ham-meg era, he set them at the stone-saw, although 'al would be 
preferable ; but uaisimem ba-hncvm or be-magzerot, he set them 
at picks or at axes, would be impossible. The passage describing 
David's treatment of the inhabitants of the capital of the 
Ammonites means neither he set them at saws and at picks and 
at axes (so Curtis ad 1 Chr. 20: 3.) nor he cut them with saws, 
and with harrows of iron, and with axes (so AV) but he made 
them cut with the stone-saw, and with iron picks, and with iron 



HAUPT : MASORA 227 

axes, and made them work with the brickmold (cf. Nah. 12) i. e. 
he condemned them to forced labor with stone-saws, picks for 
excavations, axes for hewing timber, and brickmolds for making 
bricks. The emendations suggested by Klostermann (bam- 
mikre u-be-hocebe hab-barzel u-be-maqrefdt hab-barzel and 
bi-mlakto are gratuitous. 

The objection that uai-iasar, he sawed, could not be used in 
connection with picks and axes is not valid: uai-iasar does not 
mean he sawed, but he caused to cut. A saw is a cutting-tool. 
A pick is used in excavations, and we call an open excavation 
a cut. Assyr. xaracu means to dig or excavate, and Heb. harig 
denotes a digger or excavator, i. e. an instrument for digging or 
excavating. To cut timber includes both hewing and saw- 
ing. Our saw, German Sage, is connected with Lat. secare 
and securis, ax, Old Bulg. sekyra, hack, pick. Pliny says 
lapidem serra secare. QJ has mesdr idthon both in 1 Chr. 20 : 3 
and in 2 S 12 : 31 (M serravit) . 

The stem mesdr, to saw, may be derived from a noun with 
prefixed m (JBL 36, 254). We have e. g. in Arabic the verb 
mddaqa, to crush (a stone) = ddqqa. In Ethiopic this denomi- 
native verb appears in the transposed form damdqa, to crush, 
and in Assyrian damdqu means to fine, purify, clarify, beautify, 
but the original meaning is to pestle (cf. Arab, middqq, pestle). 
Arab, md'ira, to be bald, and md"ara, to become bare, poor, are 
derived from ma' ran (cf. Heb. ma'r = ma' re from the stem 
'driia (see the paper on Heb. 'or, skin, in JBL 38, part 1 and 
2). Similarly the stem masdru, to saw, may be derived from a 
noun masdru, from sdru, to cut, mediae u, which we have in 1 
Chr. 20 : 3. In jj we find both mesdrin and massdrin, saws {cf. 
Dalman's Worterbuch; contrast OLZ 15, 306). In Ethiopic 
we have mesdr, ax, and mosdrt, saw, with the verb uasdra, to 
saw. This verb may be derived from the noun mosdrt (ZA 2, 
279; cf. VG- 226, below) and mosdrt may be a modification of 
massdrt; cf. Heb. kokdb, star = Assyr. kakkabu, and sdfdr, 
horn = Assyr. sapparu (see Kings, SBOT, 198, 52). "W. M. 
Miiller (OLZ 4, 192, n. 2) derived Ethiop. uasdra from a noun 
massdr. 7 Prsetorius finds a stem iasar, to saw = uasar in 

'Dr. Albright (AJSL 34, 224; of. ibid. 226) thinks that Assyr. masdru 
stands for uasdru; cf. below, the conclusion of the paper on the Tophet 
Gate. 



228 JOURNAL OF BIBLICAL LITERATURE 

Phenician (ZDMG 67, 131, 32). The doubling in Heb. massdr 
= massdr may be secondary as it is in Heb. hinnih from nuh 
or in issob from sabdb (G-K §§ 72, ee; 67, g, second footnote; 
71, n. 1). We have a number of nouns derived from stems 
medice geminates which exhibit this secondary doubling of the 
first stem-consonant (JBL 36, 90). Heb. massdr could be 
derived also from a stem prima, u (cf. maggd' ', couch) but the stem 
uasdr seems to be derived from mdsdr ■= massar = masdr. The 
n in Arab, minsar is just as secondary as the n in Aram, mcmdd' , 
knowledge = maddd' , from iada' (JBL 34, 72). In Arabic we 
find not only ndsara and uasara, but also dsara, to saw 
(NBSS182). 

We have the stem malar with g instead of s on account of the 
r (ZAT 34, 144. 231 : cf. ZA 29, 243, n. 1) in Assyr. magdru, to 
cut (HW 422) which appears in Arabic as gdrama (as-sdifu; cf. 
gurdm and migram and Assyr. namgaru, sword). This is 
important for the explanation of the name Nazarene (BB 2589, 
9). In the same way cardpu, to smelt, is a differentiation of 
sardpu, to burn (cf. JBL 35, 283) which is identical with Arab. 
sariba, to drink, originally to be parched, the p (cf. postJBiblical 
sardf, to imbibe) being due to partial assimilation; cf. also 
resisim in the gloss Am. 6: 11; Tarm (BL 59) and racdg. 
Assyr. migru, boundary, border, region, means originally deter- 
mination, delimitation. In zardmu = zamdrv, = mardzu = ma- 
zaru (see above, p. 222) the z represents partial assimilation of 
the sibilant to the nasal. 

Fiirst was inclined to derive both massdr, saw, and mesurd, 
measure, from a stem masar, to cut, divide, measure = Arab. 
massar a, to divide, i. e. Frey tag's mdssara, di visit, dispersit 
rem. Fiirst thought that massdr, saw, might have originated 
from mamsdr; cf . Assyr. sassu, sun ; xassu, fifth = sansu, xansu 
= samsu, xamsu, xdmisu. He also regarded the verb masdr in 
Num. 13 : 5.16 and the stem of massdr, saw, as identical. Massdr, 
saw, is derived from the same root, but not from the same stem, 
and mesurd, measure, must be combined with sir, pot (JBL 
36, 257).