Home
RCE
Publications
Covenant
Manuscripts & Editions
Insights
Hebrew Nature
  Hebrew Poetry
 
 
  Hebrew Poetry Update
 
 
  Hebraisms in the Book of Mormon
 
 
  Lead Us Not Into Temptation: A Hebrew Idiom
 
 
  Are You Listless?
 
 
  Adieu: The Right Word After All
Bible Connection
Archaeology & Geography
Chinese Connection
Testimonies
Search

Adieu: The Right Word After All
Page 2 of 3
PrePrint  Previous  Next   Page:  

We note that Jacob not only used "adieu" correctly according to this meaning in Biblical Hebrew, but also in a skillful chiastic arrangement:

And to the reader
    A I bid farewell,
      B hoping that many of my brethren
        C may read my words.
      B'  Brethren,
    A'  adieu.             Jacob 5:48

In this poetic structure, through the use of the synonyms "farewell" and "adieu," we have the repetition of the same idea. Interestingly, the same 1828 dictionary defines "farewell" as "A wish of happiness or welfare at parting; the parting compliment; adieu." So apparently "adieu," a loan word from French, had become an English word in common usage in the 1820's.

True to the form of ancient Hebrew chiastic structure we have at the center the most important thought-the point Jacob wishes to emphasize--" read my words." In an earlier article (see "Hebrew Poetry in the Book of Mormon: Part I" pp. 12-20) it was stated that chiastic structure can be used to open or close a stanza or poem. This is what is represented here. Jacob used this poetic technique-chiasmus-to close his writing.

In summary, we see that in 1830 "adieu" was an appropriate translation for the Hebrew verb barak because "adieu" contained the connotation of blessing.

REFERENCES CITED
Bromiley, Geoffrey W.
  1985   Theological Dictionary of the New Testament.
    William B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., Devon, United Kingdom.
Brown, Francis, S. R. Driver and Charles A. Briggs
  1951  A Hebrew and English Lexicon of the Old Testament.
    Clarendon Press, Oxford.
Jones, Edgar
  1964   The Greatest Old Testament Words. SCM Press LTD, London.
Oswalt, John N.
  1980   Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament.
    Moody Press, Chicago.
Webster, Noah.
  1828     American Dictionary of the English Language.
    Facsimile Edn. Foundation for Christian Education, San Francisco.

Next Page