Saturday, August 9, 2014

Psalm 120 v 5-8



The previous post looked at the first half of Psalm 120; in this post, I'll take a look at the second half, verses 5-8.

5
V
Dóminus custódit te, Dóminus protéctio tua, * super manum déxteram tuam.
NV
Dominus custodit te, Dominus umbraculum tuum ad manum dexteram tuam.
JH
Dominus custodiet te : Dominus protectio tua super manum dexteram tuam. 


 κύριος φυλάξει σε κύριος σκέπη σου ἐπὶ χεῖρα δεξιάν σου

Text notes: None of the standard translations are particularly literal here; instead they play the verse for poetic effect.  Literally, the Latin is ‘The Lord guards you (custodit te), the Lord [is] your protection (protectio): upon your right hand (manum dexteram tuam) ’. The change in the neo-Vulgate to ‘umbraculum’ in the first phrase more closely follows the Hebrew word ‘sel’ meaning shadow or shelter, and perhaps suggests shade from the hot sun of the desert during the day.  The point of the right hand reference is that warriors carried their shields in their left hand, so protection on their right side meant security, though some of the Fathers interpret the left hand as meaning material wealth, the right eternal happiness.

protectio, onis, f a covering, a protection.
manus, us,  hand
dexter, tera, terum; the right hand.
super on, upon, over

DR
The Lord is your keeper, the Lord is your protection upon your right hand.
MD
The Lord is thy protector and thy shelter, the Lord is at thy right hand.
Brenton
The Lord shall keep thee: the Lord is thy shelter upon thy right hand. 
RSV
The LORD is your keeper; the LORD is your shade on your right hand.
Cover
The Lord himself is thy keeper; the Lord is thy defence upon thy right hand,
Knox
it is the Lord that guards thee, the Lord that stands at thy right hand to give thee shelter.
Grail
The Lord is your guard and your shade; at your right side he stands.

6
V
Per diem sol non uret te: * neque luna per noctem.
NV/JH
Per diem sol non percutiet te, neque luna per noctem.


ἡμέρας ὁ ἥλιος οὐ συγκαύσει σε οὐδὲ ἡ σελήνη τὴν νύκτα 

Text notes: Per diem has the sense of all the long day.  The verb urere means to burn, cause sunstroke; the neo-Vulgate (and Diurnal) follows once again the Hebrew, which means to smite.  The inclusion of the moon as a danger is not just poetic license: the ancients believed that the moon’s rays had dangerous affects on mental (hence the term lunatic) and physical health, including causing eye diseases and epilepsy.

dies, ei, m&f  a day, the natural day
per diem, the livelong day
sol, solis, m., the sun.
uro, ussi, ustum, ere 3,  to burn;  to burn, scorch; to smite, i.e., to cause sun-stroke.
luna, ae, f, the moon.
nox, noctis, f night.
percuto, cussi, cussum, ere 3  to smite, strike; to kill, slay

DR
The sun shall not burn you by day: nor the moon by night.
MD
The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night
Brenton
The sun shall not burn thee by day, neither the moon by night.
RSV
The sun shall not smite you by day, nor the moon by night.
Cover
so that the sun shall not burn thee by day, neither the moon by night.
Knox
The sun’s rays by day, the moon’s by night, shall have no power to hurt thee.
Grail
By day the sun shall not smite you nor the moon in the night.

This verse can be interpreted literally as a reference to the idea that the pilgrim will be protected as he walks through the heat or the desert, or the cold of night.  But it can also be taken as another way of describing God's continuous protection of us against all that assails us.

7
V
Dóminus custódit te ab omni malo: * custódiat ánimam tuam Dóminus.
NV
Dominus custodiet te ab omni malo; custodiet animam tuam Dominus.
JH
Dominus custodiet te ab omni malo; custodiat animam tuam. 


κύριος φυλάξει σε ἀπὸ παντὸς κακοῦ φυλάξει τὴν ψυχήν σου

Text notes: The main issue with this verse is verb tense.  The Vulgate makes the first phrase present active (The Lord is guarding/protecting/keeping you from all evil), the second subjunctive (May the Lord protect your soul).  The Neo-Vulgate makes both phrases future active; Jerome offers yet a third variant, namely future/subjunctive; and the Diurnal makes both verbs present tense.

omnis, e, all, each, every; subst., all men, all things, everything
malus, a, um, , bad, evil, wicked; evil, sinwoe, harm, misfortune.
anima, ae,  soul

DR
The Lord keeps you from all evil: may the Lord keep your soul.
MD
The Lord keepeth thee from all evil, the Lord protecteth thy life.
Brenton
May the Lord preserve thee from all evil: the Lord shall keep thy soul.
Cover
The Lord shall preserve thee from all evil; yea, it is even he that shall keep thy soul.
Grail
The Lord will guard you from evil, he will guard you soul.

Bellarmine comments that: 

"He now adds another consolation, a general one. Not only will the Lord guard you from falling and from fatigue, but he will protect you from every other evil that could possibly befall you on the journey, so that your soul or your life will be pre­served whole and intact through the whole journey."

God doesn't promise that we won't suffer from the slings and arrows of this life, Cassiodorus points out, but rather that he will protect us from the death of the soul:

"We must not understand this as the evil designated by mortal men such as the affliction of bereavements, the burden of very heavy losses, the oppression of poverty and the other tribulations which lovers of this world account as most crippling. He speaks of the evil which removes divine grace, destroys the soul, and renders void all the Lord's promises; and since he knew that in this world the saints have been tortured by great sufferings, and have attained the rewards of martyrdom at bodily cost, he added: May the Lord keep thy soul. He preserves the soul only in the case of the saints, who by loss of the body attain the rewards of eter­nal light."

8
V
Dóminus custódiat intróitum tuum, et éxitum tuum: * ex hoc nunc, et usque in sæculum.
NV
Dominus custodiet introitum tuum et exitum tuum ex hoc nunc et usque in saeculum
JH
Dominus custodiat exitum tuum et introitum tuum a modo et usque in aeternum.


κύριος φυλάξει τὴν εἴσοδόν σου καὶ τὴν ἔξοδόν σου ἀπὸ τοῦ νῦν καὶ ἕως τοῦ αἰῶνος

Text notes: Britt translates the first phrase as ‘The Lord keepeth thy coming in and thy going out (from this day forth and forever)’.   He notes that “Coming in and going out signify all man's activities, all his doings, the whole course of his life. It is equivalent to: Thou shalt be protected always, everywhere, in all thy doings”. But it also conjures up the idea of a group of pilgrims travelling to and from JerusalemEx hoc et usque in saeculum means ‘from this time forth, and forevermore’.

introitus, us, m. a going in, entrance.
exitus –us m a going out, going forth, departure
ex hoc nunc ( = ex hoc tempore) et usque in saeculum, from this time forth, and forevermore.
usque, adv.,  to, up to, as far as
saeculum, i, n., a lifetime, generation, age; an indefinite period of time; forever, eternity

DR
May the Lord keep your coming in and your going out; from henceforth now and for ever.
MD
The Lord watches over thy coming and thy going, from henceforth now and forever.
Brenton
The Lord shall keep thy coming in, and thy going out, from henceforth and even for ever.
RSV
The LORD will keep your going out and your coming in from this time forth and for evermore.
Cover
The Lord shall preserve thy going out, and thy coming in, from this time forth for evermore.
Knox
the Lord will protect thy journeying and thy home-coming, henceforth and for ever.
Grail
The Lord will guard your going and coming both now and for ever.

Bellarmine summarises this final promise as follows:

"The Prophet concludes by promising the last and most desirable consolation of all. Not only will the pilgrim, "who in his heart hath disposed to ascend by steps," be so protected in any particular part of his journey, but he will be always pro­tected throughout the journey. Every journey consists of an entrance and exit; for, as we go along, we enter on one road, and when that is finished we leave it; then we enter on anoth­er, from which we also depart; so also we come into a city or a house, and we go out of them; we enter another and out we go again, until we finish the journey by arriving at our country. Thus it is that we get along on the road of life, entering on and completing good works; for to begin corresponds with coming into; completing with going out; "from henceforth now and for­ever;" from this day and forever, may the Lord guard thy com­ing in and thy going out, and protect and save thee."

Psalm 120: Levávi óculos meos in montes
Vulgate
Douay-Rheims
Canticum graduum.

1  Levávi óculos meos in montes, * unde véniet auxílium mihi.
I have lifted up my eyes to the mountains, from whence help shall come to me.
2  Auxílium meum a Dómino, * qui fecit cælum et terram.
2 My help is from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.
3  Non det in commotiónem pedem tuum: * neque dormítet qui custódit te.
3 May he not suffer your foot to be moved: neither let him slumber that keeps you.
4  Ecce, non dormitábit neque dórmiet, * qui custódit Israël.
4 Behold he shall neither slumber nor sleep, that keeps Israel.
Dóminus custódit te, Dóminus protéctio tua, * super manum déxteram tuam.
5 The Lord is your keeper, the Lord is your protection upon your right hand.
Per diem sol non uret te: * neque luna per noctem.
6 The sun shall not burn you by day: nor the moon by night.
Dóminus custódit te ab omni malo: * custódiat ánimam tuam Dóminus.
7 The Lord keeps you from all evil: may the Lord keep your soul.
Dóminus custódiat intróitum tuum, et éxitum tuum: * ex hoc nunc, et usque in sæculum.
8 May the Lord keep your coming in and your going out; from henceforth now and for ever.


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