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Document Type:Latin Dissertation
Language of Document:English
Record Number:54849
Doc. No:TL24803
Call number:‭3283450‬
Main Entry:Charles A. Sommer
Title & Author:Kingship in Ben Sira's “Hymn of the Ancestors”Charles A. Sommer
College:The Catholic University of America
Date:2007
Degree:Ph.D.
student score:2007
Page No:202
Abstract:The Hymn of the Ancestors comprises chaps. 44–50 of the Wisdom of Ben Sira. In this historical overview, Ben Sira provides examples of Israel's Pious and concludes with a panegyric for Simeon, the High Priest. This study examines the following texts of the Hymn: the Proem (44:1-15), the David Section (47:1-11), the Solomon Section (47:12-23), the Hezekiah Section (48:17-22), the Josiah Section (49:1-3), and the section on the Wicked Kings of Judah (49:4-6). These sections are examined to see the picture of the monarchy in the view of Ben Sira. What emerges from the texts are two different viewpoints, which do not focus on the monarchy for its own sake, but which provide an object lesson for Ben Sira's readers. Those kings counted among the Pious (David, Hezekiah, and Josiah), are presented to advance the overall purpose of the Hymn. The kings are presented using liturgical language (Josiah) or the king's liturgical work is highlighted (David). The traditional duties of the monarch, warfare, public works, among others, are minimized. The kings' characteristics and acts that are presented serve as foils for the role of Simeon. Those kings not among the Pious, in contrast, serve a different purpose. The Wicked Kings of Judah and the successors of Solomon are presented to the reader as examples of those who failed to incorporate wisdom into their lives. They serve as concrete examples of those who have forsaken wisdom as they have forsaken the Law of God. Solomon is a unique figure in the Hymn. His name is mentioned, so he should be among the Pious. The praise of his wisdom, however, is tempered by the sin into which he fell later in life. This sin shows that Solomon, like those wicked kings who followed him, abandoned his wisdom. This study is unique in that it tries to synthesize Ben Sira's view of all the kings within the Hymn. It remains to be seen if other figures within the Hymn also serve either one or both of the above two purposes.
Subject:Philosophy, religion and theology; Ben Sira, Yeshua; Hebrew poetry; Hymn of the Ancestors; Kingship; Kingship (monarchy); Wisdom of Ben Sira; Bible; 0321:Bible
Added Entry:M. P. O'Connor
Added Entry:The Catholic University of America