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The Apocryphal Old Testament Collection of the most important non-canonical Old Testament books designed for general use.

Chapter II

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Text Commentary

1And he made five other gods, and he gave them to me and told me to sell them outside in the city street. 2And I saddled my father's ass and put them on it and went out onto the highway to sell them. 3And behold, merchants from Fandana in Syria came with camels, on their way into Egypt to trade. 4And I fell into conversation with them. 1 RJK ‘… on their way into Egypt to buy there scarlet dye from the Nile. And I asked them, and they told me not (K om.), and I talked with them’. The word kokǔnilǔ here translated ‘scarlet dye’ is obscure. Landsman translates ‘papyrus’. It seems more likely to be a corruption of Gk. κόκκινος (‘scarlet colour’) and to mean some kind of scarlet dye, possibly cochineal. 5One of their camels snorted, and the ass took fright, and ran away and upset the gods; and three of them were broken, and only two remained whole. 6And when the Syrians saw I had gods, they said to me, Why did you not tell us you had gods? We would have bought them 2 you had … bought them = RJK: S om. before the ass heard the camel's snort, 3 Lit. ‘voice’. and you would not have had this loss. 7But give us the remaining gods, and we will pay you the proper price for the broken gods as well as for the gods that remain whole. 4 J ‘But give us the remaining gods, and we will pay you a proper price. And I thought about it; and they paid the price of the broken gods as well as that for the remaining gods’. 8(For I was worried how I should make account 5 Lit. ‘how I should bring the merchandise’. to my father.) 9And the three broken ones I threw into the water of the river Gur, 6 R ‘Tur’. which was in that place; and they sank to the bottom and were seen no more.

Notes:

1 RJK ‘… on their way into Egypt to buy there scarlet dye from the Nile. And I asked them, and they told me not (K om.), and I talked with them’. The word kokǔnilǔ here translated ‘scarlet dye’ is obscure. Landsman translates ‘papyrus’. It seems more likely to be a corruption of Gk. κόκκινος (‘scarlet colour’) and to mean some kind of scarlet dye, possibly cochineal.

2 you had … bought them = RJK: S om.

3 Lit. ‘voice’.

4 J ‘But give us the remaining gods, and we will pay you a proper price. And I thought about it; and they paid the price of the broken gods as well as that for the remaining gods’.

5 Lit. ‘how I should bring the merchandise’.

6 R ‘Tur’.

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