Is this use of "bravery" in KJV unusual?

Discussion in 'Bible Versions/Translations' started by Logos1560, Oct 4, 2007.

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  1. Logos1560

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    Isaiah 3:18
    In that day the Lord will take away the bravery of their tinkling ornaments about their feet, and their cauls, and their round tires like the moon.

    Does the KJV use the word "bravery" in this verse with the usual or more common meaning of the word or is this use with a meaning now considered archaic or rare?

    Most KJV-only books or booklets that list archaic words do not list "bravery" as one. Waite's DEFINED KJB does not give a definition for it.
    In his KJV-only dictionary, Stephen White defined "bravery" at this verse as "the condition of possessing the qualities of bold courage" (White's Dictionary of the King James Language, p. 185).

    There is evidence that this definition for bravery is not the way that the KJV translators used the word.
     
  2. mesly

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    Doing a quick search on the word Bravery, I found the following definition from http://www.godweb.org/blT0000600.htm
    Bravery - (Isa. 3:18), an old English word meaning comeliness or beauty.
    Given that definition, I would have to say that I had no idea what it meant during 1600's and consequently would have misread it in the KJV.
     
  3. readmore

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    Interesting question! Noah Webster's 1828 dictionary, at least (which is the "go to" dictionary for many for the understanding of King James words) actually lists this passage in Isaiah as an example of the use of the word "bravery" in what it considers a "nearly antiquated" sense. The sense used here is "Splendor; magnificence; showy appearance."

    http://1828.mshaffer.com/d/search/word,bravery
     
  4. Logos1560

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    Noah Webster's 1828 Dictionary was part of the evidence that I had come across that suggested that the KJV used the word "bravery" with a different meaning. If the definition "spendor, magnificence, showy appearance" was "nearly antiquated" in 1828, it is probably even more so today.

    The KJV had used “bravery” instead of the rendering “gorgeousness” found in the 1535 Coverdale’s Bible, 1537 Matthew’s Bible, 1540 Great Bible, and 1568 Bishops’ Bible, which may also indicate with what meaning they used "bravery." In the book of Isaiah, the KJV translators translated the same Hebrew word five times as “beauty,“ and two times as “beautiful.” Bridges and Weigle suggested that bravery “refers to feminine finery,” and they pointed out that Shakespeare also used the word in that same sense (KJB Word Book, p. 47).
     
  5. Jerome

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    Bentley, Thomas, The sixt lampe of virginitie conteining a mirrour for maidens and matrons:, 1582, p. 148:

    "Now when the course of Ester came, yt she should goe into the king, such was her modestie & maydenly sobrietie, that she desired no apparel iewels, or any other ornament or thing, to set forth her bewtie with brauery as others before her did:"


    Achilles Tatius, The most delectable and pleasaunt history of Clitiphon and Leucippe:, trans. W.B., 1597, p. 17:

    "the Peacocke doth not do this, without great art, for being now readie to loue, and desirous to allure his female, adorneth himselfe after the manner as you sée: doo not you sée (and poynted with my hand) how the Peahen standes behinde the trée? to her doth hee shewe himselfe thus in his brauery: shewing the bewtie of his plumes, wherein the eyes being set in order in gold, bordered with purple, do cast a radiant shining to the eye:"
     
  6. Deacon

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    Obsolete usage, fer sure!

    In that day the Lord will take away the finery of the anklets, the headbands, and the crescents;
    Isaiah 3:18 ESV

    In that day the Lord will take away the beauty of their anklets, headbands, crescent ornaments,
    Isaiah 3:18 NASB95

    In the 53 occurrences of the Hebrew word in the OT, this is the only instance where the KJV translated it this way.

    The First Oxford Company (translators of the KJV from Isaiah to Malachi) used a variety of words to translate this same Hebrew word,
    among them are:

    bravery Isa 3:18
    comely Isa 4:2
    glory Isa 10:12; 20:5; 46:13; 60:7; 60:19; 62:3; 63:12; 63:14; 63:15; Ezek 24:25; Zech 12:7
    beauty Isa 13:19; 28:1; 28:4; 28:5; 44:13; 52:1; 64:11 Ezek 23:42
    honour Jer 33:9
    fair Ezek 16:17; 16:39; 23:26

    Rob
     
  7. David Lamb

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    According to the Online Bible, the same Hebrew word is used 51 times in the Old Testament. Only once is it translated in the KJV as "bravery". Here is a list of the ways it is translated on the other 50 appearances of the word:
    glory (22 times), beauty (10 times), beautiful (6 times), honour (4times), fair (3 times), glorious (3 times), comely (once), excellent (once)



    It would seem most odd if it meant "courageous" in Isaiah 3.18. The NKJV translates that verse:



    In that day the Lord will take away the finery: The jingling anklets, the scarves, and the crescents;
     
  8. NaasPreacher (C4K)

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    Interesting choice of a word. I wonder if there was some subtle difference in 1611 that led them to use this choice?

    I am reading Daniel Defoe's "Moll Flanders" at the moment, first published in 1719 and even then words that we are accustomed to had slight differences. For example, "housewife" was any woman who took care of a house.

    It is difficult for us to know what was in the mind of the translators. It is evident that as languages change God's word for His people should also adapt.
     
  9. Deacon

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    Thanks David, upon checking again I see that 51 is the correct count.

    The LXX uses the word “glory” (doxa).

    The Hebrew word is
    תִּפְאֶ֧רֶת (tip’eret)[ #9514]
    Root word - פאר (p’r) [6995]

    Holladay defines תִּפְאֶ֧רֶת (tip’eret) as:

    1. ornament, decoration, beauty Ex 28:3;
    2. glory, splendor Is 3:18; bêt tifpartî my splendid house Is 60:7 = Temple;
    3. glory, distinction, honor, respect Ju 4:9;
    4. pride, arrogance Is 10:13.
    [Holladay. A Concise Hebrew and Aramaic Lexicon of the Old Testament. (393)].

    Another dictionary adds to this last definition:
    “Glorying, boasting. This sense occurs when someone ascribes beauty or glory to himself… For example, in Judges 4:9 Barak will not have the boasting rights for the victory over Sisera; in Isa 10:12 the Lord will punish the king of Assyria for tip’eret rum ‘enayw, the (self-) glorying of the height of his eyes (NIV the haughty look in his eyes); cf 13:19; 20:5; Jer 48:17; Ezek 24:25 (the temple used as an illegitimate object of boasting, cf. v.21).” [NIDOTTTE vol 3, 574]

    Perhaps this is what prompted the translators to use that particular word.

    Rob
     
  10. Logos1560

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    David Cloud's Concise King James Bible Dictionary has the following definition of bravery: "beauty (Is. 3:18)" (p. 14).
     
  11. robycop3

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    I don't see muchuva prob here; it was merely a 1611 use of a word whose meaning changed over the ensuing 400 years. It would be wrong to use 'bravery' for 'finery' in a modern Bible, same as it'd be to use 'Easter' for 'Passover'. Long as readers of older Bibles are aware of the language differences, no prob.

    The Bishop's Bible says "gorgiousness", while the Geneva says "ornaments".
     
    #11 robycop3, Oct 8, 2007
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  12. David Lamb

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    I agree with most of what you say. But I don't think your Easter - Passover example fits. The English word "Easter" has never (as far as I am aware) meant "Passover", in the way that "bravery" once meant "finery". During its history, "Easter" has always referred to that particular time of year when some Christians think it right to celebrate the Resurrection. The Greek/Aramaic word "pascha" occurs 29 times in the New Testament. 28 times it is translated as "Passover", and just once in the AV/KJV as "Easter", in Acts 12.4:
    And when he had apprehended him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four quaternions of soldiers to keep him; intending after Easter to bring him forth to the people.



    I have seen the argument that the verse means that Herod would wait until after the pagan feast to Astarte/Ishtar, the so-called "Queen of Heaven". But that does not explain why the inspired Luke should have used the word for "Passover".
     
  13. robycop3

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    Luke didn't use "Easter"...he used 'pascha', which, in his day, meant only 'Passover'. it's plain from V# that he meant Passover.

    And a long time ago, 'Easter' WAS interchangeable with Passover. However, by 1611, that practice was all but over. The AV translators clearly knew them apart, but inexplicably rendered 'pascha' as 'Easter' in that one instance.

    The association of Easter here with Ishtar is horse feathers. pascha has NEVER been associated with Ishtar.

    Methinks some AV translator simply had a blonde moment, as pascha is rendered 'Passover' every other time it appears in the Greek.
     
  14. David Lamb

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    I think I need to write more clearly.

    I quite agree that Luke didn't use "Easter". In fact I wrote: "But that does not explain why the inspired Luke should have used the word for "Passover"."

    Second, I agree with you that he meant "Passover", just as he wrote.

    Third, "Passover" has never meant "Easter". It may be true (I don't know) that those who follow a liturgical calendar may have used "Easter" and "Passover" interchangeably for the period each year when they specially celebrated Christ's resurrection, but I thought this thread was about the use of words in the bible. There, we don't find a command to remember the Resurrection at a partricular time of year.



    Finally you say that the association of "Easter" with "Ishtar" is "horse feathers", but you then say, "pascha has NEVER been associated with Ishtar." I did not say that the word "pascha" had any association with "Ishtar". I just meant that the English word "Easter" (the word itself, not any particular meaning) comes from "Ishtar", or at least, from a similarly named false goddess. A web site for UK schoolteachers, at http://www.teachernet.gov.uk/teachingandlearning/library/easter/ says:
    Historians have traced the origin of the word Easter to the Scandinavian word 'Ostra' and the Germanic 'Ostern' or 'Eastre'. Both of these derive from the names of mythological goddesses of spring and fertility, for whom festivals were held at the time of the Spring Equinox. Similar goddesses were known by other names in other cultures around the Mediterranean, such as Aphrodite from Cyprus, Astarte from Phoenicia, Demeter from Mycenae, Hathor from Egypt, and Ishtar from Assyria. All of these goddesses were celebrated in the spring.

    My sincere apologies for not having written more clearly before.


    One last point - what is "V#"?
     
  15. franklinmonroe

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    That would probably be "v3" (verse 3), except with SHIFT key depressed it results in "V#".
     
    #15 franklinmonroe, Oct 9, 2007
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  16. David Lamb

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    ....and there I was, thinking it was some scholarly abbreviation for something! :) (Pressing SHIFT with 3 on my keyboard produces the British pound sign, £ )
     
  17. rsr

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    I would refer you to Tyndale's New Testament.

    Acts 20:6: And we sayled awaye fro Philippos after the ester holydayes and came vnto them to Troas in five dayes where we abode seven dayes.

    Matthew 26:2: Ye knowe that after ii. dayes shalb ester and the sonne of man shalbe delyvered to be crucified.

    Matthew 26:19: And the disciples did as Iesus had apoynted them and made redy the esterlambe.

    John 6:4:
    And ester a feast of ye Iewes was nye.

    Tyndale, in fact, used ester for passover about 20 times.



     
  18. TCGreek

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    Tyndale was clearly anachronistic here in terminology.
     
  19. robycop3

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    David Lamb: One last point - what is "V#"?

    It's called "Typing while half-asleep".

    I meant "V3" (Verse 3).

    Not to fear getting anything scholarly from ME; I represent the 'Redneckii" side of the anti-Onlyism movement, rather than the "Scholarii" side.
     
  20. Salamander

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    But then we would be guilty of taking the bravery away from the language and make God's word read like the New York Times.

    God's word should never adapt to people. People should adapt to God's Word!

    You scare me sometimes.
     
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