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Pesher vs. Commentary
In reference to Ian's post concerning my comments on Ioudaios, I would
like to make one further comment. Ian noted that I raised the possibility
that chapter 5 and the following of Hosea is a pesher. In fact, I would not
call it a pesher, but commentary. The difference is that the term "pesher"
for me implies a line by line commentary, such as those found in the DSS.
Hosea 5ff. is not a line by line commentary, but is an uninterupted
commentary on an uninterupted text. The commentary on Hosea in the DSS, see
Vermes, is a pesher, a line by line commentary.
As it appears that later commentaries continued in the form found at
Qumran, line by line, Midrash for example, I would argue that the commentary
found in the book of Hosea represents an older tradition of taking an entire
text and writing an uninterupted commentary.
Just a few thoughts,
-David Jay Kaufman
Rabbinical Student HUC-Jerusalem