Praise or antiphonal singing? The meaning of revisited

Nissim Amzallag

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


In the religious context, "to praise" is generally considered the essential meaning of However, this meaning is not present in the nominal form conversely, the sacrificial aspect of is not expressed by the verbal form. The present study demonstrates that the primary sense of from which all other meanings derive, most likely has to do with choral performance; specifically, the verb refers to the antiphonal mode of singing. Accordingly, the musical dimension of may be more frequently expressed in the biblical cultic context than it is generally assumed. These findings stress the central importance of antiphonal performance in the worship of Yhwh and reveal that in Biblical Hebrew, the meaning of terms used in religious context cannot be simply extrapolated from the one they exhibit in secular context.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)115-128
Number of pages14
JournalHebrew Studies
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2015

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • History
  • Religious studies
  • Literature and Literary Theory


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