Deviation from the Emphatic Role of Doubling ('HaKefel Lechazek') in Radak's Bible Commentary

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In his Bible commentary Radak (Rabi David Kimchi, 1160-1235) often refers to the phenomenon of doubling and repetition in the biblical text. He formulates a rule according to which repetitions have an emphatic meaning ( 'HaKefel Lechazek'). However, close scrutiny of his commentary reveals that Radak did not always observe his own rule. The present paper deals with three types of cases in which Radak abandons his declared approach to biblical repetitions and seeks a distinct meaning for each component of the doubling or repetition: 1. Cases in the biblical narrative in which a protagonist is named by different names; 2. Doubling in figurative style; 3. Doubling that can be attributed to metaphysical issues. Radak's numerous exceptions from his self-proclaimed approach (according to which the aim of repetitions is emphatic) reveal his unique exegetical approach, which (a) synthesizes 'Peshat' (plain meaning) and 'Derash' (homiletic meaning); and (b) often reveals additional philosophical, apologetic, and polemical purposes.
Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)555-571
StatePublished - 2008


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