Why Did Joseph Kiss His Father (Genesis 50,1)? A New Proposal

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In Genesis 50,1 we read that Joseph threw himself on his fathers face and wept over him and kissed him. The meaning of Josephs actions is not explicitly stated and it is therefore the purpose of this paper is to clarify what is the meaning of this kiss.I suggest that the verse in Genesis apparently reflects the traces of an ancient custom, which symbolized the transition from one status to another, and in this case - formal confirmation of the death of the head of the family.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)241-246
Number of pages6
JournalScandinavian Journal of the Old Testament
Issue number2
StatePublished - 3 Jul 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 © 2015 The Editors of the Scandinavian Journal of the Old Testament.


  • Book of Genesis
  • Death and Burial practices
  • Joseph Narrative
  • Kiss


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