Is ʾǎdōnāy in Psalm 110:5 Singular or Plural?

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Andrew | Forum Activity | Posted: Fri, Dec 27 2019 6:02 PM

In "The New American Commentary: Psalms 73–150", Daniel Estes states regarding Psalm 110:5:

The use of ʾǎdōnāy (“the Lord,” with the majestic plural pronominal suffix, in contrast to ʾădōnî (“my Lord”) with the singular pronominal suffix that occurs in v. 1) likely refers back to Yahweh in v. 4

This is in direct contrast to the UBS Handbook which states:

In verse 4 it is God (The Lord) who makes a solemn promise (to the king), but in verse 5 it is the Lord (king) who is at “your (God’s) right side.”

I'm not sure if this is the correct place to post this question, but if ʾǎdōnāy in Psalm 110:5 has a "plural pronominal suffix", why is it tagged as a "singular" noun (NPMSA) in the Lexham Hebrew Interlinear?

As a side question, how would I create a search to see if any other resources discuss "plural" in reference to Psalm 110:5?  I tried "plural NEAR <Psalm 110:5>", but that didn't yield the NAC sentence quoted above.

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SineNomine | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 27 2019 6:31 PM

Andrew:
I'm not sure if this is the correct place to post this question, but if ʾǎdōnāy in Psalm 110:5 has a "plural pronominal suffix", why is it tagged as a "singular" noun (NPMSA) in the Lexham Hebrew Interlinear?

Perhaps because it is the majestic plural proniminal suffix.

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Andrew | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, Dec 27 2019 6:48 PM

SineNomine:

Andrew:
I'm not sure if this is the correct place to post this question, but if ʾǎdōnāy in Psalm 110:5 has a "plural pronominal suffix", why is it tagged as a "singular" noun (NPMSA) in the Lexham Hebrew Interlinear?

Perhaps because it is the majestic plural proniminal suffix.

It is my understanding that a "majestic plural" is when the morphology is plural but the referent is singular (eg. the Queen referring to herself as "we").  All other examples of "majestic plural" that I am aware of (eg. elohim) are tagged as plural in Logos to match their morphology.

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Jack Caviness | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Dec 28 2019 5:31 AM

From NICOT— 

Verse 5’s my Lord translates the Hebrew word ʾaḏōnāy, used in the Old Testament only when addressing God.

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SineNomine | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Dec 28 2019 7:49 AM

Andrew:
It is my understanding that a "majestic plural" is when the morphology is plural but the referent is singular (eg. the Queen referring to herself as "we"). 

Yes.

Andrew:
All other examples of "majestic plural" that I am aware of (eg. elohim) are tagged as plural in Logos to match their morphology.

Seems to be a true inconsistency then. Is ʾǎdōnāy tagged as singular or plural elsewhere in the interlinear?

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Ben | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Dec 28 2019 8:52 AM

The existence of a plural of majesty in the Hebrew Bible is highly disputed; I don’t think it exists there.

"The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of Conservatives is to prevent mistakes from being corrected."- G.K. Chesterton

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SineNomine | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Dec 28 2019 8:55 AM

Ben:
The existence of a plural of majesty in the Hebrew Bible is highly disputed;

More reason to label it as plural rather than singular, then.

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Andrew | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Dec 28 2019 9:32 AM

Jack Caviness:

From NICOT— 

Verse 5’s my Lord translates the Hebrew word ʾaḏōnāy, used in the Old Testament only when addressing God.

Yes, I saw similar comments in other commentaries (eg. Baker), which is why the "likely" in my NAC quote above is strange and it is strange that the UBS Handbook interpretes Psalm 110:5 as "Lord (king)".

SineNomine:
Is ʾǎdōnāy tagged as singular or plural elsewhere in the interlinear?

Interestingly, a search for the plural form of ʾǎdōn yields A LOT of examples where this noun is used in plural to address a human superior but none are "my lord/Lord".

Here are some strange things I found:

  • Neh. 8:10...Not sure why "Lord" isn't capitalized in the LEB here like it is in other places and here in the NIV & ESV.  Is is tagged as <Person God>
  • I tried the following morph search by directly right-clicking on the Psalm 110:5 hebrew text in LHI, but it didn't find Psalm 110:5: lemma:אָדוֹן@NPMSA BEFORE 4 CHARS lemma:אֲנִי@RS1-S

The following are the examples I could find where ʾǎdōn is tagged as plural but has a singular pronoun (eg. "you" rather than "our") and refers to God:

  • Deut. 10:17
  • Psalm 45:11, 136:3
  • Isaiah 51:22
  • Hosea 12:14 (or 12:15 in LHI)

Ben:

The existence of a plural of majesty in the Hebrew Bible is highly disputed; I don’t think it exists there.

Is the morphology of this word in Psalm 110:5 plural?

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