No. 3-July, 1905. pp. 353-75.   Public Domain.







                                                JOHN D. DAVIS



IN the first part of the nineteenth Psalm, comprising verses 2-7,

or 1-6 as numbered in the English versions, the Psalmist sings

of the glory of God as displayed in the heavens:


            2 The heavens declare the glory of God,

               And the firmament showeth his handiwork.

            3 Day unto day uttereth speech,

               And night unto night showeth knowledge.

            4 There is no speech nor language,

               Their voice is unheard.

            5 Their line is gone out through all the earth,

               And their words to the end of the world.

               In them hath he set a tabernacle for the sun,

            6 Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his chamber,

               And rejoiceth as a strong man to run his course.

            7 His going forth is from the end of the heavens,

               And his circuit unto the ends of it;

               And there is nothing hid from the heat thereof.


In the second part the glory of Jehovah's law is first extolled:


8   The law of Jehovah is perfect,                            restoring the soul:

     The testimony of Jehovah is sure,                      making wise the simple.

9   The precepts of Jehovah are right,                      rejoicing the heart:

     The commandment of Jehovah is pure,              enlightening the eyes.

10 The fear of Jehovah is clean,                              enduring forever:

     The ordinances of Jehovah are true,                   and righteous altogether.

11 More to be desired are they than gold,             yea, than much fine gold;

     Sweeter also than honey                                      and the droppings of the honey





And then the poet, viewing his own life in relation to this law, prays

for pardon, deliverance, and acceptance:


12 Moreover by them is thy servant warned: in keeping them is great reward.

13 Who can discern his errors? Clear thou me from hidden faults.

14 Keep back thy servant also from presumptuous sins, let them not have do-

            minion over me:

     Then shall I be upright, and I shall be clear from great transgression.

15 Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart

     Be acceptable in thy sight, 0 Jehovah, my rock and my redeemer.


            From the apparent lack of coherence between these two parts

and from their dissimilarity in word and matter, Rosenmuller, in

1798, concluded that the nineteenth Psalm is composed either of

two distinct hymns which by accident or design became joined

together, or else, in view especially of the abrupt ending of the first

part, of fragments of two hymns (Scholia in V. T., Partis 4 Vol. 1,

pp. 530, 536). This conjecture he withdrew in the second edition

of the Scholia, which was published in 1831, as being unnecessary;

since "nothing is more common among the ancient poets of both

the Hebrews and the Arabians than suddenly to pass from one

theme to another in the same song." But although Rosenmuller

abandoned his entire theory and unreservedly accepted the unity

of the Psalm, the doctrine oft composite origin of this exquisite

ode was not allowed to lapse. De Wette had in the meantime re-

vised Rosenmuller's argument. Like Rosenmuller in his retraction,

and on substantially the same grounds, de Wette denied significance

to the alleged lack of coherence between the two parts of the

psalm; since abrupt transition, says he, is characteristic of lyric

poetry, and is exemplified in the first half of this very poem in the

sudden introduction of the sun.  But though de Wette rejected this

argument, based on the abruptness of the change from one subject

to another, yet on other grounds he asserted the original indepen-

dence of the two parts. The argument which Rosenmuller derived

from the dissimilarity of language and material de Wette modified,

partly into diverseness of style; but he discerned the chief marks

of double authorship in the difference of tone, presentation, and

character of parallelism in the two sections, particularly in the

greater length of the verse-members or lines, and in the less

sprightly rhythm, of the latter part of the poem. To this evidence

he added an argument wholly his own, though at the same time it

is a further specialization of Rosenmuller's general reference to dis-

similarity in word and matter. He discovered in the latter part

"probably the fragment of a penitential Psalm"; and "the poet,


       CRITICISM OF THE NINETEENTH PSALM.                   355


who begins with that exalted contemplation of nature, could hardly

have concluded with the sentiments of the contrite heart." He

might, indeed, have been led by a contemplation of the heavens to

an humble frame of mind, as in Psalm viii; but had he "carried such

trouble in his heart as is expressed in verses 13 and 14," he "could

scarcely have brought himself into harmony with the rejoicings of

creation" which are voiced in the first part (de Wette, Commentar

u. d. Psalmen, 3e Aufl, 1829). But over against de Wette's view it

is significant that the nineteenth Psalm has never been reckoned

among the seven penitential Psalms (Ps. vi, xxv, xxxii, xxxviii,

cxxx, cxliii). It needs only to be compared with the fifty-first, for

example, to exhibit the difference between its sentiments and a cry

of penitence wrung from a broken and contrite heart. The Psalmist

is not conscious of actual transgressions. He refers to sins of

inadvertence; asks to be acquitted of the sins that are hidden from

his eyes, and to be kept from the commission of wickedness. As

Hengstenberg says, “There is no trace of a bruised heart; the mind

rises in the face of human weakness, easily and without a struggle,

to the blessed hope of divine forgiveness and sustaining grace.”

The prayer is quite compatible with a spirit that is in attune with

nature's choir in its praise of God. It is not surprising, therefore,

that this argument of de Wette's at once sank out of sight, and

has never been put forth again. His abiding contribution to the

discussion consists in his exhibition of the difference in style

between the two parts of the Psalm. Of this, more anon.

            In 1835, six years after the third edition of de Wette's work

appeared, Ewald issued his commentary on the Psalms. He, paid

no heed to Rosenmuller's abandonment of his whole argument, nor

to de Wette's demurrer to a part of it; but he returned to Rosen-

mailer's original reasoning in so far as it was based on lack of con-

nection and on difference of content. "There is no transition from

the first to the second part either in thought or language," he says,

whereas the subject changes abruptly and entirely. The differ-

ence of theme calls for explanation. In the first and second

editions of his commentary, he made no use of the argument

derived from the difference of measure and rhythm, upon which,

together with the difference in tone, de Wette had placed his chief

reliance. His indifference to the claim which was put forth for

diverse authorship on the ground of this rhythmical dissimilarity

was doubtless influenced by the suggestion, which de Wette reports

a friend to have made, that the change of style might be accounted

for by the radical difference of theme. Ewald did, however, discern




a feebler speech in the second part, and a stylistic coloring, as he

calls it. He adduced this rhetorical inferiority as evidence of a

later age when force and vigor were waning; and in his third edition

he supplemented this argument for a late date by an appeal to the

art of the verse (kunst des verses); for, he says, that while in this

[second] part also there are two strophes of four verses each, yet

the "long-membered" verse prevails. And further, with respect

to the time of composition, he saw in the Psalmist's profound appre-

ciation for God's law and apprehension of its spirituality, and also

in the Psalmist's prayer for deliverance from the arrogant (verse 14),

marks of a date not earlier than the eighth century (first edition),

or seventh and sixth centuries (third edition). Ewald had found

four features in the second part of the Psalm which, in his judgment,

indicated lateness of composition, namely, a decline in the poetic

vigor, a longer verse, a spiritual appreciation of the law, and a

prayer for deliverance from the arrogant. Accordingly, Ewald

concluded that the present composite nineteenth Psalm consists of

an earlier and a later poem. The earlier one he regarded as Davidic.

Ewald, moreover, pointed out, on the one hand, that the hymn

with which the Psalm begins is without an application, without

a hint as to how man must praise God or receive the praise uttered

by the heavens; and, on the other hand, that the second portion

lacks a satisfactory beginning, since no prayer would begin "in so

chilly a manner." Hence the only possible inference is that "a

later poet attached this conclusion to that ancient [Davidic] piece,

in order to place the revelation in nature and that in Scripture on

equal footing (gleich zu stellen); he either found the ancient piece

without its original ending or, what is more probable, the old

ending no longer sufficed him, since at his time the written revela-

tion had attained to high importance, and it seemed to him fitting

to touch upon this latter also."

            There were thus two distinct arguments before the public, as early

as 1835, for the composite structure of the nineteenth Psalm, namely,

diversity of theme and difference of rhythm; and before the century

was half over three arguments, and soon thereafter four arguments,

for the later date of the second part, namely, a decline of poetic

vigor, a spiritual appreciation for the law, a prayer for deliverance

from the arrogant, and the art of the verse. Eventually two more

arguments for the late origin of one or both parts of the Psalm

were advanced. In the study of this Psalm, therefore, eight mat-

ters require investigation. Two concern the unity of the poem,

and six relate to the date of its composition.

            And, first, the unity of the Psalm.


       CRITICISM OF THE NINETEENTH PSALM.                   357


                              DIVERSITY OF THEME.


            In 1835, a few months later than Ewald, Hitzig reviewed the

previous discussions, and accepted the unity of the Psalm. "Pos-

session—the fact that the parts are united-is," he says, "much

easier to justify than to contend against." The argument based on

the sudden transition from one theme to the other had been shown

by Rosenmuller and de Wette to lack cogency. The mere abrupt-

ness of the change might be a sign that the Psalm has been pieced

together out of other poems, or it might not. In itself it proves

nothing. The closely related argument drawn from the difference

of content was nullified by Hitzig, in that he advanced proof of an

internal connection in thought between the two parts of the Psalm.

Remarking that "the Psalm sings [or voices] the praise of God [that

rises] from nature and from revelation," he pointed out that "the

Hebrew was especially apt to join these two thoughts. He never

made a distinction between the common God of the world and his

own particular God, the Lawgiver." Nowack and Reuss, indeed,

object that "verses 8-15 are not the praise of God from revelation,

but are the praise of the law"; and Hengstenberg regards this two-

fold division of the Psalm as a misapprehension of the poet's design.

These exceptions, however, concern the husk only; they do not touch

the kernel of the argument. It is not the law, but the law as

Jehovah's enactment that is praised. And phrase the matter as

one will, the fact remains that, as Riehm put Hitzig's argument,

"the identity of the Creator of the universe and the Giver of the

law is a fundamental thought of the Hebrew theocracy." It is

embodied in the theocratic constitution, being implied in the

monotheism of the first commandment, in which Israel's God and

Lawgiver forbids His people to have any other gods before Him;

and it is expressed in the fourth commandment, in the words "in

six days Jehovah made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in

them is.”  It is voiced by the prophets; as by Jeremiah in chapter

x. 10-16. This argument has justly made a deep impression on

criticism. In the general principle that an inner connection was

felt, Hitzig has been followed by Hengstenberg, Alexander, De-

litzsch, Schultz. Even most of those critics who deny the unity of

the Psalm frankly admit that the collector who united the two frag-

ments was goverend by some such unifying principle. So Hupfeld,

as already de Wette, Ewald and Bottcher; Nowack also; and Kirk-

patrick, citing Amos iv. 13, v. 7, 8; and Baethgen. As Cheyne

expresses it: "By an afterthought the two parts of the Psalm were

brought into relation" (The Book of the Psalms, first edition, p. 221).



Reuss saw the consequence of such an admission; and proceeding

consistently, he pronounced the two parts of the present Psalm

to be distinct odes, which should not be joined together, much less

be printed as one. And he defended the integrity and completeness

of the first poem, notwithstanding that it breaks off with startling

suddenness, declaring that the abrupt ending is "a sign of greater

antiquity, which expended as yet no great industry on form and

finish." Duhm follows Reuss, except that he regards the first poem

as a fragment. He follows Ewald in his opinion that the lost con-

clusion celebrated the moon as the ruler of the night. Reuss is

pleased to describe his separation of Psalm xix into two psalms and

his numbering of them xviii and xix as a departure from rabbinical

tradition. It is a departure from more than rabbinical tradition,

for the Psalm was a unit when the Greek version was made. But

though consistent, Reuss does not escape the force of the argument.

It must be admitted that both parts can, to quote the words of

Hupfeld, "be embraced under one common abstract category."*

It may therefore be regarded as fairly settled that there is an inner

connection of thought between the two parts.


                                    DIFFERENCE IN RHYTHM.

            As other evidence of diversity of authorship difference in rhythm

has been urged. What is the difference in rhythm? De Wette

drew attention to the greater length of the lines and the diminished

vivacity of the rhythm in the second half of the poem. But not

until 1855 was the difference in tone and rhythm described more

specifically. In that year Hupfeld wrote: "The first [part is] in

genuine lyric manner, enthusiastic and with simple two-membered

or three-membered verses; the second in its didactic portion is calm,

sententious, with long periods or verses invariably four-membered,

or, as he or his editor afterward stated the matter with nicer dis-

crimination, "two double members, each double member consisting

of a stronger and a weaker member [the latter of] which merely

adds a predicate . . . . as an echo," thus:


The law of the Lord is perfect,                     converting the soul.

The testimony of the Lord is sure,              making wise the simple.


In this conception of the verse he follows Delitzsch, who in 1859

noticed the caesura in the lines of the second part. "In the second

part . . . . comes the caesural scheme, which as it were bounds


* Hupfeld raises a question of date which will be considered in its proper place.

The question of date, however, does not concern the question of unity.


            CRITICISM OF THE NINETEENTH PSALM.                   359


higher, draws deeper breaths, and surges like the rise and fall of


            It was Budde who, as a result of his notable study of the Lamenta-

tions of Jeremiah (Z. A. T. W., 1882, 1-52), introduced the designa-

tion "lamentation verse" for those features of the second part of

the nineteenth Psalm which had been pointed out by Hupfeld and

Delitzsch. The lamentation scheme or measure is a long line broken

by the caesura into two unequal parts, of which the first is longer

than the second. In the nineteenth Psalm this scheme runs regu-

larly through verses 8-10; it is found in verse 11, where in each line

the first member is longer than the second and hence congruent with

the scheme, although equal or about equal in the number of words

(Budde, S. 7, 40); it occurs in verses 12-14a, and also in 14b by

shifting the position of the athnach pause, as was first seen by

Delitzsch. Delitzsch finds it in verse 15 also, by shifting the ath-

nach pause:


Acceptable be the words of my mouth        and the meditation of my heart

In thy sight, 0 Jehovah,                                  my rock and my redeemer.


But Budde regards this verse as a closing verse formed by the addi-

tion of a third member.* Wellhausen considers the verse a liturgical

addition to the Psalm. It divides somewhat awkwardly into one

double-membered line, according to the lamentation scheme, fol-

lowed by a short line, thus:


Let the words of my mouth be acceptable, and the meditation of my heart in

            thy sight,

Jehovah, my rock and my redeemer.


Or following the Septuagint, which bears witness to the presence

of the word "continually" in this verse in the manuscript used

by the Greek translators, Baethgen, Duhm, and Cheyne (in the

revised edition of The Book of Psalms) emend the present Hebrew

text. With this emendation the closing line, as defined by the

two critics last named, shows the familiar meter 3-2 once more.

Verse 15 then reads:

    Let the words of my mouth be acceptable          and the meditation of my heart

    Before thee continually, 0 Jehovah,                    my rock and my redeemer.


The scheme of the lament thus runs from verse 8 into or through

verse 14, and even into or through verse 15.

            It was assumed by de Wette—and the argument has been taken


            * So likewise Nowack.




up by Hupfeld, Ewald in the third edition, Reuss and others since—

that the difference in rhythm or poetical scheme indicates diversity

of authorship. But analogy does not bear out this assumption.

Other Psalms, of which the unity is unquestioned, show this poetical

form in a part only, just as in Psalm xix, and not throughout. In

Ps. lxv, the verses 6-9 are a unit in thought and form a complete

division in the treatment of the theme; these verses, but not the

rest of the poem, follow this scheme (Delitzsch, Budde). Ps. lxxxiv

consists of two parts: the blessedness of intimate communion with

God (verses 2-8, English 1-7) and a prayer by the Psalmist that he

may share in this communion (verses 9-13). The former part runs

in the lamentation measure, except its last verse, according to

Budde (striking out "where she may lay her young," v. 4, Z. A.

T. W., 1882, p. 40). Truly, then, the fact that a portion of a

Psalm, even when forming a unit of thought, is distinguished

from the rest of the poem by running in this measure is not in

itself an evidence of diverse authorship.

            Furthermore, Hupfeld, or his editor, even after he had Delitzsch's

commentary in his hands, was able to detect the scheme in Ps. xix

in verses 8-11 only. Riehm discovered in verses 12-15 not the

lamentation measure, but the recurrence of the structure which

prevails in the first part of the Psalm; and Gratz, so late as 1882,

declares that "the last three verses of the prayer neglect the

[lamentation] form entirely." Delitzsch and Budde, and others in

their train, are right in comprehending all or practically all of the

second part of the Psalm under one structural scheme of verse;

yet at the same time Hupfeld, Riehm and Gratz are clearly right

in their perception of a difference between verses 8-11 and verses

12-15. Ewald had also felt something of this difference. The

structure of the verse still follows the lamentation scheme, but the

rhythm has perceptibly changed. The change is perceptible even

to readers of the English version. While all can be embraced under

the scheme of the lament, yet the praise of Jehovah's law has its

own measure. This allotment of a distinct measure to each theme

is significant. It recalls the suggestion of de Wette's friend that

the change in style between the first and second parts of the Psalm

might be due to the radical change of subject. Moreover, the

change of measure with theme does not mark this portion of the

Psalm only, but characterizes the whole poem, and recurs con-

stantly throughout. Each minor theme has its own measure, prob-

ably without conscious effort on the poet's part; each change of

thought is invariably accompanied by change in the form of the


      CRITICISM OF THE NINETEENTH PSALM.                   361


verse; and the keynote of the characteristic scheme of the second

part of the Psalm is struck in the first part, in verses 4 and 5.

Notice that even the slight change from verses 8-10 to the summa-

rizing statement in verse 11 is subtly marked, while yet the lamenta-

tion scheme is retained.

                                    Verse 2            4

                                                            4   The heavens as a whole by day and

                                                3          4          night proclaim God's glory.

Eight ordinary lines or                4

   members of the verse.            4          4


                                                            3    The proclamation described: inarticu-

                                                5          4          late and inaudible, yet world-wide.


                                                            4    The sun's tabernacle and exuberant

                                                6          4          strength.

            Six ordinary lines or                   4

              members                     7          3

                                                            3 or 2      The sun's dominion.



                                                     8 3-2

            Eight long lines broken           3-2

                by the caesura                9 3-2            Jehovah's law enthusiastically de-

                                                        3-2           scribed.

                                                   10 3-2


                                                    11 2-2*         Summarizing statement.



                                                   12 4--3

                                                   13 3-2

            Six long lines broken by     14 4-3            The psalmist in relation to Jehovah's

               the caesura.                       3-2           law and to Jehovah his Redeemer.

                                                    15‡ 4-2


            Further, if the fifteenth verse be included as an integral part of

the Psalm, as is generally done—and even though it be a liturgi-

cal formula, the author himself could employ it as a fitting conclu-

sion to his own poem (Olshausen)—then each division of the first


            * The part before the crosura is much longer than the part after it. But as

the text is conjecturally restored by D. H. Muller (Strophenbau, p. 60), the

meter is still 3-2, 3-2, thus:

The statutes of Jehovah are desirable          beyond gold and fine gold,

His words are sweeter than honey               and the droppings of the comb.

            † The part before the cresura is slightly longer than the part after it.

            ‡ As traditionally accented, 6-4. Delitzsch, by removing the athnach accent

to the preceding word, obtains two lines, 4-2 and 2-2. If the text is emended,

the last line may become 3-2.



part bears a numerical relation to the corresponding division of the

second part. Fourteen ordinary short lines or verse-members in

the first part, just the same number of long caesural lines in the

second part; and each division of fourteen lines is subdivided into

two sections, one of eight and the other of six lines. These two

phenomena, namely, of a subtle change of rhythm with each subtle

change of theme and the numerical relations between the two parts,

go far to prove that two fragments were not put together; but that,

if the first part is a fragment, the second part was written for it,

in view of its structure, to be its conclusion, and was matched to it.

These phenomena not only serve reasonably to narrow down the

theories in regard to the origin of the Psalm to two, namely, a frag-

ment furnished with a new conclusion or a composition by one

author throughout, but they remove all need for the former hypo-


            And now in regard to the date.

            It will be recalled that Ewald assigned the first six verses of the

nineteenth Psalm to David, and the remaining eight verses to a

poet of a later age. The evidence of lateness he discerned in the

decline in poetic vigor, in the Psalmist's appreciation for the law

and apprehension of its spirituality, in his anxiety lest he be seduced

or driven to sin by the presumptuous, and in the art of the verse:

four distinct indications of a date not earlier than the eighth or

seventh centuries, or, as Ewald said in his second edition, the sev-

enth century, or, as in his third edition, the seventh or sixth century

before Christ.


                             DECLINE IN POETIC VIGOR.


            Ewald's argument from the loss of vigor is characteristic of him.

Vigor and sublimity in a Psalm form one of his criteria for Davidic

authorship, and lack of them is evidence of the decadent age in

Hebrew poetry which he defined as included in the seventh and sixth

centuries. There is an element of truth in these criteria in general,

but Ewald failed to make out a case in the nineteenth Psalm.

Hitzig, whose criticism of the Psalms was governed by the same

tests as Ewald's, found no evidence of deterioration in the nine-

teenth Psalm, and unhesitatingly accepted its unity and Davidic

authorship. Maurer and von Lengerke, who agreed with Ewald in

dating the second part about the time of the exile, felt no force in

Ewald's contention that the second part is inferior to the first in

point of vigor; and with Hitzig they held to the unity of the Psalm,

and accounted for difference in tone and rhythm by the difference of


      CRITICISM OF THE NINETEENTH PSALM.                   363


theme. Hupfeld, who like Ewald assigned the two parts of the

Psalm to different authors and dates, based no argument on the

inferiority of one part to the other. Ewald's contention that an

essential loss of vigor is observable in the second part of the nine-

teenth Psalm, a decline in power which is an indication of date,

has made no impression upon criticism. It dropped at once out

of sight; evidently not because of critical prejudice, but simply

because there was nothing in it.


                        APPRECIATION FOR JEHOVAH'S LAW.


            A second indication of lateness Ewald, as already mentioned,

found in the high regard for the written law and the apprehension

of its spirituality. This argument is important. Probably one

does not go too far in asserting that it is the supreme argument, to

which all else is subsidiary. It derives its force from the criticism

of the Pentateuch. Until the close of the eighteenth century the

nineteefth Psalm was commonly regarded as Davidic. It was not

universally ascribed to the poet-king; Paulus, for example, sug-

gested Solomon as its author. But the denial of the Psalm to

David was an individual matter. It did not divide critics into two

camps. Over against believers in the Davidic authorship of the

Psalm there was no opposing party standing for a definite poet or for

a certain historical period, organized by a tangible principle of oppo-

sition, fighting under one standard. But with the dawn of the nine-

teenth century the unifying principle emerged out of Pentateuchal

criticism. In 1805 de Wette was advocating the dating of Genesis

in the reign of David, and Deuteronomy in the reign of Josiah.

Soon afterward Ewald, with firmer grasp of the material, dated

large portions of Genesis likewise in the early period of the monar-

chy, and assigned the Book of Deuteronomy and the completion of

the Hexateuch to the second half of Manasseh's reign, or about

660 B.C. This critical position soon reflected itself in the criticism

of the Psalms. Ewald ascribed to David the first part of the nine-

teenth Psalm and the eighth Psalm, which take up the theme of

the first chapter of Genesis and sing the glory of the Creator; but

the prayer in the second part of the nineteenth Psalm indicates that

the written law in all its parts was observed. To what date does

this fact point? Now the priestly ritual of Leviticus had, according

to Ewald, ardent defenders and eulogists at the beginning of the

monarchy; and appreciation for the moral law and the apprehen-

sion of its spirituality come to fine expression in the Book of

Deuteronomy. The author of Deuteronomy, according to Ewald,




was likewise the final reviser of the entire Pentateuch and Joshua,

and wrote about the year 660 before Christ, in the second half of

Manasseh's reign. With this conception of Hebrew history Ewald

naturally, or rather necessarily, dates the second part of the nine-

teenth Psalm after the commencement of the eighth century, or,

on maturer thought, after the opening of the seventh century, or

even in the sixth century. The terminus a quo was thought by

many to have been found. It remained fixed, with unessential

modifications, just so long as the great divisive critics held that

Deuteronomy was the latest part of the Pentateuch. So Maurer

in 1838, because of the reference to the written law, concluded that

the Psalm, verses 2-15 inclusive, was composed about the time of

the exile. Von Lengerke regarded it as pre-exilic; and, speaking

generally, he considered it a product of the literary revival of the

seventh century which accompanied the newly awakened apprecia-

tion for the law (S. xvii and xxvii). "Pentateuchal criticism," he

says, "affords the surest guarantee for the correctness of our result."

            The terminus ad quem was, of course, not established; and Justus

Olshausen in 1853, on other grounds than its reference to the

written law, declared the poem to be post-exilic.

            But a new school of Pentateuchal criticism arose. The relative

ages of the Levitical law and Deuteronomy were reversed, the

priestly development was placed after the prophetic, the document

heretofore known as the older Elohist ceased to be regarded as

ancient, and the Pentateuch was declared not to have received its

final form until after the exile. At once the eighth Psalm and the

first part of the nineteenth were dated, conformably to the new

view of Gen. i, in the post-exilic period (cp. Kuenen; Wellhausen

on Ps. viii; Cheyne, Origin, p. 201); and the second part of the

nineteenth Psalm, by reason of the praise of the law, must belong

to the same late date (Kuenen, 1865; Gratz, 1882; Cheyne, 1889,

p. 202, 238; cp. Nowack).

            This particular argument for a late date might be met in one of

two ways: either by referring to the defense of the Mosaic authorship

of the Pentateuch, or else, while granting the premises of the divi-

sive critics and accepting the dates assigned by them to the several

hypothetical documents, by attempting to show that even these

presuppositions do not necessitate a late date for the Psalm.

Riehm adopted the latter method. De Wette, Ewald, Maurer,

and Riehm himself held to the Davidic authorship of 2 Sam. xxii,

that is Psalm xviii. By pointing to verses 23, 24 and 31 (22, 23

and 30, English enumeration) of that Psalm, Riehm was able to


     CRITICISM OF THE NINETEENTH PSALM.                   365


show an appreciation for the law and an apprehension of its spirit-

uality by David himself no less keen than is expressed in the nine-

teenth Psalm. Granting that Deuteronomy was a product of the

seventh century, nevertheless evidence was at hand, in the eigh-

teenth Psalm, that the praise of the law had been in men's hearts

and on their lips several centuries earlier. Nowack made an ineffec-

tual rejoinder; one indeed that was quite unnecessary, since the

ground on which Riehm stood had been swept from under his

feet. The Davidic authorship of the eighteenth Psalm, beyond

possibly its substratum, was denied, largely for the reason that its

diction has affinities with the vocabulary of Deuteronomy, and

because it contains praise of the law Advocates of a late date for

Deuteronomy were coming to advocate an equally late or yet later

date for both the eighteenth and the nineteenth Psalms.

            Riehm's argument, however, though antiquated for the use for

which it was intended, has renewed value in the debate with the

most modern school of critics. Kuenen, Gratz and Cheyne regard

the eighteenth Psalm as pre-exilic. Accordingly, so far as the praise

of the law is concerned, the nineteenth Psalm also may have been

in existence before the exile. Professor Cheyne sees this. "Even

if not Davidic, may not this fragment [Ps. xix. 8-11] belong to the

Josian age—to those halcyon days which followed the publication of

the first Scripture? This is at least plausible. If a Josian poet

wrote Ps. xviii. 21-24 and 31, why should he not have written

Ps. xix. 8-11?" (Origin of the Psalter, p. 238). The signs are not

wanting, however, that even this ground is about to be swept away.

Professor Cheyne adds to his discussion the significant remark:

"This at any rate [between 621 and 608 B.C.] is the earliest possible

date [for the eighteenth Psalm]. I accept it not without much hesi-

tation, and I cannot complain if some prefer to regard the Psalm

as an imaginative work of the exile" (Origin, p. 206); and Well-

hausen claims that "the [eighteenth] Psalm was written in the

later days of Judaism."

            But if there is likelihood that the eighteenth Psalm will be de-

clared to be a post-exilic production, there remains the Book of

Deuteronomy, which was found in the temple during the reign of

Josiah. "Certainly, Deuteronomy is a ‘rich and varied handbook,’

not perhaps unworthy even of such a glowing eulogy" as is con-

tained in the nineteenth Psalm. "’It sought to place the whole

moral and spiritual life upon a new basis"' (Cheyne, Origin, p. 238).

In a section admittedly as early as Josiah's reign, chapters v to

xxvi or xii to xxvi, it lays emphasis on the spirituality of the laws




and urgently insists upon their observance. Ps. xix. 8-15 breathes

the same spirit, and may likewise be pre-exilic. So, too, as in these

verses, the value of heart religion was appreciated by Jeremiah in

the same age (vii. 23; xxxi. 33, 34; xxxii. 40; xxxiii. 8). And long

before Jeremiah's time welfare to the body at least was talked of

as a reward for keeping Jehovah's commandments and statutes

(Ex. xv. 26J); and in the Decalogue itself the spirituality of the

laws was clearly intimated and their pertinence to the desires as

well as to the acts of men was laid bare (Ex. xx. 17).* Surely

the Psalmist's praise of the written law and his consciousness of

its relation to the inner life as well as to the conduct of men do

not involve that the Psalm was composed after the exile. Verses

8-15 may have been sung in the first temple.




            The suggestion was hazarded that this praise of the law is the

main argument for a late date, and that on examination all others

will be found to be subsidiary. Ewald brought forward a third

matter as evidence of the late origin of the Psalm, as will be remem-

bered. He argued from the reference to the presumptuous or


            Guard thy servant from the arrogant,

            That they may not have dominion over him.


Now the word has often been rendered by presumption or pre-

sumptuous sins; but it may be translated presumptuous men, and

it is contended that the historic situation may then be judged from a

similar allusion in Ps. v. 6:

            The arrogant shall not stand in thy sight,

            Thou hatest all workers of iniquity.


Rudinger, in the year 1580, arguing from verse 11 of the fifth Psalm,

concluded that the arrogant of verse 6 are the rebels under the

leadership of Absalom. In Ps. lxxxvi. 14, where the same word

occurs, Rosenmiiller understood David to refer to Saul and his

court. De Wette, making the comparison between Ps. v and xix,

judged the arrogant who are mentioned in Ps. v. 6 to be perhaps


            * The book of the covenant, with the ten commandments, had been long in

existence. As a law book it consists of formal precepts, and does not give ex-

pression to admiration of the goodness and wholesomeness of the laws, and only

incidentally or, as some critics contend, not originally to the motive of love.

Yet even so, how long must it be before thoughtful, earnest men in Israel

would begin to appreciate the moral grandeur of the Decalogue and to discover

the beneficent effect upon man of keeping Jehovah's law?



national enemies. He quoted Gurtler as holding a similar opinion

in regard to these arrogant ones, and as referring the fifth Psalm

to the time of persecution under Antiochus Epiphanes. He also

cited the view of Ferrandus that the arrogant enemies of Ps. v are

the Babylonians. But de Wette made no attempt to date the

nineteenth Psalm. Ewald understood the Psalmist to refer to the

strong party among the people, toward the end of the seventh

century, who were indifferent to religion and frivolous, and neglected

the temple partly from disdain for it and partly from an evil con-


            From these various ascriptions it is obvious that an allusion to

the presumptuous affords a basis of but doubtful value in seeking

to determine the date of a Psalm. If the approximate time of the

poem's composition is first known, an allusion to the presumptuous

can aid in bringing the date within narrower limits. But in itself

it is not determinative. It can be adjusted to different periods

of the history: to mention only those already proposed, to the

time of David, to the seventh and sixth centuries, to the persecu-

tions under Antiochus Epiphanes. Maurer and von Lengerke

quietly dropped this argument, and relied upon the reference to the

written law; while Olshausen frankly confessed that if each Psalm

is considered by itself, an allusion in it to oppression by the enemy

may be adjusted to any one of several calamities which befell

Israel in the course of centuries. But Olshausen did not allow the

matter to rest in uncertainty. He had already appropriated the

theory that the speaker in the Psalms does not represent an indi-

vidual, but is a personification of the Church or nation; and he

now proceeded to group the Psalms containing references to enemies.

His predecessors had done so in part, Ewald, for example, in his

argument on the date of the nineteenth Psalm, had referred to the

frequent occurrence of a similar prayer in other Psalms which he

assigned to the seventh and sixth centuries. But 0lshausen groups

all the Psalms which contain a prayer or a complaint or a thanks-

giving concerning the enemies of the congregation. Two classes

of foes are mentioned in these Psalms; and with the light of all

focused in one beam, "it becomes clear that the Psalmist is not

concerned with merely a struggle of Israel with foreign foes, with

the heathen, but along with the conflict goes the struggle of Israel

with godless and dangerous men within the nation itself, with

apostates; so that while Israel as a people is opposing hostile

foreign powers the loyal congregation of the pious is opposing

hostile fellow-countrymen." Taking this comprehensive view, "it




cannot for a moment be doubtful," says 0lshausen, " that the

nation was so situated but once in its history, so far as we know,

namely in the times beginning with the persecution by Antiochus

Epiphanes" (pp. 6, 7). This classification includes the nineteenth

Psalm. But the principle of grouping thus introduced by 0lshausen,

although it has been enthusiastically adopted and developed by

Prof. Cheyne, is, we believe, essentially vicious, prejudging the date

of individual Psalms and proving itself fallacious when applied

to the literature of other peoples. We might as well group Charles

Wesley's hymn of 1749:

                        Soldiers of Christ, arise,

                            And put your armor on,

                        Strong in the strength which God supplies

                            Through His Eternal Son,


with Baring-Gould's hymn of 1865:


                        Onward, Christian soldiers,

                            Marching as to war,

                        With the cross of Jesus

                            Going on before:

                        Christ the Royal Master

                            Leads against the foe;

                        Forward into battle,

                            See His banners go,


and insist that they had their birth together. Or we might com-

pare "Art thou weary, art thou languid?" by Stephen. of St. Sabas,

725-794, with its translation by the Rev. John Mason Neale in

1862, and again insist that the conditions which gave birth to the

one could not exist one thousand years later, to make the same

encouragement timely. Or we might place Ps. xlvi side by side

with Luther's imitation of it, "Ein' feste Burg," and declare that

both must be the product of the same age. As Prof. Robertson

has stated it: "Neither individuals nor nations have the habit of

exhausting a subject at one time and never recurring to it" (Poetry

and Religion of the Psalms, pp. 51-56).

            0lshausen's contention did not prevail with his contemporaries.

Perhaps it influenced Ewald to defend his own position; for in the

third edition of his commentary, in presenting his argument anew

for assigning the Psalm to the period covered by the seventh and

sixth centuries, he adds that the fear of seduction or compulsion

to heathenism "increased still more when the new Jerusalem was

actually under the domination of the heathen." Hupfeld was

uninfluenced by 0lshausen's argument; he reverted to de Wette's


      CRITICISM OF THE NINETEENTH PSALM.                   369


comparison of the several parts of the second half of the Psalm

with the late Ps. cxix; and on the basis of the relationship between

these two Psalms, taken in connection with the general subject of

verses 8-15, he merely held this section of the nineteenth Psalm to

be later than the first section. Riehm, in editing Hupfeld's work

in 1868, greatly weakened a part of the argument by pointing out

the obvious fact that Ps. cxix may echo Ps. xix.*

            Up to this last date those who rejected the Davidic authorship

of the nineteenth Psalm were not compelled to assign it to a later

period than Ewald had done. "The presumptuous ones" did not

stand in their way. It was the rise of the Graf-Wellhausen school

and the convenience, in accordance with its premises, of dating the

praise of the law and the knowledge of Gen. i in the period after

the exile that made it necessary to locate "the presumptuous

ones" also after the exile. And so Reuss, Gratz, Wellhausen,

Duhm. The argument ultimately rests, not upon the allusion to

the arrogant, but on the theory that Israel's higher religious life

came late in time. And the debate has been conducted it will be

observed, without calling in question the translation "presumptuous

ones" rather than "presumptuous sins."


                               THE RHYTHMIC MEASURE.


            The rhythmic measure of the second part is urged as evidence that

the Psalm is a late composition. According to Baethgen, "that

this metrical form [the so-called lamentation strophe] has been

employed for a subject to which according to its origin it is unsuit-

able is evidence that the second part belongs to a later age." The

assumption that originally the measure was used in laments only

calls for no remark here. It has no pertinence to the argument.

Two other questions, however, are prompted by Baethgen's asser-

tion: first, how ancient is the custom of employing this scheme for

the lament? and second, how early was this scheme adopted for

other themes than the lament? In regard to the first of these

questions Budde himself, the chief investigator of the lamentation

measure, in the article already cited, expresses his conviction that

the scheme was employed for the lament in hoary antiquity, reach-

ing back before the time of David (p. 44). As to the second ques-

tion, which is the all-important one in the determination of the


            * The relationship of verses 8-15 with Ps. cxix has also been urged by

Baethgen as a reason for regarding the nineteenth Psalm as post-exilic. When,

however, his argument as a whole is examined, it is found that his other premises

have compelled him to accept a post-exilic date.



date of the nineteenth Psalm, Budde cites examples of the adoption

of the scheme for other themes in pre-exilic times. In the Book of

Nahum, written, as all scholars agree, between 664 and 607 B.C., in

chapter ii. 1-3, Hebrew enumeration, are "seven tolerable verses"

in this measure, although "the sense is little suited to a lamentation,

being a threat of punishment for Assyria and at the same time a

promise for Israel." A yet earlier passage, Hosea vi. 7-11a,

admittedly penned during the eighth century B.C., is cited by Budde.

It is an accusation laid against the people, yet is constructed

according to the lamentation scheme; verses 7 and 8 being such

just as they stand, and verses 9 to 11a becoming such by a mere

change of the Masoretic accents. Budde's list of examples from

pre-exilic literature, of which two have been mentioned, may be

increased. Women welcomed Saul and David on their return from

the slaughter of the Philistines with song and dance and the music

of timbrels, singing one to another:

                        Saul has slain his thousands,

                        And David his ten thousands.


This antiphonal song of triumph is cast in the measure of the lament:

three words are in the first member, two in the second; and the

predicate verb is in the first. In the didactic ode of Moses (Deut.

xxxii), the prevalent measure, which consists of lines containing

two members of equal length, is ultimately, after the premoditory

note has been thrice sounded, in verses 24, 25, 27, interrupted to

give place to six consecutive verses in the lamentation measure,

verses 28-32a. And in the Blessing of Moses (Deut. xxxiii), the

benediction of Levi is almost entirely in lines of the lament. Now

these three passages are admittedly pre-exilic. The Blessing of

Moses is agreed to be at least as early as the passage cited by Budde

from Hosea, probably earlier. The account of the welcome of Saul

and David is commonly regarded as earlier still. It is thus quite

evident that the scheme of verse which appears in the second part

of the nineteenth Psalm was not uncommonly used for other purposes

than the lament during a long period of the history. A didactic

poem might be composed in this measure after the exile, certainly.

Its use in didactic and emotional writings before the exile is fully

attested, and is definitely traced back well toward the time of David.

The nineteenth Psalm cannot be dated by an appeal to this measure.

            In recent years two more arguments have been put forward as

grounds for regarding the nineteenth Psalm as a late product of

the literary activity of the Hebrews.


        CRITICISM OF THE NINETEENTH PSALM.                   371


                                    THE DICTION.


            It is argued that the language of the nineteenth Psalm betrays a

late date. For example, Kuenen, speaking of the second part, or

perhaps of the whole ode, says that verses 8-15 agree "both in

language and the choice of words with the younger portions of the

Psalter (comp. Pss. i, cxix)"; seeming to imply that they do not agree

in either of these respects with the literature older than the exile,

for he dates Pss. i and cxix about the time of Ezra (Historisch-

kritisch Onderzoek, derde Deel, Blz. 281, 303). So sweeping an asser-

tion would, however, be quite unwarranted; for with three excep-

tions* the root, and in most cases the form also, of every word in the

Psalm are attested as in use among the Hebrews before the exile

by their concurrence in literature that is universally admitted to

belong to the early period. Wellhausen describes the situation

somewhat differently from Kuenen and, combining two matters,

says “The language and contents agree in proving that both por-

tions [of the Psalm] belong to the same late period." But Baethgen

is definite. "A couple of strong Aramaisms in the first part (verses

3, 5) make it advisable not to date this part either before the time of

Job." With less restraint as to the date, but with equal modera-

tion regarding the diction, Prof. Cheyne says that "the Aramaism

hiwwah, not to urge rakia, confirms the natural view that this

Psalm of creation is post-exilic" (Book of Psalms, ed. of 1904, Vol. I,

p. 75).

            Of these three words, which are looked upon as indications of the

date of the poem, rakia, firmament, is used in the first chapter of

Genesis, so that the argument advanced really rests upon the date

which is assigned to that chapter. At any rate, however, "both

the idea and the root are good Hebrew" (Cheyne, Origin, p. 468), the

root being found in pre-exilic literature (2 Sam. xxii. 43; Jer. x. 9)

and belonging to the common Semitic stock (Dillmann on Gen. i. 1).

The two other words are characterized as Aramaisms. Regarding

millah, word, to which Baethgen evidently refers, its root occurs

as a verb in Ps. cvi. 2, and is there commented on by Giesebrecht as

follows: "Millel, speak, which one were inclined to regard as an


     * The exceptions are hiwwah, naba', and shegi'oth. Of the last-mentioned word

Prof. Cheyne has said: "Shegagah occurs seventeen times in P. C. (Lev., Num.,

Josh.), twice in Eccles., but also in 1 Sam. xiv. 24 Sept. (see Driver, ad loc.). The

latter passage at any rate, if we accept it as genuine, is pre-exilic. We may

assume, therefore, that both shegagah and its synonym shegi'ah are early" (Ori-

gin, p. 468). Compare also shagah, Is. xxviii. 7, before 702 B.C., according to Prof.

Cheyne; and its noun in Gen. xliii. 12 J. Another of the exceptions, the verb

naba', occurs in Prov. xv. 2, 28; xviii. 4, in one of the two sections of the book

expressly assigned to Solomon.



Aramaism, is found outside of Job and Proverbs in Gen. xxi. 7

also, in a Jehovistic connection" (Z. A. T. W., 1881, S. 296).

Accordingly the word was in use among the Hebrews as early as the

eighth century before Christ. The noun itself is found in "the last

words of David" (2 Sam. xxiii. 2), a poem assigned by Prof. Cheyne

to the age of Josiah (Origin, p. 69). It is the remaining word

hiwwah, show forth, which Drs. Baethgen and Cheyne concur in

regarding as an Aramaism. This verb is of frequent occurrence in

Aramaic. In Hebrew it is met outside of this Psalm in the Book of

Job only. It is common to several Semitic languages; it belongs to

the Semitic stock. How late, then, is the Hebrew literature in

which it occurs? Let us see.

            It is known that influences were at work in the northern part of

Palestine, during the entire period of its occupancy by the Hebrews,

to keep alive among the people, or to introduce among them, words

which were prominent in the Aramaic vocabulary. The evidence of

this fact is furnished by the song of Deborah and the writings of

the northern prophets Hosea and Jonah. That this same influence

was strong in the southern part of the land for half a century or

more before the exile is commonly admitted, and is abundantly

evident in the pages of Jeremiah and Habakkuk. That it was felt

still earlier is witnessed by such proper names as Asa, king of Judah,

and Ishvi, son of King Saul; Migron, a village of Benjamin, and

Jattir, a town of Judah, and Eshtaol in the lowland; by a verb like

millel and a noun like shalit.* In each of these cases the word or its

root is a common Ararnaic term, not known in Hebrew literature or

only in Psalms and the later Hebrew writings; and yet a sporadic

occurrence like shalit in Gen. xlii. 6 and millel in Gen. xxi. 7 and

many proper names betray the fact that such words were on the

lips of the people of Judah and were used in their daily life as early

as at least the eighth century before Christ, and even in many in-


     * Asa, the name of a great king of Judah and also of a Levite resident in Judah,

is the only trace in Hebrew of the well-known Aramaic equivalent of the Hebrew

rapha', to heal. The name Ishvi contains a root common in the Aramaic and not

unknown in northern Israel (Hos. x. 1); but the only evidence that it was ever

used by people in Judah and its vicinity is afforded by the name of Saul's son

and by the song of David (2 Sam. xxii. 34). The root of Migron is found in the

Aramaic, but is not met with in Hebrew literature, outside of the Psalms and

Ezekiel; yet in the name Migron it was familiar to the Hebrews from the time of

David onward. The name of the town Jattir is an Aramaic adjective, meaning

excellent; and, though not found as such in any Hebrew writing, was in the mouth

of the people. Similarly Eshtaol is a fine Aramaic form, with the final vowel

modified according to the Hebrew habit of pronunciation. The occurrence of the

word shalit, ruler, in Gen. xlii. 6, E and of course JE, is the sole witness to the

existence of this common Aramaic word in early Hebrew.

         CRITICISM OF THE NINETEENTH PSALM.                   373


stances in the times of David. It is not necessary to inquire

whether they were importations from the Aramaeans or were sur-

vivals of the old vocabulary common to the two peoples. Such

words were actually there in those early days before the exile,

however they came to be there. They were within reach of the

literary man, if he had occasion to resort to them.

            The Psalmist had such occasion now. While singing his hymn,

and while yet unfolding his first thought, he had practically ex-

hausted the ordinary synonyms of two words; and he was obliged

to draw upon terms of rarer use in literature. He had already

employed the verbs declare, show and utter; and he needed another

verb of similar meaning. The poverty of the English language is

revealed by the fact that the translators repeat the word show. The

Hebrew poet was able to give expression to the same idea in a

fourth form, hiwwah, belonging to the common Semitic stock. He

had also used speech, words, voice, line; he required yet another

noun of the same import and found it at hand, although common in

Aramaic, among his own people in their use of the root millel.

And it does not escape attention that a poet is using language; and

poetry is conspicuous in the literature of all peoples by reason

of its fondness for rare expressions. It is clear from this

exposition that the diction of the nineteenth Psalm shows the

same characteristics as does Hebrew literature generally for a

century and a half before the exile—features of which traces are

found in yet earlier examples of the Hebrew language—and more-

over in the case of the nineteenth Psalm the reason for the choice of

words is at once evident.




            It is asserted that Ps. xix. 2-7 belongs "to that literary revival

of Hebrew mythology during and after the exile of which the Books

of Job and to some extent Jonah are monuments." "The swift-

running hero Shemesh," the sun, a fine myth "debased by unholy

association," was "transfigured," and was thus reclaimed "from

superstition to the service of the Most High" (Cheyne, Origin of

the Psalter, p. 202).

            It is true that on certain private interpretations there are not a

few mythological allusions in Hebrew writings which are assigned

by the Graf-Wellhausen school to the exile and the succeeding

period. Leviathan and Rahab are possible examples.

            But are no similar allusions found in the literature of pre-exilic

days? In Prof. Cheyne's opinion cherubim and seraphim are




mythological creations for the storm cloud and the lightning, and

both find place in pre-exilic literature (Gen. iii. 24, J; 2 Samii. xx.

11, pre-exilic according to Cheyne, Origin of the Psalter, p. 193, and

cp. p. 205 on the cherub; Isa. vi. 2). In "a pre-exilic song-book

called ’The Book of the Upright,’" Joshua addresses the sun as

though it were a living object, and "speaks almost as if he had Ps.

xix. 6 in his mind" (Cheyne, Origin, pp. 192, 221). Prof. Cheyne

should be among the last to cite a mythological allusion in a Psalm

as cogent evidence for a post-exilic date. Moreover, the prophet

Amos (ix. 3) makes a poetic allusion to the serpent which Prof.,

Gunkel interprets as the dragon Tiamat of Babylonian myth.

(Schopfung u. Chaos, S. 81); and Deborah in her "ancient song"

may perhaps be subsidizing a phrase of current speech, in which

a reminiscence of heathen notions lingered, when she poeti-

cally describes the stars from their courses fighting against Sisera

(Judg. v. 20). At any rate her description of the stars as fighting

from their courses parallels the Psalmist's description of the sun

going forth as a bridegroom and rejoicing as a runner. The

prophetess refers to the sun also in words like unto the Psalmist's

when she says: "Be as the sun when he goeth forth in his might"

(Judg. v. 31). There should, therefore, be no denial by Prof. Cheyne

of at least a willingness on the part of a Hebrew poet who lived

before the exile to borrow beautiful imagery from exploded myth-

ology and to employ figures which still remained current in popular

speech. General features of this sort, even assuming that their

origin lies in mythology, afford no evidence that a Psalm is a late


            But why find mythology in the nineteenth Psalm? For one to

speak of the tabernacle of the sun is not to give credence to myth-

ology. The phrase "to set a tabernacle" means, without a figure,

to provide a dwelling, or assign a place (Alexander; comp. 1 Sam.

xiii. 2=home); and it may have this meaning in the Psalm. At

most the expression springs from a naive conception of the universe

which lingered in current speech. More probably both it and the

comparison of the sun to a radiant bridegroom and to a runner

exulting in his strength and endurance are but poetic imagery.

But to whatever source the reference to the sun's tabernacle is due,

it proceeds from the same mental trait which led the Hebrews to

speak of the foundations of the earth (Jer. xxxi. 37; Mic. vi. 2) and

the windows of heaven (Gen. vii. 11; 2 Kings vii. 2), of the cham-

bers which Jehovah hath builded for himself in the heavens (Amos

ix. 6) and the treasuries whence he bringeth forth the wind (Jer. x


        CRITICISM OF THE NINETEENTH PSALM.                   375


13), of the wings of the wind (Hos. iv. 19) and the wings of the sun

(Mal. iii. 20= iv. 2, English version). Whether these allusions are

traced to myth, or to a naive conception of the universe, or to poetic

imagination, they are all found in pre-exilic literature, with the

exception of the citation from Malachi, as will be noticed; and as

already noted, the figure by which the sun is spoken of as going

forth in might is as old as the "ancient song" of Deborah; so that

again it becomes clear that features of this sort furnish no criterion

for adjudging a late date to the Psalm.

            The crucial arguments against the pre-exilic origin of the nine-

teenth Psalm which have been advanced during the century of

modern Biblical criticism have now been examined. There appears

to be no sound reason for denying that this fine hymn had a place,

in the Psalter of the first temple. That it had this place is suffi-

ciently declared by its ancient title.


            Princeton.                                                      JOHN D. DAVIS.



This material is cited as from the public domain.

Please report any errors to Ted Hildebrandt at: