Page:The ancient interpretation of Leviticus XVIII. 18 - Marriage with a deceased wife's sister is lawful.djvu/64

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descendentes. Thus, Lev. xviii. 12, it is applied to father's sister—13, of mother's sister—17, of the relationship between a woman and her daughter, or grand-daughter. In Lev. xx. 19, of the relationship between a man and his aunt, whether on the father's or mother's side. In xxi. 2, of the relationship between a priest and his mother, or father, or son or daughter, or brother or sister. In Numb, xxvii. 11, it is used of any of the same family, mishpachah. Upon the peculiar case of Zelophehad's daughters, the Divine Legislator founded a general law: "If a man die and have no son, then ye shall cause his inheritance to pass to his daughter, and if he have no daughter then ye shall give his inheritance to his brethren. And if he have no brethren, then ye shall give his inheritance unto his father's brethren. And if his father have no brethren, then ye shall give his inheritance unto his kinsman, flesh, sheer, that is, next (Symbol missingHebrew characters) to him of his family, mishpachah." Here the word simply means kinsman, blood-relation, one of those a patre uno descendentes. These are all the passages where sheer occurs by itself of relations, and in these its signification is similar to that of the English word "relation," which, when used by itself in contradistinction to "relation by marriage," signifies one of the same family, descended from a common stock, without any determination as to nearness or remoteness. In the last passage especially, the word sheer, kinsman, is explained by mishpachah, family, which means the descendants of one common head, as may be seen, Numb. i. 2, and following verses. Now let us turn to the other word, (Symbol missingHebrew characters), basar, which occurs oftener. All agree that it signifies flesh, or body, of man or beast, and that then secondarily it signifies, like sheer, (Symbol missingHebrew characters), blood-relation, those descended from one common head, family, as Gen. xxxvii. 27. Judah says of Joseph, "He is our brother, our flesh;" and Isaiah describes one feature of true piety in the words, "That thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh." In