Notes by Autumn Light

On Hebrew, English, translation, editing, and more—by Jonathan Orr-Stav

In the Hebrew, Deut. 8:18 uses the verb for “to make atonement,” but the English translation says only “to make.” Why is this?

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1171101_make_atonement

Your impression that the verb לעשות means “to make atonement” is due to the definition given in Biblehub.com’s translation of that verse.

Which is surprising, because in fact it simply means “to do” or “to make” (like the French verb faire).

In this case, it is part of an expression

לעשות חיל (la’asot ḥayil)

which means “to thrive”, “to do extremely well”.

So basically it’s a mistake.

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Author: יונתן אור-סתיו | Jonathan Orr-Stav

Hebrew-English translator, editor, author. מתרגם עברית–אנגלית, עורך באנגלית, וסופר.

One thought on “In the Hebrew, Deut. 8:18 uses the verb for “to make atonement,” but the English translation says only “to make.” Why is this?

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