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Lamentations 1:16 New English Translation (NET Bible)

ע (Ayin)

16 I weep because of these things;
my eyes[a] flow with tears.[b]
For there is no one in sight who can comfort me[c]
or encourage me.[d]
My children[e] are desolated[f]
because an enemy has prevailed.


  1. Lamentations 1:16 tc The MT and several medieval Hebrew mss read עֵינִי עֵינִי (ʿeni, ʿeni, “my eye, my eye”). However, the second עֵינִי does not appear in several other medieval Hebrew mss, or in Old Greek, Syriac Peshitta, or Latin Vulgate.tn Heb “My eye, my eye.” The Hebrew text repeats the term for literary emphasis to stress the emotional distress of personified Jerusalem.
  2. Lamentations 1:16 tn Heb “with water.” The noun מַיִם (mayim, “water”) functions as an adverbial accusative of manner or impersonal instrument. The term מַיִם (mayim, “water”) is a metonymy of material (= water) for the thing formed (= tears).
  3. Lamentations 1:16 tn Heb “For a comforter is far from me.”
  4. Lamentations 1:16 tn The phrase מֵשִׁיב נַפְשִׁי (meshiv nafshi, “one who could cause my soul to return”) is a Hebrew idiom that means “one who could encourage me.” The noun נַפְשִׁי (nafshi) refers to the whole person (e.g., Gen 27:4, 25; 49:6; Lev 26:11, 30; Num 23:10; Judg 5:21; 16:30; Isa 1:14; Lam 3:24). When used with the noun נֶפֶשׁ (nefesh), the Hiphil הָשִׁיב (hashiv) of שׁוּב (shuv, “to turn, return”) means “to encourage, refresh, cheer” a person emotionally (Ruth 4:15; Pss 19:8; 23:3; Prov 25:13; Lam 1:11, 16, 19).
  5. Lamentations 1:16 tn Heb “my sons.” The term “my sons” (בַּנַי, banay) is a figurative description (hypocatastasis) of the former inhabitants of Jerusalem/Judah personified as the Lady Jerusalem’s children. Jerusalem mourns (and views) their devastation like a mother would her children.
  6. Lamentations 1:16 tn The verb שָׁמֵם (shamem) means “to be desolated.” The verb is used used in reference to land destroyed in battle and left “deserted” (Isa 49:8; Ezek 33:28; 35:12, 15; 36:4). When used in reference to persons, it describes the aftermath of a physical attack, such as rape (2 Sam 13:20) or military overthrow of a city (Isa 54:1; Lam 1:13, 16; 3:11).
New English Translation (NET)

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