אֲשֶׁר particle of relation (Moabite id.; origin dubious:
according to TsepreghiDiss. Lugd. p. 171
MühlauBö. Lb. ii. 79 n. StaMorg. Forsch. 1875, 188; Lb. § 167 HomZMG 1878, 708 ff. Müll§ 153 SayceHebraica. ii. 51 LagM. i. 255 &
especially KraeHebraica. vi. 298 ff
, originally a substantive 'place' = footstep, mark
, Assyrian ašru
, used (see Kraetz
.) both as a substantive 'there, where,' and as a relative of place 'where': in Hebrew this development has advanced further, and it has become a relative sign generally. The chief objection to this explanation is that it would isolate Hebrew from the other Semitic languages, in which pronouns are formed regularly from demonstrative
roots (compare also NöZMG 1886, 738
according to PhiSt. C. 73
SperlingNota Rel. im Hebr. 1876, 15-22
, developed from the relative שׁ
(q. v.) by (1) the prefixing of either a merely prosthetic א
, or, better, a pronominal א
(giving rise to אש
, the form of the relative in Phoenician), and (2) the addition of the demonstrative root ל
[found also in אֵל
(q. v.), he who
(plural)]: the main objection to this explanation is the change of ל
, which is hardly rendered probable by the compare of Syriac
by side of ᵑ7 הָלְכָּא
. 1 seems preferable
, the primitive root having acquired different significations in the different Semitic languages, and having been weakened in Hebrew to a mere particle of relation). A sign of relation
, bringing the clause introduced by it into relation with an antecedent clause. As a rule אֲשֶׁר
is a mere connecting link
, and requires to be supplemented (see the grammars) by a pronominal affix, or other word, such as שָׁם
, defining the nature of the relation more precisely: e.g.
[Gen 1:11] אֲשֶׁר זַרֵעוֺבֿוֺ
literally as to which
, its seed is in it = in which is its seed,
like the chaff אֲשֶׁרתִּֿדְּפֶנּוּ רוּחַ as to which
, the wind drives it = which the wind drives, etc.; & so אֲשֶׁרשָׁ֗֗֗ם
etc. Sometimes also (see below) the relation expressed by it is specifically temporal, local causal, etc. More particularly
1. it includes its pronominal antecedent, whether in the nominative or oblique cases, as
[Num 22:6] וַאֲשֶׁר תָּאֹר יוּאָר and he whom thou cursest is cursed, [Exod 4:12] and I will teach thee אֲשֶׁר תְּדַבֵּר that which thou shalt say; and with particles or prepositions, as אֵת אֲשֶׁר (according to the context) him who . . ., those who . . ., that which . . .; לַאֲשֶׁר to him who . . . [Gen 43:16], to those who . . . [Gen 47:24], to that which [Gen 27:8] מֵאֲשֶׁר [Judg 16:30]; [2Sam 18:18] than those whom; [Lev 27:24] לַאֲשֶׁר קָנָהוּ מֵאִתּוֺ to him from whom he bought it, [Num 5:7]; [Isa 24:2] כַּאֲשֶׁר נשֶׁא בוֺ like him against whom there is a creditor.
2. instances of אֲשֶׁר followed by a pronominal affix, or by שָׁם, שָֽׁמָּה, מִשָּׁם, are so common that the examples cited above will be sufficient. Very rarely there occurs the anomalous construction עִם אֲשֶׁר
[Gen 31:32] for אֲשֶׁר עִמּוֺ (see [Gen 44:9]), בַּאֲשֶׁר [Isa 47:12] for אֲשֶׁר בָּהֶם, לַאֲשֶׁר for אֲשֶׁרלָ֗֗֗הֶם [Ezek 23:40]: [Ps 119:49] see under על אשׁר. It is followed by the pronoun in the nominative, in the following cases: —
\ \ \ (a) immediately, mostly before an adjective or participle,
[Gen 9:3] all moving things אֲשֶׁר הוּאחַֿי which are living, [Lev 11:26]; [Num 9:13]; [Num 14:8]; [Num 14:27]; [Num 35:31]; [Deut 20:20]; [1Sam 10:19] (see Dr) [2Kgs 25:19] (|| [Jer 52:25] היה) [Jer 27:9]; [Ezek 43:19]; [Hag 1:9]; [Ruth 4:15]; [Neh 2:18]; [Eccl 7:26] before a verb [2Kgs 22:13] (omitted [2Chr 34:21]).
\ \ \ (b) in a negative sentence, at the end:
[Gen 7:2]; [Gen 17:12]; [Num 17:5]; [Deut 17:15] אֲשֶׁר לֹא אָחִיךָ הוּא who is not thy brother, [Deut 20:15]; [Judg 19:12]; [1Kgs 8:41] || [1Kgs 9:20] ||.
3. sometimes (though rarely) the defining adjunct is a pronoun of 1 or 2 person as well as of 3 person. In such cases it is strictly to be rendered I who . . ., thou who, etc.;
[Hos 14:4] אֲשֶׁרבְּֿךָ יְרֻחַם יָתוֺם thou by whom the fatherless is compassionated ! [Jer 31:32] I, whose covenant they brake, [Jer 32:19]; [Isa 49:23]; [Job 37:17]f. thou whose garments are warm . . ., canst thou ? etc., [Ps 71:19]; [Ps 71:20]; [Ps 144:12] we whose sons, etc., [Ps 139:15] my frame was not hidden from thee, אֲ֯שֶׁרעֻֿשֵּׂיתִי בַסֵּתֶר I who was wrought in secret (= though I was wrought in secret), [Exod 14:13] for ye who have seen the Egyptians to-day, — ye shall not see them again for ever! (compare [Ps 41:9]).
4. the defining pron. adjunct is dispensed with —
\ \ a. when אֲשֶׁר represents the simple subject of a sentence, or the direct object of a verb: so constantly, as
[Gen 2:1] the work אֲשֶׁר עָשָׂה which he made, [Gen 3:3] the tree אֲשֶׁר בְּתוֺךְ הַגָּן which is in the midst of the garden, etc.
\ \ b. after words denoting time, place, or manner, so that אֲשֶׁר then becomes equivalent to when, where, why:
\ \ \ (a)
[Gen 6:4] אַחֲרֵי כֵן אֲשֶׁר afterwards, when, etc. (compare [2Chr 35:20]) [Gen 45:6] there are still 5 years אֲשֶׁר אֵין חָרִישׁ when there shall be no plowing, [Josh 14:10]; [1Kgs 22:25] after יוֺם or הַיּוֺם [Deut 4:10]; [Judg 4:14]; [1Sam 24:5] (see Dr) [2Sam 19:25]; [Jer 20:14] and elsewhere; similarly [Gen 40:13]. (β) [Gen 35:13] בַּמָּקוֺם אֲשֶׁר דִּבֶּר אִתּוֺ in the place where he spake with him, v [Gen 35:14]; [Gen 39:20]; [Num 13:27]; [Num 22:26]; [Deut 1:31] in the desert which thou sawest, where (accents Ke Di), [Deut 8:15]; [1Kgs 8:9] (unless לוּחוֺת הַבְּרִית has here fallen out: see ᵐ5 & [Deut 9:9]) [Isa 55:11]; [Isa 64:10]; [Ps 84:4]. So (γ) in אֶל אֲשֶׁר to (the place) which (or whither) [Exod 32:34]; [Ruth 1:16] אֶלכָּֿלאֲֿשֶׁר to every (place) whither [Josh 1:16]; [Prov 17:8] בַּאֲשֶׁר in (the place) where [Judg 5:27]; [Judg 17:8]; [Judg 17:9]; [1Sam 23:13]; [2Kgs 8:1]; [Ruth 1:16]; [Ruth 1:17]; [Job 39:30], once only with שָׁם [Gen 21:17] בְּכֹל אֲשֶׁר wheresoever [Josh 1:7]; [Josh 1:9]; [Judg 2:15]; [1Sam 14:47]; [1Sam 18:5]; [2Sam 7:7]; [2Kgs 18:7] מֵאֲשֶׁר from (the place) where = whencesoever [Exod 5:11]; [Ruth 2:9] עַלאֲֿשֶׁר to (the place) whither (or which) [2Sam 15:20]; [1Kgs 18:12] עַלכָּֿלאֲֿשֶׁר [Jer 1:7]. (δ) זֶה הַדָּבָר אֲשֶׁר ֗֗֗ this is the reason that or why . . . [Josh 5:4]; [1Kgs 11:27].
\ \ c. more extreme instances
[Lev 14:22]; [Lev 14:30]; [Lev 14:31]; [Num 6:21]; [Deut 7:19] (wherewith), [Deut 28:20]; [1Sam 2:32] (wherein), [1Kgs 2:26]; [Judg 8:15] (about whom), [Isa 8:12] (where יאמר would be followed normally by לוֺ), [Isa 31:6] turn ye to (him as to) whom they have deeply rebelled, [Isa 47:15]; [Zeph 3:11]; [Eccl 3:9]; [1Kgs 14:19] (= how).
\ \ d. it is dispensed with only in appearance after ׅ׳אֲשֶׁר אָמַר (אָמַרְתִּי וג followed by the words used, its place being really taken by a pronoun in the speech which follows, as
[Gen 3:17] the tree as to which I commanded thee saying, Thou shalt not eat from it, [Exod 22:8]; [Deut 28:68]; [Judg 7:4] (זֶה) [Judg 8:15] (where the noun repeated takes the place of the pronoun, compare [Deut 9:2]) [1Sam 9:17] (זֶה):23 +; compare [2Sam 11:16]; [2Kgs 17:12]; [2Kgs 21:4].
5. אֲשֶׁר sometimes in poetry = one who, a man who (men who), ὅστις, οἵτινες,
[Ps 24:4]; [Ps 55:20]; [Ps 95:4]; [Ps 95:5]; [Job 4:19]; [Job 5:5]; [Job 9:5] (Hi) [Job 15:17].
6. אֲשֶׁר occasionally receives its closer definition by a substantive following it, in other words, its logical antecedent is inserted in the relative clause:
\ \ \ (a) in the phrase peculiar to Jeremiah, ׳אֶל יר ׳אֲשֶׁר הָיָה דְבַר י that which came (of) the word of ׳י to Jeremiah
[Jer 14:1]; [Jer 46:1]; [Jer 47:1]; [Jer 49:34] (compare Ew§ 334);
\ \ \ (b)
[Exod 25:9]; [Num 33:4]; [1Sam 25:30]; [2Kgs 8:12]; [2Kgs 12:6] לְכֹל אֲשֶׁריִֿמָּצֵא שָׁם בָּֽדֶק׃ [Ezek 12:25] compare the Ethiopic usage Di§ 201;
\ \ \ (c) (antecedant repeated)
[Gen 49:30] = [Gen 50:13], [1Sam 25:30] (׳י repeated), [Isa 54:9] (probably) as to which I sware that, etc., [Amos 5:1] which I take up over you (as) a dirge. 7. ׳אֲשֶׁר ל that (belongs, belong
, belonged) to
, is used
\ \ a.
either alone or preceded by כָּלֿ
to express (all) that (belongs) to
[Gen 14:23] מִכָּלאֲֿשֶׁרלְֿךָ
of all that is thine
[Gen 31:1] מֵאֲשֶׁר לְאָבִינוּ
of that which was
& sent over אֶתאֲֿשֶׁרלֿוֺ that which he had
, + often
\ \ b.
as a circumlocution of the genitive, as
[Gen 29:9] עִםהַֿצּאֹן אֲשֶׁר לְאָבִיהָ
with the sheep that were
[1Sam 25:7] הָרֹעִים אֲשֶׁרלְֿךָ
[2Sam 14:31] אֶתהַֿחֶלְקָה אֲשֶׁרלִֿי
[1Kgs 1:33] עַל הַפִּרְדָּה אֲשֶׁרלִֿי
upon mine own mule, v
and especially in the case of a compound expression depending on a single genitive, as
[Gen 41:43] מִרְכֶּבֶת הַמִּשְׁנֶה אֲשֶׁרלֿוֺ
the chariot of the second rank which he had
[1Sam 21:8] אֲבִיר הָרֹעִים אֲשֶׁר לְשָׁאוּל
the mightiest of Saul's herdmen
[1Sam 24:5] אֶתכְּֿנַףהַֿמְּעִיל אֲשֶׁרלְֿשָׁאוּל
Saul's captain of the host,
\ \ c.
with names of places (especially such as do not readily admit the stative construct)
[Judg 19:14] הַגִּבְעָה אֲשֶׁר לְבִנְיָמִין
Gibeah (the hill) of Benjamin,
. compare שֶׁל
(q. v.) which in Rabb
, like the Aramaic -דִּיל
, is in habitual use as a mark of the genitive. — N.B.
In Aramaic also דּי
, without ל
, expresses the genitive relation, as מִלְּתָא דִימַֿלְכָּא
, literally the word, that of
the king = the word of the king. The few apparent cases of a similar use of אשׁר
are, however, too foreign to the general usage of the language to be regarded otherwise than as due to textual error:
read אֲשֶׁר אָמַר
(ᵐ5 ἣν ἐποίησεν
supply אֵת with
read וַאֲשֶׁר אָמַר הַמֶּלֶךְ
) and those whom the king appointed (abbreviated from
); compare Ew§ 292 a, b
becomes, like Aramaic דּי
, a conjunction approximating in usage to כִּי
\ \ a.
, subordinating an entire sentence to a verb of knowing, remembering, etc.
\ \ \ (a
) with אֵת
forget not אֵת אֲשֶׁר הִקְצַפְתָּ the fact that
) thou provokedst, etc.,
know ye not אֵת אֲשֶׁריֹֿרוּ how
they shoot from off the wall ?
+ often As subject (rare)
. Of time (peculiarly)
[2Sam 14:15] עַתָּה אֲשֶׁר
now (is it) that . . .
(probably) yet (shall it be) that . . .
compare כִּמְעַט שֶׁ
) without אֵת
(not very common, כִּי
being usually employed): after יָדַע
(very strange in Ezekiel: see Hi
(Ew De Di
(caused to swear that . . .
); after a noun
[Isa 38:7] הָאוֺת אֲשֶׁר
the sign that . . .
[2Kgs 20:9] כִּי
): with growing frequency in late Hebrew,
, and especially Nehemiah, Esther:
(twice in verse). (γ
) prefixed to a direct
citation, like כִּי
q. v. (= ὅτι recitativum
\ \ b.
it is resolvable into so that:
[Gen 11:7] אֲשֶׁר לֹא יִשְׁמְעוּ so that
they understand not, etc.,
[Gen 22:14] אֲשֶׁר יֵאָמֵר
so that it is said,
[Deut 4:40] אֲשֶׁר יִיטַב לְךָ [Deut 6:3]
\ \ c.
it has a causal force, forasmuch as, in that, since:
and Mizpah, אֲשֶׁר אָמַר for that
we are guilty, אֲשֶׁר רָאִינוּ we who
saw (or, in that
they strove there,
go in peace, אֲשֶׁר נִשְׁבַּעְנוּ forasmuch as
we have sworn,
[1Sam 25:26] thou whom
(= or, seeing that
blessed are ye of ׳י
, אֲשֶׁר עֲשִׂיתֶם
) have done (or in that ye
(Hi De Now
). Here also belongs its use in אֲשֶׁר לָמָּה since why . . . ?
: see below לָמָּה
. On אֲשֶׁר עַל כֵּן forasmuch as
see below כִּי עַל כֵּן
\ \ d.
it expresses a condition
(rare & peculiar):
[Lev 4:22] אֲשֶׁר נָשִׂיא יֶחֱטָא
in (case) that = when
) a ruler sinneth (
[Lev 4:37] אִם
(explained differently by Ew§ 334 a
and the blessing אֲשֶׁר תִּשְׁמְעוּ if ye
[Deut 11:28] אִם
[Deut 18:22] Ges
[Josh 4:21] אֲשֶׁר יִשְׁאָלוּן ֗֗֗ when
they ask . . ., then . . . (
[Josh 4:6] כִּי
[2Chr 6:24] כִּי
, compare Kings v
may be rendered indifferently because
. Once, similarly, אֵת אֲשֶׁר
\ \ e.
perhaps (exceptionally) = כַּאֲשֶׁר
(followed by כֵּן
; but כֵּן
q. v. sometimes stands without כאשׁר
, & אשׁר
may in these passages connect with what precedes); according to some also
(in a connection where כַּאֲשֶׁר
would be more usual: אֲשֶׁר
may however be the object of אָמַר
[1Sam 16:7] אֲשֶׁר יִרְאֶה הָאָדָם
, see Dr
combined with prepositions, אֲשֶׁר
converts them into conjunctions: see below, בַּאֲשֶׁר
. On its use similarly with (אַחֲרֵי) אַחַר
, עַל דְּבַר
, see these words. — הַאֲשֶׁר
, with ה interrogative
, occurs once,
also read כַּאֲשֶׁר
: note ברכך
The Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew and English Lexicon
License: Public domain document; formatting developed for use in https://marvel.bible by Eliran Wong.
Source: provided by Tim Morton, the developer of Bible Analyzer