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Holman Bible Dictionary


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A stout-bodied, medium-size game bird with variegated plumage. David likened his life as a fugitive from Saul to a hunted partridge (1 Samuel 26:20 ). The translation of the proverb of the partridge (Jeremiah 17:11 ) is difficult; the Hebrew is extremely terse, and one of the verbs is of uncertain meaning (brood, gather, or lay). Various translations understand the action in the following ways: a partridge sits on eggs which will not hatch (KJV); a partridge gathers chicks it did not hatch (RSV); a partridge sits on eggs it did not lay (REB); a partridge hatches eggs it did not lay (NAS, NIV, NRSV TEV). The KJV interpretation is an apt picture of riches which come to nothing. In other interpretations, the partridge who steals eggs or chicks is no less fortunate than any bird whose chicks grow and leave the nest.

Copyright Statement
These dictionary topics are from the Holman Bible Dictionary, published by Broadman & Holman, 1991. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman & Holman.

Bibliography Information
Butler, Trent C. Editor. Entry for 'Partridge'. Holman Bible Dictionary. 1991.

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