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Old Testament Hebrew Lexical Dictionary
Strong's #0994 - בִּי
1) if it please, pray excuse me, excuse me please
1a) used to introduce an entreaty or request
1033) ib (בי BY) AC: Need CO: Empty AB: Sorrow: The pictograph b , a picture of the house represents what is inside. The i is the hand. When combined these mean "inside the hand". An empty hand desiring to be filled. This root is closely related to aband eb.
Jeff Benner, Ancient Hebrew Research Center Used by permission of the author.
בִּי (for בְּעִי from the root בָּעָה, as בֵּל for בְּעֵל), prayer, asking, and by the usage of the language in the acc., as a part. of entreaty, or rather of asking pardon, always followed by אֲדֹנִי, אֲדֹנָי, prop. with a petition, with asking, or with asking, requesting, we come to thee; as if pace tua, Germ. bitte! mit Erlaub=nib. Genesis 44:18, בִּי אֲדֹנִי יְרַבֶּר־נָא עַבְדְּךָ דָכָר בְּאָזִנֵי אֲדֹנִי “I pray, O lord, let thy servant speak one word to thee;” Exodus 4:10, 13 Numbers 12:11; Joshua 7:8; Judges 6:13, 15 Judges 6:15, 13:8 1 Samuel 1:26; 1 Kings 3:17, 26 1 Kings 3:26 also when more than one speak, Genesis 43:20, זַיּאֹמְרוּ בִּי אֲדֹנִי יָרֹד יָרַדְנוּ וגו׳ “and they said, we pray, O lord! we went down,” etc. Of the ancient versions, LXX. excellently δέομαι and δεόμεθα, Vulg. obsecro, oramus, Targg. בְּבָעוּ, Syr. ܒܒܳܥܘܽ, Judges 13:8, with asking, asking; all of which answer exactly to the Hebrew בִּי, and remarkably confirm the etymology proposed by me, and afterwards approved by Hartmann, Winer, and others. The opinions of others are discussed in Thes. p. 222.
the Fourth Week after Epiphany