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Old Testament Hebrew Lexical Dictionary
Strong's #2495 - חַלָּמוּת
1) purslane, a tasteless plant with thick slimy juice
Jeff Benner, Ancient Hebrew Research Center Used by permission of the author.
חַלָּמוּת fem. ἅπαξ λεγόμ. Job 6:6, a word with regard to which, interpreters have advanced many conjectures, agreeing however in this, that the context requires the meaning to be some article of food which is unsavoury or insipid. In order to shew the true signification, we must have recourse to its etymology. חַלָּמוּת then (of the form פַּלָּצוּת) from חָלַם properly is dreaminess, dreams, hence fatuity (comp. Ecclesiastes 5:2, ), a foolish matter, which may be applied to tasteless food, just as vice versâ insipidity is transferred from food to discourse; compare μωρὸς, ap. Dioscorid. of insipid roots. The Syriac version well shews what this food was, rendering it ܚܠܡܬܐ; for this word, closely resembling the Hebrew word in question, denotes the purslain, a kind of herb, the insipid taste of which has become proverbial in Arabic (رِجْلَة أَحْمَقُ مِنْ more foolish than purslain; v. Meidanii Prov. No. 344, p. 219, ed. H. A. Schultens; Golius ad Sententias Arab. No. 81), in Greek (μωρὸν λάχανον, βλίτον, whence βλίτων, βλιτὰς, βλιτομάμας, Arist. Nub. 997, of a foolish man), and Latin (bliteus, Plaut. Trucul. iv. 4, 1) whence it is called foolish herb, الَقْلَةُ الحَمْقَاءُ which very word the Arabic translator of Job used for the Syr. ܚܠܡܬܐ. The Talmudic word חלמית may be compared with this which is used of herbs in general, Chilaim viii. § 8. רִיר חַלָּמוּת in Job loc. cit. properly the slime of purslain, seems to be contemptuously spoken of herb broth, just as in Germ. any thing foolish, especially foolish discourse, may be proverbially and jocosely called Kohl-Brühe. The Jewish interpreters and the Targums make חַלָּמוּת to be the same as חֶלְמוֹן and חֶלְבּוֹן the yolk of an egg (from the root חָלַס = חָלַב No. 1), and the slime of the yolk of an egg they interpret to be the white of an egg, as being unsavory food; an explanation not bad in itself, but that already given is preferable, on account of the analogy of so many languages.
the Fifth Week after Epiphany