hence, the rationale for the proposed methodology. The enemies are not particularly noticeable in wisdom literature because they do not tend to cluster as they do in the Psalms where they constitute one of "the three determinant elements"69 in the Psalter's most abundantly witnessed forms. Because the psalmists used conventional Hebrew to designate and describe their enemies, however, the assump- tion is reasonable that sages would draw from much the same lexical stock when they spoke about the same or similar folk.
In the cases of the wisdom books of Sirach and the Wisdom of Solomon, the linguistic situation is complicated by the fact that these documents are known primarily in Greek. As confessed by Sirach's grandson, and translator, his book was originally written in Hebrew, but the Greek text is found in the larger canon of the Old Testament. Hebrew textual witnesses (none complete) have been discovered in the modern period.70 Because of this peculiar situation in Sirach's textual transmission the Greek text is used as primary in this study with Hebrew fragments used for
69 70 See n. 7 above. I. Levi, The Hebrew Text of the Book of Ecclesiasticus (Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1904); Y. Yadin, The Ben Sirs Scroll from Masada with Introduction, Emendations and Commentary (Jerusalem: The Israel Exploration Society and the Shrine of the Book, 1965).