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perspective of the mores of the community.62 This may be the case with the "stranger" mentioned in Proverbs 6:1 where

it is paralleled by "neighbor" (fr). Here again, though,

the point at issue is still financial dealings with such persons.

The "strange woman" (hrz hwx) is a problem

peculiar to Proverbs. She was clearly a troublesome figure for the circle(s) responsible for Proverbs 1-9, not to mention latter day commentators. At least four interpre- tations have been proposed: a common prostitute, a cult prostitute, the unfaithful (foreign) wife of a Hebrew, and Astarte or some other fertility goddess.63

The first appearance of this figure is in Proverbs 2:16-19 which is part of an instruction comprising the whole

62

L. Snijders, "The Meaning of rz in the Old Testa-

ment," OTS 10 (1954), 63f., 78, 79.

63 Kovacs, p. 252; cf. G. Bostrom, Proverbastudien die Weisheit and das Fremde Weib in Spr. 1-9 (Lund: C. Gleerup, 1934); McKane, pp. 264-288, 314-320, 326-331, 334- 341, 365-368; B. Lang, Die weisheit Lehrrede: Eine Untersuch von Spruche 1-7 (Stuttgart: Katholische be werc erlag, 1972), pp. 87-99; Perdue, pp. 146-155; J. Burnham, Women in the Book of Proverbs (Th. M. Thesis, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, 1956), pp. 56-81; M. Tate, Jr., A Study of the Wise Men of Israel in Relation to the Prophets (Th.D. Dissertation, The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, 1958), pp. 355-360; N. Habel, "The Symbolism of Wisdom in Proverbs 1-9," Interpretation 26 (1972), 131-157; H. Ringgren, Word and Wisdom: Studies in the Hypostatization of Divine Qualities and Functions in the Ancient Near East (Lund: Hakan Ohlssons Boktryckeri, 1947).

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