Zeit. Der Deutschen Morgenländischen Gesellsch


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The Israelites, in common with other Semites, practiced human sacrifice, that is, the frightful sacrifice of children. The law which claims every first-born [everything that first opens the womb] for Yahweh (Exodus 13: 2) was originally certainly intended to be taken literally. That a redemption price was required in the case of first-born children indicates that their sacrifice was originally carried out. The narrative in Genesis 22 [the sacrifice of Isaac] would also be meaningless if it did not assume the original sacrifice of the first-born. The command not to dedicate your children to Moloch (Leviticus 18: 21; 20: 2) does not give the impression of being directed against a foreign custom. Among the Hebrews, as among the Greeks, cultural progress tended to suppress these barbarous practices at an early time, while they continued in full force among the equally religious but culturally cruder Carthaginians. But time and again the practice reemerged in the later history of Israel.2

The practice of redeeming the first-born by giving a sum of money to the rabbis (usually a fee of five shekels or twenty groschen) persisted among the European Jews until recent times.3

2Nöldeke, T.n/an/an/an/an/a, "Baethgens Beitrtäge zur Semit. Religionsgeschichte," ., 42: 483.

3 Löw, L., Die Lebensalter in der jüdischen Literatur, 110–118.

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Chicago: Zeit. Der Deutschen Morgenländischen Gesellsch in Primitive Behavior: An Introduction to the Social Sciences, ed. Thomas, William I. (New York: McGraw-Hill Book Company, Inc., 1937), Original Sources, accessed July 21, 2024, http://originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=ULZZGWZV7P3GVS2.

MLA: . Zeit. Der Deutschen Morgenländischen Gesellsch, Vol. 42, in Primitive Behavior: An Introduction to the Social Sciences, edited by Thomas, William I., New York, McGraw-Hill Book Company, Inc., 1937, Original Sources. 21 Jul. 2024. http://originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=ULZZGWZV7P3GVS2.

Harvard: , Zeit. Der Deutschen Morgenländischen Gesellsch. cited in 1937, Primitive Behavior: An Introduction to the Social Sciences, ed. , McGraw-Hill Book Company, Inc., New York. Original Sources, retrieved 21 July 2024, from http://originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=ULZZGWZV7P3GVS2.