Some Biblical verses concerning color (12 April 2016, 4 Nisan, 5776)
Oliver Thompson Jr.
Still working hard to whitewash our history! The Torah speaks against your lies! Please take time to investigate these following scriptures: Israelites Appearance Jer. 8:21 Jer. 14:2 Song Of Solomon.
21 For the brokenness of the daughter of my people I am broken;
I mourn, dismay has taken hold of me.
The word translated above as "I mourn" in Hebrew is "Kadarti." This is from the root "Kedar" which can mean "dark".
Someone who mourns was considered to become darker in visage. Even today a person who is depressed is described as being dark in outlook or "under a shadow."
Similarly we have the English word sombre meaning "gloomy, subdued, pessimistic."
The word sombre according to the Online Etymological Dictionary is from:
1760 "gloomy, shadowy" (earlier sombrous, c. 1730), from French sombre "dark, gloomy," from Old French sombre (14c.), from an adjective from Late Latin subumbrare "to shadow,"
2 Judah mourns
And her gates languish;
They sit on the ground in mourning,
And the cry of Jerusalem has ascended.
The expression translated above as
"They sit on the ground in mourning,"
uses the Hebrew words ""Kidarti le-Arets" i.e. "I became dark on the ground." This too is from the root "Kedar" which can mean "dark".
The simple implication is according tot he English translation above. It means mourning, dejection, gloom, etc. The word "gloom" in English also connotes both "darkness and dejection."
You want to say it means their skin color became darker?
Maybe it did.
Individuals and nations have genetic potentials. Under different conditions certain types become more prominent.
The early white settlers in North America and Australia and the Zionist settlement in Israel were both reported as having a higher proportion of blond children compared to their parents.
This may have been an optical illusion, or wishful thinking, or there may have been something to it.
So too, in the opposite direction.
It may be that the Jews (as distinct from other Israelites) when they went into Exile produced more darker phenotypes.
This brings us to your quote from the Song of Solomon:Song of Solomon 1:
5 I am black but lovely,
O daughters of Jerusalem,
Like the tents of Kedar,
Like the curtains of Solomon.
6 Do not stare at me because I am swarthy,
For the sun has burned me.
My mother's sons were angry with me;
They made me caretaker of the vineyards,
But I have not taken care of my own vineyard.
What exactly this means may be considered elsewhere. According to the very simple literal meaning a young beautiful woman is speaking. She says she is black because the sun has scorched her. She asks the daughters of Jerusalem not to be prejudiced against her because she is darker than them.
The maximum one can get from this is that there may have existed darker types in Ancient Israel perhaps much darker than the average but they were a minority. Otherwise why should she need to ask the daughters of Jerusalem not to be prejudiced against her?
Fair enough. So some were dark and most were not.
What is the big deal?