About This Site

Figaro rips the innards out of things people say and reveals the rhetorical tricks and pratfalls. For terms and definitions, click here.
(What are figures of speech?)
Ask Figaro a question!

This form does not yet contain any fields.

    « She Doesn’t Look a Day Over 200 | Main | You’re Getting Warmer »

    Cannibalism in the Bible!

    From Ask Figaro:

    Dear Fig,
    Kindly explain this statement in very simple terms.”The fool folds his hands together, and eats his own flesh”.


    Dear Vich,

    Ah, Ecclesiastes 4:5. Figaro loves Ecclesiastes best of all, not least because the Hebrew for Ecclesiastes, Qohelet, is best translated as “Orator.” It’s the most openly rhetorical of all the sacred books.

    The fool you refer to is a man who shuns work (“folds his hands”) and ends up starving (“eats his own flesh”). This is a wonderful metaphor, and a very subtle form of metonomy.

    The New International Bible, with its usual ham-handed translating, swaps the flesh-eating for “ruins himself.” Figaro vastly prefers cannibalistic figures.



    PrintView Printer Friendly Version

    EmailEmail Article to Friend

    Reader Comments (1)

    Test comment. Firefox using MacOS 10.4.10. If this works, I guess my problem posting comments was only temporary.
    October 10, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterRichard

    PostPost a New Comment

    Enter your information below to add a new comment.

    My response is on my own website »
    Author Email (optional):
    Author URL (optional):
    All HTML will be escaped. Hyperlinks will be created for URLs automatically.