1I. Περὶ μὲν δὴ τούτων ἀρκέσει τὰ εἰρημένα. σκεπτέον δὲ ἑξῆς οὐ παρέργως, ἃ περὶ τῆς τῶν διαλέκτων συγχύσεως φιλοσοφεῖ· λέγει γὰρ ὧδε· “καὶ ἦν πᾶσα ἡ γῆ χεῖλος ἕν, καὶ φωνὴ μία πᾶσι. καὶ ἐγένετο ἐν τῷ κινῆσαι αὐτοὺς ἀπὸ ἀνατολῶν, εὗρον πεδίον ἐν τῇ γῇ Σεναὰρ καὶ κατῴκησαν ἐκεῖ. καὶ εἶπεν ἄνθρωπος τῷ πλησίον· δεῦτε πλινθεύσωμεν πλίνθους καὶ ὀπτήσωμεν αὐτὰς πυρί. καὶ ἐγένετο αὐτοῖς ἡ πλίνθος εἰς λίθον, καὶ ἄσφαλτος ἦν αὐτοῖς ὁ πηλός.1 καὶ εἶπον· δεῦτε οἰκοδομήσωμεν ἑαυτοῖς πόλιν καὶ πύργον, οὗ ἡ κεφαλὴ ἔσται ἕως τοῦ οὐρανοῦ, καὶ ποιήσωμεν ἑαυτῶν ὄνομα πρὸ τοῦ διασπαρῆναι ἐπὶ πρόσωπον πάσης τῆς γῆς. καὶ κατέβη κύριος ἰδεῖν τὴν πόλιν καὶ τὸν πύργον ὃν ᾠκοδόμησαν οἱ υἱοὶ τῶν ἀνθρώπων. καὶ εἶπε κύριος· ἰδοὺ γένος ἓν καὶ χεῖλος ἓν πάντων· καὶ τοῦτο ἤρξαντο ποιῆσαι, καὶ νῦν οὐκ ἐκλείψει ἐξ αὐτῶν πάντα ὅσα ἂν ἐπιθῶνται ποιεῖν· δεῦτε καὶ καταβάντες συγχέωμεν ἐκεῖ αὐτῶν τὴν γλῶσσαν, ἵνα μὴ ἀκούσωσιν ἕκαστος τὴν φωνὴν τοῦ πλησίον. καὶ διέσπειρεν αὐτοὺς κύριος ἐκεῖθεν ἐπὶ πρόσωπον πάσης τῆς γῆς, καὶ


The Confusion of Tongues

On the Confusion of Tongues

I. Enough has been said on these matters. The1 next question which demands our careful consideration is the confusion of tongues and the lessons of wisdom taught by Moses thereon. For he says as follows.

“And all the earth was one lip and there was one voice to all. And it came to pass as they moved from the east, they found a plain in the land of Shinar and dwelt there. And a man said to his neighbour, Come, let us make bricks and bake them with fire. And the brick became as stone to them and the clay was asphalt to them. And they said, ‘Come, let us build for ourselves a city and a tower, whose head shall be unto heaven, and let us make our name before we are scattered abroad, on the face of all the earth.’ And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of men built. And the Lord said, ‘Behold, they have all one race and one lip, and they have begun to do this, and now nothing shall fail from them of all that they attempt to do. Come and let us go down and confuse their tongue there, that they may not understand each the voice of his neighbour.’ And the Lord scattered them abroad thence on the face of all the earth, and they

DOI: 10.4159/DLCL.philo_judaeus-confusion_tongues.1932