Wild Grape

Wild Grape is the rendering of the A.V. at Isa 5:2,4 of the Heb. word which occurs only in the plur. beushim, בּאֻשַׁים, and indicates a noxious species of plant or kind of fruit. In form the word is a pass. participle of בָּאִשׁ, which means to smell offensively, as many poisonous vegetables do; and this connects it radically with בָּאשָׁה, boshah ("cockles," Job 31:40), although the two seem to denote different plants, but both useless. The Sept. gives ἀκάνθας as the Greek equivalent; which is certainly a mistake, unless they had some other reading of the original text. The rendering of Aquila is σαπρίαι, that of Symmachus ἀτελῆ; both of which give rather the etymological meaning or force of the original word than translate it into its Greek equivalent as a significative appellation. The rendering of Jerome is labruscce; and this has been followed by Luther (Herlinge) and the A.V. (wild grapes). The species of plant intended has been supposed by some to be the Fitis labrusca, a plant which produces small berries of a dark-red color when ripe, but sour to the taste; Hasselquist suggests the Solanum incanun, or gray nightshade; and Celsius contends for the Aconiturn napellus, wolfs-bane. It seems more probable, however, that no specific plant is referred to in the passage of the prophet; but that the word is simply used as an adjective with its substantive understood, as a designation of bad or worthless grapes. The Lord expected that his vineyard should produce grapes, but it produced only beihshim, vile, uneatable grapes. See Rosenmuller, Bibl. Bot. (Eng. transl.), page 111; and Comment. ad loc.; Gesenius, Henderson, Knobel, ad loc. See GRAPE.

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