Mothers and their children as victims in war : Amos 1:13 against the background of the Ancient Near East

Kruger, Paul A. (2016)

CITATION: Kruger, P. A. 2016. Mothers and their children as victims in war : Amos 1:13 against the background of the Ancient Near East. Old Testament Essays, 29(1):100-115, doi:10.17159/2312-3621/2016/v29n1a7.

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Article

This article investigates a war atrocity mentioned in Amos 1:13, viz. "ripping open pregnant women. " Twice the combination "ripping open pregnant women " appears in close proximity with "dashing in pieces the little ones" (2 Kgs 8:12; Hos 14:1). The latter topic is also occasionally referred to in other prophetic passages (Isa 13:16; Nah 3:10). After the presentation of comparable evidence from a variety of ANE literary genres, it is concluded that these types of literary topoi were not essentially meant to convey a historical truth. They were rather employed as rhetorical devices to amplify the seriousness of the given (war) scenario.

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