Gershon Hadas

Click here for sample verses from the version by Gershon D. Hadas.


Title: The Book of Psalms / For the Modern Reader • A New Translation by Gershon Hadas
Date: Copyright 1964
Publisher: New York NY (U.S.A.): Jonathan David
Contents: 5 Books of Psalms. – A Note on the Book of Psalms • Contents • Preface • Foreword.
References: Chamberlin p. 339-3
Images: Cover, Title page
Comment: Clothbound or Paperback octavo; XXII & 266 pp. Scripture text in single column set in paragraphs. No versification, no supplements. Titles are translated.

Gershon ben Rav David Hadas wrote two pages "Note on The Book of Psalms"; his Preface (3 pp.), dated Kansas City, MO, June 1, 1964, informs,
»Recent versions of te Bible including the Psalms are, with two or three notable exceptions, revisions of the matchless King James translation. The edition published by the Jewish Publication Society, some 50 years ago, also follows the King James version, except that the Jewish Scholars removed from this edition the scattered overtones of Christian tradition. (…) I endeavored to provide an honest reflection of the Hebrew rather than a word by word translation. There was a time, not long ago, when I read the Psalms in Hebrew with my congregation on Sabbath afternoons and on other occasions. I want the tradition to continue even if we have to resort to a translation. But the translation must be intelligible as well as honest. In order to produce such a version, I have had to take some privileges with the original. Matters of singular and plural, past and present, are often not too carefully observed in the original. In the English, we are more rigid in these matters, and I have had to make the number or the tense fit the rest of the verse or the chapter. I have had to transpose lines on occasion. At times I have had to add a whole line, but this only to make clear the text, never to change its meaning. Where individual words or phrases offer insurmountable difficulties to the translator, I selected from the Hebrew commentators that meaning, which seemed to me, most acceptable to a contemporary reader.«

Theodore Friedman, [then] President of the Rabbinic Assembly, added a Foreword. He praises Hadas´ translation, »Faithful to the Hebrew original, yet possessing a contemporary ring, it should once again restore the Book of Psalms to its position as the inexhaustible source to which the Jew of our times can turn again and again in search of solace, inspiration and faith.«

Gershon Hadas son of David Hadas and Gitel Draizin, born Wołkowysk / Volkovisk (Poland) July 9th, 1896, died Dec. 11th, 1980 Kansas City MO (U.S.A.), was Rabbi at the Beth Shalom Synagogue, Kansas City, MO from 1929 till 1961. He is buried on Mount Carmel Cemetary in Raytown MO.


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