BAR 20:03, May/Jun 1994
Power to the PowerlessA Long-Lost Song of Miriam
According to the Book of Exodus, after the miracle at the Red Seathe Israelites have passed through dry-shod and the Egyptians have drownedMoses and the Israelites sing a victory hymn (Exodus 15:119). Immediately following the Song of the Sea, as it is called,a is the Song of Miriam: Then Miriam the prophet, the sister of Aaron, took a timbrel in her hand, and all the women went out after her, with timbrels and dancing. And Miriam sang to them (Exodus 15:2021a). The Song of Miriam, however, is a mere half verseExodus 15:21b. It is not only truncated, it is simply a repetition of the first lines of the Song of the Sea:
Sing to the Lord for he has triumphed gloriously;
Horse and rider he has thrown into the sea.