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p. 46



   AFTER Jacob's sons had been born to him by Leah, then Joseph and Benjamin were born to him (by Rachel); and he loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the child of (his) old age, and because of his beauty and purity, and his being left motherless. He made him a garment with long sleeves, and his brethren envied him. And he dreamed dreams twice, and their hatred increased, and they kept anger in their hearts against him. They sold him to the Midianites, who carried him to Egypt, and sold him to Potiphar, the chief of the guards; and Potiphar delivered his house and servants into his hands; but because of the wantonness of Potiphar's wife, he was bound and kept in prison for two years. When the chief cup-bearer and the chief baker dreamed dreams in one night, and Joseph interpreted them, his words actually came to pass. After Joseph had remained in bondage two years, Pharaoh the king of Egypt saw two dreams in one night; and he was troubled and disturbed, and the sorcerers and enchanters and wise men were unable to interpret his dreams. Then one of those who had been imprisoned with Joseph remembered (him), and they told Pharaoh; p. 47 and Joseph interpreted his dreams, and Pharaoh made him king over Egypt. And Joseph gathered together and collected the corn of the seven prosperous years, and saved it for the seven years of famine. When the household of Jacob lacked bread, Jacob sent his sons to Egypt to buy corn, and they met Joseph, and he recognised them, but they did not know him. After he had tortured them twice by his harsh words, he at last revealed himself to them, and shewed himself to his brethren. And he sent and brought his father Jacob and all his family--seventy-five souls in number, and they came down and dwelt in the land of Egypt two hundred and thirty years. Concerning that which God spake to Abraham, 'Thy seed shall be a sojourner in a strange land four hundred and thirty years1;' they were under subjection in their thoughts from the time that God spake to Abraham until they went forth from Egypt. Jacob died in Egypt, and he commanded that he should be buried with his fathers; and they carried him and buried him by the side of his fathers in the land of Palestine. After Joseph died, another king arose, who knew not Joseph, and he oppressed the children of Israel with heavy labour in clay; at that time Moses was born in Egypt. Since many have written the history of the blessed Joseph at great length, and the blessed Mâr Ephraim has written his history in twelve discourses, concerning everything which happened to him from his childhood to his death, as well as another discourse upon the carrying up of his bones (to Palestine), we refrain from writing a long account of him, that we may not depart from the plan which we laid down in making this collection.



p. 46

5 In the Oxford MS. chap. xxxi. It is much amplified by long extracts from the Bible history of Joseph.

6 Gen. xxxvii, xxxix, xli-l.

p. 47

1 Gen. xv. 13, Exod. xii. 40.