complete verse (Proverbs 17:21 in Southern Sotho)

This verse is translated in the Southern Sotho Bibele of 1989 as

Ya tswalang sethoto
o itswalla ditsietsi,
ntata sethoto o hloka thabo.

Or

He who begets a fool,
begets troubles,
the father of a fool lacks happiness

The Hebrew text contains synonymous parallelism and word pairs: “he who begets a fool” and “father of a fool”; to his grief and does not enjoy. In other words, synonymous parallelism and word pairs in this example are the main systemic features of orality identified in the Hebrew text. [In the Southern Sotho translation] the poetic nature, including the parallelisms and word pairs, are well presented in a poetic format:

Ya tswalang sethoto
/he who begets a fool = ntata sethoto/father of a fool
o itswalla ditsietsi/begets troubles to himself = o hloka thabo/he lacks joy.

In simpler terms, he who begets is the father, and by begetting a fool, a father creates troubles for himself, and will never be happy in life.

(Source: Tshokolo J. Makutoane in Religions 2024, 15(2), p. 190)

complete verse (Proverbs 17:2 in Southern Sotho)

This verse is translated in the Southern Sotho Bibele of 1989 as

Mohlanka ya masene
a ka busa mora
a busa mora ya sethoto wa monga hae
a arolelwa lefa jwalo ka bana ba monga hae

Or

“a wise servant
can rule over a son,
rule over a stupid son of his master,
benefit from the inheritance like the children of his master.”

In this example, the most prominent oral feature that is represented in the Hebrew text is syntactic parallelism. This means that an argument about “a wise servant” is presented in a “staircase format.” The wise servant can do two things: (a) rule over a stupid son (b) so that ultimately, he (the wise son) benefits from the inheritance of his (stupid son) master exactly the way his master’s children will benefit. The “staircase format”, or building up of an argument or rather the syntactic parallelism of the Hebrew text is clearly represented and further enhanced [in the Southern Sotho translation] by the repetition of “he will rule over a shameful son.”

(Source: Tshokolo J. Makutoane in Religions 2024, 15(2), p. 190)