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In the WildernessThe Doctrine of Defilement in the Book of Numbers$
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Mary Douglas

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780199245413

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199245413.001.0001

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The Land and the Jubilee

The Land and the Jubilee

(p.235) Chapter 13 The Land and the Jubilee
In the Wilderness

Mary Douglas

Oxford University Press

The Book of Numbers has always been regarded as a serious book. This leads to noticing that the law pertaining to heiresses is not given in the style for laws. In the vivid narrative style of a special encounter with Moses, the uncles of the women complain about the probable effect of the Jubilee on their inheritance. The Numbers list of appointed feasts only deals with the annual cycle, so in Numbers there is no other mention of the Jubilee. The law of Jubilee that the sons of Manasseh are referring to is from Leviticus which calls for the celebration of a sabbatical year when the land shall be left fallow, as in Exodus, and adds a Jubilee in the fiftieth year, which it requires in addition to the seven-yearly release of slaves and remission of debts.

Keywords:   Book of Numbers, law, heiresses, Jubilee, inheritance, sons of Manasseh, Leviticus, land, slaves, debts

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