Bible Review 1:1, Spring 1985

Unlocking the Poetry of Love in the Song of Songs

By Jack M. Sasson

At barely eight chapters with a total of 117 verses, the Song of Songs is one of the shortest books of the Bible. In 1977, Marvin Pope of Yale University published his massive, 750-page commentary to the Song of Songs. That’s an average of nearly six and a half pages for each verse—and most of these pages are printed in small, densely packed type. One would have thought that Pope’s volume would dull, if not answer, all our questions about the Song of Songs for at least a decade or two. But at least four major works on the Song of Songs have crossed my desk since then, obviously a sign that authors feel the need to say more. This also demonstrates insatiable interest in this fascinating book, by scholars as well as by the general public.

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