Jerusalem is described as a widow after the destruction of the Temple: "Lonely sits the city Once great with people! She that was great among nations Is become like a widow" (Lamentations 1:1). The significance of Jerusalem the downtrodden being depicted in feminine terms is examined and specifically the implication of her being described as a widow. First, the meaning of widowhood is investigated. Then other metaphors used in the text to describe the desolate city of Jerusalem are examined. Midrashic commentary and life experience are enlisted to elucidate the biblical text. Finally, the metaphors that are used to describe women in this text are compared with similar metaphors used by prophets in other texts. The purpose of this article is to focus on the danger of negative feminine metaphors which depict the sinning city/nation and the power of these metaphors to influence how women are perceived.


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pp. 16-24
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