The multiple descriptions of a body of water called yam sûp (ים סוף) in the Pentateuch present a confusing portrait of when the Israelites reach this body of water and what exactly happens there. In this article, I argue that the yam sûp in the Pentateuch is the literary product of multiple hands informed by different, and at times irreconcilable, notions of geography and historiography. In identifying the multiple depictions of the yam sûp of the exodus, I consider also the extent to which the redactor intervenes in the text.

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