And he took the damsel by the hand
(See Gill on Matthew 9:25).
And said unto her;
in the Syriac language, which was then commonly spoken by the Jews, and well understood: hence the Syriac version expresses the following words without an interpretation,
The Ethiopic version reads it, "Tabitha Cumi"; and so do some Greek copies, and Latin versions, taking it to be the same word as in ( Acts 9:36 ) whereas that signifies "Dorcas, a roe"; but this word is of another signification, as here explained,
which is, being interpreted, damsel (I say unto thee) arise.
The phrase, "I say unto thee", is no part of the interpretation of the above Syriac words; but is added, by the evangelist, as being what was expressed by Christ at the same time, signifying his authority and power over death; only "damsel arise", is the interpretation of them, (ylj) , "Tali", signifies a "boy", and (atylj) , "Talitha", a "girl"; and so they are often used in the Targums F23, and in the Talmud: the one is used for a boy of seventeen years of age F24, and the other for a girl of sixteen or seventeen years of age F25; so that this child might well be called by this name, since she was but twelve years of age; and (ymwq) , "Cumi", is the imperative (Mwq) , "to arise".
F23 Targum Hieres in Deut. xxii. 21. & Targum Sheni in Esther ii. 9.
F24 T. Bab. Bava Bathra, fol. 142. 2. Gloss. in ib.
F25 lb. fol. 91. 2.