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Seduce; Seducer

SEDUCE; SEDUCER

se-dus', se-dus'-er (Hiphil of (Ta`ah, or ta`ah, "to err"; of pathah, "to be simple"; planao, apoplanao, "to lead astray"):

(1) The word "seduce" is only used in the Bible in its general meaning of "to lead astray," "to cause to err," as from the paths of truth, duty or religion. It occurs in the King James Version and the Revised Version (British and American) Ezekiel 13:10; 2 Kings 21:9; 1 Timothy 4:1; Revelation 2:20; in the King James Version only, Proverbs 12:26 (the Revised Version (British and American) "causeth to err"); Isaiah 19:13 (the Revised Version (British and American) "caused to go astray"); Mark 13:22; 1 John 2:26 (the Revised Version (British and American) "lead astray"). The noun "seducer" (2 Timothy 3:13 the King James Version, goes) is correctly changed in the Revised Version (British and American) into "impostor."

(2) It is not found in its specific sense of "to entice a female to surrender her chastity." Yet the crime itself is referred to and condemned.

Three cases are to be distinguished:

(a) The seduction of an unbetrothed virgin:

In this case the seducer cording to J-E (Exodus 22:16) is to be compelled to take the virgin as his wife, if the father consents, and to pay the latter the usual purchase price, the amount of which is not defined. In the Deuteronomic Code (Deuteronomy 22:28) the amount is fixed at 50 shekels, and the seducer forfeits the right of divorce.

(b) The seduction of a betrothed virgin:

This case (Deuteronomy 22:23-27; not referred to in the other codes) is treated as virtually one of adultery, the virgin being regarded as pledged to her future husband as fully as if she were formally married to him; the penalty therefore is the same as for adultery, namely, death for both parties (except in the case where the girl can reasonably be acquitted of blame, in which case the man only is put to death).

(c) The seduction of a betrothed bondmaid (mentioned only in Leviticus 19:20-22):

Here there is no infliction of death, because the girl was not free; but the seducer shall make a trespass offering, besides paying the fine.

See CRIMES; PUNISHMENTS.

D. Miall Edwards


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Bibliography Information
Orr, James, M.A., D.D. General Editor. "Entry for 'SEDUCE; SEDUCER'". "International Standard Bible Encyclopedia". 1915.