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    a brand from the fire

    Dear teachers,

    Would you be kind enough to tell me whether I am right with my interpretation of the expression in bold in the following sentence?

    When I realized I was through the siege, I felt like a brand from the burning.

    a brand from the fire = a brand plucked out of the fire (an allusion from Zackariah 3:2)

    The LORD said to Satan, "The LORD rebuke you, Satan! The LORD, who has chosen Jerusalem, rebuke you! Is not this man a burning stick snatched from the fire?"

    Thanks for your efforts.



  1. BobK's Avatar
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    Re: a brand from the fire

    There seem to be two meanings of 'brand' in your quotes:

    In 'felt like a brand from the burning', the 'brand' sounds like a mark on the skin made with a hot iron to mark ownership or status. (Maybe after the siege, for some reason, this person felt as if he were a piece of wood in a fire - but I doubt it)

    But in 'a brand from the fire', the 'brand' is a piece of burning wood. This usage is not common today, but is preserved in fossilized form in the term 'firebrand' - an easily excitable person/a hot-head.


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