How could Miriam speak to, let alone get close to the Princess in Exodus 2:7?

Ex 2:7 - Then his sister said to Pharaoh’s daughter, “Shall I go and call you a nurse from the Hebrew women to nurse the child for you?”

1 Answer 1


The answer to this question is actually contained in Ex 2:4 -

And his sister stood at a distance to see what would happen to him.

Then again in V6 -

When she opened it, she saw the child, and behold, the little boy was crying. So she had compassion on him and said, “This is one of the Hebrew children.”

Thus, Miriam was standing in the vicinity of Moses' ark and Pharaoh's daughter recognized the child as a Hebrew boy! It appears that Pharaoh's daughter then, because of her compassion for the child (V6) and her awareness of her father's edict, wanted to save the child, so, engaged in a little ruse the maintain a fig-leaf of legal respectability.

Pharaoh's daughter then allowed what she must have known was a close relative of the child to engage and pay his mother to nurse the child. While Jochebed and Miriam would have been aware that Moses was to be raised as the princess' protege, it was better than having Moses killed.

  • Oh ok so it has to be assumed that she must have known Mirian was a close relative. Thanks.
    – Nat
    Commented Apr 18, 2023 at 22:22
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    + 1 - this raises the question as to whether the princess knew the Hebrew wet nurse in question was Moses' mother. I had formerly thought the princess presumed Miriam to be a local Hebrew girl who simply knew of a handy wet nurse. One wonders how far Miriam's journey downriver would have been. Commented Apr 19, 2023 at 0:54
  • @DanFefferman - she must have known Miriam was a relative because it looked to obvious, AND, if Miriam was not a relative, she would have retrieved the child from the river. It was a rather obvious ruse to elicit feminine maternal sympathy. It worked!
    – Dottard
    Commented Apr 19, 2023 at 1:04
  • @DanFefferman. Yes assumption won’t help to get unbelievers to understand. It’s not in the story at all.
    – Nat
    Commented Apr 26, 2023 at 19:54
  • @Nat - Paul found the same thing on the Areopagus in Greece - air-tight logical arguments never converted anyone. Faith in the unseen is a choice each person makes. No one is here to convince anyone. We are here to exchange ideas and help each other along.
    – Dottard
    Commented Apr 26, 2023 at 21:11

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