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In Ruth 2:8-9 Boaz instructs Ruth to work closely with the maidens and to not stray. He also mentions that he's instructed his servants not to molest her.

Were these servants not Jewish? Or was the spiritual level of the people that bad?

Did Boaz only care to protect Ruth or were all the maidens included?

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    Neither translation is quite accurate. Boaz's first set of instructions is not don't stray, but more like: Do not go to gather in a different field, and also do not pass from this, and keep close to my maidens. Also, the instruction to the youths is that they not touch Ruth; in English this may carry the euphemistic connotation you are suggesting, but I am not sure that the same is true in Hebrew; the meaning is probably closer to I have commanded the youths not to bother you. Do you have any sources that support your understanding of the meaning? – Zev Spitz May 21 '18 at 6:29
  • @ZevSpitz based on your answer it makes sense. That explains 2:22 where it says "annoyed in another field." Artscroll for my translation (despite my lack of accuracy when posting this question). – Re'eh May 21 '18 at 20:41
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    IIIRC, I think that the main intention of saying not to bother her may be related to the overall concept of pe'ah. Perhaps, Boaz was concerned that when his workers sees a stranger taking something from the field they might be concerned that the woman was a robber. So Boaz may have been hinting to them, "She's not a robber. Leave her alone and let her gather whatever she wants." – DanF May 22 '18 at 13:58

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