status of forms yiqtolun, etc.?
decaen at chass.utoronto.ca
Wed Nov 25 07:20:17 EST 1998
got a bit of a bee in my bonnet (hat, not trunk of the car). all the
grammars **assume** that the modern hebrew forms are basic, period.
hence when looking at the nonpast (aka imperfect), we're supposed to
teach the form yiqtlu 3mp as *basic*, period.
but look at the grammar, how the forms actually work, and the apparent
free variation with forms in -n (paragogic nun: yeah, right, extra n
for no apparent reason: gotta love our little benighted field).
if you look at the Tiberian reading of Standard Biblical Hebrew, I
think you must conclude the following:
the basic indicative *form* is yiqtolun. contextual form yiqtlun is a
**reduction**; absence of n is **functional**.
that's what I want to propose. I also think there are some interesting
correlations with that -n that are highly suggestive. I want to frame
it as a hypothesis for further investigation.
n-long zero-long short
syntax verb-second verb-second ? verb-initial
3ms yaqum yaqum ? yaqom
3mp yaqumun yaqumu (plene) yaqumu (defectiva)
suffix yqimennu yqimennu ? yqimehu
consec. wayyiqtol wqatal wqatal
(w modals; also sequ?)
transl. 1. simple pres. modal auxiliaries 1. modals
2. hist. pres. (will, must, etc) 2. sequential
what do you think about the suggestion? in other words, perhaps not
paragogic in any way, really. semantically/functionally "basic" vs
zero-form, inherent modality. there are a number of predictions, but I
don't want to bore you. I would use the samuel-kings corpus to test.
Vincent DeCaen, Ph.D. <decaen at chass.utoronto.ca>
Hebrew Syntax Encoding Initiative
c/o Deparment of Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations
4 Bancroft Ave., 2d floor, University of Toronto, Toronto ON, M5S 1A1
The world needs open hearts and open minds, and it is not through
rigid systems, whether old or new, that these can be derived.
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