ronning at nis.za
Sun Feb 27 08:57:53 EST 2000
Jason Hare wrote:
> I notice the transliteration system proposed on this site and think that it
> is a little odd. For instance, how are you supposed to use a period (.) to
> show a daghesh? B."N is supposed to be for son (*ben*)? Is that not a
> little strange?
Strange, I agree. This transliteration scheme was designed
to be read by non-thinking entities (computers), not
humans. It does have a couple good ideas, though, like +
for teth to distinguish from taw/tav; also x for cheth is
nice, and c for tsadeh. The problem is replacing it with
something that exactly represents the Hebrew (which,
however, is usually not necessary). I think a cross between
the michigan system and common sense is appropriate:
1. for dagesh forte, just double the appropriate letter
2. for dagesh lene make the "soft" spelling optional (v, gh,
dh, kh, f or ph, th)
3. for shin, just use sh unless confusion would result, then
use $. For sin, use s unless it's not obvious what the word
is, then &.
4. for vowels, maybe what Henry does - a is pathach, aa is
qamets, etc. (optionally - only when necessary to mark a
vowel as long; most people know e.g. that the a's in bara'
5. shewa and composite shewas - maybe e, a, or o unless the
distinction is crucial, in which case keep the michigan-
system with :
6. write the mater with the long vowel (in which case you
could drop the long vowel distinction) - e.g. ben = son of,
bEn = son, beyn = the preposition "between"
b:re'shiyth bara' 'e:lohiym 'eth hashshamayim w:'eth ha'arec
More information about the b-hebrew