[b-hebrew] Nephesh Mesopotamian myths
Polycarp66 at aol.com
Polycarp66 at aol.com
Sat Feb 8 07:08:21 EST 2003
In a message dated 2/8/2003 5:36:55 AM Eastern Standard Time,
furuli at online.no writes:
> It is true that theology has influenced Bible translators. The NIV
> has for instance on the basis of a hapax legomenon introduced a brand
> new theological teaching into the OT. In Is. 19:3 it translates
> )++YM with "the spirits of the dead". The context would rathr suggest
> the rendering "the charmers"
> As in the case above, we can criticize a rendering and say it is
> tendentious, it is not accurate, or it is colored by theology, but it
> is rather seldom that we can say that a rendering is *wrong*.
> However, from a *linguistic* ( not theological) point of view we can
> say that to render YHWH with "the Lord" is wrong, because it is a
> violation of fundamental rules of translation.
> YHWH is a proper name, and the rule is that a proper name which
> denotes one particular person or one particular place should not be
> translated but transcribed. The reason is that the *reference* must
> be upheld. <snip>
I personally have no objection to the use of the name, and I agree that names
are generally transliterated rather than, as the one who began this portion
of the thread stated, "translated". I actually prefer to insert the name,
but unless one desires to to a specifically Christian or secular translation,
it risks excluding the Jewish community.
> There is absolutely no evidence whatsoever that the Jews during the
> first or second temple pronounced YHWH as Yahweh. But Samaritans had
> a pronunciation which was not far from Yahweh. When the element YAH
> occurs in proper names, it is at the end of the name. Looking at
> proper names in the Tanach, it seems that the first two syllables of
> YHWH was YAHO or YEHO . It is true that the Masoretic pointing of
> YHWH is based on the vowels of a substitute, but we must remember
> that the real pronunciation of YHWH was lost when the Masoretes did
> their work. Thus they did not necessarily use vowels which were
> *different* from the original pronunciation (which they did not
> know), but they used the vowels from the substitute word. Their use
> of the vowels YE:H, or occasionally YE:HO at the beginning does not
> rule out that YE:HO was used in the original pronunciation. In short:
> The evidence points to a pronunciation during the second temple which
> is closer to the three syllabic YAHOWA/YEHOWA than to the
> two-syllabic YAHWEH.
I know where you're coming from Rolf, and I'm not buying. This version of
the name of God is not supported by scholars, but is desired by one
particular faith group. Let's just drop any discussion of what that
vocalization might have been.
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