[b-hebrew] weak verb reference
karyn at birchbarkstudio.com
Sat Feb 26 10:38:03 EST 2005
On Feb 25, 2005, at 7:47 PM, Maurice A. O'Sullivan wrote:
> At 21:44 25/02/2005, Karl Randolph wrote:
>> I personally ascribe to the third theory. As a result, I prefer to
>> read Tanakh in unpointed Hebrew,
> >> Aron Dotan is a strong opponent of the revolutionary proposal
> raised several months ago by
> some scholars to do away with all of the diacritical markings and to
> only leave one mark for
> the "A" sound (instead of the kamatz and patach) and one for the "E"
> sound (instead of tzere
> and segol). "I think that if we give up two of these marks we are
> liable to undermine the entire
> Hebrew grammar system,"
Thanks to both Karl and Maurice for their interesting insights. I
appreciate their comments.
However, my current concern is not with how the pointing helps (or
doesn't help) with pronunciation (choose whatever period you prefer).
Neither is the issue with translation, I agree that context is the
standard for navigating ambiguity. My problem is with explaining
grammatically the pointing that we actual have. In other words, I need
to be able to justify why a verb "looks" the way it does. Now typically
I can explain how it differs from an expected strong verb pattern by
various weak verb patterns, accent shifts, presence of gutterals, etc.
However, I am at a loss for where to turn when I, for example, expect a
segol and I see a qamats, or I expect a dagesh and it just isn't there
(with no compensatory lengthening anywhere in sight) ... and usually
just saying "that's the way it is" isn't satisfactory (although, I
recognize that in some cases that will just be the way it is). Let me
give an example.
From Ruth 2 vs 2 we have the verb _wa'alaqotah_ (I probably don't have
the transliteration accurate... the word is: waw-patach--aleph-hataf
patach--lamed-patach--qof-hataf qamats--tet-qamats--heh) No dagesh. The
verb is parsed as a Piel cohortative. I don't expect this pointing with
a Piel stem! Where is the dagesh in the middle root? The BHQ has a
dagesh in the tet. Why?
Or Ruth 1:18 the first word of the verse _watere'_ which is a Qal
Imperfect 3fs of r'h. How do we get the sere and segol? (on this one
our professor did put together a presentation to help us see the
historical development that led to this form).
So, my quest for where to turn for resources remains. When my current
arsenal of patterns and explanations falls short, where can I go to try
to track down the "why" for the pointing?
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