[b-hebrew] Perception influenced the origin of the Hebrew alphabet?
yitzhaksapir at gmail.com
Fri Jan 22 07:37:28 EST 2010
On Fri, Jan 22, 2010 at 2:04 AM, George Athas wrote:
> The main issue I have with your discussion here is that it seems to be approaching a Semitic
> language from a largely Indo-European perspective. ... Syllables are, I believe, a completely
> secondary issue in word formation and alphabetic notation within Hebrew, whereas in Indo-
> European languages it's far more important because they do not have Hebrew's basic triliteral
> construction model.
There's nothing inherent in the language that prevents the use of an alphabet.
Persian languages have for a very long time used alphabetic systems
directly borrowed from
Aramaic, and without clear denotation of vowels. Even today.
The ostracon found at Tell as-Safi has been posited to be an
alphabetic inscription in an IE
Canaanite languages have been written in syllabic script in EA and Ugarit.
The Byblos syllabary is probably used to transmit Canaanite.
What one can say, though, is that the root system requires the speaker
of a Semitic language
to distinguish between vowels. MLK can bemelekh 'king',malakh
mulkha 'in front of you', millekh 'from lekh', malkha 'circumcised
you', molkha 'circumcizing you'.
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