[b-hebrew] NGD neged *nagad
kwrandolph at gmail.com
Wed Sep 29 21:27:26 EDT 2010
On Tue, Sep 28, 2010 at 8:09 AM, Randall Buth <randallbuth at gmail.com> wrote:
> >> Most people would not use English 'initimate' to describe a public
> >> address to a large crowd. To do so would be called 'special pleading'.
> >> Why are you trying to introduce the English word 'intimate'?
> > Which word would you have used?
> With the common collocation with 'eyes', perhaps 'in front of'.
The reason I mentioned “intimate” was because there are times where MNGD
מנגד and similar constructions are used to indicate objects or people that
are in sight, but not in the presence of the subject, therefore the common
collocation is wrong. So what terminology would you use to indicate a
corrected understanding of the term?
> >> > Well, to start out, בלי is not related to בלה, nor is עמדי related to
> >> > עמד,
> >> > shall I go on?
> >> Yes, you should go on. Are you not aware that words like 'balah' come
> >> from roots that are final-y.?
> > Ah, the etymological fallacy. Just because two words are spelled the same
> > without vowels does not mean that they are from the same root.
> Yes, etymological proposals must be weighed for plausibility. However,
> proposing an etymology, whether accepted of not, is not the
> 'etymological fallacy'.
The insistence that similarly spelled words indicate etymology is a fallacy.
This is what you were doing.
> … Fifty years ago a youngish scholar, James Barr, took
> the whole field to task for flagrantly abusing 'etymology' in place of
> lexicography. There is still a tendency to abuse this and my explanation
> for this sad/amusing phenomenon is that it is a result of the common
> ways in which Hebrew is taught. But that is another thread.
And many now go the opposite extreme. There needs to be a balance.
As for James Barr, I have seen some of his work, and have been underwhelmed.
Admittedly those were apparently later works, and not directly connected to
Hebrew, so I can’t discuss his linguistic work. But if his linguistic work
was of the same caliber, then it wouldn’t be good.
> >>>> Ecc 4.12
> >>>>: אם־יתקפו האחד השנים יעמדו נגדו
> >>>> if someone overpower/attack him, the one,
> >>>> the two will stand against/resist him.
> >>> If the one makes himself go around in circles, the second will make him
> >>> stand in his presence.
> >> taqaf תקף 'overpower, be strong against' is a word with a root that
> >> to 'strength' and 'validity', not 'going in circles'.
> > This is a hithpael of NQP נקף. In other words, the idea of running around
> > like a chicken with its head cut off.
> there are problems with this proposal.
> 1. A hitpa``el normally has some preposition other than a 'direct object'
> for any adjunct added to a verb. (There are a few that use a 'direct
> where the meaning has a more comples transitivity.)
> Here, if a singular is read there is a suffix to the verb; if a plural is
> then ha-eHad is the object.
Normally, but as you acknowledge, there are exceptions.
> 2. A minor problem is the fact/probability that n.q.p. is not attested as
> a hitpa``el. A person may always propose such a verb, but some
> doubt will attach to the proposal because of a lack of parallel.
How do you know that this is not the example where it is so attested?
> 3. Most importantly, the morphology cannot support the proposal. A
> hitpa``el would have been spelled y.t.n.q.p.w. יתנקפו. the nun does
> not drop or get absorbed in the pi``el and hitpa``el forms. Without
> a nun in the consonantal text you would be required to amend the
> text and would be doing so arbitrarily, and after already showing a
> lack of control of the language.
This is a more substantive argument.
However, there are problems with your proposal as well, starting with the
definition of TQP תקף, it does not mean “attack”. Going from memory, both
the noun and the verb from the same root together are used fewer than 10
times in Tanakh in Hebrew. From its contexts, the verb has more the meaning
of “to empower”, sometimes clearly in the context of authority assigned from
above. So the idea of opposition is not part of this context.
The problem here is that we are dealing with a language that has not been
spoken as a native tongue (learned at one’s mother’s knee) for well over two
millennia, where the earliest transliterations into other languages were
written several generations after people were mispronouncing the language
according to the other languages that they spoke natively. There are
indications that several terms were forgotten by the time of the first
translation (words not translated, or translated uniquely each time found)
and there is too small a written corpus for us to be 100% certain of many
statements in the text. But while some individual statements are uncertain,
enough is understood that all the major teachings are well and accurately
recognized. Having said that, I have trouble with you defining terms
differently in one case than how all other contexts indicate are their
> Randall Buth
> Randall Buth, PhD
> randallbuth at gmail.com
> Biblical Language Center
> Learn Easily - Progress Further - Remember for Life
Karl W. Randolph.
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