Indirect volitives in Genesis 1?

Paul Zellmer zellmer at
Fri Sep 25 04:07:36 EDT 1998

Trevor M Peterson wrote:

> Normally I'm just a lurker on this list, but I have a question about
> indirect volitives.

Trevor, don't apologize.  In the recent past, we all appeared to be lurkers on the
list.  There just wasn't much to see in our lurking, since there wasn't much activity!

You're using a term I'm not really familiar with, "*indirect* volitives."  I am
guessing, though, that these are the results if other volitives occur (apodosis-like
features) expressed in volitional-type language.  E.g., "Move the rook and *put him in
check* with the bishop (by uncovering the bishop's path)."

> First, is it *possible* to take the jussives with a
> waw conjunction in Gen 1:6,9,26 as indirect volitives, instead of simple,
> coordinating conjunctions?  Second, is it *more likely* that they should
> be taken this way?

If I have understood your term right, not only is it possible, but it is likely.  If
you have access to it, look at Waltke & O'Connor, 32.2.2 and 34.6.a.  In the latter
section, they write in part, "After an imperative a verbal form not preceded by its
subject or a negative particle is normally either a jusssive or a cohortative.  Where
a prefix-conjunction form is not morphologically marked in such a context, it may be
taken as having jussive or cohortative force.  The second volitional form signifies
purpose or result...."



Paul and Dee Zellmer, Jimmy Guingab, Geoffrey Beltran
Ibanag Translation Project
Cabagan, Philippines

zellmer at

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