Assyrian Hebrew?

Lewis Reich lewreich at
Tue Aug 10 20:45:46 EDT 1999

On 10 Aug 99, at 11:20, Peter Kirk wrote:

> Henry is of course right that this shift cannot be fully explained in 
> a short E-mail. But it is interesting that this long A to O shift 
> seems to occur rather regularly, including a second time in Hebrew. 
> Thus we have the following changes in Hebrew:
> 2nd millennium BCE    long A becomes (long) O (holem)
> 1st millennium BCE ?  some short A's lengthened to long A
> 1st millennium CE ?   new long A becomes O in Ashkenazi >  

I seem to recall that in some Jewish pronunciation subgroups even 
in modern times, the holem was at least occasionally pronounced 
as a long a;  an uncle of mine pronounced the holem in ywm (day) 
as a long a.

Lewis Reich
lewreich at

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