Hebrew and Israel and a Book on Inscriptions

jonathan.bailey at gmx.de jonathan.bailey at gmx.de
Tue Nov 9 14:31:18 EST 1999

My Biblical Hebrew is much further along than Modern Hebrew, though I have
completed a course amounting to the ulpan level gimmel in modern Hebrew.
Basically, I know enough to go to Israel and find out I don't know a whit.
I am getting married and am too poor to transplant my entire family to Israel, s

unless I end up getting a job there, I don't plan on being what I would call
fluent in the
language. I do aspire to be able to read it though, for purposes of the
Fachliteratur. In
terms of the linguistics, I really don't see too much relevance of Modern Hebrew
have a personal interest in modern Hebrew poetry, though. (If one dare call that

And I am not terribly sure about the sine qua non thing. In my frantic struggle
for a
pen-pal, I have been astounded by the number of people I have run into on Jewish
Hebrew lists and sites who do not know modern Israeli Hebrew.

You asked about being able to help. Well, I am looking for a letter or e-mail
correspondance in modern Hebrew. I have LingoMAIL, and can receive and send
Hebrew mails. Anyway, finding people who are willing to talk to me is pretty har
as I
am a committed Christian who knows more about Judaism than most Jews. Not that
I am tooting my own horn. I just major in the stuff. I admit to knowing much les
virtually all graduated scholars, but scholars are hard to come by. Do you know
I can get in touch with Israelis who would be interested in talking to a guy lik
me? I
really need to work on my active writing skills, so if I ever do end up in Israe
with a
need to learn the language quickly, it won't be such a shock. Letters would be
so I would be more inclined to take the time to write them properly and in so
save myself some embarassment. E-mails find a way to get rushed. But I will take
what I can get. Though I am a Christian, I tend to like to AVOID talking about
theological subjects with Jews or Christians unless I am already assured that I
a VERY similar wavelength than my partner. I hate meeting people who I am tempte

to respect, only to have that friendship ruined by differing religious beliefs.
healthiest relationship I have with an academian is my epigraphy teacher because
don't mutter a peep about personal religious views. We just peep about epigraphy

As far as the visit, well, the only way you could help me is by getting a
scholarship for
me to get a doctorate over there that would be sufficient for me to support my
and daughter. I would be willing to work as much as possible without damaging my
studies, but of course, I don't know modern Hebrew fluently.

But we all do what we can in this world. Some just don't have the privilege of
all over the world learning all kinds of languages. But my wife and daughter are
the sacrifice.

I assume the book you mentioned is translated into English? I would like to know
if the
ISBN you gave me is to the Hebrew or English. I would like to get it in Hebrew (
I get it
at all - can you tell me more about it?).

I have decided to go ahead and put this on the list, although it is personal and
off-topic, because I am indeed looking for "penpals". Maybe someone on the list
be interested. For those of you who are not, and don't enjoy your boxes getting
cluttered with personal style mails about off-topic subjects, you can be rest
that I will stick to Hebrew linguistics in the future.


---------- Original Message ----------

>>if I really
>>fall in love with the language and/or find the time to really learn it

>i noticed you mentioned ... "[akkadian] fluently" ... and also "modern
>hebrew" in your list.

>i hope that means that you are already fluent in hebrew.
>that is a sine qua non if you are serious about doing your best in biblical

>what levels are necessary?
>i would say about 5000 vocabulary level for BH, 6000-10000 for modern.
>if you're not there, then by all means plan a visit over here. i'll be glad
>to help out where i can.

>on inscriptions that you've mentioned interest in, you may want

>asuppat ketovot `ivriyyot
>by shmuel aHitov
>jerusalem: mosad bialik, 1992
>ISBN 965-342-602-8
>eng tit: handbook of ancient hebrew inscriptions

>it's nice to work on these things within the language, as it were.

>randall buth
>rothberg, hebrew u.
>jerusalem univ. coll.

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