Constructs with finite verb.
dwashbur at nyx.net
Tue Sep 5 13:18:51 EDT 2000
> Last night I found a relevant section in Gesenius
> on this topic. There it said that in these cases the
> whole rest of the sentence (or maybe he meant the clause
> which began with the finite verb) was in a dependent
> genitive relationship to the noun in construct.
> There was no elaboration and I'm not sure how to undersand
> what is being said. What does that mean exactly?
> Does that mean we translate it as if it were a verbal noun?
> Is that what Rashi meant? Rather than emend it
> you read these as if they were verbal nouns?
What section of Gesenius are you looking at? The only one I could
find is 130d (p. 422 in GKC) where he says that the construct can
govern independent sentences and gives the example of Exod 4:13
and others. He also refers there to section 155, where he says
much the same thing. It is interesting that he doesn't mention Gen
1:1 in either of these sections, though he spends about half the
paragraph talking about this construction with time indicators.
Considering the examples he gives, such as Isa 29:1 QIR:YAT
XFNF DVWID which he renders "the city where David encamped," I
doubt that he has a verbal noun sense in mind here; it looks more
as though he would be likely to suggest for Gen 1:1 a more relative-
clause type sense: "In the beginning when God created the
heavens and the earth etc." At least that's how I read it. I quite
agree that he doesn't say much that is of interpretive value, but this
is more or less how I read what he does say. Considering the
quote that was given earlier by someone, the verbal noun idea may
be what Rashi had in mind; however, I don't see any indication that
Gesenius is going in the same direction. At the same time, it
seems to me that if B:R"$IYT is actually a construct, Gesenius'
approach has real possibilities: "In the beginning, when God
created the heavens and the earth, the earth was formless and
empty etc." I could live with this :-)
"Éist le glór Dé."
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