linguistic minimalism, finis (for now...)

Liz Fried lizfried at
Thu Mar 8 19:33:36 EST 2001

This is very interestingVincent.
Why do you put Kings before Deuteronomy?
What about so-called "core" deuteronomy?

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Vincent DeCaen [mailto:decaen at]
> Sent: Thursday, March 08, 2001 1:42 PM
> To: Biblical Hebrew
> Subject: linguistic minimalism, finis (for now...)
> dear friends,
> i'm now in the home stretch of the job search here, and i'll probably
> maintain radio silence soon, very soon...... but in the meantime.
> this is a programme, not a theory, not conclusions, but a programme. so i
> don't have answers, yet, to how ezra patterns with 2 chronicles (but
> hopefully, the answers will start coming in soon). i don't know about
> jonah (though have done some interesting work on the pentameter in jonah
> 2). the jury's out on she- vs asher right now....
> but,
> i can now talk a little more, because a very rough draft of the programme
> with a few worked examples is now in print (a collection of papers from
> departmental symposia), the paper is still steaming from the press. ;-)
> so here're some initial results, yet to be confirmed, etc, etc.
> (a) strata
> so far, i have five clear strata (vs the old two: early vs late). i'm
> using datable milestones to attach approximate dates (* indicates the bulk
> of the book)
> stratum I	ca 700 -	amos, 1st isaiah	*kings
> stratum II	ca 600 -	jeremiah, ezekiel	*deuteronomy
> stratum III	ca 500 -	*zechariah		*gen-exodus
> stratum IV	400+ ?		job?			numbers+gen/exod
> stratum V	?		ecclesiastes		*ezra-nehemiah
> stratum ?	?		qimron's DSS grammar
> i'm using fine variations, considered marginal, and hitherto unstudied in
> any rigorous fashion: verbal morphology, variants of pronominals, etc.
> programme: three volumes (morphological, lexical, syntactic) using the
> computer to create a "dialect geography" of the biblical text... time to
> completion: 2-3 years.
> to michael's question, what would this prove? well, i guess we'd have to
> give the same answer archaeologists and historians give... but a rigorous
> historical dialectology would be an important contribution all the same.
> of course, time of composition is logically independent of value and
> historicity of sources, etc.  i think, e.g., that chronicles has some
> historical gems, despite its putative time of composition.....
> sholom,
> V
> -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
> -=-=-=-=-=-=-
> Dr Vincent DeCaen     <decaen at>
> c/o Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations, 4 Bancroft Ave., 2d floor
> University of Toronto, Toronto ON, CANADA, M5S 1A1
> Hebrew Syntax Encoding Initiative,
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> -=-=-=-=-=-=-
> Love work. Hate authority.  --Shemaiah, from Avot
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