TOHUW WA BOHUW, Gen & Jer. (hyth)

Peter Kirk Peter_Kirk at
Thu Apr 4 12:15:03 EST 2002

Yes, very likely if the author meant "the earth had become...", so a
good point. But if he meant "the earth then became..." he would probably
have written Vayhi ha'aretz l'tohu wabohu. But it is always a risky game
to speculate on what the author might have written.

Peter Kirk

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Jason A. Hare [mailto:language_lover64801 at]
> Sent: 04 April 2002 09:36
> To: Biblical Hebrew
> Subject: RE: TOHUW WA BOHUW, Gen & Jer. (hyth)
> Just a small addition.  When this argument was raised before (in
> discussion with some friends), I brought this up:
> If Genesis 1.2 had been intended to mean "became," the author would
> likely) have written - V'ha'aretz hayetah l'tohu vavohu.
> In other words, if the author was meaning to specify that the earth
> "became" Tohu and Bohu, he would have used the L- preposition.  As it
> written, however, it means simply "was."
> Is there no merit to this?
> Regards,
> Jason

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