[b-hebrew] Offend/dealt corruptly - chet bet lamed (nehemiah 1:7)

Peter Kirk peterkirk at qaya.org
Sat Jun 26 07:41:20 EDT 2004

On 25/06/2004 16:28, Karl Randolph wrote:

>“Bear” in English comes from at least two, if not three, roots. ...

But how do you know this? Perhaps just from the meaning - but not 
necessarily, the animal "bear" could have been so called because it 
carries (bears) heavy loads or can survive (bear) cold winters. And I 
suspect that this is the kind of explanation you would look for if you 
found a similar case in Hebrew. But in fact we know that the animal 
"bear" comes from a different root because it has different cognates in 
other Indo-European languages e.g. German "bär" vs. "(ge)bier-t", 
Swedish "björn" vs. "bär-a" etc.

So similarly with a Hebrew root like XBL. We might be able to squeeze 
the attested meanings into being based on a single root. But evidence 
from related languages like Arabic suggests that there are in fact two 
separate roots. While we can't be sure perhaps, we need to take that 
evidence seriously.

Peter Kirk
peter at qaya.org (personal)
peterkirk at qaya.org (work)

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