[b-hebrew] Fw: WAYYIQTOL

George Athas gathas at hotkey.net.au
Thu Mar 11 01:09:58 EST 2004

I concur with the possibility of the thesis that the Masoretes invented the
difference between conventional waw /we-/ and consecutive waw /wa-/. I'm not
sure of its veracity, but it is certainly plausible.

The reason for the possibility stems from the necessary difference between
Imperfect Yiqtol and the Preterite Yiqtol -- a point that cannot be made
more strongly. The distinction between these two verb types is seen
primarily in those weak roots which appear shorter in the Preterite than in
the Imperfect (eg, III-Heh roots). The traditional understanding of the
Wayyiqtol as essentially an 'inverted Imperfect' (or a conversive) is
erroneous and unhelpful for exegesis and interpretation. It presents a
treacherous 'shortcut' for young players.

I'm steadily coming to the realisation that the Masoretes at least
misunderstood key verbal Hebrew forms, even if they did not invent new
verbal categories. I think they certainly misunderstood cohortative verbs as

Best regards,

Lecturer in Biblical Languages
Southern Cross College
Sydney, Australia

> > 5th century C.E. There is no distinction between WAYYIQTOL  and
> > WEYIQTOL (the conjunction WAW+YIQTOL) at Qumran, and there is no
> > distinction between the two in the transcriptions in the second
> > column of Origen's Hexapla. I argue in my coning thesis that there is
> > strong evidence that the Masoretes was the inventors of the
> > distinction between WEYIQTOL and WAYYIQTOL, although the meaning the
> > Masoretes ascribed to WAYYIQTOL  was different from the meaning
> > ascribed to it from David Kimhi onward. If this is true, it means
> > that the concept WAYYIQTOL  only is a fiction, a misunderstanding
> > based un a wrong interpretation of of Masoretic pointing. Thus the
> > WAYYIQTOL form could not be lost at any given point of time, because
> > it has never existed as an independent semantic unit!
> >
> >
> > Best regards
> >
> > Rolf

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