[b-hebrew] GDD (was not: Self-mutilation)

Dave Washburn dwashbur at nyx.net
Sun Oct 10 18:35:14 EDT 2004

On Sunday 10 October 2004 14:02, you wrote:
> Dear Dave,
> >  > HH: My first guess would be that there were three languages in use. A
> >>
> >>  good number of scholars say that.
> >
> >Definitely they were.  The question is, which was used for what purposes?
> >That's where we differ.
> HH: Here's an interesting quote from apparent experts in the Hebrew
> language and linguistics, Bernard Spolsky and Elana Shohamy:
> http://www.biu.ac.il/hu/lprc/Hebrew_after_a_century_of_RLS_efforts.htm
>   The process of shifting from the use of Hebrew as a spoken
> vernacular may have started as early as the sixth century BCE, and
> certainly was well along for many living in ancient Israel by the
> beginning of the common era (Chomsky 1957; Rabin 1973).  How long
> Hebrew continued to be spoken among Jews is a matter of some debate
> but it is now generally believed that there were still monolingual
> speakers of Hebrew in villages of Judaea at the time of the Bar
> Kochba Revolt,  in the second century of the Common Era, and native
> speakers even later.

It's a tantalizing quote, to be sure, but upon reading the article I don't see 
any evidence given, and statements like "it is now generally believed" really 
don't do anything for me.  What does "generally" mean?  "Believed" by whom?  
They don't say, and give no backing for such a statement.  Simply citing 
"apparent experts" isn't going to get us very far.

Dave Washburn
"No good.  Hit on head."   -Gronk

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