[b-hebrew] BLG

Karl Randolph kwrandolph at email.com
Wed Oct 20 20:33:50 EDT 2004


I started writing this off list to another person, but then realized that this goes to the reason I brought up the question in the first place.

Is the Arabic the only recognized cognate language similarity to BLG? With all the Hebrew uses of the root being pre-Exilic, making recorded Arabic uses well over a thousand years later as well as in a different language, how far can we trust the Arabic term to have the same meaning? Even in contemporanious uses Hebrew and Aramaic terms sometimes had very different meanings, Arabic, being so much later as well, is even further from Hebrew. Already Mishnaic Hebrew shows marked differences with Biblical Hebrew, and that was earlier than Arabic.

What I find is that the term, as it is used in Job and Psalm 39, if it has the meaning of cheering up, it is a gallows kind of cheer, "Eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow we die!" The Amos and Jeremiah uses don't even fit this sort of cheer. That's why I question the dictionary meaning. But the uses are too few and not specific enough to recognize its meaning from its contexts. That's why I hoped for more clues from cognate languages.

This is one of those verbs where I have no idea what it means, other than certain meanings seem to be ruled out; cheering up is one of the meanings that seems to be ruled out. Possible meanings include cause to appear, cause to act, to reach out, etc.

And yes, I really did read break (dawn) as break (down).

Karl W. Randolph.

----- Original Message -----
From: Peter Kirk <peterkirk at qaya.org>

> On 20/10/2004 00:02, Karl Randolph wrote:
> >...
> >Thanx for the response on BLG: it looks as if the Arabic balaja with the idea of destruction fits the context better than the gloss I had been given.
> >  
> >
> Where did you get this one from? None of the on-list replies suggested a 
> meaning "destruction" for the Arabic. "Break" when used of dawn does not 
> mean destruction.
> -- 
> Peter Kirk
> peter at qaya.org (personal)
> peterkirk at qaya.org (work)
> http://www.qaya.org/

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