[b-hebrew] 2Sam24:1 v. Gen18:1-3

Yitzhak Sapir yitzhaksapir at gmail.com
Sun Aug 14 18:06:57 EDT 2005

On 8/14/05, Read, James C wrote:
>  JCR: Good! But we would never say in English 'and he sits' but something
> like 'while he was sitting' or
>  'when he was sat/sitting'. And so the rather inflexible view that 'wa' must
> be translated as 'and' as if it
>  is always a sequence of events is unreasonable. As you have shown the
> translation of 'when' or 'while' much
>  better fits the context on many occasions.

It's not determined by context.  It's determined by whether the "and"
is attached
to a verb (as in wayyiqtol) or not.  Basically, "and" acts as the
sentence divider, so
that it's presence is pretty much granted.  However, in the case that
the and is
attached to a verb as in "wayyiqtol" the semantics is that the previous action 
completes and a new action begins.  If, however, the next "and" is not
attached to
the verb, that implies the verb is not sequential, because if it were
sequential it
would have been attached to the "and".  There is nothing contextual
about it.  Just
take the above heuristic and apply it to any context, any verb, any noun.

You apparently want to take the results of the above analysis, and turn them
upside down, arguing that even in wayyiqtol the meaning is not
sequential.  You're
missing the point there and that's not how it works.  You'd also be missing the
true meaning in many Hebrew verses which use the above structure.

Yitzhak Sapir

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