[b-hebrew] Hebrew Verbs Request (from Rodney Duke)

George Athas gathas at hotkey.net.au
Thu Aug 18 02:57:56 EDT 2005

The following post is sent on behalf of Rodney Duke (dukerk at appstate.edu).


Dear Colleagues, 

The list has gone through another series of discussions on the Hebrew verbal system.  I have generally followed these discussions, and have even saved some that go back to 1999.  However, it is difficult for me to put together a synthesis of each one of the positions taken, when the discussion threads get so interwoven by interaction with various respondents.  

I would like to make the following request of each of the linguists, including self-educated linguists (no one excluded):  
Would you please present a very compact synthesis of your current understanding of (a) the Hebrew verbal system (tense? aspect? modal nuance?) and (b) the function of waw, particularly in wayyiqtol.  I certainly would benefit from a side-by-side comparison of your responses, if you would be so willing.  Also, I would like to request a (c) element: your strongest supportive argument.  For instance, I would be interested in the traditional "tense advocates" and 4-verb form advocates to state what they think is the strongest, still-standing argument for short and long prefixed verbs.  I am not asking that you go into lengthy explanations or defend your positions against all other variants.  Just state in briefly why you are convinced.  No dialogue.

I do not believe that DeCaen, Hatav, Niccacci, Buth, and some others have been involved in recent discussions.  If someone could represent their positions or explain how your current synthesis differs from one of theirs, that would be even more helpful.  I am not trying to get another convoluted thread going, just a collection of summary statements to compare.  Thanks in advance for anyone who is willing to take the time and effort to respond!

Rodney Duke
Professor of Phil. & Rel.
Appalachian State University
Boone, NC 28607 

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