[b-hebrew] yhwh pronunciation

Read, James C K0434995 at kingston.ac.uk
Wed Jul 20 13:14:46 EDT 2005

See comments below.

-----Original Message-----
From: b-hebrew-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org on behalf of Vadim Cherny
Sent: Wed 7/20/2005 5:58 PM
To: Medina, Vincent; b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] yhwh pronunciation
Besides suspicious preservation of final hey in the future tense, the
Tetragrammaton-as-a-verb hypothesis has fundamental flaw:

who in his right mind would call vocalization of a well-established verb

I don't think the purpose of banning pronouncing the name was to
make the correct pronunciation secret so much as stop it from being 
used in vain as an exaggerated view of one of the ten words.

Making the vowels secret--a great secret, indeed--made sense only if the
vowelization was not evident to any Hebrew-speaker. And that rules out any
standard morphological form, including verbs.

Again! No-one intended to make the vowels secret. This was just the consequence
of receiving a text without vowels. Anyway, the current evidence seems to 
be pointing towards a correct Masoretic pointing of the vowels as 
the other internal evidence already discussed seems to be in agreement with 
the qere/ketib vowels of adonai superimposed on yhwh.

Why would anyone use hwh root in the Hebrew scriptures instead of hyh?

The use of hwh evidently predates the use of hyh and so when the scriptures 
were compiled the common form hyh would have been used. Whereas, yhwh already 
being a well established proper name would maintain its archaic pronunciation.

Also consider mappiq in final hey. It doesn't suggest a verb. Rather,
perhaps, mappiq distinguishes final hey as the only consonant in the word.

I feel that in order to dismiss the name being a verb we would also have to dismiss 
the first hand knowledge of the ancient Hebrew language of the author of the 
Torah who I think we will all agree may have lacked the grammatical analysis skills
that we have today but had a lifetime's experience of speaking and hearing the 
language firsthand.

Of course, the Tetragrammaton came into existence well before matres
lectionis, but it seems possible to me that the Tetragrammaton is the
earliest instance of matres lectionis, and only much later everyone started
using them.

Vadim Cherny

> Yaho, Yahu and Yah all appear to be variant forms of the name. The one
thing that they have in common, and appear to establish firmly, is that
the first syllable of the name is Yah. If yhwh is a verbal form, the
final he would appear to support a final syllable with seghol, "weh,"
whether the verb stem was either qal or hiphil. A verbal yqtl form would
almost certainly have two syllables. In my opinion, all this seems to
support the widely accepted pronunciation Yahweh.

G. Vincent Medina
Associate Professor
Central Bible College
Phone: 417 887-6559
Email: vmedina at cbcag.edu

-----Original Message-----
From: b-hebrew-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org
[mailto:b-hebrew-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org] On Behalf Of Vadim Cherny
Sent: Tuesday, July 19, 2005 3:00 PM
To: Read, James C; b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
Cc: David P Donnelly
Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] yhwh pronunciation

Why not allow that ancients knew the grammar? Why not take the things
literally? Perhaps, Yahu and Yaho names are not derivations of the Name,
the Name itself.

We know from Diodorus that the accepted reading was Iao, which is
Yaho - Yho found in names.
Yhu is an expected variant of Yho if the Name is composed of suffixes,
thou, you."

Vadim Cherny

> I've been reading through the various arguments for the pronunciation
etymology of the tetragrammaton and have found the arguments presented
interesting and informative. However, I have noticed that the main
seems to have been neglected. While it can justifiably be argued that
pronunciation of the name has been lost through various superstitions
pharisee style over-burdening the same cannot be said for the multitude
YaHo's and YaHu's we see appended and prepended to many names as early
Ex17:9's YeHo$ua. I think these testify greatly to a second long vowel
the first 'he'. Plus the fact that the vast majority of Hebrew verbs are
trisyllabic I see no reason to doubt that it was of the form

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