[b-hebrew] Masoretic invention, was: masorete pointing v's LLX translite...

Bearpecs at aol.com Bearpecs at aol.com
Tue Jul 26 17:03:27 EDT 2005

In a message dated 7/26/2005 12:19:54 PM Eastern Daylight Time,  joel at exc.com 

But  there is incontrovertible evidene that the
Masoretes did not correctly  capture the sounds of ancient Hebrew.

Quite.  But they were not trying to capture the sounds of ancient  Hebrew.  
They were trying to capture the sounds of the best and most  reliable living 
tradition of reading the Hebrew of the Bible.  Certainly  they knew that 
different communities had different  traditions.  (Whether they believed that their 
tradition was somehow a  more authentic reflection of how Moses spoke is moot.) 
 They knew they were  capturing the tradition as it existed in their day.  
Thus, to say that they  "misread" a verb as pu`al which should be qal passive, 
is meaningless.   They didn't invent the pronunciation of the word.  They 
invented a system  for recording the pronunciation they found.
(I am not btw 100% sure I believe this to be literally true, but I  think it 
is a valid and coherent position.)

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