[b-hebrew] YHWH - De Moor's approach

Uri Hurwitz uhurwitz at yahoo.com
Sun Jul 31 17:28:19 EDT 2005

   Yes, it may be a hypocoroisticon, but can be analyzed very differently from Albright and Cross.
   C. De Moor in his important work the The Rise of Yahwism analyzes this as follows: 
   It was indeed an hypocrost. of a name like *YHWHILU or *YHWHADU   (where ILU or ADU stand for El or Hadad), of a real  individual who had been an obscure ancestor of  someone in the Patriarchs society.
   Theophoric names that consist of  the elements : deity plus "exists"/ "is" , or vice versa "exists"/"is" plus deity, are attested in the  ANE, and of course in the HB.
   This indivudual's memory became a deified spirit, a custom attested in more than one region in the ANE. As such it was worshipped as a deity among ancient Hebrews.  The divine component eventually dropped and the verbal part YHWH  took over  with time as the name of the sole and jealous god.
  Note: I report the above from memory. De. Moor's discussion is of course more elaborate and heavily annotated.
   I'm fully in the corner of those who hold that the name is  an imperfect 3.m.s. The root, HWH, reflects its antiquity. It is either borrowed from the Arameans, the tradtional ancestors of the Patriarchs, or goes back to an ancient era when NW Semitic and Aramaic still had much in common.

Jack Kilmon <jkilmon at historian.net> wrote:
I still believe it possible that yhwh is just what it is, the qal of hwh 
from a TITLE phrase as a hypocoristicon of EL, ala Albright and Cross. A
title like "El caused the world to come into being".

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