[b-hebrew] John Gill's Dissertation

Karl Randolph kwrandolph at email.com
Fri Mar 25 18:51:49 EST 2005

Dear Chris:

John Gill did the same thing that the present documentary hypothesis advocates do: in the absence of physical evidence either pro or con, speculate based on preconcieved presuppositions.

John Gill lost me in his first chapter, where he tried to prove that the Aramaic square characters with the points were the original Hebrew alphabet, one that goes back to Adam. From archeology, we now can say that Torah most likely was written using proto-Sinaitic glyphs, the prophets using archaic Hebrew glyphs, with even variations among them, and the square characters being adopted only a little over 2000 years ago. Gill's argument is impressive, but speculation upon speculation.

It is stuff like this that makes me insist on physical evidence, the DSS is one example of such, as the minimum standard before I will accept any claim that contradicts the internal dates as recognized by attestation where applicable, and style or internal evidence (e.g. Kings, Chronicles).

Sure, I can speculate with the best, but who will such speculations convince?

Karl W. Randolph.

----- Original Message -----
From: wattswestmaas <wattswestmaas at eircom.net>

> It shall be nice for once to be able to contribute to this forum instead of
> draining you all of brain power so here is an offer.
> I noticed that some months ago there was a discussion about the Masoretes
> and vowel pointing.  I realise that this is a subject of debate in some
> circles and that someone gave information about John Gill who wrote a
> lengthy dissertation in 1767 on "The antiquity of the hebrew language and
> vowel pointing".   If anyone is interested I can save them money and trouble
> by emailing them this work via word.doc as an attachment.
> regards, Chris Watts. Ireland.
> _______________________________________________
> b-hebrew mailing list
> b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
> http://lists.ibiblio.org/mailman/listinfo/b-hebrew

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