[b-hebrew] Why Semitic languages had no written vowels?

Bill Rea bsr15 at cantsl.it.canterbury.ac.nz
Mon May 2 16:57:07 EDT 2005

Vadim wrote:-

>If we accept an obvious notion, that proto-West Semitic had a single
>verbal stem or a single form of nouns, then there was just no need for
>different vowels.

t sms t m tht f y knw th wrds y cn fgr t wht thy r syng wtht ndng
vwls. W mst rmmbr tht wrtng mrgd frm spch nd nt th thr wy rnd.
Thrs nl a prblm f th wrd hs tw sllbls nd nl n vwl r th wrd strts
wth a vwl.

For those that can't figure that out:-

It seems to me that if you know the words you can figure out what they
are saying without needing vowels. We must remember that writing
emerged from speech and not the other way round. There's only a problem
if the word has two syllables and only one vowel or the word starts
with a vowel.

Bill Rea, IT Services, University of Canterbury \_
E-Mail bill.rea at canterbury.ac.nz               </   New
Phone 64-3-364-2331, Fax  64-3-364-2332       /)  Zealand
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