[b-hebrew] re:the mystery of the vav-consecutive

Ken Penner pennerkm at mcmaster.ca
Wed May 25 16:17:07 EDT 2005

Colin Smith wrote:

> The derivation of the wayyiqtol verb is relevant to the 
> discussion. The most likely origin of the
> form is that it was an innovation, combining vav with 
> doubling (assimilated nun?) and an archaic
> preterite verbal form, adapted for a new kind of literature, 
> religous narrative/prose. The sacred
> writing/mythology of the other ANE languages was poetic 
> (treating Middle Egyption prose as
> non-Semitic). The Hebrew Bible was the first body of Semitic 
> literature to present sacred texts inprose form and it 
> presented a unique circumstance in which a verbal form was 
> created to suit the needs of the text - a narrative of the 
> acts of a God of time/history rather than a god of nature.

Wow! That's quite a theory. Can you tie it to any evidence? What do you make
of narrative wayyiqtol in epigraphic Hebrew?

Ken Penner, McMaster/DSS
Dead Sea Scrolls scholars' list owner,

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