[b-hebrew] phonetic writing, was Initial "Beged Kefet" consonants always have a...

Kevin Riley klriley at alphalink.com.au
Mon Oct 24 20:19:24 EDT 2005

 I know that this is a suggestion many on this list will see as heresy, but
could I suggest that, rather than relying on the internet for articles that
are of widely varying accuracy, anyone who is interested in this subject
actually read some of the classic books where all the evidence is set out
for everyone to comprehend and argue with.  There seems to be a virus
infecting so many people interested in religion and religious writings that
makes them avoid like the plague anyone who has spent a lifetime actually
studying the subject in favour of 'unbiased' authorities like Wikipedia and
obscure internet sites.  Just in case anyone wants to [probably in secret to
avoid public castigation] read these books, I will list some below to get
you started.

Robert Hezron (ed) The Semitic Languages [put first because it is my
bed-time reading at the moment - I need something to relax after a day of
reading social science books on the connection between liturgics and
semiotics or I can't sleep :) ]  Richard Steiner wrote the chapter on
biblical Hebrew - I haven't got to that yet, I was distracted by the South
Ethiopic languages - fascinating!

Angel Saenz-Badillo History of the Hebrew Language - this is a little dated
now, but it gives evidence for why the BH pronunciation was probably
different to the Tiberian tradition - quite a bit on the Babylonian and
Palestinian tradition.

Sydney Allen Vox Graeca [and Vox Latinae if you want to pursue Latin] and
Caragounis's book are good places to start for Greek.  The bibliographies in
those four books [and the books and articles they lead to] are enough to
keep a anybody busy for years.

I haven't tracked it down yet, but Peter Daniels' translation of
Bergstrasser's Introduction to the Semitic Languages is supposed to have a
section on Semitic scripts.  Sabatino Moscati also has a book that deals
with the same area, but can't recall the name of it "comparative grammar of
Semitic languages", or something like that.

Kevin Riley
-------Original Message-------
From: Peter Kirk
Date: 10/25/05 09:09:45
On 24/10/2005 23:27, Karl Randolph wrote:
>As for Biblical Hebrew pronunciation, about the only thing
>we can say with certainty is that the Masoretic points do
>not preserve it. ...
No, we cannot say this with certainty, unless someone provides some
actual evidence of change. It is probable that there were some changes,
but perhaps only rather small ones (cf. Caragounis' claims that Greek
pronunciation has hardly changed for 2500 years!), but nothing can be
certain without evidence.
Peter Kirk
peter at qaya.org (personal)
peterkirk at qaya.org (work)

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