[b-hebrew] definate article on proper place name
smille10 at sbcglobal.net
Fri Jan 20 18:13:57 EST 2006
Could I get a copy of the pdf article. I have the scanned article from
Yigal, but the pdf would take up less space. I thought the article was very
By the way, isn't Noah Lee a man, not a "she". Thanks.
From: b-hebrew-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org
[mailto:b-hebrew-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org] On Behalf Of Herman Meester
Sent: Tuesday, January 17, 2006 7:14 AM
To: Yigal Levin
Cc: b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] definate article on proper place name
Dear Yigal, Steve,
the Vetus Testamentum issue was 52 (2002), not 53. Hardly matters,
just thought I'd say for the sake of "academic correctness" ;).
I have the article (as pdf) because of my fascination with the origin
of the definite article.
One thing I found there was interesting: it made me think about the
etymology of the word Gilboa גלבע, which Lee doesn't really go into,
but she did refer to Koehler, to a remark also present in his lexicon
(p. 181): he proposes that גלבע GLB( derives of גבע (he suggests
*gibbo(, "hill"). I think this is likely: we have dissimilation of
/(b)b/ to /lb/, just like in the word גלמוד galmud (Arabic gulmuud),
deriving of the root גמד GMD.
Here we have more evidence for the idea that the origin of the
definite article in Central Semitic is only lengthening of the first
consonant, and in Arabic sometimes dissimilation of CC > (a)lC or, in
other dialects, (e)nC or (e)mC. Evidence, because it shows that
dissimilation of -CC- to -LC- is possible in central-Semitic (unlike
assimilation of lC to CC in Arabic!).
2006/1/14, Yigal Levin <leviny1 at mail.biu.ac.il>:
> Dear Steve,
> The general rule is that proper names don't nead the article. However,
> proper names that are understood as descriptive may receive the article,
> since it's the article that makes them into proper names in the first
> For example, "Mizpeh" means "lookout". For a "lookout" to be a proper
> in would have to be "The Lookout". This might eventually develop into just
> "Lookout", if the place became so well-known that everyone would know
> lookout was meant. Of course, one problem that we have is that we don't
> always know what the authors assumed that their readers would know.
> S. Noah Lee wrote an article on "The Use of the Definite Article in the
> Developement of some Biblical Toponyms" in Vetus Testamentum 53 (2002),
> 334-349. I happen to have a photocopy. If you wish, contact me off-list
> I'll email you a copy.
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Steve Miller" <smille10 at sbcglobal.net>
> To: "B-Hebrew" <b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org>
> Sent: Saturday, January 14, 2006 6:30 AM
> Subject: [b-hebrew] definate article on proper place name
> > What is the significance of the definite article on a proper place name?
> > Most proper place names do not ever occur with a definite article. The
> > following are the only place names I found that were preceded by the
> > definite article:
> > 1) "Havilah" is used 3 times as a place name in the Bible: Gen 2:11,
> > it has the definite article, and Gen 25:18 & 1 Sam 15:7 where it does
> > Does this mean that that "the Havilah" in Gen 2:11 is different than
> > Havilah
> > in the other two references?
> > 2) Moriah - only 2 usages (Gen. 22:2 & 2 Chron 3:1), both with the
> > definite
> > article.
> > 3) Gilead - Used about 100 times as a place name. The place name almost
> > always has the definite article, but a few do not. Some of the ones that
> > don't have the def. article refer to a city called Gilead (Hos 6:8) or
> > the inhabitants of Gilead (Jud. 11:8). Here are the refs that do not use
> > the
> > def. article and don't seem to refer to the inhabitants or to the city:
> > Gen
> > 37:25; Num 32:1, 39; 1 Sam 13:7. 1 Kings 4:19; 1 Chron 5:9; 27:21; SS
> > Jer. 8:22 (by vowels); 46:11; Zech. 10:10.
> > 4) Mizpeh - Always with def. article except when referring to Mizpeh of
> > Gilead (Jud. 11:29) or to the people of Mizpeh (Hos 5:1).
> > 5) Goshen - never with def. article when referring to Goshen in Egypt.
> > Josh
> > 10:41 & 11:16 refer to a land of Goshen in Israel. 11:16 has the def.
> > article, but 10:41 does not. 10:41 probably refers to the inhabitants.
> > Josh
> > 15:51 refers to a city of Goshen and does not have the article.
> > 6) Bashan - Similar to Gilead. Almost always with definite article.
> > 7) Galilee - 5 out of 6 uses have def. article. Only Isa. 9:1 "Galilee
> > hagoim" does not have the def. article on Galilee, but does on goyim..
> > 8) Uz - Jer 25:20 has def article. Job 1:1 and Lam. 4:21 have no
> > 9) Magog - def. article in Ezek 38:2. None in 39:6.
> > Thanks,
> > -Steve Miller
> > Detroit
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