[b-hebrew] Nun-Tav-Vet root

Isaac Fried if at math.bu.edu
Wed Nov 22 18:45:47 EST 2006


 

 

  _____  

From: Isaac Fried [mailto:if at math.bu.edu] 
Sent: Wednesday, November 22, 2006 4:11 PM
To: Isaac Fried
I am not responding to you directly; it is as I say to my students: when I say you I do not mean YOU. Yet it should be pedagogically and psychologically interesting to see how the mind of a hyperactive dilettante works, particularly when emotionally driven. So let us see what you pile on us:

  

YS: You appear to be a university professor!

IF: I am a university professor, and I know it even without your exclamation mark.

 

YS: You are expected to know how theories are proposed.

IF: I know, I know. I think I know.

 

YS: You have easy access to a university library 

IF: The access is not so easy, I have to cross a busy street.

 

YS: where you can probably read all you want about the linguistic method, and about various cognate languages, as well as modern studies of the ancient pronounciation (?) of different words.

IF: We are not dealing here with probabilities. There is one thing I beg of you: please don’t tell it to the dean: “ Prof. Fried is not frequenting the library as often as he should, and when he goes there once in a blue moon he does not open the Cambridge Encyclopedia to read on cognate languages, but flirts instead with the librarian Miss Gudie Lookin.” This is a wrong and vicious rumor! What we actually do in this dark recess of the library is chat about the reconstructed pronunciation of ancient Yebusite.

 

YS: In an earlier post, I asked you to explain the following sentence of yours: In fact, the extension of נתיב is at once upward, widthwise, and lengthwise.

IF: That’s true, but you did not wait for my answer. Why not? Because you were in a great hurry to expose the crackpotedness of Prof. Fried’s theories.

 

YS: I picked this one because it appeared that you were referring to the shape of the letters, in which case (if this is indeed what you are talking about), I was going to confront you with how the alphabet developed and the way the letters looked like in ancient times, and also in other languages such as Ugaritic which had a very different alphabet but both roots.

IF: The shape of the letters!?!? I am afraid you have wandered into some go-go land. Where did you get this silly idea? I know how the letters looked like in ancient times; I have a special telescope with which to look into the past.

 

YS: If this is not about the shape of letters, I admit that I have no idea what you're talking about.

IF: Hurray! Hurray! Bravo! You admit it! It comes from your own mouth! You indeed have no idea about what I am talking about, but admission of ignorance is the first step (and how important it is!) to enlightenment. There is hope!

 

YS: This is not to say that you can't come to this list and write nonsense (?). Just expect it to be properly discredited if it is a crackpot theory like yours Is

IF: Thanks for welcoming me to this list. I am well aware of the grave risk I am taking in being exposed and rebuked by big boys like you.

 

YS: What has this to do with the word [nɔ:'ti:v]?

IF: Do you really want to know, or is it just a rhetorical question?

 

YS: This word is not found in the Hebrew Bible.  It is a modern form that is constructed based on the word as it appears in the Hebrew Bible.  We are talking here about the Hebrew Bible.

IF: Not a word but a Biblical root.

 

YS: If you do happen to open the Cambridge Encyclopedia of the World's Ancient

Languages, please also read the articles on Hebrew, Aramaic, North Arabian,

South Arabian, Ugaritic, Phoenician, the Canaanite dialects, and

Afroasiatic.

IF: I will! I promise! As soon as I am done with Miss Gudie Lookin.

 

I know that my book: “The Analytic and Synthetic Etymology of the Hebrew Language” is one of the most significant books ever written on the Hebrew language. The theory behind it is very simple, as a good theory should be, but it is profound in its implications; it actually solves the enigma of the Hebrew language. I suggest that you drop for a while your preoccupation with “cognate languages” and concentrate on this book instead. The effort is worthwhile, and if you understand it, then I promise you the kingdom of language.    

 

On 11/21/06, Isaac Fried wrote:

On one count the amazon.com "reviewer" of my book: "the Analytic and

Synthetic Etymology of the Hebrew Language" is profoundly wrong (of course I

am not going to argue with him about what is "probable" and what is

"improbable"), and I want to point this out here for the sake of our

readers. It never occurred to me to suggest that "...every Hebrew word can

be analyzed..." It is of course not 'word' but 'root'. This commentator, an

apparent expert on the "principles of historical linguistics", is confusing

here word and root.

 

Dear Isaac Fried,

 

I don't know who the reviewer of that book is.  But that particular review is

actually very useful.  Indeed, of all the people on amazon who used that

review (5), all of them found it useful.  What that review says is that you have

no idea what you're talking about.   I think it actually gives you more credit

than you deserve.  In any case, the reviewer is not fundamentally wrong in

his review because of his confusion as regarding your theory.  His review

is correct whether the theory relates to words or roots, and gives you too

much credit in both cases.

 

One does not have to be an expert in historical linguistics to know that

what you are talking about is absolute nonesense.  A basic treatment,

such as "Reconstructed Ancient Languages" in the Cambridge

Encyclopedia of the World's Ancient Languages suffices.  Even just

reading the following link suffices:

http://www.utexas.edu/depts/classics/documents/PIE.html

 

The following links on Proto-Semitic may also be useful:

Introduction - http://www.bartleby.com/61/10.html

Sounds chart - http://www.bartleby.com/61/JPG/proto.jpg

Root Index - http://www.bartleby.com/61/Sroots.html

Language relationships - http://www.bartleby.com/61/tree.html

 

In a sense, you and Karl think alike.  Neither of you has apparently any

understanding of how comparative historical linguistics is done, nor are you

or him have any knowledge of some cognate languages.  But there is a

difference.  You appear to be a university professor!  You are expected to

know how theories are proposed.  You are expected to know the value of

offering your book to criticism from your peers in the linguistics department.

You have easy access to a university library where you can probably read

all you want about the linguistic method, and about various cognate

languages, as well as modern studies of the ancient pronounciation of

different words.

 

In an earlier post, I asked you to explain the following sentence of yours:

In fact, the extension of נתיב is at once upward, widthwise,

and lengthwise.

I picked this one because it appeared that you were referring to the shape

of the letters, in which case (if this is indeed what you are talking about),

I was going to confront you with how the alphabet developed and the way

the letters looked like in ancient times, and also in other languages such

as Ugaritic which had a very different alphabet but both roots.  If this is not

about the shape of letters, I admit that I have no idea what you're talking

about.  But honestly said, I don't think you do either.

 

This is not to say that you can't come to this list and write nonesense.

Just expect it to be properly discredited if it is a crackpot theory like yours

is:

 

The Hebrew word (noun as well as verb) is composed of a root interlaced with

pronouns. The inserted pronouns (the "infixes") are the sounds U and I,

pronounced in Hebrew oo and ee, and their latter variants O and E. Thus, the

word נתיב=נת+היא+ב, has an inserted pronoun I, for which I wrote the Hebrew

היא, referring to the object itself.

 

The feminine singular pronoun is [hi:] in Massoretic Hebrew.  Only in Modern

Hebrew does the [h] go away.  What has this to do with the word [nɔ:'ti:v]?

 

The sound A in nAtIv is a mere vocal

gap between the consonants. However, in the verbal form ניתבתי=נ+היא+תב+אתי

 

This word is not found in the Hebrew Bible.  It is a modern form that is

constructed based on the word as it appears in the Hebrew Bible.  We are

talking here about the Hebrew Bible.

 

both היא and אתי mark the actor performing the act expressed by the root

נתב.

 

In their separate form the Hebrew pronouns are composed of the original

universal pronouns U, O, I, E, augmented by existence markers. For instance:

אני=אן+היא, or ani=an+I,

 

The word [?a'ni:] was originally [?ana:] as can be seen from its Aramaic form.

The [i:] vowel is a later development.

 

and אנוכי=אן+הוא+אך+היא, or anoxi=an+O+x+I. In the

 

The word [?ɔ:no:'ki:] is a development from [?ana:ku].  The medial holam

is the result of the Canaanite shift a: > o, which can be seen all over

Hebrew.

 

same way אנו=אן+הוא, or anu=an+U, and אנחנו=אן+אך+אן+הוא, or

 

While in Modern Hebrew Het and Kaf sound the same, this is clearly not

the case in Massoretic Hebrew.  In an earlier form of the language there

were two Het sounds, one of which sounded like a Het in Modern Hebrew

and one which sounds like the Het as it was pronounced in Massoretic

Hebrew and still is pronounced in the Oriental pronounciation.  Also, in

an earlier form of the language, the letter k was never fricative so it always

sounded like [k].  There probably was a time when the two Het sounds and

the two allophones of Kaf were present simultaneously.  However, in the

word [?a'na:xnu:] the Het was never equivalent to the fricative Kaf until

modern times.

 

If you do happen to open the Cambridge Encyclopedia of the World's Ancient

Languages, please also read the articles on Hebrew, Aramaic, North Arabian,

South Arabian, Ugaritic, Phoenician, the Canaanite dialects, and

Afroasiatic.

 

Yitzhak Sapir

_______________________________________________

b-hebrew mailing list

b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org

http://lists.ibiblio.org/mailman/listinfo/b-hebrew

 

 




More information about the b-hebrew mailing list