[b-hebrew] Translating - some elementary questions

Peter Kirk peter at qaya.org
Sun Oct 1 13:02:54 EDT 2006

On 01/10/2006 08:45, Yitzhak Sapir wrote:
> ...
> Having actually looked up evidence now, I need to correct that above
> explanation.  Like the "long a to o" shift, Phoenician had a similar shift in
> "short a".  Hebrew probably did too.  The qamats represents those situations
> that "short a" became "o" among others.  Under Arabic influence, those "short
> a" cases that became "o" were now read as "a" again.
Yitzhak, are you really claiming that all cases of qamats in Masoretic 
Hebrew were always pronounced as "o" and not "a" until after the time of 
the Masoretes? This is an improbably claim, as is surely demonstrated by 
transliterations as "a" into Greek, Latin and other languages, from say 
3rd century BCE (LXX) to 4th century CE (Jerome). For example, if the 
names of Hebrew Bible characters which ended in -YH or -YHW, with qamats 
under the yod, were pronounced -yo or -yohu in Hebrew of this period, 
why do the Greek and Latin forms of their names uniformly end in -AS and 
not -OS? Many more such examples could be given.

Peter Kirk
E-mail:  peter at qaya.org
Blog:    http://speakertruth.blogspot.com/
Website: http://www.qaya.org/

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