[b-hebrew] Judges 16:30 - Verb with no use, Chris's PROBLEM!

Lisbeth S. Fried lizfried at umich.edu
Tue Oct 3 13:36:40 EDT 2006

Dear Chris,
You did use the verb "to be" when you translated. You said "those who were
killed by means of his death WERE more than those he killed during his
life."  The KJV used to translate sentences like this as "And it came to
pass that" which reflects the LXX evgeneto (which isn't here in this verse
actually). It is important to remember that in the normal Hebrew narrative
voice, the verb in wayiqtol begins the sentence. The normal narrative
sentence structure is VSO, verb -subject-object, or VSP,
verb-subject-predicate. Here, the verb is "were", the subject is "those that
he killed by means of his death", the predicate is "more than he killed
during his life." There are nominal sentences, with no verb "to be," but
those cannot move the narrative along. Sentences which move the narrative
along have the verb "to be" in wayiqtol at the beginning of the sentence. 
I hope this helps.
Liz Fried

> -----Original Message-----
> From: b-hebrew-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org
[mailto:b-hebrew-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org] On
> Behalf Of Chris and Nel
> Sent: Tuesday, October 03, 2006 1:09 PM
> To: B-Hebrew
> Subject: [b-hebrew] Judges 16:30 - Verb with no use, MY PROBLEM!
> Judges 16:30
> Sorry Folks, but for those who are bemused at my 'daft'? question please
> allow me to indulge.  For someone who is still young at the art of trying
> to understand the hundreds of ways to translate without looking at the
> english,  YES, Judges 16:30, does present a minor confusion for me.  The
> context and the word RaBaH (many) seem to me to translate just as well
> without the verb "to be"?  Now it is obvious that I am utterly wrong -
> I
> know! There are myriads of sentences where the verb "to be" is not used
> yet 'known and correctly assumed' from the translation.  My problem is
> beginning this particular sentence with that verb actually threw me off
> course, when I continued to translate it as if the verb was not there then
> to my shock I actually translated it correctly (Mmmm, now that's a
> This shows that I am doing something wrong (even though I got the answer
> correct).  I am so used to
> reading sentences without "to be " in them that I still can not fathom its
> purpose here, considering that without it I actually arrived at the
> translation without looking at the English.
> Now can someone be kind enough pleeeease..... to relieve me of my making a
> fool of
> myself on this board?
> Chris
> Ireland.
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