[b-hebrew] Genesis 1:16 (The Tifha accent)

Harold Holmyard hholmyard at ont.com
Sun Sep 3 07:43:26 EDT 2006

Dear Chris and Nel wrote:

>The last part of this verse namely: ...ET  HaCoCHaViM...is accompanied by a 
>tifha accent.  It has been suggested by a pdf document that I found about 
>accents (David Robinson and Elisabeth Levy 2002) that the above verse is in 
>the most part mistranslated into English by saying that "God made the stars 
>also".  When it should in fact be translated to indicate that the writer was 
>saying that "The smaller light to rule the night and the The stars to rule 
>the night"  implying that the purpose of the tifha is to read the clause: 
>"rule the night" Twice!
>I am not trying to be pedantic here, but since I am learning to get to grips 
>with these accents I am more interested in appreciating the use of the tifha 
>at this point.
>Personally (before I understood the accents) I read this verse as to mean 
>that God made the lesser light to rule the night 'Along with the stars also' 
>to rule the night based on interpreting the 'ET' before HaCoCHaViM as 
>'With', and for the fact that it seems to be too much of an awkward 
>afterthought to have it placed at the end of the sentence if it were to mean 
>simply that: "Oh yes and God made the stars also"!

HH: The chapter is talking about creation, and before the stars do 
anything, they have to be created. That is the thrust of the verse. You 
could rewrite the verse:

And God made the two great lights -- the greater light to rule the day 
and the smaller light to rule the night -- and the stars.

Harold Holmyard

>Your comments will as always be appreciated and I will reply,
>Chris Watts
>S. Ireland. 
>b-hebrew mailing list
>b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org

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