[b-hebrew] Matres Lectionis and critical analysis

JAMES CHRISTIAN READ JCR128 at student.anglia.ac.uk
Tue Aug 28 14:04:00 EDT 2007

Hi all,

recent discussions have reminded me of points that my old 
Hebrew lecturer used to bring up in lectures. As well as 
mistakes made by the Massoretes in their vowel pointing 
he also spoke about another level of critical analysis of 
the text. He suggested that the oldest texts from which 
the books of the Hebrew bible were copied had no matres 
lectionis and were written without spaces. He further 
suggested that a number of scribal errors could have 
been introduced by introducing a matres lectionis where 
it shouldn't be and by dividing the purely consonantal 
text into space separated words incorrectly.

He therefore posited that a completely critical 
analysis of the text would include not only questioning 
the Massoretic pointing but further questioning the 
matres lectionis and the word divisions and the further
variety of possible readings such an analysis would 

Just thought I'd throw it out there for discussion. Any 


James Christian Read - BSc Computer Science 
http://www.lamie.org/hebrew       -  thesis1: concept driven machine translation using the Aleppo codex 
http://www.lamie.org/lad-sim.doc  -  thesis2: language acquisition simulation


2f/www.lamie.org/lad-sim.doc  -  thesis2: language acquisition simulation


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