[b-hebrew] Ktiva & Kria

Yitzhak Sapir yitzhaksapir at gmail.com
Sat Nov 3 16:31:20 EDT 2007

On Nov 3, 2007 6:02 PM, Edward Belaga wrote:

> (2) This opinion is not universally accepted.

Here you are referring to my definition of kativ and qari.  This brings to mind
what it means "universally accepted."  Now, in the synagogue, it might not
be universally accepted that kativ and qari refer to either changes in language,
or to alternate versions.  But you are not making a synagogue drasha ("sermon").
You are writing an article for a mathematics journal.  Readers of a scientific
mathematics journal expect you to use the common accepted findings of
Biblical scholars in the academic community and not what is accepted in the
synagogue.  In the academic community, the understanding of kativ and qari
that I suggested is universally accepted.  Any other understanding has to be
substantiated in order to be used in an academic study.

I am adding here a reference to Maimon Cohen, The Kethib and Qeri System
in the Biblical Text (Hebrew), Jerusalem: Magness Press, 2007.  I think Cohen
takes this attempt to read different stages of Hebrew in the katib/qari system
into the extreme, but it is a reference you should at least look at.  You may be
able to get it online at www.magnesspress.co.il if it is really
important to you.

You should also be able to read at least about acrostics but maybe gematria
too in such reference works as the Anchor Bible Dictionary.  This may give
you a starting point as to the academic views of the relevant subjects.  Yigal
already responded to you about these secondary points in a better way than
I could.

I wanted to add that in addition to rounding, there is the issue of measurement.
It is not simple to measure a diameter of a circle and it is also hard
to measure
a circumference.  It must have been harder in ancient times, where there was
no exact ruler or measuring tape, and the measuring had to be done by hand
-- literally, hence the word ?mh "arm" as a measurement unit.  Consider how a
person might measure the diameter of a large circular vat whose diameter is
approximately 10 "arms."  His result is going to be approximate.  If he then
proceeds to measure the circumference, using his arm, his result is also going
to be rather approximate.  These issues cannot be ignored when you try to make
sense of the 30/10 ratio given in the book of Kings.

Yitzhak Sapir

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