[b-hebrew] Ecclesiastes 3:11

Bryant J. Williams III bjwvmw at com-pair.net
Sat Nov 17 15:01:32 EST 2007


Dear Yitzhak,

Reference Gesenius' Hebrew Grammar, page 483, Para. 152y, #2. It states the
following:

"2.    Two negatives in the same sentence do not neutralize each other (as in
'nonulli, non nemo'), but make the negation more emphatic (like 'OUK OUDEIS, OUK
OUDAMWS, 'NULLI-NON, NEMO NON'); E.G. Zp 2:2 (if the text is correct) This
especially applies to the compounds formed by the union of )ayN, BeLI with MiN-,
without (para. 119y), e.g. Is 5:9; (6:11 ) (Jer. 2:15,) prop. without no
inhabitant, i.e. so that no inhabitant is left there. On the other hand, in Is
50:2 is causative; as also Ex 14:11; 2 K 1:2, 6, 16. ***In Ec 3:11 except that
(yet so that man cannot, &c.)."*** (Emphasis mine)

Now, regarding )asher, see Gesenius, paragraph 138, The Relative Pronoun
especially sub-section "a." I would suggest that we all review what he says
regarding 'asher.

Rev. Bryant J. Williams III



----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Yitzhak Sapir" <yitzhaksapir at gmail.com>
To: "b-hebrew Hebrew" <b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Saturday, November 17, 2007 8:37 AM
Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] Ecclesiastes 3:11


> On Nov 16, 2007 9:52 PM, Martin Shields wrote:
> > Yitzhak,
> >
> > > Is it possible that the author of Qohelet is here trying to write in
> > > Hebrew
> > > a phrase using a specific word structure that is more natural in an
> > > Indo-
> > > European language, such as Greek (the phrase being something of the
> > > sort of "without which a man will not find")?
> >
> > I think this is what the text means (see my other posts), but I don't
> > think understanding it this way is necessarily dependent upon Indo-
> > European influence. I think it is probably the simplest understanding
> > of the Hebrew anyway. OTOH, there's a long tradition of seeing Greek
> > influence in Qohelet, and if that's to be seen in any way in this
> > verse I suspect it is more likely related to העלם (αιων in the
> > LXX which is a term loaded with rather more baggage than עולם in
> > biblical Hebrew).
>
> Hello,
>
> Part of the reason I suggested IE influence is the unnatural word order
> as far as Biblical syntax is concerned.  You can try to interpret the final
> meaning any way you want, but the fact remains that "without which"
> translates almost precisely the meaning of the words mbly and ?$r in that
> order, and also does make sense of the sentence.  But ?$r doesn't work
> in Biblical syntax in this way.  ?$r generally stands between the
> subordinate clause and the main sentence, as a connection between
> the two.  If the subordinate clause needs to refer to the antecedent it uses
> the 3s pronoun. HALOT provides (in the entry on ?$r) Is 5:28 and Ps 95:5
> as examples of this.  As far as "without", the general word is bl(dy,
> possibly prefixed with m-.  A nice similar example is Gen 41:44.  Thus, to
> say "without which" in normative Biblical Hebrew, one should write "?$r
> bl(dyw" instead.  Indeed, if one replaces "mbly ?$r" with these words, the
> sentence sounds a lot more "normal."  The use of "mbly ?$r" therefore
> rings of the sound of some foreign influence, as if a speaker of a foreign
> language, very possibly some IE language, tried to say "without which"
> but did not use the appropriate Hebrew syntax, and used instead his
> own native language syntax.  I'm not saying a non-Hebrew speaker
> wrote this, but I think it does suggest that some foreign linguistic
> influence is in place here.
>
> Yitzhak Sapir
> _______________________________________________
> b-hebrew mailing list
> b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
> http://lists.ibiblio.org/mailman/listinfo/b-hebrew
>


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