[b-hebrew] Genesis 31: 47: What Foreign Language Is That?
if at math.bu.edu
Sun Nov 25 17:27:46 EST 2007
Even though I fail to see the purpose in your word "plain", I think I
understand the essence of your argument. And it seems that our
disagreement is profound and fundamental. You are saying that the
"suffix" -UT [as are -IT and -OT, and many more] is but a mere random
syllable [a "particle"] that has no intrinsic meaning and is
unrelated to any meaningful word in the language. It is a kind of a
heedless hoot, you are saying, that the ancient Hebrews [Semites]
added to a root with the "grammatical" intent of producing by dint of
this addition, as "attested", an "abstract" noun. Correct me please
if I am misrepresenting your words.
I am sorry, but I have to reject this argument in its entirety and
without so much as a flinch of doubt. It is inconceivable that a
logically structured language, such as Hebrew is, root based, and
developed by consensus, should employ random meaningless sounds for
abstract "grammatical" purposes.
I believe that all the "prefixes" and "suffixes" of the Hebrew
language were originally separate words that, by the urgency of
fluent speech, and the latter conventions of writing, merged into the
main body of the following or the preceding word.
I can hardly imagine how one may fail to see that the "inflected"
forms $AMAR-T, 'you [female singular] gurded', $AMAR-TA, 'you [male
singular] guarded', $AMAR-NU, 'we guarded', and $AMAR-TEM, 'you
guarded', of the root $MR, is but the congregation of of the separate
words $AMAR AT, $AMAR ATAH, $AMAR ANU, and $AMAR ATEM, respectively.
Even the prudent Gesenius fleetingly agrees with this somewhere in
his grammar book. And if you agree with this you have given your
consent to a principle, namely, that every T that is not radical is a
With this, everything in the grammar becomes clear, logical, coherent
and of the utmost generality. Try it on any word of the Hebrew
language and you will see that I am evidently right.
Isaac Fried, Boston University
On Nov 25, 2007, at 5:53 AM, George Athas wrote:
>> The Ending -UTA is the grafted combined personal
>> pronoun HU)-AT-HI) or HU)-ATAH
> No, Isaac, I disagree. It's not that at all. The particle -UT is a
> plain noun marker, usually of abstract nouns, attested in Hebrew and
> Best Regards,
> GEORGE ATHAS
> Moore Theological College (Sydney)
> 1 King St, Newtown, NSW 2042, Australia
> Ph: (+61 2) 9577 9774
> b-hebrew mailing list
> b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
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