[b-hebrew] Genesis 20: 1

Yitzhak Sapir yitzhaksapir at gmail.com
Sat Oct 13 19:35:24 EDT 2007


On 10/13/07, Shoshanna Walker wrote:
> So what does arabic have to do with Hebrew??  What do we care about
> arabic words like howling female dog??

Why don't you start finding out by reading some of the works of the early
grammarians of Hebrew?  You can start with Saadiah Gaon's "Book of the
pure Hebrew language" (Kita:b fasi:x lug'at al-(ibra:niyyah), and find out?

But make sure also to read Ibn Barun's work, "Book of comparison between
the Hebrew and Arabic language" ("Kita:b al-muwa:zanah bayn al-lug'ah al-
(ibra:niyyah wa-l-(arabiyyah") about whom you can read here:
http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/view.jsp?artid=7&letter=I

More seriously, Arabic and Ancient Hebrew are related languages.
They both developed out of a language called Central Semitic.  The
significant innovation of Central Semitic is the leveling of the suffix -t
for the verbal suffixes (as in "katavti", whereas previously the first
person suffix was -ku like "anoki").  Anyone who learns even a little
about Arabic will see the significant relationship between both Hebrew
and Arabic.  For example, compare above the Arabic word "Kita:b" =
book, and the Hebrew root KTB.  "bayn" with Hebrew "ben" = between.
muwa:zanah with Hebrew M)ZNYM "balances".

Yitzhak Sapir



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