[b-hebrew] Spelling changes in the BHS

Yigal Levin leviny1 at mail.biu.ac.il
Sat Jan 5 16:16:58 EST 2008

Dear Mark,

Shelah/Shalah of Gen. 10:24 and 1 Chr. 1:18 is spelled exactly the same in 
Hebrew of both books, including the shift from segol (e) to qamatz (a). The 
other two names are clearly cases of simple scibal error: I would guess that 
the spelling "Meshech" in 1 Chr. 1:17 in stead of "Mash" in Gen. 10:23 was 
influenced by the better-known Meshech that appears in verse 2/5 of the same 
chapter (in both books). The change from "Obal" to "Ebal" is simply because 
the Waw in Gen. was written as a graphically similar Yod in 1 Chr. (or maybe 
in the source used by 1 Chr.).

In any case, there is nothing more "truly Semitic" in the Gen. spellings or 
"more Aramaic" in the Chr. spellings, besides which of course Aramaic is 
just as "Semitic" a language as Hebrew.

Hope that helps,

Yigal Levin

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Mark Spitsbergen" <awakesd at mac.com>
To: <b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Saturday, January 05, 2008 10:30 PM
Subject: [b-hebrew] Spelling changes in the BHS

>I have a question regarding spelling changes of: Mash to Meshech,
> Shalach to Salah, Obal to Ebal in Genesis 10:23-28 and 1 Chronicles
> 1:17-22. When we consider that Arpachshad is not Semitic and
> potentially more Assyrian to begin with (Knoppers 2004; Gunkel 1926;
> Westermann 1984;  Blenkinshopp 1992:90) would  this be a clue to an
> adaptation of the truly Semitic spellings to more of an Aramaic one
> in the time of Ezra?
> Thanks
> Mark Spitsbergen
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