[b-hebrew] incorrect letter in text

Yaakov Stein yaakov_s at rad.com
Sun Jun 1 02:39:56 EDT 2008

I promised a nice example of a letter most probably being in error.

In Number 16:1 we read  WYQX QRX = Korah took.
The classical comentaries go on and on about what precisely Korah took.

However, if we look at the next verse we see what his colleagues did.
WYQMW = they stood up.

So it is most probable that the text was originally WYQM QRX = Korah
stood up.

It is easy to see how a mem sofit could become a het by the bottom line
being erased. This could not have occurred during first temple period
(when the het and mem looked completely different)
or even during the early second temple period before the sofit forms
were standardized. On the other hand, I do not know of any text that has
the mem, so we can even put a rough time frame I when this replacement
could have happened.

Interested in comments.

Yaakov (J) Stein

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