[b-hebrew] "th" and "b"

Yigal Levin leviny1 at mail.biu.ac.il
Sat Jun 14 19:10:13 EDT 2008

Dear Karl,

While there were differences between Galilean and Judean pronounciations, I 
would actually assume that the differences here are chronological: the Greek 
spelling of Bethlehem would have followed the Septuagint of the OT, which 
was about 300 years earlier than the Greek of the NT.

It's like "OT Greek" spelling of the name "Simeon" reflects the Ayin that 
was still pronounced at the time, while NT and Josephus "Simon", rendering 
the same Hebrew spelling, shows that the Ayin was no longer pronounced.

Yigal Levin

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "K Randolph" <kwrandolph at gmail.com>
To: "b-hebrew" <b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org>
Sent: Sunday, June 15, 2008 1:59 AM
Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] "th" and "b"

> In New Testament studies, one indication that the Byzantine tradition may 
> be
> older than the Coptic tradition that underlies most scholarly editions of
> the New Testament is that it preserves what seem to be regional variations
> of Hebrew names: for example, Bethlehem in Judea, was spelled with a 
> theta,
> while Nazareth in Galilee is consistently spelled with a tau as Nazaret. I
> noticed a couple of other similar differences in transliterations. Both 
> New
> Testament traditions spelled Kapernaum with a pi instead of the modern phi
> that would have been used.
> I have not made a detailed study of the matter, but I wonder if these
> variations indicate that there was a change in pronunciation going on at
> that time, a change that was not reflected in the spelling as the spelling
> was frozen to the Biblical norm.
> Karl W. Randolph.

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