[b-hebrew] 22-Letter Alphabet Origination

joel at exc.com joel at exc.com
Fri Jul 3 11:08:07 EDT 2009


>It would seem to me, that since their phonetic inventory was wider
>than the 22 letter alphabet could fully accommodate, it would seem
>that they were the adopters of the alphabet.

The Hebrews almost certainly adopted and adapted the Phoenician
writing system, adding the matres lectionis: vocalic heh, yud, and
vav.

I think the evidence for a wider phonetic inventory is less clear than
other bits of information.  We really don't know what Hebrew sounded
like 3,000 years ago.

-Joel





Joel M. Hoffman, PhD
http://www.lashon.net

http://www.AndGodSaid.com

Director of Education
Temple Israel of Northern Westchester
http://www.TINW-School.org




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