[b-hebrew] Benefit of Modern Heb.?

Randall Buth randallbuth at gmail.com
Sat Oct 24 04:15:37 EDT 2009

> K'vod Hammoreh Rnadall,
>   I really didn't follow closely the lively exchanges
 about the benefit of knowing modern Hebrew for the
 study of biblical Heb.
>   One is tempted to ask: how could an anonymous
translator to the Greek of the LXX, or an Ibn Ezra',
 or a Gesenius do their respective jobs without modern
 Hebrew? I chose different individuals, distant many
 centuries from each other.
  Perhaps the modern language is not essential for the
 knowledge of the old?
shalom Uri

The translators to LXX were fluent in both literary (high) and
spoken (low/mishnaic) Hebrew of their time.
Ibn Ezra was fluent in the high-level "medieval Hebrew" of
his time.
Gesenius, I don't know his language skills. But he was a better
cataloguer than theorest. Perhaps he had become fluent in

The issue isn't 'modern' per se (bixvoda ube`atsma), but the
advantage of fluency/internalization of any closely related
dialect, especially one with close to 100% morphological

Must travel.

  >May this reflection encourage some on this list.
  Mimmenni HeHagav,
  >Uri Hurwitz

Randall Buth, PhD
randallbuth at gmail.com
Biblical Language Center
Learn Easily - Progress Further - Remember for Life

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