[b-hebrew] Can YHWH at Genesis 3:14 [ in Codex L. ] be "correctly"read as"Yehowah"? [ RE-TITLED MESSAGE]

James Christian jc.bhebrew at googlemail.com
Tue Jun 29 08:21:01 EDT 2010

Hi Yitzhak,

I think you may have missed Dave's point. He is asserting that in the
Leningrad Codex many of the instances where we would expect, following your
explanation, vowels of Adonai we do not in fact find them. Only later in the
Ben Chayyim text do we find them.

James Christian

On 28 June 2010 03:11, Yitzhak Sapir <yitzhaksapir at gmail.com> wrote:

> Dave,
> Various answers have been provided to you over the years.
> You never tell us why they don't satisfy you.
> There is actually a whole lot of evidence that the Masoretes read
> the name as Adonai.
> First, the vocalization changes whenever the word is nearby the
> word Adonai.  This would be easy to explain if the vocalization of
> the Tetragrammaton is Adonai, but not if it were something else.
> How else would you explain the vocalization change next to the
> word Adonai?
> Why doesn't this answer satisfy you?
> Also, the schewa joins up differently with prefixes under the
> letter yodh.  If a word that begins with a vocal schewa under
> yodh takes a prefix with a vocal schewa itself, both the
> schewas and the yodh disappear and the prefix takes a long
> hirik.
> Some examples:
> ידי yade Gen 24:30 -
> but:
> וידי vide - Ex 17:12,
> בידי bide Ps 141:6,
> כידי kide Gen 27:23
> מידי mide Gen 49:24
> יהי yihi Gen 1:6
> ויהי vihi Gen 1:6
> (This is a conjunctive waw different from vayhi which is a conversive waw)
> This also happens in proper names:
> יהואחז yoho)aHaz 2 Ki 13:8
> ליהואחז liho)aHaz 2 Ki 13:7
> יהודה yuhuda Gen 37:26
> ויהודה vihuda Gen 35:23
> ביהודה bihuda Jud 10:9
> ליהודה lihuda Gen 38:24
> Now, in the word Adonai, the prefix becomes a patah:
> אדוני adonai Jud 13:8
> ואדני vadonai 2 Ki 7:6
> לאדני ladonai Gen 18:30
> Now, Dave, the tetragrammaton behaves exactly like the
> word Adonai when taking a prefix, but never like a word
> that begins with a yodh -- even a theophoric name that
> begins with YHW.
> It is also important to understand that a schewa under the yodh would
> not be read by the Masoretes as Jehovah.  It would be read as [yohov@].
> Jehovah is a late European reading of the Masoretic schewa and vowels,
> but not how the Masoretes themselves read it.  The Masoretes when
> reading a letter with a schewa followed by a guttural such as He would
> read the letter with the same vowel as the guttural.  So above we have
> yoho)aHaz, not yeho)aHaz, and yuhuda, not yehuda.
> You can see this already in the LXX.  The name YHWRM is read in the
> Tiberian tradition as [yohor at m] and the name YHWNTN is read in the
> Tiberian tradition as [yohon at th@n] and this vocalization of the initial
> syllable is already seen in the LXX.  There these names are transcribed
> IWRAM and IWNAQAN.  This is why you get transcriptions such as
> Joram or Jonathan.  You even have IOUDA in the LXX.  All these show a
> long o: and u:.  Because the He was not transcribed in Greek, this turns
> out to be almost the exact same pronunciation as the Masoretes!  (The
> difference is actually in the qamats which the Masoretes pronounced
> differently from a patah.  This is not germane to this discussion so I've
> not differentiated it in the transcriptions above).
> Why would you continue to write Jehovah if it is clear that the first vowel
> under no circumstance could be -e- and the first consonant could not be
> -j-?  (For what it's worth, the Masoretes did pronounce the waw as a [v]
> except when adjacent to an [u] vowel).
> The Talmud already explicitly deals with the issue in a quote attributed to
> Rabbi Avina several centuries prior to the Masoretes:
> רבי אבינא רמי, כתיב 'זה שמי' וכתיב 'זה זכרי'. אמר הקדוש ברוך הוא,
> לא כשאני נכתב אני נקרא, נכתב אני ביו'ד ה'י ונקרא באל'ף דל'ת
> Rabbi Avina said - It is written "This is my name" and it is also written
> "This is my mention."  The Holy One is saying - I'm not called the same
> way as I'm written.  I'm written with Yodh-He but read with Aleph-Daleth.
> Why is this quote from the Talmud not sufficient for you, Dave?
> Why are you skeptical about the evidence that has been provided?
> Simply because one has hataf patah and one has a schewa?  But a schewa
> was normally pronounced like a hataf patah (except for some exceptions
> such as when followed by a yodh or a guttural as described above).  From
> the Masoretic point of view they were the same.
> Because sometimes you don't have the holam?  But the only point the
> Masoretes had to specify for the word was whether it was to be pronounced
> Adonai or Elohim, and this depended only on the vocalization of the last
> vowel - qamats or hirik.  Also, we have additional documents from the
> Masoretes and in these the Masoretes spell the name of God as three
> yodhs arranged in a pyramid, two on the bottom and one on top, with a
> circle around them.  Since there is only room for two vowels, they give
> the first and last vowel.  This practice is what you apparently see now
> when the holam is missing.  But it is just a scribal convention for
> specifying the vocalization Adonai.  It is like one person would write
> an essay and dot the lowercase j's only in some places.  That doesn't
> mean that the words with dotted lowercase j's are different variants from
> the ones without them.  It is just what the scribe felt like using from a
> variety of equivalent representations for the same pronunciation.
> Why are you skeptical about the evidence provided?  Why doesn't the
> evidence satisfy you?
> Yitzhak Sapir
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