[b-hebrew] Northern and Southern Hebrew?

Jack Kilmon jkilmon at historian.net
Thu Apr 14 14:24:47 EDT 2011

-----Original Message----- 
From: K Randolph
Sent: Wednesday, April 13, 2011 3:41 PM
To: Chavoux Luyt
Cc: b-hebrew at lists.ibiblio.org
Subject: Re: [b-hebrew] Northern and Southern Hebrew?


On Wed, Apr 13, 2011 at 12:50 PM, Chavoux Luyt <chavoux at gmail.com> wrote:

> I am not sure if this is the right place to ask this question, but maybe
> somebody could point me in the right direction?
> In one of my Biblical Archaeology books the claim is made (pretty
> convincingly) that a difference in dialect between the Northern (Israel)
> and
> Southern (Judah) kingdom can be seen in Iron Age (split kingdom era)
> archaeological remains. Specifically, the bullae (seals) with personal
> names
> shows that names with the divine Name as part of it, use mostly Yod Waw in
> the North, but Yod He Waw in the South.
> Is there any indication in the Hebrew Bible of a similar difference? (E.g.
> between the prophets in the North vs. those in the South). Or has all
> differences between the two "dialects" been removed by later scribes?

Interesting question.

Let’s see, in the Bible there is Joseph from before the kingdom split, also
Jonathan son of king Saul also spelled Jehonathan, Joab, Joash the king,
Jotham, Joach son of Joachaz YW)X BN YW)XZ, Joram, all from the South;
contrast to Judah, Joshua, Jehonathan, Jehoyada from before the split, king
Jehoshaphat, Jehoram, Jehoram from the South, Jehu, Jehoram, Jehoachaz,
Jehonadab, Jehoshaphat, Jehoash from the North. Some of the names are
spelled both ways, and it doesn’t seem to differ which part of the country
they are from.

Maybe the bullae show a difference, but I don’t see any difference based on
names recorded in Tanakh. Interesting question, none the less.

> Regards
> Chavoux Luyt

Karl W. Randolph.

Hi Karl, Chavoux:

What I have noticed, but have not as yet researched it extensively for 
consistency, is that when the theophoric is a PREFIX to a root it is Yeho- 
(Yehoshua, Yehosef, Yehonathan, Yehoash) and in 2nd temple convention 
truncated to Y- (with a tsere) or Y- (with a holam); but when SUFFIXED to a 
root it is Yahu- (Yeshayahu, Yirmiyahu, Gedaliyahu) and truncated to -ya in 
2nd Temple times (Yeshaya [Isaiah]) noticeable more so in epigraphy since 
convention in scripture appears mixed due to scribal preference.  Has anyone 
else noticed this or published on it?  I placed it on my "things to look 
into when I have the time" list that we all have.



Jack Kilmon 

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