[b-hebrew] third person

Nir cohen - Prof. Mat. nir at ccet.ufrn.br
Wed Nov 14 08:33:10 EST 2012


ET in hebrew is a preposition (similar to MIN, EL, (AL, LIFNEY etc) and a marker for direct object, and as such 
it is not specified for gender or number. it is the same ET for everybody.

now, AT, ATAH, HEM etc is a personal pronoun, and is specified for both gender and number.

i think you confuse the two. now, i admit that it is logical to see the pronoun as linguistically derived from the  preposition 
(precisely by gender and number speciation). thiere is room for much speculation here.

probably, H* was used as the primordial semitic 2nd and 3rd pronoun, from which we still have in hebrew HU, HI, HEM, HEN.

the question of ATAH, AT, ATEM, ATEN is less understood. one would like to conjecture a dative origin (thus, ATAH is ET-H*)
for them, which became nominal later; but then there is the problem of the truly hebrew dative forms (OTKhA, OTAKh etc).
here, the situation is less clear.

> isaac: 1. Food for thought: Does not the translation implicitly see this HU as a verb?

the translation is in english, and the two languages have a different vision of the role of an auxiliary verb. in hebrew HU) is not considered a verb. one argument for 
this is that it is not tense specified (past, present, future), while the english TO BE is tense specified.

> 2. If the "first person" may speak for himself as a "third person", 
> can not the first את AT or ET of Gen. 14:9  stand for הוא HU or זה ZEH,
> or even הם HEM, as in 1Sam. 17:34, and Neh. 9:34?

i dont see the logic here. distorting an argument does not render it incorrect.

nir cohen
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