[b-hebrew] Ex 6:6 hiphil imperative 'bring'

Jerry Shepherd jshepherd53 at gmail.com
Wed Jul 10 22:06:30 EDT 2013

Hi Karl,

I won't interfere with the discussion between you and Barry; I'll let Barry
take up the mantle for a while of trying to show the problems withy "one
unique meaning" lexeme theory, a task which, thankfully, is not all that
difficult.  But I do have one question for you.  What is your evidence that
"strike" in baseball, meaning "to miss," comes from a different "root" than
"strike", meaning to "hit"?  I think you mentioned that before, and I
thought that sounded very odd.  So, I'm skeptical.



Jerry Shepherd
Taylor Seminary
Edmonton, Alberta
jshepherd53 at gmail.com

On Wed, Jul 10, 2013 at 7:13 PM, K Randolph <kwrandolph at gmail.com> wrote:

> Barry:
> On Wed, Jul 10, 2013 at 5:53 AM, Barry <nebarry at verizon.net> wrote:
>> On 7/10/2013 8:05 AM, K Randolph wrote:
>>  > First, I noticed that some words were used in ways that indicated that
>>  > their meanings as given in dictionaries didn’t seem accurate. It was
>>  > more often a nuance than a full meaning, but sometimes the latter as
>>  > well. Part of that is also how I understand words are used which is
>>  > different from how some other lexicographers understand how words are
>>  > used. My understanding is based on action and the range where that
>>  > action can be applied, theirs more often on form and affect.
>> Karl, this experience is shared by all who proceed beyond the
>> beginning/intermediate levels of any language study. Lexicons and
>> dictionaries are not exhaustive – that's simply impossible. They are, so
>> to speak, the beginning of semantic wisdom. What you are describing is
>> called in linguistics the pragmatics of the word, how the word is
>> actually used in context. Here is a pretty good introductory lecture on
>> the subject:
>> http://www.ling.upenn.edu/courses/Fall_1998/ling001/meaning.html
>> My comments here are restricted to pragmatic or semantic extension, not
>> to the other aspects of linguistic pragmatics.
> Let’s go back to the example I gave of “to swing” which is limited motion
> around an arc. When a conductor swings his baton, he leads the orchestra.
> When a baseball player swings his bat, he attempts to hit a speeding ball
> (if he misses, he then has a count against him, which is called a “strike”,
> from a different root than “strike” to hit). When a man swings his partner
> to music, that is dancing. When a child swings on a chair suspended from an
> overhead gantry, that is playing. But they all have the same action, namely
> limited movement along an arc. How a translator would translate the word
> into another language and culture may be different with each context when
> the target language doesn’t have the concept of “swing”. But the translator
> would be best able to choose the closest words in the target language if he
> understands the action behind the word in English.
> I’m expanding my dictionary beyond mere glosses to showing how and where
> they are used. As we discussed in earlier discussions, meaning is
> discovered not only in the actions referred to by the verb, but also the
> contexts where that action takes place. Some actions can take place in
> greater number of contexts than other words.
>> As an example of the pragmatic use of a word in English, let's say I'm
>> writing a science fiction story in which I regularly use the word "car"
>> to mean "flying car." Car doesn't normally mean that in English, but
>> anybody reading my book would understand how its being used. At times
>> what begins initially as a pragmatic extension of the meaning becomes a
>> standard meaning in a particular context, such as "phone" to mean "cell
>> phone" or "scan" to make digital copies of documents or pictures.
>> The difficulty for us as modern readers of ancient languages is this, do
>> we use an different word other than the standard lexical glosses to
>> render the usage in context, or do we use such a standard gloss and hope
>> the context shows the pragmatic extension in English? I don't have a
>> clue, really, but I think it has to be decided on a case by case basis.
> Now when I read Tanakh, I almost never translate, so that’s not an issue
> with my normal reading. However, when translating, I often don’t take the
> exact meaning—sometimes because it makes for awkward readings, sometimes
> not understandable. For example, הוצאתי HWC)TY literally means “I cause to
> exit” which is commonly “translated” as “I brought …” The reason for the
> difference is because English doesn’t have a one-to-one correspondence to
> Hebrew. And we need to decide on a case by case basis to decide on how is
> best to translate a passage.
> I think the translator does best when he recognizes what is the action
> indicated by the lexeme, so he’s best able to choose whether or not to
> follow a gloss.
>> All this to say that your lexicons weren't lying to you. The best
>> lexicons provide definitions which act as guides to the usage of the
>> word, descriptive rather than prescriptive.
> Lying is telling falsehoods with the intent to deceive. Far be it from me
> to claim so apart from evidence (which I don’t have). What I think is far
> more likely is that other lexicographers used a lexicographic method that
> my experience indicates gives a substandard to misleading and incorrect
> result, in this case gloss.
>>  >
>>  > I was taught two different patterns of verbal use: one where the
>>  > different conjugations referred to tense, which was the main
>>  > understanding at the time of Gesenius and Davidson, hence their use of
>>  > “ preterite” and “perfect” and “future”; secondly that they referred to
>>  > aspect; neither turn out to be accurate.
>>  >
>>  > There is a pattern of usage for the conjugations, but that pattern
>>  > doesn’t fit tense, aspect nor mood.
>> As recent discussion on this list proves, the Hebrew verbal system is a
>> matter of some controversy as our understanding of it evolves...
> How much of that controversy is driven by pride? After all, the scholar
> who staked his reputation on the claim that present referent, declarative,
> continuous action speech is rendered by a sentence structure of subject,
> verb in participle, object optional depending on verb will not take too
> kindly to the person who points out that the real pattern is subject, verb
> in Qatal, and optional object depending on verb.
> How many other positions are similar to that?
>> --
>> N.E. Barry Hofstetter
>> Semper melius Latine sonat
>> http://my.opera.com/barryhofstetter/blog
>> All opinions in this email are my own, and
>> reflect no institution with which I may be
>> associated
> Karl W. Randolph.
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