[b-hebrew] Ex 6:6 hiphil imperative 'bring' (K Randolph)

K Randolph kwrandolph at gmail.com
Tue Jul 16 03:03:54 EDT 2013


Jerry:

On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 10:07 PM, Jerry Shepherd <jshepherd53 at gmail.com>wrote:

> Karl had asked: "How much editorial activity? What evidence do you have
> that the MT consonantal text, apart from relatively few copyist errors,
> doesn’t represent an older text form?"
>
>
>
> My response was as follows.
>
>
>
> Actually, I have you to thank for giving me the answer to this question.
> In your reply to Ruth you referenced an article on the SBL Forum site  by
> William Griffin about your preference for an unpointed text.  Notice this
> paragraph:
>
>
>
> "'Biblical Hebrew' is the name applied to the language(s) contained in a
> collection of texts that were written over a period of about a thousand
> years, spanning the second and first millennia B.C.E., by people in diverse
> regions and settings. Originally, it was written in what is called
> 'Paleohebrew,' a script much different from current Hebrew texts.[2] Dots
> were employed as word separators, and there were no distinctions between
> medial and final forms. The language was written without vowels. From about
> the sixth century B.C.E. on, many consonants were added to represent vowels
> (*aleph, he, vav*, and *yodh*), known as *matres lectionis*, 'mothers of
> the reading.'"
>
>
>
> Griffin, by the way, references one of the important works for this whole
> discussion, Cross and Freedman's *Early Hebrew Orthography*.  Now, you
> may not agree with him; but Griffin here argues that the use *matres
> lectiones* did not come into play until the sixth century BCE.
> Therefore, any texts of biblical books that existed before then must have
> been subjected to a wholesale editing process to account that addes these
> *matres lectiones*.  So, when reading, for example, the text of Exodus,
> if one believes that this text was written by Moses or someone at or close
> to that same time period, every time one comes across a heh, waw, or yod
> used as a vowel letter, one is actually reading a text that was updated to
> include these vowel letters many centuries later.  That constitutes a
> substantial revision of the consonantal text.
>
>
>
> Karl's response was as follows:
>
>
>
> Points to consider:
>
>
>
> 1) in pre-Babylonian Exile writings, were they “materes lectionis” or
> full-fledged consonants? In other words, prior to their being counted as
> vowels by later readers, were they considered to be consonants by the
> original writers?
>
>
>
> 2) In reading the pre-Babylonian Exile books, “materes lectionis” are
> found so seldom as to be either a) sounds added in poetry to make it fit a
> meter or b) copyist errors by later copyists or c) originally consonants
> later changed to materes lectionis?
>
>
>
> My answer:
>
>
>
> 1) Karl, are you really being serious here?  This sounds absolutely
> ridiculous.
>

Begging the question logical fallacy.

>
>
> (2) Again, I have to ask, are you being serious here, that *matres
> lectiones* are seldom found in pre-exilic writings?  Look at Gen 1.  There
> are two occurrences  in v. 1, seven occurrences in v. 3, five in verse 3.
> and on and on.  You've got me totally confused here.
>

Not totally. Most of what you call materes lectionis in pre-Babylonian
Exile books act like consonants. Therefore, are they materes lectionis?

And the claim that what are called materes lectionis came into play in the
sixth century is belied by the Siloam inscription from the eighth century
BC, and the Mesha Stele, among others. There’s even an inscription from
Jordan in proto-Hebrew script that in its short length includes a “materes
lectionis”.

>
>
> Blessings,
>
>
> Jerry
>
> Jerry Shepherd
> Taylor Seminary
> Edmonton, Alberta
> jshepherd53 at gmail.com
>
>
I asked you before how much you trust the consonantal text, and your answer
is that you don’t as far as I can see, in that you think all the “materes
lectionis” and what all else was added after the Babylonian Captivity. I
have a higher regard for the scribes, that they wouldn’t deliberately
change the text like that.

Karl W. Randolph.
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