An introduction to biblical Hebrew syntax by Bruce K Waltke; Michael Patrick O'Connor

By Bruce K Waltke; Michael Patrick O'Connor

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By Bruce K Waltke; Michael Patrick O'Connor

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73 f During the more fluid stages of the text we might also expect confusion between forms such as I-yod verbs where the initial yod on the purely graphic level is ambiguous between the prefix and suffix conjugations. MT pairs like bv'y" and bveyE or [d;y" and [d;yE require careful attention. The "hidden" definite article with the inseparable preposition also illustrates the problem (cf. ~d'a'l. in Gen 2:20). chm::/bwbhs01.... 28/07/2005 Language and Text Page 16 of 24 g The validity of the MT.

15. Though outdated in details, C. H. Gordon's Ugaritic Textbook remains standard. 16. The name of the language (or forms of it) is given as yÝhuÖdiÖt 'Judean'(2 Kgs 18:26) and sÃÝpat kenaÃÁan 'Canaanite'(Isa 19:18); the term ÁibriÖt 'Hebrew' is earliest attested by the Greek adverb Hebraïsti (Ben Sira Prologue 22; cf. John 19:20). For a useful review of biblical allusions to Hebrew as a language, see W. Weinberg, "Language Consciousness in the Old Testament," Zeitschrift für die Alttestamentliche Wissenschaft 92 (1980) 185–204.

Page 27 i A complex body of evidence indicates that the MT could not, in any serious or systematic way, represent a reconstruction or faking of the data. The first clue that the Masoretes and their predecessors were preservers and not innovators lies in the history of Hebrew. By the time of the Qumran community, Biblical Hebrew was no longer a spoken language; Mishnaic Hebrew and Aramaic were the vernaculars of Palestine. The scribes were dealing with linguistic material they understood well but could use with no more spontaneity than we can speak English of the Tudor-Stuart period.

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