Further Biblical Hebrew: Explanations and Exercises 9781463216504

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Further Biblical Hebrew

Gorgias Handbooks

11

The Gorgias Handbooks series provides students and scholars with necessary tools.

Further Biblical Hebrew

Explanations and Exercises

Fiona Blumfield

9

34 2009

Gorgias Press LLC, 180 Centennial Ave., Piscataway, NJ, 08854, USA www.gorgiaspress.com Copyright © 2009 by Gorgias Press LLC

All rights reserved under International and Pan-American Copyright Conventions. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, scanning or otherwise without the prior written permission of Gorgias Press LLC. 2009

‫ܚ‬

9

ISBN 978-1-59333-948-7

ISSN 1935-6838

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Blumfield, Fiona Eve. Further biblical Hebrew : explanations and exercises / Fiona Blumfield. -- 1st Gorgias Press ed. p. cm. -- (Gorgias handbooks ; v. 11) Includes bibliographical references and index. 1. Hebrew language--Textbooks for foreign speakers--English. 2. Hebrew language--Grammar--Textbooks. 3. Hebrew language--Grammar--Problems, exercises, etc. 4. Bible O.T.--Language, style. I. Title. PJ4567.3.B58 2009 492.4'82421--dc22 2009031615 Printed in the United States of America

TABLE OF CONTENTS Table of contents.....................................................................................................v Foreword .................................................................................................................ix Acknowledgments ..................................................................................................xi Abbreviations ........................................................................................................xiii Part One: The Verb in Biblical Hebrew ............................................................15 Niphal.............................................................................................................15 Spot the Niphal.............................................................................................15 The relation between verbs lamed-’aleph and verbs lamed-hey ...........33 The relation between verbs ‫ ע"ו‬and ‫ ע"ע‬................................................41 Uses of Niphal ..............................................................................................43 Views of medieval scholars on use of Niphal..........................................52 Piel ..................................................................................................................68 Spot the Piel ..................................................................................................68 Uses of Piel....................................................................................................77 Views of medieval scholars on use of Piel ...............................................85 Polel, Polal, Hithpolel ..................................................................................92 Hiphil............................................................................................................101 Try to recognise Hiphil verbs...................................................................101 Uses of Hiphil .............................................................................................109 a): Hiphil stems which express the obtaining or receiving of a concrete or abstract quality. ................................................................111 b): Stems which express in Hiphil the entering into a certain condition and being in that condition...............................................112 c): Stems which express action in some particular direction. .............113 Views of medieval scholars on use of Hiphil.........................................115 Hithpael........................................................................................................126 Spot the Hithpael........................................................................................126 Uses of Hithpael .........................................................................................131 Exercise: identify the Hithpael verbs in the following biblical verses; discuss their form and use. (see explanatory notes at the end). ........................................................................................................135 Views of medieval scholars on use of Hithpael.....................................138 the theory of the qal passive .....................................................................148 I: Supposed perfects of Pual...................................................................149 II: Apparent Hophal imperfects..............................................................152 III:Apparent Pual participle forms without preformative mem. ........154 v

vi

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

IV: Views of medieval scholars on the Qal Passive...............................155 Glossary of rabbinic Hebrew grammatical terminology ......................157 Brief biographical sketches of medieval scholars..................................158 Part Two: The Infinitives in Biblical Hebrew................................................163 Infinitive Absolute......................................................................................163 Infinitive Construct....................................................................................188 Exercise: identify the Infinitive Construct forms in the following biblical verses; discuss their form and use........................................189 View of Medieval Scholars on the Form and Use of Infinitive Absolute and Infinitive Construct .....................................................206 Part Three: Syntax ...............................................................................................221 final or purpose clauses .............................................................................221 The biblical origins of rabbinic Hebrew words for expressing purpose...................................................................................................231 Exercise: translate the following English sentences into fully pointed biblical Hebrew. .....................................................................235 Antithesis in Biblical Hebrew ...................................................................237 Study the following biblical verses and analyse the various methods used to express antithesis and/or contrast; explanatory notes are provided with each verse. .............................................................237 Exercise: translate the following English sentences into fully pointed biblical Hebrew. .....................................................................246 causal and explicative clauses....................................................................248 Exercise: study the following biblical verses and discuss/analyse the various methods of formulating causal and explicative clauses in biblical Hebrew. See explanatory notes at the end of the exercise. ...........................................................................................248 Exercise: translate the following English sentences into fully pointed biblical Hebrew. .....................................................................257 Questions and answers in biblical hebrew..............................................259 Exercise: spot the ‘hey interrogative’ in the following biblical verses and deduce the rules for the pointing of the ‘hey interrogative’; explanatory notes are found at the end.............................................259 Study the following biblical verses and discuss the formation of interrogative sentences in biblical Hebrew.......................................264 Study the following biblical verses and consider how answers to questions are formulated in biblical Hebrew. ..................................268 Exercise: translate the following English interrogative sentences into fully pointed biblical Hebrew; suggested translations will be found at the end....................................................................................273

TABLE OF CONTENTS

vii

Part Four: Use of Tenses in Biblical Hebrew .................................................275 Use Of Perfect/Qatal ................................................................................276 Exercise: in the following biblical verses, discuss/analyse uses of the Perfect/Qatal..................................................................................276 Use of Imperfect/Yiqtol ...........................................................................284 Exercise: in the following biblical verses discuss/analyse use of Imperfect/Yiqtol ..................................................................................284 Views of medieval scholars on use of perfect and imperfect..............296 the use of participles in biblical hebrew..................................................310 Exercise: identify the participle forms in the following biblical verses and discuss their use and function.; explanatory notes are added. .....................................................................................................310 The form and use of the jussive in biblical hebrew ..............................314 Exercise: identify the Jussive in the following biblical verses and analyse/discuss its function; explanatory notes are added.............314 Part Five: Poetic Hebrew/Elevated Style........................................................319 Introductory remarks .................................................................................319 A summary outline of the grammatical features of ‘elevated style’. ...320 Energic Nun and Unassimilated Engergic Nun (See GK 58 i, k, l; WHG pp 130-131) ...............................................................................322 Exercise: in the following biblical verses, identify the verbal suffixes with Energic Nun, both contracted and uncontracted.; explanatory notes are found at the end.............................................323 Rare forms of pronominal suffixes of the verb and noun...................325 Exercise; in the following biblical verses, identify the rare forms ‫ ֵמוֹ‬,‫ ָמוֹ‬,‫ מוֹ‬of the pronominal suffixes of the verb (with the perf. imperf. and imperat.); explanatory notes are added. .............326 Exercise: in the following biblical verses, identify the rare forms ‫ ֵמוֹ‬,‫ ָמוֹ‬,‫ מוֹ‬of the pronominal suffixes with the noun..................329 Explanatory notes are added. ...................................................................329 Ḥireq compaginis........................................................................................331 Exercise: in the following biblical verses, spot the Ḥireq Compaginis in nouns, adjectives and participles. note also the instances where a preposition is inserted between the cstr. state and its genitive; explanatory notes are added...................................332 Paragogic nun..............................................................................................336 Exercise: study the occurrence of Paragogic Nun in the following biblical verses, noting its occurrence with and without the pause, in both prose and poetic texts; explanatory notes are added. .....................................................................................................336 A grammatical overview of the song of the sea ....................................339

viii

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

(exodus 15:1-18) .........................................................................................339 Exodus 15:1.................................................................................................339 Exodus 15:2.................................................................................................342 Exodus 15:4.................................................................................................344 Exodus 15:5.................................................................................................345 Exodus 15:6.................................................................................................346 Exodus 15:7.................................................................................................347 Exodus 15:8.................................................................................................348 Exodus 15:9.................................................................................................348 Exodus 15:10...............................................................................................349 Exodus 15:11...............................................................................................349 Exodus 15:12...............................................................................................349 Exodus 15:13...............................................................................................350 Exodus 15:14...............................................................................................351 Exodus 15:15...............................................................................................352 Exodus 15:16...............................................................................................353 Exodus 15:17...............................................................................................354 Bibliography .........................................................................................................357 Index......................................................................................................................361  

FOREWORD This book arose from the requirement to deliver lectures in Biblical Hebrew Grammar to second and third year College students who had already completed a first year course in Biblical Hebrew Grammar using one of the basic textbooks which are available (e.g. Kelley, Pratico/Van Pelt, Weingreen etc. see Bibliography). This book aims to help students make the transition from the basic grammar books to the comprehensive reference grammar books (Gesenius-Kautzsch, Jouon/Muraoka etc, see Bibliography) and to the Biblical Hebrew lexicons (BDB etc) and thereby facilitate a more advanced analysis of Biblical texts; there are many issues of Biblical interpretation for which a deeper understanding of Biblical Hebrew grammar is required than is possible to gain from the study of only a basic grammar book. Constant reference is made in this book not only to recent works of Grammar, but also to the grammatical comments of the medieval Jewish exegetes, for the grammatical insights of these medieval scholars and the modern grammarians often differ from each other only in terminology rather than in substance. Accordingly, this book features numerous examples of actual Biblical verses, with no artificial Biblical Hebrew, and the grammatical explanations are fully referenced to the modern grammar books, with the aim of encouraging students to consult the reference grammar books and lexicons for themselves. The comments of the medieval exegetes are presented in the original Rabbinic Hebrew, but full translations and explanations are provided. Extensive “exercise” sections are presented based on biblical verses, but the “answers/explanations” are always presented, either together with the exercise, or at the end of the section; this enables students to use the book for self-study. ix

x

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

It is to be noted that this book is not offered in any manner as a comprehensive grammar book, but rather as a tool to facilitate a more advanced analysis of Biblical Hebrew and to include material not completely covered in the basic grammar books, such as: uses of verbal patterns and infinitive forms, issues of syntax and features of ‘elevated style’, incorporating a small study of the “Song of the Sea” (Exodus 15) from a grammatical perspective. Since a central feature of this book are the numerous citations of biblical verses to illustrate points of grammar, English translations to the verses have in all cases been provided, with a view to enabling the student better to grasp the points of grammar under discussion. Accordingly, the priority has been the plain and literal meaning of the verse, so far as is possible, often at the expense of more idiomatic English. Constant reference has been made to the Bible translations cited below, but no one published translation has been exclusively relied upn. The published Bible translations consulted were: The Jerusalem Bible. The English text revised and edited by Harold Fisch. Koren Publishers Jerusalem Ltd. 2000. The Jewish Study Bible. ed. Adele Berlin and Marc Zvi Brettler. Jewish Publication Society Tanakh translation. OUP. 2004. The Keter Crown Bible. Introduction by Raphael Jospe. Horev Publishing House. 2004. Sole Distributors, Feldheim Publishers. Fiona Blumfield July 2008

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I owe considerable gratitude to the following individuals: Rabbi Dr Irving Jacobs, emeritus Principal of Jews’ College, London University, who taught me Midrash and Medieval Jewish Exegesis, and who first asked me to deliver lectures in Advanced Biblical Hebrew Grammar, which ultimately became the basis for this book. Professor Geoffrey Khan, Faculty of Oriental Studies, Cambridge University, who supervised my PhD thesis and who was always willing to give his learned advice on matters relating to this book. Chris Dillon, Faculty Information Support Officer for Arts and Humanities and Laws, University College London, without whose expertise and help so willingly given, the publication of this book would not have been possible. Katie Stott Ph.D. Production & Acquisitions Editor, Gorgias Press, whose skills and devotion to the task were phenomenal. Dr Ada Rapoport-Albert, Head of Dept. of Hebrew and Jewish Studies, University College London, who gave me the valued opportunity to continue lecturing in Advanced Biblical Hebrew Grammar at UCL after the degree programmes at Jews’ College/London School of Jewish Studies were discontinued. My long-enduring husband, Manny, and my daughters Penina and Shoshana, who happily tolerated the many hours I devoted to this project. This book is dedicated to the fond memory of my very dear father, Azriel Yoffey, son of Rabbi Israel Jacob Yoffey of Manchester, England, who first taught me the Hebrew alphabet and who so greatly encouraged me in Hebrew Studies over the years; to him belongs much of the credit for all my achievements. May he rest in peace.

xi

ABBREVIATIONS adj. adv. apoc. BCE c.pl. c.sg. cstr. Chron Deut def. art. Exod fem. f.pl. f.sg. Gen hapax hey int. imperat. imperf. inf. abs. inf. cstr. Lev lit. masc. m.pl.

adjective adverb apocopated (shortened) Before Christian Era common plural common singular construct (state) Chronicles Deuteronomy definite article Exodus feminine feminine plural feminine singular Genesis hapaxlegomenon (a form attested only once in the Hebrew Bible) hey interrogative imperative imperfect infinitive absolute infinitive construct Leviticus literally masculine masculine plural xiii

xiv m.sg. n.f. n.m. Numb part. perf. Pesh.

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

masculine singular noun feminine noun masculine Numbers participle perfect Peshitta (Syriac translation of the Hebrew Bible, perhaps c. 1st cent. BCE) pl. plural prep. preposition Ps Psalms Sam Samuel LXX Septuagint sf. Suffix vav conj. vav conjunctive vav consec. vav consecutive Vulg Vulgate (Latin translation of the Hebrew Bible made by the Church father Jerome c. 400 ce.)

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW (Morphology and Uses of Biblical Hebrew Verbal Patterns)

NIPHAL Spot the Niphal Study the following biblical verses. PARSE and TRANSLATE all the NIPHAL verbs. The student will find that the Niphal verbs occur in a logical order, progressing from the regular through the various types of irregular formations. The student may consult the verb tables in any reliable Biblical Hebrew grammar book. Explanatory notes are found at the end of the section. The subsequent two sections, “the relation of verbs ‫ ל"א‬to verbs ‫”ל"ה‬ and “the relation of verbs ‫ ע"ע‬to verbs ‫ ”ע"ו‬are of relevance to the analysis of a few verbs in this section. 1

Exodus 22:9

;‫ ִל ְשׁמֹר‬-‫ ְבּ ֵה ָמה‬-‫וְ ָכל‬, ‫ ֶשׂה‬-‫שׁוֹר אוֹ‬-‫ ֵר ֵעהוּ ֲחמוֹר אוֹ‬-‫יִ ֵתּן ִאישׁ ֶאל‬-‫ִכּי‬ ‫ ֵאין ר ֶֹאה‬,‫נִ ְשׁ ָבּה‬-‫נִ ְשׁ ַבּר אוֹ‬-‫וּמת אוֹ‬ ֵ If a man gives his fellow a donkey, an ox, a sheep or any beast to guard, and it dies or is injured or taken captive, with no witness.

15

16 2

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Leviticus 25:23

‫תוֹשׁ ִ ֛בים ַא ֶ ֖תּם‬ ָ ְ‫י־לי ָה ָ ֑א ֶרץ ִ ֽכּי־גֵ ִ ֧רים ו‬ ֖ ִ ‫וְ ָה ָ֗א ֶרץ ֤ל ֹא ִת ָמּ ֵכ ֙ר ִל ְצ ִמ ֻ֔תת ִכּ‬ ‫ִע ָמּ ִ ֽדי׃‬ The land shall not be sold in perpetuity, for the land is mine, for you are strangers and sojourners with me. 3

Genesis 42:19

‫ם־כּ ִנ֣ים ַא ֶ֔תּם ֲא ִח ֶיכ֣ם ֶא ָ֔חד יֵ ָא ֵ ֖סר ְבּ ֵב֣ית ִמ ְשׁ ַמ ְר ֶכ֑ם וְ ַא ֶתּ ֙ם ְל ֣כוּ‬ ֵ ‫ִא‬ ‫יכם׃‬ ֽ ֶ ‫ָה ִ֔ביאוּ ֶ ֖שׁ ֶבר ַר ֲע ֥בוֹן ָבּ ֵתּ‬ If you are honest, let one of your brothers be imprisoned in the house of your confinement and you go and bring grain for the hunger of your households. 4

II Kings 18:10

‫ת־תּ ַשׁע‬ ֵ֗ ַ‫ת־שׁשׁ ְל ִחזְ ִק ָיּ֑ה ִ ֣היא ְשׁנ‬ ֖ ֵ ַ‫ַוֽ יִּ ְל ְכּ ֻ ֗ד ָה ִמ ְק ֵצ ֙ה ָשׁ ֹ֣לשׁ ָשׁ ִ֔נים ִבּ ְשׁנ‬ ֵ֙ ‫ְל‬ ‫הוֹשׁ ַע ֶ ֣מ ֶלְך יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ֔אל נִ ְל ְכּ ָ ֖דה שׁ ְֹמ ֽרוֹן׃‬ They captured it after three years; in the sixth year of Hezekiah, that is the ninth year of Hosea, king of Israel, Samaria was captured. 5

Jeremiah 7:10

‫א־שׁ ִ ֣מי ָע ֔ ָליו וַ ֲא ַמ ְר ֶ ֖תּם‬ ְ ‫שׁר נִ ְק ָר‬ ֣ ֶ ‫אתם וַ ֲע ַמ ְד ֶ ֣תּם ְל ָפ ֗ ַני ַבּ ַ ֤בּיִ ת ַהזֶּ ֙ה ֲא‬ ֶ֞ ‫וּב‬ ָ ‫תּוֹע ֖בוֹת ָה ֵ ֽא ֶלּה׃‬ ֵ ‫ל־ה‬ ַ ‫נִ ַ ֑צּ ְלנוּ ְל ַ ֣מ ַען ֲע ֔שׂוֹת ֵ ֥את ָכּ‬ And will you come and stand before Me in this Temple, upon which My Name is called, and say, ‘we have been saved’, in order that you may do all these abominations?

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 6

17

Genesis 6:6,7

‫אמר‬ ֶ ֹ ‫ וַ ֣יּ‬7 ‫ל־ל ֽבּוֹ׃‬ ִ ‫ת־ה ָא ָ ֖דם ָבּ ָ ֑א ֶרץ וַ יִּ ְת ַע ֵצּ֖ב ֶא‬ ָ ֽ ‫י־ע ָ ֥שׂה ֶא‬ ָ ‫הוה ִ ֽכּ‬ ָ֔ ְ‫וַ יִּ ָנּ ֶ֣חם י‬ ָ֗ ְ‫י‬ ‫אתי ֵמ ַעל֙ ְפּ ֵנ֣י ֽ ָה ֲא ָד ָ֔מה ֽ ֵמ ָא ָד ֙ם‬ ֙ ִ ‫ר־בּ ָ ֙ר‬ ָ ‫ת־ה ָא ָ ֤דם ֲא ֶשׁ‬ ָ ‫הוה ֶא ְמ ֶ֨חה ֶא‬ ֣ ‫ד־ר ֶמשׂ וְ ַע‬ ֖ ֶ ‫ד־בּ ֵה ָ֔מה ַע‬ ְ ‫ַע‬ ‫יתם׃‬ ֽ ִ ‫ד־עוֹף ַה ָשּׁ ָ ֑מיִ ם ִ ֥כּי נִ ַ ֖ח ְמ ִתּי ִ ֥כּי ֲע ִשׂ‬ The Lord regretted that He had made man on the earth and He was grieved in His heart; and the Lord said, ‘I will blot out man whom I have created from upon the face of the earth, from man to beast to creeping things and the birds of the air, for I regret that I made them.’ 7

Isaiah 40:4

‫ישׁוֹר וְ ָה ְר ָכ ִ ֖סים‬ ֔ ‫ל־הר וְ גִ ְב ָ ֖עה יִ ְשׁ ָ ֑פּלוּ וְ ָה ָי֤ה ֶ ֽה ָעק ֹ֙ב ְל ִמ‬ ֥ ַ ‫יא יִ נָּ ֵ֔שׂא וְ ָכ‬ ֙ ֶ‫ָכּל־גּ‬ ‫ְל ִב ְק ָ ֽעה׃‬ Every valley will be raised and every mountain and hill will be made low, the uneven shall be a level and the rough places a plain. 8

Genesis 12:7

‫ת־ה ָ ֣א ֶרץ ַה ֑זּ ֹאת וַ ִיּ ֶ֤בן ָשׁ ֙ם‬ ָ ‫אמר ְַלז ְר ֲע ָ֔ך ֶא ֵ ֖תּן ֶא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫ל־א ְב ָ ֔רם וַ ֕יּ‬ ַ ‫וַ יֵּ ָ ֤רא יְ הוָ ֙ה ֶא‬ ֖ ָ ‫ִמזְ ֵ֔בּ ַח׀ ַל‬ ‫יהוה ַהנִּ ְר ֶ ֥אה ֵא ָ ֽליו׃‬ The Lord appeared to Abraham and said, ‘I will give this land to your seed’, and he built there an altar to the Lord who had appeared to him. 9

Jeremiah 32:15

‫וּכ ָר ִ ֖מים ָבּ ָ ֥א ֶרץ ַהזּֽ ֹאת׃‬ ְ ‫֣עוֹד יִ ָקּנ֥ וּ ָב ִ ֛תּים וְ ָשׂ ֥דוֹת‬ Houses and fields and vineyards will be bought again in this land.

18

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

10 Genesis 41:32

‫ל־פּ ְר ֖עֹה ַפּ ֲע ָ ֑מיִ ם ִ ֽכּי־נָ ֤כוֹן ַה ָדּ ָב ֙ר ֵמ ִ ֣עם‬ ַ ‫ ַה ֲח ֛לוֹם ֶא‬.‫וְ ֨ ַעל ִה ָשּׁנ֧ וֹת‬ ‫ֹלהים ַל ֲעשׂ ֹֽתוֹ׃‬ ֖ ִ ‫וּמ ַמ ֵ ֥הר ָה ֱא‬ ְ ‫ֹלהים‬ ִ֔ ‫ָה ֱא‬ As for the repetition of the dream to Pharoah twice, it is because the thing is determined by G-d and G-d is hurrying to perform it. 11 II Samuel 1:6

‫יתי ְבּ ַ ֣הר ַהגִּ ְל ֔בֹּ ַע וְ ִה ֵנּ֥ה ָשׁ ֖אוּל‬ ֙ ִ ‫אמר ַה ַנּ ַ֣ער ַה ַמּ ִגּ֣יד ֗לוֹ נִ ְק ֤ר ֹא נִ ְק ֵ ֙ר‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֜יּ‬ ֑ ִ‫ל־חנ‬ ֲ ‫נִ ְשׁ ָ ֣ען ַע‬ ‫וּב ֲע ֵ ֥לי ַה ָפּ ָר ִ ֖שׁים ִה ְד ִבּ ֻ ֽ קהוּ׃‬ ַ ‫יתוֹ וְ ִה ֵנּ֥ה ָה ֶ ֛ר ֶכב‬ The young man who was reporting to him said, ‘I happened to be on Mount Gilboa and Saul was leaning on his spear, and the chariots and the horsemen were pursuing him.’ 12

Numbers 23:4

‫ת־שׁ ְב ַ ֤עת ַ ֽה ִמּזְ ְבּח ֹ֙ת ָע ַ ֔ר ְכ ִתּי‬ ִ ‫אמר ֵא ֗ ָליו ֶא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫־בּ ְל ָ ֑עם וַ ֣יּ‬ ִ ‫ֹלהים ֶאל‬ ֖ ִ ‫וַ יִּ ָ ֥קּר ֱא‬ ‫וָ ַ ֛א ַעל ָ ֥פּר וָ ַ ֖איִ ל ַבּ ִמּזְ ֵ ֽבּ ַח׃‬ G-d met Balaam and He said to him, ‘I have arranged the seven altars and I have offered up a bull and a ram on each altar.’ 13

Psalm 109:14

‫ל־תּ ָ ֽמּח׃‬ ִ ‫הו֑ה וְ ַח ַ ֥טּאת ִ֝א ֗מּוֹ ַא‬ ָ ְ‫יִ זָּ ֵכ֤ר ֲע ֹ֣ון ֲ֭אב ָֹתיו ֶאל־י‬ May the iniquity of his fathers be remembered by the Lord and let not the sin of his mother be blotted out.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 14

19

Jeremiah 6:8

‫ימְך ְשׁ ָמ ָ֔מה ֶ ֖א ֶרץ ֥לוֹא‬ ֣ ֵ ‫ן־א ִשׂ‬ ֲ ‫ן־תּ ַ ֥ קע נַ ְפ ִ ֖שׁי ִמ ֵ ֑מְּך ֶפּ‬ ֵ ‫וּשׁ ֔ ַל ִם ֶפּ‬ ָ ‫ִהוָּ ְס ִ ֙רי יְ ֣ר‬ ‫נוֹשׁ ָבה׃‬ ָֽ Be chastened, O Jerusalem, lest my soul be alienated from you, lest I make you a desolation, a land not inhabited. 15

I Kings 12:6

‫מה‬ ֹ ֣ ‫ת־פּנֵ ֙י ְשֹׁל‬ ְ ‫ר־הי֣ וּ ע ְֹמ ִ ֗דים ֶא‬ ָ ‫ים ֲא ֶשׁ‬ ֙ ִ‫ת־הזְּ ֵקנ‬ ַ ‫וַ יִּ וָּ ֞ ַעץ ַה ֶ ֣מּ ֶלְך ְר ַח ְב ֗ ָעם ֶא‬ ‫ם־ה ֶזּ֖ה‬ ַ ‫ת־ה ָע‬ ֽ ָ ‫וֹע ִ֔צים ְל ָה ִ ֥שׁיב ֶא‬ ָ ֽ‫מר ֵ ֚איְך ַא ֶ ֣תּם נ‬ ֹ ֑ ‫ָא ִ֔ביו ִ ֽבּ ְהי ֹ֥תוֹ ַ ֖חי ֵלא‬ ‫ָדּ ָ ֽבר׃‬ And King Rehoboam took counsel with the Elders who had stood before his father while he was alive, saying, ‘how do you advise that I answer this people?’ 16

Psalm 130:4

‫יחה ְ֝ל ַ֗מ ַען ִתּוָּ ֵ ֽרא׃‬ ֑ ָ ‫י־ע ְמָּך֥ ַה ְסּ ִל‬ ִ ‫ִ ֽכּ‬ For with You is forgiveness, so that You may be feared. 17

I Kings 19:10

‫ֽו ִָאוָּ ֵ ֤תר ֲאנִ ֙י ְל ַב ִ ֔דּי וַ יְ ַב ְק ֥שׁוּ ֶאת־נַ ְפ ִ ֖שׁי ְל ַק ְח ָ ֽתּהּ׃‬ I alone have remained and they seek to take my life. 18

Deuteronomy 7:25

‫יה ֙ם‬ ֶ ‫א־ת ְחמֹד֩ ֶ֨כּ ֶסף וְ זָ ָ ֤הב ֲע ֵל‬ ַ ֹ ‫יהם ִתּ ְשׂ ְר ֣פוּן ָבּ ֵ ֑אשׁ ֽל‬ ֖ ֶ ‫ֹלה‬ ֵ ‫ ֱא‬.‫ילי‬ ֥ ֵ ‫ְפּ ִס‬ ‫ֹלהיָך ֽהוּא׃‬ ֖ ֶ ‫הו֥ה ֱא‬ ָ ְ‫תוֹע ַ ֛בת י‬ ֲ ‫וְ ָל ַק ְח ָ ֣תּ ֔ ָלְך ֶ ֚פּן ִתּוָּ ֵ ֣ קשׁ ֔בּוֹ ִ ֧כּי‬

20

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

You shall burn the statues of their gods in fire, you shall not desire the silver or gold upon them and take it for yourself, lest you be ensnared by it, for it is an abomination to the Lord your G-d.333 19 I Kings 2:46

‫מת וְ ַה ַמּ ְמ ָל ָ ֥כה‬ ֹ ֑ ָ‫ע־בּוֹ וַ יּ‬ ֖ ַ‫הוּ ֶבּן־יְ ֣הוֹיָ ָ ֔דע וַ יֵּ ֵ֕צא וַ יִּ ְפגּ‬ ֙ ָ֙‫ת־בּנָ י‬ ְ ‫וַ יְ ַצ֣ו ַה ֶ֗מּ ֶלְך ֶא‬ ‫מה׃‬ ֹ ֽ ‫ד־שֹׁל‬ ְ ַ‫נָ ֖כוֹנָ ה ְבּי‬ And the king commanded Benaiah son of Jehoiada and he went out and struck him and he died; and the kingdom was established in the hand of Solomon. 20

I Kings 2:12

‫אד׃‬ ֹ ֽ ‫ל־כּ ֵ ֖סּא ָדִּו֣ד ָא ִ ֑ביו וַ ִתּ ֥כֹּן ַמ ְל ֻכ ֖תוֹ ְמ‬ ִ ‫מה יָ ַ֕שׁב ַע‬ ֹ ֕ ‫וּשֹׁל‬ ְ And Solomon sat on the throne of David his father and his kingdom was firmly established. 21

Amos 4:12

‫ֹלהיָך יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֽאל׃‬ ֖ ֶ ‫את־א‬ ֱ ‫ִה ֥כּוֹן ִל ְק ַר‬ Prepare to meet your G-d, O Israel. 22

Exodus 15:15

‫מגוּ ֖כֹּל י ְֹשׁ ֵ ֥בי‬ ֹ ֕ ָ‫אח ֵז֖מוֹ ָ ֑ר ַעד נ‬ ֲ ֹ ֽ‫מוֹאב י‬ ָ֔ ‫לּוּפ֣י ֱא ֔דוֹם ֵא ֵיל֣י‬ ֵ ‫ָ ֤אז נִ ְב ֲה ֙לוּ ַא‬ ‫ְכ ָנ ַֽען׃‬ Then the chiefs of Edom were terrified, as for the leaders of Moab, trembling seized them, all the inhabitants of Canaan melted away.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 23

21

Psalm 17:5

‫לוֹתיָך ַבּל־נָ ֥מוֹטוּ ְפ ָע ָ ֽמי׃‬ ֑ ֶ ְ‫מְך ֲ֭א ֻשׁ ַרי ְבּ ַמ ְעגּ‬ ֹ ֣ ‫ָתּ‬ My steps have held firmly to your tracks, my feet have not slipped. 24

Psalm 15:5

‫יִמּוֹט‬ ֣ ‫ה־א ֶלּה ֖ל ֹא‬ ֑ ֵ ‫ַכּ ְס ֤פּוֹ לֹא־נָ ַ ֣תן ְבּנֶ ֶשׁ ְ֮ך וְ ֥שׁ ֹ ַחד ַעל־נָ ִ֗קי ֥ל ֹא ֫ ָל ָ ֥קח ֽע ֹ ֵשׂ‬ ‫עוֹלם׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫ְל‬ He does not give his money on interest and he does not take a bribe against the innocent; he that does these things shall never be shaken. 25

Psalm 38:9

‫אד ָ֝שׁ ַ֗אגְ ִתּי ִ ֽמנַּ ֲה ַ ֥מת ִל ִ ֽבּי׃‬ ֹ ֑ ‫ד־מ‬ ְ ‫֣יתי ַע‬ ִ ‫וֹתי וְ נִ ְד ֵכּ‬ ִ ֣‫נְ פוּג‬ I am benumbed and crushed greatly, I roar from the groaning of my heart. 26

Joel 4:12

‫וֹשׁ ָ ֑פט ִ ֣כּי ָ֗שׁם ֵא ֵ ֛שׁב ִל ְשׁ ֥ ֹפּט‬ ָ ‫ל־ע ֶמק יְ ֽה‬ ֖ ֵ ‫גּוֹים ֶא‬ ִ֔ ‫וֹרוּ וְ יַ ֲע ֣לוּ ַה‬ ֙ ‫יֵ ֙ע‬ ‫גּוֹי֖ם ִמ ָסּ ִ ֽביב׃‬ ִ ‫ל־ה‬ ַ ‫ת־כּ‬ ָ ‫ֶא‬ Let the nations rouse themselves and go up to the Valley of Jehoshaphat, for there I will sit to judge all the nations from round about. 27

Genesis 17:26

‫ְבּ ֙ ֶע ֶצ ֙ם ַהיּ֣ וֹם ַה ֶ֔זּה נִ ֖מּוֹל ַא ְב ָר ָ ֑הם וְ יִ ְשׁ ָמ ֵ ֖עאל ְבּנֽ וֹ׃‬ On this very day, Abraham and his son Ishmael were circumcised.

22 28

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Amos 9:9

‫ת־בּ֣ית יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֑אל ַכּ ֲא ֶ ֤שׁר‬ ֵ ‫ל־הגּוֹיִ ֖ם ֶא‬ ַ ‫וֹתי ְב ָ ֽכ‬ ִ ‫ֹכי ְמ ַצ ֶ ֔וּה וַ ֲהנִ ֥ע‬ ֙ ִ ‫י־ה ֵנּ֤ה ָ ֽאנ‬ ִ ‫ִ ֽכּ‬ ַ ‫יִ ֙נּ‬ ‫וֹע ַבּ ְכּ ָב ָ ֔רה וְ ֽל ֹא־יִ ֥פּוֹל ְצ ֖רוֹר ָ ֽא ֶרץ׃‬ For I am about to command and I will toss the House of Israel among all the nations, as grain is sifted in a sieve, and no pebble falls to the ground. 29

Ezekiel 20:43

‫אתם ָ ֑בּם‬ ֖ ֶ ‫יכם ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר נִ ְט ֵמ‬ ֶ֔ ‫וֹת‬ ֵ ‫ל־ע ִל ֣יל‬ ֲ ‫יכ ֙ם וְ ֵא ֙ת ָכּ‬ ֶ ‫ת־דּ ְר ֵכ‬ ַ ‫ם־שׁם ֶא‬ ָ֗ ‫וּזְ ַכ ְר ֶתּ‬ ֵ ‫ל־ר‬ ָ ‫יכם ְבּ ָכ‬ ֶ֔ ֵ‫וּנְ ֽקֹט ֶֹת ֙ם ִבּ ְפנ‬ ‫יתם׃‬ ֽ ֶ ‫עוֹת ֶיכ֖ם ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ֲע ִשׂ‬ And you will remember there all your ways and all your deeds with which you have been defiled, and you shall feel a loathing at yourselves for all your evils which you have done. 30

Numbers 34:4

‫וְ נָ ַ ֣סב ָל ֶכ ֩ם ַהגְּ ֨בוּל ִמ ֶ֜נּגֶ ב ְל ַמ ֲע ֵל֤ה ַע ְק ַר ִבּ ֙ים‬ And your border shall turn southward of the ascent of Akrabbim. 31

Genesis 19:4

‫ל־ה ַ֔בּיִ ת‬ ַ ‫ֶט ֶר ֮ם יִ ְשׁ ָכּב ֒וּ וְ ַאנְ ֵ֨שׁי ָה ֜ ִעיר ַאנְ ֵ ֤שׁי ְסד ֹ֙ם נָ ַ ֣סבּוּ ַע‬ They had not yet lain down when the men of the city, the men of Sodom surrounded the house. 32

Psalm 97:5

‫דּוֹנג ָ ֭נ ַמסּוּ‬ ַ֗ ‫ָה ִ ֗רים ַכּ‬ The mountains melted like wax.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 33

23

II Samuel 6:22

‫שׁר ָא ַ֔מ ְר ְתּ‬ ֣ ֶ ‫הוֹת ֲא‬ ֙ ‫ם־ה ֲא ָמ‬ ֽ ָ ‫֥יתי ָשׁ ָ ֖פל ְבּ ֵע ָינ֑י וְ ִע‬ ִ ִ‫עוֹד ִמ ֔זּ ֹאת וְ ָהי‬ ֙ ‫וּנְ ַק ֹּ֤ל ִתי‬ ‫ִע ָ ֖מּם ִא ָכּ ֵ ֽב ָדה׃‬ And I will be yet more lightly esteemed than this, and I will be lowly in my own eyes, and with the maidservants of whom you spoke, with them I will be honoured. 34

Hosea 2:1

‫ְ ֽו ָהיָ ה ִמ ְס ַ ֤פּר ְבּ ֵנֽי־יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵאל֙ ְכּ ֣חוֹל ַה ָ֔יּם ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ֽל ֹא־יִ ַ ֖מּד וְ ֣ל ֹא יִ ָסּ ֵ ֑פר‬ And the number of the children of Israel shall be like the sand of the sea which may not be measured and may not be counted. 35

Amos 5:24

..‫יתן‬ ֽ ָ ‫וּצ ָד ָ ֖ קה ְכּ ַנ ַ֥חל ֵא‬ ְ ‫וְ יִ ַגּ֥ל ַכּ ַ ֖מּיִם ִמ ְשׁ ָ ֑פּט‬ But let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing torrent. 36

Malachi 3:9

‫ַבּ ְמּ ֵא ָר ֙ה ַא ֶ ֣תּם ֵנ ָֽא ִ ֔רים וְ א ִ ֹ֖תי ַא ֶ ֣תּם ק ְֹב ִ ֑עים ַהגּ֖ וֹי ֻכּ ֽלּוֹ׃‬ With the curse you are cursed and Me you are robbing, the whole nation. 37

Psalm 18:27

‫ם־ע ֵ ֗קּשׁ ִתּ ְת ַפּ ָ ֽתּל׃‬ ִ ֝ ‫ִעם־נָ ָ ֥בר ִתּ ְת ָבּ ָ ֑רר וְ ִע‬ With the pure You show Yourself pure and with the twisted You deal tortuously.

24 38

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Leviticus 26:39

‫ ַבּ ֲעו ֹ ֹ֥נת‬. ‫קּוּ ֽ ַבּ ֲעו ָֹ֔נם ְבּ ַא ְר ֖צֹת אֹיְ ֵב ֶיכ֑ם וְ ַ ֛אף‬ ֙ ‫יִמּ‬ ַ֙ ‫ וְ ַהנִּ ְשׁ ָא ִ ֣רים ָבּ ֶ֗כם‬. . ‫יִמּקּוּ׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫ֲאב ָ ֹ֖תם ִא ָ ֥תּם‬ And those who are left among you will rot away in their iniquity in the lands of your enemies and even in the iniquities of their fathers with them they will rot away. 39 Isaiah 50:5

‫יתי ָא ֖חוֹר ֥ל ֹא נְ סוּגֽ ִֹתי׃‬ ִ ‫אזֶ ן וְ ָאנ ִ ֹ֖כי ֣ל ֹא ָמ ִ ֑ר‬ ֹ ֔ ‫ח־לי‬ ֣ ִ ‫ֲאד ָֹנ֤י יְ הוִ ֙ה ָפּ ַ ֽת‬ The Lord G-d has opened for me an ear and I did not rebel, I did not turn back. 40

Psalm 78:57

‫בוֹתם ֶ֝נ ְה ְפּ ֗כוּ ְכּ  ֶ ֣ק ֶשׁת ְר ִמ ָיּֽה׃‬ ֑ ָ ‫ֽ יִּבגְּ דוּ ַכּ ֲא‬ ְ ‫וַ יִּ ֣סֹּגוּ ַו‬ They turned back and acted treacherously, they changed like a deceitful bow. 41

Micah 2:6

‫יפוּן ֽל ֹא־יַ ִ ֣טּפוּ ָל ֵ֔א ֶלּה ֥ל ֹא יִ ַ ֖סּג ְכּ ִל ֽמּוֹת׃‬ ֑ ‫ל־תּ ִ ֖טּפוּ יַ ִטּ‬ ַ ‫ַא‬ ‘Do not preach’, they preach; they shall not preach to these; reproaches do not depart. Explanatory notes for spot the Niphal 1

Exodus 22:9

‫ נִ ְשׁ ַבּר‬Niphal perf. 3 m.sg. lit. “he/it was broken”; root ‫שׁבר‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

25

The participle would have qamets under the beth: ‫נִ ְשׁ ָבּר‬

‫ נִ ְשׁ ָבּה‬Niphal perf. 3 m.sg. lit. “he/it was taken captive”; root ‫שׁבה‬. The participle would have segol under the beth: rules of verbs ‫ל"ה‬. 2

‫נִ ְשׁ ֶבּה‬

according to the

Leviticus 25:23 (Jubilee Year)

‫ ִת ָמּ ֵכר‬Niphal imperf. 3 f.sg. “it/she will be sold”; root ‫מכר‬. ‫ = ָצ ַמת‬put an end to, exterminate > ‫ ְצ ִמיתוּת‬n.f. = completion, finality only in phrase, 3

‫ ַל ְצּ ִמיתוּת‬, ‫“ = ִל ְצ ִמיתוּת‬in perpetuity”

Genesis 42:19 (Joseph to his brothers)

‫ יֵ ָא ֵסר‬Niphal imperf. 3 m.sg. “he will be bound/imprisoned”; root ‫אסר‬. Note compensatory lengthening of ḥireq to tsere under prefix yod due to absence of dagesh in the ’aleph (first root letter), according to rules of verbs pe-guttural in Niphal. 4

II Kings 18:10

‫ נִ ְל ְכּ ָדה‬Niphal perf. 3 f.sg. “she/it was captured”; root ‫לכד‬. 5

Jeremiah 7:10

‫ נִ ְק ָרא‬Niphal perf. 3 m.sg. “it has been called” Note that in verbs form.

‫ל"א‬

the Niphal perf. and part. m.sg. have the same

‫ נִ ַצּ ְלנוּ‬Niphal perf. 1 c.pl. “we have been saved”. Root ‫נצל‬.

26

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Note the assimilation of the nun (first root letter) into the tsadi (second root letter) according to the rules of verbs ‫פ"נ‬. 6

Genesis 6:6,7

‫וַ יִּ נָּ ֶחם‬

Niphal imperf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. “and he repented.”

‫נִ ַח ְמ ִתּי‬

Niphal perf. 1 c.sg. “I repented, regretted.”

Be careful not to confuse Niphal perfect and Piel perfect of the root ‫נחם‬. Niphal perf. 3 m.sg. is ‫( נִ ַחם‬contracted from ‫( )נִ נְ ַחם‬Amos 7:3 + 4 t) > pausal: ‫נִ ָחם‬ Niphal perf. 1 c.sg. is ‫( נִ ַח ְמ ִתּי‬contracted from ‫)נִ נְ ַח ְמ ִתּי‬. The Piel perf. 3 m.sg. is also ‫( נִ ַחם‬no contraction having taken place; notice the ‘virtual doubling’ of the middle root letter in the Piel, since it is a guttural). 7

Isaiah 40:4

‫יִ נָּ ֵשׂא‬

Niphal imperf. 3 m.sg. “it will be lifted up”; root ‫נשׂא‬.

‫ָעקֹב‬

adj. steep, hilly; ‫ ְר ָכ ִסים‬rough places.

8

Genesis 12:7

‫וַ יֵּ ָרא‬

Niphal apocopated imperf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. “and he appeared” root ‫ראה‬

‫ַהנִּ ְר ֶאה‬

The long form of the Niphal imperf. is ‫יֵ ָר ֶאה‬

Niphal participle m.sg. + definite article; ‫ראה‬.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 9

27

Jeremiah 32:15 Niphal imperf. 3 m.pl. “they will be bought,” root ‫קנה‬.

‫יִ ָקּנוּ‬ 10

Genesis 41:32

‫ִה ָשּׁנוֹת‬

Niphal infinitive construct; “being repeated”; root ‫שׁנה‬.

‫נָ כוֹן‬

Niphal participle m.sg. “established, determined,” root ‫כון‬.

11

II Samuel 1:6 (The Amalekite to David on the death of Saul and Jonathan at Mount Gilboa).

‫נִ ְקרֹא‬

Niphal infinitive absolute; ‫קרא‬.

‫יתי‬ ִ ‫נִ ְק ֵר‬

Niphal perf. 1 c.sg.; ‫קרה‬. “I happened to be.”

On the relation between verbs ‫ ל"א‬and verbs ‫ל"ה‬, see below. See also GK 75 nn-rr. 12

Numbers 23:4

‫וַ יִּ ָקּר‬

Niphal apocopated imperf. 3 m.sg. “and he met,” root ‫קרה‬.

The longer form would be ‫יִ ָקּ ֶרה‬. See GK 49d: “When a shortening of the imperfect form is possible—it takes effect, as a rule—after waw consec. e.g. in Hiphil ‫( וַ יַּ ְק ֵטל‬53n). The tendency to retract the tone from the final syllable is even stronger after waw consec. than in the jussive,—.” e.g. ‫יָ קוּם‬, jussive ‫יָ קֹם‬, with waw consec. ‫ וַ יָּ ָקם‬and he arose.” 13 Psalm 109:14

‫יִ זָּ ֵכר‬

Niphal imperf. 3 m.sg. “it will be remembered,” root ‫זכר‬.

28

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

‫ִתּ ָמּח‬

Niphal imperf. 3 f.sg. apocop. from ‫“ ִתּ ָמּ ֶחה‬it/she will be wiped

out” root ‫מחה‬. 14

Jeremiah 6:8

‫ִהוָּ ְס ִרי‬

Niphal imperative f.sg. “let yourself be chastened,” root ‫יסר‬.

‫נוֹשׁ ָבה‬ ָ

Niphal participle f.sg. “inhabited,” root ‫ישׁב‬.

‫ = יקע‬be dislocated, alienated > Qal imperf. 3 f.sg. ‫ ֵתּ ַקע‬. (See Gen 32:26) 15

I Kings 12:6

‫וַ יִּ וָּ ַעץ‬ ‫יעץ‬

Niphal imperf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. “and he took counsel,” root

‫נוֹע ִצים‬ ָ

Niphal part. m.pl. “consult together, exchange counsel”; root ‫יעץ‬

16

Psalm 130:4

‫ִתּוָּ ֵרא‬ 17

Niphal imperf. 2 m.sg. “you will be feared”; root ‫ירא‬.

I Kings 19:10

‫וָ ִאוָּ ֵתר‬

Niphal imperf. 1 c.sg. “and I have remained,” root ‫יתר‬.

18 Deuteronomy 7:25

‫ִתּוָּ ֵקשׁ‬ 19

Niphal imperf. 2 m.sg. “you will be ensnared,” root ‫יקשׁ‬.

I Kings 2:46

‫נָ כוֹנָ ה‬

Niphal perf. 3 f.sg. “it was established,” root ‫כון‬.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 20

I Kings 2:12

‫וַ ִתּ ֥כֹּן‬ ‫כון‬. 21

Niphal imperf. 3 f.sg. + vav consec. “and it was established,” root

Amos 4:12

‫ִהכּוֹן‬ 22

29

Niphal imperative m.sg. “prepare,” root

‫כון‬.

Exodus 15:15

‫נִ ְב ֲהלוּ‬

Niphal perf. 3 m.pl. “they were terrified,” root ‫בהל‬.

‫מגוּ‬ ֹ ֕ ָ‫נ‬

Niphal perf. 3 pl. “they melted away,” root ‫מוג‬.

‫אח ֵז֖מוֹ‬ ֲ ֹ ֽ‫י‬

“(trembling) has taken hold of them.” root ‫ ;אחז‬Qal imperf. + sf. For rare forms of the pronominal suffixes of the verb, see GK 58g and Part Five of this book. For use of imperf. in the sphere of pasttime, “to express actions etc which continued throughout a longer or shorter period,” see GK 107b. 23

Psalm 17:5

‫נָ מוֹטוּ‬

Niphal perf. 3 pl. “(they) tottered, slipped,” root

‫מוט‬.

‫מְך‬ ֹ ֣ ‫ָתּ‬

Note use of Infinitive Absolute instead of inflected form.

24 Psalm 15:5

‫יִמּוֹט‬ 25

Niphal imperf. 3 m.sg. “he will (not) be shaken,” root ‫מוט‬.

Psalm 38:9

‫וֹתי‬ ִ ֣‫נְ פוּג‬

Niphal perf. 1 c.sg. “I am benumbed,” root ‫פוג‬.

‫יתי‬ ִ ‫נִ ְד ֵכּ‬

Niphal perf. 1 c.sg. “I am crushed,” root ‫דכה‬.

30 26

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Joel 4:12

‫יֵ עוֹרוּ‬ 27

Niphal imperf. 3 m.pl. “let them rouse themselves,” root ‫עור‬.

Genesis 17:26

Niphal perf. 3 m.sg. “he was circumcised,” root ‫מול‬. See GK 72ee: “In common with verbs ‫ ע"ע‬verbs ‫ ע"ו‬sometimes have in Niphal and Hiphil the quasi-Aramaic formation, by which, instead of the long vowel under the preformative, they take a short vowel with Dagesh forte in the following consonant; this variety is frequently found even along with ֵ the ordinary form, e.g. ‫ ִה ִסּית‬to incite, imperfect ‫( יַ ִסּית‬also ‫ה ִסית‬, ‫—;)יָ ִסית‬sometimes with a difference of meaning, as ‫יח‬ ַ ִ‫ ֵהנ‬to cause to rest, but ‫יח‬ ַ ִ‫( ִהנּ‬imperfect ‫יח‬ ַ ִ‫—)יַ נּ‬to set down.”

‫נִ מּוֹל‬

28

Amos 9:9 Niphal imperf. 3 m.sg. “it is tossed about, sieved,” root ‫נוע‬.

‫נּוֹע‬ ַ ִ‫י‬

Note the Hiphil of the same root ‫נוע‬:

‫ְצרוֹר‬ 29

‫עוֹתי‬ ִ ִ‫“ וַ ֲהנ‬I will toss about, shake.”

n.m. pebble

Ezekiel 20:43

‫אתם‬ ֶ ‫נִ ְט ֵמ‬ ‫טמא‬.

Niphal perf. 2 m.pl. “you have defiled yourselves,” root

‫וּנְ ֽקֹט ֶֹת ֙ם‬

Niphal perf. 2 m.pl. + vav consec. “and you shall feel a loathing at yourselves,” root ‫“ = קוט‬feel a loathing.” See Psalm 95:10 for Qal of this root: ‫“ ַא ְר ָ֘בּ ִ ֤עים ָשׁ ֨ ָנה ׀ ָ֘א ֤קוּט ְבּ ֗דוֹר‬for forty years I felt a loathing at the generation.” 30

Numbers 34:4

‫ וְ נָ ַסב‬Niphal perf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. “and it will turn,” root ‫סבב‬.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 31

Genesis 19:4

‫נָ ַסבּוּ‬ 32

Niphal perf. 3 pl. “they surrounded,” root ‫סבב‬

.

Psalm 97:5 Niphal perf. 3 pl. “they melted,” root ‫מסס‬.

‫נָ ַמסּוּ‬ ‫דּוֹנַ ג‬ 33

31

n.m. wax

II Samuel 6:22 (David dancing before the Ark as it was brought into Jerusalem)

‫וּנְ ַק ֹּ֤ל ִתי‬

Niphal perf. 1 c.sg. + vav consec. “and I will be lightly esteemed,” ‫קלל‬. ‫ ִא ָכּ ֵב ָדה‬Niphal imperf. cohortative 1 c.sg. pausal; “I will be honoured,” ‫כבד‬ 34 Hosea 2:1

‫יִמּד‬ ַ Niphal imperf. 3 m.sg. “it will be measured,” ‫מדד‬. ‫ יִ ָסּ ֵפר‬Niphal imperf. 3 m.sg. “it will be counted,” ‫ספר‬. 35

Amos 5:24

‫ וְ יִ גַּ ל‬Niphal imperf. 3 m.sg. + vav conjunct. “let it roll.” root ‫גלל‬. ‫יתן‬ ָ ‫ ֵא‬adj. = “perennial, ever-flowing, permanent.” (BDB p 450, ‫)יתן‬. 36

Malachi 3:9 (rebuking the people for not bringing the tithes and heave offerings)

‫נֵ ָא ִרים‬

Niphal participle m.pl. “cursed,” root ‫ארר‬. (compare Niphal participle of ‫)נְ ַס ִבּים > סבב‬.

32

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

37

Psalm 18:27

‫נָ ָבר‬

Niphal participle m.sg. “the pure,” root ‫“ = ָבּ ַרר‬purify, select.” > Niphal: “purify oneself,” Hithpael: “show oneself pure.”

‫ ִע ֵקּשׁ‬adj. twisted, perverted; ‫ ָפּ ַתל‬twist. 38

Leviticus 26:39

‫ַהנִּ ְשׁ ָא ִרים‬ ‫יִמּקּוּ‬ ַ

Niphal part. m.pl. “those remaining,” ‫שׁאר‬.

Niphal imperf. 3 m.pl. “they will rot,”

‫מקק‬. (‫יִמּקּוּ‬ ָ

pausal). 39 Isaiah 50:5

‫נְ סוּגֽ ִֹתי‬ 40

Niphal perf. 1 c.sg. “I turned myself back,” root

‫סוג‬.

Psalm 78:57

‫וַ יִּ ֣סֹּגוּ‬

Niphal imperf. 3 m.pl. + vav consec. “and they turned back,” root ‫סוג‬.

41

‫נֶ ְה ְפּכוּ‬

Niphal perf. 3 pl. “they changed,” root ‫הפך‬.

‫ְר ִמיָּ ה‬

n.f. deceit, treachery

Micah 2:6

‫ יִ ַסּג‬See below for discussion of this form in “The relation between verbs ‫ ע"ע‬and verbs ‫ע"ו‬.” ‫“ = נָ ַטף‬drop, drip” > Hiphil: 1): “drip”; e.g. Amos 9:13: ‫ים ָע ִ֔סיס‬ ֙ ‫וְ ִה ִ ֤טּיפוּ ֶ ֽה ָה ִר‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

33

“and the mountains shall drip sweet wine” 2): “preach” e.g. Amos 7:16:

‫ל־בּית יִ ְשׂ ָ ֽחק׃‬ ֥ ֵ ‫֤ל ֹא ִתנָּ ֵב ֙א ַעל־יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ֔אל וְ ֥ל ֹא ַת ִ ֖טּיף ַע‬ “Do not prophesy against Israel and do not preach against the House of Isaac.”

The relation between verbs lamed-’aleph and verbs lamed-hey “The close relation existing between verbs ‫ ל"א‬and ‫ ל"ה‬is shown in Hebrew by the fact that the verbs of one class often borrow forms from the other.” (GK 75 nn). “The ‫ ל"א‬and ‫ ל"ה‬verbs are intimately related, and they frequently interchange, or borrow forms from one another.” (Radak. Mikhlol. ed. Chomsky. p 155). Examples: I:

‫ = ָר ָפה‬sink, relax; ‫ = ָר ָפא‬heal.

Study the following biblical verses and note the interchange of form and meaning between these two verbal roots. a)

Hosea 14:5

‫וּב ָ֔תם‬ ָ ‫ֶא ְר ָפּ ֙א ְמ ֣שׁ‬

“I will heal their backsliding.”.

‫ ֶא ְר ָפּ ֙א‬is Qal imperf. 1 c.sg. ‫ָר ָפא‬ b)

Jeremiah 3:22

‫ֶא ְר ָ ֖פּה ְמשׁוּ ֽבֹ ֵת ֶיכ֑ם‬

“I will heal your backslidings.”

34

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Note that ‫ ֶא ְר ָ ֖פּה‬is formed from the ‫ ל"ה‬root, ‫ר ָפה‬,ָ but has kept the ‫ ל"א‬vowels, and the meaning is according to the ‫ ל"א‬verb, ‫ר ָפא‬.ָ Qal imperf. .from the ‫ ל"ה‬root, ‫ר ָפה‬,ָ would be: ‫ ֶא ְר ֶפּה‬. c)

Numbers 12:13

‫מר ֵ֕אל ָנ֛א ְר ָ ֥פא ָנ֖א ָ ֽלהּ׃‬ ֹ ֑ ‫הו֖ה ֵלא‬ ָ ְ‫וַ יִּ ְצ ַע֣ק מ ֶֹ֔שׁה ֶאל־י‬ “Moses cried out to the Lord saying, ‘O Lord, please heal her’.”

‫ ְר ָ ֥פא‬is Qal imperative m.sg. ‫“ = ָר ָפא‬heal”. d)

Psalm 60:4

‫י־מ ָטה׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫יה ִכ‬ ָ ‫ִה ְר ַ ֣ע ְשׁ ָתּה ֶ ֣א ֶרץ ְפּ ַצ ְמ ָ ֑תּהּ ְר ָ ֖פה ְשׁ ָב ֶ ֣ר‬ “You have caused the land to quake, You have split it open; heal its breaches, for it totters.”

‫ ְר ָ ֖פה‬is formed from the ‫ ל"ה‬root, ‫ר ָפה‬,ָ but has the meaning of the ‫ל"א‬ root, ‫ ָר ָפא‬, and has kept the ‫ ל"א‬vowels. The vowels of the Qal imperative m.sg. of the ‫ ל"ה‬root would be: ‫ ְר ֵפה‬. e)

Jeremiah 6:14

‫מר ָשׁ ֣לוֹם ׀ ָשׁ ֑לוֹם וְ ֵ ֖אין ָשׁ ֽלוֹם׃‬ ֹ ֖ ‫מּי ַעל־נְ ַק ֔ ָלּה ֵלא‬ ֙ ִ ‫ת־שׁ ֶבר ַע‬ ֤ ֶ ‫ַוֽ יְ ַר ְפּ ֞אוּ ֶא‬ “They healed the breach of My people lightly saying, ‘peace, peace’, but there is no peace.”

‫ ַוֽ יְ ַר ְפּ ֞אוּ‬is Piel imperf. 3 m.pl. + vav consec. root: ‫ ָר ָפא‬. f)

Jeremiah 8:11

‫מר ָשׁ ֣לוֹם ׀ ָשׁ ֑לוֹם וְ ֵ ֖אין ָשׁ ֽלוֹם׃‬ ֹ ֖ ‫מּי ַעל־נְ ַק ֔ ָלּה ֵלא‬ ֙ ִ ‫ת־ע‬ ַ ‫ת־שׁ ֶבר ַבּ‬ ֤ ֶ ‫וַ יְ ַר ֞פּוּ ֶא‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

35

“They healed the breach of the daughter of My people lightly saying, ‘peace, peace’, but there is no peace.”

‫וַ יְ ַר ֞פּוּ‬

has the meaning of the ‫ ל"א‬root, “heal” (see e), but the form is entirely of a ‫ ל"ה‬character, with no ’aleph.

g) Jeremiah 38:4

‫ל־כּן‬ ֵ֡ ‫י־ע‬ ַ ‫ה ִ ֽכּ‬ ֒ ֶ‫ת־ה ִ ֣אישׁ ַהזּ‬ ָ ‫וּמת נָ ֮א ֶא‬ ַ ֣‫ל־ה ֶ֗מּ ֶלְך י‬ ַ ‫אמ ֨רוּ ַה ָשּׂ ִ ֜רים ֶא‬ ְ ֹ ‫וַ יּ‬ ְ ‫ֽה‬ ‫וּא־מ ַר ֡ ֵפּא ֶאת־יְ ֵדי֩ ַאנְ ֵ֨שׁי ַה ִמּ ְל ָח ָ֜מה ַ ֽהנִּ ְשׁ ָא ִ ֣רים ׀ ָבּ ִ ֣עיר ַה ֗זּ ֹאת‬ “And the officers said to the king, ‘let this man be put to death now, because he is disheartening (lit. weakening the hands of) the soldiers who remain in this city’”.

‫ְמ ַר ֡ ֵפּא‬

(Piel part. m.sg.) is formed from the ‫ ל"א‬root, ‫ר ָפא‬,ָ but in the context of this verse has the meaning of the Piel of the ‫ ל"ה‬root, ‫ר ָפה‬,ָ i.e. “let drop, weaken, enfeeble, dishearten”. The form of the Piel participle of the ‫ ל"ה‬root would be ‫ ְמ ַר ֶפּה‬, but the form ‫ ְמ ַר ֡ ֵפּא‬in this verse entirely follows the analogy of the ‫ ל"א‬verbs. (The Piel ‫ ְמ ַר ֡ ֵפּא‬would = “heal”). h)

Ecclesiastes 10:4

‫֖יח‬ ַ ‫ל־תּ ַנּ֑ח ִ ֣כּי ַמ ְר ֔ ֵפּא יַ ִנּ‬ ַ ‫קוֹמָך֖ ַא‬ ְ ‫מּוֹשׁל֙ ַתּ ֲע ֶל֣ה ָע ֔ ֶליָך ְמ‬ ֵ ‫וּח ַה‬ ַ ‫ם־ר‬ ֤ ‫ִא‬ ‫דוֹלים‬ ֽ ִ ְ‫ֲח ָט ִ ֥אים גּ‬ “If the spirit of the ruler rises up against you, do not leave your place, for a healing (?) allays (?) great offences.”

‫נוּח‬ ַ > Hiphil A: ‫יח‬ ַ ִ‫ = ֵהנ‬cause to rest; ַ ִ‫ = ִהנּ‬lay, set down; let remain, leave; let alone. Hiphil B: ‫יח‬

36

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Ibn Ezra’s comment on Ecclesiastes 10:4

‫ ָלהּ‬-‫פּוֹעל ֵמ ַה ִבּנְ יָ ן ַה ָכּ ֵבד ֶשׁ ִמּ ֶמּנּוּ ַה ְר ֵפּה‬ ַ ‫ויותר נָ כוֹן היות מרפא‬ (‫)מ"ב ד כ"ז‬ (‫והאל"ף במקום ה"א כאל"ף )ירמיהו לח ד‬ ‫וּא־מ ַר ֡ ֵפּא ֶאת־יְ ֵדי֩ ַאנְ ֵ֨שׁי ַה ִמּ ְל ָח ָ֜מה‬ ְ ‫ֽה‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra’s comment It is more correct to understand (the noun) ‫ ַמ ְר ֔ ֵפּא‬as a Piel participle of the same root as ‫ ַה ְר ֵפּה‬in II Kings 4:27, “leave her alone”. The ’aleph in ‫ מרפא‬is in place of hey, as in ‫ ְמ ַר ֡ ֵפּא‬in Jeremiah 38:4, “He is weakening the hands of the soldiers.” Explanation of Ibn Ezra

‫ ַמ ְר ֵפּא‬appears

to be a masculine noun = “healing, cure.” However, this understanding makes little sense in the context of this verse. Accordingly, Ibn Ezra suggests that ‫ מרפא‬should be taken as a Piel participle from the ‫ ל"ה‬root, ‫רפה‬, i.e. ‫“ = ְמ ַר ֶפּה‬let drop, weaken etc,” as in Jeremiah 38:4 ְ (see above, g), where ‫ ְמ ַר ֡ ֵפּא‬has the meaning of ‫מ ַר ֶפּה‬.

II:

‫ = ָכּלָ ה‬be complete, at an end, finished etc (BDB p 477) ‫ = ָכּלָ א‬shut up, restrain, withhold (BDB p 476) Compare the following two biblical verses:

a) Genesis 8:2

‫ן־ה ָשּׁ ָ ֽמיִם׃‬ ַ ‫רוּ ַמ ְעיְ ֹ֣נת ְתּ ֔הוֹם ֽו ֲַא ֻר ֖בֹּת ַה ָשּׁ ָ ֑מיִ ם וַ יִּ ָכּ ֵ ֥לא ַה ֶגּ ֶ֖שׁם ִמ‬ ֙ ‫וַ יִּ ָ ֽסּ ְכ‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

37

“And the springs of the deep and the sluices of the heavens were shut up and the rain was withheld from the heavens.”

‫וַ יִּ ָכּ ֵ ֥לא‬

Niphal imperf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. root ‫ָכּ ָלא‬

b) Genesis 23:6

‫ת־ק ְב ֛רוֹ ֽל ֹא־יִ ְכ ֶ ֥לה ִמ ְמּך‬ ִ ‫ִ ֣אישׁ ִמ ֶ֔מּנּוּ ֶא‬ “No man of us shall withhold/keep back from you his burial place.”

‫יִכ ֶ ֥לה‬ ְ has the form of the Qal imperf. 3 m.sg. of the ‫ ל"ה‬root, ‫כלה‬, but it has the meaning of the ‫ ל"א‬root, ‫ ָכּ ָלא‬. The ‫ ל"א‬Qal imperf. would be ‫יִכ ָלא‬. ְ III: ‫( ָק ָרא‬II) = encounter, befall (BDB p 896) (not to be confused with ‫( ָק ָרא‬I) = call, proclaim, read); ‫ = ָק ָרה‬encounter, meet, befall. Compare the verbal forms from these roots in the following biblical verses: a)

Exodus 3:18

‫ים נִ ְק ָ ֣רה ָע ֔ ֵלינוּ‬ ֙ ִ‫ֹלהי ָ ֽה ִע ְב ִריּ‬ ֤ ֵ ‫הוה ֱא‬ ָ֞ ְ‫י‬ “The Lord G-d of the Hebrews has met with us.”

‫ נִ ְק ָ ֣רה‬is Niphal perf. 3 m.sg. root ‫ ָק ָרה‬. b)

Exodus 5:3

‫ֹלהי ָה ִע ְב ִ ֖רים נִ ְק ָ ֣רא ָע ֵל֑ינוּ‬ ֥ ֵ ‫ֱא‬

“The Lord of the Hebrews has met with

us.”

‫ נִ ְק ָ ֣רא‬is Niphal perf. 3 m.sg. root ‫( ָק ָרא‬II). In this form, the vowels of verbs ‫ ל"א‬and ‫ ל"ה‬do not differ.

38

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

c) Numbers 23:4

‫ל־בּ ְל ָ ֑עם‬ ִ ‫ֹלהים ֶא‬ ֖ ִ ‫וַ יִּ ָ ֥קּר ֱא‬ “G-d encountered Balaam”.‫ וַ יִּ ָ ֥קּר‬is Niphal apocopated imperf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. root ‫ ָק ָרה‬. d)

II Samuel 18:9

‫וַ יִּ ָקּ ֵר ֙א ַא ְב ָשׁ ֔לוֹם ִל ְפ ֵנ֖י ַע ְב ֵ ֣די ָדִו֑ד‬ “And Absalom chanced to meet the servants of David.”

‫ וַ יִּ ָקּ ֵר ֙א‬is Niphal imperf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. ‫ָק ָרא‬ (II) with same meaning as ‫ָק ָרה‬ Further examples and exercise In the following biblical verses, identify ‫ ל"א‬verbs which are of a character. Explanatory notes are found at the end of the section.

‫ל" ה‬

a) I Samuel 6:10

‫רוֹת ָע ֔לוֹת וַ יַּ ַא ְס ֖רוּם ָבּ ֲעגָ ָל֑ה‬ ֙ ‫וַ יַּ ֲע ֤שׂוּ ָה ֲאנָ ִשׁ ֙ים ֵ֔כּן וַ יִּ ְק ֗חוּ ְשׁ ֵ ֤תּי ָפ‬ ‫יהם ָכּ ֥לוּ ַב ָ ֽבּיִת׃‬ ֖ ֶ ֵ‫ת־בּנ‬ ְ ‫וְ ֶא‬ “And the men did so and they took two nursing cows and tied them to the wagon, and shut up their calves in the house.” b)

I Samuel 10:6

‫ית ִע ָ ֑מּם וְ נֶ ְה ַפּ ְכ ָ ֖תּ ְל ִ ֥אישׁ ַא ֵ ֽחר׃‬ ָ ‫הוה וְ ִה ְתנַ ִ ֖בּ‬ ָ֔ ְ‫וּח׀ י‬ ַ ‫וְ ָצ ְל ָ ֤חה ָע ֶ ֙ל ֙יָך ֣ר‬ “The spirit of the Lord will rush upon you, and you will prophesy with them, and you will be turned into another man.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW c)

39

Jeremiah 26:9

‫ ָה ִ ֥עיר‬.‫מר ְכּ ִשׁלוֹ֙ יִ ְֽהיֶ ֙ה ַה ַ ֣בּיִ ת ַה ֶ֔זּה ְו‬ ֹ ֗ ‫הוה ֵלא‬ ָ֜ ְ‫ית ְב ֵשׁם־י‬ ָ ‫דּוּע׀ נִ ֵ֨בּ‬ ַ ‫ ַמ‬. ‫יוֹשׁב‬ ֑ ֵ ‫ ַה ֛זּ ֹאת ֶתּ ֱח ַ ֖רב ֵמ ֵ ֣אין‬. “Why have you prophesied in the name of the Lord, saying that this Temple will be like Shiloh, and this city shall be destroyed, without an inhabitant?” d)

Ruth 2:9

‫ל־ה ֵכּ ֔ ִלים‬ ַ ‫וְ ָצ ִ֗מת וְ ָה ַל ְכ ְ֙תּ ֶא‬ e)

“If you become thirsty, go to the jugs.”

Lamentations 4:1

‫יוּע֣ם זָ ָ֔הב יִ ְשׁ ֶנ֖א ַה ֶכּ ֶ֣תם ַה ֑טּוֹב‬ ַ ‫יכ ֙ה‬ ָ ‫ֵא‬ “How is the gold become dim! how is the most fine gold changed!” f)

Esther 1:5

‫שׁוּשׁן‬ ַ ‫ ְבּ‬. ‫ים‬ ֩ ‫ל־ה ָע֣ם ַהנִּ ְמ ְצ ִא‬ ָ ‫וּב ְמ ֣לוֹאת ַהיָּ ִ ֣מים ָה ֵ֗א ֶלּה ָע ָ ֣שׂה ַה ֶ֡מּ ֶלְך ְל ָכ‬ ִ ָ ‫ירה ְל ִמ ָגּ֧דוֹל וְ ַע‬ ֜ ָ ‫ַה ִבּ‬ ‫יָמים‬ ֑ ִ ‫ד־ק ָ ֛טן ִמ ְשׁ ֶ ֖תּה ִשׁ ְב ַע֣ת‬ “And when these days were completed, the king made a seven-day banquet for all the people present in Shushan the capital, from great to small!” Explanatory notes for ‫ ל"א‬and ‫ ל"ה‬Verbs. a)

I Samuel 6:10

‫ ָכּלוּ‬Qal perf. 3 pl. ‫כּ ָלה‬.ָ However, ‫“ = )ל"ה( ָכּ ָלה‬be complete, at an end” whereas ‫“ = )ל"א( ָכּ ָלא‬shut up, restrain, withhold” (Qal perf. 3 pl. of ‫ ָכּ ָלא‬would be ‫) ָכּ ְלאוּ‬

40 b)

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW I Samuel 10:6

‫ית‬ ָ ‫ וְ ִה ְתנַ ִ ֖בּ‬Hithpael perf. 2 m.sg. ‫נבה‬. However, the meaning is of the ‫ ל"א‬verb ‫נבא‬, and one would expect ָ ‫“ ִה ְתנַ ֵבּ‬you have prophesied.” the Hithpael perf. to be ‫את‬ c)

Jeremiah 26:9

‫ית‬ ָ ‫נִ ֵ֨בּ‬

is Piel perf. 2 m.sg. One would expect prophesied.” d)

‫את‬ ָ ‫נִ ֵבּ‬

“you have

Ruth 2:9

‫ וְ ָצ ִ֗מת‬has the meaning of the ‫ ל"א‬stative verb ‫“ = ָצ ֵמא‬be thirsty”, and one would expect ‫( וְ ָצ ָמאת‬like ‫) ָמ ָצאת‬. Instead, it follows the analogy of verbs ‫ ל"ה‬like ‫“ גָּ ִלית‬you have uncovered”. e)

Lamentations 4:1

‫“ יִ ְשׁנֶ א‬it is changed” is Qal imperf. 3 m.sg. written with ’aleph as third root letter, but with the vowels and meaning of the ‫ ל"ה‬verb ‫= ָשׁנָ ה‬ “change”. If it were a true under the nun. f)

‫ל"א‬

verb, it would be written

‫יִ ְשׁנָ א‬

with qamets

Esther 1:5

‫וּב ְמ ֣לוֹאת‬ ִ (see GK 74h) has the meaning of the Qal inf. cstr. of the stative ‫ ל"א‬verb, ‫“ = ָמ ֵלא‬be full” and one would expect ‫וּב ְמלֹא‬. ִ Instead, it follows the analogy of inf. cstr. of verbs ‫ל"ה‬, like ‫גְּ לוֹת‬ (‫)גָּ ָלה‬. ‫ים‬ ֩ ‫ ַהנִּ ְמ ְצ ִא‬Niphal participle m.pl. ‫“ ָמ ָצא‬who are found”.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

41

According to the rules of verbs ‫ל"א‬, we would expect ‫ַהנִּ ְמ ָצ ִאים‬ (qamets under tsadi). If, however, the verb were ‫ל"ה‬, we would have ‫ נִ ְמ ִצים‬with elision of hey. The sheva under the tsadi plus the retention of the ’aleph gives us a hybrid formation.

The relation between verbs ‫ ע"ו‬and ‫ע"ע‬ See GK 72dd: “The verbs ‫ ע"ו‬are primarily related to the verbs ‫ע"ע‬, which were also originally biliteral, so that it is especially necessary in analyzing them to pay attention to the differences between the inflexion of the two classes. Several forms are exactly the same in both, e.g. imperfect Qal and Hiphil with waw consecutive,—. Owing to this close relation, verbs ‫ ע"ו‬sometimes have forms which follow the analogy of verbs ‫—ע"ע‬.” This resemblance of verbs ‫ ע"ו‬to verbs ‫ ע"ע‬is due partially at least to biliteral roots having been expanded to triliterals in both groups. That is to say, many triliteral stems in these groups of verbs really point to a biliteral base. These root syllables are easily distinguished when the stem has a feeble consonant (‫ )ע"ו‬or the same consonant in second and third place (‫)ע"ע‬. For example, ‫ דוך‬,‫ דכא‬,‫ דכה‬,‫ דכך‬all mean “beat, beat in pieces” and thus, the two stronger letters ‫ דך‬constitute the monosyllabic root. Hence, verbs ‫ ע"ע‬were expanded to triliterals by doubling the second radical, and verbs ‫ ע"ו‬were expanded by lengthening the medial vowel. In the following biblical verses, analyse the verbs

‫ע"ו‬

which follow the

analogy of verbs ‫ ע"ע‬and the verbs ‫ ע"ע‬which follow the analogy of verbs

‫ע"ו‬. 1

Micah 2:6

‫יפוּן ֽל ֹא־יַ ִ ֣טּפוּ ָל ֵ֔א ֶלּה ֥ל ֹא יִ ַ ֖סּג ְכּ ִל ֽמּוֹת׃‬ ֑ ‫ל־תּ ִ ֖טּפוּ יַ ִטּ‬ ַ ‫ַא‬

42

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

“‘Do not preach’, they preach; they shall not preach to these; reproaches do not depart.”

‫יִ ַ ֖סּג‬

Apparently, Niphal imperf. 3 m.sg. ‫סגג‬.

However, the root ‫ סגג‬is otherwise unattested and according to meaning, the root letters are ‫“ = סוּג‬move away, backslide” (Niphal imperf. ‫)יִ סּוֹג‬ e.g. Psalm 78:57: ‫בוֹתם‬ ֑ ָ ‫ַכּ ֲא‬

‫ֽ יִּבגְּ דוּ‬ ְ ‫וַ יִּ ֣סֹּגוּ ַו‬

“they drew back and betrayed like their fathers.” Note also: 7:16). 2

‫נָ ַטף‬

= drop, drip > Hiphil: = drip (Amos 9:13); preach (Amos

Isaiah 24:3

‫ת־ה ָדּ ָ ֥בר ַה ֶזּֽה׃‬ ַ ‫הוה ִדּ ֶ ֖בּר ֶא‬ ָ֔ ְ‫ִה ֧בּוֹק ִתּ ֛בּוֹק ָה ָ ֖א ֶרץ וְ ִה ֣בּוֹז ִתּ ֑בּוֹז ִ ֣כּי י‬ “The land will become utterly emptied and utterly despoiled, for the Lord has spoken this word.”

‫ִה ֧בּוֹק ׀ ִתּ ֛בּוֹק‬ Apparently Niphal inf. abs. + Niphal imperf. 3 f.sg. ‫בּוּק‬. However, the root ‫ בּוּק‬is not attested for any verbal form, though the noun forms in Nahum 2:11 clearly derive from the‫ ע"ו‬root: ‫בּוּ ָ ֥ קה‬ ‫וּמ ֻב ָלּ ָ ֑ קה‬ ְ ‫וּמבוּ ָ ֖ קה‬ ְ “emptiness and void and waste”. The ‫ ע"ע‬root ‫ בּקק‬is ֙ ‫“ ִ ֤כּי ְב ָק‬for much better attested (BDB p 132) e.g. Nahum 2:3: ‫קוּם ֽבֹּ ְק ִ֔קים‬ the emptiers have emptied them”.e.g. Isaiah 24:1: ‫א ֶרץ‬ ֖ ָ ‫הו֛ה בּוֹ ֵ ֥ קק ָה‬ ָ ְ‫ִה ֵנּ֧ה י‬ “Behold the Lord is emptying the land.”

‫וְ ִה ֣בּוֹז ׀ ִתּ ֑בּוֹז‬

Apparently Niphal inf. abs. + Niphal imperf. 3 f.sg. ‫בּוּז‬. However, the root ‫ בּוּז‬means “despise” which does not fit this context. Clearly, the intended meaning is that of the ‫ ע"ע‬root,‫“ = ָבּזַ ז‬spoil, plunder” (BDB p 102).

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

43

Uses of Niphal The following summary of the uses of the Niphal conjugation is based on the analyses of modern grammarians. (see Bibliography).

i: Reflexive of Qal

‫נִ ְשׁ ַמר‬

take heed to oneself

e.g. Exodus 23:21

‫וּשׁ ַ ֥מע ְבּק ֹ֖לוֹ‬ ְ ‫ִה ָ ֧שּׁ ֶמר ִמ ָפּ ָנ֛יו‬ “Pay heed to him and listen to his voice”

‫נִ ְל ַחץ‬

thrust oneself (against)

e.g. Numbers 22:25

‫ל־ה ִ֔קּיר‬ ַ ‫הוה וַ ִתּ ָלּ ֵח ֙ץ ֶא‬ ָ֗ ְ‫ת־מ ְל ַ ֣אְך י‬ ַ ‫וַ ֵ֨תּ ֶרא ָה ָא ֜תוֹן ֶא‬ “The ass saw the angel of the Lord and pressed herself against the wall”

‫נִ ְס ַתּר‬

hide oneself

e.g. I Kings 17:3

‫֥ית ְלָּך֖ ֵ ֑ק ְד ָמה וְ נִ ְס ַתּ ְר ָ֙תּ ְבּ ַנ ַ֣חל ְכּ ִ ֔רית‬ ָ ‫וּפ ִנ‬ ָ ‫ֵלְ֣ך ִמ ֶ֔זּה‬ “Go from here and turn eastward and hide yourself by the Wadi Cherith” (compare passive/resultative use in Genesis 4:14:

‫וּמ ָפּ ֶנ֖יָך ֶא ָסּ ֵ ֑תר‬ ִ ‫ֵה ֩ן גֵּ ַ ֨ר ְשׁ ָתּ א ִֹ֜תי ַהיּ֗ וֹם ֵמ ַעל֙ ְפּ ֵנ֣י ֽ ָה ֲא ָד ָ֔מה‬ “Behold You have driven me out this day from the face of the ground and from Your face I shall be hidden”)

44

‫נִ גְ ַאל‬

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW redeem oneself

e.g. Leviticus 25:49

‫שׁ ַפּח ְ֖תּוֹ יִגְאָלֶ ֑ נּוּ ֽאוֹ־ה ִּ֥שִׂיגָה‬ ְ ‫ִשׁאֵ ֧ ר ְבּשׂ ָ֛רוֹ מִ ִמּ‬ ְ ּ ‫דּ ֹד ֙וֹ יִגְאָ ֶ֔לנּוּ אֽוֹ־מ‬-‫ֹד ֹ֞דוֹ ֤אוֹ בֶן‬-‫או‬ ‫י ָ֖דוֹ ְונִגְאָ ֽל׃‬ “or his uncle or his uncle’s son shall redeem him, or anyone of his own flesh of his family shall redeem him; or, if he prospers,he may redeem himself” (compare passive use in Leviticus 25:54:

‫וּב ָנ֥יו ִע ֽמּוֹ׃‬ ָ ‫ם־ל ֹא יִ גָּ ֵ ֖אל ְבּ ֵ ֑א ֶלּה וְ יָ ָצ ֙א ִבּ ְשׁ ַנ֣ת ַהיּ ֵֹ֔בל ֖הוּא‬ ֥ ‫וְ ִא‬ “If he will not be redeemed in any of those ways, he and his children with him shall go free in the Jublilee year”) Within the “reflexive” category, Niphal is used to express emotions which react upon the mind. e.g. Isaiah 1:24

‫֚הוֹי ֶאנָּ ֵ ֣חם ִמ ָצּ ַ ֔רי וְ ִאנָּ ְק ָ ֖מה ֵמאוֹיְ ָ ֽבי׃‬ “Ah, I will relieve Myself of My adversaries and avenge Myself of My enemies” e.g. Lamentations 1:8:

‫ם־היא נֶ ֶאנְ ָ ֖חה וַ ָ ֥תּ ָשׁב ָא ֽחוֹר׃‬ ֥ ִ ַ‫גּ‬ “She also sighs (bemoans herself) and turns backwards”

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

45

Also within the “reflexive” category is the Tolerative Niphal, that is, the use of Niphal to express actions which the subject allows to happen to himself, or, to have an effect upon himself. e.g. Isaiah 65:1

‫שׁנִ י‬ ֑ ֻ ‫֖אתי ְל ֣ל ֹא ִב ְק‬ ִ ‫תּי ְל ֣לוֹא ָשׁ ָ֔אלוּ נִ ְמ ֵצ‬ ֙ ִ ‫נִ ְד ַ ֙ר ְשׁ‬ “I let Myself be inquired of to those who did not ask. I let Myself be found to those who did not seek Me” A passive rendering of such Niphals is possible: e.g. Ecclesiastes 12:12

‫ְבּ ִנ֣י ִהזָּ ֵ ֑הר‬ “Be warned, my son” or: “Allow/suffer yourself to be warned, my son”

ii: Reciprocal or mutual action

‫נִ ְד ְבּרוּ‬

they spoke to one another

e.g. Malachi 3:16:

‫ת־ר ֵ ֑עהוּ‬ ֵ ‫הו֖ה ִ ֣אישׁ ֶא‬ ָ ְ‫ָ ֧אז נִ ְד ְבּ ֛רוּ יִ ְר ֵ ֥אי י‬ “Then those that fear the Lord spoke to one another

‫נִ ְשׁ ַפּט‬

go to law with one another

e.g. I Samuel 12:7

‫הוה‬ ָ֔ ְ‫ל־צ ְד ֣קוֹת י‬ ִ ‫הו֑ה ֵ ֚את ָכּ‬ ָ ְ‫וְ ַע ָ֗תּה ִ ֽה ְתיַ ְצּ ֛בוּ וְ ִא ָשּׁ ְפ ָ ֥טה ִא ְתּ ֶכ֖ם ִל ְפ ֵנ֣י י‬

46

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

“Now stand still that I may plead with you (enter into controversy) before the Lord concerning all the righteous acts of the Lord” (the passive use of ‫ ָשׁ ַפט‬is restricted to Psalms e.g. 37:33; 109:7)

‫נוֹעץ‬ ַ

consult each other, take counsel of

e.g. I Kings 12:6

‫מה‬ ֹ ֣ ‫ת־פּנֵ ֙י ְשֹׁל‬ ְ ‫ר־הי֣ וּ ע ְֹמ ִ ֗דים ֶא‬ ָ ‫ים ֲא ֶשׁ‬ ֙ ִ‫ת־הזְּ ֵקנ‬ ַ ‫וַ יִּ וָּ ֞ ַעץ ַה ֶ ֣מּ ֶלְך ְר ַח ְב ֗ ָעם ֶא‬ ‫ָא ִ֔ביו‬ “King Rehoboam took counsel with the elders who had served his father Solomon”

‫נוֹעד‬ ַ

meet each other

e.g. Exodus 25:22

‫ם וְ ִד ַבּ ְר ִ֨תּי ִא ְתּ ָ֜ך ֵמ ַ ֣על ַה ַכּ ֗ ֹפּ ֶרת ִמ ֵבּ ֙ין ְשׁ ֵנ֣י ַה ְכּ ֻר ִ֔בים‬ ֒ ‫נוֹע ְד ִ ֣תּי ְל ָ֮ך ָשׁ‬ ַ ְ‫ו‬ “There I will meet with you and I will speak with you from above the mercy-seat from between the two cherubim”

‫נִ ְל ַחם‬

fight with one another

e.g. Isaiah 19:2

‫ישׁ־בּ ָא ִ ֖חיו וְ ִ ֣אישׁ ְבּ ֵר ֵ ֑עהוּ ִ ֣עיר ְבּ ֔ ִעיר ַמ ְמ ָל ָ ֖כה ְבּ ַמ ְמ ָל ָ ֽכה׃‬ ְ ‫וְ נִ ְל ֲח ֥מוּ ִא‬ “They shall war with each other, every man against his fellow, city with city and kingdom with kingdom”

‫נוֹכח‬ ַ

reason together

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

47

e.g. Isaiah 1:18

‫שּׁ ֶלג יַ ְל ִ֔בּינו‬ ֣ ֶ ‫ים ַכּ‬ ֙ ִ‫הו֑ה ִאם־יִ ְֽהי֨ וּ ֲח ָט ֵא ֶיכ֤ם ַכּ ָשּׁנ‬ ָ ְ‫אמר י‬ ֣ ַ ֹ ‫כוּ־נ֛א וְ נִ ָוּ ְֽכ ָ ֖חה י‬ ָ ‫ְל‬ ֖ ָ ‫ִאם־יַ ְא ִ ֥דּימוּ ַכ‬ ‫תּוֹלע ַכּ ֶ ֥צּ ֶמר יִ ְהיֽ וּ׃‬ “‘Come now and let us reason together’, says the Lord. ‘If your sins are like crimson they will become white as snow; if they are red like the scarletworm they will become like wool.’”

iii: Passive of Qal

‫נִ ְס ַתּר‬

be hidden

e.g. Genesis 4:14 see above reflexive use of ‫ נִ ְס ַתּר‬compared with passive use.

‫נִ גְ ַאל‬

be redeemed

e.g. Leviticus 25:54 see above – reflexive use of ‫ נִ גְ ַאל‬compared with passive use.

‫נוֹלד‬ ַ

be born e.g. Ecclesiastes 7:1

‫שּׁ ֶמן ֑טוֹב וְ י֣ וֹם ַה ָ֔מּוֶ ת ִמיּ֖ וֹם ִהוָּ ְל ֽדוֹ׃‬ ֣ ֶ ‫֥טוֹב ֵ ֖שׁם ִמ‬ “A good name is better than fragrant oil and the day of death than the day of birth (being born)”

‫נִ ְק ַבּר‬

be buried

48

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW e.g. Deuteronomy 10:6

‫ָ ֣שׁם ֵ ֤מת ַא ֲה ֙ר ֹן וַ יִּ ָקּ ֵב֣ר ָ֔שׁם‬ “Aaron died there and was buried there”

‫נִ ְשׁ ַבּר‬

be broken e.g. Jonah 1:4

‫וְ ָ ֣ה ֳאנִ ָ֔יּה ִח ְשּׁ ָ ֖בה ְל ִה ָשּׁ ֵ ֽבר׃‬ “and the ship was in danger of breaking up (being broken)”

iv: Passive of Piel and Hiphil In cases where Qal is intransitive in meaning, or is not used, Niphal also appears as the passive of Piel and Hiphil. e.g. Genesis 34:19

‫א־א ַ ֤חר ַהנַּ֙ ַע ֙ר ַל ֲע ֣שׂוֹת ַה ָדּ ָ֔בר ִ ֥כּי ָח ֵ ֖פץ ְבּ ַ ֽבת־יַ ֲע ֑קֹב וְ ֣הוּא נִ ְכ ָ֔בּד ִמ ֖כֹּל‬ ֵ ֹ ‫וְ ֽל‬ ‫ֵ ֥בּית ָא ִ ֽביו׃‬ “And the youth did not delay in doing the thing, for he wanted Jacob’s daughter; he was the most respected in his father’s house.” The Niphal participle, ‫“ נִ ְכ ָ֔בּד‬honoured, respected”, is the passive of the Piel (‫“ = ִכּ ֵבּד‬honour”), rather than the Qal (‫“ = ָכּ ֵבד‬be heavy, be in honour”). For Piel of ‫כבד‬, see Exodus 20:12: ‫מָּך‬ ֑ ֶ ‫ת־א‬ ִ ‫וְ ֶא‬ “Honour your father and your mother”.

‫ת־א ִ ֖ביָך‬ ָ ‫ַכּ ֵ ֥בּד ֶא‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

49

e.g. Exodus 9:15

‫ת־ע ְמָּך֖ ַבּ ָ ֑דּ ֶבר וַ ִתּ ָכּ ֵ ֖חד‬ ַ ‫אוֹתָך֛ וְ ֶ ֽא‬ ְ ‫ִ ֤כּי ַע ָתּ ֙ה ָשׁ ַל ְ֣ח ִתּי ֶאת־יָ ִ ֔די וָ ַ ֥אְך‬ ‫ן־ה ָ ֽא ֶרץ׃‬ ָ ‫ִמ‬ “For now I could have stretched forth My hand and smitten you and your people with pestilence and you would have been effaced from the earth”. The Niphal imperf. + vav consec. ‫ וַ ִתּ ָכּ ֵ ֖חד‬is the passive of the Hiphil, ‫“ = ִה ְכ ִחיד‬destroy”. ‫ ָכּ ַחד‬is never found in Qal, but only in Niphal, Piel and Hiphil. For the Hiphil, see Exodus 23:23: ‫" וְ ִה ְכ ַח ְד ִ ֽתּיו׃‬and I will destroy him.”

v: Causative/reflexive See Waltke/O’Connor p 390: “The causative-reflexive scheme in Hebrew is usually Hithpael, but in some cases the Niphal is used. In these verbs the subject causes the action to happen to himself—.” e.g. Ruth 3:3

‫ֹּלתוֹ ֶל ֱא ֥כֹל וְ ִל ְשׁ ֽתּוֹת׃‬ ֖ ‫ל־תּוָּ ְד ִ ֣עי ָל ִ֔אישׁ ַ ֥עד ַכּ‬ ִ ‫ַא‬ “But do not make yourself known to the man until he has finished eating and drinking” (‫ ִתּוָּ ְד ִ ֣עי‬is Niphal imperf. 2 f.sg. ‫)ידע‬ e.g. Exodus 6:3

‫הוה ֥ל ֹא‬ ֔ ָ ְ‫וּשׁ ִ ֣מי י‬ ְ ‫ל־א ְב ָר ָ ֛הם ֶאל־יִ ְצ ָ ֥חק וְ ֶ ֽאל־יַ ֲע ֖קֹב ְבּ ֵ ֣אל ַשׁ ָ ֑דּי‬ ַ ‫וָ ֵא ָ ֗רא ֶא‬ :‫נוֹד ְע ִתּי ָל ֶ ֽהם‬ ַ֖ “I appeared to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob as El Shaddai, but I did not make Myself known to them by My name ” (‫נוֹד ְע ִתּי‬ ֖ ַ is Niphal perf. 1 c.sg. ‫)ידע‬

50

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

vi: Denominatives See Davidson’s Introductory Hebrew Grammar, Continuum, 1993, p 145: “The usual development in Hebrew is from verb to noun; when the process works in the reverse direction, the verb is known as a ‘denominative’ (‘from the noun [Latin nomen]’) verb”. Denominatives are rare in Niphal. See the list in Waltke/O’Connor p 391. e.g. Job 11:12

‫וְ ִ ֣אישׁ ָ ֭נבוּב יִ ָלּ ֵ ֑בב וְ ַ ֥עיִ ר ֗ ֶפּ ֶרא ָא ָ ֥דם יִ וָּ ֵ ֽלד׃‬ “A hollow man will get understanding, when a wild ass is born a man” (i.e. the sinners will have a change of heart).

‫ יִ ָלּ ֵ ֑בב‬is a HAPAXLEGOMENON (occurs only once in the Bible) derived from the masculine noun ‫“ = ֵל ָבב‬heart”. Note on passive/reflexive distinction Note the work of P A Siebesma: “The Function of Niphal in Biblical Hebrew”. Studia Semitica Neerlandica. Van Gorcum. 1991. He suggests that if one assumes that Biblical Hebrew lacked the distinction passive/reflexive, it would account for the fact that various nuances occur in ONE verb root. See the above examples: ‫“ = נִ ְס ַתּר‬hide oneself; be hidden”; ‫“ = נִ גְ ַאל‬redeem oneself; be redeemed”; which occur both as reflexive of Qal and as passive of Qal (sections I and III). Another example of both passive and reflexive nuances occurring in one verb root is in the root ‫אסף‬, which occurs in a passive sense in Numbers 11:22, but in a reflexive sense in Numbers 11:30.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

51

‫ל־דּ ֵג֥י ַה ָיּ֛ם יֵ ָא ֵ ֥סף‬ ְ ‫ת־כּ‬ ָ ‫וּמ ָצ֣א ָל ֶ ֑הם ִ ֣אם ֶ ֽא‬ ָ ‫וּב ָ ֛ קר יִ ָשּׁ ֵ ֥חט ָל ֶ ֖הם‬ ָ ‫ֲה ֧צ ֹאן‬ ‫וּמ ָ ֥צא ָל ֶ ֽהם׃‬ ָ ‫ָל ֶ ֖הם‬ “Could enough flocks and herds be slaughtered to suffice them? Or could all the fish of the sea be gathered for them to suffice them?” (‫ יֵ ָא ֵ ֥סף‬Niphal imperf. 3 m.sg. passive use) Numbers 11:30

‫ל־ה ַמּ ֲח ֶנ֑ה ֖הוּא וְ זִ ְק ֵנ֥י יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֽאל׃‬ ֽ ַ ‫וַ יֵּ ָא ֵ ֥סף מ ֶ ֹ֖שׁה ֶא‬ “And Moses withdrew into the camp together with the elders of Israel”. (‫ וַ יֵּ ָא ֵ ֥סף‬Niphal imperf. + vav consec. reflexive use.) Siebesma also states: “It is sometimes difficult to determine whether one should translate a Niphal reflexively, passively or reciprocally; to a major extent it depends on semantic and theological interpretation.” e.g. Genesis 7:11

‫ה־ע ָ ֥שׂר י֖ וֹם‬ ָ ‫ח ֶד ֙שׁ ַה ֵשּׁ ֔ ִני ְבּ ִשׁ ְב ָ ֽע‬ ֹ ֨ ‫שׁ־מ ֤אוֹת ָשׁנָ ֙ה ְל ַחיֵּ י־ ֔נ ֹ ַח ַבּ‬ ֵ ‫ִבּ ְשׁ ֨ ַנת ֵשׁ‬ ‫ל־מ ְעיְ נ ֹ֙ת ְתּ ֣הוֹם ַר ָ֔בּה וַ ֲא ֻר ֥בֹּת ַה ָשּׁ ַ ֖מיִ ם‬ ַ ‫עוּ ָ ֽכּ‬ ֙ ‫ַל ֑חֹ ֶדשׁ ַבּו ֹם ַה ֶ֗זּה נִ ְב ְק‬ ‫נִ ְפ ָ ֽתּחוּ׃‬ “In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, on the seventeenth day of the month, on that day all the fountains of the great deep burst apart, and the floodgates of the sky broke open.”

‫עוּ‬ ֙ ‫נִ ְב ְק‬

Niphal perf. 3 pl. ‫בקע‬.

‫נִ ְפ ָ ֽתּחוּ‬

Niphal perf. 3 pl. ‫פתח‬, pausal.

52

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

These two Niphal verbs could be understood in either a passive or reflexive way, depending on whether G-d opens doors (i.e. “they were opened”) or whether they open by themselves (i.e. “they opened”). Waltke/O’Connor (p 383) suggest that these two Niphals are examples of the middle (which may be distinguished from the passive in that it is nonagent oriented, whereas the passive is agent oriented): “and all the springs of the great abyss burst open”. See Lambdin p 176 for explanation of the middle: “Unlike the incomplete passive construction, middle verbs are active in form, but the meaning is, in a sense, reversed: the object of the verb has become the subject of the middle verb. Niphal verbs in Hebrew often correspond to middle verbs in English:

‫נִ ְפ ַתּח ַה ַשּׁ ַער‬

“The gate opened”

‫נִ ְשׁ ַבּר ַה ְכּ ִלי‬

“The vessel broke”

‫נִ ְק ַבּץ ָה ָעם‬

“The people gathered””

Views of medieval scholars on use of Niphal This section presents the views of medieval scholars on the uses of the Niphal conjugation. Their comments are presented in the original rabbinic Hebrew, together with translation and explanation. A glossary of some of the Hebrew grammatical terms used by these scholars is found at the end of the section, as well as brief biographical sketches of these scholars. Students should study the biblical verses and compare the views of the medieval scholars with the views in modern grammar books.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 1

53

Genesis 24:65 (Rebekah about to meet Isaac)

‫אמר‬ ֶ ֹ ‫אתנוּ וַ ֥יּ‬ ֵ֔ ‫י־ה ִ ֤אישׁ ַה ָלּזֶ ֙ה ַהה ֵֹלְ֤ך ַבּ ָשּׂ ֶד ֙ה ִל ְק ָר‬ ָ ‫ל־ה ֗ ֶע ֶבד ִ ֽמ‬ ָ ‫אמר ֶא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣תּ‬ ‫ָה ֶ ֖ע ֶבד ֣הוּא ֲאד ִֹנ֑י וַ ִתּ ַ ֥קּח ַה ָצּ ִ ֖עיף וַ ִתּ ְת ָ ֽכּס׃‬ She said to the servant, ‘Who is this man walking in the field towards us? The servant said, ‘He is my master,’ and she took the veil and covered herself. Comment of Rashi on ‫וַ ִתּ ְת ָ ֽכּס‬

:‫ וַ ִתּ ָקּ ֵבר וַ ִתּ ָשּׁ ֵבר‬:‫ כמו‬,‫ְלשׁוֹן וַ ִתּ ְת ָפּ ֵעל‬ Translation of Rashi “And she covered herself.” This is Hithpael, like: “and she was buried” (Gen 35:8),“and (it) was broken” (I Sam 4:18). Explanation of Rashi Rashi points out that the verb ‫( וַ ִתּ ְת ָ ֽכּס‬apocopated Hithpael, pausal, 3 f.sg. + vav consec. ‫ ) ָכּ ָסה‬has a reflexive meaning. Note that ‫ וַ ִתּ ְת ָ ֽכּס‬is Hithpael, yet Rashi compares two verbs which we term Niphal. It is also noteworthy that ‫ וַ ִתּ ְת ָ ֽכּס‬is best understood as reflexive, whereas ‫וַ ִתּ ָקּ ֵבר‬ ‫ וַ ִתּ ָשּׁ ֵבר‬are passive in context. Rashi’s comparison seems to be due to the fact that in Biblical Hebrew, both the Niphal and the Hithpael can be used either in a reflexive or in a passive sense, although the passive use of Hithpael is rare in Biblical Hebrew. 2

Genesis 25:21

‫הוה‬ ָ֔ ְ‫וַ יֶּ ְע ַ֨תּר יִ ְצ ָ ֤חק ֽ ַליהוָ ֙ה ְל ֹ֣נ ַכח ִא ְשׁ ֔תּוֹ ִ ֥כּי ֲע ָק ָ ֖רה ִ ֑הוא וַ יֵּ ָ ֤ע ֶתר לוֹ֙ י‬ ‫וַ ַ ֖תּ ַהר ִר ְב ָ ֥ קה ִא ְשׁ ֽתּוֹ׃‬

54

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Isaac entreated the Lord on behalf of his wife, for she was barren, and the Lord allowed Himself to be entreated, and Rebekah, his wife, conceived. Comment of Rashi on ‫ וַ יֶּ ְע ַ֨תּר‬and ‫ע ֶתר‬ ֤ ָ ֵ‫וַ יּ‬

‫ נִ ְת ַפּ ֵצּר וְ נִ ְת ַפּיֵּ ס וְ נִ ְת ַפּ ָתּה‬: ֙‫ וַ יֵּ ָ ֤ע ֶתר לוֹ‬.‫ ִה ְר ָבּה וְ ִה ְפ ִציר ִבּ ְת ִפ ָלּה‬:‫וַ יֶּ ְע ַ֨תּר‬ :‫לוֹ‬ Translation of Rashi He prayed much and urgently. He let Himself be urged, conciliated and influenced by him. Explanation of Rashi

֤ ָ ֵ‫“( וַ יּ‬He let Himself be enRashi points to the use of the Niphal ‫ע ֶתר‬ treated”) as the tolerative/reflexive of the Qal ‫“( וַ יֶּ ְע ַ֨תּר‬He entreated”). Note that Rashi uses the Nithpael, the rabbinic equivalent of the Hithpael, to explain the Biblical Hebrew Niphal, ‫ע ֶתר‬ ֤ ָ ֵ‫ וַ יּ‬i.e. ‫נִ ְת ַפּ ֵצּר וְ נִ ְת ַפּיֵּ ס‬ ‫וְ נִ ְת ַפּ ָתּה‬. 3

Exodus 15:24

‫מר ַמה־נִּ ְשׁ ֶ ֽתּה׃‬ ֹ ֖ ‫וַ יִּ ֹּ֧לנוּ ָה ָ ֛עם ַעל־מ ֶ ֹ֥שׁה ֵלּא‬ The people complained to Moses, saying, ‘What shall we drink?’ Comment of Rashi on

‫וַ יִּ ֹּ֧לנוּ‬

‫ וכן דרך‬,‫ וְ ִא ְת ָר ָעמוּ‬,‫ וְ ֵכן ַה ַתּ ְרגּוּם ְלשׁוֹן נפעל הוא‬,‫ְלשׁוֹן נִ ְפ ַעל הוּא‬ ‫ ולא‬,‫רוֹעם‬ ֵ ‫ ִמ ְת‬,‫לשון ְתּלוּנָ ה ְל ָה ֵסב ַה ִדּבּוּר ֶאל ָה ָא ָדם – ִמ ְתלוֹנֵ ן‬ ‫ ֵמ ֵסב‬,‫לּוֹעז דקומפ"לישנ"ט שׂ"י ְב ַל ַעז‬ ֵ ‫אמר ַה‬ ַ ֹ ‫ וכן י‬,‫רוֹעם‬ ֵ ,‫ָא ַמר לוֹנֵ ן‬ .‫ַה ִדּבּוּר ֵא ָליו ְבּ ָא ְמרוֹ שׂ"י‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

55

Translation of Rashi This is a Niphal form, and similarly the Targum is a Niphal form: ‫( וְ ִא ְת ָר ָעמוּ‬The Ithpael form in Aramaic corresponds to the Hebrew Niphal). And such is the way of expressing “murmuring” (root ‫)לוּן‬, to refer back the action of murmuring to the subject; thus one says ‫ ִמ ְתלוֹנֵ ן‬and ‫רוֹעם‬ ֵ ‫( ִמ ְת‬reflexive forms) and one does not say ‫ לוֹנֵ ן‬and ‫רוֹעם‬ ֵ . And in Old French it is “decomplaisant se;” it refers back the action of murmuring to the subject, by saying “se.”(“himself”). Explanation of Rashi Rashi explains that ‫ )לוּן( וַ יִּ ֹּ֧לנוּ‬is a Niphal used in the reflexive sense, because “murmuring, complaining” is a reflexive thought process. Modern grammarians also suggest that the Niphal is frequently used to express emotions which react upon the mind; e.g. ‫“ = נֶ ֱאנַ ח‬sigh, bemoan oneself”. (GK 51c).

‫“ = לוּן‬murmur”. Only in: Exodus 15, 16, 17; Numbers 14, 16, 17; Joshua 9:18. Only Niphal and Hiphil. 4

Exodus 19:13

‫ם־אישׁ ֣ל ֹא‬ ֖ ִ ‫ם־בּ ֵה ָ ֥מה ִא‬ ְ ‫י־ס ֤קוֹל יִ ָסּ ֵקל֙ אוֹ־יָ ֣ר ֹה יִ יָּ ֶ ֔רה ִא‬ ָ ‫א־ת ֨ ַגּע ֜בּוֹ ָ֗יד ִ ֽכּ‬ ִ ֹ‫ל‬ ‫יִ ְח ֶי֑ה ִבּ ְמשׁ ְֹ֙ך ַהיּ ֵֹ֔בל ֵ ֖ה ָמּה יַ ֲע ֥לוּ ָב ָ ֽהר׃‬ Let no hand touch it, for he shall certainly be stoned or thrown down; whether beast or man, he shall not live; when the ram’s horn sounds, they shall go up the mountain. Comment of Rashi on ‫יִ יָּ ֶ ֔רה‬

‫ יָ ָרה ַבּיָּ ם‬:‫יֻ ְשׁ ַלְך ְל ַמ ָטּה ָל ָא ֶרץ ְכּמוֹ‬

56

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Translation of Rashi He shall be thrown down to the ground, like: “He has thrown into the sea” (Exodus 15:4). Explanation of Rashi Rashi points to the passive meaning of the Niphal imperf. ‫( יִ יָּ ֶ ֔רה‬root ‫)יָ ָרה‬ by rendering it with the Hophal imperf. ‫“ יֻ ְשׁ ַלְך‬he shall be thrown, cast”. Rashi also points to the meaning of ‫ יָ ָרה‬in this context by comparing ‫יָ ָרה‬ in Exodus 15:4. (see BDB p 434: ‫“ = יָ ָרה‬throw, shoot”). Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫יִ יָּ ֶ ֔רה‬

‫יה ִכּי ִמ ְשׁ ַפּט בעלי היו"ד ְל ִה ְת ַח ֵלּף בו"ו‬ ָ ‫עוֹת‬ ֶ ‫וּמ ַלּת יִ יָּ ֶרה ְמשׁוּנָ ה ֵמ ֵר‬ ִ ‫ֶבּ ָע ִתיד ִבּנְ יַ ן נִ ְפ ַעל כמו )בראשית מא לא( וְ ֽל ֹא־יִ וָּ ַ ֤דע ַה ָשּׂ ָב ֙ע )ירמיה‬ ‫אוּלי ָעשׂוּ כך ֶשׁלֹּא ִת ְת ָע ֵרב ִעם גִּ זְ ַרת ְל ַמ ַען‬ ַ .‫לא יח( יִ ַסּ ְר ַ֙תּנִ ֙י ָו ִֽאוָּ ֵ֔סר‬ ‫ִתּוָּ ֵרא )תהלים קל ד( ִכּי האל"ף והה"א נָ ִחים בסוֹף המלה אין‬ .‫יהם ַבּ ִמּ ְב ָטא‬ ֶ ֵ‫ֶה ְפ ֵרשׁ ֵבּינ‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra The word ‫ יִ יָּ ֶרה‬behaves differently from other pe-yod verbs, for the rule of pe-yod verbs is that the yod (first root letter) changes to vav in the Niphal imperf. like ‫( יִ וָּ ַ ֤דע‬Gen 41:31) and ‫( ָו ִֽאוָּ ֵ֔סר‬Jerem. 31:18). Perhaps ‫יִ יָּ ֶרה‬ (retains the yod) so that it is not confused with ‫( ִתּוָּ ֵרא‬Psalm 130:4) “You shall be feared,” root letters ‫יָ ֵרא‬, because both ’aleph and hey are quiescent at the end of the word. There is no difference between them in pronunciation.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

57

Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra points to the fact that the pe-yod verb ‫ יָ ָרה‬has retained the yod in the Niphal imperf. (‫ )יִ יָּ ֶרה‬instead of converting the yod to vav as in ‫יִ וָּ ַ ֤דע‬ etc. Ibn Ezra suggests that this is to avoid confusion between the roots ‫יָ ָרה‬ (throw, shoot) and ‫( יָ ֵרא‬fear) since neither hey nor ’aleph are sounded at the end of a word. 5

Numbers 9:17

‫וּב ְמ ֗קוֹם‬ ִ ‫י־כן יִ ְס ֖עוּ ְבּ ֵנ֣י יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֑אל‬ ֵ֔ ‫א ֶהל וְ ַ ֣א ֲח ֵר‬ ֹ ֔ ‫וּל ֞ ִפי ֵה ָע ֹ֤לת ֶ ֽה ָענָ ֙ן ֵמ ַ ֣על ָה‬ ְ ָ ‫ֲא ֶ ֤שׁר יִ ְשׁ ָכּ‬ ‫ן־שׁ ֙ם ֶ ֽה ָע ָ֔נן ָ ֥שׁם יַ ֲחנ֖ וּ ְבּ ֵנ֥י יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֽאל׃‬ When the cloud raised itself from above the Tent, then the children of Israel would travel, and at the place where the cloud settled, there the children of Israel would camp. Comment of Rashi on ‫ֶ ֽה ָענָ ֙ן‬

‫ֵה ָע ֹ֤לת‬

‫יִתּ ֵכן‬ ָ ‫ וכן ) ְבּ ִמ ְד ַבּר ט כא( וְ נַ ֲע ָ ֧לה ֶ ֽה ָע ָנ֛ ן ולא‬,‫ְכּ ַת ְרגּוּמוֹ ִא ְס ַתּ ָלּקוּת‬ ְ ‫לכתוב‬ ‫ שאין זה לשון ִסלּוּק אלא‬,‫ וְ ָע ָלה ֶה ָענָ ן‬,‫וּל ִפי ֲעלוֹת ֶה ָענָ ן‬ ‫ף־אישׁ ע ָֹל֣ה‬ ֖ ִ ‫ה־עב ְק ַט ָנּ֥ה ְכּ ַכ‬ ֛ ָ ֵ‫ )מ"א יח מד( ִהנּ‬:‫ כמו‬,‫מּוּח וַ ֲע ִליָּ ה‬ ַ ‫ִצ‬   ‫ִמָיּ֑ם‬ Translation of Rashi Understand this as the Targum does: the departure (the raising itself), like: Numbers 9:21: “and the cloud raised itself”. It would not have been correct to write ‫ ֲעלוֹת‬/‫( ָע ָלה‬i.e. Qal) because this (the Qal) would not have expressed ‘departure’ (raising oneself) but ‘springing forth’ and ‘rising’, like: I Kings 18:44: “Behold a little cloud like a man’s hand is rising (‫ )ע ָֹל֣ה‬from the sea.”

58

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Explanation of Rashi Rashi comments on the Niphal inf. cstr. ‫( ֵה ָעלוֹת‬root ‫“ = ָע ָלה‬go up”), pointing out that this must be understood in a reflexive sense, “raising itself”, just like the Niphal perf. in Numbers 9:21 (‫)וְ נַ ֲע ָלה‬, because the reflexive indicates ‘departure’ and since the Cloud represents the Divine Presence, the departure of the Cloud is a reflexive rather than a passive action. The Qal form of the verb ‫ ָע ָלה‬would indicate merely the ‘rising’ of an inanimate object, like the raincloud in I Kings 18:44. Note, however, that BDB (p 749) understands ‫( ֵה ָעלוֹת‬9:17) and ‫( נַ ֲע ָלה‬9:21) in a passive sense: “be taken up”, while understanding the Niphal imperative ‫ ֵה ָעלוּ‬in Numbers 16:24 as reflexive: “withdraw (raise yourselves) from the vicinity of Korah’s dwelling”; ‫לוּ ִמ ָסּ ִ֔ביב ְל ִמ ְשׁ ַכּן־ ֖קֹ ַרח‬ ֙ ‫ֵ ֽה ָע‬ 6

Numbers 17:10

‫יהם׃‬ ֽ ֶ ֵ‫ל־פּנ‬ ְ ‫תּוְֹך ָה ֵע ָ ֣דה ַה ֔זּ ֹאת וַ ֲא ַכ ֶ ֥לּה א ָ ֹ֖תם ְכּ ָ ֑רגַ ע ַוֽ יִּ ְפּ ֖לוּ ַע‬ ֙ ‫ֵה ֗ר ֹמּוּ ִמ‬ ‘Get yourselves up from the midst of this congregation that I may destroy them in a moment’, and they fell on their faces. Comment of Rashbam on

‫ֵה ֗ר ֹמּוּ‬

‫לאי‬ ֵ ‫כמו )ירמיה ד ד( ִהמֹּלוּ ַלײ ֲא ָבל בשביל הרי"ש נֶ הפך החירק‬ ‫ וכאן‬,‫ ולמעלה )טז כא( אומר ִה ָבּ ְדלוּ‬.‫שׁקל דגש‬ ַ ‫כמו ֵבּ ַרְך ֵבּ ַרְך ִמ‬ .‫ ֶשׁ ַמּ ְשׁ ַמע ְל ִה ָבּ ֵדל יותר לפי ֶשׁ ְכּ ָבר יָ ָצא ַה ֶקּ ֶצף‬,‫אומר ֵהר ֹמּוּ‬ Translation of Rashbam

‫ֵה ֗ר ֹמּוּ‬

is like ‫( ִהמֹּלוּ‬Jeremiah 4:4) but because of the resh (rejects dagesh) the ḥireq (under the hey) became tsere. This may be compared to (the Piel form which usually has ḥireq, tsere/pataḥ + dagesh in middle root letter) ‫ ֵבּ ַרְך‬where the ḥireq has been lengthened to tsere (under the bet). In

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

59

Numbers 16:21, it states ‫‘( ִה ָבּ ְדלוּ‬separate yourselves’) but here (it states) ‫ ֵהר ֹמּוּ‬, meaning, ‘separate urgently’ because the anger has already gone forth. Explanation of Rashbam Rashbam compares ‫ ֵהר ֹמּוּ‬to ‫ ִהמֹּלוּ‬. The difficulty here is that ‫ ִהמֹּלוּ‬is Niphal imperative from the ‫ ע"ו‬root, ‫“( מוּל‬circumcise”) (analogous to ‫ ִהכּוֹנוּ‬from ‫)כּוּן‬, with dagesh in the first root letter, but ‫ ֵהר ֹמּוּ‬has dagesh in the third root letter (mem) and seems to be derived from a ‫ ע"ע‬root, ‫( ָרמֹם‬see BDB p 942) = “be exalted”. The regular Niphal imperative plural from a ‫ ע"ע‬root is on the pattern of ‫ ִה ַסּבּוּ‬, and ‫ ֵהר ֹמּוּ‬may be explained as following this pattern, with lengthening of ḥireq to tsere under hey to compensate for lack of dagesh in the resh. 7

Numbers 22:25

‫ת־רגֶ ל‬ ֥ ֶ ‫ל־ה ִ֔קּיר וַ ִתּ ְל ַ ֛חץ ֶא‬ ַ ‫הוה וַ ִתּ ָלּ ֵח ֙ץ ֶא‬ ָ֗ ְ‫ת־מ ְל ַ ֣אְך י‬ ַ ‫וַ ֵ֨תּ ֶרא ָה ָא ֜תוֹן ֶא‬ ַ ‫ִבּ ְל ָ ֖עם ֶא‬ ‫ל־ה ִ ֑קּיר וַ ֹ֖יּ ֶסף ְל ַהכּ ָ ֹֽתהּ׃‬ The ass saw the angel of the Lord and pressed itself against the wall, and pressed Balaam’s foot against the wall, and he struck it again. Comment of Rashi on ‫וַ ִתּ ָלּ ֵח ֙ץ‬

  .‫ וַ ִתּ ְל ַחץ את ֲא ֵח ִרים – את רגל בלעם‬,‫וַ ִתּ ָלּ ֵחץ ִהיא ַע ְצ ָמהּ‬ Translation of Rashi (The Niphal form here denotes that) she pressed herself. (The Qal form denotes that) she pressed something else – viz. Balaam’s foot.

60

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫וַ ִתּ ָלּ ֵח ֙ץ‬

‫ִהיא ָל ֲח ָצה ַע ְצ ָמהּ‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra She pressed herself. Explanation of Rashi and Ibn Ezra Rashi and Ibn Ezra point out that the verb ‫“ = ָל ַחץ‬squeeze, press” is used in the Qal and the Niphal in this verse, and that the Niphal here is the reflexive of the Qal. That is, ‫“ = וַ ִתּ ְל ַחץ‬and she pressed” (Qal imperf. + vav consec.); ‫“ = וַ ִתּ ָלּ ֵחץ‬and she pressed herself” (Niphal imperf. + vav consec.). 8

I Samuel 20:6

‫רוּץ‬ ֙ ‫א ֩ל נִ ְשׁ ַ֨אל ִמ ֶ ֤מּנִּ י ָדוִ ֙ד ָל‬ ֹ ‫ם־פּ ֥קֹד יִ ְפ ְק ֵ ֖דנִ י ָא ִ ֑ביָך וְ ָא ַמ ְר ָ֗תּ נִ ְשׁ‬ ָ ‫ִא‬ ֔ ‫ית־ל ֶ֣חם ִע‬ ֶ ‫ֵ ֽבּ‬ ‫ל־ה ִמּ ְשׁ ָפּ ָ ֽחה׃‬ ַ ‫ירוֹ ִ ֣כּי ֶז ַ֧בח ַהיָּ ִ ֛מים ָ ֖שׁם ְל ָכ‬ If your father misses me, you shall say: ‘David asked leave of me to run to Bethlehem his town, since there is a yearly sacrifice there for all the family.’

֤ ֶ ‫ִמ‬ Comment of Rashi on ‫מּנִּ י‬

‫א ֩ל נִ ְשׁ ַ֨אל‬ ֹ ‫נִ ְשׁ‬ ‫ְרשׁוּת ָשׁ ַאל ִמ ֶמּנִּ י‬

Translation of Rashi He asked permission from me. Explanation of Rashi Rashi comments on the use of the Niphal perf. 3 m.sg. ‫ נִ ְשׁ ַאל‬which is preceded by Niphal inf. abs. ‫נִ ְשׁאֹל‬. He states that the Niphal here has the

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

61

sense of “he asked (something) (for himself)”, i.e. he asked permission. Compare GK 51e: “It (Niphal) has also, like Hithpael and the Greek middle, the meaning of the active, with the addition of to oneself, for oneself, e.g. ‫נִ ְשׁ ַאל‬ to ask (something) for oneself.” This usage occurs in the OT three times: I Sam 20:6, 28; Nehemiah 13:6. 9

I Kings 12:28

‫וַ יִּ וָּ ַע֣ץ ַה ֶ֔מּ ֶלְך וַ ַ֕יּ ַעשׂ ְשׁ ֵנ֖י ֶעגְ ֵל֣י זָ ָ ֑הב‬ The king took counsel and he made two golden calves. Comment of Radak on

‫וַ יִּ וָּ ַע֣ץ‬

‫יּוֹע ִצים אוֹתוֹ ֶשׁיַּ ֲע ֶשׂה‬ ֲ ‫ימה ֲע ָצתוֹ ִעם ַה‬ ָ ‫יאְך יַ ֲע ֶשׂה וְ ִה ְס ִכּ‬ ַ ‫ָשׁ ַאל ֵע ָצה ֵה‬ .‫ְשׁנֵ י ֲעגָ ִלים‬ Translation of Radak He asked advice how he should make (them) and he came to an agreement with his advisers, that he should make two calves. Explanation of Radak Radak comments on the Niphal ‫ ;יָ ַעץ( וַ יִּ וָּ ַעץ‬imperf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec.), explaining that it is a reciprocal Niphal, expressing mutual action. 10

Isaiah 65:1

‫שׁנִ י‬ ֑ ֻ ‫֖אתי ְל ֣ל ֹא ִב ְק‬ ִ ‫תּי ְל ֣לוֹא ָשׁ ָ֔אלוּ נִ ְמ ֵצ‬ ֙ ִ ‫נִ ְד ַ ֙ר ְשׁ‬ I let Myself be inquired of, to those who did not ask, I let Myself be found, to those who did not seek Me.

62

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

֙ ִ ‫ נִ ְד ַ ֙ר ְשׁ‬and ‫֖אתי‬ ִ ‫נִ ְמ ֵצ‬ Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫תּי‬ ‫ ַה ַטּ ַעם‬,‫ כי אבותיכם ִה ְכ ִעיסוּנִ י ואני נִ ְד ַר ְשׁ ִתּי‬,‫שׁוּבת השם‬ ַ ‫הנה ְתּ‬ ִ ‫ִה ְמ ֵצ‬ .‫אתי ַע ְצ ִמי ַבּ ָצּ ָרה ְל ַעם לֹא ָשׁ ֲאלוּ ֶשׁ ֶא ָמּ ֵצא ָל ֶהם‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra This is G-d’s answer, for your fathers angered Me, but I let Myself be inquired of, and the meaning is, I caused Myself to be found in the distress (of) a people who did not ask that I should be found for them. Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra points out that the Niphal perfect forms (‫אתי‬ ִ ‫ נִ ְמ ֵצ‬and ‫)נִ ְד ַר ְשׁ ִתּי‬ are Tolerative Niphals, expressing an action which the subject allows to happen to himself. (compare GK 51c). 11

Jeremiah 6:8

‫ימְך ְשׁ ָמ ָ֔מה ֶ ֖א ֶרץ ֥לוֹא‬ ֣ ֵ ‫ן־א ִשׂ‬ ֲ ‫ן־תּ ַ ֥ קע נַ ְפ ִ ֖שׁי ִמ ֵ ֑מְּך ֶפּ‬ ֵ ‫וּשׁ ֔ ַל ִם ֶפּ‬ ָ ‫ִהוָּ ְס ִ ֙רי יְ ֣ר‬ ‫נוֹשׁ ָבה׃‬ ָֽ Allow yourself to be chastened, O Jerusalem, lest my soul be alienated from you, lest I make you a desolation, a land not inhabited. Comment of Rashi on ‫ִהוָּ ְס ִרי‬

‫מוּסר‬ ָ ‫ַק ְבּ ִלי‬ Translation of Rashi Accept chastening.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

63

Explanation of Rashi Rashi comments on ‫ ִהוָּ ְס ִרי‬, Niphal imperative f. sg. root ‫“ = יָ ַסר‬discipline, chasten, admonish”. His comment suggests that he sees ‫ ִהוָּ ְס ִרי‬as a Tolerative Niphal, “let yourself be chastened, corrected” (see GK 51c). Note also ‫( ֵתּ ַקע‬Qal imperf. 3 f.sg. ‫“ = יקע‬be dislocated, alienated”). Compare Gen 32:36. And note the other Niphal, ‫נוֹשׁ ָבה‬ ָ (part. f.sg. ‫ישׁב‬ “inhabited”). 12

Ezekiel 14:3

‫וּמ ְכ ֣שׁוֹל ֲעו ָֹ֔נם‬ ִ ‫ל־ל ָ֔בּם‬ ִ ‫יה ֙ם ַע‬ ֶ ‫וּל‬ ֵ ‫ן־א ָ ֗דם ָה ֲאנָ ִ ֤שׁים ָה ֵ֙א ֶלּ ֙ה ֶה ֱע ֤לוּ גִ ֽלּ‬ ָ ‫ֶבּ‬ ֑ ֶ ֵ‫נָ ְתנ֖ וּ ֹ֣נ ַכח ְפּנ‬ ‫יהם ַה ִא ָדּ ֥ר ֹשׁ ִא ָדּ ֵ ֖רשׁ ָל ֶ ֽהם׃‬ Son of man, these men have brought up their idols upon their heart, and have placed the stumbling-block of their iniquity before their faces; shall I indeed let Myself be inquired of/consulted by them? Comment of Radak on ‫ָל ֶ ֽהם‬

‫ַה ִא ָדּ ֥ר ֹשׁ ִא ָדּ ֵ ֖רשׁ‬

‫בחוֹלם והאל"ף ִבּ ְמקוֹם ה"א כי‬ ָ ‫ הראשון ָמקוֹר‬,‫האלפ"ן בחירק‬ ‫בחוֹלם ְבּ ֶשׁ ֶקל ִהנָּ תוֹן‬ ָ ‫ָכּ ֵבד על הלשון ִל ְקרֹא ְשׁנֵ י ההי"ן ְכּ ֶא ָחד והוא‬ ִ ‫ִתּנָּ ֵתן ואמר‬ ‫יהם לא ִא ָדּ ֵרשׁ‬ ֶ ‫לּוּל‬ ֵ ִ‫ ְל ַא ַחר ֶשׁ ִלּ ָבּם אל גּ‬,‫וכי ִא ָדּ ֵרשׁ ָל ֶהם‬ .‫ישׁה היא ָל ֵתת ְשׁ ֵא ָל ָתם‬ ָ ‫וְ ִקבּוּל ַה ְדּ ִר‬ Translation of Radak The ’alephs (in ‫ ) ַה ִא ָדּ ֥ר ֹשׁ ִא ָדּ ֵ ֖רשׁ‬have ḥireq; the first word ‫ ִא ָדּר ֹשׁ‬is inf. abs. (Niphal) with ḥolem, but the ’aleph is in place of hey, because it is difficult to pronounce two heys consecutively (i.e. ‫) ַה ִה ָדּר ֹשׁ‬, but the ḥolem (is regular) on the pattern of ‫( ִהנָּ תֹן‬Niphal inf. abs. Jeremiah 38:3). The (prophet) says: ‘Shall I let Myself be inquired of by them? Since their heart

64

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

is to their idols, I will not let Myself be inquired of. Accepting their inquiry is to give in to their request.’ Explanation of Radak Radak first comments on the form of the Niphal inf. abs. ‫ ִא ָדּר ֹשׁ‬. The ’aleph is in place of the usual hey for ease of pronunciation. ‫( ִהנָּ תֹן‬Jerem. 38:3) is a regular Niphal inf. abs. formation. Radak then explains that the Niphal imperf. (‫ ) ִא ָדּ ֵרשׁ‬preceded by inf. abs. may be understood as Tolerative Niphal. G-d’s question indicates clearly that He has a choice whether or not to allow the people to inquire of Him, since they do not deserve the privilege of consulting Him. 13

Amos 9:9

‫ת־בּ֣ית יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֑אל ַכּ ֲא ֶ ֤שׁר‬ ֵ ‫ל־הגּוֹיִ ֖ם ֶא‬ ַ ‫וֹתי ְב ָ ֽכ‬ ִ ‫ֹכי ְמ ַצ ֶ ֔וּה וַ ֲהנִ ֥ע‬ ֙ ִ ‫י־ה ֵנּ֤ה ָ ֽאנ‬ ִ ‫ִ ֽכּ‬ ַ ‫יִ ֙נּ‬ ‫וֹע ַבּ ְכּ ָב ָ ֔רה וְ ֽל ֹא־יִ ֥פּוֹל ְצ ֖רוֹר ָ ֽא ֶרץ׃‬ For I will command and I will shake the House of Israel among all the nations as (grain) is shaken in a sieve, and no pebble will fall to the ground.

ַ ‫יִ ֙נּ‬ Comment of Rashi on ‫וֹע׀‬ .‫נוּע ֶשׁהוּא ָדּ ָבר ַהנָּ ע ֵמ ֵא ָליו‬ ַ ָ‫על יְ ֵדי ַא ֵחר וְ לֹא יִ ָתּ ֵכן ִל ְקרוֹת י‬ Translation of Rashi

‫נּוֹע‬ ַ ִ‫( י‬Niphal imperf. ‫נוּע‬ ַ ) means “be shaken, tossed” by another and it is not possible to read ‫נוּע‬ ַ ָ‫( י‬Qal imperf.), which (expresses the idea of) “shaking, trembling etc” on its own.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

65

Explanation of Rashi Rashi explains that the Qal imperf. of ‫נוּע‬ ַ would mean “he quivers, trembles, totters” etc. whereas in Amos 9:9 is found the Niphal imperf. ‫נּוֹע‬ ַ ִ‫= י‬ “be tossed about” (of corn in a sieve). Hence, this is the passive use of the Niphal.

ַ in its causative sense, Note that in the same verse, occurs the Hiphil of ‫נוּע‬ ‫וֹתי‬ ִ ‫“ וַ ֲהנִ ֥ע‬and I will shake” (cause to tremble, quiver). Note also: ‫ ְכּ ָב ָרה‬n.f. = sieve; ‫ ְצרוֹר‬n.m. = pebble. 14

Micah 6:6

‫עוֹלוֹת ַבּ ֲעגָ ִ ֖לים ְבּ ֵנ֥י‬ ֔ ‫אֹלהי ָמ ֑רוֹם ַה ֲא ַק ְדּ ֶ ֣מנּוּ ְב‬ ֣ ֵ ‫הוה ִא ַ ֖כּף ֵל‬ ָ֔ ְ‫ַבּ ָמּ ֙ה ֲא ַק ֵדּ֣ם י‬ ‫ָשׁ ָנֽה׃‬ With what shall I come before the Lord, and with what shall I bow myself to G-d on High? Shall I come before Him with burnt-offerings, with calves a year old? Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫ִא ַ ֖כּף‬

‫וּמ ַלּת ִא ַכּף ִמ ָפּ ֳע ֵלי ַה ֶכּ ֶפל ְכּ ֶד ֶרְך ֶא ְשׁ ַתּ ֲחוֶ ה ְכ ִמנְ ַהג ַה ֵמּ ִביא ִמנְ ָחה‬ ִ .‫לאדוניו‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra The word ‫ ִא ַכּף‬is a double-‘ayin verb (‫ ) ָכּ ַפף‬with the meaning of “bow myself”, as is the custom of one who brings a gift to his master. Comment of Radak on

‫ִא ַכּף‬ ‫ָשׁ ְרשׁוֹ ָכּפוּף והוא ִמ ִבּנְ יַ ן נִ ְפ ַעל‬

66

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Translation of Radak Its root is ‫ ָכּ ַפף‬and it is Niphal. Explanation of Ibn Ezra and Radak They have informed us that ‫ ִא ַכּף‬is Niphal imperf. 1 c.sg. bend down, be bent, bowed”.

‫“ = כּפף‬bend,

Note the well-known uses of ‫ כּפף‬in Psalm 145:14 and Isaiah 58:5. Psalm 145:14

‫פוּפים׃‬ ֽ ִ ‫ל־ה ְכּ‬ ַ ‫ל־הנּ ְֹפ ִ ֑לים וְ ֝זוֹ ֵ ֗קף ְל ָכ‬ ַ ‫סוֹמְך ְי֭הוָ ה ְל ָכ‬ ֵ֣ The Lord supports all the fallen ones, and straightens all the bowed.

‫פוּפים‬ ֽ ִ ‫ ְכּ‬is Qal passive participle m.pl. Isaiah 58:5

‫אשׁוֹ‬ ֗ ֹ ‫מן ר‬ ֹ ֜ ְ‫ֲה ָכ ֶ֗זה יִ ְֽהיֶ ֙ה ֣צוֹם ֶא ְב ָח ֵ ֔רהוּ י֛ וֹם ַענּ֥ וֹת ָא ָ ֖דם נַ ְפ ֑שׁוֹ ֲה ָל ֨כֹף ְכּ ַאג‬ ‫יהוֽה׃‬ ָ ‫א־צוֹם וְ י֥ וֹם ָר ֖צוֹן ַל‬ ֔ ‫יע ֲה ָלזֶ ֙ה ִתּ ְק ָר‬ ַ ‫וְ ַ ֤שׂק וָ ֵ֙א ֶפ ֙ר יַ ִ֔צּ‬ Is such the Fast that I have chosen? A day for a man to afflict his soul; is it to bow down his head like a bulrush, and to spread sackcloth and ashes? Will you call this a Fast and an acceptable day to the Lord?

‫ ֲה ָל ֨כֹף‬is Qal inf. cstr. + hey interrogative. 15

Lamentations 1:4

‫֖יה‬ ָ ‫וֹמ ִ֔מין כּ ֲֹה ֶנ‬ ֵ ‫יה ֽשׁ‬ ָ֙ ‫ל־שׁ ָע ֶ ֙ר‬ ְ ‫מוֹעד ָכּ‬ ֵ ֔ ‫ַדּ ְר ֵ֨כי ִציּ֜ וֹן ֲא ֵב ֗לוֹת ִמ ְבּ ִ ֙לי ָבּ ֵ ֣אי‬ ָ ‫תוֹּלת‬ ֶ֥ ‫נֶ ֱאנָ ִ ֑חים ְבּ‬ ‫ר־להּ׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫יה נוּג֖ וֹת וְ ִ ֥היא ַמ‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

67

The roads of Zion are mourning for lack of those coming for the festival; all her gates are desolate, her priests are sighing; her maidens are grieving, and she is embittered. Comment of Rashi on ‫נוּג֖ וֹת‬

‫שׁוֹרשׁ ַבּ ֵתּ ָיבה ֶא ָלּא הגימ"ל ְל ַב ָדּהּ‬ ֶ ‫ְלשׁוֹן יָ גוֹן ואין‬ Translation of Rashi

‫נוּג֖ וֹת‬

is connected with the noun ‫“ =( יָ גוֹן‬grief, sorrow”), but the only root letter (visible) in the word is the gimmel. Explanation of Rashi

Rashi is commenting on ‫ נוּג֖ וֹת‬which we know to be Niphal participle f.pl. from the root ‫“ = יגה‬suffer”. The masc. noun ‫“ = יָ גוֹן‬grief, sorrow” is also derived from this root. Rashi comments that the only root letter in the word ‫ נוּג֖ וֹת‬is gimmel. He seems not to understand fully the function of the weak letters. It is worth remembering, however, that Rashi (1040-1105 CE) hailed from medieval Christian France, and for his lexicographical studies he relied on the dictionary of Menaḥem ibn Saruq (910-970 CE) which was the first complete dictionary in Hebrew. For the Jews of Christian France had no access to Arabic and to all the philological research which had been written in Arabic by the Jews of medieval Spain. Despite the great merits of Menaḥem’s dictionary (known as Maḥberet Menaḥem), it pre-dated the discovery of the basic triconsonantal nature of the verbal stem, a discovery attributed to Judah b. Ḥayyūj (950-1000 CE) who wrote in Arabic. It was only through the work of Abraham ibn Ezra (1092-1167), who consistently wrote in Hebrew, that all the Jewish philological research written in Arabic,

68

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

became available to the Jews of Christian Europe. (see Sarna N M, 1964; Hirschfield, Hartwig 1926).

PIEL Spot the Piel Study the following biblical verses. Parse and translate all the Piel verbs. The student may consult the verb tables in any reliable Biblical Hebrew grammar book. Explanatory notes are found at the end of the section. 1

II Samuel 4:8

‫איִ ְב ָ֔ך ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ִבּ ֵ ֖קּשׁ ֶאת־נַ ְפ ֶ ֑שָׁך‬ ֹ ֽ ֙‫ן־שׁאוּל‬ ָ ‫ישׁ־בּ ֹ ֶשׁת ֶבּ‬ ֗ ‫ֽה־ר ֹאשׁ ִ ֽא‬ ֣ ‫ִה ֵנּ‬ Here is the head of Ish-boshet, son of your enemy Saul, who sought your life. 2 Numbers 6:11 (atonement by sacrifice for the involuntary defilement of the Nazirite by contact with a dead body)

‫את וְ ֶא ָ ֣חד ְלע ֔ ָֹלה וְ ִכ ֶפּ֣ר ָע ֔ ָליו ֵמ ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ָח ָ ֖טא‬ ֙ ‫וְ ָע ָ ֣שׂה ַהכּ ֵֹ֗הן ֶא ָ ֤חד ְל ַח ָטּ‬ ַ ‫ַע‬ ‫אשׁוֹ ַבּיּ֥ וֹם ַה ֽהוּא׃‬ ֖ ֹ ‫ל־ה ָנּ ֶ֑פשׁ וְ ִק ַ ֥דּשׁ ֶאת־ר‬ The priest shall make one for a sin-offering and one for a burnt-offering and he shall atone for him from that which he sinned over the (dead) soul and he shall sanctify his head on that day. 3

Genesis 12:4

‫הוה‬ ָ֔ ְ‫וַ ֵיּ ֶ֣לְך ַא ְב ָ ֗רם ַכּ ֲא ֶ֨שׁר ִדּ ֶ ֤בּר ֵא ָל ֙יו י‬ Abram went as the Lord spoke to him.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 4

69

Genesis 21:1

‫הו֛ה ְל ָשׂ ָ ֖רה ַכּ ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ִדּ ֵ ֽבּר׃‬ ָ ְ‫שׁר ָא ָ ֑מר וַ יַּ ַעשׂ י‬ ֣ ֶ ‫ת־שׂ ָ ֖רה ַכּ ֲא‬ ָ ‫ַיהו֛ה ָפּ ַ ֥ קד ֶא‬ ָ ‫ֽו‬ The Lord remembered Sarah as He had said, and the Lord did for Sarah as He had spoken. 5

Amos 2:14

‫נוֹס ִמ ָ ֔קּל וְ ָח ָז֖ק לֹא־יְ ַא ֵ ֣מּץ כּ ֹ֑חוֹ וְ גִ ֖בּוֹר לֹא־יְ ַמ ֵ ֥לּט נַ ְפ ֽשׁוֹ׃‬ ֙ ‫וְ ָא ַ ֤בד ָמ‬ Escape will perish from the swift and the strong will not muster his strength and the mighty man will not deliver his life. 6

Psalm 116:4

‫֝הוה ַמ ְלּ ָ ֥טה נַ ְפ ִ ֽשׁי׃‬ ֗ ָ ‫ָא ָנּ֥ה ְי‬ Please, O Lord, save my soul! 7

Genesis 2:3

‫יעי וַ יְ ַק ֵ ֖דּשׁ א ֹ֑תוֹ‬ ִ ֔ ‫ים ֶאת־י֣ וֹם ַה ְשּׁ ִב‬ ֙ ‫ֹלה‬ ִ ‫וַ יְ ָ ֤ב ֶרְך ֱא‬ G-d blessed the seventh day and sanctified it. 8

Exodus 10:3 (Moses and Aaron to Pharoah in the name of G-d)

‫ד־מ ַ ֣תי ֵמ ַ֔אנְ ָתּ ֵל ָע ֹ֖נת ִמ ָפּ ָנ֑י ַשׁ ַ ֥לּח ַע ִ ֖מּי וְ ַי ַֽע ְב ֻ ֽדנִ י׃‬ ָ ‫ַע‬ Until when will you refuse to humble yourself before Me? Let My people go that they may serve Me. 9

I Kings 3:3

‫וּמ ְק ִ ֽטיר׃‬ ַ ‫ַ ֚רק ַבּ ָבּ ֔מוֹת ֥הוּא ְמזַ ֵ ֖בּ ַח‬

70

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Only on the high places did he (Solomon) offer sacrifices and offer incense. 10

Exodus 35:3

‫א־ת ַב ֲע ֣רוּ ֵ֔אשׁ ְבּ ֖כֹל מ ְֹשׁ ֽבֹ ֵת ֶיכ֑ם ְבּי֖ וֹם ַה ַשּׁ ָ ֽבּת׃‬ ְ ֹ‫ל‬ You shall not kindle fire in all your dwelling places on the Sabbath day. 11

Isaiah 66:13

‫וּשׁ ַל ִ֖ם ְתּנֻ ָ ֽחמוּ׃‬ ָ ‫וּב ֽיר‬ ִ ‫ֹכי ֲא ַנ ֶ֣ח ְמ ֶ֔כם‬ ֙ ִ ‫ְכּ ִ֕אישׁ ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ִא ֖מּוֹ ְתּנַ ֲח ֶ ֑מנּוּ ֵכּ֤ן ָ ֽאנ‬ Like a man whose mother consoles him, so will I console you, and in Jerusalem you will be consoled. 12

Leviticus 13:44

‫ַט ֵ ֧מּא יְ ַט ְמּ ֶ ֛אנּוּ ַהכּ ֵ ֹ֖הן‬ The priest shall surely declare him impure. 13

Esther 3:1

‫ן־ה ְמּ ָ ֛ד ָתא‬ ַ ‫ת־ה ָ ֧מן ֶ ֽבּ‬ ָ ‫ַא ַ ֣חר ׀ ַה ְדּ ָב ִ ֣רים ָה ֵ֗א ֶלּה גִּ ַדּ ֩ל ַה ֶ֨מּ ֶלְך ֲא ַח ְשׁוֵ ֜רוֹשׁ ֶא‬ ‫ָה ֲאגָ ִ ֖גי ַוֽ יְ נַ ְשּׂ ֵ ֑אהוּ‬ After these things, King Ahasuerus promoted Haman, son of Hammedata the Agagite and exalted him. 14

Exodus 3:22

‫וּשׂ ָמ ֹ֑לת‬ ְ ‫וּכ ֵ ֥לי זָ ָ ֖הב‬ ְ ‫י־כ ֶ֛סף‬ ֶ ‫יתהּ ְכּ ֵל‬ ָ֔ ‫וּמגָּ ַ ֣רת ֵבּ‬ ִ ‫וְ ָשׁ ֲא ֨ ָלה ִא ָ ֤שּׁה ִמ ְשּׁ ֶכנְ ָתּ ֙הּ‬ ֶ ֵ‫ל־בּנ‬ ְ ‫וְ ַשׂ ְמ ֶ֗תּם ַע‬ ‫ת־מ ְצ ָ ֽריִם׃‬ ִ ‫יכם וְ נִ ַצּ ְל ֶ ֖תּם ֶא‬ ֶ֔ ‫ל־בּ ֹ֣נ ֵת‬ ְ ‫יכ ֙ם וְ ַע‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

71

Every woman shall borrow from her neighbour and from the woman living in her house silver vessels and golden vessels and garments, and you shall put them on your sons and daughters and you shall strip off (despoil) the Egyptians. 15

Malachi 3:1

‫ה־ד ֶרְך ְל ָפ ָנ֑י‬ ֖ ֶ ָ‫וּפנּ‬ ִ ‫ִהנְ ִנ֤י שׁ ֵֹל ַח ַמ ְל ָא ִ֔כי‬ Behold I will send My messenger and he will clear a path before Me. 16

Exodus 24:15

‫ת־ה ָ ֽהר׃‬ ָ ‫ל־ה ָ ֑הר וַ יְ ַ ֥כס ֶה ָע ָנ֖ ן ֶא‬ ָ ‫וַ ַיּ ַ֥על מ ֶ ֹ֖שׁה ֶא‬ Moses ascended the mountain and the cloud covered the mountain. 17

Genesis 24:19

‫תּת׃‬ ֹ ֽ ‫ם־כּ ֖לּוּ ִל ְשׁ‬ ִ ‫אמר ַגּ֤ם ִלגְ ַמ ֶ ֙לּ ֙יָך ֶא ְשׁ ָ֔אב ַ ֥עד ִא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ְתּ ַכ֖ל ְל ַה ְשׁק ֹ֑תוֹ וַ ֗תּ‬ She finished giving him to drink and she said, “also for your camels I will draw until they finish drinking”. 18

Genesis 42:25

֒‫יה ֮ם ָבּר‬ ֶ ‫ת־כּ ֵל‬ ְ ‫יוֹסף וַ יְ ַמ ְל ֣אוּ ֶא‬ ֵ֗ ‫וַ יְ ַצ֣ו‬ Joseph commanded and they filled their vessels with grain. 19

Psalm 33:18-20

‫ִה ֵנּ֤ה ֵע֣ין ְי֭הוָ ה ֶאל־יְ ֵר ָ ֑איו ַל ְֽמיַ ֲח ִ ֥לים ְל ַח ְס ֽדּוֹ׃ ְל ַה ִ ֣צּיל ִמ ָ ֣מּוֶ ת נַ ְפ ָ ֑שׁם‬ ָ֗ ‫וּ ְ֝ל ַח‬ ‫וּמגִ ֵנּ֣נוּ ֽהוּא׃‬ ָ ‫יהו֑ה ֶעזְ ֵ ֖רנוּ‬ ָ ‫יּוֹתם ָבּ ָר ָ ֽעב׃ ַ ֭נ ְפ ֵשׁנוּ ִח ְכּ ָ ֣תה ַ ֽל‬

72

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Behold the eye of the Lord is to those who fear Him, to those who await His kindness; to rescue their soul from death, and to preserve them alive in famine; our soul awaits the Lord, He is our help and our shield. 20

Psalm 118:18

‫יַ ֣סֹּר יִ ְסּ ַ ֣רנִּ י ָיּ֑הּ וְ ַ֝ל ָ֗מּוֶ ת ֣ל ֹא נְ ָת ָנֽנִ י׃‬ G-d has chastened me severely, but He has not given me over to death. Explanatory notes for spot the Piel 1

II Samuel 4:8

‫ִבּ ֵקּשׁ‬

Piel perf. 3 m.sg. ‫בקשׁ‬. “He sought”. Regular formation. Ḥireq in first syllable and tsere in second syllable. Strong dagesh in middle root letter. 2

Numbers 6:11

‫וְ ִכ ֶפּר‬

Piel perf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. ‫כפר‬. “and he will atone”.Note the segol rather than tsere in the second syllable. See JM 52c: “In three verbs we find the vowel ֶ ‫ ִדּ ֶבּר‬he spoke, ‫ ִכּ ֶפּר‬he expiated, ‫ וְ ִכ ֶבּס‬and he will wash (11 times, but twice ‫)!וְ ִכ ֵבּס‬. These anomalies are difficult to explain. In pause one finds ‫ ִדּ ֵבּר‬and ‫ ִכּ ֵבּס‬.”

‫וְ ִק ַדּשׁ‬

Piel perf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec.. ‫קדשׁ‬. “and he will sanctify”. Note the pataḥ rather than tsere in the second syllable. See JM 52c:“Perfect 3rd pers. m. sg. Although ֵ is secondary, ‫ ִק ֵטּל‬is the proper form of Piel and also its pausal form. One very often finds the form ‫ ִק ַטּל‬, the pataḥ of which is not the primitive a, but an attenuation of tsere. The form ‫ ִק ַטּל‬, a lighter form, is used mostly with the conjunctive accent and when -‫ִק ַטּל‬ loses the stress (before maqqef), and only rarely with a disjunctive accent. Thus with a conjunctive accent we find ‫ ֵבּ ַרְך‬always; with a weak disjunc-

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

73

tive accent we find ‫ ֵבּ ַרְך‬twice and ‫ ֵבּ ֵרְך‬twice; the pausal form (which does not occur) would have been ‫ ֵבּ ֵרְך‬.” 3

Genesis 12:4

‫ִדּ ֶבּר‬ 4

Piel perf. 3 m.sg. ‫דבר‬. “he spoke”. See note above on 2. Genesis 21:1

‫ִדּ ֵ ֽבּר׃‬

Piel perf. 3 m.sg. above on 2. 5

‫דבר‬.

“he spoke”. Pausal form; see note

Amos 2:14

‫יְ ַא ֵמּץ‬

Piel imperf. 3 m.sg. ‫אמץ‬. “He will make firm, strengthen”.

‫יְמ ֵלּט‬ ַ

Piel imperf. 3 m.sg. ‫מלט‬. “He will rescue, deliver”.

These are regular formations. 6

Psalm 116:4

‫ַמ ְלּ ָטה‬ 7

Piel emphatic imperative m.sg. ‫מלט‬. “Save, deliver!”

Genesis 2:3

‫וַ יְ ָ ֤ב ֶרְך‬

Piel imperf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. ‫ברך‬. “and he blessed”.

Note compensatory lengthening of pataḥ to qamets under the vet due to absence of dagesh in resh (middle root letter). Note also the reduction of tsere to segol under the resh due to retraction of accent from final syllable to penultimate syllable after vav consec.

‫וַ יְ ַק ֵדּשׁ‬

Piel imperf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. ‫קדשׁ‬. “and he sanctified”.

74 8

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Exodus 10:3

‫ֵמ ַאנְ ָתּ‬

Piel perf. 2 m.sg. ‫מאן‬. “You refuse”. Note compensatory lengthening of ḥireq to tsere under the mem due to absence of dagesh in the ’aleph (a guttural).

‫ַשׁ ַלּח‬

Piel imperative m.sg. ‫שׁלח‬. “Send away, let go”.

Note that the guttural (ḥet) requires the vowel pataḥ before it. Compare the regular Piel imperative m.sg. formation, e.g. ‫ ַדּ ֵבּר‬. (tsere in second syllable). 9

I Kings 3:3

‫ְמזַ ֵבּ ַח‬

Piel participle m.sg. ‫זבח‬. “Sacrificing”.

Note that the guttural (ḥet) takes a furtive pataḥ after the full accented vowel. 10 Exodus 35:3

‫ )לֹא־( ְת ַב ֲע ֣רו‬Piel

imperf. 2 m.pl. ‫בער‬. “You shall (not) kindle”. Note the “virtual doubling” of the ‘ayin (middle root letter), since the guttural does not admit dagesh, but there is no compensatory lengthening of the preceding vowel. Note also the composite sheva (ḥatephpataḥ) under the ‘ayin, since gutturals usually take composite sheva instead of the simple vocal sheva. 11

Isaiah 66:13

‫ְתּנַ ֲח ֶמנּוּ‬

Piel imperf. 3 f.sg. + suffix 3 m.sg. with energic nun; ‫נחם‬. “She comforts him”. Note “virtual doubling” of middle root letter (the guttural ḥet). (for Energic Nun, see: WHG pp 130-131: GK 58i-l).

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

‫ֲאנַ ֶח ְמ ֶכם‬

Piel imperf. 1 c.sg. + suffix 2 m.pl.

‫נחם‬.

75

“I will comfort

you”. 12

Leviticus 13:44

‫ַט ֵמּא‬

Piel inf. abs. ‫טמא‬. Lamed-’aleph verb.

‫יְ ַט ְמּ ֶאנּוּ‬

Piel imperf. 3 m.sg. + sf. 3 m.sg. (energic nun). “He shall declare him impure”. Note that in this form the lamed-’aleph verb is patterned after the corresponding form of the strong verb. 13

Esther 3:1

‫גִּ ַדּל‬

Piel perf. 3 m.sg. “He made great”. Note pataḥ as second vowel.

‫ וַ יְ נַ ְשּׂ ֵאהוּ‬Piel imperf. 3 m.sg. + sf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. “and he exalted him” (lit. lifted him up). ‫נשׂא‬, lamed-’aleph verb. Note that in this form the lamed-’aleph verb is patterned after the corresponding form of the strong verb. 14

Exodus 3:22

‫וְ נִ ַצּ ְל ֶתּם‬

Piel perf. 2 m.pl. + vav consec. ‫נצל‬. “and you shall despoil”. Note that in this form the pe-nun verb is patterned after the corresponding form of the strong verb. (e.g. ‫וְ ִשׁ ַבּ ְר ֶתּם‬. Deut. 12:3). However, note that in theory, ‫ נִ ַצּ ְל ֶתּם‬could be Niphal perf. 2 m.pl. of ‫נצל‬, with assimilation of the first root letter (nun) into the tsadi (‫ )נִ ַצּ ְל ֶתּם > נִ נְ ַצ ְל ֶתּם‬with the passive meaning, “and you shall be delivered, rescued”. Compare ‫> נִ נְ ַצ ְלנוּ‬ ‫ נִ ַצּ ְלנוּ‬in Jeremiah 7:10 (Spot the Niphal no 5). 15

Malachi 3:1

‫וּפנָּ ה‬ ִ Piel perf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. “and he will make clear, empty”. ‫פנה‬. Lamed-hey verb. All perfects of lamed-hey verbs without afformatives end in ‫ָה‬.

76 16

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Exodus 24:15

‫וַ יְ ַכס‬

Piel imperf. apocopated 3 m.sg. + vav consec. ‫כסה‬. Lamedhey,“and he/it covered”. Long form of imperf. would be ‫יְכ ֶסּה‬ ַ . All imperfects of lamed-hey verbs without afformatives end in ‫ ֶ◌ה‬. Imperfects of lamed-hey verbs with hey as their final consonant often appear in apocopated (shortened) form after vav consec. 17

Genesis 24:19

‫וַ ְתּ ַכל‬

Piel imperf. 3 f.sg. apocopated + vav consec. ‫כלה‬. “and she finished”. ‫( ָכּ ָלה‬Qal) = “be complete, at an end, finished” > in Piel = “complete, bring to an end, finish”. The long form of Piel imperf. would be ‫( ְתּ ַכ ֶלּה‬see 16 above).‫ ִכּלּוּ‬Piel perf. 3 c.pl. ‫כלה‬. “They (shall have) finished”. Note use of Biblical Hebrew “perfect” for the English “future perfect”. 18

Genesis 42:25

‫ וַ יְ ַצו‬Piel imperf. 3 m.sg. apocopated + vav consec. ‫צוה‬. The longer form would be ‫ יְ ַצוֶּ ה‬See e.g. Gen. 18:19. Note that the middle root letter is consonantal vav (see below, section on Polel etc.). Compare ‫( וַ יְ ַקו‬root ‫)קוה‬,see Isaiah 5:2. ‫וַ יְ ַמ ְלאוּ‬

Piel imperf. 3 m.pl. + vav consec. ‫ ָמ ֵלא‬. “and they filled”. Note absence of dagesh in lamed (middle root letter). See GK 20 l-m for “The loss of the dagesh forte”—“Very frequently in certain consonants with sheva mobile, since the absence of a strong vowel causes the strengthening to be less noticeable”. 19

Psalm 33:18-20

‫ַל ְמיַ ֲח ִלים‬

Piel participle m.pl. ‫יחל‬. Pe-yod and ‘ayin guttural. Note the composite sheva under the ḥet (middle root letter) instead of simple vocal

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

77

sheva. Otherwise, this form is patterned after the form of a regular Piel participle.

‫יּוֹתם‬ ָ֗ ‫וּ ְ֝ל ַח‬

Piel inf. cstr. + suffix 3 m.pl. + lamed prep. ‫חיה‬. ‘ayin-yod and lamed-hey. “to preserve them alive, let them live”. Note that all inf. cstr. forms of lamed-hey verbs drop the final hey together with the preceding vowel and replace them with ‫ו ֹת‬.

‫ִח ְכּ ָתה‬

Piel perf. 3 f.sg. ‫חכה‬. “it/she awaits”. Pe-guttural and lamed-hey. The perf. 3 f.sg. in all stems of verbs lamed-hey is formed by substituting the old feminine ‫ ת‬for the final ‫ ה‬of the verb root and adding ‫ ָה‬the 3 f.sg.afformative. 20

Psalm 118:18

‫ יַ סֹּר‬Piel inf. abs. ‫יסר‬. ‫יִ ְסּ ַרנִ י‬

Piel perf. 3 m.sg. + sf. 1 c.sg.

‫יסר‬. “He has chastened me”. Pe-

yod verb.

Uses of Piel The following summary of the uses of Piel is based on the analyses of modern grammarians. (see Bibliography). I:

Intensive of Qal

The Piel adds such ideas as: often, much, for a long time, to the simple idea of the verb. It is a strengthening and repetition of the action.

‫ָשׁ ַבר‬

= “he broke”;

‫= ִשׁ ֵבּר‬

“he broke in pieces”.

e.g. II Kings 18:4

‫ת־ה ֲא ֵשׁ ָ ֑רה‬ ֽ ָ ‫ת־ה ַמּ ֵצּ ֔בֹת וְ ָכ ַ ֖רת ֶא‬ ַ ‫ת־ה ָבּ ֗מוֹת וְ ִשׁ ַבּ ֙ר ֶא‬ ַ ‫֣הוּא ֵה ִ ֣סיר ֶא‬

78

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

“He removed the high places, shattered the pillars and cut down the asherah trees”. (see GK 52a: “In the second syllable, a has been retained in the majority of cases, so that the conjugation should more correctly be called Pi al—.”) See also above, Explanatory Notes for Spot the Piel, no 2.

‫ָס ַפר‬

‫ִס ֵפּר‬

= “he counted”;

= “he recounted, related”.

e.g. Exodus 10:2

‫תּי ְבּ ִמ ְצ ַ ֔ריִם‬ ֙ ִ ‫ן־בּנְ ָ֗ך ֵ ֣את ֲא ֶ ֤שׁר ִה ְת ַע ַ ֙לּ ְל‬ ִ ‫וּב‬ ֶ ‫וּל ַ֡מ ַען ְתּ ַס ֵפּר֩ ְבּ ָאזְ ֵ֨ני ִבנְ ָ֜ך‬ ְ “And in order that you may recount to your son and your grandson how I mocked Egypt”.

‫ָצ ַחק‬

=

“he laughed”;

‫ִצ ֵחק‬

=

“he

laughted

repeatedly,

jested”. e.g. Genesis 21:9

‫ן־ה ָג֧ר ַה ִמּ ְצ ִ ֛רית ֲא ֶשׁר־יָ ְל ָ ֥דה ְל ַא ְב ָר ָ ֖הם ְמ ַצ ֵ ֽחק׃‬ ָ ‫ת־בּ‬ ֶ ‫וַ ֵ֨תּ ֶרא ָשׂ ָ ֜רה ֶ ֽא‬ “Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian whom she had borne to Abraham mocking”.

‫ָשׁ ַאל‬

=

“he asked”;

‫ִשׁ ֵאל‬

=

“he begged” (only twice in

Piel) e.g. Psalm 109:10

‫יהם׃‬ ֽ ֶ ‫בוֹת‬ ֵ ‫וֹע יָ נ֣ וּעוּ ָב ָנ֣יו וְ ִשׁ ֵ ֑אלוּ וְ ָ֝ד ְר ֗שׁוּ ֵמ ָח ְר‬ ַ ֤‫וְ נ‬ “May his children constantly wander and beg, and may they seek from their ruins”.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

79

Jouon/Muraoka (52d) do not list an intensive category, but rather a pluralizing category, suggesting that some Piel verbs involve either multiple subַ ‫“ = ְל ַק ֵ ֖בּר ֶא‬to bury the jects or objects. e.g. I Kings 11:15: ‫ת־ה ֲח ָל ִ ֑לים‬ slain”. Jouon/Muraoka further suggest that such Piels may have to do with the frequency of an action. e.g. ‫“ = ִצ ֵחק‬laugh repeatedly”; ‫= ִשׁ ֵאל‬ “beg”(i.e. ask repeatedly). Lambdin (Lesson 40, 148) suggests that many socalled intensive Piels seem to be stylistic variants of the Qal. Jouon/Muraoka (52d) conclude as follows: “—the question how the function of Piel in relation to other conjugations, notably Qal, should be defined still remainsone of the major challenges facing Hebrew and Semitic linguistics”. II: Factitive/causative “Factitive” denotes the generation of a state or quality. A root which occurs in the Qal as an intransitive or stative verb may have a transitive, active or factitive meaning in the Piel.

‫( גָּ ַדל‬Qal)

=

“he grew up, became great”

‫( גִּ ַדּל‬Piel)

=

“he made great, magnified”

e.g. Esther 3:1:

‫ת־ה ָ ֧מן‬ ָ ‫ַא ַ ֣חר ַה ְדּ ָב ִ ֣רים ָה ֵ֗א ֶלּה גִּ ַדּ ֩ל ַה ֶ֨מּ ֶלְך ֲא ַח ְשׁוֵ ֜רוֹשׁ ֶא‬ “After these things, King Ahasuerus promoted Haman”

‫( ָל ַמד‬Qal)

=

“he learned”

‫( ִל ַמּד‬Piel)

=

“he taught”

The latter example is designated “causative” by Lambdin on the basis that the Qal is transitive.

80

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW e.g. Ecclesiastes 12:9:

‫ת־ה ֔ ָעם וְ ִא ֵ ֣זּ ן וְ ִח ֵ ֔קּר ִתּ ֵ ֖קּן‬ ָ ‫ד־דּ ַע ֙ת ֶא‬ ֙ ַ ‫וְ י ֵֹ֕תר ֶשׁ ָה ָי֥ה ק ֶ ֹ֖ה ֶלת ָח ָ ֑כם ֗עוֹד ִל ַמּ‬ ‫ְמ ָשׁ ִ ֥לים ַה ְר ֵ ֽבּה׃‬ “And besides being wise, Kohelet also taught the people knowledge and he tested and he sought out and he arranged many proverbs”. (Note four Piel perfect forms in this verse: ‫ִתּ ֵ ֖קּן‬

‫) ִל ַמּד וְ ִא ֵ ֣זּ ן וְ ִח ֵ ֔קּר‬

III: Declarative/estimative

‫נִ ָקּה‬

=

“he declared innocent”

‫ִט ַהר‬

=

“he declared clean”

‫ִט ֵמּא‬

=

“he declared unclean”

e.g. Exodus 34:7

‫נ ֵ ֹ֥צר ֶ֙ח ֶס ֙ד ָל ֲא ָל ֔ ִפים נ ֵ ֹ֥שׂא ָע ֹ֛ון וָ ֶ ֖פ ַשׁע וְ ַח ָטּ ָ ֑אה וְ נַ ֵקּ ֙ה ֣ל ֹא יְ נַ ֶ ֔קּה‬ “Preserving kindness for thousands of generations, bearer of iniquity, rebellion and sin, who absolves (declares innocent) but not entirely”. e.g. Leviticus 14:48

‫ת־ה ַ֔בּיִ ת ִ ֥כּי נִ ְר ָ ֖פּא ַה ָנּֽ גַ ע׃‬ ַ ‫ֹהן ֶא‬ ֙ ֵ ‫וְ ִט ַ ֤הר ַהכּ‬ “The priest shall declare the house pure, for the plague has been healed”. e.g. Leviticus 13:8

‫וְ ָר ָא ֙ה ַהכּ ֵֹ֔הן וְ ִה ֵנּ֛ה ָפּ ְשׂ ָ ֥תה ַה ִמּ ְס ַ ֖פּ ַחת ָבּ ֑עוֹר וְ ִט ְמּ ֥אוֹ ַהכּ ֵ ֹ֖הן ָצ ַ ֥ר ַעת ִ ֽהוא׃‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

81

“The priest shall look, and indeed, the scab has spread on the skin. The priest shall declare it impure; it is tzara’at”. IV: Denominatives “Denominatives” are verbs derived from nouns. (GK 38b). Denominatives “are frequently formed in this conjugation, and generally express a being occupied with the object expressed by the noun, either to form or to make use of it”. (GK 52h). See JM 52d: “The following examples are denominative in the sense that there lies behind each of them a related, and assuredly more primitive, noun: ‫ ִדּ ֶבּר‬to speak (‫ ִכּ ֵהן ;) ָדּ ָבר‬to act as priest (‫ ִא ֵלּם ;)כּ ֵֹהן‬to bind sheaves (‫) ֲא ֻל ָמּה‬.” Further examples are:

‫ = ִקנֵּ ן‬make a nest (‫ = ֵקן‬nest) ‫ = ִע ַפּר‬throw dust (‫ = ָע ָפר‬dust) ‫ = ִענֵּ ן‬gather clouds (‫ = ָענָ ן‬cloud) e.g. Psalm 104:17

‫יתהּ׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫רוֹשׁים ֵבּ‬ ֥ ִ ‫ר־שׁם ִצ ֳפּ ִ ֣רים יְ ַק ֵנּ֑נוּ ֲ֝ח ִס ָ ֗ידה ְבּ‬ ֭ ָ ‫ֲא ֶשׁ‬ “For there the birds nest; as for the stork, the fir-trees are her house.” V:

Privative Piels

The denominative Piel may express the taking away or injuring of the object denoted by the noun and this is termed a Privative Piel.

‫( ֵשׁ ֵרשׁ‬from ‫= )שׁ ֶֹרשׁ‬

root out, extirpate

‫( זִ נֵּ ב‬from ‫)זָ נָ ב‬

rout the rear (of an army) (lit. injure the tail)

=

82

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

‫( ִדּ ֵשּׁן‬from ‫) ֶדּ ֶשׁן‬

=

‫( ִח ֵטּא‬from ‫= ) ֵח ְטא‬

remove the ashes free from sin

e.g. Psalm 52:7

‫וְ ֵ ֽשׁ ֶר ְשׁ ָ֙ך ֵמ ֶ ֖א ֶרץ ַח ִיּ֣ים‬ “And He will uproot you from the land of life”. The root ‫ סקל‬occurs in both Qal and Piel in the sense of “stone, pelt with stones”(see below, II Samuel 16:6), and occurs also in Piel in the privative sense of “remove stones, clear away stones” (see below, Isaiah 5:2). Gesenius (GK 52h) suggests that this is an example of a denominative although the noun from which it is derived is no longer found. II Samuel 16:6

‫ל־ע ְב ֵ ֖די ַה ֶ ֣מּ ֶלְך ָדִּו֑ד‬ ַ ‫ת־כּ‬ ָ ‫ת־דּ ִ֔וד וְ ֶא‬ ָ ‫וַ יְ ַס ֵ ֤קּל ָ ֽבּ ֲא ָבנִ ֙ים ֶא‬ “He pelted David and all of King David’s servants with stones”. Isaiah 5:2

‫הוּ שׂ ֵ ֹ֔רק‬ ֙ ‫ַוֽ יְ ַעזְּ ֵ ֣ קהוּ ַוֽ יְ ַס ְקּ ֗ ֵלהוּ וַ יִּ ָטּ ֙ ֵע‬ “He fenced it around, and cleared it of stones; he planted it with choice shoots”. Exercise: identify the Piel verbs in the following biblical verses; discuss their form and use. (see explanatory notes at the end). 1

Genesis 24:56 (Eliezer to Laban, seeking a wife for Isaac).

‫יח ַדּ ְר ִ ֑כּי ַשׁ ְלּ ֕חוּנִ י וְ ֵא ְל ָ ֖כה‬ ַ ‫ַיהו֖ה ִה ְצ ִ ֣ל‬ ָ ‫ל־תּ ַא ֲח ֣רוּ א ִֹ֔תי ֽו‬ ְ ‫אמר ֲא ֵל ֶה ֙ם ַא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֤יּ‬ ‫ֽ ַלאד ִ ֹֽני׃‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

83

He said to them, ‘do not detain me, as the Lord has made my journey a success; send me away and I will go to my master’. 2

Genesis 34:19

‫א־א ַ ֤חר ַהנַּ֙ ַע ֙ר ַל ֲע ֣שׂוֹת ַה ָדּ ָ֔בר ִ ֥כּי ָח ֵ ֖פץ ְבּ ַ ֽבת־יַ ֲע ֑קֹב וְ ֣הוּא נִ ְכ ָ֔בּד ִמ ֖כֹּל‬ ֵ ֹ ‫וְ ֽל‬ ‫ֵ ֥בּית ָא ִ ֽביו׃‬ The youth did not delay carrying out the thing, because he desired Jacob’s daughter, and he was the most important among his father’s entire household. 3

Numbers 33:4

‫ל־בּ ֑כוֹר‬ ְ ‫הו֛ה ָבּ ֶ ֖הם ָכּ‬ ָ ְ‫וּמ ְצ ַ ֣ריִם ְמ ַק ְבּ ִ ֗רים ֵא ֩ת ֲא ֶ֨שׁר ִה ָ ֧כּה י‬ ִ The Egyptians were burying every firstborn, whom the Lord had killed among them. 4

II Samuel 16:13 (Shimei ben Gera, from a family of the House of Saul, curses David, who had left Jerusalem during Absalom’s rebellion).

‫לוְֹך וַ יְ ַק ֔ ֵלּל‬ ֙ ‫וַ ֵיּ ֶ֧לְך ָדִּו֛ד וַ ֲאנָ ָ ֖שׁיו ַבּ ָ ֑דּ ֶרְך וְ ִשׁ ְמ ֡ ִעי ה ֵֹלְך֩ ְבּ ֵ֨צ ַלע ָה ָ֜הר ְל ֻע ָמּ ֗תוֹ ָה‬ ‫וַ יְ ַס ֵ ֤קּל ָ ֽבּ ֲא ָבנִ ֙ים ְל ֻע ָמּ ֔תוֹ וְ ִע ַ ֖פּר ֶבּ ָע ָ ֽפר׃‬ David and his men continued on the way, with Shimei walking along the side of the mountain opposite him; he cursed and flung stones towards him and threw dirt as he went along. 5

I Kings 20:11 (Ahab’s answer to Ben-Hadad, King of Aram, who was besieging Samaria and threatening Israel).

‫אמר ַדּ ְבּ ֔רוּ ַאל־יִ ְת ַה ֵ ֥לּל ח ֵֹג֖ר ִכּ ְמ ַפ ֵ ֽתּ ַח׃‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ַיּ֤ ַען ֶ ֽמ ֶלְך־יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵאל֙ וַ ֣יּ‬

84

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

The King of Israel replied, ‘Speak, let he who girds on (his sword) not boast like he who takes it off’. 6

Job 33:32 (Elihu speaking to Job, hoping to show that Job is right).

‫י־ח ַ ֥פ ְצ ִתּי ַצ ְדּ ֶ ֽ קךָּ ׃‬ ָ ‫יבנִ י ַ ֝דּ ֵ֗בּר ִ ֽכּ‬ ֑ ֵ ‫שׁ־מ ִ ֥לּין ֲה ִשׁ‬ ִ ֵ‫ִאם־י‬ If there are words, answer me: speak, for I wish to vindicate you. Explanatory notes (for: identify the Piel verbs) 1

Genesis 24:56

‫ְתּ ַא ֲחרוּ‬

Piel imperf. 2 m.pl. factitive/causative. ‫אחר‬. “Do not hinder me, cause me delay”. Contrast the “intensive” use of this root in Gen. 34:19 (below).

‫ַשׁ ְלּחוּנִ י‬

Piel imperat. m.pl. + sf. 1 c.sg. “Intensive” of Qal ‫“= ָשׁ ַלח‬he sent”, (Gen. 31:4; 42:4 etc). Piel has force of: “send off, away, dismiss; let go, set free”, e.g. Gen. 30:25; 31:27; 32:27; Exod. 4:23; 5:1 etc.

2

Genesis 34:19

‫ֵא ַחר‬

Piel perf. 3 m.sg. ‫אחר‬. Intensive of Qal. Used only once in Qal; ֽ ָ ‫“ וָ ֵא ַ ֖חר ַע‬and I delayed/tarried until now”. ‫ וָ ֵא ַ ֖חר‬is see Gen. 32:5: ‫ד־ע ָתּה‬ contracted from ‫ וָ ֶא ֱא ַחר‬Qal imperf. + vav consec. 3

Numbers 33:4

‫ְמ ַק ְבּ ִרים‬

Piel participle m.pl. ‫קבר‬. Perhaps “intensive” of Qal ‫ָק ַבר‬ = “he buried”, but note the “pluralizing” category suggested by Jouon/Muraoka (52d), whereby some Piel verbs involve either multiple subjects or objects.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 4

85

II Samuel 16:13

‫וַ יְ ַק ֵלּל‬

Piel imperf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. Factitive use of the root ‫ָק ַלל‬ = “be light, trivial”. Hence, in Piel = “make light of, treat as unimportant” > “curse” (Lambdin 148).

‫וַ יְ ַס ֵקּל‬

Denominative. See: Uses of Piel, IV, V.

‫וְ ִע ַפּר‬

Piel perf. 3 m.sg. + vav conjunctive. Denominative. Derived from ‫“ = ָע ָפר‬dust”.

5

I Kings 20:11

‫ְמ ַפ ֵתּ ַח‬

Piel participle m.sg. ‫פתח‬. Qal ‫“ = ָפּ ַתח‬he opened”. The Piel is “intensive”: “free, loosen”. See also Gen. 24:32.

‫ ַדּ ְבּרוּ‬Piel imperat. m.pl. ‫דבר‬. Piel ‫ ִדּ ֶבּר‬is denominative, derived from ‫ ָדּ ָבר‬n.m. = “word”. Note, however, several instances of ‫“ = דבר‬speak” in Qal: Gen. 16:13; Exod. 6:29; Numb. 27:7; 32:27; 36:5; Deut. 5:1. 6

Job 33:32

ָ‫ַצ ְדּ ֶקךּ‬

Piel inf. cstr. + sf. 2 m.sg. “Declare righteous”.

‫צדק‬. Declarative or Estimative Piel.

Views of medieval scholars on use of Piel This section presents the views of medieval scholars on the uses of the Piel conjugation. Their comments are presented in the original rabbinic Hebrew, together with translation and explanation. A glossary of some of the Hebrew grammatical terms used by these scholars is found at the end of the section, as well as brief biographical sketches of these scholars. Students should study the biblical verses and compare the views of the medieval scholars with the views in modern grammar books.

86 1

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Genesis 8:8

‫אוֹת ֲה ַ ֣ קלּוּ ַה ַ֔מּיִם ֵמ ַ ֖על ְפּ ֵנ֥י ֽ ָה ֲא ָד ָ ֽמה׃‬ ֙ ‫יּוֹנ֖ה ֵמ ִא ֑תּוֹ ִל ְר‬ ָ ‫ת־ה‬ ַ ‫וַ יְ ַשׁ ַ ֥לּח ֶא‬ He sent forth the dove from him, to see if the waters were abated from the face of the ground. Comment of Rashi on ‫וַ יְ ַשׁ ַ ֥לּח‬

‫לּוּח‬ ַ ‫ֵאין זֶ ה ְלשׁוֹן ְשׁ ִליחוּת ֶא ָלּא לשון ִשׁ‬ Translation of Rashi This does not mean (merely) ‘sending on an errand’ but ‘sending away’ ‘letting go’. Explanation of Rashi Rashi explains that ‫( וַ יְ ַשׁ ַ ֥לּח‬Piel imperf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec.) is an ‘intensive’ Piel, i.e. it expresses the idea, not just of ‘send’ (as in the Qal), but of ‘send away’, that is, complete dismissal. 2

Genesis 9:14

‫ל־ה ָ ֑א ֶרץ וְ נִ ְר ֲא ָ ֥תה ַה ֶ ֖קּ ֶשׁת ֶבּ ָע ָנֽ ן׃‬ ָ ‫וְ ָה ָ֕יה ְבּ ֽ ַענְ ִ ֥ני ָע ָנ֖ ן ַע‬ And it will be that when I gather a cloud over the earth, the rainbow will be seen in the cloud. Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫ָע ָנ֖ ן‬

‫ְבּ ֽ ַענְ ִ ֥ני‬

‫הראשׁון והיה ָראוּי ְל ִה ָדּגֵ שׁ ַבּ ֲעבוּר ֶשׁהוּא ֵמ ַה ִבּנְ יָ ן ַה ָכּ ֵבד‬ ִ ‫ַקל הנו"ן‬ (‫ְכּמוֹ ְבּ ַד ְבּ ִ ֣רי ִע ָ֔מְּך )שמות יט ט‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

87

Translation of Ibn Ezra The first nun (in ‫ ) ְבּ ֽ ַענְ ִ ֥ני‬is without dagesh, but it ought to have dagesh because it is of the heavy conjugation (Piel), like: ‫“ ְבּ ַד ְבּ ִ ֣רי ִע ָ֔מְּך‬when I speak with you” (Exod. 19:9). Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra comments on ‫( ְבּ ֽ ַענְ ִ ֥ני‬lit. “in my gathering a cloud”) which is a Piel infinitive construct form with suffix 1 c.sg., root ‫ענן‬, and in that sense is analogous to ‫( ְבּ ַד ְבּ ִ ֣רי‬lit. “in my speaking”) (Exod. 19:9) which is also Piel inf. cstr. + sf. 1 c.sg.(root ‫)דבר‬. Piel normally has strong dagesh in the middle root letter, as in ‫ ְבּ ַד ְבּ ִ ֣רי‬. Ibn Ezra notices the absence of this dagesh in the nun of ‫בּ ֽ ַענְ ִ ֥ני‬. ְ Ibn Ezra’s comment should be compared with GK 52d: “The dagesh forte—characteristic of the whole of Piel and Pual, is often omitted when the middle radical has sheva under it. The vocal character of the sheva under the littera dagessenda is sometimes in such cases expressly emphasized by its taking the form of a ḥaṭeph,—.” See also GK 201: pp 73-74: “Omission of the strengthening, or at least the loss of Dagesh Forte occurs: a)

almost always at the end of a word

b) very frequently in certain consonants with sheva mobile, since the absence of a strong vowel causes the strengthening to be less noticeable c)

in the gutturals

Note also that the verb ‫“ = ָענָ ן‬cloud”. 3

‫ְבּ ַענֲ נִ י‬

is a denominative, derived from the noun

Genesis 21:9

‫ן־ה ָג֧ר ַה ִמּ ְצ ִ ֛רית ֲא ֶשׁר־יָ ְל ָ ֥דה ְל ַא ְב ָר ָ ֖הם ְמ ַצ ֵ ֽחק׃‬ ָ ‫ת־בּ‬ ֶ ‫וַ ֵ֨תּ ֶרא ָשׂ ָ ֜רה ֶ ֽא‬

88

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, whom she had borne to Abraham, mocking. Comment of Rashi on ‫ְמ ַצ ֵ ֽחק‬

.(‫ וַ יָּ ֻ ֖ קמוּ ְל ַצ ֵ ֽחק )שמות לב ז‬:‫ כמו ֶשׁנֶּ ֱא ַמר‬,‫בוֹדה זָ ָרה‬ ָ ‫ְלשׁוֹן ֲע‬ .(‫ ְל ַ ֥צ ֶחק ִ ֽבּי )בראשית לט יז‬:‫ימא‬ ָ ‫ כמו ְד ֵת‬,‫ לשון גִּ לּוּי ֲע ָריוֹת‬.‫ד"א‬ ‫ישׂ ֲח ֖קוּ ְל ָפ ֵנ֑ינוּ )ש"ב ב‬ ַ ‫ יָ ֤קוּמוּ נָ ֙א ַהנְּ ָע ִ ֔רים ִ ֽו‬:‫ כמו‬,‫יחה‬ ָ ‫ לשון ְר ִצ‬.‫ד"א‬ .—‫הירוּשׁה‬ ָ ‫ ֶשׁ ָהיָ ה ֵמ ִריב עם יצחק על‬.(‫יד‬ Translation of Rashi

‫ְמ ַצ ֵחק‬

“mocking” means: worshipping idols, as it is said (in reference to the Golden Calf, Exod. 32:6): “They rose up to make merry”. Another explanation is that it refers to immoral conduct, as it says (in reference to Potiphar’s wife, Gen. 39:17): “to mock at me”. Another explanation is that it refers to murder, as (in the war between the House of Saul and the House of David, II Sam. 2:14): “Let the young men arise and make sport before us”. Ishmael was quarrelling with Isaac about the inheritance. Explanation of Rashi

Rashi is commenting on ‫( ְמ ַצ ֵחק‬Piel participle m.sg.). He shows how the meaning of the Piel here is not the simple Qal meaning of ‫“ = ָצ ַחק‬he laughed”, as in: Gen. 17:17; 18:13 etc. Rather, it is an intensification of the Qal, denoting: idolatrous behaviour or immoral behaviour or even murderous intentions. 4

Deuteronomy 24:5

‫ל־דּ ָ ֑בר‬ ָ ‫ישׁ ִא ָ ֣שּׁה ֲח ָד ָ֔שׁה ֤ל ֹא יֵ ֵצ ֙א ַבּ ָצּ ָ֔בא וְ לֹא־יַ ֲע ֥בֹר ָע ָל֖יו ְל ָכ‬ ֙ ‫ִ ֽכּי־יִ ַ ֥קּח ִא‬ ‫ת־א ְשׁ ֥תּוֹ ֲא ֶשׁר־ ָל ָ ֽ קח׃‬ ִ ‫נָ ִ֞קי יִ ְה ֶי֤ה ְל ֵביתוֹ֙ ָשׁ ָנ֣ה ֶא ָ֔חת וְ ִשׂ ַ ֖מּח ֶא‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

89

If a man takes a new wife, he shall not go out in the army, and he shall not be assigned any task. He shall be free for his home one year and make the wife whom he took happy. Comment of Rashi on

‫וְ ִשׂ ַ ֖מּח‬

‫ וְ ַה ְמּ ַת ְרגֵּ ם וְ יֶ ְח ֵדּי ִעם‬,‫ וְ ַת ְרגּוּמוֹ וְ יַ ְח ֵדּי יָ ת ִא ְתּ ַתהּ‬,‫יְ ַשׂ ַמּח את אשתו‬ ֶ ,‫ִא ְתּ ַתהּ‬ .‫ שאין זה ַת ְרגּוּם של וְ ִשׂ ַמּח אלא של וְ ָשׂ ַמח‬,‫טוֹעה הוא‬ Translation of Rashi

‫ וְ ִשׂ ַמּח‬means “he shall gladden his wife” and its correct Targum rendering is ‫וְ יַ ְח ֵדּי יָת ִא ְתּ ַתהּ‬. The one who renders ‫“ וְ יֶ ְח ֵדּי ִעם ִא ְתּ ַתהּ‬he shall rejoice with his wife” is in error, for this is not the (Aramaic) rendering of ‫( וְ ִשׂ ַמּח‬Piel) but of ‫( וְ ָשׂ ַמח‬Qal). Explanation of Rashi Rashi has explained the causative meaning of ‫( וְ ִשׂ ַמּח‬Piel perf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec.“and he shall make happy”). Rashi refers to two different renderings in the Aramaic Targum. The correct rendering uses the Aramaic Aphel conjugation, which has a causative meaning: ‫“ וְ יַ ְח ֵדּי יָ ת ִא ְתּ ַתהּ‬he ֵ shall make his wife happy” and the ‫יָ ת‬, equivalent to Biblical Hebrew ‫את‬, indicates the definite direct object. The incorrect rendering uses the Aramaic equivalent of the Qal to render ‫ וְ ִשׂ ַמּח‬and takes ‫ ֵאת‬in the sense of “with”, ‫“ וְ יֶ ְח ֵדּי ִעם ִא ְתּ ַתהּ‬he shall be happy with his wife”. 5

Deuteronomy 25:18

‫ל־הנֶּ ֱח ָשׁ ִ ֣לים ַ ֽא ַח ֶ ֔ריָך וְ ַא ָ ֖תּה ָע ֵי֣ ף וְ יָ ֵג ַ֑ע‬ ַ ‫ֲא ֶ֨שׁר ָ ֽק ְר ָ֜ך ַבּ ֶ ֗דּ ֶרְך וַ יְ זַ ֵנּ֤ב ְבּ ָ֙ך ָכּ‬ How he encountered you on the way and cut off your rear, all those who lagged behind you; and you were tired and weary.

90

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Comment of Ibn Ezra on

‫וַ יְ זַ ֵנּ֤ב‬

.‫ ֶשׁלֹּא היה ָבּם כּ ַֹח ָל ֶל ֶכת‬,‫ והם ַהנֶּ ֱח ָשׁ ִלים ַא ֲח ֶריָך‬,‫ָכּ ַרת זְ נָ ְבָך‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra He cut off your tail, that is, those who were shattered behind you, who had no strength to go. Explanation of Ibn Ezra By stating ‫“ ָכּ ַרת זְ נָ ְבָך‬he has cut off your tail”, Ibn Ezra is pointing out that ‫( וַ יְ זַ נֵּ ב‬Piel imperf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec.) is a denominative/privative Piel, derived from the noun ‫“ = זָ נָ ב‬tail”. The denominative Piel may express the taking away or injuring of the object denoted by the noun and this is termed a privative Piel. Hence, the Piel verb ‫ זִ נֵּ ב‬literally means “injure the tail” and by extension “rout the rear (of an army)”. 6

Isaiah 5:2

‫הוּ שׂ ֵ ֹ֔רק‬ ֙ ‫ַוֽ יְ ַעזְּ ֵ ֣ קהוּ ַוֽ יְ ַס ְקּ ֗ ֵלהוּ וַ יִּ ָטּ ֙ ֵע‬ He fenced it around, and cleared it of stones; he planted it with choice shoots. Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫ַוֽ יְ ַס ְקּ ֗ ֵלהוּ‬

‫ אז‬,‫ואם ָהיָ ה ֵמ ַה ִבּנְ יָ ן ַה ַקּל‬ ִ .‫וטעמוֹ ֵה ִסיר ָה ֲא ָבנִ ים‬ ַ ,‫ֵמ ַה ִבּנְ יָ ן ַה ָכּ ֵבד‬ (‫ וְ ֵ ֽשׁ ֶר ְשׁ ָ֙ך ֵמ ֶ ֖א ֶרץ ַח ִיּ֣ים )תהלים נב ז‬:‫וכן‬ ֵ ,‫יהיה ְל ַח ֵבּר האבנים‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra From the heavy conjugation (Piel), and it means “he removed the stones”. If it was in the Qal, it would mean “heap up stones” and similarly, Psalm 52:7: “He will uproot you from the land of life”.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

91

Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra explains that ‫( ַוֽ יְ ַס ְקּ ֗ ֵלהוּ‬Piel imperf. 3 m.sg. + sf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec.) “and he cleared it of stones”, is a privative Piel. Ibn Ezra compares ‫( וְ ֵ ֽשׁ ֶר ְשׁ ָ֙ך‬Psalm 52:7) “and he will uproot you”, because this is also a privative Piel, derived from the noun ‫“ = שׁ ֶֹרשׁ‬root”; hence, the Piel verb = “uproot”. (Note the suggestion in GK 52h that ‫ ִס ֵקּל‬is an example of a denominative although the noun from which it is derived is no longer found). 7

Psalm 109:10

‫יהם׃‬ ֽ ֶ ‫בוֹת‬ ֵ ‫וֹע יָ נ֣ וּעוּ ָב ָנ֣יו וְ ִשׁ ֵ ֑אלוּ וְ ָ֝ד ְר ֗שׁוּ ֵמ ָח ְר‬ ַ ֤‫וְ נ‬ May his children constantly wander and beg, and may they seek from their ruins.

‫נוּע‬ ַ = “quiver, tremble, totter”; ‫ָח ְר ָבּה‬ pl. ‫ ֳח ָרבוֹת‬.

n.f. = “waste, desolation, ruin” >

Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫אלוּ‬ ֑ ֵ ‫וְ ִשׁ‬

‫בּא ֵבל )ש"ב כ יח( וְ ָדרשׁו כמו וְ ִשׁ ֵאלו‬ ָ ‫יש ֲאלו‬ ָ ‫פּוֹעל ָכּ ֵבד כמו ָשאל‬ ַ ‫בקּשׁו ֶל ֶחם‬ ְ ְ‫ֶשׁי‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra

‫ וְ ִשׁ ֵאלוּ‬is a Piel, like ‫ יְ ָשׁ ֲא ֛לוּ‬in II Sam. 20:18. ‫“( וְ ָד ְרשׁוּ‬and let them seek”) has the same meaning as ‫ וְ ִשׁ ֵאלוּ‬, “let them seek bread”. Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra clarifies that ‫ וְ ִשׁ ֵאלוּ‬is a Piel verb. It is in fact Piel perf. 3 pl. + vav consec., pausal; the non-pausal form is ‫ ִשׁ ֲאלוּ‬. Ibn Ezra points to the

92

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

only other occurrence in the Old Testament of the Piel of ‫“ = ָשׁ ַאל‬ask”, in II Sam. 20:18, where it is preceded by the Qal infinitive absolute ‫ ָשׁאוֹל‬. In ֹ ֧ ‫ ָשׁ‬may be translated as “they shall surely ask” in II Sam. 20:18 ‫אל יְ ָשׁ ֲא ֛לוּ‬ the sense of “inquire carefully, ask counsel”. In Psalm 109:10, however, the Piel of ‫ ָשׁ ַאל‬means “ask repeatedly, beg”. Note also that ‫ שׁאל‬is an ‘ayinguttural root and that the Piel imperf. ‫ יְ ָשׁ ֲא ֛לוּ‬shows compensatory lengthening of pataḥ to qamets under the shin to compensate for lack of strong dagesh in the middle root letter. However, in Psalm 109:10, the form ‫ וְ ִשׁ ֵאלוּ‬shows virtual doubling of the ’aleph, since the ḥireq under the shin has not been lengthened to tsere (as in ‫“ = ֵמ ֵאן‬he refused”). 8

Psalm 104:17

‫יתהּ׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫רוֹשׁים ֵבּ‬ ֥ ִ ‫ר־שׁם ִצ ֳפּ ִ ֣רים יְ ַק ֵנּ֑נוּ ֲ֝ח ִס ָ ֗ידה ְבּ‬ ֭ ָ ‫ֲא ֶשׁ‬ For there the birds nest; as for the stork, the fir-trees are her house. Comment of Rashi on ‫יְ ַק ֵנּ֑נוּ‬

.‫לשׁוֹן ַקן ִצפּוֹר‬ Translation of Rashi The verb is connected with the noun, a bird’s nest. Explanation of Rashi Rashi points out that the verb ‫( יְ ַק ֵנּ֑נוּ‬Piel imperf. 3 m.pl. pausal) is derived from the root ‫“ = ַקן‬nest”. Hence, ‫“( ִקנֵּ ן‬make a nest, nest”) is a denominative Piel.

Polel, Polal, Hithpolel It is rare to find examples in Biblical Hebrew of ‘ayin vav verbs in Piel, Pual or Hithpael, because these conjugations are formed by doubling the middle

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

93

root letter (or by lengthening the preceding vowel); since, however, the medial vav has no status as a consonant, it cannot be doubled. Consequently, ‘ayin vav verbs repeat the third root letter, resulting in the following forms: POLEL POLAL HITHPOLEL e.g. from the root ‫קוּם‬, we derive the forms:

‫קוֹמם‬ ֵ (Polel instead of Piel) ‫קוֹמם‬ ַ (Polal instead of Pual) ‫קוֹמם‬ ֵ ‫( ִה ְת‬Hithpolel instead of Hithpael) Typical Polel verbs are:

‫קוֹמם‬ ֵ

= “raise up”; “establish”;

‫מוֹתת‬ ֵ

= “slay, kill”;

‫רוֹמם‬ ֵ

= “raise”;

‫כּוֹנֵ ן‬

=

‫שׁוֹבב‬ ֵ = “bring back, restore”; ‫עוֹרר‬ ֵ = “arouse”. In late Biblical Hebrew, however, a few Piel formations from ‘ayin vav verbs can be found. See GK 72m: “The formation of the conjugations Piel, Pual and Hithpael is, strictly speaking, excluded by the nature of the verbs ‫ע"ו‬. It is only in the latest books that we begin to find a few secondary formations, probably borrowed from Aramaic, on the analogy of verbs ‫ע"ו‬ with consonantal vav—e.g. the Piel ‫ ִעוֵּ ד‬to surround, only in ‫ ִעוְּ ֻדנִ י‬Ps. 119:61; and with change of ‫ ו‬to ‫י‬, ‫ ִקיַּ ם‬Esther 9:31, ‫ ִקיְּ מוּ‬Esther 9:27 etc.— Exercise: In the following biblical verses, identify and parse verbs with a consonantal vav for their second radical (see GK 72gg). (See explanatory notes at end of section)

94

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

1

Examples in Qal

a)

Numbers 20:3

‫מר וְ ֥לוּ גָ ַו ְ֛ענוּ ִבּגְ ַו֥ע ַא ֵ ֖חינוּ ִל ְפ ֵנ֥י‬ ֹ ֔ ‫אמ ֣רוּ ֵלא‬ ְ ֹ ‫וַ ָיּ ֶ֥ רב ָה ָ ֖עם ִעם־מ ֶ ֹ֑שׁה וַ יּ‬ ‫הוֽה׃‬ ָ ְ‫י‬ The people quarreled with Moses and said, ‘If only we had perished in the perishing of our brothers before the Lord”. b)

I Samuel 16:23

‫ת־ה ִכּנּ֖ וֹר וְ נִ ֵ ֣גּ ן ְבּיָ ֑דוֹ‬ ַ ‫ל־שׁ ֔אוּל וְ ָל ַ ֥ קח ָדִּו֛ד ֶא‬ ָ ‫ים ֶא‬ ֙ ‫ֹלה‬ ִ ‫־א‬ ֱ ‫וּח‬ ַ ‫וְ ָה ָ֗יה ִ ֽבּ ְהי֤ וֹת ֽר‬ ‫וּח ָה ָר ָ ֽעה׃‬ ַ ‫וְ ָרַ ֤וח ְל ָשׁאוּל֙ וְ ֣טוֹב ֔לוֹ וְ ָ ֥ס ָרה ֵמ ָע ָל֖יו ֥ר‬ And whenever the spirit of G-d was on Saul, David took the harp and played with his hand, and there was relief for Saul and he would feel better, and the spirit of evil would depart from him. c)

Isaiah 29:22

‫א־ע ָ ֤תּה‬ ַ ֹ ‫ת־א ְב ָר ָ ֑הם ֽל‬ ַ ‫ל־בּ֣ית ַי ֲֽע ֔קֹב ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ָפּ ָ ֖דה ֶא‬ ֵ ‫ה־א ַ ֤מר יְ הוָ ֙ה ֶא‬ ָ ֹ‫ָל ֵ֗כן ֽכּ‬ ‫יֵבוֹשׁ ַי ֲֽע ֔קֹב וְ ֥ל ֹא ַע ָ ֖תּה ָפּ ָנ֥יו יֶ ֱחָוֽרוּ׃‬ ֙ Therefore, thus says the Lord, who redeemed Abraham, to the House of Jacob: Jacob will not be ashamed now, and his face will not pale. d)

Isaiah 42:11

‫שׁב ֵק ָ ֑דר יָ ֨ר ֹ ֙נּוּ ֣י ֹ ְשׁ ֵבי ֶ֔ס ַלע ֵמ ֥ר ֹאשׁ ָה ִ ֖רים‬ ֣ ֵ ‫יִ ְשׂ ֤אוּ ִמ ְד ָבּ ֙ר וְ ָע ָ ֔ריו ֲח ֵצ ִ ֖רים ֵתּ‬ ‫יִ ְצָוֽחוּ׃‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

95

The desert and its cities will raise (their voices in song); (so too will) the open cities where Kedar dwells; those who live on rocks will sing out; they will cry from mountain peaks. Explanatory notes to examples in Qal: a)

Numbers 20:3

‫גָּ וַ ְענוּ‬

Qal perf. 1 c pl ‫ = גָּ וַ ע‬expire, perish; > Qal inf. cstr. ‫גְּ וַ ע‬

‫ִבּגְ ַו֥ע ַא ֵ ֖חינוּ‬

= lit. “in the perishing of our brothers”. i.e. when our brothers perished. b)

I Samuel 16:23

‫וְ ָרוַ ח‬ c)

Qal perf. 3 m.sg. + vav conjunctive; ‫ = ָרוַ ח‬be wide.

Isaiah 29:22

‫ = ָחוַ ר‬be white. Qal imperf. ‫ > יֶ ֱחוַ ר‬pl. pausal: ‫יֶ ֱחָוֽרוּ‬ d)

Isaiah 42:11

‫ = ָצוַ ח‬cry aloud. Qal imperf. 3 pl. pausal > ‫יִ ְצָוֽחוּ‬ ‫ ָח ֵצר‬n.m. settlement, village. always in pl. ‫( ֲח ֵצ ִרים‬BDB p 347) 2

Examples in Piel

a) Genesis 49:33

‫ל־ה ִמּ ָ ֑טּה וַ יִּ גְ ַו֖ע וַ יֵּ ָ ֥א ֶסף‬ ַ ‫ת־בּ ָ֔ניו וַ יֶּ ֱא ֥סֹף ַרגְ ָל֖יו ֶא‬ ָ ‫וַ יְ ַכ֤ל יַ ֲעק ֹ֙ב ְל ַצ ֹ֣וּת ֶא‬ ‫ל־ע ָ ֽמּיו׃‬ ַ ‫ֶא‬ Jacob finished instructing his sons and he gathered his feet to the bed and he expired and was gathered to his people.

96 b)

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Isaiah 5:4

‫֛יתי ַל ֲע ֥שׂוֹת ֲענָ ִ ֖בים‬ ִ ‫וּע ִקֵוּ‬ ַ ‫יתי ֑בּוֹ ַמ ֧דּ‬ ִ ‫עוֹד ְל ַכ ְר ִ֔מי וְ ֥ל ֹא ָע ִ ֖שׂ‬ ֙ ‫ה־לּ ֲע ֥שׂוֹת‬ ַ ‫ַמ‬ :‫וַ יַּ ַעשׂ ְבּ ֻא ִ ֽשׁים‬ What more could I have done to my vineyard that I have not done to it? Why did I hope to produce fine grapes but it brought forth stinking ones? c)

Psalm 71:4

‫חוֹמץ׃‬ ֵ ְ‫ֹלהי ַ ֭פּ ְלּ ֵטנִ י ִמַיּ֣ד ָר ָ ֑שׁע ִמ ַ ֖כּף ְמ ַעֵוּ֣ל ו‬ ַ֗ ‫ֱ ֽא‬ My G-d, deliver me from the hand of the wicked one, from the palm of the unjust and ruthless. d)

Psalm 119:61

‫ֶח ְב ֵל֣י ְר ָשׁ ִ ֣עים ִעוְּ ֻ ֑דנִ י ֽתּ ָוֹר ְת ָ֗ך ֣ל ֹא ָשׁ ָ ֽכ ְח ִתּי׃‬ The bands of the wicked have surrounded me, I have not forgotten Your law. e) Psalm 146:9

‫עוֹדד וְ ֶ ֖ד ֶרְך ְר ָשׁ ִ ֣עים יְ ַעֵוּֽת׃‬ ֑ ֵ ְ‫הו֤ה ֘שׁ ֹ ֵ ֤מר ֶאת־גֵּ ִ ֗רים יָ ֣תוֹם וְ ַא ְל ָמ ָנ֣ה י‬ ָ ְ‫י‬ The Lord protects strangers. He relieves orphan and widow, but He makes crooked the way of the wicked. Explanatory notes to examples in Piel: a)

Genesis 49:33

‫ְל ַצוֹּת‬

Piel inf. cstr. + lamed; ‫צוה‬. “to charge”.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW b)

Isaiah 5:4

‫יתי‬ ִ ֵ‫ִקוּ‬ c)

97

Piel perf. 1 c.sg. ‫קוה‬. “I hoped”.

Psalm 71:4

‫ ְמ ַעוֵּ ל‬Piel part. m.sg. ‫עול‬. “acting wickedly”. d)

Psalm 119:61

‫ ִעוְּ ֻדנִ י‬Piel perf. 3 c.pl. + sf. 1 sg. ‫עוד‬. “They have surrounded me”. Note that the Polel of the same root ‫ עוּד‬occurs in Psalm 146:9 (see below), but with a different meaning (“restore, relieve”). e)

Psalm 146:9

‫יְ ַעוֵּ ת‬

Piel imperf. 3 m.sg. ‫ ָעוַ ת‬. “bend, make crooked”.

Exercise: In the following biblical verses, identify and parse Polel formations. (see explanatory notes at end of section). a) Exodus 15:17

‫הו֑ה ִמ ְקּ ָ ֕דשׁ‬ ָ ְ‫ְתּ ִב ֵ֗אמוֹ וְ ִת ָטּ ֙ ֵעמוֹ֙ ְבּ ַ ֣הר נַ ֲח ָ ֽל ְת ָ֔ך ָמ ֧כוֹן ְל ִשׁ ְב ְתָּך֛ ָפּ ַ ֖ע ְל ָתּ י‬ ‫ֲאד ָֹנ֖י כּוֹנְ נ֥ וּ יָ ֶ ֽדיָך׃‬ You shall bring them and You shall plant them in the mountain of Your inheritance, a fixed place for Your dwelling, which You have made O Lord, a sanctuary, Lord, which Your hands have established.

98 b)

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW II Samuel 1:9,10

‫ל־עוֹד נַ ְפ ִ ֖שׁי‬ ֥ ‫י־כ‬ ָ ‫מ ְת ֵ֔תנִ י ִ ֥כּי ֲא ָח ַז֖נִ י ַה ָשּׁ ָ ֑בץ ִ ֽכּ‬ ֹ ֣ ‫ד־נ֤א ָע ַ ֙לי וּ‬ ָ ‫אמר ֵא ֗ ַלי ֲע ָמ‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣יּ‬ ֹ ֤ ‫ִ ֽבּי׃ וָ ֶא ֱע‬ ‫מ ְת ֵ֔תהוּ ִ ֣כּי יָ ַ ֔ד ְע ִתּי ִ ֛כּי ֥ל ֹא ִי ְֽח ֶי֖ה ַא ֲח ֵ ֣רי נִ ְפ ֑לוֹ‬ ֹ ֣ ‫מד ָע ָל ֙יו וַ ֲא‬ And he said to me, ‘Stand over me and put me to death, for cramp has seized me, while my soul is still within me’. So I stood over him and put him to death, for I knew that he would not live after his falling. c)

Isaiah 44:26

‫תּוּשׁב‬ ָ֗ ‫ירוּשׁ ֜ ַל ִם‬ ָ ‫ֵמ ִק ֙ים ְדּ ַ ֣בר ַע ְב ֔דּוֹ וַ ֲע ַ ֥צת ַמ ְל ָא ָ ֖כיו יַ ְשׁ ִ ֑לים ָהא ֵֹ֨מר ִל‬ ָ ְ‫וּל ָע ֵ ֤רי י‬ ְ ‫קוֹמם׃‬ ֽ ֵ ‫יה ֲא‬ ָ ‫בוֹת‬ ֖ ֶ ‫הוּד ֙ה ִתּ ָבּ ֶ֔נינָ ה וְ ָח ְר‬ Who confirms the word of His servant and fulfils the counsel of His messengers; Who says of Jerusalem, ‘it shall be settled’ and of the citie of Judah, ‘they shall be rebuilt and I will raise up its ruins’. d)

Psalm 23:3

‫י־צ ֶדק ְל ַ ֣מ ַען ְשׁ ֽמוֹ׃‬ ֶ֗ ‫שׁוֹבב ַיֽנְ ֵ ֥חנִ י ְב ַמ ְעגְּ ֵל‬ ֑ ֵ ְ‫נַ ְפ ִ ֥שׁי י‬ He restores my soul; He leads me on paths of righteousness for the sake of His Name. e)

Psalm 30:2

:‫א־שׂ ַ ֖מּ ְח ָתּ אֹיְ ַב֣י ִ ֽלי‬ ִ ֹ ‫יתנִ י וְ ל‬ ֑ ָ ‫רוֹמ ְמָך֣ ְי֭הוָ ה ִ ֣כּי ִד ִלּ‬ ִ ‫ֲא‬ I will extol You O Lord for You have drawn me up and have not let my foes rejoice over me. f)

Psalm 146:9

‫עוֹדד וְ ֶ ֖ד ֶרְך ְר ָשׁ ִ ֣עים יְ ַעֵוּֽת׃‬ ֑ ֵ ְ‫הו֤ה ֘שׁ ֹ ֵ ֤מר ֶאת־גֵּ ִ ֗רים יָ ֣תוֹם וְ ַא ְל ָמ ָנ֣ה י‬ ָ ְ‫י‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

99

The Lord protects strangers, He relieves orphan and widow, but He makes crooked the way of the wicked. g)

Psalm 147:6

‫י־א ֶרץ׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫הו֑ה ַמ ְשׁ ִ ֖פּיל ְר ָשׁ ִ ֣עים ֲע ֵד‬ ָ ְ‫עוֹדד ֲענָ ִו֣ים י‬ ֣ ֵ ‫ְמ‬ The Lord restores the humble, He brings the wicked low to the ground. h)

Song of Songs 2:7

‫רוּשׁ ַ ֙ל ִ֙ם ִבּ ְצ ָב ֔אוֹת ֖אוֹ ְבּ ַאיְ ֣לוֹת ַה ָשּׂ ֶ ֑דה‬ ָ ְ‫ִה ְשׁ ַ֨בּ ְע ִתּי ֶא ְת ֶ֜כם ְבּנ֤ וֹת י‬ ְ ‫ם־תּ ִ ֧עירוּ ׀ ְ ֽו ִא‬ ָ ‫ִא‬ ‫ת־ה ַא ֲה ָ ֖בה ַ ֥עד ֶשׁ ֶתּ ְח ָ ֽפּץ׃‬ ָ ‫ם־תּ ֽע ְוֹר ֛רוּ ֶא‬ I adjure you, O daughters of Jerusalem, by the gazelles or by the hinds of the field, that you will not waken nor arouse love until it pleases. Explanatory notes to verses with Polel: a)

Exodus 15:17

‫כּוֹנְ נ֥ וּ‬

Polel perf. 3 pl. ‫(“ כּוּן‬they) have established”.

Note the Dagesh Forte Dirimens in ‫“ ; ִמ ְקּ ָ ֕דשׁ‬when a consonant with sheva is strengthened—to make the sheva more audible”. (GK 20h). Note that pataḥ). b)

‫ִמ ְקּ ָ ֕דשׁ‬

is not in construct state here (qamets under dalet, not

II Samuel 1:9,10 (The Amalekite telling David how he killed Saul)

‫מ ְת ֵ֔תנִ י‬ ֹ֣‫וּ‬

Polel imperat. m.sg. + sf. 1 sg. ‫מוּת‬. “put me to death”.

‫מ ְת ֵ֔תהוּ‬ ֹ ֣ ‫וַ ֲא‬

Polel imperf. 1 sg. + sf. 3 m.sg. + vav conjunctive. ‫מוּת‬. (although the meaning seems to be as if it were vav consec. “and I put him

100

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

to death”, i.e. vav + qamets, the verse). c)

Polel imperf. 1 sg. ‫“ ;קוּם‬I will raise up”.

Psalm 23:3

‫שׁוֹבב‬ ֑ ֵ ְ‫י‬ e)

earlier in

Isaiah 44:26

‫קוֹמם‬ ֽ ֵ ‫ֲא‬ d)

‫ וָ ֲאמ ְֹת ֵתהוּ‬corresponding to ‫וָ ֶא ֱעמֹד‬

Polel imperf. 3 m.sg. ‫“ ;שׁוּב‬he restores, refreshes”.

Psalm 30:2

֣‫רוֹמ ְמָך‬ ִ ‫ ֲא‬Polel imperf. 1 sg. + sf. 2 m.sg. ‫“ ;רוּם‬I will extol, exalt you”. ‫ָדּ ָלה‬ f)

“draw water” > Piel (only here): “You have drawn me up”. Psalm 146:9

‫עוֹדד‬ ֑ ֵ ְ‫“ ;י‬he will restore, relieve”.‫ עוּד‬Polel imperf. 3 m.sg. Contrast Piel of this root in Psalm 119:61 (see above). and see BDB p 728:

‫“ =עוּד‬return, go about, repeat, do again” ).

> Piel: = “surround”; Polel: = “restore, relieve”. g)

Psalm 147:6

‫עוֹדד‬ ֣ ֵ ‫ ְמ‬Polel participle m.sg. ‫עוּד‬. h)

Song of Songs 2:7

‫ ְתּ ֽע ְוֹר ֛רוּ‬Polel imperf. 2 m.pl. ‫“ ;עוּר‬you will rouse, incite”. ‫ ַאיָּ ָלה‬n.f. hind, doe > pl. ‫ > ַאיָּ לוֹת‬cstr. ‫ַאיְ לוֹת‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

101

HIPHIL Try to recognise Hiphil verbs Study the following biblical verses. PARSE and TRANSLATE all the HIPHIL verbs. The student may consult the verb tables in any reliable Biblical Hebrew grammar book. Explanatory notes are found at the end of the section. 1

Exodus 14:10

‫יהם וְ ִה ֵנּ֥ה ִמ ְצ ַ ֣ריִ ם ׀ נ ֵ ֹ֣ס ַע‬ ֶ֜ ֵ‫ת־עינ‬ ֵ ‫וּפ ְר ֖עֹה ִה ְק ִ ֑ריב וַ יִּ ְשׂאוּ֩ ְב ֵנֽי־יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ֨אל ֶא‬ ַ ֙ ‫יהם וַ ִיּ ְֽיר‬ ֶ֗ ‫ַא ֲח ֵר‬ ‫אד‬ ֹ ֔ ‫אוּ ְמ‬ And Pharoah drew near and the children of Israel lifted up their eyes and behold the Egyptians were marching after them and they were very afraid. 2

Leviticus 8:13

‫ת־בּ ֵנ֣י ַא ֲה ֗ר ֹן וַ יַּ ְל ִבּ ֵ ֤שׁם ֻכּ ֳתּ ֹנ ֙ת וַ יַּ ְח ֹ֤גּר א ָֹת ֙ם ַא ְב ֔ ֵנט‬ ְ ‫וַ יַּ ְק ֵ ֨רב מ ֶֹ֜שׁה ֶא‬ ‫וַ יַּ ֲח ֥ב ֹשׁ ָל ֶ ֖הם ִמגְ ָבּ ֑עוֹת‬ And Moses brought near Aaron’s sons and he clothed them (with) tunics and he girded them with girdles and he bound turbans on them. 3

Isaiah 6:7

֖‫אתָך‬ ְ ‫ל־שׂ ָפ ֶ ֑תיָך וְ ָ ֣סר ֲעו ֶֹ֔נָך וְ ַח ָטּ‬ ְ ‫אמר ִה ֵנּ֛ה נָ ַג֥ע ֶז֖ה ַע‬ ֶ ֹ ‫ל־פּי וַ ֕יּ‬ ִ ֔ ‫וַ יַּ ַגּ֣ע ַע‬ ‫ְתּ ֻכ ָ ֽפּר׃‬ And he caused (it) (the burning coal) to touch my mouth and he said, ‘behold this has touched your lips, and your iniquity will depart and your sin will be atoned for’.

102 4

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Genesis 24:18 (Rebekkah to Eliezer, Abraham’s servant)

‫תּ ֶרד ַכּ ָ ֛דּהּ ַעל־יָ ָ ֖דהּ וַ ַתּ ְשׁ ֵ ֽ קהוּ׃‬ ֹ ֧ ַ‫אמר ְשׁ ֵ ֣תה ֲאד ִֹנ֑י וַ ְתּ ַמ ֵ֗הר ו‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֖תּ‬ And she said, ‘drink my Lord’ and she hastened and let down her pitcher on her hand and she gave him to drink. 5

Exodus 1:20

‫אד׃‬ ֹ ֽ ‫ֹלהים ַל ְֽמיַ ְלּ ֑ד ֹת וַ ִיּ ֶ֧ רב ָה ָ ֛עם וַ ַיּ ַֽע ְצ ֖מוּ ְמ‬ ֖ ִ ‫֥יטב ֱא‬ ֶ ‫וַ ֵיּ‬ And G-d dealt well with the midwives and the people multiplied and grew very mighty. 6

Leviticus 26:9

‫יתי‬ ֖ ִ ‫ת־בּ ִר‬ ְ ‫יתי ֶא ְת ֶכ֑ם וַ ֲה ִקימ ִ ֹ֥תי ֶא‬ ֖ ִ ‫יתי ֶא ְת ֶ֔כם וְ ִה ְר ֵבּ‬ ֣ ִ ‫יכם וְ ִה ְפ ֵר‬ ֶ֔ ‫֣יתי ֲא ֵל‬ ִ ‫וּפ ִנ‬ ָ ‫ִא ְתּ ֶ ֽכם׃‬ And I will turn to you and I will make you fruitful and multiply you and establish My covenant with you. 7

Lamentations 2:5

‫יה ִשׁ ֵ ֖חת ִמ ְב ָצ ָ ֑ריו‬ ָ ‫נוֹת‬ ֶ֔ ‫ל־א ְר ְמ‬ ַ ‫ָה ָ֨יה ֲאד ָֹנ֤י ְכּאוֹיֵ ֙ב ִבּ ַלּ֣ע יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ֔אל ִבּ ַלּ ֙ע ָכּ‬ ֔ ָ ְ‫וַ יֶּ֙ ֶר ֙ב ְבּ ַבת־י‬ ‫הוּדה ַתּ ֲאנִ ָיּ֖ה וַ ֲאנִ יָּ ה‬ The Lord was like an enemy, He has swallowed up Israel, He has swallowed up all her palaces, He has destroyed his strongholds, and He has increased in the daughter of Judah, mourning and moaning.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 8

103

Deuteronomy 9:14

‫ת־שׁ ָ֔מם ִמ ַ ֖תּ ַחת ַה ָשּׁ ָ ֑מיִ ם וְ ֶ ֽא ֱע ֶשׂ ֙ה‬ ְ ‫ֶ ֤ה ֶרף ִמ ֶ֙מּנִּ ֙י וְ ַא ְשׁ ִמ ֵ ֔ידם וְ ֶא ְמ ֶ ֣חה ֶא‬ ָ ‫וֹת ָ֔ך ְל‬ ְ ‫ֽא‬ ‫גוֹי־ע ֥צוּם וָ ָ ֖רב ִמ ֶ ֽמּנּוּ׃‬ Let me alone that I may destroy them and blot out their name from under Heaven and I will make you a nation mightier and more numerous than it. 9

Hosea 2:14

‫־לי‬ ֖ ִ ‫שׁר ָא ְמ ָ ֗רה ֶא ְת ָנ֥ה ֵ֙ה ָמּ ֙ה ֔ ִלי ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ָנ ְֽתנוּ‬ ֣ ֶ ‫וּת ֵ ֣אנָ ָ֔תהּ ֲא‬ ְ ‫וַ ֲה ִשׁמּ ִֹ֗תי גַּ ְפנָ ֙הּ‬ ‫ְמ ַ ֽא ֲה ָ ֑בי וְ ַשׂ ְמ ִ ֣תּים ְל ַ֔י ַער וַ ֲא ָכ ָ ֖ל ַתם ַח ַיּ֥ת ַה ָשּׂ ֶ ֽדה׃‬ And I shall devastate her vines and her fig trees of which she said, ‘they are my hire, which my lovers have given me’, and I shall make them into a forest, and the beasts of the field will eat them. 10

Deuteronomy 2:31

‫ת־א ְר ֑צוֹ ָה ֵ ֣חל ָ ֔רשׁ ָל ֶ ֖ר ֶשׁת‬ ַ ‫ת־סי ֖חֹן וְ ֶא‬ ִ ‫תי ֵ ֣תּת ְל ָפ ֶ֔ניָך ֶא‬ ֙ ִ ‫ְר ֵ֗אה ַ ֽה ִח ֹּ֨ל‬ ‫ת־א ְר ֽצוֹ׃‬ ַ ‫ֶא‬ See, I have begun (to) give before you Sihon and his land; begin (to) take possession, in order to inherit his land. 11 Numbers 30:16 (concerning vows)

‫ת־עו ָֹנֽהּ׃‬ ֲ ‫ם־ה ֵ ֥פר יָ ֵ ֛פר א ָ ֹ֖תם ַא ֲח ֵ ֣רי ָשׁ ְמ ֑עוֹ וְ נָ ָ ֖שׂא ֶא‬ ָ ‫וְ ִא‬ And if he will surely annul them after he has heard (them), then he shall bear her iniquity.

104 12

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Deuteronomy 26:6

‫וַ יָּ ֵ ֧רעוּ א ָ ֹ֛תנוּ ַה ִמּ ְצ ִ ֖רים וַ יְ ַענּ֑ וּנוּ וַ יִּ ְתּנ֥ וּ ָע ֵל֖ינוּ ֲעב ָ ֹ֥דה ָק ָ ֽשׁה׃‬ And the Egyptians maltreated us and afflicted us, and put hard labour on us. 13

Deuteronomy 28:52 (vv 15-68: The Warnings)

‫ל־שׁ ָע ֶ ֗ריָך ַע֣ד ֶ ֤ר ֶדת חֹמ ֶֹ֙ת ֙יָך ַהגְּ ב ֹ֣הוֹת וְ ַה ְבּ ֻצ ֔רוֹת‬ ְ ‫וְ ֵה ַ֨צר ְל ָ֜ך ְבּ ָכ‬ And He will cause you distress in all your gates until your high and fortified walls come down. 14

Lamentations 3:2

‫א־אוֹר׃‬ ֽ ֹ ‫אוֹתי נָ ַ ֛הג וַ יּ ַֹלְ֖ך ֥ח ֹ ֶשְׁך וְ ל‬ ִ֥ Me, He has led and brought into darkness and not light. 15

Lamentations 3:5

‫וּת ָל ָ ֽאה׃‬ ְ ‫ָבּ ָנ֥ה ָע ַל֛י וַ יַּ ַ ֖קּף ֥ר ֹאשׁ‬ He has built against me and surrounded (me) with venom and hardship. 16

Lamentations 1:5

‫֛יה‬ ָ ‫עוֹל ֶל‬ ָ ‫֑יה‬ ָ ‫ֹב־פּ ָשׁ ֶע‬ ְ ‫הוֹג֖הּ ַ ֣על ר‬ ָ ‫הו֥ה‬ ָ ְ‫֣יה ָשׁ ֔לוּ ִ ֽכּי־י‬ ָ ‫אשׁ אֹיְ ֶב‬ ֙ ֹ ‫יה ְלר‬ ָ ‫ָהי֨ וּ ָצ ֶ ֤ר‬ ‫י־צר׃‬ ֽ ָ ֵ‫ָה ְל ֥כוּ ְשׁ ִ ֖בי ִל ְפנ‬ Her adversaries have become chief, her enemies are at ease, for the Lord has caused her sorrow for her many sins, her children have gone into captivity before the enemy.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 17

105

Hosea 2:13

‫מוֹע ָ ֽדהּ׃‬ ֲ ‫שׂוֹשׂהּ ַח ָגּ֖הּ ָח ְד ָ ֣שׁהּ וְ ַשׁ ַבּ ָ ֑תּהּ וְ ֖כֹל‬ ָ֔ ‫ל־מ‬ ְ ‫תּי ָכּ‬ ֙ ִ ‫וְ ִה ְשׁ ַבּ‬ I will put an end to all her joy, her feast days, her new moons and her Sabbaths, and all her appointed times. 18

Genesis 41:54

‫יוֹסף‬ ֑ ֵ ‫שׁ ַבע ְשׁ ֵנ֤י ָה ָר ָע ֙ב ָל ֔בוֹא ַכּ ֲא ֶ ֖שׁר ָא ַ ֣מר‬ ֣ ֶ ‫וַ ְתּ ִח ֜ ֶלּינָ ה‬ And the seven years of famine began to come, as Joseph had said. Explanatory notes for try to recognise Hiphil verbs 1

Exodus 14:10

‫ִה ְק ִריב‬

Hiphil perf. 3 m.sg. approach”.

‫קרב‬.

“He came near, made an

Note the apparent intransitive sense of Hiphil here (see Use of Hiphil, below). 2

Leviticus 8:13

‫וַ יַּ ְק ֵרב‬

Hiphil imperf. apoc. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. ‫קרב‬.

“And he caused to come near”. See WHG p 114 b: “It is to be noted very carefully that the Hiphil is the only part of the regular verb which has a shortened form of the Imperfect, thus: ‫( יַ ְמ ִליְך‬Imperf.) is shortened to ‫יַמ ֵלְך‬ ְ (Jussive); ‫ יַ גְ ִדּיל‬to ‫יַ גְ ֵדּל‬, and that the Waw Consecutive takes the shortened form of the Imperfect when there is one, so that, e.g. ‘and he made great’ is ‫( וַ יַּ גְ ֵדּל‬and not ‫)וַ יַּ גְ ִדּיל‬.”Hence, in our verse, Leviticus 8:13, it is written ‫ וַ יַּ ְק ֵרב‬and not ‫וַ יַּ ְק ִריב‬.

‫וַ יַּ ְל ִבּ ֵשׁם‬

Hiphil imperf. 3 m.sg. + sf. 3 m.pl. + vav consec.

106

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

“and he clothed them”. (lit. caused them to wear). Note that is the equivalent of ‫וַ יַּ ְל ֵבּשׁ א ָֹתם‬.

‫וַ יַּ ְל ִבּ ֵשׁם‬

‫ ֻכּתֹּנֶ ת‬n.f. = tunic > pl. ‫ֻכּ ֳתּנֹת‬ ‫ ַא ְבנֵ ט‬n.m. = girdle; ‫ ִמגְ ָבּעוֹת‬n.f.pl. = head-gear, turban 3

Isaiah 6:7

‫ וַ יַּ גַּ ע‬Hiphil imperf. apoc. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. ‫“ = נָ גַ ע‬he touched”. “and he caused to touch”. Longer form of Hiphil imperf. is ‫יע‬ ַ ִ‫יַ גּ‬. 4

Genesis 24:18

‫וַ תּ ֶֹרד‬

Hiphil imperf. apoc. 3 f.sg. + vav consec. ‫“ = יָ ַרד‬he came, went down, descended”. “And she caused to come down, brought down, let ִ /‫יוֹריד‬ ִ . down”. The longer form of the Hiphil imperf. is ‫תּוֹריד‬ 5

Exodus 1:20

‫יטב‬ ֶ ֵ‫וַ יּ‬

Hiphil imperf. apoc. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. ‫יטב‬. “And he did good to, dealt well with”. The longer form of the Hiphil imperf. is ‫יטיב‬ ִ ֵ‫י‬ which is a true pe-yod verb, as opposed to pe-yod verbs which were originally pe-vav; see JM 75. And see JM 76 a-d: “The verbs with primitive ‫ י‬as the first radical number only seven—. The primitive ‫ י‬is maintained in all the forms.” (they are: ‫יבשׁ‬ 6

‫)ימן ילל יקץ יטב ישׁר ינק‬

Leviticus 26:9

‫יתי‬ ִ ‫וְ ִה ְפ ֵר‬

Hiphil perf. 1 c.sg. + vav consec. fruitful”; > “and I will make (you) fruitful”.

‫ָפּ ָרה‬

= “bear fruit, be

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

‫יתי‬ ִ ‫וְ ִה ְר ֵבּ‬

Hiphil perf. 1 c.sg. + vav consec. much, many, great”; “and I will multiply, increase.”

‫ָר ָבה‬

107

= “be, become

‫וַ ֲה ִקימ ִֹתי‬

Hiphil perf. 1 c.sg. + vav consec. ‫“ = קוּם‬arise”; “and I will cause to arise, establish”. 7

‫וַ יֶּ ֶרב‬

Hiphil imperf. apoc. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. ‫ר ָבה‬.ָ “and he made much, increased”. Longer form of Hiphil imperf. ‫יַ ְר ֶבּה‬. This pattern of shortened Hiphil imperfect is typical of lamed-hey verbs; e.g. ‫( וַ יֶּ ֶפן‬Judges 15:4), ‫“ = ָפּנָ ה‬turn”;

‫( וַ יֶּ גֶ ל‬II Kings 17:6), ‫“ = גָּ ָלה‬go into exile” Note: ‫ = ָאנָ ה‬mourn > “mourning”.

‫ָבּ ַצר‬

‫ֲאנִ יָּ ה‬

cut off, make inaccessible > stronghold”. 8

n.f. = “mourning”;

‫ִמ ְב ָצר‬

‫ַתּ ֲאנִ יָּ ה‬

n.f. =

n.m. = “fortification, fortress,

Deuteronomy 9:14

‫ֶה ֶרף‬

Hiphil imperative m.sg. shortened form;

‫ָר ָפה‬

“let drop, let

alone”. Longer form: ‫( ַה ְר ֵפּה‬II Kings 4:27); “leave (me) alone”.

‫ וְ ַא ְשׁ ִמ ֵידם‬Hiphil imperf. 1 c.sg. ‫ ָשׁ ַמד‬.“that I may annihilate them”. 9

+ sf. 3 m.pl. + vav conjunctive;

Hosea 2:14

‫וַ ֲה ִשׁמּ ִֹתי‬

Hiphil perf. 1 c.sg. + vav consec. “and I shall devastate”.

‫“ = ָשׁ ֵמם‬be desolated”;

108 10

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Deuteronomy 2:31

‫ֹּלתי‬ ִ ‫ַה ִח‬

Hiphil perf. 1 c.sg. ‫ ָח ַלל‬. “I have begun”.

‫ָה ֵחל‬ Hiphil ‫ ָה ֵס ִבּי‬/‫) ָה ֵסב‬.

imperative

m.sg.

‫; ָח ַלל‬

“begin”.

(compare

‫ָס ַבב‬

‫ ָרשׁ‬is a pausal form of ‫( ֵרשׁ‬Qal imperat. m.sg. ‫“ )יָ ַרשׁ‬take possession of”. 11

Numbers 30:16 (concerning vows)

‫יָפר‬ ֵ ‫ָה ֵפר‬

Hiphil inf. abs. + Hiphil imperf. 3 m.sg. ‫פרר‬.

“he will surely break, make ineffectual, annul”. 12

Deuteronomy 26:6

‫וַ יָּ ֵרעוּ‬

Hiphil imperf. 3 m.pl. + vav consec.

‫רעע‬.

“and they did hurt,

evil”. 13

Deuteronomy 28:52

‫וְ ֵה ַצר‬

Hiphil perf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. ‫( ָצ ַרר‬I) = “bind, tie up, be restricted, narrow”. “and he will make narrow (for you), cause distress”. Note also: ‫ ַעד ֶר ֶדת‬lit. “until the coming down of”, ‫ ַעד‬+ inf. cstr. Qal, ‫ירד‬. 14

Lamentations 3:2

‫וַ יּ ַֹלְך‬

Hiphil imperf. apoc. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. ‫ ָה ַלְך‬. “and he has led, brought”. Longer form of Hiphil imperf. ‫יוֹליְך‬. ִ 15

‫וַ יַּ ַקּף‬

Lamentations 3:5

Hiphil imperf. apoc. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. ‫( נָ ַקף‬II) = “go around”. “and he has surrounded”. Longer form of Hiphil imperf. ‫יַ ִקּיף‬.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

109

Note also: ‫ רֹאשׁ‬n.m. / ‫ רוֹשׁ‬n.m. = venom (poisonous herb);

‫ = ָל ָאה‬be weary > ‫ ְתּ ָל ָאה‬n.f. = weariness, hardship 16

Lamentations 1:5

‫הוֹגָ הּ‬

Hiphil perf. 3 m.sg. + sf. 3 f.sg. ‫“ = יָ גָ ה‬suffer” (not in Qal); “he has caused her grief, sorrow”. Note also: ‫ ָשׁ ֵלו‬/‫“ = ָשׁ ָלה‬be quiet, at ease”.

17

Hosea 2:13

‫וְ ִה ְשׁ ַבּ ִתּי‬

Hiphil perf. 1 c.sg. + vav consec. ‫ ָשׁ ַבת‬. “and I will cause to cease”. Note that the final root letter, tav, has assimilated into the tav of the suffix; ‫ ִה ְשׁ ַבּ ִתּי > ִה ְשׁ ַבּ ְת ִתּי‬.

18 Genesis 41:54

‫וַ ְתּ ִח ֶלּינָ ה‬

Hiphil imperf. 3 f.pl. + vav consec.

‫חלל‬.

“and (they)

began”.

Uses of Hiphil The following summary of the uses of Hiphil is based on the analyses of modern grammarians (see Bibliography). I:

Causative of Qal

‫ָפּ ַקד‬

oversee >

‫ִה ְפ ִקיד‬

make overseer, entrust to

‫ָק ַדשׁ‬

be holy

‫ִה ְק ִדּישׁ‬

sanctify

>

e.g. II Kings 25:23:

֙‫ְך־בּ ֶבל‬ ָ ‫י־ה ְפ ִ ֤ קיד ֶ ֽמ ֶל‬ ִ ‫ל־שׂ ֵ ֨רי ַה ֲחיָ ֜ ִלים ֵ ֣ה ָמּה וְ ָה ֲאנָ ִ֗שׁים ִ ֽכּ‬ ָ ‫וַ יִּ ְשׁ ְמעוּ֩ ָכ‬ ‫ֶאת־גְּ ַד ְל ָ֔יהוּ‬

110

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

“All the officers of the army, they and their men, heard that the king of Babylon had appointed Gedaliah”. Verbs which are intransitive in Qal, simply become transitive in Hiphil.

‫יָ ָצא‬

he went out;

‫הוֹציא‬ ִ he took out.

If the Qal already has a transitive meaning, e.g. “he ate”, then the Hiphil takes two accusatives:

‫ָר ָאה‬

= “he saw”,

‫ָא ַכל‬

=

e.g. Exodus 16:32:

‫ת־ה ֗ ֶלּ ֶחם ֲא ֶ֨שׁר ֶה ֱא ַכ ְ֤ל ִתּי ֶא ְת ֶכ ֙ם ַבּ ִמּ ְד ָ֔בּר‬ ַ ‫ְל ַ ֣מ ַען יִ ְר ֣אוּ ֶא‬ “So that they may see the food that I fed you (caused you to eat) in the desert”. e.g. Exodus 33:18:

‫ת־כּב ֶ ֹֽדָך׃‬ ְ ‫ַה ְר ֵ ֥אנִ י ָנ֖א ֶא‬ “Please show me (cause me to see) Your glory”. II: Declarative/estimative

‫ִה ְצ ִדּיק‬

declare one to be ‫ ַצ ִדּיק‬, in the right; acquit

‫יע‬ ַ ‫ִה ְר ִשׁ‬

declare one to be ‫ ָר ָשׁע‬, in the wrong; condemn

‫ֵה ַקל‬

consider someone insignificant, despise.

(‫ = ָק ַלל‬be slight, swift, trifling) e.g. Deuteronomy 25:1:

‫ת־ה ָר ָ ֽשׁע׃‬ ָ ‫ת־ה ַצּ ִ ֔דּיק וְ ִה ְר ִ ֖שׁיעוּ ֶא‬ ַ ‫יקוּ ֶא‬ ֙ ‫וְ ִה ְצ ִ ֙דּ‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

111

“They will declare the innocent in the right and declare the guilty in the wrong” III: Inwardly transitive/intensive The Hiphil is very frequently used of actions or states which we express by an intransitive verb.

‫ֶה ֱחזִ יק‬

“he was strong”

‫ֶה ֱא ִמין‬

“he trusted”

“But we must not say that the Hiphil is intransitive or that it stands for the Qal: the transitive idea is genuinely present to Semitic feeling; e.g. ‫ ֶה ֱחזִ יק‬to develop strength, ‫ ֶה ֱח ִרישׁ‬to keep silence” (Davidson, 1932) e.g. Genesis 34:5:

‫וְ ֶה ֱח ִ ֥רשׁ יַ ֲע ֖קֹב ַעד־בּ ָ ֹֽאם׃‬

“Jacob remained silent until they came”. Gesenius (GK 53d, p 145) distinguishes the following categories: a):

Hiphil stems which express the obtaining or receiving of a concrete or abstract quality.

‫ ְל ַה ֲא ִריְך‬to be long (acquire length) ‫יח‬ ַ ‫ְל ַה ְצ ִל‬

to have success

‫ ְל ַה ֲא ִדים‬to become red (Isaiah 1:18) ַ ‫ִמ‬ e.g. I Kings 8:8: ‫ן־ה ֨קֹּ ֶד ֙שׁ‬

‫אשׁי ַה ַבּ ִ ֤דּים‬ ֵ֨ ‫ם וַ יֵּ ָראוּ֩ ָר‬ ֒ ‫כוּ ַה ַבּ ִדּי‬ ֮ ‫ֽוַיַּ ֲא ִר‬

“The poles projected (were long) so that the ends of the poles were visible from the sanctuary”. e.g. Genesis 39:2:

‫יח‬ ַ ‫ת־יוֹסף וַ יְ ִ ֖הי ִ ֣אישׁ ַמ ְצ ִ ֑ל‬ ֵ֔ ‫וַ יְ ִ ֤הי יְ הוָ ֙ה ֶא‬

“The Lord was with Joseph and he became a successful man”.

112

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

(The root ‫ צלח‬in the Hiphil is also found with a transitive meaning. e.g. Genesis 24:21). b): Stems which express in Hiphil the entering into a certain condition and being in that condition.

‫ְל ַה ְקשׁוֹת‬

to become hard, difficult

‫הוֹבישׁ‬ ִ ‫ְל‬

to become dry

e.g. Genesis 35:17

‫ם־ז֥ה‬ ֶ ַ‫ל־תּ ְיר ִ֔אי ִ ֽכּי־ג‬ ֣ ִ ‫אמר ָל֤הּ ַה ְמיַ ֶ ֙לּ ֶד ֙ת ַא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ יְ ִ ֥הי ְב ַה ְקשׁ ָ ֹ֖תהּ ְבּ ִל ְד ָ ֑תּהּ וַ ֨תּ‬ ‫ָלְ֖ך ֵ ֽבּן׃‬ “While she was labouring (‫ ;קשׁה ; ְב ַה ְקשׁ ָ ֹ֖תהּ‬Hiphil inf. cstr. + sf.) in her delivery, the midwife said to her, ‘Do not fear, for this one, too, is a son for you.’” e.g. Joel 1:10:

‫הוֹבישׁ ִתּ ֖ירוֹשׁ ֻא ְמ ַ ֥לל יִ ְצ ָ ֽהר׃‬ ֥ ִ ‫ִכּ֚י ֻשׁ ַ ֣דּד ָדּ ֔ ָגן‬ “For the grain has been robbed, the wine dried up, and the oil devastated”. The Hiphil forms of some verbs of motion are a variety of this class:

‫ְל ַה ְק ִריב‬

to come near; ‫ ְל ַה ְר ִחיק‬to withdraw far off

(also used as causatives) e.g. Exodus 14:10:

‫וּפ ְר ֖עֹה ִה ְק ִ ֑ריב‬ ַ “And Pharoah drew near”

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

113

e.g. Leviticus 1:13:

֙‫ת־הכֹּל‬ ַ ‫וְ ִה ְק ִ ֨ריב ַהכּ ֵ ֹ֤הן ֶא‬ “The priest shall offer everything” c):

Stems which express action in some particular direction.

‫יטיב‬ ִ ‫ְל ֵה‬

to act well, to do good

‫ ְל ַה ְשׁ ִחית‬to act corruptly e.g. Isaiah 1:4:

‫יתים‬ ִ ‫֣הוֹי גּ֣ וֹי ח ֵֹ֗טא ַ ֚עם ֶכּ ֶ֣בד ָע ֔ו ֹן ֶז֣ ַ רע ְמ ֵר ֔ ִעים ָבּ ִנ֖ים ַמ ְשׁ ִח‬ “Woe! They are a sinful nation, a people heavy with iniquity, seed of evildoers, corrupt children”. The root ‫ שׁחת‬is also found in Hiphil with a causative sense. e.g. Genesis ַ ‫י־מ ְשׁ ִח ִ ֣תים ֲא ַ֔נ ְחנוּ ֶא‬ ַ ‫“ ִ ֽכּ‬For we are destroying this 19:13: ‫ת־ה ָמּ ֖קוֹם ַה ֶזּ֑ה‬ place”. d): Denominatives (See GK 53g: he regards these Hiphils as causative since they “express the bringing out, the producing of a thing”).

‫ִה ְשׁ ִרישׁ‬

grow roots (Job 5:3); ‫ימין‬ ִ ‫ ֵה‬go to the right;

‫ִה ְשׂ ְמ ִאיל‬

go to the left

e.g. Genesis 13:9:

‫ימנָ ה‬ ִ֔ ‫ם־ה ְשּׂ ֣מ ֹאל וְ ֵא‬ ַ ‫ל־ה ָ֙א ֶר ֙ץ ְל ָפ ֶ֔ניָך ִה ָ ֥פּ ֶרד ָנ֖א ֵמ ָע ָל֑י ִא‬ ָ ‫ֲה ֤ל ֹא ָכ‬ ‫ם־היָּ ִ ֖מין וְ ַא ְשׂ ְמ ִ ֽא ָילה׃‬ ַ ‫וְ ִא‬

114

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

“Is not the whole land before you? Please separate from me; if to the left, then I will go to the right and if to the right, I will go to the left”. (‫ ְשׂמֹאל‬n.m. = the left; ‫יָמין‬ ִ n.f. = right hand) e.g. Jeremiah 4:31:

‫ירה‬ ֔ ָ ‫חוֹלה ָשׁ ַ֗מ ְע ִתּי ָצ ָר ֙ה ְכּ ַמ ְב ִכּ‬ ָ ֜ ‫ִכּי֩ ֨קוֹל ְכּ‬ “For I have heard an outcry like that of a woman in labour, in pain like a woman giving birth for the first time”. (‫ ַמ ְב ִכּ ָירה‬Hiphil participle f.sg. ‫בכר‬. ‫ ְבּכוֹר‬n.m. first-born). Exercise Study the following extract from the Book of Numbers (17:6-15) and answer the following questions: 1

Parse and translate all the Niphal verbs.

2

Parse and translate all the Hiphil verbs.

‫מר‬ ֹ ֑ ‫ל־א ֲה ֖ר ֹן ֵלא‬ ַ ‫ל־ע ַ ֤דת ְבּ ֵנֽי־יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵאל֙ ִ ֽמ ָמּ ֳח ָ ֔רת ַעל־מ ֶ ֹ֥שׁה וְ ַ ֽע‬ ֲ ‫ וַ יִּ ֹּ֜לנוּ ָכּ‬6 ֥ ַ ‫ַא ֶ ֥תּם ֲה ִמ ֶ ֖תּם ֶא‬ ‫ וַ יְ ִ֗הי ְבּ ִה ָקּ ֵ ֤הל ָ ֽה ֵע ָד ֙ה ַעל־מ ֶ ֹ֣שׁה‬7 ‫הוֽה׃‬ ָ ְ‫ת־עם י‬ ֵ ֔ ‫א ֶהל‬ ֹ ֣ ‫ל־א ֲה ֔ר ֹן וַ יִּ ְפ ֙נוּ ֶאל־‬ ַ ‫וְ ַ ֽע‬ ‫הוֽה׃‬ ָ ְ‫מוֹעד וְ ִה ֵנּ֥ה ִכ ָ ֖סּהוּ ֶה ָע ָנ֑ ן וַ יֵּ ָ ֖רא ְכּ ֥בוֹד י‬ ‫מוֹעד׃ פ‬ ֽ ֵ ‫א ֶהל‬ ֹ ֥ ‫ל־פּ ֵנ֖י‬ ְ ‫ וַ יָּ ֤ב ֹא מ ֶֹשׁ ֙ה וְ ַא ֲה ֔ר ֹן ֶא‬8 ‫תּוְֹך ָה ֵע ָ ֣דה ַה ֔זּ ֹאת‬ ֙ ‫ ֵה ֗ר ֹמּוּ ִמ‬10 ‫מר׃‬ ֹ ֽ ‫הו֖ה ֶאל־מ ֶ ֹ֥שׁה ֵלּא‬ ָ ְ‫ וַ יְ ַד ֵ ֥בּר י‬9 ֶ ֹ ‫ וַ ֨יּ‬11 ‫יהם׃‬ ֽ ֶ ֵ‫ל־פּנ‬ ְ ‫וַ ֲא ַכ ֶ ֥לּה א ָ ֹ֖תם ְכּ ָ ֑רגַ ע ַוֽ יִּ ְפּ ֖לוּ ַע‬ ‫ל־א ֲה ֗ר ֹן ַ ֣קח‬ ַ ‫אמר מ ֶֹ֜שׁה ֶ ֽא‬ ‫הוֹלְ֧ך‬ ֵ ְ‫יה ֵ֜אשׁ ֵמ ַ ֤על ַה ִמּזְ ֵ֙בּ ַח׀ וְ ִ ֣שׂים ְק ֔טֹ ֶרת ו‬ ָ ‫ן־ע ֨ ֶל‬ ָ ‫ת־ה ַמּ ְח ָתּה וְ ֶת‬ ַ ֠ ‫ֶא‬ ‫הו֖ה ֵה ֵ ֥חל‬ ָ ְ‫יהם ִ ֽכּי־יָ ָ ֥צא ַה ֶ ֛קּ ֶצף ִמ ִלּ ְפ ֵנ֥י י‬ ֑ ֶ ‫ל־ה ֵע ָ ֖דה וְ ַכ ֵפּ֣ר ֲע ֵל‬ ָ ‫ְמ ֵה ָ ֛רה ֶא‬ ‫ל־תּוֹך ַה ָקּ ָ֔הל וְ ִה ֵנּ֛ה‬ ֣ ‫שׁר ׀ ִדּ ֶבּ֣ר מ ֶֹ֗שׁה וַ יָּ֙ ָר ֙ץ ֶא‬ ֣ ֶ ‫ וַ יִּ ַ ֨קּח ַא ֲה ֜ר ֹן ַכּ ֲא‬12 ‫ַה ָנּֽ גֶ ף׃‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

115

‫מד‬ ֹ ֥ ‫ וַ יַּ ֲע‬13 ‫ל־ה ָ ֽעם׃‬ ָ ‫ת־ה ְקּ ֔טֹ ֶרת וַ יְ ַכ ֵ ֖פּר ַע‬ ַ ‫תּן ֶ ֽא‬ ֙ ֵ ִ‫ֵה ֵ ֥חל ַה ֶנּ֖ גֶ ף ָבּ ָ ֑עם וַ יּ‬ ַ ‫ֵ ֽבּ‬ ‫ים ַבּ ַמּגֵּ ֔ ָפה‬ ֙ ‫ וַ יִּ ְהי֗ וּ ַה ֵמּ ִת‬14 ‫ין־ה ֵמּ ִ ֖תים ֵוּב֣ין ֽ ַה ַח ִיּ֑ים וַ ֵתּ ָע ַ ֖צר ַה ַמּגֵּ ָ ֽפה׃‬ ְ ‫ַא ְר ָבּ ָ ֥עה ָע ָ ֛שׂר ֶ ֖א ֶלף‬ ‫ל־דּ ַבר־ ֽקֹ ַרח׃‬ ְ ‫וּשׁ ַב֣ע ֵמ ֑אוֹת ִמ ְלּ ַ ֥בד ַה ֵמּ ִ ֖תים ַע‬ ֵ ‫א ֶהל‬ ֹ ֣ ‫ וַ ָיּ ָ֤שׁב ַא ֲה ֙ר ֹן ֶאל־מ ֶֹ֔שׁה ֶאל־ ֶ ֖פּ ַתח‬15 ‫מוֹע֑ד וְ ַה ַמּגֵּ ָ ֖פה נֶ ֱע ָ ֽצ ָרה׃ פ‬ Key to exercise Niphal verbs:

‫וַ יִּ ֹּ֜לנוּ‬

‫ ;לוּן‬imperf. 3 m.pl. + vav consec. “and they murmured”.

‫ ;קהל ְבּ ִה ָקּ ֵ ֤הל‬inf. cstr. + prep. ‫“ בּ‬in (its) being gathered”. ‫וַ יֵּ ָ ֖רא‬

‫ ;ראה‬apoc. imperf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec. “and (it) appeared”.

‫ֵה ֗ר ֹמּוּ‬

‫ ; ָרמֹם‬imperat. m.pl. “be lifted up”.

‫ ;עצר וַ ֵתּ ָע ַ ֖צר‬imperf. 3 f.sg. + vav consec. “and it was restrained”. ‫ ;עצר נֶ ֱע ָ ֽצ ָרה‬perf. 3 f.sg. pausal; “it was restrained”. Hiphil verbs:

‫ ;מוּת ֲה ִמ ֶ ֖תּם‬perf. 2 m.pl. “you have killed”. ‫הוֹלְ֧ך‬ ֵ ְ‫ו‬

‫ ;הלְך‬imperat. m.sg. “take” (lit. “cause to go”).

‫ֵה ֵ ֥חל‬

‫ ;חלל‬perf. 3 m.sg. “it has begun”.

Views of medieval scholars on use of Hiphil This section presents the views of medieval scholars on the uses of the Hiphil conjugation. Their comments are presented in the original rabbinic Hebrew, together with translation and explanation. A glossary of some of the Hebrew grammatical terms used by these scholars is found at the end of the section, as well as brief biographical sketches of these scholars. Students

116

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

should study the biblical verses and compare the views of the medieval scholars with the views in modern grammar books. 1

Genesis 12:11

‫ה־נ֣א‬ ָ ֵ‫ל־שׂ ַ ֣רי ִא ְשׁ ֔תּוֹ ִהנּ‬ ָ ‫אמ ֙ר ֶא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ יְ ִ֕הי ַכּ ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ִה ְק ִ ֖ריב ָל ֣בוֹא ִמ ְצ ָ ֑ריְ ָמה וַ ֙יּ‬ ‫ת־מ ְר ֶ ֖אה ָ ֽא ְתּ׃‬ ַ ‫יְפ‬ ַ ‫יָ ַ ֔ד ְע ִתּי ִ ֛כּי ִא ָ ֥שּׁה‬ “And it was that when he came near to entering Egypt, he said to Sarai, his wife, ‘Behold now, I know that you are a beautiful woman’”. Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫ִה ְק ִ ֖ריב‬

‫עוֹמ ִדים כי ימצאו פעלים ֶשׁיֵּ ְצאוּ‬ ְ ‫ַמ ֲחנֵ הוּ או הוא ֵמ ַה ְפּ ָע ִלים ָה‬ ‫וְ יַ ַע ְמדוּ‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra He brought near. i.e. his camp, or (translating as ‘he came near’) it is one of the intransitive verbs, for some verbs are both transitive and intransitive. Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra suggests that the Hiphil perf. 3 m.sg. form ‫ ִה ְק ִ ֖ריב‬could have either a transitive or an intransitive sense in this verse. If it has a transitive sense, then the reader must ‘supply’ the direct object, and we understand the verse as if it said, ‫“ ִה ְק ִריב ַמ ֲחנֵ הוּ‬he brought near his camp”, even though the word ‫ ַמ ֲחנֵ הוּ‬is not actually written in the biblical text. Alternatively, says Ibn Ezra, ‫ ִה ְק ִ ֖ריב‬in this verse could have an intransitive sense and mean “he drew near”. Note Ibn Ezra’s terms for “transitive verb” (‫יוֹצא‬ ֵ ‫פּוֹעל‬ ַ ) and “intransitive verb” (‫עוֹמד‬ ֵ ‫פּוֹעל‬ ַ ). (compare GK 53d, p 145, on “inwardly transitive” or “intensive” Hiphils).

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 2

117

Genesis 12:8

‫ית־אל ִמיָּ ֙ם וְ ָה ַע֣י‬ ֤ ֵ ‫ית־אל וַ ֵיּ ֣ט ָא ֳה ֹ֑לה ֵ ֽבּ‬ ֖ ֵ ‫וַ יַּ ְע ֵ֨תּק ִמ ָ֜שּׁם ָה ָ֗ה ָרה ִמ ֶ ֛קּ ֶדם ְל ֵ ֽב‬ ֤ ָ ‫ִמ ֶ ֔קּ ֶדם וַ ִיּ ֶֽב‬ ‫הוֽה׃‬ ָ ְ‫יהוה וַ יִּ ְק ָ ֖רא ְבּ ֵ ֥שׁם י‬ ָ֔ ‫ן־שׁם ִמזְ ֵ֙בּ ַח ֽ ַל‬ “He moved from there to the mountain east of Bethel and pitched his tent; Bethel was to the west and the Ai to the east. He built there an altar to the Lord and He called in the name of the Lord”. Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫וַ יַּ ְע ֵ֨תּק‬

‫ק־צוּר‬ ֗ ‫פּוֹעל י ֵֹצא כי )איוב יח ד( וְ יֶ ְע ַתּ‬ ַ ‫נּוֹסף והוא‬ ָ ‫ֵמ ַה ִבּנְ יָ ן ַה ָכּ ֵבד ַה‬ :‫עוֹמד וְ ַה ָפּעוּל ָא ֳהלוֹ‬ ֵ ‫ִמ ְמּק ֹֽמוֹ‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra The word ‫( וַ יַּ ְע ֵ֨תּק‬Hiphil apoc. imperf. 3 m.sg. + vav consec.) (‫= ָע ֵתק‬ move, proceed, advance) is Hiphil and transitive because the Qal imperf. form ‫ וְ יֶ ְע ַתּק‬in Job 18:4 is intransitive (“shall the rock be removed out of its place”) and the direct object of ‫ וַ יַּ ְע ֵ֨תּק‬is “his tent”, even though this word is not actually written in the biblical verse. Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra explains that the Hiphil form ‫ וַ יַּ ְע ֵ֨תּק‬is transitive and that the implied direct object is “his tent”. Hence, the verse should be translated: “He removed his tent from there to the mountain east of Bethel—.” However, the word “his tent” (‫ ) ָא ֳהלוֹ‬is not actually written in the biblical text. Ibn Ezra bases his opinion on the occurrence of the root ‫ עתק‬in the Qal in Job 18:4, where it has an intransitive meaning. Note Ibn Ezra’s term for the Hiphil: ‫( ַה ִבּנְ יָ ן ַה ָכּ ֵבד ַהנּוֹ ָסף‬lit. “the additional heavy/intensive conjugation”). His term for the Piel is “the heavy conjugation”, ‫ַה ִבּנְ יָ ן‬ ‫ ַה ָכּ ֵבד‬. Note also Ibn Ezra’s terminology for “direct object” – ‫ ַה ָפּעוּל‬.

118 3

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Genesis 37:23:

‫ת־כּ ָתּנְ ֔תּוֹ‬ ֻ ‫ת־יוֹס ֙ף ֶא‬ ֵ ‫ל־א ָ ֑חיו וַ יַּ ְפ ִ ֤שׁיטוּ ֶא‬ ֶ ‫יוֹסף ֶא‬ ֖ ֵ ‫ר־בּא‬ ֥ ָ ‫ֽוַיְ ִ֕הי ֽ ַכּ ֲא ֶשׁ‬ ‫תנֶ ת ַה ַפּ ִ ֖סּים ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ָע ָ ֽליו׃‬ ֹ ֥ ‫ת־כּ‬ ְ ‫ֶא‬ “And it was when Joseph came to his brothers that they stripped Joseph of his tunic, the striped tunic that was on him”. Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫שׁיטוּ‬ ֤ ִ ‫וַ יַּ ְפ‬

.‫אוֹתהּ ְבּ ַע ְצמוֹ‬ ָ ‫עוּלים ֶשׁ ָא ְמרוּ לוֹ ֶשׁיַּ ְפ ִשׁיטוּ‬ ִ ‫יוֹצא ִל ְשׁנֵ י ְפּ‬ ֵ ‫פּוֹעל‬ ַ Translation of Ibn Ezra “And they stripped”. A transitive verb which takes two direct objects, for they told him to take it off by himself. Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra explains that the Hiphil verb ‫שׁיטוּ‬ ֤ ִ ‫( וַ יַּ ְפ‬imperf. 3 m.pl. + vav consec. ‫ )פשׁט‬takes two direct objects in this verse, i.e. “Joseph” and “his tunic” (both marked by -‫) ֶאת‬. This is due to the fact that the verb ‫ ָפּ ַשׁט‬in the Qal is already transitive; see: Leviticus 6:4

‫ת־בּגָ ָ ֔דיו וְ ָל ַ ֖בשׁ ְבּגָ ִ ֣דים ֲא ֵח ִ ֑רים‬ ְ ‫וּפ ַשׁ ֙ט ֶא‬ ָ : “He shall take off his clothes and put on other clothes”. 4

Genesis 42:6

‫ל־ע֣ם ָה ָ ֑א ֶרץ‬ ַ ‫ל־ה ָ֔א ֶרץ ֥הוּא ַה ַמּ ְשׁ ִ ֖בּיר ְל ָכ‬ ָ ‫יוֹסף ֤הוּא ַה ַשּׁ ִ ֣לּיט ַע‬ ֵ֗ ְ‫ו‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

119

“Joseph was the ruler over the land; he was the grain-seller for all the people of the land”. Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫ַה ַמּ ְשׁ ִ ֖בּיר‬

.‫עוּלים‬ ִ ‫יוֹצא ִל ְשׁנֵ י ְפּ‬ ֵ ‫פּוֹעל‬ ַ ‫מוֹכר והוא‬ ֵ ‫ִמגִּ זְ ַרת ֶשׁ ֶבר וְ ַטעמוֹ‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra The word ‫( ַה ַמּ ְשׁ ִ ֖בּיר‬Hiphil participle, m.sg. + definite article) is from the root ‫ שׁבר‬and means “sell”. It is a transitive verb, taking two direct objects (accusatives). Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra connects ‫ ַה ַמּ ְשׁ ִ ֖בּיר‬with the noun ‫“ = ֶשׁ ֶבר‬corn, grain” (see Gen 42:1, 43:2 etc) and the denominative verb ‫ ָשׁ ַבר‬which, in the Qal, means “buy grain” (BDB p 991). ‫ ָשׁ ַבר‬in the Qal is transitive; see Gen 43:2: ‫א ֶכל׃‬ ֹ ֽ ‫רוּ־לנוּ ְמ ַעט־‬ ֥ ָ ‫“ = ִשׁ ְב‬buy us a little food”, and accordingly, Ibn Ezra concludes that in the Hiphil, this verb takes two accusatives. This is seen ֹ ֣ “you shall sell me food clearly in Deuteronomy 2:28: ‫א ֶכל ַבּ ֶכּ ֶ֤סף ַתּ ְשׁ ִבּ ֵ ֙רנִ ֙י‬ for money”, where the suffix on the Hiphil imperfect (‫ ) ַתּ ְשׁ ִבּ ֵ ֙רנִ י‬constitutes one direct object, and the noun ‫א ֶכל‬ ֹ ֣ (“food”) is the second direct object. In Gen 42:6, the reader must “assume” a second direct object to be inherent in the Hiphil participle, ‫ ַה ַמּ ְשׁ ִ ֖בּיר‬. i.e. “Joseph was the one selling (‫ ) ַה ַמּ ְשׁ ִ ֖בּיר‬grain (‫ ) ֶשׁ ֶבר‬to all the people of the land”. However, the noun “grain” is not actually written in the biblical text. 5

Exodus 16:7

‫הו֑ה‬ ָ ְ‫ת־תּ ֻלנּ ֵֹת ֶיכ֖ם ַעל־י‬ ְ ‫הוה ְבּ ָשׁ ְמ ֥עוֹ ֶא‬ ָ֔ ְ‫ת־כּ ֣בוֹד י‬ ְ ‫ית ֙ם ֶא‬ ֶ ‫וּ ֗בֹ ֶקר ְוּר ִא‬ ‫וְ ַנ ְ֣חנוּ ָ֔מה ִ ֥כּי ַתלּוֹנוּ ] ַת ִ ֖לּינוּ[ ָע ֵ ֽלינוּ׃‬

120

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

“And in the morning you shall see the glory of the Lord, as He hears your complaints against the Lord. Who are we that you cause others to complain about us?” Comment of Rashi on [‫] ַת ִ ֖לּינוּ‬

‫ַתלּוֹנוּ‬

.‫וע ֶרב ַרב‬ ֵ ‫ את בניכם ונשיכם ובנותיכם‬,‫ֶשׁ ַתּ ְר ִעימוּ ָע ֵלינוּ את הכל‬ ‫ ִמ ְפּנֵ י ַדּגְ שׁוּתוֹ‬,‫ועל ָכּ ְר ִחי אני זָ קוּק ְל ָפ ֵרשׁ ַת ִלּינוּ בלשון ַתּ ְפ ִעילוּ‬ ַ ְ .‫וּק ִריָ יתוֹ‬ Translation of Rashi That you make everyone murmur against us, your sons and your wives and your daughters and the mixed multitude. I am forced to explain ‫ ַת ִלּינוּ‬in the sense of “you make people do something” (i.e. Hiphil) because of the lamed having a dagesh and because of the Keri (with yod, whereas the Ketiv has vav – ‫תלונו‬, which could be read as ‫ ִתּלּוֹנוּ‬, as a Niphal imperfect). Explanation of Rashi One might have translated the verse as “and what are we that you should complain against us”, but that meaning would presuppose the Ketiv, ‫תלונו‬, which could be read as a Niphal imperf. ‫“ ִתּלּוֹנוּ‬you complain”. However, Rashi feels compelled to follow the Keri, which can only be read as a Hiphil ‫ ַתּ ִלּינוּ‬, which must then have a causative sense, and this makes it necessary to supply the direct object, which Rashi does – “your sons and your wives and your daughters and the mixed multitude”. For the root ‫( לוּן‬II), see BDB p 534. ‫( לוּן‬I) means “lodge, pass the night”, but ‫( לוּן‬II) means “murmur” and occurs only in Niphal and Hiphil in: Exodus 15, 16, 17; Numbers 14, 16, 17 and Joshua 9:18.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 6

121

Numbers 17:20

‫נּוֹת‬ ֙ ‫ת־תּ ֻל‬ ְ ‫ר־בּוֹ ַמ ֵ ֣טּהוּ יִ ְפ ָ ֑רח וַ ֲה ִשׁכּ ִ ֹ֣תי ֵ ֽמ ָע ֗ ַלי ֶא‬ ֖ ‫וְ ָה ָ֗יה ָה ִ ֛אישׁ ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ֶא ְב ַח‬ ‫יכם׃‬ ֽ ֶ ‫ְבּ ֵנ֣י יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ֔אל ֲא ֶ ֛שׁר ֵ ֥הם ַמ ִלּ ִינ֖ם ֲע ֵל‬ “The man whom I will choose – his staff shall blossom. I will rid Myself of the complaints of the children of Israel, which they complain against you”. Ibn Ezra’s comments on ‫( וַ ֲה ִשׁכּ ִ ֹ֣תי‬Hiphil perf. 1 c.sg. ‫)שׁכך‬

:‫ ְכּמוֹ )יחזקאל כב טו( וַ ֲה ִתמּ ִֹתי ֻט ְמ ָא ֵתְך ִמ ֵמְּך‬,‫ִמ ָפּ ֳע ֵלי ַה ֶכּ ֶפל‬ ַ :‫ִמגִּ זְ ַרת )אסתר ז י( וַ ֲח ַמת ַה ֶמּ ֶלְך ָשׁ ָכ ָכה‬ ‫ כדרך בני‬,‫וט ַעם וַ ֲה ִשׁכּ ִ ֹ֣תי‬ .‫אדם למצוא מנוחה‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra This is a geminate verb (double ‘ayin), like ‫ תמם( וַ ֲה ִתמּ ִֹתי‬Hiphil) in Ezekiel 22:15: “and I will consume your filth out of you”, from the same root as ‫ ָשׁ ָכ ָכה‬in Esther 7:10: “and the anger of the king abated”. The meaning of ‫“ וַ ֲה ִשׁכּ ִ ֹ֣תי‬and I will cause to abate, decrease; allay” is anthropomorphic, “to find rest”. Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra points out that the root of ‫ וַ ֲה ִשׁכּ ִ ֹ֣תי‬is geminate, ‫שׁכך‬, like the root of ‫ וַ ֲה ִתמּ ִֹתי‬, ‫תמם‬. He also explains the meaning by referring to Esther 7:10, where the Qal root, ‫שׁכך‬, means “abate, decrease”. Accordingly, the Hiphil perf. + vav consec. ‫ וַ ֲה ִשׁכּ ִ ֹ֣תי‬has a causative meaning, “I will cause to abate”. Hence, G-d is stating that He will “rid Himself” of the complaints of the Israelites, which Ibn Ezra suggests is an anthropomorphic statement, for G-d does not need to “rid Himself” in a literal sense.

122 7

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Deuteronomy 4:31

‫יתָך וְ ֤ל ֹא יִ ְשׁ ַכּ ֙ח‬ ֑ ֶ ‫ֹלהיָך ֥ל ֹא יַ ְר ְפָּך֖ וְ ֣ל ֹא יַ ְשׁ ִח‬ ֶ֔ ‫הו֣ה ֱא‬ ָ ְ‫חוּם י‬ ֙ ‫ִ ֣כּי ֵ ֤אל ַר‬ ְ ‫ֶא‬ ‫ת־בּ ִ ֣רית ֲאב ֶֹ֔תיָך ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר נִ ְשׁ ַ ֖בּע ָל ֶ ֽהם׃‬ “For the Lord your G-d is a merciful G-d; He will not forsake you, nor ruin you, nor forget the covenant of your forefathers that He swore to them”. Comment of Rashi on

֖‫֥ל ֹא יַ ְר ְפָּך‬

‫יִתּן ְלָך‬ ֵ ‫ לא‬,‫יַפ ִעיל הוא‬ ְ ‫ ולשון ֥ל ֹא יַ ְר ְפָּך֖ לֹא‬,‫ִמ ְלּ ַה ֲחזִ יק ְבָּך ְבּיָ ָדיו‬ .‫רפיון‬ Translation of Rashi

֖‫( ֥ל ֹא יַ ְר ְפָּך‬means) He will not let loose of you from keeping hold of you in His hands. ֖‫ יַ ְר ְפָּך‬is a Hiphil (i.e. with a causative meaning); He will not give you any looseness. Explanation of Rashi Rashi explains that ֖‫ יַ ְר ְפָּך‬is a Hiphil verb with a causative meaning. ‫ָר ָפה‬ (Qal) = “sink, relax”; in the Hiphil, the meaning is “let drop, abandon, forsake”. ֖‫ יַ ְר ְפָּך‬is Hiphil imperf. 3 m.sg. + sf. 2 m.sg. equivalent to: ‫יַ ְר ֶפּה‬

‫א ְֹתָך‬.

Note that there is another Hiphil verb in this verse: ‫יתָך‬ ֑ ֶ ‫( וְ ֣ל ֹא יַ ְשׁ ִח‬root ‫ ;שׁחת‬Hiphil imperf. 3 m.sg. + sf. 2 m.sg.). It is possible that ‫וְ ֣ל ֹא‬ ‫יתָך‬ ֑ ֶ ‫ יַ ְשׁ ִח‬is another example of a causative Hiphil, although the root ‫שׁחת‬ does not occur in the Qal. BDB suggests a theoretical meaning of “go to ruin” for ‫ ָשׁ ַחת‬. Hence, ‫יתָך‬ ֑ ֶ ‫“ = וְ ֣ל ֹא יַ ְשׁ ִח‬and He will not cause you to go to ruin, destroy you”.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

123

But see Isaiah 1:4 below for the inwardly transitive meaning of ‫ ָשׁ ַחת‬in the Hiphil (“act corruptly”). See also Deut. 4:25. Note also that Lambdin (157) suggests a permissive use of Hiphil. “This is closely related to the causative meaning and can be decided only from context.” e.g. Genesis 48:11: ‫ֹלהים ַגּ֥ם ֶאת־זַ ְר ֶ ֽעָך׃‬ ֖ ִ ‫“ וְ ִה ֵ֨נּה ֶה ְר ָ ֥אה א ִ ֹ֛תי ֱא‬and behold G-d has allowed me to see your children also” (Jacob to Joseph). It is possible that a permissive meaning could be perceived in the Hiphil verbs in Deut. 4:31. 8

Deuteronomy 15:6

‫ר־לְ֑ך וְ ֽ ַה ֲע ַב ְט ָ֞תּ גּוֹיִ ֣ם ַר ִ֗בּים וְ ַא ָתּ ֙ה‬ ָ ‫ֹלה ֙יָך ֵ ֽבּ ַר ְכ ָ֔ך ַכּ ֲא ֶ ֖שׁר ִדּ ֶבּ‬ ֶ֙ ‫הו֤ה ֱא‬ ָ ְ‫ִ ֽכּי־י‬ ‫יִמ ֽשׁ ֹלוּ׃‬ ְ ‫וּבָך֖ ֥ל ֹא‬ ְ ‫וּמ ַשׁ ְל ָ֙תּ ְבּגוֹיִ ֣ם ַר ִ֔בּים‬ ֽ ָ ‫֣ל ֹא ַת ֲע ֔בֹט‬ “For the Lord your G-d blessed you as He had spoken to you; you shall lend to many nations, but you will not borrow, and you shall rule over many nations, but they will not rule over you”. Comment of Rashi on ‫וְ ֽ ַה ֲע ַב ְט ָ֞תּ‬

‫ ְכּגוֹן‬,‫נּוֹפל על ַה ַמּ ְלוֶ ה נופל ִבּ ְלשׁוֹן ַמ ְפ ִעיל‬ ֵ ‫כל לשון ַה ְלוָ ָאה ְכּ ֶשׁ‬ ֵ ‫ וְ ַה ֲע ַב ְט ָתּ ואם היה אומר וְ ָע ַב ְט ָתּ היה‬,‫ית‬ ָ ִ‫וְ ִה ְלו‬ ‫נוֹפל על ַהֹּלוֶ ה כמו‬ ‫ית‬ ָ ִ‫וְ ָלו‬ Translation of Rashi In the case of every term that denotes transacting a loan, when it refers to the lender, the Hiphil form is used (i.e. cause someone to give a pledge, i.e. lend), e.g. ‫ית‬ ָ ִ‫ ;לוה(וְ ִה ְלו‬Hiphil); ‫ ;עבט( וְ ַה ֲע ַב ְט ָתּ‬Hiphil), but if it stated ‫( וְ ָע ַב ְט ָתּ‬in the Qal), it would apply to the borrower (i.e. give a pledge), e.g. ‫ית‬ ָ ִ‫ ;לוה( וְ ָלו‬Qal).

124

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Explanation of Rashi Rashi simply explains that the roots ‫ עבט‬and ‫ לוה‬are both used in the Qal to mean “borrow” and in the Hiphil to mean “lend”.

‫ עבט‬is in fact a denominative verb derived from the masc. sg. noun ‫ֲעבֹט‬ = “pledge”. Thus, the Qal form means “give a pledge, borrow”, while the Hiphil form means “cause to give a pledge, lend”. 9

Isaiah 1:4

‫יתים ָעזְ ֣בוּ‬ ֑ ִ ‫֣הוֹי גּ֣ וֹי ח ֵֹ֗טא ַ ֚עם ֶכּ ֶ֣בד ָע ֔ו ֹן ֶז֣ ַ רע ְמ ֵר ֔ ִעים ָבּ ִנ֖ים ַמ ְשׁ ִח‬ ְ ‫הוה ִ ֽנ ֲא ֛צוּ ֶא‬ ָ֗ ְ‫ֶאת־י‬ ‫ת־ק ֥דוֹשׁ יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֖אל נָ ֹ֥זרוּ ָא ֽחוֹר׃‬ “Woe sinful nation, a people weighed down by iniquity, seed of evildoers, corrupt children; they have forsaken the Lord, spurned the Holy One of Israel, turned their back to Him”. Ibn Ezra’s comment on ‫יתים‬ ֑ ִ ‫ַמ ְשׁ ִח‬

‫נַ ְפ ָשׁם אוֹ ַדּ ְר ָכּם‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra Themselves or their way. Radak’s comment on ‫יתים‬ ֑ ִ ‫ַמ ְשׁ ִח‬

‫יהם‬ ֶ ‫יתים ַדּ ְר ֵכ‬ ִ ‫ָבּנִ ים ַמ ְשׁ ִח‬ Translation of Radak Children corrupting their ways.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

125

Explanation of Ibn Ezra and Radak Both Ibn Ezra and Radak have supplied a direct object to the Hiphil masc. pl. participle form, ‫יתים‬ ִ ‫ ַמ ְשׁ ִח‬. It is possible to take ‫יתים‬ ִ ‫ ַמ ְשׁ ִח‬as an inwardly transitive/intensive Hiphil (GK 53f) and translate as “children acting corruptly”.The Hiphil participle ‫ )רעע( ְמ ֵר ֔ ִעים‬in the same verse can also be taken as an inwardly transitive/intensive Hiphil, “a seed of evildoers”. However, Ibn Ezra and Radak are both suggesting that ‫יתים‬ ִ ‫ ַמ ְשׁ ִח‬should be understood in a causative sense and therefore they supply direct objects; “children who corrupt themselves” or “children who corrupt their way(s)”. See Genesis 19:13 for another example of the transitive use of ‫ שׁחת‬in the Hiphil and see II Chronicles 26:16 for an example of the inwardly transitive use of ‫ שׁחת‬in the Hiphil. 10

Isaiah 1:18

‫שּׁ ֶלג יַ ְל ִ֔בּינוּ‬ ֣ ֶ ‫ים ַכּ‬ ֙ ִ‫הו֑ה ִאם־יִ ְֽהי֨ וּ ֲח ָט ֵא ֶיכ֤ם ַכּ ָשּׁנ‬ ָ ְ‫אמר י‬ ֣ ַ ֹ ‫כוּ־נ֛א וְ נִ ָוּ ְֽכ ָ ֖חה י‬ ָ ‫ְל‬ ֖ ָ ‫ִאם־יַ ְא ִ ֥דּימוּ ַכ‬ ‫תּוֹלע ַכּ ֶ ֥צּ ֶמר יִ ְהיֽ וּ׃‬ “Come now, let us debate together, says the Lord. If your sins are like scarlet they will become as white as snow. If they become as red as the scarlet worm, they will become as white as wool.” Comment of Isaiah of Trani on ‫ יַ ְל ִ֔בּינוּ‬and ‫יַ ְא ִ ֥דּימוּ‬

‫ כמו )מ"א ח ח( וַ יַּ ֲא ִריכוּ‬,‫יוֹצ ִאין ָבּ ֲא ֵח ִרים‬ ְ ‫ ֵאינָ ן‬,‫אע"פ ֶשׁ ֵהן ְכּ ֵב ִדים‬ .‫וּפ ְרעֹה ִה ְק ִריב‬ ַ (‫ַה ַבּ ִדּים )שמות יד י‬ Translation of Isaiah of Trani Even though these verbs are Hiphil, they are not transitive, like: I Kings 8:8: “the poles were long” and Exodus 14:10: “Pharoah drew near”.

126

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Explanation of Isaiah of Trani Isaiah of Trani points out that the Hiphil imperfects ‫( יַ ְל ִ֔בּינוּ‬root ‫ )לבן‬and

‫( יַ ְא ִ ֥דּימוּ‬root ‫ )אדם‬are not transitive, just like the Hiphils in I Kings 8:8 (‫ )וַ יַּ ֲא ִריכוּ‬and Exodus 14:10 (‫) ִה ְק ִריב‬. Isaiah of Trani has in fact pointed out the phenomenon of inwardly transitive or intensive Hiphils – see GK 53d, p 145.

HITHPAEL Spot the Hithpael Study the following biblical verses. PARSE and TRANSLATE all the HITHPAEL verbs. The student may consult the verb tables in any reliable Biblical Hebrew grammar book. Explanatory notes are found at the end of the section. 1

II Kings 11:3

‫ל־ה ָ ֽא ֶרץ׃‬ ָ ‫שׁשׁ ָשׁ ִנ֑ים וַ ֲע ַת ְל ָי֖ה מ ֶ ֹ֥ל ֶכת ַע‬ ֣ ֵ ‫הוה ִמ ְת ַח ֵ ֖בּא‬ ָ֔ ְ‫וַ יְ ִ ֤הי ִא ָתּ ֙הּ ֵבּ֣ית י‬ And he was with her hidden in the house of the Lord for six years, while Athaliah reigned over the land. 2

Deuteronomy 3:23

‫מר׃‬ ֹ ֽ ‫הו֑ה ָבּ ֵ ֥עת ַה ִ ֖הוא ֵלא‬ ָ ְ‫וָ ֶא ְת ַח ַנּ֖ ן ֶאל־י‬ And I beseeched the Lord at that time, saying. 3

Psalm 18:24

‫וָ ֱא ִ ֣הי ָת ִ ֣מים ִע ֑מּוֹ וָ ֶ֝א ְשׁ ַתּ ֵ֗מּר ֵמ ֲעו ִ ֹֽני׃‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

127

And I was innocent with him and I kept myself from my iniquity. 4

Micah 6:2

‫ם־ע ֔מּוֹ וְ ִעם־יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֖אל יִ ְתוַ ָ ֽכּח׃‬ ַ ‫ִ ֣כּי ִ ֤ריב ַ ֽליהוָ ֙ה ִע‬ For the Lord has a controversy with His people and He will contend with Israel. 5

Genesis 44:16

‫וּמה־נִּ ְצ ַט ָ ֑דּק‬ ַ ‫ֹאמ ֙ר ַ ֽלאד ִֹ֔ני ַמה־נְּ ַד ֵ ֖בּר‬ ַ ‫הוּדה ַמה־נּ‬ ֗ ָ ְ‫אמר י‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣יּ‬ And Judah said, ‘What shall we say to my lord? What shall we speak? How shall we justify ourselves?’ 6

Leviticus 21:1

‫ל־הכּ ֲֹה ִנ֖ים ְבּ ֵנ֣י ַא ֲה ֑ר ֹן וְ ָא ַמ ְר ָ ֣תּ ֲא ֵל ֶ֔הם ְל ֶנ ֶ֥פשׁ ֽל ֹא־יִ ַטּ ָ ֖מּא ְבּ ַע ָ ֽמּיו׃‬ ַ ‫מר ֶא‬ ֹ ֥ ‫ֱא‬ Speak to the priests, the sons of Aaron, and you shall say to them, ‘none shall defile himself for a (dead) soul among his people’. 7

Job 5:4

‫יִ ְר ֲח ֣קוּ ָב ָנ֣יו ִמֶיּ ַ֑שׁע וְ יִ ַֽ דּ ְכּ ֥אוּ ַ֝ב ַ֗שּׁ ַער וְ ֵ ֣אין ַמ ִ ֽצּיל׃‬ Let his children be far from safety and let them be crushed in the gate, with none to deliver. 8

Numbers 7:89

‫ת־ה ֜קּוֹל ִמ ַדּ ֵבּ֣ר‬ ַ ‫מוֹע ֮ד ְל ַד ֵבּ֣ר ִאתּוֹ ֒ וַ יִּ ְשׁ ַ֨מע ֶא‬ ֵ ‫א ֶהל‬ ֹ ֣ ‫וּב ֨ב ֹא מ ֶֹ֜שׁה ֶאל־‬ ְ ‫ל־א ֣ר ֹן ָה ֵע ֻ ֔דת ִמ ֵ ֖בּין ְשׁ ֵנ֣י ַה ְכּ ֻר ִ ֑בים וַ יְ ַד ֵ ֖בּר‬ ֲ ‫ֵא ֗ ָליו ֵמ ַ ֤על ַה ַכּ ֨ ֹפּ ֶר ֙ת ֲא ֶשׁ ֙ר ַע‬ ‫ֵא ָ ֽליו׃‬

128

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

And when Moses went into the Tent of Meeting to speak with Him, he heard the Voice speaking to him from above the covering that was on the Ark of Testimony, from between the two Cherubim and it spoke to him. 9

Leviticus 14:8

‫ל־שׂ ָע ֗רוֹ וְ ָר ַ ֤חץ ַבּ ַ֙מּ ֙יִם וְ ָט ֵ֔הר‬ ְ ‫ת־כּ‬ ָ ‫ת־בּגָ ָ ֜דיו וְ גִ ַלּ֣ח ֶא‬ ְ ‫וְ ִכ ֶבּ ֩ס ַה ִמּ ַטּ ֵ֨הר ֶא‬ And he that is to be purified shall wash his clothes and shave off all his hair and bathe in water and he shall be clean. 10

Jeremiah 23:13

‫ת־ע ִ ֖מּי‬ ַ ‫יתי ִת ְפ ָל֑ה ִהנַּ ְבּ ֣אוּ ַב ַ֔בּ ַעל וַ יַּ ְת ֥עוּ ֶא‬ ִ ‫יאי שׁ ְֹמ ֖רוֹן ָר ִ ֣א‬ ֥ ֵ ‫וּבנְ ִב‬ ִ ‫ֶאת־יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֽאל׃‬ And among the prophets of Samaria I have seen folly; they prophesied by Baal and caused my people Israel to err. 11

Genesis 9:21

‫ן־ה ַ ֖יּ יִ ן וַ יִּ ְשׁ ָ ֑כּר וַ יִּ ְת ַגּ֖ל ְבּ ֥תוְֹך ָא ֳה ֹֽלה׃‬ ַ ‫וַ ֵיּ ְ֥שׁ ְתּ ִמ‬ And he drank from the wine and became drunken, and he was uncovered in the midst of his tent. 12

II Samuel 13:5

‫ל־מ ְשׁ ָכּ ְבָך֖ וְ ִה ְת ָ ֑חל‬ ִ ‫אמר לוֹ֙ יְ ֣הוֹנָ ָ ֔דב ְשׁ ַ ֥כב ַע‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֤יּ‬ And Jonadab said to him, ‘lie down on your bed and pretend to be sick’.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

129

Explanatory notes to spot the Hithpael 1

II Kings 11:3

‫ ִמ ְת ַח ֵ ֖בּא‬Hithpael participle m.sg. ‫“ ;חבא‬hiding oneself, hidden”. 2

Deuteronomy 3:23

‫וָ ֶא ְת ַח ַנּ֖ ן‬

Hithpael imperf. 1 c.sg. + vav consec. ‫“ ;חנן‬and I sought favour, implored”. See GK 54k: “As in Piel, so in Hithpael, the perfect very frequently (in stems ending in ‫ )פ מ ק נ‬has retained the original Patah in the final syllable—; with ְ‫ ו‬consecutive; so also in the imperfect and imperative, e.g. ‫ ִתּ ְת ַח ַכּם‬Ec. 7:16;—.” 3

Psalm 18:24

‫וָ ֶ֝א ְשׁ ַתּ ֵ֗מּר‬

Hithpael imperf. 1 c.sg. + vav consec. ‫“ ;שׁמר‬and I kept myself”. Note metathesis of ‫ ת‬of Hithpael preformative with first root letter ‫( שׁ‬a sibilant). See WHG p 120; Kelley p 111.

4

Micah 6:2

‫יִתוַ ָ ֽכּח‬ ְ

Hithpael imperf. 3rd m.sg. pausal. ‫“ ;יכח‬he will argue”. Regarding verbs ‫ פ"י‬see GK 69 i: “The original waw is retained as a firm consonant—in the Hithpael of some verbs, e.g. ‫ ִה ְתוַ ַדּע‬from ‫יָ ַדע‬, ‫ִה ְתוַ ַכּח‬ from ‫יָכח‬ ַ , ‫ ִה ְתוַ ָדּה‬from ‫—יָ ָדה‬.”

‫ ִריב‬n.m. strife, dispute 5

Genesis 44:16 (Judah’s appeal for Benjamin after the discovery of the goblet in his sack).

‫נִּ ְצ ַט ָ ֑דּק‬

Hithpael imperf. 1 c.pl. pausal, ‫(“ ; ָצ ֵדק‬how) shall we justify ourselves?” Note the metathesis of the 1st root letter (‫ )צ‬with the ‫ ת‬of the Hithpael preformative, and note also that ‫ ת‬has been changed to the emphatic ‫ט‬. (GK 54 b). i.e. ‫נִ ְת ַצ ֵדּק < נִ ְצ ַתּ ֵדּק < נִ ְצ ַט ֵדּק‬.

130 6

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Leviticus 21:1 (rules for priests)

‫יִ ַטּ ָ ֖מּא‬

Hithpael imperf. 3 m.sg. ‫“ = ָט ֵמא‬be, become unclean.” Hithpael: “defile oneself”. Note that the ‫ ת‬of the Hithpael preformative has assimilated into the 1st root letter because it is a dental (‫)ט‬. (WHG p 120). ְ i.e. ‫יִת ַט ָמּא < יִ ַטּ ָמּא‬ 7

Job 5:4 (the fate of the children of the foolish)

‫וְ יִ ַֽ דּ ְכּ ֥אוּ‬

Hithpael imperf. 3 m.pl. + vav conjunctive. ‫“ = ָדּ ָכא‬crush”(not in Qal) > Hithpael: “let themselves be crushed”. Note the assimilation of the ‫ ת‬of the Hithpael preformative to the 1st root letter which is a dental (‫)ד‬. i.e. ‫יִת ַדּ ְכּאוּ < יִ ַדּ ְכּאוּ‬ ְ

8

Numbers 7:89

‫ ִמ ַדּ ֵבּ֣ר‬Hithpael participle m.sg. ‫“ ;דבר‬speaking”. Note the assimilation of the ‫ ת‬of the Hithpael preformative to the 1st root letter which is a dental (‫)ד‬. i.e. ‫ ִמ ְת ַדּ ֵבּר < ִמ ַדּ ֵבּר‬. 9

Leviticus 14:8 (purification of a leper)

‫ַה ִמּ ַטּ ֵ֨הר‬

Hithpael participle m.sg. ‫“ = ָט ֵהר‬be clean, pure >Hithpael: “purify oneself” > + definite article: ‫“ = ַה ִמּ ַטּ ֵ֨הר‬the candidate for purification” (BDB p 372). Note assimilation of the ‫ ת‬of the Hithpael preformative to the 1st root letter which is a dental (‫)ט‬. 10

Jeremiah 23:13

‫ִהנַּ ְבּ ֣אוּ‬

Hithpael perf. 3 c.pl. ‫“ ;נָ ָבא‬they prophesied”. Note assimilation of the ‫ ת‬of the Hithpael preformative to the 1st root letter (‫)נ‬. i.e. ‫ ִה ְתנַ ְבּאוּ < ִהנַ ְבּאוּ‬. See GK 54 c: “The assimilation of the ‫ ת‬occurs also with ‫ נ‬and ‫כ‬, e.g. ‫ ִהנַּ ֵבּא‬to prophesy, as well as ‫— ִה ְתנַ ֵבּא‬.”

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 11

131

Genesis 9:21 (Noah planted a vineyard and became drunk)

‫וַ יִּ ְת ַגּ֖ל‬

Hithpael imperf. 3 m.sg. apoc. + vav consec. ‫“ = גָּ ָלה‬uncover, remove” > (here): “and he was uncovered”. Longer form of Hithpael imperf. would be ‫יִתגַּ ֶלּה‬ ְ . 12 II Samuel 13:5 (Jonadab’s advice to Amnon, David’s eldest son, who was sick with love for his half-sister, Tamar)

‫וְ ִה ְת ָ ֑חל‬

Hithpael imperative m.sg. shortened form, pausal. ‫“ = ָח ָלה‬be weak, sick” > (here): “make (yourself) sick”. Longer form of imperative m.sg. would be ‫ ִה ְת ַח ֵלּה‬.

Uses of Hithpael The following summary of the uses of Hithpael is based on the analyses of modern grammarians. (see Bibliography). I:

Reflexive of Piel

‫ ִה ְת ַק ֵדּשׁ‬he sanctified himself ‫ִה ְת ַאזֵּ ר‬

he girded himself

‫ ִה ְת ַח ֵבּא‬he hid himself e.g. Exodus 19:12: ‫יִ ְת ַק ָ ֑דּשׁוּ‬

‫הו֖ה‬ ָ ְ‫וְ ַג֧ם ַהכּ ֲֹה ִנ֛ים ַהנִּ גָּ ִ ֥שׁים ֶאל־י‬

“Even the priests who approach the Lord must sanctify themselves”. II: A more intensive meaning implying that one shows himself as, gives himself out as, imagines himself as, performing the action of the simple verb.

‫ִה ְתנַ ֵקּם‬

he showed himself revengeful (Niphal: take revenge)

‫ ִה ְת ַע ֵשּׁר‬he gave himself out to be rich, feigned himself as rich

132

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

‫ִה ְתגַּ ֵדּל‬

he made himself great, he acted proudly

‫ִה ְת ַח ֵכּם‬

he showed himself wise, crafty

‫ִה ְת ַח ָלּה‬

he pretended to be ill

‫ ִה ְשׂ ָתּ ֵרר‬he made himself a prince ‫ִה ְתנַ ֵבּא‬

he acted in an excited manner like a prophet, he raved

e.g. Numbers 16:13:

‫יתנוּ ַבּ ִמּ ְד ָ ֑בּר‬ ֖ ֵ ‫ית ֙נוּ ֵמ ֶ֨א ֶרץ זָ ַ ֤בת ָח ָל ֙ב ְוּד ַ֔בשׁ ַל ֲה ִמ‬ ָ֙ ‫ַה ְמ ֗ ַעט ִ ֤כּי ֶ ֽה ֱע ִל‬ ‫ם־ה ְשׂ ָתּ ֵ ֽרר׃‬ ִ ‫ִ ֽכּ‬ ִ ַ‫י־ת ְשׂ ָתּ ֵ ֥רר ָע ֵל֖ינוּ גּ‬ “Is it too little that you brought us up from a land flowing with milk and honey to have us die in the desert, that you would make yourself ruler over us?” e.g. I Samuel 18:10:

‫ל־שׁאוּל֙ וַ יִּ ְתנַ ֵבּ֣א‬ ָ ‫ֹלהים ׀ ָר ָ ֤עה ׀ ֶא‬ ִ֨ ‫רוּח ֱא‬ ַ ‫וַ יְ ִ ֣הי ִ ֽמ ָמּ ֳח ָ ֗רת וַ ִתּ ְצ ַ ֣לח‬ ‫תוְֹך־ה ַ֔בּיִ ת‬ ַ ‫ְב‬ “On the following day a spirit of melancholy from G-d came upon Saul, and he raved in the house.” III: Reciprocal action See Waltke/O’Connor p 431: “When two or more subjects act in relationship to each other according to the notion expressed by the verbal root, the action is reciprocal. Although the Hithpael is used to designate such action, it is rare.”

‫ִה ְת ָר ָאה‬

look upon one another

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

‫ִה ַדּ ֵבּר‬

133

converse

‫ ִה ְתבּ ֵֹשׁשׁ‬feel shame before each other e.g. Genesis 42:1:

‫אמר יַ ֲעק ֹ֙ב ְל ָב ָ֔ניו ָל ָ֖מּה ִתּ ְת ָר ֽאוּ׃‬ ֶ ֹ ‫שׁ־שׁ ֶבר ְבּ ִמ ְצ ָ ֑ריִם וַ ֤יּ‬ ֖ ֶ ֶ‫וַ ַיּ֣ ְ רא יַ ֲע ֔קֹב ִ ֥כּי י‬ “And Jacob saw that there was grain in Egypt and Jacob said to his sons: ‘Why do you look upon one another?’” e.g. Numbers 7:89:

‫ת־ה ֜קּוֹל ִמ ַדּ ֵבּ֣ר‬ ַ ‫מוֹע ֮ד ְל ַד ֵבּ֣ר ִאתּוֹ ֒ וַ יִּ ְשׁ ַ֨מע ֶא‬ ֵ ‫א ֶהל‬ ֹ ֣ ‫וּב ֨ב ֹא מ ֶֹ֜שׁה ֶאל־‬ ְ ‫ֵא ֗ ָליו ֵמ ַ ֤על ַה ַכּ ֨ ֹפּ ֶר ֙ת‬ “When Moses would enter the Tent of Meeting to speak with Him, he would hear the Voice speaking to him from above the cover.” (but compare Rashi’s view on ars on Use of Hithpael, no 6).

‫ ; ִמ ַדּ ֵבּ֣ר‬see below, Views of Medieval Schol-

e.g. Genesis 2:25:

‫יִתבּ ֹ ָ ֽשׁשׁוּ׃‬ ְ ‫רוּמּים ֽ ָה ָא ָ ֖דם וְ ִא ְשׁ ֑תּוֹ וְ ֖ל ֹא‬ ִ֔ ‫יה ֙ם ֲע‬ ֶ ֵ‫וַ ִיּ ְֽהי֤ וּ ְשׁנ‬ “They were both naked, the man and his wife, yet they felt no shame before each other.” IV: Action upon or for oneself (in one’s own special interest, doing something for oneself, for one’s own benefit, to one’s own detriment) (called by Lambdin, ‘Indirect Reflexive’)

134 a):

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW with accusative of object

‫ִה ְת ָפּ ֵרק‬

tear off from oneself (Exodus 32:3)

‫ִה ְתנַ ֵצּל‬

strip from oneself (Exodus 33:6)

‫ ִה ְת ַפּ ֵשּׁט‬strip from oneself (I Samuel 18:4) ‫ ִה ְת ַפּ ַתּח‬loosen from oneself (Isaiah 52:2) ‫ִה ְצ ַטיֵּ ד‬

take (something) as one’s provision (Joshua 9:12)

e.g. I Samuel 18:4:

‫שׁר ָע ֔ ָליו‬ ֣ ֶ ‫ת־ה ְמּ ִעיל֙ ֲא‬ ַ ‫שּׁט יְ הוֹנָ ָ֗תן ֶ ֽא‬ ֣ ֵ ‫וַ יִּ ְת ַפּ‬ “and Jonathan took off (lit. stripped from himself) the robe he was wearing.” b): without accusative

‫ִה ְת ַה ֵלְּך‬

walk about for oneself (Lambdin cites hlk as the only example of the iterative use of the Hithpael)

‫ִה ְת ַפּ ֵלּל‬

pray for oneself

e.g. Job 1:7:

‫אמר‬ ַ֔ ֹ ‫ל־ה ָשּׂ ָ ֖טן ֵמ ַ ֣איִ ן ָתּ ֑ב ֹא וַ ַ֨יּ ַען ַה ָשּׂ ָ ֤טן ֶאת־יְ הוָ ֙ה וַ יּ‬ ַ ‫הו֛ה ֶא‬ ָ ְ‫אמר י‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֧יּ‬ ‫וּמ ִה ְת ַה ֵלְּ֖ך ָ ֽבּהּ׃‬ ֽ ֵ ‫ִמ ֣שּׁוּט ָבּ ָ֔א ֶרץ‬ “And the Lord asked the Satan, ‘From where have you come?’ The Satan answered the Lord, ‘From wandering and walking about the earth.’”

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW V:

135

Seldom passive (tends to be found in later biblical literature) e.g. Proverbs 31:30:

‫֝הוה ִ ֣היא ִת ְת ַה ָ ֽלּל׃‬ ָ֗ ‫ת־י‬ ְ ‫שׁ ֶקר ַ ֭ה ֵחן וְ ֶ ֣ה ֶבל ַה ֹ֑יּ ִפי ִא ָ ֥שּׁה יִ ְר ַא‬ ֶ֣ “Grace is false, and beauty vain; a woman who fears the Lord, she should be praised.” e.g. Ecclesiastes 8:10:

‫וְ יִ ְֽשׁ ַתּ ְכּ ֥חוּ ָב ִ ֖עיר‬ “and they are forgotten in the city.”

Exercise: identify the Hithpael verbs in the following biblical verses; discuss their form and use. (see explanatory notes at the end). 1

Genesis 44:16

‫וּמה־נִּ ְצ ַט ָ ֑דּק‬ ַ ‫ֹאמ ֙ר ַ ֽלאד ִֹ֔ני ַמה־נְּ ַד ֵ ֖בּר‬ ַ ‫הוּדה ַמה־נּ‬ ֗ ָ ְ‫אמר י‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣יּ‬ “And Judah said, ‘What shall we say to my lord? What shall we speak and how shall we justify ourselves?’” 2

Exodus 33:6

‫חוֹרב׃‬ ֽ ֵ ‫ת־ע ְד ָי֖ם ֵמ ַ ֥הר‬ ֶ ‫וַ ִיּ ְֽתנַ ְצּ ֧לוּ ְב ֵנֽי־יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֛אל ֶא‬ “The children of Israel stripped themselves of their ornaments from Mount Horeb.” 3

Numbers 16:13

‫יתנוּ ַבּ ִמּ ְד ָ ֑בּר‬ ֖ ֵ ‫ית ֙נוּ ֵמ ֶ֨א ֶרץ זָ ַ ֤בת ָח ָל ֙ב ְוּד ַ֔בשׁ ַל ֲה ִמ‬ ָ֙ ‫ַה ְמ ֗ ַעט ִ ֤כּי ֶ ֽה ֱע ִל‬ ִ ‫ִ ֽכּ‬ ‫ם־ה ְשׂ ָתּ ֵ ֽרר׃‬ ִ ַ‫י־ת ְשׂ ָתּ ֵ ֥רר ָע ֵל֖ינוּ גּ‬

136

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW “Is it too little that you brought us up from a land flowing with milk and honey to have us die in the desert, that you should act the prince over us?”

4

Joshua 9:12

‫יכם‬ ֑ ֶ ‫אתנוּ ָל ֶל ֶ֣כת ֲא ֵל‬ ֖ ֵ ‫ֶז֣ה ַל ְח ֵ֗מנוּ ָ֞חם ִה ְצ ַט ַיּ֤ ְ דנוּ אֹתוֹ֙ ִמ ָ ֣בּ ֵ֔תּינוּ ְבּי֥ וֹם ֵצ‬ “This is our bread we provided hot for ourselves from our houses on the day we went out to go to you.” 5

Isaiah 52:2

‫מוֹס ֵ ֣רי‬ ְ [‫חי‬ ֙ ִ ‫וּשׁ ָל ִ֑ם ִה ְת ַפּ ְתּחוּ ] ִ ֽה ְת ַפּ ְתּ‬ ָ ‫וּמי ְשּׁ ִ ֖בי יְ ֽר‬ ִ ‫ִה ְתנַ ֲע ִ ֧רי ֵמ ָע ָ ֛פר ֥ק‬ ֔ ֵ ָ‫ַצוּ‬ ‫־ציּֽ וֹן׃‬ ִ ‫ארְך ְשׁ ִב ָיּ֖ה ַבּת‬ “Shake yourself from the dust, arise and sit down, O Jerusalem; loose from yourself the bands of your neck, O captive daughter of Zion.” 6

Proverbs 31:30

‫֝הוה ִ ֣היא ִת ְת ַה ָ ֽלּל׃‬ ֗ ָ ‫ת־י‬ ְ ‫שׁ ֶקר ַ ֭ה ֵחן וְ ֶ ֣ה ֶבל ַה ֹ֑יּ ִפי ִא ָ ֥שּׁה יִ ְר ַא‬ ֶ֣ “Grace is false and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord, she shall be praised.” Explanatory notes (for: identify the Hithpael verbs) 1

Genesis 44:16

‫נִּ ְצ ַט ָ ֑דּק‬

See “Spot the Hithpael” (above, no 5) for form (imperf. 1 c.pl.

pausal,

‫ ; ָצ ֵדק‬metathesis of ‫ צ‬with ‫ ת‬of Hithpael prefix). See “Views of Medieval Exegetes” (below, no 2) for Rashi’s comment. The Hithpael is here the re-

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

137

ַ ‫ַ ֽע‬ flexive of the Piel and for the Piel use of this root, see: Job 32:2: ‫ל־צ ְדּ ֥קוֹ‬ ‫ֹלהים׃‬ ֽ ִ ‫“ ַ֝נ ְפ ֗שׁוֹ ֵמ ֱא‬because he justified himself rather than G-d”, where ‫ ַצ ְדּ ֥קוֹ‬is Piel infinitive construct + sf. 3 m.sg. followed by the definite direct object ‫ ַ ֝נ ְפ ֗שׁוֹ‬. 2

Exodus 33:6

The root ‫ נצל‬occurs in the Piel in the sense of “strip off, spoil” (e.g. Exod. 3:22; 12:36). The Hithpael occurs only here (‫ ;וַ ִיּ ְֽתנַ ְצּ ֧לוּ‬imperf. 3 m.pl. + vav consec.) as the reflexive of the Piel: “they stripped from themselves” (Lambdin’s Indirect Reflexive) and taking a direct object (‫“ = ֶע ְד ָי֖ם‬their ornaments”). One should compare Exod. 32:3 and Rashi’s comment there (see Views of Medieval Scholars on Hithpael, no 4 below).

‫( ָע ָדה‬I) = ornament, deck oneself > ‫ ֲע ִדי‬n.m. (coll.) = “ornaments” >

‫ ֶע ְדיְ ָך‬/‫ ֶע ְדיוֹ‬etc.

3

Numbers 16:13

(‫ ) ָשׂ ַרר‬denom. from ‫ ַשׂר‬n.m. = “chief, ruler, prince” > Hithpael imperf. 2 m.sg. ‫ ִת ְשׂ ָתּ ֵ ֥רר‬followed by infinitive absolute Hithpael, ‫ ִה ְשׂ ָתּ ֵ ֽרר‬. Note metathesis of the sibilant ‫ שׂ‬with the ‫ ת‬of the Hithpael preformative. Note also compensatory lengthening (qamets under tav) due to absence of dagesh in resh (middle root letter). More intensive use of Hithpael > “that you should act the prince over us.” 4

Joshua 9:12

‫ ִה ְצ ַט ַיּ֤ ְ דנוּ‬denom.

Hithpael perf. 1 c.pl. ‫ צוד‬from the masc. noun ‫= ַציִ ד‬ “provision, food”. Note the metathesis of the ‫( צ‬1st root letter) with the ‫ת‬ of the Hithpael preformative, which has become an emphatic ‫ט‬. This type of Hithpael expresses action upon or for oneself, called Indirect Reflexive by Lambdin. “We supplied ourselves with provisions”. The words in this

138

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

verse are uttered by the Gibeonites, who pretended to be poor travellers from afar, so that they would be permitted to make a covenant with Joshua, since the Israelites had been forbidden to make agreements with their neighbours. 5

Isaiah 52:2

‫נָ ַער‬

= “shake” occurs also in Piel in the sense of “shake out, off”; e.g. ִ ‫הו֛ה ֶא‬ ָ ְ‫“ וַ יְ נַ ֵ ֧ער י‬and the Lord shook Exod. 14:27: ‫ת־מ ְצ ַ ֖ריִם ְבּ ֥תוְֹך ַה ָיּֽם׃‬ off the Egyptians into the sea”. The Hithpael occurs only here in Isaiah 52:2 (‫ ) ִה ְתנַ ֲע ִ ֧רי‬as imperative f.sg. in the reflexive sense of “shake yourself”. ‫חי‬ ֙ ִ ‫ ִ ֽה ְת ַפּ ְתּ‬is the only occurrence in the Hithpael of the root ‫= פתח‬ “open”. The Piel of ‫ פתח‬has the sense of “loosen, free” (see I Kings 20:11) and the Hithpael here is the (indirect) reflexive of the Piel – “loosen from yourself”. The Keri (‫חי‬ ֙ ִ ‫ ) ִ ֽה ְת ַפּ ְתּ‬is imperative f.sg. and see GK 54 f: “It (Hithpael) more often indicates an action less directly affecting the subject, and describes it as performed with regard to or for oneself, in one’s own special interest. Hithpael in such cases readily takes an accusative,—.” Here, the ‘accusative’ (i.e. the direct object) is ‫ארְך‬ ֔ ֵ ָ‫מוֹס ֵ ֣רי ַצוּ‬ ְ “the bands of your neck”. The noun ‫מוֹסר‬ ֵ (= ‫אסר‬ ֵ ֹ ‫ )מ‬n.m. = “band, bond” (pl. ‫מוֹסרוֹת‬ ֵ ) is derived from the root ‫“ = ָא ַסר‬bind, imprison”. 6

Proverbs 31:30

The root ‫ הלל‬occurs in Piel with the meaning of “praise” and in Hithpael sometimes has the reflexive meaning of “glory, boast” (i.e. praise oneself); e.g. I Kings 20:11; Psalm 34:3. Here only, in Prov. 31:30, the Hithpael occurs in a passive sense: ‫“ = ִת ְת ַה ָ ֽלּל‬she shall be praised” (imperf. 3 fem. sg. pausal).

Views of medieval scholars on use of Hithpael This section presents the views of medieval scholars on the uses of the Hithpael conjugation. Their comments are presented in the original rabbinic

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

139

Hebrew, together with translation and explanation. A glossary of some of the Hebrew grammatical terms used by these scholars is found at the end of the section, as well as brief biographical sketches of these scholars. Students should study the biblical verses and compare the views of the medieval scholars with the views in modern grammar books. 1

Genesis 42:1

‫אמר יַ ֲעק ֹ֙ב ְל ָב ֔ ָניו ָל ָ֖מּה ִתּ ְת ָר ֽאוּ׃‬ ֶ ֹ ‫שׁ־שׁ ֶבר ְבּ ִמ ְצ ָ ֑ריִם וַ ֤יּ‬ ֖ ֶ ֶ‫וַ ַיּ֣ ְ רא יַ ֲע ֔קֹב ִ ֥כּי י‬ Jacob saw that there was grain in Egypt so Jacob said to his sons, ‘Why do you look at one another?’ Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫ִתּ ְת ָר ֽאוּ‬

‫ַאל ִתּ ְתראוּ ֶשׁיֵּ שׁ ָל ֶכם הוֹן או ַאל ִתּהיוּ ְמ ִר ִיבים זה עם זה כמו )מ"ב‬ ‫יד ח( ְל ָ ֖כה נִ ְת ָר ֶ ֥אה ָפ ִ ֽנים׃‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra Do not show yourselves (pretend) as having wealth; or, do not quarrel with one another, like: (II Kings 14:8): ‘Come, let us look one another in the face’. (The King of Judah, Amaziah, challenged the King of Israel, Jehoash). Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra gives two alternative ways to understand the Hithpael imperf. 2 m.pl. ‫) ָר ָאה( ִתּ ְת ָר ֽאוּ‬. It could be an “intensive” Hithpael, implying that one shows himself as, gives himself out as, imagines himself as, performing the action of the simple verb. That is, Jacob’s message to his sons was that they should not imagine that they had the material means to delay any longer from going down to Egypt to obtain grain. Alternatively, ‫ִתּ ְת ָר ֽאוּ‬ could be a Hithpael implying reciprocal action, that is, “look upon one another”; Ibn Ezra suggests that this second alternative implies “quarrel with

140

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

one another”, as the same expression is used when the King of Judah, Amaziah, unwisely challenged the King of Israel, Jehoash. 2

Genesis 44:16

‫וּמה־נִּ ְצ ַט ָ ֑דּק‬ ַ ‫ֹאמ ֙ר ַ ֽלאד ִֹ֔ני ַמה־נְּ ַד ֵ ֖בּר‬ ַ ‫הוּדה ַמה־נּ‬ ֗ ָ ְ‫אמר י‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣יּ‬ And Judah said, ‘What shall we say to my lord? What shall we speak and how shall we justify ourselves? (clear ourselves)’ Comment of Rashi on ‫נִּ ְצ ַט ָ ֑דּק‬

‫סוֹדהּ ַצ ִדּ"י והיא ָב ָאה ְל ַד ֵבּר‬ ָ ְ‫יבה ֶשׁ ְתּ ִח ַלּת י‬ ָ ‫וכן ָכּל ֵתּ‬ ֵ ,‫ְלשׁוֹן ֶצ ֶדק‬ ‫נוֹתנָ הּ‬ ְ ‫נוֹתן ֵטי"ת במקום ָתּי"ו וְ ֵאינָ הּ‬ ֵ ,‫ְבּ ָלשׁוֹן ִמ ְת ָפּ ֵעל או נִ ְת ָפּ ֵעל‬ ,‫לפני אוֹת ראשונה של יְ סוֹד ַה ֵתּ ָיבה ֶא ָלּא ְב ֶא ְמ ַצע אותיות ָה ִע ָקּר‬ .‫ וַ יִּ ְצ ַט ַבּע ִמגִּ זְ ַרת צבע‬,‫כּגוֹן נִ ְצ ַט ָדּק ִמגִּ זְ ַרת צדק‬ Translation of Rashi

‫ נִּ ְצ ַט ָ ֑דּק‬is derived from the root ‫צדק‬. Every root whose first letter is ‫צ‬ when used in the Hithpael or Nithpael, takes ‫ ט‬instead of ‫( ת‬in the prefix); however, it is not placed before the first root letter, but after the first root letter (and before the second root letter), e.g. ‫ נִ ְצ ַט ָדּק‬from the root ‫;צדק‬ ‫“( וַ יִּ ְצ ַט ַבּע‬let him be wet”) (Daniel 4:12) from the root ‫צבע‬. Explanation of Rashi Rashi explains the Hithpael formation ‫( נִּ ְצ ַט ָ ֑דּק‬imperf. 1 c.pl. pausal). The expected prefix for Hithpael imperf. 1 pl. would be ‫נִ ת‬, but since the first root letter is ‫( צ‬a sibilant), the ‫ ת‬has become ‫ ט‬and has changed places with the ‫צ‬. (See WHG p 120 for rules of Hithpael when the first root letter is a sibilant or dental. See also GK 54 b,c,d).

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 3

141

Exodus 1:10 (words of Pharoah about the children of Israel)

‫ָ ֥ה ָבה ִ ֽנ ְת ַח ְכּ ָ ֖מה ֑לוֹ‬ Come, let us deal wisely with him. Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫מה‬ ֖ ָ ‫ִ ֽנ ְת ַח ְכּ‬

.‫נְ ַב ֵקּשׁ ֶדּ ֶרְך ָח ְכ ָמה ֶשׁלֹּא יִ ְר ֶבּה‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra Let us seek a way of wisdom, that he should not multiply. Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra comments on ‫מה‬ ֖ ָ ‫ ִ ֽנ ְת ַח ְכּ‬, imperf. cohortative 1st c.pl. ‫חכם‬ “bewise”. Ibn Ezra’s words suggest that he saw ‫מה‬ ֖ ָ ‫ ִ ֽנ ְת ַח ְכּ‬as an “intensive” Hithpael, implying that Pharoah wants to “show himself, give himself out as wise” in his dealings with the Israelites. 4

Exodus 32:3

‫ל־א ֲה ֽר ֹן׃‬ ַ ‫יהם וַ יָּ ִ ֖ביאוּ ֶ ֽא‬ ֑ ֶ ֵ‫שׁר ְבּ ָאזְ נ‬ ֣ ֶ ‫ל־ה ֔ ָעם ֶאת־נִ זְ ֵ ֥מי ַהזָּ ָ ֖הב ֲא‬ ָ ‫קוּ ָכּ‬ ֙ ‫וַ יִּ ְת ָ ֽפּ ְר‬ All the people broke off from themselves the golden earrings which were in their ears, and brought them to Aaron. Comment of Rashi on ‫קוּ‬ ֙ ‫וַ יִּ ְת ָ ֽפּ ְר‬

‫יהם נִ ְמ ְצאוּ ֵהם ְמפ ָֹר ִקים‬ ֶ ֵ‫ ְכּ ֶשׁנְּ ָטלוּם ֵמ ָאזְ נ‬,‫ְלשׁוֹן ְפּ ִר ַיקת ַמ ָשּׂא‬ ֶ ‫ִמנִּ זְ ֵמ‬ ‫אתי ֶאת ָה ִעיר )שמות‬ ִ ‫ ְכּמוֹ ְכּ ֵצ‬.‫ ְכּמוֹ ִמנִּ זְ ֵמי‬.‫ — ֶאת נִ זְ ֵמי‬,‫יהם‬ .‫ט כט( ִמן ָה ִעיר‬

142

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Translation of Rashi “And they unloaded themselves”. ‫ פרק‬denotes unloading a burden. When they took them (the rings) from their ears, they became “unloaded” from their rings—. ‫( ֶאת‬indicates definite direct object) is the equivalent to ‫ִמן‬ ִ ‫ְכּ ֵצ‬ (from). Like Exodus 9:29 where ‫ ֶאת‬has the force of ‫ ִמן‬in ‫אתי ֶאת‬ ‫“ ָה ִעיר‬when I departed (from) the city”. Explanation of Rashi

֙ ‫ וַ יִּ ְת ָ ֽפּ ְר‬is here followed by ‫ֶאת‬ The Hithpael imperf. + vav consec. ‫קוּ‬ which normally indicates a definite direct object. One would not expect a Hithpael (reflexive) to be followed by a definite direct object. Consequently, ֙ ‫ וַ יִּ ְת ָ ֽפּ ְר‬really is reflexive, in the sense that by removRashi explains that ‫קוּ‬ ing the rings from their ears, the people “unloaded themselves” from the rings. This interpretation causes Rashi to assert that the particle ‫ ֶאת‬here has the force of the preposition ‫“ ִמן‬from”. i.e. “the people unloaded themselves from the golden rings”. Rashi compares Exodus 9:29 where ‫ֶאת‬ again has the force of ‫ ִמן‬. Contrast Rashi’s view with the statement in GK 54 f : “It (Hithpael) more often indicates an action less directly affecting the subject, and describes it as performed with regard to or for oneself, in one’s own special interest. Hithpael in such cases readily takes an accusative.”Hence, according to Rashi, the translation of ‫ל־ה ֔ ָעם‬ ָ ‫קוּ ָכּ‬ ֙ ‫וַ יִּ ְת ָ ֽפּ ְר‬ ‫ ֶאת־נִ זְ ֵ ֥מי ַהזָּ ָ ֖הב‬is: “All the people unloaded themselves from the rings” whereas, according to GK, the translation is: “All the people unloaded from themselves the rings”. 5

Leviticus 18:24

‫ר־א ִ ֥ני ְמ ַשׁ ֵלּ ַ֖ח‬ ֲ ‫גּוֹים ֲא ֶשׁ‬ ִ֔ ‫ל־א ֶלּ ֙ה נִ ְט ְמ ֣אוּ ַה‬ ֵ֙ ‫ל־א ֶלּה ִ ֤כּי ְב ָכ‬ ֑ ֵ ‫ל־תּ ַטּ ְמּ ֖אוּ ְבּ ָכ‬ ֽ ִ ‫ַא‬ ‫יכם׃‬ ֽ ֶ ֵ‫ִמ ְפּנ‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

143

Do not defile yourselves in any of these, for in all these, the nations, which I am sending away from before you, defiled themselves. Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫ִ ֽתּ ַטּ ְמּ ֖אוּ‬

‫ וְ ָה ֵעד‬,‫ַדּגְ שׁוּת ַהטּי"ת ְל ִה ְת ַבּ ַלּע תי"ו ִה ְת ָפּ ֵעל ולא נו"ן ִבּנְ יַ ן נִ ְפ ָעל‬ .‫ַדּגְ שׁוּת ַהמ"ם ַכּ ִמּ ְשׁ ָפּט‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra The dagesh in the ‫ ט‬is due to the assimilation of the ‫ ת‬of the Hithpael, and is not due to the assimilation of the ‫ נ‬of Niphal. The proof is the dagesh in the ‫ מ‬according to the rule (of Hithpael; dagesh in middle root letter). Explanation of Ibn Ezra The Hithpael verb ‫ ִ ֽתּ ַטּ ְמּ ֖אוּ‬is derived from the root ‫“ = ָט ֵמא‬be impure”. Since the first root letter is a dental (‫)ט‬, the ‫ ת‬of the Hithpael prefix is assimilated into the ‫ ט‬as indicated by the strong dagesh. Ibn Ezra explains this and also points out that one cannot mistake the strong dagesh in the ‫ט‬ as due to the assimilation of the ‫ נ‬of the Niphal, since dagesh in middle root letter (as in the ‫ מ‬of ‫ ) ִ ֽתּ ַטּ ְמּ ֖אוּ‬is characteristic of Hithpael, but not of Niphal. One may add that the Niphal imperf. of ‫ ָט ֵמא‬would also have qamets under the ‫( ט‬not pataḥ), i.e. ‫ ִתּ ָטּ ְמאוּ‬. Ibn Ezra’s point is well worth making because both the Niphal and the Hithpael may have a reflexive sense and may mean “defile oneself” (BDB p 379). 6

Numbers 7:89

‫ת־ה ֜קּוֹל ִמ ַדּ ֵ ֣בּר‬ ַ ‫מוֹע ֮ד ְל ַד ֵבּ֣ר ִאתּוֹ ֒ וַ יִּ ְשׁ ַ֨מע ֶא‬ ֵ ‫א ֶהל‬ ֹ ֣ ‫וּב ֨ב ֹא מ ֶֹ֜שׁה ֶאל־‬ ְ ֲ ‫ֵא ֗ ָליו ֵמ ַ ֤על ַה ַכּ ֨ ֹפּ ֶר ֙ת ֲא ֶשׁ ֙ר ַע‬ ‫ל־א ֣ר ֹן ָה ֵע ֻ ֔דת ִמ ֵ ֖בּין ְשׁ ֵנ֣י ַה ְכּ ֻר ִ ֑בים וַ יְ ַד ֵ ֖בּר‬ ‫ֵא ָ ֽליו׃‬

144

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

And when Moses went into the Tent of Meeting to speak with Him, he heard the Voice speaking to him from above the covering that was on the Ark of Testimony, from between the two Cherubim and it spoke to him. Comment of Rashi on ‫ִמ ַדּ ֵבּ֣ר‬

‫ ְמ ַד ֵבּר ֵבּינוֹ ְל ֵבין ַע ְצמוֹ‬,‫לוֹמר ֵכּן‬ ַ ‫ ְכּבוֹדוֹ ֶשׁל ַמ ְע ָלה‬,‫ְכּמוֹ ִמ ְת ַדּ ֵבּר‬ :‫שׁוֹמ ַע ֵמ ֵא ָליו‬ ֵ ‫וּמ ֶֹשׁה‬ Translation of Rashi

‫ִמ ַדּ ֵבּר‬

is the same as ‫“ ִמ ְת ַדּ ֵבּר‬uttering itself”. It is out of reverence for the Most High that Scripture speaks thus: (the Voice) was speaking to itself and Moses heard it of his own accord. Explanation of Rashi Rashi explains that ‫ ִמ ַדּ ֵבּר‬is a Hithpael participle m.sg. with the assimilation of the ‫ ת‬of Hithpael into the ‫ד‬, respresented by the strong dagesh. Rashi explains that the Reflexive (Hithpael) is used here out of reverence for the Divine, because it would not have been respectful to have used the Piel, ‫ ְמ ַד ֵבּר‬, implying that G-d spoke directly to Moses as it were. Rather, the Voice spoke to Itself and Moses could not help hearing it. 7

I Samuel 18:4

‫שׁר ָע ֔ ָליו ַוֽ יִּ ְתּ ֵנ֖הוּ ְל ָדִו֑ד‬ ֣ ֶ ‫ת־ה ְמּ ִעיל֙ ֲא‬ ַ ‫שּׁט יְ הוֹנָ ָ֗תן ֶ ֽא‬ ֣ ֵ ‫וַ יִּ ְת ַפּ‬ And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was on him and gave it to David.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

145

֣ ֵ ‫וַ יִּ ְת ַפּ‬ Comment of Radak on ‫שּׁט‬ ‫ת־ה ִע ֮יר ֣ל ֹא‬ ָ ‫ֵפּירוּשׁ ִמן ַה ְמּ ִעיל כמו )בראשית מד ד( ֠ ֵהם ָי ְֽצ ֣אוּ ֶא‬ ‫יוֹצא וְ ָא ַמר בלשון התפעל כי ְבּ ָרצוֹן‬ ֵ ‫ִה ְר ִחיק ֒וּ כי אין ִבּנְ יַ ן ִה ְת ָפּ ֵעל‬ .‫וּב ַא ֲה ָבה ַר ָבּה ִה ְת ַפּ ֵשּׁט ְבּגָ ָדיו וּנְ ָתנָ ם לוֹ‬ ְ ‫גָּ דוֹל‬ Translation of Radak

‫שּׁט‬ ֣ ֵ ‫וַ יִּ ְת ַפּ‬

means “he stripped himself from (‫ ) ֶאת‬the robe”, like Genesis 44:4: “They went out from (‫ ) ֶאת‬the city”. For Hithpael cannot be transitive. He used Hithpael because (Jonathan) took off his clothes with great goodwill and great love and gave them to him (i.e. to David). Explanation of Radak Radak states that Hithpael cannot be transitive (‫יוֹצא‬ ֵ ) and therefore cannot have a direct object. Accordingly, the Hithpael imperf. + vav consec. ‫שּׁט‬ ֣ ֵ ‫ וַ יִּ ְת ַפּ‬, cannot take a direct object and therefore the particle ‫ ֶאת‬here must be understood in the sense of ‫“( ִמן‬from”) – i.e. “Jonathan stripped himself from the robe—.” Radak compares ‫ ֶאת‬in Genesis 44:4, which also has the sense of ‫ ִמן‬. Radak then explains why the Hithpael is used rather than the Qal, since the Qal ‫ ָפּ ַשׁט‬is used in a transitive sense to mean “strip” – see I Samuel 19:24: ‫ם־הוּא ְבּגָ ָ ֗דיו‬ ֜ ַ‫“ וַ יִּ ְפ ַ֨שׁט גּ‬He also took off his clothes”. The Hithpael is used here, says Radak, because Jonathan acted with great love and great good will. Contrast Radak’s approach here with GK 54 f (see above, no 4), where it is suggested that this kind of Hithpael (called Indirect Reflexive by Lambdin, see Uses of Hithpael IV) can indeed take an accusative of object; then we could render, “and Jonathan stripped from himself the robe which was on him”. 8

II Samuel 13:2

‫בוּר ָתּ ָ ֣מר ֲאח ֹ֔תוֹ‬ ֙ ‫וַ ֵ֨יּ ֶצר ְל ַא ְמנ֜ וֹן ְל ִה ְת ַח ֗לּוֹת ַ ֽבּ ֲע‬

146

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Amnon was distressed enough to make himself sick for the sake of Tamar his sister. Comment of Radak on ‫ְל ִה ְת ַח ֗לּוֹת‬

‫חוֹלה ֵמרוֹב ֶח ְשׁקוֹ ָבהּ‬ ֶ ‫ַעד ֶשׁ ָהיָ ה נִ ְר ֶאה‬ Translation of Radak Until he seemed ill, from his great desire for her. Explanation of Radak Radak explains that ‫( ְל ִה ְת ַח ֗לּוֹת‬Hithpael inf. cstr. + lamed; ‫ )חלה‬expresses a more intensive meaning, implying that Amnon was not actually ill, but seemed ill, even pretended to be ill. (Amnon, David’s eldest son, was sick with love for his half-sister, Tamar). 9

II Samuel 13:5

‫ל־מ ְשׁ ָכּ ְבָך֖ וְ ִה ְת ָ ֑חל‬ ִ ‫אמר לוֹ֙ יְ ֣הוֹנָ ָ ֔דב ְשׁ ַ ֥כב ַע‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֤יּ‬ Jehonadab said to him, ‘Lie on your bed and pretend to be ill.’ Comment of Radak on ‫וְ ִה ְת ָ ֑חל‬

‫חוֹלה‬ ֶ ‫ַה ְר ֵאה ַע ְצ ְמָך‬ Translation of Radak Show yourself to be ill. Explanation of Radak

‫ וְ ִה ְת ָ ֑חל‬is the apocopated imperative (pausal) Hithpael, ‫( חלה‬shortened from ‫) ִה ְת ַח ֵלּה‬. Radak again explains that it implies pretence of illness. Je-

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

147

honadab advised Amnon to pretend to be ill in order that he could seduce Tamar. 10

Isaiah 1:16

‫צוּ ִהזַּ ֔כּוּ ָה ִ ֛סירוּ ֥ר ֹ ַע ַמ ַע ְל ֵל ֶיכ֖ם ִמ ֶ ֣נּ גֶ ד ֵע ָינ֑י ִח ְד ֖לוּ ָה ֵ ֽר ַע׃‬ ֙ ‫ַר ֲח‬ Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean, remove the evil of your deeds from before My eyes, cease to do evil. Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫ִהזַּ ֔כּוּ‬

‫ וְ ָל ַקח ַל ִמּ ַטּ ֵהר‬:‫בדגְ שׁוּת הזי"ן כמו‬ ַ ‫וּבוּלּע התי"ו‬ ַ ‫ִמ ִבּנְ יַ ן ִה ְת ָפּ ֵעל‬ ( ‫)ויקרא יד ֝ד‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra This is a Hithpael and the ‫ ת‬of the Hithpael prefix has been assimilated into the ‫ז‬, like: Leviticus 14:4: where the ‫ ת‬of the Hithpael prefix is assimilated into the ‫ ט‬of ‫טהר‬. Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra clarifies that ‫ ִהזַּ ֔כּוּ‬is a Hithpael imperative m.pl. root ‫( זכה‬be clean, pure) with assimilation of ‫ ת‬into the ‫ז‬. i.e. ‫ ִהזַּ ֔כּוּ‬instead of ‫ ִה ְתזַ כּוּ‬, just like ‫( ַל ִמּ ַטּ ֵהר‬Levit. 14:4) instead of ‫“( ַל ִמּ ְת ַט ֵהר‬unto him who purifies himself”). Compare GK 54 d: “Metathesis would likewise be expected— when ‫ ת‬and ‫ ז‬come together, as well as a change of ‫ ת‬to ‫ד‬. Instead of this, in the only instance of the kind, (‫) ִהזַּ ֔כּוּ‬, the ‫ ת‬is assimilated to the ‫– ז‬ unless indeed ‫ ִהזַ כּוּ‬imperative Niphal of ‫ זכך‬is intended.” Note, however, the comment of SHADAL (Samuel David Luzzatto, 18001865, Italian scholar): ‫ היה ַטעמוֹ למעלה‬,‫שּׁוֹרשׁ זכך‬ ֶ ‫וְ ִאם ָהיָ ה נִ ְפ ַעל ִמ‬

148

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

– “If it was Niphal from ‫זכך‬, the accent on ultimate but on the penultimate syllable.” 11

‫ִהזַּ ֔כּוּ‬

would not be on the

Proverbs 13:7

‫רוֹשׁשׁ וְ ֣הוֹן ָ ֽרב׃‬ ֵ֗ ‫ֵי ֣שׁ ִ ֭מ ְת ַע ֵשּׁר וְ ֵ ֣אין ֑כֹּל ִ֝מ ְת‬ There is one who pretends to be rich, yet has nothing; (there is another) who pretends to be poor, but yet has great riches. Comment of Rashi on ‫ִ ֭מ ְת ַע ֵשּׁר‬

‫ַמ ְר ֶאה ַע ְצמוֹ ָע ִשׁיר‬ Translation of Rashi He shows himself to be rich. Explanation of Rashi Rashi comments on the Hithpael participle m.sg. ‫ ִ ֭מ ְת ַע ֵשּׁר‬, root ‫עשׁר‬, which does not have the simple reflexive meaning of “make oneself rich” but the more intensive meaning of “pretend to be rich”, “give oneself out ֵ֗ ‫ ִ֝מ ְת‬, a as rich”. One may note the other participle in this verse, ‫רוֹשׁשׁ‬ Hithpolel (root, ‫ ִרישׁ‬/‫)רוּשׁ‬, which also has this more intensive meaning, “pretend to be poor”.

THE THEORY OF THE QAL PASSIVE According to this theory, a number of supposed perfects of Pual are in fact passives of Qal and a number of supposed imperfects of Hophal are in fact imperfects of the passive of Qal. Moreover, there are some examples of supposed participles of Pual without the preformative mem which could be participles of former passives of Qal. In this section, examples of these three categories will be discussed, based on the analyses found in modern

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

149

grammar books. (GK 52e; 52s; 53u; JM 58a-d; IBHS 22.6). At the end of the section there will also be discussion of the opinions of some medieval scholars.

I:

Supposed perfects of Pual

With regard to some verbal forms which are apparently Pual perfect forms, see GK 52e: “According to the convincing suggestion of Bottcher—many supposed perfects of Pual are in reality passives of Qal. He reckons as such all those perfects, of which the Piel (which ought to express the corresponding active) is either not found at all, or only (as in the case of ‫)יִ ֵלּד‬ with a different meaning, and which form their imperfect from another conjugation, generally Niphal.” In the following biblical verses, identify the verbal forms which could be construed as Qal Passives and explain why. 1

Isaiah 32:14

‫ד־עוֹלם‬ ָ֔ ‫רוֹת ַע‬ ֙ ‫י־א ְר ֣מוֹן נֻ ָ֔טּשׁ ֲה ֥מוֹן ִ ֖עיר ֻע ָזּ֑ב ֣עֹ ֶפל וָ ַ֜ב ַחן ָה ָ֨יה ְב ַ ֤עד ְמ ָע‬ ַ ‫ִ ֽכּ‬ ‫ְמ ֥שׂוֹשׂ ְפּ ָר ִ ֖אים ִמ ְר ֵ ֥עה ֲע ָד ִ ֽרים׃‬ For the palace has been abandoned, the city’s multitude forsaken; the mound and tower have become dens forever, a joy of wild asses, a pasture of flocks.

‫נֻ ָ֔טּשׁ‬

appears to be Pual perf. 3 m.sg. pausal. (the pataḥ characteristic of Pual perf. 3 m.sg. has been lengthened to qamets under the influence of the accentuation). ‫“ = נָ ַטשׁ‬leave, forsake”. However, this root does not occur in Piel, and the ‘Pual’ occurs only here.

‫ֻע ָזּ֑ב‬

appears to be Pual perf. 3 m.sg. pausal. (the pataḥ characteristic of Pual perf. 3 m.sg. has been lengthened to qamets under the influence of the ’Athnaḥ). However, this root ( ‫“ = ָעזַ ב‬leave, forsake”) does not occur

150

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

in Piel. The ‘Pual’ occurs only here and in Jeremiah 49:25 (3 f.sg. ‫) ֻעזְּ ָבה‬. The Niphal imperf is found four times (Lev 26:43; Isa 7:16; 18:6; Job 18:4). 2

Jeremiah 29:22

‫מר יְ ִ ֽשׂ ְמָך֤ יְ הוָ ֙ה‬ ֹ ֑ ‫הוּדה ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ְבּ ָב ֶ ֖בל ֵלא‬ ֔ ָ ְ‫וְ ֻל ַ ֤קּח ֵמ ֶה ֙ם ְק ָל ֔ ָלה ְלכֹל֙ גָּ ֣לוּת י‬ ָ ‫ר־ק ָ ֥לם ֶ ֽמ ֶל‬ ‫ְך־בּ ֶ ֖בל ָבּ ֵ ֽאשׁ׃‬ ָ ‫וּכ ֶא ָ֔חב ֲא ֶשׁ‬ ְ ‫ְכּ ִצ ְד ִק ָיּ֣הוּ‬ And there will be derived (lit. taken) from them a curse by all the exile of Judah that is in Babylon, saying: ‘May the Lord make you like Zedekiah and like Ahab whom the king of Babylon roasted in fire. (‫“ = ָק ָלה‬roast”).

‫וְ ֻל ַ ֤קּח‬

appears to be Pual perf. 3 m.sg. (+ vav consec.) from ‫“ = ָל ַקח‬he took”. However, the Piel of ‫ ָל ַקח‬is not attested and the meaning of ‫וְ ֻל ַ ֤קּח‬ is the passive of the Qal (“was taken”). 3

Genesis 2:23

‫את יִ ָקּ ֵ ֣רא ִא ָ֔שּׁה ִ ֥כּי ֵמ ִ ֖אישׁ ֻל ֳֽק ָחה־זּֽ ֹאת׃‬ ֙ ֹ ‫ְלז‬ She shall be called Woman, because she was taken from Man.

‫ֻל ֳֽק ָחה‬

appears to be Pual perf. 3 f.sg. ‫ ָל ַקח‬, but the Piel of ‫ ָל ַקח‬does not occur (see above, no 2). For absence of dagesh in middle root letter (‫)ק‬ and ḥaṭeph-qamets under the ‫ק‬, see GK 52d: “The Dagesh Forte, which— is characteristic of the whole of Piel and Pual, is often omitted—when the middle radical has sheva under it—. The vocal character of the sheva under the litera dagessanda is sometimes in such cases—expressly emphasized by its taking the form of a ḥaṭeph, as in ‫ ֻל ֳֽק ָחה‬Gn 2:23, with ֳ owing to the influence of the preceding u,—.”see also GK 10h. Ibn Ezra, however, considers ‫ ֻל ֳֽק ָחה‬to be a Pual formation, as is evident from his comment on this verse, where he states that it is ‫ֵמ ַה ִבּנְ יָ ן ַה ָכּ ֵבד‬ which is his terminology for Piel and Pual. (lit. “the heavy conjugation”).

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

151

‫ולֹא נִ ְדגַּ שׁ קו"ף ֻל ֳֽק ָחה זאת ְל ָה ֵקל על הלשון והוא מהבנין הכבד‬ .‫וְ ִאם לֹא נִ ְמ ָצא‬ “The koph of ‫ ֻל ֳֽק ָחה‬lacks the strong dagesh in order to facilitate pronunciation. The form is Pual, even though the Piel is not found.” 4

Genesis 4:26

‫ת־שׁ ֖מוֹ ֱאנ֑ וֹשׁ‬ ְ ‫ד־בּן וַ יִּ ְק ָ ֥רא ֶא‬ ֵ֔ ‫ם־הוּא יֻ ַלּ‬ ֙ ַ‫וּל ֵ ֤שׁת גּ‬ ְ And to Shet, to him also, there was born a son and he called his name Enosh.

‫יֻ ַלּד‬

appears to be Pual perf. 3 m.sg. However, the meaning (“there was born”) is passive of the Qal (‫ = יָ ַלד‬bear, bring forth, beget) and although the Piel of ‫ יָ ַלד‬is attested, it has the meaning of “cause, help to bring forth, assist, tend as midwife”. (the Piel participle f.sg. ‫“ = ְמיַ ֶלּ ֶדת‬midwife”; see Gen 35:17 etc). 5

Ezekiel 15:34

‫זוּנּ֑ה‬ ָ ‫נוּתיִ ְך וְ ַא ֲח ַ ֖ריִ ְך ֣ל ֹא‬ ַ֔ ְ‫ן־הנָּ ִשׁ ֙ים ְבּ ַתז‬ ַ ‫י־בְך ֵ ֤ה ֶפְך ִמ‬ ָ֨ ‫וַ יְ ִה‬ And the contrary is in you from (other) women, in your fornications, but fornication was not done (in going) after you.

‫זוּנּ֑ה‬ ָ is

apparently Pual perf. 3 m.sg. ‫“ = זָ נָ ה‬commit fornication, be a harlot”, but the root ‫ זָ נָ ה‬is unattested in the Hebrew Bible in Piel and occurs only here in ‘Pual’. 6

Job 33:21

‫מוֹתיו ֣ל ֹא ֻר ֽאוּ׃‬ ָ֗ ‫וּשׁ ִפי ]וְ ֻשׁ ֥פּוּ[ ֝ ַע ְצ‬ ְ

152

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

His bones are laid bare, are not seen. (Ketib: (‫ = ָשׁ ָפה‬sweep bare).

‫וּשׁ ִפי‬ ְ

= “and bareness”)

‫ ֻר ֽאוּ‬could be Pual perf. 3 c.pl. ‫ ָר ָאה‬, but this root is unattested in Piel in the Hebrew Bible and this apparent ‘Pual’ is a Hapax, suggesting that it is Qal passive.

II: Apparent Hophal imperfects With regard to some verbal forms which are apparently Hophal imperfects, see GK 53u: “According to Bottcher—and Barth (see above 52e) a number of supposed imperfects Hophal are, in fact, imperfects of the passive of Qal. As in the case of the perfects passive of Qal (see above, 52e) the question is again of verbs of which neither the corresponding causative (i.e. here the Hiphil), nor the tense of the same conjugation (i.e. here the perfect Hophal) is found; —.” In the following biblical verses, identify the verbal forms which could be construed as Qal Passives and explain why. 1

Genesis 18:4

‫ט־מיִ ם וְ ַר ֲח ֖צוּ ַרגְ ֵל ֶיכ֑ם‬ ַ֔ ‫ח־נ֣א ְמ ַע‬ ָ ‫יֻ ַ ֽקּ‬ Let a little water be taken and wash your feet.

‫יֻ ַ ֽקּח‬

appears to be Hophal imperf. 3 m.sg. ‫“ = ָל ַקח‬he took”. However, the corresponding Hiphil is not attested (i.e. ‫יח‬ ַ ‫ ִה ְל ִק‬/‫יח‬ ַ ‫) ִה ִקּ‬, nor the perfect of the ‘Hophal’. See GK 53u: “In point of fact it would be very ַ and ‫ יֻ ַ ֽקּח‬that of these frequently used strange, especially in the case of ‫יֻתּן‬ verbs, amongst all the forms of Hiphil and Hophal, only the imperfect Hophal should have been preserved.” Waltke/O’Connor (22.6b) point out (note 29) that the root lqh shows an apparent Pual eight times and an apparent Hophal six times.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 2

153

Leviticus 11:38

‫ל־ז ַרע וְ נָ ַ ֥פל ִמנִּ ְב ָל ָ ֖תם ָע ָל֑יו ָט ֵ ֥מא ֖הוּא ָל ֶ ֽכם׃‬ ֶ֔ ‫ן־מיִ ֙ם ַע‬ ַ֙ ‫יֻתּ‬ ַ ‫וְ ִ ֤כי‬ But if any water be put upon the seed and any part of the carcass fall on it, it shall be unclean.

‫יֻתּן‬ ַ

appears to be Hophal imperf. 3 m.sg. ‫“ = נָ ַתן‬he gave”, but the corresponding Hiphil is not attested (i.e. ‫ ִהנְ ִתּין‬/‫ ) ִה ִתּין‬and the ‘Hophal’ perfect does not occur. Moerover, the meaning is the passive of the Qal: “he will be given/put”. The Niphal imperf. of ‫ נָ ַתן‬is well attested. Note, however, Ibn Ezra’s comment on Levit. 11:38, where he indicates that both ‫יֻתּן‬ ַ and ‫ יֻ ַקּח‬are Hophals.

‫ט־מיִ ם ֵמ ַה ִבּנְ יָ ן ַה ָכּ ֵבד‬ ַ֔ ‫ח־נ֣א ְמ ַע‬ ָ ‫ )בראשית יח ד( יֻ ַ ֽקּ‬:‫יוּתּן ְכּמוֹ‬ ַ ‫וּמ ַלּת‬ ִ .‫נּוֹסף‬ ָ ‫ַה‬ “The word ‫יֻתּן‬ ַ is like conjugation.” 3

‫יֻ ַ ֽקּח‬

(Gen 18:4) from the intensive/heavy

Genesis 4:24

‫ם־קיִ ן וְ ֶל ֶ֖מְך ִשׁ ְב ִ ֥עים וְ ִשׁ ְב ָ ֽעה׃‬ ֑ ָ ‫ִ ֥כּי ִשׁ ְב ָע ַ ֖תיִם יֻ ַקּ‬ If Cain will be avenged sevenfold, then Lemech (will be avenged) seventyseven times.

‫ יֻ ַקּם‬appears

to be Hophal imperf. 3 m.sg.

‫נָ ַקם‬

= “avenge, take

vengeance”. However, neither the Hiphil nor the Hophal perfect are attested. (see also: Gen 4:15; Ex 21:21).

154

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

III: Apparent Pual participle forms without preformative mem. With regard to these apparent Pual participle forms, see GK 52s: “A few examples occur of the participle Pual without the preformative (‫) ְמ‬, e.g. ‫( ֻא ָכּל‬Ex 3:2); ‫יוּלּד‬ ָ (for ‫ ) ְמיֻ ָלּד‬Ju 13:8; ‫ ֻל ָקּח‬2 K 2:10; ‫ ס ֲֹע ָרה‬Isa 54:11. These participles are distinguished from the perfect (as in Niphal) by the a of the final syllable.—Notice, however, Barth’s suggestion—that, as the active of forms like ‫ ֻא ָכּל‬only occurs in Qal, they are perfect participles of former passives of Qal.” See also: JM 58b: “Corresponding to the perfect passive Qal ‫ ֻק ַטּל‬there is a participle ‫ ֻק ָטּל‬, just as there is a participle ‫ נִ ְק ָטל‬corresponding to the perfect ‫נִ ְק ַטל‬. Thus one has ‫ ֻא ָכּל‬eaten, consumed, Ex. 3.2, corresponding to the perfect ‫יוּלד ; ֻא ַכּל‬ ָ (for ‫ )יֻ ָלּד‬born, Jdg. 13.8 corresponding to the perfect ‫ ֻל ָקּח ;יֻ ַלּד‬taken 2 Kg 2.10 corresponding to the perfect ‫ ֻל ַקּח‬.” In the following biblical verses, identify the verbal forms which could be construed as Qal Passives and explain why. 1

II Kings 2:10 (Elijah to Elisha)

‫ם־איִ ן ֥ל ֹא יִ ְה ֶיֽה׃‬ ֖ ַ ‫י־לָך֣ ֵ֔כן וְ ִא‬ ְ ‫ם־תּ ְר ֶ֨אה א ִֹ֜תי ֻל ָ ֤קּח ֵ ֽמ ִא ָתּ ְ֙ך יְ ִ ֽה‬ ִ ‫ִא‬ If you will see me taken from you, it will be so for you, but if not, it shall not be so.”

‫ֻל ָ ֤קּח‬

is a strange verbal form because it appears to have the form of a Pual perf. 3 m.sg. However, the qamets under the ‫ ק‬is hard to explain since the word does not carry a pausal accent. Furthermore, syntactically, a participle form is required. Consequently, ‫ ֻל ָ ֤קּח‬here is either a Qal passive participle or it is equivalent to ‫ ְמ ֻל ָקּח‬, that is, Pual participle m.sg. 2

Exodus 3:2

‫וְ ִה ֵנּ֤ה ַה ְסּנֶ ֙ה בּ ֵֹע֣ר ָבּ ֵ֔אשׁ וְ ַה ְסּ ֶנ֖ה ֵא ֶינ֥נּוּ ֻא ָ ֽכּל׃‬

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

155

And, behold, the bush burned with fire, but the bush was not consumed.

‫ ֻא ָ ֽכּל‬appears to be Pual perf. 3 m.sg. pausal (the non-pausal form would be ‫ֻא ַכּל‬ with patah in the second syllable). However, the verbal form ‫ ֻא ָ ֽכּל‬here is preceded by ‫ ֵאין‬as a negative and not by ‫לֹא‬, indicating a participle form. Furthermore, ‫ ֻא ָ ֽכּל‬possesses the passive force of the Qal, ‫ ָא ַכל‬, which does not occur in the Piel in the Hebrew Bible. Consequently, the form ‫ ֻא ָ ֽכּל‬here must be taken as Qal passive participle, although there is a view (see GK 52s) that it is a shortened form of ‫( ְמ ֻא ָכּל‬Pual participle). The qamets in the last syllable is characteristic of all passive participles (‫נִ ְק ָטל‬/‫ ְמ ֻק ָטּל‬/‫ ) ָמ ְק ָטל‬and compare ‫ ֻל ָקּח‬above (1). 3

Judges 13:8 (words of Manoah to G-d)

‫יּוּלּד׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫ַ ֽמה־נַּ ֲע ֶ ֖שׂה ַל ַנּ ַ֥ער ַה‬ What shall we do to the child that will be born?

‫יּוּלּד‬ ֽ ָ ‫ ַה‬could be a shortened form of ‫( ַה ְמיֻּ ָלּד‬Pual part. m.sg. + def. art. ‫ )יָ ַלד‬but is likely to be Qal passive participle, since the Piel of ‫ יָ ַלד‬occurs only with the meaning of “cause to bring forth, tend as midwife”, while the Qal ‫“ = יָ ַלד‬bear, bring forth”. The definite article prefix makes it even less likely that the form is a Pual perfect.

IV: Views of medieval scholars on the Qal Passive See David Kimḥi’s Hebrew Grammar (Mikhlol) systematically presented and critically annotated by William Chomsky. Published by Bloch Publishing Company New York 1952. 24 k: Rem. 4, pp 88-89 and Chomsky’s editorial note 146, p 103. Radak points out the occurrence of some verbs in the Pual even though there are no corresponding Piel forms. Radak then suggests that one may create Piel forms on the basis of these Puals, as for example: ‫וְ זֵ ִדים ִט ַבּ ְע ָתּ‬

156

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

“you have drowned the arrogant”and ‫“ ִבּ ְתהֹמֹת ִט ַבּע‬he drowned (them) in the deep”, (phrases found in Jewish synagogue liturgy, the former in the prayer before the morning Amidah/Standing Prayer and the latter in the prayer before the Evening Amidah/Standing Prayer) on the basis of Exodus 15:4: ‫“ ֻט ְבּעוּ‬they were sunk” (Pual perf.). Radak names Samuel haNagid (993-1055/6 CE, a prominent medieval Spanish Jewish scholar) who regarded these ‘Pual’ forms as passives of the Qal. Chomsky gives a fascinating editorial note (146) on this section of Radak, quoting Ibn Ezra’s grammar treatise, “Moznaim” where Samuel ha-Nagid is quoted by Ibn ַ . These latter forms appear to Ezra (Moz. 33a) with regard to ‫ יֻ ַקּח‬and ‫יֻתּן‬ be imperfect Hophal, passive of Hiphil, and were regarded as such by Ibn Janaḥ (c. 985 – 1040 CE) (a prominent medieval Spanish Jewish scholar who wrote a grammar and a dictionary). However, Samuel ha-Nagid regarded ‫ יֻ ַקּח‬and ‫יֻתּן‬ ַ as Qal Passives, since the corresponding Hiphils are not attested and in meaning they are passive of the Qal. i.e. ‫“ = ָל ַקח‬he took” > ‫“ = יֻ ַקּח‬he will be taken”; ‫“ = נָ ַתן‬he gave” > ‫יֻתּן‬ ַ = “he will be given”. Consequently, a serious controversy resulted between the Nagid and Ibn Janaḥ, which is recorded by Ibn Barun (a medieval grammarian and lexicographer) in Kitāb al-Muwazana, ed. Kokowzoff, p 12. Ibn Ezra, himself, however, disagreed with the Nagid and refers these forms to the “heavy” conjugations (Piel and Hiphil). Chomsky concludes his note (146) as follows: “This theory of the existence of a passive Kal in Hebrew was revived and systematically elaborated in modern times, independently of the older Hebrew grammarians, by Boettcher and particularly by Barth—.” In conclusion, we may quote Jouon/Muraoka 58d, who explain why the Qal Passive disappeared. “The passive Qal, some vestiges of which still remain, as we have seen, disappeared little by little from the linguistic consciousness of Hebrew for the phonetic reasons indicated and also because Nifal, having gradually assumed the passive meaning, had made it well-nigh redundant.”

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

157

Glossary of rabbinic Hebrew grammatical terminology

‫אוֹתיּוֹת ָה ִע ָקּר‬ ִ

the root letters

‫ גִּ זְ ָרה‬n.f. > cstr. -‫גִּ זְ ַרת‬ ‫ָדּ ָבר ַא ֵחר > ד"א‬

root (lit. cutting, shape)

another interpretation

‫( ַה ִבּנְ יָ ן ַה ָכּ ֵבד‬used by Ibn Ezra) ‫ַה ִבּנְ יָ ן ַה ָכּ ֵבד ַהנּוֹ ָסף‬

the heavy conjugation/Piel

(used by Ibn Ezra) the additional heavy conjuga-

tion/Hiphil

‫ַה ַטּ ַעם‬

the meaning

‫ַט ְעמוֹ‬

its meaning

‫ַט ַעם‬

“accent” (see Shadal on Isaiah 1:16)

‫לּוֹעז‬ ֵ ‫ַה‬

strange, foreign language (in Rashi refers to Old French) (see Psalm 114:1: ‫לוֹעז‬ ֵ ‫) ֵמ ַעם‬

‫ַל ַעז‬

foreign language (Old French in Rashi)

‫ יְ סוֹד‬n.m.

root > ‫יבה‬ ָ ‫ַה ֵתּ‬

‫ = יְ סוֹד‬the root of the word (Rashi)

‫ימא‬ ָ ‫ְכּמוֹ ְד ֵת‬

as it says

‫יִתּ ֵכן‬ ָ ‫לֹא‬

it is not possible/not likely

‫ָמקוֹר‬

infinitive absolute (used by Radak)

‫ִמ ְשׁ ָקל‬

(morphological) pattern

‫ֶשׁ ֶקל‬

(morphological) pattern (i.e. word pattern, formation)

‫פּוֹעל‬ ַ

verb

158

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

‫יוֹצא‬ ֵ ‫פּוֹעל‬ ַ

transitive verb

‫עוֹמד‬ ֵ ‫פּוֹעל‬ ַ

intransitive verb

‫ְפּ ָע ִלים ֶשׁיֵּ ְצאוּ וְ יַ ַע ְמדוּ‬ ‫ָפּעוּל‬

verbs that are both transitive and intransitive

direct object

‫עוּלים‬ ִ ‫וֹצא ִל ְשׁנֵ י ְפּ‬ ֵ ‫פּוֹעל י‬ ַ

a transitive verb which takes two direct

objects

‫פּוֹעל ָכּ ֵבד‬ ַ

Piel

‫ָפּ ֳע ֵלי ַה ֶכּ ֶפל‬

double ‘ayin verbs (lit. verbs of doubling)

‫יבה‬ ָ ‫ ֵתּ‬n.f.

word

‫ַתּ ְרגּוּם‬

lit. = “translation”, i.e. the Aramaic translation of the Hebrew

Bible.

Brief biographical sketches of medieval scholars (in chronological order) Menaḥem ibn Saruq (910 – 970 CE) He wrote the first complete dictionary in Hebrew, called ‫ ַמ ְח ֶבּ ֶרת ְמנַ ֵחם‬, and since it was written in Hebrew, it was very popular among the Jews of Christian Europe who had no access to Arabic, unlike the Jews of the Spanish school, who were flourishing in the tolerant Islamic civilisation of Spain at that time. Judah ibn Ḥayyūj (950 – 1000 CE) Native of Fas, who wrote in Arabic and who virtually discovered the basic triconsonantal nature of the verbal stem. He was quoted twenty-three times by Ibn Ezra in his commentaries.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

159

Jonah ibn Janaḥ (’Abu’l Walid ibn Merwan) (c. 985 – c. 1040) Born in Cordova. He wrote a grammar and a dictionary, preserved both in the Arabic original and in the Hebrew translation by Judah b. Tibbon. He was often quoted by Ibn Ezra. Samuel ha-Nagid (993 – 1055/6) Vizier of Granada (medieval Muslim Spain). Notable for his high status among both the Arabs and Jews of his time. Mainly a poet and halakhist. Rashi (Rabbi Solomon Yishaki) (1040 – 1105) Born in Troyes, France. It is crucial to remember that despite all the progress made by the end of the eleventh century in Hebrew grammar and lexicography, the results were accessible only to those who knew Arabic, thereby excluding the Jews of Christian Spain, France, Germany and Italy. Hence, Rashi relied on ‫( ַמ ְח ֶבּ ֶרת ְמנַ ֵחם‬see above), quoting it by name more than one hundred and fifty times. However, despite its merit, ‫ ַמ ְח ֶבּ ֶרת ְמנַ ֵחם‬posited uni, bi, tri, quadre, quinque consonantal radicals, and as a result, Rashi’s grasp of the triconsonantal nature of the verbal stem was incomplete. Nevertheless, in complete independence of the Spanish school, Rashi founded a new school of exegesis in Northern France, which endeavoured to arrive at a literal interpretation of the Bible, the peshaṭ, and which used the old Midrashic exegesis selectively. Joseph Kara (1050 – 1125 CE) A colleague or student of Rashi in the peshaṭ school of N France. He wrote commentaries on most of the books of the Bible, of which some have survived. Even more than Rashi, he moved away from reliance on midrashic sources in his exegesis and applied the principles of contextual exegesis. Rashbam (Rabbi Samuel ben Meir) (c. 1080-85 – c. 1174) Commentator on Bible and Talmud. Born in Ramerupt in Northern France. Studied under his grandfather, Rashi, in Troyes. He also wrote a grammati-

160

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

cal work, Sefer Daikut. His biblical commentaries (only his commentary on the Pentateuch has come down almost in its entirety) are characterized by devotion to the peshaṭ (literal meaning of the text). Abraham ibn Ezra (1092 – 1167 CE) Ibn Ezra left Spain in 1140 CE and for the rest of his life wandered over Italy, Provence, Northern France and England. He excelled both as a biblical exegete and as a poet, but especially as a grammarian. His use of Hebrew meant that through his agency, all the Jewish philological research, written in Arabic, became available to the Jews of Christian Europe. He personally translated the most important works of Hayyuj (see above). He also wrote several books on grammar:

.‫רוּרה‬ ָ ‫ ָשׂ ָפה ְבּ‬,‫ ַצחוֹת‬,‫ יְ סוֹד ַה ִדּ ְקדּוּק‬,‫ ְשׂ ַפת יֶ ֶתר‬,‫מֹאזְ נַ יִ ם‬ Ibn Barun (c. 1100) Hebrew grammarian and lexicographer. In his Kitāb al-Muwazana bayn allugha al-‘Ibraniyya wa-al-‘Arabiyya (“The Book of Comparison between the Hebrew and Arabic Language”) he developed the comparative linguistic studies begun by Ibn Quraysh and others. Rabbi David Kimḥi (Radak) Born in Narbonne in 1160 CE. He wrote a two-part work called the Mikhlol, a combination of a Hebrew Grammar and a Dictionary. The Dictionary ָ ‫“( ֵס ֶפר ַה‬Book of Roots”). Radak was later issued separately as ‫שּׁוֹר ִשׁים‬ wrote Hebrew commentaries on many parts of the Bible, generally adhering to the plain meaning (peshaṭ) and referring to a wide range of sources, including Rashi, Ibn Ezra and his own father, Joseph Kimḥi.

PART ONE: THE VERB IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

161

Naḥmanides (Rabbi Moses ben Naḥman/Ramban) (1194 – 1270) Born in Gerona, Spain, he was a halakhist and a biblical commentator, as well as a physician, inheriting the scholarship of both N France and Provence. Isaiah ben Mali di Trani (the Elder, born c. 1200 CE?) An outstanding Italian scholar. Isaiah ben Elijah di Trani (the Younger, c. 1235 – 1300 CE) Grandson of Isaiah ben Mali di Trani the Elder. There is some confusion concerning some biblical commentaries which have been ascribed to di Trani the Elder which perhaps should be ascribed to di Trani the Younger. Samuel David Luzzatto (Shadal) (1800 – 1865) Italian scholar. Appointed Professor of the rabbinical college of Padua in 1829. He wrote Hebrew commentaries on many parts of the Hebrew Bible.

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW INFINITIVE ABSOLUTE In this section, the student is asked: {i} to identify the Infinitive Absolute forms in the fifty biblical verses reproduced here, {ii} to discuss their form and use. Explanatory notes are supplied at the end of the list of verses. The selection of verses is designed to illustrate the various forms of Infinitive Absolute in the different conjugations and also to illustrate the various functions of Infinitive Absolute, which may briefly be summarized as follows: {i} a strengthening complement to finite verbs from the same root, placed either before or after the finite verb. (Jouon/Muraoka describe this function as “accusative of internal object either before or after the verb”, 123d). {ii} an adverbial complement to finite verbs from a different root. {iii} a substitute for any form of a finite verb: {a}: without significant force when an inflected form has already been used, i.e. in connected narrative or discourse. {b}: with more force on its own without a preceding finite form, e.g. in injunctions, in proverbial sayings, in descriptions or where the action is to be vividly expressed. 163

164

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

{iv} as an English gerund (a verbal noun – part verb, part noun – that functions as a noun in a clause). This is a rare use of the Infinitive Absolute however. The explanatory notes further clarify these usages. The student should consult the reference grammar books in the bibliography for further study. Exercise: identify the Infinitive Absolute forms in the following biblical verses. Discuss their form and use. I:

A strengthening complement to finite verbs from the same root, placed either before or after the verb. (1-23).

1

Genesis 2:17

‫אכ֖ל ִמ ֶ ֑מּנּוּ ִ֗כּי ְבּי֛ וֹם ֲא ָכ ְלָך֥ ִמ ֶ ֖מּנּוּ ֥מוֹת‬ ַ ֹ ‫וּמ ֗ ֵעץ ַה ַ ֙דּ ַע ֙ת ֣טוֹב וָ ָ ֔רע ֥ל ֹא ת‬ ֵ ‫ָתּ ֽמוּת׃‬ But from the tree of knowledge of good and evil, you shall not eat from it, for on the day that you eat from it, you shall surely die. 2

I Samuel 9:6

‫ים ָבּ ִ ֣עיר ַה ֔זּ ֹאת וְ ָה ִ ֣אישׁ נִ ְכ ָ֔בּד ֥כֹּל ֲא ֶשׁר־יְ ַד ֵ ֖בּר ֣בּוֹא‬ ֙ ‫ֹלה‬ ִ ‫ישׁ־א‬ ֱ ‫ה־נ֤א ִא‬ ָ ֵ‫ִהנּ‬ ‫֑יָבוֹא‬ Behold, now, there is in this city a man of G-d, and the man is honourable; all that he says will surely come about. 3

Exodus 21:28

‫ת־א ָ ֖שּׁה וָ ֵ ֑מת ָס ֨קוֹל יִ ָסּ ֵ ֜קל ַה ֗שּׁוֹר וְ ֤ל ֹא‬ ִ ‫ת־אישׁ ֥אוֹ ֶא‬ ֛ ִ ‫וְ ִ ֽכי־יִ ֨ ַגּח ֥שׁוֹר ֶא‬ ‫וּב ַעל ַה ֖שּׁוֹר נָ ִ ֽ קי׃‬ ֥ ַ ‫ת־בּ ָשׂ ֔רוֹ‬ ְ ‫יֵ ָא ֵכל֙ ֶא‬

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

165

If an ox gores a man or a woman and they die, the ox shall surely be stoned and its flesh shall not be eaten, and the owner of the ox shall be free. 4

Jeremiah 32:4

‫תן ְבּ ַי֣ד‬ ֙ ֵ ָ‫תן יִ נּ‬ ֹ ֤ ָ‫יִמּ ֵל֖ט ִמַיּ֣ד ַה ַכּ ְשׂ ִ ֑דּים ִ ֣כּי ִהנּ‬ ָ ‫הוּדה ֥ל ֹא‬ ֔ ָ ְ‫הוּ ֶ ֣מ ֶלְך י‬ ֙ ‫ק‬ ָ֙‫וְ ִצ ְד ִ יּ‬ ‫ְך־בּ ֶ֔בל‬ ָ ‫ֶ ֽמ ֶל‬ And Zedekiah King of Judah shall not escape from the hand of the Chaldeans, but he shall surely be delivered into the hand of the King of Babylon. 5

Deuteronomy 7:26

‫מהוּ ַשׁ ֵ ֧קּץ ְתּ ַשׁ ְקּ ֶצ֛נּוּ וְ ַת ֵ ֥עב‬ ֹ ֑ ‫֥ית ֵ ֖ח ֶרם ָכּ‬ ָ ִ‫יתָך וְ ָהי‬ ֶ֔ ‫ל־בּ‬ ֵ ‫וֹע ָב ֙ה ֶא‬ ֵ ‫א־ת ִ ֤ביא ֽת‬ ָ ֹ ‫וְ ל‬ ‫י־ח ֶרם ֽהוּא׃‬ ֥ ֵ ‫ְ ֽתּ ַת ֲע ֶ ֖בנּוּ ִכּ‬ And you shall not bring an abomination into your house and become a devoted thing like it, (but) you shall utterly detest it and you shall utterly abhor it, for it is a devoted thing. 6

Exodus 22:3

‫ד־שׂה ַח ִיּ֑ים ְשׁ ַנ֖ יִם‬ ֖ ֶ ‫ד־ח ֛מוֹר ַע‬ ֲ ‫ם־ה ָמּ ֵצ ֩א ִת ָמּ ֵ֨צא ְביָ ֜דוֹ ַהגְּ נֵ ָ֗בה ִמ ֧שּׁוֹר ַע‬ ִ ‫ִ ֽא‬ ‫יְ ַשׁ ֵ ֽלּם׃‬ If the thing stolen shall indeed be found in his hand, whether ox or ass or sheep, alive, he shall restore double. 7

Exodus 22:11

‫וְ ִאם־גָּ ֹ֥נב יִ גָּ ֵנ֖ב ֵמ ִע ֑מּוֹ יְ ַשׁ ֵלּ֖ם ִל ְב ָע ָ ֽליו׃‬

166

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

But if it shall indeed be stolen from him, he shall make restitution to its owner. 8

Genesis 37:8

‫יּוֹספוּ‬ ֤ ִ ַ‫ם־מ ֥שׁוֹל ִתּ ְמ ֖שׁ ֹל ָ ֑בּנוּ ו‬ ָ ‫ֹלְך ָע ֔ ֵלינוּ ִא‬ ֙ ‫אמרוּ לוֹ֙ ֶא ָ֔חיו ֲה ָמ ֹ֤לְך ִתּ ְמ‬ ְ ֹ ‫וַ ֤יּ‬ ְ ‫ל־חֹלמ ָ ֹ֖תיו וְ ַע‬ ֲ ‫עוֹד ְשׂ ֣נ ֹא א ֹ֔תוֹ ַע‬ ‫ל־דּ ָב ָ ֽריו׃‬ ֙ And his brothers said to him, ‘will you indeed reign over us or will you indeed have dominion over us?’ And they hated him more for his dreams and for his words. 9

Numbers 22:37

‫א־לְך ָל ָ֥מּה‬ ָ ֔ ֹ ‫ל־בּ ְל ֗ ָעם ֲהל ֹ ֩א ָשׁ ֹ֨ל ַח ָשׁ ַל ְ֤ח ִתּי ֵא ֶ ֙ל ֙יָך ִל ְקר‬ ִ ‫אמר ָבּ ֜ ָלק ֶא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֨יּ‬ ַ ‫א־ה ַל ְ֖כ ָתּ ֵא ָל֑י ַ ֽה ֻא ְמ ָ֔נם ֥ל ֹא‬ ‫אוּכ֖ל ַכּ ְבּ ֶ ֽדָך׃‬ ָ ֹ‫ל‬ And Balak said to Balaam, ‘did I not indeed send to you to call you? Why did you not come to me? Am I not indeed able to honour you?’ 10

Numbers 23:11

‫ית ִ ֑לי ָל ֤קֹב אֹיְ ַ ֙בי ְל ַק ְח ִ֔תּיָך וְ ִה ֵנּ֖ה‬ ָ ‫ל־בּ ְל ֔ ָעם ֶ ֥מה ָע ִ ֖שׂ‬ ִ ‫אמר ָבּ ָל ֙ק ֶא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֤יּ‬ ‫ֵבּ ַ ֥ר ְכ ָתּ ָב ֵ ֽרְך׃‬ And Balak said to Balaam, ‘what have you done to me? I took you to curse my enemies and behold you have surely blessed (them)’. 11

II Kings 5:11

‫אמר֩ ִה ֵ֨נּה ָא ַ֜מ ְר ִתּי ֵא ַל֣י יֵ ֵצ֣א יָ ֗צוֹא וְ ָע ַמ ֙ד וְ ָק ָר ֙א‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ יִּ ְק ֥צֹף נַ ֲע ָ ֖מן וַ יֵּ ַלְ֑ך וַ יּ‬ ‫ל־ה ָמּ ֖קוֹם וְ ָא ַ ֥סף ַה ְמּצ ָ ֹֽרע׃‬ ַ ‫ֹלהיו וְ ֵה ִנ֥יף יָ ֛דוֹ ֶא‬ ָ֔ ‫הו֣ה ֱא‬ ָ ְ‫ְבּ ֵשׁם־י‬

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

167

And Na‘aman was angry and he went away, and he said, ‘behold I thought, he will surely come out to me, and he will stand and call on the name of the Lord his G-d, and he will wave his hand over the place and he will heal the leper’. 12 Genesis 31:15

‫ת־כּ ְס ֵ ֽפּנוּ׃‬ ַ ‫ם־א ֖כוֹל ֶא‬ ָ ַ‫אכל גּ‬ ַ ֹ ‫ֲה ֧לוֹא נָ ְכ ִריּ֛ וֹת נֶ ְח ַ ֥שׁ ְבנוּ ֖לוֹ ִ ֣כּי ְמ ָכ ָ ֑רנוּ וַ ֥יּ‬ Are we not accounted as foreigners to him, for he has sold us and has indeed consumed our money. 13

Numbers 11:32

‫פוּ‬ ֙ ‫ל־ה ֜ ַלּיְ ָלה וְ ֣כֹל י֣ וֹם ַ ֽה ָמּ ֳח ָ ֗רת וַ ַיּ ַֽא ְס‬ ַ ‫יּוֹם ַה ֨הוּא וְ ָכ‬ ֩ ‫ל־ה‬ ַ ‫וַ ָיּ֣ ָ קם ָה ֡ ָעם ָכּ‬ ‫וֹח‬ ַ ‫ת־ה ְשּׂ ֔ ָלו ַה ַמּ ְמ ֕ ִעיט ָא ַ ֖סף ֲע ָשׂ ָ ֣רה ֳח ָמ ִ ֑רים וַ יִּ ְשׁ ְט ֤חוּ ָל ֶה ֙ם ָשׁ ֔ט‬ ַ ‫ֶא‬ ‫ְס ִב ֖יבוֹת ַ ֽה ַמּ ֲח ֶנֽה׃‬ And the people arose all that day and all the night and all the next day, and they gathered the quails; he that gathered least gathered (a quantity of) ten homer, and they kept spreading for themselves round the camp. 14

Genesis 8:7

‫וֹא וָ ֔שׁוֹב ַעד־יְ ֥ב ֹ ֶשׁת ַה ַ ֖מּיִם ֵמ ַ ֥על ָה ָ ֽא ֶרץ׃‬ ֙ ‫ת־הע ֵ ֹ֑רב וַ יֵּ ֵצ֤א יָ צ‬ ָ ֽ ‫וַ יְ ַשׁ ַלּ֖ח ֶא‬ And he sent forth the raven and it went out and back continually until the waters were dried up from upon the earth. 15

II Kings 2:11

‫וּסי ֵ֔אשׁ וַ יַּ ְפ ִ ֖רדוּ ֵבּ֣ין‬ ֵ ‫ב־א ֙שׁ וְ ֣ס‬ ֵ ‫לוְֹך וְ ַד ֵ֔בּר וְ ִה ֵנּ֤ה ֶ ֽר ֶכ‬ ֙ ‫וַ יְ ִ֗הי ֵ ֣ה ָמּה ה ְֹל ִ ֤כים ָה‬ ‫יהם וַ יַּ֙ ַעל֙ ֵ ֣א ִל ָ֔יּהוּ ַ ֽבּ ְס ָע ָ ֖רה ַה ָשּׁ ָ ֽמיִ ם׃‬ ֑ ֶ ֵ‫ְשׁנ‬

168

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

They were walking along, talking as they went, and behold, there was a chariot of fire and horses of fire, and they separated between the two of them, and Elijah went up in the storm-wind to the Heavens. 16 Genesis 8:3

‫וַ יָּ ֻ ֧שׁבוּ ַה ַ ֛מּיִ ם ֵמ ַ ֥על ָה ָ ֖א ֶרץ ָה ֣לוְֹך וָ ֑שׁוֹב וַ יַּ ְח ְס ֣רוּ ַה ַ֔מּיִ ם ִמ ְק ֵ֕צה ֲח ִמ ִ ֥שּׁים‬ ‫וּמ ַ ֖את יֽ וֹם׃‬ ְ And the waters receded from upon the earth continually, and the waters diminished at the end of one hundred and fifty days. 17

Genesis 12:9

‫וֹע ַה ֶנּֽ גְ ָבּה׃‬ ַ ‫וַ יִּ ַ ֣סּע ַא ְב ָ ֔רם ָה ֥לוְֹך וְ נָ ֖ס‬ And Abram journeyed continually toward the South. 18

Genesis 26:13

‫אד׃‬ ֹ ֽ ‫לוְֹך וְ גָ ֵ ֔דל ַ ֥עד ִ ֽכּי־גָ ַ ֖דל ְמ‬ ֙ ‫וַ יִּ גְ ַ ֖דּל ָה ִ ֑אישׁ וַ ֵיּ ֶ֤לְך ָה‬ And the man became great and he continued becoming greater, until he was very great. 19

Jeremiah 41:6

‫הי‬ ֙ ִ ְ‫ן־ה ִמּ ְצ ֔ ָפּה ה ֵ ֹ֥לְך ָה ֹ֖לְך וּב ֶֹכ֑ה ַוֽ י‬ ַ ‫את ֙ם ִמ‬ ָ ‫ַו֠יֵּ ֵצא יִ ְשׁ ָמ ֨ ֵעאל ֶבּן־נְ ַתנְ ָי֤ה ִל ְק ָר‬ ֶ֔ ‫אמר ֲא ֵל‬ ֶ ֹ ‫ִכּ ְפ ֣ג ֹשׁ א ָֹ֔תם וַ ֣יּ‬ ‫ן־א ִחי ָ ֽ קם׃‬ ֲ ‫יהם ֖בֹּאוּ ֶאל־גְּ ַד ְל ָי֥הוּ ֶב‬ And Ishmael the son of Netanya went out from Mitspah to meet them, weeping continually as he went, and it was, when he met them, that he said to them, ‘Come to Gedaliah son of Ahikam’.

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169

20 Isaiah 30:19

‫א־ת ְב ֶ֗כּה ָחנ֤ וֹן יָ ְחנְ ָ֙ך ְל ֣קוֹל זַ ֲע ֶ ֔קָך‬ ִ ֹ ‫וּשׁ ָל ִ֑ם ָבּ ֣כוֹ ֽל‬ ָ ‫י־עם ְבּ ִציּ֥ וֹן יֵ ֵ ֖שׁב ִבּ ֽיר‬ ֛ ַ ‫ִכּ‬ ‫ְכּ ָשׁ ְמ ָע ֖תוֹ ָע ָנֽ ְך׃‬ For, O people that dwells in Zion, in Jerusalem, you shall weep no more; He will surely be gracious to you at the sound of your cry, when He hears it, He will answer you. 21

Amos 9:8

‫הוה ַבּ ַמּ ְמ ָל ָכ ֙ה ַ ֽה ַח ָטּ ָ֔אה וְ ִה ְשׁ ַמ ְד ִ ֣תּי א ָֹ֔תהּ ֵמ ַ ֖על ְפּ ֵנ֣י‬ ִ֗ ְ‫ִה ֵ֞נּה ֵע ֵינ֣י ֲאד ָֹנ֣י י‬ ‫הוֽה׃‬ ָ ְ‫ת־בּית יַ ֲע ֖קֹב נְ ֻאם־י‬ ֥ ֵ ‫ָה ֲא ָד ָ ֑מה ֶ֗א ֶפס ֠ ִכּי ֣ל ֹא ַה ְשׁ ֵ ֥מיד ַא ְשׁ ִ ֛מיד ֶא‬ Behold, the eyes of the Lord are upon the sinful kingdom, and I shall destroy it from upon the face of the earth, except that I will not utterly destroy the House of Jacob, says the Lord. 22

Numbers 11:15

‫אתי ֵ ֖חן ְבּ ֵע ֶינ֑יָך‬ ִ ‫ם־מ ָ ֥צ‬ ָ ‫־ע ֹ ֶשׂה ֗ ִלּי ָה ְר ֵג֤נִ י נָ ֙א ָה ֔ר ֹג ִא‬ ֣ ‫ם־כּ ָ֣כה ַא ְתּ‬ ָ ‫וְ ִא‬ ‫ל־א ְר ֶ ֖אה ְבּ ָר ָע ִ ֽתי׃‬ ֶ ‫וְ ַא‬ And if thus You are doing to me, please kill me, if I have found favour in Your eyes, and let me not see my evil. 23

Genesis 46:4

‫יוֹסף יָ ִ ֥שׁית יָ ֖דוֹ‬ ֵ֕ ְ‫ָאנ ִֹ֗כי ֵא ֵ ֤רד ִע ְמּ ָ֙ך ִמ ְצ ַ ֔ריְ ָמה וְ ָאנ ִ ֹ֖כי ַ ֽא ַע ְלָך֣ גַ ם־ ָע ֹ֑לה ו‬ ‫ל־ע ֶינֽיָך׃‬ ֵ ‫ַע‬

170

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

I will go down with you to Egypt and I will also surely bring you up, and Joseph will place his hand on your eyes. II: An adverbial complement to finite verbs from a different root (24-26). 24 I Samuel 3:12

‫יתוֹ ָה ֵ ֖חל‬ ֑ ‫ל־בּ‬ ֵ ‫ל־א ֶ ֥שׁר ִדּ ַ ֖בּ ְר ִתּי ֶא‬ ֲ ‫ל־ע ֔ ִלי ֵ ֛את ָכּ‬ ֵ ‫הוּא ָא ִ ֣ קים ֶא‬ ֙ ‫ַבּיּ֤ וֹם ַה‬ ‫וְ ַכ ֵ ֽלּה׃‬ On that day I will fulfill for Eli all that I have said concerning his house, from beginning to end. 25

I Samuel 26:21

‫א־א ַ ֤רע ְל ָ֙ך ֔עוֹד ֠ ַתּ ַחת ֲא ֶ֨שׁר‬ ָ ֹ ‫י־ד ִ֗וד ֠ ִכּי ֽל‬ ָ ‫אתי ֣שׁוּב ְבּ ִ ֽנ‬ ִ ‫אמר֩ ָשׁ ֨אוּל ָח ָ֜ט‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ יּ‬ ‫אד׃‬ ֹ ֽ ‫יָ ְק ָ ֥רה נַ ְפ ִ ֛שׁי ְבּ ֵע ֶינ֖יָך ַהיּ֣ וֹם ַה ֶזּ֑ה ִה ֵנּ֥ה ִה ְס ַכּ ְ֛ל ִתּי וָ ֶא ְשׁ ֶגּ֖ה ַה ְר ֵ ֥בּה ְמ‬ And Saul said, ‘I have sinned, return, my son, David, for I will no longer harm you, because my life was precious in your sight this day; behold, I have acted foolishly and have erred greatly’. 26

Exodus 32:8

֙‫יתם ָע ֣שׂוּ ָל ֶ֔הם ֵ ֖עגֶ ל ַמ ֵסּ ָ ֑כה וַ יִּ ְשׁ ַ ֽתּ ֲחווּ־לוֹ‬ ִ֔ ִ‫שׁר ִצוּ‬ ֣ ֶ ‫ן־ה ֶ ֙דּ ֶר ְ֙ך ֲא‬ ַ ‫ָ ֣סרוּ ַמ ֵ֗הר ִמ‬ ְ ֹ ‫חוּ־לוֹ וַ ֣יּ‬ ‫ֹלה ֙יָך יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ֔אל ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ֽ ֶה ֱע ֖לוָּך ֵמ ֶ ֥א ֶרץ ִמ ְצ ָ ֽריִ ם׃‬ ֶ֙ ‫אמ ֔רוּ ֵ ֤א ֶלּה ֱא‬ ֔ ‫וַ יִּ זְ ְבּ‬ They have turned aside quickly from the way which I commanded them, they have made for themselves a molten calf and they have bowed down to it and sacrificed to it and they said: ‘these are your gods, O Israel, who brought you up from the land of Egypt’.

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

171

III: Infinitive Absolute as a substitute for any form of a finite verb (27-44). 27

Judges 7:19

‫מ ֶרת‬ ֹ ֣ ‫ר־א ֜תּוֹ ִבּ ְק ֵצ֣ה ַ ֽה ַמּ ֲח ֶ֗נה ֚ר ֹאשׁ ָה ַא ְשׁ‬ ִ ‫ה־אישׁ ֲא ֶשׁ‬ ִ֨ ‫וּמ ָא‬ ֵ ‫וַ יָּ ֣ב ֹא ִ֠ג ְדעוֹן‬ ‫וֹפ ֔רוֹת וְ נָ ֥פוֹץ‬ ָ ‫עוּ ַבּ ֣שּׁ‬ ֙ ‫ת־ה ֽשּׁ ֹ ְמ ִ ֑רים ַוֽ יִּ ְת ְק‬ ָ֔ ‫ַה ִ ֽתּ‬ ַ ‫יכוֹנה ַ ֛אְך ָה ֵ ֥ קם ֵה ִ ֖ קימוּ ֶא‬ ‫ַה ַכּ ִ ֖דּים ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ְבּיָ ָ ֽדם׃‬ So Gideon and the hundred men with him came to the edge of the camp, at the beginning of the middle watch, (when) they had just stationed the sentinels, and they blew the trumpets and shattered the pitchers which were in their hand(s). 28

Exodus 8:11

‫ת־ל ֔בּוֹ וְ ֥ל ֹא ָשׁ ַ ֖מע ֲא ֵל ֶ ֑הם‬ ִ ‫וַ ַיּ֣ ְ רא ַפּ ְר ֗עֹה ִ ֤כּי ָ ֽהיְ ָת ֙ה ָ ֽה ְרוָ ָ֔חה וְ ַה ְכ ֵבּ ֙ד ֶא‬ ‫הוֽה׃‬ ָ ְ‫ַכּ ֲא ֶ ֖שׁר ִדּ ֶ ֥בּר י‬ And Pharoah saw that there was respite and he hardened his heart, and he did not listen to them, as the Lord had spoken. 29

Genesis 41:43

‫ר־לוֹ וַ יִּ ְק ְר ֥אוּ ְל ָפ ָנ֖יו ַא ְב ֵ ֑רְך וְ נָ ֣תוֹן‬ ֔ ‫וַ יַּ ְר ֵכּ֣ב א ֹ֗תוֹ ְבּ ִמ ְר ֶכּ ֶ֤בת ַה ִמּ ְשׁנֶ ֙ה ֲא ֶשׁ‬ ‫ל־א ֶרץ ִמ ְצ ָ ֽריִ ם׃‬ ֥ ֶ ‫א ֹ֔תוֹ ַ ֖על ָכּ‬ And he made him to ride in the second chariot which he had and they called out before him Avrekh and they placed him over the whole land of Egypt.

172 30

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Zechariah 3:4

‫מר ָה ִ ֛סירוּ ַה ְבּגָ ִ ֥דים ַהצּ ִ ֹ֖אים ֵמ ָע ָל֑יו‬ ֹ ֔ ‫ל־הע ְֹמ ִ ֣דים ְל ָפנָ ֙יו ֵלא‬ ָ ‫אמר ֶא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ַיּ ַ֣ען וַ ֗יּ‬ ‫אמר ֵא ֗ ָליו ְר ֵ֨אה ֶה ֱע ַ ֤ב ְר ִתּי ֵמ ָע ֶ ֙ל ֙יָך ֲעו ֶֹ֔נָך וְ ַה ְל ֵ ֥בּשׁ א ְֹתָך֖ ַמ ֲח ָל ֽצוֹת׃‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣יּ‬ And he answered and he spoke to those who stood before him, saying, ‘remove the filthy garments from upon him’, and he said to him, ‘see, I have caused your iniquity to pass from upon you and I will clothe you with robes’. 31

Ecclesiastes 9:11

‫בּוֹרים‬ ֣ ִ ִ‫ת־ה ֶ֗שּׁ ֶמשׁ ִ ֣כּי ל ֹ ֩א ַל ַקּ ֨ ִלּים ַה ֵמּ ֜רוֹץ וְ ֧ל ֹא ַלגּ‬ ַ ‫אה ַ ֽת ַח‬ ֹ ֣ ‫ַ֜שׁ ְב ִתּי וְ ָר‬ ‫ַה ִמּ ְל ָח ָ֗מה ְו֠גַ ם ֣ל ֹא ַל ֲח ָכ ִ ֥מים ֶ ֙ל ֶח ֙ם וְ ֨ ַגם ֤ל ֹא ַלנְּ בֹנִ ֙ים ֔ע ֹ ֶשׁר וְ ַג֛ם ֥ל ֹא‬ ‫ת־כּ ָ ֽלּם׃‬ ֻ ‫י־עת וָ ֶ ֖פגַ ע יִ ְק ֶ ֥רה ֶא‬ ֥ ֵ ‫ַליּ ְֹד ִ ֖עים ֵ ֑חן ִכּ‬ I returned and saw under the sun that the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, nor even is bread to the wise, nor wealth to men of understanding nor favour to men of skill, but time and chance happens to them all. 32

Jeremiah 14:5

‫א־ה ָי֖ה ֶ ֽדּ ֶשׁא׃‬ ָ ֹ ‫ם־א ֶל ֙ת ַבּ ָשּׂ ֶ ֔דה יָ ְל ָ ֖דה וְ ָעז֑ וֹב ִ ֥כּי ֽל‬ ֶ֙‫ִ ֤כּי גַ ַ יּ‬ Even the hind in the field gives birth and (then) abandons (its young), because there is no grass. 33

Jeremiah 32:44

‫ם ְבּ ֶ֨א ֶרץ ִבּנְ יָ ִ֜מן‬ ֒ ‫תוֹם וְ ָה ֵע֣ד ֵע ִדי‬ ֮ ‫ָשׂ ֞דוֹת ַבּ ֶכּ ֶ֣סף יִ ְקנ֗ וּ וְ ָכ ֨תוֹב ַבּ ֵ ֥סּ ֶפר וְ ָח‬ ְ ‫וּב ָע ֵ ֥רי ַה ְשּׁ ֵפ ָ ֖לה‬ ‫וּב ָע ֵ ֣רי‬ ְ ‫וּב ָע ֵ ֣רי ָה ָ֔הר‬ ְ ‫הוּד ֙ה‬ ָ ְ‫וּב ָע ֵ ֤רי י‬ ְ ‫רוּשׁ ֗ ַל ִם‬ ָ ְ‫וּב ְס ִב ֵיב֣י י‬ ִ ‫בוּתם‬ ֖ ָ ‫ת־שׁ‬ ְ ‫י־א ִ ֥שׁיב ֶא‬ ָ ‫ַה ֶ ֑נּ גֶ ב ִ ֽכּ‬

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

173

They will buy fields with money and they will write (it) in the book and they will seal (it) and they will call witnesses in the land of Benjamin and in the surroundings of Jerusalem and in the cities of Judah and in the cities of the mountain and in the cities of the Lowland and in the cities of the South, for I will return their captivity. 34

Esther 8:8

‫שׁם ַה ֶ֔מּ ֶלְך וְ ִח ְת ֖מוּ‬ ֣ ֵ ‫יכ ֙ם ְבּ‬ ֶ ֵ‫הוּדים ַכּ ֤טּוֹב ְבּ ֵ ֽעינ‬ ֜ ִ ְ‫ל־היּ‬ ַ ‫ְו ַ֠א ֶתּם ִכּ ְת ֨בוּ ַע‬ ‫ם־ה ֶ֗מּ ֶלְך וְ נַ ְח ֛תּוֹם ְבּ ַט ַ ֥בּ ַעת‬ ַ ‫י־כ ָ֞תב ֲא ֶשׁר־נִ ְכ ָ ֣תּב ְבּ ֵשׁ‬ ְ ‫ְבּ ַט ַ ֣בּ ַעת ַה ֶ ֑מּ ֶלְך ִ ֽכּ‬ ‫ַה ֶ ֖מּ ֶלְך ֵ ֥אין ְל ָה ִ ֽשׁיב׃‬ And you write about the Jews as is good in your eyes in the name of the King, and seal (it) with the ring of the King, for a writing which is written in the name of the King and sealed with the ring of the King, one cannot revoke. 35 Exodus 20:8

‫זָ ֛כוֹר֩ ֶאת־י֥ וֹם ַה ַשּׁ ָ ֖בּת ְל ַק ְדּ ֽשׁוֹ‬ Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy. 36

Deuteronomy 5:12

‫וֹם ַה ַשּׁ ָ ֖בּת ְל ַק ְדּ ֑שׁוֹ‬ ֩ ֥‫ָשׁ ֛מוֹר ֶאת־י‬ Keep the Sabbath day to sanctify it. 37

Jeremiah 2:2

‫הוה זָ ַכ ְ֤ר ִתּי ָל ְ֙ך ֶ ֣ח ֶסד‬ ָ֔ ְ‫מר ֚כֹּה ָא ַ ֣מר י‬ ֹ ֗ ‫רוּשׁ ֜ ַל ִם ֵלא‬ ָ ְ‫את ְב ָאזְ נֵ ֙י י‬ ֩ ָ ‫ָה ֹ֡לְך וְ ָ ֽ ק ָר‬ ‫רוּעה׃‬ ֽ ָ ְ‫לוֹּלתיִ ְך ֶל ְכ ֵ ֤תְּך ַא ֲח ַר֙י ַבּ ִמּ ְד ָ֔בּר ְבּ ֶ ֖א ֶרץ ֥ל ֹא ז‬ ֑ ָ ‫עוּריִ ְך ַא ֲה ַ ֖בת ְכּ‬ ֔ ַ ְ‫נ‬

174

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Go and call in the ears of Jerusalem saying, ‘Thus says the Lord, I remember for you the kindness of your youth, the love of your nuptials, when you went after Me in the wilderness, in a land that was not sown’. 38

Deuteronomy 31:26

‫הו֖ה‬ ָ ְ‫תּוֹר ֙ה ַה ֶ֔זּה וְ ַשׂ ְמ ֶ ֣תּם א ֹ֔תוֹ ִמ ַצּ֛ד ֲא ֥רוֹן ְבּ ִרית־י‬ ָ ‫ָל ֗קֹ ַח ֵ ֣את ֵ ֤ס ֶפר ַה‬ ‫ה־שׁם ְבָּך֖ ְל ֵ ֽעד׃‬ ֥ ָ ָ‫ֹלה ֶיכ֑ם וְ ָ ֽהי‬ ֵ ‫ֱא‬ Take this book of the Law and you shall place it beside the Ark of the Covenant of the Lord your G-d, and it shall be there as a witness against you. 39 Deuteronomy 1:16

‫וּשׁ ַפ ְט ֶ ֣תּם‬ ְ ‫יכ ֙ם‬ ֶ ‫ין־א ֵח‬ ֲ ‫מ ַע ֵבּ‬ ֹ ֤ ‫מר ָשׁ‬ ֹ ֑ ‫יכם ָבּ ֵ ֥עת ַה ִ ֖הוא ֵלא‬ ֶ֔ ‫וָ ֲא ַצוֶּ ֙ה ֶאת־ ֣שׁ ֹ ְפ ֵט‬ ‫ֶ֔צ ֶדק‬ And I commanded your judges at that time saying, ‘hear (the claims) between your brothers and you shall judge justly’. 40

Hosea 4:2

‫אף ָפּ ָ ֕רצוּ וְ ָד ִ ֥מים ְבּ ָד ִ ֖מים נָ ָגֽעוּ׃‬ ֹ ֑ ָ‫ָא ֹ֣לה וְ ַכ ֵ֔חשׁ וְ ָר ֥צֹ ַח וְ גָ ֹ֖נב וְ נ‬ There is swearing and lying and killing and stealing and committing adultery; they break all bounds and blood touches blood. 41

Jeremiah 7:9

‫ֹלהים‬ ֥ ִ ‫אף וְ ִה ָשּׁ ֵ ֥ב ַע ַל ֶ ֖שּׁ ֶקר וְ ַק ֵ ֣טּר ַל ָ ֑בּ ַעל וְ ָה ֹ֗לְך ַא ֲח ֵ ֛רי ֱא‬ ֹ ֗ ָ‫ֲהגָ ֹ֤נב ָר ֨צ ֹ ַח ְ ֽונ‬ ‫ֲא ֵח ִ ֖רים ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ֽל ֹא־יְ ַד ְע ֶ ֽתּם׃‬

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

175

Will you steal, murder and commit adultery and swear falsely and burn incense to Baal, and will you go after other gods which you do not know? 42

Jeremiah 3:1

‫ישׁ־א ֵ֗חר ֲהיָ ֤שׁוּב‬ ַ ‫יְתה ְל ִא‬ ֣ ָ ‫ת־א ְשׁתּוֹ֩ וְ ָה ְל ָ֨כה ֵמ ִא ֜תּוֹ וְ ָה‬ ִ ‫ֵ ֣הן יְ ַשׁ ַלּ֣ח ִ ֣אישׁ ֶא‬ ‫יה ֔עוֹד ֲה ֛לוֹא ָחנ֥ וֹף ֶתּ ֱח ַנ֖ ף ָה ָ ֣א ֶרץ ַה ִ ֑היא וְ ַ֗א ְתּ זָ נִ ֙ית ֵר ִ ֣עים ַר ִ֔בּים‬ ָ֙ ‫ֵא ֶ ֙ל‬ ‫וְ ֥שׁוֹב ֵא ַ ֖לי‬ If a man sends away his wife and she goes from him and becomes another man’s, can he return to her again? Shall not that land be greatly polluted? And you have played the harlot with many lovers, and will you return to me? 43 Numbers 15:35

‫יוּמת ָה ִ ֑אישׁ ָר ֨גוֹם א ֹ֤תוֹ ָ ֽב ֲא ָבנִ ֙ים‬ ֖ ַ ‫אמר יְ הוָ ֙ה ֶאל־מ ֶֹ֔שׁה ֥מוֹת‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֤יּ‬ ‫ל־ה ֵע ָ ֔דה ִמ ֖חוּץ ַל ַֽמּ ֲח ֶנֽה׃‬ ֣ ָ ‫ָכּ‬ And the Lord said to Moses, the man shall surely be put to death; all the congregation shall stone him with stones outside the camp. 44

Deuteronomy 15:2

‫שּׁה יָ ֔דוֹ ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר יַ ֶ ֖שּׁה ְבּ ֵר ֵ ֑עהוּ‬ ֣ ֵ ‫ל־בּ ַעל֙ ַמ‬ ַ֙ ‫ה ָשׁ ֗מוֹט ָכּ‬ ֒ ‫וְ זֶ ֮ה ְדּ ַ ֣בר ַה ְשּׁ ִמ ָטּ‬ ‫יהוֽה׃‬ ָ ‫י־ק ָ ֥רא ְשׁ ִמ ָ ֖טּה ַ ֽל‬ ָ ‫ת־א ִ֔חיו ִ ֽכּ‬ ָ ‫הוּ וְ ֶא‬ ֙ ‫ת־ר ֙ ֵע‬ ֵ ‫ֽל ֹא־יִ ֤גּ ֹשׂ ֶא‬ And this is the manner of the release; every creditor (lit. every possessor of a loan of his hand) who lends to his neighbour, he shall not exact (it of) his neighbour and his brother, for he has proclaimed a release to the Lord.

176

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

IV: Use of Infinitive Absolute as an English gerund (a verbal noun – part verb, part noun – that functions as a noun in a clause) (4550). 45

Proverbs 28:21

  ‫ע־גּ ֶֽבר׃‬ ָ ‫ת־ל ֶחם יִ ְפ ַשׁ‬ ֶ ֗ ‫ל־פּ‬ ַ ‫א־טוֹב וְ ַע‬ ֑ ֹ ‫ר־פּ ִ ֥נים ל‬ ָ ‫ַ ֽה ֵכּ‬ Showing partiality (in judgment) is not good; for a morsel of bread, a man will sin. 46

Isaiah 1:17

‫יטב ִדּ ְר ֥שׁוּ ִמ ְשׁ ָ ֖פּט ַא ְשּׁ ֣רוּ ָח ֑מוֹץ ִשׁ ְפ ֣טוּ יָ ֔תוֹם ִ ֖ריבוּ ַא ְל ָמ ָנֽה׃‬ ֛ ֵ ‫ִל ְמ ֥דוּ ֵה‬ Learn to do well, seek justice, relieve the oppressed, judge the orphan, plead for the widow. 47

Isaiah 42:24

‫הו֑ה ז֚וּ‬ ָ ְ‫שׁוֹסה ] ִל ְמ ִשׁ ָ ֧סּה[ יַ ֲע ֛קֹב וְ יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֥אל ְלבֹזְ ִז֖ים ֲה ֣לוֹא י‬ ֶ ‫ִ ֽמי־נָ ַ֨תן ִל ְמ‬ ָ ֹ ‫ָח ָ ֣טאנוּ ֔לוֹ וְ ֽל‬ ‫תוֹר ֽתוֹ׃‬ ָ ‫א־א ֤בוּ ִב ְד ָר ָכ ֙יו ָה ֔לוְֹך וְ ֥ל ֹא ָשׁ ְמ ֖עוּ ְבּ‬ Who gave Jacob for a spoil and Israel to robbers? Was it not the Lord, against Whom we have sinned, and they were not willing to walk in His ways and they did not listen to His Law. 48

Isaiah 22:13

‫וְ ִה ֵנּ֣ה ָשׂ ֣שׂוֹן וְ ִשׂ ְמ ָ֗חה ָה ֤ר ֹג ָבּ ָק ֙ר וְ ָשׁ ֣חֹט ֔צ ֹאן ָא ֥כֹל ָבּ ָ ֖שׂר וְ ָשׁ ֣תוֹת ָ ֑י יִ ן‬ ‫ָא ֣כוֹל וְ ָשׁ ֔תוֹ ִ ֥כּי ָמ ָ ֖חר נָ ֽמוּת׃‬ And behold there is joy and gladness, slaying cattle and killing sheep, eating meat and drinking wine; let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we shall die.

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 49

177

I Samuel 1:9

‫תה וְ ֵע ִ ֣לי ַהכּ ֵֹ֗הן י ֵֹשׁ ֙ב‬ ֹ ֑ ‫וַ ָ ֣תּ ָקם ַח ֔ ָנּה ַא ֲח ֵ ֛רי ָא ְכ ָ ֥לה ְב ִשׁ ֹ֖לה וְ ַא ֲח ֵ ֣רי ָשׁ‬ ‫הוֽה׃‬ ָ ְ‫יכל י‬ ֥ ַ ‫זוּז֖ת ֵה‬ ַ ‫ל־מ‬ ְ ‫ל־ה ִכּ ֵ֔סּא ַע‬ ַ ‫ַע‬ And Hannah arose after eating in Shiloh and after drinking, and Eli the priest was sitting on the chair by the doorpost of the Temple of the Lord. 50

II Kings 13:17

‫אמר‬ ֶ ֹ ‫ישׁע יְ ֵר ֙ה וַ יּ֔ וֹר וַ ֗יּ‬ ֤ ָ ‫אמר ֱא ִל‬ ֶ ֹ ‫אמר ְפּ ַ ֧תח ַה ַח ֛לּוֹן ֵ ֖ק ְד ָמה וַ יִּ ְפ ָ ֑תּח וַ ֤יּ‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֗יּ‬ ‫ת־א ָ ֛רם ַבּ ֲא ֵ ֖פק‬ ֲ ‫ית ֶא‬ ֧ ָ ‫שׁוּעה ַ ֽב ֲא ָ ֔רם וְ ִה ִכּ‬ ֣ ָ ‫שׁוּעה ַ ֽליהוָ ֙ה וְ ֵ ֣חץ ְתּ‬ ֤ ָ ‫ץ־תּ‬ ְ ‫ֵח‬ ‫ד־כּ ֵ ֽלּה׃‬ ַ ‫ַע‬ And he said, ‘open the window eastward’ and he opened (it); and Elisha said, ‘shoot’ and he shot; and he said, ‘an arrow of deliverance for the Lord and an arrow of deliverance from Aram; and you shall strike Aram completely in Aphek’. Explanatory notes to identify infinitive absolute forms 1

‫֥מוֹת ָתּ ֽמוּת‬

Qal; ‫ ;מוּת‬inf. abs. followed by Qal imperf. 2 m.sg. The inf. abs. serves as strengthening or emphasizing complement before the verb. Here it strengthens the certainty of the threat. “You shall surely die”.

2

‫֣בּוֹא ֑יָבוֹא‬

Qal; ‫ ;בוא‬inf. abs. followed by Qal imperf. 3 m.sg. emphasizes certainty of fulfillment. Saul’s servant is speaking to Saul when Saul despaired of finding the lost asses belonging to his father, Kish. “(it) will surely come about”.

3

‫ָס ֨קוֹל יִ ָסּ ֵ ֜קל‬

Qal; ‫ ;סקל‬note that although the stem of the inf. abs. is oftenest of the same stem as the finite verb, nevertheless the inf. abs. Qal expresses the idea of the verb in general and may be joined

178

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW with any other stem. Here, inf. abs. Qal gives emphasis to the injunction conveyed by the Niphal imperf. ‫“ יִ ָסּ ֵקל‬the ox shall surely be stoned”. ‫“ = נָ גַ ח‬gore”. Note also the use of -‫ ֶאת‬in this verse. For ‫ת־א ָ ֖שּׁה‬ ִ ‫ת־אישׁ ֥אוֹ ֶא‬ ֛ ִ ‫ ֶא‬see GK 117d: “On the other hand ‫ֵאת‬ occurs very seldom in prose before a noun actually or apparently undetermined. In Ex. 21:28—perhaps the ‫ ֶאת־‬is used in order to avoid the combination ‫—שׁוֹר ִאישׁ‬.” For ‫ת־בּ ָשׂ ֔רוֹ‬ ְ ‫ וְ ֤ל ֹא יֵ ָא ֵכל֙ ֶא‬see GK 121b: “—The passive, however, is also used impersonally (in the 3rd sing. masc.), —more frequently with the object of the active construction still subordinated in the accusative, e.g. Gen. 27:42: ‫וַ יֻּ ַגּ֣ד‬ ‫ת־דּ ְב ֵ ֥רי ֵע ָ ֖שׂו‬ ִ ‫“ ְל ִר ְב ָ ֔קה ֶא‬and there were told (i.e. one told) to Rebekah the words of Esau”.

4

‫תן‬ ֙ ֵ ָ‫תן יִ נּ‬ ֹ ֤ ָ‫ִ ֣כּי ִהנּ‬

Niphal; ‫ ;נתן‬The inf. abs. before the finite verb (Niphal imperf. 3 m.sg. ‫ )יִ נָּ ֵתן‬emphasizes the antithesis introduced by ‫ ִ ֣כּי‬after the preceding negative clause. “He will not escape BUT he will surely be delivered”. Note that both inf. abs. and finite verb are of the same stem.

5

‫ַשׁ ֵ ֧קּץ ְתּ ַשׁ ְקּ ֶצ֛נּוּ‬

‫וְ ַת ֵ ֥עב ְ ֽתּ ַת ֲע ֶ ֖בנּוּ‬

Piel; ‫“ = שׁקץ‬detest”

Piel; ‫“ = תעב‬abhor”

Here, both inf. abs. forms (each before a finite verb of the same stem) emphasize the antithesis following the preceding negative clause, although there is no introductory antithetical particle as in no 4 above. “And you shall not bring—BUT (implied) you shall utterly detest it and you shall utterly abhor it”. 6

‫ִה ָמּ ֵצ ֩א ִת ָמּ ֵ֨צא‬

Niphal; ‫ ;מצא‬here, the inf. abs. before the finite verb gives emphasis to the supposition. Both the inf. abs. and the finite form are Niphal. “If —shall indeed be found”.

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

179

7

‫וְ ִאם־גָּ ֹ֥נב יִ גָּ ֵנ֖ב‬

Qal; ‫ ;גנב‬but the finite verb is Niphal (‫)יִ גָּ ֵנ֖ב‬. The inf. abs. before the finite verb emphasizes the supposition. “But if it shall indeed be stolen”.

8

‫ֹלְך ָע ֔ ֵלינוּ‬ ֙ ‫ֲה ָמ ֹ֤לְך ִתּ ְמ‬

Qal;

‫ ;מלך‬the inf. abs. before the finite verb

strengthens the question.

‫ם־מ ֥שׁוֹל ִתּ ְמ ֖שׁ ֹל ָ ֑בּנוּ‬ ָ ‫ִא‬

Qal;

‫;משׁל‬

the inf. abs. before the finite verb

strengthens the question. Note the method for asking an alternative question: ‫ֲה— ִאם‬ 9

‫ֲהל ֹ ֩א ָשׁ ֹ֨ל ַח ָשׁ ַל ְ֤ח ִתּי‬

Qal; ‫ ;שׁלח‬The inf. abs. before the finite verb strengthens the question. “Did I not indeed send—?”

10

‫ֵבּ ַ ֥ר ְכ ָתּ ָב ֵ ֽרְך‬

Piel; ‫ ;ברך‬note compensatory lengthening of vowel under beth due to absence of strong dagesh in resh. Note place of inf. abs. after the finite verb, here with the same function of emphasis as when before the finite verb.

11

‫יֵ ֵצ֣א יָ ֗צוֹא‬

Qal; ‫ ;יצא‬note inf. abs. after finite verb. “He will surely come out”. ‫“ = נוּף‬move to and fro, wave” > Hiphil: “wave (hand)”. Na‘aman, Aramean army captain, seeks a cure for his leprosy from Elisha.

12

‫ם־א ֖כוֹל‬ ָ ַ‫אכל גּ‬ ַ ֹ ‫וַ ֥יּ‬

13

‫וֹח‬ ַ ‫וַ יִּ ְשׁ ְט ֤חוּ ָל ֶה ֙ם ָשׁ ֔ט‬

Qal; ‫ ;אכל‬note inf. abs. after finite verb, strengthened with ‫גַּ ם‬. “He has indeed consumed”. Words of Leah and Rachel about Laban their father.

Qal; ‫ ;שׁטח‬note furtive pataḥ due to lamedguttural verb. The inf. abs. after the verb often seems to suggest an indefinitely prolonged state of the action, and therefore to express continuance, prevalence. “They kept spreading them out”. ‫ ְשׂ ָלו‬n.f. = “quail”; ‫ ח ֶֹמר‬n.m. = “homer” (a dry measure) > pl. ‫ ֳח ָמ ִרים‬.

180

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

14

‫צוֹא וָ ֔שׁוֹב‬ ֙ ָ‫וַ יֵּ ֵצ֤א י‬

Qal ‫ ;יצא‬Qal ‫שׁוּב‬. Note that the nuance of continuity becomes clearer when an inf. abs. of another verb (here, ‫ )שׁוּב‬is added. “It went out and back continually”. See also JM 123m: “The postpositive inf. abs. followed by a second inf. abs. expresses the simultaneousness or quasi-simultaneousness of a second action—Gn 8:7 ‘and he went out just to come back again (soon)’;—.” Note also infinitive construct Qal from ‫יְבשׁת – יבשׁ‬ ֶ .

15

‫לוְֹך וְ ַד ֵ֔בּר‬ ֙ ‫ה ְֹל ִ ֤כים ָה‬

Qal; ‫ ;הלך‬Piel: ‫דבר‬. This is another example of a second inf. abs. after the finite verb conveying the idea of continuity “Walking along talking as they went”.

16

‫וַ יָּ ֻ ֧שׁבוּ— ָה ֣לוְֹך וָ ֑שׁוֹב‬

17

‫וֹע‬ ַ ‫וַ יִּ ַ ֣סּע— ָה ֥לוְֹך וְ נָ ֖ס‬

Qal; ‫ ;הלך‬Qal ‫נסע‬. This example may be compared with the one above (no 16), namely, the use of the inf. abs. of the verb ‫ הלך‬together with the inf. abs. of the verb ‫נסע‬, following ֣ ַ ִ‫וַ יּ‬, to express the idea of long continuance. “He the finite verb ‫סּע‬ journeyed continually”.

18

‫לוְֹך וְ גָ ֵ ֔דל‬ ֙ ‫וַ ֵיּ ֶ֤לְך ָה‬

“and he (Isaac) grew more and more”. Qal; ‫הלך‬. Note the use of the Qal finite form of the verb ‫)וַ ֵיּ ֶ֤לְך( הלך‬, followed by the inf. abs. Qal of the same stem (‫לוְֹך‬ ֙ ‫) ָה‬, followed by the masculine participle form, ‫( גָ ֵדל‬or adj. see BDB p 152), all following the finite verb ‫( וַ יִּ גְ ַדּל‬cognate with ‫)גָ ֵדל‬. The effect is again to express the idea of long continuance.

19

‫ה ֵ ֹ֥לְך ָה ֹ֖לְך וּב ֶֹכ֑ה‬

Qal ‫ ;הלך‬Qal ‫שׁוּב‬. “The waters returned continually”. Note the use of inf. abs. of ‫ הלך‬together with the inf. abs. of the verb ‫שׁוּב‬, following the finite verb ‫שׁבוּ‬ ֧ ֻ ָ‫וַ יּ‬. This expresses the idea of long continuance.

“crying continually as he went”. ‫ ;הלך‬Note the Qal active participle ‫ה ֵ ֹ֥לְך‬, followed by the Qal inf. abs. ‫ ָה ֹ֖לְך‬, followed by the Qal active participle of a different verb, ‫וּב ֶֹכ֑ה‬. Ishmael son of

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

181

Nethaniah (royal descent) was responsible for the murder of Gedaliah, governor of Judah, installed by Babylon. 20

‫א־ת ְב ֶ֗כּה‬ ִ ֹ ‫ָבּ ֣כוֹ ֽל‬

Qal; ‫בכה‬. Note that inf. abs. precedes the negative.“You shall indeed not weep”. ‫“ = זָ ַעק‬cry, cry out” > inf. cstr. + sf. ‫( זַ ֲע ֶקָך‬pausal). Also, ‫ ; ָחנוֹן‬Qal inf. abs. before ‫ יָ ְחנְ ָך‬Qal imperf. + sf. ‫“ ;חנן‬he will surely be gracious to you”. Also, ‫; ְכּ ָשׁ ְמ ָעתוֹ‬ see GK 45c for “other forms of the inf. cstr. Qal of the strong verb”; and see BDB p 1033 for usual form of Qal inf. cstr. + sf. from ‫>שׁמע‬ ‫ ָשׁ ְמעוֹ‬. ‫“ ְכּ ָשׁ ְמ ָעתוֹ‬when he hears it” is a unique form (GK 45d).

21

‫֣ל ֹא ַה ְשׁ ֵ ֥מיד ַא ְשׁ ִ ֛מיד‬

22

‫ָה ְר ֵג֤נִ י נָ ֙א ָה ֔ר ֹג‬

Qal; ‫ ;הרג‬note position of inf. abs. after the imperative. “Please kill me”. Moses pleading with G-d when the people were lusting for the fleshpots of Egypt.

23

‫ם־ע ֹ֑לה‬ ָ ַ‫ַ ֽא ַע ְלָך֣ ג‬

Qal; ‫ ;עלה‬Qal inf. abs. after Hiphil finite verb. Since inf. abs. Qal expresses the idea of the verb in general, it may be joined with any other stem. “And I will also surely bring you up”. ַ ‫ מוֹת‬e.g. Exodus 21:12 (inf. abs. Qal + Compare the frequent ‫יוּמת‬ Hophal finite verb).

24

‫ָה ֵ ֖חל וְ ַכ ֵ ֽלּה‬

Hiphil; ‫ ;חלל‬Piel ‫“ ;כלה‬from beginning to end”. The inf abs. is used to describe adverbially the manner, degree etc. of the action expressed by a previous non-cognate verb.

25

‫אד‬ ֹ ֽ ‫ַה ְר ֵ ֥בּה ְמ‬

Hiphil; ‫( שׁמד‬extra yod in inf. abs.). Negative precedes inf. abs. in this instance of a denial being given to previous words. “Except that I will not utterly destroy”.

Hiphil; ‫“ ; ָר ָבה‬very much”. Some inf. abs. forms (chiefly Hiphil) have become in effect straightforward adverbs. Compare Genesis 21:16: ‫“ ַה ְר ֵח ֙ק ִכּ ְמ ַט ֲחֵו֣י ֶ ֔ק ֶשׁת‬at a distance, a bowshot away”. (‫ ַה ְר ֵח ֙ק‬is Hiphil inf. abs. ‫)רחק‬.

182

‫סכל‬

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW > Hiphil:

‫ִה ְס ַכּ ְל ִתּי‬

= “I have acted foolishly”.

‫ָשׁגָ ה‬

= “go astray,

err”. 26

‫ַמ ֵ֗הר‬ ‫ַמ ֵסּ ָכה‬

Piel; ‫“ ;מהר‬quickly”. adverbial use. ‫“ = נָ ַסְך‬pour out” > n.f. = “libation; molten metal, image” > ‫= ֵעגֶ ל ַמ ֵסּ ָכה‬ “molten calf”.

27

‫וֹפ ֔רוֹת וְ נָ ֥פוֹץ ַה ַכּ ִ ֖דּים‬ ָ ‫ַוֽ יִּ ְת ְקע֙וּ ַבּ ֣שּׁ‬ “They blew the trumpets and shattered the pitchers”. ‫ וְ נָ ֥פוֹץ‬is Qal inf. abs. with vav conjunctive, ‫נפץ‬. The inf. abs. is used instead of an inflected form without significant force when an inflected form has already been used – ‫עוּ‬ ֙ ‫ ַוֽ יִּ ְת ְק‬in this example, Qal imperf. + vav consec. (a vayiqtol form), i.e. in connected narrative or discourse. This infinitive may follow any inflected form, and unlike the complementary infinitive, is introduced by “and”.

Note also in this verse, ‫אְך ָה ֵ ֥ קם ֵה ִ ֖ קימוּ‬ ֛ ַ , where ‫ ָה ֵ ֥ קם‬is inf. abs. Hiphil, ‫קום‬, before finite verb ‫ ֵה ִ ֖ קימוּ‬, Hiphil perf. 3 c.pl. ‫קום‬. For use of ‫ַ ֛אְך‬ here see BDB p 36: as an adverb of time; “only just, scarcely”. 28

‫ת־ל ֔בּוֹ‬ ִ ‫וְ ַה ְכ ֵבּ ֙ד ֶא‬

Hiphil; ‫“ ;כבד‬and he hardened his heart”. The Hiphil inf. abs. + vav follows the inflected form, ‫( וַ יַּ ְרא‬Qal apocop. imperf. + vav consec. vayiqtol form). ‫“ = ָרוַ ח‬be wide, spacious” > ‫ ְרוָ ָחה‬n.f. respite, relief.

Note the work of A. Rubinstein (“A Finite Verb continued by an Infinitive Absolute in Biblical Hebrew”. Vetus Testamentum 2. 1952, pp 362-7). He points to an apparent “redundancy of function” of the inf. abs. here, since in the Hebrew Pentateuch of the Samaritans, we find the inflected form, ‫וַ יַּ ְכ ֵבּד‬. He suggests that the use of this construction (vav inf. abs.) may be due to scribes or copyists, who resorted to it when they could not be certain of the form of a finite verb. Such uncertainty might arise if the manuscript before him was indistinct in places, or if the copyist had before him divergent readings, or possibly the copyist was writing a passage from memory.

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

183

Another illustration brought by Rubinstein of this apparent “redundancy of function” is the reading in: Isaiah 37:19: ‫אשׁ‬ ֑ ֵ ‫יהם ָבּ‬ ֖ ֶ ‫ֹלה‬ ֵ ‫ת־א‬ ֱ ‫תן ֶא‬ ֹ ֥ ָ‫ וְ נ‬where ֹ ֥ ָ‫ וְ נ‬follows the inflected form in 37:18: ‫ֶה ֱח ִ ֜ריבוּ ַמ ְל ֵ ֥כי‬ the inf. abs. + vav, ‫תן‬ ‫ל־ה ֲא ָר ֖צוֹת‬ ָ ‫ת־כּ‬ ָ ‫ ַא ֛שּׁוּר ֶא‬. This text is paralleled in II Kings 19:17,18, where the finite form ‫( וְ נָ ְתנוּ‬vav + Qal perf.) follows ‫ ֶה ֱח ִ ֜ריבו‬and the Isaiah Scroll has ‫ויתנו‬. Rubinstein suggests that the inf.abs. reading in Isaiah 37:19 may have been a scribe’s way of dealing with divergent readings. Rubinstein’s view is disputed by E. Hammershaimb, ‘On the so-called Infinitivus Absolutus in Hebrew’. Printed in Hebrew and Semitic Studies Presented to G R Driver, 1963, OUP, pp 85-94. He points out how rare is this usage in the Hebrew Bible (between 45-58 instances according to whether textual errors are taken into consideration or not) and suggests that this use of inf. abs. in Hebrew reflects a usage which was common in Canaanite and Phoenician, stating: “According to the old principle of always preferring the more complicated reading, I consider the infinitive to be the original form, and the fact that this old construction gradually fell into desuetude must then have influenced later transmissions of the text.” (note 1, p 91). 29

‫ר־לוֹ‬ ֔ ‫וַ יַּ ְר ֵכּ֣ב א ֹ֗תוֹ ְבּ ִמ ְר ֶכּ ֶ֤בת ַה ִמּ ְשׁנֶ ֙ה ֲא ֶשׁ‬

‫וַ יִּ ְק ְר ֥אוּ ְל ָפ ָנ֖יו ַא ְב ֵ ֑רְך‬ ‫ל־א ֶרץ ִמ ְצ ָ ֽריִ ם׃‬ ֥ ֶ ‫וְ נָ ֣תוֹן א ֹ֔תוֹ ַ ֖על ָכּ‬ The Qal inf. abs. + vav, ‫וְ נָ תוֹן‬, follows the inflected forms, ‫“( וַ יַּ ְר ֵכּ֣ב‬and he caused to ride”) and ‫“( וַ יִּ ְק ְר ֥אוּ‬and they called”), connected by vav. The use of ‫ וְ נָ תוֹן‬leaves open the question of whether the subject is again Pharoah (as in ‫ )וַ יַּ ְר ֵכּ֣ב‬or is impersonal (as in ‫) וַ יִּ ְק ְראוּ‬. The copyist may have been unwilling to commit himself.

184

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

‫ַא ְב ֵרְך‬

many Egyptian derivations proposed. e.g. “prostrate yourself”, or, e.g. (Assyrian), “grand vizier”.

‫ ֶמ ְר ָכּ ָבה‬n.f. 30

chariot;

‫ ִמ ְשׁנֶ ה‬n.m. double, copy, second.

‫“ וְ ַה ְל ֵ ֥בּשׁ א ְֹתָך֖ ַמ ֲח ָל ֽצוֹת‬And I will clothe you with robes”. ‫וְ ַה ְל ֵ ֥בּשׁ‬ is Hiphil inf. abs. ‫לבשׁ‬. Here, the Hiphil inf. abs. follows the Hiphil perf. ‫ ֶה ֱע ַב ְר ִתּי‬. The use of inf. abs. leaves open the question of whether the angel or those standing before him clothe Joshua. “Indeed, so neutral a form is the inf. abs. that in the case of Zechariah 3:4 it may have even the force of a passive, i.e. ‘and thou shalt be clothed’.”(Rubinstein, p 366).

‫ָח ַלץ‬

= “draw off, out” > ordinary life).

‫ַמ ֲח ָל ָצה‬

n.f. = “robe of state” (taken off in

‫ צֹאי > צוא‬adj. filthy > pl. ‫צֹאים‬ Historical setting: the Jews who had returned from Babylon had started to restore the Temple, but work was halted due to the hostility of their neighbours. Haggai and Zechariah urged the people to carry on the rebuilding. In ch 3 (th 4th Vision), Joshua, the High Priest, is accused by the Satan and acquitted. v 3: “Now Joshua was clothed with filthy garments, and stood before the angel.” v 4: “—take the filthy garments from off him—and I will clothe you with robes.” 31

‫אה‬ ֹ ֣ ‫ַ֜שׁ ְב ִתּי וְ ָר‬

Qal; ‫“ ;ראה‬I returned and I saw”. Qal inf. abs. following finite verb ‫( ַ֜שׁ ְב ִתּי‬qatal form, Qal perf. ‫)שׁוב‬. Compare use ֣ ַ ְ‫ ו‬and of finite forms in: Ecclesiastes 4:1: ‫שׁ ְב ִ ֽתּי ֲא ֗ ִני וָ ֶא ְר ֶא ֙ה‬ Ecclesiastes 4:7: ‫וְ ַ ֧שׁ ְב ִתּי ֲא ִנ֛י וָ ֶא ְר ֶ ֥אה‬

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

185

‫ ֶפּגַ ע‬n.m. occurrence, chance; ‫ ִבּין‬Niphal part. pl. ‫“ נְ בֹנִ ים‬intelligent, discerning, with understanding”. 32

‫יָ ְל ָ ֖דה וְ ָעז֑ וֹב‬

Qal inf. abs. ‫ עזב‬+ vav, following a qatal form, “gives birth and abandons”. ‫ ַאיָּ ָלה‬n.f. = hind, doe (here > ‫) ַאיֶּ ֶלת‬.

33

‫ָשׂדוֹת ַבּ ֶכּ ֶסף יִ ְקנוּ‬

‫וְ ָכתוֹב ַבּ ֵסּ ֶפר וְ ָחתוֹם‬ ‫וְ ָה ֵעד ֵע ִדים‬

Qal ‫ ;כתב‬Qal ‫ ;חתם‬Hiphil ‫עוד‬.

Three vav + inf. abs. forms following a Yiqtol form, ‫יִ ְקנוּ‬. 34

‫ נִ ְכ ָ ֣תּב—וְ נַ ְח ֛תּוֹם‬Vav participle m.sg. ‫כתב‬.

35

‫זָ כוֹר‬

Qal; ‫ ;זכר‬inf. abs. for imperative. See GK 113bb: the full form occurs in Deut. 6:17: ‫ ָשׁמוֹר ִתּ ְשׁ ְמרוּן‬and in Deut. 7:18: ‫זָ כֹר‬ ‫ ִתּזְ כֹּר‬. i.e. it is an elliptical form.

36

‫ָשׁמוֹר‬

Qal; ‫ ;שׁמר‬inf. abs. for imperative.

37

‫ָהֹלְך‬

Qal; ‫ ;הלך‬inf. abs. for imperative.

38

‫ָלק ַֹח‬

39

‫ָשׁמ ַֹע‬

40

‫אף‬ ֹ ֑ ָ‫ָא ֹ֣לה וְ ַכ ֵ֔חשׁ וְ ָר ֥צֹ ַח וְ גָ ֹ֖נב וְ נ‬

+ inf. abs. Niphal,

‫חתם‬,

following a Niphal

Qal; ‫ ;לקח‬inf. abs. for imperative. Moses commanding the Levites to put the Book of the Law by the side of the Ark of the Covenant. Qal; ‫ ;שׁמע‬inf. abs. for imperative.

‫ ָא ֹ֣לה‬Qal ‫ וְ ַכ ֵ֔חשׁ ;אלה‬Piel ‫ וְ ָר ֥צֹ ַח ;כחש‬Qal ‫ וְ גָ ֹ֖נב ;רצח‬Qal ‫אף ;גנב‬ ֹ ֑ ָ‫וְ נ‬ Qal ‫נאף‬. A series of inf. abs. forms used in place of inflected forms for

186

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

vivid description of prevailing conduct. (limits).” 41

‫“ = ָפּ ַרץ‬break through, break over

‫אף וְ ִה ָשּׁ ֵ ֥ב ַע ַל ֶ ֖שּׁ ֶקר וְ ַק ֵ ֣טּר ַל ָ ֑בּ ַעל וְ ָה ֹ֗לְך‬ ֹ ֗ ָ‫ֲהגָ ֹ֤נב ָר ֨צ ֹ ַח ְ ֽונ‬

A series of inf. abs. forms used in place of inflected forms in indignant question about prevailing conduct.

‫ֲהגָ ֹ֤נב‬ Qal, ‫ ָר ֨צ ֹ ַח ;גנב‬Qal, ‫אף ;רצח‬ ֹ ֗ ָ‫ְ ֽונ‬ ‫ וְ ַק ֵ ֣טּר ;שׁבע‬Piel, ‫ וְ ָה ֹ֗לְך ;קטר‬Qal, ‫הלך‬.

Qal,

‫וְ ִה ָשּׁ ֵ ֥ב ַע ;נאף‬

Niphal,

42

‫וְ ֥שׁוֹב ֵא ַ ֖לי‬

“and will you return to me?”. Inf. abs. Qal, ‫שׁוב‬, used in place of inflected form in indignant question about prevailing conduct. Note also ‫“ ָחנוֹף ֶתּ ֱחנַ ף‬be greatly polluted”, Qal inf. abs. preceding finite verb for emphasis, ‫“ = ָחנֵ ף‬be polluted, profane”. ‫= ֵהן‬ “lo! Behold! if.”

43

‫ָר ֨גוֹם א ֹ֤תוֹ‬

44

‫שּׁה יָ ֔דוֹ‬ ֣ ֵ ‫ל־בּ ַעל֙ ַמ‬ ַ֙ ‫ָשׁ ֗מוֹט ָכּ‬

“Every possessor of a loan of his hand shall let drop/fall”. Use of Qal inf. abs. ‫שׁמט‬, instead of finite verb, with SUBJECT expressed. ‫ = ָשׁ ַמט‬let drop > ‫ ְשׁ ִמ ָטּה‬n.f. = a letting drop (of exactions), a remitting (every 7th year is ‫) ְשׁנַ ת ְשׁ ִמ ָטּה‬. ‫נָ ָשׁה‬ = lend, become a creditor >Hiphil: lend > ‫ ַמ ֶשּׁה‬n.m. = loan. ‫= נָ גַ שׂ‬ oppress.

45

-‫ַה ֵכּר‬

“They shall stone him”. Use of inf. abs. Qal, ‫רגם‬, instead of finite verb, with SUBJECT expressed (‫ ָה ֵע ָדה‬-‫) ָכּל‬. Punishment for man who gathered sticks on the Sabbath.

Hiphil; ‫ ;נכר‬subject in a nominal clause.

lit. “regard for faces (partiality) is not good”. 46

‫יטב‬ ֛ ֵ ‫ֵה‬

Hiphil; ‫ ;יטב‬direct object of a transitive verb.

‫( ִריב‬Qal) = strive, contend;

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

187

‫ַא ְשּׁרוּ ָחמוֹץ‬

= “set right the ruthless” or: “relieve the oppressed”.see BDB p 330: (‫“ = )חמץ‬be ruthless”; only Qal part. ‫חוֹמץ‬ ֵ ְ‫( ו‬Psalm 71:4); ‫ ָחמוֹץ‬n.m. = “the ruthless” (only here); Vrss. give passive, perh. ‫= ָחמוּץ‬ “oppressed”. 47

‫ָה ֔לוְֹך‬

Qal; ‫ ;הלך‬object complement of an intransitive verb.

‫ ְמ ִשׁ ָסּה‬n.f. “booty, plunder”. 48

(‫ָהר ֹג ) ָבּ ָקר‬

Qal; ‫ ;הרג‬taking a direct object.

(‫ָשׁחֹט )צֹאן‬

Qal; ‫ ;שׁחט‬taking a direct object.

(‫ָאכֹל ) ָבּ ָשׂר‬

Qal; ‫ ;אכל‬taking a direct object.

(‫ָשׁתוֹת )יָ יִ ן‬

Qal; ‫ ;שׁתה‬taking a direct object.

‫“ ָאכוֹל וְ ָשׁתוֹ‬let us eat and drink” (use of inf. abs. in place of finite verb) compare: ‫ ָשׁתוֹת‬and ‫ ָשׁתוֹ‬as variant forms of Qal inf. abs. from ‫שׁתה‬ 49

‫תה‬ ֹ ֑ ‫וְ ַא ֲח ֵ ֣רי ָשׁ‬

50

‫ד־כּ ֵ ֽלּה‬ ַ ‫ַע‬ that ‫ ַכּ ֵ ֽלּה‬has pletely”. ‫יָ ָרה‬

Qal; “after drinking”.

‫;שׁתה‬

following a preposition (not common).

Piel; ‫ ;כלה‬following a preposition. JM 123c: suggest become an adverb here, “until completion” = “com> Qal imperative m.sg. ‫“ = יְ ֵרה‬shoot”; > Hiphil imperf. shortened after vav consec. ‫“ = וַ יּוֹר‬and he shot”. (The prophet Elisha and King Joash of Israel).

INFINITIVE CONSTRUCT In this section, the student is asked: {i} to identify the Infinitive Construct forms in the forty-six biblical verses reproduced here.

188

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

{ii} to discuss their form and use. Explanatory notes are supplied at the end of the list of verses. The selection of verses is designed to illustrate the various forms of Infinitive Construct in the different conjugations and also to illustrate the various functions of Infinitive Construct. The Infinitive Construct is a verbal noun, which does not of itself express tense, nor does it take the Definite Article. It does admit both prepositions and suffixes. The main functions of the Infinitive Construct may briefly be summarized as follows: {i} In its nominal function it may be used as the subject or object of a sentence, or in the genitive. {ii} With prepositions, it may form temporal clauses, causal clauses and even expresses negative result and concession. {iii} The Infinitive Construct with lamed prefix or the Infinitive Construct introduced by ‫ ְל ַמ ַען‬or ‫ ַבּ ֲעבוּר‬may express Purpose. {iv} The Infinitive Construct with lamed prefix may have a gerundive function, with the sense of “is to be, must be, ought to be”. {v} The Infinitive Construct with lamed prefix may be used in a gerundial sense, “to explain the circumstances or nature of a preceding action”. (Davidson, Syntax p 127 f). The functions of Infinitive Construct are further clarified in the explanatory notes to the biblical verses. The student should consult the reference grammar books in the bibliography for further study.

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

189

Exercise: identify the Infinitive Construct forms in the following biblical verses; discuss their form and use. I:

Nominal function of Infinitive Construct (1-7)

1

Genesis 2:18

‫הּ־לּוֹ ֵ ֖עזֶ ר ְכּנֶ גְ ֽדּוֹ׃‬ ֥ ‫א־טוֹב ֱהי֥ וֹת ָ ֽה ָא ָ ֖דם ְל ַב ֑דּוֹ ֽ ֶא ֱע ֶשׂ‬ ֛ ֹ‫ל‬ It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make for him a helpmate corresponding to him. 2

I Samuel 15:22

‫מ ַע ִמ ֶזּ ַ֣בח ֔טוֹב‬ ֹ ֨ ‫ִה ֵנּ֤ה ְשׁ‬ Behold, listening is better than sacrifice. 3

Genesis 2:17

‫אכ֖ל ִמ ֶ ֑מּנּוּ ִ֗כּי ְבּי֛ וֹם ֲא ָכ ְלָך֥ ִמ ֶ ֖מּנּוּ ֥מוֹת‬ ַ ֹ ‫וּמ ֗ ֵעץ ַה ַ ֙דּ ַע ֙ת ֣טוֹב וָ ָ ֔רע ֥ל ֹא ת‬ ֵ ‫ָתּ ֽמוּת׃‬ And from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you shall not eat from it, for on the day that you eat from it, you shall surely die. 4

Hosea 2:5

‫יה ַכ ִמּ ְד ָ֗בּר וְ ַשׁ ִ֙תּ ָ֙ה‬ ָ ‫יה ְכּי֖ וֹם ִהָוּ ְֽל ָ ֑דהּ וְ ַשׂ ְמ ִ ֣תּ‬ ָ ‫יטנָּ ה ֲע ֻר ָ֔מּה וְ ִ֨ה ַצּגְ ִ֔תּ‬ ֣ ֶ ‫ן־א ְפ ִשׁ‬ ַ ‫ֶפּ‬ ‫יה ַבּ ָצּ ָ ֽמא׃‬ ָ ‫ְכּ ֶ ֣א ֶרץ ִצ ָ֔יּה וַ ֲה ִמ ִ ֖תּ‬ Lest I strip her naked, and set her as in the day that she was born, and make her as the wilderness and set her like a land of drought and slay her with thirst.

190 5

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW I Kings 3:7

‫ֹכי ַנ ַ֣ער ָק ֔טֹן ֥ל ֹא ֵא ַ ֖דע‬ ֙ ִ ‫ת־ע ְב ְדּ ָ֔ך ַ ֖תּ ַחת ָדִּו֣ד ָא ִ ֑בי וְ ָ ֽאנ‬ ַ ‫ַא ָתּ ֙ה ִה ְמ ַל ְ֣כ ָתּ ֶ ֽא‬ ‫ֵ ֥צאת וָ ֽב ֹא׃‬ You have made Your servant king instead of David my father, even though I am a young lad, I do not know how to go out or come in. 6

Isaiah 1:14

‫יתי נְ ֽשׂ ֹא׃‬ ִ ‫יכ ֙ם ָשׂנְ ָ ֣אה נַ ְפ ִ֔שׁי ָהי֥ וּ ָע ַל֖י ָל ֑טֹ ַרח נִ ְל ֵ ֖א‬ ֶ ‫וּמוֹע ֵד‬ ֲ ‫ָח ְד ֵשׁ ֶיכ֤ם‬ Your New Moons and your appointed seasons, My soul hates, they have become a burden on Me, I am weary of bearing (them). 7

Genesis 37:5

‫יּוֹספוּ ֖עוֹד ְשׂ ֥נ ֹא א ֹֽתוֹ׃‬ ֥ ִ ַ‫יוֹס ֙ף ֲח ֔לוֹם וַ יַּ ֵגּ֖ד ְל ֶא ָ ֑חיו ו‬ ֵ ‫וַ יַּ ֲח ֹ֤לם‬ And Joseph dreamed a dream and he told (it) to his brothers and they hated him still more. II: Infinitive Construct with prepositions to form temporal clauses, causal clauses etc (8-22) 8

Genesis 24:30

‫וּכ ָשׁ ְמ ֗עוֹ‬ ְ ֒ ‫ים ַעל־יְ ֵ ֣די ֲאחֹתוֹ‬ ֮ ‫ת־ה ְצּ ִמ ִד‬ ַ ‫ת־ה ֗ ֶנּזֶ ם ְ ֽו ֶא‬ ַ ‫את ֶא‬ ֹ ֣ ‫וַ יְ ִ ֣הי ִכּ ְר‬ ֹ ֔ ‫ת־דּ ְב ֵ ֞רי ִר ְב  ָ ֤קה ֲאחֹתוֹ֙ ֵלא‬ ִ ‫ֶא‬ ‫ל־ה ִ֔אישׁ‬ ָ ‫ה־ד ֶ ֥בּר ֵא ַל֖י ָה ִ ֑אישׁ וַ יָּ ב ֹ ֙א ֶא‬ ִ ֹ‫מר ֽכּ‬ ‫ל־ה ָ ֽעיִ ן׃‬ ָ ‫ל־הגְּ ַמ ִ ֖לּים ַע‬ ַ ‫וְ ִה ֵנּ֛ה ע ֵ ֹ֥מד ַע‬ And it was when he saw the ring and the bracelets on the hands of his sister, and when he heard the words of Rebekah his sister saying, ‘Thus the

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

191

man spoke to me’, that he came to the man and behold he was standing by the camels at the well. 9

Genesis 4:8

‫ל־ה ֶבל ָא ִ ֖חיו וַ יַּ ַה ְר ֵגֽהוּ׃‬ ֥ ֶ ‫יוֹתם ַבּ ָשּׂ ֶ ֔דה וַ ָיּ ָ֥ קם ַ ֛קיִ ן ֶא‬ ֣ ָ ‫הי ִבּ ְה‬ ֙ ִ ְ‫ֽוַי‬ And it was, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother and killed him. 10

I Kings 6:7

‫ל־כּ ִ ֣לי‬ ְ ‫וּמ ָקּ ֤בוֹת וְ ַהגַּ ְרזֶ ֙ן ָכּ‬ ַ ‫ן־שׁ ֵל ָ ֥מה ַמ ָ ֖סּע נִ ְב ָנ֑ה‬ ְ ‫וְ ַה ַ֙בּיִ ֙ת ְבּ ִה ָ ֣בּנ ֹ֔תוֹ ֶ ֽא ֶב‬ ‫ַב ְר ֶ֔זל ֽל ֹא־נִ ְשׁ ַ ֥מע ַבּ ַ ֖בּיִ ת ְבּ ִה ָבּנ ֹֽתוֹ׃‬ And the House, when it was being built, was built of stone perfect (at the) quarrying, and no hammer nor axe nor any iron tool were heard in the House, while it was being built. 11

Genesis 45:1

‫ל־א ָ ֽחיו׃‬ ֶ ‫יוֹסף ֶא‬ ֖ ֵ ‫ישׁ ִא ֔תּוֹ ְבּ ִה ְתוַ ַ ֥דּע‬ ֙ ‫א־ע ַמד ִא‬ ֤ ָ ֹ ‫וְ ל‬ And no man stood with him when Joseph made himself known to his brothers. 12

Genesis 13:14

‫ד־לוֹט ֽ ֵמ ִע ֔מּוֹ ָ ֣שׂא ָנ֤א ֵעינֶ֙ ֙יָך ְוּר ֵ֔אה‬ ֣ ‫ל־א ְב ָ ֗רם ַא ֲח ֵר֙י ִה ָ ֽפּ ֶר‬ ַ ‫ַיהוה ָא ַ ֣מר ֶא‬ ָ֞ ‫ֽו‬ ‫ר־א ָ ֣תּה ָ ֑שׁם ָצ ֥ ֹפנָ ה וָ ֶנ֖ גְ ָבּה וָ ֵ ֥ ק ְד ָמה וָ ָי ָֽמּה׃‬ ַ ‫ן־ה ָמּ ֖קוֹם ֲא ֶשׁ‬ ַ ‫ִמ‬ And the Lord said to Abram after Lot was separated from him, ‘Lift up your eyes and look from the place where you are, northward and southward and eastward and westward’.

192

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

13 Genesis 13:10

‫ל־כּ ַכּ֣ר ַהיַּ ְר ֵ ֔דּן ִ ֥כּי ֻכ ָלּ֖הּ ַמ ְשׁ ֶ ֑ קה ִל ְפ ֵנ֣י‬ ִ ‫ת־כּ‬ ָ ‫ת־ע ָ֗יניו וַ יַּ ְר ֙א ֶא‬ ֵ ‫א־לוֹט ֶא‬ ֣ ‫וַ יִּ ָשּׂ‬ ‫ת־עמ ָ ֹ֔רה‬ ֲ ‫ת־סד ֹ֙ם וְ ֶא‬ ְ ‫הוה ֶא‬ ָ֗ ְ‫ַשׁ ֵ ֣חת י‬ And Lot lifted up his eyes and saw the whole Jordan Valley, that it was wellirrigated, before the Lord had destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah. 14

Genesis 27:44,45

‫ד־שׁוּב‬ ֨ ‫־תּ ֖שׁוּב ֲח ַ ֥מת ָא ִ ֽחיָך׃ ַע‬ ָ ‫יָמים ֲא ָח ִ ֑דים ַ ֥עד ֲא ֶשׁר‬ ֣ ִ ‫וְ יָ ַשׁ ְב ָ ֥תּ ִע ֖מּוֹ‬ ‫ף־א ִ֜חיָך ִמ ְמּ ָ֗ך‬ ָ ‫ַא‬ And you shall dwell with him a few days (years) until your brother’s wrath subsides, until the subsidence of your brother’s anger from you. 15

II Kings 4:8

‫ל־ל ֶחם׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫הי ִמ ֵ ֣דּי ָע ְב ֔רוֹ יָ ֻ ֥סר ָ ֖שׁ ָמּה ֶל ֱא ָכ‬ ֙ ִ ְ‫ַוֽ י‬ And it was, whenever he passed by, he would turn aside there to eat bread. 16

Exodus 4:10

‫ל ֹ ֩א ִ֨אישׁ ְדּ ָב ִ ֜רים ָא ֗נ ֹ ִכי ַגּ֤ם ִמ ְתּמוֹל֙ ַגּ֣ם ִמ ִשּׁ ְל ֔שׁ ֹם ַגּ֛ם ֵמ ָ ֥אז ַדּ ֶבּ ְרָך‬ ‫וּכ ַ ֥בד ָל ֖שׁוֹן ָאנֽ ִֹכי׃‬ ְ ‫ד־פּה‬ ֛ ֶ ‫ל־ע ְב ֶ ֑דָּך ִ ֧כּי ְכ ַב‬ ַ ‫ֶא‬ I am not a man of words, neither yesterday nor the day before, nor since you spoke to your servant, for I am heavy of mouth and heavy of tongue. 17

Jeremiah 7:13

‫הו֑ה וָ ֲא ַד ֵ֨בּר‬ ָ ְ‫ל־ה ֽ ַמּ ֲע ִ ֥שׂים ָה ֵ ֖א ֶלּה נְ ֻאם־י‬ ַ ‫ת־כּ‬ ָ ‫שׂוֹת ֶכ֛ם ֶא‬ ְ ‫וְ ַע ָ֗תּה ַי ַ֧ען ֲע‬ ‫יכם ַה ְשׁ ֵכּ֤ם וְ ַד ֵבּ ֙ר וְ ֣ל ֹא ְשׁ ַמ ְע ֶ֔תּם‬ ֶ֜ ‫ֲא ֵל‬

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

193

And now, because you have done all these deeds, says the Lord, and I have spoken to you, speaking early and often, but you did not listen. 18

Isaiah 30:12

‫חוּ ְבּ ֣ע ֹ ֶשׁק‬ ֙ ‫ָל ֵ֗כן ֤כֹּה ָא ַמ ֙ר ְק ֣דוֹשׁ יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ֔אל ַי ַ֥ען ָ ֽמ ָא ְס ֶכ֖ם ַבּ ָדּ ָ ֣בר ַה ֶזּ֑ה ַו ִֽתּ ְב ְט‬ ‫וְ נָ ֔לוֹז וַ ִ ֽתּ ָשּׁ ֲענ֖ וּ ָע ָ ֽליו׃‬ Therefore thus says the Holy One of Israel, ‘because you despise this word and trust in oppression and crookedness and lean on it’. 19

Exodus 17:7

‫ל־ריב ׀ ְבּ ֵנ֣י יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ֗אל וְ ֨ ַעל נַ סּ ָ ֹ֤תם‬ ֣ ִ ‫יבה ַע‬ ֑ ָ ‫וּמ ִר‬ ְ ‫שׁם ַה ָמּ ֔קוֹם ַמ ָ ֖סּה‬ ֣ ֵ ‫וַ יִּ ְק ָר ֙א‬ ‫ֶאת־יְ הוָ ֙ה‬ And he called the name of the place Massah and Merivah (lit. Trial and Dispute) because of the dispute of the children of Israel and because of their testing of the Lord. 20

Jeremiah 2:35

‫ל־א ְמ ֵ ֖רְך‬ ָ ‫אוֹתְך ַע‬ ָ֔ ‫יתי ַ ֛אְך ָ ֥שׁב ַא ֖פּוֹ ִמ ֶ ֑מּנִּ י ִהנְ נִ ֙י נִ ְשׁ ָ ֣פּט‬ ִ ‫אמ ִר֙י ִ ֣כּי נִ ֵ ֔קּ‬ ְ ֹ ‫וַ ֽתּ‬ ‫אתי׃‬ ִ ‫֥ל ֹא ָח ָ ֽט‬ And you said, ‘because I am innocent, surely His anger has returned from me;’ behold I will enter into judgment with you, because you said, ‘I have not sinned’. 21

Genesis 27:1

‫את‬ ֹ ֑ ‫הי ִ ֽכּי־זָ ֵ ֣ קן יִ ְצ ָ֔חק וַ ִתּ ְכ ֶ ֥הין ָ ֵע ָינ֖יו ֵמ ְר‬ ֙ ִ ְ‫וַ י‬

194

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

And it was when Isaac was old and his eyes were dim so that he could not see. 22

Job 10:7

‫י־ל ֹא ֶא ְר ָ ֑שׁע וְ ֵ ֖אין ִמיָּ ְדָך֣ ַמ ִ ֽצּיל׃‬ ֣ ‫ל־דּ ְע ְתָּך ִכּ‬ ֭ ַ ‫ַ ֽע‬ Although You know that I shall not be found guilty and there is none to deliver from Your hand. III: Infinitive Construct with lamed (or without) to express purpose (23-24) 23

Genesis 11:5

‫ת־ה ִמּגְ ָ ֑דּל ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ָבּנ֖ וּ ְבּ ֵנ֥י ָה ָא ָ ֽדם׃‬ ַ ‫ת־ה ִ ֖עיר וְ ֶא‬ ָ ‫את ֶא‬ ֹ ֥ ‫הוה ִל ְר‬ ָ֔ ְ‫וַ ֵיּ ֣ ֶ רד י‬ And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men had built. 24

Exodus 9:16

‫וּל ַ ֛מ ַען ַס ֵ ֥פּר‬ ְ ‫את ֶה ֱע ַמ ְד ִ֔תּיָך ַבּ ֲע ֖בוּר ַה ְרא ְֹתָך֣ ֶאת־כּ ִ ֹ֑חי‬ ֙ ֹ ‫אוּלם ַבּ ֲע ֥בוּר ז‬ ָ ֗ ְ‫ו‬ ‫ל־ה ָ ֽא ֶרץ׃‬ ָ ‫ְשׁ ִ ֖מי ְבּ ָכ‬ But indeed on account of this have I caused you to stand firm, for the sake of showing you My strength and in order to recount My Name in all the land. IV: Gerundive use of Infinitive Construct + lamed (25-31) 25

Genesis 15:12

‫ימה ֲח ֵשׁ ָ ֥כה‬ ֛ ָ ‫ל־א ְב ָ ֑רם וְ ִה ֵנּ֥ה ֵא‬ ַ ‫וַ יְ ִ ֤הי ַה ֶ֙שּׁ ֶמ ֙שׁ ָל ֔בוֹא וְ ַת ְר ֵדּ ָ ֖מה נָ ְפ ָל֣ה ַע‬ ‫גְ ד ָֹל֖ה נ ֶ ֹ֥פ ֶלת ָע ָ ֽליו׃‬

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

195

And the sun was about to set and a deep slumber fell on Abram and behold, a terror, great darkness, was falling on him. 26 Joshua 2:5

‫וַ יְ ִ֨הי ַה ַ֜שּׁ ַער ִל ְס ֗גּוֹר ַבּ ֨ח ֹ ֶשׁ ְ֙ך וְ ָה ֲאנָ ִ ֣שׁים יָ ָ֔צאוּ ֣ל ֹא יָ ַ ֔ד ְע ִתּי ָ ֥אנָ ה ָה ְל ֖כוּ‬ ‫ֽ ָה ֲאנָ ִ ֑שׁים‬ And the gate was about to close at dark and the men went out; I do not know where the men went. 27

II Kings 4:13

‫ת‬ ֒ ‫ל־ה ֲח ָר ָ ֣דה ַהזֹּא‬ ַ ‫ת־כּ‬ ָ ‫ינוּ ֶא‬ ֮ ‫יה ִה ֵנּ֣ה ָח ַ ֣ר ְד ְתּ ֵא ֵל‬ ֮ ָ ‫ר־נ֣א ֵא ֶל‬ ָ ‫אמר ֗לוֹ ֱא ָמ‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣יּ‬ ‫ל־שׂר ַה ָצּ ָ ֑בא‬ ֣ ַ ‫ל־ה ֶ֔מּ ֶלְך ֖אוֹ ֶא‬ ַ ‫ר־ל ְ֙ך ֶא‬ ָ ‫ֶ ֚מה ַל ֲע ֣שׂוֹת ֔ ָלְך ֲהֵי֤שׁ ְל ַד ֶבּ‬ Say now to her, ‘Behold you have taken all this anxious care for us, what is to be done for you? Should one speak for you to the king or to the captain of the host?’ 28

II Kings 13:19

‫ד־כּ ֵלּ֑ה‬ ַ ‫ת־א ָ ֖רם ַע‬ ֲ ‫ית ֶא‬ ָ ‫אוֹ־שׁ ֙שׁ ְפּ ָע ִ֔מים ָ ֛אז ִה ִ ֥כּ‬ ֵ ‫אמ ֙ר ְל ַה ֨כּוֹת ָח ֵ ֤משׁ‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֙יּ‬ ‫ת־א ָ ֽרם׃‬ ֲ ‫וְ ַע ָ֕תּה ָשׁ ֹ֥לשׁ ְפּ ָע ִ ֖מים ַתּ ֶ ֥כּה ֶא‬ And he said, ‘you should have smitten five or six times; then you would have smitten Aram until annihilation; whereas now you will smite Aram only three times.’ 29

Isaiah 5:4

‫֛יתי ַל ֲע ֥שׂוֹת ֲענָ ִ ֖בים‬ ִ ‫וּע ִקֵוּ‬ ַ ‫יתי ֑בּוֹ ַמ ֧דּ‬ ִ ‫עוֹד ְל ַכ ְר ִ֔מי וְ ֥ל ֹא ָע ִ ֖שׂ‬ ֙ ‫ה־לּ ֲע ֥שׂוֹת‬ ַ ‫ַמ‬ ‫וַ ַיּ ַ֥עשׂ ְבּ ֻא ִ ֽשׁים׃‬

196

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

What more should I have done to my vineyard which I did not do to it? Why did I hope to produce (fine) grapes, but it produced stinking grapes? 30 Amos 6:10

‫הוֽה׃‬ ָ ְ‫וְ ָא ַ ֣מר ָ֔הס ִ ֛כּי ֥ל ֹא ְל ַהזְ ִ ֖כּיר ְבּ ֵ ֥שׁם י‬ And he will say, ‘Hush! for one must not mention the name of the Lord’. 31

Esther 4:2

‫ל־שׁ ַער ַה ֶ ֖מּ ֶלְך ִבּ ְל ֥בוּשׁ‬ ֥ ַ ‫ר־ה ֶ ֑מּ ֶלְך ִ ֣כּי ֵ ֥אין ָל ֛בוֹא ֶא‬ ַ ‫וַ יָּ ֕בוֹא ַ ֖עד ִל ְפ ֵנ֣י ַ ֽשׁ ַע‬ ‫ָ ֽשׂק׃‬ And he came up to the front of the king’s gate, for none might enter the king’s gate with clothing of sackcloth. V:

Gerundial use of Infinitive Construct + lamed (32-38)

32

I Kings 5:23

‫יתי׃‬ ֽ ִ ‫ת־ח ְפ ִ֔צי ָל ֵ ֖תת ֶ ֥ל ֶחם ֵבּ‬ ֶ ‫שׂה ֶא‬ ֣ ֶ ‫וְ ַא ָתּ ֙ה ַתּ ֲע‬ And you will accomplish my desire, in giving food for my household. 33

Genesis 37:15

‫מר‬ ֹ ֖ ‫וַ יִּ ְמ ָצ ֵ ֣אהוּ ִ֔אישׁ וְ ִה ֵנּ֥ה ת ֶ ֹ֖עה ַבּ ָשּׂ ֶ ֑דה וַ יִּ ְשׁ ָא ֵל֧הוּ ָה ִ ֛אישׁ ֵלא‬ ‫ה־תּ ַב ֵ ֽקּשׁ׃‬ ְ ‫ַמ‬ And a man found him and behold he was wandering in the field, and the man asked him saying, ‘what are you looking for?’

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 34

197

I Samuel 12:17

‫הוה ִל ְשׁ ֥אוֹל ָל ֶכ֖ם‬ ָ֔ ְ‫ית ֙ם ְבּ ֵע ֵינ֣י י‬ ֶ ‫י־ר ַע ְת ֶכ֤ם ַר ָבּ ֙ה ֲא ֶ ֤שׁר ֲע ִשׂ‬ ָ ‫ְוּד ֣עוּ ְוּר ֗אוּ ִ ֽכּ‬ ‫ֶ ֽמ ֶלְך׃‬ Know and see that your wickedness is great, which you have done in the eyes of the Lord, in requesting a king for yourselves. 35

I Samuel 14:33

‫ל־ה ָ ֑דּם‬ ַ ‫יהו֖ה ֶל ֱא ֣כֹל ַע‬ ָ ‫מר ִה ֵנּ֥ה ָה ָ ֛עם ח ִ ֹ֥טאים ַ ֽל‬ ֹ ֔ ‫וַ יַּ ִגּ֤ידוּ ְל ָשׁאוּל֙ ֵלא‬ And they told Saul saying, ‘behold the people are sinning to the Lord in eating with the blood’. 36

Genesis 3:22

‫ֵ ֤הן ָ ֽה ָא ָד ֙ם ָהיָ ֙ה ְכּ ַא ַ ֣חד ִמ ֶ֔מּנּוּ ָל ַ ֖ד ַעת ֣טוֹב וָ ָ ֑רע‬ Behold the man has become like one of us, in knowing good and evil. 37

Genesis 18:25

‫ם־ר ָ֔שׁע‬ ָ ‫יק ִע‬ ֙ ‫ָח ֨ ִל ָלה ְלּ ָ֜ך ֵמ ֲע ֣שׂ ֹת ׀ ַכּ ָדּ ָ ֣בר ַה ֶ֗זּה ְל ָה ִ ֤מית ַצ ִדּ‬ Far be it from you (lit. a profanation to you) to do this thing, to slay the righteous with the wicked. 38

Genesis 29:26

‫ירה׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫ירה ִל ְפ ֵנ֥י ַה ְבּ ִכ‬ ֖ ָ ‫קוֹמנוּ ָל ֵ ֥תת ַה ְצּ ִע‬ ֑ ֵ ‫אמר ָל ָ֔בן לֹא־יֵ ָע ֶ ֥שׂה ֵ ֖כן ִבּ ְמ‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣יּ‬ And Laban said, ‘it is not done thus in our place, to give the younger before the elder’.

198

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

VI: Negative Infinitive Construct: use of ‫( לְ ִבלְ ִתּי‬39-44) 39

Genesis 4:15

‫הו֤ה ְל ַ ֙קיִ ֙ן ֔אוֹת ְל ִב ְל ִ ֥תּי ַהכּוֹת־א ֹ֖תוֹ ָכּל־מ ְֹצ ֽאוֹ׃‬ ָ ְ‫וַ ָ֨יּ ֶשׂם י‬ And he placed a sign on Cain in order that anyone finding him should not smite him. 40 Genesis 38:9

‫ן־ז ַ רע ְל ָא ִ ֽחיו׃‬ ֖ ֶ ‫ל־א ֶשׁת ָא ִח ֙יו וְ ִשׁ ֵ ֣חת ַ֔א ְר ָצה ְל ִב ְל ִ ֥תּי נְ ָת‬ ֤ ֵ ‫ם־בּא ֶא‬ ָ֨ ‫וְ ָה ָ֞יה ִא‬ And it was, whenever he came to the wife of his brother, he would destroy (his seed) on the ground, in order not to give seed to his brother. 41

Genesis 19:21

‫ת־ה ִ ֖עיר ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר‬ ָ ‫אתי ָפ ֔ ֶניָך ַגּ֖ם ַל ָדּ ָ ֣בר ַה ֶזּ֑ה ְל ִב ְל ִ ֛תּי ָה ְפ ִ ֥כּי ֶא‬ ִ ‫ִהנֵּ ֙ה נָ ָ ֣שׂ‬ ‫ִדּ ַ ֽבּ ְר ָתּ׃‬ Behold I have given you favour (lit. lifted up your face) also for this thing, in my not overturning the city of which you spoke. 42

Deuteronomy 8:11

‫מר ִמ ְצו ָֹת ֙יו‬ ֹ ֤ ‫ֹלהיָך ְל ִב ְל ִ֨תּי ְשׁ‬ ֑ ֶ ‫הו֣ה ֱא‬ ָ ְ‫ן־תּ ְשׁ ַ ֖כּח ֶאת־י‬ ִ ‫ִה ָ ֣שּׁ ֶמר ְל ָ֔ך ֶפּ‬ ‫וּמ ְשׁ ָפּ ָ ֣טיו וְ ֻחקּ ָֹ֔תיו‬ ִ Take care lest you forget the Lord your G-d in not keeping His commandments and His judgments and His statutes. 43

Genesis 3:11

‫ל־מ ֶ ֖מּנּוּ ָא ָ ֽכ ְל ָתּ׃‬ ִ ‫יתיָך ְל ִב ְל ִ ֥תּי ֲא ָכ‬ ֛ ִ ִ‫ן־ה ֗ ֵעץ ֲא ֶ ֧שׁר ִצוּ‬ ָ ‫ֲה ִמ‬

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

199

Have you eaten from the tree from which I commanded you not to eat? 44

Ruth 2:9

‫ת־הנְּ ָע ִ ֖רים ְל ִב ְל ִ ֣תּי נָ גְ ֵעְ֑ך‬ ַ ‫֛יתי ֶא‬ ִ ‫ֲה ֥לוֹא ִצִוּ‬ Have I not commanded the young men not to harm you? VII: Infinitive Construct + lamed as object of governing verb (45-46). 45 Genesis 37:35

‫א ָלה‬ ֹ ֑ ‫ל־בּ ִנ֛י ָא ֵ ֖בל ְשׁ‬ ְ ‫י־א ֵ ֧רד ֶא‬ ֵ ‫אמר ִ ֽכּ‬ ֶ ֹ ‫אן ְל ִה ְתנַ ֵ֔חם וַ ֕יּ‬ ֙ ֵ ‫וַ יְ ָמ‬ And he refused to be comforted and he said, ‘for I will go down to my son in mourning to Sheol’. 46

Genesis 38:26

‫יה ְל ֵשׁ ָל֣ה ְב ִנ֑י‬ ָ ‫ל־כּן לֹא־נְ ַת ִ ֖תּ‬ ֥ ֵ ‫י־ע‬ ַ ‫אמ ֙ר ָ ֽצ ְד ָ ֣ קה ִמ ֶ֔מּנִּ י ִ ֽכּ‬ ֶ ֹ ‫הוּדה וַ ֙יּ‬ ֗ ָ ְ‫וַ יַּ ֵכּ֣ר י‬ ‫וְ ֽל ֹא־יָ ַ ֥סף ֖עוֹד ְל ַד ְע ָ ֽתּהּ׃‬ And Judah recognized (them) and he said, ‘she is more righteous than me, because I did not give her to Shelah my son’ and he did not continue to know her. Explanatory notes to identify infinitive construct forms 1

‫ ֱהיוֹת‬Qal; ‫ ; ָהיָ ה‬subject of sentence (nominative); “(man’s) being—”.

2

‫ְשׁמ ַֹע‬

Qal; ‫ ;שׁמע‬subject of sentence (nominative); “listening”.Saul had been commanded to destroy Amalek and all that he had, but he spared Agag and the best of the livestock. Hence, Samuel’s rebuke.

3

‫ֲא ָכ ְלָך‬

Qal; ‫ אכל‬+ sf. 2 m.sg. “your eating”. Genitive function; “the day of your eating”.

200

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

4

‫ִהוָּ ְל ָדהּ‬

Niphal; ‫ ילד‬+ sf. 3 f.sg. “her being born”. Genitive function;“as the day of her being born”. ‫ ִציָּ ה‬n.f. = “dryness, drought”; ‫ > יצג‬Hiphil:“set, place”; ‫ > ִשׁית‬Qal perf. 1 c.sg. ‫“ ַשׁ ִתּי‬I have put, set” (note assimilation of tav, third root letter, into tav of suffix).

5

‫ֵצאת וָ בֹא‬

6

‫נְ שׂא‬

Qal; ‫ ;נשׂא‬object of verb ‫יתי‬ ִ ‫“ ;נִ ְל ֵא‬I am weary of bearing”;

7

‫ְשׂנ ֹא‬

Qal;

Qal; ‫ ;יצא‬Qal; ‫“ ;בוא‬going out and coming in”. Both these inf. cstr. forms are functioning as objects (accusative) of the verb ‫“ לֹא ֵא ַדע‬I do not know”. Note qamets under vav conjunctive before tone syllable. Note also the nominal circumstantial clause introduced by vav, followed by subject and then predicate. “Even though I was a young lad, not knowing how to go out and come in”. (The dream of Solomon at Gibeon. He asks G-d for understanding and ability to judge the people. G-d grants his prayer and also gives him wealth and glory).

‫;שׂנא‬

object of verb

‫יּוֹספוּ‬ ִ ַ‫;ו‬

“they continued hating

him”. 8

‫ִכּ ְראֹת‬

‫וּכ ָשׁ ְמעוֹ‬ ְ

Qal; ‫ ראה‬+ prep. ‫ ;כ‬lit. “as the seeing”.

Qal; ‫ שׁמע‬+ prep. ‫ כ‬+ sf. 3 m.sg. lit. “as his hearing”.

The two inf. cstr. forms express time; “when (he) saw—and when he heard”. Rebekah’s brother, Laban, approaches Abraham’s servant. 9

‫יוֹתם‬ ָ ‫ִבּ ְה‬

Qal; ‫ היה‬+ sf. 3 m.pl. + prep ‫ ;בּ‬lit. “in their being”, i.e. “when they were”; inf. cstr. + prep ‫ בּ‬expressing time.

10

‫ְבּ ִה ָבּנֹתוֹ‬

Niphal; ‫ בנה‬+ sf. 3 m.sg. + prep ‫ ;בּ‬inf. cstr. + prep ‫בּ‬ expressing time; lit. “in its being built”; i.e. “when it was built—”.

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

201

‫ ַמ ָסּע‬n.m. = “quarry, quarrying” > ‫“ ֶא ֶבן ְשׁ ֵל ָמה ַמ ָסּע‬stone perfect (at the) quarrying”, i.e. “when it was quarried”; ‫“ = נָ ַקב‬pierce” > ‫ ַמ ֶקּ ֶבת‬n.f. = “hammer” > pl. ‫ גַּ ְרזֶ ן ; ַמ ָקּבוֹת‬n.m. = “axe”. Neither hammer nor axe was used in the building of the Temple. The stones were fitted together with one of the marvels of Creation, the SHAMIR, a kind of worm which could cleave the stones. (Hertz p 338). 11

‫ ְבּ ִה ְתוַ ַדּע‬Hithpael; ‫ ידע‬+ prep ‫ ;בּ‬lit. “in (Joseph’s) making himself known”, i.e. “when Joseph made himself known”; inf. cstr. + prep expressing time.

12

‫לוֹט‬-‫ַא ֲח ֵרי ִה ָפּ ֶרד‬

Niphal; ‫ פרד‬following the prep ‫ ַא ֲח ֵרי‬. Note segol under resh, shortened from tsere, due to maqqef. (Words joined by maqqef lose their primary accent unless they are the final word in the unit and may undergo vowel changes due to the loss of accent). Lit. “after the separating of Lot from him”; i.e. “after Lot separated from him”. the prep ‫ ַא ֲח ֵרי‬+ inf. cstr. Expressing time.

13

'‫ִל ְפנֵ י ַשׁ ֵחת ה‬

Piel; ‫ שׁחת‬following prep ‫ ; ִל ְפנֵ י‬lit. “before the Lord’s destroying Sodom & Gomorrah”; i.e. “before the Lord destroyed Sodom & Gomorrah”; inf. cstr. + prep expressing time.

14

‫ שׁוּב‬Qal; ‫שׁוּב‬

following the prep ‫“ = ַעד‬until”; lit. “until the returning of your brother’s anger from you”, i.e. “until your brother’s anger returns—”; inf. cstr. + prep to express time. Note that in the previous verse, the temporal clause is expressed by ‫ ַעד ֲא ֶשׁר‬+ the finite verb, ‫ ָתּשׁוּב‬. Rebekkah advising Jacob to flee Esau’s wrath and take refuge with her brother Laban.

15

‫ִמ ֵדּי ָע ְברוֹ‬

Qal; ‫ עבר‬+ sf. 3 m.sg. following the prep ‫ ; ִמ ֵדּי‬lit. “as often as his passing”. (‫ ִמ ֵדּי‬is made up of the prep ‫ ִמן‬and the construct form of ‫“ = ַדּי‬sufficiency, enough” > “out of the sufficiency

202

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW of”). Inf. cstr. + prep expressing time, i.e. “whenever he passed by, he used to—”. The Shunamite lady’s hospitality to Elisha the Prophet.

16

‫ֵמ ָאז ַדּ ֶבּ ְרָך‬

Piel; ‫ דבר‬+ sf 2 m.sg. following prep ‫ ; ֵמ ָאז‬lit. “since your speaking”; inf. cstr. + prep expressing time, i.e. “since you spoke”. Moses pleading lack of rhetorical ability.

17

‫שׂוֹת ֶכם‬ ְ ‫ יַ ַען ֲע‬Qal; ‫;עשׂה‬

18

‫יַ ַען ָמ ָא ְס ֶכם‬

Qal; ‫ מאס‬+ sf. 2 m.pl. following prep ‫ ;יַ ַען‬lit. “because of your rejecting”; inf. cstr. + prep expressing cause. ‫> לוּז‬ Niphal part. ‫“ = נָ לוֹז‬crooked” > “crookedness”. “This word” refers to the prophetic warning against alliance with Egypt.

19

‫סּוֹתם‬ ָ ַ‫וְ ַעל נ‬

Piel; ‫ נסה‬+ sf. 3 m.pl. following prep ‫ ; ַעל‬lit. “upon their trying”; inf. cstr. + prep ‫ ַעל‬expressing cause, i.e. “because they tried—”.

20

‫ ָא ְמ ֵרְך‬-‫ַעל‬

Qal; ‫ אמר‬+ sf. 2 f.sg. following prep ‫ ; ַעל‬lit. “upon your saying”; inf. cstr. + prep expressing cause, i.e. “because you said—”.

21

‫ֵמ ְראוֹת‬ Qal; ‫ ראה‬+ prep ‫ ; ֵמ‬lit. “from seeing”; inf. cstr. + prep ‫ מ‬to express negative result, i.e. “so that he could not see”.

22

‫ ַדּ ְע ְתָּך‬-‫ַעל‬

Qal; ‫ ידע‬+ sf. 2 m.sg. following prep ‫ ; ַעל‬inf. cstr. + prep to express concession; lit. “upon your knowing”, i.e. “although you know—”.

23

‫ִל ְראֹת‬

following prep ‫ ;יַ ַען‬lit. “because of your doing”; inf. cstr. + prep expressing cause, i.e. “because you did—”.

see”.

Qal;

‫ ראה‬+ lamed prefix, expressing purpose; “in order to

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

203

24

‫ַבּ ֲעבוּר ַה ְרא ְֹתָך‬

Hiphil; ‫ ראה‬+ sf. 2 m.sg. following prep ‫ַבּ ֲעבוּר‬ expressing purpose; lit. “for the sake of showing you”; i.e. “in order to ְ Piel; ‫ ספר‬following prep ‫ ְל ַמ ַען‬expressing show you”. ‫וּל ַמ ַען ַס ֵפּר‬ purpose; “in order to recount”.

25

‫ וַ יְ ִהי ַה ֶשּׁ ֶמשׁ ָלבוֹא‬Qal; ‫ בוא‬+ lamed prefix; “and the sun was about to set”; gerundive use of inf. cstr; sense of: “is to be, must be, ought to be”.

26

‫וַ יְ ִהי ַה ַשּׁ ַער ִל ְסגּוֹר‬

Qal; ‫ סגר‬+ lamed prefix; gerundive use of inf. cstr. “and the gate was about to be shut, had to be shut”.

27

‫ֶמה ַל ֲעשׂוֹת ָלְך‬

Qal; ‫ עשׂה‬+ lamed prefix; “what is to be done for you?” Gerundive use of inf. cstr. but with omission of preceding

‫וַ יְ ִהי‬/‫ ָהיָ ה‬. ‫ ָלְך‬-‫ֲהיֵ שׁ ְל ַד ֶבּר‬

Piel; ‫ דבר‬+ lamed prefix; “should one speak for you to the king?” Gerundive use of inf. cstr. 28

‫ְל ַהכּוֹת‬

Hiphil; ‫ נכה‬+ lamed prefix; gerundive use of inf. cstr. but with omission of ‫(“ ;היה‬it was) to smite/you should have smitten”. Elisha’s last illness; Joash, King of Israel, went to visit him; Elisha told Joash to smite the arrows on the ground; Joash smote them three times only; Elisha reproved him.

29

‫ ַלּ ֲעשׂוֹת עוֹד‬-‫ַמה‬

30

‫לֹא ְל ַהזְ ִכּיר‬

Qal; ‫ עשׂה‬+ lamed prefix; gerundive use of inf. cstr. but without ‫“ ;היה‬what should I have done?” ‫ ְבּ ֻא ִשׁים‬n.m.pl. “stinking things, wild grapes” (‫“ = ָבּ ַאשׁ‬have a bad smell, stink”).

Hiphil; ‫ זכר‬+ lamed prefix, preceded by ‫ ;לֹא‬negative of gerundive use of inf. cstr. “one must not mention”. ‫( ַהס‬pausal: ‫“ = ) ָהס‬hush! keep silence” (prob. onomatopoeic).

204

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

31

‫ֵאין ָלבוֹא‬

Qal; ‫ בוא‬+ prefix lamed, preceded by gerundive use of inf. cstr. “for none might enter”.

‫ ; ֵאין‬negative of

32

‫ָל ֵתת‬

33

‫ֵלאמֹר‬

Qal; ‫ אמר‬+ prefix lamed; gerundial use of inf. cstr. “The man asked him, saying—”. A man found Joseph looking for his brothers, who were tending the flock in Shechem.

34

‫ִל ְשׁאוֹל‬

Qal; ‫ שׁאל‬+ prefix lamed; gerundial use of inf. cstr. “in your asking for a king”.

35

‫ֶל ֱאכֹל‬

36

‫ָל ַד ַעת‬

Qal; ‫ ידע‬+ prefix lamed; gerundial use of inf. cstr. “Behold like one of us, in knowing good and evil”.

37

‫ֵמ ֲעשׂ ֹת‬

Qal; ‫ נתן‬+ prefix lamed; gerundial use of inf. cstr. plus lamed, “to state motives, attendant circumstances, or otherwise to define more exactly” (GK 114); “to explain the circumstances or nature of a preceding action” (Davidson, Syntax, p 127 f). “This gerundial use is very common” (Davidson, Syntax, p 127). Hiram of Tyre has agreed to supply timber for the Temple and comes to a mutual agreement with Solomon.

Qal; ‫ אכל‬+ prefix lamed; gerundial use of inf. cstr. “The people are sinning in eating with the blood.”

Qal; ‫ עשׂה‬+ prep ‫ ;מ‬lit. “from doing”; inf. cstr. + prep to express negative result, i.e. “so that you will not do”.

‫ְל ָה ִמית‬

Hiphil; ‫ מות‬+ prefix lamed; gerundial use of inf. cstr. “in slaying/to slay the righteous with the wicked”. 38

‫ָל ֵתת‬

Qal; ‫ נתן‬+ prefix lamed; gerundial use of inf. cstr. “to give the younger before the elder”.

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

205

39

‫אֹתוֹ‬-‫ ְל ִב ְל ִתּי ַהכּוֹת‬Hiphil; ‫;נכה‬

the particle ‫ ְל ִב ְל ִתּי‬negatives infinitives expressing purpose, as here; “in order that (anyone finding him) should not smite him”.

40

‫זֶ ַרע‬-‫ְל ִב ְל ִתּי נְ ָתן‬

Qal; ‫ ;נתן‬note short qamets before maqqef, shortened from ḥolem. The particle ‫ ְל ִב ְל ִתּי‬negatives the inf. cstr. Expressing purpose here; “in order not to give seed to his brother”. Judah and Batshua had three sons, Er, Onan and Shelah; Judah took a wife for Er, Tamar, but Er died, so Judah ordered Onan to perform levirate duty, but Onan was unwilling.

41

‫ְל ִב ְל ִתּי ָה ְפ ִכּי‬

Qal; ‫ הפך‬+ sf. 1 c.sg. The particle ‫ ְל ִב ְל ִתּי‬is frequently used to negative an inf. cstr. form in its gerundial or explicative sense, as here;“in not overturning the city—”. The angel agreed to spare Zoar, a small town whither Lot had fled from Sodom.

42

‫ְל ִב ְל ִתּי ְשׁמֹר‬

Qal; ‫ ְל ִב ְל ִתּי ;שׁמר‬+ inf. cstr. in its gerundial sense; “in

not keeping”. 43

‫ ִמ ֶמּנּוּ‬-‫ְל ִב ְל ִתּי ֲא ָכל‬

Qal; ‫ ְל ִב ְל ִתּי ;אכל‬+ inf. cstr. negative purpose; “I commanded you not to eat from it”.

44

‫ ְל ִב ְל ִתּי ְל ִב ְל ִתּי נָ גְ ֵעְך‬+ inf. cstr. Qal, ‫“ = נגע‬touch”, + sf. 2 f.sg.“in order not to harm you”; negative purpose.

45

‫ְל ִה ְתנַ ֵחם‬

Hithpael; ‫ נחם‬+ prefix lamed; inf. cstr. + lamed as object of governing verb; “he refused to be comforted”.

46

‫ְל ַד ְע ָתּהּ‬

Qal; ‫ ידע‬+ sf. 3 f.sg. + prefix lamed; inf. cstr. + lamed as object of governing verb; “he did not continue to know her”. Tamar had become pregnant by acting as a harlot because Judah had not given her as wife to his 3rd son, Shelah. Judah then ceased relations with her.

206

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

VIEW OF MEDIEVAL SCHOLARS ON THE FORM AND USE OF INFINITIVE ABSOLUTE AND INFINITIVE CONSTRUCT The comments of the medieval scholars are presented in the original rabbinic Hebrew, together with translation and explanation. Students should study the biblical verses and compare the views of the medieval scholars with the views in modern grammar books. Note the following grammatical terms used by Rashi and Ibn Ezra for infinitive forms: Rashi’s terms for ‘infinitive absolute’ are: ‫ ָפּעוֹל‬and ‫הוֹ וֶה‬. The term ‫ הוֹ וֶה‬is often employed by Rashi to a form in the perfect or imperfect, an infinitive absolute or participle, when Rashi deems such forms to have the force of a frequentative or customary action, or long continuance. The terms ‫ ָפּעוֹל‬and ‫ הוֹ וֶה‬are often interchangeable. However, Rashi has no special term for the ‘infinitive construct’, labeling the Qal inf. cstr. ‫ ִל ְפעוֹל‬and the Niphal inf. cstr. ‫( ְל ִה ָפּ ֵעל‬see below, Rashi’s comment on Genesis 34:15). Ibn Ezra’s term for the ‘infinitive construct’ is ‫פּוֹעל‬ ַ ‫ֵשׁם ַה‬ ‫ ַה ָסּמוְּך‬and his term for the ‘infinitive absolute’ is ‫פּוֹעל ֶשׁ ֵאינוֹ‬ ַ ‫ֵשׁם ַה‬ ‫ ָסמוְּך‬or ‫מּוּכ ָרת‬ ְ ‫פּוֹעל ַה‬ ַ ‫שׁם ַה‬. ֵ 1

Exodus 8:11

‫ת־ל ֔בּוֹ‬ ִ ‫וַ ַיּ֣ ְ רא ַפּ ְר ֗עֹה ִ ֤כּי ָ ֽהיְ ָת ֙ה ָ ֽה ְרוָ ָ֔חה וְ ַה ְכ ֵבּ ֙ד ֶא‬ And Pharoah saw that there was respite and he hardened his heart. Comment of Rashi on ‫וְ ַה ְכ ֵבּ ֙ד‬

‫וֹע‬ ַ ‫ וַ יִּ ַ ֣סּע ַא ְב ָ ֔רם ָה ֥לוְֹך וְ נָ ֖ס‬:(‫ )בראשית יב ט‬:‫ כמו‬,‫ְלשׁוֹן ָפּעוֹל הוא‬ ‫ת־מוֹאב׃‬ ָֽ ‫ ]וַ יַּ כּוּ־[ ָ֔בהּ וְ ַה ֖כּוֹת ֶא‬:(‫ַה ֶנּֽ גְ ָבּה׃ וכן )מלכים ב ג כד‬ ‫)שמואל א כב יג(׃‬

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

207

֙‫וּבן־יִ ָ ֑שׁי ְבּ ִת ְתּ ָ֙ך ֜לוֹ ֶל ֶ֣חם וְ ֶ֗ח ֶרב וְ ָשׁ ֥אוֹל לוֹ‬ ֶ ‫ָ ֚ל ָמּה ְק ַשׁ ְר ֶ ֣תּם ָע ֔ ַלי ַא ָ ֖תּה‬ ‫אֹלהים‬ ִ֔ ‫ֵ ֽבּ‬ ‫וּפ ֽצ ֹ ַע‬ ָ ‫ וַ יַּ ֵ ֥כּהוּ ָה ִ ֖אישׁ ַה ֵ ֥כּה‬:(‫)מלכים א כ לז‬ Translation of Rashi’s comments

‫וְ ַה ְכ ֵבּ ֙ד‬

This is an expression of ‘continuity’ like: Genesis 12:9: and Abraham journeyed continually towards the South; II Kings 3:24: and they smote Moab with great force; I Samuel 22:13: why have you conspired against me, you and the son of Jesse, by your giving him bread and a sword and you consulted G-d for him; (words of King Saul to Abimelech, priest of Nob, whom he rebuked for sheltering David); I Kings 20:37: and the man smote him, smiting and wounding (him). Explanation of Rashi’s comments Rashi brings examples of inf. abs. from four different biblical verses. It is noteworthy that most of Rashi’s examples do not illustrate the use of inf. abs. instead of an inflected form, as is the case with ‫וְ ַה ְכ ֵבּד‬. In three of Rashi’s examples (Gen 12:9: ‫סוֹע‬ ַ ָ‫ ( ;) ָהלוְֹך וְ נ‬II Kings 3:24: ‫( ;)וְ ַהכּוֹת‬I Kings 20:37: ‫וּפצ ַֹע‬ ָ ‫) ַה ֵכּה‬, the inf. abs. forms are used after the finite verb for emphasis. We have seen that the inf. abs. after the finite verb emphasizes the nuance of continuity, and it seems to be this aspect of the function of inf. abs. that Rashi is keen to highlight here; “Pharoah continued hardening his heart”. Only in one of Rashi’s examples does it seem possible that the inf. abs. is used in place of the finite verb, that is in I Samuel 22:13 (‫)וְ ָשׁאוֹל לוֹ‬. Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫וְ ַה ְכ ֵבּד‬

.‫פּוֹעל ָע ָבר‬ ַ ‫פּוֹעל ַתּ ַחת‬ ַ ‫ֵשׁם ַה‬

208

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Translation of Ibn Ezra’s comments The infinitive is used instead of the finite verb. (note that Ibn Ezra does not offer any explanation for the phenomenon). 2

Exodus 20:8

‫זָ ֛כוֹר֩ ֶאת־י֥ וֹם ַה ַשּׁ ָ ֖בּת ְל ַק ְדּ ֽשׁוֹ‬ Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy. Comment of Rashi on

֩‫זָ ֛כוֹר‬

‫ ָא ֣כוֹל וְ ָשׁ ֔תוֹ ִ ֥כּי ָמ ָ ֖חר נָ ֽמוּת׃‬:(‫ )ישעיה כב יג‬:‫ כמו‬,‫לשון ָפּעוֹל הוא‬ ‫וּב ֛כֹה‬ ָ ‫ישׁהּ ָה ֧לוְֹך‬ ָ֗ ‫ וַ ֵ֨יּ ֶלְך ִא ָ֜תּהּ ִא‬:(‫)שמואל ב ג טז‬ ‫ ְתּנוּ ֵלב ִלזְ כּוֹר ָתּ ִמיד את יום ַה ַשּׁ ָבּת ֶשׁ ִאם נִ זְ ַדּ ֵמּן ְלָך‬,‫וכן ִפתרוֹנוֹ‬ .‫ ְתּ ֵהא ַמזְ ִמינוֹ ְל ַשׁ ָבּת‬,‫ֵח ֶפץ יָ ֶפה‬ Translation of Rashi on Exodus 20:

‫ זָ כוֹר‬is an expression of continuity, like: Isaiah 22:13: “let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we shall die”; II Samuel 3:16: “and her husband went with her, weeping as he went”. This is the explanation; pay attention to remember continually the Sabbath day, that if something nice comes your way, set it aside for the Sabbath. Explanation of Rashi on Exodus 20:8 Rashi compares ‫ זָ כוֹר‬with two examples. In Rashi’s first example, (Isaiah 22:13), the two inf. abs. forms, ‫ ָא ֣כוֹל וְ ָשׁ ֔תוֹ‬are used in place of finite verbs, “let us eat and drink”. In Rashi’s second example (II Samuel 3:16), ָ ‫ ָה ֧לוְֹך‬coming after the finite verb, ‫וַ ֵ֨יּ ֶלְך‬, the inf. abs. forms, ‫וּב ֛כֹה‬

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

209

emphasize the nuance of continuity, “her husband went with her, weeping as he went”. (Phalti went with Michal, younger daughter of King Saul, who had been won by David for slaughter of Philistines. After David’s flight, Saul gave Michal to Phalti, but David insisted on the return of Michal when Abner wanted to make a treaty with him). It is noteworthy that the function of ‫ זָ כוֹר‬in Exodus 20:8 is not the same as the function of the inf. abs. forms in either of the examples brought by Rashi, since ‫ זָ כוֹר‬comes in place of the imperative form, but it seems that it is the nuance of continuity that Rashi wishes to illustrate. 3

I Samuel 1:9

‫תה‬ ֹ ֑ ‫וַ ָ ֣תּ ָקם ַח ָ֔נּה ַא ֲח ֵ ֛רי ָא ְכ ָ ֥לה ְב ִשׁ ֹ֖לה וְ ַא ֲח ֵ ֣רי ָשׁ‬ And Hannah arose after eating in Shiloh and after drinking. Comment of Rashi on ‫ָא ְכ ָ ֥לה‬

‫ַא ֲח ֵ ֛רי‬

‫לא ַמ ִפּיק ה"א והאל"ף חטף קמץ והיא כמו ַא ֲח ֵרי ָאכוֹל בשילה‬ ‫ אחרי ָא ְכ ָלה לשון‬.‫נוֹפל ֵבּין ְלזָ ָכר ֵבּין ִלנְ ֵק ָבה‬ ֵ ‫וה ָלּשׁוֹן‬ ַ .‫וא ֲח ֵרי ָשׁתֹה‬ ַ .‫לא ְכ ָלה לשון ִל ְפעוֹל‬ ָ ‫ָפּעוֹל כמו‬ Translation of Rashi The word ‫ ָא ְכ ָלה‬does not have mappiq hey (mappiq is a dot that can be inserted in a final hey to enable it to retain its consonantal value, instead of functioning merely as a vowel letter) and the ’aleph has ḥatef-qamets and it (the word ‫ ) ָא ְכ ָלה‬is like ‫ ָאכוֹל‬.i.e. ‫ַא ֲח ֵרי ָאכוֹל בשילה ואחרי ָשׁתֹה‬ (thereby corresponding with ‫) ָשׁתֹה‬. Hence, ‫ ָא ְכ ָלה‬is a ‫ ָפּעוֹל‬form (inf. abs.), whereas ‫( ְל ָא ְכ ָלה‬with lamed) is ‫ – ִל ְפעוֹל‬inf. cstr. form (see Genesis 1:29, 30; 6:21 etc.).

210

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Explanation of Rashi Rashi discounts the idea that ‫ ָא ְכ ָלה‬could mean “her eating”, i.e. noun + suffix, since the suffix of 3 f.sg. has mappiq hey and this is not present in our word. Equally, he discounts the idea that ‫ ָא ְכ ָלה‬could be Qal perf. 3 f.sg. “she had eaten”, because then the ’aleph would have long qamets, not ḥatef qamets. He concludes that ‫ ָא ְכ ָלה‬is like ‫ ָאכוֹל‬, the Qal inf. abs. form, corresponding with ‫ ָשׁתֹה‬, also Qal inf. abs. The inf. cstr. form has lamed attached, ‫ ְל ָא ְכ ָלה‬, as in Genesis 1:29, 30 etc. We see here clearly that Rashi’s terminology for inf. abs. is ‫ ָפּעוֹל‬and for inf. cstr. is ‫( ִל ְפעוֹל‬i.e. no special term). Rashi does not comment on the abnormal ‫תה‬ ֹ ֑ ‫וְ ַא ֲח ֵ ֣רי ָשׁ‬, but it is worth noting the comments of Gesenius and Jouon/Muraoka: see GK 113e, note 3: “‫תה‬ ֹ ֑ ‫ וְ ַא ֲח ֵ ֣רי ָשׁ‬is impossible Hebrew and as the LXX shows, a late addition.” And see: JM 123c: “It is equally abnormal for an inf. abs. to ֹ ֑ ‫וְ ַא ֲח ֵ ֣ר ָשׁ‬ be governed by a preposition. However, there is I Sm 1.9 ‫תה‬ Comment of Radak on ‫ָא ְכ ָ ֥לה‬

‫ַא ֲח ֵ ֛רי‬

‫ ואין הה"א ִלנְ ֵק ָבה כי איננה ַמ ִפּיק וכן ָשׁתֹה‬.‫תוֹס ֶפת ה"א‬ ֶ ‫ָמקוֹר ְבּ‬ .‫ופירוּשׁ אחרי ֶשׁ ָא ְכלוּ וְ ָשׁתוּ‬ ֵ ‫ָמקוֹר‬ Translation of Radak The word ‫ ָא ְכ ָ ֥לה‬is inf. abs. (‫ ) ָמקוֹר‬with an extra hey. The hey is not for a feminine, since it has no mappiq and likewise ‫ ָשׁתֹה‬is inf. abs. The meaning is “after they had eaten and drunk”. Explanation of Radak Radak’s comment brings out the fact that these forms, inf. abs. according to his opinion, serve here in place of finite verbs.

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 4

211

Isaiah 6:10

‫ב־ה ָע֣ם ַה ֶ֔זּה וְ ָאזְ ָנ֥יו ַה ְכ ֵבּ֖ד וְ ֵע ָינ֣יו ָה ַ ֑שׁע ֶפּן־יִ ְר ֶ֨אה ְב ֵע ָ֜יניו‬ ָ ‫מן ֵל‬ ֙ ֵ ‫ַה ְשׁ‬ ְ ‫יָבין וָ ָ ֖שׁב וְ ָ ֥ר ָפא ֽלוֹ׃‬ ֛ ִ ‫וּל ָב ֥בוֹ‬ ְ ‫וּב ָאזְ ָנ֣יו יִ ְשׁ ָ֗מע‬ Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and besmear their eyes, lest one will see with one’s eyes and hear with one’s ears, and one’s heart will understand and will return and be healed. (‫“ = ָשׁ ַעע‬be smeared over, blinded” > Hiphil imperative m.sg. “besmear”)

‫ָה ַ ֑שׁע‬

=

֙ ֵ ‫ ַה ְשׁ‬and ‫ַה ְכ ֵ ֖בּד‬ Comment of Rashi on ‫מן‬ ‫ ִל ָבּם‬.‫ לשון ָהלוְֹך לשון ָפּעוֹל‬.‫ ִלבּוֹ‬-‫ וְ ַה ְכ ֵבּד ֶאת‬:(‫ )שמות ח יא‬:‫כמו‬ .‫מוֹע‬ ַ ‫וה ְכ ֵבּד ִמ ְשּׁ‬ ַ ‫הוֹלְך ָהלוְֹך וְ ַה ְשׁ ֵמן ואזניו הולכים ָהלוְֹך‬ ֵ Translation of Rashi Like Exodus 8:11: “and (he) hardened his heart”, an expression of continuity. Their heart continually becomes fatter and his ears are becoming heavier and heavier so that they do not hear. Explanation of Rashi Rashi takes ‫( ַה ְשׁ ֵמן‬also ‫ ַה ְכ ֵבּד‬and ‫ ) ָה ַשׁע‬as inf. abs. forms, labeling them ‫לשון ָהלוְֹך לשון ָפּעוֹל‬. They could have been taken as Hiphil imperative m.sg. since they have the same form as inf. abs. Hiphil, but such a view gives rise to the problem that the prophet would hardly be asked to fatten the people’s hearts, harden their ears and smear their eyes. Hence, Rashi avoids this problem by taking these forms as inf. abs., an expression of a continuous action.

212

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Comment of Ibn Ezra on Isaiah 6:10

‫ )שמואל א ב‬:‫פּוֹעל כמו‬ ַ ‫ַה ְשׁ ֵמן – יש אומר ֶשׁ ִמּ ַלּת ַה ְשׁ ֵמן ֵשׁם ַה‬ .‫ ַק ֵטּר יַ ְק ִטירוּן ַכּיּוֹם ַה ֵח ֶלב וְ ֵכן ָה ַשׁע כמו )ויקרא ה ד( ְל ָה ַרע‬:(‫טז‬ ‫ וידענו כי אין כּ ַֹח‬,‫ רק הכל ִציווי‬,‫וזה לא יִ ָתּ ֵכן ַבּ ֲעבוּר ִמ ַלּת ֶפּן‬ .‫ וכמוהו רבים‬,‫ רק הוא בדבור‬,‫ַבּנָּ ִביא ְל ַה ְשׁמן ַה ֵלּב‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra on Isaiah 6:10 There are those who say that the word ‫ ַה ְשׁ ֵמן‬is an infinitive form

ַ ‫ ) ֵשׁם ַה‬like: I Samuel 2:16: “let them indeed make the fat to smoke (‫פּוֹעל‬ now” (where the word ‫ ַק ֵטּר‬is Piel inf. abs. giving emphasis to the finite Hiphil imperf. form ‫ )יַ ְק ִטירוּן‬and likewise, ‫( ָה ַשׁע‬Hiphil: ‫ )שׁעע‬has the same form as the infinitive form ‫( ְל ָה ַרע‬Hiphil: ‫( )רעע‬Leviticus 5:4). But this is not likely, because of the word “lest”. Only, these forms are all imperatives (‫)ציווי‬. We know that the prophet does not have the ability to fatten the heart, but it is by way of speech, and there are many such examples. Explanation of Ibn Ezra on Isaiah 6:10 Ibn Ezra holds that these forms must be imperatives because infinitives could not be the verbal form of a main clause followed by the subordinate clause introduced by ‫“ = ֶפּן‬lest”. Ibn Ezra implies that the people are being deprived of the ability to repent as punishment for their sins. 5

Hosea 6:9

‫חוּ־שׁ ְכ ָמה ִ ֥כּי זִ ָ ֖מּה ָע ֽשׂוּ׃‬ ֑ ֶ ‫דוּדים ֶ ֚ח ֶבר ֽכֹּ ֲה ִ֔נים ֶ ֖דּ ֶרְך יְ ַר ְצּ‬ ֗ ִ ְ‫וּכ ַח ֵ֨כּי ִ֜אישׁ גּ‬ ְ And as troops waiting for a man is the company of priests; they murder on the road to Shechem for they have planned wickedness.

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

213

ְ Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫וּכ ַח ֵ֨כּי‬ ‫היו"ד ַתּ ַחת ה"א על דרך ְל ַכ ֵלּא ַה ֶפּ ַשׁע )דניאל ט כד( גם הוא‬ ‫וא ֶלּה ַהשׁתים ִמלּוֹת זָ רוֹת ֵהן כי ִמ ְשׁ ַפּט בּעלי‬ ֵ ,‫באל"ף תחת ה"א‬ .‫הה"א ְבּ ָסמוְּך ְל ַכלּוֹת ְל ַחכּוֹת‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra The yod in ‫וּכ ַח ֵכּי‬ ְ replaces hey. Compare ‫( ְל ַכ ֵלּא ַה ֶפּ ַשׁע‬Daniel 9:24) = “to finish the transgression”, in which case the ’aleph similarly replaces the hey. Both of these words (‫וּכ ַח ֵכּי‬ ְ and ‫ ) ְל ַכ ֵלּא‬are rare; for the proper form of the inf. cstr. (when derived from) a lamed-hey verb is ‫( ְל ַכלּוֹת‬to finish), ‫( ְל ַחכּוֹת‬to wait). Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra is explaining that the regular form of Piel inf. cstr. from the lamed-hey root ‫ חכה‬would be ‫ =( ַחכּוֹת‬waiting). Hence, ‫וּכ ַח ֵכּי‬ ְ is a strange form, where one would have expected ‫וּכ ַחכּוֹת‬ ְ . Similarly, the regular Piel inf. cstr. form of the root ‫ כלה‬would be ‫ ְל ַכלּוֹת‬and from the context, the form ‫ ְל ַכ ֵלּא‬in Daniel 9:24 clearly means “to finish”, which presupposes the Piel of the root ‫ כלה‬and not ‫כלא‬. (For discussion of relation between verbs lamed- ’aleph and lamed-hey, see GK 75nn-rr). 6

Isaiah 42:19,20

‫ם־ע ְב ִ ֔דּי וְ ֵח ֵ ֖רשׁ ְכּ ַמ ְל ָא ִ ֣כי ֶא ְשׁ ָל֑ח ִ ֤מי ִעוֵּ ֙ר ִכּ ְמ ֻשׁ ֔ ָלּם וְ ִעֵוּ֖ר‬ ַ ‫ִ ֤מי ִעוֵּ ֙ר ִ ֣כּי ִא‬ ָ ְ‫ְכּ ֶ ֥ע ֶבד י‬ ‫וֹח ָאזְ ַנ֖ יִ ם וְ ֥ל ֹא‬ ַ ‫מר ָפּ ֥ק‬ ֹ ֑ ‫ית ] ָר ֥אוֹת[ ַר ֖בּוֹת וְ ֣ל ֹא ִת ְשׁ‬ ָ ‫הוֽה׃ ָר ִא‬ ‫יִ ְשׁ ָ ֽמע׃‬ Who is blind but My servant or deaf as My messenger whom I send? Who is blind as he that is perfect and blind as the servant of the Lord? Seeing

214

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

many things but you do not take heed, opening the ears but he does not hear. Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫( ָראוֹת‬Qere)

‫פּוֹעל ְבּ ֶא ָחד‬ ַ ‫ִמ ָלּה זָ ָרה ַבּ ֲעבוּר ִה ְת ַחבּרוּת ְשׁנֵ י ִמ ְשׁ ְק ֵלי ֵשׁם ַה‬ ‫ יִ ְראוּ ְדּ ָב ִרים ַר ִבּים ולא‬,‫ וכן הוא‬,(‫וה ָסּמוְּך ) ְראוֹת‬ ַ (‫מּוּכ ָרת ) ָראֹה‬ ְ ‫ַה‬ ,‫ ולא יִ ְשׁ ְמעוּ‬,‫ואזְ נֵ יהם יִ ְפ ְקחוּ ולא יִ ְסגְּ רוּם‬ ָ ,‫ִת ְשׁ ְמ ֵרם ַהנֶּ ֶפשׁ או ָה ַעיִ ן‬ .‫וזה ָתּ ֵמ ַהּ‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra It is an irregular form; it is a combination of the two infinitives, the absolute (‫ ) ָראֹה‬and the construct (‫) ְראוֹת‬. The meaning is: they will perceive many words but their soul or eye will not retain them; they will open their ears and will not close them, but they will not hear, and that is strange. 7

Genesis 11:6

‫הוה ֵ ֣הן ַ ֤עם ֶא ָח ֙ד וְ ָשׂ ָ ֤פה ַא ַח ֙ת ְל ֻכ ֔ ָלּם וְ ֶז֖ה ַה ִח ָלּ֣ם ַל ֲע ֑שׂוֹת‬ ֗ ָ ְ‫אמר י‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣יּ‬ ‫וְ ַע ָתּ ֙ה ֽל ֹא־יִ ָבּ ֵצ֣ר ֵמ ֶ֔הם ֛כֹּל ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר יָ זְ ֖מוּ ֽ ַל ֲע ֽשׂוֹת׃‬ And the Lord said, ‘Behold one people and one language for them all, and this is what they begin to do; and now nothing that they scheme to do will be withheld from them’. (‫ = זָ ַמם‬consider, purpose, devise > Qal imperf. 3 m.pl. GK 67dd)

‫ יָ זְ ֖מוּ‬for ‫ ;יָ זֹמּוּ‬see

Rashi’s comment on ‫ַה ִח ָלּ֣ם‬

.‫שׂוֹתם – ְל ַה ְת ִחיל ֵהם לעשות‬ ָ ‫ ֲע‬,‫ ָא ְמ ָרם‬:‫ כמו‬:‫ַה ִח ָלּם‬

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

215

Translation of Rashi’s comment

‫ ַה ִח ָלּם‬is infinitive, like: ‫‘ ָא ְמ ָרם‬their speaking’; ‫וֹתם‬ ָ ‫‘ ֲעשׂ‬their doing’ (i.e. they speak, they do), so here – they begin to do. Explanation of Rashi’s comment Rashi points out that in the word ‫( ַה ִח ָלּם‬Hiphil inf. cstr. + sf. 3 m.pl. ‫חלל‬, “their beginning”), the suffix is subjective, (i.e. ‘they begin’) where the suffix acts as the subject of the verb. This is comparable to ‫‘ ָא ְמ ָרם‬their speaking’ and ‫שׂוֹתם‬ ָ ‫‘ ֲע‬their doing’. Rashi’s clarification arises from the fact that the suffix on an inf. cstr. form may be either subjective or objective. That is, ‫“ ָק ְטלוֹ‬his killing” may mean “slaughter committed by him” (subjective) or the “slaughter of him by another” (objective). Only the suffix of the 1st pers. sg. has two forms: ‫ ְל ָק ְט ֵלנִ י‬can mean only “to kill me”, while the subjective use is always expressed by ‫( ָק ְט ִלי‬Silbermann p 263, appendix to p 45). 8

Exodus 29:46

‫֧אתי א ָ ֹ֛תם ֵמ ֶ ֥א ֶרץ ִמ ְצ ַ ֖ריִ ם‬ ִ ‫הוֹצ‬ ֵ ‫יהם ֲא ֶ֨שׁר‬ ֶ֔ ‫וְ יָ ְד ֗עוּ ִ ֣כּי ֲא ִנ֤י יְ הוָ ֙ה ֱא ֹ֣ל ֵה‬ ‫תוֹכם‬ ֑ ָ ‫ְל ָשׁ ְכ ִנ֣י ְב‬ And they shall know that I am the Lord their G-d who brought them out from the land of Egypt that I may dwell in their midst. Comment of Rashi on ‫ְל ָשׁ ְכ ִנ֣י‬

.‫תוֹכם‬ ָ ‫ ַעל ְמנָ ת ִל ְשׁכּוֹן ֲאנִ י ְב‬  Translation of Rashi in order that I may dwell in their midst.

216

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Explanation of Rashi Rashi clarifies that the 1st pers. sg. suffix on the Qal inf. cstr. + lamed, ‫ ְל ָשׁ ְכנִ י‬, has a subjective sense. Rashi also explains that the lamed before the inf. cstr. expresses ‘purpose’; G-d brought them out of Egypt for the express purpose that they should lead such lives that He could dwell in their midst. 9

II Kings 13:19

‫ד־כּ ֵלּ֑ה וְ ַע ָ֕תּה‬ ַ ‫ת־א ָ ֖רם ַע‬ ֲ ‫ית ֶא‬ ָ ‫אוֹ־שׁ ֙שׁ ְפּ ָע ִ֔מים ָ ֛אז ִה ִ ֥כּ‬ ֵ ‫ְל ַה ֨כּוֹת ָח ֵ ֤משׁ‬ ‫ת־א ָ ֽרם׃‬ ֲ ‫ָשׁ ֹ֥לשׁ ְפּ ָע ִ ֖מים ַתּ ֶ ֥כּה ֶא‬ You should have smitten five or six times; then you would have smitten Aram until annihilation; whereas now you will smite Aram only three times. Comment of Rashi on ‫ְל ַה ֨כּוֹת‬

‫ית את ארם חמש או שש פעמים‬ ָ ‫ית ִה ִכּ‬ ָ ‫ ָאז ִאם כּך ָע ִשׂ‬.‫ָהיָ ה ְלָך‬ .‫שׁוּעה ִה ְר ַכּ ְב ִתּי ידיך על ַה ֶקּ ֶשׁת‬ ָ ‫ֶשׁ ֲה ֵרי ְל ִסימן ְתּ‬ Translation of Rashi You should have (smitten). Then, if you had done so, you would have smitten Aram five or six times, for as a sign of victory did I make your hands grasp the bow. Explanation of Rashi Rashi supplies the missing ‫ ָהיָ ה‬. See no 28 above where ‫( ְל ַה ֨כּוֹת‬Hiphil; ‫ )נכה‬was explained as the gerundive use of inf. cstr. with omission of ‫ ָהיָ ה‬. Rashi’s comment supports this analysis.

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW 10

217

Genesis 34:15

‫מּל ָל ֶכ֖ם ָכּל־זָ ָ ֽכר׃‬ ֹ ֥ ‫מנוּ ְל ִה‬ ֹ ֔ ‫ְך־בּ ֖ז ֹאת נֵ ֣אוֹת ָל ֶכ֑ם ִ ֚אם ִתּ ְהי֣ וּ ָכ‬ ְ ‫ַא‬ But on this (condition) will we consent to you, if you will be like us, that every male be circumcised.

ֹ ֥ ‫ְל ִה‬ Comment of Rashi on ‫מּל‬ .‫ אינו לשון ִל ְפעוֹל ֶא ָלּא לשון ְל ִה ָפּ ֵעל‬,‫להיות נִ מּוֹל‬ Translation of Rashi

‫מּל‬ ֹ ֥ ‫ ְל ִה‬means ‘to be circumcised’. It is not an active inf. cstr. (Qal) but a passive inf. cstr. (Niphal). Explanation of Rashi We see from Rashi’s comment that he has no special term for the inf. cstr. He labels the Qal inf. cstr. ‫ ִל ְפעוֹל‬and he labels the Niphal inf. cstr. ‫ ְל ִה ָפּ ֵעל‬. ‫מּל‬ ֹ ֥ ‫ ְל ִה‬is the Niphal inf. cstr. + lamed prefix from the root ‫מוּל‬ (Niphal perf. ‫ – נִ מּוֹל‬see GK 72ee). Note also ‫ – נֵ ֣אוֹת‬Niphal imperf. 1 c.pl. ‫“ אות‬we will consent”. 11

Deuteronomy 1:16

‫וּשׁ ַפ ְט ֶ ֣תּם‬ ְ ‫יכ ֙ם‬ ֶ ‫ין־א ֵח‬ ֲ ‫מ ַע ֵבּ‬ ֹ ֤ ‫מר ָשׁ‬ ֹ ֑ ‫יכם ָבּ ֵ ֥עת ַה ִ ֖הוא ֵלא‬ ֶ֔ ‫וָ ֲא ַצוֶּ ֙ה ֶאת־ ֣שׁ ֹ ְפ ֵט‬ ‫ֶ֔צ ֶדק‬ And I charged your judges at that time saying, ‘Hear (the claims) between your brothers and judge righteously’.

218

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

ֹ ֤ ‫ָשׁ‬ Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫מ ַע‬ ‫יוֹם ַה ַשּׁ ָבּת והוא ָשׁמ ַֹע ִשׁ ְמעוּ או‬-‫ זָ כוֹר ֶאת‬:‫ָשׁמ ַֹע ֵשׁם ַהפּ ַֹעל כמו‬ .‫ִשׁ ְמעוּ ָשׁמ ַֹע‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra

‫ָשׁמ ַֹע‬

is an infinitive form like: “Remember the Sabbath day” (Exodus 20:7), but (the meaning is as if it was written) “surely hear” or “hear surely”. Explanation of Ibn Ezra

Ibn Ezra compares ‫ ָשׁמ ַֹע‬to ‫ – זָ כוֹר‬both Qal inf. abs. forms used for imperatives (“hear”, “remember”). However, Ibn Ezra construes such inf. abs. forms as elliptical, that is, he suggests that the meaning is as if the inf. abs. form either followed or came before the imperative form, i.e. ‫ִשׁ ְמעוּ‬ ‫“( ָשׁמ ַֹע‬hear surely”) or ‫“( ָשׁמ ַֹע ִשׁ ְמעוּ‬surely hear”). See GK 113bb. 12

Hosea 10:4

‫אשׁ ִמ ְשׁ ֔ ָפּט ַ ֖על ַתּ ְל ֵ ֥מי‬ ֙ ֹ ‫וּפ ַ ֤רח ָכּר‬ ָ ‫ִדּ ְבּ ֣רוּ ְד ָב ִ ֔רים ָא ֥לוֹת ָ ֖שׁוְ א ָכּ ֣ר ֹת ְבּ ִ ֑רית‬ ‫ָשׂ ָ ֽדי׃‬ They speak words, swearing falsely, they make covenants and justice sprouts like a poisonous herb on the furrows of the field. Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫ָא ֥לוֹת‬

‫פּוֹעל ַה ָסּמוְּך וְ ֶשׁ ֵאינוֹ ָסמוְּך‬ ַ ‫מוּר ֶכּ ֶבת ִמ ֵשּׁם ַה‬ ְ ‫ֶדּ ֶרְך זָ ָרה ְכּ ִאילוּ ַה ִמּ ָלּה‬ .‫או ָהיָ ה ֵכּן ַבּ ֲעבוּר אוֹת ַהגָּ רוֹן‬

PART TWO: THE INFINITIVES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

219

Translation of Ibn Ezra

‫ָא ֥לוֹת‬

(= “swearing”) is a strange formation as if the word were a combination of the inf. cstr. and the inf. abs. Or else it is so due to the guttural letter (’aleph). Explanation of Ibn Ezra

‫“ = ָא ָלה‬swear, curse”. The Qal inf. abs. is generally vocalised with a qames under the first letter of the verb. However, the ot ending in the word ‫ָא ֥לוֹת‬ indicates that the infinitive here is construct and therefore the ’aleph should be vocalised with a composite sheva, rather than a qamets (‫) ֲאלוֹת‬. The correct form of the inf. abs. here would be as in Hosea 4:2: ‫ ָאֹלה‬. The confusion may have arisen because the letter ’aleph is a guttural and therefore does not tolerate the sheva which is expected in a Qal inf. cstr. form from a strong verb, such as: ‫ ְשׁמוֹר‬from ‫ ָשׁ ַמר‬of which the inf. abs. would be ‫ ָשׁמוֹר‬.

PART THREE: SYNTAX FINAL OR PURPOSE CLAUSES Final or purpose clauses are clauses which express the purpose or aim of an action. The main methods for expressing PURPOSE in Classical Biblical Hebrew may be summarized as follows: 1

Vav Conjunctive + Imperf. or Cohortative

2

Inf. cstr. + lamed

3

‫ ְל ַמ ַען ֲא ֶשׁר‬+ imperf.

4

‫ ְל ַמ ַען‬+ imperf.

5

‫ ְל ַמ ַען‬+ inf. cstr.

6

‫ ֲא ֶשׁר‬+ imperf.

7

‫ ַבּ ֲעבוּר ֲא ֶשׁר‬+ imperf. (less usual)

8

‫ ַבּ ֲעבוּר‬+ imperf.

9

‫ ַבּ ֲעבוּר‬+ inf. cstr.

The main methods for expressing “negative purpose” in classical Biblical Hebrew may be summarized as follows: 1

‫ ְל ִב ְל ִתּי‬+ inf. cstr.

2

‫ ְל ִב ְל ִתּי‬+ imperf. (only twice)

3

‫ ֲא ֶשׁר לֹא‬+ imperf. 221

222 4

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

‫ ְל ַמ ַען ) ֲא ֶשׁר( לֹא‬+ imperf.

Study the following biblical verses and discuss/analyse the various methods for expressing “purpose” in Biblical Hebrew. See the explanatory notes at the end of each verse. I:

Vav Conjunctive + Imperf./Cohortative

1

Genesis 24:14 (Eliezer praying to G-d, describing the impending encounter with Rebekah)

‫י־נ֤א ַכ ֵדּ ְ֙ך וְ ֶא ְשׁ ֶ֔תּה וְ ָא ְמ ָ ֣רה ְשׁ ֵ֔תה‬ ָ ‫יה ַה ִטּ‬ ָ֙ ‫וְ ָה ָי֣ה ַ ֽהנַּ ֲע ָ ֗ר ֲא ֶ֨שׁר א ַ ֹ֤מר ֵא ֶ ֙ל‬ ֣ ָ ‫וְ גַ ם־גְּ ַמ ֶלּ֖יָך ַא ְשׁ ֶ ֑ קה א ָ ֹ֤תהּ ה ֙ ַֹכ ְח ָ֙תּ ְל ַע ְב ְדָּך֣ ְליִ ְצ ָ֔חק‬ ‫ית‬ ָ ‫י־ע ִ ֥שׂ‬ ָ ‫וּבהּ ֵא ַ ֔דע ִכּ‬ ‫ם־אד ִ ֹֽני׃‬ ֲ ‫ֶ ֖ח ֶסד ִע‬ And it shall be, the maiden to whom I shall say, ‘please incline your jar that I may drink’, and she shall say, ‘drink, and I will also water your camels’, she is the one You have appointed for Your servant Isaac and thereby I shall know that You have shown kindness to my master.

‫וְ ֶא ְשׁ ֶ֔תּה‬

“that I may drink” (note also:

‫יכח‬

> Hiphil: decide, adjudge,

appoint). 2

Genesis 27:4 (Isaac to Esau)

‫יאה ִ ֖לּי וְ א ֵ ֹ֑כ ָלה ַבּ ֲע ֛בוּר‬ ָ ‫ה־לי ַמ ְט ַע ִ֜מּים ַכּ ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ָא ַ ֛ה ְב ִתּי וְ ָה ִ ֥ב‬ ִ ֨ ‫וַ ֲע ֵשׂ‬ ‫ְתּ ָב ֶר ְכָך֥ נַ ְפ ִ ֖שׁי ְבּ ֶ ֥ט ֶרם ָא ֽמוּת׃‬ And make for me tasty food such as I like and bring (it) to me that I may eat, so that my soul may bless you before I die.

‫וְ א ֵֹכ ָ֑לה‬

“in order that I may eat” (vav conjunctive + cohortative 1 sg.

pausal;

‫)א ֵֹכ ָלה > א ְֹכ ָלה > א ַֹכל‬

PART THREE: SYNTAX

223

II: Infinitive Construct + lamed 3

I Kings 18:42 (after Elijah’s confrontation with the prophets of Baal on Mount Carmel)

‫ל־ר ֹאשׁ ַה ַכּ ְר ֶמל֙ וַ יִּ גְ ַ ֣הר‬ ֤ ‫וַ יַּ ֲע ֶ ֥לה ַא ְח ָ ֖אב ֶל ֱא ֣כֹל וְ ִל ְשׁ ֑תּוֹת וְ ֵ֨א ִל ָ֜יּהוּ ָע ֨ ָלה ֶא‬ ‫ַ֔א ְר ָצה‬ And Ahab went up to eat and to drink and Elijah went up to the top of Mount Carmel and crouched on the ground.

‫“ ֶל ֱא ֣כֹל וְ ִל ְשׁ ֑תּוֹת‬in order to eat and to drink” 4

Judges 3:1

‫הוה ְלנַ ֥סּוֹת ָ ֖בּם ֶאת־יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֑אל‬ ָ֔ ְ‫֣יח י‬ ַ ‫שׁר ִה ִנּ‬ ֣ ֶ ‫וְ ֵ ֤א ֶלּה ַהגּוֹיִ ֙ם ֲא‬ And these are the nations that the Lord left to test Israel by them.

‫“ ְלנַ ֥סּוֹת ָ ֖בּם‬to that He might test by them” III:

‫ לְ ַמ ַען ֲא ֶשׁר‬+ imperf.

5

Genesis 18:19 (G-d is about to reveal to Abraham the impending destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah)

‫רוּ ֶ ֣דּ ֶרְך‬ ֙ ‫ת־בּיתוֹ֙ ַא ֲח ָ ֔ריו וְ ָ ֽשׁ ְמ‬ ֵ ‫ת־בּ ָנ֤יו וְ ֶא‬ ָ ‫ִ ֣כּי יְ ַד ְע ִ֗תּיו ְל ַמ ַען֩ ֲא ֶ֨שׁר יְ ַצ ֶ ֜וּה ֶא‬ ‫ל־א ְב ָר ָ֔הם ֵ ֥את‬ ַ ‫וּמ ְשׁ ָ ֑פּט ְל ַ֗מ ַען ָה ִ ֤ביא יְ הוָ ֙ה ַע‬ ִ ‫הוה ַל ֲע ֥שׂוֹת ְצ ָד ָ ֖ קה‬ ָ֔ ְ‫י‬ ‫ר־דּ ֶ ֖בּר ָע ָ ֽליו׃‬ ִ ‫ֲא ֶשׁ‬ For I have known him that he may instruct his children and his household after him and they will keep the way of the Lord to do righteousness and justice in order that the Lord may bring on Abraham what He has promised him.

224

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

‫ת־בּ ָנ֤יו‬ ָ ‫“ ְל ַמ ַען֩ ֲא ֶ֨שׁר יְ ַצ ֶ ֜וּה ֶא‬in order that he may instruct his children” IV:

֩‫ לְ ַמ ַען‬+ imperf.

6

Genesis 12:13 (Abram to Sarai in Egypt)

‫בוּרְך וְ ָחיְ ָ ֥תה נַ ְפ ִ ֖שׁי ִבּגְ ָל ֵ ֽלְך׃‬ ֔ ֵ ‫ב־לי ַב ֲע‬ ֣ ִ ‫ֽיט‬ ַ ִ‫י־נ֖א ֲא ֣חֹ ִתי ָ ֑א ְתּ ְל ַ֙מ ַ ֙ען י‬ ָ ‫ִא ְמ ִר‬ Please say that you are my sister that it may go well with me for your sake and my soul will live because of you.

‫ב־לי‬ ֣ ִ ‫ֽיט‬ ַ ִ‫“ ְל ַ֙מ ַ ֙ען י‬in order that it may go well with me” 7

Genesis 27:25 (Isaac to Jacob)

‫א ְכ ָל ֙ה ִמ ֵצּ֣יד ְבּ ִ֔ני ְל ַ ֥מ ַען ְתּ ָ ֽב ֶר ְכָך֖ נַ ְפ ִ ֑שׁי‬ ֹ ֽ ְ‫אמר ַה ִגּ ָ֤שׁה ִ ֙לּי ו‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֗יּ‬ And he said, ‘bring (it) near to me and let me eat of my son’s game, that my soul may bless you’.

‫“ ְל ַ ֥מ ַען ְתּ ָ ֽב ֶר ְכָך֖ נַ ְפ ִ ֑שׁי‬in order that my soul may bless you” V:

‫ לְ ַמ ַען‬+ inf. cstr.

8

Genesis 37:22 (Reuben to his brothers concerning Joseph)

‫ל־ה ֤בּוֹר ַהזֶּ ֙ה‬ ַ ‫ם ַה ְשׁ ִ ֣ליכוּ א ֹ֗תוֹ ֶא‬ ֒ ‫כוּ־ד‬ ָ ‫ל־תּ ְשׁ ְפּ‬ ִ ‫אוּב֮ן ַא‬ ֵ ‫אמר ֲא ֵל ֶ ֣הם ְר‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֨יּ‬ ‫יבוֹ‬ ֖ ‫חוּ־בוֹ ְל ַ֗מ ַען ַה ִ ֤צּיל אֹתוֹ֙ ִמיָּ ָ ֔דם ַל ֲה ִשׁ‬ ֑ ‫ל־תּ ְשׁ ְל‬ ִ ‫שׁר ַבּ ִמּ ְד ָ֔בּר וְ ָי֖ד ַא‬ ֣ ֶ ‫ֲא‬ ‫ל־א ִ ֽביו׃‬ ָ ‫ֶא‬ And Reuben said to them, ‘do not shed blood, cast him into this pit which is in the wilderness, and do not lay a hand on him’, in order to save him from their hand, to bring him back to his father.

֙‫“ ְל ַ֗מ ַען ַה ִ ֤צּיל אֹתוֹ‬in order to save him” (‫ ;נצל‬Hiphil)

PART THREE: SYNTAX 9

225

Amos 2:7

‫ת־שׁם ָק ְד ִ ֽשׁי׃‬ ֥ ֵ ‫ל־הנַּ ֲע ָ ֔רה ְל ַ ֥מ ַען ַח ֵלּ֖ל ֶא‬ ֽ ַ ‫כוּ ֶא‬ ֙ ‫וְ ִ ֣אישׁ וְ ָא ִ֗ביו ֵי ְֽל‬ A man and his father go to the (same) girl in order to profane My holy name.

‫“ ְל ַ ֥מ ַען ַח ֵלּ֖ל‬in order to profane” (‫ ;חלל‬Piel) VI:

‫ ֲא ֶשׁר‬+imperf.

10

Deuteronomy 4:10

‫ת־דּ ָב ָ ֑רי ֲא ֶ֨שׁר יִ ְל ְמ ֜דוּן ְליִ ְר ָ ֣אה א ִֹ֗תי‬ ְ ‫ת־ה ֔ ָעם וְ ַא ְשׁ ִמ ֵ ֖עם ֶא‬ ָ ‫ל־לי ֶא‬ ֙ ִ ‫ַה ְק ֶה‬ Gather the people to Me that I may let them hear My words, in order that they may learn to fear Me.

‫“ ֲא ֶ֨שׁר יִ ְל ְמ ֜דוּן‬in order that they may learn”. (Note ‫“ וְ ַא ְשׁ ִמ ֵ ֖עם‬in order that I may let them hear”; vav conjunctive + imperf. Hiphil ‫ שׁמע‬+ sf. 3 m.pl.). 11

Joshua 3:7

‫הוֹשׁ ַע ַהיּ֣ וֹם ַה ֶ֗זּה ָא ֵחל֙ גַּ ֶדּ ְל ָ֔ך ְבּ ֵע ֵינ֖י ָכּל־יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֑אל‬ ֻ֔ ְ‫אמר יְ הוָ ֙ה ֶאל־י‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֤יּ‬ ‫֛יתי ִעם־מ ֶ ֹ֖שׁה ֶא ְה ֶי֥ה ִע ָ ֽמְּך׃‬ ִ ‫ֲא ֶשׁ ֙ר ֵ ֽי ְ ד ֔עוּן ִ֗כּי ַכּ ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ָה ִי‬ And the Lord said to Joshua, ‘this day I will begin to exalt you in the eyes of all Israel, so that they shall know that I will be with you as I was with Moses.

‫“ ֲא ֶשׁ ֙ר ֵ ֽי ְ ד ֔עוּן‬so that they shall know”

226

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

VII: ‫ֲא ֶשׁר‬ 12

‫ ַבּ ֲעבוּר‬+ imperf. (less usual)

Genesis 27:10 (Rebekah to Jacob)

‫מוֹתוֹ׃‬ ֽ ‫את ְל ָא ִ ֖ביָך וְ ָא ָכ֑ל ַבּ ֲע ֻב֛ר ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ָיְב ֶר ְכָך֖ ִל ְפ ֵנ֥י‬ ֥ ָ ‫וְ ֵה ֵב‬ And you will bring (it) to your father and he will eat, in order that he may bless you before he dies.

֖‫“ ַבּ ֲע ֻב֛ר ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ָיְב ֶר ְכָך‬in order that he may bless you” VIII: 13

‫ ַבּ ֲעבוּר‬+ imperf.

Genesis 27:4 (Isaac to Esau)

‫יאה ִ ֖לּי וְ א ֵֹכ ָ֑לה ַבּ ֲע ֛בוּר‬ ָ ‫ה־לי ַמ ְט ַע ִ֜מּים ַכּ ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ָא ַ ֛ה ְב ִתּי וְ ָה ִ ֥ב‬ ִ ֨ ‫וַ ֲע ֵשׂ‬ ‫ְתּ ָב ֶר ְכָך֥ נַ ְפ ִ ֖שׁי ְבּ ֶ ֥ט ֶרם ָא ֽמוּת׃‬ And make for me tasty food such as I like and bring (it) to me that I may eat, so that my soul may bless you before I die.

‫“ ַבּ ֲע ֛בוּר ְתּ ָב ֶר ְכָך֥ נַ ְפ ִ ֖שׁי‬so that my soul may bless you” 14

Exodus 19:9 (preparing for Mount Sinai)

‫הוה ֶאל־מ ֶֹ֗שׁה ִה ֵ֨נּה ָאנ ִֹ֜כי ָ ֣בּא ֵא ֶל ֮יָך ְבּ ַע֣ב ֶ ֽה ָענָ ן֒ ַבּ ֲע ֞בוּר‬ ָ֜ ְ‫אמר י‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֨יּ‬ ‫עוֹל֑ם‬ ָ ‫ם־בָּך֖ יַ ֲא ִ ֣מינוּ ְל‬ ְ ַ‫יִ ְשׁ ַ ֤מע ָה ָע ֙ם ְבּ ַד ְבּ ִ ֣רי ִע ָ֔מְּך וְ ג‬ And the Lord said to Moses, ‘behold I will come to you in a thick cloud, in order that the people may hear when I speak with you and also in you will they believe for ever’.

‫“ ַבּ ֲע ֞בוּר יִ ְשׁ ַ ֤מע ָה ָע ֙ם‬in order that the people may hear”

PART THREE: SYNTAX IX:

‫ ַבּ ֲעבוּר‬+ inf. cstr.

15

Exodus 9:16

227

‫וּל ַ ֛מ ַען ַס ֵ ֥פּר‬ ְ ‫את ֶה ֱע ַמ ְד ִ֔תּיָך ַבּ ֲע ֖בוּר ַה ְרא ְֹתָך֣ ֶאת־כּ ִ ֹ֑חי‬ ֙ ֹ ‫אוּלם ַבּ ֲע ֥בוּר ז‬ ָ ֗ ְ‫ו‬ ‫ל־ה ָ ֽא ֶרץ׃‬ ָ ‫ְשׁ ִ ֖מי ְבּ ָכ‬ Nevertheless I have caused you to stand for this purpose, in order to show you My power and in order to recount My Name in all the land.

‫ַבּ ֲע ֖בוּר ַה ְרא ְֹתָך֣ ֶאת־כּ ִ ֹ֑חי‬

“in order to show you My power” (‫;ראה‬

Hiphil). (note also

‫ ְל ַמ ַען‬+ inf. cstr. Piel, ‫וּל ַ ֛מ ַען ַס ֵ ֥פּר‬ ְ ) 16

II Samuel 18:18

‫ק־ה ֶ֔מּ ֶלְך‬ ַ ‫שׁר ְבּ ֵ ֽע ֶמ‬ ֣ ֶ ‫ת־מ ֙ ֶצּ ֶב ֙ת ֲא‬ ַ ‫ב־לוֹ ְב ַחיָּ ו ] ְב ַחיָּ ֙יו[ ֶא‬ ֤ ‫וְ ַא ְב ָשׁ ֹ֣לם ָל ַ ֗קח וַ יַּ ֶצּ‬ ‫ין־לי ֵ֔בן ַבּ ֲע ֖בוּר ַהזְ ִ ֣כּיר ְשׁ ִ ֑מי‬ ֣ ִ ‫ִ ֤כּי ָא ַמ ֙ר ֵ ֽא‬ And Absalom had taken, in his lifetime, and set up for himself the pillar which is in the Valley of the King, for he said, ‘I have no son to keep my name in remembrance’.

‫“ ַבּ ֲע ֖בוּר ַהזְ ִ ֣כּיר ְשׁ ִ ֑מי‬to keep my name in remembrance” (note: ‫ > נצב‬Hiphil: ‫“ = ִה ִצּיב‬set up” > n.f. ‫ ַמ ֶצּ ֶבת‬/‫“ = ַמ ֵצּ ָבה‬pillar”) X:

Some rare usages in late biblical Hebrew

17

Ecclesiastes 3:14

‫עוֹלם ָע ָל ֙יו ֵ ֣אין‬ ָ ֔ ‫ֹלה ֙ים ֚הוּא יִ ְה ֶי ֣ה ְל‬ ִ ‫ל־א ֶ֨שׁר יַ ֲע ֶ ֤שׂה ָה ֱא‬ ֲ ‫יָ ַ ֗ד ְע ִתּי ֠ ִכּי ָכּ‬ ֣ ִ ‫וּמ ֶ ֖מּנּוּ ֵ ֣אין ִלגְ ֑ר ֹ ַע וְ ָה ֱא‬ ‫ֹלהים ָע ָ֔שׂה ֶשׁ ִיּ ְֽ ר ֖אוּ ִמ ְלּ ָפ ָנֽיו׃‬ ִ ‫הוֹסיף‬ ִ֔ ‫ְל‬

228

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

I know that whatever G-d does it will be forever; one cannot add to it and one cannot diminish it; and G-d has brought it to pass that (men) should fear before Him.

‫“ ֶשׁ ִיּ ְֽ ר ֖אוּ ִמ ְלּ ָפ ָנֽיו‬that (men) should fear before Him”. (‫ ֶשׁ‬+ imperf.) (‫ ֶשׁ‬is synonymous with ‫ ֲא ֶשׁר‬but in usage limited to late Hebrew and passages with North Palestinian colouring; see BDB pp 979-80). 18

Ecclesiastes 7:14

‫ת־ז֤ה ְל ֻע ַמּת־זֶ ֙ה ָע ָ ֣שׂה‬ ֶ ‫וּבי֥ וֹם ָר ָ ֖עה ְר ֵ ֑אה ַגּ֣ם ֶא‬ ְ ‫טוֹב ֙ה ֱהֵי ֣ה ְב ֔טוֹב‬ ָ ‫ְבּי֤ וֹם‬ ‫וּמה׃‬ ָ ‫יִמ ָ ֧צא ָ ֽה ָא ָ ֛דם ַא ֲח ָ ֖ריו ְמ ֽא‬ ְ ‫ל־דּ ְב ַ ֗רת ֶשׁ ֨לּ ֹא‬ ִ ‫ֹלהים ַע‬ ִ֔ ‫ָ ֽה ֱא‬ In a day of prosperity be joyful, but in a day of adversity, reflect; G-d has made the one corresponding to the other, to the end that man should find nothing after Him. (i.e. so that man should find no fault with Him).

‫יִמ ָ ֧צא ָ ֽה ָא ָ ֛דם‬ ְ ‫ל־דּ ְב ַ ֗רת ֶשׁ ֨לּ ֹא‬ ִ ‫“ ַע‬so that man may not find” (‫ֶשׁ‬

‫ ַעל ִדּ ְב ַרת‬+ imperf.) (‫ ִדּ ְב ָרה‬n.f. = cause, reason, manner).

XI: Negative purpose 19

Genesis 4:15

‫הו֤ה ְל ַ ֙קיִ ֙ן ֔אוֹת ְל ִב ְל ִ ֥תּי ַהכּוֹת־א ֹ֖תוֹ ָכּל־מ ְֹצ ֽאוֹ׃‬ ָ ְ‫וַ ָ֨יּ ֶשׂם י‬ And the Lord put a mark on Cain, lest anyone who found him should smite him.

‫“ ְל ִב ְל ִ ֥תּי ַהכּוֹת־א ֹ֖תוֹ‬in order that (noone) should smite him” (use of ‫ ְל ִב ְל ִ ֥תּי‬+ inf. cstr. to express negative purpose. cstr. ‫) ַהכּוֹת‬

‫ > נכה‬Hiphil inf.

PART THREE: SYNTAX 20

229

Genesis 38:9 (Onan was unwilling to perform levirate duty for Tamar, widow of his older brother, Er. Er, Onan and Shelah were sons of Judah and Bat-Shua)

‫ן־ז ַ רע ְל ָא ִ ֽחיו׃‬ ֖ ֶ ‫ל־א ֶשׁת ָא ִח ֙יו וְ ִשׁ ֵ ֣חת ַ֔א ְר ָצה ְל ִב ְל ִ ֥תּי נְ ָת‬ ֤ ֵ ‫ם־בּא ֶא‬ ָ֨ ‫וְ ָה ָ֞יה ִא‬ And it was, whenever he went in to his brother’s wife, he destroyed (his seed) on the ground, so as not to give seed to his brother.

‫ן־ז ַ רע‬ ֖ ֶ ‫“ ְל ִב ְל ִ ֥תּי נְ ָת‬so as not to give seed” (‫ ְל ִב ְל ִתּי‬+ inf. cstr. Qal; ‫)נתן‬ 21 II Kings 23:10 (reign of Josiah, a righteous king of Judah)

‫תּ ֶפת ֲא ֶ ֖שׁר ְבּ ֵ ֣גי ְבנֵ י ] ֶבן־[ ִה ֹ֑נּם ְל ִב ְל ִ֗תּי ְל ַה ֲע ִ֨ביר ִ֜אישׁ‬ ֹ ֔ ‫ת־ה‬ ַ ‫וְ ִט ֵ ֣מּא ֶא‬ ‫מּ ֶלְך׃‬ ֹ ֽ ‫ת־בּ ֛תּוֹ ָבּ ֵ ֖אשׁ ַל‬ ִ ‫ת־בּנ֧ וֹ וְ ֶא‬ ְ ‫ֶא‬ And he defiled Tophet which is in the valley of Ben-Hinnom, so that no one might cause his son or his daughter to pass through the fire to Molech.

‫“ ְל ִב ְל ִ֗תּי ְל ַה ֲע ִ֨ביר‬so that no one might cause to pass through” (‫ ְל ִב ְל ִתּי‬+ inf. cstr. Hiphil + lamed; ‫)עבר‬. (Joseph Kara suggests that Tophet = “pit”. It may also be from an Aramaic word, tepat = “fireplace”). 22

Exodus 20:17

‫בוּר נַ ֣סּוֹת ֶא ְת ֶ֔כם ָ ֖בּא‬ ֙ ‫ל־תּ ָירא ֒וּ ִ֗כּי ְל ַ ֽב ֲע‬ ִ ‫ל־ה ָע ֮ם ַא‬ ָ ‫אמר מ ֶ ֹ֣שׁה ֶא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֨יּ‬ ‫ל־פּנֵ ֶיכ֖ם ְל ִב ְל ִ ֥תּי ֶת ֱח ָ ֽטאוּ׃‬ ְ ‫וּב ֲע ֗בוּר ִתּ ְה ֶי֧ה יִ ְר ָא ֛תוֹ ַע‬ ַ ‫ֹלהים‬ ֑ ִ ‫ָה ֱא‬ And Moses said to the people, ‘do not fear, for G-d has come in order to test you and in order that the fear of Him should be on your faces, so that you do not sin’.

‫“ ְל ִב ְל ִ ֥תּי ֶת ֱח ָ ֽטאוּ‬so that you do not sin”. (‫ ְל ִב ְל ִתּי‬+ imperf. only twice; ֙ ‫“ ְל ַ ֽב ֲע‬in order to test”, Piel inf. here + II Sam 14:14). (note also: ‫בוּר נַ ֣סּוֹת‬

230

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

cstr. ‫יִ ְר ָא ֛תוֹ ;)נסה‬ should be”). 23

‫וּב ֲע ֗בוּר ִתּ ְה ֶי֧ה‬ ַ

“and in order that the fear of Him

Genesis 11:7

‫ָ ֚ה ָבה ֽנ ְֵר ָ ֔דה וְ נָ ְב ָ ֥לה ָ ֖שׁם ְשׂ ָפ ָ ֑תם ֲא ֶשׁ ֙ר ֣ל ֹא יִ ְשׁ ְמ ֔עוּ ִ ֖אישׁ ְשׂ ַ ֥פת ֵר ֵ ֽעהוּ׃‬ Come, let us go down and confound their speech there, so that they shall not understand one another’s speech there.

‫“ ֲא ֶשׁ ֙ר ֣ל ֹא יִ ְשׁ ְמ ֔עוּ‬so that they shall not undersand” (‫ ֲא ֶשׁר לֹא‬+ imperf.). Note also ‫ = ָבּ ַלל‬mingle, mix, confuse > Qal imperf. 1 c.pl. ‫= נָ ְב ָלה‬ ‫נָ ב ָֹלּה‬. And for ‫ ָה ָבה‬see BDB p 396, ‫“ יָ ַהב‬give” > Qal imperat. ‫> ַהב‬ emphatic imperat. ‫“ = ָה ָבה‬come now”. 24

Exodus 24:26

‫א־תגָּ ֶ ֥לה ֶע ְרוָ ְתָך֖ ָע ָ ֽליו׃‬ ִ ֹ ‫ל־מזְ ְבּ ִ ֑חי ֲא ֶ ֛שׁר ֽל‬ ִ ‫א־ת ֲע ֶ ֥לה ְב ַמ ֲע ֹ֖לת ַ ֽע‬ ַ ֹ ‫וְ ֽל‬ Do not ascent My altar by steps, that your nakedness may not be exposed upon it.

֖‫א־תגָּ ֶ ֥לה ֶע ְרוָ ְתָך‬ ִ ֹ ‫“ ֲא ֶ ֛שׁר ֽל‬that your nakedness (‫ ֲא ֶ ֛שׁר ֽל ֹא‬+ imperf. ‫ ;גלה‬Niphal imperf.). 25

may not be exposed”

Deuteronomy 20:18

‫וֹעב ָֹ֔תם‬ ֲ ‫ְל ַ֗מ ַען ֲא ֶ֨שׁר ֽל ֹא־יְ ַל ְמּ ֤דוּ ֶא ְת ֶכ ֙ם ַל ֲע ֔שׂוֹת ְכּכֹל֙ ֽתּ‬ In order that they may not teach you to do according to all their abominations.

‫“ ְל ַ֗מ ַען ֲא ֶ֨שׁר ֽל ֹא־יְ ַל ְמּ ֤דוּ ֶא ְת ֶכ ֙ם‬in order that they may not teach you”. (‫ֽל ֹא‬

‫ ְל ַ֗מ ַען ֲא ֶ֨שׁר‬+ imperf.)

PART THREE: SYNTAX 26

231

Psalm 119:11

‫א־לְך׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫ְ ֭בּ ִל ִבּי ָצ ַ ֣פנְ ִתּי ִא ְמ ָר ֶ ֑תָך ְ֝ל ַ֗מ ַען ֣ל ֹא ֶ ֽא ֱח ָט‬ In my heart I have hidden Your word, in order that I might not sin against You.

‫א־לְך‬ ֽ ָ ‫“ ְ֝ל ַ֗מ ַען ֣ל ֹא ֶ ֽא ֱח ָט‬In order that I might not sin against You”. ( ‫ְ֝ל ַ֗מ ַען‬ ‫ ֣ל ֹא‬+ imperf.) The biblical origins of rabbinic Hebrew words for expressing purpose. In order to express ‘purpose’, both biblical Hebrew and post-biblical Hebrew make use of lamed + infinitive. However, the various other methods for expressing ‘purpose’ in biblical Hebrew were superseded in rabbinic Hebrew by expressions such as:

‫ְכּ ֵדי ְל‬

+

infinitive

‫ַעל ְמנָ ת‬

+

infinitive

‫ֶשׁ‬

imperfect

+

‫ְכּ ֵדי ֶשׁ‬ ‫ִבּ ְשׁ ִביל ֶשׁ‬ ‫ַעל ְמנָ ת ֶשׁ‬ The particle ‫ ֶשׁ‬does appear in biblical Hebrew, as synonymous with ‫ ֲא ֶשׁר‬, but in usage was limited to late biblical Hebrew and passages with North Palestinian colouring (BDB pp 979-980).

232

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Study the following biblical verses in order to trace the biblical origins of:

‫ ִבּ ְשׁ ִביל‬/‫ ַעל ְמנָ ת‬/‫ְכּ ֵדי‬ 1

Malachi 3:10

‫וּב ָחנ֤ וּנִ י‬ ְ ‫יתי‬ ִ֔ ‫יהי ֶ֙ט ֶר ֙ף ְבּ ֵב‬ ֥ ִ ִ‫אוֹצר ו‬ ָ֗ ‫ל־בּ֣ית ָה‬ ֵ ‫ל־ה ַמּ ֲע ֵ֜שׂר ֶא‬ ֽ ַ ‫ת־כּ‬ ָ ‫ָה ִ֨ביאוּ ֶא‬ ‫ם־ל ֹא ֶא ְפ ַ ֣תּח ָל ֶ֗כם ֵ ֚את ֲא ֻר ֣בּוֹת‬ ֧ ‫הו֣ה ְצ ָב ֑אוֹת ִא‬ ָ ְ‫נָ ֙א ָבּ ֔ז ֹאת ָא ַ ֖מר י‬ ‫י־די׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫ד־בּ ִל‬ ְ ‫ַה ָשּׁ ַ֔מיִ ם וַ ֲה ִריק ִ ֹ֥תי ָל ֶכ֛ם ְבּ ָר ָ ֖כה ַע‬ Bring all the tithe into the storehouse and let there be food in My House and put Me to the test with this, said the Lord of Hosts if I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour out for you blessing immeasurable (lit. until there is not sufficiency). (‫ ַדּי‬is a substantive meaning “sufficiency, enough”, occurring here in pause. It occurs in the absolute state only three times; see: Esther 1:18; II Chron 30:3. The construct state, ‫ ֵדּי‬, occurs five times and ‫ ַדּי‬+ suffix occurs four times; see below). 2

Exodus 36:7 (The building of the Tabernacle)

‫הוֹתר׃‬ ֽ ֵ ְ‫אכה ַל ֲע ֣שׂוֹת א ָ ֹ֑תהּ ו‬ ֖ ָ ‫ל־ה ְמּ ָל‬ ַ ‫אכה ָהיְ ָ ֥תה ַד ָיּ֛ם ְל ָכ‬ ָ֗ ‫וְ ַה ְמּ ָל‬ For the material they had was sufficient for all the work to do it, and too much. (‫ ַד ָיּ֛ם‬means literally “their sufficiency”. For ‫ ַדּי‬+ suffix, see also: Jeremiah 49:9; Obadiah v 5; Proverbs 25:16). (Note also: ‫ > יתר‬Hiphil inf. abs. ‫הוֹתר‬ ֽ ֵ “shewed excess, had more than enough”).

PART THREE: SYNTAX 3

233

Deuteronomy 15:8 (Israelite warned against letting the approach of the Jubilee Year hinder him from helping the poor)

‫יטנּוּ ֵ ֚דּי ַמ ְחס ֹ֔רוֹ ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר יֶ ְח ַ ֖סר‬ ֶ֔ ‫ת ַח ִתּ ְפ ַ ֛תּח ֶאת־יָ ְדָך֖ ֑לוֹ וְ ַה ֲע ֵב ֙ט ַתּ ֲע ִב‬ ֹ ֧ ‫י־פ‬ ָ ‫ִ ֽכּ‬ ‫ֽלוֹ׃‬ But you shall open your hand wide to him and you shall surely lend him sufficient for his need that he lacks. (Construct ‫ ֵדּי‬occurs by itself five times; see also: Leviticus 5:7; 12:8; 25:28; Isaiah 40:16. ‫ ֵ ֚דּי ַמ ְחס ֹ֔רוֹ‬means literally “the sufficiency of his need”. Note also the Hiphil inf. abs. + Hiphil imperf. + suffix, ‫יטנּוּ‬ ֶ֔ ‫וְ ַה ֲע ֵב ֙ט ַתּ ֲע ִב‬, a denominative verb derived from

‫ ֲעבוֹט‬n.m. = “pledge, article pledged”. The Hiphil verb means “cause to give a pledge, lend”). 4

Leviticus 25:26 (redemption of land)

‫וּמ ָ ֖צא ְכּ ֵ ֥די גְ ֻא ָלּ ֽתוֹ׃‬ ָ ‫ה־לּוֹ גּ ֵ ֹ֑אל וְ ִה ִ ֣שּׂיגָ ה יָ ֔דוֹ‬ ֖ ֶ‫וְ ִ֕אישׁ ִ ֛כּי ֥ל ֹא יִ ְֽהי‬ If a man has no redeemer, but he has sufficient means, and he has acquired enough for his redemption. (‫ ְכּ ֵ ֥די גְ ֻא ָלּ ֽתוֹ‬means literally “according to the sufficiency of his redemption”. ‫“ = ְכּ ֵדי‬according to the sufficiency of” occurs four times in the Hebrew Bible; see the other three examples below. Note also: ‫> נשׂג‬ Hiphil: ‫“ = ִה ִשּׂיג‬reach, overtake” > ‫“ = ִה ִשּׂיגָ ה יָ דוֹ‬one’s hand has reached”, i.e. one is able, has enough). 5

Deuteronomy 25:2 (against excessive punishment)

‫ם־בּן ַה ֖כּוֹת ָה ָר ָ ֑שׁע וְ ִה ִפּ ֤ילוֹ ַהשּׁ ֵֹפ ֙ט וְ ִה ָכּ֣הוּ ְל ָפ ֔ ָניו ְכּ ֵ ֥די ִר ְשׁ ָע ֖תוֹ‬ ֥ ִ ‫וְ ָה ָי֛ה ִא‬ ‫ְבּ ִמ ְס ָ ֽפּר׃‬

234

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

And it shall be, if the guilty one is liable for flogging, the judge shall make him lie down and one shall smite him in his presence in accordance with his crime in number. (‫ ְכּ ֵ ֥די ִר ְשׁ ָע ֖תוֹ‬means literally “according to the sufficiency of his wickedness”). 6

Judges 6:5 (the Midianite oppression and call to Gideon)

‫י־א ְר ֶבּ ֙ה ָל ֔ר ֹב‬ ַ ‫וּבאוּ[ ְכ ֵ ֽד‬ ֤ ָ ] ‫יהם יָ בֹאוּ‬ ֶ֗ ‫יהם יַ ֲע ֜לוּ וְ ָא ֳה ֵל‬ ֶ֨ ֵ‫וּמ ְקנ‬ ִ ‫ִ֡כּי ֵה ֩ם‬ For they would come up with their livestock and their tents and they would come like locusts for multitude. (‫י־א ְר ֶבּ ֙ה ָל ֔ר ֹב‬ ַ ‫ ְכ ֵ ֽד‬means literally “according to the abundance of the locust in multitude”). 7

Nehemiah 5:8 (Nehemiah rebukes the creditors)

‫הוּדים ַהנִּ ְמ ָכּ ִ ֤רים ַלגּוֹיִ ֙ם ְכּ ֵ ֣די‬ ֜ ִ ְ‫ת־א ֵ֨חינוּ ַהיּ‬ ַ ‫וָ א ְֹמ ָ ֣רה ָל ֶ֗הם ֲא ַנ ְ֣חנוּ ָ֠קנִ ינוּ ֶא‬ ‫ָ֔בנוּ‬ And I said to them, ‘we have bought (back) our Jewish brothers who were sold to the nations according to our ability’. (‫ = ְכּ ֵ ֣די ָ֔בנוּ‬lit. “according to the sufficiency of what is in us”). 8

Psalm 16:5

‫גּוֹר ִ ֽלי׃‬ ָ ‫תּוֹמיְך‬ ֥ ִ ‫כוֹסי ַ֝א ָ֗תּה‬ ֑ ִ ְ‫ת־ח ְל ִ ֥ קי ו‬ ֶ ָ‫ֽהוה ְמנ‬ ָ֗ ְ‫י‬ The Lord is the portion of my inheritance and of my cup; you grasp (uphold) my lot. (‫ ְמנָ ת‬n.f. = portion. ‫ ְמנָ ת‬occurs six times in the Hebrew Bible and always = “portion”; see: Psalm 11:6; 63:11; II Chron 31:3,4: Jeremiah 13:25. See GK 95n: “A few (aramaising) feminines from lamed-hey stems are found

PART THREE: SYNTAX

235

֥ ִ instead of with the ending ath,” e.g. ‫ ְק ָצת‬n.f. = “end”.) (Note also ‫תּוֹמיְך‬ ‫תּוֹמְך‬ ֵ is an anomaly.) 9

Jeremiah 18:15

‫עוֹלם ָל ֶל ֶ֣כת‬ ָ ֔ ‫יה ֙ם ְשׁ ִב ֵיל֣י‬ ֶ ‫י־שׁ ֵכ ֻ ֥חנִ י ַע ִ ֖מּי ַל ָ ֣שּׁוְ א יְ ַק ֵ ֑טּרוּ וַ יַּ ְכ ִשׁ ֤לוּם ְבּ ַד ְר ֵכ‬ ְ ‫ִ ֽכּ‬ ‫לוּלה׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫נְ ִת ֔יבוֹת ֶ ֖דּ ֶרְך ֥ל ֹא ְס‬ For My people have forgotten Me, they burn incense to Vanity and have been made to stumble (lit. they make them to stumble) in their ways, the ancient paths, to walk in bypaths, a way not levelled (lit. cast up). (‫“ = ְשׁ ִביל‬way, path”; occurs only twice in the Hebrew Bible; see also Psalm 77:20).

Exercise: translate the following English sentences into fully pointed biblical Hebrew. The sentences contain ‘purpose’ clauses which should be rendered with as great a variety of constructions as possible. Annotate your translations to explain the constructions you have used. Suggested vocabulary and translations will be found at the end. 1

They will come to Jerusalem to take possession of the land of Abraham and live there for ever in safety.

2

He revealed to me a word that I might be comforted and showed me visions that I might not again be sorrowful.

3

Let me be a little while so that I may beseech G-d that He might have compassion and pity me, for I alone have sinned.

4

Give me from the tree of life that I might eat before I am cast out.

236

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Notes for ‘purpose’ sentences 1

‫עוֹלם‬ ָ ‫ ֶא ֶרץ ַא ְב ָר ָהם ַבּ ֲעבוּר יֵ ְשׁבוּ ָשׁם ְל‬-‫רוּשׁ ַליְ ָמה ָל ֶר ֶשׁת ֶאת‬ ָ ְ‫יָ בֹאוּ י‬ .‫ָל ֶב ַטח‬ 2

For “visions”, see BDB p 909: ‫ ַמ ְר ָאה‬n.f. > pl. ‫“ = ַמ ְראוֹת‬visions”; and see BDB p 302: ‫ ִחזָּ יוֹן > ָחזָ ה‬n.m. > pl. ‫“ = ֶחזְ י ֹנוֹת‬visions”; and see Joel 3:1: ‫יכם ֶחזְ י ֹנ֖ וֹת יִ ְר ֽאוּ׃‬ ֶ֔ ‫ֹלמוּן ַבּ ֣ח ֵוּר‬ ֔ ‫ֹלמוֹת יַ ֲח‬ ֣ ‫יכ ֙ם ֲח‬ ֶ ֵ‫“ זִ ְקנ‬your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions”. For “be sorrowful”, see BDB p 864: ‫( ָצ ַרר‬I) = “be narrow etc” > Qal imperf.+ vav consec. ‫“ = וַ יֵּ ֶצר לוֹ‬and it was narrow for him”, i.e. “he was in distress”; and see Gen 32:8: ‫אד וַ ֵיּ ֶ֣צר ֑לוֹ‬ ֹ ֖ ‫ירא יַ ֲע ֛קֹב ְמ‬ ֧ ָ ִ‫“ וַ יּ‬and Jacob was greatly afraid and he was distressed”. See also BDB p 780: ‫“ = ָע ַצב‬hurt, pain, grieve”; see Gen 6:6: ‫ל־ל ֽבּוֹ‬ ִ ‫“ וַ יִּ ְת ַע ֵצּ֖ב ֶא‬and he was grieved to his heart” (see also Gen 34:7); and see I Chron 4:10: ‫“ ְל ִב ְל ִ ֣תּי ָע ְצ ִ ֑בּי‬so that I should not be saddened”.

‫גָּ ָלה )וַ יְ גַ ל( ִלי ָדּ ָבר ְל ַמ ַען ֶאנָּ ֵחם וַ יַּ ְר ֵאנִ י ֶחזְ י ֹנוֹת ) ַמ ְראוֹת( ְל ִב ְל ִתּי‬ ַ ) ‫ָע ְצ ִבּי עוֹד‬ .(‫למ ַען ֲא ֶשׁר לֹא יֵ ֶצר ִלי עוֹד‬ 3

For “let me be”, see BDB p 951: ‫“ = ָר ָפה‬sink, relax” > Hiphil: “let drop, let go” > imperative m.sg. ‫ ֶה ֶרף‬/‫ ַה ְר ֵפּה‬see Deut. 9:14; see also BDB p 292: ‫“ = ָח ַדל‬cease”, see Exod 14:12.

‫ ֶא ְת ַפּ ֵלּל‬/‫יוֹמיִ ם( ְל ַמ ַען ֶא ְת ַחנֵּ ן‬ ַ ‫ֶה ֶרף ִמ ֶמּנִּ י ) ֲח ַדל ִמ ֶמּנִּ י( ֶרגַ ע )יוֹם אוֹ‬ ִ ‫ֶאל ָה ֱא‬ .‫אתי‬ ִ ‫יחנֵּ נִ י ִכּי ֲאנִ י ְל ַב ִדּי ָח ָט‬ ָ ִ‫ֹלקים וִ ַיר ֵחם א ִֹתי )וִ ַיר ֲח ֵמנִ י( ו‬ 4

See BDB p 382: ‫ ְבּ ֶט ֶרם‬/‫( ֶט ֶרם‬mostly + imperf.) = “not yet, before that”; see, e.g. Gen 27:4; 37:18. ‫ֵתּן ִלי ֵמ ֵעץ ַה ַחיִּ ים ְל ַמ ַען א ַֹכל ֶט ֶרם‬

.‫ֶאגָּ ֵרשׁ‬

PART THREE: SYNTAX

237

ANTITHESIS IN BIBLICAL HEBREW In English, antithesis and contrast are expressed by a variety of adversative particles (but, yet, however, nevertheless, while, on the other hand). Biblical Hebrew lacks this variety and often uses vav, although other conjunctions ָ ְ‫ו‬/‫אוּלם‬ ָ /‫ ַאְך‬/ and also ‫ִכּי‬ are also used, as demonstrated below. (e.g. ‫אוּלם‬ and ‫ ִכּי ִאם‬after negation). There are, however, other devices in biblical Hebrew which may contribute to the expression of antithesis and contrast, as follows: (i)

Chiasmus (the reversal in the second clause of the word order in the first clause).

(ii) Highlighting in initial position in each clause the two persons or entities which are contrasted. (iii) Use of antonyms (opposites). (iv) Negation of first or second clause.

Study the following biblical verses and analyse the various methods used to express antithesis and/or contrast; explanatory notes are provided with each verse. I:

Chiasmus, antonyms and contrast (1-5)

1

Genesis 37:11

‫ת־ה ָדּ ָ ֽבר׃‬ ַ ‫אוּ־בוֹ ֶא ָ ֑חיו וְ ָא ִ ֖ביו ָשׁ ַ ֥מר ֶא‬ ֖ ְ‫וַ יְ ַקנ‬ And his brothers envied him, but his father guarded the matter. Note the chiastic structure of this verse. In the first clause, the verb precedes the subject (BA), while in the second clause, the subject precedes the verb (AB). The two clauses are connected by simple vav, which is best translated by English “but”.

238 2

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Genesis 41:54

‫ל־א ֶרץ ִמ ְצ ַ ֖ריִ ם ָ ֥היָ ה ָ ֽל ֶחם׃‬ ֥ ֶ ‫ל־ה ֲא ָר ֔צוֹת וּ ְב ָכ‬ ֣ ָ ‫וַ יְ ִ ֤הי ָר ָע ֙ב ְבּ ָכ‬ And there was famine in all the lands, but in all the land of Egypt there was bread. Note the chiastic structure; the place of famine (“all the lands”) comes at the end of the first clause, but the place of bread (“all the land of Egypt”) comes at the beginning of the second clause. Note also the use of antonyms, ‫ ָר ָע ֙ב‬in the first clause and ‫ ָ ֽל ֶחם‬in the second clause. Again, biblical Hebrew simple vav may be translated as “but”. 3

Genesis 13:12

‫ץ־כּ ָנ ַ֑ען וְ ֗לוֹט יָ ַשׁ ֙ב ְבּ ָע ֵ ֣רי ַה ִכּ ָ֔כּר‬ ְ ‫ַא ְב ָ ֖רם יָ ַ ֣שׁב ְבּ ֶ ֽא ֶר‬ Abram dwelt in the land of Canaan, while Lot dwelt among the cities of the valley. The two personages, Abram and Lot, are set in contrast by being highlighted in initial position in each clause. The meaning here is not completely antithetical but rather contrastive, expressed by biblical Hebrew simple vav, English “while”. 4

Proverbs 10:1

‫תּוּג֥ת ִא ֽמּוֹ׃‬ ַ ‫וּבן ְ֝כּ ִ֗סיל‬ ֥ ֵ ‫ח־אב‬ ֑ ָ ‫ֵבּ֣ן ָ ֭ח ָכם יְ ַשׂ ַמּ‬ A wise son makes a father glad but a foolish son is the grief of his mother. Again, the contrasting elements are highlighted in initial position in each clause (‫“ ֵבּ֣ן ָ ֭ח ָכם‬a wise son” in the first clause, and ‫וּבן ְ֝כּ ִ֗סיל‬ ֥ ֵ “a foolish

PART THREE: SYNTAX

239

son” in the second clause) and biblical Hebrew simple vav may be translated “but, whereas”. 5

Psalm 1:6

‫אבד׃‬ ֽ ֵ ֹ ‫י־יוֹד ַע ְי֭הוָ ה ֶ ֣דּ ֶרְך ַצ ִדּי ִ ֑ קים וְ ֶ ֖ד ֶרְך ְר ָשׁ ִ ֣עים תּ‬ ֣ ֵ ‫ִ ֽכּ‬ For the Lord knows the way of the righteous but the way of the wicked shall perish. In this verse, the two contrasting entities (antonyms) are ‫ֶ ֣דּ ֶרְך ַצ ִדּי ִ ֑ קים‬ (“the way of the righteous”) and ‫“( ֶ ֖ד ֶרְך ְר ָשׁ ִ ֣עים‬the way of the wicked”), which are arranged in a chiastic structure, with ‫ ֶ ֣דּ ֶרְך ַצ ִדּי ִ ֑ קים‬coming at the end of the first clause, and ‫ ֶ ֖ד ֶרְך ְר ָשׁ ִ ֣עים‬at the beginning of the second clause. Simple vav connects the two clauses and may be rendered “but”. II: Antithesis by negation (after positive statement) (6-7) 6

Genesis 4:4,5

‫ל־מנְ ָח ֖תוֹ ֣ל ֹא ָשׁ ָ ֑עה‬ ִ ‫ל־קיִ ן וְ ֶא‬ ֥ ַ ‫ל־מנְ ָח ֽתוֹ׃ וְ ֶא‬ ִ ‫ל־ה ֶבל וְ ֶא‬ ֖ ֶ ‫הוה ֶא‬ ֔ ָ ְ‫וַ ִיּ ַ֣שׁע י‬ And the Lord had respect to Abel and to his offering, but to Cain and to his offering He had no respect. The second clause is negated with ‫ לֹא‬and the antithesis is heightened by the chiastic structure, with the verb coming at the beginning of the first ֑ ָ ‫) ֣ל ֹא ָשׁ‬. The second clause (‫ )וַ יִּ ַשׁע‬but at the end of the second clause (‫עה‬ clause is introduced with biblical Hebrew simple vav, here rendered “but”. 7

Exodus 19:24

‫ל־י ֶֶה ְר ֛סוּ ַל ֲע ֹ֥לת‬ ֽ ‫ית ַא ָ ֖תּה וְ ַא ֲה ֣ר ֹן ִע ָ ֑מְּך וְ ַהכּ ֲֹה ִנ֣ים וְ ָה ֗ ָעם ַא‬ ָ ‫וְ ָע ִ ֥ל‬

240

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

And you shall come up, you and Aaron with you, but let not the priests and the people break through to come up. Note the negation in the second clause and also the chiastic structure; in the first clause, the verb (‫ית‬ ָ ‫ )וְ ָע ִ ֥ל‬is followed by the subject, but in the second ֽ ‫) ַא‬. Again, the clause, the subject comes before the verb (‫ל־י ֶֶה ְר ֛סוּ ַל ֲע ֹ֥לת‬ second clause is introduced by biblical Hebrew simple vav, here rendered “but”. III: Antithesis after negation, introduced by vav (conjunctive or consecutive) (8-10) 8

Exodus 5:18

‫ת ֶכן ְל ֵב ִנ֖ים ִתּ ֵ ֽתּנּוּ׃‬ ֹ ֥ ְ‫וְ ֶ ֖ת ֶבן לֹא־יִ נָּ ֵ ֣תן ָל ֶכ֑ם ו‬ And straw will not be given to you, but the quantity (lit. measurement) of bricks you shall deliver. The first clause is negated by ‫ לֹא‬and the second clause is introduced by simple vav, which may be rendered “but”. (‫ תּ ֶֹכן‬n.m. = “measurement”; ‫ ְל ֵבנָ ה‬n.f. = “brick”). 9

Genesis 40:23

‫ת־יוֹסף וַ יִּ ְשׁ ָכּ ֵ ֽחהוּ׃‬ ֵ֖ ‫ר־ה ַמּ ְשׁ ִ ֛ קים ֶא‬ ַ ‫וְ ֽל ֹא־זָ ַ ֧כר ַ ֽשׂ‬ The chief butler did not remember Joseph but he forgot him. The first clause is negated by ‫ לֹא‬and the second clause is introduced by vav consecutive, which may here be rendered “but”. 10

Genesis 17:5

‫ת־שׁ ְמָך֖ ַא ְב ָ ֑רם וְ ָה ָי֤ה ִשׁ ְמ ָ֙ך ַא ְב ָר ָ֔הם‬ ִ ‫וְ לֹא־יִ ָקּ ֵ ֥רא ֛עוֹד ֶא‬

PART THREE: SYNTAX

241

Your name shall no longer be called Abram but your name shall be Abraham. The first clause is negated by ‫ לֹא‬and the second clause is introduced by vav consecutive (‫)וְ ָה ָי֤ה‬, here rendered “but”. (For use of ‫ ֶאת־‬here, see GK 117i). IV: Antithesis after negation introduced by ‫ִאם‬ 11

‫ ִכּי‬/‫( ִכּי‬11-14)

Genesis 17:15

‫ת־שׁ ָ ֖מהּ ָשׂ ָ ֑רי‬ ְ ‫א־ת ְק ָ ֥רא ֶא‬ ִ ֹ ‫ל־א ְב ָר ָ֔הם ָשׂ ַ ֣רי ִא ְשׁ ְתּ ָ֔ך ל‬ ַ ‫ים ֶא‬ ֙ ‫ֹלה‬ ִ ‫אמר ֱא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֤יּ‬ ‫ִ ֥כּי ָשׂ ָ ֖רה ְשׁ ָ ֽמהּ׃‬ And G-d said to Abraham, ‘as for Sarai your wife, you shall not call her name Sarai, but Sarah shall be her name’. The first clause is negated by ‫ לֹא‬and the second clause is introduced by ‫ִכּי‬ = “but”. 12

Genesis 45:8

‫ֹלהים‬ ֑ ִ ‫ֹתי ֵ֔הנָּ ה ִ ֖כּי ָה ֱא‬ ֙ ִ ‫א־א ֶ֞תּם ְשׁ ַל ְח ֶ ֤תּם א‬ ַ ֹ ‫וְ ַע ָ֗תּה ֽל‬ And now it was not you who sent me here, but G-d. The first clause is negated by ‫ לֹא‬and the second clause is introduced by ‫ִכּי‬ = “but”. 13

Genesis 32:29

‫עוֹד ִשׁ ְמ ָ֔ך ִ ֖כּי ִאם־יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֑אל‬ ֙ ‫אמר ֤ל ֹא יַ ֲעק ֹ֙ב יֵ ָא ֵ ֥מר‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֗יּ‬ And he said, ‘your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel’.

242

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

The first clause is negated by ‫ לֹא‬and the second clause is introduced by ‫“ = ִאם‬but”. 14

‫ִכּי‬

Numbers 10:30 (Jethro to Moses)

‫ל־מוֹל ְד ִ ֖תּי ֵא ֵ ֽלְך׃‬ ַ ‫ל־א ְר ִ ֛צי וְ ֶא‬ ַ ‫ם־א‬ ֶ ‫אמר ֵא ָל֖יו ֣ל ֹא ֵא ֵלְ֑ך ִ ֧כּי ִא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֥יּ‬ And he said to him, ‘I will not go, but to my (own) country and to my kindred I will go’. The first clause is negated by ‫ לֹא‬and the second clause is introduced by ‫“ = ִאם‬but”. V:

‫ִכּי‬

‫וְ אוּלָ ם‬/‫“ = אוּלָ ם‬but, howbeit” (15-16)

This is a more pronounced adversative conjunction and need not follow a negative. 15

Genesis 28:19

‫ם־ה ִ ֖עיר‬ ָ ‫אוּל֛ם ֥לוּז ֵשׁ‬ ָ ְ‫ית־אל ו‬ ֑ ֵ ‫ם־ה ָמּ ֥קוֹם ַה ֖הוּא ֵ ֽבּ‬ ַ ‫ת־שׁ‬ ֽ ֵ ‫וַ יִּ ְק ָ ֛רא ֶא‬ ‫ָל ִראשׁ ָֹנֽה׃‬ And he called the name of that place Bethel, but Luz was the name of the place at first. 16

Genesis 48:19 (Jacob to Joseph; Jacob was blessing Ephraim with his right hand, but Manasseh was the elder)

‫ם־הוּא‬ ֣ ַ‫ה־לּ ָ ֖עם וְ ג‬ ְ ֶ‫ם־הוּא יִ ְהי‬ ֥ ַ‫אמ ֙ר יָ ַ ֤ד ְע ִ ֽתּי ְבנִ ֙י יָ ַ ֔ד ְע ִתּי גּ‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ יְ ָמ ֵ ֣אן ָא ִ֗ביו וַ ֙יּ‬ ‫טֹן יִ גְ ַ ֣דּל ִמ ֶ֔מּנּוּ‬ ֙ ‫אוּלם ָא ִ ֤חיו ַה ָקּ‬ ָ ֗ ְ‫יִ גְ ָ ֑דּל ו‬

PART THREE: SYNTAX

243

And his father refused and said, ‘I know my son I know; he also shall become a people and he also shall be great, but his younger brother shall be greater than him. VI:

‫ = ַאְך‬however, but, yet (17-21)

The use of ‫ ַאְך‬as an adversative must be distinguished from its use as an asseverative (= “surely, certainly, indeed”; e.g. Gen 29:14; Ex 31:13) and also from its use as a restrictive particle (= “only, except”; e.g. Numb 12:2; 22:20; I Sam 18:8). 17

Genesis 20:12 (Abraham to Abimelech)

‫י־לי ְל ִא ָ ֽשּׁה׃‬ ֖ ִ ‫ת־א ִ ֑מּי וַ ְתּ ִה‬ ִ ‫ת־א ִ ֙בי ִ֔הוא ַ ֖אְך ֣ל ֹא ַב‬ ָ ‫ם־א ְמ ָ֗נה ֲאח ִ ֹ֤תי ַב‬ ָ ַ‫וְ ג‬ And also indeed she is my sister, the daughter of my father, but not the daughter of my mother; and she became my wife. This is the only biblical example where ‫ ַאְך‬as an adversative introduces a nominal clause. (‫ ָא ְמנָ ה‬adv. = “verily, truly, indeed”). 18

I Samuel 29:9

‫ל־דּוִ ד֒ יָ ַ ֕ד ְע ִתּי ִ ֣כּי ֥טוֹב ַא ָ ֛תּה ְבּ ֵע ַינ֖י ְכּ ַמ ְל ַ ֣אְך‬ ָ ‫אמר ֶא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫ישׁ וַ ֣יּ‬ ֮ ‫וַ ַיּ ַ֣ען ָא ִכ‬ ‫ֹלהים ַ ֣אְך ָשׂ ֵ ֤רי ְפ ִל ְשׁ ִתּ ֙ים ָ ֽא ְמ ֔רוּ ֽל ֹא־יַ ֲע ֶ ֥לה ִע ָ ֖מּנוּ ַבּ ִמּ ְל ָח ָ ֽמה׃‬ ֑ ִ ‫ֱא‬ And Achish answered and said to David, ‘I know that you are good in my eyes as an angel of G-d, but the princes of the Philistines have said, He shall not go up with us in battle’.

‫ ַאְך‬here introduces a clause with a perfect verb (‫) ַאְך— ָא ְמרוּ‬. David had fled to Achish, king of Gath, and had been forced to join the Philistine army, with his men, but now they were afraid he would betray them, so he was discharged.

244 19

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Numbers 36:6

‫יהם‬ ֖ ֶ ֵ‫מר ַל ֥טּוֹב ְבּ ֵעינ‬ ֹ ֔ ‫הוה ִל ְבנ֤ וֹת ְצ ָל ְפ ָח ֙ד ֵלא‬ ָ֗ ְ‫ר־צָוּ֣ה י‬ ִ ‫ֶז֣ה ַה ָדּ ָ֞בר ֲא ֶשׁ‬ ‫יהם ִתּ ְה ֶי֥ינָ ה ְלנָ ִ ֽשׁים׃‬ ֖ ֶ ‫ִתּ ְה ֶי ֣ינָ ה ְלנָ ִ ֑שׁים ַ֗אְך ְל ִמ ְשׁ ַ ֛פּ ַחת ַמ ֵ ֥טּה ֲא ִב‬ This is the word which the Lord has commanded concerning the daughters of Zelophehad, saying, ‘let them be wives to the one who is pleasing in their eyes, but let them be wives (only) to the family of the tribe of their father.

‫ ַאְך‬here introduces a clause with an imperfect verb (‫) ַאְך— ִתּ ְהיֶ ינָ ה‬. 20

I Kings 17:13 (The widow from Zarephat; Elijah asks her to give him first from her sparse provisions).

‫י־לי ֠ ִמ ָשּׁם‬ ֣ ִ ‫ל־תּ ְיר ִ֔אי ֖בֹּ ִאי ֲע ִ ֣שׂי ִכ ְד ָב ֵ ֑רְך ַ ֣אְך ֲע ִשׂ‬ ֣ ִ ‫הוּ ַא‬ ֙ ‫֤יה ֵא ִ יָּ֙ל‬ ָ ‫אמר ֵא ֶל‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֨יּ‬ ‫֣את ֔ ִלי וְ ָלְ֣ך וְ ִל ְב ֵ֔נְך ַתּ ֲע ִ ֖שׂי ָבּ ַא ֲחר ָֹנֽה׃‬ ְ ‫הוֹצ‬ ֵ ְ‫ֻע ֨ ָגה ְק ַט ָנּ֤ה ָב ִראשׁ ֹנָ ֙ה ו‬ And Elijah said to her, ‘do not fear, go do according to your word, but make me a small cake from there first and bring it out to me, and for you and your son, you shall make last’.

‫ ַאְך‬here introduces a clause with an imperative (‫ ; ֲע ִשׂי‬Qal fem. sg. ‫)עשׂה‬. 21

II Samuel 3:13

֤‫אמר ֔טוֹב ֲא ִ֕ני ֶא ְכ ֥ר ֹת ִא ְתָּך֖ ְבּ ִ ֑רית ַ ֣אְך ָדּ ָ ֣בר ֶא ָ֡חד ָאנ ִֹכי֩ שׁ ֵֹ֨אל ֵמ ִא ְתָּך‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣יּ‬ And he said, ‘good, I will make a covenant with you, but one thing I ask of you’.

‫ ַאְך‬here introduces a clause with a participle (‫ ;שׁ ֵֹ֨אל‬Qal m.sg. ‫( )שׁאל‬the only such example). David’s words to Abner, about to request the return of Michal.

PART THREE: SYNTAX

245

VII: ‫ ֲא ָבל‬in late biblical Hebrew (22-23) It is only in Late Biblical Hebrew that “howbeit, but”. 22

‫ֲא ָבל‬

has an adversative force =

Daniel 10:7

‫שׁר ָהי֣ וּ ִע ִ֔מּי ֥ל ֹא‬ ֣ ֶ ‫ים ֲא‬ ֙ ‫ת־ה ַמּ ְר ָ֔אה וְ ָה ֲאנָ ִשׁ‬ ַ ‫יתי֩ ֲא ִ֨ני ָדנִ ֵיּ֤אל ְל ַב ִדּ֙י ֶא‬ ִ ‫וְ ָר ִא‬ ‫ֽ יִּב ְר ֖חוּ ְבּ ֵה ָח ֵ ֽבא׃‬ ְ ‫יהם ַו‬ ֶ֔ ‫ת־ה ַמּ ְר ָ ֑אה ֲא ָ֗בל ֲח ָר ָ ֤דה גְ ד ָֹל ֙ה נָ ְפ ָל֣ה ֲע ֵל‬ ַ ‫ָר ֖אוּ ֶא‬ And I Daniel alone saw the vision and the men who were with me did not see the vision, but a great trembling fell on them and they fled into hiding. 23

II Chronicles 33:17

‫ֲא ָבל֙ ֣עוֹד ָה ֔ ָעם ז ְֹב ִ ֖חים ַבּ ָבּ ֑מוֹת‬ But the people still sacrificed in the high places. VIII:

‫ ֲא ָבל‬in older biblical Hebrew (24-25)

In older Hebrew ‫ ֲא ָבל‬has an asseverative force = “verily, of a truth”. 24

Genesis 42:21

‫ל־א ִחינ ֒וּ ֲא ֶ֨שׁר ָר ִ֜אינוּ ָצ ַ ֥רת נַ ְפ ֛שׁוֹ ְבּ ִה ְת ַ ֽחנְ נ֥ וֹ‬ ָ ‫ֲא ָב ֮ל ֲא ֵשׁ ִ ֣מים ׀ ֲאנַ ְח ֮נוּ ַע‬ ‫ֵא ֵל֖ינוּ וְ ֣ל ֹא ָשׁ ָ ֑מ ְענוּ‬ Truly we are guilty concerning our brother, that we saw the distress of his soul when he besought us and we did not listen. Rashi comments on ‫ ֲא ָבל‬here as follows:

= ‫ ֲא ָבל‬,‫רוֹמ ָאה הוא‬ ָ ‫ישׁנָ א ְד‬ ְ ‫יתי בב"ר ִל‬ ִ ‫ וְ ָר ִא‬.‫קוּשׁ ָטא‬ ְ ‫ ְבּ‬:‫ְכּ ַת ְרגּוּמוֹ‬ .‫ְבּ ַרם‬

246

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

“It is to be understood as the Targum renders it: ‘in truth’. I have seen (a statement in) Bereishit Rabbah that in the Roman language (Latin) ‫= ֲא ָבל‬ ‫( ְבּ ַרם‬verum) = ‘truly, indeed’.” 25

Genesis 17:19 (G-d to Abraham)

‫ֲא ָבל֙ ָשׂ ָ ֣רה ִא ְשׁ ְתּ ָ֗ך י ֶֹל ֶ֤דת ְל ָ֙ך ֵ֔בּן‬ Indeed, Sarah your wife shall bear you a son. Rashi comments on ‫ ֲא ָבל‬here as follows:

‫ וכן )בראשית מב כא( ֲא ָב ֮ל ֲא ֵשׁ ִ ֣מים‬,‫ לשון ֲא ִמ ַתּת ְדּ ָב ִרים‬.‫ֲא ָבל‬ ‫׀אנַ ְח ֮נוּ )מלכים ב ד יד( ֲא ָבל ֵבּן ֵאין ָלהּ‬ ֲ “This word implies confirmation of a statement, as in Genesis 42:21; II Kings 4:14.”

Exercise: translate the following English sentences into fully pointed biblical Hebrew. Each sentence contains a ‘contrastive’ or ‘antithetical’ construction. Annotate your translation in each case to show how you have dealt with the contrast or antithesis; it may be possible to suggest more than one option per sentence. Do not forget chiasmus! Suggested translations will be found at the end. 1

Your name will no longer be called Jacob but it will be Israel.

2

Let us fall into the hand of the Lord; but let me not fall into the hand of man.

3

And Adonijah called all his brothers and all the men of Judah, but Nathan the prophet and the mighty men and Solomon his brother he called not.

PART THREE: SYNTAX

247

4

Those who love G-d in truth will rejoice, and sinners and wrong-doers will perish.

5

The son returned to his father’s house, but the slave drove him away.

6

They will rebuild the house of G-d, but not as it was before.

Suggested translations for sentences with contrast and antithesis. 1

(‫( ִשׁ ְמָך יַ ֲעקֹב ִכּי ִאם\ ִכּי יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵאל )יִ ְהיֶ ה ְשׁ ֶמָך‬-‫לֹא יִ ָקּ ֵרא עוֹד ) ֶאת‬

See: Gen 17:5, 15; 32:29. Antithesis after negation. 2

:‫ ֶאפּ ָֹלה‬-‫וּביַ ד ָא ָדם ַאל‬ ְ '‫נָּ א ְביַ ד ה‬-‫נִ ְפּ ָלה‬

See: II Sam 24:14. Negation after positive statement + chiasmus. 3

‫נָ ָתן ַהנָּ ִביא‬-‫הוּדה וְ ֶאת‬ ָ ְ‫ ַאנְ ֵשׁי י‬-‫וּל ָכל‬ ְ ‫ ֶא ָחיו‬-‫ ָכּל‬-‫וַ יִּ ְק ָרא ֲאד ֹנִ יָּ הוּ ֶאת‬ ִ ִ‫ ַהגּ‬-‫וְ ֶאת‬   :‫ ְשֹׁלמֹה ָא ִחיו לֹא ָק ָרא‬-‫בּוֹרים וְ ֶאת‬ See: I Kings 1:9,10. Antithesis by negation after positive statement + chiasmus. 4

‫ה' ֶבּ ֱא ֶמת‬-‫א ֲה ֵבי‬ ֹ ‫יִ ְשׁ ְמחוּ‬

:‫אבדוּ‬ ֵ ֹ ‫וְ ַח ָטּ ִאים וּפ ְֹש ִעים י‬ (‫ָעוֶ ל‬

‫ ע ֵֹשׂי‬Deut 25:16; ‫ פ ְֹשׁ ִעים‬Isaiah 1:28)

Chiasmus + antonyms. or:

‫א ֲֹה ֵבי ה' ֶבּ ֱא ֶמת יִ ְשׂ ְמחוּ‬

248

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

:‫אבדוּ‬ ֵ ֹ ‫וְ ַח ָטּ ִאים וּפ ְֹש ִעים י‬ Constrast: highlighting in initial position in each clause the two persons/entities in opposition. 5

:‫ָשׁב ַה ֵבּן ְל ֵבית ָא ִביו ַאְך גֵּ ֵרשׁ אֹתוֹ ָה ֶע ֶבד‬

6

:‫אוּלם לֹא ַכּ ַבּיִ ת ָה ִראשׁוֹן‬ ָ ְ‫ֹלקים ו‬ ִ ‫ ֵבּית ָה ֱא‬-‫וּבנוּ ֶאת‬ ָ

CAUSAL AND EXPLICATIVE CLAUSES Biblical Hebrew demonstrates the following methods of formulating causal and explicative clauses: 1

With the simple juxtaposition of two clauses.

2

With vav.

3

With ‫( ִכּי‬commonly used).

4

With ‫ֲא ֶשׁר‬

5

With ‫יַ ַען‬/‫ִכּי‬

6

With ‫ֲא ֶשׁר‬

7

With other prepositions, e.g. ‫ַעל‬

‫יַ ַען‬/‫יַ ַען ֲא ֶשׁר‬

‫ ַתּ ַחת‬/(‫ֵע ֶקב ) ֲא ֶשׁר‬

Exercise: study the following biblical verses and discuss/analyse the various methods of formulating causal and explicative clauses in biblical Hebrew. See explanatory notes at the end of the exercise. 1

Genesis 17:14

‫ת־בּ ַ ֣שׂר ָע ְר ָל ֔תוֹ וְ נִ ְכ ְר ָ ֛תה ַה ֶנּ ֶ֥פשׁ ַה ִ ֖הוא‬ ְ ‫וְ ָע ֵ ֣רל זָ ָ֗כר ֲא ֶ ֤שׁר ֽל ֹא־יִ מּוֹל֙ ֶא‬ ‫יתי ֵה ַ ֽפר׃‬ ֖ ִ ‫ת־בּ ִר‬ ְ ‫יה ֶא‬ ָ ‫ֵמ ַע ֶ ֑מּ‬

PART THREE: SYNTAX

249

And the uncircumcised male, the flesh of whose foreskin is not circumcised, that soul shall be cut off from its people; (because) he has broken My covenant. 2

Exodus 23:9

‫יתם ְבּ ֶ ֥א ֶרץ‬ ֖ ֶ ִ‫ת־נ ֶ֣פשׁ ַה ֔ ֵגּר ִ ֽכּי־גֵ ִ ֥רים ֱהי‬ ֶ ‫וְ ֵג֖ר ֣ל ֹא ִת ְל ָ ֑חץ וְ ַא ֶ֗תּם יְ ַד ְע ֶתּ ֙ם ֶא‬ ‫ִמ ְצ ָ ֽריִ ם׃‬ And you shall not oppress a stranger; for (because) you know the soul of the stranger, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt. 3

Genesis 3:14 (G-d to the serpent)

‫וּמ ֖כֹּל ַח ַיּ֣ת ַה ָשּׂ ֶ ֑דה‬ ִ ‫ל־ה ְבּ ֵה ָ֔מה‬ ַ ‫ת ָא ֤רוּר ַא ָתּ ֙ה ִמ ָכּ‬ ֒ ‫ית זֹּא‬ ָ ‫ִ ֣כּי ָע ִ ֣שׂ‬ Because you have done this, you are more cursed than all the cattle and than all the beasts of the field. 4

Genesis 8:9

‫י־מיִ ם‬ ֖ ַ ‫ל־ה ֵתּ ָ֔בה ִכּ‬ ַ ‫ף־רגְ ֗ ָלהּ וַ ָ ֤תּ ָשׁב ֵא ָל ֙יו ֶא‬ ַ ‫וֹח ְל ַכ‬ ַ ֜‫יּוֹנה ָמנ‬ ָ ֨ ‫א־מ ְצ ָא ֩ה ַה‬ ָ ֹ ‫וְ ֽל‬ ‫ל־ה ָ ֑א ֶרץ‬ ָ ‫ל־פּ ֵנ֣י ָכ‬ ְ ‫ַע‬ And the dove did not find rest for the sole of her foot and she returned to him to the ark, for the waters were on the face of the whole land. 5

Genesis 42:21

‫ל־א ִחינ ֒וּ ֲא ֶ֨שׁר ָר ִ֜אינוּ ָצ ַ ֥רת נַ ְפ ֛שׁוֹ ְבּ ִה ְת ַ ֽחנְ נ֥ וֹ‬ ָ ‫ֲא ָב ֮ל ֲא ֵשׁ ִ ֣מים ֲאנַ ְח ֮נוּ ַע‬ ‫ֵא ֵל֖ינוּ וְ ֣ל ֹא ָשׁ ָ ֑מ ְענוּ‬ Truly we are guilty concerning our brother, who/because we saw the distress of his soul when he besought us and we did not listen.

250 6

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Genesis 30:18

‫ישׁי וַ ִתּ ְק ָ ֥רא‬ ֑ ִ ‫ים ְשׂ ָכ ִ ֔רי ֲא ֶשׁר־נָ ַ ֥ת ִתּי ִשׁ ְפ ָח ִ ֖תי ְל ִא‬ ֙ ‫ֹלה‬ ִ ‫אמר ֵל ָ֗אה נָ ַ ֤תן ֱא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣תּ‬ ‫שכר׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫ְשׁ ֖מוֹ יִ ָשּׂ‬ And Leah said, ‘G-d has given me my reward, because I gave my maiden to my husband’ and she called his name Issachar. 7

Genesis 22:16,17

‫ידָך׃‬ ֽ ֶ ‫ת־בּנְ ָך֥ ֶאת־יְ ִח‬ ִ ‫ת־ה ָדּ ָ ֣בר ַה ֶ֔זּה וְ ֥ל ֹא ָח ַ ֖שׂ ְכ ָתּ ֶא‬ ַ ‫ית ֶא‬ ָ֙ ‫ַי ַ֚ען ֲא ֶ ֤שׁר ָע ִ ֙שׂ‬ ‫י־ב ֵ ֣רְך ֲא ָב ֶר ְכ ָ֗ך‬ ָ ‫ִ ֽכּ‬ Because you have done this thing and you have not withheld your son, your only son, I will surely bless you. 8

Deuteronomy 1:36

‫ְך־בּהּ‬ ֖ ָ ‫ת־ה ָ ֛א ֶרץ ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ָ ֽדּ ַר‬ ָ ‫וֹ־א ֵ ֧תּן ֶא‬ ֶ ‫וּל ִ֞תי ָכּ ֵל֤ב ֶבּן־יְ ֻפנֶּ ֙ה ֣הוּא יִ ְר ֶ֔אנָּ ה וְ ֽל‬ ָ ֽ‫ז‬ ‫הוֽה׃‬ ָ ְ‫וּל ָב ָנ֑יו ַ֕י ַען ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ִמ ֵלּ֖א ַא ֲח ֵ ֥רי י‬ ְ Except Caleb the son of Yephunneh, he will see it, and to him I will give the land which he has trodden on, because he has wholly followed the Lord. 9

Numbers 20:12

‫ישׁנִ י‬ ֵ֔ ‫א־ה ֱא ַמנְ ֶ ֣תּם ִ֔בּי ְל ַה ְק ִדּ‬ ֶ ֹ ‫ל־א ֲהרֹן֒ ַי ַ֚ען ל‬ ַ ‫אמר יְ הוָ ֮ה ֶאל־מ ֶ ֹ֣שׁה וְ ֶ ֽא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣יּ‬ ַ ‫יאוּ ֶא‬ ֙ ‫ְל ֵע ֵינ֖י ְבּ ֵנ֣י יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֑אל ָל ֵ֗כן ֤ל ֹא ָת ִ֙ב‬ ‫ל־ה ָ ֖א ֶרץ‬ ָ ‫ת־ה ָקּ ָ ֣הל ַה ֶ֔זּה ֶא‬ ‫ֲא ֶשׁר־נָ ַ ֥ת ִתּי ָל ֶ ֽהם׃‬

PART THREE: SYNTAX

251

And the Lord said to Moses and to Aaron, ‘because you did not believe in Me, to sanctify Me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore you shall not bring this congregation to the land which I gave to them’. 10

I Kings 21:29

[‫א־א ִבי ] ָא ִ ֤ביא‬ ָ ֹ ‫ית ִ ֽכּי־נִ ְכ ַנ֥ע ַא ְח ָ ֖אב ִמ ְלּ ָפ ָנ֑י ַ֜י ַען ִ ֽכּי־נִ ְכ ַנ֣ע ִמ ָפּ ַ֗ני ֽל‬ ָ ‫ֲ ֽה ָר ִ֔א‬ ‫יתוֹ׃‬ ֽ ‫ל־בּ‬ ֵ ‫ימי ְבנ֔ וֹ ָא ִ ֥ביא ָה ָר ָ ֖עה ַע‬ ֣ ֵ ‫ֽ ָה ָר ָע ֙ה ְבּיָ ָ֔מיו ִבּ‬ Have you seen that Ahab has humbled himself before Me? Because he has humbled himself before Me, I will not bring the evil in his days, (but) in the days of his son I will bring the evil on his house. 11

Jeremiah 5:14

‫ת־ה ָדּ ָ ֖בר ַה ֶזּ֑ה ִהנְ ִנ֣י נ ֵֹתן֩ ְדּ ָב ַ ֨רי ְבּ ֜ ִפיָך ְל ֵ֗אשׁ וְ ָה ָ ֥עם ַה ֶזּ֛ה‬ ַ ‫ַי ַ֚ען ַדּ ֶבּ ְר ֶ֔כם ֶא‬ ‫ֵע ִ ֖צים וַ ֲא ָכ ָ ֽל ַתם׃‬ Because you speak this word, behold I will make My words in your mouth as fire, and this people wood, and it (the fire) shall devour them. 12

Genesis 22:18

‫גּוֹי ֣י ָה ָ ֑א ֶרץ ֕ ֵע ֶקב ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ָשׁ ַ ֖מ ְע ָתּ ְבּק ִ ֹֽלי׃‬ ֵ ‫וְ ִה ְת ָבּ ֲר ֣כוּ ְבזַ ְר ֲע ָ֔ך ֖כֹּל‬ And all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in your seed because you have listened to My voice. 13

Numbers 25:13

‫אֹלהיו‬ ָ֔ ‫עוֹל֑ם ַ֗תּ ַחת ֲא ֶ ֤שׁר ִקנֵּ ֙א ֵ ֽל‬ ָ ‫וּלזַ ְר ֣עוֹ ַא ֲח ָ ֔ריו ְבּ ִ ֖רית ְכּ ֻה ַנּ֣ת‬ ְ ֙‫וְ ָ ֤היְ ָתה לּוֹ‬ ‫־בּ ֵנ֥י יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֽאל׃‬ ְ ‫וַ יְ ַכ ֵ ֖פּר ַעל‬

252

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

And there shall be to him and to his seed after him a covenant of everlasting priesthood, because he was zealous for his G-d and he made atonement for the children of Israel. 14 II Samuel 12:6

‫ת־ה ָדּ ָ ֣בר ַה ֶ֔זּה‬ ַ ‫ת־ה ִכּ ְב ָ ֖שׂה יְ ַשׁ ֵלּ֣ם ַא ְר ַבּ ְע ָ ֑תּיִ ם ֗ ֵע ֶקב ֲא ֶ ֤שׁר ָע ָשׂ ֙ה ֶא‬ ַ ‫וְ ֶא‬ ‫א־ח ָ ֽמל׃‬ ָ ֹ ‫וְ ַ ֖על ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ֽל‬ And he shall restore the lamb fourfold, because he did this thing and because he had no pity. 15

II Kings 22:16,17

‫ל־ה ָמּ ֥קוֹם ַה ֶזּ֖ה וְ ַעל־יֽ ְֹשׁ ָ ֑ביו ֵ ֚את‬ ַ ‫הוה ִהנְ ִ֨ני ֵמ ִ ֥ביא ָר ָ ֛עה ֶא‬ ָ֔ ְ‫֚כֹּה ָא ַ ֣מר י‬ ֽ ָ ְ‫ל־דּ ְב ֵ ֣רי ַה ֵ֔סּ ֶפר ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ָק ָ ֖רא ֶ ֥מ ֶלְך י‬ ‫רוּ‬ ֙ ‫שׁר ֲעזָ ֗בוּנִ י ַוֽ יְ ַק ְטּ‬ ֣ ֶ ‫הוּדה׃ ַ ֣תּ ַחת ֲא‬ ִ ‫ָכּ‬ ‫אֹלהים ֲא ֵח ִ ֔רים‬ ֣ ִ ‫ֵל‬ Thus says the Lord, ‘behold I will bring evil upon this place and upon its inhabitants, all the words of the book which the King of Judah read, because they have forsaken Me and have burned incense to other gods’. 16

II Samuel 12:10

‫ד־עוֹל֑ם ֵ ֚ע ֶקב ִ ֣כּי ְבזִ ָ֔תנִ י וַ ִתּ ַ ֗קּח‬ ָ ‫יתָך֖ ַע‬ ְ ‫א־ת ֥סוּר ֶ ֛ח ֶרב ִמ ֵבּ‬ ָ ֹ ‫וְ ַע ָ֗תּה ל‬ ִ ‫ת־א ֶשׁ ֙ת‬ ‫אוּר ָיּ֣ה ַה ִח ִ֔תּי ִל ְהי֥ וֹת ְלָך֖ ְל ִא ָ ֽשּׁה׃‬ ֵ֙ ‫ֶא‬ And now the sword will not depart from your house for ever, because you despised Me and took the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your wife.

PART THREE: SYNTAX 17

253

Deuteronomy 8:20

‫אב ֑דוּן ֵ ֚ע ֶקב ֣ל ֹא ִת ְשׁ ְמ ֔עוּן‬ ֵ ֹ ‫יכם ֵ ֖כּן ת‬ ֶ֔ ֵ‫גּוֹים ֲא ֶ ֤שׁר יְ הוָ ֙ה ַמ ֲא ִ ֣ביד ִמ ְפּנ‬ ִ֗ ‫ַכּ‬ ‫יכם׃‬ ֽ ֶ ‫ֹלה‬ ֵ ‫הו֥ה ֱא‬ ָ ְ‫ְבּ ֖קוֹל י‬ As the nations whom the Lord destroys from before you, so shall you perish, because you will not listen to the voice of the Lord your G-d. 18 Exodus 17:7

‫ל־ריב ְבּ ֵ ֣ני יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ֗אל וְ ֨ ַעל נַ סּ ָ ֹ֤תם‬ ֣ ִ ‫יבה ַע‬ ֑ ָ ‫וּמ ִר‬ ְ ‫שׁם ַה ָמּ ֔קוֹם ַמ ָ ֖סּה‬ ֣ ֵ ‫וַ יִּ ְק ָר ֙א‬ ‫ֶאת־יְ הוָ ֙ה‬ And he called the name of the place Massah and Merivah because of the strife of the children of Israel and because they tried the Lord. 19

II Samuel 3:30

‫האל‬ ֧ ֵ ‫ת־ע ָשׂ‬ ֲ ‫ישׁי ָא ִ֔חיו ָה ְרג֖ וּ ְל ַא ְב ֵנ֑ר ַע ֩ל ֲא ֶ֨שׁר ֵה ִ֜מית ֶא‬ ֣ ַ ‫יוֹא ֙ב וַ ֲא ִב‬ ָ ְ‫ו‬ ‫יהם ְבּגִ ְב ֖עוֹן ַבּ ִמּ ְל ָח ָ ֽמה׃‬ ֛ ֶ ‫ֲא ִח‬ And Joab and Avishai his brother killed Abner because he had slain Asahel their brother at Gibeon in war. 20

Genesis 39:9

‫ם־אוֹתְך‬ ָ֖ ‫וּמה ִ ֥כּי ִא‬ ָ ‫א־ח ַ ֤שְׂך ִמ ֶ֙מּנִּ ֙י ְמ ֔א‬ ָ ֹ ‫ֵא ֶ֨יננּוּ גָ ֜דוֹל ַבּ ַ ֣בּיִת ַהזֶּ ֮ה ִמ ֶמּנִּ י֒ וְ ֽל‬ ‫־א ְשׁ ֑תּוֹ‬ ִ ‫שׁר ַא ְתּ‬ ֣ ֶ ‫ַבּ ֲא‬ There is none greater in this house than I, and he has not kept back anything from me except you, because you are his wife.

254 21

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Exodus 19:18

‫הו֖ה ָבּ ֵ ֑אשׁ‬ ָ ְ‫וְ ַ ֤הר ִסינַ ֙י ָע ַ ֣שׁן ֻכּ ֔לּוֹ ֠ ִמ ְפּנֵ י ֲא ֶ֨שׁר יָ ַ ֥רד ָע ָל֛יו י‬ And the whole of Mount Sinai smoked because the Lord descended on it in fire. 22

Judges 6:27

‫יוֹמם וַ ַיּ ַ֥עשׂ‬ ֖ ָ ‫ת־אנְ ֵ ֥שׁי ָה ִ ֛עיר ֵמ ֲע ֥שׂוֹת‬ ַ ‫ת־בּית ָא ִ֜ביו וְ ֶא‬ ֵ֨ ‫שׁר יָ ֵר ֩א ֶא‬ ֣ ֶ ‫וַ יְ ִ֡הי ַכּ ֲא‬ ‫ָ ֽליְ ָלה׃‬ And it was, since he feared his father’s household and the men of the city from doing (it) by day, so he did (it) by night. Explanatory notes to ‘causal and explicative clauses’ 1

ִ ‫ ְבּ ִר‬-‫“ ֶאת‬he has broken my covenant”, The last three words, ‫יתי ֵה ַפר‬ constitute a causal clause, expressing the reason for the soul being cut off. The causal clause is merely juxtaposed to the previous clause, with no expressed syntactical link.

2

The first causal clause is introduced by simple vav ‫וְ ַא ֶתּם יְ ַד ְע ֶתּם‬ “and you know”, i.e. “because you know”, while the second causal ֶ ִ‫גֵּ ִרים ֱהי‬-‫“ ִכּי‬for you were strangers”. clause is introduced by ‫ ִכּי‬, ‫יתם‬

3

The causal clause is introduced by have done this”.

4

The causal clause is introduced by ‫ ִכּי‬, ‫ ָה ָא ֶרץ‬-‫ָכל‬ “for the waters were on the face of the whole land”.

5

The relative construction ‫ ֲא ֶשׁר‬can have a weak causal sense and in this verse we see how such a development could arise, for the words ‫ ַעל ָא ִחינוּ ֲא ֶשׁר ָר ִאינוּ ָצ ַרת נַ ְפשׁוֹ‬could be understood either as

‫ ִכּי‬, ‫ית זֹּאת‬ ָ ‫ ִכּי ָע ִשׂ‬, “Because you ‫ ְפּנֵ י‬-‫ ַמיִ ם ַעל‬-‫ ִכּי‬,

PART THREE: SYNTAX

255

“concerning our brother whose distress we saw” (taking ‫ ֲא ֶשׁר‬as a relative pronoun) or as “concerning our brother in that/because we saw the distress of his soul—” (taking ‫ ֲא ֶשׁר‬as a causal conjunction). 6

‫ֲא ֶשׁר‬

introduces a causal clause here, ‫ישׁי‬ ִ ‫ִשׁ ְפ ָח ִתי ְל ִא‬ “because I gave my maiden”. (See also: Gen 34:13,27).

‫נָ ַת ִתּי‬-‫ֲא ֶשׁר‬

7

‫ יַ ַען ֲא ֶשׁר‬introduces a causal clause here, ‫ית‬ ָ ‫“ יַ ַען ֲא ֶשׁר ָע ִשׂ‬because you have done”; ‫ יַ ַען ֲא ֶשׁר‬is used thirty-two times in the Hebrew Bible. ‫ יַ ַען‬alone as a conjunction occurs twenty-three times and ‫יַ ַען ִכּי‬ occurs seven times. Use of ‫יַ ַען ִכּי‬/‫ יַ ַען ֲא ֶשׁר‬/‫ יַ ַען‬denotes “a stronger or more precisely causal nuance”(JM 170f), “for the reason of (the fact that), because of (the fact that)” (ibid); “in fact almost all the examples occur in texts evincing an elevated style (a divine or prophetic speech).” (ibid).

8

‫ יַ ַען ֲא ֶשׁר‬introduces a causal clause here, '‫יַ ַען ֲא ֶשׁר ִמ ֵלּא ַא ֲח ֵרי ה‬ “because he has wholly followed the Lord”.

‫יַ ַען‬

‫ ֶה ֱא ַמנְ ֶתּם ִבּי‬-‫יַ ַען לֹא‬

9

introduces a causal clause here, you did not believe in Me”.

“because

10

‫ יַ ַען ִכּי‬introduces a causal clause here, ‫נִ ְכנַ ע ִמ ָפּנַ י‬-‫“ יַ ַען ִכּי‬because he has humbled himself before Me”.

11

‫ יַ ַען‬occurs here as a preposition with inf. cstr. (Piel) plus suffix 2 m.pl. ‫ יַ ַען ַדּ ֶבּ ְר ֶכם‬lit. = “because of your speaking”, i.e. “because you speak”.

12

‫ ֵע ֶקב ֲא ֶשׁר‬introduces a causal clause here, ‫ֵע ֶקב ֲא ֶשׁר ָשׁ ַמ ְע ָתּ ְבּק ִֹלי‬ “because you have listened to My voice”, expressing the idea of reward/recompense; see JM 170g: “for the special nuance of in recompense for the fact that or in the pejorative sense of in punishment for

256

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW the fact that we use ‫ֲא ֶשׁר‬ synonymous”.

13

‫ ֵע ֶקב‬and ‫ ַתּ ַחת ֲא ֶשׁר‬which are practically

‫ ַתּ ַחת ֲא ֶשׁר‬introduces a causal clause here, ‫ַתּ ַחת ֲא ֶשׁר ִקנֵּ א‬

‫“ ֵלאל ֹהָיו‬because

he was zealous for his G-d”, expressing the idea of reward/recompense. Pinchas ben Elazar, son of Aaron the priest, had stabbed the Israelite man with the Midianite woman.

‫ֵע ֶקב ֲא ֶשׁר‬

14

introduces the first causal clause, expressing the idea of punishment, ‫ ַה ָדּ ָבר ַהזֶּ ה‬-‫“ ֵע ֶקב ֲא ֶשׁר ָע ָשׂה ֶאת‬because he did this thing”. The parallel second causal clause, also expressing the idea of punishment, is introduced by the preposition ‫ ַעל‬+ ‫ַעל ֲא ֶשׁר > ֲא ֶשׁר‬ + finite verb, ‫ ָח ָמל‬-‫“וְ ַעל ֲא ֶשׁר לֹא‬and because he had no pity”. ‫ַעל‬ is the most common preposition for causality. These are the words of David to Nathan the Prophet in response to the parable in which the rich man took the poor man’s lamb.

15

‫ ַתּ ַחת ֲא ֶשׁר‬introduces a causal retribution, ‫ַתּ ַחת ֲא ֶשׁר ֲעזָ בוּנִ י‬

16

‫ ֵע ֶקב ִכּי‬introduces the causal clause, expressing the idea of punishment, ‫“ ֵע ֶקב ִכּי ְבזִ ָתנִ י‬because you despised Me”.

17

‫ ֵע ֶקב‬introduces the causal clause, expressing the idea of retribution, ‫“ ֵע ֶקב לֹא ִת ְשׁ ְמעוּן‬because you will not listen”.

18

The preposition ‫ ַעל‬introduces two causal clauses in this verse. The first causal clause is introduced by ‫ ַעל‬+ a noun, ‫ ִריב‬-‫“ ַעל‬because of the strife of”, and the second causal clause is introduced by ‫ ַעל‬+ inf. cstr. (Piel) + suffix 3 m.pl. ‫( וְ ַעל נַ סּ ָֹתם‬lit.) “because of their trying/testing”.

clause here, expressing the idea of “because they have forsaken Me”. These are the words of Huldah the Prophetess during the reign of Josiah, when the Book of the Law was found.

PART THREE: SYNTAX

257

19

ֵ Hiphil, The causal clause is introduced by ‫ ַעל ֲא ֶשׁר‬+ perf. (‫ה ִמית‬, ‫)מות‬, ‫“ ַעל ֲא ֶשׁר ֵה ִמית‬because he had slain”. Compare use of -‫ַעל‬ ‫ ְדּ ַבר ֲא ֶשׁר‬in II Sam 13:22 and ‫ ַעל ִכּי‬in Judges 3:12.

20

The nominal causal clause is introduced by ‫“ ִא ְשׁתּוֹ‬because you are his wife”.

21

‫ ִמ ְפּנֵ י ֲא ֶשׁר‬followed by Qal perf. 3 m.sg. ‫ יָ ַרד‬introduces the causal

‫ ַבּ ֲא ֶשׁר‬, -‫ַבּ ֲא ֶשׁר ַא ְתּ‬

clause. 22

Note the unusual use of ‫ ַכּ ֲא ֶשׁר‬to introduce a causal clause,

‫ַכּ ֲא ֶשׁר יָ ֵרא‬ “since he feared”. Gideon destroyed the Baal altar and Asherah belonging to his father.

Exercise: translate the following English sentences into fully pointed biblical Hebrew. The sentences contain causal clauses which should be rendered with as great a variety of constructions as possible. Suggested translations will be found at the end. 1

Because the king’s heart is haughty, I am hastening to accomplish this thing.

2

And when Asenath had ceased making confession to the Lord, behold, the morning star rose out of heaven in the east. And Asenath saw it and rejoiced and said: ‘So the Lord G-d listened to my prayer, because this star rose as a messenger and herald of the light of the great day’.

3

The judge acquitted him on the grounds that he was living in Egypt at the time that his wife was murdered.

4

Because you have slain his anointed one, you also shall die.

‫‪258‬‬

‫‪FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW‬‬ ‫‪They approached him and bowed down to the ground, for they feared‬‬ ‫‪him greatly.‬‬

‫‪5‬‬

‫‪Suggested translations for sentences with causal clauses‬‬ ‫‪1‬‬

‫יַ ַען גָּ ַבהּ ֵלב ַה ֶמּ ֶלְך ) ִכּי יָ רוּם ְל ַבב ַה ֶמּ ֶלְך( ְמ ַמ ֵהר ֲאנִ י ַל ֲעשׂוֹת ֵאת‬ ‫ַה ָדּ ָבר ַהזֶּ ה‪:‬‬ ‫)‪(see: II Chron 26:16‬‬ ‫‪2‬‬

‫כּוֹכב‬ ‫וַ יְ ִהי ְכּ ַכלּוֹת ) ַכּ ֲא ֶשׁר ָח ְד ָלה( ָא ְסנַ ת ְל ִה ְתוַ דּ ֹת ַלה' ִהנֵּ ה ָע ָלה ַ‬ ‫ַהבּ ֶֹקר ֵמ ַה ָשּׁ ַמיִם ִמ ִמּזְ ָרח וַ ֵתּ ֶרא אֹתוֹ ָא ְסנַ ת )וַ ִתּ ְר ֵאהוּ( וַ ִתּ ְשׂ ַמח‬ ‫ֹלהים ֶאת‪ְ -‬תּ ִפ ָלּ ִתי ִכּי‪ֲ /‬א ֶשׁר‪/‬יַ ַען ֲא ֶשׁר ָע ָלה‬ ‫ֹאמר‪ִ :‬כּי ָשׁ ַמע ה' ֱא‪ִ -‬‬ ‫וַ תּ ַ‬ ‫וּמ ַב ֵשּׂר אוֹר ַהיּוֹם ַהגָּ דוֹל‪:‬‬ ‫כּוֹכב ַהזֶּ ה ְכּ ַמ ְל ָאְך ְ‬ ‫ַה ָ‬ ‫)‪(see: Gen 41:45,50; Ezra 10:1; Exod 2:6‬‬ ‫‪3‬‬

‫ִה ְצ ִדּיק אֹתוֹ ַהשּׁ ֵֹפט יַ ַען‪ַ /‬על ֲא ֶשׁר‪ֵ /‬ע ֶקב ִכּי‪ֵ /‬ע ֶקב ֲא ֶשׁר גָּ ר ְבּ ִמ ְצ ַריִם‬ ‫ְבּ ֵעת‪ֵ -‬ה ָה ֵרג‪ֵ /‬ה ָר ַצח ִא ְשׁתּוֹ‪:‬‬ ‫)”‪ְ = “at the time of her giving birth‬בּ ֵעת‬

‫ִל ְד ָתּהּ ‪(see: Gen 38:27:‬‬

‫ִכּי‪ַ /‬תּ ַחת ֲא ֶשׁר ָה ַרגְ ָתּ ֵאת ְמ ִשׁיחוֹ גַּ ם ַא ָתּה מוֹת ָתּמוּת‪:‬‬

‫‪4‬‬

‫דוֹלה‪:‬‬ ‫וַ יִּ גְּ שׁוּ ֵא ָליו וַ יִּ ְשׁ ַתּ ֲחווּ ַא ַפּיִ ם ַא ְר ָצה ִכּי יָ ְראוּ אֹתוֹ יִ ְר ָאה גְּ ָ‬

‫‪5‬‬

PART THREE: SYNTAX

259

QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

Exercise: spot the ‘hey interrogative’ in the following biblical verses and deduce the rules for the pointing of the ‘hey interrogative’; explanatory notes are found at the end. 1

Genesis 4:9

‫אמ ֙ר ֣ל ֹא יָ ַ ֔ד ְע ִתּי ֲהשׁ ֵ ֹ֥מר ָא ִ ֖חי‬ ֶ ֹ ‫ל־קיִ ן ֵ ֖אי ֶ ֣ה ֶבל ָא ִ ֑חיָך וַ ֙יּ‬ ֔ ַ ‫אמר יְ הוָ ֙ה ֶא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֤יּ‬ ‫ָאנֽ ִֹכי׃‬ And the Lord said to Cain, ‘where is Abel your brother?’ and he said, ‘I do not know; am I my brother’s keeper?’ 2

Genesis 18:17

‫ַוֽי ָ֖הו ֹה ָא ָ ֑מר ֽ ַה ְמ ַכ ֶ ֤סּה ֲאנִ ֙י ֽ ֵמ ַא ְב ָר ָ֔הם ֲא ֶ ֖שׁר ֲא ִ ֥ני ע ֶ ֹֽשׂה׃‬ And the Lord said, ‘shall I hide from Abraham that which I am about to do?’ 3

Exodus 2:7

֮ ‫אמר ֲאח‬ ‫אתי ָל ְ֙ך ִא ָ ֣שּׁה ֵמ ֶ֔ינ ֶקת ִ ֖מן‬ ִ ‫ה ַה ֵא ֗ ֵלְך וְ ָק ָ ֤ר‬ ֒ ֹ‫ת־פּ ְרע‬ ַ ‫ל־בּ‬ ַ ‫ֹתוֹ ֶא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣תּ‬ ‫ת־ה ָיּ ֶֽלד׃‬ ַ ‫ָה ִע ְב ִר ֹ֑יּת וְ ֵת ִ ֥ינק ָלְ֖ך ֶא‬ And his sister said to Pharoah’s daughter, ‘shall I go and call for you a nursing woman from the Hebrews, that she may nurse the child for you?’ 4

Job 1:9

‫ֹלהים׃‬ ֽ ִ ‫אמר ַ ֽה ִח ָ֔נּם יָ ֵ ֥רא ִאיּ֖ וֹב ֱא‬ ֑ ַ ֹ ‫הו֖ה וַ יּ‬ ָ ְ‫וַ ַיּ ַ֧ען ַה ָשּׂ ָ ֛טן ֶאת־י‬ And the Satan answered the Lord and said, ‘is it for nothing that Job fears G-d?’

260 5

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Numbers 11:23

‫הו֖ה ִתּ ְק ָ ֑צר ַע ָ ֥תּה ִת ְר ֶ ֛אה ֲהיִ ְק ְרָך֥ ְד ָב ִ ֖רי‬ ָ ְ‫אמר יְ הוָ ֙ה ֶאל־מ ֶֹ֔שׁה ֲהַי֥ד י‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֤יּ‬ ‫ם־ל ֹא׃‬ ֽ ‫ִא‬ And the Lord said to Moses, ‘is the Lord’s hand too short? Now you will see whether My word will befall you or not’. 6

Numbers 11:12

‫ם־אנ ִ ֹ֖כי יְ ִל ְד ִ ֑תּיהוּ‬ ָ ‫ל־ה ָ ֣עם ַה ֶ֔זּה ִא‬ ָ ‫יתי ֵ ֚את ָכּ‬ ִ ‫ֶה ָאנ ִ ֹ֣כי ָה ִ ֗ר‬ Have I conceived all this people or have I begotten them? 7

Genesis 24:5 (Eliezer to Abraham about Rebekah)

‫ל־ה ָ ֣א ֶרץ‬ ָ ‫ֹאבה ָ ֽה ִא ָ֔שּׁה ָל ֶ ֥ל ֶכת ַא ֲח ַ ֖רי ֶא‬ ֣ ֶ ‫אוּלי לֹא־ת‬ ֙ ַ ‫אמר ֵא ָל ֙יו ָה ֔ ֶע ֶבד‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֤יּ‬ ‫את ִמ ָ ֽשּׁם׃‬ ָ ‫ל־ה ָ ֖א ֶרץ ֲא ֶשׁר־יָ ָ ֥צ‬ ָ ‫ת־בּנְ ָ֔ך ֶא‬ ִ ‫ַה ֑זּ ֹאת ֶ ֽה ָה ֵ ֤שׁב ָא ִשׁ ֙יב ֶא‬ And the servant said to him, ‘perhaps the woman will not be willing to go after me to this land; shall I indeed bring your son back to the land from where you came out?’ Explanatory notes to ‘spot the hey interrogative’ For rules of ‘hey interrogative’ see: WHG p 80; GK 100k-n. 1

‫“ ֲהשׁ ֵ ֹ֥מר ָא ִ ֖חי ָאנֽ ִֹכי‬am I my brother’s keeper? Hey int. takes ḥatephpataḥ generally before non-gutturals with a firm vowel.

2

‫“ ֽ ַה ְמ ַכ ֶ ֤סּה ֲאנִ ֙י‬shall I hide?” Before a consonant with sheva (here ‫) ְמ‬ hey int. usually takes pataḥ without a following dagesh forte. Less frequently, in about ten passages, pataḥ with a following dagesh forte (see below).

PART THREE: SYNTAX 3

‫ַה ֵא ֗ ֵלְך‬

4

‫“ ַ ֽה ִח ָ֔נּם‬is it for nothing?” See above, no 3.

5

‫הו֖ה ִתּ ְק ָ ֑צר‬ ָ ְ‫“ ֲהַי֥ד י‬Is the Lord’s hand too short?”

261

“shall I go?” Before gutturals not pointed with qamets or ḥateph- qamets, hey int. takes pataḥ.

Before non-gutturals hey int.takes ḥateph-pataḥ.

‫ם־ל ֹא‬ ֽ ‫“ ֲהיִ ְק ְרָך֥ ְד ָב ִ ֖רי ִא‬Will My Word befall you or not?” Note the disjunctive question, introduced by ‫ ֲה‬in the first clause and by ‫ ִאם‬in the second clause.(GK 150 c; JM 161e). 6

‫ ֶה ָאנ ִ ֹ֣כי‬The hey int. takes segol before gutturals pointed with qamets or ḥateph-qamets. Note the disjunctive question; ‫ ָאנ ִֹכי‬-‫ֶה ָאנ ִֹכי— ִאם‬

7

‫“ ֶ ֽה ָה ֵ ֤שׁב ָא ִשׁ ֙יב‬Shall I indeed bring back?” Hey int. + inf. abs. Hiphil, ‫שׁוּב‬. The hey int. takes segol before gutturals pointed with qamets or ḥateph-qamets.

Exercise: analyse the use of ‘hey interrogative’ in the following biblical verses. Remember that before a consonant with sheva hey int. usually takes pataḥ without a following dagesh forte. Less frequently, in about ten passages, pataḥ with a following dagesh forte. (GK 100l). (Explanatory notes are provided at the end). 1

Numbers 13:18-20

‫הוּא‬ ֙ ‫יה ֶה ָח ָ ֥זק‬ ָ ‫ת־ה ָע ֙ם ַהיּ ֵ ֹ֣שׁב ָע ֔ ֶל‬ ָ ‫ה־הוא וְ ֶא‬ ֑ ִ ‫ת־ה ָ ֖א ֶרץ ַמ‬ ָ ‫יתם ֶא‬ ֥ ֶ ‫ְוּר ִא‬ ‫טוֹבה‬ ֥ ָ ‫ר־הוּא י ֵ ֹ֣שׁב ָ֔בּהּ ֲה‬ ֽ ָ ‫ֲה ָר ֔ ֶפה ַה ְמ ַ ֥עט ֖הוּא ִא‬ ֙ ‫וּמה ָה ָ֗א ֶרץ ֲא ֶשׁ‬ ֣ ָ ‫ם־רב׃‬ ‫יוֹשׁב ָבּ ֵ֔הנָּ ה ַה ְבּ ַ ֽמ ֲח ִנ֖ים ִ ֥אם‬ ֣ ֵ ‫ר־הוּא‬ ֙ ‫וּמה ֶ ֽה ָע ִ ֗רים ֲא ֶשׁ‬ ֣ ָ ‫ם־ר ָ ֑עה‬ ָ ‫ִ ֖הוא ִא‬

262

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

‫ם־איִ ן‬ ַ֔ ‫ֽשׁ־בּהּ ֵע ֙ץ ִא‬ ֥ ָ ‫ם־ר ָ֗זה ֲהֵי‬ ָ ‫וּמה ֠ ָה ָא ֶרץ ַה ְשּׁ ֵמ ָ֨נה ִ֜הוא ִא‬ ֣ ָ ‫ְבּ ִמ ְב ָצ ִ ֽרים׃‬ ‫כּוּרי ֲענָ ִ ֽבים׃‬ ֥ ֵ ‫יְמי ִבּ‬ ֖ ֵ ‫וּל ַק ְח ֶ ֖תּם ִמ ְפּ ִ ֣רי ָה ָ ֑א ֶרץ וְ ַ֨היָּ ִ֔מים‬ ְ ‫וְ ִ֨ה ְת ַחזַּ ְק ֶ֔תּם‬ And you shall see the land, what it is; and the people who dwell in it, whether they are strong or weak, few or many. And what the land is that they dwell in, whether it is good or bad; and what are the cities in which they dwell, whether in camps or in strongholds. And what the land is, whether it is fertile or barren, whether there are trees in it or not, and you shall strengthen yourselves and take from the fruit of the land, and the time was the time of the firstripe grapes. 2

Genesis 17:17

‫ה־שׁנָ ֙ה יִ וָּ ֔ ֵלד‬ ָ ‫אמר ְבּ ִל ֗בּוֹ ַה ְלּ ֶ ֤בן ֵמ ָ ֽא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫ל־פּ ָנ֖יו וַ יִּ ְצ ָ ֑חק וַ ֣יּ‬ ָ ‫וַ יִּ ֧ ֹפּל ַא ְב ָר ָ ֛הם ַע‬ ‫ת־תּ ְשׁ ִ ֥עים ָשׁ ָנ֖ה ֵתּ ֵ ֽלד׃‬ ִ ‫ם־שׂ ָ ֔רה ֲה ַב‬ ָ ‫וְ ִ֨א‬ And Abraham fell upon his face and he laughed and he said in his heart, ‘shall a child be born to him that is a hundred years old? And shall Sarah, who is ninety years old, give birth?’ 3

Genesis 37:32 (Joseph’s brothers to Jacob concerning Joseph’s coat)

‫ם־ל ֹא׃‬ ֽ ‫תנֶ ת ִבּנְ ָך֛ ִ ֖הוא ִא‬ ֹ ֧ ‫ר־נא ַה ְכּ‬ ָ֗ ‫ַה ֶכּ‬ Observe, is it your son’s coat or not? 4

I Samuel 10:24

‫הוה ִ ֛כּי ֵ ֥אין‬ ָ֔ ְ‫ר־בּוֹ י‬ ֣ ‫שׁר ָ ֽבּ ַח‬ ֣ ֶ ‫ית ֙ם ֲא‬ ֶ ‫ל־ה ֗ ָעם ַה ְרּ ִא‬ ָ ‫ל־כּ‬ ָ ‫מוּאל ֶא‬ ֵ֜ ‫אמר ְשׁ‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֨יּ‬ ְ ֹ ‫ל־ה ָ ֛עם וַ יּ‬ ָ ‫ל־ה ָ ֑עם וַ יָּ ִ ֧רעוּ ָכ‬ ‫אמ ֖רוּ יְ ִ ֥חי ַה ֶ ֽמּ ֶלְך׃‬ ָ ‫מהוּ ְבּ ָכ‬ ֹ ֖ ‫ָכּ‬

PART THREE: SYNTAX

263

And Samuel said to all the people, ‘do you see him whom the Lord has chosen, that there is none like him among all the people? And all the people shouted and said, ‘Long live the King’.’

Explanatory notes to ‘analyse hey int. in biblical verses’ 1

Numbers 13:18-20

Note five examples of disjunctive questions (see no 5 in preceding exercise and GK 150 c):;

,‫ ַאיִ ן‬-‫ ָבּהּ ֵעץ ִאם‬-‫ ֲהיֵ שׁ‬,‫ ָרב‬-‫ ַה ְמ ַעט הוּא ִאם‬,‫ ָר ָעה‬-‫טוֹבה ִהוא ִאם‬ ָ ‫ֲה‬ ; ‫ ַה ְבּ ַמ ֲחנִ ים ִאם ְבּ ִמ ְב ָצ ִרים‬,‫ ָרזָ ה‬-‫ַה ְשּׁ ֵמנָ ה ִהוא ִאם‬ Note also two examples of hey int. with pataḥ with a following dagesh: ‫ ַה ְשּׁ ֵמ ֨ ָנה‬and ‫ ַה ְבּ ַ ֽמ ֲח ִנ֖ים‬. (GK 100 l). 2

Genesis 17:17

‫ה־שׁנָ ֙ה‬ ָ ‫ ַה ְלּ ֶ ֤בן ֵמ ָ ֽא‬Note that hey int. has pataḥ with following dagesh before consonant with sheva.

‫ם־שׂ ָ ֔רה‬ ָ ‫ וְ ִ֨א‬Note disjunctive question. ‫ת־תּ ְשׁ ִ ֥עים ָשׁ ָנ֖ה‬ ִ ‫ֲה ַב‬

Note repetition of implies disbelief (GK 150 g). 3

‫ ֲה‬after ‫ וְ ִאם‬in a question which

Genesis 37:32

‫תנֶ ת‬ ֹ ֧ ‫ ַה ְכּ‬Hey int. has pataḥ with following dagesh before consonant with sheva.

‫ם־ל ֹא‬ ֽ ‫ ִא‬Note disjunctive question.

264 4

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW I Samuel 10:24

‫ית ֙ם‬ ֶ ‫“ ַה ְרּ ִא‬Do you see?” Note hey int. with pataḥ before consonant with sheva with a following dagesh forte, even in resh. (GK 100 l; see also: I Sam 17:25; II Kings 6:32).

Study the following biblical verses and discuss the formation of interrogative sentences in biblical Hebrew. I:

Without any particle, by the mere tone of voice

(perhaps most common in animated speech) a)

II Samuel 18:29

‫אמר ַה ֶ֔מּ ֶלְך ָשׁ ֥לוֹם ַל ַנּ ַ֖ער ְל ַא ְב ָשׁ ֑לוֹם‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣יּ‬ And the king said, ‘is the young man Absalom safe?’ b)

Judges 14:16 (Samson to his wife about the riddle)

‫וּל ִא ִ ֛מּי ֥ל ֹא ִה ַגּ ְ֖ ד ִתּי וְ ָ ֥לְך ַא ִ ֽגּיד׃‬ ְ ‫ִה ֵ֨נּה ְל ָא ִ ֧בי‬ Behold, I have not told my father and mother, but to you I should tell? c)

II Samuel 11:11

‫יהוּדה י ְֹשׁ ִ ֣בים ַבּ ֻסּ ֗כּוֹת וַ אד ִֹ֨ני‬ ֜ ָ ‫ל־דּ ִ֗וד ֠ ָה ָארוֹן וְ יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ֨אל ִ ֽו‬ ָ ‫אוּר ָ֜יּה ֶא‬ ִ ‫אמר‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֨יּ‬ ְ ‫יוֹאב וְ ַע ְב ֵ ֤די ֲאד ִֹ֨ני ַע‬ ‫יתי ֶל ֱא ֥כֹל‬ ֛ ִ ‫ל־בּ‬ ֵ ‫ל־פּ ֵנ֤י ַה ָשּׂ ֶד ֙ה ח ִֹ֔נים וַ ֲא ִ֞ני ָא ֧בוֹא ֶא‬ ָ֜ ‫ת־ה ָדּ ָ ֥בר‬ ַ ‫ם־א ֱע ֶ ֖שׂה ֶא‬ ֶ ‫ח ָ֙ך וְ ֵ ֣חי נַ ְפ ֶ֔שָׁך ִ ֽא‬ ֶ֙‫ם־א ְשׁ ִ ֑תּי ַ יּ‬ ִ ‫וְ ִל ְשׁ ֖תּוֹת וְ ִל ְשׁ ַכּ֣ב ִע‬ ‫ַה ֶזּֽה׃‬ And Uriah said to David, ‘the Ark and Israel and Judah dwell in booths, and my lord Joab and the servants of my lord are camping out in the field;

PART THREE: SYNTAX

265

shall I then go into my house to eat and drink and to lie with my wife? By your life and the life of your soul, I will not do this thing’. (note use of ‫ ִאם‬after expression of oath to express a negative. GK 149). II: The simple question is often expressed by hey interrogative. Note also ‫“ = ֲהיֵ שׁ‬is there?” and the negatives ‫ ֲהלֹא‬and ‫= ַה ֵאין‬ “is there not?” a)

Genesis 24:58

‫ם־ה ִ ֣אישׁ ַה ֶזּ֑ה‬ ָ ‫יה ֲה ֵת ְל ִ ֖כי ִע‬ ָ ‫אמ ֣רוּ ֵא ֔ ֶל‬ ְ ֹ ‫וַ יִּ ְק ְר ֤אוּ ְל ִר ְב ָק ֙ה וַ יּ‬ And they called Rebekah and said to her, ‘will you go with this man?” (‫) ֲה ֵת ְל ִ ֖כי‬ b)

Genesis 24:23 (Eliezer to Rebekah)

‫ית־א ִ ֛ביְך ָמ ֥קוֹם ָ ֖לנוּ ָל ִ ֽלין׃‬ ָ ‫ֲה ֵי֧שׁ ֵבּ‬ Is there room in your father’s house for us to lodge? (‫־־י֧שׁ‬ ֵ ‫) ֲה‬ c)

Judges 14:3 (Samson’s marriage)

‫י־א ָ ֤תּה‬ ַ ‫מּי ִא ָ֔שּׁה ִ ֽכּ‬ ֙ ִ ‫ל־ע‬ ַ ‫וּב ָכ‬ ְ ‫אמר ֜לוֹ ָא ִ ֣ביו וְ ִא ֗מּוֹ ַה ֵאין֩ ִבּ ְבנ֨ וֹת ַא ֶ ֤חיָך‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֨יּ‬ ‫הוֹל ְ֙ך ָל ַ ֣ ק ַחת ִא ָ֔שּׁה ִמ ְפּ ִל ְשׁ ִ ֖תּים ָה ֲע ֵר ִ ֑לים‬ ֵ And his father and his mother said to him, ‘is there not a woman among the daughters of your brothers or among all my people, that you go to take a wife from the uncircumcised Philistines?’ ( ֩‫)ה ֵאין‬ ַ d)

Genesis 13:9 (Abraham to Lot)

‫ל־ה ָ֙א ֶר ֙ץ ְל ָפ ֶ֔ניָך‬ ָ ‫ֲה ֤ל ֹא ָכ‬

266

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Is not all the land before you? (‫) ֲה ֤ל ֹא‬ III: The disjunctive or alternative question is put by hey interrogative in the first clause and by ‫וְ ִאם‬/‫ ִאם‬in the second clause (or ‫לֹא‬ a)

‫ ִאם‬if negative).

Genesis 27:21

‫ם־ל ֹא׃‬ ֽ ‫ַ ֽה ַא ָ ֥תּה ֶז֛ה ְבּ ִ ֥ני ֵע ָ ֖שׂו ִא‬ Are you my son Esau or not? (‫לֹא‬-‫) ַה— ִאם‬ b)

Joshua 5:13 (Joshua to the captain of the host of the Lord)

‫ם־ל ָצ ֵ ֽרינוּ׃‬ ְ ‫ֲה ָ ֥לנוּ ַא ָ ֖תּה ִא‬ Are you for us or for our adversaries? (‫) ֲה— ִאם‬ c)

I Kings 22:15

‫מת גִּ ְל ָ ֛עד ַל ִמּ ְל ָח ָ ֖מה‬ ֹ ֥ ‫ל־ר‬ ָ ‫הוּ ֲהנֵ ֞ ֵלְך ֶא‬ ֙ ְ‫יכי‬ ָ ֙ ‫אמר ַה ֶ֜מּ ֶלְך ֵא ֗ ָליו ִמ‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֨יּ‬ ‫ִאם־נֶ ְח ָ ֑דּל‬ And the king said to him, ‘Micaiah, shall we go against Ramot Gilead to war or shall we desist/leave off?’ (‫) ֲה— ִאם‬ IV: The indirect question is made in the same way a)

Genesis 8:8

‫אוֹת ֲה ַ ֣ קלּוּ ַה ַ֔מּיִם ֵמ ַ ֖על ְפּ ֵ ֥ני ֽ ָה ֲא ָד ָ ֽמה׃‬ ֙ ‫יּוֹנ֖ה ֵמ ִא ֑תּוֹ ִל ְר‬ ָ ‫ת־ה‬ ַ ‫וַ יְ ַשׁ ַ ֥לּח ֶא‬ And he sent forth the dove from him, to see if the waters had abated from upon the face of the ground. (‫“ = ֲה ַ ֣ קלּוּ‬if (they) had abated”)

PART THREE: SYNTAX

267

Genesis 24:21 (Abraham’s servant encounters Rebekah)

b)

‫ם־ל ֹא׃‬ ֽ ‫הו֛ה ַדּ ְר ֖כּוֹ ִא‬ ָ ְ‫יח י‬ ַ ‫וְ ָה ִ ֥אישׁ ִמ ְשׁ ָתּ ֵ ֖אה ָל֑הּ ַמ ֲח ִ ֕רישׁ ָל ַ ֗ד ַעת ֽ ַה ִה ְצ ִ ֧ל‬ And the man was gazing at her, keeping silence, to know whether the Lord ַ ‫) ֲה ִה ְצ ִל‬ had made his way prosperous or not. (‫לֹא‬-‫יח— ִאם‬ V:

Note use of ‫( ַה ִאם‬twice only, see BDB p 50)

a)

Numbers 17:28 (the people were in despair after so much death)

‫ַה ִ ֥אם ַ ֖תּ ְמנוּ ִלגְ וֽ ַֹע׃‬ Shall we ever have finished dying? [Note ‫“ = ָתּ ַמם‬be complete, finished” > Qal perf. 1 pl. (here): ‫( ַ ֖תּ ְמנוּ‬for ‫ ַתּמּוֹנוּ‬see GK 67 dd: aramaizing form).] b)

Job 6:13

‫ַה ִ֬אם ֵ ֣אין ֶעזְ ָר ִ ֣תי ִ ֑בי‬ (perhaps) “Is it that my help is not in me?” (see BDB p 50: “a forcible means of expressing that that which might be thought impossible is nevertheless the case”). VI:

‫ִכּי‬

a)

II Samuel 9:1 (David showed kindness to Mephiboshet, lame son of Jonathan, son of Saul)

adds force to the question

‫נוֹתר ְל ֵב֣ית ָשׁ ֑אוּל וְ ֶא ֱע ֶ ֤שׂה ִעמּוֹ֙ ֶ֔ח ֶסד‬ ֖ ַ ‫שׁ־עוֹד ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר‬ ֔ ֶ‫אמר ָדּ ִ֔וד ֲה ִ ֣כי י‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣יּ‬ ‫ַבּ ֲע ֖בוּר יְ הוֹנָ ָ ֽתן׃‬ And David said, ‘is there yet any that is left of the House of Saul, that I may deal kindly with him for the sake of Jonathan?’ (‫שׁ־עוֹד‬ ֔ ֶ‫) ֲה ִ ֣כי י‬

268 b)

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW II Samuel 13:28 (Absalom plotting murder of Amnon)

‫֣יתי ֶא ְת ֶ֔כם‬ ִ ‫ֹכי ִצִוּ‬ ֙ ִ ‫ֲה ֗לוֹא ִ ֤כּי ָ ֽאנ‬ Is it not that I have commanded you? (‫ִ ֤כּי‬

‫) ֲה ֗לוֹא‬

VII: The interrogative particle may be strengthened by other particles a)

Genesis 18:13

‫ַה ַ ֥אף ֻא ְמ ָנ֛ם ֵא ֵל֖ד וַ ֲא ִנ֥י זָ ַ ֽ קנְ ִתּי׃‬ Shall I indeed give birth although/seeing as I am old? (‫ֻא ְמ ָנ֛ם‬

‫) ַה ַ ֥אף‬

(‫“ = ַאף‬also, yea”; BDB pp 64-65; > ‫“ = ַה ַאף‬indeed? really?”

‫ ֻא ְמנָ ם‬adv. = “verily, truly, indeed”; BDB p 53). b)

Genesis 18:23

‫ם־ר ָ ֽשׁע׃‬ ָ ‫ַה ַ ֣אף ִתּ ְס ֔ ֶפּה ַצ ִ ֖דּיק ִע‬ Will you indeed sweep away the righteous with the wicked? (‫־־אף‬ ֣ ַ ‫)ה‬ ַ

Study the following biblical verses and consider how answers to questions are formulated in biblical Hebrew. I:

The answer is usually made by repeating part of the question, or by the use of some word suggested by it.

a)

Genesis 24:58

‫אמר ֵא ֵ ֽלְך׃‬ ֶ ֹ ‫ם־ה ִ ֣אישׁ ַה ֶזּ֑ה וַ ֖תּ‬ ָ ‫יה ֲה ֵת ְל ִ ֖כי ִע‬ ָ ‫אמ ֣רוּ ֵא ֔ ֶל‬ ְ ֹ ‫וַ יִּ ְק ְר ֤אוּ ְל ִר ְב ָק ֙ה וַ יּ‬ And they called Rebekah and they said to her, ‘will you go with this man?’ And she said, ‘I will go’. (Question: ‫ ֲה ֵת ְל ִ ֖כי‬Answer: ‫) ֵא ֵ ֽלְך‬

PART THREE: SYNTAX b)

269

Genesis 27:24 (Isaac to Jacob)

‫אמר ָ ֽאנִ י׃‬ ֶ ֹ ‫אמר ַא ָ ֥תּה ֶז֖ה ְבּ ִנ֣י ֵע ָ ֑שׂו וַ ֖יּ‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֕יּ‬ And he said, ‘are you really my son Esau?’ And he said, ‘I am’. (The question is by tone of voice: corresponds to the question). c)

‫ ַא ָ ֥תּה ֶז֖ה ְבּ ִנ֣י ֵע ָ ֑שׂו‬and the answer ‫ָ ֽאנִ י‬

Genesis 29:5 (Jacob asking about Laban in Aram)

‫אמ ֖רוּ יָ ָ ֽד ְענוּ׃‬ ְ ֹ ‫ת־ל ָ ֣בן ֶבּן־נָ ֑חוֹר וַ יּ‬ ָ ‫אמר ָל ֶ֔הם ַהיְ ַד ְע ֶ ֖תּם ֶא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣יּ‬ And he said to them, ‘do you know Laban son of Nahor?’ And they said, ‘we (do) know (him)’. (Question: ‫תּם‬ ֖ ֶ ‫ ַהיְ ַד ְע‬Answer: ‫)יָ ָ ֽד ְענוּ‬ d)

II Samuel 9:2 (Ziba was servant to Mephiboshet, lame son of Jonathan, son of Saul)

‫אמר ַה ֶ ֧מּ ֶלְך‬ ֶ ֹ ‫ל־דִּו֑ד וַ ֨יּ‬ ָ ‫אוּ־לוֹ ֶא‬ ֖ ‫יבא וַ יִּ ְק ְר‬ ָ֔ ‫וּשׁ ֣מוֹ ִצ‬ ְ ‫וּל ֵ֨בית ָשׁ ֥אוּל ֙ ֶע ֶב ֙ד‬ ְ ‫אמר ַע ְב ֶ ֽדָּך׃‬ ֶ ֹ ‫יבא וַ ֥יּ‬ ֖ ָ ‫ֵא ָל֛יו ַה ַא ָ ֥תּה ִצ‬ The House of Saul had a servant whose name was Ziba and they called him to David and the king said to him, ‘are you Ziba?’ and he said, ‘your servant’. (Question: ‫יבא‬ ֖ ָ ‫ִצ‬ e)

‫ ַה ַא ָ ֥תּה‬Answer: ‫) ַע ְב ֶ ֽדָּך‬

II Kings 10:15 (Jehu to Jehonadab)

‫אמר יְ הוֹנָ ָ ֥דב ֵי֛שׁ וָ ֵי֖שׁ‬ ֶ ֹ ‫ם־ל ָב ֶ֔בָך וַ ֨יּ‬ ְ ‫ת־ל ָב ְבָך֣ יָ ָ֗שׁר ַכּ ֲא ֶ ֤שׁר ְל ָב ִ ֙בי ִע‬ ְ ‫ֲהֵי֧שׁ ֶא‬ ‘Is your heart right, as my heart is with your heart?’ And Jehonadab said, ‘it is’.

270

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

(Question: ‫ ֲה ֵי֧שׁ‬Answer: ‫וָ ֵי֖שׁ‬ f)

‫) ֵי֛שׁ‬

Judges 4:20 (Sisera, captain of Canaanite host, to Yael, wife of Heber the Kenite)

‫וּשׁ ֵא ֗ ֵלְך וְ ָא ַ ֛מר ֲהֵיֽשׁ־ ֥ ֹפּה ִ ֖אישׁ וְ ָא ַ ֥מ ְר ְתּ ָ ֽאיִ ן׃‬ ְ ‫ם־אישׁ ֜יָבוֹא‬ ִ֨ ‫וְ ָהיָ ֩ה ִא‬ And it shall be, if anyone will come and ask you and say, ‘is anyone here?’ then you will say, ‘there is not’.

ֹ ֥ ‫ ֲהֵיֽשׁ־‬Answer: ‫) ָ ֽאיִ ן‬ (Question: ‫פּה‬ II: The negative reply to a simple question may be ‫“ = ל ֹא‬no”. (see BDB p 519: ‫ לֹא‬- “in answer to a question or request, to deny, or decline”). a)

Judges 12:5

‫יטי‬ ֤ ֵ ‫אמ ֞רוּ ְפּ ִל‬ ְ ֹ ‫ת־מ ְע ְבּ ֥רוֹת ַהיַּ ְר ֵ ֖דּן ְל ֶא ְפ ָ ֑ריִם ְ ֽו ָהיָ ה ִ ֣כּי י‬ ַ ‫וַ יִּ ְל ֥כֹּד גִּ ְל ָ ֛עד ֶ ֽא‬ ‫אמר ֽל ֹא׃‬ ֽ ֶ ֹ ‫אמרוּ ֧לוֹ ַאנְ ֵ ֽשׁי־גִ ְל ָ ֛עד ַ ֽה ֶא ְפ ָר ִ ֥תי ַ ֖א ָתּה וַ ֥יּ‬ ְ ֹ ‫ֶא ְפ ַ ֙ריִ ֙ם ֶא ֱע ֔בֹ ָרה וַ ֨יּ‬ And Gilead captured the fords of the Jordan (which belonged) to Ephraim and it was, whenever the fugitives of Ephraim would say ‘let me cross’, the men of Gilead said to him, ‘are you an Ephraimite?’ And he said, ‘no’.

ַ֖ (Question: ‫א ָתּה‬ b)

‫ ַ ֽה ֶא ְפ ָר ִ ֥תי‬Answer: ‫) ֽל ֹא‬

Genesis 19:2 (Lot to the angels)

‫יכם וְ ִה ְשׁ ַכּ ְמ ֶ ֖תּם וַ ֲה ַל ְכ ֶ ֣תּם‬ ֶ֔ ‫ינוּ וְ ַר ֲח ֣צוּ ַרגְ ֵל‬ ֙ ‫ל־בּית ַע ְב ְדּ ֶכ֤ם וְ ִ ֙ל‬ ֵ֨ ‫֣סוּרוּ ָ֠נא ֶא‬ ‫אמ ֣רוּ ֔לּ ֹא ִ ֥כּי ָב ְר ֖חוֹב נָ ִ ֽלין׃‬ ְ ֹ ‫ְל ַד ְר ְכּ ֶכ֑ם וַ יּ‬

PART THREE: SYNTAX

271

Please turn aside to the house of your servant, and stay the night and wash your feet, and you shall rise up early and go on your way, and they said, ‘no, but we will spend the night in the street’. (‫ לֹא‬is often followed by ‫‘ = ִכּי‬no: for, but’; BDB p 519). c)

Haggai 2:12,13 (What was ceremonially holy hallowed what it touched but not more. What was ceremonially impure infected not only the person in contact with it, but whatever he touched as well. So with the people; the wicked can easily infect the righteous, but the righteous cannot so easily influence the wicked).

‫ל־ה ֨ ֶלּ ֶחם‬ ַ ‫ֵ ֣הן יִ ָשּׂא־ ִ֨אישׁ ְבּ ַשׂר־ ֜קֹ ֶדשׁ ִבּ ְכ ַ ֣נ ף ִבּגְ ֗דוֹ וְ נָ ַג֣ע ֠ ִבּ ְכנָ פוֹ ֶא‬ ַ ‫ל־כּ‬ ָ ‫ל־שׁ ֶמן וְ ֶא‬ ֛ ֶ ‫ל־ה ַ ֧יּ יִ ן וְ ֶא‬ ַ ‫ל־הנָּ ִ֜זיד וְ ֶא‬ ַ ‫וְ ֶא‬ ‫ל־מ ֲא ָ ֖כל ֲהיִ ְק ָ ֑דּשׁ וַ יַּ ֲענ֧ וּ ַהכּ ֲֹה ִנ֛ים‬ ֖ ֵ ‫א־נ ֶ֛פשׁ ְבּ ָכ‬ ֶ ‫אמר ַח ֔ ַגּי ִאם־יִ ַגּ֧ע ְט ֵמ‬ ְ ֹ ‫וַ יּ‬ ‫ל־א ֶלּה ֲהיִ ְט ָ ֑מא וַ יַּ ֲענ֧ וּ‬ ֶ ֹ ‫אמ ֖רוּ ֽל ֹא׃ וַ ֣יּ‬ ‫אמ ֖רוּ יִ ְט ָ ֽמא׃‬ ְ ֹ ‫ַהכּ ֲֹה ִנ֛ים וַ יּ‬ ‘If one carries holy meat in the skirt of his garment, and with his skirt he touches bread or pottage, or wine or oil, or any food, will it become holy?’ And the priests answered and said, ‘No’. And Haggai said, ‘if one who is unclean by a dead body touches any of these, will it become unclean?’ And the priests answered and said, ‘it will become unclean’. (Question: ‫ ֲהיִ ְק ָ ֑דּשׁ‬Answer: ‫ ; ֽל ֹא‬Question: ‫מא‬ ֑ ָ ‫ ֲהיִ ְט‬Answer: ‫)יִ ְט ָ ֽמא‬ (for ‫ ֵהן‬see BDB p 243: sometimes = sometimes = “if”).

‫ִהנֵּ ה‬

(but less common) and

III: The use of ‫ ֵכּן‬in biblical Hebrew (the common post-biblical usage of ‫“ = ֵכּן‬yes” is only perhaps hinted at in the Hebrew Bible; see below). (see BDB p 485: ‫ ֵכּן‬adv. = “so, thus”).

272

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

a) Exodus 1:12

‫יִפ ֑ר ֹץ‬ ְ ‫וְ ַכ ֲא ֶשׁ ֙ר יְ ַענּ֣ וּ א ֹ֔תוֹ ֵ ֥כּן יִ ְר ֶ ֖בּה וְ ֵכ֣ן‬ But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and increased. (‫ ַכּ ֲא ֶשׁר— ֵכּן‬lit. ‘according as—so, thus’). b)

Exodus 10:14

‫ה־כּן׃‬ ֽ ֵ ֶ‫מהוּ וְ ַא ֲח ָ ֖ריו ֥ל ֹא יִ ְֽהי‬ ֹ ֔ ‫א־היָ ה ֵכ֤ן ַא ְר ֶבּ ֙ה ָכּ‬ ָ֨ ֹ ‫֠ ְל ָפנָ יו ל‬ There was not before it locust like it and after it there will not be such. (‫א־היָ ה ֵכ֤ן‬ ָ֨ ֹ ‫ה־כּן—ל‬ ֽ ֵ ֶ‫יִ ְֽהי‬ such”). c)

‫֥ל ֹא‬

“there was not such—there will not be

Numbers 13:33

‫יהם׃‬ ֽ ֶ ֵ‫ינוּ ֽ ַכּ ֲחגָ ִ֔בים וְ ֵ ֥כן ָהיִ ֖ינוּ ְבּ ֵעינ‬ ֙ ֵ֙‫וַ נְּ ִ ֤הי ְב ֵעינ‬ And we were in our own eyes as grasshoppers, and so we were in their eyes. d)

Joshua 2:4 (the two spies sent by Joshua)

‫אמר ֵ֗כּן ָ ֤בּאוּ ֵא ַ ֙לי‬ ֶ ֹ ‫ת־שׁ ֵנ֥י ָה ֲאנָ ִ ֖שׁים ַו ִֽתּ ְצ ְפּנ֑ וֹ וַ ֣תּ‬ ְ ‫וַ ִתּ ַ ֧קּח ֽ ָה ִא ָ ֛שּׁה ֶא‬ ‫ֽ ָה ֲאנָ ִ֔שׁים וְ ֥ל ֹא יָ ַ ֖ד ְע ִתּי ֵמ ַ ֥איִ ן ֵ ֽה ָמּה׃‬ And the woman took the two men and hid them and she said, ‘yes, the men came to me but I do not know from where they are’. (It is possible that in this verse ‫“ = ֵכּן‬yes”).

PART THREE: SYNTAX

273

(Note also ‫( = ַו ִֽתּ ְצ ְפּנ֑ וֹ‬lit) “she hid him”; i.e. m.sg. verbal suffix instead of plural; see comment of Rashi for various explanations, e.g. she hid each one by himself so that they would not be found.) Note the use of ‫ ֵהן‬in Genesis 30:34: ‫ִכ ְד ָב ֶ ֽרָך׃‬

‫אמר ָל ָ ֖בן ֵ ֑הן ל֖ וּ יְ ִ ֥הי‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֥יּ‬

“And Laban said, ‘all right, may it be like your word’.” See comment of Rashi here:

‫“ ְלשׁוֹן ַק ָבּ ַלת ְדּ ָב ִרים‬language of acquiescence”. Exercise: translate the following English interrogative sentences into fully pointed biblical Hebrew; suggested translations will be found at the end. 1

Will you build me a house?

2

Are they not written in the book?

3

Is the guilt mine or did I judge badly?

4

Will these things exist for us until the end? And will these things befall us always?

Suggested translations for interrogative sentences 1

‫ ִלּי ַביִ ת‬-‫ַה ַא ָתּה ִתּ ְבנֶ ה‬

(see: II Sam 7:5) 2

‫תוּבים ַבּ ֵסּ ֶפר‬ ִ ‫ֲהלֹא ֵהם ְכּ‬

(see: I Kings 11:41 etc) 3

(‫ ָעוֶ ל ָשׁ ַפ ְט ִתּי )וְ ִאם ָעוֶ ל ָשׁ ַפ ְט ִתּי‬-‫ֶה ָאנ ִֹכי ָא ַשׁ ְמ ִתּי וְ ִאם ִמ ְשׁ ַפּט‬

(see: Psalm 82:2: ‫טוּ־עוֶ ל‬ ֑ ָ ‫ִתּ ְשׁ ְפּ‬ injustice, unrighteousness).

‫ד־מ ַ ֥תי‬ ָ ‫( ) ַע‬see also BDB p 732: ‫ ָעוֶ ל‬n.m. =

274

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

4

‫ֲהיִ ְהיוּ ָלנוּ ַה ְדּ ָב ִרים ָה ֵא ֶלּה ַעד ַא ֲח ִרית ַהיָּ ִמים וְ ִאם ִתּ ְק ֶרינָ ה ָלנוּ‬ ‫ָהרעוֹת ָה ֵא ֶלּה ָתּ ִמיד׃‬ ( ‫‘ = ָק ָרה‬meet, encounter, befall’; see: Gen 42:29; 44:29; Numb 11:23) Note the use of the conjunction 14-15).

‫“ = אוֹ‬or” in biblical Hebrew. (BDB pp

Occasionally, the second member of a disjunctive question is introduced by ‫אוֹ‬. See: GK 150 g: “The second member is introduced by ‫‘ אוֹ‬or’ in 2 K 6:27, Jb16:3, 38:28, 31:36, (Mal 1:8 ‫)אוֹ ֲה‬, in each case before ‫מ‬, and hence no doubt for euphonic reasons, to avoid the combination ‫” ִאם מ‬. Note then the occurrence of ‫ אוֹ‬to introduce the second member of a disjunctive clause in Malachi 1:8; this is the only such occurrence without the euphonic reason explained in GK 150 g. Malachi 1:8 (rebuke of priests)

‫י־תגִּ ֨שׁוּן ִעֵוּ֤ר ִלזְ ֨בֹּ ַח ֵ ֣אין ָ ֔רע וְ ִ ֥כי ַת ִגּ֛ישׁוּ ִפּ ֵ ֥סּ ַח וְ ח ֶֹל֖ה ֵ ֣אין ָ ֑רע‬ ַ ‫וְ ִ ֽכ‬ ‫הו֥ה ְצ ָב ֽאוֹת׃‬ ָ ְ‫יבהוּ ָ֜נא ְל ֶפ ָח ֶ֗תָך ֲהיִ ְר ְצ ָ֙ך ֚אוֹ ֲהיִ ָ ֣שּׂא ָפ ֶ֔ניָך ָא ַ ֖מר י‬ ֵ֨ ‫ַה ְק ִר‬ And if you offer the blind for sacrifice, is it not evil? and if you offer a lame or sick animal, is that not evil? Offer it now to your governor; will he be pleased with you or will he show you favour? Says the Lord of Hosts. (‫שּׂא ָפ ֔ ֶניָך‬ ֣ ָ ִ‫ֲהי‬ your face?”

‫) ֲה—אוֹ— ֲה‬.

‫ֲהיִ ְר ְצ ָ֙ך ֚אוֹ‬

lit. “will he show you favour or will he lift up

PART FOUR: USE OF TENSES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW It is generally agreed that the two forms in Biblical Hebrew, which are traditionally called ‘Perfect’ and ‘Imperfect’, express not just ‘tense’ but also ‘aspect’ or ‘mood’. Thus, the ‘Perfect’, which has afformatives and is also termed ‘Qatal’, may be used not only for the past, but also for the present and even for the future; it may express the quality of an action as complete and finished, and may identify a situation or event as static or at rest. See below for examples of the uses of Qatal/Perfect for: English past; English pluperfect; English present; English future perfect; the so-called ‘performative perfect’; ‘perfect of experience’; ‘perfect of certainty’ and ‘prophetic perfect’. The ‘Imperfect’, which has both preformatives and afformatives and is also termed ‘Yiqtol’, may be used not only for the future, but also in the sphere of the present and the past; it may express the quality of an action as incomplete or unfinished, and identify a situation or event as fluid or in motion. See below for examples of the uses of Yiqtol/Imperfect for: continued/durative or repeated action in the sphere of past time; its use after certain particles for past action; its use in the sphere of present time for repeated or durative action or for the expression of general truths and truths of experience; and its use in the sphere of future time, whatever the aspect.

275

276

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

USE OF PERFECT/QATAL Exercise: in the following biblical verses, discuss/analyse uses of the Perfect/Qatal. I:

Completed actions where English also uses past tenses

a) Genesis 22:1

‫ת־א ְב ָר ָ ֑הם‬ ַ ‫ֹלהים נִ ָ ֖סּה ֶא‬ ִ֔ ‫וַ יְ ִ֗הי ַא ַח ֙ר ַה ְדּ ָב ִ ֣רים ָה ֵ֔א ֶלּה וְ ָ ֣ה ֱא‬ And it was after these things that G-d tested Abraham.

‫נִ ָ ֖סּה‬

Piel, perf. 3 m.sg. ‘he tested’; action completed at a time indicated by the narrative. b) Genesis 4:6 (G-d to Cain)

‫וְ ָל ָ֖מּה נָ ְפ ֥לוּ ָפ ֶנֽיָך‬ And why has your face fallen?

‫נָ ְפ ֥לוּ‬

Qal perf. 3 c.pl. action finished in the past, but continuing its effects into the present. c) Genesis 2:2

‫אכ ֖תּוֹ ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ָע ָ ֽשׂה׃‬ ְ ‫ל־מ ַל‬ ְ ‫יעי ִמ ָכּ‬ ִ ֔ ‫וַ יִּ ְשׁבּ ֹ֙ת ַבּיּ֣ וֹם ַה ְשּׁ ִב‬ And He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done.

‫ָע ָ ֽשׂה‬

Qal perf. 3 m.sg. ‘had done’; the perfect is used to express the English pluperfect, to indicate that one of two actions was completed before the other. It is obvious from the context that the work of ‘doing’ was completed before G-d desisted from the work of creation.

PART FOUR: USE OF TENSES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

277

d) Genesis 31:32 (Jacob to Laban)

‫ר־לָך֛ ָ ֥מה‬ ְ ‫ה ֶ ֣נ גֶ ד ַא ֵ ֧חינוּ ַ ֽה ֶכּ‬ ֒ ֶ‫ֹלה ֮יָך ֣ל ֹא יִ ְֽחי‬ ֶ ‫ת־א‬ ֱ ‫ִ֠עם ֲא ֶ֨שׁר ִתּ ְמ ָצ֣א ֶא‬ ָ ‫ִע ָמּ ִ ֖די וְ ַ ֽ ק‬ ‫ח־לְ֑ך וְ ֽל ֹא־יָ ַ ֣דע יַ ֲע ֔קֹב ִ ֥כּי ָר ֵ ֖חל גְּ נָ ָ ֽב ַתם׃‬ With whoever you will find your gods, he shall not live; in front of our brothers identify what of yours is with me and take (it); but Jacob did not know that Rachel had stolen them.

‫גְּ נָ ָ ֽב ַתם‬

Qal perf. 3 f.sg. + sf. 3 m.pl. ‘she had stolen them’; English pluperfect. e) Judges 13:23 (the words of the wife of Manoah, father of Samson)

‫א־ל ַ ֤ קח ִמיָּ ֵ ֙ד ֙נוּ ע ָֹל֣ה‬ ָ ֹ ‫ית ֙נוּ ֽל‬ ֵ֙ ‫הו֤ה ַל ֲה ִמ‬ ָ ְ‫אמר ֣לוֹ ִא ְשׁ ֗תּוֹ לוּ֩ ָח ֨ ֵפץ י‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֧תּ‬ ‫וּמנְ ָ֔חה‬ ִ And his wife said to him, ‘if the Lord desired to kill us, He would not have taken from our hand a burnt offering and a meal offering’.

‫לוּ֩ ָח ֨ ֵפץ‬

‘if He had desired’; ‫א־ל ַ ֤ קח‬ ָ ֹ ‫‘ ֽל‬He would not have taken’.

The perf. is used here in both the protasis and the apodosis of a hypothetical conditional sentence. II: Completed actions where English uses the present “expressing facts which were completed long before or conditions and attributes which were acquired long before, but of which the effects still remain in the present” (GK 106 d)

278

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

a) Genesis 14:22 (Abram and Melchizedek)

‫מ ִתי יָ ִ ֤די ֶאל־יְ הוָ ֙ה ֵ ֣אל ֶע ְלי֔ וֹן ק ֵֹנ֖ה‬ ֹ ֨ ‫ל־מ ֶלְך ְס ֑ד ֹם ֲה ִרי‬ ֣ ֶ ‫אמר ַא ְב ָ ֖רם ֶא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֥יּ‬ ‫ָשׁ ַ ֥מיִם וָ ָ ֽא ֶרץ׃‬ And Abram said to the king of Sodom, ‘I raise my hand to the Lord, Most High G-d, possessor of Heaven and Earth’.

‫מ ִתי‬ ֹ ֨ ‫ֲה ִרי‬

Hiphil perf. 1 c.sg. ‫ ;רוּם‬lit. ‘I have raised’ > ‘I raise’; i.e. an action completed in the immediate past. b) Genesis 27:2

‫מוֹתי׃‬ ֽ ִ ‫ה־נ֖א זָ ַ ֑ קנְ ִתּי ֥ל ֹא יָ ַ ֖ד ְע ִתּי י֥ וֹם‬ ָ ֵ‫אמר ִהנּ‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֕יּ‬ Behold now I am old, I do not know the day of my death.

‫זָ ַ ֑ קנְ ִתּי‬

Qal perf. 1 c.sg. ‘I am old’;

‫ יָ ַ ֖ד ְע ִתּי‬Qal

perf. 1 c.sg. ‘I do (not)

know’.

‫ זָ ַ ֑ קנְ ִתּי‬is a stative verb, i.e. it describes a mental or physical condition. The primary meaning of stative verbs is that of the present, although the perf. of stative verbs can also be used for the past (JM 112 a,b). English, by its present tense, expresses the condition, while Hebrew expresses rather the act which has resulted in it. Sometimes an active verb is treated like a stative verb, i.e. when its meaning comes close to a stative meaning (JM 111h); the verb ‫‘ ידע‬know’ is very often treated like a stative verb (JM 112a). c) Genesis 27:4 (Isaac)

‫ה־לי ַמ ְט ַע ִ֜מּים ַכּ ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ָא ַ ֛ה ְב ִתּי‬ ִ ֨ ‫וַ ֲע ֵשׂ‬ Make me tasty food as I love.

‫ָא ַ ֛ה ְב ִתּי‬

Qal perf. 1 c.sg. ‘I love’; stative verb.

PART FOUR: USE OF TENSES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

279

d) Genesis 32:11 (Jacob praying before his meeting with Esau)

‫ת־ע ְב ֶ ֑דָּך‬ ַ ‫ית ֶא‬ ָ ‫ל־ה ֱא ֶ֔מת ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ָע ִ ֖שׂ‬ ֣ ָ ‫וּמ ָכּ‬ ִ ‫ָק ֜טֹנְ ִתּי ִמ ֤כֹּל ַה ֲח ָס ִד ֙ים‬ I am too insignificant for all the kindnesses and all the truth which you have performed with your servant.

‫ָק ֜טֹנְ ִתּי‬

Qal perf. 1 c.sg. ‘I am small’; stative.

e) Numbers 11:5

‫אכל ְבּ ִמ ְצ ַ ֖ריִ ם ִח ָנּ֑ם‬ ֥ ַ ֹ ‫ת־ה ָדּ ֔ ָגה ֲא ֶשׁר־נ‬ ַ ‫זָ ֙ ַכ ְר ֙נוּ ֶא‬ We remember the fish which we ate in Egypt for nothing.

‫זָ ֙ ַכ ְר ֙נוּ‬

Qal perf. 1 c.pl. ‘we remember’; ‫ זכר‬is treated like a stative verb. (JM 112a). f)

Deuteronomy 26:3 (presentation of first-fruits at Sanctuary; declaration to priest)

‫יּוֹם‬ ֙ ‫ל־הכּ ֵֹ֔הן ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר יִ ְה ֶי֖ה ַבּיָּ ִ ֣מים ָה ֵ ֑הם וְ ָא ַמ ְר ָ ֣תּ ֵא ֗ ָליו ִה ַגּ ְ֤ ד ִתּי ַה‬ ַ ‫את ֶא‬ ָ֙ ‫וּב‬ ָ ‫הו֛ה ַל ֲאב ֵ ֹ֖תינוּ ָ ֥ל ֶתת‬ ָ ְ‫ל־ה ָ֔א ֶרץ ֲא ֶ֨שׁר נִ ְשׁ ַ ֧בּע י‬ ָ ‫אתי ֶא‬ ֙ ִ ‫י־ב‬ ָ֙ ‫ֹלהיָך ִכּ‬ ֶ֔ ‫יהו֣ה ֱא‬ ָ ‫ַל‬ ‫ָ ֽלנוּ׃‬ And you will come to the priest who will be in those days and you shall say to him, ‘I declare this day to the Lord your G-d that I have come to the Land which the Lord swore to our fathers to give us’.

‫ִה ַגּ ְ֤ ד ִתּי‬

Hiphil perf. 1 c.sg. ‫‘ ;נגד‬I declare’; “The qatal is used for an instantaneous action which, being performed at the very moment of the utterance, is assumed to belong to the past. Hence this use of the perfect is sometimes called ‘performative’ (JM 112f).

280

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

g) Deuteronomy 8:19

‫אב ֽדוּן׃‬ ֵ ֹ ‫ַה ִע ֤ד ֹ ִתי ָב ֶכ ֙ם ַהיּ֔ וֹם ִ ֥כּי ָא ֖בֹד תּ‬ I testify against you today that you will surely perish.

‫ַה ִע ֤ד ֹ ִתי‬

Hiphil perf. 1 c.sg. ‫‘ ;עוד‬I take as witness’; ‘performative’ perfect (see f above). h) Jeremiah 8:7

‫יס[ וְ ָע ֗גוּר ָשׁ ְמ ֖רוּ‬ ֙ ‫תר וְ סוּס ]וְ ִס‬ ֹ ֤ ְ‫יה ו‬ ָ ‫וֹע ֶ ֔ד‬ ֲ ‫ידה ַב ָשּׁ ַ֗מיִ ם ָי ְֽ ד ָע ֙ה ֽמ‬ ֣ ָ ‫ם־ח ִס‬ ֲ ַ‫גּ‬ ‫הוֽה׃‬ ָ ְ‫ת־ע֣ת בּ ָ ֹ֑אנָ ה וְ ַע ִ֕מּי ֣ל ֹא ָי ְֽ ד ֔עוּ ֵ ֖את ִמ ְשׁ ַ ֥פּט י‬ ֵ ‫ֶא‬ Even the stork in heaven knows her appointed times and the turtle and the swift and the crane observe the time of their coming; but My people do not know the judgment of the Lord.

‫ָי ְֽ ד ָע ֙ה‬

Qal perf. 3 f.sg. ‘(she) knows’;

‫ָשׁ ְמ ֖רוּ‬

Qal perf. 3 c.pl. ‘(they)

observe’; These verbs express actions of frequent occurrence which are proved by experience. Therefore, this use of Qal perf. may be termed ‘perfect of experience’. III: Use of Perfect to express future actions “When the speaker intends by an express assurance to represent them as finished, or as equivalent to accomplished facts” (GK 106 m). a) Genesis 23:11 (Ephron the Hittite to Abraham; Abraham bought the Cave of Machpelah from Ephron)

‫יה‬ ָ ‫ר־בּוֹ ְלָך֣ נְ ַת ִ ֑תּ‬ ֖ ‫א־אד ִֹנ֣י ְשׁ ָמ ֔ ֵענִ י ַה ָשּׂ ֶד ֙ה נָ ַ ֣ת ִתּי ֔ ָלְך וְ ַה ְמּ ָע ָ ֥רה ֲא ֶשׁ‬ ֲ ֹ ‫ֽל‬

PART FOUR: USE OF TENSES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

281

No, my lord, hear me; the field I (will) give to you, and the cave which is in it, to you I (will) give it.

‫נָ ַ ֣ת ִתּי‬

Qal perf. 1 c.sg. ‫“ ;נתן‬I (will) give”. The perfect is here used for an action that belongs to the near future, in the context of making a contract. b) Genesis 15:18

‫תּי‬ ֙ ִ ‫מר ְלזַ ְר ֲע ָ֗ך נָ ַ֙ת‬ ֹ ֑ ‫ת־א ְב ָ ֖רם ְבּ ִ ֣רית ֵלא‬ ַ ‫הו֛ה ֶא‬ ָ ְ‫ַבּיּ֣ וֹם ַה ֗הוּא ָכּ ַ ֧רת י‬ ‫ר־פּ ָ ֽרת׃‬ ְ ‫ד־הנָּ ָ ֥הר ַהגָּ ֖ד ֹל נְ ַה‬ ַ ‫ת־ה ָ ֣א ֶרץ ַה ֔זּ ֹאת ִמנְּ ַ ֣הר ִמ ְצ ַ ֔ריִ ם ַע‬ ָ ‫ֶא‬ On that day, the Lord made a covenant with Abraham saying, ‘to your seed I will give this land, from the river of Egypt to the Great River, the Euphrates’.

‫תּי‬ ֙ ִ ‫נָ ַ֙ת‬

Qal perf. 1 c.sg. ‫“ ;נתן‬I will give”. Contrast this use of ‫תּי‬ ֙ ִ ‫נָ ַ֙ת‬ with its use in Gen 23:11 (see a, above), where the act of giving took place almost immediately. Here, the act of giving is after a lapse of some time. c) Numbers 17:27 (after Koraḥ’s rebellion)

‫מר ֵ ֥הן גָּ ַו ְ֛ענוּ ָא ַ ֖ב ְדנוּ ֻכּ ָ ֥לּנוּ ָא ַ ֽב ְדנוּ׃‬ ֹ ֑ ‫רוּ ְבּ ֵנ֣י יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ֔אל ֶאל־מ ֶ ֹ֖שׁה ֵלא‬ ֙ ‫אמ‬ ְ ֹ ֽ‫וַ יּ‬ Behold, we (will) die, we (will) perish, we (will) all perish.

‫גָּ ַו ְ֛ענוּ ָא ַ ֖ב ְדנוּ‬

Qal perf. 1 c.pl. ‫גוע‬, ‫“ ;אבד‬we (will) die/perish”; this use of perf. is “to express facts which are undoubtedly imminent and therefore in the imagination of the speaker already accomplished” (GK 106 n). This use of perf. may be termed “perfect of certainty”. d) Isaiah 5:13

‫וּכבוֹדוֹ֙ ְמ ֵ ֣תי ָר ֔ ָעב וַ ֲהמוֹנ֖ וֹ ִצ ֵ ֥חה ָצ ָ ֽמא׃‬ ְ ‫י־ד ַעת‬ ֑ ָ ‫ָל ֵכ֛ן גָּ ָ ֥לה ַע ִ ֖מּי ִמ ְבּ ִל‬

282

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Therefore My people have gone into captivity (will go into captivity) because they have no knowledge and their honoured (men) are men of hunger and their multitude is parched with thirst.

‫גָּ ָ ֥לה‬

Qal perf. 3 m.sg. lit. ‘has gone into captivity’ > ‘will go into captivity’; this use of the perf. may be termed ‘prophetic perfect’ (JM 112 h; GK 106 n), since it occurs most frequently in the writings of the prophets, where “the prophet so transports himself in imagination into the future that he describes the future event as if it had been already seen or heard by him”. (GK 106 n). “This prophetic perfect is not a special grammatical perfect, but a rhetorical device” (JM 112 h). e) Isaiah 25:8

‫ל־פּ ִנ֑ים וְ ֶח ְר ַ ֣פּת‬ ָ ‫הו֛ה ִדּ ְמ ָ ֖עה ֵמ ַ ֣על ָכּ‬ ִ ְ‫וּמ ָ֨חה ֲאד ָֹנ֧י י‬ ָ ‫ִבּ ַלּ֤ע ַה ָ֙מּוֶ ֙ת ָל ֶ֔נ ַצח‬ ָ ‫יר ֵמ ַ ֣על ָכּ‬ ‫הו֖ה ִדּ ֵ ֽבּר׃‬ ָ ְ‫ל־ה ָ֔א ֶרץ ִ ֥כּי י‬ ֙ ‫ַע ֗מּוֹ יָ ִס‬ He will swallow up death for ever and the Lord G-d will wipe away tears from upon all faces and the reproach of His people He will remove from upon all the earth, for the Lord has spoken.

‫ִבּ ַלּ֤ע‬

Piel perf. 3 m.s.g lit. ‘He has swallowed’, but the sense is clearly in the future, a ‘prophetic perfect’. (see above, d) f)

Hosea 5:5

‫וְ ָע ָנ֥ה גְ ֽאוֹן־יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֖אל ְבּ ָפ ָנ֑יו וְ יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֣אל וְ ֶא ְפ ַ ֗ריִם יִ ָ ֽכּ ְשׁ ֙לוּ ַבּ ֲעו ָֹ֔נם ָכּ ַ ֥שׁל‬ ‫הוּדה ִע ָ ֽמּם׃‬ ֖ ָ ְ‫גַּ ם־י‬ And the pride of Israel will testify in his face, and Israel and Ephraim will stumble in their iniquity, Judah will also stumble with them.

PART FOUR: USE OF TENSES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

283

‫ָכּ ַ ֥שׁל‬

Qal perf. 3 m.sg. lit. ‘he has stumbled’. However, ‫שׁל‬ ֥ ַ ‫ ָכּ‬follows the Niphal imperf. ‫לוּ‬ ֙ ‫יִכּ ְשׁ‬ ֽ ָ and the perf. + vav consec. ‫ וְ ָע ָנ֥ה‬and so the ֥ ַ ‫ ָכּ‬is here a ‘prophetic narrative sequence plus context demonstrate that ‫שׁל‬ perfect’; ‘Judah will stumble’. IV: Use of Perfect in sense of Future Perfect. “to express actions or facts, which are meant to be indicated as existing in the future in a completed state” (GK 106 o), that is, to indicate that an action, though future, is finished in relation to another future action. a) Genesis 24:19 (Rebekah’s words to Abraham’s servant)

‫תּת׃‬ ֹ ֽ ‫ם־כּ ֖לּוּ ִל ְשׁ‬ ִ ‫אמר ַגּ֤ם ִלגְ ַמ ֶ ֙לּ ֙יָך ֶא ְשׁ ָ֔אב ַ ֥עד ִא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ְתּ ַכ֖ל ְל ַה ְשׁק ֹ֑תוֹ וַ ֗תּ‬ And she finished giving him to drink and she said, ‘for your animals also I will draw (water) until they shall have finished drinking’.

‫ם־כּ ֖לּוּ‬ ִ ‫ַ ֥עד ִא‬

Piel perf. 3 c.pl. ‫‘ ;כלה‬until they shall have finished’

b) Isaiah 6:11

‫יוֹשׁב‬ ֵ֗ ‫ם־שׁ ֨אוּ ָע ִ ֜רים ֵמ ֵ ֣אין‬ ָ ‫אמר ַע֣ד ֲא ֶשׁר֩ ִא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫ד־מ ַ ֖תי ֲאד ָֹנ֑י וַ ֡יּ‬ ָ ‫וָ א ַֹ֕מר ַע‬ ‫ים ֵמ ֵ ֣אין ָא ָ ֔דם וְ ָה ֲא ָד ָ ֖מה ִתּ ָשּׁ ֶ ֥אה ְשׁ ָמ ָ ֽמה׃‬ ֙ ‫וּב ִתּ‬ ָ And I said, ‘how long Lord?’ And He said, ‘until cities will have crashed into ruins without inhabitants, and houses without man, and the ground will be ruined into a desolation’.

‫ם־שׁ ֨אוּ‬ ָ ‫ַע֣ד ֲא ֶשׁר֩ ִא‬ crashed into ruins’.

Qal perf. 3 c.pl.

‫;שׁאה‬

‘until they will have

284

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

USE OF IMPERFECT/YIQTOL Exercise: in the following biblical verses discuss/analyse use of Imperfect/Yiqtol I:

Sphere of past time

a) To express actions, events or states which CONTINUED throughout a longer or shorter period (GK 107) (labelled ‘durative action’, see JM 113f) (i) Genesis 2:6 (description of earth before man)

‫ֽי־ה ֲא ָד ָ ֽמה׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫ל־פּ ֵנ‬ ְ ‫ת־כּ‬ ָ ‫ן־ה ָ ֑א ֶרץ וְ ִה ְשׁ ָ ֖ קה ֶ ֽא‬ ָ ‫וְ ֵ ֖אד ַי ֲֽע ֶל֣ה ִמ‬ A mist was constantly rising and watering the face of the whole earth.

‫ ַי ֲֽע ֶל֣ה‬Qal imperf. ‫‘ ;עלה‬was (constantly) rising’ ‫וְ ִה ְשׁ ָ ֖ קה‬

Hiphil perf. + vav consec. ‫‘ ;שׁקה‬was watering’.

(ii) Genesis 37:7

‫יכם וַ ִ ֽתּ ְשׁ ַתּ ֲחֶו֖ין ָ ַל ֲא ֻל ָמּ ִ ֽתי׃‬ ֶ֔ ‫מּ ֵת‬ ֹ ֣ ‫וְ ִה ֵנּ֤ה ְת ֻס ֶ֙בּינָ ֙ה ֲא ֻל‬ And behold your sheaves were surrounding and bowed down to my sheaf.

‫ְת ֻס ֶ֙בּינָ ֙ה‬

Qal imperf. 3 f.pl. ‫‘ ;סבב‬were surrounding’

(iii) Exodus 1:12 (Israel in Egypt)

‫יִפ ֑ר ֹץ‬ ְ ‫וְ ַכ ֲא ֶשׁ ֙ר יְ ַענּ֣ וּ א ֹ֔תוֹ ֵ ֥כּן יִ ְר ֶ ֖בּה וְ ֵכ֣ן‬ The more they afflicted him, the more he multiplied and spread abroad.

‫יְ ַענּ֣ וּ‬

Piel imperf. ‫‘ ;ענה‬they (continuously) afflicted’

PART FOUR: USE OF TENSES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

‫יִ ְר ֶ ֖בּה‬

Qal imperf. ‫‘ ;רבה‬he (continuously) multiplied’

‫יִפ ֑ר ֹץ‬ ְ

Qal imperf. ‫‘ ;פרץ‬he (continually) spread abroad’

b)

285

To express actions, events or states which were repeated in the past, either at fixed intervals or occasionally (GK 107) (labelled ‘repeated action’, see JM 113e)

(i) Genesis 29:2 (Jacob reaches a well)

‫יה‬ ָ ‫אן ר ְֹב ִ ֣צים ָע ֔ ֶל‬ ֙ ֹ ‫ֹלשׁה ֶע ְד ֵרי־צ‬ ֤ ָ ‫וַ ַ֞יּ ְרא וְ ִה ֵנּ֧ה ְב ֵ ֣אר ַבּ ָשּׂ ֶ ֗דה וְ ִהנֵּ ה־ ָ֞שׁם ְשׁ‬ ‫ן־ה ְבּ ֵ ֣אר ַה ִ֔הוא יַ ְשׁ ֖קוּ ָה ֲע ָד ִ ֑רים‬ ַ ‫ִכּ֚י ִמ‬ And he looked and behold a well in the field and behold there were three flocks of sheep lying by it, for from that well they would water the flock.

‫יַ ְשׁ ֖קוּ‬

Hiphil imperf. ‫‘ ;שׁקה‬they would water’

(ii) Exodus 33:7

‫ן־ה ַמּ ֲח ֔ ֶנה‬ ֽ ַ ‫ה־לוֹ ִמ ֣חוּץ ַל ַֽמּ ֲח ֶ֗נה ַה ְר ֵח ֙ק ִמ‬ ֣ ‫א ֶהל וְ ָנ ָֽט‬ ֹ ֜ ‫ת־ה‬ ָ ‫וּמ ֶֹשׁ ֩ה יִ ַ ֨קּח ֶא‬ And Moses used to take the tent and pitch it outside the camp, at a distance from the camp.

‫יִ ַ ֨קּח‬

Qal imperf. ‫‘ ;לקח‬he used to take’

‫וְ ָנ ָֽטה‬

Qal imperf. + vav consec. ‘he used to pitch’

(iii) Numbers 9:18 (the fiery cloud upon the tabernacle)

‫הו֖ה יַ ֲחנ֑ וּ ָכּל־יְ ֵ֗מי ֲא ֶ֨שׁר יִ ְשׁ ֧כֹּן‬ ָ ְ‫ל־פּי י‬ ֥ ִ ‫עוּ ְבּ ֵנ֣י יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ֔אל וְ ַע‬ ֙ ‫הוה יִ ְס‬ ָ֗ ְ‫ל־פּי י‬ ֣ ִ ‫ַע‬ ‫ל־ה ִמּ ְשׁ ָ ֖כּן יַ ֲחנֽ וּ׃‬ ַ ‫ֶה ָע ָנ֛ ן ַע‬

286

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

According to the command of the Lord the children of Israel would journey and according to the command of the Lord they would encamp, all the days that the Cloud would abide upon the Tabernacle, they would encamp.

‫עוּ‬ ֙ ‫ יִ ְס‬Qal imperf. 3 m.pl. ‫‘ ;נסע‬they would journey’; ‫ יַ ֲחנ֑ וּ‬Qal imperf. 3 m.pl ‫‘ ;חנה‬they would encamp’; ‫ יִ ְשׁ ֧כֹּן‬Qal imperf. 3 m.sg. ‫(‘ ;שׁכן‬it) would abide’. c)

Yiqtol with the value of Qatal

“There are some yiqtols with no iterative or durative aspect, and thus having the value of qatal, which would be the expected form” (JM 113h). “Almost all instances belong to the elevated or poetic style” (ibid). (i) Deuteronomy 32:10 (G-d’s care of Israel)

‫מן‬ ֹ ֑ ‫תהוּ יְ ֵל֣ל יְ ִשׁ‬ ֹ ֖ ‫וּב‬ ְ ‫הוּ ְבּ ֶ ֣א ֶרץ ִמ ְד ָ֔בּר‬ ֙ ‫יִמ ָצ ֵ֙א‬ ְ He found him in a desert land and in a waste of howling of a desert (= in the howling waste of a desert).

‫הוּ‬ ֙ ‫יִמ ָצ ֵ֙א‬ ְ

Qal imperf. 3 m.sg. + sf. 3 m.sg. ‫‘ ;מצא‬he found him’.

(ii) Job 3:3

‫אבד י֖ וֹם ִאָוּ ֶ֣לד ֑בּוֹ‬ ַ ֹ ‫֣י‬ May the day perish on which I was born.

‫ִאָוּ ֶ֣לד‬

Niphal imperf. 1 c.sg. ‫‘ ;ילד‬I was born’.

(iii) Psalm 8:6

‫ֹלהים וְ ָכ ֖בוֹד וְ ָה ָ ֣דר ְתּ ַע ְטּ ֵ ֽרהוּ׃‬ ֑ ִ ‫וַ ְתּ ַח ְסּ ֵ ֣רהוּ ְ ֭מּ ַעט ֵמ ֱא‬

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287

You have made him lack little of G-d and with glory and honour you have crowned him.

‫ְתּ ַע ְטּ ֵ ֽרהוּ‬

Piel imperf. 2 m.sg. + sf. 3 m.sg.

‫‘ ;עטר‬you have crowned

him’. Note the narrative sequence; the Yiqtol form follows a Vayiqtol form, ‫וַ ְתּ ַח ְסּ ֵ ֣רהוּ‬. (iv) Exodus 15:5,12,14

‫יְכ ְסֻי ֑מוּ ִתּ ְב ָל ֵ ֖עמוֹ יִ ְרגָּ ז֑ וּן‬ ַ “(They) have covered them”; “(it) has swallowed them”; “(they) trembled”. These verbs from the Song of the Sea (see detailed analysis in Part Five of this book) are included by Jouon/Muraoka in the category of Yiqtol verbs having the value of Qatal verbs, with no iterative or durative aspect (113h). However, see GK 107b for a different analysis, according to which these verbs (Ex. 15:6,12,14,15) are used in the sphere of past time “to express actions etc which continued throughout a longer or shorter period”, i.e. GK views these verbs as expressing durative or continuous action in the past. d)

Imperfects after certain particles (‫“ = ָאז‬then”; ‫“ = ֶט ֶרם‬before, not yet”; ‫“ = ְבּ ֶט ֶרם‬before”; ‫“ = ַעד‬until”). (JM 113i-k, view these imperfects as part of the preceding category, c).

(i)

Joshua 8:30

‫יבל׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫ֹלהי יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֑אל ְבּ ַ ֖הר ֵע‬ ֣ ֵ ‫יהו֖ה ֱא‬ ָ ‫הוֹשׁ ַע ִמזְ ֵ֔בּ ַח ַ ֽל‬ ֻ֙ ְ‫ָ ֣אז ְיִב ֶנ֤ה י‬ Then Joshua built an altar to the Lord G-d of Israel on Mount Ebal.

‫ָ ֣אז ְיִב ֶנ֤ה‬

“Then he built” (‫יִבנֶ ה‬ ְ Qal imperf. ‫)בנה‬. ‫ ָאז‬+ imperf. used of past action is even a little more common that ‫ ָאז‬+ perf. (JM 113i); see I

288

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

ַ ‫ָ ֖אז ָבּ ָנ֥ה ֶא‬ Kings 9:24 for same verb (‫ )בנה‬in perf. after ‫ת־ה ִמּ ֽלּוֹא׃ > ָאז‬ “Then he built the Millo”. Compare e.g. Joshua 10:33: ‫ ָאז ָע ָלה‬with II Kings 12:18: ‫ ָאז יַ ֲע ֶלה‬both meaning “then he went up”. Jouon/Muraoka (113i) conclude that this phenomenon (occurrence of same verb in both perf. and imperf. after ‫ ָאז‬used of past action) suggests that this use of imperf. “is not conditioned by ‫” ָאז‬. See, however, GK 107c: “The perfect is used after ‫ ָאז‬when stress is to be laid on the fact that the action has really taken place, and not upon its gradual accomplishment or duration in the ָ ְ‫הוּחל ִל ְק ֖ר ֹא ְבּ ֵ ֥שׁם י‬ ַ֔ ‫“ ָ ֣אז‬then it was begun to call past, e.g. Gen 4:26: ‫הוֽה‬ on the name of the Lord”; Exod 15:15: ‫לּוּפ֣י ֱא ֔דוֹם‬ ֵ ‫“ ָ ֤אז נִ ְב ֲה ֙לוּ ַא‬then the chiefs of Edom were dismayed”. See note on ‫ ָאז‬below, at end of section. (ii) Genesis 19:4 (two angels came to Sodom to Lot’s house)

‫ל־ה ַ֔בּיִ ת ִמ ַנּ ַ֖ער וְ ַעד־זָ ֵ ֑ קן‬ ַ ‫ֶט ֶר ֮ם יִ ְשׁ ָכּב ֒וּ וְ ַאנְ ֵ֨שׁי ָה ֜ ִעיר ַאנְ ֵ ֤שׁי ְסד ֹ֙ם נָ ַ ֣סבּוּ ַע‬ Before they lay down, the men of the city, the men of Sodom, surrounded the house, from young to old.

‫ֶט ֶר ֮ם יִ ְשׁ ָכּב ֒וּ‬

‘before they lay down’; used for a past action.

‫ ֶט ֶרם‬+ imperf. = ‘before’ is always

(iii) Genesis 27:33 (Isaac to Esau)

‫וָ א ַ ֹ֥כל ִמ ֛כֹּל ְבּ ֶ ֥ט ֶרם ָתּ ֖בוֹא וָ ֲא ָב ֲר ֵכ֑הוּ‬ And I ate from all before you came and I blessed him.

‫ְבּ ֶ ֥ט ֶרם ָתּ ֖בוֹא‬ past action.

‘before you came’;

‫ְבּ ֶט ֶרם‬

+ imperf. = ‘before’ is used of

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289

(iv) Genesis 24:45

‫את‬ ֙ ‫ל־ל ִ֗בּי וְ ִה ֵ֨נּה ִר ְב ָ ֤ קה י ֵֹצ‬ ִ ‫ֲאנִ י֩ ֶ֨ט ֶרם ֲא ַכ ֜ ֶלּה ְל ַד ֵבּ֣ר ֶא‬ I had not yet finished speaking to my heart and behold Rebekah was coming out.

‫ֶ֨ט ֶרם ֲא ַכ ֜ ֶלּה‬

‘I had not yet finished’; Piel imperf. 1 c.sg. ‫;כלה‬ ‘not yet’, almost always + imperf. (see Gen 24:15; I Sam 3:7 for perf.).

‫= ֶט ֶרם‬ ‫ ֶט ֶרם‬+

(v) Joshua 10:13 (the sun stood still to give the Israelites time to conquer the Amorites)

‫איְ ָ֔ביו‬ ֹ ֽ ‫גּוֹי‬ ֙ ‫וַ יִּ ֨דּ ֹם ַה ֶ֜שּׁ ֶמשׁ וְ יָ ֵ ֣ר ַח ָע ָ֗מד ַעד־יִ ֥קֹּם‬ And the sun was still and the moon stood until the nation had avenged itself of its enemies.

‫גּוֹי‬ ֙ ‫ַעד־יִ ֥קֹּם‬

‘until (the) nation had avenged itself’; Qal imperf. ‫ַעד ;נקם‬ + imperf. occasionally used for past action; here, “poetic, and perhaps nuance of purpose” (JM 113k). Note on use of ‫“ = ָאז‬then, at that time” (whether temporally or logically, but not in the sense of ‘subsequently, next’) 1)

For ‫ ָאז‬without a verb for past time, see Gen 12:6.

2)

For ‫ ָאז‬+ perf. of past time, see: Gen 4:26; Exod 4:26.

3)

For ‫ ָאז‬+ imperf. of past time, see: Exod 15:1; Num 21:17; Deut 4:41; Joshua 10:12; I Kings 3:16; I Kings 8:1.

290

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

4)

For ‫ ָאז‬+ imperf. of future time (usually where some emphasis is intended), see: Isaiah 35:5; Micah 3:4.

5)

For ‫ ָאז‬+ imperf. of future time, with an accompanying logical force, implying the fulfilment of a condition, see: Gen 24:41; Exod 12:48; Joshua 1:8.

ִ ‫ֶא‬ e.g. Genesis 24:41: ‫ל־מ ְשׁ ַפּ ְח ִ ֑תּי‬

‫ָ ֤אז ִתּנָּ ֶק ֙ה ֵמ ָ ֣א ָל ִ֔תי ִ ֥כּי ָת ֖בוֹא‬

“then (i.e. on condition that this has been done) you will be clear of my oath, when you will come to my family”. 6)

For ‫ ָאז‬expressing only logical sequence, see: Isaiah 58:13,14; II Kings 5:3.

II Kings 5:3 (Hebrew slave girl to Naaman’s wife)

‫שׁר ְבּשׁ ְֹמ ֑רוֹן ָ ֛אז יֶ ֱא ֥סֹף‬ ֣ ֶ ‫אמ ֙ר ֶאל־גְּ ִב ְר ָ֔תּהּ ַא ֲח ֵל֣י ֲאד ִֹ֔ני ִל ְפ ֵנ֥י ַהנָּ ִ ֖ביא ֲא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֨תּ‬ ‫א ֹ֖תוֹ ִמ ָצּ ַר ְע ֽתּוֹ׃‬ And she said to her mistress, ‘would that my lord was before the prophet who is in Samaria; then he would gather him from his leprosy’.

‫ָ ֛אז יֶ ֱא ֥סֹף א ֹ֖תוֹ‬

“then he would gather/heal him”.

Note also ‫ ַא ֲח ֵל֣י‬from ‫“ ַא ֲח ַלי‬my wish”; see BDB p 25. Isaiah 58: 13,14

‫את ַל ַשּׁ ָ֜בּת‬ ָ ‫ם־תּ ִ ֤שׁיב ִמ ַשּׁ ָבּ ֙ת ַרגְ ֔ ֶלָך ֲע ֥שׂוֹת ֲח ָפ ֶ ֖ציָך ְבּי֣ וֹם ָק ְד ִ ֑שׁי וְ ָק ָ ֨ר‬ ָ ‫ִא‬ ֖‫֗עֹנֶ ג ִל ְק ֤דוֹשׁ יְ הוָ ֙ה ְמ ֻכ ָ֔בּד וְ ִכ ַבּ ְדתּוֹ֙ ֵמ ֲע ֣שׂוֹת ְדּ ָר ֶ֔כיָך ִמ ְמּ ֥צוֹא ֶח ְפ ְצָך‬ ‫הוה‬ ָ֔ ְ‫וְ ַד ֵ ֥בּר ָדּ ָ ֽבר׃ ָ֗אז ִתּ ְת ַענַּ ֙ג ַעל־י‬

PART FOUR: USE OF TENSES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

291

If you will bring back your foot because of the Sabbath, from doing your business on My holy day, and you will call the Sabbath a delight, holy of the Lord, honoured, and (if) you honour it from doing your ways, from seeking your desire and speaking a word; then you will delight in the Lord.

‫ָ֗אז ִתּ ְת ַענַּ ֙ג‬

‘then, (under those conditions), you will delight’

II: Sphere of present time a)

Durative action, to express actions events or states which are continued for a shorter or longer time.

(i) Genesis 24:31 (Laban to Abraham’s servant)

‫ָל ָ֤מּה ַת ֲעמ ֹ֙ד ַבּ ֔חוּץ‬ Why are you standing outside? (ii) I Samuel 1:8

‫אכ ֔ ִלי וְ ָל ֶ֖מה‬ ְ ֹ ‫ישׁהּ ַחנָּ ֙ה ָל ֶ֣מה ִת ְב ִ֗כּי וְ ָ ֙ל ֶמ ֙ה ֣ל ֹא ֽת‬ ָ֗ ‫אמר ֜ ָלהּ ֶא ְל ָק ָנ֣ה ִא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֨יּ‬ ‫יֵ ַ ֣רע ְל ָב ֵבְ֑ך‬ And Elkanah her husband said to her, ‘Hannah, why are you weeping and why do you not eat and why is your heart sad?’ b)

Repeated action, to express actions, events or states which may be repeated at any time or are customarily repeated.

(i) Deuteronomy 1:44

‫את ֶ֔כם וַ יִּ ְר ְדּ ֣פוּ ֶא ְת ֶ֔כם ַכּ ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר‬ ְ ‫הוּא ִל ְק ַר‬ ֙ ‫וַ יֵּ ֵ֨צא ָה ֱאמ ִ ֹ֜רי ַהיּ ֵֹ֨שׁב ָבּ ָ ֤הר ַה‬ ‫ַתּ ֲע ֶ ֖שׂינָ ה ַה ְדּב ִ ֹ֑רים‬

292

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

And the Amorites who dwell in that mountain came out to meet you and pursued you as bees are accustomed to do.

‫ ַתּ ֲע ֶ ֖שׂינָ ה‬Qal imperf. 3 f.pl. ‫‘ ;עשׂה‬are accustomed to do’. (ii) Genesis 32:33

‫ל־כּ֣ף ַהיָּ ֵ ֔רְך ַ ֖עד‬ ַ ‫ת־גּ֣יד ַהנָּ ֶ֗שׁה ֲא ֶשׁ ֙ר ַע‬ ִ ‫אכ ֨לוּ ְב ֵנֽי־יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ֜אל ֶא‬ ְ ֹ ‫ל־כּן ֽל ֹא־י‬ ֵ֡ ‫ַע‬ ‫ַהיּ֣ וֹם ַה ֶזּ֑ה‬ Therefore the children of Israel do not eat the sinew of the vein which is upon the hollow of the thigh, until this day.

‫אכ ֨לוּ‬ ְ ֹ ‫ֽל ֹא־י‬ c)

Qal imperf. ‫‘ ;אכל‬they do not (customarily) eat’.

Truths of experience or general truths

(i) Exodus 23:8

‫יס ֵלּ֖ף ִדּ ְב ֵ ֥רי ַצ ִדּי ִ ֽ קים׃‬ ַ ‫ִ ֤כּי ַה ֨שּׁ ֹ ַח ֙ד יְ ַעֵוּ֣ר ִפּ ְק ִ֔חים ִ ֽו‬ For the bribe blinds the clear-sighted and perverts the words of the righteous.

‫יְ ַעֵוּ֣ר‬

Piel imperf. 3 m.sg. ‫‘ ;עור‬blinds’.

‫יס ֵלּ֖ף‬ ַ ‫ִ ֽו‬

Piel imperf. 3 m.sg. + vav conj. ‫‘ ;סלף‬perverts’.

(ii) Proverbs 15:20

‫בּוֹז֥ה ִא ֽמּוֹ׃‬ ֶ ‫וּכ ִ ֥סיל ָ֝א ָ ֗דם‬ ְ ‫ח־אב‬ ֑ ָ ‫ֵ ֣בּן ָ ֭ח ָכם יְ ַשׂ ַמּ‬ A wise son makes a father glad but a foolish man despises his mother.

‫יְ ַשׂ ַמּח‬

Piel imperf. ‫(‘ ;שׂמח‬he) makes glad’.

PART FOUR: USE OF TENSES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

293

III: Sphere of future time a)

From the standpoint of the speaker’s present time

(i) Exodus 6:1

‫אמר יְ הוָ ֙ה ֶאל־מ ֶֹ֔שׁה ַע ָ ֣תּה ִת ְר ֶ֔אה ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ֽ ֶא ֱע ֶ ֖שׂה ְל ַפ ְר ֑עֹה ִ ֣כּי ְב ָי֤ד‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֤יּ‬ ‫וּב ָי֣ד ֲחזָ ָ ֔קה יְ גָ ְר ֵ ֖שׁם ֵמ ַא ְר ֽצוֹ׃‬ ְ ‫ֲחזָ ָק ֙ה יְ ַשׁ ְלּ ֵ֔חם‬ And the Lord said to Moses, ‘now you will see that which I shall do to Pharoah, for with a strong hand he will let them go and with a strong hand he will drive them out of his land’.

‫ִת ְר ֶ֔אה‬

Qal imperf. ‫שׂה ;ראה‬ ֖ ֶ ‫ ֽ ֶא ֱע‬Qal imperf. ‫ יְ ַשׁ ְלּ ֵ֔חם ;עשׂה‬Piel imperf. + sf. 3 m.pl ‫שׁם ;שׁלח‬ ֖ ֵ ‫ יְ גָ ְר‬Piel imperf. + sf. 3 m.pl. ‫גרשׁ‬. (ii) I Kings 12:27 (Jeroboam I planning the calf worship)

‫וּשׁ ֔ ַל ִם ְו ָ֠שׁב ֵל֣ב‬ ָ ‫ִ ֽאם־יַ ֲע ֶל֣ה ָה ָע֣ם ַה ֶ֗זּה ַל ֲע ֨שׂוֹת זְ ָב ִ ֤חים ְבּ ֵבית־יְ הוָ ֙ה ִבּ ֣יר‬ ‫הוּדה‬ ֑ ָ ְ‫ל־ר ַח ְב ָ ֖עם ֶ ֣מ ֶלְך י‬ ְ ‫יהם ֶא‬ ֶ֔ ֵ‫ל־א ֣ד ֹנ‬ ֲ ‫ָה ָ ֤עם ַהזֶּ ֙ה ֶא‬ If this people will go up to perform sacrifices in the House of the Lord in Jerusalem, then the heart of this people will turn back to their lord, to Rehoboam.

‫יַ ֲע ֶל֣ה‬ b)

Qal imperf. 3 m.sg. ‫(‘ ;עלה‬it) will go up’.

To represent actions which may be regarded as future from some standpoint in the past (corresponding to English: will, shall, may, can, am to, would, should, might, could, was to).

(i) Genesis 43:7 (sons of Jacob speaking to Jacob)

‫יכם׃‬ ֽ ֶ ‫ת־א ִח‬ ֲ ‫הוֹרידוּ ֶא‬ ֖ ִ ‫אמר‬ ַ֔ ֹ ‫וֹע נֵ ַ ֔דע ִ ֣כּי י‬ ַ ‫ֲהיָ ֣ד‬

294

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Were we to know that he would say ‘bring down your brother?’

‫אמר‬ ַ֔ ֹ ‫‘ ִ ֣כּי י‬that he would say’ (ii) II Kings 3:27 (when the King of Moab saw that the war with Israel was going against him, he offered up his son for a burnt-offering)

‫ר־יִמ ֹ֣לְך ַתּ ְח ָ֗תּיו‬ ְ ‫ת־בּנ֨ וֹ ַה ְבּ ֜כוֹר ֲא ֶשׁ‬ ְ ‫וַ יִּ ַקּ ֩ח ֶא‬ And he took his eldest son who was to reign after him.

‫ר־יִמ ֹ֣לְך‬ ְ ‫ֲא ֶשׁ‬

‘who was to reign’

(iii) II Kings 13:14

‫יָמוּת ֑בּוֹ‬ ֖ ‫ת־ח ְלי֔ וֹ ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר‬ ָ ‫ישׁ ֙ע ָח ָל֣ה ֶא‬ ָ ‫ֶו ֱֽא ִל‬ And Elisha became sick with the illness of which he was to die.

‫יָמוּת ֑בּוֹ‬ ֖ ‫ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר‬ c)

‘of which he was to die’

Potential or permissive sense, to express what can or may happen, or in a negative sense, what cannot or should not happen.

(i) Genesis 2:16

‫אכל׃‬ ֽ ֵ ֹ ‫ץ־ה ָגּ֖ ן ָא ֥כֹל תּ‬ ַ ‫ִמ־־ ֥כֹּל ֵ ֽע‬ From every tree of the garden, you may indeed eat.

‫אכל‬ ֽ ֵ ֹ ‫ָא ֥כֹל תּ‬

Qal inf. abs. + Qal imperf. ‘you may indeed eat’.

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295

(ii) Genesis 42:37

‫יאנּוּ‬ ֖ ֶ ‫ם־ל ֹא ֲא ִב‬ ֥ ‫ת־שׁ ֵנ֤י ָבנַ ֙י ָתּ ִ֔מית ִא‬ ְ ‫מר ֶא‬ ֹ ֔ ‫ל־א ִ ֣ביו ֵלא‬ ָ ‫אוּבן ֶא‬ ֙ ֵ ‫אמר ְר‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֤יּ‬ ‫ֵא ֶל֑יָך‬ And Reuben spoke to his father saying, ‘my two sons you may put to death if I do not bring him to you’.

‫ָתּ ִ֔מית‬

Hiphil imperf. ‫‘ ;מות‬you may put to death’.

(iii) Genesis 29:26

‫ירה׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫ירה ִל ְפ ֵנ֥י ַה ְבּ ִכ‬ ֖ ָ ‫קוֹמנוּ ָל ֵ ֥תת ַה ְצּ ִע‬ ֑ ֵ ‫אמר ָל ָ֔בן לֹא־יֵ ָע ֶ ֥שׂה ֵ ֖כן ִבּ ְמ‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣יּ‬ And Laban said, ‘it ought not so to be done in our place, to give the younger before the elder’.

‫ לֹא־יֵ ָע ֶ ֥שׂה ֵ ֖כן‬Niphal imperf. 3 m.sg. ‫‘ ;עשׂה‬it ought not so to be done’. (iv) Genesis 32:13 (Jacob reminds G-d of His promise to multiply Abraham’s seed)

‫וְ ַשׂ ְמ ִ ֤תּי ֶ ֽאת־זַ ְר ֲע ָ֙ך ְכּ ֣חוֹל ַה ָ֔יּם ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר לֹא־יִ ָסּ ֵ ֖פר ֵמ ֽר ֹב׃‬ And I shall place your seed as the sand of the sea which cannot be numbered for multitude.

‫ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר לֹא־יִ ָסּ ֵ ֖פר‬

Niphal imperf. ‫‘ ;ספר‬it cannot be numbered’.

(v) I Kings 8:27 (Solomon praying at the dedication of the Temple)

‫וּשׁ ֵ ֤מי ַה ָשּׁ ַ֙מיִ ֙ם ֣ל ֹא‬ ְ ‫ל־ה ָ ֑א ֶרץ ֠ ִהנֵּ ה ַה ָשּׁ ַ֜מיִ ם‬ ָ ‫ֹלהים ַע‬ ֖ ִ ‫ִכּ֚י ַ ֽה ֻא ְמ ָ֔נם יֵ ֵ ֥שׁב ֱא‬ ‫יתי׃‬ ִ ‫י־ה ַ ֥בּיִ ת ַה ֶזּ֖ה ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ָבּ ִ ֽנ‬ ַ ‫יְכ ְל ְכּ ֔לוָּך ַ֕אף ִ ֽכּ‬ ַ

296

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

For will G-d indeed dwell on the earth? Behold, the heaven and the heaven of heavens cannot contain You, how much less this house that I have built?

‫יְכ ְל ְכּ ֔לוָּך‬ ַ ‫֣ל ֹא‬

Polel imperf. 3 m.pl. + sf. 2 m.sg. ‫(‘ ;כול‬they) cannot contain You’. (The English states the impossibility of the Heavens containing G-d, whereas the Hebrew merely expresses the fact that they do not habitually and there is no likelihood that they will contain Him).

VIEWS OF MEDIEVAL SCHOLARS ON USE OF PERFECT AND IMPERFECT 1

Genesis 21:1

‫הו֛ה ְל ָשׂ ָ ֖רה ַכּ ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ִדּ ֵ ֽבּר׃‬ ָ ְ‫שׁר ָא ָ ֑מר וַ ַיּ ַ֧עשׂ י‬ ֣ ֶ ‫ת־שׂ ָ ֖רה ַכּ ֲא‬ ָ ‫ַיהו֛ה ָפּ ַ ֥ קד ֶא‬ ָ ‫ֽו‬ And the Lord had remembered Sarah as He had said, and the Lord did to Sarah as He had spoken. Comment of Rashi on ‫( ָפּ ַקד‬Rashi recognizes the PLUPERFECT)

‫ָס ַמְך ָפּ ָר ָשׁה זוֹ ְל ַל ֶמּ ְדָך ֶשׁ ָכּל ַה ְמ ַב ֵקּשׁ ַר ֲח ִמים ַעל ֲח ֵברוֹ וְ הוּא ָצ ִריְך‬ :‫ וְ ָס ַמְך ֵליהּ‬,'‫ וַ יִּ ְת ַפּ ֵלּל וגו‬,‫ ֶשׁנֶּ ֱא ַמר‬,‫ הוּא נַ ֲענֶ ה ְתּ ִח ָלּה‬,‫ְלאֹתוֹ ָד ָבר‬ :‫ימ ֶלְך‬ ֶ ‫קוֹדם ֶשׁ ִר ָפּא ֵאת ֲא ִב‬ ֶ ‫ ֶשׁ ְפּ ָק ָדהּ ְכּ ָבר‬,‫ ָשׂ ָרה‬-‫וה' ָפּ ַקד ֶאת‬ Translation of Rashi (Scripture) juxtaposes (this section to the preceding one) to teach you that whoever requests mercy for his fellow, when he needs the same thing, (his prayer) is answered first, as it is said (Gen 20:17), ‘and Abraham prayed (for Abimelech etc)’ and it juxtaposes ‘and the Lord had remembered Sarah’, for He had already remembered her, before He healed Abimelech.

PART FOUR: USE OF TENSES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

297

Explanation of Rashi Rashi explains that ‫ ָפּ ַקד‬is a pluperfect; G-d had remembered Sarah, for Gd remembered Sarah before He healed Abimelech and family. 2

Exodus 4:21 (Rashi recognises the Future-Perfect)

‫ים‬ ֙ ‫מּ ְפ ִת‬ ֹ ֽ ‫ל־ה‬ ַ ‫ה ְבּ ֶל ְכ ְתּ ָ֙ך ָל ֣שׁוּב ִמ ְצ ַ ֔ריְ ָמה ְר ֵ֗אה ָכּ‬ ֒ ‫אמר יְ הוָ ֮ה ֶאל־מ ֶֹשׁ‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣יּ‬ ִ ‫עה וַ ֲאנִ ֙י ֲא ַח ֵזּ֣ק ֶא‬ ֹ ֑ ‫יתם ִל ְפ ֵנ֣י ַפ ְר‬ ‫ת־ל ֔בּוֹ וְ ֥ל ֹא‬ ֖ ָ ‫ר־שׂ ְמ ִתּי ְביָ ֶ ֔דָך וַ ֲע ִשׂ‬ ֣ ַ ‫ֲא ֶשׁ‬ ‫ת־ה ָ ֽעם׃‬ ָ ‫יְ ַשׁ ַלּ֖ח ֶא‬ And the Lord said to Moses, ‘when you go to return to Egypt, see all the wonders which I shall have placed in your hand, and do them before Pharoah, but I will harden his heart and he will not let the people go’.

ַ֣ Comment of Rashi on ‫שׂ ְמ ִתּי‬ ‫ ֶשׁ ֲה ֵרי לֹא ִל ְפנֵ י ַפּ ְרעֹה ִצוָּ ה‬,‫לֹא ַעל ָשֹׁלש אוֹתוֹת ָה ֲאמוּרוֹת ְל ַמ ְע ָלה‬ ָ ‫ַל ֲע‬ ,‫ ולא ָמ ִצינוּ ֶשׁ ֲע ָשׂ ָאם ְל ָפנָ יו‬,‫שׂוֹתם ֶא ָלּא לפני ישראל ֶשׁיַּ ֲא ִמינוּ לוֹ‬ (‫ )שמות ז ט‬:‫ ְכּמוֹ‬,‫מוֹפ ִתים ֶשׁ ֲאנִ י ָע ִתיד ָלשׂוּם ְבּיָ ְדָך ְבּ ִמ ְצ ַריִם‬ ְ ‫ֶא ָלּא‬ ‫ִכּי֩ יְ ַד ֵ֨בּר ֲא ֵל ֶכ֤ם ַפּ ְרע ֹ֙ה‬ ‫ ְכּ ֶשׁ ְתּ ַד ֵבּר‬,‫ ֶשׁ ֵכּן ַמ ְשׁ ָמעוֹ‬,‫וְ ַאל ִתּ ְת ַמהּ על ֲא ֶשׁר ְכּ ִתיב ֲא ֶשׁר ַשׂ ְמ ִתּי‬ :‫ִעמּוֹ ְכּ ָבר ַשׂ ְמ ִתּים ְבּיָ ְדָך‬ Translation of Rashi Not concerning the three signs mentioned above (earlier in Exod 4), for He had not commanded to do them before Pharoah, but before Israel, that they should believe him, and we do not find that he did them before Pharoah, but, (G-d meant) the wonders which I will have placed in your hand in Egypt, like: (Exod 7:9): ‘when Pharoah will speak to you etc’, and

298

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

do not wonder that it is written ‫( ֲא ֶשׁר ַשׂ ְמ ִתּי‬Qal perf.), for this is what it means: when you will speak with him (Pharoah), I shall have already placed them in your hand. Explanation of Rashi The word ‫( ַשׂ ְמ ִתּי‬Qal perf. 1 c.sg. ‫ ) ִשׂים‬is a future-perfect, ‘I shall have put’. G-d was not referring to the signs already mentioned in Exod 4 (Moses’ rod became a serpent, his hand became leprous, the water of the Nile turned to blood), because they were not performed before Pharoah, but before Israel. Rather, G-d referred to signs which Moses had not yet received; see Exod 7:9. 3

Isaiah 25:8 (Rashi, Ibn Ezra and Radak recognise the Prophetic Perfect)

‫ל־פּ ִנ֑ים‬ ָ ‫הו֛ה ִדּ ְמ ָ ֖עה ֵמ ַ ֣על ָכּ‬ ִ ְ‫וּמ ָ֨חה ֲאד ָֹנ֧י י‬ ָ ‫ִבּ ַלּ֤ע ַה ָ֙מּוֶ ֙ת ָל ֶ֔נ ַצח‬ He has swallowed (will swallow) death for ever and the Lord G-d will wipe away tears from upon all faces. Comment of Rashi on ‫ִבּ ַלּ֤ע‬

.‫עוֹל ִמית ִמיִּ ְשׂ ָר ֵאל‬ ָ ‫ימנּוּ‬ ֶ ‫יְכ ֶסּנּוּ וְ יַ ֲע ִל‬ ַ Translation of Rashi He will cover it and hide it for ever from Israel. Explanation of Rashi

‫ִבּ ַלּע‬

is Piel perf. 3 m.sg. lit. = ‘he has swallowed’; however, the context suggests a future meaning, as indicated by Rashi’s comment, where he uses verbs in the future tense to explain the meaning of ‫ ִבּ ַלּע‬. Rashi also suggests that G-d will destroy death only from Israel.

PART FOUR: USE OF TENSES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

299

Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫ִבּ ַלּע‬

‫“ = ַיְב ַלּע א ָֹתם‬it will swallow them”. Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra suggests that Death will destroy them, not that G-d will destroy death. However, Ibn Ezra does confirm a future meaning. Comment of Radak on ‫ִבּ ַלּע‬

.‫יתה ִט ְב ִעית‬ ָ ‫יתה ִמ ְק ִרית לֹא ִמ‬ ָ ‫ ר"ל ִמ‬.‫יב ֵטּל ַה ָמּוֶ ת‬ ַ ִ‫יַ ְשׁ ִחית ו‬ Translation of Radak He will destroy and nullify death that is, accidental death, not natural death. Explanation of Radak Radak suggests that G-d will destroy only accidental death. He uses verbs in the future to interpret ‫ ִבּ ַלּע‬. 4

I Samuel 2:19 (use of Yiqtol in sphere of past time to express repeated action)

‫לוֹת ֙הּ‬ ָ ‫ימה ַ ֽבּ ֲע‬ ָ ‫ה־לּוֹ ִא ֔מּוֹ וְ ַה ַע ְל ָ ֥תה ֖לוֹ ִמיָּ ִ ֣מים יָ ִ ֑מ‬ ֣ ‫טֹן ַתּ ֲע ֶשׂ‬ ֙ ‫וּמ ִ ֤עיל ָק‬ ְ ‫ת־ז ַ֥בח ַהיָּ ִ ֽמים׃‬ ֶ ‫ישׁהּ ִלזְ ֖בֹּ ַח ֶא‬ ָ֔ ‫ת־א‬ ִ ‫ֶא‬ And his mother made him (used to make him) a little coat and she brought it up to him from year to year, when she came up with her husband to offer the yearly sacrifice.

300

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

֣ ‫ַתּ ֲע ֶשׂ‬ Comment of Radak on ‫ה־לּוֹ‬ ‫ או אמר ַתּ ֲע ֶשׂה ִכּי לא ָע ְשׂ ָתה לוֹ ְמ ִעיל‬.‫ְכּמוֹ וְ ָע ְשׂ ָתה וְ ַר ִבּים ָכּמוֹהוּ‬ ֵ ‫ֶא ָחד ְל ַבד ֶא ָלּא ְכּמוֹ ֶשׁ ָהיָ ה‬   .‫הוֹלְך וְ גָ ֵדל ֵכּן ַתּ ֲע ֶשׂה לו ְכּ ִמ ָדּתוֹ ְמ ִעיל‬ Translation of Radak Like ‘she made’ (Qal perf.) and there are many (examples) like it. Or, he used the imperf. because she did not make him only one coat, but as he grew bigger, so she made him a new coat according to his size. Explanation of Radak

‫ ַתּ ֲע ֶשׂה‬is Qal imperf. 3 f.sg. = ‘she will make’. Radak offers two explanations for the use of the imperf. here: either, it is simply the equivalent of the perf. ‫‘ = ָע ְשׂ ָתה‬she made’; or, it expressed repeated action in the past; she made him a new coat every time he outgrew the old one. The latter explanation is in line with that of modern grammarians (see above). 5

ֵ Psalm 1:1,2 (Ibn Ezra on ‫עוֹמד‬

‫‘ = זְ ַמן‬standing time’)

‫וּב ֶ ֣ד ֶרְך ַ ֭ח ָטּ ִאים ֥ל ֹא ָע ָ ֑מד‬ ְ ‫ַ ֥א ְ ֽשׁ ֵרי ָה ִ֗אישׁ ֲא ֶ ֤שׁר ֥ל ֹא ָה ַל ְ֮ך ַבּ ֲע ַ ֪צת ְר ָ֫שׁ ִ ֥עים‬ ְ ‫תוֹר ֥תוֹ יֶ ְה ֗ ֶגּה‬ ָ ‫הוה ֶ֫ח ְפ ֥צוֹ וּֽ ְב‬ ָ֗ ְ‫תוֹרת י‬ ֥ ַ ‫וּבמוֹ ַ ֥שׁב ֵ֝ל ִ֗צים ֣ל ֹא יָ ָ ֽשׁב׃ ִ ֤כּי ִ ֖אם ְבּ‬ ‫יוֹמם וָ ָ ֽליְ ָלה׃‬ ָ֥ Happy is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked and in the way of sinners does not stand and in the seat of scorners does not sit; but in the Law of the Lord is his delight and in His Law he meditates day and night.

PART FOUR: USE OF TENSES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫יֶ ְהגֶּ ה‬

301

,‫ יָ ָשׁב‬,‫ ָע ָמד‬,‫ָה ַלְך‬

‫ימן אוֹת ְל ָכל ַה ְפּ ָע ִלים ַכּ ֲא ֶשׁר ֵהם‬ ַ ‫וּמ ְשׁ ַפּט ְלשׁוֹן ַהקּ ֶֹדשׁ ְל ַה ְכנִ יס ִס‬ ִ ְ – ‫ ָא ְמרוּ ִמן ָפּ ַעל‬,‫ֲע ִת ִידים‬ ‫עוֹמד‬ ֵ ‫ וְ ַכ ֲא ֶשׁר יִ ְרצוּ ְל ַד ֵבּר ַעל זְ ַמן‬.‫יִפ ַעל‬ ‫ כמו )ישעיה ו ד( וַ יָּ נֻ עוּ‬,‫)= הוֹ וֶה( יְ ַד ְבּרוּ ִבּ ְלשׁוֹן ָע ָבר גַּ ם ֶבּ ָע ִתיד‬ ‫ וְ ָכ ָכה לֹא ָה ַלְך‬:‫קּוֹרא וְ ַה ַבּיִ ת יִ ָמּ ֵלא ָע ָשׁן‬ ֵ ‫ַאמּוֹת ַה ִסּ ִפּים ִמקּוֹל ַה‬ .‫וּבת ָוֹרתוֹ יֶ ְהגֶּ ה‬ ְ Translation of Ibn Ezra It is the rule of the Holy Tongue to insert a sign to all verbs when they are ‘future’; ‫ ָפּ ַעל‬becomes ‫יִפ ַעל‬ ְ and when they wish to speak in ‘standing time’, they use either perfect or imperfect, as in Isaiah 6:4: “and the doorposts shook at the sound of the one calling and the Temple was filled with smoke”. Likewise, “who does not walk” and “in His Law he meditates”. Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra explains that prefixes are placed before the verbal stem to indicate the ‘future’ in Hebrew, i.e. ‫ ָפּ ַעל‬becomes ‫יִפ ַעל‬ ְ . Moreover, either perfect or imperfect may be used to express ‘standing time’, ‫עוֹמד‬ ֵ ‫ זְ ַמן‬, that is, to express continuation, repetition, duration; in other words, for the expression of ‘standing time’ (also termed ‫)הוֹ וֶה‬, the tenses are virtually interchangeable. This may be illustrated in Isaiah 6:4, which contains a description of the Temple during Isaiah’s vision; in the first half of the verse, the ַ ; ‘and they shook’), while in the verb is ‫( וַ יָּ נֻ עוּ‬Qal imperf. + vav consec. ‫נוּע‬ second half of the verse, the ‘parallel’ verb, ‫יִמּ ֵלא‬ ָ is Niphal imperf. ‘was being filled with’. Likewise, in Psalm 1:1, the verbs are Qal perf. ‫ָה ַלְך ָע ָמד‬ ‫ יָ ָשׁב‬while the ‘parallel’ verb in 1:2, with the same subject, ‫ ָה ִאישׁ‬, is in the imperfect (‫)יֶ ְהגֶּ ה‬. All these verbs express ‫עוֹמד‬ ֵ ‫זְ ַמן‬, i.e. “happy is the man who does not (habitually) walk—stand—sit, but—he meditates”.

302

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Ibn Ezra’s comment on Isaiah 6:4 makes the same point:

‫פּוֹעל עתיד והוא זמן‬ ַ ) ‫יִמּ ֵלא ָע ָשׁן‬ ָ ‫והנֵּ ה‬ ִ ‫פּוֹעל ָע ָבר‬ ַ ‫וְ ִהנֵּ ה ָא ַמר וַ יָּ נֻ עוּ‬ ‫עוֹמד והנה ִמ ְשׁ ַפּט‬ ֵ ‫ימן ַעל זְ ַמן‬ ֶ ‫עומד( ַבּ ֲעבוּר ֶשׁ ֵאין ִבּ ְלשׁוֹן ַה‬ ָ ‫קּוֹדשׁ ִס‬ .‫יהם‬ ֶ ‫ָה ִע ְב ִרים ְל ָע ֵרב ִדּ ְב ֵר‬ “Behold, it says ‫( וַ יָּ נֻ עוּ‬past tense) and behold ‫יִמּ ֵלא ָע ָשׁן‬ ָ (future tense, i.e. standing time), because in the Holy Tongue there is no specific way to express ‫עוֹמד‬ ֵ ‫ זְ ַמן‬and it is the custom of the Hebrews to mix their words.” (See also Ibn Ezra’s comments on: Isaiah 1:21; Hosea 6:1). 6

Genesis 29:3 (Rashi on ‫הוֹ וֶה‬

‫) ְלשׁוֹן‬

‫ת־ה ֶ֙א ֶ ֙בן ֵמ ַעל֙ ִ ֣פּי ַה ְבּ ֵ֔אר וְ ִה ְשׁ ֖קוּ‬ ָ ‫ל־ה ֲע ָד ִ ֗רים וְ גָ ֲל ֤לוּ ֶא‬ ָ ‫פוּ־שׁ ָמּה ָכ‬ ֣ ָ ‫וְ נֶ ֶא ְס‬ ‫ל־פּי ַה ְבּ ֵ ֖אר ִל ְמק ָ ֹֽמהּ׃‬ ֥ ִ ‫ת־ה ֶ ֛א ֶבן ַע‬ ָ ‫ת־ה ֑צּ ֹאן וְ ֵה ִ ֧שׁיבוּ ֶא‬ ַ ‫ֶא‬ And all the flocks were (customarily) gathered there and they would roll the stone from upon the mouth of the well and they would water the sheep and they would return the stone to the mouth of the well, to its place. Comment of Rashi on ‫ונאספו‬/‫וגללו‬

.‫ וגללו‬.‫ ְל ִפי ֶשׁ ָהיְ ָתה ָה ֶא ֶבן גדולה‬,‫ ְרגִ ִילים ָהיוּ ְל ֵה ָא ֵסף‬.‫ונאספו‬ ‫ ָכּל ְלשׁוֹן הוֹ וֶה ִמ ְשׁ ַתּנָּ ה ְל ַד ֵבּר ִבּ ְלשׁוֹן‬.‫וּמגַ נְ ְדּ ִרין‬ ְ :‫ות ְרגּוּמוֹ‬ ַ ,‫גוֹל ִלים‬ ְ ְ‫ו‬ ‫וע ִתיד‬ ָ ‫ ְל ִפי ֶשׁ ָכּל ָדּ ָבר ַההוֹ וֶה ָת ִמיד ְכּ ָבר ָהיָ ה‬,‫וּב ְלשׁוֹן ָע ָבר‬ ִ ‫ָע ִתיד‬ .‫להיות‬ Translation of Rashi They were accustomed to being gathered there, because the stone was big. And they used to roll (the stone). The Targumic rendering is ‫וּמגַ נְ ְדּ ִרין‬ ְ (a participle). Frequentative action may be expressed differently in either fu-

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303

ture (imperf.) or past (perf.), because all continuous action has already been and will be in the future. Explanation of Rashi Rashi explains that the Niphal perf. + vav, ‫ וְ נֶ ֶא ְספוּ‬expresses the idea of repeated or continuous action in the past and likewise ‫( וְ גָ ֲללוּ‬Qal perf. + vav). Rashi terms this usage ‫ ְלשׁוֹן הוֹ וֶה‬and states that either perf. or imְ Rashi often applies the term ‫ הוֹ וֶה‬to a perf. may be used for ‫לשׁוֹן הוֹ וֶה‬. form in the perf., imperf., inf. abs. or participle, when Rashi deems such forms to have the force of a frequentative or customary action, or to have the force of long continuance. Compare Ibn Ezra’s explanation of ‫זְ ַמן‬ ‫עוֹמד‬ ֵ (on Psalm 1:1,2). 7

Job 1:5 (Rashi on use of imperf. for repeated action in the past)

‫יְמי ַה ִמּ ְשׁ ֶ֜תּה וַ יִּ ְשׁ ַל֧ח ִאיּ֣ וֹב ַוֽ יְ ַק ְדּ ֵ֗שׁם וְ ִה ְשׁ ִ ֣כּים ַבּבּ ֶֹק ֮ר‬ ֵ֨ ֩‫יפוּ‬ ֽ ‫וַ יְ ִ֡הי ִ ֣כּי ִה ִקּ‬ ‫וּב ֲר ֥כוּ‬ ֵ ‫אוּלי ָח ְט ֣אוּ ָב ַ֔ני‬ ֙ ַ ‫ם ִכּ֚י ָא ַ ֣מר ִאיּ֔ וֹב‬ ֒ ‫ֹלוֹת ִמ ְס ַ ֣פּר ֻכּ ָלּ‬ ֮ ‫וְ ֶה ֱע ָל֣ה ע‬ ‫ל־היָּ ִ ֽמים׃‬ ַ ‫ֹלהים ִבּ ְל ָב ָ ֑בם ָכּ ָ֛כה יַ ֲע ֶ ֥שׂה ִאיּ֖ וֹב ָכּ‬ ֖ ִ ‫ֱא‬ And it was when the days of feasting had completed their circuit, Job sent and sanctified them, and rose up early in the morning and offered burnt offerings according to the number of them all, for Job said, ‘perhaps my sons have sinned and cursed G-d in their heart’. Thus Job used to do all the days. Comment of Rashi on ‫יַ ֲע ֶשׂה‬

‫ ְפּ ָע ִמים ֶשׁ ָכּ ַתב‬,‫ ָמ ָחר ְכּ ֶשׁ ָכּ ַתב ְבּ ָד ָבר ַההוֹ וֶה וְ ָת ִדיר‬.‫עוֹשׂה‬ ֶ ‫ְכּמוֹ ָהיָ ה‬   .‫וּפ ָע ִמים ְלשׁוֹן ָע ִתיד‬ ְ ‫בּוֹ ְלשׁוֹן ָע ָבר‬

304

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Translation of Rashi

‫ יַ ֲע ֶשׂה‬has the meaning of ‫עוֹשׂה‬ ֶ ‫היָ ה‬,ָ ‘used to do’. When Scripture writes after the event about a continuing or repeated action, at times it uses past tense (perf./qatal) and at times, future (imperf./yiqtol). Explanation of Rashi Rashi explains that the imperf. ‫ יַ ֲע ֶשׂה‬expresses repeated action here and that for this usage, either the perf. or the imperf. can be used. 8

Exodus 33:7 (Rashi on repeated action in the past)

‫ן־ה ַמּ ֲח ֔ ֶנה‬ ֽ ַ ‫ה־לוֹ ִמ ֣חוּץ ַל ַֽמּ ֲח ֶ֗נה ַה ְר ֵח ֙ק ִמ‬ ֣ ‫א ֶהל וְ ָנ ָֽט‬ ֹ ֜ ‫ת־ה‬ ָ ‫וּמ ֶֹשׁ ֩ה יִ ַ ֨קּח ֶא‬ And Moses used to take the tent and pitch it outside the camp, at a distance from the camp. Comment of Rashi on ‫יִ ַקּח‬

.‫נוֹטהוּ ִמחוּץ ַל ַמּ ֲחנֶ ה‬ ֵ ְ‫לוֹק ַח ָא ֳהלוֹ ו‬ ֵ – ‫ְלשׁוֹן הוֹ וֶה הוּא‬ Translation of Rashi

‫ יִ ַקּח‬is ‫( ְלשׁוֹן הוֹ וֶה‬used here of repeated action in the past). He used to take his tent and pitch it outside the camp. 9

Genesis 23:11 (Ephron To Abraham) (Rashi on use of perf.)

‫א־אד ִֹנ֣י ְשׁ ָמ ֔ ֵענִ י ַה ָשּׂ ֶד ֙ה נָ ַ ֣ת ִתּי ֔ ָלְך‬ ֲ ֹ ‫ֽל‬ No my lord, hear me, the field I (will give) (have given) to you. Comment of Rashi on ‫נָ ַת ִתּי‬

:‫יה ָלְך‬ ָ ‫ֲה ֵרי ִהיא ְכּמוֹ ֶשׁנְּ ַת ִתּ‬

PART FOUR: USE OF TENSES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

305

Translation of Rashi See it is as though I have given it to you. Explanation of Rashi The verb ‫( נָ ַת ִתּי‬Qal perf. ‫ )נתן‬is problematic in that Ephron has not yet given over the field. Hence, Rashi comments that it is as though he has given over the field. Modern grammarians suggest that we have here the use of perfect to express future actions. 10 Genesis 23:13 (Abraham to Ephron) (Rashi on use of perf.)

‫נָ ַ֜ת ִתּי ֶכּ ֶ֤סף ַה ָשּׂ ֶד ֙ה ַ ֣קח ִמ ֶ֔מּנִּ י‬ I have given/am about to give/am giving the money for the field. Comment of Rashi on ‫נָ ַ֜ת ִתּי‬

:‫ וְ ַה ְלוַ אי נָ ַת ִתּי ָלְך ְכּ ָבר‬,‫מוּכן הוּא ֶא ְצ ִלי‬ ָ Translation of Rashi The money is ready with me and I wish that I had already given it to you. Explanation of Rashi Rashi explains the Qal perf. ‫ נָ ַת ִתּי‬as a wish, for it can hardly refer to the past, since Abraham’s next words are ‘take (it) from me’. 11 Psalm 27:10 (Ibn Ezra on the interchangeability of the tenses)

‫ֽיהו֣ה ַי ַֽא ְס ֵ ֽפנִ י׃‬ ָ ‫י־א ִ ֣בי וְ ִא ִ ֣מּי ֲעזָ ֑בוּנִ י ַו‬ ָ ‫ִכּ‬ For my father and my mother have forsaken me, but the Lord will gather me (has gathered me).

306

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫ַי ַֽא ְס ֵ ֽפנִ י‬

‫ ְכּ ֶד ֶרְך )בראשית כג‬,‫ואם הוא לשון עתיד‬ ִ ,‫וְ ַא ָתּה ֲא ַס ְפ ַתּנִ י ָתּ ִמיד‬ ‫ ֵעגֶ ל ְבּח ֵֹרב‬-‫יג( נָ ַת ִתּי ֶכּ ֶסף ַה ָשּׂ ֶדה ַקח ִמ ֶמּנִּ י )ותהלים קו יט( יַ ֲעשׂוּ‬ ‫וַ יִ ְשׁ ַתּ ֲחווּ ְל ַמ ֵסּ ָכה‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra (‫ יַ ַא ְס ֵפנִ י‬has the meaning of ) ‘you have gathered me continually’, even though it is imperf., like Gen 23:13, ‘I am about to give you the money of the field’ and Psalm 106:19, ‘they made a calf at Horeb and bowed down to a molten image’. Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra explains that ‫( יַ ַא ְס ֵפנִ י‬Qal imperf. 3 m.sg. + sf. 1 c.sg. ‫)אסף‬ expresses continuous action in the past, even though the imperf. is used. The tenses thus seem to be used interchangeably, as in Gen 23:13, where ‫( נָ ַת ִתּי‬Qal perf. ‫ )נתן‬expresses near future and in Psalm 106:19, where ‫ ֵעגֶ ל ְבּח ֵֹרב‬-‫ יַ ֲעשׁוּ‬means ‘they made a calf at Horeb’, that is, the Qal imperf. ‫ יַ ֲעשׁוּ‬is used of past action; this is quite clear from the context, Psalm 106 being a historical psalm in which the psalmist gives an overview of the early history of Israel. 12

Genesis 14:22 (Rashi on use of perf. for English present) (Abram and Melchizedek)

‫מ ִתי יָ ִ ֤די ֶאל־יְ הוָ ֙ה ֵ ֣אל ֶע ְלי֔ וֹן ק ֵֹנ֖ה‬ ֹ ֨ ‫ל־מ ֶלְך ְס ֑ד ֹם ֲה ִרי‬ ֣ ֶ ‫אמר ַא ְב ָ ֖רם ֶא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֥יּ‬ ‫ָשׁ ַ ֥מיִם וָ ָ ֽא ֶרץ׃‬ And Abram said to the king of Sodom, ‘I raise my hand to the Lord, most High G-d, possessor of Heaven and Earth’.

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307

ֹ ֨ ‫ֲה ִרי‬ Comment of Rashi on ‫מ ִתי‬ ‫ וְ ֵכן ִבּי נִ ְשׁ ַבּ ְע ִתּי‬.‫לאל ֶעליון‬ ֵ ‫ ֵמ ִרים אני את יָ ִדי‬.‫בוּעה‬ ָ ‫ְלשׁוֹן ְשׁ‬ ‫וכן נָ ַת ִתּי ֶכּ ֶסף ַה ָשּׂ ֶדה ַקח ִמ ֶמּנִּ י‬ ֵ ,‫ נִ ְשׁ ָבּע ֲאנִ י‬,(‫)בראשית כב טז‬ .‫ ָק ֵחהוּ ִמ ֶמּנִּ י‬,‫נוֹתן אני לך כסף השדה‬ ֵ (‫)בראשית כג יג‬ Translation of Rashi

‫( ֲה ִרימ ִֹתי‬Hiphil perf. 1 c.sg. ‫ = רום‬lit. ‘I have raised’) is an expression of oath (to be understood as an English present), ‘I am raising my hand to G-d Most High’. Similarly, ‘by Myself I have sworn’ (Gen 22:16), (to be understood as an English present), ‘by Myself I do swear’. Similarly, (Gen 23:13), ‘I have given the money of the field, take from me’, (to be understood as an English present), ‘I am giving the money of the field, take from me’. Explanation of Rashi In all these examples, the perfect is used for the English present, as though the act is already completed. 13 Genesis 4:23 (Ibn Ezra on interchangeability of tenses) (The War Boast of Lemech)

‫שׁי ֔ ֶל ֶמְך ַה ְא ֵז֖נָּ ה ִא ְמ ָר ִ ֑תי‬ ֣ ֵ ְ‫קוֹלי נ‬ ִ ֔ ‫אמר ֜ ֶל ֶמְך ְלנָ ָ֗שׁיו ָע ָ ֤דה וְ ִצ ָלּ ֙ה ְשׁ ַ ֣מ ַען‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֨יּ‬ ‫תּי ְל ִפ ְצ ֔ ִעי וְ ֶי ֶ֖לד ְל ַח ֻבּ ָר ִ ֽתי׃‬ ֙ ִ ְ‫ִ ֣כּי ִ ֤אישׁ ָה ַ ֙רג‬ And Lemech said to his wives, ‘Ada and Tsila, hear my voice, women of Lemech, listen to my words, I would kill a man for (i.e. to avenge) my wound, even a boy for my bruise’.

308

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

֙ ִ ְ‫ָה ַ ֙רג‬ Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫תּי‬ ‫וכמוֹהוּ )בראשית כג יג( נָ ַת ִתּי ֶכּ ֶסף‬ ָ .‫מוּרת ֶא ֱהרוֹג‬ ַ ‫וּמ ַלּת ָה ַרגְ ִתּי ְתּ‬ ִ .‫ַה ָשּׂ ֶדה‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra The word ‫( ָה ַרגְ ִתּי‬I killed) is in place of ‫( ֶא ֱהרוֹג‬I would kill), and likewise, “I gave (would/will give) (Gen 23:13) the money of the field”. Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra responds to a problem in the text. One might translate ‫ָה ַרגְ ִתּי‬ (Qal perf.) as “I killed”, but why should Lemech boast of killing a child? Rather, we should take ‫ ָה ַרגְ ִתּי‬as in place of ‫( ֶא ֱהרוֹג‬Qal imperf.) “I would kill”, noting the crescendo effect in the parallel structure of the verse; “(not only) would I kill a man for my wound, (but even) a boy for my bruise”. As regards this interchangeability of tenses, Ibn Ezra again refers to Gen 23:13, where the Qal perf. ‫ נָ ַת ִתּי‬means “I am about to give, I am giving” (see above, nos 10, 11, 12). 14 Song of Songs 1:2 (Ibn Ezra on the interchangeability of tenses)

‫י־טוֹבים דּ ֶ ֹ֖דיָך ִמָיּֽ יִ ן׃‬ ִ֥ ‫יִ ָשּׁ ֵ ֙קנִ ֙י ִמנְּ ִשׁ ֣יקוֹת ֔ ִפּיהוּ ִ ֽכּ‬ May he kiss me (according to Ibn Ezra, ‘he has kissed me’) with the kisses of his mouth, for your love is better than wine. Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫יִ ָשּׁ ֵקנִ י‬

.‫וְ ַאל ִתּ ְת ַמהּ ַבּ ֲעבוּר ֶשׁ ָא ַמר יִ ָשּׁ ֵקנִ י ְל ָד ָבר ָע ָבר ִכּי ֵכן ֶדּ ֶרְך ַה ִמּ ְק ָרא‬ (‫ָאז יָ ִשׁיר מ ֶֹשׁה )שמות טו א( יַ ֲעשׁוּ ֵעגֶ ל ְבּח ֵֹרב )תהלים קו יט‬ ‫גוֹים‬ ִ֨ ‫ֹלהים ָ ֤בּאוּ‬ ִ֡ ‫ )תהלים עט א( ִמזְ ֗מוֹר ְל ָ֫א ָ ֥סף ֱ ֽא‬,‫וְ ֵה ֶפְך ַה ָדּ ָבר‬

PART FOUR: USE OF TENSES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

309

‫רוּשׁ ַל ִ֣ם ְל ִע ִיּֽים׃ וְ ַר ִבּים‬ ָ ְ‫ת־ה ַיכ֣ל ָק ְד ֶ ֑שָׁך ָ ֖שׂמוּ ֶאת־י‬ ֵ ‫ְ ֽבּנַ ֲח ָל ֶ֗תָך ִ ֭ט ְמּאוּ ֶא‬ .‫ָכּמוֹהוּ‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra Do not be surprised that it says ‫ יִ ָשּׁ ֵקנִ י‬for a past action, for that is characteristic of biblical language, e.g. ‘then sang Moses’ (Exod 15:1); ‘they made a calf at Horeb’ (Ps 106:19); and the opposite, e.g. ‘A psalm of Asaph, O G-d, nations have come (i.e. will come) into Your inheritance, they have defiled (i.e. will defile) Your holy temple, they have made (i.e. will make) Jerusalem (into) ruins’ (Ps 79:1). And many such examples. Explanation of Ibn Ezra Ibn Ezra understands ‫( יִ ָשּׁ ֵקנִ י‬Qal imperf. 3 m.sg. + sf. 1 c.sg. ‫ ;נשׁק‬lit. ‘he will kiss me’) as referring to the past, and he compares Exod 15:1, where ‫( יָ ִשׁיר‬Qal imperf. lit. ‘he will sing’) is understood as referring to the past, ‘then Moses sang’; Ibn Ezra also compares Ps 106:19, where ‫( יַ ֲעשׁוּ‬Qal imperf. ‫עשׂה‬, lit. ‘they will make’) refers to a past action, ‘they made’. Ibn Ezra also brings an example of the opposite phenomenon, whereby a perfect refers to the future, as in Ps 79:1, where the verbs ‫( ָבּאוּ‬Qal perf. ‫בוא‬ lit. ‘they came’); ‫( ִט ְמּאוּ‬Piel perf. lit. ‘they defiled’) and ‫( ָשׂמוּ‬Qal perf. ‫ ִשׂים‬lit. ‘they placed’) are all ‘prophetic perfects’, referring to the future, since at the time of writing, Jerusalem has not yet been invaded and defiled. 15

Isaiah 42:16 (Rashi on the prophetic perfect) (The return of the exiles)

‫ים‬ ֩ ‫יבוֹת ֽל ֹא־יָ ְד ֖עוּ ַא ְד ִר ֵיכ֑ם ָא ִשׂ‬ ֥ ‫הוֹל ְכ ִ ֣תּי ִעוְ ִ ֗רים ְבּ ֶ ֙ד ֶר ְ֙ך ֣ל ֹא יָ ָ ֔דעוּ ִבּנְ ִת‬ ַ ְ‫ו‬ ֖ ִ ‫ישׁוֹר ֵ ֚א ֶלּה ַה ְדּ ָב ִ ֔רים ֲע ִשׂ‬ ‫יתם וְ ֥ל ֹא‬ ֔ ‫ים ְל ִמ‬ ֙ ‫וּמ ֲע ַק ִשּׁ‬ ֽ ַ ‫יהם ָל ֗אוֹר‬ ֶ֜ ֵ‫ַמ ְח ָ֨שְׁך ִל ְפנ‬ ‫ֲעזַ ְב ִ ֽתּים׃‬

310

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

And I will lead the blind by a way they did not know, I will guide them in paths they did not know, I will make darkness light before them, and crooked places (into) a level plain; these are the things which I will do (lit. have done them) and I will not forsake them (lit. have not forsaken them).

֖ ִ ‫ֲע ִשׂ‬ Comment of Rashi on ‫יתם‬ .‫בוּאה ְל ַד ֵבּר ַעל ֶה ָע ִתיד ְכּ ִאילוּ ָעשׂוּי‬ ָ ְ‫ ֵכּן ְלשׁוֹן נ‬.‫ֶא ֱע ֶשׂה‬ Translation of Rashi I will do. Thus is the language of prophecy, to speak about a future action as if it had already been done. Explanation of Rashi

ִ ‫( ֲע ִשׂ‬Qal perf. 1 c.sg. + sf. 3 m.pl. ‫ )עשׂה‬as a Rashi has identified ‫יתם‬ ‘prophetic perfect’ (see above, Use of Perfect to express future actions, III d; see also JM 112h; GK 106n). THE USE OF PARTICIPLES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW The main characteristics of the active participle are as follows: 1

The participle is often used to imply continuity.

2

The participle itself does not express time; the time setting is indicated by the context in which the participle occurs, and this may be: past, present or future.

3

Participles may function as: verbs, adjectives or nouns.

PART FOUR: USE OF TENSES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

311

Exercise: identify the participle forms in the following biblical verses and discuss their use and function.; explanatory notes are added. I: 1

verbal function (1-6) Genesis 37:16 (Joseph to the man)

‫ת־א ַ ֖חי ָאנ ִ ֹ֣כי ְמ ַב ֵ ֑קּשׁ‬ ַ ‫ֶא‬ I am seeking my brothers.

‫ְמ ַב ֵ ֑קּשׁ‬

Piel part. m.s.g. verbal function, expressing continuous action in the present. 2

I Samuel 1:12

‫יה׃‬ ָ ‫ת־פּ‬ ֽ ִ ‫הו֑ה וְ ֵע ִ ֖לי שׁ ֵ ֹ֥מר ֶא‬ ָ ְ‫וְ ָהיָ ֙ה ִ ֣כּי ִה ְר ְבּ ָ֔תה ְל ִה ְת ַפּ ֵלּ֖ל ִל ְפ ֵנ֣י י‬ And it was as she prayed much before the Lord, that Eli watched her mouth.

‫שׁ ֵ ֹ֥מר‬ 3

Qal part. m.sg. verbal function, expressing continuity in the past.

Genesis 37:2

‫ת־א ָח ֙יו ַבּ ֔צּ ֹאן‬ ֶ ‫ע־ע ְשׂ ֵ ֤רה ָשׁנָ ֙ה ָה ָ֨יה ר ֶ ֹ֤עה ֶא‬ ֶ ‫ן־שׁ ַ ֽב‬ ְ ‫יוֹסף ֶבּ‬ ֵ֞ Joseph, being seventeen years old, was tending the flock with his brothers.

‫ָה ָ֨יה ר ֶ ֹ֤עה‬

The verb ‫ ָהיָ ה‬sometimes precedes the participle in its verbal function to express continuous action in the past. See also, e.g. Gen 4:17; I Sam 2:11. 4

Genesis 6:17

‫ל־ה ָ֔א ֶרץ‬ ָ ‫ת־ה ַמּ ֥בּוּל ַ֙מיִ ֙ם ַע‬ ַ ‫וַ ֲא ִ֗ני ִהנְ נִ י֩ ֵמ ִ֨ביא ֶא‬

312

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Behold I will bring the flood of waters upon the earth.

‫ִהנְ נִ י֩ ֵמ ִ֨ביא‬

Hiphil part. m.sg. ‫ ;בוא‬use of participle in its verbal function to express imminent (Divine) action. See Driver S R: A Treatise on the Use of Tenses in Hebrew and some other syntactical questions. OUP 1892. Eerdmans 1998, p 168: “The participle is used—of future time which it represents as already beginning: hence, if the event designated can only in fact occur after some interval, it asserts forcibly and suggestively the certainty of its approach. In the latter case, however, its use is (naturally) pretty much restricted to announcements of the Divine purpose.” For further examples, see e.g.Gen 18:17; 19:13; 20:3. 5

Genesis 18:1

‫א ֶהל ְכּ ֥חֹם ַהיּֽ וֹם׃‬ ֹ ֖ ‫ח־ה‬ ָ ‫ֹלנ֖י ַמ ְמ ֵ ֑רא וְ ֛הוּא י ֵ ֹ֥שׁב ֶ ֽפּ ַת‬ ֵ ‫הוה ְבּ ֵא‬ ָ֔ ְ‫וַ יֵּ ָ ֤רא ֵא ָל ֙יו י‬ And the Lord appeared unto him at the terebinths of Mamre, as he sat (lit. and he was sitting) at the entrance of the tent in the heat of the day.

‫וְ ֛הוּא י ֵ ֹ֥שׁב‬

‘and he was sitting’; i.e. ‘when, as, while he was sitting’.

This is an example of a circumstantial clause, which “expresses some circumstance or concomitant of the principal action or statement” (A B Davidson, Hebrew Syntax, T & T Clark. p 186) “In such a clause the subj. is naturally prominent, hence it stands first, the order being - vav, subj., pred. This simple vav may need to be rendered variously, as if, while, when, seeing, though—.” For further examples, see, e.g. Gen 19:1; Isaiah 6:1. For examples of circumstantial clauses with forms other than participles, see, e.g. Gen 18:13; 24:56. 6

II Kings 17:32

‫הו֑ה‬ ָ ְ‫וַ יִּ ְהי֥ וּ יְ ֵר ִ ֖אים ֶאת־י‬

PART FOUR: USE OF TENSES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

313

They were fearing the Lord.

‫‘ וַ יִּ ְהי֥ וּ יְ ֵר ִ ֖אים‬and they were fearing’. Qal part. m.pl. ‫ יָ ֵרא‬and preceded by the verb ‫ ָהיָ ה‬in Qal imperf. + vav consec. Compare no 3 above, Gen 37:2. See Driver S R ‘A Treatise on the Use of Tenses etc’; pp 169-170: “Occasionally, the idea of duration conveyed by the ptcp. is brought into fuller prominence, and defined more precisely, by the addition of the substantive verb. —But altogether the more frequent use of the combination is characteristic of the later writers - in the decadence of a language, the older forms are felt to be insufficient, and a craving for greater distinctness manifests itself: the rarer, however, its occurrence in the earlier books, the more carefully it deserves notice.” Hence, there are many examples in II Kings 17, which describes the mixed forms of worship in Israel after the Assyrian exile in 722 BCE. II: Adjectival function (7-8) 7

Deuteronomy 4:24

‫ֹלהיָך ֵ ֥אשׁ א ְֹכ ָל֖ה ֑הוּא‬ ֶ֔ ‫הוה ֱא‬ ֣ ָ ְ‫ִכּ֚י י‬ For the Lord your G-d is a consuming fire.

‫ֵ ֥אשׁ א ְֹכ ָל֖ה‬

Active part. Qal f.sg. (agrees in number and gender). 8

‫ָא ַכל‬

qualifying the fem. noun,

‫ֵ ֥אשׁ‬

Genesis 13:5

‫אן־וּב ָ ֖ קר וְ א ָֹה ִ ֽלים׃‬ ָ ֹ ‫ת־א ְב ָ ֑רם ָהָי֥ה צ‬ ַ ‫ם־ל ֔לוֹט ַהה ֵֹלְ֖ך ֶא‬ ְ ַ‫וְ ג‬ And also to Lot, who went with Abram, there were flocks and herds and tents.

314

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

‫ ַהה ֵֹלְ֖ך‬Qal part. + def. art. The part. + def. art. function as a relative clause, “who went” (lit. ‘the one going’). This usage is common; see, e.g. Gen 35:3: ‫ֹתי ְבּי֣ וֹם ָ ֽצ ָר ִ֔תי‬ ֙ ִ ‫“ ָהעֹ ֶנ֤ה א‬who answers me on the day of my “distress”. III: Noun function (9-10) 9

Isaiah 19:20

‫ילם׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫יע וָ ָ ֖רב וְ ִה ִצּ‬ ַ ‫מוֹשׁ‬ ֥ ִ ‫ִ ֽכּי־יִ ְצ ֲע ֤קוּ ֶאל־יְ הוָ ֙ה ִמ ְפּ ֵנ֣י ֹֽל ֲח ִ֔צים וְ יִ ְשׁ ַ ֥לח ָל ֶ ֛הם‬ For they will cry to the Lord because of (the) oppressors and He will send them a saviour and will plead and will deliver them.

‫ֹֽל ֲח ִ֔צים‬

Qal part. m.pl. ‫‘ ;לחץ‬oppressors’.

‫יע‬ ַ ‫מוֹשׁ‬ ִ֥

Hiphil part. m.sg. ‫‘ ;ישׁע‬a saviour’.

10 Jeremiah 18:6

‫ן־א ֶ ֥תּם ְבּיָ ִ ֖די ֵ ֥בּית יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ ֽאל׃‬ ַ ‫יּוֹצר ֵכּ‬ ֵ֔ ‫ִה ֵנּ֤ה ַכ ֨חֹ ֶמ ֙ר ְבּ ַי֣ד ַה‬ Behold, as the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are you in my hand, O house of Israel.

‫יּוֹצר‬ ֵ֔ ‫ַה‬

‘The potter’; Qal part. m.sg. ‫‘ = יצר‬form, fashion’.

THE FORM AND USE OF THE JUSSIVE IN BIBLICAL HEBREW The lengthened form of the imperfect is termed cohortative (usually occurs only in 1st pers. sg. or pl. e.g. ‫נִ ְשׁ ְמ ָרה‬/‫ ) ֶא ְשׁ ְמ ָרה‬and the shortened form of the imperfect is termed jussive (usually occurs in 2nd or 3rd pers.). In the strong verb, the form of the jussive is the same as that of the imperfect and is therefore recognized only by its context, except in Hiphil (indicative: ‫ ;יַ ְק ִטיל‬jussive: ‫)יַ ְק ֵטל‬. However, in weak verbs, the jussive often takes a shortened form of the imperfect. The jussive is used to express a command

PART FOUR: USE OF TENSES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

315

or a desire that something should/should not happen and is often strengthened with the addition of ‫נָ א‬. It is often translated by English ‘may’, ‘let’. e.g. Genesis 47:4: ‫בוּ־נ֥א ֲע ָב ֶ ֖דיָך ְבּ ֶ ֥א ֶרץ גּֽ ֶֹשׁן׃‬ ָ ‫“ וְ ַע ָ ֛תּה ֵי ְֽשׁ‬And now please let your servants dwell in the land of Goshen”. The negative before a jussive is ‫ ַאל‬.

Exercise: identify the Jussive in the following biblical verses and analyse/discuss its function; explanatory notes are added. 1

Genesis 33:14 (Jacob to Esau)

‫ר־נ֥א ֲאד ִֹנ֖י ִל ְפ ֵנ֣י ַע ְב ֑דּוֹ‬ ָ ‫יַ ֲע ָב‬ Please let my lord pass before his servant.

‫ר־נ֥א‬ ָ ‫יַ ֲע ָב‬

Shortened form of ‫( יַ ֲעבֹר‬Qal imperf. ‫ )עבר‬due to makkef and consequent loss of accent. Strengthened with ‫נָ א‬. ‘Please let him pass’. 2

Genesis 41:33

‫ל־א ֶרץ ִמ ְצ ָ ֽריִ ם׃‬ ֥ ֶ ‫יתהוּ ַע‬ ֖ ֵ ‫ישׁ‬ ִ ִ‫וְ ַע ָתּ ֙ה יֵ ֶ ֣רא ַפ ְר ֔עֹה ִ ֖אישׁ נָ ֣בוֹן וְ ָח ָכ֑ם ו‬ And now let Pharoah look out a discerning and wise man and set him over the land of Egypt.

‫יֵ ֶ ֣רא‬

Shortened from ‫ יִ ְר ֶאה‬Qal imperf. ‫‘ ;ראה‬let him see’.

‫יתהוּ‬ ֖ ֵ ‫ישׁ‬ ִ ִ‫ו‬

Qal imperf. ‫ ִשׁית‬+ sf. 3 m.sg. + vav conj. ‘and let him put, set him’ (same form as ordinary imperf. + sf.). 3

Genesis 44:18

‫ר־נא ַע ְב ְדָּך֤ ָד ָב ֙ר ְבּ ָאזְ ֵנ֣י ֲאד ִֹ֔ני‬ ָ֨ ‫אמ ֮ר ִ ֣בּי ֲאד ֹנִ י֒ יְ ַד ֶבּ‬ ֶ ֹ ‫הוּדה וַ יּ‬ ֗ ָ ְ‫וַ יִּ ֨ ַגּשׁ ֵא ֜ ָליו י‬ ‫ל־י ַ֥חר ַא ְפָּך֖ ְבּ ַע ְב ֶ ֑דָּך‬ ִ ‫וְ ַא‬

316

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

And Judah drew near to him and he said, ‘O my lord, please let your servant speak a word in the ears of my lord, and let not your anger burn against your servant’.

‫יְ ַד ֶבּר־ ָ֨נא‬

Shortened from ‫( יְ ַד ֵבּר‬Piel imperf. ‫ )דבר‬due to makkef and strengthened with ‫נָ א‬.

‫ל־י ַ֥חר‬ ִ ‫וְ ַא‬

‫ יִ ַחר‬is shortened from ‫( יֶ ֱח ֶרה‬Qal imperf. ‫‘ = ָח ָרה‬burn, be kindled’) and made negative with ‫ ַאל‬. ‘And let it not burn’.

4

Genesis 44:33

‫ם־א ָ ֽחיו׃‬ ֶ ‫ב־נ֤א ַע ְב ְדּ ָ֙ך ַ ֣תּ ַחת ַה ַ֔נּ ַער ֶ ֖ע ֶבד ַ ֽלאד ִֹנ֑י וְ ַה ַנּ ַ֖ער ַי ַ֥על ִע‬ ָ ‫וְ ַע ָ֗תּה ֵ ֽי ֶשׁ‬ And now please let your servant dwell instead of the lad as servant to my lord, and let the lad go up with his brothers.

‫ב־נ֤א‬ ָ ‫ֵי ֶֽשׁ‬

Shortened from let him dwell’.

‫ַי ַ֥על‬ 5

‫( יֵ ֵשׁב‬Qal imperf. ‫ )ישׁב‬due to makkef. ‘Please

Shortened from ‫( יַ ֲע ֶלה‬Qal imperf. ‫‘ ;) ָע ָלה‬let him go up’. Numbers 6:25,26

‫יח ֶנּֽ ךָּ ׃‬ ֻ ‫הו֧ה ׀ ָפּ ָנ֛יו ֵא ֶל֖יָך ִ ֽו‬ ָ ְ‫יָ ֵ֨אר י‬ ‫הו֤ה ׀ ָפּנָ ֙יו ֵא ֔ ֶליָך וְ יָ ֵ ֥שׂם ְלָך֖ ָשׁ ֽלוֹם׃‬ ָ ְ‫יִ ָ֨שּׂא י‬ May the Lord make His face to shine on you and be gracious to you; May the Lord lift up His countenance to you and give you peace.

‫יָ ֵ֨אר‬

Shortened from ‫( יָ ִאיר‬Hiphil imperf. ‫‘ )אור‬may He cause to shine”

‫וְ יָ ֵ ֥שׂם‬

Shortened from place/put’

‫יָ ִשׂים‬

(Qal imperf.

‫ִשׂים‬

+ vav conj.) ‘may He

PART FOUR: USE OF TENSES IN BIBLICAL HEBREW

317

ֻ ‫ ִ ֽו‬have the forms of ordinary imperfs. but carry a (note that ‫יִ ָ֨שּׂא‬and ָ‫יח ֶנּֽ ךּ‬ jussive meaning here.) 6

Deuteronomy 20:5

‫יתוֹ‬ ֑ ‫ת־ח ָד ֙שׁ וְ ֣ל ֹא ֲחנָ ֔כוֹ יֵ ֵלְ֖ך וְ יָ ֣שׁ ֹב ְל ֵב‬ ָ ִ‫י־ה ִ֞אישׁ ֲא ֶ֨שׁר ָבּ ָנ֤ה ַ ֽבי‬ ָ ‫ִ ֽמ‬ Who is the man who has built a new house and has not dedicated it? Let him go and return to his house.

‫יֵ ֵלְ֖ך‬

Qal imperf.

‫‘ ;הלך‬he will go’, but here with jussive meaning, ‘let

him go’.

‫וְ יָ ֣שׁ ֹב‬

Shortened from ‫( יָ שׁוּב‬Qal imperf. ‫ שׁוּב‬+ vav conj.) ‘and let him

return’. 7

I Samuel 1:23

‫בי ַעד־גָּ ְמ ֵלְ֣ך א ֹ֔תוֹ ַ ֛אְך‬ ֙ ִ ‫ישׁהּ ֲע ִ ֧שׂי ַה ֣טּוֹב ְבּ ֵע ַ֗יניִ ְך ְשׁ‬ ָ֜ ‫אמר ָל ֩הּ ֶא ְל ָק ֨ ָנה ִא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣יּ‬ ‫ת־דּ ָב ֑רוֹ‬ ְ ‫הו֖ה ֶא‬ ָ ְ‫יָ ֵ ֥ קם י‬ And Elkanah her husband said to her, ‘do what is good in your eyes, stay until you wean him, but may the Lord establish His word’.

‫יָ ֵ ֥ קם‬

Shortened from

‫יָ ִקים‬

(Hiphil imperf.

‫)קום‬

‘may He raise up,

establish’. 8

Psalm 27:9

‫ט־בּ ַ֗אף ֫ ַע ְב ֶ ֥דָּך‬ ְ ‫ל־תּ‬ ַ ‫ל־תּ ְס ֵ֬תּר ָפּ ֶ֨ניָך ׀ ִמ ֶמּנִּ ֮י ַ ֽא‬ ַ ‫ַא‬ Do not hide Your face from me and do not turn away Your servant in anger.

318

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

‫ל־תּ ְס ֵ֬תּר‬ ַ ‫ ַאל ַא‬+ shortened imperf. (longer form > ‫ַתּ ְס ִתּיר‬ ‫ )סתר‬to express prohibition/negative command, ‘do not hide’.

Hiphil,

‫ל־תּט‬ ַ ‫ ַתּט ַ ֽא‬is shortened from ‫( ַתּ ֶטּה‬Hiphil imperf. ‫‘ = נטה‬bend, turn, incline’), ‘do not turn away’.

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE Bibliography: Alter, Robert. The Art of Biblical Poetry. Basic Books Inc. New York. 1985. Gillingham, S E. The Poems and Psalms of the Hebrew Bible. OUP. 1994. Jouon Paul, Muraoka T. A Grammar of Biblical Hebrew. Editrice Pontificio Istituto Biblico – Roma 1996. Part One, pp 11-12. Kugel, James L. The Idea of Biblical Poetry. Parallelism and its History. Yale Univ. Press. 1981. Seow, C L. A Grammar for Biblical Hebrew. Abingdon Press Nashville, 1995. Excursus E, Poetic Hebrew, pp 157-159.

Introductory remarks It is difficult to define what we mean by Biblical Hebrew poetry. It is true that some parts of the Bible are traditionally regarded as ‘poetry’, such as the Song of the Sea (Exodus 15) or the Song of Deborah (Judges 5), but it is also the case that some features of ‘poetic’ or ‘elevated’ style may be found in parts of the Bible normally considered to be ‘prose’. The main grammatical features of ‘elevated style’ are the focus of this section and they are presented here to facilitate the student’s grasp of the plain meaning of the ‘poetic’ sections of the Hebrew Bible. A summary outline of these features is followed by a more detailed treatment of some features. However, this is a complex topic and the student is referred to the Bibliography for further study. 319

320

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Finally, an analysis of some grammatical features of the Song of the Sea (Exodus 15:1-18) is presented.

A SUMMARY OUTLINE OF THE GRAMMATICAL FEATURES OF ‘ELEVATED STYLE’. 1

Frequent absence of: definite article, relative pronoun (‫ ) ֲא ֶשׁר‬and marker of definite direct object (‫ ;) ֵאת‬none of these occur in the Song of the Sea after verse one, i.e. Exodus 15:2-18.

2

Brevity and terseness of expression. For example: Psalm 8:5:

‫ן־א ָ ֗דם ִ ֣כּי ִת ְפ ְק ֶ ֽדנּוּ׃‬ ָ֝ ‫וּב‬ ֶ ‫י־תזְ ְכּ ֶ ֑רנּוּ‬ ִ ‫ה־אנ֥ וֹשׁ ִ ֽכּ‬ ֱ ‫ָ ֽמ‬ ‘What is man that You should remember him and (what is) the son of man that You should visit him?’ The interrogative pronoun ‫ ָמה‬in line one has to be mentally repeated in line two. 3

Freedom in use of tenses. For example, Psalm 38:12:

‫חק ָע ָ ֽמדוּ׃‬ ֹ ֥ ‫רוֹבי ֵמ ָר‬ ַ֗ ‫מדוּ וּ ְ֝ק‬ ֹ ֑ ‫א ֲה ַ֨בי וְ ֵר ֗ ַעי ִמ ֶ ֣נּ גֶ ד נִ גְ ִ ֣עי יַ ֲע‬ ֹֽ ‘My lovers and my friends stand afar from my plague; and my kinsmen stand at a distance’. Note the variation of tenses in two balancing lines, imperf. ‫ יַ ֲעמֹדוּ‬in line one, and perf. ‫ ָע ָ ֽמדוּ‬in line two. 4

Variable word order. For example, Numbers 23:7:

‫י־ק ֶדם‬ ֔ ֶ ‫ְך־מוֹא ֙ב ֵ ֽמ ַה ְר ֵר‬ ָ ‫ן־א ָרם יַ נְ ֵ֨חנִ י ָב ָל֤ק ֶ ֽמ ֶל‬ ֲ ֠ ‫ִמ‬ ‘From Aram Balak has guided me, the King of Moab from the mountains of the East’. Line one has: circumstance + verb + subject; line two has: subject + circumstance, with omission of verb, which has to be supplied mentally.

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE 5

321

Some vocabulary which is typical of poetry. For example,

‫ ֱאנוֹשׁ‬for ‫‘ = ָא ָדם‬man’; ‫ ָחזָ ה‬for ‫‘ = ָר ָאה‬see’; ‫ ָא ָתה‬for ‫‘ = בוא‬come’. 6

Endings ḥireq-yod and vav-ḥolem (ḥireq compaginis, see below) on nouns, adjectives and participles; longer forms of prepositions, e.g. ‫ ֱא ֵלי‬for ‫ ֶאל‬and ‫ ֲע ֵדי‬for ‫ ַעד‬.

7

Longer pronominal suffixes, ‫ ֵ◌מוֹ‬/‫ָמוֹ‬/‫( מוֹ‬see below).

8

Unassimilated energic nun (see below).

9

Use of: word-pairs, rhyming, repetition, alliteration and chiasmus.

(‘chiasmus’ is the reversal in the second line of the word-order in the first line). 10

Parallelism – a feature which is concentrated in the ‘poetic’ books, but in fact is to be found throughout the Bible. Parallelism of clauses means that the second clause corresponds in some way to the first clause; the second clause is a continuation of the first clause, often “particularizing, defining, expanding or even contrasting with the meaning” (Kugel, 1981, p 8). For example, Psalm 145:10: ‫יוֹדוָּך ְי֭הוָ ה‬ ֣ ‫וּכה׃‬ ָ ‫ל־מ ֲע ֶ ֑שׂיָך וַ ֲ֝ח ִס ֶ ֗ידיָך ָיְב ֲר ֽכ‬ ַ ‫‘( ַמ ֲע ֶשׂיָך ; ָכּ‬Your works’) is parallel to ‫ידיָך‬ ֶ ‫‘( ֲח ִס‬Your pious ones’) and ‫‘( יוֹדוָּך‬they will praise You’) is parallel to ‫כוּכה‬ ָ ‫‘( ָיְב ֲר‬they will bless you’). Note also the chiasmus: line A has verb + subject; line B has subject + verb (reversal of order). The second line is not, however, a mere restatement of the first line in ֶ ‫ ֲח ִס‬refers to a smaller, more pious group different words. Rather, ‫ידיָך‬ than ‫שׂיָך‬ ֑ ֶ ‫ל־מ ֲע‬ ַ ‫ ָכּ‬while ‫כוּכה‬ ָ ‫ ָיְב ֲר‬expresses a closer relationship to Gd than ‫יוֹדוָּך‬. This progression can be conveyed in English by translating the conjunction vav as ‘but’; “O Lord, all Your works praise You, but, Your pious ones bless You”.

322

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Genesis 21:1:

‫הו֛ה ְל ָשׂ ָ ֖רה ַכּ ֲא ֶ ֥שׁר ִדּ ֵ ֽבּר׃‬ ָ ְ‫שׁר ָא ָ ֑מר וַ ַיּ ַ֧עשׂ י‬ ֣ ֶ ‫ת־שׂ ָ ֖רה ַכּ ֲא‬ ָ ‫ַיהו֛ה ָפּ ַ ֥ קד ֶא‬ ָ ‫ֽו‬ ‘And the Lord remembered Sarah as He had said and the Lord did for Sarah as He had spoken’. This is an example of parallelism in a ‘prose’ section of the Bible. The verb ‫ ָפּ ַקד‬in line A is parallel to ‫ וַ ַיּ ַ֧עשׂ‬in line B, but note the small chiastic arrangement, ‫ַיהו֛ה ָפּ  ַ ֥קד‬ ָ ‫ ֽו‬subject + verb, ‫הו֛ה‬ ָ ְ‫ וַ ַיּ ַ֧עשׂ י‬verb + subject.

ENERGIC NUN AND UNASSIMILATED ENGERGIC NUN (SEE GK 58 I, K, L; WHG PP 130-131) There are alternative forms of the verbal suffix on the singular imperfect which have energic nun assimilated before the suffix. These forms give greater emphasis to the verb and are especially frequent in pause. For example, ‘he will guard me’ may be either ‫( יִ ְשׁ ְמ ֵרנִ י‬no energic nun) or ‫ יִ ְשׁ ְמ ֶרנִּ י‬where the energic nun is assimilated into the nun of the verbal suffix, which therefore has dagesh forte. Note also that the tsere under the resh has modified to segol under the influence of the tone. Likewise, ‘he will guard you’ may be either ‫( יִ ְשׁ ָמ ְרָך‬no energic nun) or ָ‫ יִ ְשׁ ְמ ֶרךּ‬with dagesh forte in the final caph to indicate the assimilated energic nun and segol under the resh due to the tone. The other forms are: ‘he will guard him’, ‫( יִ ְשׁ ְמ ֵרהוּ‬no energic nun) or ‫( יִ ְשׁ ְמ ֶרנּוּ‬with assimilated energic nun) and ‘he will guard her’, ‫( יִ ְשׁ ְמ ֶר ָה‬no energic nun) or ‫( יִ ְשׁ ְמ ֶרנָּ ה‬with assimilated energic nun). These contracted forms with energic nun (where the nun is assimilated to the following consonant) are quite frequent even in prose. However, there are also uncontracted forms, where the nun is not assimilated and these forms are rare, occurring only in poetic or elevated style. e.g. Psalm 72:15:‫יְב ֲר ֶ ֽכנְ ֽהוּ׃‬ ָ ‫ל־היּ֗ וֹם‬ ַ֝ ‫‘ ָכּ‬all the day he will bless him’; ָ without energic nun). (instead of ‫יְב ְר ֵכהוּ‬

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE

323

Exercise: in the following biblical verses, identify the verbal suffixes with Energic Nun, both contracted and uncontracted.; explanatory notes are found at the end. 1

Leviticus 1:3

‫יבנּוּ‬ ֑ ֶ ‫ן־ה ָבּ ָ ֔קר זָ ָ ֥כר ָתּ ִ ֖מים יַ ְק ִר‬ ַ ‫ִאם־ ע ָֹל֤ה ָק ְר ָבּנוֹ֙ ִמ‬ If his offering is a burnt-offering of cattle, he shall offer an unblemished male. 2

Numbers 23:25

‫ם־בּ ֵ ֖רְך ֥ל ֹא ְת ָב ֲר ֶ ֽכנּוּ׃‬ ָ ַ‫ל־בּ ְל ֔ ָעם גַּ ם־ ֖קֹב ֣ל ֹא ִת ֳקּ ֶ ֑בנּוּ גּ‬ ִ ‫אמר ָבּ ָל ֙ק ֶא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֤יּ‬ And Balak said to Balaam, ‘you shall indeed not curse him and you shall indeed not bless him’. 3

Exodus 15:2

‫ֹלהי ָא ִ ֖בי וַ ֲאר ְֹמ ֶ ֽמנְ הוּ׃‬ ֥ ֵ ‫ֶז֤ה ֵא ִ ֙לי וְ ַאנְ ֵ֔והוּ ֱא‬ This is my G-d and I will adorn Him (or, build Him a dwelling), the G-d of my father and I will extol Him. 4

Deuteronomy 32:10

‫הוּ ֣יְבוֹנְ ֵ֔נהוּ יִ ְצּ ֶ ֖רנְ הוּ‬ ֙ ְ‫מן יְ ֽסֹ ְב ֶ֙בנ‬ ֹ ֑ ‫תהוּ יְ ֵל֣ל יְ ִשׁ‬ ֹ ֖ ‫וּב‬ ְ ‫הוּ ְבּ ֶ ֣א ֶרץ ִמ ְד ָ֔בּר‬ ֙ ‫יִמ ָצ ֵ֙א‬ ְ ‫ישׁוֹן ֵעינֽ וֹ׃‬ ֥ ‫ְכּ ִא‬ He found him in a desert land, in the howling waste of a wilderness, He encompassed him, attended him, kept him as the apple of His eye.

324 5

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW Jeremiah 5:22

֙‫ר־שׂ ְמ ִתּי חוֹל‬ ֤ ַ ‫יראוּ נְ ֻאם־יְ ָ֗הו ֹה ִ ֤אם ִמ ָפּנַ ֙י ֣ל ֹא ָת ִ֔חילוּ ֲא ֶשׁ‬ ֜ ָ ‫א־ת‬ ִ ֹ ‫אוֹתי ל‬ ִ֨ ‫ַה‬ ‫יוּכלוּ וְ ָה ֥מוּ גַ ָלּ֖יו‬ ‫גְּ ֣בוּל ַל ָ֔יּם ָח‬ ָ֔ ‫שׁוּ וְ ֣ל ֹא‬ ֙ ‫ק־עוֹל֖ם וְ ֣ל ֹא יַ ַע ְב ֶ ֑רנְ הוּ וַ ִיּ ְֽתגָּ ֲע‬ ָ ‫וְ ֥ל ֹא יַ ַע ְב ֻ ֽרנְ הוּ׃‬ Will you not fear Me? Says the Lord, Will you not tremble at My presence? I have placed sand as a boundary for the sea, an everlasting statute and none may pass it; its waves toss themselves, but cannot prevail, they roar, but they cannot pass it. Explanatory notes to exercise on energic nun 1

‫יבנּוּ‬ ֑ ֶ ‫יַ ְק ִר‬

Hiphil imperf. 3 m.sg. ‫ קרב‬+ sf. 3 m.sg. assimilated energic nun. The form without energic nun would be ‫יבהוּ‬ ֵ ‫‘ ; יַ ְק ִר‬he shall offer it’.

2

‫ִת ֳקּ ֶ ֑בנּוּ‬

Qal imperf. 2 m.sg. ‫ קבב‬+ sf. 3 m.sg. assimilated energic nun. Note that inf. abs. ‫ קֹב‬precedes the negative. ‘You shall curse him’.

‫ְת ָב ֲר ֶ ֽכנּוּ‬

Piel imperf. 2 m.sg. ‘You shall bless him’. 3

‫וַ ֲאר ְֹמ ֶ ֽמנְ הוּ‬

4

‫הוּ‬ ֙ ְ‫יְ ֽסֹ ְב ֶ֙בנ‬

‫ ברך‬+ sf. 3 m.sg.

assimilated energic nun.

Polel imperf. 1 c.sg. ‫ רום‬+ vav conj. + sf. 3 m.sg. unassimilated energic nun. ‘I will extol/exalt Him’.

Polel imperf. 3 m.sg. ‫ סבב‬+ sf. 3 m.sg. unassimilated energic nun. ‘He encompasses/surrounds him’. (Note use of imperf. for continuous action).

‫יִ ְצּ ֶ ֖רנְ הוּ‬

Qal imperf. 3 m.sg. ‫ נצר‬+ sf. 3 m.sg. unassimilated energic nun. ‘He watches, guards, keeps him’. Note also: ‫‘ = בין‬discern’ > Polel (only here): ‘he attentively considers him’.

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE

325

‫ ִאישׁוֹן‬n.m. = ‘pupil of eye’ ‫‘ = יָ ַשׁם‬be desolate’ > ‫ יְ ִשׁימוֹן‬n.m. ‘waste, wilderness’ ‫ יְ ֵלל‬n.m. = ‘howling’ (of beasts); lit: ‘in a waste of howling of a desert’ (‫יְ ִשׁימוֹן‬ 5

‫תהוּ יְ ֵלל‬ ֹ ‫וּב‬ ְ )

‫יַ ַע ְב ֶ ֑רנְ הוּ‬

Qal imperf. 3 m.sg. ‫ עבר‬+ sf. 3 m.sg. unassimilated energic nun. ‘He shall pass it’. Note also: ‫ יַ ַע ְב ֻ ֽרנְ הוּ‬Qal imperf. 3 m.pl. ‫ עבר‬+ sf. 3 m.sg. ‘they shall pass it’; see GK 60e: “Suffixes are also appended in twelve passages to the plural forms in ‫( ”וּן‬for Paragogic Nun, see GK 47m: “Instead of the plural forms in ‫ וּ‬there are, especially in the older books, over 300 forms with the fuller ending ‫( וּן‬with Nun paragogicum), always bearing the tone.”)

‫ ִחיל‬,‫( חוּל‬BDB p 296) = ‘whirl, dance, writhe’ > Qal imperf. ‫‘ ָתּ ִחילוּ‬be in severe pain, anguish’

‫‘ = גָּ ַעשׁ‬shake, quake’ > Hithpael: ‘shake back and forth, toss’ ‫‘ = ָה ָמה‬murmur, growl, roar’ RARE FORMS OF PRONOMINAL SUFFIXES OF THE VERB AND NOUN With regard to rare forms of pronominal suffixes of the verb, see GK 58g: “The forms ‫ ֵמוֹ‬,‫ ָמוֹ‬,‫ מוֹ‬occur 23 times, all in poetry (except Ex 23:31)”. With regard to pronominal suffixes of the noun, see GK 91l: “The termination ‫ ֵ◌מוֹ‬like ‫מוֹ‬and ‫ ָמוֹ‬, occurs with the noun (as with the verb 58g) almost exclusively in the later poets—and cannot, therefore, by itself be taken as an indication of archaic language. On the other hand there can be no doubt that these are revivals of really old forms. That they are consciously and artificially used is shown by the evidently intentional accumula-

326

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

tion of them, e.g. in Ex 15:5,7,9; Ps 2:3,5; 140:4,10, and also by the fact— that in Ex 15 they occur only as verbal suffixes, in Dt 32 only as noun suffixes.”

Exercise; in the following biblical verses, identify the rare forms ,‫מוֹ‬

‫ ֵ◌מוֹ‬,‫ָמוֹ‬

of the pronominal suffixes of the verb (with the perf.

imperf. and imperat.); explanatory notes are added. I:

Examples with Perfect

a) Exodus 15:10

‫רוּחָך֖ ִכּ ָ ֣סּמוֹ ָי֑ם‬ ֲ ‫נָ ַ ֥שׁ ְפ ָתּ ְב‬ You blew with Your wind, the sea covered them.

‫ִכּ ָ ֣סּמוֹ‬

Piel perf. 3 m.sg. ‫ כסה‬+ sf. 3 m.pl. ‘(it) covered them’.

b) Exodus 23:31

‫ִ ֣כּי ֶא ֵ ֣תּן ְבּיֶ ְד ֶ֗כם ֵ ֚את י ְֹשׁ ֵב֣י ָה ָ֔א ֶרץ וְ גֵ ַר ְשׁ ָ ֖תּמוֹ ִמ ָפּ ֶנֽיָך׃‬ For I will deliver the inhabitants of the land into your hand, and you shall drive them out before you.

‫וְ גֵ ַר ְשׁ ָ ֖תּמוֹ‬

Piel 2 m.sg. ‫ גרשׁ‬+ sf. 3 m.pl. + vav consec. ‘and you will drive them out’. Note that this is the only example in prose rather than poetry. c) Psalm 73:6

‫ָ ֭ל ֵכן ֲענָ ַ ֣ ק ְתמוֹ גַ ֲאָו֑ה‬ Therefore pride is their necklace.

‫ֲענָ ַ ֣ ק ְתמוֹ‬

Qal 3 f.sg. ‫ ענק‬+ sf. 3 m.pl. ‘(it) is necklace for them’ ( =

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE

327

‫) ָענְ ָקה א ָֹתם‬. Compare ‫‘ ָשׁ ְמ ָרה א ָֹתם = ְשׁ ָמ ָר ַתם‬she guarded them’, see WHG p 123. (The verb ‫ ָענַ ק‬is a denominative from the masc. noun ‫‘ = ֲענָ ק‬neck’). II: Examples with Imperfect a) Exodus 15:7

‫אכ ֵל֖מוֹ ַכּ ַ ֽקּשׁ׃‬ ְ ֹ ‫ְתּ ַשׁ ַלּ ֙ח ֲח ֣ר ֹנְ ָ֔ך י‬ You sent forth Your anger, it consumed them like stubble.

‫אכ ֵל֖מוֹ‬ ְ ֹ‫י‬

Qal 3 m.sg. ‫ אכל‬+ sf. 3 m.pl. ‘(it) consumed them’.

b) Exodus 15:9

‫ישׁמוֹ יָ ִ ֽדי׃‬ ֖ ֵ ‫תּוֹר‬ ִ ‫ֲא ַח ֵלּ֣ק ָשׁ ָל֑ל ִתּ ְמ ָל ֵ ֣אמוֹ נַ ְפ ִ֔שׁי ָא ִ ֣ריק ַח ְר ִ֔בּי‬ I will divide (the) spoil, my appetite will be full of them, I will draw my sword, my hand will dispossess (destroy) them.

‫ִתּ ְמ ָל ֵ ֣אמוֹ‬

Qal 3 f.sg. ‫ ָמ ֵלא‬+ sf. 3 m.pl. ‘(it) will be full of them’

‫ישׁמוֹ‬ ֖ ֵ ‫תּוֹר‬ ִ

Hiphil 3 f.sg.

‫ ירשׁ‬+ sf. 3 m.pl. ‘(it) will dispossess/destroy

them’. c) Exodus 15:12

‫יְמינְ ָ֔ך ִתּ ְב ָל ֵ ֖עמוֹ ָ ֽא ֶרץ׃‬ ֣ ִ ‫ית‬ ָ֙ ‫נָ ִ֙ט‬ You stretched forth Your right hand, the earth swallowed them.

‫ִתּ ְב ָל ֵ ֖עמוֹ‬

Qal 3 f.sg. ‫ בלע‬+ sf. 3 m.pl. ‘(it) swallowed them’.

328

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

d) Exodus 15:15

‫אח ֵז֖מוֹ ָ ֑ר ַעד‬ ֲ ֹ ֽ‫מוֹאב י‬ ָ֔ ‫ֵא ֵיל֣י‬ As for the leaders of Moab, trembling seized them.

‫אח ֵז֖מוֹ‬ ֲ ֹ ֽ‫י‬

Qal 3 m.sg. ‫ אחז‬+ sf. 3 m.pl. ‘(it) seized them’.

e) Exodus 15:17

‫ְתּ ִב ֵ֗אמוֹ וְ ִת ָטּ ֙ ֵעמוֹ֙ ְבּ ַ ֣הר נַ ֲח ָ ֽל ְת ָ֔ך‬ You shall bring them and You shall plant them in the mountain of Your inheritance.

‫ְתּ ִב ֵ֗אמוֹ‬

Hiphil 2 m.sg. ‫ בוא‬+ sf. 3 m.pl. ‘You will bring them’.

‫וְ ִת ָטּ ֙ ֵעמוֹ‬

Qal 2 m.sg. ‫ נטע‬+ sf. 3 m.pl. + vav conj. ‘and you will plant

them’. f)

Psalm 2:5

‫ָ ֤אז יְ ַד ֵבּ֣ר ֵא ֵל֣ימוֹ ְב ַא ֑פּוֹ וּֽ ַב ֲחרוֹנ֥ וֹ ַיְב ֲה ֵ ֽלמוֹ׃‬ Then He will speak to them in His anger and in His wrath He will terrify them.

‫ַיְב ֲה ֵ ֽלמוֹ‬

Piel 3 m.sg. ‫ בהל‬+ sf. 3 m.pl. ‘he will terrify/dismay them’.

Note also the ‫ מוֹ‬suffix on the preposition ‫ ֶאל‬, hence, ‫ ֵא ֵל֣ימוֹ‬for ‫יהם‬ ֶ ‫= ֲא ֵל‬ “to them”. See GK 103k: “The syllable ‫— ִמן‬in—‫ ַכּמוֹנִ י‬is, in poetry, appended to the three simple prefixes ‫ ְבּ ְכּ ְל‬even without suffixes, so that ‫ ְבּמוֹ‬,‫ ְכּמוֹ‬,‫ְלמוֹ‬ ְ Poetry is appear as independent words, equivalent in meaning to ‫בּ ְכּ ְל‬. here distinguished from prose by the use of longer forms.”

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE

329

g) Psalm 22:5

‫ְ ֭בָּך ָבּ ְט ֣חוּ ֲאב ֵ ֹ֑תינוּ ָ֝בּ ְט ֗חוּ ַו ְֽתּ ַפ ְלּ ֵ ֽטמוֹ׃‬ Our fathers trusted in You, they trusted and You delivered them.

‫ַו ְֽתּ ַפ ְלּ ֵ ֽטמוֹ‬

Piel 2 m.sg. delivered them’.

‫פלט‬

+ vav consec. + sf. 3 m.pl. ‘and You

III: Example with Imperative a) Psalm 59:12

‫ידמוֹ‬ ֑ ֵ ‫הוֹר‬ ִ ְ‫ֲהנִ ֵיע֣מוֹ ְ ֭ב ֵח ְילָך ו‬ Cause them to wander with Your might and bring them down.

‫ֲהנִ ֵיע֣מוֹ‬

Hiphil imperat. m.sg. ‫ נוע‬+ sf. 3 m.pl. ‘cause them to wander’.

‫ידמוֹ‬ ֑ ֵ ‫הוֹר‬ ִ ְ‫ו‬

Hiphil imperat. m.sg. bring them down’.

‫ירד‬

+ sf. 3 m.pl. + vav conj. ‘and

Exercise: in the following biblical verses, identify the rare forms ,‫מוֹ‬

‫ ֵ◌מוֹ‬,‫ ָמוֹ‬of the pronominal suffixes with the noun. Explanatory notes are added. 1

Psalm 2:3-5

‫יכה ִמ ֶ ֣מּנּוּ ֲעב ֵ ֹֽתימוֹ׃‬ ָ ‫רוֹתימוֹ וְ נַ ְשׁ ִ ֖ל‬ ֑ ֵ ‫וֹס‬ ְ ‫ת־מ‬ ֽ ‫ ְ ֽננַ ְתּ ָקה ֶא‬3 ‫ג־למוֹ׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫יוֹשׁב ַבּ ָשּׁ ַ ֣מיִ ם יִ ְשׂ ָ ֑חק ֲ֝אד ָֹ֗ני יִ ְל ַע‬ ֵ֣ 4 ‫ ָ ֤אז יְ ַד ֵבּ֣ר ֵא ֵל֣ימוֹ ְב ַא ֑פּוֹ וּֽ ַב ֲחרוֹנ֥ וֹ ַיְב ֲה ֵ ֽלמוֹ׃‬5 Let us tear apart their bonds and let us cast from us their cords;

330

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

He who sits in the heavens laughs, the Lord mocks them; Then He will speak to them in His anger, and in His burning wrath He will terrify them.

‫רוֹתימוֹ‬ ֑ ֵ ‫וֹס‬ ְ ‫ֽמ‬

‘their bonds’. ‫מוֹסר > ָא ַסר‬ ֵ n.m. (= ‫אסר‬ ֵ ֹ ‫ > )מ‬pl. ‫מוֹסרוֹת‬ ְ

‫ֲעב ֵ ֹֽתימוֹ‬

‘their cords’. ‫ ֲעבֹת > ָע ַבת‬n.m. & f. = twisted cord, rope

> pl. ‫ ֲעב ִֹתים‬/‫ֲעבֹתֹת‬

‫‘ ָל ֶהם = ָלֽמוֹ‬to them’ (GK 103k); note the rare suffix on prepositions as well as nouns.

‫ֵא ֵל֣ימוֹ‬ 2

= ‫יהם‬ ֶ ‫‘ ֲא ֵל‬to them’; see GK 103k.

Deuteronomy 32:27,32,37,38

‫י־רוֹשׁ ַא ְשׁ ְכּ ֹ֥לת ְמר ֹ ֖ר ֹת ָלֽמוֹ׃‬ ֔ ‫פֶּ ֽן־יְנַכּ ְ֖רוּ צ ֵ ָ֑רימוֹ ֲענָ ֵ֙במוֹ֙ ִענְּ ֵב‬ ‫אכלוּ‬ ֵ֔ ֹ ‫ֹלהימוֹ ֖צוּר ָח ָ ֥סיוּ ֽבוֹ׃ ֲא ֶ֨שׁר ֵ ֤ח ֶלב זְ ָב ֵ֙חימוֹ֙ י‬ ֑ ֵ ‫וְ ָא ַ ֖מר ֵ ֣אי ֱא‬ Lest their adversaries misinterpret (lit. treat as foreign); their grapes are grapes of poison, their clusters are bitter (lit. bitter clusters to them); and He shall say, where are their gods, (the) rock in whom they trusted? who would eat the fat of their sacrifices.

‫ָצ ֵ ֑רימוֹ‬ ‫ָצ ִרים‬

‘their adversaries’ (=

‫יהם‬ ֶ ‫ַצר ;) ָצ ֵר‬

֙‫ֲענָ ֵ֙במוֹ‬

‘their grapes’; ‫ ֵענָ ב‬n.m. = ‘grape(s)’ > pl. ‫ > ֲענָ ִבים‬cstr. ‫ִענְּ ֵבי‬

n.m. = ‘adversary, foe’ > pl.

Note dagesh forte dirimens in nun of ‫ ִענְּ ֵבי‬and see GK 20 c: “a dagesh is sometimes strengthened merely for the sake of euphony—”; GK 20 h:

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE

331

“when a consonant with sheva is strengthened by dagesh forte dirimens to make the sheva more audible.”

‫ָלֽמוֹ‬

= ‫‘ ָל ֶהם‬to them’

‫ֹלהימוֹ‬ ֑ ֵ ‫ֱא‬

= ‫יהם‬ ֶ ‫ֹלה‬ ֵ ‫‘ ֱא‬their gods’

֙‫זְ ָב ֵ֙חימוֹ‬

= ‫יהם‬ ֶ ‫‘ זִ ְב ֵח‬their sacrifices’

For ‫‘ ָחסוּ = ָח ָ ֥סיוּ‬they sought refuge’ (‫) ָח ָסה‬, see GK 75 Verbs ‫ > ל"ה‬GK 75 u: “The original yod sometimes appears even before afformatives beginning with a vowel—.” 3

Psalm 89:18

‫י־ת ְפ ֶ ֣א ֶרת ֻע ָזּ֣מוֹ ָ ֑א ָתּה‬ ִ ‫ִ ֽכּ‬ For You are the glory of their strength.

‫ֻע ָזּ֣מוֹ‬

‘their strength’; ‫ עֹז‬n.m. = ‘strength’

ḤIREQ COMPAGINIS See GK 90: Real and Supposed Remains of Early Case-endings; JM 93: Paragogic vowels. JM 93l: “The paragogic vowel ‫ ִ◌י‬. This vowel is called ḥireq compaginis (linking i) because it is usually found in nouns in the cst. state, and therefore in close link with other nouns. Because of its ordinary use and of its origin this ‫ ִ◌י‬can be called i of the construct state. It is the ‫ ִ◌י‬which is found in the cst. state of the biliteral nouns of kinship ‫ ֲח ִמי ֲא ִחי ֲא ִבי‬. This ‫ ִ◌י‬was used in poetry in nouns, adjectives and especially participles, at first to express the construct state in the strict sense or in the loose sense, then as a purely rhythmic vowel.”

332

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Exercise: in the following biblical verses, spot the Ḥireq Compaginis in nouns, adjectives and participles. note also the instances where a preposition is inserted between the cstr. state and its genitive; explanatory notes are added. 1

Genesis 49:11 (Judah)

‫ירוֹ[ וְ ַלשּׂ ֵֹר ָ ֖ קה ְבּ ִנ֣י ֲאתֹנ֑ וֹ‬ ֔ ‫א ְֹס ִ ֤רי ַלגֶּ֙ ֶ ֙פן ִעיר ֹה ] ִע‬ Binding his foal to the vine and to the choice vine his ass’s colt.

‫א ְֹס ִ ֤רי‬

Qal part. m.sg. ‘binding’. The regular form would be ‫א ֵֹסר‬.

See GK 90 m: “otherwise than in the cstr. state the ḥireq compaginis is only found in participial forms, evidently with the object of giving them more dignity”.

‫‘ ְבּ ִנ֣י ֲאתֹנ֑ וֹ‬the son (colt) of his ass’. ‫ ְבּנִ י‬instead of ‫ ֶבּן‬, cstr. from ‫ ֵבּן‬n.m. 2

Zechariah 11:17

‫עֹזְ ִ ֣בי ַה ֔צּ ֹאן‬ ‘that leaves the flock’.

‫עֹזְ ִ ֣בי‬

for ‫( עֹזֵ ב‬Qal part. m.sg.). See JM 93n: “In participles the ‫ ִ◌י‬of the cst. state is rather frequent. This is because on the one hand a participle preceding a substantive is often put in the cst., on the other hand because a participle, for example ‫ק ֵֹטל‬, usually retains ֵ in the cstr. state: a form such as ‫ ק ְֹט ִלי‬had thus the advantage of expressing the cst. state clearly”. 3

Deuteronomy 33:16

‫ְוּר ֥צוֹן שׁ ְֹכ ִנ֖י ְס ֶנ֑ה‬ And the good will of Him that dwells in the bush.

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE

‫שׁ ְֹכ ִנ֖י‬ 4

333

for ‫‘ שׁ ֵֹכן‬dwelling’.

Jeremiah 49:16

‫ֽשׁ ֹ ְכנִ ֙י ְבּ ַחגְ ֵו֣י ַה ֶ֔סּ ַלע‬ Dwelling in the clefts of the rock.

‫ֽשׁ ֹ ְכנִ ֙י‬ 5

Note the cstr. state before a preposition.

Isaiah 22:16 (Isaiah denounces a powerful official of King Hezekiah, Shebna, who was constructing for himself a rock sepulchre).

‫רוֹם ִק ְב ֔רוֹ ח ְֹק ִ ֥ קי ַב ֶ ֖סּ ַלע ִמ ְשׁ ָ ֥כּן ֽלוֹ׃‬ ֙ ‫ח ְֹצ ִ ֤בי ָמ‬ Hewing out his tomb on high, cutting in a dwelling place for himself in the rock.

‫ח ְֹצ ִ ֤בי‬

Qal part. m.sg. for ‫‘ ח ֵֹצב‬hewing out’

‫ח ְֹק ִ ֥ קי‬

Qal part. m.sg. for ‫‘ ח ֵֹקק‬cutting in’

6

Lamentations 1:1

‫גּוֹים‬ ִ֗ ‫יר ַר ָ ֣בּ ִתי ֔ ָעם ָהיְ ָ ֖תה ְכּ ַא ְל ָמ ָנ֑ה ַר ָ ֣בּ ִתי ַב‬ ֙ ‫ֵא ָיכ֣ה יָ ְשׁ ָ ֣בה ָב ָ ֗דד ָה ִע‬ ‫תי ַבּ ְמּ ִדינ֔ וֹת ָהיְ ָ ֖תה ָל ַ ֽמס׃‬ ֙ ִ ‫ָשׂ ָ ֙ר‬ How does the city sit solitary, that was full of people, she has become like a widow; she that was great among the nations and princess among the provinces, she has become a vassal.

‫ַר ָ ֣בּ ִתי ֔ ָעם‬ ‘abounding in people’; ‫ַר ָבּ ִתי‬ ‫ ַר ָבּה‬,‫‘ = ַרב‬much, many, great’.

=

‫ ַר ַבּת‬,

fem. cstr. from adj.

334

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

‫גּוֹים‬ ִ֗ ‫ַר ָ ֣בּ ִתי ַב‬

‘great among the nations’; note cstr. adj. with ḥireq compaginis before a preposition, which does not nullify the cstr. relation.

‫תי ַבּ ְמּ ִדינ֔ וֹת‬ ֙ ִ ‫‘ ָשׂ ָ ֙ר‬princess among the provinces’; ‫ ָשׂ ַרת = ָשׂ ָר ִתי‬, cstr. from ‫ ָשׂ ָרה‬n.f. = ‘princess’. Again, note the preposition between the cstr. state and its genitive. 7

Genesis 31:39

‫גְּ ֻנ ְֽב ִ ֣תי י֔ וֹם וּגְ ֻנ ְֽב ִ ֖תי ָ ֽליְ ָלה׃‬ Stolen by day or stolen by night.

‫גְּ נֻ ַבת = גְּ ֻנ ְֽב ִ ֣תי‬, which is cstr. from ‫נוּבה‬ ָ ְ‫גּ‬, pass. part. f.sg. ‫גנב‬, = ‘stolen’. See JM 93o: “There is a probable example of the passive participle in Gn 31:39—: this probably is the only example of paragogic ‫ ִ◌י‬in prose.” 8

Isaiah 1:21

‫זוֹנה ִק ְר ָי֖ה נֶ ֱא ָמ ָנ֑ה ְמ ֵל ֲא ִ ֣תי ִמ ְשׁ ֗ ָפּט ֶצ ֶ֛דק יָ ִ ֥לין ָ ֖בּהּ וְ ַע ָ ֥תּה‬ ָ ֔ ‫יכ ֙ה ָהיְ ָ ֣תה ְל‬ ָ ‫ֵא‬ ‫ְמ ַר ְצּ ִ ֽחים׃‬ How the faithful city has become a harlot, she that was full of judgment, righteousness lodged in her, and now murderers.

‫‘ ְמ ֵל ֲא ִ ֣תי ִמ ְשׁ ֗ ָפּט‬full of judgment’; ‫ ְמ ֵל ַאת = ְמ ֵל ֲא ִ ֣תי‬cstr. from ‫ ְמ ֵל ָאה‬, fem. of ‫ ָמ ֵלא‬adj. = ‘full’. 9

Psalm 113:5,6,7,9

‫ימי ֵמ ָע ָ ֣פר ָ ֑דּל‬ ֣ ִ ‫ילי ִל ְר ֑אוֹת ְמ ִ ֽ ק‬ ֥ ִ ‫יהי ָל ָ ֽשׁ ֶבת׃ ַ ֽה ַמּ ְשׁ ִפּ‬ ֥ ִ ‫ַ ֽה ַמּגְ ִבּ‬ ‫יבי ֲע ֶ ֬ק ֶרת ַה ַ֗בּיִת‬ ִ֨ ‫וֹשׁ‬ ִ ‫ֽמ‬

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE

335

Who dwells on high. Who makes low to see. Raises (the) poor from (the) dust. He makes the barren of the house to dwell.

‫יהי‬ ֥ ִ ‫ַ ֽה ַמּגְ ִבּ‬ ‫ימי‬ ֣ ִ ‫ְמ ִ ֽ ק‬

Hiphil part. m.sg. ‫ילי ;גבהּ‬ ֥ ִ ‫ ַ ֽה ַמּ ְשׁ ִפּ‬Hiphil part. m.sg. ‫;שׁפל‬ Hiphil part. m.sg. ‫יבי ;קום‬ ִ֨ ‫וֹשׁ‬ ִ ‫ ֽמ‬Hiphil part. m.sg. ‫ישׁב‬.

See GK 90m: “We must distinguish, however, between passages in which the participle nevertheless does stand in close connexion,—; and passages in which the i added to the participle with the article merely serves as an ornamental device of poetic style, e.g. in the late Psalms, 113:5,6,7,9; 114:8; 123:1.”

ִ ‫הוֹשׁ‬ ִ ‫ִ◌י( ְל‬ See also JM 93o: “The ‫ ִ◌י‬is simply incorrect in Ps 113:8 ‫יבי‬ brought about by the preceding and following paragogic ‫) ִ◌י‬.” 10 Genesis 1:24

‫תּוֹצא ָה ָ֜א ֶרץ ֶנ ֶ֤פשׁ ַחיָּ ֙ה ְל ִמ ָ֔ינהּ ְבּ ֵה ָ ֥מה וָ ֶ ֛ר ֶמשׂ‬ ֵ֨ ‫ֹלהים‬ ִ֗ ‫אמר ֱא‬ ֶ ֹ ‫וַ ֣יּ‬ ‫י־כן׃‬ ֽ ֵ ‫תוֹ־א ֶרץ ְל ִמ ָינ֑הּ ַוֽ יְ ִה‬ ֖ ֶ ְ‫וְ ַ ֽחי‬ And G-d said, ‘let the earth bring forth living creature after its kind, cattle and creeping things and animals of the earth, after its kind,’ and it was so. See JM 93r: Paragogic Vowel ֹ ‫ו‬: “This vowel is found only in a few nouns in the construct state, notably ‫ ַחיָּ ה‬animal. —It is used in some cases in the cst. state instead of ‫ ִ◌י‬for reasons unknown. Instead of ‫( ְבּנִ י‬Gn 49:11) we find ‫‘ ְבּנוֹ ִצפּוֹר‬son of Zipor’ (Num 23:18), ‫‘ ְבּנוֹ ְבעֹר‬son of Beor’ (Num 24.3,15). (poetic and archaic texts). —Finally we find ‫ ַחיְ תוֹ‬7 times (one of which occurs in a prose passage). In Gn. 1:24 ‫תוֹ־א ֶרץ‬ ֖ ֶ ְ‫—וְ ַ ֽחי‬the poetic form may have been chosen to avoid ‫ ֶא ֶרץ‬-‫ ַחיַּ ת‬, which may have been thought too harsh (but vs 25:

336

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

‫ ַחיַּ ת ָה ָא ֶרץ‬with the article); cf. Ps 79.2 ‫ ֶא ֶרץ‬-‫ ְל ַחיְתוֹ‬.” 11 Psalm 114:8

‫נוֹ־מיִ ם׃‬ ֽ ָ ְ‫ם־מיִ ם ַ֝ח ָלּ ִ֗מישׁ ְל ַמ ְעי‬ ֑ ָ ַ‫ַהה ְֹפ ִ ֣כי ַה ֣צּוּר ֲאג‬ Who turns the rock into a pool of water, (the) flint into a fountain of water.

‫ַהה ְֹפ ִ ֣כי‬

‘who turns’ = ‫( ַהה ֵֹפְך‬Qal part. m.sg.)

‫נוֹ־מיִ ם‬ ֽ ָ ְ‫ְל ַמ ְעי‬

Note paragogic ֹ ‫ו‬. But see JM 93r: “Instead of ‫נוֹ־מיִ ם‬ ֽ ָ ְ‫ְל ַמ ְעי‬ Ps 114:8 one should phps read the plural ‫( ְל ַמ ְעיְ נֵ י‬cf. LXX, Pesh., Vulg.).”

PARAGOGIC NUN See JM 44e,f; GK 47m. JM 44e: “Added to the sufformative ‫ וּ‬of the 3rd pers. pl. m. and 2nd pl. m. ‫ ִתּ ְק ְטלוּ‬,‫ יִ ְק ְטלוּ‬we often find a ‫ ן‬called paragogic nun, i.e. added Nun. In reality the ‫ ן‬belongs to primitive forms and is found in Ugaritic, Arabic, Aramaic etc. The total of 305 examples are pretty widely spread in the Old Testament;—. The reasons for the presence of a form with ‫ וּן‬can be the antiquity of a text, a deliberate archaism, Aramaic influence, and metre. But the usual reason seems to be preference for a fuller and more emphatic form. This explains why one finds forms with ‫ וּן‬especially in pause (in major and intermediate pauses).”

Exercise: study the occurrence of Paragogic Nun in the following biblical verses, noting its occurrence with and without the pause, in both prose and poetic texts; explanatory notes are added. 1

Exodus 15:14

‫ָ ֽשׁ ְמ ֥עוּ ַע ִ ֖מּים יִ ְרגָּ ז֑ וּן‬ The people hear and quake.

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE

337

‫יִ ְרגָּ ז֑ וּן‬

Qal imperf. 3 m.pl. ‫ ;רגז‬this form occurs in pause and the pausal vowel of the 2nd syllable (qamets) is retained. i.e. ‫יִ ְרגָּ זוּן > יִ ְרגָּ זוּ > יִ ְרגְּ זוּ‬

2

Psalm 104:28

‫ִתּ ֵ ֣תּן ָ ֭ל ֶהם יִ ְלק ֹ֑טוּן ִתּ ְפ ַ ֥תּח ָי ְֽ ד ָ֗ך יִ ְשׂ ְבּ ֥עוּן ֽטוֹב׃‬ You give to them, they gather in, You open Your hand, they are sated with good.

‫יִ ְלק ֹ֑טוּן‬

Qal imperf. 3 m.pl. ‫ ;לקט‬this form occurs in pause and the pausal vowel of the 2nd syllable (holem) is retained. i.e. ‫> יִ ְלקֹטוּ > יִ ְל ְקטוּ‬

‫יִ ְלקֹטוּן‬

‫יִ ְשׂ ְבּ ֥עוּן‬ 3

Qal imperf. 3 m.pl. ‫ ;שׂבע‬not in pause.

Deuteronomy 4:10

‫יהם יְ ַל ֵמּ ֽדוּן׃‬ ֖ ֶ ֵ‫ת־בּנ‬ ְ ‫וְ ֶא‬ And their sons they will teach.

‫יְ ַל ֵמּ ֽדוּן׃‬

Piel imperf. 3 m.pl. ‫> יְ ַל ְמּדוּ ;למד‬ (retention of pausal vowel + paragogic nun). 4

‫( יְ ַל ֵמּדוּ‬in pause) > ‫יְ ַל ֵמּדוּן‬

Genesis 18:28

‫יק ֙ם ֲח ִמ ָ֔שּׁה‬ ִ ‫וּלי יַ ְח ְס ֞רוּן ֲח ִמ ִ ֤שּׁים ַה ַצּ ִדּ‬ ַ ‫֠א‬ Perhaps the fifty righteous ones will lack five.

‫יַ ְח ְס ֞רוּן‬ 5

Qal imperf. 3 m.pl. ‫ ; ָח ֵסר‬not in pause.

Genesis 18:29

‫יִמּ ְצ ֥אוּן ָ ֖שׁם ַא ְר ָבּ ִ ֑עים‬ ָ ‫אוּל֛י‬ ַ

338

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Perhaps forty will be found there.

‫יִמּ ְצ ֥אוּן‬ ָ 6

Niphal imperf. 3 m.pl. ‫ ;מצא‬not in pause.

Numbers 16:29

‫ל־ה ָא ָד ֙ם יְ ֻמ ֣תוּן ֵ֔א ֶלּה‬ ֽ ָ ‫ם־כּ ֤מוֹת ָכּ‬ ְ ‫ִא‬ If these shall die like the death of any man.

‫יְמ ֣תוּן‬ ֻ

Qal imperf. 3 m.pl. ‫ ;מות‬some examples may be due to euphonic reasons, here to avoid a hiatus before ’aleph (GK 47m). 7

Isaiah 26:11

‫ת־עם‬ ָ ֔ ‫שׁוּ ִקנְ ַא‬ ֙ ֹ ‫הו֛ה ָ ֥ר ָמה יָ ְדָך֖ ַבּל־יֶ ֱחזָ י֑ וּן יֶ ֱחז֤ וּ וְ יֵ ֨ב‬ ָ ְ‫י‬ O Lord, (when) Your hand is lifted up, they will not see; they will see and be ashamed (Your) zeal for (the) people.

‫ַבּל־יֶ ֱחזָ י֑ וּן‬ ‘they will not see’; Qal imperf. ‫ ;חזה‬retention of archaic yod of ‫ ל"ה‬verbs; paragogic nun in pause. ‫יֶ ֱחז֤ וּ‬

without paragogic nun in the same verse but not in pause suggests that it was “the pause especially which exerted an influence on the restoration of this older and fuller termination”. (GK 47m). 8

Ruth 2:8

‫וְ ֥כֹה ִת ְד ָבּ ִ ֖ קין ִעם־נַ ֲער ָ ֹֽתי‬ But stay close to my maidens.

‫ִת ְד ָבּ ִ ֖ קין‬

Qal imperf. 2 f.sg. ‫ ;דבק‬see JM 44f: “Similarly, to the sufformative ‫ י‬of the second pers. sg. f. one sometimes adds a paragogic Nun.” Note the retention of the pausal vowel. ‫> ִתּ ְד ָבּ ִקי > ִתּ ְד ְבּ ִקי‬

‫ִתּ ְד ָבּ ִקין‬

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE

339

A GRAMMATICAL OVERVIEW OF THE SONG OF THE SEA

(EXODUS 15:1-18) (based on both medieval and modern scholarship) Nahum Sarna (The JPS Torah Commentary, p 75) suggests that the Song of the Sea “may be the oldest piece of sustained poetry in the Hebrew Bible” and it certainly contains a concentration of grammatical features of “elevated” or “poetic” style. This section will present a verse-by-verse analysis of these grammatical features but will not encompass a complete analysis of all the literary features which characterize biblical “poetry”, for which other works may be consulted. A number of these grammatical features have already been dealt with separately in Parts Four and Five of this book, but will be explained again or the student will be referred back to the relevant section.

Exodus 15:1

‫מר‬ ֹ ֑ ‫אמ ֖רוּ ֵלא‬ ְ ֹ ‫את ַ ֽלײ וַ יּ‬ ֙ ֹ ‫ירה ַהזּ‬ ֤ ָ ‫ת־ה ִשּׁ‬ ַ ‫וּב ֵ֨ני יִ ְשׂ ָר ֵ֜אל ֶא‬ ְ ‫ָ ֣אז יָ ִ ֽשׁיר־מ ֶֹשׁ ֩ה‬ ‫אה גָּ ָ֔אה‬ ֹ ֣ ָ‫ָא ִ ֤שׁ ָירה ֽ ַלײ ִ ֽכּי־ג‬ ‫֥סוּס וְ ר ְֹכ ֖בוֹ ָר ָ ֥מה ַב ָיּֽם׃‬ Then sang Moses and the children of Israel this song to the Lord and they spoke, saying, ‘I will sing to the Lord, for He is surely exalted, horse and its rider He has cast into the sea’.

‫ָ ֣אז יָ ִ ֽשׁיר‬

“Then (Moses) sang”; for use of imperf. in sphere of past time, imperf. after certain particles and note on use of ‫ ָאז‬, see Part Four of this grammar book.

340

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

‫אה גָּ ָ֔אה‬ ֹ ֣ ָ‫ג‬

Qal inf. abs. + Qal perf. 3 m.sg. ‫‘ = גָּ ָאה‬rise up, be lifted up,

exalted’.

‫ָר ָמה‬

Qal perf. 3 m.sg. = ‘cast, shoot’.

Notice the ‘parallelism’ of clauses (see summary outline of the grammatical features of ‘elevated style’, Part Five of this grammar book). Views of medieval scholars on ‫יָ ִ ֽשׁיר‬ 1

‫ָ ֣אז‬

Comment of Ibn Ezra in his longer commentary on the Pentateuch

.‫לוֹמר ְלשׁוֹן ָע ִתיד ַתּ ַחת ָע ָבר ִעם ִמ ַלּת ָאז‬ ַ ‫קּוֹדשׁ‬ ֶ ‫ִמ ְשׁ ַפּט ְלשׁוֹן ַה‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra: It is the custom of the Holy Language to use imperfect instead of perfect after the word ‫ָאז‬ 2

Comment of Ibn Ezra in his shorter commentary on the Pentateuch

‫משׁה׃ ָע ִתיד ַתּ ַחת ָע ָבר וְ ַעל ַדּ ְע ִתּי ֶשׁהוּא ַהזְּ ַמן ָה ֶא ְמ ָצ ִעי‬ ֶ ‫ָאז יָ ִשׁיר‬ ‫אמרוּ ִבּ ְלשׁוֹן ָע ָבר וְ ָע ִתיד‬ ָ ‫וְ ֵאין ִבּ ְלשׁוֹן ַהקּ ֶֹדשׁ ִס‬ ְ ֹ ‫ימן ָע ָליו ַעל ֵכּן י‬ Translation of Ibn Ezra Then sang Moses. Imperfect instead of perfect. It is my opinion that it is ‫ ַהזְּ ַמן ָה ֶא ְמ ָצ ִעי‬and there is no method (to express) it in the Holy Language, therefore they use past or future. Explanation of Ibn Ezra’s comments

‫ַהזְּ ַמן ָה ֶא ְמ ָצ ִעי‬

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE

341

ֵ ‫ – זְ ַמן‬see Part another term used by Ibn Ezra for ‘standing time’, ‫עוֹמד‬ Four, views of medieval scholars on use of perf. and imperf., no 5, where Ibn Ezra’s comments on Psalm 1:1,2 are presented and the concept of ‫זְ ַמן‬ ‫עוֹמד‬ ֵ is explained. i.e. either perfect or imperfect may be used to express ‘standing time’, that is, to express continuation, repetition, duration. 3

Comments of Rashi

‫ ָל ַמ ְדנוּ‬--- ‫משׁה׃ ָאז ְכּ ֶשׁ ָר ָאה ַהנֵּ ס ָע ָלה ְבּ ִלבּוֹ ֶשׁיָּ ִשׁיר ִשׁ ָירה‬ ֶ ‫ָאז יָ ִשׁיר‬ ‫ישּׁב ְפּשׁוּטוֹ ֲא ָבל ִמ ְד ָרשׁוֹ‬ ֵ ַ‫ֶשׁ ַהיּוֹ״ד ַעל ֵשׁם ַה ַמּ ֲח ָשׁ ָבה נֶ ֶא ְמ ָרה זֶ הוּ ְלי‬ ‫תּוֹרה‬ ָ ‫בּוֹתינוּ ז״ל ִמ ָכּאן ֶר ֶמז ִל ְת ִחיַּ ת ַה ֵמּ ִתים ִמן ַה‬ ֵ ‫ָא ְמרוּ ַר‬ Translation of Rashi Then sang Moses. Then, when he saw the miracle, it arose in his heart that he would sing a song—we learn that the yod (i.e. future tense) indicates the intention; that is the plain meaning. But (according to) the midrashic explanation, our rabbis of blessed memory said, from here there is an allusion in the Torah to the revival of the dead. Explanation of Rashi Rashi suggests that ‫ ָאז‬here indicates the thought/intention to sing, followed by the actual uttering of the song, expressed by ‫מר‬ ֹ ֑ ‫אמ ֖רוּ ֵלא‬ ְ ֹ ‫ וַ יּ‬i.e. “Then Moses intended/decided to sing—and they spoke, saying—.” According to the midrashic interpretation brought by Rashi, the use of the imperf. here indicates the Messianic era, the time of the revival of the dead, “then, in the future, Moses will sing—.” Rashi argues that ‫ ָאז יָ ִשׁיר‬is not an imperf. indicating continuous action (for which a past or future may be used), for ‫ ָאז יָ ִשׁיר‬expresses an action that happened once only. RAMBAN (see glossary) criticizes Rashi and points out that there are future forms which refer to past actions which happened only once (e.g. Psalm

342

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

106:19: ‫‘ יַ ֲעשׂוּ ֵעגֶ ל ְבּח ֵֹרב‬they made a calf at Horeb’). Ramban seems to conclude that the tenses are interchangeable; the narrator places himself at the point of time he desires in order to convey the event realistically; this is usual in prophecy.

Exodus 15:2

‫ישׁוּעה‬ ֑ ָ ‫י־לי ִ ֽל‬ ֖ ִ ‫ָע ִזּ֤י וְ זִ ְמ ָר ֙ת ָ֔יהּ ַוֽ יְ ִה‬ ‫ֶז֤ה ֵא ִ ֙לי וְ ַאנְ ֵ֔והוּ‬ ‫ֹלהי ָא ִ ֖בי וַ ֲאר ְֹמ ֶ ֽמנְ הוּ׃‬ ֥ ֵ ‫ֱא‬ Translation according to interpretation of Rashi The strength and the vengeance of G-d has become to me a salvation; this is my G-d and I will adorn Him (or, build Him a dwelling), the G-d of my father and I will extol Him. Translation according to interpretation of Ibn Ezra G-d is my strength and the song of (my strength) and has become to me a salvation, this is my G-d and I will build Him a dwelling, this is the G-d of my father and I will extol Him.

‫ עֹז‬n.m. = ‘strength, might’; the usual form of ‫ עֹז‬+ sf. 1 c.sg. is ‫( ֻעזִּ י‬see Jeremiah 16:19). The form with qamets-ḥateph ‫ ָע ִזּ֤י‬occurs only here and in the same phrase in Isaiah 12:2 and Psalm 118:14.

‫ זִ ְמ ָרה‬n.f. ‘song, melody’; the expected form in cstr. state would be ‫זִ ְמ ַרת‬ (pataḥ under resh, not qamets). The form with sf. 1 c.sg. would be ‫זִ ְמ ָר ִתי‬ (ḥireq yod at end) = ‘my song’. Hence, ‫ זִ ְמ ָרת‬is a strange form, although rarer fem. endings do include ‫ָת‬, see GK 80g and see II Chron 31:3, ‫וּמנָ ת‬ ְ ‫ ַה ֶמּ ֶלְך‬.

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE

343

IBN EZRA states that there is no difference between ‫ ָע ִזּ֤י‬and ‫ ֻעזִּ י‬and that ‫‘ = ָע ִזּ֤י‬my strength’. He also takes ‫ זִ ְמ ָרת‬as a fem. noun in cstr. state = ‘song of’ and he regards ‫ ָע ִזּ֤י וְ זִ ְמ ָר ֙ת ָ֔יהּ‬as elliptical, suggesting that we need to understand the word ‫ ָע ִזּ֤י‬a second time, i.e. ‫‘ ָעזִּ י וְ זִ ְמ ַרת ָעזִּ י יָ הּ‬Gd is my strength and the song of my strength’. See Ibn Ezra’s following comment:

‫מוֹשׁ ֶכת ַע ְצ ָמהּ וְ ַא ֶח ֶרת ִע ָמּהּ ְכּ ִמ ְשׁ ַפּט ְלשׁוֹן‬ ֶ ‫וּל ִפי ַד ְע ִתּי ֶשׁ ִמּ ַלּת ָעזִּ י‬ ְ ‫ַהקּ ֶֹדשׁ ְכּ ִאילוּ ָכּתוּב ָעזִּ י וְ זִ ְמ ַרת ָעזִּ י יָ הּ‬ “And in my opinion, the word ‫ ָעזִּ י‬pulls itself and another with it (i.e. is understood twice over) according to the custom of the Holy Language, as if it was written, ‘my strength and the song of my strength’. RASHI takes an altogether different view, suggesting that although ‫ֻעזִּ י‬ (with qibbus) is noun + sf., ‫( ָעזִּ י‬with qamets-ḥateph) is a noun without a suffix, but with an extra ḥireq-yod ‫( ִ◌י‬see above, Ḥireq Compaginis). Rashi also takes ‫ זִ ְמ ָרת‬as a noun in cstr. state, but connects it with a different root ‫‘ = זמר‬trim, prune’ (see Levit 25:4 and BDB p 274). Rashi then understands the verse: “the strength of and the vengeance of G-d has become to me a salvation”.

‫וְ ַאנְ ֵ֔והוּ‬ (i)

can be understood in two different ways:

based on ‫( נוה‬I) – only found in Hiphil = ‘beautify, adorn’

> “I will beautify/adorn Him” (BDB p 627) (ii) based on ‫( נוה‬II) – a denominative derived from ‫ נָ וֶ ה‬n.m. = ‘abode of shepherd, habitation’ > “I will build Him a dwelling” (BDB p 627).

344

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

RASHI brings both views, while IBN EZRA brings only the latter view, which is derived from the Aramaic Targum.

‫;רום וַ ֲאר ְֹמ ֶ ֽמנְ הוּ‬

Polel imperf. 1 c.sg. + vav conj. + sf. 3 m.sg. with unassimilated Energic Nun (see Energic Nun, Part Five, above); these forms are rare, occurring only in poetic or elevated style (GK 58 i,j,k,l).

‫ֹלהי ָא ִ ֖בי וַ ֲאר ְֹמ ֶ ֽמנְ הוּ‬ ֥ ֵ ‫ֶז֤ה ֵא ִ ֙לי וְ ַאנְ ֵ֔והוּ ֱא‬ Note the terseness of expression typical of poetic style; the reader is left to deduce the climactic ascent in the parallel structure here; the second line adds something: “(Not only) is He my G-d and I will adorn Him, (but also) He is the G-d of my father and I will extol Him”; i.e. not only is He my G-d, but also my father’s G-d; not only will I adorn Him, but also I will extol Him. Note also the ellipsis of the word ‫זֶ ה‬, which must be understood a second time, ‘This is my G-d—and (this is) my father’s G-d—.’ The ellipsis is pointed out by Ibn Ezra: ‫‘ זֶ ה יְ ָשׁ ֵרת ַבּ ֲעבוּר ַא ֵחר‬this serves a second time’.

Exodus 15:4

‫ַמ ְר ְכּ ֥בֹת ַפּ ְר ֛עֹה וְ ֵח ֖ילוֹ יָ ָ ֣רה ַב ָיּ֑ם‬ ‫ם־סוּף׃‬ ֽ ַ‫וּמ ְב ַ ֥חר ָ ֽשׁ ִל ָ ֖שׁיו ֻט ְבּ ֥עוּ ְבי‬ ִ The chariots of Pharoah and his army He threw into the sea, the choicest of his officers were sunk in the Reed Sea.

‫‘ יָ ָ ֣רה‬throw, shoot, cast’; ‫ ִמ ְב ָחר‬n.m. ‘choicest, best’; ‫ ָשׁ ִלישׁ‬n.m. ‘officer’; ‫‘ ָט ַבע‬sink’ > Pual perf. 3 c.pl. ‫‘ ֻט ְבּ ֥עוּ‬they were sunk’.

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE

345

Exodus 15:5

‫יְכ ְסֻי ֑מוּ‬ ַ ‫מת‬ ֹ ֖ ֹ‫ְתּה‬ ‫מוֹ־א ֶבן׃‬ ֽ ָ ‫צוֹֹלת ְכּ‬ ֖ ‫יָ ְר ֥דוּ ִב ְמ‬ The depths covered them, they sank in the deep like stone.

‫ ְתּהוֹם‬n.f. (& m) ‘deep, sea’ (usu. poetic) ‫צוּלה > צול‬ ָ ‫ ְמ‬n.f. ‘depth, deep’ ‫( ְכּמוֹ‬BDB p 455) functioning here as a poetic synonym of ‫‘ = ְכּ‬like, as’ ‫יְ ַכ ְסֻי ֑מוּ‬

Piel imperf. 3 m.pl. ‫ כסה‬with retention of original yod (see GK 75u: verbs lamed-hey were originally either lamed-vav or lamed-yod and “the original yod sometimes appears even before afformatives beginning with a vowel”). Note also the ‫ מוּ‬ending instead of the rare suffix ‫ מוֹ‬and see GK 58g: “The forms ‫ ֵ◌מוֹ ָמוֹ מוֹ‬occur 23 times, all in poetry (except Ex. 23:31)”. RASHBAM suggests that the ‫ מוּ‬form is due to assonance with the ֻ sound earlier in the verse.

ַ Comment of Rashi on ‫יְכ ְס ֻי ֑מוּ‬ ‫והיּו״ד ָה ֶא ְמ ָצ ִעית יְ ֵת ָירה בוֹ ֶוד ֶרְך ִמ ְק ָראוֹת ְבּ ַכְך ְכּמוֹ‬ ַ ‫ְכּמוֹ יְ ַכסּוּם‬ (‫וּב ָ ֽ ק ְרָך֤ וְ ֽצ ֹאנְ ָ֙ך יִ ְר ְבּ ֻ֔ין) ְדּ ָב ִרים ח יג‬ ְ ( ‫יתָך) ְתּ ִה ִלּים לו ט‬ ֑ ֶ ‫ִי ְ֭רוְ יֻ ן ִמ ֶ ֣דּ ֶשׁן ֵבּ‬ ‫והיו״ד ָה ִראשׁוֹנָ ה ֶשׁ ַמּ ְשׁ ָמ ָעהּ ְלשׁוֹן ָע ִתיד ַכְּך ָפּ ְר ֵשׁהוּ׃ ֻט ְבּעוּ ְביַ ם‬   ‫אוֹתן‬ ָ ‫יכסּוּ‬ ַ ִ‫סוּף ְכּ ֵדי ֶשׁיַּ ְחזְ רוּ ַה ַמּיִ ם ו‬

346

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Translation and Explanation of Rashi Like ‫יְכסּוּם‬ ַ (Piel imperf. 3 m.pl. + sf. 3 m.pl. ‘they will cover them’, ‫)כסה‬ and the middle yod is superfluous; this is typical of Biblical Hebrew, like: Deut 8:13: ‘your cattle and your sheep will multiply’ ( ‫ יִ ְרבּוּ = יִ ְר ְבּ ֻ֔ין‬Qal imperf. 3 m.pl. ‫ ָר ָבה‬but has retained the archaic yod and also has paragogic nun), and Psalm 36:9: “they are abundantly satisfied with the fatness of Your house” (‫יִ ְרווּ = ִי ְ֭רוְ יֻ ן‬, Qal imperf. 3 m.pl. ‫רוה‬, but has retained the archaic yod and also has pargogic nun). And as for the first yod (i.e. the fact that the verb is imperf.) explain it thus: ‘they were sunk in the Reed Sea in order that the waters should return and cover them’. (i.e. Rashi has joined the beginning of v 5 to the end of v 4 in a relation of effect and cause; this accords with the notion that biblical Hebrew poetry is characterized by terseness, which leads to ellipsis of thematic connections, and consequently, Rashi makes explicit the thematic connection which is not expressed in the biblical text in actual words). (Rashi’s explanation also accounts for the fact that ‫יְכ ְס ֻי ֑מוּ‬ ַ is imperf. while all the other verbs in vv 4-5 are perf. – ‫יָ ָרה‬ ‫) ֻט ְבּעוּ יָ ְרדוּ‬.

Exodus 15:6

‫יְמינְ ָך֣ ײ נֶ ְא ָדּ ִ ֖רי ַבּ ֑כֹּ ַח‬ ִֽ ‫אוֹיֽב׃‬ ֵ ‫יְמינְ ָך֥ ײ ִתּ ְר ַ ֥עץ‬ ִֽ Your right hand, O Lord, glorious in strength, Your right hand, O Lord, crushes (the) enemy.

‫נֶ ְא ָדּ ִ ֖רי‬

Niphal part. m.sg. ‫‘ אדר‬majestic, glorious’; for the ḥireq compaginis, see above, Part Five of this book. Note the preposition inserted between the cstr. state and its genitive (‫‘ נֶ ְא ָדּ ִ ֖רי ַבּ ֑כֹּ ַח‬glorious in strength’).

‫ָר ַעץ‬

‘shatter’ (only Exod 15:6 and Judges 10:8)

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE

347

‫יָמין‬ ִ n.f. ‘right hand’ (also n.m. see Ezekiel 2:9) The words ‫ַבּ ֑כֹּ ַח‬

‫ נֶ ְא ָדּ ִ ֖רי‬could be taken in two possible ways:

(i) as addressed to G-d > ‘Your right hand, O Lord, You who are glorious in power, Your right hand, O Lord, shatters (the) enemy’. (This is the view of Ibn Ezra and it accords with a pattern of repetitive parallelism found elsewhere, e.g. Psalm 92:10; 93:3; 94:3).

ֽ ִ ‘your right hand’, since (ii) alternatively, ‫ נֶ ְא ָדּ ִ ֖רי ַבּ ֑כֹּ ַח‬refers back to ֣‫יְמינְ ָך‬ ‫יָמין‬ ִ is also found as masculine (Ezekiel 2:9), i.e. ‘Your right hand, O Lord, is glorious in power, Your right hand, O Lord, shatters (the) enemy’. Exodus 15:7

֖‫וּב ֥ר ֹב גְּ אוֹנְ ָך‬ ְ ‫ַתּ ֲה ֣ר ֹס ָק ֶ ֑מיָך‬ ‫ְתּ ַשׁ ַלּ ֙ח ֲח ֣ר ֹנְ ָ֔ך‬ ‫אכ ֵל֖מוֹ ַכּ ַ ֽקּשׁ׃‬ ְ ֹ‫י‬ And in the greatness of Your majesty, You overthrew those who rose up against You, You sent forth Your burning anger, it consumed them like stubble. Note the assonance created by the repetition of ‫ָך‬, perhaps drawing attention to G-d’s supreme power. Note also use of imperf. in all the verbs to express repetition and continuity, and use of the rare suffix form ‫ ֵ◌מוֹ‬in ‫אכ ֵל֖מוֹ‬ ְ ֹ ‫אכ ֵלם = י‬ ְ ֹ ‫( י‬imperf. 3 m.sg. + sf. 3 m.pl.) (GK 58g). ‫ָחרוֹן > ָח ָרה‬ n.m. = ‘burning (of anger)’; ‫ ַקשׁ‬n.m. = ‘stubble’; ‫‘ = ָה ַרס‬throw down, break, tear down’.

348

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Exodus 15:8

‫וּח ַא ֙ ֶפּ ֙יָך ֶנ ֶ֣ע ְרמוּ ַ֔מיִ ם‬ ַ ‫וּב ֤ר‬ ְ ‫מוֹ־נ֖ד נֹזְ ִ ֑לים‬ ֵ ‫נִ ְצּ ֥בוּ ְכ‬ ‫ב־יֽם׃‬ ָ ‫מת ְבּ ֶל‬ ֹ ֖ ֹ‫ָ ֽק ְפ ֥אוּ ְתה‬ And with the breath of Your nostrils the waters were piled up, the floods stood upright like a heap, the depths congealed in the heart of the sea.

‫ > ָע ַרם‬Niphal: ‘be heaped up’; ‫ נֵ ד‬n.m. ‘heap’ (of waters); ‫ > נָ ַצב‬Niphal perf. ‫‘ נִ ְצּ ֥בו‬stood upright’; ‫ > נָ זַ ל‬Qal part. ‫‘ = נֹזְ ִ ֑לים‬waters, floods’; ‫= ָק ָפא‬ ‘thicken, congeal’.

Exodus 15:9

‫אוֹי֛ב ֶא ְר ֥דּ ֹף ַא ִ ֖שּׂיג ֲא ַח ֵלּ֣ק ָשׁ ָל֑ל‬ ֵ ‫ָא ַ ֥מר‬ ‫ישׁמוֹ יָ ִ ֽדי׃‬ ֖ ֵ ‫תּוֹר‬ ִ ‫ִתּ ְמ ָל ֵ ֣אמוֹ נַ ְפ ִ֔שׁי ָא ִ ֣ריק ַח ְר ִ֔בּי‬ The enemy said, ‘I will pursue, I will overtake, I will divide (the) spoil; my appetite will be full of them, I will draw (lit. empty out) my sword, my hand will dispossess (destroy) them’. Note alliteration of letter ’aleph (‫שּׂיג ֲא ַח ֵלּ֣ק‬ ֖ ִ ‫אוֹי֛ב ֶא ְר ֥דּ ֹף ַא‬ ֵ ‫ ) ָא ַ ֥מר‬and three parallel clauses all ending in ‫)נַ ְפ ִ֔שׁי ַח ְר ִ֔בּי יָ ִ ֽדי( ִ◌י‬. Note also two ֣ ֵ ‫ ִתּ ְמ ָל‬Qal imperf. + sf. 3 m.pl. ‫; ָמ ֵלא‬ occurrences of the ‫ מוֹ‬ending: ‫אמוֹ‬ ‫ישׁמוֹ‬ ֖ ֵ ‫תּוֹר‬ ִ Hiphil imperf. 3 f.sg. + sf. 3 m.pl. ‫ירשׁ‬.

‫ > ִריק‬Hiphil = ‘empty out’; ‫ > נשׂג‬Hiphil = ‘reach, overtake’ Exodus 15:10

‫רוּחָך֖ ִכּ ָ ֣סּמוֹ ָי֑ם‬ ֲ ‫נָ ַ ֥שׁ ְפ ָתּ ְב‬

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE

349

‫עוֹפ ֶרת ְבּ ַ ֖מיִם ַא ִדּ ִ ֽירים׃‬ ֶ ֔ ‫ָ ֽצ ֲל ֙לוּ ַ ֽכּ‬ You blew with Your wind, (the) sea covered them, they sunk like lead in the mighty waters. Note ‫ מוֹ‬ending on ‫סּמוֹ‬ ֣ ָ ‫(‘ ִכּ‬it) covered them; Piel perf. 3 m.sg. + sf. 3 m.pl. ‫כסה‬.

‫עוֹפ ֶרת‬ ֶ ֔ n.m. = ‘lead’. Exodus 15:11

‫מ ָכה ָ ֽבּ ֵא ִל ֙ם ײ‬ ֹ ֤ ‫י־כ‬ ָ ‫ִ ֽמ‬ ‫מ ָכה נֶ ְא ָ ֣דּר ַבּ ֑קֹּ ֶדשׁ‬ ֹ ֖ ‫ִ ֥מי ָכּ‬ ‫נוֹרא ְת ִה ֹּ֖לת ֥ע ֹ ֵשׂה ֶ ֽפ ֶלא׃‬ ָ֥ Who is like You, O Lord, among the gods? Who is like You, majestic in holiness? Fearful in praises, doing wonders. (‫נוֹרא‬ ָ > Niphal participle, ‫)יָ ֵרא‬. Notice the repetition (‫ָכּמ ָֹכה‬

‫ ָכמ ָֹכה ִמי‬-‫) ִמי‬, typical of ‘poetry’.

Exodus 15:12

‫יְמינְ ָ֔ך ִתּ ְב ָל ֵ ֖עמוֹ ָ ֽא ֶרץ׃‬ ֣ ִ ‫ית‬ ָ֙ ‫נָ ִ֙ט‬ You stretched out Your right hand, the earth swallowed them.

ָ֙ ‫ נָ ִ֙ט‬is perf. (Qal ‫)נטה‬, while ‫ ִתּ ְב ָל ֵ ֖עמוֹ‬is imperf. (Qal ‫ בלע‬+ Note that ‫ית‬ sf. 3 m.pl. rare form, ‫)מוֹ‬, demonstrating the customary variation of tenses in ‘poetry’. See GK 107d: “Also those actions etc which might be regarded in themselves as single or even momentary are, as it were, broken up by the imper-

350

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

fect into their component parts, and so pictured as gradually completing themselves. Hence, ‫עמוֹ‬ ֖ ֵ ‫ ִתּ ְב ָל‬represents the Egyptians in a vivid, poetic description, as being swallowed up one after another.”

Exodus 15:13

‫ית ְב ַח ְס ְדָּך֖ ַעם־ז֣ וּ גָּ ָ ֑א ְל ָתּ נֵ ַ ֥ה ְל ָתּ ְב ָעזְּ ָך֖ ֶאל־נְ ֵו֥ה ָק ְד ֶ ֽשָׁך׃‬ ָ ‫נָ ִ ֥ח‬ You, in Your mercy, have led (the) people whom You have redeemed, You have guided (them) in Your strength to Your holy habitation. Comment of Ibn Ezra on ‫ית‬ ָ ‫נָ ִ ֥ח‬

‫וּכ ָבר‬ ְ ,‫ית ְב ַח ְס ְדָּך׃ ַעל ַדּ ַעת ָכּל ַה ְמּ ָפ ְר ִשׁים ֶשׁהוּא ָדּ ָבר ָע ִתיד‬ ָ ‫נָ ִח‬ ִ ‫ִהזְ ַכּ ְר ִתּי ָל ָמה יְ ַד ְבּרוּ ַהנְּ ִב‬ ‫ וְ ַה ַטּ ַעם‬.‫יאים ִבּ ְלשׁוֹן ָע ָבר ַתּ ַחת ָע ִתיד‬ ‫ וְ ַהנָּ כוֹן‬.‫קוֹדשׁ‬ ֶ ‫רוּשׁ ַליִ ם ֶשׁהוּא נְ וֵ ה‬ ָ ְ‫יאם ֶאל י‬ ֵ ‫ֶשׁ ַה ֵשּׁם יַ נְ ֵחם ַעד ֶשׁיְּ ִב‬ ‫קּוֹדשׁ הוּא ַהר ִסינַ י ֶשׁ ָשּׁם יַ ַע ְבדוּ ֵאת ַה ֵשּׁם וְ ָשׁם נִ ְתּנָ ה‬ ֶ ‫ְבּ ֵעינַ י ֶשׁנְּ וֵ ה ַה‬ ‫תּוֹרה ְליִ ְשׂ ָר ֵאל‬ ָ Translation of Ibn Ezra You have led/will lead in Your lovingkindness: it is the opinion of all the commentators that this verb refers to the future, and I have already mentioned why the Prophets use the perfect to refer to the future. The meaning here is that G-d will guide them until He brings them to Jerusalem, which is the Holy Habitation. And it is correct in my eyes that the Holy Habitation is Mount Sinai, where they will serve G-d, and there the Torah was given to Israel.

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE

351

Explanation of Ibn Ezra’s comment Ibn Ezra has clearly understood the verb ‫ית‬ ָ ‫( נָ ִח‬Qal perf. 2 m.sg. ‫= נחה‬ ‘lead, guide’) as a Prophetic Perfect, which is characteristic of prophetic, elevated style. Note also: ‫א ְל ָתּ‬ ֑ ָ ָ‫“ ַעם־ז֣ וּ גּ‬the people whom You have redeemed”; see BDB p 262 and GK 138g. ‫ זוּ‬is a pronoun used in ‘poetic’ language; it can be: (i)

a demonstrative. e.g. Habakkuk 1:11: ‫כֹּחוֹ‬

‫‘ זוּ‬this his strength’

(ii) a relative. e.g. Exod 15:13 (here) and Exod 15:16: ‘the people whom You have acquired’ ‫ית‬ ָ ‫עם־ז֥ וּ ָק ִ ֽנ‬.ַ See also: Isaiah 42:24. See also Seow p 157, 1b: “The relative particle ‫ ֲא ֶשׁר‬is absent from the oldest poetic texts and is uncommon in standard poetry. Instead, one finds asyndetic (unmarked) relative clauses, and ‫ זוּ זוֹ זֶ ה‬used in its place”. e.g. Psalm 74:2: ‫ר־ציּ֗ וֹן ֶז֤ה ׀ ָשׁ ַ֬כנְ ָתּ ֽבּוֹ‬ ִ֝ ‫‘ ַה‬Mount Zion wherein You dwell’. (‫ )נהל‬in Piel: lead, guide (to a watering-place) > perf. 2 m.sg. ‫ – נֵ ַ ֥ה ְל ָתּ‬here, ָ ‫ נָ ִח‬and therefore also prophetic perfect. parallel to ‫ית‬

Exodus 15:14

‫ָ ֽשׁ ְמ ֥עוּ ַע ִ ֖מּים יִ ְרגָּ ז֑ וּן‬ ‫ִ ֣חיל ָא ַ֔חז י ְֹשׁ ֵ ֖בי ְפּ ָ ֽל ֶשׁת׃‬ The people heard and quaked, trembling took hold of the inhabitants of Philistia.

‫ ִחיל‬n.m. ‫ָרגַ ז‬

writhing, anguish

be agitated, quiver, quake > ‫( יִ ְרגָּ ז֑ וּן‬Qal imperf. 3 m.pl. + paragogic nun; see above and GK 47m; JM 44e,f.). Note retention of pausal

352

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

vowel in second syllable. tenses, ‫שׁ ְמ ֥עוּ‬ ֽ ָ ‫יִ ְרגָּ ז֑ וּן‬

‫ יִ ְרגָּ זוּן > יִ ְרגָּ זוּ > יִ ְרגְּ זוּ‬Note also variation of

Exodus 15:15

‫לּוּפ֣י ֱא ֔דוֹם‬ ֵ ‫ָ ֤אז נִ ְב ֲה ֙לוּ ַא‬ ‫אח ֵז֖מוֹ ָ ֑ר ַעד‬ ֲ ֹ ֽ‫מוֹאב י‬ ָ֔ ‫ֵא ֵיל֣י‬ ‫מגוּ ֖כֹּל י ְֹשׁ ֵ ֥בי ְכ ָנ ַֽען׃‬ ֹ ֕ ָ‫נ‬ Then the chiefs of Edom were terrified, the leaders of Moab, trembling took hold of them, all the inhabitants of Canaan melted away. Note variation of tenses: ‫לוּ‬ ֙ ‫( נִ ְב ֲה‬Niphal perf. ‫מגוּ ;)אחז‬ ֹ ֕ ָ‫( נ‬Niphal perf. ‫)מוג‬.

‫אח ֵז֖מוֹ ;)בהל‬ ֲ ֹ ֽ‫( י‬Qal imperf.

ֲ ֹ ֽ‫ = י‬lit. ‘it will take hold of them’. Note also rare suffix form ‫ מוֹ‬on ‫אח ֵז֖מוֹ‬ ‫ָ ֤אז נִ ְב ֲה ֙לוּ‬

see GK 107c for ‫ ָאז‬+ perf. (see note on ‫ ָאז‬in Part Four of this book, use of imperf. in sphere of past time).

‫אח ֵז֖מוֹ ָ ֑ר ַעד‬ ֲ ֹ ֽ‫מוֹאב י‬ ָ֔ ‫ֵא ֵיל֣י‬

Note use of extrapolation; instead of

‫מוֹאב‬ ָ ‫אחז ֵאי ֵלי‬ ֵ ֹ ‫‘ ַר ַעד י‬trembling took hold of the leaders of Moab’ i.e. subject + verb + object, the text has first the extrapolated object (‫מוֹאב‬ ָ֔ ‫ ) ֵא ֵיל֣י‬followed by verb + suffix (referring back to the extrapolated object) followed by subject. The ֵ ‫ ַא‬and ‫מוֹאב‬ ָ֔ ‫ ֵא ֵיל֣י‬. effect is to juxtapose ‫לּוּפ֣י ֱא ֔דוֹם‬

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE

353

Finally in 15:15, note the climactic ascent in the parallel structure, plus the ellipsis of the thematic connection (compare 15:5). “Not only were the chiefs of Edom terrified, but even the leaders of Moab trembled, in fact, all the inhabitants of Canaan melted away.”

Exodus 15:16

‫ימ ָת ֙ה וָ ֔ ַפ ַחד‬ ָ֙ ‫יהם ֵא‬ ֤ ֶ ‫ִתּ ֨ ֹפּל ֲע ֵל‬ ‫רוֹעָך֖ יִ ְדּ ֣מוּ ָכּ ָ ֑א ֶבן‬ ֲ ְ‫ִבּגְ ֥ד ֹל ז‬ ‫ַעד־יַ ֲע ֤בֹר ַע ְמּ ָ֙ך ײ‬ ‫ית׃‬ ָ ‫ַ ֽעד־יַ ֲע ֖בֹר ַעם־ז֥ וּ ָק ִ ֽנ‬ Fear and dread will fall upon them, in the greatness of Your arm they will be silent like stone, until, O Lord, Your people pass, until the people pass, whom You have acquired For the form ‫ימ ָת ֙ה‬ ָ֙ ‫‘ ֵא‬fear, terror’, see JM 93c-i: Paragogic vowel ‫ ָ֫◌ה‬.“This unstressed vowel, formerly thought to be a vestige of the old determinate accusative, is no longer so considered in the light of Ugaritic, which also attests to a form such as arsh “to the ground”, where the final letter is not a mater lectionis, but a consonant. It is mainly used to indicate direction towards, or destination to, a place.” (93c) “Sometimes the ‫ ָה‬no longer has its original force; its use is purely rhythmic. In poetry sometimes it could have been used out of metrical necessity:—This is rather frequent

354

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

in the feminine, where we have the ending ‫ ָָתה‬. In some cases this form seems to have been chosen to avoid the contact of two stressed syllables:— ָ֙ ‫ ֵא‬from the fem. noun ‫ימה‬ ָ ‫ ֵא‬. (see also GK 90c.” (93i) as in ‫ימ ָת ֙ה וָ ֔ ַפ ַחד‬ g). Compare, e.g. ‫‘ ֶעזְ ָ ֣ר ָתה‬help’ (= ‫( ) ֶעזְ ָרה‬Ps 44:27); ‫שׁוּע ָתה‬ ָ ֔ ְ‫‘ י‬salvation’ (= ‫שׁוּעה‬ ָ ְ‫( )י‬Ps 3:3) Note the repetition: ‫ַ ֽעד־יַ ֲע ֖בֹר— ַעד־יַ ֲע ֤בֹר‬ The Song of the Sea divides naturally into three sections: vv 1-6; vv 7-11; vv 12-16 + conclusion, vv 17-18. A repetition marks the conclusion of each section: v6

‫יְמינְ ָך ײ‬ ִ —‫יְמינְ ָך ײ‬ ִ

v 11

‫ִמי ָכמ ָֹכה— ִמי ָכמ ָֹכה‬

v 16

‫ַ ֽעד־יַ ֲע ֖בֹר— ַ ֽעד־יַ ֲע ֖בֹר‬

And there is a simile before each repetition, exhibiting parallelism of thought. v5

‫ ָא ֶבן‬-‫ְכּמוֹ‬

‘like stone’

v 10

‫עוֹפ ֶרת‬ ֶ ‫ַכּ‬

‘like lead’

v 16

‫ָכּ ָא ֶבן‬

‘like stone’

Exodus 15:17

‫ְתּ ִב ֵ֗אמוֹ וְ ִת ָטּ ֙ ֵעמוֹ֙ ְבּ ַ ֣הר נַ ֲח ָ ֽל ְת ָ֔ך‬ ‫ָמ ֧כוֹן ְל ִשׁ ְב ְתָּך֛ ָפּ ַ ֖ע ְל ָתּ ײ‬ ‫ִמ ְקּ ָ ֕דשׁ ײ כּוֹנְ נ֥ וּ יָ ֶ ֽדיָך׃‬

PART FIVE: POETIC HEBREW/ELEVATED STYLE

355

You will bring them in and You will plant them in the mountain of Your inheritance, (in) (the) establishment, O Lord, (which) You have made for Your dwelling, (in) (the) Sanctuary, O Lord, (which) Your hands have established. Note that the relative pronoun (‘which’, ‫ ) ֲא ֶשׁר‬and the definite article (‘the’) have to be supplied in translation; their omission is characteristic of biblical Hebrew poetry. RASHI’s comments on this verse supply the word ‫ ֲא ֶשׁר‬twice, as follows:

‫ָמכוֹן ְל ִשׁ ְב ְתָּך׃ ִמ ְק ָדּשׁ ֶשׁל ַמ ָטּה ְמ ֻכוָּ ן ְכּנֶ גֶ ד ִכּ ֵסּא ֶשׁל ַמ ְע ָלה ֲא ֶשׁר‬ .‫ָפּ ַע ְל ָתּ‬ ‫ִמ ְ֕קּ ָדשׁ ײ׃ ַה ַטּ ַעם ָע ָליו זָ ֵקף גָּ דוֹל ְל ַה ְפ ִרידוֹ ִמ ֵתּ ַיבת ַה ֵשּׁם ֶשׁ ְלּ ַא ֲח ָריו‬ ‫ַה ִמּ ְקּ ָדשׁ ֲא ֶשׁר כּוֹנְ נוּ יָ ֶדיָך ײ׃‬ Translation of Rashi The Sanctuary below is placed exactly opposite (‫ ) ְמ ֻכוָּ ן ְכּנֶ גֶ ד‬the (Divine) Throne above, which (‫ ) ֲא ֶשׁר‬You have made. The accent on the word ‫ ִמ ְקּ ָ ֕דשׁ‬is zakeph gadol, to separate it from the Divine Name after it. i.e. The Sanctuary which (‫ ) ֲא ֶשׁר‬Your hands have established, O Lord. Explanation of Rashi Rashi takes ‫ ָמכוֹן‬as ‫( ְמ ֻכוָּ ן‬exactly opposite), referring to ‘the mountain of Your inheritance’ ‫ ַהר נַ ֲח ָל ְתָך‬i.e. Mt Moriah, the site of the Temple, which is exactly opposite G-d’s dwelling on High (‫ ) ְל ִשׁ ְב ְתָּך‬which (to be supplied) ‘You (G-d) have made’ (‫) ָפּ ַע ְל ָתּ‬. Rashi notes that the accent on the word ‫ ִמ ְקּ ָ ֕דשׁ‬is disjunctive, meaning that ‫ ִמ ְקּ ָ ֕דשׁ‬is not in cstr. state (indicated also by qamets under the dalet, not

356

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

pataḥ) and therefore the sense is not ‘the sanctuary of the Lord’, but ‘Lord’ is vocative (‘O Lord’) and one must supply the relative pronoun ‫ ֲא ֶשׁר‬before ‫כּוֹנְ נוּ‬.

‫ְתּ ִב ֵ֗אמוֹ‬

Hiphil imperf. 2 m.sg. ‫ בוא‬+ rare sf. form 3 m.pl.

֙‫וְ ִת ָטּ ֙ ֵעמוֹ‬

Qal imperf. 2 m.sg. ‫ נטע‬+ rare sf. form 3 m.pl. + vav conj.

Note the dagesh forte dirimens in the koph of more audible” (GK 20h)

‫“ ִמ ְקּ ָ ֕דשׁ‬to make the sheva

BIBLIOGRAPHY Driver, G. R. Canaanite Myths and Legends (Edinburgh: T & T Clark, 1956). Alter, Robert The Art of Biblical Poetry. (New York, Basic Books Inc. 1985). Brown, F. Driver, S.R. Briggs, C.A. A Hebrew and English Lexicon of the Old Testament. (Oxford, Clarendon Press, 1951). (BDB). Chomsky, William, David Kimhi’s Hebrew Grammar (Mikhlol) systematically presented and critically annotated. (New York, Dropsie College for Hebrew and Cognate Learning, Bloch Publishing Company, 1952). Davidson, A.B. Hebrew Syntax 3rd edition. (Edinburgh, T & T Clark, 1901). Davidson A.B. An Introductory Hebrew Grammar. Twenty-fourth edition. Revised by John McFadyen. (Edinburgh, T & T Clark, 1932). Driver, S.R. A Treatise on the Use of Tenses in Hebrew and Some Other Syntactical Questions, edition with new Introduction by W. Randall Garr (Eerdmans Publishing Co. 1998). Fernandez, M.P. An Introductory Grammar of Rabbinic Hebrew. Translated by John Elwolde. (Brill, 1999). Gesenius, W. Hebrew Grammar. As edited and enlarged by the late E. Kautzsch. Second English Edition. Revised in accordance with the twenty-eighth German edition by A.E. Cowley. (Oxford, the Clarendon Press, 1910. (GK). Gibson, J.C.L. Davidson’s Introductory Hebrew Grammar – Syntax. Fourth Edition. (Edinburgh, T & T Clark, 1994). Gillingham, S.E. The Poems and Psalms of the Hebrew Bible. (Oxford University Press, 1994).

357

358

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Hertz, J.H. ed. The Pentateuch and Haftorahs. Hebrew text, English translation and commentary. Second Edition. (London, Soncino Press, 1969). Hirsch, H. Literary History of Hebrew Grammarians and Lexicographers. (London, Humphrey Milford, Oxford University Press. 1926). Jouon, P.S. A Grammar of Biblical Hebrew. 2 Volumes. Translated and Revised by T.Muraoka. (Roma, Subsidia Biblica – 14/1. Editrice Pontificio Istituto Biblico. 1996.) (JM). Kelley, Page H. Biblical Hebrew, An Introductory Grammar. (Grand Rapids, Michigan, William B Eerdmans Publishing Co. 1992). Kugel, James L. The Idea of Biblical Poetry. Parallelism and Its History. (Yale University Press, 1981). Lambdin, T.O. Introduction to Biblical Hebrew. (London, Darton, Longman and Todd, 1973). Martin, James D. Davidson’s Introductory Hebrew Grammar. Twentyseventh edition. (Continuum, T & T Clark. 1993). Pratico, Gary D. and Van Pelt, Miles V. Basics of Biblical Hebrew Grammar. (Grand Rapids, Michigan, Zondervan, 2001, 2007). Sarna, N.M. ‘Hebrew and Bible Studies in Medieval Spain’ in The Sephardi Heritage. Essays on the History and Cultural Contribution of the Jews of Spain and Portugal. ed. Barnett R.D. vol. I: The Jews in Spain and Portugal before and after the Expulsion of 1492: 323-366. (London, Vallentine, Mitchell 1964). Sarna, N.M. The JPS Torah Commentary Exodus. The Traditional Hebrew Text with the new JPS Translation. Commentary by Nahum M Sarna. (Philadelphia, The Jewish Publication Society. 1991). Segal, M.H. A Grammar of Mishnaic Hebrew. (Oxford, Clarendon Press. 1926). Seow, C.L. A Grammar for Biblical Hebrew. Revised Ed. (Nashville, Abingdon Press, 1995).

BIBLIOGRAPHY

359

Siebesma, P.A. The Function of Niphal in Biblical Hebrew. (Studia Semitica Neerlandica. Van Gorcum. 1991). Silbermann, A.M. ed. Rosenbaum, M. Pentateuch with Targum Onkelos, Haphtaroth and Rashi’s Commentary, translated into English and annotated. 5 vols. (Jerusalem, the Silbermann Family by arrangement with Routledge & Kegan Paul Ltd. 1929). Waltke, Bruce K. O’Connor, Michael. An Introduction to Biblical Hebrew Syntax. (Winona Lake, Ind. Eisenbrauns. 1990). (WHG). Weingreen, J. A Practical Grammar for Classical Hebrew. Second Edition. (Oxford, Clarendon Press. 1959). (WHG).

INDEX accent (conjunctive, disjunctive, retraction of), 72, 73, 148, 154, 157, 201, 314, 355 Accusative (object), 52, 58, 81, 89, 90, 116, 117, 119, 120, 125, 134, 137, 138, 142, 145, 158, 163, 178, 186, 187, 188, 199, 200, 205, 320, 332, 352 Amidah, 156 Amos, 20, 22, 23, 26, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 42, 64, 65, 69, 73, 169, 196, 225 Aphel, 89 Arabic, 67, 158, 159, 160, 336 Aramaic, 30, 55, 89, 93, 158, 229, 336, 344 Brown, Driver, Briggs (BDB), ix, 31, 36, 37, 42, 56, 58, 59, 95, 100, 119, 120, 122, 130, 143, 180, 181, 182, 187, 228, 230, 231, 236, 267, 268, 270, 271, 273, 274, 290, 325, 343, 345, 351, 357 Case-endings, 331 causal clause, 188, 190, 254, 255, 256, 257, 258 Causative, 49, 109 Chiasmus/chiastic structure, 237, 238, 239, 240, 247 Chomsky, 33, 155, 156, 357 Christian France, 67 Cohortative, 221, 222 compensatory lengthening, 25, 73, 74, 92, 137, 179 Completed action, 276, 277 Continuity/continuance, 179, 180, 206, 303 Contrast/contrastive, 84, 100, 142, 145, 238, 246, 281

dagesh (weak, strong, forte, dirimens), 25, 58, 59, 72, 73, 74, 76, 87, 92, 120, 137, 143, 144, 150, 151, 179, 260, 261, 263, 264, 322, 330, 356 Davidson, 50, 111, 188, 204, 312, 357, 358 Declarative, 80, 85, 110 Denominative, 85 Dictionary, 160 Durative action, 291 Ecclesiastes, 35, 36, 45, 47, 80, 135, 172, 184, 227, 228 Ellipsis/elliptical, 185, 218, 343 Esther, 39, 40, 70, 75, 79, 93, 121, 173, 196, 232 Estimative, 85 Ezekiel, 22, 30, 63, 121, 151, 347 Factitive, 79, 85 final root letter, 109 first root letter, 25, 26, 56, 59, 75, 129, 140, 143 Frequentative action, 302 Genitive, 199, 200 Gerundial, 196 Gerundive, 194, 203 GK (Gesenius), ix, 27, 29, 30, 33, 40, 41, 55, 61, 62, 63, 74, 76, 78, 81, 82, 87, 91, 93, 99, 111, 113, 116, 125, 126, 129, 130, 138, 140, 142, 145, 147, 149, 150, 152, 154, 155, 178, 181, 185, 204, 210, 213, 214, 217, 218, 234, 241, 260, 261, 263, 264, 265, 267, 274, 277, 280, 281, 282, 283, 284, 285, 287, 288, 310, 322, 325, 328, 330, 331, 332, 335, 336, 338, 342, 344, 345, 347, 349, 351, 352, 354, 356, 357 Hammershaimb, E., 183

361

362

FURTHER BIBLICAL HEBREW

Ḥayyūj, Judah ibn, 67, 158 Hey interrogative, 260, 261, 263, 264 Hiphil imperative, 107, 108, 211 Hiphil imperfect, 107, 119, 126 Hiphil participle, 114, 119, 125 Hithpael imperative, 131, 147 Hithpael imperfect, 129, 130, 131, 137, 139, 140, 142, 145 Hithpael participle, 129, 130, 144, 148 Hithpael perfect, 40, 130, 137 Hithpolel, 92, 93, 148 holem, 337 Hophal imperfects/imperfects of hophal, 152 Hosea, 16, 23, 31, 33, 103, 105, 107, 109, 174, 189, 212, 218, 219, 282, 302 Ibn Barun, 156, 160 Ibn Ezra (Abraham), 36, 56, 57, 60, 62, 65, 66, 86, 87, 90, 91, 116, 117, 118, 119, 121, 124, 125, 139, 141, 143, 147, 150, 153, 156, 157, 158, 159, 160, 206, 207, 208, 212, 213, 214, 218, 219, 298, 299, 300, 301, 302, 303, 305, 306, 307, 308, 309, 340, 341, 342, 343, 344, 347, 350, 351 Imperfect, 105, 275, 284, 327, 340 infinitive absolute, 42, 60, 63, 64, 75, 77, 108, 177, 178, 179, 180, 181, 182, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 207, 208, 209, 210, 211, 212, 218, 219, 232, 233, 261, 294, 302, 324, 340 infinitive construct, 40, 58, 66, 77, 85, 87, 95, 96, 108, 112, 115, 146, 181, 200, 201, 202, 203, 204, 205, 206, 209, 210, 213, 215, 216, 217, 219, 221, 224, 227, 228, 229, 230, 255, 256 Intensive, 77, 84 Inwardly transitive, 111 Isaiah, 17, 24, 26, 32, 42, 44, 45, 46, 47, 61, 66, 70, 74, 76, 82, 90, 94,

95, 96, 97, 98, 100, 101, 106, 111, 113, 123, 124, 125, 126, 134, 136, 138, 147, 149, 157, 161, 169, 176, 183, 190, 193, 195, 208, 211, 212, 213, 233, 247, 281, 282, 283, 290, 298, 301, 302, 309, 312, 313, 333, 334, 338, 342, 351 Isaiah of Trani, 125, 126 Ithpael, 55 Janaḥ, Jonah ibn, 159 Jeremiah, 16, 17, 19, 25, 27, 28, 33, 34, 35, 36, 39, 40, 58, 62, 63, 75, 114, 128, 130, 150, 165, 168, 172, 173, 174, 175, 192, 193, 232, 234, 235, 251, 280, 314, 324, 333, 342 JM (Jouon/Muraoka), ix, 72, 79, 81, 84, 106, 149, 154, 156, 163, 180, 187, 210, 255, 261, 278, 279, 282, 284, 285, 286, 287, 289, 310, 331, 332, 334, 335, 336, 338, 351, 353, 358 Job, 50, 84, 85, 113, 117, 127, 130, 134, 137, 150, 151, 194, 259, 267, 286, 303 Joseph Kara, 159, 229 Jussive, 105, 314 Keri, 120, 138 Ketiv, 120 Lambdin, 52, 79, 85, 123, 133, 134, 137, 145, 358 Lamed, 75, 76 Lamed-hey, 75, 76 Lamentations, 39, 40, 44, 66, 102, 104, 108, 109, 333 maqqef, 72, 201, 205 medieval scholars, ix, 52, 85, 115, 116, 133, 137, 138, 139, 149, 155, 158, 206, 296, 340, 341 Metathesis, 147 Micah, 24, 32, 41, 65, 127, 129, 290 middle root letter, 26, 58, 72, 73, 74, 76, 87, 92, 93, 137, 143, 150 negative purpose, 205, 221, 228 Negative purpose, 228

INDEX Niphal, 15 Niphal imperative, 28, 29, 58, 59, 63 Niphal imperfect, 120 Niphal infinitive absolute, 27 Niphal infinitive construct, 27 Niphal participle, 26, 27, 28, 31, 32, 40, 48, 67, 185, 349 Niphal perfect, 26, 62 Nithpael, 54, 140 Nun (energic, paragogic), 74, 322, 323, 325, 336, 338, 344 Old French, 55, 157 Parallelism (of clauses), 322, 340, 347, 354 Passive, 47, 48, 155, 156 patach/patah (hateph, furtive), 155 pause (pausal vowel), 72, 232, 322, 336, 337, 338, 352 Perfect, 72, 275, 276, 280, 283, 297, 298, 310, 326, 351 permissive hiphil, 123 Piel imperative, 74 Piel infinitive construct, 87, 137 Piel participle, 35, 36, 74, 76, 84, 85, 88, 151 Piel perfect, 26, 80 Poetic Hebrew, 319 Polal, 92, 93 Polel, 76, 92, 93, 97, 99, 100, 295, 324, 344 Privative, 81 Pual perfect/perfects of pual, 149, 155 Purpose, 188 Qal imperative, 34, 187 Qal infinitive absolute, 92 Qal passive, 66, 152, 154, 155 qamets (hateph), 25, 40, 41, 73, 92, 99, 100, 137, 143, 149, 150, 154,

363 155, 200, 205, 209, 210, 219, 261, 337, 342, 343, 355 Qatal, 275, 276, 286, 287 qibbus, 343 Radak (David Kimhi), 33, 61, 63, 64, 65, 66, 124, 125, 145, 146, 155, 157, 160, 210, 298, 299, 300 Ramban (Nahmanides), 161, 342 Rashbam, 58, 59, 159 Rashi, 53, 54, 55, 56, 57, 58, 59, 60, 62, 63, 64, 65, 67, 86, 88, 89, 92, 120, 122, 123, 124, 133, 136, 137, 140, 141, 142, 144, 148, 157, 159, 160, 206, 207, 208, 209, 210, 211, 214, 215, 216, 217, 245, 246, 273, 296, 297, 298, 302, 303, 304, 305, 306, 307, 309, 310, 341, 342, 343, 345, 346, 355, 359 Reciprocal, 45, 132 Reflexive, 43, 131, 133, 137, 144, 145 Repeated action, 291 Rubinstein, A., 182, 183, 184 Ruth, 39, 40, 49, 199, 338 Saruq, Menaḥem ibn, 67, 158 segol, 25, 72, 73, 201, 261, 322 Shadal (Luzzatto), 157, 161 Siebesma, 50, 51, 359 Song of Deborah, 319 Targum, 55, 57, 89, 246, 344, 359 third root letter, 40, 59, 93, 200 Tolerative, 45, 62, 63, 64 triconsonantal, 67, 158, 159 tsere, 25, 58, 59, 72, 73, 74, 92, 201, 322 Ugaritic, 336, 353 Vav (consonantal, medial, conjunction, conjunctive, consecutive), 185, 221, 222 virtual doubling, 26, 74, 92 Yiqtol, 185, 275, 284, 286, 287, 299