tsere hinting to a hireq

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Isaac Fried
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tsere hinting to a hireq

Postby Isaac Fried » Sat Sep 07, 2019 8:21 pm

The possibility was raised here before that the tsere niqud marking, two horizontal dots, is a compromise marking for possibly different reading traditions of the HB: for a more emphatic hireq or, otherwise, for a more emphatic patah.
Today we have read in Deut. 18:16
לֹא אֹסֵף לִשְׁמֹעַ אֶת קוֹל יהוה אֱלֹהָי
KJV: "Let me not hear again the voice of the Lord my God"
in which אֹסֵף, here with a tsere, is of the root יסף in binyan הפעיל
I recall Gen. 8:21
וַיֹּאמֶר יהוה אֶל לִבּוֹ לֹא אֹסִף לְקַלֵּל עוֹד אֶת הָאֲדָמָה בַּעֲבוּר הָאָדָם
KJV: "and the Lord said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man's sake"
in which אֹסִף, here with a hireq, is again of the same root יסף and the same binyan הפעיל.

Isaac Fried, Boston University

Isaac Fried
Posts: 1448
Joined: Sat Sep 28, 2013 8:32 pm

Re: tsere hinting to a hireq

Postby Isaac Fried » Mon Sep 09, 2019 11:42 am

I suspect that the tsere niqud sign, two horizontal dots, is designed to also hint to an otherwise patax reading version. See 1Sam. 13:20
וַיֵּרְדוּ כָל יִשְׂרָאֵל הַפְּלִשְׁתִּים לִלְטוֹשׁ אִישׁ אֶת מַחֲרַשְׁתּוֹ וְאֶת אֵתוֹ וְאֶת קַרְדֻּמּוֹ וְאֵת מַחֲרֵשָׁתוֹ
KJV: "But all the Israelites went down to the Philistines, to sharpen every man his share, and his coulter, and his axe, and his mattock"
NIV: " So all Israel went down to the Philistines to have their plow points, mattocks, axes and sickles sharpened"
in which we encounter both
מַחֲרַשְׁתּוֹ = מה-חרש-את-הוּא
with a patax (and a dagesh in the תּ), and
מַחֲרֵשָׁתוֹ = מה-חרש-את-הוּא
with a tsere.

Isaac Fried, Boston University

ducky
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Re: tsere hinting to a hireq

Postby ducky » Mon Sep 09, 2019 2:16 pm

Hello Isaac

ִTsere sound was developed from Hiriq.
And the Hiriq turned/turns to Tsere in some conditions.

For example:
Heart - לֵב
My heart - לִבּי
(here the condition is when the original Hiriq stands in a stressed closed syllable).

So (almost) every time you see Tsere, you know that the original vowel was Hiriq.

And as for the relationship between Patah and Tsere/Hiriq...
It also happens in some conditions when the Tsere/Hiriq turns to Patah (Philippi's law).
And it happens in the opposite way when the syllable is closed and unstressed.

As for the two forms of מחרשתו...
it is not because of a relationship between the vowels, but the difference is because of the base word
מחרשת vs. מחרשה
David Hunter

Isaac Fried
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Joined: Sat Sep 28, 2013 8:32 pm

Re: tsere hinting to a hireq

Postby Isaac Fried » Mon Sep 09, 2019 4:26 pm

ducky wrote
Tsere sound was developed from Hiriq

I would like to hear more on what you call "developed". Also on what you mean by the "original Hiriq".

Isaac Fried, Boston University

ducky
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Re: tsere hinting to a hireq

Postby ducky » Mon Sep 09, 2019 6:18 pm

Most scholars (the mainstream view) assume that the Proto-Semitic had only three vowels: a/i/u.
And each one of them could be short or long.

By the way, there is also a suggestion of a fourth vowel, which is "long e" (just like the Tsere).
But I don't think it is acceptable to most of the scholars.
The support for this fourth Semitic vowel (while using Hebrew) is based on words like מת and others like it, which the scholars find it hard to explain in a decisive way, and so the so-called "fourth vowel" comes to the rescue.
The scholars who assume only three vowels may also see the "fourth vowel" "long e" (but not as an original vowel), and explain it as a development from a combination of the Semitic vowels (like triphthongs "awi" or "ayi" for example).

Anyway, these three Semitic vowels are still the only vowels in the Classic Arabic, and we also can see it in Ugarit, which even though it is a consonantal language, it has three types of letter Aleph.
Each Aleph comes with a vowel. And there are only three Alephs, each one with the "i" or "u" or "a".

So Most scholars (the mainstream view) assume that the Proto-Semitic had only three vowels: a/i/u.
And each one of them could be short or long.
But Hebrew, in its time, stopped using the "length", and instead, gave quality to the vowel by adding more of them.

So if there is an "I" in a stressed closed syllable, for example, it would change its quality to "e".
And if there is an "u" in a stressed closed syllable, for example, it would change its quality to "o".
(I picked very obvious things for the example).

Basically, those who study the language with the intention of Historical forms, examine every vowel to "restore" it to its original vowel and length.

So my point is, that if you find relationships between vowels, that is part of the common processes that Hebrew has. And while you examine more and more you may find the pattern by yourself.
David Hunter

Isaac Fried
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Re: tsere hinting to a hireq

Postby Isaac Fried » Mon Sep 09, 2019 9:52 pm

ducky writes
For example:
Heart - לֵב
My heart - לִבּי
Would you explain to me why it is actually לִבּי and not לֵֹבִי. What is wrong with לֵֹבִי, except that it is "wrong"?

Isaac Fried, Boston University

ducky
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Re: tsere hinting to a hireq

Postby ducky » Tue Sep 10, 2019 4:25 am

The root is LBB.
The original vowel of the word לב is "libb"
And the "i" sound keep being in this word whenever it "can".
And it is when the vowel is unstressed and closed.
"lib-bi" - the first syllable is closed.
And so the "i" sound "kept safe" in the unstressed syllable.

But when the "libb" stood alone, and the syllable was stressed, then it was pronounced as "e" and gets a Tsere.
libb-->(lib)-->leb-->(lev)
David Hunter

Isaac Fried
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Joined: Sat Sep 28, 2013 8:32 pm

Re: tsere hinting to a hireq

Postby Isaac Fried » Tue Sep 10, 2019 9:27 pm

ducky writes
The original vowel of the word לב is "libb"

It not clear to me why "libb" and not "lib".
"lib-bi" - the first syllable is closed.

It is not clear to me why "lib-bi" and not "libi". Is this how you actually speak Hebrew, by dramatically declaring "lib-bi" with a conspicuously repeated "b"?
But when the "libb" stood alone, and the syllable was stressed, then it was pronounced as "e" and gets a Tsere.
libb-->(lib)-->leb-->(lev)

I can, indeed, see how some people may slur an emphatic "i" into an indefinite "e" or "ei".

Isaac Fried, Boston University

ducky
Posts: 174
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Re: tsere hinting to a hireq

Postby ducky » Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:53 am

Hello Isaac

Your question is good, and it opens a new subject which is not the subject here.
The subject you opened is the development of the roots in Hebrew.
The roots that we see in Hebrew are three-letter roots and also two letters roots.
And probably there were a lot more of two letters roots.

And in times, the Semitic languages (and also Hebrew of course) "developed" the two letters root into three letters roots.
So for example, according to a quick look, I see that the Akkadian writes the לב with double B.
But the Ugarit writes it with one B.
(By the way, no matter how you see that root: LB or LBB - it would still be with a vowel "i": "libi/libbi").

And as for the Hebrew, even though we can probably say that the לב was original "LB", we can see that it was developed to "LBB".
That is why the word "Heart" is written as לב but also as לבב=levav

The form of heart=לבב shows that the word לב was developed into three letters root.
And so, the word לב is tended according to the developed "LBB" and acts the same.
(And we can wonder about the time that happened, and it is hard to say. But we can say for sure that in the Biblical time - when the word לבב was in use, the process was already made, or was in progress).

So this is just a few points about this subject which is not our subject, and I wrote that to put it on the side for a moment.

Our subject is the Grammar, and the Grammar is based on what we see according to the vowels and the relationship with each other.
And so, the process that I wrote here is based on the pattern that is seen in the texts.
The vowel "i" was the original vowel for "lib" or "libb", and it "kept safe" as long as it was in an unstressed closed syllable.
But when the syllable was opened or when the syllable was stressed (like לב), then it was pronounced as "e".
(There are other "option").

As for the pronunciation of the Dagesh.
it is true that today we don't say "lib-bi" but just say "libi".
But those who speak well, especially you would hear it by old people from Yemen and such places, they pronounce the Dagesh in its place and say, for example, "libbi".
Also when people pray or read the Torah, pronounce it as it should because it is part of the "glory of reading".
(And I guess that some pronounce it more clearly, and some pronounce it less clearly).
David Hunter

Isaac Fried
Posts: 1448
Joined: Sat Sep 28, 2013 8:32 pm

Re: tsere hinting to a hireq

Postby Isaac Fried » Wed Sep 11, 2019 10:40 am

ducky writes
The roots that we see in Hebrew are three-letter roots and also two letters roots.

If you discount the א and the ע letters, then you will find also a number of single-letter roots, to wit:
אב, בא, אח, אם, אל, אץ, שׂא, אש, את
עב, עז, עט, על, גע, דע, זע, סע, פה, צא, רע, תא

Look at the old book
מִלוֹן הַשְתַיִם by מרדכי יצחק עדעלמאנן
You will possibly find it in the old Hebrew books repository
http://www.hebrewbooks.org/

Isaac Fried, Boston University


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