וְהִתְוִ֨יתָ in Ezekiel 9.4

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Andrew Chapman
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וְהִתְוִ֨יתָ in Ezekiel 9.4

Postby Andrew Chapman » Tue May 23, 2017 12:52 pm

וַיֹּ֤אמֶר יְהוָה֙ אֵלֹו עֲבֹר֙ בְּתֹ֣וךְ הָעִ֔יר בְּתֹ֖וךְ יְרֽוּשָׁלִָ֑ם וְהִתְוִ֨יתָ תָּ֜ו עַל־מִצְחֹ֣ות הָאֲנָשִׁ֗ים הַנֶּֽאֱנָחִים֙ וְהַנֶּ֣אֱנָקִ֔ים עַ֚ל כָּל־הַתֹּ֣ועֵבֹ֔ות הַֽנַּעֲשֹׂ֖ות בְּתֹוכָֽהּ׃

Ezekiel 9.4.

וְהִתְוִ֨יתָ is, I believe, Hifil perfect, 2nd person masculine singular. It's not I think in the imperative form. How then does it function apparently as if it were:

mark (a mark on the foreheads of the men etc.)

rather than:

you marked (a mark etc)

?

עֲבֹר֙, on the other hand, seems to be Qal, 2nd person masculine singular imperative, - 'go through (the midst of the city)' - as I would have expected.

Thanks for your help with this,
Andrew Chapman

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Re: וְהִתְוִ֨יתָ in Ezekiel 9.4

Postby sebalou » Wed May 24, 2017 6:04 am

Hi Andrew,

you are right, it is a Hifil 2nd person masculine singular.

However it is not qatal but weqatal. The weqatal is built with the qatal form preceded by "we" (וְ). It can have several meanings:

- consecutive: it then often takes the same value as the preceding verb or indicates that the action is linked to the preceding verb. It is clear that it it the case here. The weqatal hifil of your example takes the same value as the preceding verb (imperative) and should then be translated as an imperative as well.

- At the beginning of a sentence it often expresses the future.

It is not always easy to determine if we deal with a weqatal or with a qatal linked to the conjunction "we" וְ (and). The context helps in such cases.

I hope this helps.

Kind regards
Sébastien Louis (Belgium)

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Re: וְהִתְוִ֨יתָ in Ezekiel 9.4

Postby Andrew Chapman » Wed May 24, 2017 9:09 am

Hi Sébastien,

Thanks a lot, that makes sense. I have now found in Driver, Hebrew tenses, 118:

... the perfect, when attached to a preceding verb by means of this waw consecutive, loses its individuality: no longer maintaining an independent position, it passes under the sway of the verb to which it is connected.


which I think is similar to your:

often takes the same value as the preceding verb


Thanks again,
Andrew Chapman

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Re: וְהִתְוִ֨יתָ in Ezekiel 9.4

Postby kwrandolph » Thu May 25, 2017 3:05 pm

Andrew Chapman wrote:וַיֹּ֤אמֶר יְהוָה֙ אֵלֹו עֲבֹר֙ בְּתֹ֣וךְ הָעִ֔יר בְּתֹ֖וךְ יְרֽוּשָׁלִָ֑ם וְהִתְוִ֨יתָ תָּ֜ו עַל־מִצְחֹ֣ות הָאֲנָשִׁ֗ים הַנֶּֽאֱנָחִים֙ וְהַנֶּ֣אֱנָקִ֔ים עַ֚ל כָּל־הַתֹּ֣ועֵבֹ֔ות הַֽנַּעֲשֹׂ֖ות בְּתֹוכָֽהּ׃

Ezekiel 9.4.

וְהִתְוִ֨יתָ is, I believe, Hifil perfect, 2nd person masculine singular. It's not I think in the imperative form. How then does it function apparently as if it were:

mark (a mark on the foreheads of the men etc.)

rather than:

you marked (a mark etc)

?

עֲבֹר֙, on the other hand, seems to be Qal, 2nd person masculine singular imperative, - 'go through (the midst of the city)' - as I would have expected.

Thanks for your help with this,


To give another perspective:

First of all, Biblical Hebrew didn’t have a tense. It didn’t conjugate for any time relationship, which mean that its conjugations didn’t indicate aspect either. Therefore we can’t talk about a “Hifil perfect, 2nd person masculine singular”. Rather we can talk about a “Qatal Hifil, 2nd person masculine singular”.

(Tradition has it that the conjugations indicated tense. The reason, according to Waltke & O’Connor, is that already by the time of Mishnaic, if not DSS, Hebrews, the grammar had changed so that the conjugations indicate tense. But it was not so in the Bible. All I know is Biblical Hebrew, so I can’t verify Waltke & O’Connor’s claim.)

The prefixed waw had a much wider range of meaning than any one conjunction in English. Possibly one of the most common in the Bible is preceding a Yiktol verb in narrative. There it indicates continuation with the Yiktol verb as a secondary indicative mood (a mood not found in English). Many other times the waw is used in the same way as English uses “that”, “in order that” or “then”.

In this context of Ezekiel 9:4, there’s the construction of “Go over … in order that you cause to mark a mark …” to which no good translator would agree is a good translation into English. Because of the differences in the languages, a good English translator should change the Qatal Hifil, 2nd person masculine singular to a singular imperative. But the translator, as well as the Biblical Hebrew grammarian, needs to remember that that change is an artifact of translation, that it doesn’t change the underlying Hebrew use.

I hope my 2¢ here helps.

Karl W. Randolph.

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Re: וְהִתְוִ֨יתָ in Ezekiel 9.4

Postby Andrew Chapman » Fri May 26, 2017 4:59 am

Hi Karl,

I didn't understand Qatal and Yiqtol as indicating tense per se, but I did understand them as indicating aspect. I am using Davidson's Analytical Lexicon, and have been converting his 'preterite' and 'future' into 'perfect' and 'imperfect', which is what my grammars call the conjugations, explaining them in terms of completion and non-completion (eg Davidson/Mauchline §17.1). You say that they don't indicate aspect either, so can I ask what you think they do indicate?
Andrew Chapman

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Re: וְהִתְוִ֨יתָ in Ezekiel 9.4

Postby kwrandolph » Fri May 26, 2017 5:25 pm

Andrew Chapman wrote:Hi Karl,

I didn't understand Qatal and Yiqtol as indicating tense per se,


I was originally taught tense in class…

Andrew Chapman wrote:but I did understand them as indicating aspect.


When I was taught Hebrew, this idea was just then coming into vogue, so the professor introduced us to this idea too.

Andrew Chapman wrote:I am using Davidson's Analytical Lexicon,


Excellent resource for the beginning student of Hebrew, I used my copy until it fell apart. But its categories are dated. Translate “preterite” into “Qatal” and “future” into “Yiqtol” and you should be fine 99% of the time.

One caveat, Davidson assumed two things that I have found false—1) the Masoretic points are always correct, which I have found usually, but not always, correct, and 2) every noun and adjective has a tri-literal verbal root. Both of those suppositions are based on tradition that was still taught when I studied Hebrew.

Andrew Chapman wrote:and have been converting his 'preterite' and 'future' into 'perfect' and 'imperfect', which is what my grammars call the conjugations, explaining them in terms of completion and non-completion (eg Davidson/Mauchline §17.1). You say that they don't indicate aspect either, so can I ask what you think they do indicate?


For verbal conjugations, I know of TAM—Tense-Aspect-Mood. Every western language that I’ve studied conjugates for tense, some for aspect as well, but none for mood. Mood is indicated by context. All the grammars of Hebrew that I know of were written from people whose mother tongues grammaticalized tense and sometimes aspect, but none from a background of mood. That includes medieval Jewish grammars, as medieval Hebrew, as well as the native languages that they spoke, grammaticalized tense and sometimes aspect too. Tense and aspect are both measurements of time.

Moods that we are taught in English include indicative, optative, and subjunctive. Biblical Hebrew has different moods, and the Qatal and Yiqtol both take more than one mood, context indicates which.

Qatal is connected with indicative, also with the idea of changing subjects or indicating certainty of action.

Yiqtol is connected with secondary, or follow-up indicative (continuation of subject), subjunctive or intent.

Optative is not expressed by conjugation in Biblical Hebrew.

I have written a dictionary that is a .pdf file that I send out to people who request it at kwrandolph@gmail.com . I update every six months. In the back I have a short grammar in which I go into greater detail as to the grammaticalization of Biblical Hebrew verbs. It assumes that the user has basic knowledge of Biblical Hebrew (which it sounds like you have) and who doesn’t mind reading unpointed Hebrew.

My 2¢, I hope it helps.

Karl W. Randolph.
Last edited by kwrandolph on Sat May 27, 2017 9:22 am, edited 1 time in total.

Jemoh66
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Re: וְהִתְוִ֨יתָ in Ezekiel 9.4

Postby Jemoh66 » Sat May 27, 2017 12:11 am

kwrandolph wrote:For verbal conjugations, I know of TAM—Tense-Aspect-Mood. Every western language that I’ve studied conjugates for tense, some for aspect as well, but none for mood. Mood is indicated by context.


Were I to write a modal sentence, it would look like this one. In English you have to use auxiliary verbs to express mood.
Jonathan E Mohler
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Baptist Bible Theological Seminary

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Re: וְהִתְוִ֨יתָ in Ezekiel 9.4

Postby Andrew Chapman » Sat May 27, 2017 1:38 pm

We have a distinct form for the third person singular present subjunctive - 'I insist that he leave now' etc.

Andrew
Andrew Chapman

Jemoh66
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Re: וְהִתְוִ֨יתָ in Ezekiel 9.4

Postby Jemoh66 » Sat May 27, 2017 9:25 pm

Andrew Chapman wrote:We have a distinct form for the third person singular present subjunctive - 'I insist that he leave now' etc.

Andrew


Yes, although it is disappearing in the common tongue. Modern American don't use the subjunctive much.
Jonathan E Mohler
Studying for a MA in Intercultural Studies
Baptist Bible Theological Seminary


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