The name מָחֲלַת of Gen. 28:9

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Isaac Fried
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Re: The name מָחֲלַת of Gen. 28:9

Post by Isaac Fried »

So is the right reading of the name בָּשְׂמַת Bosmat or Basmat? And צָרְפַת, is it Tsorfat or Tsarfat?


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Re: The name מָחֲלַת of Gen. 28:9

Post by Jason Hare »

Isaac,
Isaac Fried wrote: Mon Nov 23, 2020 7:51 pm So is the right reading of the name בָּשְׂמַת Bosmat or Basmat? And צָרְפַת, is it Tsorfat or Tsarfat?
David (@ducky) has already provided the answer to this question:
ducky wrote: Mon Nov 23, 2020 6:32 pm In words like צרפת or בשמת the Sheva is mobile.
If the sheva is mobile (שווא נע), then the vowel before it is long (קמץ) and not short (קמץ קטן). Thus, both of these are pronounced with ā in the first syllable: צָֽרְפַת Ṣārəp̄aṯ (Tsar⁽ᵊ⁾fat) and בָּֽשְׂמַת Bāśəmaṯ (Bas⁽ᵊ⁾mat).
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Isaac Fried
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Re: The name מָחֲלַת of Gen. 28:9

Post by Isaac Fried »

So, if I correctly understand it the reading of the qamatz as an A or as an O depends on the nature of the following schwa. Since I don't detect any mobility in the schwa of צָרְפַת the way I (and many more) pronounce it, should I not pronounce it צוֹרְפָת with the stress on the פָ, as opposed to צָרְֶפַת with a stress on the רְֶ?

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Last edited by Isaac Fried on Tue Nov 24, 2020 9:26 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The name מָחֲלַת of Gen. 28:9

Post by Jason Hare »

Isaac Fried wrote: Mon Nov 23, 2020 11:43 pm So, if I correctly understand it the reading of the qamatz as an A or as an O depends on the nature of the following schwa. Since I don't detect any mobility in the schwa of צָרְפַת the way I (and many more) pronounce it, should I not pronounce it צוֹרְפָת with the stress on the פָ, as opposed to צָרְֶפַת with a stress on the רְֶ?
The fact that there is no dagesh in the peh shows that it is sheva mobile. If it were silent, the peh would have a dagesh (because the sheva would be closing the previous syllable). I think it's clear that you cannot put word stress on a sheva. The word is tsa-re-FAT, with the "e" being barely audible (or not even at all).
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Isaac Fried
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Re: The name מָחֲלַת of Gen. 28:9

Post by Isaac Fried »

It is still not clear to me what it means "it is sheva mobile". Isn't it so that if I move it, then it is "mobile", but if I skip it (as I and many do) then it is "silent"? Should I, wanting to adhere to the rules, pronounce it צָרְפַּת with a fast schwa? Or is the nature of the schwa a-priori fixed by the qamatz and the dageshless פַ ?
And if "the "e" being barely audible (or not even at all)", then how can it be categorized as a schwa "mobile"?

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Re: The name מָחֲלַת of Gen. 28:9

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A sheva mobile is generally in a syllable that had a full vowel that was at some point reduced. It happens a lot. So, שמר is sha|már. When the feminine ending (originally, -àt) was added, it was sha|má|rat. The final -t softened to become -h (a vowel marker), and the middle syllable reduced to sheva. It is sha|mə|rá today. It's the difference between ḥoḵ|mâ "wisdom" (silent sheva closing the first syllable) and ḥā|ḵə|mấ "she was wise" (mobile sheva opening the next syllable, representing a reduced vowel: ḥa|ḵá|mat > ḥa|ḵə|má > ḥā|ḵə|mấ).
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Isaac Fried
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Re: The name מָחֲלַת of Gen. 28:9

Post by Isaac Fried »

OK, I think I more or less understand it now. The schwa is not "mobile" because the speaker moves it as he speaks. The mobility of the schwa is rather a genetic property inherent in it, due to it "descending" from an ancestral vowel. For instance שָמַר versus שָמְרָה (not * שָמַרָה).

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Re: The name מָחֲלַת of Gen. 28:9

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Isaac Fried wrote: Tue Nov 24, 2020 7:19 pm OK, I think I more or less understand it now. The schwa is not "mobile" because the speaker moves it as he speaks. The mobility of the schwa is rather a genetic property inherent in it, due to it "descending" from an ancestral vowel. For instance שָמַר versus שָמְרָה (not * שָמַרָה).
Yes, that's essentially what it means. It means that it doesn't represent a closed syllable. If the syllable is closed, then the sheva is silent (not mobile). Silent sheva will follow short vowels when the syllable is unstressed (חֻפְשָׁה ḥup̄šâ). Also, if there are two shevas in a row, the first is always silent, and the second is always mobile (יִשְׁמְרוּ yišmərû). [In this case, it is also representing a reduced vowel, since the original form was yišmṓrû [yishMOru], which was reduced.]
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Re: The name מָחֲלַת of Gen. 28:9

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Jason Hare wrote: Tue Nov 24, 2020 1:45 pm A sheva mobile is generally in a syllable that had a full vowel that was at some point reduced. It happens a lot. So, שמר is sha|már. When the feminine ending (originally, -àt) was added, it was sha|má|rat. The final -t softened to become -h (a vowel marker), and the middle syllable reduced to sheva. It is sha|mə|rá today. It's the difference between ḥoḵ|mâ "wisdom" (silent sheva closing the first syllable) and ḥā|ḵə|mấ "she was wise" (mobile sheva opening the next syllable, representing a reduced vowel: ḥa|ḵá|mat > ḥa|ḵə|má > ḥā|ḵə|mấ).
That’s really good stuff Jason!

It’s really nothing different than what happens in English.
Banana > b’|næ|nə
aɪ wʌnə teɪk homə dəplomə (Doris Day, Teachers Pet)

Moveable schwa
Botany > botanical
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Isaac Fried
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Re: The name מָחֲלַת of Gen. 28:9

Post by Isaac Fried »

Jason wrote
It's the difference between ḥoḵ|mâ "wisdom" (silent sheva closing the first syllable) and ḥā|ḵə|mấ "she was wise" (mobile sheva opening the next syllable, representing a reduced vowel: ḥa|ḵá|mat > ḥa|ḵə|má > ḥā|ḵə|mấ).
They are written the same way:
חָכְמָה, 'She became wise'
חָכְמָה, 'Knowledge'
but have a different genealogy, leading to different readings?

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