The Hebrew Language

When it comes to the Hebrew language I am the beginner of beginners. (It is an interesting language, and I hope to learn much more by the time this class is over.) I started with the alphabet, 22 letters and easy enough to learn with some repetition, but then I found out about vowel marks, 16 more things to learn and much more confusing. The concept of vowel marks rather than actual vowels is completely foreign to me, and it is taking some getting used to, but the online tutorial link has been helpful.

What I am learning is that unlike english, Hebrew verbs and nouns are mostly all formed the same way, with triliteral roots made of 3 consonants. The cool thing about that is that they are changed with prefixes, infixes, suffixes and vowel patterns, so the same verb can have hundreds of forms. This explains to me what people mean when they say that Hebrew names come from “roots.” So if Ezekiel comes from a root meaning strength, it can be changed to mean God strengthens. (I really like meanings of names.) It also means that words are related to each other in ways that we could not link ideas in English very clearly at all. I am interested to see how that influences translation.

Other parts I am not sure I entirely understand. Stems are built from verb roots and from what I can tell it is a little bit like conjugating a verb, but it has more meaning to it than that. I’m still a bit confused as to how it really works. I still do not know anything about word order of sentence construction. I hope to learn a lot more when we can discuss it in class. It is very interesting, and I think it could help me quite a lot in studying the Bible.

Advertisements

3 Responses

  1. Have you ever s-n-g a Hebrew s-n-g. Do you like s-n-g-n-g Hebrew s-n-g-s? We will try to s-n-g one in class.

  2. To look words up in a Hebrew lexicon, you only need to know the consonants. Occasionally there are homonyms that are distinguished by the vowels, but usually you can tell by context.

    You would need to know the vowel points to read the Hebrew Bible.

    We will talk about the vowels some in class.

    You are right about stems; it is something like conjugating a verb.

  3. […] When it comes to the Hebrew language I am the beginner of beginners. (It is an interesting language, and I hope to learn much more by the time this class is over.) I started with the alphabet, 22 letters and easy enough to learn with some repetition, but then I found out about vowel marks, 16 more things to learn and much more confusing. The concept of vowel marks rather than actual vowels is completely foreign to me, and it is taking some gettin … Read More […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: