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How to search for preterite verbs


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#1 fmcfee

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 04:45 PM

Hi,

 

I am studying "young earth creationism" and a study has been done by Dr. Steven Boyd using Bibleworks software on Hebrew verbs used in narrative and poetic sentences...he does an analysis of four verb forms : preterite, imperfect, perfect, waw-perfect...I am really a beginner in original language having studied  BBH but not "memorized" the material....I am trying to duplicate Boyd's search because this area interests me and I have not been able to completely relate the terms between Bibleworks and Accordance.....I tried to search based on Aspect but could not get agreement....Boyd's conclusion was that the verb forms could be used to "prove" narrative text versus poetic text....He does a great job in his analysis....

 

 

So any suggestions on how to do this search would be appreciated....

Thanks

Frank


Edited by fmcfee, 05 March 2013 - 04:46 PM.


#2 Ken Simpson

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 05:05 PM

Hi Frank,

the real scholars of Hebrew will need to chime in here, but as I understand it, preterite generally maps to waw-consecutive. Many modern grammarians are leaving the waw-consecutive and preterite terminology behind (though as in most things there is a variety of practice). wayyiqtol  and weqatal (for the waw-perfect) are becoming more the "flavour".

 

Having gotten that out of the way, Accordance maps the waw-consecutive. What I am not sure of is whether (in general) the waw-consecutive is basically co-extensive with the preterite. As far as I am aware, the weqatal (waw-perfect) is not mapped specifically, so you would need to do a search for a perfect with a waw and patach next to it. Do you need help with how to do that?

 

Anyone have a definitive on the preterite/waw-consecutive issue? 


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#3 nicklaurence

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 05:17 PM

The difficult one to identify in this list, for me, is the preterite - I've known a number of ways of describing verbs but not come across this one for Hebrew. But by a process of elimination, I think the terms would translate across most Hebrew grammars as follows:

 

  1. preterite = waw consecutive imperfect = wayyiqtol
  2. imperfect = yiqtol
  3. perfect = qatal
  4. waw perfect = waw consecutive perfect = weqatal

 

If I have correctly identified your terms, really it's the last one which is likely to cause you most trouble. Accordance doesn't make any attempt to identify waw consecutive perfects, perhaps because morphologically they are usually identical to perfects with an "and" conjunction. Bibleworks, on the other hand, does make an attempt to identify them, whether they always get them right or not would in many cases be a matter of judgement. Having said that, in my experience where you see a verb with the waw consecutive perfect looking morphology, it usually is a waw consecutive perfect and not a perfect + conjunction, but there are exceptions.

 

Anyway, as it seems to be the waw consecutive imperfect you want, perhaps I shouldn't make you so worried about the above. I hope this is helpful.  :unsure:


Edited by nicklaurence, 05 March 2013 - 05:18 PM.


#4 fmcfee

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 05:45 PM

Hi Frank,

the real scholars of Hebrew will need to chime in here, but as I understand it, preterite generally maps to waw-consecutive. Many modern grammarians are leaving the waw-consecutive and preterite terminology behind (though as in most things there is a variety of practice). wayyiqtol  and weqatal (for the waw-perfect) are becoming more the "flavour".

 

Having gotten that out of the way, Accordance maps the waw-consecutive. What I am not sure of is whether (in general) the waw-consecutive is basically co-extensive with the preterite. As far as I am aware, the weqatal (waw-perfect) is not mapped specifically, so you would need to do a search for a perfect with a waw and patach next to it. Do you need help with how to do that?

 

Anyone have a definitive on the preterite/waw-consecutive issue? 

 

 

The difficult one to identify in this list, for me, is the preterite - I've known a number of ways of describing verbs but not come across this one for Hebrew. But by a process of elimination, I think the terms would translate across most Hebrew grammars as follows:

 

  1. preterite = waw consecutive imperfect = wayyiqtol
  2. imperfect = yiqtol
  3. perfect = qatal
  4. waw perfect = waw consecutive perfect = weqatal

 

If I have correctly identified your terms, really it's the last one which is likely to cause you most trouble. Accordance doesn't make any attempt to identify waw consecutive perfects, perhaps because morphologically they are usually identical to perfects with an "and" conjunction. Bibleworks, on the other hand, does make an attempt to identify them, whether they always get them right or not would in many cases be a matter of judgement. Having said that, in my experience where you see a verb with the waw consecutive perfect looking morphology, it usually is a waw consecutive perfect and not a perfect + conjunction, but there are exceptions.

 

Anyway, as it seems to be the waw consecutive imperfect you want, perhaps I shouldn't make you so worried about the above. I hope this is helpful.  :unsure:

Ken & Nick,

 

Thanks for your quick responses....I "mostly" understand what you are both saying....my understanding of the "waw" verbs is that they could be:

consecutive imperfect (preterite), conversive perfect, sequential perfect for "wayyqt" verbs, and waw + perfect for "wqtl" (According to "Hebrew For the rest of Us" which I think agrees with you Nick.....thanks for clarifying what Bibleworks does....I also thought "context" was important in determining this???

 

.but I am not sure what I would need to select for my verb search in Accordance.....ie under Aspect waw consecutive???...my "limited" understanding is that what "preterite" means is it happened in the past tense (completed action).. I tried this and it did not match as closely as I hoped...it might be "the way it is"...I have multiple grammars and it seems like "scholars" use different terms for similar things which is confusing to a "beginner" like me....

 

thanks so much for taking the time to help me..

Frank

 

PS I just reran it for Gen 1:1-2:3  (Aspect for perfect, imperfect, waw consecutive) which was his "main" text and I got about 68% waw consecutives (he calls this preterite) 13% perfects  and 19% imperfects "normalized" .......which sort of corresponds....he shows "waw perfects" about 9%.....I am not sure how Accordance treats waw perfects....


Edited by fmcfee, 05 March 2013 - 06:15 PM.


#5 Robert Holmstedt

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 06:09 PM

Fellas,

 

The wayyiqtol (so-called waw-consecutive) preserves the old prefix preterite in a conventionalized story-telling form. There are cases of this prefix preterite without the waw+doubling in old poetic sections. But the only way they are identifiable is 1) the context suggests a past temporal frame and 2) the form of the verb is the "short" prefix/yiqtol form (which is the same as the "short" form in the wayyiqtol and the jussive). This "short" form only occurs in the Qal binyan of certain weak verbs (II-w/y, III-h) and Hifil binyan.

 

Anson Rainey wrote on these old preterites in a 1986 Hebrew Studies article.* Jouon-Muraoka 2006 mentions this in a footnote (§117, n. 5) and then quickly dismisses it. See also John Cook's summary in his Time and the Biblical Hebrew Verb (Eisenbrauns, 2012, p. 257).

 

A. F. Rainey. 1986. “The Ancient Hebrew prefix conjugation in the light of Amarnah Canaanite,” HS 27.4-19.


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#6 fmcfee

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 06:26 PM

Fellas,

 

The wayyiqtol (so-called waw-consecutive) preserves the old prefix preterite in a conventionalized story-telling form. There are cases of this prefix preterite without the waw+doubling in old poetic sections. But the only way they are identifiable is 1) the context suggests a past temporal frame and 2) the form of the verb is the "short" prefix/yiqtol form (which is the same as the "short" form in the wayyiqtol and the jussive). This "short" form only occurs in the Qal binyan of certain weak verbs (II-w/y, III-h) and Hifil binyan.

 

Anson Rainey wrote on these old preterites in a 1986 Hebrew Studies article.* Jouon-Muraoka 2006 mentions this in a footnote (§117, n. 5) and then quickly dismisses it. See also John Cook's summary in his Time and the Biblical Hebrew Verb (Eisenbrauns, 2012, p. 257).

 

A. F. Rainey. 1986. “The Ancient Hebrew prefix conjugation in the light of Amarnah Canaanite,” HS 27.4-19.

Robert,

 

Thanks....I "mostly" understand at my level what you said.....but what about the waw-perfect in Accordance?...I am assuming this could not be done in a "simple" search like I was using and I don't want to waste your time coming up with a way to do this..just a "not easy to do" and probably would not make a big difference type of answer if you have time....I forgot to mention Boyd's study was limited to finite verb forms only

Thanks

 

Frank


Edited by fmcfee, 05 March 2013 - 06:29 PM.


#7 Robert Holmstedt

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 07:21 PM

The simple answer is that there is no such thing as a distinct waw-perfect verb. I recommend this article:

 

http://www.jhsonline.../article_80.pdf


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#8 Ken Simpson

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 10:20 PM

Professor Holmstedt.

"We would hear you more on this" (or at least I would).

 

Sadly I am unlikely to attend your Hebrew classes (as much as I would like to). Do you have a suggested text that outlines how you think the Hebrew verb works?


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Ken
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#9 fmcfee

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 10:34 PM

The simple answer is that there is no such thing as a distinct waw-perfect verb. I recommend this article:

 

http://www.jhsonline.../article_80.pdf

Robert,

 

Thanks so much for your expert help and time!

Frank



#10 Helen Brown

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Posted 06 March 2013 - 12:05 AM

Please note that Accordance takes neither credit or blame for the tagging of the Hebrew text. Both (mostly full credit) should be directed to the J. Alan Groves Center for Advanced Biblical Research at Westminster Theological Seminary, named in honor of the pioneering scholar and our friend.

 

All Accordance does is present the text and tagging in as accurate a form as possible with as clear and full a search capability as we can muster. Only the glosses are our own (based on HALOT).

 

In addition, Dr. Holmstedt leads the team that is continuing to develop a syntactical database aligned to the same text.


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#11 Robert Holmstedt

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Posted 06 March 2013 - 08:14 AM

Ken,

 

I have longed worked with Dr. John Cook (Asbury Theological Seminary), whose book I suggested above. Syntax and semantics overlap a great deal in the Hebrew verbal system, so we have worked out many of our ideas together.

 

Besides his monograph, the approach to the verbal system that we promote is expressed in both our Hebrew textbooks —the illustrated one that is coming out with Baker Books (we have the page-proofs now, so it will be out this summer) and the more traditional one we offer in PDF format on our blog: 

 

http://ancienthebrew...om/bh-textbook/


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#12 luoar

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Posted 06 March 2013 - 09:56 AM

The only morphological database that distinguishes imperfect forms from preterite forms is the Andersen Forbes Analysed Text. This text is not available in Accordance. However one must bear in mind that the identification of these forms is based on a subjective decision of the grammarian and not on the forms of the verbs in question. That said, I personally would like to have access to a morphological database in Accordance that allows for the identification and searching of these forms, particularly since they appear most frequently in the Psalms, which is where my focus currently lies. 



#13 fmcfee

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Posted 06 March 2013 - 10:35 AM

Ken,

 

I have longed worked with Dr. John Cook (Asbury Theological Seminary), whose book I suggested above. Syntax and semantics overlap a great deal in the Hebrew verbal system, so we have worked out many of our ideas together.

 

Besides his monograph, the approach to the verbal system that we promote is expressed in both our Hebrew textbooks —the illustrated one that is coming out with Baker Books (we have the page-proofs now, so it will be out this summer) and the more traditional one we offer in PDF format on our blog: 

 

http://ancienthebrew...om/bh-textbook/

 

I carefully read the article you referenced and also downloaded "Cook's Biblical Hebrew student grammar"...to be honest I am overwhelmed and way over my head...my purposes in studying the original languages was to "begin" to understand the "basics" especially how verbs work....I am a visual learner and do not memorize well....so I use Accordance to do all the parsing...and refer to multiple translations, grammars, and lexicons to help me understand as much as possible what the original intent of the author was in the context he wrote.....thanks for your help... I will wait until your books are published to "try" and understand the issues you mention..........
 
Frank





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