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Amount of non-consecutive weqatal in BHS?


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#1 Pchris

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Posted 28 January 2015 - 05:27 PM

Hi there!

 

I have a good friend who is specialized in the Hebrew verbal system and its issues. Some time ago he asked me to check how many weqatal forms that have been interpreted by Accordance as NON-consecutive in the entire Hebrew Bible. These were my search criteria in the BHS (Tagged) module:

 

‏ו ‎<FOLLOWED BY>‎<WITHIN 1 Words>‎[VERB perfect -consecutive]‏ 

 

It yielded 1902 hits with the waw's making up half the results, so that gives 951 weqatal forms that are not considered consecutive. These data surprised my friend greatly, who said that there are way too many compared to other concordances (He told me that he expected a figure around 300).

 

My question is: Did I do something wrong in my search or is there an explanation behind these many numbers? On a side note, I did an identical search in the Westminister Biblia Hebraica module which yielded 1916 hits and thus 958 non-consecutive weqatal forms. I would've liked to see exactly where the differences were in the two texts, but I couldn't find a "clever" solution to do so in order to not go through all 1900+ hits manually for both texts. The "add parallel" and "Compare" button didn't work..

 

With kind regards

 

Peter Christensen


Edited by Pchris, 28 January 2015 - 07:19 PM.

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#2 Daniel Semler

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Posted 28 January 2015 - 08:55 PM

Hi Peter,

 

  You should be able to do this with two additional tabs one for each text and the following searches. In the new BHS tab do [CONTENTS <first BHS tabname>] <NOT> [CONTENTS <first WBH tabname>]

  Then in the new WBH tab do the reverse query [CONTENTS <first WBH tabname>] <NOT> [CONTENTS <first BHS tabname>].

  Then if either of those tabs shows differences - at least one should - perhaps both will - you can open a parallel pane with the other text and see how the verse differs. Make sure context is set to 0 on all tabs to simplify the display.

 

Thx

D


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#3 Pchris

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Posted Yesterday, 03:19 AM

Hi there!

 

I have a good friend who is specialized in the Hebrew verbal system and its issues. Some time ago he asked me to check how many weqatal forms that have been interpreted by Accordance as NON-consecutive in the entire Hebrew Bible. These were my search criteria in the BHS (Tagged) module:

 

‏ו ‎<FOLLOWED BY>‏ ‎<WITHIN 1 Words>‏ ‎[VERB perfect -consecutive]‏ 

 

It yielded 1902 hits with the waw's making up half the results, so that gives 951 weqatal forms that are not considered consecutive. These data surprised my friend greatly, who said that there are way too many compared to other concordances (He told me that he expected a figure around 300).

 

My question is: Did I do something wrong in my search or is there an explanation behind these many numbers? On a side note, I did an identical search in the Westminister Biblia Hebraica module which yielded 1916 hits and thus 958 non-consecutive weqatal forms. I would've liked to see exactly where the differences were in the two texts, but I couldn't find a "clever" solution to do so in order to not go through all 1900+ hits manually for both texts. The "add parallel" and "Compare" button didn't work..

 

With kind regards

 

Peter Christensen

 

 

 


Hi Peter,

 

  You should be able to do this with two additional tabs one for each text and the following searches. In the new BHS tab do [CONTENTS <first BHS tabname>] <NOT> [CONTENTS <first WBH tabname>]

  Then in the new WBH tab do the reverse query [CONTENTS <first WBH tabname>] <NOT> [CONTENTS <first BHS tabname>].

  Then if either of those tabs shows differences - at least one should - perhaps both will - you can open a parallel pane with the other text and see how the verse differs. Make sure context is set to 0 on all tabs to simplify the display.

 

Thx

D

 

 

Thank you so much Daniel, this was exactly what I was looking for. I actually tried making several tabs myself and experimenting a bit with [CONTENTS] as I had an idea that this was the command I had to use, but I was unable to get the desired result. Now I finally understand the mechanic perfectly. In fact, thinking back, I remember doing almost what you did, except I used "<AND>  <NOT>" instead of just <NOT> for the [CONTENTS] tabs.

 

Anyway, both of the tabs using [CONTENTS] did indeed show differences. I'll list them here for good measure:

 

The ‎[CONTENTS BHS1]‎<NOT>‎[CONTENTS West1]‏ tab has the following verses with non-consecutive weqatal forms:

Josh 19:29; Ezek 17:21; Psa 68:10; Neh 7:2

 

The main issue with Josh 19:29 is that the reading of the verb היה is contested. BHS reads וְּו֧יָה and sees it as a non-consecutive weqatal. The Westminister edition reads וְיִהְיוּ and sees it as an imperfect form. The Westminister edition has the verb written again in brackets, too [וְ][הָי֧וּ], seeing it as a consecutive perfect.

 

In Ezek 17:21 the BHS reads the verb וִידַעְתֶּ֕ם as a non-consecutive weqatal whereas the Westminister edition does not.

 

In Psa 68:10 the BHS considers the verb וְנִלְאָ֗ה a nifal non-consecutive perfect, whereas the Westminister edition reads it as a nifal participle.

 

In Neh 7:2 the BHS considers וְיָרֵ֥א a non-consecutive perfect verb, whereas the Westminister edition reads it as an adjective.

 

The ‎[CONTENTS West1]‎<NOT>‎[CONTENTS BHS1] has the following verses with non-consecutive weqatal forms:

 

2 Sam 12:22; 14:30; Jer 43:11; Ezek 44:24

 

In 2 Sam 12:22 the reading of the verb הנן is contested. The Westminister edition reads an imperfect form יְחָנַּנִי while BHS reads a perfect form חַנַּ֥נִי. It also has the verb written again in brackets [וְ][חַנַּ֥נִי], seeing it as a non-consecutive perfect.

 

In 2 Sam 14:30, the Westminister edition reads a non-consecutive perfect form וְהוֹצִתִּיהָ while BHS reads an imperfect form וְהַוצִּת֣יּהָ.

 

In Jer 43:11 the Westminister edition reads the verb וּבָאָהּ as a non-consecutive weqatal whereas the BHS does not.

 

In Ezek 44:25, the Westminister edition reads the verb וְשָׁפְטֻהוּ as a non-consecutive weqatal, whereas the BHS reads it as an imperfect וִשְׁפְּטֻ֑הוּ.

 

The BHS tab has four unique non-consecutive weqatal forms but so does the Westminister tab, which confused me. Where were the additional seven non-consecutive forms in the Westminister edition? Then I figured that the bracketed forms in the Westminister edition is the main issue here - I then asked for the bracketed words to be ignored in the search, and saw that the Westminister edition got 1900 hits opposed to the BHS's amount of 1902, leaving out 2 Sam 12:22 from the search in the Westminister edition. When I asked for the bracketed forms to be exclusive to the search, I found the seven additional forms that mostly repeats the non-bracketed verb.

 

This is quite interesting stuff! As for why there are an excessive amount of non-consecutive weqatal forms in both text editions, the answer has yet to be revealed.

 

With kind regards

 

Peter


Edited by Pchris, Yesterday, 03:34 AM.

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#4 Helen Brown

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Posted Yesterday, 03:37 AM

It's a little hard to follow your query because the string is backwards, I think. You enter waw and then the VERB. There is no need to use ‎<FOLLOWED BY>‏ ‎<WITHIN 1 Words> as this is always assumed in a phrase search.

 

The tagging was applied to the BHS-T from an older version of BHS-W4, while HMT-W4 has the latest tagging that we have implemented from Westminster.

 

I am struggling to see the fundamental differences between Perfect Consecutive and Perfect not Consecutive when there is a waw. I understand the wawConsecutive which I think uses an imperfect form but intends perfect or past tense. I see that the Help says:

 

Consecutive: Applies to a perfect verb which is translated as imperfect because it follows an imperfect verb.

 

The examples I am looking at look OK to me, so perhaps it's a question of the definition of these terms in different grammars.

 

The brackets in HMT-W4 are the Qere forms, the marginal forms dating back to the Masoretes who felt that these were the correct forms but did not want to alter the text. The Qere forms are the ones to be read, ignoring the prior Ketiv forms in the text.


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#5 Pchris

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Posted Yesterday, 04:02 AM

Yes, the strings were copy pasted as backwards - I'm terribly sorry about the confusion. And thank you very much for the clarification about the bracketed forms, Helen. I think I'll use the Westminister edition as my default Hebrew Bible from now on!

 

But I do see problems with the examples, though - For instance, in Gen 9:16, the first verb in the verse, ‏וְהָיְתָ֥ה, is read as consecutive, but the following one וּרְאִיתִ֗יהָ is not, which it should've been, given that the first verb is consecutive. And likewise in Gen 15:13 there is a verb יִהְיֶ֣ה in the imperfect, but the following verb וַעֲבָד֖וּם is read as a non-consecutive weqatal form. The verb after that, וְעִנּ֣וּ, is read as a consecutive perfect, though. While the non-consecutive weqatal forms are debated to this day (some believe they don't even exist, or can't be proved to exist), they are certainly out of place in these two examples and lots of others:

 

Gen 9:16 would with the current tagging sound like this: "And the bow shall be in the cloud; and I looked at it"

 

and in 15:13: You shall know that your seed shall be foreign in a land that is not theirs, and served them; and they shall oppress them four hundred years;

 

With kind regards

 

Peter Christensen


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#6 Helen Brown

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Posted Yesterday, 06:20 AM

You are welcome to submit any errors you detect to us or the Groves Institute directly. However, if they are widespread, it may be due to a different understanding of the verb tags, since I believe that the tagging is now pretty clean and consistent.


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#7 Daniel Semler

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Posted Yesterday, 10:15 AM

Glad to help Peter.

 

On the question itself, I had a look on the Groves website ( but could not see any documentation on the tagging database beyond basic version numbers and that is incomplete - Accordance is using a version later than any mentioned, 4.18. I wonder if a quick note to them would bear fruit. I was hoping to find a document describing the principles employed in the tagging or what grammar was followed and so on but if such a document exists it doesn't appear to be publicly published. It's possible documentation on IBYCUS might be interesting here too but again it doesn't look easy to find anything published on it.

 

Thx

D


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#8 Pchris

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Posted Yesterday, 03:08 PM

You are welcome to submit any errors you detect to us or the Groves Institute directly. However, if they are widespread, it may be due to a different understanding of the verb tags, since I believe that the tagging is now pretty clean and consistent.

 

 

Strictly speaking, neither of the examples I mentioned are errors per se, as it is impossible to determine whether any weqatal is consecutive or not with absolute certainty. I can only object in terms of context; the way the verbs are tagged as non-consecutives in the examples mentioned above (and several others) just does not seem to be correct to me. On the other hand, there is no consensus on the matter, so any error reports of this kind will probably be of little value. Nevertheless, I might try contacting professor Lowery from the Westminster Morphology project one of these days for an explanation of why there are listed so many non-consecutive weqatal forms compared to most other concordances. I must say that I find all of this quite interesting! 

 

 

Glad to help Peter.

 

On the question itself, I had a look on the Groves website ( but could not see any documentation on the tagging database beyond basic version numbers and that is incomplete - Accordance is using a version later than any mentioned, 4.18. I wonder if a quick note to them would bear fruit. I was hoping to find a document describing the principles employed in the tagging or what grammar was followed and so on but if such a document exists it doesn't appear to be publicly published. It's possible documentation on IBYCUS might be interesting here too but again it doesn't look easy to find anything published on it.

 

Thx

D

 

 

I had a look at the website myself and I couldn't find anything of the sort either, other than the option of contacting professor Lowery for more information. I might just do that. :)

 

With kind regards

 

Peter Christensen


Edited by Pchris, Yesterday, 03:17 PM.

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#9 Robert Holmstedt

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Posted Yesterday, 04:52 PM

For what it's worth, in my opinion the entire tag "waw-consecutive" should be removed from Accordance. It is not based in verbal morphology and, as has been shown in this thread, is a morph tag that is either subjective or inconsistent, or both. 


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#10 Ken Simpson

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Posted Yesterday, 05:16 PM

Hooray Dr Holmstedt! Love it! Let’s go yiqtol weqatal as has been mentioned elsewhere (I know that’s not really possible as that’s not the way Groves tags them, but we can dream)  B)


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#11 Pchris

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Posted Yesterday, 05:18 PM

For what it's worth, in my opinion the entire tag "waw-consecutive" should be removed from Accordance. It is not based in verbal morphology and, as has been shown in this thread, is a morph tag that is either subjective or inconsistent, or both. 

 

 

I agree, and I also do see your point with removing the tag altogether - as contested as it is, it creates a whole lot of problems. 


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#12 Pchris

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Posted Yesterday, 05:22 PM

Hooray Dr Holmstedt! Love it! Let’s go yiqtol weqatal as has been mentioned elsewhere (I know that’s not really possible as that’s not the way Groves tags them, but we can dream)  B)

I'm 100% with you on this, Ken, in spite of the explanation by Helen in the other thread about the binyanim. I know it won't happen anytime soon, if ever, but it would still be great. :)


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