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Do not post entries or comments regarding particular religions. This is to be a language-focused community only.
Koine Greek, Aramaic, Modern Hebrew (Hebrew School), Modern Hebrew (Learn Hebrew) / Topics (Tags) List
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Aug. 27th, 2006 @ 09:58 pm Massoreth Ha-Massoreth
Massoreth Ha-Massoreth of Elias Levita, being an exposition of the massoretic notes on the Hebrew Bible, or the ancient critical apparatus of the Old Testament in Hebrew, with an English translation, and critical and explanatory notes, by Christian D. Ginsburg, LL. D.

Scan copy of paper book in http://bible.zoxt.net. Welcome!
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Сергей Федосов
Jul. 27th, 2006 @ 07:02 pm Returning from Sheol
Well, this community has been dead for a while. I would like to see it up and active again. I just got married and I am ready to beginning doing some regular translations here again. Shall we continue in Samuel or start afresh with something else? Thoughts?
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Hebrew atom
Apr. 27th, 2006 @ 02:18 am Question on Passage from Koheleth
What do you think the Hebrew for this text is implying? That is, what unwritten adjective is understood to come before adham and ishah. It does not make any sense to say that one has not found a woman among a thousand women. Koheleth must mean a particular kind of women was not found.

(The translation here is ESV.)
Ecclesiastes 3:27Behold, this is what I found, says the Preacher, while adding one thing to another to find the scheme of things-- 28which my soul has sought repeatedly, but I have not found. One man among a thousand I found, but a woman among all these I have not found. 29See, this alone I found, that God made man upright, but they have sought out many schemes.
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Hebrew atom
Apr. 15th, 2006 @ 02:00 pm (no subject)
I'm in examination too these days and I had to translate 30 phrases. I miss one word !

Its probably verry simple but I just can't see what it is..

its beth,hireq-yod, mem, tsere-yod

by the ending, I know that it is a construct, masculine plural..

anyone as a clue ?

PS : sorry for the bad english, my main language is french..
PSS : I take my hebrew course in english so I sould have a better english in my further posts haha :P
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Apr. 12th, 2006 @ 12:09 am On Seraphim
Current Mood: awake
Current Music: silence
A while ago, I asked the question, "Just what exactly is a cherub?" I received a mostly satisfactory answer from kaph that confirms what I have since researched on my own. A cherub seems to have been basically a winged sphinx -- a winged bull or lion with a man's face -- in ancient near-eastern mythology. They were known to more that just the ancient Jews.

The Old Testament, however, seems to indicate that there are real cherubim from which the mythological ones are based or perhaps real heavenly/angelic/otherworldly creatures associated with cherubim as the closet approximation to mere humans.

Brief Overview of Biblical Descriptions of CherubimCollapse )

Now what of seraphim?

First, the root of the word is almost certainly, SRP, which is "to burn". So at first guess, one might conclude that the seraphim were similar to ifrits (jinns/genies of fire).

This much I knew until this weekend when I ate lunch with tellemonn who showed me a book about life in ancient Israel. I read some of the following information there and then looked up more in my Hebrew books at home.

For one, there was an Egyptian snake-beings called Sherrefs. There was also an Assyrian serpent god named Sharrapu or Sharrabu. Are these coincidences, or are seraphim snake creatures?

Well, going back to the book of Numbers, when Moses set up a bronze serpent, the people were being bitten by n'hashim seraphim, "snakes of flames" or "fiery snakes". It is generally thought from the context that these were poisonous snakes. And one can easily explain how poison would cause burning.

Interestingly enough, however, the word seraph, the singular of seraphim is sometimes used in the Bible to refer to what are thought to be poisonous snakes without the attached n'hash. Even more interesting, a seraph is mentioned twice in Isaiah, where it is usually translated as some type of serpent. But it is associated with a word for "darting, winged, flying". In these two passages -- Is 14:29; 30:6 -- seraphim appear to be flying snakes!

Now as for the root, "to burn", the Egyptians often wore ornamental snakes that they believed could breath fire upon their enemies. (These were the uraei.)

So if anything, we see that ancient cultures had ideas of flying serpents and/or fire-breathing serpents.

Finally, the Book of Enoch, when translated into Greek has the word seraphim translated into the word from which we get our word "dragon".

Are seraphim dragons?

Now, this raises the question about the only occurrence of the plural in the Hebrew Bible in Is 6:3. Isaiah, unlike Ezekiel, is able to name these creatures. He calls them seraphim. It is probable that they were fire serpents or flying serpents or both. They have six wings, so they were definitely flying something. They apparently had feet (or possibly genitals, as feet was a euphemism for them) and hands. So do most depictions of dragons. They had no aversion to fire as one picked up a burning coal. They sang, "Holy, holy, holy," so they could speak.

(Now, like in Ezekiel, Isaiah may have been associating a known mythological creature with some otherworldly creature, but still....)

Finally, consider this. What if the serpent in the garden of Eden was actually a seraphim or what we might call a dragon? Regardless of whether one takes that story to be true or fable, it would make a lot of narrative sense if the serpent were a walking, flying, and talking serpent, since it talks to Eve and since it is later cursed to crawl on its belly.


Cross-posted to lhynard and biblical_hebrew.
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Hebrew atom
Mar. 31st, 2006 @ 12:11 pm Thread vanished?
Current Mood: confusedconfused
Current Music: Silence
hey, what happened to the Lamed-thread?
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Mar. 22nd, 2006 @ 09:55 am Psalm 61 question
In Psalm 61:2 " בְּצוּר-יָרוּם מִמֶּנִּי תַנְחֵנִי " KJV and MS translate it as "lead me to the rock that is higher than I" KJV, "lead me to a rock that is too high for me" - MS. But LXX translates "thou liftedst me up on a rock thou didst guide me:", and BibleWorks says that יָרוּם is a verb (verb hiphil imperfect 2nd person masculine singular). Why is it translated as a noun "high" in MS/KJV? How could it be a noun if there is a yod in front?
What would be the most accurate translation?
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Mar. 20th, 2006 @ 01:40 pm (no subject)
Current Mood: sleepysleepy
Current Music: First Day of My LIfe
?האם אין שום שאילות
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Feb. 27th, 2006 @ 02:22 pm Introduction and Inquiries
Hello all,

I just joined the community. My name is Matthew, and I'm a twenty-five year old student of music history. My roommate/best friend in college was a Messianic Jew and turned me on to Hebrew study. I admit right now I'm rusty - German demands my attention as a musicologist at least for the moment. But I've been getting into more serious Bible study lately and would like to apply my (limited) Hebrew abilities. I currently have Page H. Kelly's grammar, the Brown-Driver-Briggs lexicon, and a couple of other slightly more advanced books for which I'm not yet ready.

I have two questions: First, is there a vocabulary book with the deeper, theological meanings of words that will help me more than, say, BDB in getting the full meaning/all potential meanings of Hebrew words I look at, other connotations, etc.? Second, I'm not wild about the Page H. Kelly grammar, particularly in that he teaches everything except verbs and then verbs - I have trouble learning when I can't make complete sentences to play with. Can anyone recommend other textbooks you like, particularly if review of the basics is going to be necessary before I can really use the language again?

Thanks much.
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Tomcat, F-14
Feb. 6th, 2006 @ 10:57 pm Hebrew Translation Assignment — week of 3.02.06
I Samuel 2:11

a tad late

I'm a little behind myself, but here's the next assignment -- only a single verse this time, but a moderately long one....

RulesCollapse )
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Hebrew atom