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Hebrew of the Late Second Temple Period

Studies on the Texts

of the Desert of Judah

Edited by

George J. Brooke

Associate Editors

Eibert J. C. Tigchelaar
Jonathan Ben-Dov
Alison Schofield

volume 114

The titles published in this series are listed at brill.com/stdj

Hebrew of the Late Second
Temple Period
Proceedings of a Sixth International Symposium
on the Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls and Ben Sira

Edited by

Eibert Tigchelaar and Pierre Van Hecke

with the assistance of

Seth Bledsoe and Pieter B. Hartog

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

International Symposium on the Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls and Ben Sira (6th : 2011 : Leuven, Belgium)
Hebrew of the late Second Temple period : proceedings of a sixth international symposium on the
Hebrew of the Dead Sea scrolls and Ben Sira / edited by Eibert Tigchelaar and Pierre Van Hecke.
pages cm. (Studies on the texts of the desert of Judah, ISSN 0169-9962 ; volume 114)
Conference held in Leuven, September 1921, 2011.
Includes bibliographical references and index.
ISBN 978-90-04-29101-0 (hardback: alk. paper) ISBN 978-90-04-29931-3 (ebook) 1. Hebrew language,
Post-BiblicalCongresses. 2.Dead Sea scrollsCongresses. 3. Bible. EcclesiasticusLanguage, style
Congresses. I. Tigchelaar, Eibert J. C., editor. II. Van Hecke, P. (Pierre), editor. III. Title.
PJ4865.A35 2015

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Remarks on the Language of the Pesher Scrolls1

Chanan Ariel and Alexey (Eliyahu) Yuditsky

The Nature and Extent of Aramaisms in the Hebrew Dead Sea Scrolls7
Steven E. Fassberg

The Tiberian Vocalization and the Hebrew of the Second Temple

Jan Joosten

Priests of Qoreb: Linguistic Enigma and Social Code in the Songs of the
Sabbath Sacrifice37
Noam Mizrahi

The Nominal Clause in the Hebrew Legal Documents and Letters from the
Judean Desert65
Uri Mor and Tamar Zewi

Aspects of the (Morpho)syntax of the Infinitive in Qumran Hebrew80

Takamitsu Muraoka

Syntactic Features of in Qumran Hebrew88

Jacobus A. Naud and Cynthia L. Miller-Naud

Linguistic Observations on the Hebrew Prayer of Manasseh from the

Cairo Genizah112
Wido van Peursen

The Nature of Qumran Hebrew as Revealed through Pesher Habakkuk132

Gary A. Rendsburg
vi contents

Dislocated Negations: Negative Followed by a Non-verbal Constituent

in Biblical, Ben Sira and Qumran Hebrew160
Jean-Sbastien Rey

Some Semantic Notes on the Lexeme in the DSS175

Francesco Zanella

Index of Modern Authors197

Index of Ancient Sources201

After earlier meetings in Leiden (1995 and 1997), Beer-Sheva (1999), Strasbourg
(2006), and Jerusalem (2008), a sixth international symposium on the Hebrew
of the Dead Sea Scrolls and Ben Sira was held in Leuven on September 1921,
2011, organized by the editors of this volume with the assistance of Hanneke
van Loon, and with the financial support of the Research FundFlanders
(FWO) The conference hosted twenty scholars and several Ph.D. students. This
volume contains the peer-reviewed papers of eleven of the presented papers.
Half of them have been revised by the authors at the request of the editors. All
of them have been copy-edited by Seth Bledsoe. Brry Hartog has produced
the indices.
Eight of the eleven papers in this proceedings deal with different linguistic
or philological aspects of the Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls found at Qumran
(Ariel and Yuditsky; Fassberg; Mizrahi; Muraoka; Naud and Miller-Naud;
Rendsburg; Rey; Zanella), one more generally with the Hebrew of the Second
Temple Period (Joosten), one with the Hebrew of the documents and letters
found elsewhere in the Judaean Desert (Mor and Zewi), and one with the
Prayer of Manasseh from the Cairo Genizah (van Peursen). The emphasis on
the Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls warrants the inclusion of this volume, like
the earlier proceedings, in the Studies on the Texts of the Desert of Judah, and
we thank the series editor, George J. Brooke, for peer-reviewing some of the
articles, and for accepting the volume.

Eibert Tigchelaar and Pierre Van Hecke

Leuven, March 2015


BH Biblical Hebrew
CBH Classical Biblical Hebrew
DSS Dead Sea Scrolls
KJV King James Version
LBH Late Biblical Hebrew
LXX Septuaginta
MH Mishnaic Hebrew
MT Masoretic Text
NRSV New Revised Standard Version
QA Qumran Aramaic
QH Qumran Hebrew
RH Rabbinic Hebrew
SBH Standard Biblical Hebrew


AB Anchor Bible
AGJU Arbeiten zur Geschichte des antiken Judentums und des
ANES Ancient Near Eastern Studies
ANESSup Ancient Near Eastern Studies Supplement Series
AOAT Alter Orient und Altes Testament
AOS American Oriental Series
BDB A Hebrew and English Lexicon of the Old Testament. Edited
by F. Brown, S. R. Driver, and C. A. Briggs. Oxford, 1907
BETL Bibliotheca ephemeridum theologicarum lovaniensium
BHS Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia. Edited by K. Elliger and
W. Rudolph. Stuttgart, 1983
BibOr Biblica et orientalia
BKAT Biblischer Kommentar, Altes Testament
CBQ Catholic Biblical Quarterly
DCH Dictionary of Classical Hebrew. Edited by D. J. A. Clines. 9 vols.
Sheffield, 19932015
DJD Discoveries in the Judaean Desert
abbreviations ix

DSD Dead Sea Discoveries

DSSEL The Dead Sea Scrolls Electronic Library Program. Edited by
E. Tov. Leiden, 2006
DSSSE The Dead Sea Scrolls Study Edition. Edited by F. Garca Martnez
and E. J. C. Tigchelaar. 2 vols. Leiden, 19971998; Leiden and
Grand Rapids, 2000
EBib Etudes bibliques
EHLL Encyclopedia of Hebrew Language and Linguistics. Edited by
G. Khan. 4 vols. Leiden, 2013
GKC Gesenius Hebrew Grammar. Edited by E. Kautzsch. Translated
by A. E. Cowley. 2nd ed. Oxford, 1910
HAHAT Hebrisches und aramisches Handwrterbuch ber das Alte
Testament. Edited by W. Gesenius and H. Donner. 18th ed.
Berlin, 2005
HAL Hebrisches und aramisches Lexicon zum Alten Testament.
Edited by L. Koehler, W. Baumgartner, and J. J. Stamm. 5 vols.
Leiden, 19671995
HALOT The Hebrew and Aramaic Lexicon of the Old Testament. Edited
by L. Koehler, W. Baumgartner, and J. J. Stamm. 5 vols. Leiden,
HAR Hebrew Annual Review
HdO Handbuch der Orientalistik
HS Hebrew Studies
HSM Harvard Semitic Monographs
HSS Harvard Semitic Studies
HTKAT Herders Theologisches Kommentar zum Alten Testament
ICC International Critical Commentary
IELOA Instruments pour ltude des langues de lOrient ancien
JANES Journal of the Ancient Near Eastern Society
JAOS Journal of the American Oriental Society
JBL Journal of Biblical Literature
JHS Journal of Hebrew Studies
JJS Journal of Jewish Studies
JM A Grammar of Biblical Hebrew. Edited by P. Joon and
T. Muraoka. Rome, 1993. 2nd ed. Rome, 2006
JNSL Journal of Northwest Semitic Languages
JQR Jewish Quarterly Review
JSem Journal for Semitics
JSOTSS Journal for the Study of the Old Testament Supplement Series
JSQ Jewish Studies Quarterly
x abbreviations

KBL Lexicon in Veteris Testamenti libros. Edited by L. Koehler and

W. Baumgartner. 2nd ed. Leiden, 1958
KS Kirjath-Sefer
KZAT Kommentar zum Alten Testament
LCL Loeb Classical Library
Ling&P Linguistics and Philosophy
LingI Linguistic Inquiry
Lingua Lingua: International Review of General Linguistics
MPI Monographs of the Peshitta Institute Leiden
NETS New English Translation of the Septuagint. Edited by A. Pietersma
and B. G. Wright. Oxford, 2007
NTOA Novum Testamentum et Orbis Antiquus
OLA Orientalia Lovaniensia Analecta
OrChr Oriens christianus
PTSDSSP Princeton Theological Seminary Dead Sea Scrolls Project
REJ Revue des tudes juives
RevQ Revue de Qumrn
ScrHier Scripta hierosolymitana
SAOC Studies in Ancient Oriental Civilizations
SJSJ Supplements to the Journal for the Study of Judaism
SSL Studies in Semitic Languages and Linguistics
SSN Studia Semitica Neerlandica
STDJ Studies on the Texts of the Desert of Judah
SVTP Studia in Veteris Testamenti Pseudepigrapha
TAPA Transactions of the American Philological Association
TBN Themes in Biblical Narrative
TDOT Theological Dictionary of the Old Testament. Edited by
G. J. Botterweck and H. Ringgren. 8 vols. Grand Rapids
ThWQ Theologisches Wrterbuch zu den Qumrantexten. Edited by
H.-J. Fabry and U. Dahmen. Stuttgart
TSAJ Texte und Studien zum antiken Judentum
TSHLRS Texts and Studies in the Hebrew Language and Related
VT Vetus Testamentum
WBC Word Bible Commentary
WUNT Wissenschaftliche Untersuchungen zum Neuen Testament
ZAH Zeitschrift fr Althebraistik
ZAW Zeitschrift fur die alttestamentliche Wissenschaft
Remarks on the Language of the Pesher Scrolls*
Chanan Ariel and Alexey (Eliyahu) Yuditsky

The preparation of the database of the Dead Sea Scrolls for the Historical
Dictionary Project at the Academy of the Hebrew Language in Jerusalem
entails the reexamination of the readings of all the scrolls. During the process
new readings and reconstructions are occasionally found, which could be pre-
ferred to those of the official editions. Here are presented three such innova-
tive cases which have been revealed while editing the pesharim.1

1 4Q163 47 i 411

In these lines a commentary on Isa 9:1314 had been preserved. The editor of
the text, John Allegro, restored the survived text as follows:2

] 4
] 5
] 6

Regarding line 5 he noted: apparently the end of a peer on v. 13 and the begin-
ning of the statement of v. 14. Indeed, in chapter 9 of Isaiah we read

. John Strugnell suggested an improved reading of line 5:3

] 5

As he has claimed, it should be better treated as the final words of v. 13, which
contain a variant alternative to the Masoretic Text, whereas begins
the citation of v. 14. Thus, the text should be restored as follows:

* We would like to thank Prof. Elisha Qimron for his valuable comments. Our thanks are also
due to Dr. David Prebor who has styled the English text of the article.
1 The readings are now included in Elisha Qimron, The Dead Sea Scrolls: The Hebrew Writings
(3 vols.; Jerusalem: Yad Ben-Zvi, 20102015), 2:267, 271, 292.
2 See Allegro, DJD 5:18. These fragments consist of two partially survived columns, and the
following text is situated in the right one. Since it has a full margin on the left, the preserved
words should be posited in the end of the lines as presented below.
3 John Strugnell, Notes en marge du volume V des Discoveries in the Judaean Desert of Jordan,
RevQ 7/26 (1970): 163276, at 189.

koninklijke brill nv, leiden, 5|doi .63/9789004299313_002

2 Ariel and Yuditsky

] 4
[ ] 5
[ ] 6

A careful examination of the photographs shows that Strugnells proposition

should be preferred. But it raises another difficulty. Taking into account that
the last words of line 6, , concludes v. 14, one can easily reconstruct
an estimated width of the column in this manuscript. It has to be about 3035
letters. But this is just the length of v. 13 which, therefore, should be fully cited
in line 5. As a result, the surviving remains of line 4 conclude the previous
sentence. Yet, it is quite unusual and non-grammatical to finish a phrase by the
word , as correctly noted by Maurya Horgan.4
As a result of reexamining the photos we believe that line 4 should be deci-
phered otherwise. It seems that the surviving traces might be read as [
. The word here is an allograph of , and such a spelling occurs
elsewhere in the Scrolls.5 Fluctuations of glides spelled like this are quite com-
mon in Qumran Hebrew.6
This reading fits perfectly Isa 9:11

. It is reasonable to assume that the

commentary of verse 11 of chapter 9 concludes in the third line. The author or
the redactor finished its Pesher with the phrase as an allusion to
of v. 11.

2 4Q163 23 ii 1414b

In the editions of this scroll the reading is: ...[ ,7 and the rem-
nants of ...[ make possible the identification of the phrase as a citation
of the book of Hosea. Hosea (6:89) says: :

. The scroll citation is similar to

the biblical text, apart from the first word, which is in the scroll vis--vis
in the Bible. How should it be understood?

See Maurya Horgan, Pesharim: Qumran Interpretations of Biblical Books (Washington:
Catholic Biblical Association of America, 1979), 108.
5 [( ]] [ 4QSama 164:23 [2 Sam 24:16]).
6 See Elisha Qimron,The Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls (HSS 29; Atlanta: Scholars Press,
1986), 26 and Qimron, , in ( ed.
Z. Talshir, Sh. Yona, and D. Sivan; Jerusalem: Bialik Institute, 2001), 36275, esp. 36364.
7 See Allegro, DJD 5:24 and Strugnell, Notes, 193.
Remarks on the Language of the Pesher Scrolls 3

Regarding the biblical , commentators of Hosea floundered in explain-

ing this word, proposing a plural form of the noun fishing rod or a pecu-
liar form of the verb to wait.8 The Scrolls version is not less
puzzling. It was suggested that it reflects a combination of the preposition -
and a future Piel form .9 Yet, such a combination is common in Piyyut, but
not in the Bible and in the Scrolls. Another option is to understand the word as
a combination of the conjunction and the infinitive . It seems that the
latter solution is not better than the former.
In fact, there is no clear distinction between waw and yod in this papyrus,
so it is possible to read the word with waw your power, as suggested
by Elisha Qimron. This reading apparently reflects the Septuagint version of
Hosea, which translates and your power.10 Prima facie, there
were two different versions, in the Hebrew Bible, and in the Scrolls,
the latter of which is seemingly reflected in the Septuagint.
There is, however, another possible solution. Hosea 6:8 reads
. Its subject is , a feminine form, as the ver-
bal form also proves. The pronominal suffix of , therefore, should
be the second person feminine. The scroll, however, has , not (or
). But in fact, the spelling might reflect the form with the suf-
fix of second person feminine. It has already been shown that this suf-
fix is occasionally written just as the masculine one, -.11 For example, the
Isaiah Scroll has:
( 57:11). Hence, the word might well be understood as
, as if it were .12

8 For various propositions of medieval and modern commentators see Andrew A. Macintosh,
Hosea: A Critical and Exegetical Commentary (ICC; Edinburgh: T&T Clark, 1997), 242.
9 See Horgan, Pesharim, 120.
10 Compare Allegro, DJD 5:25.
11 See Hannah M. Cotton and Elisha Qimron, Xev/Se ar 13 of 134 or 135 CE: A Wifes
Renunciation of Claims, JJS 49 (1998): 10818, at 111.
12 The same suffix seems to occur in the Bible, as well. In Nah 2:14, there is

. According to the context, is your (fem.) messenger. Compare also the
verb for ( 2 fem. sg.) in Ezek 21:37 and 23:32, which was usually seen as an error;
see Rimon Kasher, :( 2 vols.; Tel Aviv: Am Oved,
2004), 1:432, 459; Leslie C. Allen, Ezekiel 2048 (WBC 29; Dallas: Word Books, 1990), 22, 44.
It can be explained, however, as a peculiar form of , where the last vowel was low-
ered to .
4 Ariel and Yuditsky

Regarding the Tiberian form , its consonantal basis fits the word ; 13
that is and the old original feminine suffix -. It is possible, therefore, that
the only difference between the Tiberian version and the Scrolls
is just the spelling. Both imply your (fem.) power, and in the former the last
vowel is designated by yod whereas in the latter by he. So actually in Hosea
there is, perhaps, an example of a difference between the scribal and the vocal-
ization traditions. The spelling intends such a word as , but it was
vocalized as .
It should be noted that the Greek language has the same form for the pro-
nouns of the second person. Hence, the translation of Septuagint
might indicate the form with the feminine suffix as well, and it could be
assumed that the translator utilized the text which included the very same
version as the Masoretic one.14

3 4Q177 711 811

In the scroll 4Q177 a number of biblical verses are interpreted. John Allegro, the
first editor of the scroll, joined two fragments and suggested such a composite

] [ ] [ 8
[ ] [ ] 9
] [ ] [ 10

He rightly stated that in these lines the words of Ps 13:23 are cited and inter-
preted. It says:

At the end of line 9 he read ] , translating the interpreta-

tion of the phrase forever: the hearts of men of [.... Allegro understood the

13 Basing on the Septuagint version, Albin Van Hoonacker proposed to treat of the
Hebrew Bible as , where the suffix - is related to mentioned in verse 8; see
Albin van Hoonacker, Les douze petits prophtes (Paris: Gabalda, 1908), 6566.
14 As has already been suggested by Wilhelm Rudolph, Hosea (KZAT; Gtersloh: Mohn,
1966), 142 and Macintosh, Hosea, 244.
15 See Allegro, DJD 5:71.
Remarks on the Language of the Pesher Scrolls 5

word as forever, assuming, perhaps, that it is a citation or an inter-

pretation of the word of the Psalms.
John Strugnell added two more fragments reconstructing as follows:16

] [ ] [ 8
[ ] [ ] [ ] [ ] 9
] [] [ ] [ [ ] 10

He thought that was better explained as cleansing,17 and the author of

the Pesher apparently had spoken of the purification of mens hearts. Annette
Steudel argued that the verb has a similar meaning in Arabic and Ethiopian.18
Steudel presented an alternative reconstruction:

[ ] ] [ 8
[ ] [ ] [ ] [ ] 9

] [] [] [ [ ] 10

The completion ] [, however, does not fit the remnants of the follow-
ing letter . Qimron has proposed reconstructing [], which seems
to be better.
We believe that it is possible to reconstruct the full sentence, as follows:

[ ] ] [ 8
[ ] [ ] [ ] [ ] 9

] [ [] [ ] [ ] 10

Our reconstruction is supported by another text, Barkhi Nafshi which reads:

( 4Q436 1 i 1). This reading
has been suggested by Qimron interpreting as , depressed,
gloomy soul.19 Here is a clear parallel vis--vis .20 A similar
parallel is found in the Hodayot []

16 See Strugnell, Notes, 243.

17 Ibid., 245.
18 See Annette Steudel, Der Midrasch zur Eschatologie aus der Qumrangemeinde (STDJ 13;
Leiden: Brill, 1994), 9596, n. 5.
19 Other scholars have read , to make delight in it and the like see DJD 24:29799.
20 See also the discussion in DJD 24:300.
6 Ariel and Yuditsky

( 4Q427 7 i 16). In this clause the noun corresponds to the noun

More than fourty years ago Yechezkel Kutscher claimed that the verb is
relatively common in the books of Chronicles because it is a calque of Aramaic
.22 Now the Dead Sea Scrolls corroborate his assumption.
Two additional remarks should be made. Firstly, the editor of the scroll
4Q299 read [] , translating lightning bolts He made for
eternal rain.23 In fact, it should be better interpreted as strengthening the
rain, just as in the Mishnah there is an expression . And secondly,
we are able to understand better the method of interpretation of the Dead Sea
community. It seems that reading the Psalms they understood as eternity,
but when preached they read ! ? , an imperative form, that
means strengthen me. It may well be a kind of very early evidence of the
Midrash and .24

21 Eileen Schuller translates mighty tongue; see DJD 24:99. She notes, DJD 24:104, in
sense of strength is frequent in Qumran Hebrew. The verb in the War Scroll should
also be interpreted as strengthen, as, for example, in 1QM 8:1
; see Qimron, The Dead Sea Scrolls: The Hebrew Writings, 1:119. Noam
Mizrahi, :
11QPsa in Avi
Hurvitz Festschrift (ed. S. E. Fassberg and A. Maman; Language Studies 1112; Jerusalem:
Hebrew University Press, 2008), 199212 has discussed the semantics of the verb in
the Scrolls, but has drawn quite different conclusions.
22 See E. Yechezkel Kutscher, , Leshonenu 31 (1967): 28081. It is
worth mentioning that Kutscher himself stated that the verb in Imperial, Egyptian,
and Biblical Aramaic (Dan 6:4) has to be understood as , i.e., to distinguish one-
self etc.; see Kutscher, Hebrew and Aramaic Studies (Jerusalem: Magnes, 1977), 18. This
assumption has been accepted by scholars; see, for example, Godfrey R. Driver, Aramaic
Documents of the Fifth Century BC (Oxford: Clarendon, 1957), 65; HALOT 5:1933; Takamitsu
Muraoka and Bezalel Porten, A Grammar of Egyptian Aramaic (HdO 32; Leiden: Brill,
1998), 259. Yet, in the light of the present discussion, the verb in these dialects of
Aramaic should be better interpreted as, e.g., to strengthen, to overcome.
23 See DJD 20:4546.
24 Regarding these Midrashim see Moshe Zippor, ( Tel Aviv: Papirus, 2001),
The Nature and Extent of Aramaisms in the Hebrew
Dead Sea Scrolls

Steven E. Fassberg

1 Introduction

From the beginning scholars have noted the influence of Aramaic on the
Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls. E. Y. Kutscher commented on it already in
1950 in a review of M. Burrows edition of the Great Isaiah Scroll,1 and a year
later H. Yalon pointed out several grammatical Aramaisms while reviewing
the same edition.2 In 1958, towards the end of the first decade of research,
M. Goshen-Gottstein presented the first linguistic overview of all published
Scrolls in which he also referred repeatedly to Aramaisms.3 A comprehensive
and detailed analysis of suspected Aramaisms was presented a year later in
Kutschers monumental book on the language of 1QIsaa, where more than
twenty pages were devoted to the subject.4 In his posthumous History of the
Hebrew Language, Kutscher summarized the situation in the Hebrew Scrolls as
follows: The Aramaic influence is all pervasive. The Isaiah Scroll especially is
permeated by Aramaic elements, but they are to be found in the other Scrolls
as well.5 Kutschers general assessment is accepted by all who deal with the
language of the Scrolls, though scholars disagree over specific examples. For
instance, E. Qimron wrestles throughout his 1986 grammar of the Hebrew
Dead Sea Scrolls with the question of different Aramaisms, often agreeing
with Kutscher, occasionally expressing hesitation, and at times preferring to

1 E. Y. Kutscher, , : , Haaretz (Tel Aviv),

September 25, 1950. Kutscher noted the Aramaic background of the scribe and mentioned in
particular the forms ,, and .
2 H. Yalon, review of M. Burrows, ed., The Dead Sea Scrolls of St. Marks Monastery, vol. I: The
Isaiah Manuscript and the Habakkuk Commentary, KS 27 (1951): 16372 [Hebrew].
3 M. H. Goshen-Gottstein, Linguistic Structure and Tradition in the Qumran Documents,
ScrHier 4 (1958): 10136.
4 E. Y. Kutscher, The Language and Linguistic Background of the Isaiah Scroll (Jerusalem:
The Hebrew University Magnes Press, 1959), 1922, 14163 [Hebrew]. Further references to
this work will be given according to the English translation, The Language and Linguistic
Background of the Isaiah Scroll (1Q Isaa) (STDJ 6; Brill: Leiden, 1974).
5 E. Y. Kutscher, A History of the Hebrew Language, (ed. R. Kutscher; Jerusalem: The Hebrew
University Magnes Press, 1982), 104.

koninklijke brill nv, leiden, 5|doi .63/9789004299313_003

8 Fassberg

see independent and parallel Hebrew developments.6 Recent concise state-

ments on the subject include observations by Qimron and by M. Kister in the
two-volume work of collected essays on the Dead Sea Scrolls from 2009,7 by
J. Joosten in the Oxford Handbook of the Dead Sea Scrolls from 2010,8 and also in
2010 by M. Abegg, Jr. in a contribution to the Discoveries in the Judaean Desert
volume containing the Isaiah Scrolls.9
Now that all of the Dead Sea Scrolls have been published and in the light
of earlier and later Hebrew and Aramaic evidence from Palestine, I think it
only appropriate to reevaluate the nature and extent of Aramaic penetra-
tion into the Hebrew of the Scrolls as well as the distribution of Aramaisms
in the different documents. A similar reevaluation of the Hebrew influence
on the Aramaic Scrolls was undertaken a few years ago by C. Stadel, who
demonstrated that most Hebrew borrowings into Aramaic were religious and
technical lexemes for which there were no Aramaic equivalents, and that the
influence of Hebrew on syntax and morphology was negligible.10 Unlike in
the case of Hebraisms in Aramaic, which Stadel attributed to the literary and
religious prestige of Hebrew, Aramaisms in Hebrew have been assumed, on
the whole, to be the result of a spoken Aramaic superstratum. For example,
Kutscher wrote that Aramaic was the mother tongue of the 1QIsaa scribe; how-
ever, he also displayed sensitivity to the possibility of written Aramaic influ-
ence on the scribe, who was, in his words, undoubtedly familiar with the
Aramaic literature of his day.11 In the third meeting of this group in Beersheba
in 1999, M. Bar-Asher conjectured that the Qumran scribes may have drawn
not only on the Hebrew Bible, but also on a literary Aramaic corpus composed
of Aramaic biblical Targumim or related works.12 Nonetheless, the question

6 E. Qimron, The Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls (HSS 29; Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1986), 116
and Aramaic in the subject index (119).
7 E. Qimron, The Language and Linguistic Background of the Qumran Compositions,
in The Qumran Scrolls and Their World (ed. M. Kister; 2 vols.; Jerusalem: Yad Ben-Zvi,
2009), 2:55160, esp. 552, 555 [Hebrew]; and from the same work M. Kister, Some Lexical
Features of the Writings from Qumran, 2:56566 [Hebrew].
8 J. Joosten, Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek, in The Oxford Handbook of the Dead Sea Scrolls
(ed. T. H. Lim and J. J. Collins; Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2010), 35174, esp. 35859.
9 M. Abegg, Jr., Linguistic Profile of the Isaiah Scrolls, DJD 32:2541.
10 C. Stadel, Hebraismen in den aramischen Texten vom Toten Meer (Schriften der
Hochschule fr Jdische Studien Heidelberg 11; Heidelberg: Universittsverlag Winter,
11 Kutscher, Language and Linguistic Background, 24.
12 M. Bar-Asher, A Few Remarks on Mishnaic Hebrew and Aramaic in Qumran Hebrew,
in Diggers at the Well: Proceedings of a Third International Symposium on the Hebrew of
The Nature and Extent of Aramaisms in the Hebrew Dead Sea Scrolls 9

of spoken versus written influence has generally been ignored by scholars,

who have tended to focus on the general status of Hebrew vis--vis Aramaic.13
Joosten expresses what is the majority view today when he concludes that
Hebrew and Aramaic are adstrata and that The amount of Aramaic influence
in the Hebrew Qumran scrolls can best be explained as reflecting the bilin-
gualism of the authors and their readers. Although the sectarian writings were
composed in Hebrew, the group among which they came into being knew and
practiced these two languages.14
It is a commonplace in linguistics that languages in contact tend to influ-
ence one another more in certain fields than in others. At the most frequent
end of the scale of adoptability,15 a term coined by E. Haugen in the 1950s, is
lexical borrowing, and at the other end are morphological and grammatical
loans. In between one finds phonological, semantic, and syntactic influences.
In cases of bilingualism involving closely related languages, structural borrow-
ing may increase.16 I shall survey the nature and extent of Aramaic borrowings
against the backdrop of Haugens scale of adoptability.

2 Orthography

One indicator of the influence of written language on the Hebrew of the Dead
Sea Scrolls is the occasional use of alef as against he to represent final - and -,
as is common in Official and Middle Aramaic, e.g., and bravery 6Qpap
apocrSamKings [6Q9] 45 2; the law 1QSa 1:1; and he built 1QIsaa
4:13 ( Isa 5:2); it was 4QMMTe [4Q398] 1417 i 5; 1417 ii 1, 2;

the Dead Sea Scrolls and Ben Sira (ed. T. Muraoka and J. F. Elwolde; STDJ 36; Leiden: Brill,
2000), 1219, esp. 1619.
13 J. C. Greenfields description of a Standard Literary Aramaic at Qumran is directly rel-
evant to the question of the nature of the Aramaisms in the Hebrew Dead Sea Scrolls as
will be seen. See J. C. Greenfield, Standard Literary Aramaic, in Actes du premier congrs
de linguistique smitique et chamitosmitique, Paris, 1619 juillet 1969 (ed. A. Caquot and
D. Cohen; Janua Linguarum, Series Practica 159; Paris: Mouton, 1974): 28089.
14 Joosten, Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek, 359.
15 E. Haugen, The Analysis of Linguistic Borrowing, Language 26 (1950): 21031, at 224.
Before him W. D. Whitney, On Mixture in Language, TAPA 12 (1881): 526 presented a
decreasing scale of borrowings: nouns, other parts of speech, suffixes, inflections, and
16 S. G. Thomason, Language Change and Language Contact, Encyclopedia of Language
and Linguistics (ed. K. Brown; 14 vols.; 2nd ed.; Oxford: Elsevier, 2006), 10:33946, at 341.
10 Fassberg

twelve 4QShirShabbf [4Q405] 20 ii 2122 6; behold 4QPsf [4Q88] X 11.

Final alef is especially frequent in the Copper Scroll [3Q15].17

3 Phonology

Several phonological phenomena seem to point to Aramaic influence. The

common sporadic shift in Aramaic in general, and in Palestinian Aramaic
in particular, of a > o before labials and r (known also in Tannaitic Hebrew)18
is well-attested in different Qumran manuscripts, particularly 1QIsaa, e.g.,
Abiram 4QNumb [4Q27] 6:6 12, 19:33 240 6 ( Num 16:1; 26:9)
and 4QPhyl K [4Q138] 1 13 (Deut 11:6); Ararat 1QIsaa 31:19 (
Isa 37:38); your destroyers 1QIsaa 41:16 ( Isa 49:17);
and on litters 1QIsaa 54:10 ( Isa 66:20); magicians 4QRPc
[4Q365] 2 3; and the Jordan 4QapocrJoshb [4Q379] 12 6; and
the cricket 11QTemplea [11Q19] 48:3.19 The related shift of a > o / _ n, well
known in Aramaic,20 is found in merciful (4QNon-Canonical Psalms B
[4Q381] 1011 3).
An unequivocal Aramaic phonological feature is prenasalization, i.e., the
substitution of nasalization for gemination.21 It is attested several times in
verbs: he will give (as against ) in the biblical manuscript 4QExodLevf
[4Q17] 2 ii 14 (Exod 40:19, 20, 22) and in a biblical citation in 4QTest [4Q175]
3 (Deut 5:29). In non-biblical manuscripts one finds when it is estab-
lished 4QShirb [4Q511] 6364 2 4; to save them CD 14:2. Perhaps
in you will keep your law 4QBarkhi Nafshic [4Q436 ] 2 i 4 should
also be included here; the original nasal is preserved in the verb in the
Imperfect in Biblical Hebrew only in pause (e.g., Deut 33:9, which

17 J. T. Milik, DJD 3:16364; Qimron, Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls, 23.
18 Yalon, review of Burrows, 169; Kutscher, Language and Linguistic Background, 49697.
19 Kutscher, Language and Linguistic Background, 49698; E. Qimron, The Language of the
Temple Scroll, Leshonenu 42 (1978): 8398, esp. 90 [Hebrew]. Qimrons interpreration
of as there (11QTemplea [11Q19] 59:4) is difficult; the common interpretation of
a waste is preferable because of the waw connecting it with and
a mockery and a ruin.
20 C. Brockelmann, Grundriss der vergleichenden Grammatik der semitischen Sprachen
(2 vols.; Berlin: Reuther & Reichard 19081913), 1:203.
21 Goshen-Gottstein Linguistic Structure, 15; Sh. Morag, Qumran Hebrew: Some
Typological Observations, VT 38 (1988): 15153; W. R. Garr, Prenasalization, in Studies in
Semitic and Afroasiatic Linguistics Presented to Gene B. Gragg (ed. C. L. Miller; SAOC 60;
Chicago, Ill.: Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago, 2007), 81109.
The Nature and Extent of Aramaisms in the Hebrew Dead Sea Scrolls 11

is attested as in 4QTest [4Q175] 17; cf. 4QBeatitudes [4Q525]

5 9). Prenasalization is also responsible for what is commonly described as the
non-assimilation of the preposition under the influence of Aramaic, e.g.,
and from a gentile nation 11QTa [11Q19] LVII 11; from a
fig 1QIsaa 28:45 ( Isa 34:4); and from daughters 1QIsaa 46:16
Isa 56:5).22 A phenomenon related to prenasalization is the rhotacism
found in place of gemination: there are seven examples of the proper noun
Damascus in 1QIsaa.23
The addition of a prosthetic alef before consonants, especially consonantal
clusters involving sibilants, is a feature that is attested in Aramaic, Hebrew, and
in Semitic languages in general,24 but since it is a relatively frequent phenom-
enon in Palestinian Aramaic Targumim,25 one wonders if the prosthetic vowel
in reflects the influence of Palestinian Aramaic or Biblical Aramaic
arm26: in 11QTa [11Q19] 20:16 and also a few times in biblical quotations
(Deut 5:15) in phylacteries (4Q137, 139, XQ3) versus in Phyl J [4Q137] 1 22;
Phyl L [4Q139] 1 8; Phyl 3 [XQ3] 1 24; Phyl A [4Q128] 1 29; 8QMez [8Q4] 1 16
(Deut 11:2); 4QXIIg [4Q82] (Hos 7:15); 4QIsac [4Q57] (Isa 52:10); 11QPsa [11Q5]
(Ps 136:12). Of course, Biblical Hebrew too knows , but only in the book
of Jeremiah, where it might also be explained as Aramaic influence.27 Could
underworld 11QPsa 23:4 [11Q5] ( Ps 141:7) and and for a
remembrance XHev/Se5 1 3 ( Exod 13:9) also be additional examples of
this phenomenon?28
Early on in Qumran research scholars suggested that two more phonologi-
cal features were Aramaisms. The first was the weakening of gutturals and the
second, general penultimate stress. With regard to the first, Goshen-Gottstein,

22 Kutscher, Language and Linguistic Background, 214; Qimron, Hebrew of the Dead Sea
Scrolls, 3031.
23 Kutscher, Language and Linguistic Background, 34, 102.
24 E. Qimron, A Grammar of the Hebrew Language of the Dead Sea Scrolls (Ph.D. diss.,
Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 1976), 11718 [Hebrew].
25 G. Dalman, Grammatik des jdischpalstinischen Aramisch nach den Idiomen des
palstinischen Talmud, des Onkelostargum und Prophetentargum und der jerusalemischen
Targume (2nd ed.; Leipzig: J. C. Hinrichs, 1905), 94.
26  is also attested in Biblical Aramaic.
27 See Sh. Morag, On the Historical Validity of the Vocalization of the Hebrew Bible, JAOS
94 (1974): 30715, at 315 n. 48, where he calls Official Aramaic influence on the language of
Jeremiah plausible.
28 Were these two nouns realized with consonantal clusters at Qumran? For different
Aramaic realizations of without prosthesis in Aramaic dialects, see Kutscher,
Language and Linguistic Background, 500.
12 Fassberg

for example, considered the weakening of the gutturals attested in Qumran

manuscripts an Aramaism, either direct or indirect.29 The weakening, merger,
and disappearance of gutturals is indeed attested to varying degrees in differ-
ent Aramaic dialects both in the east and in the west, though in neither area
does it affect all dialects to the same extent so one cannot speak of a general
Aramaic phenomenon. In eastern dialects it is attributed to the historical leg-
acy of Akkadian, whereas in the west, it is blamed on Greek.30 Nonetheless,
though there is no proof that Aramaic is responsible for the weakening of the
gutturals in the Dead Sea Scrolls, it may have played some role in the light
of the weakening in later Palestinian Aramaic sources (Jewish Palestinian,
Christian Palestinian, and Samaritan).
With regard to word stress, some scholars have invoked the Aramaic pattern
of accentuation in order to explain the orthography of 3 masc. pl. imperfect
verbs of the type , masc. pl. imperatives ,31 and segholate nouns writ-
ten or showing the fluctuation /.32 In classical Aramaic stress is
generally on the penultimate syllable when the word ends in a vowel, and on
the ultimate syllable when the word ends in a consonant or what once was
originally consonantal. In later Palestinian Aramaic one finds this system still
remains in Jewish Palestinian Aramaic, but no longer in Christian Palestinian
Aramaic nor in Samaritan Aramaic. Plausible alternative explanations, how-
ever, have been proposed for each of these categories in the Hebrew Dead Sea
Scrolls and so here, too, Aramaic influence is speculative.

4 Lexicon

The biblical Dead Sea Scrolls contain lexical Aramaisms, though by no means
a deluge. Kutscher pointed out that 1QIsaa sometimes substitutes infrequent
Hebrew roots of nouns and verbs with Hebrew roots that are common in
Aramaic, e.g., for , for , for , for , and

29 Goshen-Gottstein, Linguistic Structure, 7. For the statistics concerning the misspellings

with gutturals, see Abegg, Linguistic Profile, 2930.
30 Kutscher, Language and Linguistic Background, 50811.
31 Abegg, Linguistic Profile, 32 notes eleven occurrences of in the non-biblical manu-
scripts from Qumran and forty-four in the biblical manuscripts.
32 Kutscher, Language and Linguistic Background, 19497, 5024. For recent discussions
and bibliography, see Qimron, Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls, 4042; Qimron, ,

, in Yaakov Bentolila Jubilee Volume: Research Papers in Hebrew
Linguistics, Hebrew Literature and Jewish Languages (ed. D. Sivan and P.-I. Halevy-
Kirtchuk; Beersheba: Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, 2003), 32739.
The Nature and Extent of Aramaisms in the Hebrew Dead Sea Scrolls 13

for .33 Note also the noun overturning for , if the alef
indeed reflects the Aramaic = ( Hebrew )and not merely an ad hoc
weakening of the guttural h > .34 In a quotation of a biblical verse in a non-
biblical text, 4QTan [4Q176] 811 6, one finds your widowhood for
( it also shows up in Tannaitic Hebrew). A certain and common
Aramaism in some biblical manuscripts, as well as non-biblical, is the plural
base of the noun day35: 4QTest [4Q175] 4 ( Deut 5:29);
1QIsaa ( Isa 1:1); all the days of the wicked domin-
ion 1QS 2:19; all the days that he rejects Gods laws
1QS 3:5; and in some phylacteries ( Exod 13:10): []
Phyl B [4Q129]; [ Phyl I [4Q136]; [] Phyl M [4Q140];
Phyl R [4Q145]. It should be stressed that apart from 1QIsaa,
the biblical manuscripts that have survived are extremely fragmentary and this
may be the reason why they exhibit fewer lexical Aramaisms than does 1QIsaa.36
Non-biblical scrolls also exhibit borrowings, though the number of exam-
ples is actually quite limited. One cannot say that they are particularly fre-
quent in any one text.37 Borrowed nouns include crown, which appears
four times in the expression 1QS 4:7, 1QSb 4:2, 1QHa 17:25; and once
in the expression crown of glory (4QEschatological Work B
[4Q472] ii 8),38 as well as words and expressions that are of ultimate Akkadian
origin: intercessors (abbt) 1QS 2:9, 4QCurses [4Q280] 2 4;

33 Kutscher, Language and Linguistic Background, 219, 223, 233, 289, 272, 313.
34 Ibid., 251.
35 Yalon, review of Burrows, 167; H. Yalon, review of M. Burrows, ed., The Dead Sea Scrolls of
St. Marks Monastery, vol. II, 2: Plates and Transcription of the Manual of Discipline, KS 28
(19521953): 65 [Hebrew]; Goshen-Gottstein, Linguistic Structure, 32 n. 17.
36 Abegg, Linguistic Profile, 25 points out that 1QIsaa contains more than 24% of all the
words (tokens) attested in the biblical manuscripts found at Qumran.
37 Kister, Lexical Features, 56566. 4QTest [4Q175] does contain a number of Aramaic-
looking forms in a relatively small text, but only one, maybe two (depending on
the readings), are lexical. F. M. Cross notes: Perf. 1 sg. I heard (1), he will
give (3), and the days (4). One should also add I dont know you
(fem. sg.) (16). See Cross, Testimonia [4Q175 = 4QTestimonia = 4QTestim], in Pesharim,
Other Commentaries, and Related Documents (ed. J. H. Charlesworth and H. W. M. Rietz;
PTSDSSP 6b; Tbingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2002), 30827, at 312. J. Strugnell read two more
forms as Aramaic: and he will be (3; Cross )and and with his
praises (21; so too Qimron [n. 51 below], but Cross ;)see Strugnell, Notes en
marge du Volume V des Discoveries in the Judaean Desert of Jordan, RevQ 7 (1970):
163276, at 22529.
38 See also Sir 45:8 and the Hekhalot literature.
14 Fassberg

angel of intercession 4QPrayer of Enosh [4Q369] 2 1; ( malw)

sign of the zodiac 4QLament by a Leader [4Q439] 1 i 2.39
Original *qutl nouns spelled are common in different Dead Sea Scrolls,
e.g., unripe grapes 1QIsaa ( Isa 18:5), straight of heart
1QS 11:2; slow to anger 1QHa 9:8; strength of our hands
1QM 11:5. Not all *qutl nouns show up as , however. Most scholars consider
those that do to be Aramaisms; a notable exception is Qimron, who takes them
as authentic Hebrew forms for which there are parallels in the Masoretic text.40
Verbs in non-biblical texts inflected as Hebrew but from Aramaic roots
include she was widowed 4QDf [4Q271] 3 12 and ( tbt < )
she will spend the night 1QHa 25:6.
Aramaic prepositions have also penetrated both biblical and non-biblical
texts. One finds for under, in place of, e.g., 1QIsaa 4:1 (
Isa 3:24; preceded in same verse by tt?), 1QS 7:13; for by,
from 4QPseudo-Ezekiela [4Q385] 6 8 (also attested in Samaritan Aramaic),
and, as attested in Late Biblical Hebrew, for : and they will
stream unto him 1QIsaa 2:9 ( Isa 2:2), as well as Isa 6:9, 17:8, 22:5, 22:11,
36:7, 36:12, 46:7, 65:6, and for ( 47:1, 9:12, 36:11).41 See also the preposition
above (3 under prenasalization).

5 Semantics

There is no doubt that Aramaic is the source of several calques. Qimron pre-
sented a comprehensive collection of loan translations known at the time
in his 1986 grammar.42 Underlying Aramaic words and syntagms can be
found throughout the non-biblical corpus, e.g., frequently 1QM 2:2
( Dan 6:17, 21), very 4QHoroscope [4Q186] 1 iii 4; = Targum
Onqelos ). Note also in the Vision of Gabriel before me (16) and
before you (17), which are calques on the common Aramaic
(e.g., Dan 2:15, 18).43

39 Cf. the synonym, , which also came into Hebrew and Aramaic from Akkadian.
40 Kutscher, Language and Linguistic Background, 2013, 5024; Qimron, , esp. 32.
For a list of nouns, see Qimron, Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls, 3738.
41 There are several cases of in 1QIsaa for MT . See Kutscher, Language and Linguistic
Background, 4045.
42 Qimron, Hebrew of Dead Sea Scrolls, 116, 119.
43 See the discussion of M. Bar-Asher, On the Language of the Vision of Gabriel, RevQ 23
(2008): 491524, at 493 n. 16.
The Nature and Extent of Aramaisms in the Hebrew Dead Sea Scrolls 15

6 Syntax

4QMMT is marked by syntagms that seem to be calques on Aramaic compound

conjunctions containing /-, e.g., lest (= ) 4QMMTc [4Q396] 12
iv 7; - so that (= - ,- ) 4QMMTc [4Q396] 12 iv 8; -
so that (= - ) 4QMMTa [4Q394] 37 i 15, 37 i 19, 4QMMTb [4Q395] 10;
4QMMTd [4Q397] 23 2; 4QMMTe [4Q398] 1417 ii 6; as it is written
(= )4QMMTc [4Q396] 12 iv 5.44
J. Carmignac argued that the positioning of an object before the infinitive
in Qumran Hebrew texts is the result of Aramaic influence, e.g.,
they should properly exercise their strength 1QS 1:12;
to strengthen the willing hearted by the might of God 1QM [1Q33] 10:5.45
Qimron believes that there are not enough examples in the Hebrew texts to
prove Carmignacs assertion.46

7 Morphology

Several morphological phenomena have been attributed to Aramaic. For

example, one finds in 1QIsaa Aramaic-looking 2 fem. sg. formsthe indepen-
dent pronoun at 1QIsaa 42:24, 25, 28 ( Isa 51:9, 10, 12); the pronominal
suffix - ( and your redeemer 1QIsaa 41:27 [ Isa 49:26]); the object
suffix - ( I will forget you 1QIsaa 41:15 [ Isa 49:15]); and the per-
fect suffix - ( you placed 1QIsaa 29:25 [ Isa 47:6, 7]).47 Abegg has
discussed the number of occurrences of 2 fem. sg. forms in the Scrolls:48 the
2 fem. sg. independent pronoun is attested three times (as noted above) in
1QIsaa as well as once possibly in a non-biblical text (4QpapJubh [4Q223224]
2 ii 11); the 2 fem. sg. perfect - shows up in eighteen out of thirty examples
of the 2 fem. sg. perfect in 1QIsaa but outside of this scroll only twice, and
both times in biblical manuscripts (1QIsab 20:20 [Isa 47:7] and 4QJerc 4754 11

44 E. Qimron and J. Strugnell, DJD 10:7475, 95.

45 J. Carmignac, Un aramasme biblique et qumrnien: linfinitif plac aprs son compl-
ment dobjet, RevQ 5 (1966): 50320.
46 Qimron, Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls, 74.
47 For the examples from 1QIsaa, see Kutscher, Language and Linguistic Background, 188
90. For a general discussion, see E. Qimron, review of Z. Ben-ayyim, The Literary and
Oral Tradition of Hebrew and Aramaic amongst the Samaritans, Vol. 5, KS 54 (1979): 365
48 Abegg, Linguistic Profile, 31, 33.
16 Fassberg

[Jer 31:21]); the 2 fem. sg. pronominal suffix - is preserved twenty-seven times
in 1QIsaa as against 217 occurrences of -; there are two more examples of - in
other biblical manuscripts (4QPsb 28 i 18 [Ps 116:10] and 4QLam 3:2 [Lam 1:12])
and five examples in non-biblical manuscripts (4QPsf [4Q88] 8:13; 4QpIsaa
[4Q161] 56 7; 4QTan [4Q176] 811 67, 50 1). As an object suffix, it may pos-
sibly underlie the unexpected orthography I dont know you 4QTest
[4Q175] 16 (= )? .49
The 3 masc. sg. suffix - on plural nouns and prepositions is limited nei-
ther to 1QIsaa nor to biblical texts, e.g., his hands 1QIsaa 37:10 ( Isa
44:5); upon him 1QpHab 12:12; his feet 1QS 6:13; with
his praises 4QTest [4Q175] 21.50 It also shows up in non-biblical texts such as
the Community Rule (1QS) and Pesher Habakkuk (1QpHab), though early edi-
tors, because of the difficulty in distinguishing between waw and yod in some
manuscripts, sometimes read the Aramaic - suffix as the Hebrew - (eh),
which is found in Biblical Hebrew on III-y nouns (e.g., his field) and in
poetry.51 - also shows up in 1QIsaa as the object suffix on perfect 3 pl. verbs (cf.
Tiberian Hebrew -), e.g., they must carry it on
their backs, transport it and put it down 1QIsaa 34:12 ( ... -

Isa 46:7).52

Kutscher believed that 1QIsaa evidences three examples of an Aramaic

3 fem. pl. perfect suffix - () as against the expected Hebrew suffix - ():
seven women shall take hold 1QIsaa 4:4 (
Isa 4:1); his ways succeeded 1QIsaa 40:20 ( Isa 48:15);
... the first things...went out 1QIsaa 40:8 ...
(Isa 48:3).53
There are a few words in the Scrolls, primarily in 1QIsaa, that appear
to reflect the Aramaic C-stem Hapel: remove 1QIsaa 3:1 ( Isa 3:1);
and I shall feed 1QIsaa 41:27 ( Isa 49:26); and I will
lead 1QIsaa 35:26 (
Isa 42:16), and he will prepare 1QS 3:9.54

49 The he is unexpected. Strugnell, Notes, 226 reads here . See also n. 37 above.
50 Qimron, Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls, 61; Abegg, Linguistic Profile, 34. See also n. 37
51 See the discussion in J. Licht, The Rule Scroll: A Scroll from the Wilderness of Judaea.
1QS. 1QSa. 1QSb. Text, Introduction and Commentary (Jerusalem: Bialik Institute, 1965),
4445 [Hebrew]. On the difficulty of distinguishing waw from yod, see E. Qimron, The
Distinction between Waw and Yod in the Qumran Scrolls, Beit Mikra (1972): 10212
52 Abegg, Linguistic Profile, 34.
53 For possible additional examples, see Kutscher, Language and Linguistic Background, 191.
54 Ibid., 197200.
The Nature and Extent of Aramaisms in the Hebrew Dead Sea Scrolls 17

It has been suggested that the use of G-stem verbal nouns and infinitives
with prefixed mem, which is found in various Dead Sea Scrolls, is the result
of Aramaic influence,55 e.g., seeking out 1QS 3:3; also in the parallel
text 4Q257); to unlock 1QS 10:4; to repent 1QS 3:1; hat-
ing 1QS 4:5; to repent 1QM 1:13; in leaving and entering
4QShirShabbf [4Q405] 23 i 10.
Some have viewed the masc. pl. suffix - found in the Copper Scroll (3Q15)
and occasionally in other Scrolls56 (and in Tannaitic Hebrew) as an Aramaism,
though most nowadays consider it a phonological phenomenon: a shift of final
m > n.57

8 Analysis of Data

The sketch presented above leaves no doubt that the scribe of 1QIsaa was heav-
ily influenced by Aramaic and that other scribes were also influenced, though
the manuscripts they wrote or copied show less evidence of it. It confirms
what was known by the end of the 1950s, namely, that there is a significant
difference in the amount of Aramaisms in 1QIsaa and other more carefully
written, official-looking documents such as the Community Rule (1QS) and the
Temple Scroll. One must keep in mind, however, that the picture of other bibli-
cal Scrolls may be distorted because of their fragmentary nature.58
Are the Aramaisms the result of a literary language, the vernacular, or a
combination of both? The most obvious yardstick by which to begin to exam-
ine the Aramaisms in the Hebrew scrolls is the Aramaic corpus of manuscripts
from Qumran.59 Yet, because the provenance and date of composition of many
if not all of the Aramaic documents is far from certain60 and because the texts

55 Licht, Rule Scroll, 44. See also the remarks of Qimron, Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls, 65.
56 Qimron, Language of Temple Scroll, 9394.
57 See Qimron, Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls, 27 for a discussion and additional bibliography.
58 See n. 36 above.
59 See the grammatical descriptions of Qumran Aramaic by K. Beyer, Die aramischen Texte
vom Toten Meer (3 vols.; Gttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 19842004); U. Schattner-
Rieser, Laramen des manuscrits de la mer Morte. I. Grammaire (IELOA 5; Lausanne:
Editions du Zbre, 2004) and T. Muraoka, A Grammar of Qumran Aramaic (ANESSup 38;
Leuven: Peeters, 2011).
60 For an overview of the Aramaic corpus, see J. J. Collins, The Aramaic Texts from Qumran:
Conclusion, in Aramaica Qumranica: Proceedings of the Conference on the Aramaic Texts
from Qumran in Aix-en-Provence 30 June2 July 2008 (ed. K. Berthelot and D. Stkl Ben
Ezra; STDJ 94; Leiden: Brill, 2010), 54764.
18 Fassberg

are written in Standard Literary Aramaic and not in a vernacular like the Bar-
Kosibah letters, for these reasons it must be said that just because a feature
may be found in an Aramaic Dead Sea Scroll does not necessarily mean that
Qumran Aramaic is the source of the Aramaism.
The alleged morphological Aramaisms are the most intriguing and sur-
prising of all the data. As noted, morphological loans from one language to
another are relatively rare. U. Weinreich noted that when they do occur they
may not only be the result of cultural influence, but may also have been
introduced into the recipient language to replace zeros or phonemically less
bulky forms.61 Grammatical loans may be attested when the two languages
are closely related, or usually when they are dialects of the same language:
one of the parade examples is the borrowing of Scandinavian pronouns (Old
Norse) beginning with th- (eir they, eim them, and eirra their) into Old
English displacing the corresponding h- forms (hie, him, and hira), presum-
ably facilitated by the existence in Old English of th- demonstrative pronouns
(including the definite article).62 Is the contact between Hebrew and Aramaic
reflected in the Hebrew Dead Sea Scrolls similar to the contact that might have
enabled the borrowing of pronouns between Old Norse and Old English? See
what Otto Jespersen says about Old Norse and Old English:

An enormous number of words were then identical in the two languages,

so that we should now have been utterly unable to tell which language
they had come from if we had had no English literature before the inva-
sion; nouns such as man, wife, father, folk, mother, house thing, life, sor-
row, winter, summer, verbs like will, can, meet, come, bring, hear, see, think,
smile, ride, stand, sit, set, spin, adjectives and adverbs like full, wise, well,
better, best, mine and thine, over and under, etc. etc. The consequence was
that an Englishman would have no great difficulty in understanding a
Vikingnay, we have positive evidence that Norse people looked upon
the English language as one with their own.63

Can one say that this was the case for Aramaic and Hebrew? Did not the
Canaanite vowel and consonant shifts, as well as the distinctive Canaanite core
vocabulary, create a divide with Aramaic that was considerably wider than
that between Old Norse and Old English? Was a sentence such as

61 U. Weinreich, Languages in Contact: Findings and Problems (The Hague: Mouton, 1964), 33.
62 O. Jespersen, Growth and Structure of the English Language (10th ed.; Chicago: University
of Chicago Press, 1982), 66; T. R. Lounsbury, History of the English Language (rev. and enl.
ed.; New York: Henry Holt & Co., 1894), 26667.
63 Jespersen, Growth and Structure, 60.
The Nature and Extent of Aramaisms in the Hebrew Dead Sea Scrolls 19

the man went out from the city felt to be identical with
?Were Hebrew and Aramaic mutually intelligible? It is interesting to
note that the redactors of the Mishnah clearly distinguished between Hebrew
and Aramaic. There is no Mischsprache in the Mishnah: when the editors deal
with Aramaic, they cite the sentence or paragraph in pure Aramaic. There is
no general mixing of languages, even though there are isolated Aramaic words
that appear in the Mishnaic text.
A comparison with other Hebrew corpora that were heavily influenced by
Aramaic is, I think, instructive. The first is Tannaitic Hebrew. Despite the con-
siderable Aramaic influence on the language, which manifests itself in many
different areas,64 it is by no means accepted by all that Aramaic penetrated
the morphological structure of the language. Take, for example, the pronomi-
nal and the verbal systems. Grammatical features that have been attributed
by scholars to Aramaic include the 2 masc. sg. independent pronoun , the
possessive suffixes 2 masc. sg. [] and 2 fem. sg. [], the second a-vowel of
the Nitpael stem, and the Pael stem.65 All of them, however, are explainable
by internal Hebrew processes and are attested already in Classical Biblical
Hebrew: ( 8 in MT), - ( , , , ,) , - (, , , ,
) , and the final a-vowel of Hitpaal (e.g., ) . The existence of paral-
lel phenomena in Aramaic probably reinforced their use in Hebrew. Following
Weinreichs observation that grammatical borrowings tend to replace ambigu-
ous forms, why would speakers of Tannaitic Hebrew borrow a form such as
for the 2 masc. sg. from Aramaic when it would create confusion in the system
between the 2 masc. sg. and the 2 fem. sg. independent pronouns? Grammatical
borrowings are usually motivated by the desire to eliminate obfuscation.
A second corpus for comparison is the Hebrew Judean Desert documents
from between the destruction of the Second Temple and the Second Revolt.
Though the paradigms are not complete and the evidence is limited, I am not cer-
tain that there are clear Aramaisms in either the pronominal or verbal systems,66

64 For an extreme maximalist view, see I. Gluska, Hebrew and Aramaic in Contact during the
Tannaitic Period: A Sociolinguistic Approach (Tel Aviv: Papirus, 1999) [Hebrew].
65 M. Bar-Asher, Lhbreu mishnique: tudes linguistiques (Orbis Supplementa 11; Leuven:
Peeters, 1999), 3034. On the suffix see also R. Steiner, From Proto-Hebrew to
Mishnaic Hebrew: The History of - and - , HAR 3 (1979): 15774.
66 U. Mor, The Grammar of the Epigraphic Hebrew Documents from Judaea between the
First and the Second Revolts, (Ph.D. diss., Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, 2009),
11633, 14346 [Hebrew]. Mor, at 132, cites one example of a possible 3 masc. pl. Aramaic
suffix - ( in P. Yadin 51:3), but the reading is far from certain. According to
H. Gzella there is Aramaic influence, however, on the use of the Hebrew participle; see
H. Gzella, The Use of the Participle in the Bar Kosiba Letters in the Light of Aramaic,
DSD 14 (2007): 9098; Gzella, Elemente systemischen Sprachkontaktes in den
20 Fassberg

unless one views the shift of final m > n as proof, though it is currently believed
by most to reflect an internal Hebrew development.67
Yet another case of intense Hebrew and Aramaic contact occurs in Neo-
Aramaic as spoken today in Israel. Hebrew is the superstratum for all Neo-
Aramaic speakers living in Israel, most of whom emigrated from Kurdistan in
19501951. And yet, the pronominal and verbal systems of all Neo-Aramaic dia-
lects still spoken in Israel are impermeable to Hebrew morphological features.
The lexicon is flooded with Modern Hebrew loans and scores of verbal roots,
but the nouns and verbs are all inflected according to the grammatical rules
of Neo-Aramaic, and the pronouns are direct internal Aramaic developments.
Speakers of Jewish Neo-Aramaic often borrow pronouns and verbal inflections
from other closely related Jewish Neo-Aramaic dialects, but not from Hebrew.
Speakers distinguish clearly between Hebrew and Neo-Aramaic; they bor-
row lexemes freely, but not morphological elements. The same is true for the
Western Neo-Aramaic Christian dialects (Malula, Baxa, and Jubbadin), which
have been in contact with the superstratum of Arabic for over a millennium.
The lexicon of Western Neo-Aramaic is heavily Arabicized, but the grammati-
cal structure of the language remains entirely Aramaic.
In the light of the relative rarity of morphological borrowings between
languages,68 on the one hand, and the Hebrew-Aramaic bilingualism dem-
onstrated in Tannaitic Hebrew, the Hebrew of the Judean Desert documents,
and Jewish Neo-Aramaic, on the other, I question whether all the morphologi-
cal phenomena that have been described as borrowings in the Hebrew of the
Dead Sea Scrolls indeed are vernacular Aramaisms that penetrated the texts
from the spoken language of the scribes.
The 2 fem. sg. forms with final - are attested in Biblical Hebrew in all the
categories in which they are attested in the Dead Sea Scrolls: the independent
pronoun, the possessive suffix, and the object suffix. Kutscher called the pro-
nominal elements with - in 1QIsaa a mirage form or fata morgana,69 i.e.,
although the 2 fem. sg. forms with yod looked like ancient Hebrew forms,

hebrischen Bar-Kosiba-Briefen, in ...der seine Lust hat am Wort des Herrn!: Festschrift
fr Ernst Jenni zum 80. Geburtstag (ed. J. Luchsinger, H.-P. Mathys, and M. Saur; AOAT 336;
Mnster: Ugarit-Verlag, 2007), 93107.
67 On m > n, see, e.g., Bar-Asher, Lhbreu mishnique, 9.
68 For examples of morphological borrowings, see S. G. Thomason, Language Contact: An
Introduction (Washington, D.C.: Georgetown University Press, 2001), 6365; D. Winford,
An Introduction to Contact Linguistics (Malden, Mass.: Blackwell, 2003), 5658.
69 Kutscher, History of the Hebrew Language, 38; Kutscher, Language and Linguistic
Background, 25.
The Nature and Extent of Aramaisms in the Hebrew Dead Sea Scrolls 21

in reality they entered the Qumran texts from the Aramaic vernacular.
Ben-ayyim, in discussing Samaritan Hebrew, took the opposite view of the
2 fem. sg. forms with final -, arguing that the ancient Hebrew forms were
maintained because of the Aramaic.70 I agree with Ben-ayyim because I
think Qumran scribes tended to lengthen artificially pronouns and other forms
whenever possible in order to embellish the text (the independent pronouns
, , , the suffixes -, and -, the adverbs , , ).71
In the case of the 2 fem. sg. morphemes, I believe that here too Qumran scribes
deliberately used the archaic or dialectal Hebrew forms since they were longer
and felt to be more elegant than the regular classical forms, and also had the
same syllable structure as the 2 masc. sg. forms (Cv#). The existence of the suf-
fix in Aramaic reinforced the use of the older Hebrew forms.72
The orthography - for the 3 masc. sg. pronominal suffix on pl. nouns and
the object suffix is undeniably Aramaic. It occurs once in Biblical Hebrew
( Ps 116:12), but on a word that occurs only in Second Temple Hebrew
sources and itself may be an Aramaism.73 Ben-ayyim considered the suffix
- in Qumran Hebrew texts to be an Aramaic orthography that reflected a
realization of -o, similar to the contracted diphthong of Samaritan Aramaic,74
and a borrowing of Aramaic orthography.75 In the light of the contraction of
the diphthong aw > o in the Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls and the ensuing
homophony and graphic confusion between the 3 masc. sg. suffix on singular
and plural nouns (- and -), I would like to suggest that the use of - was

70 Z. Ben-ayyim, A Grammar of Samaritan Hebrew (Winona Lake, Ind.: Eisenbrauns, 2000),
104 (perfect suffixes), and 225 (independent pronouns). Qimron, in his review of the
Hebrew version of Ben-ayyims grammar (see n. 47 above), agrees with Kutschers inter-
pretation of the data (p. 365) as does generally Abegg, Linguistic Preference, 31, 3334.
71 S. E. Fassberg, The Preference for Lengthened Forms in Qumran Hebrew, Meghillot 1
(2003): 22740 [Hebrew].
72 Two different 2 fem. sg. suffixes existed in Palestine. The orthographies of the suffix in
the Aramaic Dead Sea Scrolls - and - (e.g., 1QapGen ar [1Q20] 19:19 but ,
19:20) could reflect -e, as in Official Aramaic, though Palestinian Aramaic also
knows , which is found in Targum Onqelos, Jewish Palestinian Aramaic, and Samaritan
Aramaic. See S. E. Fassberg, The Pronominal Suffix of the Second Feminine Singular in
the Aramaic Texts from the Judean Desert, DSD 3 (1996): 1019.
73 See Kutscher, Language and Linguistic Background, 213; the Classical Biblical Hebrew
noun is .
74 Written - and - in Samaritan Aramaic texts.
75 Z. Ben-ayyim, Studies in the Traditions of the Hebrew Language (Madrid: Instituto Arias
Montano, 1954), 9092. Qimron, Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls, 61 corrects Ben-ayyims
statement that - was used on both singular and plural nouns: - is restricted to plural
nouns. See too Goshen-Gottstein, Linguistic Structure, 1617.
22 Fassberg

merely another embellished form, a long marker of the 3 masc. sg. suffix -o,
which served to distinguish plural nouns bound by the suffix from the homoph-
onous singular nouns. The orthography - was, as suggested by Ben-ayyim,
borrowed from Aramaic, but probably from Standard Literary Aramaic and not
from the vernacular, in which there are signs that the he already began to fall
out ( his brother 1QapGen [1Q20] 21:34; on him 11QNJ ar [11Q18] 8 3;
9 4),76 leaving -y and -oy, which may have further contracted to -o. Moreover,
the use of the he agreed with the orthographic convention of adding that let-
ter to final -o in spellings such as 1QIsaa 38:18 ( Isa 45:11); and
in his bosom 1QIsaa 30:11 ( Isa 33:11); his strength 1QIsaa 37:17
( Isa 44:12); his desire 4QJubd [4Q219] 2:29, 32; his sign 4QJubd
[4Q219] 2:34; as well as the spelling - found in Official Aramaic texts and
once in Qumran Aramaic.77 With regard to - as an object suffix (cf. Tiberian
Hebrew [h]), this orthography was probably realized as since the he may
not have been pronounced and the diphthong y > /o as in revealed
4QTest [4Q175] 11 = MT ) . Here too the scribe of 1QIsaa seems to have merely
adopted the literary Aramaic form.
In the case of the 3 fem. pl., which is attested only in 1QIsaa, Aramaic influ-
ence may indeed be responsible, though later Palestinian Aramaic dialects
(Jewish Palestinian ,78 Christian Palestinian ,79 and Samaritan
qli)80 show a suffix of -e/i and not -, the latter of which is attested in the
qere of Biblical Aramaic ( , , ) as well as in Targum Onqelos
() . The final - in 1QIsaa represented by - may well be in imitation of
Standard Literary Aramaic.81

76 See Schattner-Rieser, Laramen, 59; Muraoka, Grammar of Qumran Aramaic, 40; cf.
Syriac, where the pronoun was written with a he for historical reasons, even though it was
no longer pronounced: = [aw].
77 T. Muraoka and B. Porten, A Grammar of Egyptian Aramaic (2nd rev. ed.; HdO 32; Leiden:
Brill, 2003), 50; Qimron, Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls, 61. The Qumran example is
its nostrils 11QtgJob [11Q10] 36:5. See Muraoka, Grammar of Qumran Aramaic, 40.
78 S. E. Fassberg, A Grammar of the Palestinian Targum Fragments from the Cairo Genizah
(HSS 38; Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1990), 17576, 179.
79 For the Christian Palestinian Aramaic evidence, see M. Bar-Asher, Palestinian Syriac
Studies: Source-Texts, Traditions and Grammatical Problems (Ph.D. diss., Hebrew
University of Jerusalem, 1977), 32526 [Hebrew].
80 Z. Ben-ayyim, The Recitation of Prayers and Hymns (vol. 3.2 of The Literary and Oral
Tradition of Hebrew and Aramaic amongst the Samaritans; ed. Ben-ayyim; Jerusalem:
Academy of the Hebrew Language, 1967), 147 [Hebrew].
81 One finds - in the Aramaic Dead Sea Scrolls: they are/were perfect 1QapGen
[1Q20] 20:6, 22:28; they took 1QapGen [1Q20] 5:12; they were 4QEnocha
[4Q201] iii 16.
The Nature and Extent of Aramaisms in the Hebrew Dead Sea Scrolls 23

The few examples of he in the C-stem are most certainly in imitation of a

literary and not a vernacular Aramaic since he was often unpronounced in
speech at Qumran, as can be seen by its occasional omission in writing.82 Is
the addition of he in these C-stem verbs part of the same archaizing process
that reinserts a he in the two proper nouns and ( reinterpreted as a
C-stem verb?) in Second Temple epigraphic sources?83 The 1QIsaa forms
and are indisputably Aramaic.
The existence of G-stem verbal nouns and infinitives with prefixed mem
need not be attributed to Aramaic influence since the use of such noun pat-
terns as infinitives is attested already in Classical Biblical Hebrew, e.g.,
to summon the community and to set the divisions in
motion (Num 10:2).

9 Conclusion

Aramaic has left a heavy imprint on the Hebrew Dead Sea Scrolls, particu-
larly 1QIsaa. Other documents show less influence and may lend support to
S. Weitzmans view that the Qumran community sought to write in the Holy
Tongue and transcend the mundane reality,84 and to the antilanguage nature
of Qumran Hebrew argued by W. Schniedewind,85 though one would have
thought that the scribe of 1QIsaa would have wanted to preserve the ipsissima
verba of God, as did other scribes of other biblical manuscripts. It must be
borne in mind that the biblical manuscripts at Qumran with which one can
compare 1QIsaa are fragmentary and so the more limited extent of Aramaic
influence on different manuscripts may be an optical illusion. Among non-
biblical manuscripts, the Community Rule (1QS) has a number of Aramaisms;
4QTest [4Q175] should also be singled out since, relative to its size, there are
several Aramaic-looking features.86 This is not surprising since both manu-
scripts were copied by the same scribe.87

82 Abegg, Linguistic Profile, 29.

83 For a discussion of these names and bibliography, see D. Talshir, Rabbinic Hebrew as
Reflected in Personal Names, ScrHier 37 (1998): 36579.
84 S. Weitzman, Why Did the Qumran Community Write in Hebrew? JAOS 119 (1999):
3545, at 45.
85 W. M. Schniedewind, Qumran Hebrew as an Antilanguage, JBL 118 (1999): 23552,
esp. 235.
86 See n. 37 above.
87 Cross, Testimonia, 308.
24 Fassberg

Lexical, phonological, and semantic borrowings occur in varying degrees

in different manuscripts according to the official nature of the document and
the skill of its scribe. No doubt conservative orthography and a desire to write
Hebrew hide additional forms. Of the alleged morphological loans, two occur
in more scrolls than just 1QIsaa: the 2 fem. sg. pronominal elements with final
[] and the 3 masc. sg. suffix - on plural nouns and as an object suffix. In the
light of the general infrequency of morphological loans from one language into
another, even those in close contact, I suggest that these and other morpho-
logical-looking borrowings are not loans in Hebrew from a spoken Aramaic.
In the case of the 2 fem. sg. forms, they are old Hebrew forms that have been
exploited because they are attested in literary Aramaic and because they
embellish the text. I think the morphological borrowing of - is also probably
from Standard Literary Aramaic, and it reflects the general desire of Qumran
scribes to lengthen forms in order to raise the register of the language.88 Do we
really know what the Aramaic of the scribes sounded like?89 After all, we pos-
sess only literary texts, and judging from later Palestinian Aramaic, it looked
considerably different.

88 Cross, ibid., 3089, calls the orthography baroque and the forms archaic and pseudo-
archaic literary forms.
89 See Greenfield, Standard Literary Aramaic, 281.
The Tiberian Vocalization and the Hebrew
of the Second Temple Period

Jan Joosten

1 Introduction

While the Tiberian system of vocalization was developed only in the Middle
Ages, the information encoded in the Tiberian vowels added to the Masoretic
text is probably considerably older.1 Some past and present Hebraists tend to
view the Masoretes themselves as the ones who created the vocalization on
the basis of their general knowledge of Hebrew and the Biblical text.2 Most
specialists agree, however, that the Tiberian Masoretes based their vocaliza-
tion on an oral reading tradition stretching back to the time when some form
of Hebrew was still a living language.3 The Tiberian vocalization preserves a
host of features that could not be derived from the consonantal text, and nev-
ertheless appear to represent genuine linguistic features of Hebrew:

The distinction between shin and sin is not one of vocalization, but the
point distinguishing them was introduced at the same time as the vowels.
In some cases, Hebrew sin may have been selected so as to accord with a
samek in Aramaic, but the letter also occurs in many words not attested in
that language (e.g., to strip off, to press, drive, to creep).
Comparative grammar shows that it is almost always correctly used in these
instances as well.4
The difference between infinitive construct ( ) and infinitive abso-
lute ( ) is for most verbs a matter of vocalization only. The distinction

1 See S. Schorch, Die Vokale des Gesetzes: Die samaritanische Lesetradition als Textzeugin der
Tora, I: Das Buch Genesis (BZAW 339; Berlin: De Gruyter, 2004), 110.
2 See, e.g., P. Kahle, Die berlieferte Aussprache des Hebrischen und die Punktation der
Masoreten, ZAW 39 (1921): 22039; R. Bartelmus, Einfhrung in das Biblische Hebrisch
(Zrich: Theologischer Verlag, 1994), 2022.
3 See the recent review of the evidence in G. A. Khan, A Short Introduction to the Tiberian
Masoretic Bible and its Reading Tradition (Piscataway, N.J.: Gorgias, 2012), in particular 4648.
4 See R. Steiner, Addenda to The Case for Fricative Laterals, in Semitic Studies in Honor of Wolf
Leslau on the Occasion of his 85th Birthday (ed. A. S. Kaye; Wiesbaden: Harrasowitz, 1991),
2:14991514, in particular 15014 (where earlier literature is discussed).

koninklijke brill nv, leiden, 5|doi .63/9789004299313_004

26 Joosten

is not attested in the same way in Arabic, Aramaic, or Rabbinic Hebrew.

Nevertheless, the Masoretes get the morphology right in practically all cases.
The distinction between long and short forms in the prefix conjugation of
middle weak verbs or in the Hiphil of strong verbs is another subtlety that
could not be derived from Aramaic, Arabic, or Rabbinic Hebrew. Admittedly,
it is often in accord with the consonantal spellingthe long form being
written with a mater lectionis () , the short form without () . Yet the
vocalization does not blindly follow the spelling. Long forms written defec-
tively are almost always correctly pointed by the Masoretes.5

These features, and many others, can hardly have been reconstructed by the
Masoretes on the basis of their knowledge of comparative Semitics. They must
reflect an oral tradition going back to an age when the biblical idiom was still
known at least to some.6
The present study will focus on some parallels and connections between
Tiberian Hebrew and different varieties of Hebrew from the Second Temple

2 Methodological Remarks

It is not easy to compare Tiberian Hebrew, expressed as it is in the vowel point-

ing, with unvocalized texts produced in the Second Temple period and earlier.
Even apart from the essential incommensurability of the data, the undertaking
seems daunting: Second Temple Hebrew is not a unified language, but a col-
lection of corpora exhibiting a wide variety of linguistic forms. The language of
the main sectarian scrolls from Qumran differs along dialectal lines from the
Hebrew of Ben Sira, and differs again from what transpires from transcriptions
of Hebrew words in the Septuagint. In addition, there are problems of attesta-
tion: some of the documents are known from old manuscripts, while others

5 See, e.g., Deut 29:22; Judg 20:16; 1 Sam 20:13, 23:22; Isa 44:28; Jer 13:16, 32:5; Ezek 46:18; Mal 3:11.
An exception would be in Exod 2:7, where one expects a short form.
6 In his dissertation, Uri Mor has recently defended the view that the period between the
Jewish wars is the one when Hebrew died out as a living language; see U. Mor, The Grammar
of the Epigraphic Hebrew Documents from Judaea between the First and the Second Revolts
(Ph.D. diss., Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, 2009). Note, however, that Steven Fassberg
has recently enumerated some arguments for the view that Hebrew remained a spoken lan-
guage in Palestine until much later; see S. Fassberg, Which Semitic Language Did Jesus and
Other Contemporary Jews Speak, CBQ 74 (2012): 26380, in particular 27578.
The Tiberian Vocalization & the Hebrew of the 2nd Temple Period 27

have been transmitted through a textual tradition that can only partially be
retraced. How can a linguist operate with such disparate materials?
In dealing with these thorny questions it is important to keep an eye on
the objective of the inquiry. The point at issue presently is the problem of the
antiquity of the oral tradition leading up to the Tiberian vocalization. This
issue can be discussed without having recourse to fine-grained dialectological
analyses. What is of interest is not the location of Tiberian Hebrew on the dia-
lectal spectrum of the Second Temple period, but the temporal anchoring of
the tradition it represents. The perspective is historical. The question at issue is
whether it is possible to find diachronic markers defining the time span when
the Tiberian tradition originated. Some linguistic features spring up and die
out in Hebrew at approximately datable periods. If such features can be identi-
fied in Tiberian Hebrew it will be possible to cast light on our problem.

3 Reinterpretation of Forgotten Words and Forms

A first category of promising features is that of forgotten words and forms.

The history of Hebrew is a very long one, and many words were forgotten over
timealthough sometimes their meaning could later be recovered through
close philological study. The phenomenon of forgotten words cannot usually
be exploited in diachronic perspective: it is hard to know when the meaning
of a word fell into oblivion. In a few cases, however, words that had fallen from
use were then reinterpreted and used in a new meaning. The attestation of
such (pseudo-classical) reinterpretation can at times be dated at least approxi-
mately. Where the reinterpretation turns up in the Tiberian pointing, it can
become a diagnostic feature in the sense defined above.
A well-known example of this phenomenon is the noun .7 In the
Hebrew Bible, this word occurs only in poetical texts, almost always in com-
bination with words like or meaning darkness. Its general meaning
is not in doubt. But its precise interpretation has been the object of debate.
According to the Tiberian vocalization (as well as the Babylonian: ilmwt),8
is a composite word consisting of shadow and death. The

7 See C. Cohen, The Meaning of Darkness: A Study in Philological Method, in Texts,

Temples, and Traditions: A Tribute to Menahem Haran (ed. M. V. Fox; Winona Lake, Ind.:
Eisenbrauns, 1996), 287309.
8 See I. Yeivin, The Hebrew Language Tradition as Reflected in the Babylonian Vocalization
(2 vols.; Jerusalem: Academy of the Hebrew Language, 1985), 2:812.
28 Joosten

Mekilta explains: ( in ref. to Jer 2:6)? .9 This etymol-

ogy is endorsed in the lexical works of Ibn Janah and David Qimhi. By their time
a derivation from the root to be darkrare in Hebrew but well-known
in Arabichad been envisaged. But Ibn Janah and Qimhi argued that the
pointing doesnt allow this connection.10 Eight hundred years later, Wilhelm
Gesenius still held on to this traditional point of view. In the Thesaurus the
word is listed under the root , with the express indication that it is a com-
posite.11 By his time, however, critical scholars had found a way to overcome
the problem of the vocalization. According to Johann Michalis, the noun
should simply be repointed. It might originally have been pronounced almt
(or almt, or allamt).12 Over the last two hundred years, most knowledge-
able scholars have adopted this opinion. Recent dictionaries agree in deriving
the word from the root .13 A major argument in favor of this view is that
Hebrew has very few genuine composites.14 Alleged parallels such as and
are proper nouns and as such should not be used to explain a common
noun. Moreover, the Ugaritic texts have provided a precise cognate in the word
lmt darknessincidentally confirming the non-consonantal status of the
waw in the Hebrew word.15
The upshot of these considerations is that the precise meaning of the poetic
word , originally pronounced almt or something similar, was, at some
point in the history of Hebrew, forgotten and subsequently reinterpreted
according to a type of folk etymology entailing a different pronunciation. It
appears that the change from the original noun to the reinterpreted pseudo-
composite can be dated approximately. The biblical occurrences, all reflect-
ing the original usage of the word, take us down to the sixth centurynote
especially Jer 2:6 and 13:16.16 The reinterpretation, for its part, is clearly attested
in the standard Septuagint rendering of the word as shadow

9 H. S. Horovitz and I. A. Rabin, eds., Mechilta dRabbi Ismael (Breslau, 1930; repr., Jerusalem:
Shalem, 1997), 54.
10 Ibn Janah, Book of Hebrew Roots (ed. A. Neubauer; Oxford: Clarendon, 1875), 611; D. Qimhi,
Sefer hashorashim (ed. J. H. R. Biesenthal and F. Liebrecht; Berlin: Friedlnder, 1847), 313.
11 Gesenius, Thesaurus, 3:1169.
12 Cited in W. Gesenius, Hebrischdeutsches Handwrterbuch (2 vols.; Leipzig: Vogel, 1810
1812), 2:974.
13 Thus HAL, HAHAT (but not DCH).
14 The only real exception is in 1 Kgs 10:22 and parallel.
15 For more details and secondary literature, see the study by Chaim Cohen cited above
in n. 7.
16 Some exegetes are of the opinion that the occurrences of the word in Ps 44:20 and 107:10,
14 are very late. It is hard to attain certainty in these matters.
The Tiberian Vocalization & the Hebrew of the 2nd Temple Period 29

of death.17 Thus the reinterpretation must have occurred between the sixth
and the second century BCE. It is a reasonable hypothesis to say that the
word fell into oblivion because of the disruption caused by the Judaean exile.
The Tiberian vocalization reflects the later form and appears to hark back to
this period.18
Another, equally famous example is the noun / meaning witness,
pointed almost everywhere as if it were a form of the verb to blow. In
this case the correct meaning of the word was retrieved only in the twentieth
century after the discovery of Ugaritic.19 Otherwise, the history of this word is
comparable to that of : while the word is still used correctly by Habakkuk,
at the very end of the seventh century, by the time of the Septuagint translators
its meaning is completely forgotten. In the Greek version, the word is generally
interpreted as a finite verb, exactly as in the MT.
These examples show, rather persuasively, that elements of the Tiberian
vocalization were stabilized during the Second Temple period.

4 Grammatical Modernizations

A number of grammatical modernizations also indicate a connection between

Tiberian Hebrew and the Second Temple period. Like words, grammatical
forms and constructions fell into disuse over the long existence of the Hebrew
language, while others arose in their place. Just as in the case of the forgotten
words discussed above, some old grammatical features were later misunder-
stood and analyzed differently. In some instances, this reanalysis shows up in
the vocalization. The old Hebrew morphology presupposed by the consonan-
tal text is overlaid by a more recent system. Although grammatical moderniza-
tions may affect single forms, they more typically concern groups of instances,
thus strengthening the case.

17 This is the standard rendering everywhere except in the book of Job, where other equiva-
lents are found as well.
18 For completeness sake it should be signaled that the word is attested once with con-
text in the Qumran Scrolls: They hedged about me with utter dark-
ness (1QHa 13:35). It is difficult to know from this sole occurrence how the author of the
Hodayot would explain the word, let alone how he would vocalize it. Without context the
word is found in 4Q509 189 3. In later Hebrew, the word is, unless I err, used only in refer-
ence to the biblical text.
19 See D. Pardee, Yp witness in Hebrew and Ugaritic, VT 28 (1978): 20413.
30 Joosten

Several examples of possible grammatical modernization have been pointed

out by various scholars, first Mayer Lambert, and after him H. L. Ginsberg,
Elisha Qimron, Jeremy Hughes, David Talshir, and no doubt others.20 Some
of these authors, such as Lambert and Ginsberg, loosely speak of Rabbinic
Hebrew influence on the Masoretic pointing. But the discoveries of the
Qumran texts and subsequent research on Second Temple Hebrew show that
many of the later features underlying the vocalization existed already in the
Second Temple period.21 Two case studies will illustrate this point.

4.1 The Use of WEYIQTOL instead of WEQATAL with pe-yod verbs

In classical Hebrew prose, the two syntagms we + prefix conjugation and we +
suffix conjugation (WEQATAL) are usually kept apart: the first expresses voli-
tion (or light subordination)22 and teams up with the cohortative, imperative,
and jussive, while the second expresses more general futurity and interacts
with clause-internal YIQTOL (the long form of the prefix conjugation). In
other words, we + prefix conjugation essentially, in classical prose, represents
we + jussive. The meanings and functions of the jussive are close to those of
WEQATAL, but they are not identical.23

20 M. Lambert, Le waw conversif, REJ 26 (1883): 4762; Lambert, Lemploi du Nifal en
hbreu, REJ 41 (1900), 196214; H. L. Ginsberg, , Tarbiz 5 (193435):
20823 and Tarbiz 6 (193536): 543; J. Hughes, Post-Biblical Features of Biblical Hebrew
Vocalization, in Language, Theology, and the Bible: Essays in Honour of James Barr (ed.
S. E. Balentine and J. Barton; Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1994), 6780; E. Qimron,
, Hadassah Shy Jubilee Book (ed. Y. Bentolila; Jerusalem:
Mosad Bialik, 1997), 3743; D. Talshir, ,
in Samaritan, Hebrew and Aramaic Studies Presented to Professor Abraham Tal (ed. M. Bar-
Asher and M. Florentin; Jerusalem: Mosad Bialik, 2005), 15975. See now also Khan, Short
Introduction, 4850.
21 In a recent study on the form in Biblical Hebrew, Noam Mizrahi has expressly
established a link between the grammatical modernizations in the Tiberian vocalization
and Second Temple Hebrew; see N. Mizrahi, Colliding Traditions in Biblical Hebrew in
Historical Linguistic Perspective, in ISRAEL: Linguistic Studies in the Memory of Israel
Yeivin (ed. R. I. Zer and Y. Ofer; Jerusalem: Hebrew University Bible Project, 2011), 34154,
xxviii [Hebrew, with English abstract].
22 JM116, Indirect volitive moods.
23 See J. Joosten, Textual Developments and Historical Linguistics, in After Qumran: Old and
Modern Editions of the Biblical TextsThe Historical Books (ed. H. Ausloos, B. Lemmelijn,
and J. Trebolle Barrera; BETL 246; Leuven: Peeters, 2012), 2131; in more detail, Joosten,
The Verbal System of Biblical Hebrew: A New Synthesis Elaborated on the Basis of Classical
Prose (Jerusalem: Simor, 2012).
The Tiberian Vocalization & the Hebrew of the 2nd Temple Period 31

This state of affairs raises doubts as to the vocalization of the form weyirau
in the following formulaic passages:

Deut 17:13

All the people will hear and be afraid, and will not act presumptuously

Deut 19:20

The rest shall hear and be afraid, and a crime such as this shall never
again be committed.

Deut 21:21

So you shall purge the evil from your midst; and all Israel will hear and
be afraid.

The use of clause-internal YIQTOL in the first clause, would lead one to expect
a WEQATAL form in the second clause. Functionally, none of the usual mean-
ings of we + jussive fits the passages well: one should hardly attribute a volitive
(and may they be afraid) or telic (so that they may be afraid) nuance to
the second clause. These considerations may seem somewhat subjective, but
they can be backed up by two more structural observations. Firstly, the cases
enumerated (to which Deut 13:12 is to be added, see below) are practically the
only cases of we + prefix conjugation in the Deuteronomic Code.24 The legisla-
tive style has no place for volitive forms. Secondly, in the one instance where
the Deuteronomic formula is varied in a way that puts a different verb in the
second slot, WEQATAL is used instead of we + prefix conjugation:

Deut 31:13

24 The exceptions occur in quoted direct discourse: Deut 13:3, 7, 14; 20:5, 6, 7, 8; and in a
motivation clause Deut 16:19.
32 Joosten

Their children, who have not known it, will hear and learn to fear the
Lord your God.

What all this leads up to is that instead of we + prefix conjugation, the original
text of Deuteronomy was intended to be read as WEQATAL in all these pas-
sages: . It appears that in the later reading tradition, the form was adapted
to the syntax of post-classical Hebrew in which we + YIQTOL is regularly used
in legislative discourse, as is indeed the norm in Qumran Hebrew.25 First-yod
verbs have the particularity that the consonantal shape of third person forms
is the same for the prefix conjugation as for the suffix conjugation. This made
it possible to read WEQATAL as we + YIQTOL.26
It is hard to say when the change in the reading tradition, from WEQATAL to
we + YIQTOL, was made. Non-volitive we + YIQTOL is found already in the later
biblical books,27 and is still frequent in Mishnaic Hebrew. An indication as to
the relatively high date of the change is that in one or two passages, it shows up
in the consonantal text as well:

Deut 13:12

All Israel will hear and be afraid.

Although the paragogic nun is attached to the suffix conjugation once or

twice,28 it typically features with the long form of the suffix conjugation.29 The
addition of the nun in suggests, therefore, that the form was already read
as a prefixed form.30 Similar considerations can be made in regard to another

25 See, e.g., 1QS 6:12:

By these rules they are to govern themselves wherever they dwell,
in accordance with each legal finding that bears upon communal life. Inferiors must obey
their ranking superiors as regards work and wealth.
26 The same phenomenon affects the Samaritan Pentateuch more systematically, see
Joosten, Textual developments, 2627.
27 See Ezek 12:25; 14:7; 27:30; 40:42. For a full list of occurrences, see Joosten, Verbal System,
28 JM 42f (Deut 8:3, 16; Isa 26:16).
29 See W. R. Garr, The Paragogic nun in Rhetorical Perspective, in Biblical Hebrew in Its
Northwest Semitic Setting: Typological and Historical Perspectives (ed. S. E. Fassberg and
A. Hurvitz; Jerusalem: Magnes, 2006), 6574.
30 The Samaritan Pentateuch does not attest the paragogic nun in this passage. Omission of
paragogic nun is a normal phenomenon in this textual witness.
The Tiberian Vocalization & the Hebrew of the 2nd Temple Period 33

attestation of we + YIQTOL of the same verb even although it does not occur in
the same formula:

Deut 2:4

You are about to pass through the territory of your kindred, the descen-
dants of Esau, who live in Seir. They will be afraid of you.

Here too, one expects the WEQATAL form . The pointing probably reflects
secondary adaptation to later syntax. And here, too, the consonantal text con-
curs with the pointing.31
The fact that the reading of the forms as prefix conjugation shows up in the
consonantal text tends to indicate that the putative change from WEQATAL to
we + YIQTOL came about in the Second Temple period.

4.2 The Shortening of YIQTOL when it is Preceded by waw

Another case of grammatical modernization allowing a good handle on the
diachronic question is the following. As Elisha Qimron has shown, Late Biblical
and Qumran Hebrew tend to use the long and short forms of the prefix conju-
gation as syntactically conditioned allomorphsthe long form being used in
clause-internal position, the short form at the head of the clause, particularly
with waw:32

Dan 11:4

And while still rising in power, his kingdom shall be broken and divided
toward the four winds of heaven.

The reason for the use of the short form is not that the meaning is
jussiveit isnt, but simply that the form occurs at the head of the clause
following waw.
The meaning of short and long forms is, in LBH, the same: both may be
used over a wide range of predictive and modal statements. The LBH system is

31 In 4QDeuth [4Q35], the form is written with one yod: . In the Samaritan Pentateuch,
the form is written with two yods in all passages: Deut 2:4; 13:12; 17:13; 19:20; 21:21.
32 See E. Qimron, Consecutive and Conjunctive Imperfect: the Form of the Imperfect with
Waw in Biblical Hebrew, JQR 77 (1987): 14961, esp. 15153.
34 Joosten

superficially similar to that of Classical Hebrew, where long and short forms
tend to occur in the same syntactic positions, but in CBH the forms do in
fact express distinct functions: the imperfect is used in predictive discourse,
whereas the jussive expresses volition or light subordination. In a con-
text like that of Dan 11:4, Classical Hebrew would not have used the jussive
LBH grammar has affected the pointing of CBH texts in a few places where
a long form has been shortened due to the prefixed waw:

Exod 19:3

Thus shall you say to the house of Jacob, and tell the children of Israel.

In this example, the second imperfect form does not have a jussive meaning.
According to the CBH system, the form should therefore be read wetaggd, as
is confirmed by the consonantal orthography.33 The form is to be regarded as a
normal imperfect.34 It was mechanically vocalized as a jussive according to the
LBH system, because it was preceded by waw.35
If this explanation is correct, the vocalization of we + prefix conjugation as
a short form in Exod 19:3 can only be attributed to Second Temple times. It
accords with the syntax of LBH and Qumran Hebrew, but in later Hebrew the
short form became obsolete.

5 Tiberian Hebrew and the Second Temple Period

The lexical and grammatical features inspected above show rather clearly that
elements of the Tiberian vocalization hail back to the Second Temple period.
By itself this is an interesting insight, establishing at once the great antiquity
of the tradition on which the Masoretes based their work, and the secondary
nature of some of the features this tradition incorporates.

33 Note also that CBH does not use the jussive in the second person except following the
negation al: the second person volitive is the imperative.
34 For the syntax of the passage, see J. Joosten, A Neglected Rule and Its Exceptions: On Non-
Volitive yiqtol in Clause-Initial Position, in : Saggi di linguis-
tica ebraica in onore di Alviero Niccacci, ofm (ed. G. Geiger; Jerusalem: Franciscan Printing
Press, 2011), 21319.
35 Thus also in Mic 3:4; 6:14; Ps 85:14 (but not in Amos 9:10).
The Tiberian Vocalization & the Hebrew of the 2nd Temple Period 35

It would be tempting to generalize this conclusion and situate the origin of

the entire reading tradition leading up to the Tiberian vocalization, and the
linguistic knowledge it incorporates, in this period. The time of the Second
Temple is the period to which our earliest biblical manuscripts belong, the
period when the biblical text became the object of intense study and com-
mentary, the period in which we first hear of public reading of the Bible. One
could easily imagine that this is also the time when more or less fixed reading
traditions were established.36
Nevertheless, such a conclusion would be essentially misguided. As clear as
the fact that some features of the Tiberian vocalization first emerged during
the Second Temple period is the fact that precisely those features are late and
secondary. Reinterpreted words and grammatical modernizations are charac-
teristic items of Tiberian Hebrew, yet they are also exceptions proving the rule.
For every forgotten word re-vocalized according to late exegesis, Tiberian
Hebrew relays innumerable old words whose morphological shape is transmit-
ted correctly. For every construction overlaid by later grammatical rules, there
are many constructions of classical Hebrew that are faithfully reproduced in
the Masoretic tradition. The stream of tradition that issued in the Tiberian
vowels underwent important changes in the Second Temple period, but it goes
back much further. Precisely how much further is a question that cannot be
addressed in the present context.37
An entirely different issue is whether the alterations introduced during the
Second Temple period were the last ones that affected the reading tradition
inherited by the Tiberian Masoretes. There is no reason of principle to exclude
the possibility that similar changes came about even later in the stream of tra-
dition, in late antiquity or during the Middle Ages. Nevertheless, one should be
cautious in postulating such changes. Paul Kahle famously attempted, during
the 1920s and 1930s, to identify a number of lateand, in his view, artificial

36 Stefan Schorch has tried to define more precisely the period when oral reading traditions
of the biblical text crystallized. On the basis of an array of evidence, some of it rather
loosely connected to the issue, he argues for the end of the second and the beginning of
the first century BCE as the most likely period when fixed reading traditions may have
been established. See Schorch, Vokale des Gesetzes, 5660.
37 A few cases may be found where an opposition between CBH and LBH is expressed solely
in the vocalization. Such cases seem to indicate that the vocalization of CBH texts was
transmitted faithfully all the way down from pre-exilic times. See for the time being
S. Morag, On the Historical Validity of the Vocalization of the Hebrew Bible, JAOS 94
(1974): 30715; D. Boyarin, Towards the Talmudic Lexicon IV, in Teuda VI: Studies in
Hebrew and Arabic in Memory of Dov Eron (ed. Aron Dotan; Tel Aviv: University Publishing,
1988), 6375, in particular 6364.
36 Joosten

features in the Tiberian vocalization, only to be proved spectacularly wrong by

subsequent discoveries.38 Until someone brings new and better evidence, the
existence of post-Second Temple features in Tiberian Hebrew will remain a
mere theoretical possibility.

6 Conclusions

To non-specialists the idea of an oral tradition accurately transmitting linguis-

tic information over a millennium or more is hard to envisage. Hebrew scholars
have had to adjust their critical acumen to this idea, however, because so many
facts support it. Not only Tiberian Hebrew, but other traditions as wellthe
Babylonian vocalization, the Samaritan reading traditionappear to link up
with genuine varieties of the language from a period when it was still spoken.
Of all the vocalization systems, the Tiberian is the most extensively pre-
served. The evidence examined in the present paper indicates that the infor-
mation it transmits is of very high quality. Although it incorporates some
manifestly secondary features, the most striking of these arguably go back to
the Second Temple period. Since the secondary features are to be qualified as
exceptions proving the rule, much else in the Tiberian tradition would appear
to be even older.
The Hebrew Bible hasnt come to us in autographs, dug up recently in
archeological excavations. It has been mediated by a century-long tradition.
Although the consonants and the vocalization of this text have travelled partly
along distinct itineraries, our basic attitude to them should be similar. Textual
critics, exegetes, and grammarians need to adopt a critical attitude toward
both the consonantal text and the vocalization: to confront variant traditions
and to be prepared to admit that even when only one text form is attested it
might be secondary. They also need to respect the tradition, however, and to
realize to what extraordinary extent it faithfully transmits information coming
to us from the mists of time.

38 See the review of the question in L. L. Grabbe, Comparative Philology and the Text of Job:
A Study in Methodology (Missoula: Scholars Press, 1977), 17997.
Priests of Qoreb: Linguistic Enigma and Social
Code in the Songs of the Sabbath Sacrifice

Noam Mizrahi


The liturgical composition known as the Songs of the Sabbath Sacrifice is one
of the most enigmatic works discovered among the Dead Sea scrolls. To be
sure, its state of preservation is considerably better than that of many other
works, due to the presence of nine or ten copies; fragmentary as they are, they
overlap in many passages, a fact that allowed Carol Newsom to reconstruct
much of the work in her admirable edition.1 This reconstruction enabled her
and subsequent scholars to account for the literary structure of the work as
being composed of thirteen songs, and to expose its somewhat esoteric or even
mystical contents.
The most baffling aspect of the Songs, however, remains its language.
Although its entire inventory of lexical items and grammatical forms is
attested elsewhere in QH or other corpora,2 in this composition they are boldly
combined into unique phrases and seemingly wild syntactic constructions
that are often so exceptional as to verge on unintelligible. A reader may be
relieved to at last encounter a clause with what appears to be a comprehensive

1 The manuscripts are generally quoted according to the following editions: C. Newsom, DJD
11:173401, pl. xvixxxi; F. Garca Martnez, E. J. C. Tigchelaar, and A. S. van der Woude, DJD
23:259304, pl. xxxxxxiv. I have also consulted the preliminary edition of C. Newsom, Songs
of the Sabbath Sacrifice: A Critical Edition (HSS 27; Atlanta: Scholars, 1985). A new composite
edition is that of E. Qimron, The Dead Sea Scrolls: The Hebrew Writings (3 vols.; Jerusalem: Yad
Ben-Zvi, 20102015), 2:35884 [Hebrew].
2 Hebrew corpora are abbreviated throughout this paper as follows: BH = Biblical Hebrew,
divided to classical (CBH) and late (LBH) phases; QH = Qumran Hebrew; MH = Mishnaic
Hebrew, referring especially to the language used by the early Rabbis, the Tannaim. LBH, QH,
and MH comprise the main literary corpora that testify to Second Temple Hebrew, although
it is acknowledged that they do not completely overlap in terms of their exact time, literary
status, or social register. Quotations from rabbinic literature are taken from Maagarim, the
online database of the Historical Dictionary of the Academy of Hebrew Language (http://
hebrew-treasures.huji.ac.il/), with references to the standard editions of the rabbinic works
cited. Translations from the Hebrew Bible take their cue from the NRSV, but with many modi-
fications. Other translations are my own, unless noted otherwise.

koninklijke brill nv, leiden, 5|doi .63/9789004299313_005

38 Mizrahi

structure, only to discover within it a new riddle that reduces understanding

to speculation.
The following discussion focuses on one such mystery, which, to my mind,
has not been addressed in a satisfactory way: the meaning of the collocation
, which appears at least six times in three different Songs.3 Both the
consistent use of this construct phrase and its distribution throughout the
work indicate that it belongs to the core phraseology of the Songs and stems
from the essential ideology encoded therein. Admittedly, the nomen regens
(, priests of...) is a well-known lexeme, amply recorded throughout
the history of Hebrew, but the nomen rectum ( )is anything but transpar-
ent from a semantic point of view, and it requires close linguistic analysis and
detailed exegesis.

1 Primary Evidence

An overview of the actual contexts in which the collocation is embedded

allows one to sketch a preliminary, cotextual definition of its usage.4 Since the
grammatical form of the word spelled is to be considered unknown at this
initial stage of the inquiry, it will be rendered by its orthographical representa-
tion, i.e., QWRB.

Song I: (1) [( [] [4Q400 1 i 8 || 4Q401 15 3)

Priests of QWRB, servants of the presence of the [most] holy
(2) [ ...] (4Q400 1 i 17)
[...] Knowledge is among the priests of QWRB, and by their
mouth is the teaching of all the holy ones.
(3) ( 4Q400 1 i 19)
He had established for himself the priests of QWRB, the holi-
est among the holy ones.
Song VIII: (4) 
( 4Q403 1 ii 19 || 4Q405 89
[= col. E] 23)

3 For the time being it is also unique to the Songs, as no parallel to it has been detected in other
Hebrew or Aramaic sources.
4 When quoting from the Dead Sea scrolls, overlapping manuscripts were merged into a com-
posite text, so that brackets mark only conjectural restorations. The numbering of lines dis-
tinguishes, with the prime sign, between lines of columns (1, 2, 3) and lines of fragments
(1, 2, 3).
Priests of Qoreb 39

Second among the priests of QWRB, a second council in the

wondrous abode
( [] [] 4Q405 89 45 || 4Q403
1 ii 20 || 11Q17 3 [= col. II] 6)5
Praise [the God of] gods, O seven [priestly order]s of His
(6) [...] [ ...] (4Q403 1ii 24)
Chief [...] from a priest of QWRB, and the chiefs of the Kings
congregation in the assembly of [...]
Song XI: (7) 

[] ...[]
(4Q405 20 ii22 1
[= col. J 10] || 11Q17 1618 [= col. VII] 3)
They shall [no]t delay in taking their stand ... His [inner sanct]
um, all the priests of QWRB

Song I describes the establishment of the cultic function of the angels, and
twice juxtaposes the collocation with an appositive:
servants of the kings presence (no. 1), and , the holiest among
the holy ones (3). These epithets demonstrate that the angels called
belong to the highest ranks of the priestly hierarchy at the heavenly temple,
since they are allowed to be in the very presence of the divinity. A similar rela-
tion is implied by the designation , chiefs of the kings congre-
gation (6), from Song VIII. Song I further informs us that these senior angels
possess divine knowledge (2), and are thus in charge of the teaching ( )of
the other angels, called , holy ones. The important position of these
priests is reflected also in Song XI, which seems to place them in the inner
sanctum ( )of the heavenly temple (7). Songs VIVIII portray a picture
according to which seven groups or orders of priests officiate in the celestial
shrine; these are probably denoted by the term ( 5).6 Song VIII
focuses on the second order, which consists of , deputy princes,
and defines them as , second among the
priests of QWRB, a second council in the wondrous abode (4). The func-
tional matrix that emerges from this survey is that the collocation
refers to the angels that serve as priests in the heavenly temple, and best fits a

5 For the restoration [] , cf. further in the Song VIII: []

, seven priest[ly orders] in the wondrous temple for the seven holy cadres
(4Q403 1 ii 22).
6 For the use of the noun to denote a group of priests, see 1 Sam 2:36; cf. Neh 13:9.
40 Mizrahi

select group of themthose who hold the highest ranking positions in the
celestial hierarchy.7

2 Current Interpretation and its Problems

2.1 Newsoms Interpretation

Newsom established the standard understanding of the expression by consis-
tently translating all its occurrences as priests of the inner sanctum. The word
is thus taken as a reference to the innermost part of the temple, function-
ing as a virtual synonym of the architectural term . This interpretation is
based on the premise that is nothing but a morphological biform of the
BH noun in the sense of inner part.8 Indeed, the use of this lexeme in rela-
tion to the temple was compared by Newsom to a biblical psalmodic passage:9

( Ps 48:10)
We ponder your steadfast love, O God, in the midst of your palace.

Newsom backed her argument that is a biform of with a seemingly

unequivocal piece of evidence adduced from a biblical quotation embedded in
another work found in Qumran, the so-called Pesher Melchizedek:

(9) ( Ps 82:1)

God has taken his place in the divine council, in the midst of the gods he
holds judgment.

7 The form appears in two additional phrases, one that may come from Song IV:
, the holy ones of QWRB (4Q401 16 2 || 4Q402 9 4), and the other from Song IX:
, the spirits of QWRB, holy of holies (4Q405 1415 i 4 [=col. G 19] ||
4Q403 3 2). Both phrases are unique, and seem to be variations of the more basic term
, which recurs in the Songs.
8 See, e.g., Newsom, Songs, 3637; cf. B. Nitzan, Qumran Prayer and Religious Poetry (trans.
J. Chipman; STDJ 12; Leiden: Brill, 1994), 288 n. 47. Newsoms interpretation also underlies
James Davilas attempt to connect with the figure of the archangel Metatron, known
from much later sources as the angel who bears Gods name within him, following biblical
proof-texts such as Exod 23:2023 (mentioning a divine messenger about whom God says:
, for my name is within him) and Isa 63:714. See his paper, The Macrocosmic
Temple, Scriptural Exegesis, and the Songs of the Sabbath Sacrifice, DSD 9 (2002): 119, esp.
1217, elaborating his earlier comment in Liturgical Works (Eerdmans Commentaries on the
Dead Sea Scrolls 6; Grand Rapids, Mich.: Eerdmans, 2000), 98.
9 Newson, Songs, 3637.
Priests of Qoreb 41

(10) [ ]
[] :
( 11Q13 ii 910)
As it is said concerning it in the Songs of David, who has said: God has
taken his place in the divine council, in the midst of the gods he holds

While the Tiberian vocalization of the MT has qrb, which originates in

*qirb-, the quoted passage contains an alternative form that is spelled plene,
with a waw. Presumably, this is also a segholate form, but one that goes back
to *qurb-, which in the Tiberian tradition would have yielded qrb.
Apparently this is a case of the common interchange between nouns of the
primitive patterns *qitl/qatl on the one hand and *qutl on the other, which is a
common feature of QH.10

2.2 Counter Considerations

The morphological facts adduced by Newsom are indisputable, but in my judg-
ment their relevance for the interpretation of can be questioned for
several reasons.

2.2.1 Semantics
First and foremost, there is no clear evidence anywhere in Hebrew that has
ever been used as an architectural term in general, or denoted the holiest part
of the temple in particular. This is certainly not the meaning of Ps 82:1 (no. 9),
and there is no indication that Ps 48:10 (no. 8) refers necessarily to the inner
sanctum rather than the temple in general.
Moreover, the very assumption that the form in the Songs can be inter-
preted as inner part may be misguided, as it does not give sufficient weight to
a crucial semantic distinction between two different usages in BH:
(a) The substantive is a primary noun that denotes the entrails, and this
concrete meaning is particularly clear whenever the word is used in unbound

(11) ...( Lev 1:1113)

He shall slaughter it...He shall wash the entrails and the legs with water.
Then the priest shall offer the whole.

10 E. Qimron, The Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls (HSS 29; Atlanta: Scholars, 1986), 65330.1a.
For the wider phonological background of this interchange, see E. Y. Kutscher, The
Language and Linguistic Background of the Isaiah Scroll (1QIsaa) (STDJ 6; Leiden: Brill,
1974), 45296.
42 Mizrahi

( Sir 4:23 [ms a])
Do not churn the stomach of an oppressed person; and to the entrails of a
poor man, do not cause pain.11

(b) By contrast, the more abstract notion of inner part is found, if at all, only
in bound usages of the word, notably when it forms part of the prepositional
phrases and . These forms are the product of grammaticalzation
of the word when used figuratively. Thus, for instance, ( e.g., Num
14:14) in the entrails of the people > in the midst of the people > among the
people; ( e.g., Gen 45:6) in the entrails of the land > in the midst
of the land > within the land. The semantic change gave rise to syntactic
reanalysis, in which the distinct components of the prepositional phrases were
fused together and reinterpreted as a single, compound preposition, that is:
][ + in [the entrails of the people] > in [the midst of the people] >
] +[ [ in the midst of] the people > [among] the people (cf. Judg 18:20).12
This semantic and syntactic development follows a predictable path, being a
typological process that is well-attested cross-linguistically.13
Against this background, it becomes clear that the use of in (8) and
(9) is in no way exceptional. Synchronically, it functions as an extended form
of the simple preposition . Translating it as in the midst in both psalms
is thus somewhat misleading; among would be a more idiomatic rendition.
In any case, this bound usageas part of compound prepositionssignifies

11 For the first hemistich, cf. Lam 1:20.

12 A comparable development was operative in the metaphorical use of the lexeme
heart, for instance: , lit. up to the heart of the heavens > fig. to the very
heavens (Deut 4:11); , lit. in the heart of the sea > fig. in the deep sea (Exod 15:8).
Cf. further ][ + in [the midst of the house] > ] +[ [within] the
house, and not necessarily in its middle part (cf. Ezek 23:39). For this semantic change
in Hebrew and Akkadian, and for the semantic relation between entrails and
heart, see E. Dhorme, Lemploi mtaphorique des noms de parties du corps en hbreu et
en akkadien (Paris:Geuthner, 1923), 10912. Note, in passing, that the grammaticalization
of may go back to very early times; A. D. Rubin, Studies in Semitic Grammaticalzation
(HSS 57; Winona Lake: Eisenbrauns, 2005), 463.3.1, cautiously considers the possibil-
ity that this development took place already in Proto-Afro-Asiatic, since it is attested in
Egyptian. For the linguistic prehistory of the various Semitic cognates, cf. Y. L. Arbeitman,
You Gotta Have Heart, in Humanism, Culture, and Language in the Near East: Studies
in Honor of Georg Krotkoff (ed. A. Afsaruddin and A. H. M. Zahniser; Winona Lake:
Eisenbrauns, 1997), 36368.
13 See, e.g., B. Heine and T. Kuteva, World Lexicon of Grammaticalization (Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, 2002), 5354, s.v. belly (Belly, Stomach) > in (Spatial).
Priests of Qoreb 43

nothing as far as the unbound use of ( or ) as an independent lexeme is

concerned, and the alleged sense of inner part is not independently attested
in ancient Hebrew.

2.2.2 Historical Development

Another consideration militating against the lexical identification of the Songs
with is that the latter form has been rendered obsolete in Second
Temple Hebrew. This is evident in two complementary processes that were
operative in the language of the literary sources that survive from this period.
(a) Morphology: For denoting the original, concrete sense of the noun, a
new grammatical form has been coined in Second Temple Hebrew. Rather
than using the old singular , an innovative dual (or dual-like) is preferred,
namely, .14 This form is first attested as a suffixed form in LBH:

(13) ( Ps 103:1)15
Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all my organs (lit. my entrails), bless his
holy name.

In its independent form, is attested in QH. A telling example is furnished

by Jub. 21:8, which reworks an earlier, Pentateuchal prescription:

(14a) ( Lev 3:34)

... and all the fat that is around the entrails, and the two kidneys ...
(14b) ( [] [] 4QJube [4Q220] 1 7)
... [and] the [f]at that is around the entrails, and the kidneys ...

The adapters most conspicuous touch is the replacement of the older sin-
gular by the innovative dual , which was current in his vernacular.

14 This is perhaps on formal analogy with other terms that denote body parts: hands,
feet, eyes, and especially internal organs. Alternatively, the dual end-
ing might reflect an anatomical distinction between the small intestine and the colon.
15 That Ps 103 belongs to the LBH corpus has been established, on independent grounds,
by A. Hurvitz, The Transition Period in Biblical Hebrew (Jerusalem: Bialik Institute, 1972),
10730 [Hebrew]. Interestingly, the dual-like form is witnessed only by the vocalization,
whereas the consonantal text is apt also for the singular form , which is com-
mon in CBH (cf. Isa 16:11; Ps 5:5; 94:19). The vocalization tradition thus captures, in this
case, a grammatical difference between CBH and LBH that is not encoded in the conso-
nantal text.
44 Mizrahi

The same tendency is executed more systematicallyalbeit not entirely

consistentlyin the Temple Scroll:16

(15a) ( Lev 4:11);

And the skin of the bull and all its flesh, as well as its head, its legs, its
entrails, and its dung ...
(15b) [ ] ... ( 11QTa 16:1113)
They shall burn its skin with its dung ... [its head and its legs] with all
its entrails...

(16a) ( Lev 8:16; cf. v. 25; 3:3,9,14; 4:8);

... and all the fat that is around the entrails...
(16b) ( 11QTa 20:5 || 11QTb 4:15)
... and all the fat that is around the entrails ...
(16c) ( 11QTa 23:15)
... and everything that is around the entrails ...

(17a) ( Lev 9:14; cf. Exod 29:17; Lev 1:9, 13; 8:21).
He washed the entrails and the legs ...
(17b) ( 11QTa 34:1011)
And they wash the entrails and the legs ...

The dual form eventually becomes the default form in MH, for instance:

(18) ( m. Tamid 4:2)

The entrails are being washed three times.

Thus the original use of the word as a primary noun, which is peculiar both
semantically (by having a concrete sense) and syntactically (by being used
as an independent lexeme), is being marked, in Second Temple Hebrew, by
a novel morphological marking. When denoting the internal organs, contem-
poraneous authors reveal a clear preference for the dual over the older

16 In addition to the following passages, consider also ( 11QTa 33:14

15). This lexical trait of the language of the Temple Scroll was noted by E. Qimron, The
Lexicon of the Temple Scroll, Shnaton 4 (1980): 23962 [Hebrew], at 251 n. 41.
Priests of Qoreb 45

singular , regardless of the question how exactly the latter was vocalized
(i.e., as either or ) .
(b) Lexis: The compound prepositions and fell out of use in QH,
and are commonly replaced by the alternative compounds and .17 It
can again be demonstrated by the Temple Scrolls reworking of a biblical law,
this time one that pertains to the Day of Atonement:

(19a) .
, ( Lev
For anyone who does not practice self-denial during that entire day
shall be cut off from the people. And anyone who does any work dur-
ing that entire day, such a one I will destroy from among the people.
(11QTa 27:68)
And any person, who does work during it, or those who do not practice
self-denial during it, shall be cut off from among the people.

While the scriptural passage freely interchanges between the simple preposi-
tion ( v. 29: ) and the compound preposition ( v. 30: ) ,
the legal adaptation of the Temple Scroll prefers the compound preposition
( ll. 78: ) .
In light of this evidence, one can properly appreciate the striking fact that
and are the only forms attested in the Songs of the Sabbath Sacrifice,18
whereas the older and are not documented at all in the preserved
These facts, drawn from the realms of morphology and lexis, render unlikely
a linguistic connection between BH ( or ) , in any of its usages, and the
enigmatic QH form as found in the Songs.

17 This process of lexical replacement was recognized by A. Bendavid, Biblical Hebrew and
Mishnaic Hebrew (rev. ed.; 2 vols.; Jerusalem and Tel Aviv: Dvir, 1967), 1:361 [Hebrew]; cf.
E. Qimron, The Psalms Scroll from Qumran: A Linguistic Survey, Leonenu 35.2 (1971):
99116 [Hebrew], at 1165.7.
18 Song VII: 4Q404 6 1; Song IX: 4Q405 1415 i 6 [= col. G 21]; Song XIII: 4Q405 23 ii 8, 9
[= col. L 19, 20].
46 Mizrahi

3 Other Alternative Interpretations

Two other interpretations of may be (or have been) proposed, but in my

opinion they do not supply proper solution for the problem at hand.

3.1 Borrowing from Aramaic?

One option, mentioned by Newsom in passing, is to consider as a borrow-
ing from Aramaic 19a masculine counterpart of the Hebrew feminine
form ( attested only as part of the fixed phrase
in Isa 58:2;
Ps 73:28).20 Apparently this was also the opinion of Elisha Qimron, who
included in the list of Aramaic borrowings appended to his grammar of
QH.21 If this interpretation is correct, the form is not directly related to the
Hebrew noun or its prepositional derivations.22
The difficulty with this solution is that the form is attested in east-
ern dialects of Middle and Late Aramaic (Jewish Babylonian Aramaic, Syriac,
and Mandaic), but not in the western dialects (Jewish, Samaritan, and

19 Newsom translated this word as nearness, approach, based on Jastrows dictionary.

Sokoloff, in his recent dictionary of Jewish Babylonian Aramaic, prefers to gloss it with
close distance.
20 Newsom seems to have changed her mind in this regard. In her dissertation, she presented
this explanation on a par with the one discussed above (2.1), i.e., the one that equates
it with . See C. A. Newsom, 4Q Serek rt lat Haabbt (The Qumran Angelic
Liturgy): Edition, Translation, and Commentary (Ph.D. diss., Harvard University, 1982),
5254. In her book, she focused on the / equation, relegating the possibility of an
Aramaism to a footnote (Newsom, Songs, 77 n. 8). Her final DJD edition does not include
an introduction, but when commenting on the first occurrence of the phrase
(DJD 11:180) she refers only to the interchange between and and makes no men-
tion of the Aramaic form.
21 Qimron, Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls, 116600.
22 The two words may be unrelated also from an etymological point of view. As mentioned
above, entrails is a primary noun, which needs not be derived from any verbal root.
Rather, it should be compared to related primary nouns in other Semitic and Afro-Asiatic
languages; see A. Militarev and L. Kogan, Semitic Etymological Dictionary, I: Anatomy of
Man and Animals (AOAT 278.1; Mnster: Ugarit-Verlag, 2000), 146, 14950, nn. 161 and 165;
cf. H. Holma, Die Namen der Krperteile im Assyrisch-Babylonischen: Eine Lexikalisch-
Etymologische Studie (Helsinki: Suomalaisen Tiedeakatemian Kustantama, 1911), 5962
(s.v. qablu), 6869 (s.v. qirbu, qirbitu). In contradistinction, Hebrew and Aramaic
are evidently derived from the verb q-r-b to approach, come or draw near. The
etymon of this verb possibly differs from that of the primary noun, although the issue is
debated among etymologists and lexicographers; contrast, e.g., BDB, 897 and 899 with the
comment of N. H. Tur-Sinai in E. Ben-Yehudas Thesaurus, 12:6141a, n. 1.
Priests of Qoreb 47

Christian Palestinian Aramaic). Had the word penetrated into Hebrew from
Aramaic, one would expect to find its traces in the western dialects, which
were spoken in Palestine, rather than in the eastern dialects, which were spo-
ken in Mesopotamia. The fact that the documented evidence is opposite to
the expected distribution casts doubts on the initial assumption, and cau-
tions one from accepting the hypothesis that this item was indeed borrowed
from Aramaic.23
To be sure, there might be an exception to this rule in the form of a word
spelled that was recently found in a small Aramaic fragment allegedly
coming from Qumran. Its exact interpretation, however, is hampered by the
fragmentary context. Two options were proposed:
(a) Andr Lemaire, who first published the fragment under the provisional
siglum XQ6, read and restored in line 3: (?) ] [, and
interpreted the form as a D infinitive.24 This grammatical analysis, however,
would normally necessitate a form without a waw, namely, , as is indeed
found in all the parallel examples adduced by Lemaire himself.
(b) mile Puech re-edited the fragment under the siglum 4Q587 (frg. 1), but
his reading at this point is indecisive: - [/] . When comment-
ing on this line, he hesitates on whether the form should be read as ( fol-
lowing Hebrew ) or ( in accordance with Syriac ).25 The first
option is unlikely, since medial short /i/ is rarely if ever represented by yod
in the Qumran scrolls, while the second option is dialectally problematic, as
explained above.
The fragmentary state of the text, as well as the doubts concerning the read-
ing of the other words in context, precludes any definitive answer. Nevertheless,
Lemaire may have been on the right track in taking the form not as a noun but
rather as an infinitive. This interpretation, however, should be slightly modi-
fied in order to accommodate for the unexpected presence of a waw. The plene
spelling may be a product of an irregular phonetic change, which is sporadi-
cally attested in various Aramaic dialects as well as in QH, vis., the change of
/a/ > /o/ before /r/ in closed syllables.26

23 This is in contrast to the Hebrew feminine form , which is attested only in much
later sources: the dictum of R. Pedat quoted in b. abb. 13a (although note that the parallel
quote in b. Abod. Zar. 17a has the form ;)Tanuma Buber, addition to Devarim, 3a.
For this particular form, the assumption of influence from Jewish Babylonian Aramaic is
24 A. Lemaire, DJD 36:49091, pl. xxxii.
25 . Puech, DJD 37:5014, esp. 5023, pl. xxv.
26 See Kutscher, The Language and Linguistic Background of 1QIsaa, 49697.
48 Mizrahi

Notwithstanding that this is not the only possible explanation for the
ambiguous form that occurs in the small fragment, it is precisely the ambigu-
ity of this occurrence that renders it useless for our concern. As long as there
is no other, unambiguous occurrence of in Western Aramaic, the most
reasonable conclusion that can be drawn from the available evidence is that
this nominal form typifies the eastern dialects and was not necessarily in use
in Palestine during the Greco-Roman period. Consequently, it seems unlikely
that it was borrowed by Hebrew speakers at that time.

3.2 Prefiguring Late Semantics?

Another alternative solution is suggested by the fact that sources much later
than the Songs attest to two terms that are derived from q-r-b and might be
pertinent for the case under review: (a) some Amoraic sources refer to , a
term that is said to mean a prayer leader,27 and (b) some Genizah fragments
mention the term
as a designation of a genre of Piyyu, Hebrew liturgical
poetry of the Byzantine period. These terms form the basis for the opinion that
some occurrences of the verb q-r-b in rabbinic literature can be interpreted as
having the sense to pray, sing, compose or perform poetry or the like.28 This
was suggested especially in relation to sources belonging to Amoraic (i.e., late
rabbinic literature), but a few homilies in Tannaitic (i.e., early rabbinic litera-
ture) may also reflect such an understanding.29
Contrary to that assumption, Miron Bialik Lerner has convincingly demon-
strated that such an interpretation is fraught with doubts. At the very least, his

27 The nominal pattern qtol is common for nomina agentis; it appears already in the transi-
tional period from CBH to LBH (probably under Aramaic influence), and its distribution
expands in MH.
28 See especially S. Lieberman, The Liturgical Poetry of Yannai, Sinai 4 (1939): 22150
[Hebrew], at 22324; A. HaCohen, Cathedra 64 (1992): 17274 [Hebrew].
29 Lieberman mentions two homilies from Sifre Deuteronomy, but his interpretation was
refuted by M. B. Lerner, The Beginning of Piyyut: Talmudic and Midrashic Inquiries,
Sidra 9 (1993): 1334 [Hebrew], esp. 1920. Prof. Menaem Kahana drew my attention to
two additional homilies in Sifre Numbers116 (ed. Hurovitz, 13132) that may be relevant,
and suggested that I consider the possibility that the same meaning is at play with the
phrase in the Songs of the Sabbath Sacrifice. The homilies in Sifre Numbers,
however, pose several exegetical difficulties of their own, and cannot be said to utilize
such a meaning unambiguously. Moreover, even if they are interpreted in this way, this is
not necessarily relevant for the Songs (cf. below, n. 31).
Priests of Qoreb 49

analysis makes it very difficult to assume that such a sense was functional in
the language of the early rabbis, the Tannaim.30
Furthermore, even if one assumes that such a verb or a particular sense
of it were known to users of Second Temple Hebrew, it still does not supply
adequate explanation for the phrase in the Songs of the Sabbath
Sacrifice. To begin with, there is a conceptual difficulty: at least in the earthly
temple, liturgical singing is a ritual task peculiar to the Levites, who stand out-
side the inner cultic circle, rather than the priests, who serve within it.31 The
latter are supposed to perform their cultic duties in silence, and this holds true
to their angelic projections as described in the Songs.32
In addition, although the Songs portray a picture according to which the
main ritual performed in the heavenly temple is glorifying God by songs of
praise, this is not the primary theme of the specific passages that contain the
phrase . Indeed, the extensively preserved fragments from Songs VI
and VII describe with much detail the angelic liturgy, but, tellingly, nowhere
do they mention the term . To be sure, the term does surface in
Song VIII, which parallels Song VI in its structure and content, but in all its
contexts the phrase seems to designateand possibly to explainthe place
of the angels within the priestly cultic hierarchy of the heavenly temple, not
their liturgical function in organizing the prayer.

30 Lerner, The Beginning of Piyyut, 2125. I should add that the two relevant terms are
not necessarily related to one another. The nomen agentis occurs in an ambiguous
context that plays with several possible derivations ( y. Ber. 8b [ed. Academy of Hebrew
Language, 39]). By contrast, the term , which denotes a genre of liturgical poetry,

may be compared to Syriac /qurrb/, which can denote liturgy, especially the
mass; as such, it might be a metonymic extension of the original sense of offering, sac-
rifice in a specialized usage, i.e., when referring to the Eucharist. See the references in
M. Sokoloff, A Syriac Lexicon: A Translation from the Latin, Correction, Expansion and
Update of C. Brockelmanns Lexicon Syriacum (Winona Lake: Eisenbrauns, 2009), 1343a.
The technical terminology of Byzantine Piyyu contains several items that were evidently
borrowed from Greek and Aramaic, and some of them may have come from Syriac.
See, e.g., C. Aslanov, Bayt (House) as Strophe in Hebrew, Byzantine and Near Eastern
Poetry, Le Muson 121 (2008): 297310. For the cultural setting that enabledand even
motivatedsuch borrowings, cf. Aslanov, Romanos the Melodist and Palestinian Piyyut:
Sociolinguistic and Pragmatic Perspectives, in Jews in Byzantium: Dialectics of Minority
and Majority Cultures (ed. R. Bonfil et al.; Leiden: Brill, 2012), 61328.
31 This rule also applies to the two homilies quoted from Sifre Numbers (above, n. 29), which
indeed refer to the Levites.
32 I. Knohl, Between Voice and Silence: The Relationship between Prayer and Temple Cult,
JBL 115 (1996): 1730.
50 Mizrahi

To sum up this part of the discussion, previous interpretations of the phrase

are incompatible with the full range of linguistic facts, drawn from
Hebrew semantics and lexicology as well as Aramaic dialectology. These data
thus force us to search for a solution to the problem in a different direction.

4 New Proposal

4.1 Grammatical Analysis

A proper starting point must be an acceptable morphological analysis
of the form in question. I submit that the simplestand hence the most
compellinganalysis takes to be a verbal noun, a nomen actionis of the
G verb to approach, draw near.33 Morphologically, it can be viewed as a
masculine biform of BH ( /qrb-/ < *qurb-), which is used as a femi-
nine infinitive of the G stem:34

...( Exod 36:2)
Moses called Bezalel ... to come to do the work.

A comparable interchange between a feminine infinitive in BH and a mascu-

line verbal noun in QHboth of which exhibit a similar segholate nominal
pattern (historical *qVtl)is to be found in the way in which the language of
the Community Rule adapts a BH expression:

(21a) ( Exod 40:30)

water for washing
(21b) ( 1QS 3:5)
washing water

33 Segholate nouns are commonly employed in BH as nomina actionis of the G stem. See
H. Bauer und P. Leander, Historische Grammatik der hebrischen Sprache des Alten
Testament (Halle: Niemeyer, 1922; repr. Hildesheim: Olms, 1965), 461,61kl.
34 The terms masculine and feminine are used in this context solely as a descriptive
means to refer to the grammatical marking of these inanimate nouns with or without
final *-, without implying anything about their syntactic behavior. For the use of such
feminine infinitival forms in BH, see A. Cohen, The Infinitive plus H, Leonenu 33
(1969): 238 [Hebrew].
Priests of Qoreb 51

Against the infinitival purpose clause attested in BH, which employs the femi-
nine form /r-/ < *ru- (21a),35 the Community Rule makes use of
a construct phrase; its nomen rectum is a segholate masculine form:
(21b), whose Tiberian counterpart can be either * <( ra) or * <( ru).36
The strong relation of the latter form to the verbal paradigm is even more
pronounced in a variant reading found in 4QSh, a copy of the Community Rule
from Cave 4:

(21c) ( [] 4Q262 1 3)
washing water

This manuscript utilizes a nominal pattern that in MH has indeed become a

standard nomen actionis, derived automatically from the G stem.37
Accordingly, one may predict that the QH form , which corresponds
morphologically to the BH infinitive , would find an equivalent in a MH
form . This is indeed borne out by the evidence, as demonstrated by
the following passage from the Sifra, a Tannaitic explication of the book of
Leviticus. The passage is a homily, which seeks to explain the reason for the
death of Aarons sons:

35 Cf. , water for washing his feet (Gen 24:32).

36 That the two grammatical patterns were available in QH is suggested by another text
found in Qumran, a liturgical work that deals with a ritual of purification. A version pub-
lished by Maurice Baillet contains the expression ( 4Q512 16 [= col. XII] 5; cf.
] [in frgs. 4244, line 5), while another version, published by Esther Eshel, formulates
it as ( 4Q414 13 7). By default, such a difference is to be explained as an ortho-
graphic fluctuation between plene and defective spellings. However, the seemingly defec-
tive spelling is found in 4Q512, which normally represents the round vowels by a waw.
Since it is less likely that its scribe would have resorted to defective spelling, it is reason-
able to conclude that the textual variation between and reflects a grammatical
interchange, within QH, between the *qitl/qatl and *qutl patterns (respectively).
37 E. Y. Kutscher, Studies in the Grammar of Mishnaic Hebrew (according to ms Kaufmann),
in Bar-Ilan Annual, Humanities and Social Sciences: Decennial Volume II (ed. M. Z. Kaddari;
Ramat Gan: Bar-Ilan University Press, 1969), 5777; repr. in Studies in Hebrew and Aramaic
(Jerusalem: Magnes, 1977), 10834 [Hebrew], esp. 11016, 13031. Cf. S. Sharvit, The Growth
and Crystallization of Verbal Nouns in Ancient Hebrew, in Samaritan, Hebrew and
Aramaic Studies: Presented to Abraham Tal (ed. M. Bar-Asher and M. Florentin; Jerusalem:
Bialik Institute, 2005), 17788 [Hebrew]; M. Bar-Asher, A Morphology of Mishnaic Hebrew:
Introductions and Noun Morphology (2 vols.; Jerusalem: Academy ofHebrew Language and
the Bialik Institute, 2015), 2:121880 [Hebrew].
52 Mizrahi

(22) , :
, : .
( Sifra, 1:1 ,[ ed. Weiss, 79c])
R. Aqiva says: One passage reads upon their approaching (lit. drawing
near) before the Lord they died (Lev 16:1), and one passage reads they
offered (lit. brought near) illicit fire before the Lord (Lev 10:1). The deci-
sive passage is upon their offering (lit. bringing near) illicit fire before the
Lord (Num 3:4; 26:61). This means that they died for approaching (lit.
drawing near), not for offering (lit. bringing near).

The homily is based on two transparent grammatical equations between BH

and MH. For the causative stem, both the BH infinitival form and
the finite verb are paraphrased by the MH verbal noun . For the
G stem, the BH infinitival form ( i.e., with a pronominal suffix) is
matched by the MH verbal noun .
One may therefore conclude that just as speakers of Second Temple Hebrew
could have alternated between the forms / and as nomina actio-
nis of , so were they able to express the nomen actionis of the verb by
both and .

4.2 Syntactical Analysis

Turning back to the full phrase , the syntactic relation between its
components becomes clear. The nomen actionis occupies the slot of the
nomen rectum, and should be taken attributively as referring to the approach-
ing priests.38
This interpretation may be corroborated by a partially restored passage in
Song I, which explicates the verbal noun by paraphrasing it with another
deverbal form of , the participle .39 In this case, the attributive rela-
tion to the term for priests is syntactically marked by using it as part of a
relative clause:

(23) , ] [] ...[ , ,
[...] ( []4Q400 1 i 1920)

38 A semantically comparable expression, which similarly underscores the proximity of the

angels to God, occurs in the Arabic angelological epithet: , lit. the angels
who are drawn/brought near (Qurn 4:172; I owe this suggestive comparison to Prof. Sara
Stroumsa). The Arabic expression has a different syntax, though, since it consists of a
noun modified by an attributive participle that functions as an adjective.
39 See further below,5.3.
Priests of Qoreb 53

He had established for Himself the approaching priests, holiest among

the holy ones, [... g]o[ds of] gods, priests of the heavenly heaven who
[app]roach [...]

5 Terminological Analysis: Use of q-r-b in BH

If the above linguistic analysis is correct, closer attention should be paid to

the semantics of the verb approach, to which the verbal noun is
intimately related. While this verb is richly documented in all Hebrew chro-
nolects, a specific pattern emerges if one narrows the search to parallels for a
more restricted terminological use associated with priests.
Especially important for the present concern is its use in literary works that
employ it as part of the technical terminology of the cult that was current
among priestly circles. The Hebrew Bible contains two such sources that merit
inspection: the so-called Priestly Document of the Pentateuch (P)40 and the
book of Ezekiel.

5.1 Priestly Texts in the Pentateuch

Jacob Milgrom has shown that P employs q-r-b (in the G stem) to specifically
denote encroachment into the holy precinct of the tabernacle.41 Accordingly,
even though the cultic conceptualization underlying P is that the tabernacle

40 Although P is by no means a homogenous body of texts, its internal diversity makes no

difference for the issue discussed herein, and it will be treated as a single source. For a
detailed lexicographic description, which elaborates on the cultic nuances of the verb
and its derived nouns, see S. Rattray and J. Milgrom, qra, in TDOT 13:13552. For the
present purpose, one can exclude passages that mention proximity or drawing near to
God without mentioning priests, as found in the Covenant Code (Exod 22:7). The poetic
expression ( Isa 58:2; Ps 73:28; contrast Zeph 3:2) is similarly irrelevant, since
it does not occur in a ritual context, but rather in a figurative description of seeking Gods
41 This technical sense is prominent with respect to cultic paraphernalia, approaching to
which may be either allowed (e.g., Lev 9:7) or prohibited (e.g., Num 18:34; cf. Num 17:5
etc.). The latter usage is especially evident in the recurring formula , the
illicit encroacher shall be put to death (Num 1:51; 3:10, 38; 18:7). Milgrom has also drawn
attention to a parallel usage in Akkadian texts from Nuzi, and suggested that the termi-
nology employed by P is rooted in a West Semitic milieu of the second millennium BCE.
See J. Milgrom, The Cultic Use of /, in Proceedings of the Fifth World Congress of
Jewish Studies (ed. P. Peli; 5 vols.; Jerusalem: World Union of Jewish Studies, 1973), 1:7584;
cf. Milgrom, Studies in Levitical Terminology (Berkeley: University of California Press,
1970), 559.
54 Mizrahi

is the house of God and that the priests are his personal servants, normally
one does not find that they are described as those who approach God himself,
or even his seatan action that would have be considered an unacceptable
encroachment. At most, they can approach the altar (Exod 40:32; Lev 9:78).42
Similarly, the people of Israel may only approach the Tent of Meeting (Lev 9:5;
contrast Num 18:22).43
The verb q-r-b is therefore used in P in a specific technical sense that per-
tains to the delimitation of ritual spheres. But since it is usually used to refer to
unauthorized access to domains of graded holiness, it is not normally applied
to priests. In any case, it is not used to define their role in relation to the divin-
ity itself, but rather to exclude admittance to the domain of holiness.

5.2 Ezekiels Law Code

Unlike P, the idea that the priests do indeed approach God is emphatically
expressed in another outgrowth of priestly literature, namely, Ezekiels law
code of chapters 4048.44 In this literary corpus, the use of the verb q-r-b
becomes an essential element of the very definition of the cultic role of the
legitimate priesthood:

( Ezek 40:46)

42 The peculiarity of priestly terminology is particularly evident regarding this usage, since
the phrase / + can be shown to be typical of P, whereas non-priestly
sources employ + ( 1 Sam 2:28; 1 Kgs 12:33). See M. Paran, Forms of the
Priestly Style in the Pentateuch (Jerusalem: Magnes, 1989), 31415 [Hebrew]; note also his
explanation for the juxtaposition of the two phrases in 2 Kgs 16:12. For a somewhat differ-
ent opinion see Milgrom, Cultic Use, 84 n. 38.
43 The only exception to this rule may be found in the divine words quoted by Moses after
the death of Aarons sons: , , through those who are near
me I will show myself holy, and before all the people I will be glorified (Lev 10:3), assum-
ing that are the sons of Aaron, and taking as a reference to the action of killing
them (cf. Ezek 28:22). However, critical commentators doubt if this passage had originally
referred to the event to which it is now connected, and in any case, it does not explicitly
mention any priests. See J. Milgrom, Leviticus 116 (AB 3; New York: Doubleday, 1991), esp.
600601, and the literature adduced there.
44 The connection between the law code and the other prophecies contained in the book
of Ezekiel has been much debated in critical scholarship, and so also the integrity of the
law code itself. These issues, however, have no direct impact on the present discussion,
which is concerned with the reception of the priestly terminology in the Songs of the
Sabbath Sacrifice. In what follows, when referring to Ezekiel, it is only the law code that is
Priests of Qoreb 55

The chamber that faces north is for the priests who have charge of the
altar; these are the descendants of Zadok, who (alone) among the descen-
dants of Levi may come near to the Lord to minister to him.
(25) ( Ezek 42:13)
... the holy chambers, where the priests who approach the Lord shall eat.
(26) ( Ezek 43:19)
... the levitical priests from the seed of Zadok, who draw near to me, says
the Lord God, to minister to me.
( Ezek 44:15)
But the levitical priests, the descendants of Zadok, who kept the charge
of my sanctuary when the Israelites went astray from me, they shall come
near to me to minister to me; and they shall attend me to offer me the fat
and the blood, says the Lord God.
(Ezek 45:4)
It shall be a holy portion of the land; it shall be for the priests, who minis-
ter in the sanctuary and approach to minister to the Lord.

This usage is unique to Ezekiel.45 It stands in stark contrast to the careful ter-
minology that characterizes P, which refrains from any such definition. The
opposition between the two priestly corpora suggests that this peculiar turn of
phrase encodes a polemical stance.46 But the interpretation of Ezekiels own
language goes beyond the confines of the present discussion and cannot be
addressed here. Suffice it to acknowledge, for the present concern, that the
close similarity between Ezekiels usage and the phrase can hardly
be incidental, nor can it be attributed to a general priestly concern of the

45 The only additional source (4Q213a 1 18) that exhibits a somewhat similar use of the
verb q-r-b, albeit not in an explicit association with the term , is Levis prayer in the
Aramaic Levi Document, but this use may actually depend on the language of Ezekiel.
See J. C. Greenfield, M. E. Stone, and E. Eshel, The Aramaic Levi Document: Edition,
Translation, Commentary (SVTP 19; Leiden: Brill, 2004), 6263 (ALD 3:10 according to their
numeration); H. Drawnel, An Aramaic Wisdom Text from Qumran: A New Interpretation of
the Levi Document (SJSJ 86; Leiden: Brill, 2004), 99 (Greek text), 173 (Aramaic text), 21718
(commentary; the passage is ALD 1a 11, according to his system of reference).
46 Cf. the insightful comment of Eliezer of Beaugency on Ezek 40:46:
, , so that they shall then approach, hence that all the others,
whom he mentioned above, should keep far away; Miqraot Gedolot HaKeter: Ezekiel (ed.
M. Cohen; Ramat-Gan: Bar-Ilan University Press, 2000), 271 [Hebrew].
56 Mizrahi

Songs. Rather, the lexical components of the collocation appear to

be directly drawn from those passages in Ezekiel.47
Note further that there is no need to assume that when utilizing Ezekiels
phraseology, the Songs necessarily carried over also its original polemical over-
tones. On the contrary, whatever was the political or cultic subtext of Ezekiels
insistence on his peculiar definition of the priestly role vis--vis P, this underly-
ing motivation was no longer relevant when the Songs were composed, most
probably during the Greco-Roman period. The Songs thus adapt Ezekiels defi-
nition of the cultic duty of the priests: to approach God in order to serve him.
In the context of the Songs, this definition is projected on the angels, whose
access to the divine presence is presumably less problematic than that of
human priests.
Stylistically, the relation between the variety of formulations found in
Ezekiel and the virtually fixed collocation employed by the Songs conforms to
a mode of stylistic adaptation that is well-known in QH, especially in the realm
of legal terminology. Biblical designations and epithets, originally formulated
freely in various syntactic constructions, were crystallized in QH into construct
phrases, which then became fixed expressions, functioning as technical terms.48

5.3 Excursus: The Participial Patterns

One further detail in the Ezekiel passages merits attention due to its potential
bearing on the understanding of the language of the Songs. Ezekiel usually
distinguishes between two different participial derivatives of q-r-b: and
. This differentiation matches a morphological opposition maintained
in BH between the two participial patternsif they are both attested for the
same verb: functions as a stative participle, whereas takes the role of
a dynamic participle (i.e., one that encodes an action or a process). Similarly,
contrast growing, becoming greater (e.g., 1 Sam 2:26) with great;
one who goes far away (Ps 73:27) with one who is far.49 The morpho-
logical variation thus encodes, in BH, a semantic distinction.

47 Newsom had sensed the relation between the phrase and Ezekiels law code
in her dissertation (4QSerek, 5354), but since she gradually retreated from the under-
standing that the form is related to the verb q-r-b (see above, n. 20), she eventually
gave up her earlier insight in later publications.
48 Cf. E. Qimron, Halakhic Terms in the Dead Sea Scrolls and Their Importance for the Study
of the History of Halakha, in The Dead Sea Scrolls: Forty Years of Research (ed. Magen
Broshi et al.; Jerusalem: Israel Exploration Society, 1992), 12838 [Hebrew]. The general
stylistic trend was already observed by J. Licht, The Thanksgiving Scroll (Jerusalem: Bialik
Institute, 1957), 1011 [Hebrew].
49 G. Bergstrsser, Hebrische Grammatik, II: Verbum (Leipzig: Vogel, 1929), 85,14r (e).
Priests of Qoreb 57

The twofold differentiation appears to be operative in Ezekiel as well. This

is indicated by the fact that the form , which takes the pattern of the
dynamic participle, may indeed alternate with a finite verb:

(24) ... ( 40:46)50

(27) ...( 44:15)

If this morpho-semantic distinction maintained its force in QH, at least as far

as the verb q-r-b is concerned, it corroborates the restoration in Song I (
) []with the dynamic participle rather than the stative
.51 Moreover, such a restoration accords well with the use of the form
as a nomen actionis, since this semantic category typifies dynamic verbs.52

50 On the other hand, note Ezek 43:19, which reads

( 26). Even though it is close in its formulation to the above quoted passages
with dynamic formsbe they a participle (24) or a finite verb (27)one finds here a
seemingly stative form. Possibly this is due to a weakening of the opposition that took
place in later phases of Hebrew. A process of semantic erosion in this regard is evidenced
by an alternation of the two patterns in various vocalization traditions: contrast the
Tiberian tradition ( Num 1:51) with the Babylonian reading ,
and the
reverse interchange in Deut 13:8. Similarly, in Ps 73:27 the Tiberian tradition reads ,
while the Babylonian one has . See I. Yeivin, The Tradition of the Hebrew Language
Reflected in the Babylonian Vocalization (Jerusalem: Academy of Hebrew Language, 1985),
1:443 [Hebrew]. The two participial forms also alternate in MH; see M. Bar-Asher, First
Studies in MH according to MS Vatican 32 of Sifre Numbers, in Studies in Mishnaic Hebrew
(2 vols.; Jerusalem: Bialik Institute, 2009), 1:24068 [Hebrew], esp. 25557. Cf. S. Naeh,
The Tannaic Hebrew in the Sifra according to Codex Vatican 66 (Ph.D. diss., Hebrew
University of Jerusalem, 1989), 9394 [Hebrew].
51 See above,4.2.
52 For an alternative analysis see E. Qimron, , and , in
Yaakov Bentolila Jubilee Volume: Research Papers in Hebrew Linguistics, Hebrew Literature,
and Jewish Languages (ed. D. Sivan and P. I. Kirtchuk-Halevi; Beer Sheva: Ben Gurion
University of the Negev Press, 2003), 32739 [Hebrew]. Although he also recognizes the
relation of the noun to the verb q-r-b in general and the adjectival participle in
particular, he prefers to view as a nomen qualitativum, further suggesting that such
qtl nouns originate in *qutul infinitives of stative verbs. But even if this morphological
analysis is correct, due weight needs to be given to the semantic differentiation between
qtol and qtel when both patterns are attested for the same verb (cf. Qimrons note on
p. 334, n. 15).
58 Mizrahi

6 Sociolinguistic Analysis: Use of q-r-b in QH and MH

Both in form and in content, the collocation seems to depend on

an intertextual relation to Ezekiels law code (which itself interacts with
other priestly concepts and terms). Yet the dependence upon earlier, scrip-
tural precedents does not exhaust the range of meanings that this phrase may
have encoded when the Songs were composed. While the original, potentially
polemical overtones of the intertext were probably lost by the Greco-Roman
period, novel connotations may well have developed in their stead. Neither
the semantics of the verb q-r-b nor the theological notion of the approaching
priests remained static during the time span that separates BH from QH. Full
explication of the phrase should thus take into account additional nuances
that its components might have acquired over the years.
Careful scrutiny of the use of the verb q-r-b in QH indeed supplies evidence
for such a semantic development, which charged the Songs designation of the
angels officiating in the heavenly temple with a specialized sense. The evidence
comes primarily from sectarian writings, especially the composite works of the
Community Rule (S) and the Damascus Document (D), but there are some indi-
cations that these texts reflect a broader linguistic trend that had been current
in Second Temple Hebrew.

6.1 The Community Rule: Admission to the Yaad

The verb q-r-b is used (in the G and D stems) in several sections of the
Community Rule as a technical term denoting a gradual yet formal procedure
of becoming a member of the sectarian formation of the Yaad.53 This usage is
most conspicuous in 1QS 6, which describes in great detail how a new member
is admitted, stage by stage. The candidate first has to be interrogated by the
assembly (), whose members decide whether he should draw near or
far (l. 16: ) , i.e., be admitted or denied of the possibility of becom-
ing a novice. If he is admitted, he goes through a two-year training period, dur-
ing which he gradually gains stricter levels of purity. Initially, he may not touch
the pure food of the assembly even after he is admitted (lines 1617:
, as he draws near [i.e., while in the process of

53 This specialized use of q-r-b was correctly perceived by commentators of the Community
Rule from the early days of Qumran scholarship; see, e.g., P. Wernberg-Mller, The Manual
of Discipline (STDJ 1; Leiden: Brill, 1957), 3031 (translation of 1QS 6:1323, esp. line 19; cf.
n. 52 on p. 108), 35 (translation of 1QS 9:15; cf. n. 37 on p. 137) and M. Delcor, Le vocabu-
laire juridique, culturel et mystique de linitiation dans la secte de Qumrn, in Qumran-
Probleme (ed. H. Bardtke; Berlin: Akademie-Verlag, 1963), 10934, esp. 11823.
Priests of Qoreb 59

being admitted] to the council of the community, he shall not touch the purity
of the assembly). After a year, if he passes the exams, he is allowed to partake
in the general assembly, and eventually be elected as a full member and per-
mitted to join the sectarian council (line 19: , to draw near
[i.e., to be admitted] to the cadre of the community).54

6.2 The Damascus Document: Admission to the Community of the

New Covenant
Another procedure of admission is prescribed by CD A 15:616:1. It is quite dif-
ferent from the one detailed in 1QS 6, but interestingly closer to 1QS 5:79. The
complex relationship between the various passages suggests that they reflect
different (though related) types of social organization, but it remains a matter
of debate to what extent these differences are to be explained as resulting from
diachronic development or synchronic variation (or both).55 Notwithstanding
the literary, sociological, and historical aspects of this problem, what is telling
for our concern is the use in CD A 15:10 of the expression []in refer-
ence to the admission procedure. If the restoration is correct, then both the

54 The procedure described in 1QS 6 famously finds a close parallel in Josephuss report
about the admission of a new member among the Essenes ( J. W., 2.137138). Whether
or not the Essenes described by Josephus are indeed to be identified with the mem-
bers of the Yaad described in 1QS is a much contested issue, one which cannot be
addressed here. Nevertheless, it is worthwhile to mention a peculiar choice of words in
Josephuss description of the initial stages of the process, when asserting that
, , Having given proof
of his temperance, he (i.e., the candidate) is brought into closer touch with the rule
( J. W. 2.137138 [Thackeray, LCL]); cf. the recent translation of S. Mason and H. Chapman,
Flavius Josephus: Translation and Commentary, Vol. 1b: Judean War 2 (Leiden: Brill, 2008),
111: Whenever he should give proof of his self-control during this period, he approaches
nearer to the regimen. The apparent resemblance between this formulation (attested
nowhere else in Josephuss writings) and the use of Hebrew q-r-b in 1QS 6 was under-
scored by commentators; see especially T. S. Beall, Josephus Description of the Essenes
Illustrated by the Dead Sea Scrolls (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1988), 7375.
55 See especially C. Hempel, Community Structures in the Dead Sea Scrolls: Admission,
Organization, and Disciplinary Procedures, in The Dead Sea Scrolls after Fifty Years:
A Comprehensive Assessment (ed. P. W. Flint and J. C. VanderKam; 2 vols.; Leiden:
Brill, 199899), 2:6792, esp. 7073. For a theoretical perspective, informed by social-
scientific approaches, see C. Wassen and J. Jokiranta, Groups in Tension: Sectarianism
in the Damascus Document and the Community Rule, in Sectarianism in Early Judaism:
Sociological Advances (ed. D. J. Chalcraft; London: Equinox, 2007), 20545.
60 Mizrahi

immediate context of the phrase and its terminological similarity to 1QS 6

encourage one to interpret it as referring to the period of ones admission.56

6.3 Rabbinic Sources: The Pharisaic Gathering and other Social

A few years after the first scrolls were published, Saul Lieberman had already
noticed the specialized, terminological use of the verb q-r-b, and drew atten-
tion to a striking parallel in rabbinic literature. It occurs in a passage that
describes a similar issue of admissionbut this time to the Pharisaic gather-
ing (), which, like the sectarian community portrayed in the S tradition,
was defined first and foremost by its strict adherence to purity laws:57

(29) 58* * .
(y. Demai 23a [ed. Academy of Hebrew Language, 124])

56 Another noteworthy passage in the D tradition is the famous pesher-like exegesis of Ezek
44:15 (above, no. 27) in CD A 3:204:4. The scriptural passage mentions three groupsthe
priests, the Levites, and the descendants of Zadokwho are defined in terms of their
relation to the cult and the temple. The exegetical explication embedded in D, by con-
trast, systematically interprets these designations as referring to constituents of a sectar-
ian community. See the recent discussion of this passage by L. Goldman, Biblical Exegesis
and Pesher Interpretation in the Damascus Document (Ph.D. diss., Haifa University,
2007), 4262 [Hebrew]. Interestingly, the passage exhibits a major textual discrepancy
which results in lexical differentiationbetween the scriptural quotation and the MT.
While the MT defines the priestly role by framing it with two derivatives of q-r-b, one
referring to the act of approaching God ( , lit. they draw near), and the other to the
offering of sacrifices to him ( , lit. to bring near), the text as cited in D replaces this
whole string of words with one verb: . The lexical replacement may well be related
to the organization terminology employed in other sectarian writings (see, e.g., the par-
allelism in 1QS 9:1516; cf. 1QHa 6:2425, 2932), but this issue requires an independent
57 S. Lieberman, The Discipline of the So-Called Dead Sea Manual of Discipline, JBL 71
(1952), 199206, esp. 199200; cf. C. Rabin, Yaad, aburah, and the Essenes, in Studies
in the Dead Sea Scrolls (ed. J. Liver; Jerusalem: Kiryat Sepher, 1957), 10422 [Hebrew], esp.
110, 115, 11920. Obviously, the intriguing similarity in terminology and salient sociological
features does not mean that the sectarian Yaad and Pharisaic gatherings are identical in
their social formations and historical context; the differences between these phenomena
are as important as the similarities between them, as emphasized by S. Fraade, Qumran
Yahad and Rabbinic Hbr: A Comparison Reconsidered, DSD 16 (2009): 43353. Still,
the conspicuous phraseological isogloss between late rabbinic reports on Pharisaic cir-
cles and authentic sectarian writings plausibly points to a well rooted usage in Second
Temple Hebrew.
58 This is Liebermans emendation for , which is written in MS Leiden (the only com-
plete manuscript of the Palestinian Talmud), but makes no sense in its context.
Priests of Qoreb 61

A member who went abroad is not expelled from his association; when
he comes back, he requires no (re-)admission.

Furthermore, perusal of MH indicates that the verb q-r-b (often together with
its antonym r--q) was used to delineate various sorts of social boundaries.
Especially noteworthy is a Tannaitic source presented as a much older tradi-
tion, a regulation given to Moses at Sinai,59 which potentially goes back, at
the very least, to the Hellenistic period:60

(30) , :
, , , ,
, .
. , ;
,( m. Ed. 8:7)
R. Joshua said: I have received as a tradition from Rabban Johanan b.
Zakkai, who heard from his teacher, and his teacher from his teacher, as
a Halakah given to Moses from Sinai, that Elijah will not come to declare
unclean or clean, to remove afar or to bring nigh, but to remove afar those
[families] that were brought nigh by violence and bring nigh those [fami-
lies] that were removed afar by violence. The family of Beth Zerepha was
in the land beyond Jordan and Ben Zion removed it afar by force. And yet
another [family] was there, and Ben Zion brought it nigh by force. The
like of these Elijah will come to declare unclean or clean, to remove afar
or bring nigh.61

6.4 Sequitur
While the S and D traditions are related in terms of the ideological movement
that shaped their values and spiritual concerns, they differ in the community
structures they envisage, each reflecting a range of forms of social organiza-
tion. The rabbinic sources evidently describe communities and groups that are

59 This phrase is used in rabbinic literature to denote a type of legal prescriptions that are
not anchored in scriptural proof-textsby way of either explicit mention or exegetical
deductionbut are still accepted as obligatory, drawing their authority from their pre-
sumed antiquity; see Talmudic Encyclopedia, 9:36587 [Hebrew]. Prescriptions so desig-
nated are by no means a unified corpus, as they exhibit a variety of themes, literary forms,
and legal principles; they may have thus crystallized at different contexts. Nevertheless,
at least some of them do appear to belong to very old strata within the legal traditions
transmitted in rabbinic literature.
60 I am indebted to Prof. Vered Noam, who alerted my attention to this instructive reference.
61 The Mishnah (trans. H. Danby; London: Oxford University Press, 1933), 436.
62 Mizrahi

even more remote from those depicted in the S and D traditions. Nevertheless,
the variety of sources embedded in these corpora testifies to a specialized,
terminological use of the verb q-r-b in order to express a type of social affili-
ation that is legally regulated. It appears, therefore, that the technical use of
q-r-b in order to denote the admission of a person to a confined social group
was a common property of Hebrew legal terminology during the Second
Temple period.62
If so, where Jewish authors of the Greco-Roman period have made use of the
Hebrew verb q-r-b or its derivatives, especially in relation to a carefully delin-
eated social circle or a group, modern philologists are at least entitled (and,
at times, obliged) to take into consideration the sociolinguistic connotations
of this verb in the legal terminology of the period.63 All the more so, since the
notion of membership is of crucial importance for the establishment of social
identity, particularly in sectarian contexts.64 Close scrutiny of the language
used to denote various stages of becoming a member of a restricted group may
thus shed some light on the social mechanisms that were operative in the for-
mation of the circles in which the literary texts were formed and/or utilized.
Put differently, when decoding the ancient sources, one must bear in mind
that the verb q-r-b may convey not only the primary meaning of drawing near
but also the secondary sense of being admitted to a community. Such appears
to be the case with the phrase , which is peculiar to the Songs of the
Sabbath Sacrifice.

62 Compare the analogous case of the term , lit. the many, which is similarly
attested by both the Community Rule (for denoting the sectarian assembly) and rabbinic
sources (for referring to the legal category of the public). See, e.g., M. Weinfeld, The
Organizational Pattern and the Penal Code of the Qumran Sect: A Comparison with Guilds
and Religious Associations of the Hellenistic-Roman Period (NTOA 2; Fribourg: ditions uni-
versitaires Fribourg Suisse; Gttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1986), 1415; S. Morag,
On Some Concepts in the World of Qumran: Polysemy and Semantic Development, in
Diggers at the Well (ed. T. Muraoka and J. F. Elwolde; STDJ 36; Leiden: Brill, 2000), 18691.
63 For an attempt to consider QH from a sociolinguistic point of view, see W. M. Schniedewind,
Qumran Hebrew as an Antilanguage, JBL 118 (1999): 23552; idem, Linguistic Ideology
in Qumran Hebrew, in Muraoka and Elwolde, Diggers at the Well, 24555; idem, A Social
History of Hebrew: Its Origins Through the Rabbinic Period (New Haven: Yale University
Press, 2013), Chapter 8: Hebrew in the Hellenistic World, esp. 17390.
64 For the application of such sociological insights to the field of Qumran Studies, see, e.g.,
J. Jokiranta, Sociological Approaches to Qumran Sectarianism, in The Oxford Handbook
of the Dead Sea Scrolls (ed. T. H. Lim and J. J. Collins; Oxford: Oxford University Press,
2010), 20031.
Priests of Qoreb 63


The key to decoding the collocation , which is a phraseological hall-

mark of the Songs of the Sabbath Sacrifice, is a proper grammatical analysis of
. I have suggested that this is a verbal noun, related to the verb in gen-
eral and to the dynamic participle in particular. While the literal meaning
of this verb is to approach, draw near, it also acquired a specialized nuance in
Second Temple Hebrew, to be admitted, functioning as a technical term that
denotes social delineation from a legal perspective. I have further proposed
that the components of the construct phrase are not an ad hoc combination;
rather, the full phrase appears to rely on a specific scriptural source, Ezekiels
law code, which supplies a unique definition of the role of priestsa defini-
tion that is embraced by the Songs and projected on the heavenly temple.
By repeatedly employing the phrase , the Songs constructs its
angelological terminology on the basis of scriptural precedents that pertain to
a visionary yet earthly temple. At the same time, the phrase also connotes that
the angelic priests form a strictly defined community, that is, a fellowship to
which access is not free but rather depends on specific qualification (pertain-
ing mainly to purity) and is mediated by formal procedures of admission.
Such a meaning resonates profoundly within the theological matrix that
frames the Songs, namely, the notion of liturgical communion between the
earthly congregation of praying humans and the heavenly assembly of the
angelic priests, who all praise God at the very same time and in the very same
manner. The terminology used by the Songs implies that such a communion is
not automatically reached whenever a community offers its prayers; rather, it
is achieved only if certain formal conditions are being met with regard to the
ritual qualifications and aptness of the members of that community. The pray-
ing members of the community aspire to unite with the angelic hosts through
the act of liturgical performance. In their minds, they and they alone are the
earthly equivalents of the heavenly priests; it is only their prayers that are heard
in the celestial temple, in harmony with the angelic liturgy, thus approaching
the divine presence itself. The language of admission ( )thus simultane-
ously encodes both social inclusivity and exclusivity, as drawing near some
individuals necessarily means drawing far others. Those admitted form part
of a tight spiritual community that shares its stand with the angels, whereas
those excluded have no hope of ever being enchanted by the angelic liturgy.
This dual signification of the verbal noun echoes the double socio-
linguistic nature of the specialized use of q-r-b. On the one hand, since it
was evidently shared by various groups during the Second Temple period, it
need not be viewed as a unique item of a sectarian jargon of any particular
64 Mizrahi

community. Rather, it is an item of the legal phraseology that was relatively

common in Hebrew of the Greco-Roman period. On the other hand, its spe-
cific application does form a backbone of sectarian identity: it denotes a pro-
cess of formal admission by way of an agreed upon procedure for how to join
restricted social circles, especially ones that follow special voluntary rules of
purity. Thus, although this terminology was apparently shared by a variety of
groups in Second Temple Judaism, it vociferously gives expression to the highly
factious nature of Jewish society at that time.
The Nominal Clause in the Hebrew Legal
Documents and Letters from the Judean Desert

Uri Mor and Tamar Zewi

1 Introduction

The legal documents and letters from the time of the first and second Jewish-
Roman wars, discovered in the Judean Desert, reveal a living Hebrew dialect,
interspersed with ancient writing traditions on the one hand and significant
Aramaic influences on the other. While this dialect is basically similar to
Rabbinic Hebrew, it also exhibits independent linguistic features as well as
some resemblance to the Hebrew dialect of the Dead Sea Scrolls, particularly
in phonology.1 Following a paper by Uri Mor on word order in verbal clauses in

1 For grammatical characterization of this corpus see U. Mor, Judean Hebrew: The Language of
the Hebrew Documents from Judea between the First and the Second Revolts (Jerusalem: The
Academy of the Hebrew Language, forthcoming) [Hebrew]; U. Mor, Three Questions and
Three Answers regarding the Hebrew Documents from Judaea between the First and the
Second Revolts, Meghillot 10 (2013): 21934 [Hebrew]. The texts are cited (and translated,
unless otherwise specified) according to following editions: the Wadi Murrabaat documents
(= Mur.) and the so-called Naal eelim collection (= ev-e)according to A. Yardeni,
Textbook of Aramaic, Hebrew and Nabataean Documentary Texts from the Judaean Desert and
Related Material (2 vols.; Jerusalem: Ben-Zion Dinur Center for Research in Jewish History,
2000), excluding Mur. 174, which is cited according to E. Eshel, H. Eshel, and G. Geiger, Mur 174:
A Hebrew I.O.U. Document from Wadi Murabbaat, Liber Annuus 58 (2008): 31326. The Yadin
collection (P. Yadin)according to Y. Yadin et al., The Documents from the Bar Kokhba Period
in the Cave of Letters: Hebrew, Aramaic and Nabatean-Aramaic Papyri (Judean Desert Studies
3; Jerusalem: Israel Exploration Society, 2002). The Beth Amar documentaccording to
E. Eshel, H. Eshel, and A. Yardeni, A Document from Year Four of the Destruction of the House
of Israel in Which a Widow Declared That She Received All Her Rights, Cathedra 132 (2009):
524. The War Scrollaccording to E. Qimron, The Dead Sea Scrolls: The Hebrew Writings
(3 vols.; Jerusalem: Yad BenZvi, 20102015), 1:10936 [Hebrew]. Rabbinic Literature
according to Maagarim, the online edition of The Historical Dictionary of the Hebrew
Language of the Academy of the Hebrew Language. Translation of biblical passages are
according to RSV version. Translation of Rabbinic passagesH. Danby, The Mishnah:
Translated from the Hebrew with Introduction and Brief Explanatory Notes (Oxford: Oxford
University Press, 1933); J. Neusner, The Tosefta: Translated from the Hebrew with a New
Introduction (2 vols.; Peabody: Hendrickson, 2002). Square brackets mark reconstructed text;
angle brackets mark editors addition; curly brackets mark editors deletion.

koninklijke brill nv, leiden, 5|doi .63/9789004299313_006

66 Mor and Zewi

this corpus,2 the current article is dedicated to its nominal clause patterns. The
limited number of nominal clauses attested in the corpus allows us to present
here a complete account of all their occurrences.3 Most of the examples were
found in the legal documents and only five in the letters (namely ##4, 9, 10, 12,
17), which suggests that nominal clauses were typical of the style of the former
more than of the latter.
In the corpus we found only simple nominal clauses, namely bipartite with-
out a personal pronoun, mostly in the third person, in addition to the subject
and the predicate, occasionally entitled tripartite nominal clauses.4 Though
the number of our examples is limited, they still disclose clear tendencies and
allow us to draw significant conclusions.

2 Word Order in Simple Nominal Clauses

2.1 Subject-Predicate Order

Thirty-five occurrences of simple nominal clauses were found in the corpus.
These can be classified into 13 clusters of examples, as follows:

2.1.1 An Adjective Predicate



And all that I have and that I will acquire are responsible and a guarantee
for cleansing before you this sale...5 (Mur. 30.2324)the subject is a
nominalized clause.

2 U. Mor, Word Order in the Legal Documents and Letters from the Judean Desert, Meghillot
7 (2008): 23761 [Hebrew].
3 The legal document from Beth Amar, which was confiscated from Palestinian antique
dealers, is excluded from the corpus, for it is different from the other documents in time
(140 CE) and in language, and the division within it between Hebrew and Aramaic still awaits
clarification (see meanwhile Mor, Judean Hebrew, 1.1.2 n. 17). Nevertheless, we do not over-
look it altogether (see ##3, 16).
4 We exclude from the current discussion existential and possessive clauses, the impersonal-
evaluative pattern (the so-called xagam [ ]pattern; see U. Mor and N. Pat-El, The
Development of Predicates with Prepositional Subjects in Hebrew, Journal of Semitic Studies
[forthcoming]), and nominal clauses containing conjugated forms of the auxiliary verb .
5 Parallels in the Aramaic documents: e.g., ev-e 8.67; ev-e 9.8; ev-e 50 + Mur. 26.1415;
The Nominal Clause in the Hebrew Legal Documents and Letters 67


] [

And these men have no authority to pursue (= press a suit against) [one]
another...(P. Yadin 44.24)the negative particle stands at the begin-
ning of the clause;6 the predicate is complex ( + ;cf. #15, where
there is no negative particle and the subject intervenes between the two
components of the complex predicate).

2.1.2 A Prepositional Phrase Predicate


[ ]

And the payment (will be) [from] my house and from my property
(ev-e 49.1011).7


However, be informed that your case is (under consideration) by me

(P. Yadin 49.6)in a content clause.

cf. t. Ketub. 12.1: [ [] All] property which I

have is liable and obligated for the payment of your marriage-contract.
6 This word order is foundnot exclusivelyin Biblical Hebrew and Rabbinic Hebrew; cf.
T. Muraoka, Emphatic Words and Structures in Biblical Hebrew (Jerusalem and Leiden:
Magnes Press, 1985), 106 [20]; P. Joon and T. Muraoka, A Grammar of Biblical Hebrew
(Rome: Editrice Pontificio Istituto Biblico, 2006),154k, 160g-i; M. Azar, The Syntax of
Mishnaic Hebrew (Jerusalem: The Academy of the Hebrew Language, 1995), 16771 [Hebrew].
See, e.g., The Lord does not see us (Ezek 8:12);
Drawn Water renders the Immersion-pool invalid only if it is in the
prescribed proportion (m. Ter. 5:6).
7 Parallels in the Aramaic documents: e.g., Mur. 18.78; P. Yadin 42.9; Naal David (Wadi Sdeir)
2.67. Cf. the parallel in Beth Amar: 1011: /.
68 Mor and Zewi


Elazar, son of Elazar, son of ayyaa, and Eliezer, son of Shemuel,

both of them from En Gedi; and Teinna, son of Shimon, and Allima, son
of Yehuda, both of them from the Luit that is in Maoz Eglatayin (and)
residing in En Gedi (P. Yadin 44.46);



Yeshua QBY[], son of Shimon, from En Gedi, stated to Elazar, son of

Elazar, son of ayyaa, and to Eliezer, son of Shemuel, both of them
from there ... (P. Yadin 46.23)in a non-restrictive relative clause (asyn-
detic), closely similar to a circumstantial clause.

2.1.3 A Nominal Phrase Predicate


... ] [

The half of that silver, minus sixteen denarii, which are (equivalent to)
four selas, on[ly] ... and in addition to it, sixteen more denarii, which are
(equivalent to) four selas (P. Yadin 44.1924);

[ ] ...

For silver (in the sum of) one hundred sixty zuz, which are (equivalent to)
forty selas ... [silver,] ten denarii, which are (equivalent to) two selas plus
one shekel (P. Yadin 46.812);

[ ] [ ]

For silver (in the sum of) th[irty-six zu]zin, [which a]re (equivalent to)
nine selas (ev-e 8:79.6);
The Nominal Clause in the Hebrew Legal Documents and Letters 69


From today until the end of the eve of the Shemia (year), which are five
whole years, years of [t]ax (Mur. 24:5.910)8in a non-restrictive relative
clause, functioning as apposition; the subject is a personal pronoun.


And I am (the) receiver (Mur. 30.22)9the subject is a personal pronoun

(cf. #11: I have received).

Example 8

... ...

Westthe heirs of ABY;...northanin, son of ani, and others;

south...(Mur. 22.3);

] [...]

]Eastoni and others; westthe heirs of (the) son of ABY ... north
anin, son of anina, and others; sou[th]alifa...(Mur. 1112.12);

Eastthe seller; westthe road; northKBLWLH; southanin, son

of Yehonatan (Mur. 30.34);

[] ][

The boundari[es of ]this sale (are): eastthe seller; westthe road;

northKBLWLH; southa[n]in, son of Yehonatan (Mur. 1617)10
in these cases the identification of the subject and the predicate cannot

8 Parallels in the Aramaic documents: P. Yadin. 8.5; P. Yadin 47:2.6; ev-e 21.56.
9 This form is a noun and not a verb; see Mor, Judean Hebrew,4.10.36.
10 Parallels in the Aramaic documents: e.g., P. Yadin 7.56 = 3638; ev-e 8a.89; ev-e
50 + Mur. 26.68.
70 Mor and Zewi

rely on formal criteria, as the two clause components are both indefinite
nominal phrases. Consequently, the determination of the word order
(subject-predicate) relies only on context.11

2.1.4 A Participle Predicate



I am making the heaven my witness (that if) any person will be missi[ng]
of the Galileans who are with you, that I shall put the chains on your feet,
the same as [I] did to the son of Aflul (Mur. 43.56)in an apodosis of a
conditional sentence; a threat; the subject is a personal pronoun.12



In good (circumstances) you are dwell[i]ng, eating and drinking of the

property of the house of Israel, but showing no concern for your brothers
in any manner (P. Yadin 49.23)note that the adverbial phrase is put in
initial position (focusing13) and that the predicate is relatively long; the
subject is a personal pronoun.

11 In the Aramaic parallels a preposition may precede the first noun (the cardi-
nal direction word), e.g., To the east: the desert (P. Yadin 7.5);
[ ] To the east[: the ent]rance-gate of the house (ev-e 8.3)
but this, too, is not conclusive, since a subject can take the form of a prepositional phrase; see
T. Zewi, The Nominal Sentence in Biblical Hebrew, in Semitic and Cushitic Studies (ed.
G. Goldenberg and S. Raz; Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz, 1994), 14567, esp. 15455 n. 29;
T. Zewi, Prepositional Phrases as Subjects in Several Semitic Languages, in Language
and Nature: Papers Presented to John Huehnergard on the Occasion of His 60th Birthday
(ed. R. Hasselbach and N. Pat-El; Studies in Ancient Oriental Civilization 67; Chicago: The
Oriental Institute, 2012), 46576.
12 On the order personal pronoun + participle in the apodosis of a threat expression, see
A. Bendavid, Biblical Hebrew and Mishnaic Hebrew (2 vols.; Tel-Aviv: Dvir, 19671971),
2:832833 [Hebrew]; Mor, Word Order, 253.
13 Mor, Word Order, 251, 256.
The Nominal Clause in the Hebrew Legal Documents and Letters 71


This sela I (have) received from you (ev-e 49.78);

[ ] [] ...

twe[nt]y [fi]ve [fin]e (= valid) zuzin of silver I am receiving...

(Mur. 174.5)14the object is in initial position (topicalization);15 the sub-
ject is a personal pronoun;16 cf. And I am (the) receiver (#7).



And if it were not for (the fact) that the gentiles are approaching us,
I would have come and appeased/convinced you for this (Mur. 42.5)in
an adverbial clause.



Elazar, son of Elazar, (son of) ayyaa, and Eliezer, son of Shemuel
both of them (shall undertake to) weigh out the half of that silver ... and
Teinna, son of Shimon, and Allima, son of Yehuda (shall be) weighing
out the half of that silver (P. Yadin 44.1822).

2.2 Predicate-Subject Order

All in all, 11 occurrences of simple nominal clauses were found in the corpus.
These can be classified into 6 clusters of examples, as follows:

14 Parallels in the Aramaic documents: e.g., Mur. 25.5; ev-e 8.5; ev-e 50 + Mur. 26.11.
Note that is a passive form, a participle of Pual (Mor, Judean Hebrew, 4.7.4).
15 Mor, Word Order, 250, 256.
16 Note the attachment of the pronoun to the verb in of ev-e 49 (Mor, Judean
Hebrew, 5.5).
72 Mor and Zewi

2.2.1 A Modal Adjective or Participle Predicate


[= ]

And all that is written above is legally binding on them, and on each with
respect to the other (P. Yadin 44.26);

And all that is in this deed is binding upon me (ev-e 49.1112)17the

subject is a nominalized clause.



And the buyer and his heirs is (= are) [per]mitted in regard to this sale to
do with it all that you (= they) desire (Mur. 30.2223);

[ ] [

The buye[r]...this...(Mur. 22.4)the subject intervenes between the

two parts of the complex predicate18 (cf. #2).


... <>

I acknowledge to you this day that I have leased to you the garden of
ours...(P. Yadin 45.67);

17 Parallels in the Aramaic documents: P. Yadin 7.29; P. Yadin 10.6, 18; ev-e 13.910.
18 Mor, Word Order, 248. On this pattern in Biblical Hebrew and in Aramaic see also
Muraoka, Emphatic Words, 15; Zewi, The Nominal Sentence in Biblical Hebrew, 15455,
and the literature cited there in n. 30.
The Nominal Clause in the Hebrew Legal Documents and Letters 73


I acknowledge to you this day that I have leased from you (both) the
site that is called hasullam ... (P. Yadin 46.3)19a legal formula of



I am making the heaven my witness ... (Mur. 43.3)20a speech act of


2.2.2 A Prepositional Phrase Predicate


This salewithin its boundaries (are) the four carob trees (Mur.

...] [

This salewithin its boundaries (are) a house and[...] the fig trees
and olive trees. The tree...(Mur. 30.1718)21these two examples
(as well as the two parallel Aramaic examples) occur in deeds of sale,
in the legal paragraph describing the assets within the property (in an

19 Parallels in the Aramaic documents: e.g., P. Yadin 17.40; P. Yadin 20.4142; P. Yadin 42.3.
Cf. also Beth Amar: 46. This construction is typical of the language of prayer and
Rabbinic Hebrew (Mor, Word Order, 253 n. 51). On the order participle + personal pro-
noun at the beginning of a speech act (as opposed to personal pronoun + participle in
other positions) see Bendavid, Biblical Hebrew and Mishnaic Hebrew, 2:81719. This order
also expresses, according to Bendavid (pp. 82527), an action that has begun in the recent
past. Both these functions are appropriate for the example mentioned above.
20 This formula is found in Biblical Hebrew and Rabbinic Hebrew (Mor, Word Order, 254
n. 52). Here too the order participle + personal pronoun is found at the beginning of
a speech act (but in contrast to the previous example this cannot be an action that has
begun in the recent past).
21 Parallels in the Aramaic documents: ev-e 21.34; ev-e 50 + Mur. 26.89.
74 Mor and Zewi

e xtrapositional pattern). The designation of the property at the begin-

ning of this paragraph ( this sale, and in Aramaic
That place, Those places) connects it to the previous para-
graph, which specifies the boundaries of the property (see #8), by means
of topicalization. This syntactic device is a well established feature of the
legal documents.22 In principle, the word order could have been subject-
predicate (e.g., ) . It seems that the predicate
was brought forward in order to keep the resumptive pronoun close to
the extraposed sentence component; it may have also been due to the
length of the subject, since short components tend to appear before long
ones () .

2.2.3 A Demonstrative Pronoun Predicate


] [] /[] [



And these are the si[t]es that fell to the portion of Elazar, son of Elazar,
and of Eliezer, son of Shemuel: the site that is called haafir and the site
that is called hasullam ... and this is the site that fell to Teinna, son of
Shimon, and to Allima, son of Yehuda: the site that is called haiwweret...
(P. Yadin 44.1015).23

2.3 Conclusion
The examples above clearly suggest that subject-predicate is the typical word
order in the Judean Desert legal documents and letters.24 The alternative order
(predicate-subject) is prevalent only in two patterns: (1) when the predicate

22 Mor, Word Order, 24344, 250.

23 A parallel in the Aramaic documents: P. Yadin 7.5. Cf. in Biblical Hebrew:

These are the names of the
men who shall divide the land to you for inheritance: Eleazar the priest and Joshua the
son of Nun (Num 34:17), and in Rabbinic Hebrew:
These are they that are ineligible: a dice-
player, a usurer, pigeon-flyers, traffickers in Seventh Year produce, and slaves (m. Ro Ha.
1:8; see Azar, Syntax, 74, 310).
24 As stated above (1), most of the examples are from the legal documents.
The Nominal Clause in the Hebrew Legal Documents and Letters 75

is a modal adjective or participle,25 and (2) when the predicate is a demon-

strative pronoun.26 In #18, in which the predicate is a prepositional phrase,
the sequence of the sentence components depends on its particular extrapo-
sitional pattern, so it cannot serve as a representative example for a predicate-
subject word order with a prepositional phrase predicate.

3 Comparison with Other Hebrew Dialects

3.1 Nominal Clauses in Biblical Hebrew

Simple nominal clauses in Biblical Hebrew show either subject-predicate or
predicate-subject word order. The syntactic conditions for each order are clear:
subject-predicate order is typical of positive clauses introduced by the relative
particle , of two or more clauses coordinated by the conjunctive waw, of
the second of two clauses expressing contrast, and of circumstantial clauses;
predicate-subject order is typical of negative clauses introduced by , of
clauses introduced by speech verbs, of subordinate clauses introduced by the
subordinating conjunction , of protasis and apodosis of conditional sen-
tences, and of interrogative clauses. Furthermore, only predicate-subject order
is possible when the predicate of the nominal clause is a personal pronoun or
a demonstrative pronoun.27
As to the examples of nominal clauses in the Judean legal documents and
letters, most of them exhibit subject-predicate word order, and unlike Biblical
Hebrew they are unconditioned by the larger syntactic patterns in which they

25 As stated, Bendavid, Biblical Hebrew and Mishnaic Hebrew, 2:81719, offered an alternative
explanation for these examples; see notes 1920 above.
26 The order predicate-subject in sentences whose predicate is a demonstrative pronoun
or a personal pronoun is the expected order in Biblical Hebrew; see Zewi, The Nominal
Sentence in Biblical Hebrew, 14950.
27 Ibid., 14950, 154, 158. The basic word order of the nominal clause in Biblical Hebrew is
a matter of debate. Some scholars argue that subject-predicate is the basic order, and
predicate-subject depends on pragmatic matters, such as different sorts of emphasis (e.g.,
GKC141l). Muraoka notes that in approximately two thirds of the nominal clauses in
Biblical Hebrew the order is subject-predicate, and that the scale of predicate-subject
clauses does not allow us to treat them simply as irregular forms (Joon and Muraoka,
Grammar,154f). See C. L. Miller, ed., The Verbless Clause in Biblical Hebrew: Linguistic
Approaches (Winona Lake: Eisenbrauns, 1999), for different theoretical treatments of
nominal clauses; and T. Zewi and C. H. J. van der Merwe, Biblical Hebrew Nominal Clause:
Definitions of Subject and Predicate, JNSL 27 (2001): 8199, for different approaches to
identifying the subject and the predicate in nominal clauses.
76 Mor and Zewi

appear or by certain particles introducing them. Subject-predicate word order

indeed appears in the legal documents and letters in syntactic conditions similar
to Biblical Hebrew, e.g., in a positive relative clause (##5 and 6
introduced by the subordinate conjunction -, typical of Second Temple
Hebrew and Rabbinic Hebrew, and not by the Biblical ), but it is also
attested in patterns that have the opposite word order in Biblical Hebrew,
e.g., in a subordinate object content clause (#4introduced by -), which in
Biblical Hebrew has predicate-subject order (introduced by ).28
It can thus be concluded that the word order of nominal clauses in the
legal documents and letters from the Judean Desert essentially differs from
the standard Biblical Hebrew word order, and that it demonstrates predomi-
nance of subject-predicate order. This dissimilarity is also evident in examples
in which predicate-subject word order is regular in Biblical Hebrew. While
it can perhaps be surmised that the choice of subject-predicate order in #429
has to do with the use of the subordinate conjunction -, namely that the -
triggers subject-predicate word order, a close look at nominal clauses within
object content clauses introduced by - in Late Biblical Hebrew finds predi-
cate-subject word order, just like Classical Hebrew; e.g.,

... that you tell him that I am sick with love (Cant 5:8).
Resemblance to Biblical Hebrew is reflected nonetheless in examples in
which the word order is predicate-subject. This is typical of Biblical Hebrew
modal clauses, including blessings and curses,30 and may have been main-
tained in the language of the legal documents and letters where the predicate
was a modal adjective or participle, as demonstrated in ##1417. However, the
participle may also be expected to precede its subject pronoun when introduc-
ing a speech act, as suggested by Bendavid.31 Resemblance to Biblical Hebrew
is also revealed in the predicate-subject order of nominal clauses whose predi-
cate is a demonstrative pronoun.

28 Cf., e.g., Gen 45:12 and Exod 32:22.

29 And so in #9, in which - introduces the apodosis of a conditional sentence (Mor, Judean
Hebrew, 5.43).
30 See, e.g., R. J. Williams, Williams Hebrew Syntax (rev. and ed. J. C. Beckman; 3rd ed.;
Toronto: University of Toronto: 2007),551, 580.
31 Bendavid, Biblical Hebrew and Mishnaic Hebrew, 2:81719. See notes 1920, 25 above.
The Nominal Clause in the Hebrew Legal Documents and Letters 77

3.2 Nominal Clauses in the Hebrew Language of the Dead Sea Scrolls
Nominal clauses in the Dead Sea Scrolls, as in Biblical Hebrew, exhibit either
subject-predicate or predicate-subject word order.32 Both sequences are
attested in nominal clauses whose predicate is a nominal phrase, a prepo-
sitional phrase, or an infinitive, with no apparent syntactic conditions. This
can be observed clearly in the following two examples, which display nomi-
nal clauses introduced by and having a nominal phrase predicate. Subject-
predicate order is found in ] [For it is a time of distress
for Isra[el] (1QM 15:1), and predicate-subject order is found in
For it is a Sabbath of rest for Israel (1QM 2:89).33 Subject-
predicate order is attested in this dialect also in nominal clauses whose predi-
cate is a content clause. This pattern does not exist at all in Biblical Hebrew.34
Predicate-subject word order is also attested in this dialect in nominal clauses
whose predicate is an adjective, a passive participle, an interrogative particle, a
personal pronoun or a demonstrative pronoun.
It appears, then, that the word order of nominal clauses in the Dead Sea
Scrolls differs from that of the Judean Desert legal documents and letters
(compare, for instance, #11 above with the predicate-subject sequence in Dead
Sea Scrolls nominal clauses whose predicate is a passive participle). Actual
resemblance is revealed only in predicate-subject examples whose predicate
is a demonstrative pronoun. As stated above, in Biblical Hebrew too this order

32 This discussion is based on T. Zewi, Nominal Clause Patterns in the Dead Sea Scrolls,
Shaarei Lashon: Studies in Hebrew, Aramaic and Jewish Languages Presented to Moshe
Bar-Asher (ed. A. Maman, S. E. Fassberg, and Y. Breuer; 3 vols.; Jerusalem: Bialik Institute,
2007), 1:6480; T. Zewi, Nominal Clauses in the Dead Sea Scrolls, JJS 59 (2008): 27391.
The corpus for these studies comprises Pesher Habakkuk, the Damascus Document,
the War Scroll, the Temple Scroll, and the Rule of the Community (Serekh Ha-Yaad); no
Biblical scrolls were included in it.
33 English translation is according to D. W. Parry and E. Tov, eds., The Dead Sea Scrolls Reader
Part 1: Texts Concerned with Religious Law (Leiden: Brill, 2004), 20842, 24870.
34 See T. Zewi, Content Clause in Hebrew, Leshonenu 70 (2008): 62757, esp. 650; T. Zewi,
Content Expressions in Biblical Hebrew, in Egyptian, Semitic and General Grammar:
Studies in Memory of H. J. Polotsky (ed. G. Goldenberg and A. Shisha-Halevy; Jerusalem:
Israel Academy of Sciences and Humanities, 2009), 30216, esp. 306. Content clauses
in the role of a predicate in the Dead Sea Scrolls are peculiar to the Pesharim; cf. Zewi,
Nominal Clause Patterns in the Dead Sea Scrolls, 7273; Zewi, Nominal Clauses in the
Dead Sea Scrolls, 28485; Zewi, Content Clauses in the Dead Sea Scrolls, Hebrew in
the Second Temple Period: The Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls and of Other Contemporary
Sources: Proceedings of the Symposium of Orion Center for the Study of the Dead Sea Scrolls,
December 2931, 2008, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem (ed. S. E. Fassberg, M. Bar-Asher,
and R. Clements; STDJ 108; Leiden: Brill, 2013), 28998.
78 Mor and Zewi

in nominal clauses whose predicate is a demonstrative pronoun or a personal

pronoun is the only one possible.

3.3 Nominal Clauses in Rabbinic Hebrew

An examination of simple nominal clause patterns in Rabbinic Hebrew
(according to Ms. Kaufman) in Azars work on the syntax of the language of
the Mishnah35 suggests that their typical word order is subject-predicate, and
that the number of examples in which the order is the opposite is limited.
Predicate-subject order exists only when the predicate is a personal pronoun
or a demonstrative pronoun, in direct speech, when the predicate expresses
measure, when it is an interrogative particle (, ), and when it is the
numeral . As stated above, predicate-subject order is found in nominal
clauses whose predicate is a personal pronoun or a demonstrative pronoun in
both Biblical Hebrew and the Dead Sea Scrolls Hebrew. In the legal documents
and letters from the Judean Desert, only examples with a demonstrative pro-
noun were encountered (#19), and they seem to reflect the same pattern. This
pattern was apparently stable throughout the different phases and dialects,
and consequently it cannot serve as a significant criterion for comparison of
the Judean Desert legal documents and letters with other dialects.
On the other hand, nominal clauses whose predicate is an adjective or par-
ticiple can serve for this purpose. Bendavid indicated that the word order of
such nominal clauses in Rabbinic Hebrew can be either subject-predicate or
predicate-subject, and he endeavored to seek and define the syntactic and
contextual conditions typical of each.36 These two word orders with adjective
and participle predicates also exist in the language of the legal documents and
letters from the Judean Desert. Subject-predicate order is attested in ##913,
while predicate-subject order in ##1417. Accordingly, the legal documents
and letters share these patterns with Rabbinic Hebrew. In Biblical Hebrew, too,
a participle may precede or follow its subject, but, as stated above, the order
depends on specific syntactic conditions.
The most prominent resemblance between the language of the legal docu-
ments and letters and Rabbinic Hebrew, however, is manifested in the large
number of nominal clauses with subject-predicate word order, in the lim-
ited distribution of the opposite order, and in both ordersunlike Biblical
Hebrewbeing unconditioned by the nominal clauses general syntactic pat-
tern. This resemblance also conforms to the general affinity of the language

35 Azar, Syntax, 7179,3.1.1.

36 Bendavid, Biblical Hebrew and Mishnaic Hebrew, 2:81719.
The Nominal Clause in the Hebrew Legal Documents and Letters 79

of the Judean Desert legal documents and letters with Rabbinic Hebrew;37
it is still more salient considering that the language of the legal documents
and letters has no such similarity to Biblical Hebrew and the Dead Sea
Scrolls language.

4 Conclusion

The majority of the nominal clauses in the legal documents and letters from
the Judean Desert exhibit subject-predicate word order and are unconditioned
by the syntactic pattern in which they appear. These characteristics are also
typical of Rabbinic Hebrew, in which the subject-predicate order generally
prevails. This conclusion conforms with other linguistic features revealed in
the language of the Judean Desert legal documents and letters, which testify to
its close affinity with Rabbinic Hebrew.

37 Mor, Judean Hebrew,6.2; Mor, Three Questions and Three Answers,2.

Aspects of the (Morpho)syntax of the Infinitive
in Qumran Hebrew

Takamitsu Muraoka

Whereas Qimrons The Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls (1986) is bound to remain
the fundamental reference work as far as Qumran Hebrew (QH hereafter) is
concerned for some years to come, its syntax section covers only a small num-
ber of select topics. A number of scholars, including Qimron himself, have
published on issues not covered in this standard work. However, there is no
denying that there remains a great deal more to be investigated. It is a great
honour for me to be allowed to address here only one such issue, namely the
morphosyntax and syntax of the infinitive in QH. The scope of this investi-
gation is limited primarily to the following texts: 1QS (Community Rule), 1QH
(Thanksgiving Hymns), 11QTa (Temple Scroll) and 1QpH (Pesher Habakkuk).
It is generally agreed that the infinitive absolute (inf. abs.) became obsolete
in Mishnaic Hebrew (MH hereafter).1 The process had already begun in Late
Biblical Hebrew (LBH hereafter), and it is a process continuing in QH, as shown
by cases in which an inf. abs. in the biblical source text is replaced by a finite
verb as in 1QIsaa 37:19 vs. MT . Qimron2 justly mentions [ ]
( 1QM 1:8).3 This case reminds us
of BH examples such as ( Gen 8:5) and

( 1 Sam 6:12). However, that the structure was not quite at home with the
author of 1QM is betrayed by the incongruence in binyan, for one would have
expected Hiphil .4 We could identify another case in

1 M. Prez Fernndez, An Introductory Grammar of Rabbinic Hebrew (trans. J. Elwolde; Leiden:
Brill, 1997), 144. Cf. also T. Muraoka, An Approach to the Morphosyntax and Syntax of in
Qumran Hebrew, in Diggers at the Well: Proceedings of a Third International Symposium on
the Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls and Ben Sira (ed. T. Muraoka and J. F. Elwolde; STDJ 36;
Leiden: Brill, 1997), 193214, esp. 19596. See also a brief discussion of this particular instance
in Qimron, DJD 10:81 (
2 E. Qimron, The Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls (HSS 29; Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1986), 310.14.
3 The reading presented here follows E. Qimron, The Dead Sea Scrolls: The Hebrew Writings
(3 vols.; Jerusalem: Yad Ben-Zvi, 20102015) vol. 1. For other texts, so far as they are published
in the first volume, the same applies.

( Prov 4:18), mentioned by Y. Yadin,
( Jerusalem: Bialik Institute, 1957), 259, as
another example of this construction illustrates a clumsy imitation of the BH construction.

koninklijke brill nv, leiden, 5|doi .63/9789004299313_007

Aspects of the ( Morpho ) Syntax of the Infinitive 81

1QS 4:5, namely in the collocation , a favourite

collocation not only for the author of the Community Rule, but also for other
authors; it occurs also at 1QS 5:4 par 4Q256 9 4 par 4Q258 1 3; 1QS 8:2; 4Q298
34 ii 5; and possibly also 4Q502 16 3. and here are more likely to
be inf. absolutes than inf. constructs, because this statement concludes a long
series of ethical religious norms to be observed by members of the community;
the series starts off with
with three forms clearly marked as inf. constructs with the
preposition lamed prefixed, and then followed by a series of abstract verbal
nouns ( etc.). In one case the collocation is modernised:

4Q438 4 ii 4. The use of the inf. abs. by the author of 1QS was
most probably triggered by . All the examples found in 11QTa are almost
verbatim quotes from the Scriptures: 53:11 = Deut 23:22; 55:6 = Deut 13:16;
56:14 = Deut 17:15; 62:14 = Deut 20:17; 64:11 = Deut 21:23; 64:14 = Deut 22:1;
65:4 = Deut 22:7. What appear to be exceptions may in fact have to do with a
different Vorlage. The first such example is again from 11QTa 53:1415
, which is supposed to correspond to Num 30:3, where, how-
ever, we read , an inf. abs. instead of the imperfect in the Qumran text.
Since its author appears to be quite at home with the inf. abs., his Vorlage may
have read the imperfect, which the parallelism with the immediately following
clause seems to favour,5 or he may have so edited it mentally. A reverse sit-
uation obtains at 11QTa 53:1920 , for which the MT reads at
Num 30:6 which is, grammatically, perfectly in order. The LXX,
however, reads , which agrees with 11QTa.
Most revealing is an authentic inf. abs. occurring in what is not part of a
rewritten Bible: 4Q398 1417 ii 2 , and he was
thus rescued from many troubles, and he was forgiven. Here the Niphal inf.
abs., , continues the preceding finite verb, a feature rather typical of the
LBH syntax.6 It is most striking that this rare, genuine QH example of the inf.
abs., an example which is not an allusion to a biblical text or a take-off from

In the well-known syntagm or one meets with cases of discord in

binyan such as
he shall be put to death (Exod 19:12); for details, see P. Joon and
T. Muraoka, A Grammar of Biblical Hebrew (2nd ed.; Subsidia biblica 27; Rome: Gregorian
Biblical Press, 2006), 123p.
5 Cf. LXX: . See also Peshitta ad loc.
6 See Joon and Muraoka, Grammar, 123x with n. 1 there. Cf. also Qimron, in his description
of the language of this document in DJD 10:81 (, where he adds a few more examples
from QH. Though the usage is particularly common in LBH, it is not confined there; see refer-
ences in Joon and Muraoka, Grammar, 123x.
82 Muraoka

some standing BH (= Biblical Hebrew) expression, should occur in this docu-

ment, 4QMMT, whose proximity to, and affinity with, MH is well known.
Though in LBH and QH the inf. abs. as a category of the verb morphology
was breathing its last, some of the unique ways in which it was used in BH were
being taken over by the infinitive construct, it appears, and survived in QH.
Its modal use in expressing a command of general, permanent validity is one
such. This is well known from 1QS, though not confined to it. An innovation
in QH is its extension to negative injunctions:
parallel with a series of the infinitives in positive form, 1QS 1:6, and similarly
five more times: 1QS 1:1417;7 1QS 9:16;
1QS 3:10, immediately followed by ; 8 and also with-
out lamed in 1QS 9:2021.9 In BH we have,
by contrast, a complementary opposition between and as illus-
trated in the Decalogue: in contrast to . Thus the morphosyntactic
mechanism for expressing the obligative modality of the QH system is simpler
and more elegant (?) than that of BH. The inf. abs. in BH is not negated. In
examples such as ( Judg 15:13), even in ( Gen 3:4),
the negator is to be construed with the verbal clause as a whole, not with the
inf. abs. alone.
On the other hand, QH follows BH in its use of or as the principal
negator of the normal inf. cst. (= construct). Just as in

7 For a syntactical analysis of this long series of infinitives, see T. Muraoka, Notae Qumranicae
philologicae (1), RevQ 17 (1996): 57383, esp. 57576.
8 On this syntagm, + inf., which is not to be considered syntactically equivalent to the
preceding + inf., see T. Muraoka, Notae Qumranicae philologicae (3): The Community
Rule (1QS) Column 3, Abr-Nahrain 35 (1998): 4764, esp. 56.
9 For a discussion of this long series of infinitives from a stylistic, literary perspective, see
J. Licht, ( Jerusalem: Bialik Institute, 1965), 30 and
31. P. Wernberg-Mller, The Manual of Discipline (STDJ 1; Leiden: Brill, 1957), 44 is right in
saying that these infinitives are to be translated as finite forms, though he is inconsistent
with his in order to do what is good and right (p. 22). Thus these infinitives do not clarify
the purpose of entering the covenant, pace J. H. Charlesworth, The Dead Sea Scrolls: Hebrew,
Aramaic, and Greek Texts with English Translations, Vol. 1: Rule of the Community and Related
Documents (PTSDSSP; Tbingen: Mohr Siebeck, 1994), 7 n. 3. Charlesworth dissects the series
of infinitives into shorter series, translating the first infinitive of each with in order to and
the subsequent ones with a participle, which produces in English an awkward anacolouth
with no grammatical subject. Martone justly recognises the obligative, injunctive force of
the construction here, justifying his addition of si deve in his translation: si deve ricercate Dio
etc., see C. Martone, La Regola della Comunit (Turin: Silvio Zamorani, 1995), 117, 137 n. 4.
Aspects of the ( Morpho ) Syntax of the Infinitive 83

(Gen 3:11) we find in QH, e.g., I shall set my limit so as not

to go astray (1QS 10:1011).
As is well known, the inf. abs. in BH also continues a verbum finitum, a typ-
ically LBH feature. Qimron quotes several examples, all from 1QM,10 in which
an inf. cst. appears to be continuing the preceding verbum finitum, e.g.,
( [] 1QM 11:13);11

( 1QM 2:13). To
these we should now add the example mentioned earlier, in 4QMMT.
It appears then that we are witnessing here a redeployment in QH of the
morphosyntactic resources which were available in BH.
Lets now take a look at another issue, namely the negation of the infinitive.12
In BH is virtually the sole negator used with the infinitive. The only excep-
tions are , , and , each attested once: without seeing, when
he is not seeing (Num 35:23);13 because he no longer
takes notice of the offering (Mal 2:13); and because the
Lord was not able to bring them (Deut 9:28). is abundantly attested in
QH42 times,14 including some uncertain readings.
What we find significant here is that QH, in addition to a good number of
attestations of the biblical /, uses the plain :
, parallel with a series of the infinitives in positive form (1QS 1:6), and
similarly five more times (see above). Moreover, QH shows a complemen-
tary distribution of the two structures. + inf. is used for generic, negative
commands,15 and this is possibly a replacement and continuation of simi-
lar use of the inf. abs. in BH, as I have pointed out earlier. By contrast, +
inf. is a standard negation of an inf. cst. as in BH, e.g.,

10 Qimron, Hebrew, 400.02.

11 Though could be an additional prepositional adjunct to be construed with
, making the inf. another adjunct denoting a purpose, such an analysis is
not an obvious one.
12 On this matter in general, cf. also Qimron, Hebrew, 400.12.
13 4QNumb is here fragmentary; the inf. as in the MT is read with some hesitancy, but one
does not know the form of the negator (DJD 12:260).
14 See M. G. Abegg, Jr., with J. E. Bowley and E. M. Cook, The Dead Sea Scrolls Concordance
(3 vols.; Leiden: Brill, 20032009), 1:14748.
15 Cf. also G. A. Rendsburg, Qumran Hebrew (with a trial cut [1QS]), in The Dead Sea
Scrolls at 60: Scholarly Contributions of New York University Faculty and Alumni (ed. L. H.
Schiffman and S. Tzoref; STDJ 89; Leiden: Brill, 2010), 21746, esp. 22325.
84 Muraoka

(Gen 3:11). An example from QH is I shall set my limit so

as not to go astray (1QS 10:1011). In BH, however, such an inf. abs. is not used
with a negator.
In QH the inf. without a negator can be modally used with an obligative
modality. A good example is mentioned by Qimron:16
all those who were not counted among his covenant, you should
excommunicate them (1QS 5:18). Here, too, we could see a substitute of the
archaic inf. abs., which was in the death throes in the intertestamental period.
In BH the inf. cst. is not used in this way. An example such as
(1 Sam 23:20) represents a distinct syntagm.17
On the other hand, followed by an infinitive in 4QMMT is not another
independent negator. Thus in [ ]
( [ ] [ 4QMMT B 7678)
the particle - in one shall not mate it introduces a content
clause just as in it is written that from the moment
he shaves and washes... (4QMMT B 66). The same analysis can apply to the
above-quoted ( 4QMMT B 78), where it is therefore, pace Qimron,18
not to be assumed that the particle is redundant and introduces a clause which
is independent of what precedes.
Qimron19 lists a series of negators used in QH with an infinitive. We in turn
have attempted here to point to some functional, (morpho)syntactic differ-
ences between them.20
As in BH, an inf. often indicates a purpose in relation to the lead verb. There
are many examples of this. Let us mention just a couple:
when they enter in order to minister in the sanctuary (11QTa 32:12);
and with a large army they will encircle them in order to cap-
ture them (1QpHab 4:7).
A variant on this use of the inf. is identifiable in cases such as
until his deeds are cleansed of every
iniquity so that he will walk in integrity of way (1QS 8:18);

16 Qimron, Hebrew, 400.02.

17 Joon and Muraoka, Grammar, 124l.
18 DJD 10:80, with n. 74 there. One of Qimrons arguments is that and are
mentioned in two separate places in the Bible, which is no argument that the injunction
here in 4QMMT, combining both nouns in a single injunction, is not biblically informed.
19 Qimron, Hebrew, 400.12.
20 See further T. Muraoka, Notae Qumranicae philologicae (4c) on the Community Rule
(1QS), in Crossing Textual Boundaries: A Festschrift in Honor of Archie Chi Chung Lee for
His Sixtieth Birthday (ed. L. K. Lo, N. Tan, and Y. Zhang; Hong Kong: Divinity School of
Chung Chi College of Chinese University of Hong Kong, 2010), 291309, esp. 297301.
Aspects of the ( Morpho ) Syntax of the Infinitive 85

[ ] [] you have graciously

endowed me with a spirit of insight...and in order for me to detest every way
of iniquity and to love you freely (1QHa 6:3637).21 In these and other sim-
ilar cases, unlike in the above-mentioned final use of the inf., the subject of
the inf. differs from that of the lead verb.22 The same analysis could apply in
a syntactically difficult passage:
Abominable is it, with idolatrous ways of ones heart,
to cause the new member in this covenant to digress, and to place his sinful
stumbling-block in front of him so that he will backslide through it (1QS 2:11).23
Further, by virtue of the broadly terminative value of the preposition lamed,
an inf. cst. with such a lamed prefixed can be consecutive, indicating a result
or a consequence, namely, the action indicated by the lead verb leads to, or
results in, a certain situation, e.g., they
treated the revealed matters high-handedly, as a consequence of which puni-
tive wrath will emerge (1QS 5:12);
they will allocate their yoke and tribute,
their sustenance, to all the nations year in year out, eventually ruining many
lands (1QpHab 6:78), where the infinitive cannot be indicating a purpose,
for the colonial overlords would wish to be able to keep milking their colonies
for ever.


Sometimes an infinitive carries on in a loose fashion the thought expressed

by the preceding lead verb. In [ ]
( 1QS 1:12) the second inf., , does not express a purpose of the action
expressed by , but the first indicates ones attitude and principle, whilst

21 In other editions the lines are numbered as 2526. Henceforward this discrepancy will
not be noted: the requisite information can be easily found in the margin to the left in
Qimrons edition.
22 A translation such as you have favoured me with the spirit of knowledge [to love tr]uth
[and justice,] and to loathe all the paths... is misleading: DSSSE, 1:155. We submit that
is not an impf., but an inf., coordinate with the preceding . In close, semantic
juncture the preposition lamed may be left out as in ( 1QS 10:14).
23 On this difficult passage, see T. Muraoka, Notae Qumranicae philologicae (2), Abr-
Nahrain 33 (1995): 5573, esp. 6768; I read a phonetically spelled ( Hiphil) instead
of Qimrons ( Qal).
86 Muraoka

the second says how the attitude and stance manifests itself in practice.24 In
the Qumranic style, the second infinitive could have been introduced with
;likewise, ( 1QS 1:6
7); and, similarly, ( 1QS 1:15) and
11QTa (47:34). Also,
(1QS 1:45) is meant to elaborate the immediately preceding pair of infinitives:
( 1QS 1:34). It is not for nothing that
the co-ordinating conjunction waw is missing before .25
In one rare case an epexegetical infinitive follows and elaborates a noun
phrase: ( 1QS 4:11).26 This biblical imagery is to
be compared with ( Exod 9:7);
( Exod 7:14). This epexegetical function of the inf. cst. is a legacy from
BH as in ( 1 Sam 14:33).27


The infinitive is often used as an equivalent to a substantive in its various


a) Subject or Predicate in a nominal clause: ( 1QpHab 3:5);

( ] [] 4QMMT B 11).
b) Complement of a preposition: [ ]
( 4QMMT C 7), note the juxtaposition of the infinitive with
an ordinary substantive. Particularly common in temporal adjuncts:
( 1QS 1:18); ( 1QS 3:15); ( 1QS 4:1314);

24 In the corresponding spot in the 4Q fragment (4Q255 i 1) there is no waw prefixed to
25 It is thus misleading to use a semicolon, as DSSSE, 71 does before in order to keep
oneself... as if this is a new injunction parallel with the preceding in order to love
everything.... Equally misleading is Vermess that they may abstain ...; see G. Vermes,
The Complete Dead Sea Scrolls in English (4th ed; New York: Penguin Books, 1995), 98.
On the other hand, DSSSEs use of a participle, performing, to follow on not to talk at
line 6 is felicitous.
26 See further T. Muraoka, Notae Qumranicae philologicae (4b) on the Community Rule,
in Zaphenath-Paneah: Linguistic Studies Presented to Elisha Qimron on the Occasion of
His Sixty-Fifth Birthday (ed. D. Sivan, D. Talshir, and C. Cohen; Beer Sheva: Ben-Gurion
University of the Negev Press, 2009), 11525, esp. *12223.
27 See further Joon and Muraoka, Grammar, 124o.
Aspects of the ( Morpho ) Syntax of the Infinitive 87

( 1QS 10:3); ( [1QHa 9:1213);

( 4QMMT B 67); cf. as long as I live (1QS 10:8).
Non-temporal adjuncts are without reproving (4Q417 2 i 2);
( ] 1QHa 4:34); ( 11QTa
59:15); ( 1QHa 6:2425); to the extent that
you keep him away, so I shall detest him (1QHa 6:32).
c) Object of a verb: ( ] [ 1QS 2:2526); on
finishing burning incense (11QTa 33:15); ( 1QpHab 12:6);
( 4Q171 12 ii 17) || ( 4QMMT
C 28); ( 1QHa 8:34).
d) Nomen rectum: ( 1QS 9:1920);
( 1QS 3:56); ...
( 1QS 10:1314) || ( 1QpHab 8:9);
( [4QMMT B 11). In all these cases the nomen regens is of tem-
poral signification;28 cf. ( 11QTa 18:11 = MT) and,
similarly, 11QTa 19:11 (= MT).

28 In QA the lamed-less infinitive is confined to temporal adjuncts.

Syntactic Features of in Qumran Hebrew
Jacobus A. Naud and Cynthia L. Miller-Naud


This paper focuses on the description and explanation of the syntactic status, distri-
bution, and scope of the quantifier in Qumran Hebrew, that is, the Hebrew of the
Qumran collection of the Dead Sea Scrolls. First, it will be shown that the quantifier
ordinarily exhibits many syntactic features that are similar to Biblical Hebrew with
respect to the constituent it modifies and the semantic nuances of each construction.
Second, the distinctive patterns of at Qumran will be described and analysed. These
include, first, the use of before repeated, conjoined nouns to indicate each and
every, which is a syntactic construction that emerged in the Second Temple period.
The second construction involves the reduced use of the floated quantifier in Qumran
Hebrew. The implications of the syntactic features of for a diachronic understanding
of Hebrew will be explored.

1 Introduction

This paper reports research in progress on the interpretation and translation of

quantification constructions.1 It will specifically focus on the description and
explanation of the syntactic status, distribution, and scope of the quantifier
in Qumran Hebrew, that is, the Hebrew of the Qumran collection of the Dead
Sea Scrolls. Comparisons will be made to Biblical Hebrew where relevant. The
analysis will focus on two constructions with unusual distributional patterns in
the Qumran texts. The first construction concerns the repetition of the constit-
uent qualified by the quantifier . The second one concerns the construction

* We thank our research assistant, Ms. Jacqueline Smith, for her assistance in collecting
and classifying the data for this paper. This work is based on research supported in part
by the National Research Foundation of South Africa (Jacobus A. Naud UID 85902). The
grant-holder acknowledges that opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations
expressed in any publication generated by the NRF supported research are those of the
author, and that the NRF accepts no liability whatsoever in this regard.
1 J. A. Naud, Syntactic Patterns of Quantifier Float in Biblical Hebrew, HS 52 (2011): 12136;
Naud, The Interpretation and Translation of the Biblical Hebrew Quantifier KOL, JSem
22 (2011): 40821; J. A. Naud and G. A. Rendsburg, Negation: Pre-Modern Hebrew, EHLL

koninklijke brill nv, leiden, 5|doi .63/9789004299313_008

Syntactic Features of in Qumran Hebrew 89

described by linguists as quantifier float, which is quite common in Biblical

Hebrew but is nearly absent in Qumran Hebrew.
As background for the analysis it is necessary to explain the linguistic ter-
minology for quantification.2 The term quantifier is used within linguistics
to indicate items which appear together with nouns to specify the number or
the amount of the referents indicated by these nouns (e.g. each, every, all).3 In
other words, quantifiers indicate the amount of the entity or the amount of
the substance. As Lyons puts it, a quantifier tells us how many entities or how
much substance is being referred to.4 Determiners (e.g. a, the, this and that)
differ from quantifiers (each, every, all) in that they indicate which part of a
subgroup or group of entities is being referred to. The sentences in (1) illustrate
this difference; in (1a), the subject is modified by a determiner (these) which
indicates which subgroup of students read the book, whereas in (1b) and (1c),
the subject is modified by a quantifier (all, every) which indicates the number
of students reading the book:

(1) (a)These students read the book

(b)All the students read the book
(c)Every student reads the book

The scope of a quantifier is the part of an utterance that is controlled or quali-

fied by the quantifier; this is called the quantifier phrase (QP). Example (2a)
illustrates that the quantifier all has scope only over the noun phrase (NP)

This section draws on the material in Naud, Syntactic Patterns, and Naud, The
Interpretation and Translation, and is repeated here for the convenience of the reader to
understand the argumentation in this article. The following linguistic abbreviations are used
in this article: NP (Noun Phrase), QP (Quantifier Phrase).
3 The linguistics literature on quantification is massive. For important references on this
topic, see the articles on the various aspects of quantification in J. Gutirrez-Rexach,
Semantics: Critical Concepts in Linguistics, vol. 6: Generalized Quantifiers and Scope
(London: Routledge, 2003). Other important articles include: M. R. Baltin, Floating
Quantifiers, PRO, and Predication, LingI 26 (1995): 199248; J. Barwise and R. Cooper,
Generalized Quantifiers and Natural Language, Ling&P 4 (1981): 159219; E. Benmamoun,
Remarks and Replies: The Syntax of Quantifiers and Quantifier Float, LingI 30 (1999): 62142;
J. D. Bobaljik, Floating Quantifiers: Handle with Care, in The Second Glot International
State-of-the-Article Book (ed. L. L.-S. Cheng and R. Sybesma; Berlin: de Gruyter, 2001), 10748;
R. May, The Grammar of Quantification (Ph.D. diss., Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
1977); U. Shlonsky, Quantifiers as Functional Heads: A Study of Quantifier Float in Hebrew,
Lingua 84 (1991): 15980; D. A. Sportiche, Theory of Floating Quantifiers and Its Corollaries
for Constituent Structure, LingI 19 (1988): 42549.
4 J. Lyons, Semantics (2 vols.; Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1977), 2:455.
90 Naud and Miller-Naud

the students and not over an additional NP in the sentence (for example, the
books). In order to qualify the NP the books, a second quantifier must be for-
mally added, as in example (2b).

(2) (a)All the students read the books.

(b) All the students read all the books.

Quantifiers can be divided into two general types on the basis of the amount
of entities or the amount of the substance with which they are associated.
(Examples of the relevant quantifiers in English and Afrikaans are given in

(3) (a) All-type quantifiers are used with uncountable entities and/or
with a series of entities consisting of three or more members
(English all; Afrikaans alle, al);
(b) Each-type quantifiers are used with a series of countable
entities consisting of two or more members (English each;
Afrikaans elk, elkeen).

In a cross-linguistic study of quantifiers Gil states that syntactic and semantic

evidence supports the claim that the quantifier all is the basic or simple uni-
versal quantifier and that the quantifier every is among the most exceptional
of quantifiers in its syntactic and semantic behaviour.6 Evidence for the claim
that all is the more basic quantifier can be adduced from English, where the
quantifier all allows either distributive or non-distributive interpretations,

5 This division is not an exhaustive classification of Afrikaans floating universal quantifiers; see
J. Oosthuizen, Movement vs. Binding: Two Analyses of Quantifier Postposing Phenomena in
Afrikaans (M.A. thesis, University of Stellenbosch, 1988). The division in (3) must be broad-
ened to make provision for at least two additional types of floating universal quantifiers. The
first type (Type I quantifiers) encompasses the negative equivalents of the quantifiers in
(3a)(3c), i.e. nie al/albei (not all/both), geeneen (not one) etc. The quantifiers of the sec-
ond general type (Type II quantifiers) are the same as those in (3b) in the sense that they are
used with an exact number of entities. Examples of Type II quantifiers are al drie (all three),
al tien (all ten), etc., that is, combinations of al (all) plus a number. These two types of
quantifiers will not be discussed because the relevant characteristics of Type I quantifiers are
the same as those of their positive equivalents in (3a)-(3c), and the relevant characteristics of
Type II quantifiers are the same as in (3b).
6 D. Gil, Universal Quantification in Hebrew and Arabic, in Studies in Afroasiatic Grammar
Papers from the Second Conference on Afroasiatic Languages Sophia Antipolis, 1994 (ed.
J. Lowenstamm and U. Shlonsky; The Hague: Holland Academic Graphics, 1996), 10522,
at 106.
Syntactic Features of in Qumran Hebrew 91

while the quantifier every forces distributive interpretations. Consider the con-
trast between the two sentences in (4):

(4) (a)All the boys are riding an elephant.

(b) Every boy is riding an elephant.

Whereas in (4a), the sentence may be understood to mean that the boys are
acting collectively (all on one elephant) or individually/distributively (each
one on a separate elephant), in (4b) the only interpretation is that they are
acting individually (each boy on a separate elephant). In other words, the use
of every forces a distributive interpretation.
While English has distinct lexemes for the universal quantifier and the
distributive quantifier, Gil mentions Maricopa, isiZulu, Malayalam, White
Hmong, Yukaghir, Modern Hebrew and Arabic as languages with a simple uni-
versal quantifier, but no distributive universal quantifier.7 In these languages
there are no distinct lexical counterparts to English all and every, but instead
the semantic contrast between simple and distributive universal quantifi-
cation is expressed structurally. According to Gil, the quantifier in Modern
Hebrew or Arabic may occur either with plural morphology, in which case it is
interpreted as a simple universal quantifier, or alternatively it may occur with
singular morphology, in which case it is interpreted as a distributive universal
quantifier.8 This claim is reiterated by Shlonsky, who states that the distribu-
tive universal quantifier in Hebrew and Arabic must be followed by an indefi-
nite singular noun.9 Brockelmann also operates with this distinction.10 What
this means is that Modern Hebrew differentiates the use of as a universal
quantifier from as a distributive quantifier through the syntactic shape of
the quantifier phrase.
In Qumran Hebrew, however, there are two additional syntactic construc-
tions involving , namely: with indefinite plural nouns and with definite
singular nouns. In other words, Modern Hebrew only uses with definite plu-
ral nouns to indicate all and with indefinite singular nouns to mean each/
every. But both Biblical Hebrew and Qumran Hebrew use in four construc-
tionswith definite and indefinite nouns in both singular and plural. Whereas
Modern Hebrew uses maximal redundancy to indicate the type of quantifi-

7 Ibid., 10810.
8 Ibid., 110.
9 U. Shlonsky, Quantifiers as Functional Heads, 160 n. 1.
10 C. Brockelmann, Hebrasche Syntax (2nd ed.; Neukirchen-Vluyn: Neukirchener Verlag,
2004), 71.
92 Naud and Miller-Naud

cation by means of opposing both definitenessindefiniteness and singular

plural, Biblical and Qumran Hebrew have four syntactic constructions and
thus four nuances of quantification. As a result, while Hebrew appears, at first
glance, to be impoverished since it has only one lexical quantifier as opposed
to English, in fact, ancient Hebrew (Biblical Hebrew and Qumran Hebrew)
syntactically differentiates four quantification constructions. The semantic
implications of these four constructions must be specified even though they
cannot be translated concisely into languages with fewer quantificational dis-
tinctions, such as English and Modern Hebrew.
Precisely how we should understand the semantic nuances of the various
quantification constructions is not well understood. As an example of the
uncertainty, we can contrast the translation by Garca Martnez and Tigchelaar11
and that of Wise, Abegg, and Cook.12 In 1QS 5:3, we have an example of fol-
lowed by an indefinite noun. Garca Martinez and Tigchelaar translate with
every whereas Wise, Abegg, and Cook translate with all.13 In 1QS 4:2021,
the same construction followed by an indefinite nounoccurs, but here
Garca Martinez and Tigchelaar translate with all whereas Wise, Abegg, and
Cook translate with every. It is clear, then, that the syntactic constructions
of quantification and their accompanying semantic distinctions are not well
Three questions arise: First, how do we determine when in Biblical and
Qumran Hebrew should be understood as the simple universal quantifier all
and when it should be understood as the distributive quantifier every? Second,
because Biblical and Qumran Hebrew have twice as many quantifier con-
structions as Modern Hebrew, what is the nuance of each construction and
how should they be translated? Third, how does Qumran Hebrew differ from
Biblical Hebrew? The first two questions will be addressed in Section B; the
third question will be examined in Section C.

2 Syntactic Patterns and Scope of

This section examines the syntactic patterns and scope of as found in

Qumran Hebrew and compares them to Biblical Hebrew. As will be shown

11 F. Garca Martnez and E. J. C. Tigchelaar, The Dead Sea Scrolls Study Edition (2 vols.;
Leiden: Brill, 19971998).
12 M. Wise, M. Abegg, and E. Cook, The Dead Sea Scrolls: A New Translation (2nd ed.; London:
Harper Collins, 2005).
13 D SSSE, 1:79; Wise, Abegg and Cook, The Dead Sea Scrolls, 122.
Syntactic Features of in Qumran Hebrew 93

below, the difference between as a distributive quantifier every and as

a collective quantifier all is that as a distributive quantifier occurs with
indefinite nouns, is non-specific, and is implicitly inclusive, whereas as
a collective quantifier all is specific and inclusive. The difference between
the plural and the singular is motivated by individualisation. In the plural the
focus is not on individualisation. The singular focuses on individualisation/
individuation. These distinctions will be discussed in what follows.

2.1 with Scope over a Definite Plural Noun

In the first category, has scope over a definite plural noun. In linguistic
terms, the quantifier in this construction functions as a collective universal
quantifier and indicates the totality of the (specific) group. In this construc-
tion conveys the nuance of all.14

14 See also 1QpHab 2:89; 1QpHab 2:10; 1QpHab 3:45 (2 examples); 1QpHab 3:6; 1QpHab
3:11; 1QpHab 5:4; 1QpHab 5:5; 1QpHab 6:7; 1QpHab 7:5; 1QpHab 8:1; 1QpHab 8:5 (2 exam-
ples); 1QpHab 12:1213; 1QpHab 13:1; 1QpHab 13:3; 1QpMic 810 7; 1Q22 1:10; 1Q26 1+2 7
(2 examples); 1QMyst 1 i 8; 1QMyst 1 i 89; 1QMyst 1 ii 10; 1QS 1:3; 1QS 1:7; 1QS 1:89; 1QS 1:11;
1QS 1:16; 1QS 1:19; 1QS 1:1920; 1QS 1:23; 1QS 2:45; 1QS 2:5; 1QS 2:10; 1QS 2:1516; 1QS 2:18; 1QS
2:19; 1QS 3:5; 1QS 3:67; 1QS 3:78; 1QS 3:11; 1QS 3:14; 1QS 3:15; 1QS 3:17; 1QS 3:22; 1QS 3:23; 1QS
3:24; 1QS 4 (2 examples); 1QS 4:12; 1QS 4:13; 1QS 4:15; 1QS 4:18; 1QS 5:4; 1QS 5:6; 1QS 5:7; 1QS
5:8; 1QS 5:10; 1QS 5:14; 1QS 5:19 (2 examples); 1QS 5:20 (2 examples); 1QS 5:22; 1QS 6:2; 1QS 6:7;
1QS 6:15; 1QS 7:20; 1QS 9:3; 1QS 9:25; 1QS 10:17; 1QS 11:14; 1QS 11:16; 1QS 11:19; 1QSa 1:4; 1QSa 1:5
(2 examples); 1QSa 1:6; 1QSa 1:15; 1QSa 1:16; 1QSa 1:24; 1QSa 1:2728; 1QSa 1:29; 1QSa 2:1213;
1QSb 2:27; 1QSb 3:2; 1QSb 3:24; 1QSb 5:19; 1Q31 1 1; 1QM 1:3; 1QM 1:7; 1QM 1:12; 1QM 2:4; 1QM
2:7 (3 examples); 1QM 2:12; 1QM 2:13; 1QM 2:16; 1QM 4:2; 1QM 4:6; 1QM 4:7; 1QM 4:8; 1QM
4:12-13; 1QM 6:10; 1QM 7:2; 1QM 7:7 (2 examples); 1QM 7:12; 1QM 9:3; 1QM 9:14; 1QM 10:12;
1QM 10:5; 1QM 10:9; 1QM 10:13; 1QM 11:6; 1QM 11:13; 1QM 12:10; 1QM 12:13; 1QM 12:14; 1QM
13:1 (2 examples); 1QM 13:2; 1QM 13:3; 1QM 13:4; 1QM 13:8; 1QM 13:1112; 1QM 14:8; 1QM 14:9
(2 examples); 1QM 14:11; 1QM 15:1; 1QM 15:4; 1QM 15:6; 1QM 15:7; 1QM 15:9; 1QM 16:1; 1QM
16:11; 1QM 17:8; 1QM 18:4 (2 examples); 1QM 19:5; 1QM 19:10; 1QM 19:12; 1Q39 1 3; 2Q22 2:3;
4QpPsa 110 ii 2; 4QpPsa 110 ii 3; 4QTest 24; 4QTan 1:6; 4QTobe 2 3; 4QTobe 6 5; 4QJuba
1:15; 4QJuba 2:15; 4QJuba 2:16; 4QJuba 7:13; 4QJuba 7:14; 4QJubd 2:12; 4QJubd 2:28; 4QJubd
2:30; 4QJubd 2:31; 4QpsJubb 5 2; 4QSb 3:3; 4QSb 9:4; 4QSd 1:3; 4QSd 2:1; 4QSd 2:6; 4QSj 1 3;
4QSj 1 7; CD-A 1:2; CD-A 2:16; CD-A 4:7; CD-A 4:12; CD-A 7:3; CD-A 7:4; CD-A 7:9; CD-A 7:13;
CD-A 7:21; CD-A 8:1; CD-A 8:21; CD-A 12:14; CD-A 12:15; CD-A 13:4; CD-A 14:1; CD-A 14:3;
CD-A 14:8; CD-A 14:9; CD-A 14:12; CD-B 19:5; CD-B 19:1314; CD-B 19:3132; CD-B 19:33; CD-B
20:2; CD-B 20:14; CD-B 20:2627; CD-B 20:27; 4QDa 1 a-b 3; 4QDa 11 6; 4QDa 11 7; 4QDb 9 v 12;
4QDc 1 10; 4QDe 3 ii 19; 4QDe 7 i 15; 4QDe 7 i 20; 4QDf 3 8; 4Q274 1 i 1; 4Q274 1 i 3; 4Q274 1 i
89; 4Q274 2 i 9; 4QBera 1 a 2, b 2; 4QBera 5a, b, c, 1; 4QBera 5a, b, c, 5; 4QBera 7a 2, b, c, d, 3;
4Q292 2 4; 4QMysta 6 i 14; 4Q303 1 6; 4Q369 3 4; 4Q370 i 3; 4Q374 2 ii 5; 4Q379 12 6; 4Q379 22
ii 10; 4Q380 1 ii 3; 4Q381 1 10; 4Q392 1 7; 4QMMTc 12 iii 1; 4QShirShabbd 1 i 27; 4QShirShabbd
1 i 35; 4QShirShabbd 1 i 41; 4QShirShabbd 1 ii 4; 4QShirShabbd 1 ii 13; 4QShirShabbd 1 ii 14;
94 Naud and Miller-Naud

(5)11QTa 19:1415
][] [

and [y]ou [shall offer] new wine for the libation: four hin from all the
tribes of Israel, a th[ird of] a hin for (each) tribe.

In this example, it is clear that indicates all rather than every because the
amount of wine for each tribe is explicitly mentioned in the following phrase.

(6) 1QM 7: 12

The one priest shall walk before all the men of the battle line to
strengthen their hands for battle.

In this example, it is clear that one priest is walking before the total group of
men of the battle line.

(7) CD-A 14:810

And the Inspector who is over all the camps will be between thirty
years and sixty years of age, master of every secret of men.

4Q416 1 10; 4Q417 2 i 7; 4Q417 2 i 1213; 4Q417 2 ii 11; 4Q418 99c 10; 4Q418 81 7; 4Q418 81
8; 4Q418 81 17; 4Q422 26 ii 7; 4Q423 4 2; 4Q426 1 i 2; 4QHa 7 ii 13; 4QHa 7 ii 23; 4Q433a 2
7; 4Q434 1 i 1; 4Q437 2 i 7; 4Q439 1 i 6; 4Q445 3 1; 8Q5 2 6; 11QTa 3:8; 11QTa 9:12; 11QTa 15:4;
11QTa 16:13; 11QTa 17:4; 11QTa 19:16; 11QTa 20:13; 11QTa 26:11; 11QTa 27:9; 11QTa 29:6 (2 exam-
ples); 11QTa 29:10; 11QTa 42:3; 11QTa 45:13; 11QTa 46:4; 11QTa 49:14; 11QTa 50:10; 11QTa 50:12;
11QTa 50:16; 11QTa 51:6; 11QTa 51:11; 11QTa 51:16; 11QTa 53:9; 11QTa 53:19; 11QTa 53:20; 11QTa
54:5; 11QTa 55:34; 11QTa 55:67; 11QTa 55:13; 11QTa 56:13; 11QTa 57:5; 11QTa 57:78; 11QTa
57:1516; 11QTa 58:1617; 11QTa 58:19; 11QTa 58:21; 11QTa 59:10; 11QTa 59:15; 11QTa 59:19; 11QTa
60:2; 11QTa 60:3; 11QTa 60:10; 11QTa 60:11 (2 examples); 11QTa 60:14; 11QTa 62:16; 11QTa 63:4;
11QTa 64:6; 11QTa 66:11.
Syntactic Features of in Qumran Hebrew 95

Again, in this example, the meaning is that there is a single inspector who is
over all the camps, not one inspector over each of the camps.

(8) 4Q274 1 i 3


A man from all of the impure persons [...] ... [...]... shall bathe in
water and wash his clothes, and afterwards he shall eat.

In this example, one person out of the totality of the group of impure persons
is described. The following example is similar:

(9) 1QM 14:8

And concerning all (the totality of the specific group of) their
heroes, not one remains standing.

The construction of with the plural deictic also fits into this category;
the deictic is construed as semantically definite as an anaphoric deictic:15

(10) 1QM 7:45

And each/every lame or blind or paralysed person or a man who has

an indelible blemish on his flesh or a man suffering from unclean-
ness in his flesh, all of these (the totality of the group) will not go
out to war with them.

The example illustrates the difference between with singular indefinite

noun meaning each, every and the use of with a definite plural deictic
meaning the totality of the group.16

15 Additional examples include: 1Q22 4:9; 1QM 2:6; 1QM 6:4; 1QM 9:5; 4Q248 1 10; 4QDf 4 ii 5;
4Q381 1 7; 4QMMTa 37 i 18; 4QpapMMTe 1417 ii 4; 4QShirShabbc 4 11; 4Q418 123 ii 5;
4Q437 4 6; 4Q438 4a, b, c, d, ii 34; CD-A 8:12; CD-A 16:3; CD-B 19:24.
16 The phrase occurs 47 times in the Hebrew Bible. For a clear example of the same
meaning of the quantifier in this construction, see Gen 49:28. The other examples are:
96 Naud and Miller-Naud

A few nouns must be construed as semantically definite although they are

grammatically indefinite, as illustrated in (11):17

(11) 1QS 2:12

And the priests will bless all the men of Gods lot who walk unblem-
ished in all his paths.

The noun is construed as a proper name and thus the construct phrase gov-
erned by is semantically definite. Note that the participial clause which
modifies the noun phrase agrees with it in semantic definiteness.
This construction is the Qumran Hebrew equivalent of the Biblical Hebrew
construction where precedes definite plural nouns, as illustrated in Ezra

(12) Ezra 2:58

All the temple servants and the descendants of Solomons ser-

vants were three hundred ninety-two.

The quantifier has scope over two definite plural nouns and indicates the
totality of the (specific group of the) temple servants and the (specific group of
the) descendants of Solomons servants.
Within the Temple Scroll (11QT), there are a few examples in which seems
to mean each, every rather than all:

(13) 11QTa 30:910

Gen 10:29; 14:3; 15:10; 25:4; Lev 20:23; Deut 3:5; Jdg 13:23; 20:25, 44, 46; 1 Kgs 7:9; 2 Kgs 10:9;
1 Chr 1:23, 33; 2:23; 7:8, 11, 40; 8:38, 40; 9:9; 12:39; 25:5, 6; 26:8; 27:31; 29:17; 2 Chr 14:7; 21:2;
29:32; Ezra 10:44; Job 33:29; Qoh 11:9; Isa 45:7; 66:2 (2 examples); Jer 2:34; 3:7; 5:19; 14:22;
Ezek 6:13; 16:30; 18:11; Zech 8:12, 17.
17 Additional examples include: 1QS 1:15; 1QS 3:8; 1QS 3:10; 1QS 4:3-4; 1QpHab 7:13; CD-A 13:14;
CD-B 20:8 4QFlor 1-2 i 7-8; 4QpapSa 2:3; 4QpapSa 2:5; 4QpapSc 2:1.
Syntactic Features of in Qumran Hebrew 97

It will have a square pillar within it, in its centre, of four cubits in
width on each/all of its sides. And the width of the stairway with
ascending steps is four [cu]bits.

We would expect the phrase to mean on all of its sides, that is, the
total measurement of the four sides is four cubits. However, because the width
of the stairway is four cubits, it is clear that the phrase instead must mean on
each of its sides. Other examples of this meaning of are found only in the
Temple Scroll, primarily with measurements.18

2.2 with Scope over an Indefinite Singular Noun

In the second construction, the quantifier may occur with an indefinite sin-
gular noun to function as a distributive quantifier which is non-specific and
implicitly inclusive. In this case the construction has the nuance of individ-
ualization and is glossed as the distributive quantifier every. In the follow-
ing examples the indefinite singular noun modified by indicates each and
every individual.19

18 See 11QTa 31:10; 11QTa 36:5; 11QTa 36:13; 11QTa 38:1314; 11QTa 51:6; 11QTa 52:14; 11QTa 60:10.
19 See also 1QpHab 8:13; 1Q27 1 ii 5; 1QS 5:16; 1QS 6:3; 1QS 6:4; 1QS 6:9; 1QS 6:11; 1QS 6:12; 1QS
6:15; 1QS 7:1; 1QS 7:22; 1QS 8:16; 1QS 8:18; 1QS 8:21; 1QS 8:2324; 1QS 8:25; 1QS 9:12; 1QS 9:20;
1QS 9:21; 1QS 9:23; 1QS 10:5; 1QS 10:17; 1QS 10:18; 1QS 11:89; 1QSa 1:19; 1QSa 2:3; 1QSa 2:4;
1QSa 2:5; 1QSb 3:28; 1QM 4:3; 4Q171 12 ii 89; 4QTan 12 i 78 (2 examples); 4Q215a 1 ii
4; 4Q215a 1 ii 8; 4QJubd 2:8; 4QJube 1 2; 4Q251 10 9; 4QSb 9:3; 4QSb 9:7; 4QSb 9:10; 4QSb 19:3;
4QSf 4:3; 4Q265 4 i 11; CD-A 2:20; CD-A 3:20; CD-A 9:1; CD-A 9:2; CD-A 9:13; CD-A 9:14; CD-A
9:16; CD-A 10:12; CD-A 11:2; CD-A 11:16; CD-A 12:2; CD-A 12:17; CD-A 12:21; CD-A 14:9-10; CD-A
14:10; CD-A 14:11; CD-A 14:12; CD-A 14:13; CD-A 15:9; CD-A 15:12 (2 examples); CD-A 15:15;
CD-A 16:7; 4QDa 2 i 7; 4QDa 8 i 3; 4QDa 8 i 7; 4QDe 6 iii 17; 4QDe 6 v 19; 4QDe 7 i 15; 4QDf 2
10; 4QDf 2 11; 4QDf 5 i 10; 4Q272 1 i 2; 4Q274 1 i 2; 4Q274 1 i 5; 4Q274 1 i 6; 4Q274 2 i 4; 4Q274
3 ii 10; 4Q277 1 ii 2; 4Q298 34 i 5; 4QMysta 3a ii 3; 4QMysta 3a ii 10; 4QMysta 3a ii 11 (2
examples); 4QMysta 3a ii 15 (2 examples); 4Q370 1 6 (2 examples); 4Q381 1 4; 4Q381 1 6;
4Q381 24a+b 5; 4QMMTc 12 iv 2; 4Q416 1 12; 4Q416 1 13; 4Q416 2 ii 2; 4Q416 2 iii 5; 4Q416
2 iv 8; 4Q417 1 i 6; 4Q417 2 i 10; 4Q417 2 i 19; 4Q417 2 ii 9; 4Q418 81 2 (2 examples); 4Q418 81
4; 4Q418 81 20; 4Q418 9, 9a 1314; 4Q421 12 2; 4Q422 10a-e iii 11; 4Q423 1+2 i 1 (2 examples);
4Q434 1 ii 1; 11QTa 17:11; 11QTa 17:16; 11QTa 20:9; 11QTa 25:9; 11QTa 27:6; 11QTa 27:9; 11QTa 32:15;
11QTa 35:2; 11QTa 35:3; 11QTa 35:5; 11QTa 45:12; 11QTa 45:15; 11QTa 45:17 (2 examples); 11QTa
46:15; 11QTa 47:5 (2 examples); 11QTa 47:6; 11QTa 47:7 (2 examples) 11QTa 48:5; 11QTa 48:6;
11QTa 48:11; 11QTa 49:5; 11QTa 49:7; 11QTa 49:8; 11QTa 49:9; 11QTa 49:1112; 11QTa 49:21; 11QTa
50:11; 11QTa 50:21; 11QTa 51:19; 11QTa 52:4; 11QTa 53:19; 11QTa 53:20; 11QTa 57:10; 11QTa 57:14;
11QTa 57:15; 11QTa 57:21 (2 examples); 11QTa 58:3; 11QTa 58:17 (2 examples); 11QTa 59:9; 11QTa
60:19; 11QTa 61:6 (2 examples); 11QTa 62:10; 11QTa 62:14; 11QTa 63:4 (2 examples); 11QTa 65:2.
98 Naud and Miller-Naud

(14) 1QS 7:22

Every (i.e., each and every individual) man who has been in the
council of the community { } for ten full years...

(15) 1QS 6:34


In every (i.e., each and every individual) place where there are ten
men from the council of the community, there should not be miss-
ing a priest among them.

(16) 11QTa 47:35

[ ]

The city which I will sanctify by installing my name and my temp[le

within it] shall be holy and shall be pure from every (i.e. each and
every individual) matter concerning every (i.e each and every
individual) impurity with which they become impure.

A particularly instructive example is found in the Temple Scroll and concerns


(17) 11QTa 46:1516

It (the outhouse) must not be visible from each and every direction
from the city for three thousand cubits.

(18) CD-A 9:1415

And in the same way, each and every every lost object which has
been found and has no owner, will be for the priests, for he who
found it does not know the regulation in its regard.
Syntactic Features of in Qumran Hebrew 99

When the indefinite singular noun is an abstract noun, the phrase with has
the nuance each and every aspect of X:20

(19) 4QMysta 8 8

Each and every aspect of wisdom is from eternity; it may not be


Similarly, when the singular indefinite noun governed by is a mass noun or

a collective noun, the nuance is each and every aspect/part of X: each
and every person who is part of the people (4Q185 12 ii 8), each and
every kind/aspect of wealth (4Q416 2 ii 6; 11QTa 57:21).
The same construction occurs in Biblical Hebrew, as illustrated in (20).

(20) Isaiah 9:16

And every (= each and every individual) mouth spoke folly.

When occurs without a following noun, it functions as a substantive. The

substantive use of indefinite has the same semantic nuance as preceding
an indefinite singular noun:

(21) 1QS 1:34

... in order to love everything (= each and every individual thing)

that he has chosen and to hate everything (= each and every indi-
vidual thing) that he has rejected ...

(22) 1QS 3:1617

In his hand (are) the laws of everything (= each and every individ-
ual thing)...

20 See also 1Q27 1 ii 5; 4QSj 1 5; 4Q265 7 17; 4Q417 2 i 9; 4Q418 2, 2a, 2b, 2c 5; 4Q418 69 ii 1; 4Q418
127 1; 4Q418 127 6.
100 Naud and Miller-Naud

2.3 with Scope over an Indefinite Plural Noun

Like the previous category, in this construction functions as a distributive
quantifier. Its semantic nuance is non-specific and implicitly inclusive. It is
translated in English with every. Joon and Muraoka note that an indefinite
noun that is quantified by has a certain notion of determination, and, as
a result, a constituent that is appositional to it may have the article.21 They do
not, however, describe what a certain notion of determination means. Miller
indicates that the semantic nuance conveyed by the use of with indefinite
plural nouns is very similar to definite plural noun quantified with ;they dif-
fer only with respect to specificity.22 We can see this semantic nuance in the
following Qumran examples.23

(23) 1QS 1:911

21 P. Joon and T. Muraoka, A Grammar of Biblical Hebrew (2nd ed.; Rome: Gregorian &
Biblical Press, 2009),138d.
22 C.L. Miller, Definiteness and the Vocative in Biblical Hebrew, JNSL 36 (2010): 4364.
23 See also 1Q27 1 i 7; 1Q27 1 i 9; 1QS 1:5; 1QS 1:9; 1QS 1:10; 1QS 1:22; 1QS 2:12; 1QS 3:13 (2 examples);
1QS 3:20; 1QS 3:22; 1QS 3:2425; 1QS 4:2; 1QS 4:5 (2 examples); 1QS 4:6; 1QS 4:7; 1QS 4:11; 1QS
4:12; 1QS 4:15; 1QS 4:16; 1QS 4:17; 1QS 4:20; 1QS 4:21; 1QS 4:23; 1QS 5:7; 1QS 5:1819; 1QS 6:7; 1QS
10:21; 1QSb 4:26; 1QSb 5:18; 1QM 1:8 (2 examples); 1QM 1:9; 1QM 3:8; 1QM 3:9; 1QM 6:6; 1QM
6:13; 1QM 10:56; 1QM 11:14; 1QM 13:10; 1QM 13:16; 1QM 14:7; 1QM 15:2; 1QM 17:5; 1Q36 7 2;
4Q185 12 iii 12; 4Q215a 1 ii 8; 4QJubd 2:33; 4QSf 5:1; CD-A 1:1; CD-A 1:2021; CD-A 2:2; CD-A
2:6; CD-A 2:910; CD-A 2:10; CD-A 8:4; CD-A 14:2; CD-B 20:34; 4QDc 1 9; 4QDe 2 ii 19; 4Q286
5a, b, c 2; 4Q286 5a, b, c 7; 4Q286 5a, b, c 10; 4Q286 7a i, b, c, d 6; 4QMysta 8 7; 4Q369 1 i 4;
4Q370 1 34; 4Q381 1 6; 4Q382 31 4; 4QShirShabba 1 i 2; 4QShirShabba 1 i 5; 4QShirShabba 1 i
15; 4QShirShabba 1 i 16 (2 examples); 4QShirShabba 1 i 17; 4QShirShabba 2 2; 4QShirShabbb
14 i 8; 4QShirShabbd 1 i 21; 4QShirShabbd 1 i 22; 4QShirShabbd 1 i 24; 4QShirShabbd 1 i 29;
4QShirShabbd 1 i 3031; 4QShirShabbd 1 i 32; 4QShirShabbd 1 i 34; 4QShirShabbd 1 i 35;
4QShirShabbd 1 i 36; 4QShirShabbd 1 i 37 (2 examples); 4QShirShabbd 1 i 38 (3 examples);
4QShirShabbd 1 i 40; 4QShirShabbd 1 i 42; 4Q416 1 14; 4Q416 2 iii 14 (2 examples); 4Q417 2 ii
7; 4Q418 126 i-ii 9; 4Q418 2, 2a, 2b, 2c 6; 4Q418 55 9; 4Q418 69 ii 8; 4Q418 69 ii 12; 4Q418 69
ii 1314; 4Q418 81 4; 4Q418 81 12; 4Q418 81 13; 4Q418 81 14; 4Q418 81 16; 4Q418 81 18; 4Q418 81
20; 4Q418 127 5; 4Q423 5 4; 4QHa 7 i 17; 4QHa 7 ii 6; 4Q434a 12 7; 11QTa 35:14; 11QTa 49:15
(2 examples); 11QTa 50:1718.
Syntactic Features of in Qumran Hebrew 101

... to love all (i.e., each and every one of the) sons of light, each
one24 according to his lot in Gods plan, and to hate all (i.e., each
and every one of the) sons of darkness, each one according to his
guilt in Gods vindication.

(24) 1QS 4:15

In these is the history of all (i.e. each and every one of) mankind.

(25) 1QS 1:56

... and to hold fast to all (i.e., each and every one of the) good
works and to do truth, justice and righteousness in the land.

(26) 4QpNah 34 iv 2

Her children were dashed to pieces at all (i.e., each and every one
of the) crossroads.

The distinction between plural indefinite noun phrases and plural definite
noun phrases modified by can be seen by comparing similar phrases:
for all the periods of eternity (i.e., for each and every one of the
periods of eternity) and for all the ages (i.e., for the totalities of
the ages).
The construction is the Qumran Hebrew equivalent of the Biblical Hebrew
construction, as illustrated in Isa 28:8:

(27) Isa 28:8

All (= each and every one) tables are covered with filthy vomit;
there is no place left.

24 A subsequent article will describe how as a distributive differs from as a distribu-
tive. Preliminary investigations suggest that the use of after serves to strengthen
the distributive interpretation. See, for example, CD-B 20:24.
102 Naud and Miller-Naud

The indefinite plural noun modified by indicates each and every one of the
tables and conveys the nuance of every.

2.4 with Scope over a Definite Singular Noun

In the fourth category, the quantifier occurs with definite singular nouns.
In this construction, functions as a collective quantifier by identifying and
selecting individual members which belong to the set. Its semantic nuance
indicates the totality of the individual members of the (specific) group or set
or the totality of X.

(28) 11QTa 45:1625

He shall wash his entire body in running water.

(29) 1QM 12:2

The book of the names of all their army (i.e. the totality of the
individual members of their army) is with you in your holy

25 See also 1QpHab 3:5; 1QpHab 5:12; 1QpHab 6:1; 1QS 1:13; 1QS 2:22; 1QS 2:25; 1QS 3:15; 1QS 5:9;
1QS 6:2; 1QS 8:1; 1QS 8:12; 1QS 8:15; 1QS 8:17; 1QS 8:18; 1QS 8:19; 1QS 8:21; 1QS 9:7; 1QS 9:9;
1QS 9:13; 1QS 9:19; 1QS 9:20; 1QS 9:24 (2 examples); 1QS 10:8; 1QS 10:9; 1QS 10:16; 1QS 11:18;
1QS 11:19; 1QSa 1:6; 1QSa 1:26; 1QSa 2:12; 1QSb 3:2; 1QSb 3:3; 1Q29 57 2; 1QM 1:5; 1QM 4:11;
1QM 6:11; 1QM 7:17; 1QM 9:6; 1QM 11:16; 1QM 13:2; 1QM 13:5; 1QM 14:12; 1QM 15:1011; 1QM
15:11; 1QM 16:3; 1QM 18:1; 1QM 18:3; 4QpNah 5 2; 4Q171 34 iii 12; 4Q171 12 ii 7; 4QFlor 13
ii 2; 4QFlor 4 5; 4Q185 12 ii 10; 4Q215a 1 ii 3; 4QJubd 1:35; 4QJubf 1 4; 4QSb 18:3; 4QSf 1 iv 3;
4QSj 1 67; 4Q265 7 14; CD-A 2:1; CD-A 6:10; CD-A 8:19; CD-A 9:10; CD-A 11:21; CD-A 12:10;
CD-A 12:12; CD-A 12:1213; CD-A 13:9; 1QSa 2:12; CD-A 13:11; CD-A 14:11; CD-A 14:16; CD-A 15:7
(2 examples); CD-B 19:32; CD-B 20:8; 4Q301 1 3; 4Q369 1 ii 7; 4Q376 1 iii 1; 4Q381 69 2; 4Q382
105 5; 4QShirShabbd 1 i 31; 4Q415 2 ii 3; 4Q417 2 i 14; 4Q418 81 12; 4Q418 123 ii 3; 4Q418 126 i-ii 2;
4Q418 126 i-ii 10; 4Q418 127 2; 4Q422 10a-e iii 10; 4Q423 5 6; 4Q448 B:3; 11QTa 20:5; 11QTa 25:11;
11QTa 26:12 (2 examples); 11QTa 27:6 (2 examples); 11QTa 31:8; 11QTa 35:14; 11QTa 44:5; 11QTa
45:8; 11QTa 45:1112; 11QTa 45:16; 11QTa 47:1213; 11QTa 48:7 (2 examples); 11QTa 49:7; 11QTa
49:9; 11QTa 49:21; 11QTa 50:8; 11QTa 50:20; 11QTa 51:4; 11QTa 52:3; 11QTa 52:7; 11QTa 52:16;
11QTa 53:15; 11QTa 53:19; 11QTa 54:13 (2 examples); 11QTa 55:8 (2 examples); 11QTa 55:9; 11QTa
55:18; 11QTa 59:10 (2 examples); 11QTa 62:10.
Syntactic Features of in Qumran Hebrew 103

(30) 1QS 2:25

[ ] [ ]

And every one (i.e. the totality of the identified and selected indi-
viduals) who declines to enter [the covenant of Go]d in order to
walk in the stubbornness of his heart shall not [enter the Com]
munity of this truth ...

In the following example has scope over the collective noun and indi-
cates the totality of the identified and selected individual members of entity:26

(31) 1QS 2:21

And in third place all (i.e. the totality of the identified and selected
individual members of) the people will enter the Rule, one after
another, by thousands, and hundreds....

When has scope over a definite abstract NP, it is acceptable to translate it

with all/whole. This is evident from the following example where has scope
over an abstract NP. The qualified abstract NP does not refer to the entire
substance, but rather to the total of specific, identifiable entity:27

(32) 1QS 1:1112

They will bring all (i.e. the totality of the identified and selected
of) their knowledge and their strength and their riches into the
community of God ...

26 See also 1Q22 1:2; 1QS 2:21; 1QS 6:9; 1QSa 1:1; 1QSa 1:23; 1QSa 1:25; 1QSa 2:21; 1QM 2:9; 1QM 3:13
(2 examples); 1QM 4:15; 1QM 5:1; 1QM 9:1; 1QM 16:89; 1QM 17:14; 4QpNah 34 iii 3; 4Q185
12 ii 10; CD-A 3:14; CD-A 7:20; CD-A 8:13; CD-A 15:5; CD-A 16:1; CD-B 19:26; 4QDa 5 i 18;
4QDf 3 8; 4Q375 1 ii 6; 4Q376 1 ii 2; 4Q376 1 iii 1; 4Q418 126 i-ii 1; 4Q439 1 i 5; 11QTa 21:6; 11QTa
26:7; 11QTa 26:9; 11QTa 39:67; 11QTa 56:1011; 11QTa 60:12; 11QTa 62:7.
27 See also 1QS 1:11; 1QS 9:10; 1QS 9:13; 4Q171 12 ii 7; 4Q300 1 ii 4; 4Q300 3 i 3; 4Q432 5 i 2.
104 Naud and Miller-Naud

(33) 1QS 8:12

In the council of the Community (there shall be) twelve men and
three priests, perfect in all (i.e., the totality of the identified and
selected of) that has been revealed from all (i.e., the totality of the
identified and selected of) the law to do truth and righteousness
and judgment and, compassionate love and unassuming behaviour
of each man with his neighbour ...

This construction is Qumran Hebrew is identical to the Biblical Hebrew con-

struction, as illustrated in Exod 1:22:

(34) Exod 1:22

Then Pharaoh commanded all his people, Every boy that is born
you shall throw into the Nile, but you shall let every girl live.

The construction indicates the totality of the individual members of the (spe-
cific) group of sons that are born and the totality of the individual members of
the (specific) group of daughters (that are born).
The substantive uses of with the definite article are similar.

(35) 1QS 5:23

And they shall be recorded in the Rule, each one before his neigh-
bour according to his insight and his deed so that the entirety (i.e.,
the totality of those identified and selected) may obey, each one
his neighbour, the lesser man the superior ...

(36) 1QS 2:24

For the whole (i.e., the totality of those identified and selected)
shall be in a community of truth and proper humility and compas-
Syntactic Features of in Qumran Hebrew 105

sionate love upright purpose, each one to his neighbour in the holy
council and sons of an everlasting society.

(37) 3Q15 i 1011

The total (i.e., the totality of the items identified and selected) of
the tithes and of the treasure: a seventh of a second tithe made

2.5 Summary
To summarise, the difference between as the distributive quantifier every
and as the collective quantifier all is that it functions as the distributive quan-
tifier when it has scope over indefinite nouns (i.e., the NP is non-specific and
implicitly inclusive), whereas it functions as the collective quantifier when the
NP is specific and inclusive. The distinction between the use of plural and sin-
gular NPs is motivated by individualisation. The singular focuses on individu-
alisation/individuation; the plural does not.

3 Unique Patterns of in Qumran Hebrew

Thus far, we have seen that the patterns of quantification with in Qumran
Hebrew are identical to those of Biblical Hebrew. In this section, we examine
and explain two usages of which depart from the patterns found in Biblical

3.1 The Repetition of the Constituent Qualified by the Quantifier

The construction X- X means each and every X and is attested only in the
Biblical Hebrew of Esther and 2 Chronicles and thereafter.28 It is common in
late biblical, Mishnaic and Aramaic usage. An example from Esther illustrates
the use of this construction in a temporal expression:29

28 E. Qimron, The Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls (HSS 29; Atlanta: Scholars Press 1986),
8182; A. Hurvitz, The Transition Period in Biblical Hebrew: A Study in Post-Exilic Hebrew
and its Implications for the Dating of the Psalms (Jerusalem: Bialik Institute, 1972), 7073
[Hebrew], and references cited there; R. Polzin, Late Biblical Hebrew: Toward an Historical
Typology of Biblical Hebrew Prose (HSM 12; Missoula, Mont.: Scholars Press 1976), 4751.
29 Additional examples include ( Esth 9:21, 27);
( 2 Chr 11:12;
28:25; 31:19; Esth 8:11,17);

( 2 Chr 32:28); ( Esth 2:11);

(Esth 3:14; 4:3; 8:13, 17).
106 Naud and Miller-Naud

(38) Esth 2:11

On each and every day Mordecai would walk about in front of the
court of the harem, to learn how Esther was faring and what was
happening to her.

The overall function of this construction is distributive and inclusive.

We can compare the Biblical Hebrew construction which consists of
two nouns juxtaposed.30 The semantic nuance is only distributive (and not

(39) Gen 39:10

And much as she coaxed Joseph day after day, he did not yield to
her request to lie beside her, to be with her.

In Qumran Hebrew, the construction of having scope over repeated con-

joined nouns appears fifteen times, all except four of them in the Temple
Scroll.31 The construction is thus an example of a change that began in Late
Biblical Hebrew (Esther and 2 Chronicles) but did not widely diffuse in
Qumran Hebrew.32

30 G KC123.
31 In addition to the examples provided below, see 1QM 7:17; 4Q471 1:4; 4QMMTa 3:20 =
4QMMTc 2:2 (both examples are partially reconstructed); 11QTa 15:1; 11QTa 15:3; 11QTa 17:11;
11QTa 20:10 (reconstructed); 11QTa 22:1213; 11QTa 36:5; 11QTa 23:7(?); 11QTa 36;54; 11QTa
40:8; 11QTa 42:13 ; 11QTa 48:14..
32 For the theoretical background and terminology of change and diffusion with reference
to the history of Hebrew, see J. A. Naud, Diachrony in Biblical Hebrew and a Theory of
Language Change and Diffusion, in Diachrony in Biblical Hebrew (ed. C. L. Miller-Naud
and Z. Zevit; Linguistic Studies in Ancient West Semitic 8; Winona Lake: Eisenbrauns,
2012), 6181.
Syntactic Features of in Qumran Hebrew 107

(40) 11QTa 22:1113


... the children of Israel shall give to the priests one ram, one lamb,
and to the Levites one ram, one lamb and to each and every tribe
one ram, one lamb.

(41) 11QTa 17:1213


You shall offer on each and every day for these seven days a burnt
offering to the LORD.

Contrast the following example with all the days, referring to the
totality of the days and not to the complete set of individual, distributive days.

(42) 11QTa 29: 910

...I will create my temple, establishing it for myself all (i.e., the
totality of) the days, according to the covenant which I made with
Jacob at Bethel.

3.2 The Dismissal of the Floating Quantifier

The second distributional pattern of that is significant for Qumran Hebrew
involves the floating quantifier. The adjective floating indicates that the posi-
tion of the quantifier is not fixed, but variable. In English, for example, the
quantifier all may appear before or after the noun that it modifies as illustrated
in the following examples:

(43a) All the men would have been working.

(43b) The men would all have been working.
(43a) She loved all of them.
(43b) She loved them all.
108 Naud and Miller-Naud

In Biblical Hebrew the quantifier may appear after the constituent with
which it is associated, but in that case it obligatorily hosts a resumptive
pronoun. This phenomenon can be illustrated with the following sentence
pairs in which the quantifier serves to modify the NP peoples. In (44a),
Lam 1:18, the quantifier precedes the NP and is bare. In (44b), Ps 67:4,
follows the NP and hosts a pronominal suffix which agrees with the quantified
NP in number and gender.

(44a)Lam 1:18

The LORD is righteous, for I have rebelled against his command;

hear, all peoples, and see my suffering; my young women and my
young men have gone into captivity.

(44b)Ps 67:4

Let peoples praise you, O God; let all peoples (lit. peoples, all of
them) praise you!

Conversely, cannot host a pronominal clitic when it precedes the quantified

Noun Phrase.
To understand how the distributional patterns exhibited in Qumran Hebrew
represent a reduced inventory of constructions, let us first survey the Biblical
Hebrew data. In Biblical Hebrew, the quantifier can float in each of the
four syntactic constructions that we have already identified in Section B.

3.2.1 with Scope over a Preceding Definite Plural Noun

In the first construction with scope over a definite plural noun can
float to a position after the noun it modifies. Consider the floating quantifiers
in Ezek 39:18 and Job 27:12:

(45) Ezek 39:18

You shall eat the flesh of mighty men, and drink the blood of the
princes of the earth as if they were rams, lambs and goats, bullsall
Syntactic Features of in Qumran Hebrew 109

the fattened animals of Bashan (lit. the fattened animals of Bashan,

all of them).

(46) Job 27:12

All of you (lit. you, all of you) have seen it yourselves; why then have
you become altogether vain?

In (45), the quantifier with the third-person plural pronominal suffix

has scope over the preceding definite QP the fattened animals of
Bashan (a plural, countable definite NP) so that it indicates the total of the
specific and inclusive group of fattened animals. When has scope over a
plural, countable definite NP, it is a collective quantifier and can be translated
with all. In (46) the scope is over an independent personal pronoun.

3.2.2 with Scope over Preceding Indefinite Singular Noun

For the second category, with scope over an indefinite singular noun, con-
sider the floating quantifier in (47).

(47) Job 34:13

Who appointed him over the earth? Who put him in charge of the
whole world (lit. world, all of it)?

The quantifier with the third-person feminine singular pronominal suffix

has scope over the preceding indefinite NP . The indefinite singular noun
modified by indicates the whole (single) earth.

3.2.3 with Scope over a Preceding Indefinite Plural Noun

In the third category, floats when it modifies an indefinite plural noun. In
(43) with the third-person plural pronominal suffix has scope over the

(48) Mic 1:2 (also Ps 67:4, example 44b above)

Listen, peoples all of you (lit. peoples all of them)!

110 Naud and Miller-Naud

3.2.4 with Scope over Definite Singular Nouns

In the fourth category, floats when it modifies a definite singular noun. In
(49) with the third-person singular pronominal suffix has scope over the
definite NP and indicates the totality of the individual members of the
one entity.

(49) Isa 9:8

And all the people (lit. the people, all of it) knew itEphraim and
the inhabitants of Samaria, who say in pride and in arrogance of

3.2.5 Differences between Qumran Hebrew and Biblical Hebrew

Qumran Hebrew does not exhibit the same distribution of constructions
involving the floated quantifier in two respects. First, the construction is
much rarer at Qumran than it is in the Bible. Second, the quantifier floats only
when the noun that it modifies is definite; as a result, the Qumran Hebrew
has only half of the types of floated quantifier constructions that are found in
the Bible.

(50) 1QTa 46:5633

You shall make a platform around the outer courtyard, fourteen

cubits wide, corresponding to the openings of the gates all of them.

A particularly problematic case is found in the Temple Scroll (33:1011) in

which a noun phrase is modified by both preceding it and a floated with
a resumptive pronoun following it:34

(51) 11QTa 33:1011 (translation uncertain)

[ ]

And it will have two gates: to the north and to the south, one faces
the other with the same measurements as the gates of the laver

33 See also CD-A 11:23.

34 See also 1QM 7:2-3; 1QM 9:3-5.
Syntactic Features of in Qumran Hebrew 111

building. And all of this building, all of it, its walls on the inside
there will be blocked windows....35

Quantifier float is absent completely from most texts at Qumran, including

the following: 1QS (Rule of the Community), 1QSa (Rule of the Congregation),
1QSb (Blessings), 4Q255264 = 4QSaj and 5Q11, 4Q159 = 4QOrda (Ordinances)
and 4Q513 = 4QOrdb (Rules), 4Q514 = 4QOrdc (Purification Rule). This distribu-
tion is significant given that quantifier float is prevalent and widespread in the
Hebrew Bible. Furthermore, the overwhelming majority of instances of quan-
tifier float occur in the Temple Scroll.

4 Conclusions

The quantifier presents numerous challenges for analysis and interpreta-

tion. In ancient Hebrew, both as attested in the Bible and in Qumran Hebrew,
appears in four basic syntactic constructions whose semantic nuances are
determined by the morphological indications of definiteness-indefiniteness
and singular-plural. The numerous examples of from the Qumran Hebrew
texts (in contrast with Modern Hebrew) do not exhibit any peculiarities when
compared with Biblical Hebrew in this respect.
The Qumran Hebrew texts do exhibit distributional differences from the
biblical material in two respects and each difference has important implica-
tions for our understanding of the history of Hebrew. First, the construction
X we-X is attested only in some Late Biblical texts and in the variety of Qumran
Hebrew primarily represented in the Temple Scroll. What this means is that the
structural change that began in late biblical times became only partially dif-
fused in the Qumran Hebrew texts. Second, the reduced usage and constricted
syntactic richness of quantifier float in Qumran Hebrew as compared to the
Bible is striking. This also represents a change from the syntactic structure of
Hebrew. What is also quite interesting is the fact that once again the Temple
Scroll stands out in two waysfirst, as syntactically different from the other
texts at Qumran and second as representing a closer connection to the late
biblical texts. A close analysis of the syntactic patterns of quantification and
their syntactic nuances allows us both to understand what the construction
means on a synchronic level and what the changes in that construction mean
for the history of Hebrew and the linguistic profile of the individual texts at

35 It is possible that the translation should be in this whole building; cf. DSSSE, 2:1253.
Linguistic Observations on the Hebrew Prayer of
Manasseh from the Cairo Genizah

Wido van Peursen

1 Introduction

Among the so-called magical texts from the Cairo Genizah edited by Peter
Schfer and Shaul Shaked, the Cambridge fragments T.-S. K 1.144, T.-S. K 21.95,
and T.-S. K 21.95P constitute a manuscript containing various prayers, most
of which have a mystico-magical character.1 Among these prayers we find a
Hebrew version of the Prayer of Manasseh2 previously known in Greek and
Syriac.3 There is no relationship with Manassehs prayer found at Qumran
(4Q381 33 811) edited by Eileen Schuller4 and investigated by William M.
Schniedewind.5 One of the very few studies on the Genizah text is an article by

1 Abbreviations: BH = Biblical Hebrew; CH = Classical Hebrew (including BH and QH); MH =

Mishnaic Hebrew; RH = Rabbinic Hebrew; QH = Qumran Hebrew; PrMan = Prayer of
Manasseh; PrMan-Heb = The Hebrew text of the Prayer of Manasseh from the Cairo Genizah;
DCH = D. J. A. Clines, ed., Dictionary of Classical Hebrew; HALOT = Koehler, Baumgartner,
Stamm, eds., The Hebrew and Aramaic Lexicon of the Old Testament. We use MH if the dis-
tinction between the Tannaitic Hebrew and Amoraic Hebrew is applicable, and RH if that
distinction does not apply.
2 Peter Schfer and Shaul Shaked, eds., Magische Texte aus der Kairoer Geniza (3 vols.; TSAJ
42,64,72; Tbingen: Mohr Siebeck, 19941997), 2:2778, PrMan on pp. 32 (text) and 53
3 Also in other languages, but the other versions depend either on the Greek or on the Syriac
4 Eileen M. Schuller, Non-Canonical Psalms from Qumran: A Pseudepigrapic Collection (HSS 28;
Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1986), PrMan on pp. 146 (Hebrew text), 151 (translation), 15558 (com-
ment); Schuller also published this text in the DJD series in 1998; for PrMan (text, translation
and notes) see DJD 11:12226.
5 W. M. Schniedewind, A Qumran Fragment of the Ancient Prayer of Manasseh? ZAW 108
(1996): 1057, argued that the Qumran prayer represents an early extra-biblical tradi-
tion, which predates the Chroniclers history, and was perhaps even part of the source to
which the Chronicler refers. For a rather positive assessment of this view see Louis Jonker,
Tradition through ReadingReading the Tradition: Reflections on Eep Talstras Exegetical
Methodology, in Tradition and Innovation in Biblical Interpretation: Studies Presented to
Professor Eep Talstra on the Occasion of his Sixty-Fifth Birthday (ed. W. Th. van Peursen and
J. W. Dyk; SSN 57; Leiden: Brill, 2011), 13351, esp. 14647; for a more critical assessment see

koninklijke brill nv, leiden, 5|doi .63/9789004299313_009

Linguistic Observations on the Hebrew Prayer of Manasseh 113

Reimund Leicht, in which he argues that this Hebrew text of PrMan is a tenth-
century translation from a Greek text close to the text of the Codex Turicensis,
but reflects also unequivocal influence from the Syriac versions.
The picture that emerges from Leichts hypothesis is reminiscent of the
model that various scholars in the late-19th and early-20th centuries advocated
regarding the Hebrew text of Ben Sira from the Cairo Genizah,6 namely, that of
a document written in the Second Temple Period,7 that survived in Greek and
Syriac, and that in the Middle Ages, presumably the tenth century, was retrans-
lated into Hebrew.8 For the Hebrew text of Ben Sira the retroversion theory
could not stand the test of time, and after the discovery of the Masada text and
the Qumran fragments, at most the partial retroversion theory could be main-
tained; that is, the view that the Genizah manuscripts of Ben Sira are basically
the result of inner-Hebrew development, and that only some passages such as
Sir 51:1330 contain traces of a retroversion from Syriac (or Greek).9
For other books the scholarly discussion moved in the opposite direction.
Thus M. Gaster considered the small Hebrew version of the story of Judith
that he published in 1894 to be standing at the beginning of the literary and

Ariel Gutman and Wido van Peursen, The Two Syriac Versions of the Prayer of Manasseh
(Gorgias Eastern Christian Studies 30; Piscataway, N.J.: Gorgias, 2011), 12. Schuller, Non-
Canonical Psalms from Qumran, 3132, 16162, argues for the secondary attribution of the
prayer to Manasseh; see also Schuller, 4Q380 and 4Q381: Non-Canonical Psalms from
Qumran, in The Dead Sea Scrolls: Forty Years of Research (ed. D. Dimant and U. Rappaport;
STDJ 10; Leiden: Brill, 1992), 9099, esp. 9495; and Schuller, DJD 11:123.
6 Cf. W. Th. van Peursen, The Verbal System in the Hebrew Text of Ben Sira (SSL 41; Leiden: Brill,
2004), 20.
7 Note, however, that the date of origin of PrMan is not so easy to establish as some schol-
ars have suggested and that a later date of origin cannot be ruled out; cf. Gutman and van
Peursen, The Two Syriac Versions of the Prayer of Manasseh, 4152.
8 Whether we should call PrMan-Heb a retranslation (back into Hebrew) or just a trans-
lation depends on the source of the Greek and Syriac versions. Only if we assume that
these versions go back to a Hebrew originalwhich is far from certain (cf. Gutman and van
Peursen, The Two Syriac Versions of the Prayer of Manasseh, 89 n. 11)is it justified to speak
of a re-translation.
9 Cf. van Peursen, The Verbal System in the Hebrew Text of Ben Sira, 1923; van Peursen, The
Alleged Retroversions from Syriac in the Hebrew Text of Ben Sira Revisited: Linguistic
Perspectives, Kleine Untersuchungen zur Sprachen des Alten Testaments und seiner Umwelt
2 (2001): 4795; and van Peursen, Sirach 51:1330 in Hebrew and Syriac, in Hamlet on a Hill:
Semitic and Greek Studies Presented to Professor T. Muraoka on the Occasion of his Sixty-Fifth
Birthday (ed. M. F. J. Baasten and W. Th. van Peursen; OLA 118; Leuven: Peeters, 2003), 35774.
114 van Peursen

textual history of the book of Judith,10 and this view was in vogue for some
time and entered, for example, the Encyclopedia Biblica edited by Cheyne and
Black, in which Gaster wrote the entry on the book of Judith.11 In 1922, how-
ever, C. Meyer argued that the Hebrew text was a free retroversion from the
Vulgate,12 and since then this view has become the majority view;13 although
the minority view, giving priority to one or more of the extant Hebrew ver-
sions, did not completely disappear. It was advocated by A. M. Dubarle in his
1958 article.14 Similarly, the abridged Hebrew version of the Book of Maccabees
was thought by its editor, Abraham Schweizer, to be original,15 a view that was
refuted by C. C. Torrey.16
Will PrMan-Heb from the Cairo Genizah undergo the same fate as the
Hebrew text of Ben Sira from the Genizah? Will it also in the endwith our
increased knowledge of Hebrew from the Second Temple periodturn out
to be a genuine, original Hebrew document? Or should we rather consider it
as a parallel to medieval translations into Hebrew of, for example, the books
of Judith and 1 Maccabees? This question can be addressed from various per-
spectives. Leicht focuses on the textual affiliations of PrMan-Heb with the
Greek and Syriac versions and draws upon linguistic observations to support
his theory.17 My aim is to start with the Hebrew text in its own right and with
its linguistic profile before proceeding to the larger text-historical picture

10 M. Gaster, An Unknown Hebrew Version of the History of Judith, Proceedings of the
Society of Biblical Archaeology 16 (1894): 15663.
11 M. Gaster, Judith, the Book of, in Encyclopedia Biblica: A Critical Dictionary of the Literary,
Political and Religion History, the Archeology, Geography and Natural History of the Bible
(ed. T. K. Cheyne and J. Sutherland Black; 4 vols.; New York: The Macmillan Company,
18991903), 2:264246.
12 Carl Meyer, Zur Entstehungsgeschichte des Buches Judith, Biblica 3 (1922): 193203.
13 Cf. Carey A. Moore, Judith (AB 40B; Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1985), 1012.
14 A. M. Dubarle, Les textes divers du livre de Judith, VT 8 (1958): 34473; see, however, also
Dubarle, Rectification: sur un texte hbreu de Judith, VT 11 (1961): 8687.
15 A. Schweizer, Untersuchungen uber die Reste eines hebraischen Textes vom ersten
Makkabaerbuch (Berlin: Poppelauer, 1901); unfortunately, we were unable to consult a
copy of this book, so we depend on the extensive review by Torrey.
16 Charles C. Torrey, Schweizers Remains of a Hebrew Text of 1 Maccabees, JBL 22 (1903):
5159. Compare how Torrey (p. 53) linked up the discussion about the original Hebrew
of 1 Maccabees with that about the original Hebrew text of Ben Sira: Since a part of the
original Hebrew of Ecclesiasticus has recently come to light, we are prepared to hear of
the recovery of the original text of other books of the Old Testament Apocrypha, now
preserved only in translations.
17 The studies about the Hebrew texts of Judith and 1 Maccabees mentioned above do not
address linguistic arguments.
Linguistic Observations on the Hebrew Prayer of Manasseh 115

that emerges. Regardless of its origin, PrMan-Heb has cultural and literary-
historical significance, being the only Hebrew witness from a Jewish context to
a prayer otherwise only known from Christian transmission channels.

2 Rabbinic Elements

Our analysis of the linguistic profile of PrMan-Heb will start with features that
are typical of Rabbinic Hebrew.18

2.1 Orthography
1. The pronominal suffix 1 sg. attached to plural nouns or prepositions with
a (pseudo-)plural ending is spelled : 2a19 my fathers; 2b8
my sins, my transgressions; 2b9+13 my iniquities;
2b9+10 my sins; 2b12 on me (contrast 2b16+17 ;)2b15
my wrongdoings; 2b16 in my sins; 2b17 before
me, my sins.
2. The Niphal imperfect is written with a yod as vowel letter in the prefix:
2b5 and you relent.
3. Word-internal consonantal yod is written as : 2b18 do not con-
demn me.19
4. The Tetragrammaton is written with three yods in 2b6 and 2b18 .
5. in 2b18 because you are the Lord of
the gods for the human beings is at first sight somewhat peculiar. There
is no exact parallel to in the Bible, the closest parallel being
in Dan 11:36. A more plausible explanation, however, is that it is a
short form of God; the Genizah manuscript in which PrMan-Heb
is found contains also other abbreviated forms of .20

2.2 Morphology
1. The form of the perfect 2 masc. sg. is ( contrast BH ): 2a20
( you who) made; 2b1 you commanded; 2b7 you

18 References are to the folio and line number of the Genizah manuscript. Thus 2a19 means:
line 19 of folia 2a.
19 See also below, Section 2.2.
20 Schfer and Shaked, Magische Texte aus der Kairoer Geniza, 27.
116 van Peursen

2. After the full imperfect is used, rather than the short form in 2b17
and let (your wrath) not burn.21
3. The Piel of the so-called hollow roots follows the pattern of the strong
verb: 2b18 ( do not) condemn me.22
4. The pronominal suffix attached to the negation does not take the
epenthetic nun: 3a1 I am not (contrast BH ).23

2.3 Morphosyntax (Conjunctions)

1. is used as a relative (exclusively; there are no cases of )in 2b5,
7, 9, 19, 20; and as a causal conjunction (cf. BH )in 2b16
I seek you because I need you; 2b18 ...
...and do not condemn me ... because you are the Lord ...; compare
also introducing an adnominal prepositional phrase in 2b8
than the sand (that is) on the seashore (contrast an adnomi-
nal prepositional phrase without relative in 2b34 your
anger over sinners). The introduction of an adnominal prepositional
phrase with a relative is common in Syriac.24

21 After the short imperfect is frequent throughout the CH period (including QH). In MH
the short imperfect is used only in literary and elevated style, see Gideon Haneman,
( A Morphology of Mishnaic Hebrew according to the Tradition of
the Parma MS [De Rossi 138]) (TSHLRS 3; Tel Aviv: Tel Aviv University, 1980), 3132;
Mordechai Mishor, ( The Tense System in Tannaitic
Hebrew) (Ph.D. diss., Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 1983), 8692; and van Peursen, The
Verbal System in the Hebrew Text of Ben Sira, 92.
22 Cf. M. H. Segal, A Grammar of Mishnaic Hebrew (Oxford: Clarendon, 1927), 8283 and
Segal, ( A Grammar of Mishnaic Hebrew) (Tel Aviv: Dvir, 1936), 143. See
also above, Section 2.1, on the orthography.
23 Cf. M. Prez Fernndez, An Introductory Grammar of Rabbinic Hebrew (trans. John F.
Elwolde; Leiden: Brill, 1997), 19.
24 Van Peursen, Language and Interpretation in the Syriac Text of Ben Sira: A Comparative
Linguistic and Literary Study (MPI 16; Leiden: Brill, 2007), 224. The examples given there

include Gen 1:9 the waters (that are) under the sky for MT
Linguistic Observations on the Hebrew Prayer of Manasseh 117

2. The following compound conjunctions are attested: because

(2b8); because (2b10; cf. BH ;) at the time when
(2a18; cf. etc. in MH);25 although (3a1).26

2.4 Syntax
1. There is one nominal clause with the pattern : 2b3
and there is none who can stand before your power. This pat-
tern is reminiscent of MH examples such as m. Mena. 4:3
it has nothing which renders it permissible,27 but the use of ( rather
than ) is remarkable.28
2. The pattern X is attested twice: 2b9 I have
no authority to look; 2b1011 and I do not
have the insolence to raise my head to you. Unlike the pattern ,
which is well attested in LBH and QH, the pattern X is common
in MH.29

2.5 Words and Phrases

1. PrMan-Heb contains a number of words that are infrequently attested
or unattested in BH, but common in RH: 2b3 to carry; 2b5
long, lasting;30 2b9 authority; 2b15 Qal to transgress;31 2b17

25 Cf. van Peursen, The Verbal System in the Hebrew Text of Ben Sira, 335, with references
to Prez Fernndez, Introductory Grammar of Rabbinic Hebrew, 20910, and M. Azar,
( The Syntax of Mishnaic Hebrew) (Jerusalem: Academy of the Hebrew
Language/University of Haifa, 1995), 11718; but note that in MH the compounds with
and are more common.
26 Cf. M. Jastrow, Dictionary of the Targumim, Talmud Babli, Yerushalmi and Midrashic
Literature (2 vols.; New York: Judaica, 18861903), 99b.
27 Example from Azar, , 89.
28 Cf. Prez Fernndez, Introductory Grammar of Rabbinic Hebrew, 41: The interrogatives
and can also have indefinite significance, particularly in the sequence / who-
ever, whatever...and especially when preceded and reinforced by ( etc.).
29 Cf. W. Th. van Peursen, Negation in the Hebrew of Ben Sira, in Sirach, Scrolls, and Sages:
Proceedings of a Second International Symposium on the Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls,
Ben Sira, and the Mishnah held at Leiden University, 1517 December 1997 (ed. T. Muraoka
and J. F. Elwolde; STDJ 33; Leiden: Brill, 1999), 22343, esp. 229.
30 Only three occurrences in BH: Job 11:8; 2 Sam 3:1; Jer 29:28; for its use in RH see J. Levy,
Neuhebrisches und Chaldisches Wrterbuch ber die Targumim und Midraschim (4 vols.;
Leipzig: F. A. Brockhaus, 18761889), 1:166a.
31  Qal occurs in the Bible only in Esth 1:16 and Dan 9:5.
118 van Peursen

Hitpael to repent; 2b17 Piel to condemn;32 3a1 worthy,

deserving; 3a2 ( + infinitive) appropriate.33
2. A word that is well-attested in both BH and RH but is used in PrMan-Heb
with a sense that is typically RH is , with the meaning world (rather
than eternity), in 2a19 the ruler over his world; and
2b2 the whole world praises you; also, in 2b17, (in) this
world in contrast to the world to come.34 The biblical usage is
attested as well, cf. 3a2 for ever and ever. The introduction
of the world to come in this prayer reflects acquaintance with rabbinic
discussions as to whether or not Manasseh will have a share in the world
to come.35
3. Rabbinic idioms include, in addition to the above-mentioned ,
2a18 to do repentance (e.g. m. Yoma 8:9; m. Ned. 9:3; m. Abot

3 Non-Rabbinic Features

The features discussed in Section 2 suggest a straightforward characterization

of PrMan-Heb as a rabbinic text, but there are also features that do not easily
fit into a rabbinic linguistic profile.

32 In the Hebrew Bible it occurs only in Dan 1:10, meaning to make guilty. See also Sir 11:18.
33 Compare Sir 41:16, where the Genizah MSS B and C have , but the Masada Scroll .
Since in BH we find other forms with a waw, such as Ps 93:5 ( probably to be inter-
preted as a Niphal of ), I have argued elsewhere that the Masada text should be inter-
preted as a Niphal of , and that the Genizah manuscripts reflect a later stage in the
history of the Hebrew language, in which the Niphal of and the Qal of have
merged; cf. van Peursen, Het Participium bij Ben Sira (M.A. thesis, Leiden University,
1994), 35. For the purpose of the present study it suffices to observe that the form in Heb-
PrMan ( )agrees with the form in the Genizah manuscripts of Ben Sira as against the
Masada Scroll. R. Leicht, A Newly Discovered Hebrew Version of the Apocryphal Prayer
of Manasseh, JSQ 3 (1996): 35973, at 366, refers to in the Yishtebach of the
morning prayer. For the construction of + infinitive see also van Peursen, The Verbal
System in the Hebrew Text of Ben Sira, 270.
34 Cf. Levy, Neuhebrisches und Chaldisches Wrterbuch ber die Targumim und Midra
schim, 3:655.
35 Leicht, A Newly Discovered Hebrew Version, 367, and Gutman and van Peursen, The Two
Syriac Versions of the Prayer of Manasseh, 4647.
36  occurs in the Bible with the meaning return (HALOT, 1800b).
Linguistic Observations on the Hebrew Prayer of Manasseh 119

3.1 Orthography
1. Sin (rather than samek) occurs in the form 2b13 they have over
taken me, for which we would expect in MH .37

3.2 Morphology
1. The lengthened imperative is used in 2b16 spare!38
2. Unusual in RH are perfect forms of to be able, as in 2b13 . In RH
we find only the participle ;the BH perfect structure , has
been replaced in RH by perfect forms of the verb + the participle .39

3.3 Morphosyntax (tenses)

1. The use of the imperfect for the present is attested in 2b5 and you
relent; 2b15 I know my wrongdoings; 2b19 who

3.4 Syntax (phrase structure)

1. The use of the construct state agrees with the rules of BH, e.g., 2a18
Prayer of Manasseh, King of Judah; 3a1 all the
days of my life; 3a2 all the hosts of heaven.40 Although
it is unwarranted to call these examples, non-rabbinic, it is worth not-
ing that analytical genitive constructions with , which are common in
RH, do not occur. Furthermore, typically BH is the construction with an
adjective in 2b4 those whose heart is upright.41

37 Cf. Segal, A Grammar of Mishnaic Hebrew, 32; see Segal, , 34, on samek
replacing sin, but there this verb is not mentioned.
38 Cf. Haneman, , 31; Prez Fernndez, Introductory Grammar
of Rabbinic Hebrew, 151; and van Peursen, The Verbal System in the Hebrew Text of Ben
Sira, 92.
39 Prez Fernndez, Introductory Grammar of Rabbinic Hebrew, 114; see also Haneman,
, 7172.
40 Other examples: 2a19 the God of my fathers; 2b6 the evil over the
people; 2b6 the God of the righteous; 2b6 the good for the
righteous; 2b8 the seashore; 2b10 fetters of iron; 2b13
the hairs of my head; 2b18 under the depths of the earth; 2b18
the human beings; 3a2 for ever and ever. Note that we interpret 2b18
as an apposition: the Lord God [ ;]see Section 3.6.
41 For the use of this construction in BH see T. Muraoka, The Status Constructus of
Adjectives in Biblical Hebrew, VT 27 (1977): 37580.
120 van Peursen

2. Another peculiarity is the discord or rather the constructio ad sensum in

2a1920 their righteous offspring, but this type of disagree-
ment is acceptable in both BH and RH.42

3.5 Syntax (clause structure)

1. The construction in 3a1 I do not deserve to save me
(i.e. to be saved) is peculiar in that the suffix attached to the infinitive is
superfluous.43 The same applies to 3a2 to you, it is appro-
priate to praise you.44
2. We find a nominal clause with in 2b45 it is
you with whom is mercy; 2b6 you are the Lord,
the God of the righteous; 2b18 because you
are the Lord, the God for the human beings. According to Azar there is
no example of in the Mishnah and only one example of
(m. Naz. 8:1).45
3. The use of ( rather than ) for someone who in 2b3 is remarkable.46

3.6 Words and Phrases

1. 2b10 insolence in 2b1011 and I do
not have the insolence to raise my head to you, is remarkable. It seems
to have a meaning parallel to in 2b9 I have no
authority to look. I have found no direct parallels for this use of , but
it is reminiscent of its use in the Bible in combination with ( e.g., Ezek
3:78) or other idioms expressing the strength of the .

42 Disagreement in number is attested with as subject of a plural verb (Jer 31:3; Ezra
9:2; Neh 9:2); for the idiom used here compare Prov 11:21 the offspring of the
righteous (but there the two words constitute a construct state connection rather than
an apposition). For disagreement in number with an attributive adjective, Joon and
Muraoka, A Grammar of Biblical Hebrew, 148a, give as an example Isa 9:1 .
In MH, with collectives, adjective agreement is according to semantic sense, according
to Prez Fernndez, Introductory Grammar of Rabbinic Hebrew, 81.
43 Cf. Joon and Muraoka, A Grammar of Biblical Hebrew, 124s, on the identification of the
subject in infinitive constructions.
44 Leicht, A Newly Discovered Hebrew Version, 367, calls the use of the suffix pronoun here
rather clumsy.
45 Azar, , 80. The construction is common in Syriaccf., e.g., Sir 36:22
that you alone are God, corresponding to ] [][
in the Hebrew text (MS B)as well as in other Semitic languages; cf. Van Peursen,
Language and Interpretation in the Syriac Text of Ben Sira, 304.
46 See Section 2.4 above.
Linguistic Observations on the Hebrew Prayer of Manasseh 121

2. In 2b1112 we find to make your anger endure. In BH and RH

this idiom is used for to refrain from anger,47 and the pronominal suffix
attached to , if present, refers to the (logical) subject of the verb. Thus
we find Isa 48:9 for my own names sake I refrain
from anger; Prov 19:11 a mans insight makes him
patient; similarly Sir 30:22 (MS B);48 cf. patience (Prov 25:15)
and patient (e.g., Joel 2:13, quoted below). The use of this idiom
in PrMan-Heb, in a meaning opposite to its usual meaning (provoking
anger, rather than refraining from it) and in an uncommon syntactic con-
struction (the logical subject of the verb is I, not the you referred to by
the suffix attached to ), is striking.
3. The participle in 3a12 is problem-
atic. Leicht translates with because all hosts of heaven ask you for
compassion,49 but adds in a footnote that perhaps is a scribal
error for , since the other versions suggest a word like to praise.50
Piel occurs only once in the Bible, in Prov 26:25, meaning to make
gracious, favourable (voice). In the meaning to ask for compassion
(cf. Leichts translation) the Hitpolel is used in BH. The Piel of is not
given in the RH dictionaries of Jastrow51 and Levy.52
4. 3a2 all the hosts of heaven differs from the biblical idiom
, with the singular form of . For the plural in similar con-
texts, DCH (7:67) gives only two examples from Qumran Hebrew, one in
a reconstructed text in 1QHa 9:12 (but not anymore reconstructed in DJD
40), and one in 1QHa 5:2526 your holy vault and
[al]l its hosts, where the suffix attached to a plural form of refers to

47 H ALOT, 88b.
48 Cf. van Peursen, The Verbal System in the Hebrew Text of Ben Sira, 249.
49 Leicht, A Newly Discovered Hebrew Version, 373; cf. Schfer and Shaked, Magische Texte
aus der Kairoer Geniza, 53: denn alle Heerscharen des Himmels flehen zu dir.
50 Leicht, A Newly Discovered Hebrew Version, 373 n. 45 (see also p. 365: If in v. 15
is no scribal mistake this cannot be called a correct translation of the sources).
51 Jastrow, Dictionary of the Targumim, Talmud Babli, Yerushalmi and Midrashic Literature,
52 Levy, Neuhebrisches und Chaldisches Wrterbuch ber die Targumim und Midraschim,
122 van Peursen

4 Explanations for the Non-Rabbinic Elements

The rabbinic features of PrMan-Heb discussed in Section 2 make it basically a

RH text. This calls for an explanation for those features, discussed in Section 3,
that do not agree with this overall picture. This concerns BH features as well
as peculiarities that are unusual both according to BH and according to RH
standards. We will first focus on two phenomena highlighted by Leicht: biblical
quotations and etymological congruities with the Syriac text.

4.1 Biblical Quotations

PrMan-Heb contains many quotations from and allusions to the Bible. As Leicht
puts it: In many cases the translator adapts the verses he borrows from the
Hebrew Bible rather than rendering his textual sources very exactly.53 Some
of the non-rabbinic elements discussed above come from biblical quotations:

1. For the sin rather than samek in and the form in 2b1314
and my iniqui-
ties have overtaken me and I cannot see; they have become more numer-
ous [reading ]than the hairs of my head, and my heart has left me,
compare Ps 40:13
2. For the construct state of an adjective, in 2b4
and innumerable are your mercies and your righteous
acts to those whose heart is upright, compare Ps 36:11
continue your mercy to those who know you and your
righteousness to those whose heart is upright.
3. The use of the imperfect for the present tense in 2b15
for I know my wrongdoings and my sin is always before
me can be explained from Ps 51:5 .
4. Perhaps the construction of rather than for someone who in
2b3 and there is none who can stand before your
power comes from Nah 1:6 who can stand before his
anger?54 Yet, though the sequence is identical, the syntactic
structure in which these words function is different.
5. Note also that the construction in 2b8 than the sand
(that is) on the seashore comes from Judg 7:12
(contrast the sand of the sea in the Greek version of PrMan).

53 Leicht, A Newly Discovered Hebrew Version, 365.

54 Leicht, ibid., 365, erroneously refers to Neh 1:6.
Linguistic Observations on the Hebrew Prayer of Manasseh 123

6. Apart from these examples, which affect the linguistic profile of the text,
other biblical quotations or allusions occur as well. Thus 2b56
and you relent the evil over the people (with people instead
of human beings in the Greek text) seems to be influenced by Exod
32:12 and relent the evil against your people and
Joel 2:13 slow to anger and abounding
in love, and he relents the evil. 2b19 show
me, Lord, your mercy and give me your salvation is a direct quote from
Ps 85:8 .
7. The lengthened imperative of the verb to spare (2b16) occurs also
in Neh 13:22 and spare me according to the greatness
of your mercy and Joel 2:17 spare, o Lord, your people,
but since there are no other analogies with these passages, apart from
words and idioms that we can expect in penitential prayers in general
(cf. in Neh 13:22 and have compassion in Joel 2:17), we do not
consider the occurrence of the lengthened imperative in PrMan-Heb to
be the result of a quotation.
8. Also the following examples are unsure: 2b10 fetters of iron
which occurs (as an Aramaism in BH) also in Ps 105:18 and 149:8; 2b10
and my sins are heavy, where we find the combination of
and , which occurs also in Gen 18:20 ; 2b14
I inclined my heart, which occurs also in Ps 119:112 (contrast I incline
the knee of my heart in the Greek).

Biblical quotations do not explain all non-RH features. Thus the use of the
imperfect for the present tense in 2b15 can be explained from Ps 51:5, but the
same usage is attested in 2b5 and 2b19. The biblical elements should hence
be described not only in terms of quotations from or allusions to biblical pas-
sages, but also as biblical language used in an otherwise RH text.

4.2 Close Similarity to Syriac

Can we say more about the linguistic profile of PrMan-Heb than that it is basi-
cally a RH text that includes BH elements, partly in quotations, partly in a
general tendency to employ biblical language? One factor should be included
in the discussion, which links the linguistic analysis with text-historical con-
siderations. Leicht has drawn attention to the great number of etymological
124 van Peursen

congruities between the Hebrew and the Syriac versions.55 The most obvious
examples that he mentions are the following:56

1. 2a1920 their righteous offspring = SyrB

(cf. SyrA )
2. 2b45, 2b18 you are... = SyrA+B
3. 2b7 you put repentance for me = SyrA+B
4. 2b10 I am bent = SyrA+B
5. 2b16 57 and do not destroy me because of my sins =
SyrB ( cf. SyrA )
6. 2b18 58 do not condemn me under the depths
of the earth = SyrB

( cf. SyrA

and do not condemn me and banish me to
the depths of earth)59

Another example of possible Syriac influence that Leicht mentions is:

7. = SyrA+B , but he adds: although this can be

due to the Hebrew language itself.60

To this last example we can add the observation that the biblical idiom
is rendered in the Peshitta with a plural in, for example, Deut 17:3 MT:
, Pesh .61
We admit that such etymological congruities should play a role in estab-
lishing the textual relationships between the various sources. For our linguistic
analysis, however, it should be noted that the features of the Hebrew text that

55 Ibid., 364.
56 We distinguish between SyrA, the version found in the Syriac Didascalia and biblical
manuscripts, and SyrB, found in Melkite Horologia; cf. Gutman and van Peursen, The Two
Syriac Versions of the Prayer of Manasseh, 2425.
57 Leicht, A Newly Discovered Hebrew Version, has instead of in his list on p. 367, but
the correct reading in his text on p. 370. In general, one can observe the alternation of
( e.g., 2b17 do not bring) and ( 2b16, 17, 18).
58 Here, too, Leicht, A Newly Discovered Hebrew Version, has instead of in his list on
p. 364, but the correct reading in his text on p. 370.
59 Note the difference between the two Syriac versions, ignored by Leicht.
60 Cf. ibid., 364.
61 Cf. P. G. Borbone and K. D. Jenner, eds., The Old Testament in Syriac according to the
Peshitta Version, Part V, Concordance 1: The Pentateuch (Leiden: Brill, 1997), 304b.
Linguistic Observations on the Hebrew Prayer of Manasseh 125

can be accounted for by the similarities with the Syriac text are not in them-
selves linguistically problematic. Thus the constructio ad sensum
is indeed remarkable, especially in comparison with the singular form in the
Greek, but fits well with the rules of BH and RH. Also the peculiar structure62
is reminiscent of biblical passages such as Isa 37:16
you are God (or: it is you who are God).63 Likewise, the use of the 2nd person
perfect in the first verses instead of the participle found in the Greek can well
be explained by the influence of the Syriac, but as such the Hebrew text is not
problematic at all. An exception can be made for 3a2 because
the plural in this construction is indeed unattested in the Hebrew Bible.64
Moreover, here, too, as in the case of biblical quotations, the etymologi-
cal congruities do not result in consistently applied correspondences. Note,
for example, that , which twice corresponds to Syriac , occurs
also in 2b6, where SyrA+B has only . Also, the etymological congruities
cannot account for the most striking lexical peculiarities in the Hebrew text.
Thus 2b1112 to make your anger endure cannot be explained by
a translation error, since SyrA+B has the normal I provoked
your anger. The same applies to the lexical peculiarities mentioned above, in
Section 3.6, such as the use of insolence in 2b10.

5 Discussion and Evaluation

5.1 The Linguistic Profile of PrMan-Heb

The linguistic profile of PrMan-Heb differs considerably from that of other
Hebrew writings from the Second Temple period such as Ben Sira or the Dead
Sea Scrolls. PrMan-Heb is basically a rabbinic text reflecting rabbinic gram-
mar and lexicon. Also in its contents PrMan-Heb has an interesting rabbinic

62 Cf. Leicht, A Newly Discovered Hebrew Version, 364: The peculiar structure ,
found in the Syriac version , is very striking as well.
63 This verse has played a major role in the linguistic study of the Hebrew tripartite nominal
clause; see van Peursen, Three Approaches to the Tripartite Nominal Clause in Classical
Syriac, in Corpus Linguistics and Textual History: A Computer-Assisted Interdisciplinary
Approach to the Peshitta (ed. P. S. F. van Keulen and W. Th. van Peursen; SSN 48; Assen:
Van Gorcum, 2006), 15773, esp. 15859; cf. F. Delitzsch, Biblischer Commentar ber den
Prophet Jesaia (Leipzig: Dorffling und Franke, 1866), 363: in ist nachdrck-
liche Wiederaufnahme, also Verstrkung des Subj., wie 43,25. 51,12. 2S 7,28. Jer. 49,12.
Ps. 44,5. Neh. 9,6f. Ezr. 5,11: tu ille (nicht tu es ille (Ges. 121,2) = tu, nullus alius.
64 See Section 3.6 above.
126 van Peursen

element, because it reflects acquaintance with rabbinic discussions about

Manassehs share in the world to come.
There are also some biblical forms and expressions, such as the occurrence
of the lengthened imperative. Some of them occur in biblical quotations and
allusions. The biblical influx may be due to the liturgical character of the text
and does as such not change its overall rabbinic appearance.
There are also some linguistic oddities such as the construction with
insolence in 2b10, the use of to make your anger endure in 2b11
12, and the Piel of ask for compassion in 3a1. Leicht ascribed these oddities
to the translators poor knowledge of the Hebrew language,65 and we think he
is right. It is hard to find any other satisfying explanation for these features.
Regarding the question about the origin of PrMan-Heb, this linguistic evi-
dence is not decisive. If we postulate the composition of PrMan somewhere
the late Second Temple period (but cf. n. 7 above), it is clear that the Genizah
text is not the original composition, but this does not compel us to assume that
it is a medieval composition (or translation), since it could also be the result
of an inner-Hebrew development, reflecting, on the one hand, adaptations to
later Hebrew usage and, on the other hand, the influence of biblical passages
with some traces of unsuccessful adaptations of the text.
What we can observe, however, is that PrMan-Heb has a linguistic profile
different from that of other texts from the Second Temple period that have
been discovered in the Genizah. Thus in the case of Ben Sira, even though
there are linguistic differences between the Masada and Qumran texts on
the one hand and the Genizah texts on the otherand the latter contain
some late features, such as the typically RH idiom , bet midrash, in
Sir 51:23 (MS B)66we can even say of the Genizah texts that they reflect much
more linguistic diversity than PrMan-Heb, and that they combine Standard
BH, Late BH, and Post-BH elements, as well as many unique features. The same
applies to the Damascus Document. In this case too, the discovery of the Dead
Sea Scrolls revealed not only the way in which the text has been linguistically

65 Leicht, A Newly Discovered Hebrew Version, 367.

66 On this idiom see van Peursen, Sirach 51:1330 in Hebrew and Syriac, 36970; on the rab-
binic flavour of the Hebrew text (and the Syriac text) of Ben Sira see further van Peursen,
Language and Interpretation in the Syriac Text of Ben Sira, 115, with references.
Linguistic Observations on the Hebrew Prayer of Manasseh 127

altered and updated in its transmission history,67 but also close linguistic affin-
ities with Qumran Hebrew and agreements with the CD fragments.68

5.2 Textual Affiliations

None of the linguistic oddities in PrMan-Heb mentioned above can be
explained as translation errors from the Greek or the Syriac versions, because
in each case these versions have a different reading that cannot account for the
reading in the Hebrew text.
There is one case where the Hebrew text is likely the result of a translation
error because it seems to reflect a wrong rendering of the Greek text, but in
that case the Hebrew text is not problematic in itself. In the Greek text of v. 13
we find asking I request, in which the obvious interpreta-
tion of is asking; however, the Greek verb can also mean to need,
and that interpretation is reflected in Hebrew 2b16
I seek you because I need you.69
The textual affiliations with the Syriac text seem to be stronger, especially
because of the etymological congruities between the Hebrew and Syriac ver-
sions to which Leicht has drawn attention. However, these are not as pervasive
as, for example, those between the Hebrew text of Sir 51:1330 in the Genizah
MS B and the Syriac text,70 for which it has been suggested that the Hebrew
text is a retranslation from the Syriac. The divergences between the Hebrew
and the Syriac texts are too large to assume that the Hebrew presents a rather
literal translation from the Syriac. This means that the model that has been
used in the comparison of the Hebrew and Syriac versions of Sir 51:1330 can-
not be applied in the very same form to PrMan-Heb.

67 E. Qimron did not include the Genizah manuscripts of the Damascus Document in his
Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls (HSS 29; Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1986), since their text was
distorted by the copyists of the Middle Ages and thus does not reflect the DSS language,
especially in its phonology and morphology (p. 15).
68 Cf. S. E. Fassberg, The Linguistic Study of the Damascus Document: A Historical
Perspective, The Damascus Document, A Centennial of Discovery: Proceedings of the
Third International Symposium of the Orion Center for the Study of the Dead Sea Scrolls
and Associated Literature, 48 February, 1998 (ed. J. M. Baumgarten, E. G. Chazon, and
A. Pinnick; STDJ 34; Leiden: Brill, 2000), 5367, at 67: The relationship of phenomena in
the Damascus Document to features in late biblical Hebrew, mishnaic Hebrew, and the
Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls has been proven beyond doubt. Moreover, the Geniza
manuscripts of the Damascus Document, once disparaged linguistically, are now recog-
nized as medieval copies that still possess features of an earlier authentic type of Hebrew.
69 Cf. Leicht, A Newly Discovered Hebrew Version, 364.
70 Cf. van Peursen, Sirach 51:1330 in Hebrew and Syriac, passim.
128 van Peursen

The agreements with the Syriac text in themselves still do not compel us
to consider PrMan-Heb a retranslation from Syriac. If remarkable elements
in the Hebrew text correspond to similar constructions in the Syriac text and
the constructions in that case are less remarkable in Syriac, the congruities
as such would be a strong argument for the dependency of the Hebrew text
upon the Syriac. However, where the Hebrew text is somewhat extraordinary,
as, for example, in 2b16 and do not destroy me because of
my sins, the construction in the Syriac text (SyrB)
is just as
uncommon as the Hebrew construction. In such a case the agreements do not
answer the question as to whether the Syriac text derives from the Hebrew or
the other way round.

5.3 Text-Historical Reconstructions

In Sections 5.15.2 we have seen that neither the linguistic profile of PrMan-
Heb nor its textual affiliations with the Greek and Syriac versions provide
decisive indications for its origin. We will now take a broader perspective and
address the question as to how the linguistic profile and the textual affiliations
can be projected into the textual history of PrMan.
It is generally acknowledged that in the Greek transmission the text of
PrMan in the Didascalia has priority over all other extant versions.71 It is also
likely that PrMan entered the Syriac tradition through the Syriac translation of
the Didascalia, and that from there it was introduced into biblical manuscripts
(SyrA).72 The relation of this Syriac version (SyrA) with the version found in
the Melkite Horologia (SyrB) is complex, but there is strong evidence that both
derive from a Greek text, even if not from exactly the same Greek Vorlage.73
That PrMan-Heb stands between the Greek and the Syriac, i.e. that it is a
translation of the Greek and was in turn the basis for the Syriac translation, is
unlikely because of the interrelatedness of the Greek and the Syriac versions as
part of the Didascalia. It follows that if we try to integrate PrMan-Heb within a
reconstruction of the textual history of the Greek and Syriac versions, it should
stand either at the beginning (as the source text of the Greek text), or at the
end (as a translation from the Greek and/or the Syriac).
If we assume that PrMan-Heb stands at the beginning of the textual his-
tory, this would require the postulation of a Hebrew text that on the one hand
served as the source text of the Greek translation, and on the other hand under-
went an inner-Hebrew development up to the version found in the Genizah.

71 Gutman and van Peursen, The Two Syriac Versions of the Prayer of Manasseh, 89.
72 Ibid., 24.
73 Ibid., 201.
Linguistic Observations on the Hebrew Prayer of Manasseh 129

Apart from the fact that this postulation is highly hypothetical, because of the
absence of any Hebrew manuscript corroboration of this reconstruction, it is
problematic because of the agreements between the Hebrew and the Syriac,
not only the etymological congruities, but also, for example, cases where the
Hebrew and the Syriac versions have a perfect against a participle in the Greek
text. It is hard to explain how these features have been retained (or rather: rein-
troduced) in the transition from Hebrew to Greek and from Greek to Syriac.
Because of these text-historical considerations, I prefer the alternative
reconstruction, namely that the Hebrew text is a retranslation from the Greek
and/or Syriac. As indicated above, the correspondence between the Greek
asking I request (v. 13) and the Hebrew
I seek you because I need you (2b16) argues for the latters depen-
dency on the Greek; the remarkable patterns of formal agreement argue for
dependency on the Syriac. This agrees with Leichts view that the Hebrew text
depends both on a Syriac text (more precisely, a text of the SyrB type) and on
a Greek text (close to the text of the Codex Turicensis). As a consequence, the
question as to whether the Greek version in the end goes back to a Hebrew
original (cf. note 8 above) becomes irrelevant to our analysis of the Genizah
text and cannot be answered on the basis of this text.

5.4 Historical Considerations

The text-historical reconstruction does not answer the question of how the
Hebrew text was written. Was there a Hebrew scribe who had both a Greek
and a Syriac text in front of him? And if so, what made him decide to resort to
either the one or the other? And why did he decide to translate this document
and where did he get his sources from?
In our study on the two Syriac versions of PrMan, we have proposed (follow-
ing a suggestion that we received from James K. Aitken) that Christians who
had converted to Judaism were responsible for the (re-)adaptation of Christian
sources. Since these converts were acquainted with these sources and knew
their languages, but probably learned Hebrew at a later age, this assumption
may account for those peculiarities that can be explained from a poor knowl-
edge of Hebrew.74
The interactions between Jews, Christians, and Muslims in all areas of life
and culture is well-documented in the vast collection of the Genizah materials.
That the exchange also concerned religious texts and practices is apparent, for

74 Ibid., 201.
130 van Peursen

example, from some Syriac liturgical texts from the Genizah.75 The text under
discussion is another piece of evidence of this exchange.
The origin of the PrMan-Heb can be placed in the wider cultural context of
Jewish translation activity in the Middle Ages in which the Jewish or allegedly
Jewish sources that had been transmitted through Christian channels were
rediscovered by Jews who translated them into Hebrew. This activity gave rise
to an abundance of Hebrew translations of all kinds of literature, as has been
described in detail in the still classic work by M. Steinschneider.76 Thus, cul-
turally, the Hebrew versions of the books of Judith and Maccabees discussed
above provide better parallels to PrMan-Heb than the Genizah fragments of
Ben Sira or the Damascus Document. Whether this is also true linguistically
deserves further research. Above we noted the differences between the linguis-
tic profiles of the Genizah texts of Ben Sira and the Damascus Document on the
one hand, and that of PrMan-Heb on the other. A comparison of the linguistic
profile of PrMan-Heb with that of the other mediaeval Hebrew translations
is beyond the scope of the present study. Since until now the study of these
translations has focused on textual affiliations and the quest for the original
versions of these books, a linguistic description of them is still a desideratum.

6 Conclusions

The linguistic profile of PrMan-Heb in itself does not prove its dependency on
a Greek or Syriac text. The linguistic observations put forward to support this
argument are not decisive. PrMan-Heb can be read as a rabbinic text, reflecting
rabbinic language and ideas, with some passages that reflect biblical influence.
It is only the textual affiliations and general text-critical and text-historical
considerations that necessitate an explanation in terms of a retranslation from
the Syriac or Greek rather than in terms of development within the Hebrew.
Does this mean that our research has been useless because PrMan-Heb can
only be positioned at the end of a long and complex transmission history?
Certainly not! PrMan-Heb is a document that deserves to be studied in its own
right, whether or not it reflects a Hebrew text from the Second Temple period,
and whether or not it brings us back to the precursors of the Greek and Syriac

75 Ibid., 1213.
76 S. P. Brock, East Syrian Liturgical Fragments from the Cario Genizah, OrChr 68 (1984):
5879 and Brock, Some Further East Syrian Liturgical Fragments from the Cairo Genizah,
OrChr 74 (1990): 4461; cf. Leicht, A Newly Discovered Hebrew Version, 368 and Gutman
and van Peursen, The Two Syriac Versions of the Prayer of Manasseh, 12.
Linguistic Observations on the Hebrew Prayer of Manasseh 131

versions that were available. We find here in a clearly Jewish environment, and
with some adaptations to the Jewish context, a text that otherwise was trans-
mitted only in Christian channels. As such it is a unique witness to PrMan,
which adds an interesting chapter to the reception history of Manasseh and his
Prayer. It also informs us about cultural and religious exchanges between Jews
and Christians in the Middle Ages.
The Nature of Qumran Hebrew as Revealed through
Pesher Habakkuk

Gary A. Rendsburg

1.0. One of the major accomplishments of Hebraists in the 20th century

was the establishment of a reliable methodology for the diachronic study of
Biblical Hebrew.1 Based on the foundations laid by S. R. Driver and others,2
the two scholars who stand out in this field are E. Y. Kutscher and Avi Hurvitz,
mentor and disciple, respectively.3 The results of their investigations led to a
scholarly consensus regarding the periodization of Biblical Hebrew, with rec-
ognition of three chronological strata: Archaic Biblical Hebrew (ca. 11501000
BCE), Standard Biblical Hebrew (ca. 1000550 BCE), and Late Biblical Hebrew
(ca. 550200 BCE).
Just as this consensus emerged, however, a challenge arose, mainly from the
pens of Ian Young, Robert Rezetko, and Martin Ehrensvrd.4 These scholars
aver that the differences between Standard Biblical Hebrew (SBH) and Late
Biblical Hebrew (LBH) result not from matters of diachrony, but rather from
matters of style.5 Hence, according to this view, both registers were in use dur-
ing the post-Exilic period, with the former a more conservative style, used by
certain scribes who continued to write in an older form of the language, and
with the latter a more liberal style, used by other scribes who wrote in a more
contemporary fashion. To demonstrate the manner in which the former style
still could be employed deep into the Second Temple Period, Young, Rezetko,

1 For an excellent survey, see Aaron Hornkohl, Biblical Hebrew: Periodization, EHLL 1:30414.
2 See especially the many references to language issues scattered throughout S. R. Driver, An
Introduction to the Literature of the Old Testament (12th edition; New York: Charles Scribners
Sons, 1906).
3 E. Y. Kutscher, A History of the Hebrew Language (Jerusalem: Magnes, 1982), esp. 12, 4445,
7785; Avi Hurvitz, Ben Laon leLaon (Jerusalem: Mosad Bialik, 1972); Avi Hurvitz, A
Linguistic Study of the Relationship between the Priestly Source and the Book of Ezekiel (Paris:
Gabalda, 1982); and numerous articles written by Avi Hurvitz over the course of almost half a
4 Ian Young, Robert Rezetko, and Martin Ehrensvrd, Linguistic Dating of Biblical Texts (2 vols.;
London: Equinox, 2008).
5 In addition to the abbreviations included in this sentence, note also: QH = Qumran Hebrew;
MH = Mishnaic Hebrew.

koninklijke brill nv, leiden, 5|doi .63/9789004299313_010

The Nature of Qumran Hebrew as Revealed 133

and Ehrensvrd present the case of Pesher Habakkuk (1QpHab).6 To their mind,
this composition evinces relatively few LBH features, to such an extent, in fact,
that it may be compared with other SBH texts such as portions of Samuel and

2.0. The LBH features identified by Young in 1QpHab are the following:
2.1. with two separate items inherent in this phrase:
a) The noun solution, interpretation (cf. Qoh 8:1; Sir 38:14
MS B).
b) introducing complement clause (much more common in
Qohelet, Esther, Daniel, Ezra-Nehemiah, Chronicles, than in SBH).7
2.2. Preference for Hiphil over Qal:
a) 4:2 mock (cf. Ps 22:9, Job 21:3, Neh 2:19, 3:33, 2 Chr 30:10; else-
where 12x as Qal)
b) 9:11 acted wickedly (cf. 1 Sam 14:47, Ps 106:6, Job 34:12, Dan
9:5, 11:32, 12:10, Neh 9:33, 2 Chr 20:35, 23:3; elsewhere 9x as Qal)8

6 Young, Rezetko, and Ehrensvrd, Linguistic Dating of Biblical Texts, 1:25562, 27176. In light
of the more detailed article written by Young alone (Late Biblical Hebrew and the Qumran
Pesher Habakkuk, JHS 8 [2008], 138, art. 25), one assumes that he is the main contributor
to this particular subject. Henceforth, accordingly, I shall refer to the view of Young, Rezetko,
and Ehrensvrd as simply Young.
7 See the list compiled by Robert D. Holmstedt, The Story of Ancient Hebrew er, ANES 43
(2006): 726, at 10 n. 10.
8 The outlier here is 1 Sam 14:47, since it appears in a clearly SBH composition. But as Noam
Mizrahi pointed out to me during the oral presentation of this paper in Leuven, the pas-
sage is textually difficult and suspect, especially in light of LXX he was being kept
safe (thus the NETS rendering), the last word in the verse. Note that Greek frequently
renders Hebrew save, rescue, which presumably was present in the LXX Vorlage.
One could imagine, for example, an original text which read =( Hiphil) or
(= Niphal) he would save, he would be victorious, which eventually served as the LXX
Vorlage (the latter option is suggested by the passive voice in the Greek), but which was
changed (purposefully?) by a later scribe to he would transgress during the Persian
period, during which time the Hiphil served to express this semantic notion, as opposed to
the Qal. See S. R. Driver, Notes on the Hebrew Text of the Books of Samuel (Oxford: Clarendon,
1890), 9192. Alas, the last word that can be read in 4QSama 6 2 is and how often does
this happen in Dead Sea Scrolls scholarship!
134 Rendsburg

2.3. Eighteen verbal object suffixes vs. zero instances of plus suffix;9 as
4:7 they overtake them
4:7 to capture them
4:8 and they destroy them
5:11 and they did not help them
7:2 he did not make known to him
7:4 he made known to him
8:2 he will rescue them
9:10 he gave him
10:4 he will bring him up
10:5 he will condemn him
10:5 he will judge him
11:7 to swallow them
11:8 and to cause them to stumble
11:15 it will swallow him
12:5 he will judge him
12:13 they made them
12:13 to worship them
12:14 they will not save them
2.4.Preference for ( 40x vs. 2x , even if this count includes 20 instances
of the characteristic phrase ;) one notes especially the following
a) 1:4 ( ] even though the lemma Hab 1:2 reads )
b) 4:2 ( cf. Neh 3:33; elsewhere in BH typically with - ,
sometimes with -)
c) 4:2 / 4:56 ( cf. Neh 2:19; elsewhere
in BH with -)
d) 12:3 ( cf. Joel 4:4, Ps 13:6, 103:10, 116:7, 119:17, 142:8, 2 Chr
20:11; elsewhere with direct object or with -)
e) 7:12 ( cf. Neh 9:30 ;
elsewhere in BH with -)

9 For discussion, see Robert Polzin, Late Biblical Hebrew: Toward an Historical Typology of
Biblical Hebrew Prose (HSM 12; Missoula, Mont.: Scholars Press, 1976), 2831; Mark F. Rooker,
Biblical Hebrew in Transition: The Language of the Book of Ezekiel (JSOTSS 90; Sheffield: JSOT
Press, 1990), 8687; and Richard M. Wright, Linguistic Evidence for the Pre-Exilic Date of the
Yahwist Source (London: T&T Clark, 2005), 3741.
The Nature of Qumran Hebrew as Revealed 135

2.5. Double plurals:

a) 6:4 ( cf. BH 11x)
b) 8:1213 ( [] cf. BH )
c) 12:8 ( cf. BH
2.6. secret, mystery, appearing as the construct plural 3x in col. 7
(7:5, 7:8, 7:14).10
2.7.To quantify these data, and to place them within the context of other
ancient Hebrew compositions, Young invokes sample 500-word texts from the
literary corpus. The 6 above-listed LBH traits all appear within the 500 words
that span 1QpHab 5:312:13,11 a datum which places this portion of Pesher
Habakkuk on par with SBH texts such as 1 Sam 13:114:9; 2 Sam 6:120a, 7:112;
1 Kgs 2:129i.e., other 500-word extracts which include 6 LBH features. These
stand in contrast to selected 500-word excerpts from core LBH books such as
Ezra, Daniel, Chronicles, Nehemiah, and Esther, which have 25, 24, 22, 20, and
17 LBH traits, respectively, within the same span of material. Which is to say: a
writer in the 1st century BCE, the presumed date of Pesher Habakkuk, still was
capable of writing SBH, notwithstanding the development of LBH in the pre-
ceding centuries spanning the Persian and Hellenistic periods. This is thus far
Youngs position, though, as we shall see, he neglected to include in the mix a
host of other LBH features present in 1QpHab.

3.0.Prime among these LBH traits are matters of style and syntax identified by
Frank Polak in his extensive researches into the different registers of the bibli-
cal Hebrew literary corpus.
3.1.One of the most crucial discoveries made by Polak is the increased use
of hypotaxis (subordination) in LBH prose, in contrast to the more typical
parataxis that dominates in SBH.12 Moreover, the hypotaxis of LBH at times
works downward through several levels, with subordination upon subordina-
tion. Pesher Habakkuk reveals a number of such instances:13

10 See further below,8.7.

11 Biblical quotes are excluded from the sample, according to Young, Rezetko, and
Ehrensvrd, Linguistic Dating of Biblical Texts, 1:274 n. 42.
12 See, amongst his many studies, Frank Polak, Sociolinguistics: A Key to the Typology and
the Social Background of Biblical Hebrew, HS 47 (2006): 11562, esp. 12736.
13 Since Polak treats mainly narrative prose in his research, I have limited my selections from
1QpHab to those passages which relate past events. These are not quite narrative prose,
of course, but they are the closest approximation thereto in our document. The transla-
tions (which are mine) are included in order to help the reader apprehend the hypotaxis,
especially since the subordinating particles are indicated by italics. The Hebrew originals
are taken from The Dead Sea Scrolls Electronic Library Program (ed. Emanuel Tov; Brigham
136 Rendsburg

1QpHab 2:610
[ ]

[ ] [ ]

[ ]
[ ]

6. They are the oppress[ors of the covena]nt who will not believe
7. when they hear all that is to co[me up]on the latter generation from
the mouth of
8. the Priest whom God has placed in [his heart the understand]ing to
interpret all
9. the words of his servants the prophets, through [whom] God has
10. all that is to come upon his people and [his] com[munity].

1QpHab 5:912


9. Its interpretation is about the house of Absalom

10. and the men of their council, who kept quiet upon the rebuking of the
Teacher of Righteousness,
11. and they did not help him against the Man of the Lie, [vacat] who has
12. the Torah in the midst of their entire congregation.

Young University; Leiden: Brill, 2006) (henceforth DSSEL), though I have kept an eye on
other editions as well, e.g., Maurya P. Horgan, Habakkuk Pesher (1QpHab), in The Dead
Sea Scrolls: Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek Texts with English Translations, vol. 6B: Pesharim,
Other Commentaries, and Related Documents (ed. J. H. Charlesworth; PTSDSSP; Tbingen:
Mohr Siebeck, 2002), 15785; and Elisha Qimron, Megillot Midbar Yehuda: ha-ibburim
ha-Ivriyim (3 vols.; Jerusalem: Yad BenZvi, 20102015), 1:24357.
14 Qimron, Megillot Midbar Yehuda, 1:246 restores instead of at the lacuna, though
for our purposes this matters not.
The Nature of Qumran Hebrew as Revealed 137

1QpHab 7:78


7. Its interpretation, that the end time will be long, more so than all
8. that the prophets had said, because the mysteries of God are wondrous.

1QpHab 7:1014

10. Its interpretation is about the men of truth,

11. observers of the Torah, whose hands do not slacken from the
worship of
12. truth, even when the end time is drawn out upon them, because
13. all the fixedtimes of God will come about in their due course, as he
14. for them through the mysteries of his discernment.

1QpHab 8:13

1. Its interpretation is about all the observers of the Torah in the house of
Judah whom
2. God will rescue from the house of judgment, on account of their labour
and their loyalty
3. to the Teacher of Righteousness.

1QpHab 9:47

138 Rendsburg

4. Its interpretation is about later priests of Jerusalem,

5. who will gather wealth and spoil from the plunder of the peoples,
6. but in the end of days their wealth and their plunder will be given into
the hand of
7. the army of the Kittim, [vacat] because they are the rest of the

1QpHab 9:912

[ ]


9. Its interpretation is about the [W]icked Priest, because of the crime

against the Teacher of
10. Righteousness and the men of his council, God gave him into the hand
of his enemies, to humiliate him
11. with a consuming affliction, with bitterness of soul, on account that he
had done wrong
12. to his chosen-ones.

1QpHab 10:913


9. Its interpretation is about the Spreader of Lies, who deceived many,

10. by building a worthless city by bloodshed and by founding a congrega-
tion by lies,
11. on account of its glory, by making many weary with worthless work,
and by teaching them
12. about false d[ee]ds. Their labour will be for naught, on account of
which they will enter

15 I have adopted the reading ( with kaf ) in line 11, following Horgan, Habakkuk
Pesher (1QpHab), 176, especially upon checking the photograph; though the reading with
bet (as per DSSEL and Qimron, Megillot Midbar Yehuda, 1:253) is possible and would fit the
context as well.
The Nature of Qumran Hebrew as Revealed 139

13. into judgments of fire, because they blasphemed and reviled the
chosen ones of God.

1QpHab 11:1214

11. Its interpretation is about the priest whose disgrace became greater
than his honour,
12. because he had not circumcised the foreskin of his heart, and he fol-
lowed the paths of
13. indulgence, in order to bring to sweep away the thirsty.

1QpHab 12:26


2. The interpretation of this matter is about the Wicked Priest, to recom-

pense him
3. his due for what he did to the poor, because Lebanon refers to
4. the council of the Yaad, and the beasts refers to the simple ones of
Judah who obey
5. the Torah, because God will judge him for destruction, [vacat]
6. just as he had planned to destroy the poor.
3.2.A second important LBH feature identified by Polak is the much more
nominal, and hence less verbal, style. Which is to say, writers in the Persian
period were wont to use many more nouns in their prose (and indeed poetry
as well), so that the Noun-Verb ratio in later texts is markedly higher.16 While I
do not engage in the specific statistical analysis regularly presented by Polak,
the highlighting of the nouns and verbs in the following passages will demon-
strate the point. I indicate the nouns with the bold Hebrew font (and note how

16 See Frank Polak, The Oral and the Written: Syntax, Stylistics and the Development of
Biblical Prose Narrative, JANES 26 (1998): 59105.
140 Rendsburg

many of these are noun groups, on which see below,3.3); whereas verbs are
designated via the light Hebrew font.17

1QpHab 5:912


1QpHab 7:45

1QpHab 9:912

[ ]

1QpHab 11:48

3.3.Not surprisingly, given the greater nominal style inherent in LBH, the
number of noun groups increases in Persian-period literature.18 Such is to be
seen in Pesher Habakkuk as well, as witnessed by the following lists.
3.3.1.The first type of noun group is comprised by the collocation of two (or
more) individual nouns (A+B). In six instances, as indicated below, the Pesher
comment expands upon a single noun present in the interpreted lemma,
thereby further highlighting this practice.

17 Once more these selections are taken from those sections of Pesher Habakkuk which nar-
rate past events and hence most closely approximate BH narrative prose storytelling.
18 See n. 12; and see also Frank Polak, Parallelism and Noun Groups in Prophetic Poetry
from the Persian Era, in A Palimpsest: Rhetoric, Ideology, Stylistics, and Language Relating
to Persian Israel (ed. E. Ben Zvi, D. V. Edelman, and F. Polak; Piscataway, N.J.: Gorgias,
2009), 199235.
The Nature of Qumran Hebrew as Revealed 141

3:1 ( infinitives)

3:10 ( [] lemma Hab 1:8 )
3:1213 ] [
4:23 ( lemma Hab 1:10 )
5:9 ( lemma Hab 1:13 )
6:11 ( lemma Hab 1:17 )
8:2 ( lemma Hab 2:4 )
9:6 ( lemma Hab 2:8 )
11:78 ( infinitives)
12:1314 ( infinitives) (sic)

3.3.2.The second type of noun group is comprised of construct phrases (AB).

On four occasions, Pesher Habakkuk expands a single noun in the lemma to a
construct phrase in the interpretative comment. Moreover, fifteen of the fol-
lowing items include a complex construct phrase, that is, with three or more
nouns in construct, or two constructs back-to-back with the second standing
in apposition to the first, and so on.
1:11 ( lemma Hab 1:4
1:13, etc. ( lemma Hab 1:4 )
2:12, 5:11
2:6 [ ]

2:7 ][

( complex)
2:15 []
142 Rendsburg

4:6 (lemma Hab 1:10
5:5 ) (complex
5:10 ) (complex
7:5 ) (complex
7:1011 ) (complex
7:13 ) (complex
8:1 ) (complex
8:11 ) (complex
8:12 ) (cf. Lev 22:16
8:1213 []
8:13 ) (complex
10:12 []
11:12 ) (sic
11:67 ) (complex
11:8 ) (complex
11:1415 ) (complex) (cf. Isa 51:17 []
12:4 ) (complex
The Nature of Qumran Hebrew as Revealed 143

12:1213 ( complex) (lemma Hab 2:18 )
13:23 ( sic)
13:3 ( complex)

The most revealing of these passages is 11:68, which includes a five-word con-
struct string at the time of the festival of the repose
of the Day of Atonement (11:67), followed by a four-word construct string
on the day of the fast of the Sabbath of their repose
(11:8). Such complex constructs are very rare in the Bible; the following repre-
sents more or less a complete list:19

Gen 47:9 ...

Isa 10:12

Isa 21:17

Job 12:24

4.0.We now turn to other grammatical items classified as LBH (that is, beyond
the items investigated by Polak), though these too were not included by Young
in his study of Pesher Habakkuk. The first of these is the non-repetition of the
preposition in a noun series.
The difference between SBH and LBH may be seen by comparing the follow-
ing passages:20

SBH: ( Gen 31:27);

( Exod 15:20)
LBH: ( Ps 149:3);
( Ps 150:4);
( Ps 150:4)

The latter system continues in post-Biblical texts, as seen in the following pas-
sages from a Judean desert document:21

19 P. Joon and T. Muraoka, A Grammar of Biblical Hebrew (Rome: Pontifical Biblical
Institute, 1993), 465.
20 See Abba Bendavid, Leon Miqra u-Lon akhamim, (2 vols.; Tel-Aviv: Devir, 19671971),
2:45556; and the more detailed study of Misop Park, azara we-i-azara al Miliyot
bi-Lon ha-Miqra u-vi-Lon Megillot Midbar Yehuda (Ph.D. diss., Hebrew University of
Jerusalem, 20022003). I am grateful to Steven Fassberg for this latter reference and to
Dr. Park for supplying me with a copy of her work.
21 Uri Mor, Diqduq Ivrit el Teudot Midbar Yehuda ben ha-Mered ha-Gadol le-Mered Bar-
Kokhva (Ph.D. diss., Ben-Gurion University, 2009), 241.
144 Rendsburg

Mur 30:15
Mur 30:18

In light of this picture, one is not surprised to find five examples of this usage
in Pesher Habakkuk:

3:1213 ] [


5.0. Among the noun groups of the construct phrase type surveyed above
(3.3.2), two collocations deserve special notice.
5.1. The first of these places the word truth in the nomen rectum posi-
tion, with a variety of nouns serving in the nomen regens slot. Five such phrases
occur in the Bible, with only one from a pre-exilic text, one from an exilic text, and
three from post-exilic textsthus pointing to the late usage inherent here:22

(Exod 18:21)
(Ezek 18:8, Zech 7:9)
(Neh 7:2)
(Neh 9:13)

This pattern continues throughout Qumran Hebrew, as the following represen-

tative examples demonstrate:23

22 Note that the first of these occurs in the mouth of Jethro, whose speech is replete with
atypical usages. See further Mordecai Mishor, On the Language and Text of Exodus 18,
in Biblical Hebrew in Its Northwest Semitic Environment: Typological and Historical
Perspectives (ed. S. E. Fassberg and A. Hurvitz; Jerusalem: Magnes, 2006), 22529.
23 I do not include the specific references here, which may be located via a search in any of
the DSS concordances; the same holds for the list in5.2 below.
The Nature of Qumran Hebrew as Revealed 145

Three examples of this phraseology occur in Pesher Habakkuk:

5.2. The second relevant phrase places the word deeds of in the
nomen regens position, with a panoply of terms in the nomen rectum slot. To be
sure, such construct phrases occur in SBH, but they are limited to prescribed
The first such usage places before a specific artisan term, as in the fol-
lowing exemplary phrases:

The second typical usage occurs with a specific product or material in the
nomen rectum locus, as illustrated by the following expressions:

The third standard usage is the well-known expression with hand (singular
or plural) serving as nomen rectum, hence, for example:

Finally, we may point to the two parallel usages in Lev 18:3:

The picture in LBH is totally different, since here one finds authors utilizing a
host of different words following deeds of. The impression one gains
is that late authors no longer felt constrained by the traditional phraseology
146 Rendsburg

summarized above. Rather, they began to express their literary and linguistic
freedom through the use of expressions such as these:

(Isa 32:17)
(Qoh 8:11)
(Qoh 8:14)

(Qoh 8:14)
(2 Chr 17:4)
(Sir 39:19 MS B)

This LBH trend continues, indeed increases to a remarkable extent, in Qumran

Hebrew, as witnessed by the following examples:

Two such expressions occur in 1QpHab:

10:12 []

6.0.In this section we present a series of other late usages, of various types
and in no particular order, found in Pesher Habakkuk.
6.1.The expression one after another occurs in our text in the
following passage:

[on]e after another they shall come to destroy the la[nd] (1QpHab 4:1213)

A second instance of this syntagma in QH appears in 1QS 2:1920

the priests shall pass first in order, accord-
ing to their spirits, one after another. The closest BH parallel occurs in Qoh 7:14
indeed this-one and that-one God has done.

Most strikingly, the expression one after another occurs 38x in
Tannaitic Hebrew (Mishnah 7x; Tosefta 27x; Midreshe Halakah 4x).
The Nature of Qumran Hebrew as Revealed 147

6.2.The prepositional phrase in the house (in place of standard

Hebrew )occurs in Pesher Habakkuk in the expression:

in the house of his exile (1QpHab 11:6)

A second attestation within the Dead Sea Scrolls corpus (albeit in an Aramaic
composition) occurs in the book of Tobit:

in the house of [Reuel] (4Q197 [4QTobb ar] 4 i 16)

For another occurrence in a Hebrew text of several centuries later, note the
following from a Wadi Murabaat document:24

in Bet-Maiko (Mur 42:4)

Finally, the form in the house occurs 9x in MH, especially within specific
locutions, such as at the ash-heap and in the phar-
ynx. The evidence points to this unusual usage as a feature of Hebrew (and
Aramaic) within the prescribed period of ca. 200 BCE (or whenever we may
date the book of Tobit, or at least the relevant Qumran manuscript thereof)
through ca. 300 CE. Its presence in 1QpHab surely must be accorded status as
an LBH trait.
6.3.The noun fulfillment occurs in 1QpHab 7:2 fulfillment of
the end, and in two other DSS texts:

4Q249p 10 [( )
4Q381 24a+b 2

The word is used more regularly in MH (28x in Tannaitic texts),25 especially in

the phrase completion of the work.26

24 For this specific reference and for general discussion of the phenomenon treated here, see
Mor, Diqduq Ivrit, 10910.
25 Data according to Maagarim (database of the Academy of the Hebrew Language,
Historical Dictionary of the Hebrew Language project).
26 See already E. Qimron, The Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls (HSS 29; Atlanta: Scholars Press,
1986), 99, where is included in the list of Words Mainly Attested in the DSS and in
the Tannaitic and Amoraitic (MH2) Literature.
148 Rendsburg

6.4.The noun engagement occurs in Pesher Habakkuk as follows:

On account of their engagement and their faith in the Teacher of
Righteousness (1QpHab 8:23)

This usage is not attested in BH, where instead the noun means toil,
labour and by extension trouble, distress. But the QH usage is continued in
MH, especially with the collocation of the verbal root -- be engaged and
the key noun Torah, e.g.:27

Mekilta Devarim 12:1

6.5.The same passage in Pesher Habakkuk attests to the noun faith,

On account of their engagement and their faith in the Teacher of
Righteousness (1QpHab 8:23)

While in theory this word could be read as mn (= Masoretic ) , in light

of the fact that in MT 48 out of 49 attestations of this noun are written plene
(the exception is Ps 143:1)not to mention the greater propensity for plene
orthography in the Qumran scribal tradition when compared to MTalmost
without a doubt the relevant word above should be read as wa-mntm
(= Masoretic ) , with the base word mn as in Neh 10:1, 11:23
(with the meanings pact and agreement, respectively).28
A second postbiblical attestation of this word may occur in the Damascus

{ } the covenant { } and (the) pact (CD 20:12)

Notwithstanding the uncertainty of the reading here, most likely, especially

with the preceding word , we are to understand the second word in this

27 Again, see Qimron, Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls, 102, where occurs in the same list
of lexical items noted in the previous footnote.
28 Once more, see Qimron, Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls, 88, where is included
amongst Words Mainly Attested in the DSS and in the Late Biblical Books.
29 D CH, 1:318.
The Nature of Qumran Hebrew as Revealed 149

phrase as the noun meaning pact (though in theory it could be func-

tioning as an adjective here).
6.6.The next term to be considered is in abundance, occurring in
Pesher Habakkuk as follows:

like the waters of the sea, in abundance (1QpHab 11:12)

While this adverbial occurs in SBH (e.g., 15x in Genesis, Deuteronomy, Joshua,
Judges, Samuel, Kings), it develops into a more salient feature of LBH. The
single attestations of in both Zechariah and Nehemiah do not disclose
this, but the 36 occurrences in the book of Chronicles demonstrate the point
clearly, especially when one considers the difference between parallel passages
such as these:30

1 Kgs 10:2

2 Chr 9:1

1 Kgs 10:10

2 Chr 9:9

The Kings passages use adverbials such as and ( the latter is

particularly common in SBH), while the Chronicler updates the text linguisti-
cally by using in both cases (once with following).
The pattern discernible here continues in other Qumran texts, as witnessed
by the attestation of / in 1QS 4:12; 1QHa 20:14, 23:14; 4Q381 (4QNon-
Canonical Psalms B) 46a+b 4; 4Q285 (4QSefer ha-Milamah) 8 7 // 11Q14
(11QSefer ha-Milamah) 1 ii 10.31 We exemplify the usage with the last passage:
grain, wine, and oil in abundance.
6.7.Yet another late usage occurring in Pesher Habakkuk is the adverb
more than, very much:

Its interpretation, that the last end time will be longer than anything
about which the prophets spoke. (1QpHab 7:7[8])

30 Driver, An Introduction to the Literature of the Old Testament, 535; and Polzin, Late Biblical
Hebrew, 140.
31 See Qimron, Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls, 95, for the inclusion of this item in his list of
Words Mainly Attested in the DSS and in the Late Biblical Books.
150 Rendsburg

This term is a true marker of LBH, as indicated by the following passages:32

Qoh 2:15

Qoh 7:16

Qoh 12:9
Qoh 12:12
Esth 6:6

This usage continues in the book of Ben Sira:33

Sir 8:13 (MS A)

Sir 10:31 (MS A)34 []
Sir 10:31 (MS A)35

Other Qumran texts also reflect the usage of more than, very much:

1Q30 1 5 and more than four

4Q274 3 ii 4 for one more pure

Finally, one notes that this feature occurs in Tannaitic texts, indeed one
might even consider it a distinguishing characteristic of MH.36
6.8.The noun the coming things is a common feature of Pesher

1QpHab 1:3 ]
1QpHab 2:7 [ ]

1QpHab 2:10
1QpHab 7:12 {}

32 For extended discussion, see A. Schoors, The Preacher Sought to Find Pleasing Words: A
Study of the Language of Qoheleth, Part I: Grammar (OLA 41; Leuven: Peeters, 1992), 114
15, and Schoors, The Preacher Sought to Find Pleasing Words: A Study of the Language of
Qoheleth, Part II: Vocabulary (OLA 143; Leuven: Peeters, 2004), 21518.
33 Several of these perhaps should be read as ytr (as opposed to ytr), but the picture
remains the same essentially.
34 The restoration is rather obvious, but in any case is confirmed by the reading of Ben Sira
MS B, which is not damaged at this point.
35 MS B has as the final word.
36 Moshe Zvi Segal, Diqduq Leon ha-Mina (Tel-Aviv: Devir, 1936), 193; and Miguel Prez
Fernndez, An Introductory Grammar of Rabbinic Hebrew (Leiden: Brill, 1999), 81.
According to Maagarim, the counts for in Tannaitic texts are as follows: 18x Mishnah,
43x Tosefta, 60x Midreshe Halakah.
The Nature of Qumran Hebrew as Revealed 151

This usage developed in BH only during the exilic period, as evidenced by the
following two texts:

Isa 41:22

Ezek 16:16

Notwithstanding the fact that these phrases represented the totality of this
usage in ancient Hebrew (which is to say, the term the coming things
does not occur in the intervening material from the Persian period or in Ben
Sira, nor does it occur in rabbinic texts, as far as I am able to determine), one
still may see in this usage a feature linking LBH (albeit from the transitional
period during the 6th century BCE) and QH.
6.9.The noun honoured ones occurs in Pesher Habakkuk in the
following passage:

They mock the great ones, and they deride the honoured ones; at kings
and princes they jeer, and they scoff a throng of people. (4:23).

The source for this usage may be found in the following biblical passages:

Isa 23:8
Isa 23:9

Nah 3:10
Ps 149:8

These passages (especially the first three) suggest a non-native Hebrew idiom,
which first was employed as a style-switching feature and which only later was
expanded to general usage.37 Note that the two Isaiah passages are part of the
prophets oracle against Tyre; while the Nahum passage is directed towards
(as throughout this book) the Assyrians, even if the term here refers to the
Egyptian notables. The fourth passage above also refers to the dignitaries of
foreign countries, though one notes that the author of Ps 149 in the post-exilic
period now uses the word in a generic fashion, without an association to spe-
cific foreign notables.

37 On style-switching, see Gary A. Rendsburg, Style-switching, EHLL 3:63336, along

with the sources cited there. Though one must admit that in the present instance no
Phoenician or other cognate evidence exists.
152 Rendsburg

This generalization of the word ( always in the plural, one notes) con-
tinues and may even be expanded in the book of Ben Sira. In the passages
below, the honoured ones could just as easily (and indeed may) refer to
Israelite dignitaries as to foreign ones:

Sir 11:6 (MS B)

Sir 48:6 (MS B) ].[

The first verse occurs in a typical wisdom context, while the second appears in
the praise of Elijah.
When we turn to the Dead Sea Scrolls, we find the word honoured
ones attested in 1QpHab 4:2 cited above, and then three times in Pesher
Nahum (4Q169):

4QpNah 34 ii 9 ][] [
4QpNah 34 iii 9 ] []
4QpNah 34 iv 4

Only the third of these is elicited by the lemma of Nah 3:10 (see above for the
verse), whereas the first and second are used in pesher comments to pas-
sages occurring earlier in Nah 3. To be sure, the Pesher author presumably
anticipated the attestation of in Nah 3:10; nevertheless one notes the
more common usage of this word in QH, continuing the picture suggested by
Ben Sira.
7.0.A characteristic feature of Pesher Habakkuk in particular is the omis-
sion of the he in the Hiphil infinitive.
While examples of this general phenomenon occur sporadically in other
DSS texts (with Niphal and Hitpael, in addition to Hiphil),38 the seven-fold
presence of laql infinitives in our text is truly striking.
Examples of this grammatical feature appear more or less equally distrib-
uted throughout the Bible (Exodus/1; Numbers/2; Deuteronomy/2; Samuel/2;
Kings/1; Isaiah/4; Jeremiah/3; Amos/1; Psalms/3; Proverbs/1; Qohelet/1; Daniel/1;
Nehemiah/1; Chronicles/1), as evidence for the colloquial dialect of ancient
Hebrew which penetrated the written standard (= BH) at various times.39

38 Qimron, Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls, 48.

39 Gary A. Rendsburg, Diglossia in Ancient Hebrew (AOS 72; New Haven: American Oriental
Society, 1990), 95103. See also my earlier study, with a slightly different focus: Laql
Infinitives: Yiphil or Hiphil? Orientalia 51 (1982): 23138.
The Nature of Qumran Hebrew as Revealed 153

I am aware of three other instances of the loss of he in the Hiphil infinitive

in the Qumran documents:40

4Q169 (4QpNah ) 34 iii 7

4Q171 (4QPsa) 110 ii 16
4Q511 (4QShirb) 2 i 4

As is well known, this feature becomes standard in MH.41 In this case, accord-
ingly, Pesher Habakkuk does not represent the continuation of a feature
observable in LBH (examples of which have dominated our discussion unto
this point), but the regular use of the laql infinitive by the author/scribe of
1QpHab demonstrates nonetheless that his language is on the way to the still
later attested register of the Tannaim.

8.0.I do not wish to give the impression, however, that there are no early
features of ancient Hebrew in Pesher Habakkuk. Indeed, there are a number
of linguistic usages that evoke SBH from the pre-exilic period, and in some
cases these items even suggest Archaic Biblical Hebrew (ABH). Moreover,
in the famous case of the 3rd person masc. sg. independent pronoun
(see below,8.6), we must contend with a feature that occurs nowhere else in
the history of the Hebrew language.
Before presenting these items, however, I must state clearly that I do not
consider these traits to be natural usages of the Qumran author/scribe, but
rather conscious archaisms (or, in the one case, even an invention), used in
imitation of earlier strata of the Hebrew language.42 Together these elements
constitute evidence for understanding QH as an anti-language, used by the
Yaad to distinguish itself intentionally from other Jews of the period, while

40 This may represent a slight increase in the ratio of occurrences, when compared to BH,
though someone would have to produce a pure mathematical calculation to demonstrate
the point (or to deny it).
41 M. H. Segal, Grammar of Mishnaic Hebrew (Oxford: Clarendon, 1927), 58; Segal, Diqduq
Leon ha-Mina, 114, 120; and Gideon Haneman, Torat ha-urot el Leon ha-Mina (Tel-
Aviv: University of Tel-Aviv Press, 19791980), 3738.
42 Hence, most or all of these items would fall into the category of grammatical pseudo-
classicisms, to use the term employed by Jan Joosten, Pseudo-classicisms in Late Biblical
Hebrew, in Ben Sira, and in Qumran Hebrew, in Sirach, Scrolls and Sages: Proceedings of
a Second International Symposium on the Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls, Ben Sira, and the
Mishnah (ed. T. Muraoka and J. F. Elwolde; STDJ 33; Leiden: Brill, 1999), 14659.
154 Rendsburg

at the same time providing their texts with a patina of antiquity and hence
authority.43 The following features fall into this category.
8.1.In the two places where the option was available, the Qumran author/
scribe elected to use the older 3rd masc. pl. pronominal suffix attached to nouns
ending in -, i.e., -tm (as opposed to the later form -them):44 1QpHab 6:4
their signs [sc. military standards]; 1QpHab 6:4 their wars.45
Note that the former term has biblical precursors in Ps 74:4 and Job 21:29
8.2.1QpHab 5:6 includes the phrase in their distress, using the
archaic form their. This morpheme is limited to poetry in the Bible (57x;
mainly in Job, Psalms, and Isaiah, though also 2x each in the archaic poems
of Deut 32 and 33), whereas in QH it occurs quite naturally in prose compo-
sitions (see 1QS 4:14, 9:22, for example). Note that the Pesher comment here
interprets Hab 1:1213a, and not Hab 2:7, where the word occurs.
8.3.As is true throughout QH, so also in Pesher Habakkuk: the preferred
term for God is God. For QH as a whole, God occurs 694x; for the
key text 1QS, this lexeme appears 56x. Pesher Habakkuk employs the term 23x:
1:6, 1:11, 2:3, 2:4, 2:8, 2:9, 2:15(r), 5:3, 5:4, 7:1, 7:4, 7:8, 7:13, 8:2, 8:10, 8:11, 9:10, 10:3,
10:13, 11:15(r), 12:5, 12:9, 13:3.46 For many of these attestations, see the construct
phrases listed above,3.3.2.
8.4.One of the main discriminants between SBH and LBH is the choice
between community, congregation, used in the former (including P), ver-
sus its LBH equivalent .47 Contrary to what one might expect, given the late
linguistic profile observable in Pesher Habakkuk, our text utilizes the former

43 See William M. Schniedewind, Qumran Hebrew as an Antilanguage, JBL 118 (1999):

23552; Schniedewind, Linguistic Ideology in Qumran Hebrew, in Diggers at the Well:
Proceedings of a Third International Symposium on the Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls
and Ben Sira (ed. T. Muraoka and J. F. Elwolde; STDJ 36; Leiden: Brill, 2000), 24555; and
Gary A. Rendsburg, Qumran Hebrew (with a Trial Cut [1QS]), in The Dead Sea Scrolls at
60: Scholarly Contributions of New York University Faculty and Alumni (ed. L. H. Schiffman
and Sh. Tzoref; STDJ 89; Leiden: Brill, 2010), 21746. See also Steven Weitzman, Why Did
the Qumran Community Write in Hebrew? JAOS 119 (1999): 3545.
44 For general discussion, see Moshe Bar-Asher, Leon Qumran ben ha-Miqra li-Lon azal
(Iyyun bi-Sif be-Morfologya), Meghillot 2 (2004): 13749.
45 The full phrase is their instruments of war, but to bring out the grammati-
cal point in the translation I present here simply their wars.
46 The symbol (r) indicates that the text has been slightly restored.
47 Indeed, this conclusion was one of the first of many such findings emanating from the
pen of Avi Hurvitz; see his article, Le-imuo el ha-Muna ha-Kohani d ba-Sifrut
ha-Miqrait, Tarbiz 40 (19701971): 26167.
The Nature of Qumran Hebrew as Revealed 155

word: ( 1QpHab 10:10). This usage is indicative of QH as a whole,

with occurring 153x and occurring 46x.48
8.5.A full-scale study of the difference(s) (if any) between and
in ancient Hebrew, both meaning on account of, in order that, remains a
desideratum.49 I here present some basic information concerning the distribu-
tion of the two forms. The former occurs 51x in the Bible, as follows: Gen-Exod
22x; Josh 2x; Sam 15x; Jer 1x; Amos 2x; Mic 1x; Ps 3x; Job 1x; Chr 4x (3 of which
Samuel), suggesting a decidedly early usage, which becomes less and less com-
mon with the passage of time. The latter occurs 272x, more or less equally
distributed throughout the biblical corpus, though by the very nature of the
decreased use of in late texts, one may assume an increased use of
in Persian-period compositions. In order to highlight this dichotomy between
the two options, note the data provided in the following chart:

Samuel 15x / LBH corpus 4x (3 of which Samuel)

Samuel 3x / LBH corpus 16x

To complete the picture, note that Ben Sira uses each form 10x, a point that
seems to run counter to the trend for decreased use of in LBH. I would
posit, somewhat tentatively, that the unexpected increase in in Ben Sira
is due to the poetic nature of this composition, with its tendency to evoke bib-
lical language quite consciously.
Regardless, what is clear is Pesher Habakkuks undoubted preference for
, which occurs in 1QpHab 8:2, 8:10, 9:11, 10:11, 10:12 (with only one instance
of in 11:14). This stands in contrast, moreover, to the choice between these
two synonyms in the base text, with occurring twice (Hab 2:2, 2:15), versus
no instances of . In short, by favouring , Pesher Habakkuk resounds
the more classical language found in SBH, as another instance of intentional
archaism in support of the goal of anti-language.

48 These numbers, taken from DSSEL, reflect some double counting, since the same word
that occurs in two different copies of the same composition is counted twice. See, for
example, in the specific form ( )in both CD 3:9 and its parallel text 4Q269
= 4QDd 2 3; and in both CD 12:6 ( ) and its parallel text 4Q271 = 4QDf 5 i 21
(). Such instances, however, are relatively few and do not skew the data presented in
any significant way.
49 The essential equality of the two terms may be determined by noticing the use of in
Gen 18:24 alongside the three instances of in Gen 18:29, 31, 32; the use of in
Gen 27:25 alongside its parallels in Gen 27:4, 19, 31; and so on. For an entre to the subject,
see Joon and Muraoka, A Grammar of Biblical Hebrew, 63435.
156 Rendsburg

8.6.The uniquely QH feature represented by he occurs in 1QpHab

1:9. And while the more normative predominates thereafter (in 1QpHab
1:13, 3:2, 3:13, 5:6, 10:3, 12:3; in addition to several occurrences within the bibli-
cal lemmata), we nonetheless may observe how the author/scribe of Pesher
Habakkuk sets the tone with his initial choice. This long form, moreover, is not
an isolated morpheme, but rather stands as part of a much larger mix, with
longer spellings of various types, all of which serve to create, at least in the eyes
of the Yaad members, a more official text, a more literary text, indeed a more
archaic text.50
8.7.One final characteristic feature of the language of Pesher Habakkuk, and
indeed of QH in general, is the lack of foreign loanwords (Aramaic, Persian, or
Greek).51 To my mind, this stratagem fits the overall picture perfectly, as another
indication of the Yaads commitment to produce a more official text, a more
literary text, indeed a more archaic text (to repeat Steven Fassbergs felicitous
phrase).52 The main exception, of course, is the word secret, mystery (bor-
rowed from Persian), a key term in Qumran theology, which occurs 119x in the

50 Steven Fassberg, Haadafat urot Murakhot bi-Mgillot Midbar Yehuda, Meghillot 1

(2003): 22740, at 235 (the English rendering is mine). See also in the present volume,
Fassberg, The Nature and Extent of Aramaisms in the Hebrew Dead Sea Scrolls, 21.
51 Contrary to the opinion of many if not most scholars, I am not convinced that the key
noun interpretation is an Aramaic loanword within Hebrew. True, the Aramaic
form occurs 34x in Daniel vs. its more limited spread in Hebrew, with Qoh 8:1 as the sole
attestation in the Hebrew portions of the Bible, in addition to Sir 38:14 (MS B) (as femi-
nine noun , albeit with the meaning diagnosis vel sim., given the medical con-
text), and then QH (passim). But the picture is far from clear. First, note that the Tiberian
Masorah transmitted the vocable in Qoh 8:1 as a Hebrew segolate noun , reflecting no
influence from Aramaic. Secondly, the semantic range of the word is greater in Hebrew
than it is in Aramaic, a point stressed by Jonas C. Greenfield, Etymological Semantics,
ZAH 6 (1993): 2637, at 27; repr. in Al Kanfei Yonah: Collected Studies of Jonas C. Greenfield
on Semitic Philology (ed. S. M. Paul, M. E. Stone, and A. Pinnick; 2 vols.; Jerusalem: Magnes,
2001), 2:82132, at 822. For further discussion, see Schoors, The Preacher Sought to Find
Pleasing Words, Part II: Vocabulary, 46667.
52 In addition to the parallels brought in my earlier article, Qumran Hebrew (with a Trial
Cut [1QS]), 241 (including n. 56), note the following analogues from a period closer to
the composition of the DSS: (a) the Hebrew register used for the prayers, which strik-
ingly lack Greek and Latin loanwords, on which see Moshe Bar-Asher, Les formules de
bndiction forges par les sages: tude prliminaire, REJ 166 (2007): 44161; and (b) the
Syriac employed by Jacob of Edessa in his letters, which is distinguished by a lack of Greek
loanwords, in conspicuous contrast to the writings of other Syriac Orthodox authors of
the previous generation (information courtesy of Aaron M. Butts, Yale University).
The Nature of Qumran Hebrew as Revealed 157

Hebrew texts and 19x in the Aramaic documents from Qumran.53 Amongst the
former are three attestations in 1QpHab, always as the construct plural : 7:5
7:8, 7:14 (see above2.6). Most likely this noun was admitted into the QH lexis
because its morphology was well suited to the Hebrew language, with so many
other basic nouns bearing this shape ( , , , , , , , , , , etc.)
in contrast to words such as nobles or word, speech, which do
not fit a Hebrew paradigm, not to mention such exceedingly long (for Hebrew,
that is) vocables as satraps, and royals.54
Within Pesher Habakkuk there is only one other item that discloses for-
eign influence, namely, ( 1 QpHab 12:11), in the citation of the scriptural
lemma (= MT Hab 2:18 ) . While this pronominal suffix constitutes a pat-
ent Aramaism, its presence may be explained if we follow Fassbergs lead and
regard the form as one further instance of the Qumran scribes preference for
longer forms,55 again, as part of their baroque style.56

9.0.This study demonstrates that, contrary to the opinion expressed by Young

(and Rezetko and Ehrensvrd), the language of Pesher Habakkuk is represen-
tative of LBH, as opposed to SBH. These two varieties of ancient Hebrew do
not constitute coeval stylistic taxons, but rather chronologically determined
dialects. By the time of the main floruit of the Qumran community, ca. 150 BCE
to ca. 50 BCE, during which period Pesher Habakkuk presumably was written,57

53 Count according to DSSEL. Again, there are some double countings, e.g., in the phrase
in both 1QS 9:18 and its parallel text 4Q258 = 4QSd 8 3, but the number of such
examples is relatively insignificant.
54 Naturally, I do not mean to imply that Qumran scribes had paradigm charts of the sort
found in language primers. But individuals who spend their time (lives?) copying, study-
ing, and composing texts gain more than facility in orthography and literary flair. They are
just as likely to gain a firm understanding of the mechanics of the language, especially if
their prose is girded by linguistic ideology.
55 See the very short comment in Fassberg, Haadafat urot Murakhot bi-Mgillot Midbar
Yehuda, 231, and then the extended discussion in the present volume, Fassberg, The
Nature and Extent of Aramaisms in the Hebrew Dead Sea Scrolls, 2122.
56 For this use of the descriptive term baroque, though with special attention to the trend
of baroque orthography in the Dead Sea Scrolls, see Frank Moore Cross, Some Notes
on a Generation of Qumran Studies, in The Madrid Qumran Congress: Proceedings of the
International Congress on the Dead Sea Scrolls, Madrid 1821 March 1991 (ed. J. Trebolle
Barrera and L. Vegas Montaner; 2 vols.; STDJ 11.1; Leiden: Brill, 1992), 1:115, at 4.
57 In fact, Pesher Habakkuk most likely was composed towards the end of this century span,
given the repeated reference to the Kittim, a code name for the Romans, in 1QpHab 2:12,
2:14, 3:4, 3:9, 4:5, 4:10, 6:1, 6:10, 9:7. On the use of this code name, see Hanan Eshel, The
Kittim in the War Scroll and the Pesharim, in Historical Perspectives: From the Hasmoneans
158 Rendsburg

no Hebrew author was capable still of composing in SBH. Notwithstanding

his noble effort to produce an ancient-looking textthrough the use of archa-
isms, the adaptation of poetic forms for normal prose usage, the invention of
specific forms, the nonuse of foreign words, and morethe author of Pesher
Habakkuk reveals the true nature of his native and natural Hebrew by the
LBH features that dominate throughout, in both the morphological and syn-
tactic realms.
To expand upon this last statement, I repeat here the conclusion of my
earlier article on QH, with special attention to Serekh ha-Yaad, but which
is equally applicable to this study focused on Pesher Habakkuk. Two counter
trends are visible in this document:

a) The first trend is the purposeful development and employment of an

anti-language, in order to create an internal idiom for the members of
the sect. This brand of Hebrew attempts as much as possible to utilize
archaic features, in order to provide an air of authenticity and author-
ity to the new documents under formation in the hands of the sects
b) At the same time, though, a second trend is noticeable throughout: try
as they might, the Qumran authors could not swim upstream against the
billowing surge of LBH incursions into their prose.

The result is a most unusual Hebrew dialect, which may be visualized in the
following manner (adapting the chart developed by Shelomo Morag to depict
his understanding of QH):58

to Bar Kokhba in Light of the Dead Sea Scrolls: Proceedings of the Fourth International
Symposium of the Orion Center, 2731 January 1999 (ed. D. Goodblatt, A. Pinnick, and
D. R. Schwartz; STDJ 37; Leiden: Brill, 2001), 2944, esp. 4142.
58 Shelomo Morag, Qumran Hebrew: Some Typological Observations, VT 48 (1988): 14864,
with the chart on p. 162. As the reader is by now aware, the present article has focused on
elements (a) and (b) of the chart, with an occasional nod to element (d) and no discus-
sion of element (c). The lack of treatment of variant stress patterns is not to minimize
their importance, though. In a word, I would argue that they too could serve the goal of
linguistic ideology. For examples in Pesher Habakkuk, note 1QpHab 4:6 ( with dots
both above and below the waw in the manuscript), 4:11 , 9:5 . The reading in
1QpHab 1:8 is presumably [], but the lacuna occurs at the crucial spot. For additional
comments, see Fassberg, The Nature and Extent of Aramaisms in the Hebrew Dead Sea
Scrolls, 12. For some recent data on the subject, see Martin G. Abegg, The Linguistic
Analysis of the Dead Sea Scrolls: More than (Initially) Meets the Eye, in Rediscovering
the Dead Sea Scrolls: An Assessment of Old and New Approaches and Methods (ed.
M. L. Grossman; Grand Rapids, Mich.: Eerdmans, 2010), 4868, esp. 6162.
The Nature of Qumran Hebrew as Revealed 159

(a) non-LBH features,

especially those of a
(pseudo-)archaic nature (b) LBH features
used to create an

(c) variant
stress patterns

(d) features due to

Aramaic influence

Adapted from Vetus Testamentum 48 (1988), p. 162
Dislocated Negations: Negative Followed
by a Non-verbal Constituent in Biblical, Ben Sira
and Qumran Hebrew
Jean-Sbastien Rey

This study focuses on an unusual syntactic construction attested in 4Q417 2 i 9

(// 4Q416 2 i 35 in bold Hebrew font): [ . This
clause is the second in a series of three prohibitive clauses:

10 ] ] 2 vacat 9 ]1

Do not remove [charity] from your heart,

And do not for yourself increase [your appetite in your poverty], for what
is more insignificant than a poor man?
And do not rejoice when you should mourn, lest you have trouble in
your life

Two elements are worth noting: (1) while the negative particle usually
directly precedes the verbal predicate, here, this order is disrupted by the
complement ( ; 2) this complement, a reflexive dative () ,

* I wish to thank mile Puech for his careful reading and Gladys Gordon-Bournique for her
improvement of my English text.
1 J. Strugnell and D. Harrington, DJD 34:172, read only ] ;nevertheless, qof and he are cer-
tain (see DJD 34:88), and the trace of a letter is visible before the qof, possibly a head of re
or dalet; see J.-S. Rey, 4QInstruction: Sagesse et Eschatologie (STDJ 81; Leiden: Brill, 2009), 44,
followed by E. Qimron, The Dead Sea Scrolls: The Hebrew Writings (3 vols.; Jerusalem: Yad Ben-
Zvi, 20102015), 2:152.
2 The reading is not certain. As noticed by the editors (DJD 34:175), dalet would be pref-
erable to re, and he is also possible instead of et. Thus or ( cf. Ps 138:3; Sir 13:8
) are not excluded. The end of the line is partially restored with 4Q416 2
i 4 [
(just a trace of the end of the base of kaf has been preserved). The reading
[ proposed by the editors (p. 88) for 4Q416 2 i 4 is impossible and has not been
retained in the edition of 4Q417 (p. 173). Qimron, The Dead Sea Scrolls, 2:152 restores
] [which is certainly too long. In any event, the readings
or restorations proposed do not affect the argument.

koninklijke brill nv, leiden, 5|doi .63/9789004299313_011

Dislocated Negations 161

usually follows the verb, whereas here it is in a preverbal position.3 The syntac-
tic structure of the clause therefore presents its elements in dislocated order.
In this example, it is unlikely that the negative particle affects the preposi-
tional group and not the verb (i.e., You could increase your appetite but not
for yourself); the expression would be contradictory and would not fit the
context. In what follows, I will call dislocated negation a construction where
the negative particle does not immediately precede the verb but still negates
it (XVerb).
Scholars have noticed that the negative displays some syntactic evolu-
tion in post-biblical Hebrew. Does the specific example of 4Q417 2 i 9 testify to
such an evolution? In this study, I will examine the unusual use of the negative
followed by a non-verbal element in biblical Hebrew, with special focus
on dislocated negative clauses (XVerb). After offering a categorization,
I will consider these uses in Ben Sira and Qumran.

1 The Negative Followed by a Non-Verbal Element in Biblical


The syntax of the negative has been studied by Elisha Qimron4 in 1983 and
Menahem Zevi Kaddari,5 one year later.6 The general rule is that this particle

3 I thank Elitsur Bar Asher Siegal for this remark. I found only one other example in 1QHa 21:7
That for yourself you have done these things my God.
4 E. Qimron, [ The Negative Word in our Early
Sources], in [ Hebrew Language Studies
Presented to Professor Zeev Ben-ayyim] (ed. M. Bar-Asher et al.; Jerusalem: Magnes, 1983),
5 M. Zvi Kaddari, [ The Negative Particle al (A Study
in Diachronic Syntax), in ,[ Language Studies, 1: On the Unity of the Hebrew
Language and Its Periodization] (ed. M. Bar-Asher; Jerusalem: Magnes, 1985), 197210. See
also M. Zvi Kaddari, On Deontic Modality in Biblical and Post-Biblical Hebrew, in Occident
and Orient: A Tribute to the Memory of Alexander Scheiber (ed. R. Dan; Budapest: Akadmiai
Kiad; Leiden: Brill, 1988), 25156.
6 More recently, see also T. Zewi, [ The Negative Particle
as a Predicate in Hebrew], in Proceedings of the Fourteenth Annual Meeting of Societatis
Linguisticae Europaeae Sodalicium Isralense, Beit Berl, May 5th, 1998 (ed. E. Allon and
P. Trumer; Kfar-Sava: Beit-Berl College, 1998), 4148; Zewi, The Syntactic Function of Nega
tive Particles in Biblical Hebrew and English Bible Translations, JNSL 33 (2007): 99113;
J. A. Naud, Negation: Pre-Modern Hebrew, EHLL 2:80111; G. Rendsburg attributes the
use of the negative followed by a noun as a dialectal feature of the northern dialect of
162 Rey

is followed directly by a verb7 in the jussive or cohortative form.8 Cases where

it is followed by a non-verbal element are relatively rare: 25 appearances out of
729 in the biblical corpus, without taking into account those where the enclitic
is directly attached to the negation .9 I plan to classify these occurrences

ancient Hebrew; see Rendsburg, A Comprehensive Guide to Israelian Hebrew: Grammar

and Lexicon, Orient 38 (2003): 535, at 24.
7 This general rule is attested in cognate Semitic languages also with some rare exceptions:
in Ugaritic, J. Tropper, Ugaritische Grammatik (AOAT 273; Mnster: Ugarit-Verlag, 2000),
87.24 notices one attestation in a fragmentary context in RS 92.2016:8: [...] kbkb kbkbm al
kbkb \ [...]; in Phoenician, KAI 13,34: Do not, do not open
it (the coffin), and do not disturb me! (cf. Zellig S. Harris, A Grammar of the Phoenician
Language [New Haven: American Oriental Society, 1990], 77 and Charles R. Krahmalkov,
A Phoenician-Punic Grammar [HdO 54; Leiden: Brill, 2001], 279); in Egyptian Aramaic, see
Proverbs of Aiqar C1.1.155: [...] [ ...] Let my hands destroy (or:
they will destroy my hands) and not my mouth [...] (B. Porten and A. Yardeni, Textbook of
Aramaic Documents from Ancient Egypt, Vol. 3: Literature, Accounts, Lists [Texts and Studies
for Students; Jerusalem: Hebrew University, 1993] = [TAD]); see also Deir Alla I 67 k wl
ngh darkness and complete absence of light (J. Hoftijzer and G. van der Kooij, eds., Aramaic
Texts from Deir Alla [Documenta et Monumenta Orientis Antiqui 19; Leiden: Brill, 1976], 173,
179, and 196). But see the other explanation proposed by E. Puech, Balaam and Deir alla,
in The Prestige of the Pagan Prophet Balaam in Judaism, Early Christianity and Islam (ed.
G. H. van Kooten and J. van Ruiten; TBN 11; Leiden: Brill, 2008), 2547, at 32, 36: and do not plot
(/remove?) forever.
8 The exception of 1 Sam 27:10 where is followed by a qatal is probably a later corruption.
In Aramaic, see also 4Q546 14 3: []
translated by E. Puech ne leur ouvre
pas ta maison (DJD 31:346, but the use of the negative with an imperative seems to be
never attested elsewhere; for this example, see T. Muraoka, A Grammar of Qumran Aramaic
[ANESSup 38; Leuven: Peeters, 2011], 256 n. 122). For the case of Prov 31:4, where is fol-
lowed by an infinitive, see infra1.1b and2.2.
9 The construction tends to disappear in late biblical Hebrew and is not attested in
Ben Sira or Qumran. The enclitic has been considered rare in late biblical Hebrew
(cf. R. Polzin, Late Biblical Hebrew: Toward an Historical Typology of Biblical Hebrew Prose [HSM
12; Missoula: Scholars Press, 1976], 145), but statistics are not clear. It does occur eight times
in Chronicles (only two times in Chroniclers own language according to Polzin), six times
in Ezra and Nehemiah, twice in Daniel, and ten occurrences total in Ezekiel, Lamentations,
Song of Songs, and Qoheleth. Four attestations in Ben Sira and thirteen in Qumran should be
added, while some of them are biblical quotations; see I. Young, Late Biblical Hebrew and
Hebrew Inscriptions, in Biblical Hebrew: Studies in Chronology and Typology (ed. Ian Young;
JSOTSS 369; London: T&T Clark, 2003), 276311, at 28889.
Dislocated Negations 163

in two categories:10 (1)ellipses and (2) absolute uses; in a third part, I will
examine some ambiguous instances. Then, I will look at possible examples of
dislocated negation.

1.1 Ellipsis of the Verb

In ten cases, where is followed by a non-verbal element, the verb is under-
stood and has to be supplied.11 All the examples are in poetry.
(a) First, seven times, the negative follows a volitive clause (imperative,
absolute infinitive used for the imperative, or jussive). The verb of the first
clause has to be supplied in the second in the negative form, do X and [do] not
Y. For example, in Joel 2:13: rend your hearts and not
your clothing.12 There the second clause contains only the negative directly
followed by the verbal complement and the verb has to be supplied:
( () i.e., rend your hearts and do not [rend] your cloth-
ing). The same situation occurs in Amos 5:14 ( ;) Jer 10:24 (
;) Ps 119:36 (
;) Prov 8:10

;) 27:2 ( ;) and 17:12 ( 13

) .14 A similar phenomenon may be observed, at least

once, in Egyptian Aramaic in Proverbs of Aiqar TAD C1.1.155: [...]
[ ...] Let my hands destroy (or: they will destroy my hands) and not
my mouth and not [...].15

10 See also the relevant classification in BDB, 39 (b).

11 On the ellipsis of verb in negated clauses, see C. L. Miller, Ellipsis Involving Negation in
Biblical Poetry, in Seeking Out the Wisdom of the Ancients: Essays Offered to Honor Michael V.
Fox on the Occasion of his Sixty-Fifth Birthday (ed. E. L. Troxel, K. G. Friebel, and D. R.
Magary; Winona Lake: Eisenbrauns, 2005), 3752, esp. 45; C. L. Miller-Naud, Ellipsis:
Biblical Hebrew, EHLL 1:80712. See also J. D. Wijnkoop, Manual of Hebrew Syntax
(London: Luzac & Co, 1897), 69 25 Rem. 5.
12 English translations of biblical passages in principle follow the NRSV unless indicated
13 The infinitive absolute is used here for the imperative.
14 Qimron adds Lam 3:41 to this list:

But it is perhaps preferable to correct to according to the Greek and the Syriac (so
the BHS). Confusion between and is frequent in late Hebrew (see, for example, in
Sir 4:22 where one would expect , or in 4:28 where one would
expect ) .
15 This example where is not immediately followed by a verbal form is not recorded by
T. Muraoka and B. Porten, A Grammar of Egyptian Aramaic (HdO 32; Leiden: Brill, 1998),
164 Rey

(b) To these examples of ellipsis, we can add three others, where the verb
is implied. For Kaddari, the clause, in this case, may be interpreted as hav-
ing a zero-representation of the existential verb haya as its predicate.16 On
the contrary, for T. Zewi, in such cases, as for absolute uses infra (1.2), the
negation itself has to be understood as the logical predicate.17 For example: 2
Sam 1:21: You mountains of Gilboa,

(let there be) no dew or rain upon you, nor bounteous fields!;18 see also Isa
62:6 ( ) , Ps 83:2 ( ) , and Prov 31:4 (

( ) cf. infra2.2).19

1.2 Absolute Uses

The particle can also be used absolutely as a negative answer (like the nega-
tive ). Six cases are attested, all in direct discourse:

Gen 19:18 And Lot said to them, Oh, no,

my lords.
2Kgs 3:13 But the king of Israel said to him, No.
1Sam 2:24
No, my sons; it is not a good report
that I hear.20

In fact, these examples are classified by Kaddari in the first category where
the verb should be implicit. However, this is not clear, especially in pas-
sages like 1 Sam 2:24, where one cannot expect . As
proposed by Zewi, it seems better to consider that in such examples is the
functional predicate of the clause.21
To this category I suggest adding instances where occurs twice in the
phrase: first before a non-verbal element and then before a prohibitive
, as in 2 Sam 13:12:
She answered him, No, my

brother, do not force me. Qimron explains such cases as a poetic extension of

16 Kaddari,On Deontic Modality, 255.

17 Zewi, The Negative Particle, 46; The Syntactic Function, 103.
18 Driver suggested restoring , or more simply ; see S. R. Driver, Notes on
the Hebrew Text and the Topography of the Books of Samuel with an Introduction on Hebrew
Palaeography and the Ancient Versions and Facsimiles of Inscriptions and Maps (Oxford:
Clarendon, 1913), 236.
19 It should be noticed that these three references are translated by periphrasis in the Greek
and Aramaic.
20 See also Ruth 1:13 () ,
2 Kgs 3:13, and perhaps 2 Sam 13:16 (the text is perhaps cor-
rupted, a few manuscripts, the Lucianic version, Vulgate and Targum read ).
21 Zewi, The Negative Particle, 46.
Dislocated Negations 165

the structure: .22 Consider also 2 Kgs 4:16 (

;) Jdg 19:23 ( ;) and 2 Sam 13:25 (
) .

1.3 Two Ambiguous Cases

Two passages do not fit these categories, but they are textually dubious. In
Prov 12:28, the negative seems to modify a non-verbal element:
, In the path of righteousness there is life, in walking

its path there is no death. But the text is hardly understandable. Old versions
(Septuagint, Targum, and Peshitta) suggest that the text is corrupted and that
should be vocalized . Hence, the clause should have had something like:
but the path of wickedness (leads) to death.23
Finally, in Job 24:25, , there is nothing in what I say,24 the neg-
ative precedes a non verbal element, but is, in this unique case, considered
by grammarians25 and dictionaries26 as a substantive. Perhaps we can posit
that such a form occurs by assimilation to ( cf. Isa 40:17; 40:23) or through
the influence of the Aramaic )( .27

22 Qimron connects this attestation with KAI 13,34 in Phoenician:

Do not, do not open it (the coffin), and do not disturb me!; cf. Harris, A Grammar
of the Phoenician Language, 77 and Krahmalkov, A Phoenician-Punic Grammar, 279.
23 This verse has given rise to considerable debate. M. Dahood, Ugaritic-Hebrew Philology:
Marginal Notes on Recent Publications (BibOr 17; Rome: Pontifical Biblical Institute, 1965),
19, for example, equates the syntagm with Ugaritic blmt not dying = immor-
tality || ym (KTU 1.16 I 15; 1.16 II 37; 1.17 VI 27). But more probably the Hebrew text is
corrupted; cf. Septuagint: , In the
ways of justice there is life, but the ways of those who bear grudges lead to death (NETS)
and the Targum: . E. Puech, La croyance des
Essniens en la vie future: immortalit, resurrection, vie ternelle? Histoire dune croyance
dans le judasme ancient (2 vols.; EBib 2122; Paris: Gabalda, 1993), 1:60 suggests reading
instead of and vocalizing instead of ;see also C. H. Toy, A Critical and
Exegetical Commentary on the Book of Proverbs (ICC; New York: Charles Scribners Sons,
1916), 25960.
24 L XX: and will he place my words as nothing (this verse is
marked with an obelos); Targum: ; David M. Stec, The Text of the
Targum of Job: An Introduction and Critical Edition (AGJU 20; Leiden: Brill, 1994), 170 notes
the following variants: | | | .
25 Wijnkoop, Manual of Hebrew, 66; R. J. Williams, Williams Hebrew Syntax (rev. and ed. J. C.
Beckman; 3rd ed.; Toronto: University of Toronto: 2007),405, 146; GKC,152a.
26 BDB, KBL.
27 Cf. Dan 4:32 ( in Codex Cairensis, cf. Theodotion: )
and Muraoka and Porten, A Grammar of Egyptian Aramaic,83 and78cd; Muraoka,
A Grammar of Qumran Aramaic,5e, 23.
166 Rey

In conclusion, when the negative is used in a non-verbal clause, either

the verb is implied (only attested in poetry) or the particle is used in an abso-
lute sense as predicate. Except for the two ambiguous cases of Prov 12:28 and
Job 24:25, the negative never seems to negate a non verbal element.

1.4 Dislocated Negations

To these examples should be added four cases not mentioned by Qimron and
that Kaddari considers as regular. They concern clauses where, as in 4Q417 2 i
9, the construction is dislocated to introduce a non-verbal element
between the particle and the verb. Such constructions are explained by gram-
marians as an emphasis on the non-verbal component: The position of
(like that of , E) is immediately before the verb. Exceptions, for the sake of
emphasis: Ps 6:2 Do not reprimand me with anger, cf. 38,2; Isa
64,8; Jer 15,15 (JM, 160f; cf. GKC, 152h). I intend to examine each of these

1.4.1 Ps 6:2 and Ps 38:2

In Ps 6:2 (and Ps 38:2 with few variations),28 we find this syntactic construc-

O Lord, do not rebuke me in your
anger, or do not discipline me in your wrath.29 Both prepositional groups,
and ( as well as in Ps 38:2), should have been placed after
the verb and the construction should have been
. However, in these passages, we may consider that the negative does
not negate the following verb but the prepositional group and that the verb
is implied: () O Lord, you can rebuke me but not

in your anger. Finally, they should be classified with cases of1.1b. Indeed, the
same idea is attested in Jer 10:24: Correct me, O

Lord, but in just measure; not in your anger. Here, as the negative follows
the imperative of , the same verb has to be supplied (cf. infra1.1a).

1.4.2 Isa 64:8

In Isa 64:8, the formulation (

Do not be exceedingly angry, O Lord, and do not remember iniquity

28 MT:

O Lord, do not rebuke me in your anger,
or discipline me in your wrath; LXX: ,
; Tg: . It is probable that the
negative is missing before by scribal error as suggested by the versions.
29 LXX: , ; Tg:
Dislocated Negations 167

forever)30 could be explained by comparison with the equivalent expressions

( Isa 28:28; 57:16; Ps 9:19; 103:9), ( Isa 57:16; Ps 103:9; Job 7:16;
Prov 27:24), or ( Isa 29:17 and Job 20:9), where the temporal complement
is inserted between the negative particle and the verb. Such a syntactical con-
struction is frequently found in biblical as well as in Qumran Hebrew (4Q200 1
ii 3; 6 2; 4Q446 1 2) and Aramaic (4Q537 1+2+3 2; 4Q538 12 6;31 4Q580 4 5)32 but
only in indicative clauses with . It is, therefore, legitimate to consider that
the specific case of Isa 64:8 is an extension of this syntax to the prohibitive
(cf. Exod 36:6 ; CD 10:7 ) .

1.4.3 Jer 15:15

The last example, Jer 15:15, is certainly the most complex:

O Lord, you know; remember me and visit me, and bring down retribu-
tion for me on my persecutors. In your forbearance do not take me away;
know that on your account I suffer insult.

The textual situation of the clause is ambiguous: the Septuagint (

), Targum ( ) , and Vetus Latina (non in longa-

nimitate) do not translate 33 while Vulgate (noli in patientia tua suscipere
) do. The former should either have
me) and Peshitta (
had a Vorlage like or have corrected the syntactic ambiguity. In
the MT, the clause must be interpreted as do not let me die by your patience
(already in D. Kimchi, , Do not kill me).34 In that case, the negative
does not negate the prepositional complement but rather the verb after it,
as in 4Q417 2 i 9. Although the wording is textually ambiguous, this instance
would be the only example of dislocated negation in biblical Hebrew. If
is a later addition, then it could carry the features of post-classical Hebrew.35

30 LXX: ; Tg:
31 ( 4Q538 1 6), but compare in the preceding line: ( 4Q538 2 4).
32 Muraoka, A Grammar of Qumran Aramaic,75d, 226.
33 For the sense of in this clause, cf. Gen 5:24, Isa 53:8, and Ps 73:24.
34 See W. McKane, A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on Jeremiah (2 vols.; ICC; Edinburgh:
T&T Clark, 1986), 1:351.
35 See J. Joosten, Lexcdent massortique du livre de Jrmie et lhbreu post-classique, in
Conservatism and Innovation in the Hebrew Language of the Hellenistic Period: Proceedings
168 Rey

2 Special Usage of the Negative in Ben Sira and Qumran

The negative is especially common in Ben Sira and particularly in the pro-
hibitive form . Scholars like Kaddari and van Peursen36 have noticed
some peculiarities that they identify as linguistic evolution: the use of in
a predictive sense; the use of before the infinitive construct instead of ;
and the use of in nominal clauses. I would like to look more closely at these
examples, because all of them appear to me textually ambiguous and raise
some methodological questions.

2.1 Use of in a Predictive Sense

Van Peursen presents a list of examples where the negative is used in a
predictive sense instead of the expected prohibitive.37 Such a characteristic
was already noticed by Joon in biblical Hebrew poetry (114k) but the exam-
ples he gives are debatable.38 Concerning Ben Sira, as already noticed by van
Peursen, wherever is used in a predictive sense instead of there are varia-
tions in the textual witnesses.
In Sir 3:14 MS B, kindness to a father will not be forgot-
ten (or Do not forget kindness to a father) corresponds to
kindness to a father will not be forgotten in MS A, this later is confirmed by
the Greek and Syriac.
In Sir 6:8 MS A, For there is the friend
for one time, and he will not stay in the day of distress, following
is clearly indicative.39 However, ms C, discovered in 2007, reads
, a reading confirmed by the quotation in Saadiah40 and the Greek (

of a Fourth International Symposium on the Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls & Ben Sira (ed.
J. Joosten and J.-S. Rey; STDJ 73; Leiden: Brill, 2008), 93108.
36 W. Th. van Peursen, Negation in the Hebrew of BenSira, in Sirach, Scrolls, and Sages:
Proceedings of a Second International Symposium on the Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls,
Ben Sira, and the Mishnah (ed. T. Muraoka and J. F. Elwolde; STDJ 33; Leiden: Brill, 1999),
37 Van Peursen, Negation in the Hebrew of Ben Sira, 236.
38 Then in Ps 41:3 you will not give him over could also mean Do not give him over, and in
Ps 50:3 he will not remain quiet could also be do not remain quiet, etc.
39 As already noticed by Kaddari, The Negative Particle al, 202 and van Peursen, Negation
in the Hebrew of Ben Sira, 236.
40 ( ed. Harkavy), 178.
Dislocated Negations 169

In Sir 16:13 MS A, , A sinner does not escape with his spoil,

the negative has also been corrected into in the margin.41
Such textual variations challenge our attempt to reconstruct the historical
evolution of Hebrew language. Indeed, is the use of in a predictive sense
original (as lectio difficilior)? And in this case, is this characteristic a witness to
a linguistic feature of the Hebrew language of the Hellenistic period? Should
the alternative variants be explained as efforts to harmonize texts with classi-
cal Hebrew syntax? Or, on the contrary, should we consider the use of in a
predictive sense as a feature of medieval Hebrew and the marginal readings as
witnesses to the ancient text?

2.2 Use of with the Infinitive Construct Instead of

The same difficulty arises in Sir 39:34 where precedes an infinitive construct
instead of the expected ( Not to tell: this is not good,
what is this). Kaddari considers the construction as a corruption resulting
from the contamination of and .42 But neither Kaddari nor
van Peursen note that the marginal reading of manuscript B corrects the text
to . So here again, in which way should we take this example as a wit-
ness of linguistic evolution? Is the plain text the original reading and the mar-
ginal reading a later correction or the contrary?
Van Peursen notices that such a similar expression occurs twice in 4Q393
3 34: [] , Do not (allow) each to walk in the
stubbornness of his [ev]il heart.43 This construction could be explained by
the development of the syntagm or + in late biblical Hebrew to
indicate obligation or prohibition44 combined with confusion between and
( cf., for example, the almost identical construction in 1QS 1:6
and not to walk anymore in the stubbornness of a guilty

41 We could add cases where is used in a negative final clause to express purpose-
consecution (Sir 7:1 [MS A], 9:13 [MS A] and 38:12 [MS B in the margin, in opposition to
the plain text )].
42 Kaddari, The Negative Particle al, 202.
43 Translation from Falk, DJD 29:55.
44 See J. Carmignac, Lemploi de la ngation dans la Bible et Qumrn, RevQ 8
(1974): 40713, esp. 40910; GKC,114l; JM,124l; Qimron, The Hebrew of the Dead Sea
Scrolls,400.12; van Peursen, Negation in the Hebrew of Ben Sira, 22728.
45 So Falk, DJD 29:56; van Peursen, Negation in the Hebrew of Ben Sira, 230 n. 50, notes that
the use of in 4Q393 may be due to the different context: is part of a petition
to God, not the expression of a negative command.
170 Rey

Finally, van Peursen adds the complex case of Prov 31:4:

It is not for kings, O Lemuel,46 it is not for kings to drink wine47

Both uses of in this phrase raise difficulties insofar as they precede a non-
verbal element and an infinitive construct for the latter.48 Nevertheless, they
could easily be explained if we consider that both clauses are elliptical. The
verb could be supplied and this example would be placed in category 1.1.b

2.3 Use of in Nominal Clauses: Ellipsis of the Verb

The use of the negative in nominal clauses is attested only twice in the
entire preserved corpus of Qumran texts, both in 4QInstruction: 4Q416 2 ii 9 //
4Q418 8 9 (set in bold Hebrew font, see also the same construction in 4Q417 2 i
2122 // 4Q418 7 b 5 partially reconstructed): [
] 10 , [Let there be no rest for thy soul] or sleep for thy eyes,
Until thou hast performed 10 [his commandments.50 Here again, this example
can be explained as a case where the jussive is elliptical (cf. 1.1.b. supra).
Nevertheless, it should be noticed that this construction is attested neither in
Ben Sira nor elsewhere in Qumran and seems to disappear totally in Mishnaic
Hebrew. Certainly the sentence of 4QInstruction is inspired by biblical lan-
guage; see Prov 6:4,
Give your eyes no sleep

and your eyelids no slumber51; Ps 132:4 ( I will

not give sleep to my eyes or slumber to my eyelids) or by the Proverbs of Aiqar
(TAD C.1.1.13031) which has a comparable phrase in a similar context of loan
and deposit: [] Moreover, [i]f you

46 Kadari, The Negative Particle al, 201 n. 10, following Ibn Ezra and N. H. Torcyner, suggests
reading not as a proper name, but as an Aramaic-type infinitive of the root : it
is not for kings to be foolish.
47 LXX does not translate the negation (nor do the Targum and Syriac): Do everything with
counsel ( = aram. ;)drink wine with counsel ( ). Those in
power are wrathful (). Let them not drink wine (= ( )? NETS).
48 The form is closer to an infinitive absolute than to an infinitive construct .

49 See Michael V. Fox, Proverbs 1031: A New Translation with Introduction and Commentary
(AB; New Haven: Yale University Press, 2009), 886.
50 Trans. by Strugnell and Harrington, DJD 34:93.
51 Note that the second group exhibits ellipsis of the negative as well as of the verb .
Dislocated Negations 171

take the loan, rest to your soul do not put (= give) until 131 [you repay] the [l]

2.4 Use of in Dislocated Negations

Finally, we might find one example of a dislocated negation, in Ben Sira 32:4,
following the reading of MS F (parallel to MS B):52

3 2:4B

MS F: Do not pour out discourse in the hall of understanding, and

without music do not pour out discourse.
MS B: Do not pour out discourse53 in the banquet-hall and without
music54 do not pour out discourse and do not display your wis-
dom at the wrong time.

This verse seems to have suffered several alterations. Indeed, the first stich
presents variants;55 the second stich, attested in MS F and MS B, is missing
in Greek and Syriac;56 the third stich is present in MS B, the Greek, and the
Syriac, but is missing in MS F; the second and third stichs are written on the
same line in MS B, but in smaller script. In any event, is a rare
example of dislocated negation. Indeed, the negation probably falls on the
verb and not on which is the object of , and we cannot postulate an
ellipsis. Nevertheless, MS B does not present the same construction: as regu-
larly, the negation directly precedes the verb, and is used in place of .57
So, although MS F presents a dislocated negation, MS B, on the contrary, fol-
lows the common syntax of the prohibitive (except in the use of in place

52 See A. Scheiber, A Leaf of the Fourth Manuscript of the Ben Sira from the Geniza, Magyar
Kyvszemle 98 (1982): 17985; A. A. Di Lella, The Newly Discovered Sixth Manuscript of
Ben Sira from the Cairo Geniza, Biblica 69 (1988): 22638.
53 For in the sense of word, discourse, see Sir 13:11; 44:4.
54 This is the only attestation of outside of the Psalter and the Hodayot (1QHa 7:21;
25:34; 4Q403 1 i 40; 4Q427 3 4; 4Q448 1 1).
55 M S F: ; MS B: ; LXX: (= [ so Schechter-
Taylor]); Syr: in place in which wine is drunk.
56 Di Lella, The Newly Discovered, 233 considered this stich as secondary.
57 According to van Peursen, Negation in the Hebrew of Ben Sira, 232, the particle has
here the sense of as in 13:2; 41:4.
172 Rey

of ). In a diachronic perspective, again, it seems difficult to claim the dislo-

cated negation of MS F as a characteristic of a specific period in the history of
Hebrew language.
In the Qumran texts dislocated negations seem to be attested only twice:58
in the example of 4QInstruction (4Q417 2 i 9 [// 4Q416 2 i 35]) and in 4Q393
1 ii 2 7. And this latter is clearly problematic:

[ ] Do
n[ot] thrust the broken of [spir]it from before you.59 This example is based
solely on the restoration of Falk which presents difficulties: (1) although plau-
sible, readings of alef and et are uncertain;60 (2) as noted by Falk, the space
between the two fragments is difficult to estimate, but is certainly too short for
the restoration ( [ ] see the distance of both fragments with the complete
preceding line); (3) it is not prudent to restore an unusual syntactic construc-
tion; (4) John Strugnell proposed another solution mentioned by Falk but not
adopted: [] , and the broken spirit before Thee shall be
melted away. (5) Finally, it is better to read
[ ] and you
will drive out from you the broken spirit.61 For these five reasons, it seems
preferable to not retain this case in our analysis.

2.5 Conclusion
Our analysis has shown the difficulty in drawing some conclusions on dia-
chronic evolution in the use of the particle . Indeed, in each case where
the negative does not follow classical syntax, textual witnesses differ. For
each one, it seems impossible to know which lesson testifies to the Hebrew
of the second century BCE and which is a later corruption or evolution of the

58 Other cases where is followed by a non-verbal element are limited to biblical quota-
tions: Ps 6:2 in 4Q177 2 i 1213 and Joel 2:13 in 4Q266 11 5 // 4Q270 7 i 19.
59 Falk, DJD 29:55.
60 As noted by Falk, DJD 29:50: It is extremely difficult to read crucial parts of these lines
and to make good sense of them. I offer my reading in the transcription and translation
with a discussion of the difficulties here, and in the comments below consider this pro-
posal alongside the equally plausible restoration of Strugnell. Both rely on conjecture.
61 For the reading , see PAM 42.560 where the tav is entirely preserved, next the head
of a re and the end of its downstroke, after, head and shoulder are preferable for a dalet
than to a re, and finally the final pe is almost certain.
Dislocated Negations 173

3 Dislocated Negation with in Biblical Hebrew, Ben Sira, and


It is not the purpose of this study to examine the syntax of the negative ,
however, it is necessary to know if our cases of dislocated negation with
are or are not the result of syntactical contamination of the negative . Do we
observe dislocated negations with the particle ?
As with the negative , generally the position of is immediately before
the verb. But grammarians note that this normal order can be relinquished,
especially for the sake of emphasis.62 If examples are more numerous than
those with the negative , we have to remember that:
First, such constructions are never used in the vetitive, in which case the
negative precedes the verb directly.
Second, when a non-verbal constituent is inserted between the negative
and the verb, most often the non-verbal constituent is predicative and the
negative affects only it, for example: Num16:29: the Lord has not
sent me (lit., It is not the Lord who sent me); Ps 115:17:
The dead do not praise the Lord, nor do any that go down into

silence (lit. it is not the dead (who) praise the Lord, and it is not all those who
go down into silence). As with the negative , these sentences exhibit ellipsis
of the verb.63
Third, cases where the negation affects the verb and not the non-verbal con-
stituent are rare;64 see, for example, Ps 49:18:
For when they die they will carry nothing away; their wealth will not go
down after them. One can hardly translate For it is not in his death that he
shall carry all away. Here, the predicate is clearly the verb and the nega-
tion concerns the verb and not . Classical syntax would have had:
, or for emphasis ( see also Qoh 10:10; 2 Chr
32:25). Clear examples do not seem to be attested in Qumran Hebrew,65 and
only one in Sir 14:12: Death does not tarry (and not: it is not
the death which shall tarry). This unusual syntax is not preserved in the quo-
tation of this clause in b. Erub. 54a: .
In conclusion, we cannot attribute the prohibitive dislocated negation
with to a confusion with the syntax of negative .

62 J M,160e.
63 See Miller-Naud, Ellipsis: Biblical Hebrew, 810.
64 I have not taken into account constructions like , , or .
65 The construction followed by a verb is attested twice. Cases such as 1QS 4:18,
, or 4Q460 9 i 5, ] for you have not abandoned
your servant, are ambiguous (cf. 1Chr 17:4 and Gen 45:8).
174 Rey

4 Conclusion

We can now summarize the result of our analysis:

(1) In classical Hebrew, in addition to the prohibitive construction ,
the negative is used sporadically in nominal clauses. I suggested classifying
these uses in two categories: (a) when the verb is elliptical, only attested in
poetry; and (b) when is used in an absolute sense, only in direct discourse.
All the other cases present textual ambiguities. This use of in nominal
clauses seems to disappear in post-biblical Hebrew and possibly already in late
biblical Hebrew. In Qumran Hebrew, the only exception is 4Q416 2 ii 9 // 4Q418
8 9: [ ] [ .
(2) In the book of Ben Sira, syntactic variations in the use of raise meth-
odological problems. Indeed, each specific case presents variations among
the textual witnesses and challenges all diachronic typology of the language.
Predictive use of , use of before the infinitive construct, and dislocated
negations are certainly evidence in favor of a linguistic evolution, but which
could hardly be dated without risk to the second century BCE.
(3) Qumran texts, except biblical quotations and the two exceptions of
4QInstruction, attest exclusively the use of the negative before the verb
(including one case before the infinitive construct in 4Q393 3 34).
(4) After examination, dislocated negation, as attested in 4Q417 2 i 9, seems
only to appear in Jer 15:15 and Sir 32,4 (4Q393 1 ii 2 7 certainly has to be rejected).
Nevertheless, both examples are textually ambiguous. The former may be the
result of a later addition and in consequence would belong to late biblical
Hebrew. The latter is hard to estimate in a diachronic perspective.
(5) This construction can hardly be attributed to confusion with the nega-
tive , since the same construction with the negative in the vetitive seems
not to be attested.
(6) Examples of dislocated negation are too tenuous to characterize a lin-
guistic evolution or to be syntactically normative. Such cases may have to be
classified as hyperbata. This trope defines wavering between grammatical and
rhetorical fields66 and characterizes tout dplacement syntaxique engendrant
un relief jug exemplaire, et par l figural, au contact du discours et de ses

66 See Quintilian, Institutio Oratoria, 8.6.6267; M. Bonhomme, Entre grammaire et rh-

torique. Lhyperbate comme extraposition problmatique, in Les linguistiques du
dtachement: Actes du colloque international de Nancy (79 juin 2006) (ed. D. Apothlos,
B. Combettes, and F. Neuveu; Sciences pour la communication 87; Bern: Lang, 2009),
11728, esp. 11820.
67 Bonhomme, Entre grammaire et rhtorique, 122.
Some Semantic Notes on the Lexeme
in the DSS

Francesco Zanella


This paper examines the semantic value of the Hebrew substantive

in the corpus of the Dead Sea Scrolls (= DSS).1 For the lexicographer,
presents quite an intriguing and challenging case indeed: a problematic and
disputed hapax legomenon in Biblical Hebrew (= BH; Isa 14:4), does not
seem to have any cognate words,2 noraccording to the major concordances
and dictionariesis it attested in Mishnaic Hebrew (= MH).3 Unexpectedly,
however, the lexeme occurs at least four times in Qumranic Hebrew (= QH).
The repeated usage of the substantive in the DSS is quite surprising. It becomes
even more puzzling if one considers that the Scrolls attest to two further lex-
emes, and ( perhaps variants of )?, which happen to be
unknown to both BH and MH. These lexemes shall also be investigated here

* I am grateful to Prof. Pierre Van Hecke and Prof. Eibert Tigchelaar for inviting me to take part
in this prestigious symposium. I am also grateful to those scholars, among others Prof. Moshe
Bar-Asher, Prof. Jan Joosten, and Dr. Noam Mizrahi, who gave me precious advices during
the discussion that followed the presentation of the paper, thus helping me to deal with the
intriguing and difficult topic I chose.
1 The background of the present paper is the article on the lexeme which I wrote for
the second volume of the Theologisches Wrterbuch zu den Qumrantexten (ThWQ), edited by
Prof. H.-J. Fabry and Prof. U. Dahmen.
2 Cf. the entries for in DCH, HAL, and HAHAT.
3 The data concerning MH results from the consultation of the major concordances to the
Tannaitic corpus: Ch. Y. Kasowsky, Thesaurus Mishnae: Concordantiae verborum quae in sex
Mishnae ordinibus reperiuntur (4 vols.; Jerusalem: Massada Publishing, 19561960]; Kasowsky,
Thesaurus Thosephtae: Concordantiae verborum quae in sex Thosaephtae ordinibus reperiun-
tur (6 vols.; Jerusalem: Massada Publishing, 19321961); B. Kosowsky, Concordantiae Verborum
quae in Mechilta dRabbi Ismael reperiuntur (4 vols.; Jerusalem: Massada Publishing, 1965
1969]; Kosowsky, Concordantiae Verborum que in Sifra reperiuntur (4 vols.; Jerusalem:
Massada Publishing, 19671969); Kosowsky, Concordantiae Verborum que in Sifrei Numeri
et Deuteronomium reperiuntur (5 vols.; Jerusalem: Massada Publishing, 19711974); and lex-
ica: M. Jastrow, The Dictionary of the Targumim, the Talmud Bavli, and Yerushalmi and the
Midrashic literature (Peabody, Mass.: Hendrickson, 2006) and J. Levi, Wrterbuch ber die
Talmudim und Midraschim (4 vols.; Berlin, Vienna: Verlag Benjamin Harz, 1924).

koninklijke brill nv, leiden, 5|doi .63/9789004299313_012

176 Zanella

in order to identify the possible sense-relations (perhaps even of interchange

ability?) between them and .
The working hypothesis of this paper is as follows: The repeated usage of
in QH might imply that some scribal circles authoring the DSS were
actually able to give a specific meaning and to use it consistently. In
light of this hypothesis, the present paper will search for semantic consistency
in the use of the word in the DSS, in order to ascertain (a) whether the usage of
in the DSS points to recurrent patterns of semantic and lexical relations
that qualify its meaning, andif the use of the lexeme actually goes back to
Isa 14:4(b) whether such semantic patterns are consistent with the usage of
in this biblical passage. In order to exhaustively draw the possible lines
of the semantic development of between Hebrew Bible and DSS, the
present paper approaches the problem of the meaning of within the
framework of the semantic methodology known as Componential Analysis
of Meaning.4
To conclude, this paper argues against the assessment of as a coinci-
dental case and as a mere biblicism, and demonstrates instead that the usage
of this lexeme in the DSS points to an intentional lexical choice aimed at
expressing a specific concept.

1 Distributional Analysis

The first problem concerning the substantive arises with the very cal-
culation of its occurrences. According to the concordances to the non-biblical
Qumran texts, is attested seven times (including doublets): four occur-
rences belong to the Hodayot (1QHa 11:26; 20:21; 4Q427 [4QHa] 7 ii 3 par. 4Q431
[4QHe] 2 2) whereas the remaining three are attested in 4QInstruction (4Q416
2 ii 14; 4Q418a 16 3; 4Q418 176 3).5

4 For an exhaustive description of the approach of Componential Analysis to the semantic

study of Ancient Hebrew, cf. F. Zanella, The Lexical Field of the Substantives of Gift in Ancient
Hebrew (SSN 54; Leiden: Brill, 2010), 1261 and Zanella, Componential Analysis of Meaning,
EHLL 1:51117. As far as the role of Componential Analysis of meaning for the purposes of the
present paper is concerned, cf. Afterword below.
5 Cf. M. G. Abegg, Jr., The Dead Sea Scrolls Concordance, Volume One: The Non-Biblical Texts from
Qumran (Leiden: Brill, 2003). At this point of the investigation the count of the occurrences
still includes doublets.
Some Semantic Notes on the Lexeme in the DSS 177

TABLE 1 Distribution of in the DSS

Distribution of in the DSS

4x in the Hodayot 1QHa 11:26; 20:21; 4Q427 7 ii 3 par. 4Q431 2 2

3x in 4QInstruction 4Q416 2 ii 14; 4Q418a 16 3; 4Q418 176 3

This distributional data can be improved. For morphological reasons, two

occurrences should be excluded as irrelevant (4Q416 2 ii 14; 4Q418a 16 3). The
forms ( 4Q416 2 ii 14) and ( 4Q418a 16 3) are in fact morpho-
logically incompatible with the pattern of a substantive fem. sing/pl. + suf-
fix, which in QH also follows the standard rules of classical Hebrew: in the
case of , then, one would expect ( not )6 and
(and not ).7 These forms can either be regarded as participles (Piel)
of the root ,8 or be understood as reflecting a *maqtal substantive, hence
.9 Furthermore, in light of 4Q427 (4QHa) 7 ii 3 and the parallel occur-
rence in 4Q431 (4QHe) 2 2, DJD 40 reconstructs the occurrence of in
1QHa 26:21.
To sum up, if one follows DJD 40, one counts six occurrences alto-
gether (including doublets): five are attested in the Hodayot and one in

6 Cf., e.g., ( 4Q175 1 18).

7 Cf., e.g., ( 4Q366 4 i 7 etc.).
8 Following J. Strugnell and D. T. Harrington, DJD 34:104 and HAHAT, 632): in this regard,
one should note that that the Hebrew DSS do not seem to know this (Aramaising)
9 For the *maqtal pattern, cf., e.g., P. Joon A Grammar of Biblical Hebrew (trans. and rev.
T. Muraoka; SubBi 14; Roma: Editrice Pontificio Istituto Biblico, 1991), esp. 25758. See
below, 1.3.
10 This calculation includes doublets.
178 Zanella

table 2 Improved distribution of in the DSS

Distribution of in the DSSa possible improvement

5x in the Hodayot 1QHa 11:26; 20:21; 1QHa 26:21 par. 4Q427 7

ii 3 par. 4Q431 2 2 par.

1x in 4QInstruction 4Q418 176 3

In the Hebrew DSS the substantive is attested three times.11

table 3 Distribution of in the DSS

Distribution of in the DSS

2x in D CD 13:9 par. 4Q267 9 iv 6

1x in H 1QHa 19:4

The present distributional analysis also takes account of the two occurrences
of the (possibly) nominal form , which is considered here in order to have
more data available for the assessment of the lexeme under investigation.12

table 4 Distribution of in the DSS

Distribution of in the DSS

4QInstruction 4Q416 2 ii 14; 4Q418a 16 3

11 This calculation includes doublets.

12 For an alternative assessment of the occurrences as Piel participles of the root see
above 1.1.
Some Semantic Notes on the Lexeme in the DSS 179

1.4 : An Idiolect of the DSS?

If one were to extend the distributional analysis of across the whole
corpus of Ancient Hebrew, one would notice that the lexeme is not attested:
(a) in the Hebrew sections of Ben Sira, (b) in the later post-Classical corpora
from the Judean Desert, or (c) in the main writings of Tannaitic literature. In
light of such a peculiar distribution, one may be tempted to consider the usage
of as an idiolect of the DSS, which probably alludes to the language use
of Isaiah. For an exhaustive evaluation of the usage of in the DSS, the
following two aspects should be taken into consideration.
(a) The first aspect concerns the issue of the concrete influence of the lan-
guage of Isa 14:4 on the use of in the Scrolls. In my view, it is plausi-
ble to assume this influence: the group(s) authoring the DSS show(s) a high
acquaintance with what we call Biblical text, particularly with the writings
and the language of Isaiah. It is therefore quite possible that the use of
in the DSS explicitly goes back to Isa 14:4 or, at least, to its Qumranic reception
and interpretation. The semantic investigation of in the DSS confirms
this assumption.
(b) The second aspect concerns the issue of a possible sectarian use of the
lexeme. Unfortunately, at present, we do not have enough pieces of evidence
to demonstrate whether can be understood as a distinctive lexical fea-
ture of the writings of the community, even if it is the case that occurs
in writings thataccording to Devorah Dimantshould be considered as
sectarian.13 If one follows Dimants results, one might even consider
as a lexeme belonging to the sectarian idiolect.

2 The Lexeme in BH

If the usage of in the DSS goes back to Isa 14:4, and if at that time the
current Isaiah text corresponded to our Masoretic Text (= MT),14 then one can

13 See, e.g., D. Dimant, The Qumran Manuscripts: Contents and Significance, in Time to
Prepare the Way in the Wilderness (ed. D. Dimant and L. H. Schiffman; STDJ 16; Leiden:
Brill, 1995), 2358; Dimant, The Vocabulary of Qumran Sectarian Texts, in Qumran und
die Archologie: Texte und Kontexte (ed. J. Frey, C. Claussen, and N. Kessler; WUNT 278;
Tbingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2011), 34795; J. G. Campbell, The Qumran Sectarian Writings,
in The Cambridge History of Judaism III (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999),
798821, esp. 8025, as well as Zanella, The Lexical Field, 2833. According to Dimant
4QInstruction should be considered as definitely sectarian. This opinion, however, does
not rely on scholarly consensus.
14 According to 1QIsaa, this is not so clear-cut (see below, 2.2.1.).
180 Zanella

plausibly assume that the context of this particular biblical passage contains
all the pieces of information available to those who intentionally chose to use
this word in their writings.
In Isa 14:4 occurs at the beginning of an oracle uttered against the
King of Babylon.

table 5 The context of the usage of




3. and it shall come to pass in the day in which YHWH shall give you
rest from your pain and from your agitation, and from the hard
labour, which was worked on you,
4. and you shall lift up this poem against the king of Babylon, and
say: How has the oppressor ceased! The has ceased!
5. YHWH has broken the staff of the wicked ones and the sceptre of
the rulers.
7. The whole earth is at rest, it is quiet: they break forth into singing.
8. Even the cypress trees rejoice over you, the cedars of Lebanon.

2.1 : A Poetical Lexeme

The passage in which occurs is explicitly referred to in the Hebrew text
as a ml, a word that may denote both a poem and a satirical song. The
sentence introducing the ml ( ) functions

as a clear text marker, which explicitly separates the content and language of
the main text from the content and the language of the ml.
Linguistically, a poem or a song is qualified by a language-use which delib-
erately deviates from the linguistic norm according to the rules of a specific
genre. A poem, or a song, is not only subject to the rules of prosody (metre,
assonance, parallelismus membrorum, and the like) but it is also likely to use
a specific vocabulary, which may consist of archaisms, dialectal lexemes, loan-
Some Semantic Notes on the Lexeme in the DSS 181

words, etc.15 Against such an extraordinary linguistic framework, therefore, the

usage of words like should not be particularly surprising.

2.2 The precise meaning and translation of : A past and present

Surprisingly or not, the lexeme presented (and still presents) a problem
for most of its translators (and for lexicographers as well!).16 After a rough over-
view of the ancient translations, besides (oppressor),17 one
finds the renderings tributum (tribute, tax),18 (tax collection),19
and fames (famine).20
This rather wide range of meanings is shared by modern translators as well:
besides Tyrann21 and Anstrmer (oppressor),22 one finds oppression,23
oppressive tax-gatherer,24 and tax-collection(?),25 not to mention the
golden city.26
The diverse translations, roughly summarised here, point not only to the fact
that the meaning of presents an enigma, but they also show that
has repeatedly been understood as referring to something distressing: whether
such distress is of a political (tyrant), physiological (hunger), or financial (trib-
ute, tax collection) kind, is merely left to the interpretation of the translators.27

15 According to H. Wildberger, Jesaja 1327 (BKAT 10.2; Neukirchen-Vluyn: Neukirchener

Verlag, 1978), 543, it is not unlikely that the satirical song in Isa 14:4 attests to beliefs, ideas,
images, and even expressions of an extra-Israelite provenance.
16 Surprisingly enough, the word is known by Google-Translator.
17 Cf. LXX.
18 Cf. Vulg.
19 Cf. Symmachus and Theodotion.
20 Aquila according to Jerome.
21 Wildberger, 531.
22 W. A. M. Beuken, Jesaia 1327 (HTKAT 35: Freiburg: Herder, 2007), 49.
23 Cf. E. Chazon, DJD 29:206.
24 Cf. Strugnell and Harrington, DJD 34:93.
25 Ibid., 399.
26 So, according to KJV. On the relationship between the meaning of and the
Aramaic lexeme ( gold) see below, 2.3.
27 Linguistically, the substantial lack of explicit lexical relations between and lex-
emes belonging to the financial sphere of language would exclude any references of the
lexeme to the collection of tributes or to economic oppression.
182 Zanella

2.2.1 or ?
A further possible way to approach the problem of the meaning of is
to assume that the present spelling of the word reflects a mistake. It has been
suggested to emend the form to , thus connecting the word to
the root ( to attack, to storm).28 Interestingly enough, such an emended
form turns out to be a genuine variant, since it is attested in the Isaiah Scroll
(Isa 14:4 = 1QIsaa 12:7).29
The occurrence of the in 1QIsaa in fact complicates our case. If the
variant attested in the Isaiah Scrolls corresponds to the correct form of our
word, where do the six occurrences of the word with dalethence com-
patible with the MTcome from? Do they really originate from a spelling
In light of the scanty data available, I believe that, if one is still interested in
determining the meaning of / in the DSS, the fascinating quest
for the correct and original spelling of the word should be put aside. Rather,
one may try to see the problem from a semantic perspective. This means that
one should move the focus of the investigation and deal with questions such
as the following ones: to which semantic domain does belong? Which
concept(s) is it likely to lexicalise? How can a possible relationship to Isa 14:4 be
proven? And, in this regard, does merely represent, like Beuken argues,
eine gelehrte bernahme eines im Grunde unbekannten Ausdrucks,30 or,
rather, do the DSS point to an intentional and consistent usage of the substan-
tive? If, as we assume, the use of in the scrolls relates to Isa 14:4, than the
quest for the Qumranic meaning of must be closely connected either
with its biblical meaning or, at least, to the Qumranic reception of the satirical
song of Isa 14:4, thus reflecting the way in which some Qumran scribal circles
understood the meaning of the word.

2.2.2 , a ghost word?

In the quest for the original meaning of one may take into account a
further perspective: the most diverse translations of mentioned above31
might indicate the fact that both past and present translators did not actu-
ally understand the linguistic meaning of : instead, they merely grasped

28 See, e.g., the critical apparatus of the BHS.

29 Unfortunately, no further pieces of evidence are available: among the biblical and non-
biblical Qumran scrolls, only a further quotation from Isa 14:4 is found (4Q57 8 8): in the
very place where would be, the text unfortunately presents a lacuna.
30 Beuken, Jesaia, 49.
31 Cf. above 2.2.
Some Semantic Notes on the Lexeme in the DSS 183

its contextualised meaning, and assumed that this would correspond to its
semantic value.32 This particular kind of lexicographical mistake may also be
reflected in the Qumranic usage of : the scribal circles, which inten-
tionally used in their writings, may have picked out this word simply
because they aimed to allude to Isa 14:4. In this respect, they may have used
the otherwise unknown substantive with a meaning that they deducted
from the context of Isa 14:4 but that did not necessarily correspond to its orig-
inal meaning, thus giving birth to a ghost word.33 In this regard, one may
explain the use of in the DSS as a pseudo-classicism, namely a word
whose existence is solely due to the scribal culture.34
Against this framework, the first step to be taken in order to understand the
Qumranic understanding of the meaning of is to go back to the text and
the context of the biblical ml and try to see what the Qumranic reception
might have been.

2.3 The Content of the ml and the Contextual Meaning of

The passage in Isa 14 celebrates the fall of the world power Babylon, thereby
glorifying Gods saving might and pointing to the resulting period of liberation
and rest for the whole earth. From a semantic point of view, one can see that
the context of usage of here clearly consists of three distinct lexical
domains, which the following table displays.

32 For a distinction between linguistic meaning and contextualised use of the meaning, see,
e.g., Zanella, The Lexical Field, 1519.
33 In the discussion that followed the presentation of the paper, Prof. Bar-Asher argued that
in his view ( plausibly derived from the Aramaic , gold) denotes in Isa 14:4 a
golden staff, namely the sceptre of the king of Babylon.
34 Concerning the role of pseudo-classicisms in the later layers of the Hebrew language,
see J. Joosten, Pseudo-Classicisms in Late Biblical Hebrew, in Ben Sira and in Qumran
Hebrew, in Sirach, Scrolls, and Sages: Proceedings of a Second International Symposium
on the Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls, Ben Sira & the Mishnah, held at Leiden University:
1517 December 1997 (ed. T. Muraoka and J. F. Elwolde; STDJ 33, Leiden: Brill, 1999),
184 Zanella

table 6 The semantic background of the usage of in Isa 14:37

Semantic domains in Isa 14:37 Relevant lexemes Meaning

1. Distressing and threatening oppressor


your pain

your agitation

staff, rod; i.e. violence

and submission

the hard labour i.e.


wicked ones

2. Pleasant and peaceful rest



they have broken out

with joyous shout; i.e.
satisfaction and joy

to rejoice

away from; i.e. distance

from distressing
circumstances; cf. v.3

3. End, ceasing (through to come to an end


to break in pieces
Some Semantic Notes on the Lexeme in the DSS 185

(a) First of all, one finds a cluster of lexemes denoting distressing and threat-
ening circumstances, such as oppression ( ; v. 4), pain ( ; v. 3), agitation,
( ; v. 3), violence, submission ( ; v. 3), and slavery ( ; v. 3).
The explicit relationship between such distressing circumstances and the
wicked ones ( ; v. 5) sets this first semantic domain within an une-
quivocal theological framework. Moreover, as the recurrent references to the
2 person sg. indicate, these distressing situations directly involve and affect
the addressee of the prophetic speech, namely the one who is due to sing
the ml. Furthermore, semantically, the clear-cut parallelism between the
lexemes ( oppressor) and in v. 4 may suggest that itself
belongs, in part at least, to this first semantic domain.
(b) Secondly, there is a group of words which lexicalise the opposite pole,
thus denoting rest ( ;v. 3, 7), quiet ( ;v. 7), satisfaction, and joy (;
) . Such positively connoted situations and circumstances are explicitly
described as being far away from ( )the distress mentioned above (cf. v. 3:

away from your pain and from your agitation,

and from the hard labour).
(c) Finally, there are lexemes denoting both the ceasing ( ;2 times, v. 4)
and the destruction ( ;v. 5) of any kind of distressing and threatening situ-
ations. The end of any oppression results from divine destruction, which pre-
pares the way to a final and global period of quiet.
Against its particular context of usage, the lexeme seems to refer to
an oppressing, threatening, and unsettling situation or conditiona sort of
calamitywhich has come to an end thanks to divine intervention.

3 The Lexeme in QH

3.1 4QHa 7 ii 27 par. 1QHa 26:21 and 4QHe 2 2: A Less Concrete Usage of

To begin with, one may want to refer to the passage in 4QHa 7 ii 27 (par. 1QHa
26:21 and 4QHe 2 2), which attests to a clear-cut allusion to Isa 14:4.
186 Zanella

table 7 The context of usage of in 4QHa 7 ii 27

] [ 2
[ ] [ 3
] [ 5
] [ 6
[] [ 7

2. [ and wickedness perishes ]

3. [ and op]pression[ ceases; the oppressor ceases; with indignation
4. deceit [end]s, and there are no witless perversities; light appears, and j[oy
pours forth]
5. grief [disappears], and groaning flees; peace appears, terror ceases; a foun-
tain is opened for [eternal ]bles[sing]
6. and (for) healing for all times everlasting; iniquity ends, affliction ceases so
that there is no more sick[ness; injustice is removed,]
7. [and guil]t is no m[ore.
(Translation according to DJD 29)

The immediate context of usage of in v. 3 is very close to that of Isa 14:4,

even if it does not represent a literal quotation. The MT reads
whereas the Qumran text in 4QHe, which changes the word order, reads
( and ceased the , ceased the oppressor). This
very first piece of evidence may imply a high degree of consistency in con-
tent between this passage and the of Isaiah, which an exhaustive analysis
of both vocabulary and content of this Hodayot text clearly demonstrates. As
a matter of fact, the whole vocabulary of 4QHa 7 ii 27 (par. 1QHa 26:21 and
4QHe 2 2) is organised according to clusters of lexical relations which are highly
compatible with those identified in Isa 14:27.
Firstly, one finds a negative pole consisting of lexemes referring to distress-
ing and threatening circumstances, such as oppression ( ;line 3), grief (;
line 5), groaning ( ;line 5), affliction, plague ( ;line 6), sickness (;
line 6), terror ( ;line 5), wickedness ( ;line 2), deceit ( ;line 4),
senseless perversities ( ; line 4), iniquity ( ;line 6), injustice
( ;line 6), and guilt ( ;line 7).
Secondly, there is a positive pole consisting of lexemes referring to peace
( ;line 5), joy ( ;line 4), light ( ;line 4), healing ( ;line 6), and
blessing ( ; line 5).
Some Semantic Notes on the Lexeme in the DSS 187

Finally, one may identify a cluster of verbs denoting the ceasing of some-
thing and its non-existence: besides the known ( to come to an end),
which occurs altogether four times (twice in line 3, once in lines 5 and 7 respec-
tively), one finds ( to end, to complete, to destroy; line 4), and
(to perish; lines 2 and 4 respectively), ( to flee; line 5), ( not to be;
line 4) and ( no longer be; line 7). Within this particular cluster
of lexemes one should also list three further verbs that actually lexicalise the
opposite situation, namely the appearance and the beginning of something:
( Hiphil to appear; twice, lines 4 and 5), ( Niphal to be opened; line
5), and ( Hiphil to pour forth; line 4) .
Compared to Isa 14, this passage from the Hodayot seems to display some
significant developments in vocabulary and concepts. Each one of the three
main semantic domains qualifying the vocabulary of Isa 14:27 is here subject
to striking extensions. Besides the usage of key-words from the biblical pas-
sage (, , and ), the Hodayot text includes new lexemes and omits
some other lexemes, thus providing a new configuration and definition of both
vocabulary and concepts of the original text.
Concerning the first cluster of lexemes (words referring to distressing and
threatening circumstances) the following two data are worth mentioning:
(a) First of all, the lexemes in the biblical passage that refer to concrete
perhaps even historically traceabledistressing circumstances, such as slav-
ery, violence, or submission, are left out. Instead, the Hodayot text uses words
referring to a more abstract, theoretical kind of distress, which instead affects
the inner part of the human nature, such as grief, groaning, terror, and the like.
(b) Secondly, the reference to the domain of the ungodly, which in Isaiah is
only mentioned once () , plays a key role here and almost constitutes an
independent cluster of terms. Starting from , which goes back to Isa 14,
the Hodayot passage uses many words belonging to the semantic field of guilt
and iniquity.
A similar tendency to abstraction also applies to the second cluster of
lexemes (words referring to pleasant and peaceful situations). In compar-
ison with Isaiah one may note here the overwhelming presence of lex-
emes and phrases qualified by a theologically positive association (such as
, , ) , which is in fact meant to stand in contrast to the
domain of the ungodly reflected by the first cluster of lexemes.
The third cluster of lexemes (words referring to ceasing and coming to an
end) reflects traces of a significant extension, as well. On the one hand, the
recurrent usage of the verb ( four times), which clearly goes back to Isa 14,
is strengthened by the use of the close synonym and by further expres-
sions referring to not being. On the other hand, the biblical reference to the
concrete destruction of the rod of the wicked ones (
188 Zanella

seems here to become a more abstract reference to the perishing, decaying,

and dissipation of the whole ungodly domain, to which the lexeme
clearly belongs.
To sum up, the usage of in 4QHa 7 ii 27 (par. 1QHa 26:21 and 4QHe
2 2) seems to go back intentionally to the context of Isa 14:27; the lexeme is
used here with reference to something that is (a) distressing, (b) belonging to
the ungodly domain, and (c) supposed to dissipate due to divine intervention
(d) in order to leave the place with a period of peace and blessing.

3.2 1QHa 20:21: Eschatological nuances of

A very similar usage of can be found in 1QHa 20,21, where the meaning
of the substantive might even gain a thus far unknown eschatological nuance.

table 8 The context of usage of in 1QHa 20:21

[] 19
] [ 20
] 21
] [ ] 22
[] [ 23
] [

19. from ] dread of wickedness, and there is no deception and [

20. ] appointed times of destruction, for there is no m[ore ]
21. and] there is no more oppression, for before yo[ur] anger [
22. ] they make haste. No one is righteous besides you [ ]
23. and [to] have insight into all your mysteries, and to answer [concerning
your judgements
24. with your reproach, and they will watch for Your goodness. For in [your]
kindness [ al]l
25. who know you. In the time of your glory they will rejoice
(Translation and text according to DJD 40)

In spite of its fragmentary state, the context of the text provides significant
pieces of evidence for the assessment of the meaning of .
Some Semantic Notes on the Lexeme in the DSS 189

On the one hand, one can see in line 21 a clear reference to the dissipation
of the ( ) , which one may now consider to be a central
sense-component qualifying the meaning of this substantive: the distressing
and oppressive situation referred to by will surely not last, it will disap-
pear in order to leave the place with a lasting joy.
On the other hand, the exhaustive investigation of the lexical organisation
of the whole passage in 1QHa 20:21 points to recurring word clusters, which are
shared both by Isa 14:4 and 4QHa 7 ii 27, and which one may now consider to
be the typical lexical background for the usage of .
(a) Firstly, occurs together with lexical items referring both to dis-
tressing, threatening situations ( , terror of wickedness; line 19) and
to negative qualities (, insolence, deception).
(b) Secondly, the passage points to a cluster of lexemes denoting pleasant
and peaceful circumstances, such as goodness (), grace (), and rejoicing
(c) The third cluster of terms referring to coming to an end through divine
destruction is highlighted by the usage of ( there is not; cf. also ,
there is no more), of the verb in line 17 (Hiphil to cause to come to an
end) as well as by references to destruction ( )and to divine anger (;
line 21), which presumably represents the cause of the destruction. In this par-
ticular context of usage, the occurrence of may not be accidental, but,
rather, it may reflect a syntagmatic and paradigmatic lexical relation explicitly
going back to Isa 14:4.
The passage depicts an appointed time of destruction ( ; line
20). Such a period of time is far away from the dread of wickedness (
;line 19): here there is no deception ( ; line 20) and even the
kind of oppressive threat no longer exists () . The passage
tells us furthermore that this appointed time of destruction results in the joyful
time of the glory of God ( ; line 25).
Compared to Isa 14 and to 4QHa 7 ii 27, this passage displays further devel-
opments in both vocabulary and concepts. In this regard, what is particularly
striking is (a) the focus on the temporal dissipation of the distressing circum-
stances, and (b) the presence of sapiential vocabularyespecially the refer-
ence to the mysteries of God ( ;line 23). These aspects might ascribe an
eschatological and mystical nuance to the context of usage of , which in
Isaiah is implicit at best.
Against this particular semantic framework, if the Hodayot passage actually
goes back to Isa 14as I am proposingthen one may be tempted to draw
the following conclusion: in the Hodayot text, the references to the appointed
190 Zanella

times of destruction, to the divine wrath, and to the final period of glory
may reflect a sort of eschatological interpretation (a kind of implicit pesher
perhaps?) of the Isaianic passage, with respect to the verb ( to break in
pieces; Isa 14:5) and to the global situation of peace described in v. 7. The final
reference to joy in line 25 (), which actually echoes Is 14:7, seems to support
this conclusion.

3.3 1QHa 11:26 (4Q418 176 3):

The last two occurrences of ( 1QHa 11:26 and 4Q418 176 3) unfortunately
complicate the conclusions which have been drawn thus far. In both texts, the
context of usage of deviates from the lexical patterns which apply both
to Isaiah and to the other occurrences in the scrolls. Furthermore, in both texts,
functions as the nomen rectum of the rather obscureand otherwise
unattestedgenitival syntagm , whose usage one should analyse in
its particular context.

table 9 The context of usage of in 1QHa 11:26



24. and I, creature of

25. clay, what am I? Kneaded with water. For whom am I to be reckoned?
And what is my strength? For I have taken my stand within the domain of
26. and I am with the wretched by lot. The soul of the poor dwells with great
tumults, and are with my steps.35

In 1QHa 11:26 is still used together with lexemes referring to distress-

ing and oppressive situations ( and )as well as to the ungodly
domain (e.g., ) : such a lexical context may be considered as the basic
syntagmatic and paradigmatic background that qualifies the context of usage
of . The parallelism between this syntagm and the phrase
(great tumults) is particularly relevant for the assessment of the semantic
Some Semantic Notes on the Lexeme in the DSS 191

value of the genitive . The contextual similarities between 1QHa

11:26, Isa 14:4 and the other Qumran occurrences of end here. As a mat-
ter of fact, the general context of 1QHa 11:26 does not seem to preserve any
explicit mention of the characteristic dissipation of the or of the result-
ing final period of rest.
The passage presents a self-portrayal of the petitioner as a sinner: he/she has
walked in the boundary of the wicked ones ( ; line 25), he/
she shared his/her lot with the wretched ones ( ; line 26), his/
her soul lives with great tumult () , while
(disastrous calamities)36 follow his/her steps () .
The translation of the genitival syntagm is very problematic indeed, not
least because the meaning of the nomen regens, which swings between to
desire and to decay or to destruct, is not easy to determine in this context.37
If one ascribes to the first meaning (to desire), the genitival
syntagman objective genitivewould then denote the desire for oppres-
sion/calamity. A reference to the pursuit of oppression/calamity could be con-
sistent with the very context of the passage, in which the petitioner depicts his/
her sinful nature. On the other hand, in the Theologisches Wrterbuch zu den
Qumrantexten, A. Amihay argues that if occurs together with lexical items
belonging to the ungodly domain, it is likely to denote a sort of eschatological
destruction. If one follows Amihays argument, one should translate the geni-
tive with destructions of .38 A reference of the syntagman objective
genitiveto the elimination of the -calamity would be highly consist-
ent with the general usage of , since it would imply the final dissipation
of this calamity through destruction. Such a reference, however, would not be
appropriate within the context of the passage. The evaluation of the syntagm
as a subjective genitive would imply a reference to destructions caused by the
-calamity, which would fit the context as well as the translation desire
for oppression/calamity.
The determination of the meaning of the genitival syntagm in 4Q418 176 3
is almost impossible. The genitival syntagm, preceded by the preposition ,
occurs after an invocation to the : ] . Probably with
reference to the translations of Isa 14:4, DJD renders with O th]ou who hast
understanding of the calamities of tax-collection(?).39

35 My translation.
36 Cf. H. Stegemann, E. M. Schuller, and C. Newsom, DJD 40:155.
37 Cf. A. Amihay, , ThWQ 1:75557.
38 Ibid., 757.
39 Strugnell and Harrington, DJD 34: 399400.
192 Zanella

4 The Lexemes and in QH

The close relationship between the lexemes and seems to be not
only of a morphological kind. In fact, a detailed investigation of shows
striking similarities between the contexts of usage of and .

4.1.1 CD 13:710: , a Problem Due to Disappear

table 10 The context of usage of in CD 13:710



7. This is the rule for the overseer of a camp. He must teach the general
membership about the works
8. of God, instruct them in his mighty miracles, relate to them the future
events coming to the world with their interpretations;
9. he should care for them as a father does his children, taking care of all
their as a shepherd does for his flock
10. He should loosen all their knots, that there be no one oppressed or
crushed in his congregation.

The context of usage of in CD 13:710 (parallel to 4Q267 9 iv 6) describes

the role of the mebaqqer of a camp ( ; line 7) in his rela-
tionship to the many (): besides pedagogic duties (lines 78), the meb-
aqqer also performs a social function, hence his comparison to a shepherd and
a father.
Against this particular context, one may draw the following conclusions:
(a) The substantive, which here functions as the direct object of the verb
(to take care for),40 seems to denote a general distressing circumstance afflict-
ing the members, which may result in oppression ( )and crushing ().
(b) Such a distressing circumstance, furthermore, is due to disappear, since the

40 The emendation of the uncertain form of the Cairo Geniza text into is made follow-
ing J. Baumgarten in DJD 18:1089.
Some Semantic Notes on the Lexeme in the DSS 193

mebaqqer will take care of it (), so that there is no one oppressed in the
congregation (line 10). (c) Finally, the peaceful and reassuring representation of
the mebaqqer as an attentive shepherd and a merciful father provides a striking
contrast to the oppressive and distressing situations referred to in the text.

4.1.2 1QHa 19:4: , a Problem Due to Disappear

More fragmentary is the immediate context of usage of in 1QHa 19:4. The
text is similar to 1QHa 11:26, a very negative self-portrayal of the petitioner, in
which the lexeme occurs.

table 11 The context of usage of in 1QHa 19:47


vacat 5

4. terror disaster [ ]trouble from my eyes and grief

5. in the meditation of my heart. vacat
6. I thank you, o my God, that you have acted wonderfully with dust and with a
creature of clay you have worked so very powerfully. What am I that
7. you have [instr]ucted me in the counsel of your truth, and that you have
given me insight into your wonderful works, that you put thanksgiving into
my mouth, pr[ai]se upon my tongue in my mouth, and upon my tongue

Together with the lexemes ( terror), ( trouble), and ( grief),

is used to depict the desolate and helpless state of the petitioner. In the
examination of the text, however, one may see how such distressing circum-
stances vanish the more the petitioner acknowledges the wondrous deeds God
has done for him.

4.2 ( Financial?) Oppression

The passages in 4Q416 2 ii 14 and in 4Q418a 16 3, in which occurs, attest
to a rather obscure language use: this may be due to their fragmentary status
or, more probably, to the characteristic intricate idiolect of 4QInstruction. The
first occurrence reflects striking, recurrent lexical relations between and
lexemes from the financial sphere of language, which apply neither to
194 Zanella

nor to .41 Nonetheless, one may find here clear traces of a dualistic polar-
isation (threatening vs. peaceful circumstances), which is typical of the con-
text of usage both of and of . 4Q416 2 ii 1114 refers respectively
to the enviousness ( )and deceitfulness ( ) of human nature, and
then picks up the image of the merciful father with his only son (line 13) and
uses the verb ( to take care of), thus being very close to the content and
the context of CD 13:710.42
A possible reference to threatening and distressing circumstances may be
found in the extremely fragmentary text 4Q418a 16 3, as well; the lexeme
(toil, labour) in the (plausibly genitival) syntagm ( the toil
of your )]?[ is, in fact, semantically close to the oppression and hard
labour referred to in Isa 14:34. In light of these scanty pieces of evidence, one
may assume, supported by the DJD edition, that may denote a financial
kind of threat.

5 Conclusion

The investigation of the context of usage of in Isaiah and in the DSS

shows that this hapax legomenon, in its reception, may have been understood
as referring to a distressing, oppressive circumstance, belonging to the ungodly
domain, and supposed to vanish (due to divine intervention which will leave
the place in a time of peace and blessing).
The substantive is used with this particular reference in 4QHa 7 ii 27 (par.
1QHa 26:21 and 4QHe 2 2), in 1QHa 20:21. These very passages from the scrolls,
which have apparently taken up the phraseology and context of Isa 14, attest
to a subtle development in the contextualised meaning of the substantive: the
use of indeed reflects a more psychological, introspective, nature than
in Isaiah (4QHa 7 ii 27 and doublets), while the dissipation of the is
embedded into explicit eschatological conceptions (1QHa 20:21).
These Qumran occurrences attest to a creative relationship with the bibli-
cal text. Possibly inspired by Isa 14:4, the usage of does not result in a
slavish repetition of empty formulaic phrases. Rather, one has the impression
that the borrowed concept referred to by is interpreted, developed, and

41 Supported by the reconstructions and the translation of Strugnell and Harrington,

DJD 34, one finds in 4Q416 2 ii references to lending and paying back money (lines 46),
to creditors (lines 45), to prices (line 7), to taking and giving (both in line 5), and the like.
42 See above 4.1.1.
Some Semantic Notes on the Lexeme in the DSS 195

extended in order to be applied to contexts and ideas which are neither neces-
sarily nor explicitly found in the original biblical text.
The two further occurrences in 1QHa 11:26 and in 4Q418 176 3 deviate from
the typical patterns of usage of , and attest to the genitival syntagm
. Here the context of usage of the lexeme seems to lose its reference to
the dissipation of the threat due to divine intervention, thus merely referring
to a distressing, oppressive, and unsettling situation. Due to the fragmentary
data, it is impossible to decide whether this reflects a further step in the con-
ceptual development of the usage of , after its progressive abstraction
and grounding in eschatological conceptions and coordinates.
The investigation of the few occurrences of the substantive indicates
that its context of usage shares the main features qualifying the context of
usage of . Nevertheless, traces of a possible opposition between
and may be detected: in opposition to the dissipation of a , the
ceasing of a does not necessarily require a divine intervention (but the
sole presence and the actions of the mebaqqer): supported by further pieces
of evidence, which unfortunately are not available, this could potentially chal-
lenge the argument for the interchangeability between and .
More questionable is the issue of the role of the lexeme : even if its con-
text of usage shares some aspects with those of and , the context
of usage of seems to be associated with a financial dimension, which applies
neither to Isa 14 nor to the other occurrences in the DSS, and which may be
considered as belonging to the idiolect of 4QInstruction.


After the submission of this paper, in late 2011, an excellent article on the same
topic was published by Dr. Noam Mizrahi: The Linguistic History of :
From Textual Corruption to Lexical Innovation, RevQ 26 (2013): 91114.
Based on evidence from phonology and associative etymology, Mizrahi pro-
vides a different perspective on the problem of the meaning of , which
represents a valid alternative to the one proposed in the present paper. In my
view, though, both perspectives are not incompatible.
In my paper, to sum up, I intended to approach the problem of the meaning
of from the point of view of historical semantics, thereby focusing on
the identification of possible diachronic changes in the meaning and the usage
of across the Hebrew Bible and the DSS. In doing this, I made use of
some insights taken from the semantic methodology known as Componential
Analysis of Meaning. This methodology is a proven and valid heuristic tool,
196 Zanella

which allows one to depict the development of lexical meanings within a

clearly diachronic framework, thereby also taking into consideration the pos-
sible presence of sociolects as well as of idiolects linked to specific genres.43
Against this methodological framework, therefore, my aim was not to provide
a range of possible translations of . Rather, I intended (a) to draw the
possible line(s) of the semantic development of and (b) to categorise
them according to its different usages in the biblical and Qumranic corpora.
With the present paper, finally, I do not claim to give a definitive answer
concerning meaning and usage of . Rather, I intend to contribute to the
academic discourse a perspective that, in my view, may be helpful to throw
some light on the complex semantics of . This perspective is, of course,
open to debate. My study could not, unfortunately, take Mizrahis insights
and results exhaustively into consideration, nor could it use them as a start-
ing point for further investigations of the meaning of . This would fall
outside the framework and the scope of the present paper but may, instead,
represent a challenging topic for future publications.

43 Cf. Zanella, The Lexical Field, 1261 and Zanella, Componential Analysis of Meaning,
Index of Modern Authors

Abegg, Jr., M. G.8, 12 (nn. 29, 31), 13 (n. 36), Cooper, R.89 (n. 3)
15, 16 (nn. 50, 52), 21 (n. 70), 23 (n. 82), Cotton, H. M.3 (n. 11)
83 (n. 14), 92, 158 (n. 58), 176 (n. 5) Cross, F. M.13 (n. 37), 23 (n. 87), 24 (n. 88),
Allegro, J. M.1, 2 (n. 7), 3 (n. 10), 4 157 (n. 56)
Allen, L. C.3 (n. 2)
Amihay, A.191 Dahood, M.165 (n. 23)
Arbeitman, Y. L.42 (n. 12) Dalman, G.11 (n. 25)
Aslanov, C.49 (n. 30) Danby, H.61 (n. 61), 65 (n. 1)
Azar, M.67 (n. 6), 74 (n. 23), 78, 117 (nn. 25, 27), Davila, J.40 (n. 8)
120 (n. 45) Delcor, M.58 (n. 53)
Delitzsch, F.125 (n. 63)
Baltin, M.R.89 (n. 3) Dhorme, E.42 (n. 12)
Bar-Asher, M.8, 14 (n. 43), 19 (n. 65), 20 Di Lella, A. A.171 (nn. 52, 56)
(n. 67), 22 (n. 79), 57 (n. 50), 154 (n. 44), Dimant, D.179
156 (n. 52) Drawnel, H.55 (n. 45)
Bartelmus, R.25 (n. 2) Driver, G. R.6 (n. 22)
Barwise, J.89 (n. 3) Driver, S. R.132, 133 (n. 8), 149 (n. 30),
Bauer, H.50 (n. 33) 164 (n. 18)
Baumgarten, J. M.192 (n. 40) Dubarle, A. M.114
Beall, T. S.59 (n. 54)
Bendavid, A.45 (n. 17), 70 (n. 12), 73 (n. 19), Ehrensvrd, M.132133, 135 (n. 11), 157
75 (n. 25), 76, 78, 143 (n. 20) Eshel, E.55 (n. 45), 65 (n. 1)
Ben-ayyim, Z.21 22 Eshel, H.65(n. 1), 157158 (n. 57)
Benmamoun, E.89 (n. 3)
Bergstrsser, G.56 (n. 49) Falk, D. K.169 (nn. 43, 45), 172
Beuken, W. A. M.181 (n. 22), 182 (n. 30) Fassberg, S.21 (nn. 7172), 22 (n. 78), 26
Beyer, K.17 (n. 59) (n. 6), 127 (n. 68), 156157, 158 (n. 58)
Bobaljik, J. D.89 (n. 3) Fox, M. V.170 (n. 49)
Bonhomme, M.174 (nn. 6667) Fraade, S.60 (n. 57)
Borbone, P. G.124 (n. 61)
Bowley, J. E.83 (n. 14) Garca Martnez, F.37 (n. 1), 92
Boyarin, D.35 (n. 37) Garr, W. R.10 (n. 21), 32 (n. 29)
Brock, S. P.130 (n. 76) Gaster, M.113114
Brockelmann, C.10 (n. 20), 91 Geiger, G.65 (n. 1)
Gesenius, W.28
Campbell, J. G.179 (n. 13) Gil, D.9091
Carmignac, J.15, 169 (n. 44) Ginsberg, H. L.30
Chapman, H.59 (n. 54) Gluska, I.19 (n. 64)
Charlesworth, J. H.82 (n. 9) Goldman, L.60 (n. 56)
Chazon, E. G.181 (n. 23) Goshen-Gottstein, M. H.7, 10 (n. 21), 11, 12
Cohen, A.50 (n. 34) (n. 29), 13 (n. 35), 21 (n. 75)
Cohen, C.27 (n. 7), 28 (n. 15) Grabbe, L. L.36 (n. 38)
Cohen, M.55 (n. 46) Greenfield, J. C.9 (n. 13), 24 (n. 89), 55
Collins, J. J.17 (n. 60) (n. 45), 156 (n. 51)
Cook, E. M.83 (n. 14), 92 Gutirrez-Rexach, J.89 (n. 3)
198 Index Of Modern Authors

Gutman, A.112113 (n. 5), 113 (nn. 78), 118 Kosowsky, B.175 (n. 3)
(n. 35), 124 (n. 56), 128 (nn. 7173), 129 Krahmalkov, C. R.162 (n. 7), 165 (n. 22)
(n. 74), 130 (nn. 7576) Kuteva, T.42 (n. 13)
Gzella, H.1920 (n. 66) Kutscher, E. Y.68, 10 (nn. 1819), 11 (nn.
2223, 28), 12, 14 (nn. 4041), 15 (n. 47),
HaCohen, A.48 (n. 29) 16, 20, 21 (n. 73), 41 (n. 10), 47 (n. 26), 51
Haneman, G.116 (n. 21), 119 (nn. 3839), 153 (n. 37), 132
(n. 41)
Harrington, D. T.160 (n. 1), 170 (n. 50), 177 Lambert, M.30
(n. 8), 181 (nn. 2425), 191 (n. 39), 194 Leander, P.50 (n. 33)
(n. 41) Leicht, R.113114, 118 (nn. 33, 35), 120 (n. 44),
Harris, Z. S.162 (n. 7), 165 (n. 22) 121124, 125 (n. 62), 126, 127 (n. 69), 130
Haugen, E.9 (n. 76)
Heine, B.42 (n. 13) Lemaire, A.47
Hempel, C.59 (n. 55) Lerner, M. B.48, 49 (n. 30)
Hoftijzer, J.162 (n. 7) Levy, J.117 (n. 30), 118 (n. 34), 121 (n. 52), 175
Holma, H.46 (n. 22) (n. 3)
Holmstedt, R. D.133 (n. 7) Licht, J.16 (n. 51), 17 (n. 55), 56 (n. 48), 82
Horgan, M.2, 3 (n. 9), 135136 (n. 13), 138 (n. 9)
(n. 15) Lieberman, S.48 (nn. 2829), 60 (n. 57)
Hornkohl, A.132 (n. 1) Lounsbury, O.18 (n. 62)
Horovitz, H. S.28 (n. 9) Lyons, J.89
Hughes, J.30
Hurvitz, A.43 (n. 15), 105 (n. 28), 132, 154 Macintosh, A. A.3 (n. 8), 4 (n. 14)
(n. 47) Martone, C.82 (n. 9)
Mason, S.59 (n. 54)
Ibn Janah 28 May, R.89 (n. 3)
McKane, W.167 (n. 34)
Jastrow, M.117 (n. 26), 121 (n. 51), 175 (n. 3) Merwe, C. H. J. van der75 (n. 27)
Jenner, K. D.124 (n. 61) Meyer, C.114
Jespersen, O.18 Michalis, J.28
Jokiranta, J.59 (n. 55), 62 (n. 64) Milgrom, J.53, 54 (nn. 4243)
Jonker, L.112 (n. 5) Milik, J. T.10 (n. 17)
Joosten, J.89, 30 (n. 23), 34 (n. 34), 153 Militarev, A.46 (n. 22)
(n. 42), 167168 (n. 35), 183 (n. 34) Miller(-Naud), C. L.75 (n. 27), 100, 163
Joon, P.67 (n. 6), 75 (n. 27), 8081 (n. 4), (n. 11), 173 (n. 63)
81 (n. 6), 84 (n. 17), 86 (n. 27), 100, 120 Mishor, M.116 (n. 21), 144 (n. 22)
(nn. 4243), 143 (n. 19), 155 (n. 49), 168, Mizrahi, N.6 (n. 20), 30 (n. 21), 32 (nn.
177 (n. 9) 2627), 195196
Moore, C. A.114 (n. 13)
Kaddari, M. Z.161, 164, 166, 168169, 170 Mor, U.19 (n. 66), 26 (n. 6), 65, 66 (nn. 24),
(n.46) 69 (n. 9), 70 (nn. 1213), 71 (nn. 1416),
Kahle, P.25 (n. 2) 72 (n. 18), 73 (nn. 1920), 72 (n. 22),
Kasher, R.3 (n. 12) 76 (n. 29), 79 (n. 37), 143 (n. 21), 147
Kasowsky, Ch. Y.175 (n. 3) (n. 24)
Khan, G. A.25 (n. 3) Morag, Sh.10 (n. 21), 11 (n. 27), 35 (n. 37), 62
Kister, M.8, 13 (n. 37) (n. 62), 158
Knohl, I.49 (n. 32) Muraoka, T.6 (n. 22), 17 (n. 59), 22 (nn.
Kogan, L.46 (n. 22) 7677), 67 (n. 6), 72 (n. 18), 75 (n. 27),
Kooij, G. van der162 (n. 7) 80 (n. 1), 8081 (n. 4), 81 (n. 6), 82
Index Of Modern Authors 199

(nn. 78), 84 (nn. 17, 20), 85 (n. 23), 86 (n. 31), 152 (n. 38), 160 (nn. 12), 161, 163
(nn. 2627), 100, 119 (n. 41), 120 (n. 14), 164, 165 (n. 22), 166, 169 (n. 44)
(nn. 4243), 143 (n.19), 155 (n. 49), 162
(n. 8), 163 (n. 15), 165 (n. 27), 167 (n. 32), Rabin, C.60 (n. 57)
177 (n. 9) Rabin, I. A.28 (n. 9)
Rattray, S.53 (n. 40)
Naeh, S.57 (n. 50) Rendsburg, G. A.83 (n. 15), 88 (n. 1), 151
Naud, J. A.88 (n. 1), 89 (n. 2), 106 (n. 32), (n. 37), 152 (n. 39), 154 (n. 43), 156
161 (n. 6) (n. 52), 161162 (n. 6)
Neusner, J.65 (n. 1) Rey, J.-S.160 (n. 1)
Newsom, C.A.37, 4041, 46, 56 (n. 47), 191 Rezetko, R.132, 133 (n. 6), 135 (n. 11), 157
(n. 36) Rooker, M. F.134 (n. 9)
Nitzan, B.40 (n. 8) Rubin, A. D.42 (n. 12)
Rudolph, W.4 (n. 14)
Oosthuizen, J.90 (n. 5)
Schfer, P.112, 115 (n. 20), 121 (n. 49)
Paran, M.54 (n. 42) Schattner-Rieser, U.17 (n. 59), 22 (n. 76)
Pardee, D.29 (n. 19) Scheiber, A.171 (n. 52)
Park, M.143 (n. 20) Schniedewind, W. M.23, 62 (n. 63), 112, 154
Parry, D. W.77 (n. 33) (n. 43)
Pat-El, N.66 (n. 4) Schoors, A.150 (n. 32), 156 (n. 51)
Prez Fernndez, M.80 (n. 1), 116 (n. 23), 117 Schorch, S.25 (n. 1), 35 (n. 36)
(nn. 25, 28), 119 (nn. 3839), 120 (n. 42), Schuller, E. M.6 (n. 21), 112, 112113 (n. 5),
150 (n. 36) 191 (n. 36)
Peursen, W. Th. van112113 (n. 5), 113 (nn. Schweizer, A.114
69), 116 (nn. 21, 24), 117 (nn. 25, 29), 118 Segal, M. H. (also: M. Z.)116 (n. 22), 119
(nn. 33, 35), 119 (n. 38), 120 (n. 45), 121 (n. 37), 150 (n. 36), 153 (n. 41)
(n. 48), 124 (n. 56), 125 (n. 63), 126 Shaked, Sh.112, 115 (n. 20), 121 (n. 49)
(n. 66), 127 (n. 70), 128 (nn. 7173), 129 Sharvit, S.51 (n. 37)
(n. 74), 130 (nn. 7576), 168170, 171 Shlonsky, U.89 (n. 3), 91
(n. 57) Sokoloff, M.49 (n. 30)
Polak, F.135, 139, 140 (n. 18), 143 Sportiche, D.A. 89 (n. 3)
Polzin, R.105 (n. 28), 134 (n. 9), 149 (n. 30), Stadel, C.8
162 (n. 9) Stec, D. M.165 (n. 24)
Porten, B.6 (n. 22), 22 (n. 77), 162 (n. 7), 163 Stegemann, H.191 (n. 36)
(n. 15), 165 (n. 27) Steiner, R.19 (n. 65), 25 (n. 4)
Puech, .47, 162 (nn. 78), 165 (n. 23) Steinschneider, M.130
Steudel, A.5
Qimchi, D.28, 167 Stone, M. E.55 (n. 45)
Qimron, E.1 (n. 1), 2 (n. 6), 3 (n. 11), 6 (n. 21), Strugnell, J.12, 5, 13 (n. 37), 15 (n. 44), 16
7, 10 (n. 19), 11 (nn. 22, 24), 12 (n. 32), (n. 49), 160 (n. 1), 170 (n. 50), 172, 177
1415, 16 (nn. 5051), 17 (nn. 5557), 21 (n. 8), 181 (nn. 2425), 191 (n. 39), 194
(nn. 70, 75), 22 (n. 77), 30, 33, 37 (n. 1), (n. 41)
41 (n. 10), 44 (n. 16), 45 (n. 17), 46, 56
(n. 48), 47 (n. 52), 65 (n. 1), 80, 81 (n. 6), Talshir, D.23 (n. 83), 30
8384, 85 (nn. 21, 23), 105 (n. 28), 127 Thomason, S. G.9 (n. 16), 20 (n. 68), 92
(n. 67), 135136 (n. 13), 136 (n. 14), 138 Tigchelaar, E. J. C.37 (n. 1)
(n. 15), 147 (n. 26), 148 (nn. 2728), 149 Torrey, C. C.114
200 Index Of Modern Authors

Tov, E.77 (n. 33) Winford, D.20 (n. 68)

Toy, C. H.165 (n. 23) Wise, M. O.92
Tropper, J.162 (n. 7) Woude, A. S. van der37 (n. 1)
Wright, R. M.134 (n. 9)
Van Hoonacker, A.4 (n. 13)
Vermes, G.86 (n. 25) Yadin, Y.65 (n. 1), 80 (n. 4)
Yalon, H.7, 10 (n. 18), 13 (n. 35)
Wassen, C.59 (n. 55) Yardeni, A.65 (n. 1), 162 (n. 7)
Weinfeld, M.62 (n. 62) Yeivin, I.27 (n. 8), 57 (n. 50)
Weinreich, U.18, 19 Young, I.132133, 135, 143, 157, 162 (n. 9)
Weitzman, S.23, 154 (n. 43) Zanella, F.176 (n. 4), 179 (n. 13), 183 (n. 32),
Wernberg-Mller, P.58 (n. 53), 82 (n. 9) 196 (n. 43)
Whitney, W. D.9 (n. 15) Zewi, T.70 (n. 11), 72 (n. 18), 75 (nn. 2627),
Wijnkoop, J. D.163 (n. 11), 165 (n. 25) 77 (nn. 32, 34), 161 (n. 6), 164
Wildberger, H.181 (nn. 15, 21) Zippor, M.6 (n. 24)
Williams, R. J.76 (n. 30), 165 (n. 25)
Index of Ancient Sources

This index includes all texts that are discussed, and excludes some texts that are only listed as
examples of a specific feature.

I. Hebrew Bible 3:3 44

3:34 43
Genesis 3:9 44
3:4 82 3:14 44
3:11 8384 4:8 44
8:5 80 4:11 44
18:20 123 8:16 44
18:24 155 (n. 49) 8:21 44
18:29 155 (n. 49) 8:25 44
18:31 155 (n. 49) 9:5 54
18:32 155 (n. 49) 9:7 53 (n. 41)
19:18 164 9:78 54
27:4 155 (n. 49) 9:14 44
27:19 155 (n. 49) 10:3 54 (n. 43)
27:25 155 (n. 49) 23:2930 45
27:31 155 (n. 49) 32:22 76 (n. 28)
39:10 106
45:6 42 Numbers
45:12 76 (n. 28) 1:51 53 (n. 41), 57 (n. 50)
47:9 143 3:10 53 (n. 41)
3:38 53 (n. 41)
Exodus 16:29 173
1:22 104 17:5 53 (n. 41)
7:14 86 18:34 53 (n. 41)
9:7 86 18:7 53 (n. 41)
15:8 42 (n. 12) 18:22 54
18:21 144 34:17 74 (n. 23)
19:3 34 35:23 83
19:12 8081 (n. 4)
22:7 53 (n. 40) Deuteronomy
23:2023 40 (n. 8) 2:4 33
29:17 44 4:11 42 (n. 12)
32:12 123 9:28 83
36:2 50 13:8 57 (n. 50)
36:6 167 13:12 32
40:30 50 17:3 124
40:32 54 17:13 31
19:20 31
Leviticus 21:21 31
1:9 44 31:13 3132
1:1113 41 33:9 1011
1:13 44
202 Index Of Ancient Sources

Judges 28:8 101

7:12 122 28:28 167
15:13 82 29:17 167
18:20 42 32:17 146
19:23 165 36:7 14
36:11 14
1 Samuel 36:12 14
1:21 164 37:16 125
2:24 164 41:22 151
2:26 56 46:7 14
2:28 54 (n. 42) 47:1 14
2:36 39 (n. 6) 48:9 121
6:12 80 57:11 3
14:33 86 57:16 167
23:20 84 58:2 46, 53 (n. 40)
27:10 162 (n. 8) 62:6 164
63:714 40 (n. 8)
2 Samuel 64:8 166167
13:16 164 (n. 20) 65:6 14
13:25 165
23:12 164 Jeremiah
24:16 2 (n. 5) 2:6 28
10:24 163
1 Kings 15:15 167
10:22 28 (n. 14) 31:3 120 (n. 42)
12:33 54 (n. 42)
2 Kings 3:78 120
3:13 164 8:12 67 (n. 6)
4:16 165 16:16 151
16:12 54 (n. 42) 18:8 144
21:37 3 (n. 12)
Isaiah 23:32 3 (n. 12)
6:9 14 23:39 42 (n. 12)
9:8 110 28:22 54 (n. 43)
9:11 2 39:18 108109
9:12 14 40:46 5455, 57
9:1314 12 42:13 55
9:16 99 43:19 55, 57 (n. 50)
10:12 143 44:15 55, 57
14:37 18385 45:4 55
14:4 17985
17:8 14 Hosea
21:17 143 6:89 23
22:5 14
22:11 14 Micah
23:8 151 1:2 109
23:9 151
Index Of Ancient Sources 203

Nahum 20:9 167

1:6 122 21:29 154
2:14 3 (n. 12) 24:25 165
3:10 151 27:12 109
34:13 109
2:13 123, 163 Proverbs
2:17 123 4:18 80 (n. 4)
6:4 170
Zechariah 8:10 163
7:9 144 11:21 120 (n. 42)
12:28 165
Zephaniah 17:12 163
3:2 53 (n. 40) 19:11 121
25:15 121
Malachi 26:25 121
2:13 83 27:2 163
27:24 167
Psalms 31:4 164, 170
6:2 166
9:19 167 Canticles
13:23 45 5:8 76
36:11 122
38:2 166 Ruth
40:13 122 1:13 164 (n. 20)
41:13 168 (n. 38)
48:10 40, 41 Qohelet
49:18 173 2:15 150
50:3 168 (n. 38) 7:14 146
51:5 122 7:16 150
67:4 108 8:1 156 (n. 51)
73:27 56, 57 (n. 50) 8:11 146
73:28 46, 53 (n. 40) 8:14 146
74:4 154 10:10 173
82:1 40, 41 12:9 150
83:2 164 12:12 150
85:8 123
93:5 118 (n. 33) Lamentations
103:1 43 1:18 108
103:9 167 1:20 42 (n. 11)
105:18 123 3:41 163 (n. 14)
115:17 173
119:112 123 Esther
119:36 163 2:11 106
132:4 170 6:6 150
149:8 123, 151
Job 2:15 14
7:16 167 2:18 14
12:24 143 4:32 165 (n. 27)
204 Index Of Ancient Sources

6:4 6 (n. 22) 51:1330 127

11:4 3334 51:23 126
11:36 115

Ezra III. Qumran Scrolls

2:58 96
9:2 120 (n. 42) 1QIsaa
2:9 14
Nehemiah 3:1 16
7:2 144 4:1 14
9:2 120 (n. 42) 4:4 16
9:13 144 4:13 9
13:9 39 (n. 6) 28:45 11
13:22 123 29:25 15
30:11 22
2 Chronicles 31:19 10
17:4 146 34:12 16
32:25 173 35:26 16
37:10 16
37:17 22
II. Ben Sira 37:19 80
38:18 22
3:14 168 40:8 16
4:23 41 40:20 16
4:22 163 (n. 14) 41:15 15
4:28 163 (n. 14) 41:16 10
6:8 168 41:27 15, 16
7:1 169 (n. 41) 42:24 15
8:13 150 42:25 15
9:13 169 (n. 41) 42:28 15
10:31 150 46:16 11
11:6 152 54:10 10
13:2 171 (n. 57)
13:11 171 (n. 53) 1QIsab
14:12 173 20:20 15
16:13 169
30:22 121 1QpHab
32:4 171 2:610 136
36:22 120 (n. 45) 3:5 86
38:12 169 (n. 41) 4:7 84
38:14 156 (n. 51) 4:1213 146
39:19 146 5:912 136, 140
39:34 169 6:78 85
41:4 171 (n. 57) 7:45 140
41:16 118 (n. 33) 7:78 137
44:4 171 (n. 53) 7:1014 137
45:8 13 (n. 38) 8:13 137
48:6 152 8:23 148
8:9 87
Index Of Ancient Sources 205

9:47 137138 4:11 86

9:912 138, 140 4:12 149
10:913 138139 4:1314 86
11:48 140 4:14 154
11:68 143 4:15 101
11:1214 139 4:18 173 (n. 65)
12:26 139 4:2021 92
12:6 87 5:3 92
12:12 16 5:4 81
5:79 59
1QapGen (1Q20) 5:12 85
5:12 22 (n. 81) 5:18 84
19:19 21 (n. 72) 5:23 104
19:20 21 (n. 72) 6 58, 60
20:6 22 (n. 81) 6:12 32
21:34 22 6:34 98
22:28 22 (n. 81) 6:13 16
6:1617 58
1QS (1Q28) 6:19 59
1:12 85 7:13 14
1:34 86, 99 7:22 98
1:45 86 8:12 104
1:56 101 8:2 81
1:6 82, 169 8:18 84
1:67 86 9:1516 60 (n. 56)
1:911 100101 9:16 82
1:1112 103 9:18 157 (n. 53)
1:12 15 9:1920 87
1:1417 82 9:2021 82
1:15 86 9:22 154
1:18 86 10:3 87
2:12 96 10:4 16
2:9 13 10:8 87
2:11 85 10:1011 84
2:19 13 10:1314 87
2:1920 146 10:14 85 (n. 22)
2:21 103 11:2 14
2:24 104105
2:25 103 1QSa (1Q28a)
2:2526 87 1:1 9
3:1 16
3:3 16 1QSb (1Q28b)
3:5 13, 50 4:2 13
3:56 87
3:9 16 1QLiturgical Text (1Q30)
3:10 82 1 5 150
3:15 86
3:1617 99 1QM (1Q33)
4:5 16, 8081 1:8 80
4:7 13 1:13 16
206 Index Of Ancient Sources

2:13 83 4QPsb (4Q84)

2:2 14 28 i 18 16
2:89 77
7:45 95 4QPsf (4Q88)
7:12 94 8:13 16
8:1 6 (n. 21) 10:11 10
10:5 15
11:5 14 4QLam (4Q111)
11:13 83 3:2 16
12:2 102
14:8 95 4QPhyl A (4Q128)
15:1 77 1 29 11

1QHa 4QPhyl J (4Q137)

4:34 87 1 22 11
5:2526 121
6:2425 60 (n. 56), 87 4QPhyl K (4Q138)
6:2932 60 (n. 56) 1 13 10
6:32 87
6:3637 8485 4QPhyl L (4Q139)
7:21 171 (n. 54) 1 8 11
8:34 87
9:8 14 4QpIsaa (4Q161)
9:12 121 56 7 16
9:1213 87
11:26 190191 4Qpap pIsac (4Q163)
17:25 13 47 i 411 12
19:4 193 23 ii 1414b 24
20:14 149
20:21 188190 4QpNah (4Q169)
21:7 161 (n. 3) 34 ii 9 152
23:14 149 34 iii 7 153
25:6 14 34 iii 9 152
25:34 171 (n. 54) 34 iv 2 101
26:21 18588 34 iv 4 152

3QCopper Scroll (3Q15) 4QpPsa (4Q171)

1:1011 105 12 ii 7 87
110 ii 16 153
4QExod-Levf (4Q17)
2 ii 14 10 4QTest (4Q175)
3 10
4QNumb (4Q27) 4 13
6:6 12 10 11 22
19:33 240 6 10 16 16
17 11
4QSama (4Q51) 18 177
164:23 2 (n. 5) 21 16

4QJerc (4Q72) 4QTan (4Q176)

4754 11 1516 811 6 13
Index Of Ancient Sources 207

811 67 16 4QDd (4Q269)

50 1 16 2 3 155 (n. 48)

4QCatena A (4Q177) 4QDe (4Q270)

2 i 1213 172 (n. 58) 7 i 19 172 (n. 58)
711 811 46
4QDf (4Q271)
4QHoroscope (4Q186) 3 12 14
1 iii 4 14 5 i 21 155 (n. 48)

4QTobb ar (4Q197) 4QTohorot A (4Q274)

4 i 16 147 1 i 3 95
3 ii 4 150
4QTobe (4Q200)
1 ii 3 167 4QcryptA Words of the Maskil to All Sons of
Dawn (4Q298)
4QEnocha ar (4Q201) 34 ii 5 81
3:16 22 (n. 81)
4QCurses (4Q280)
4QLevib ar (4Q213a) 2 4 13
1 18 55 (n. 45)
4QSefer ha-Milama (4Q285)
4QJubd (4Q219) 8 7 149
2:34 22
4QMysteriesa (4Q299)
4QJube (4Q220) 6 i 4 6
1 7 43 8 8 99

4QpapJubh (4Q223224) 4QReworked Pentateuchc (4Q365)

2 ii 11 15 2 3 10

4Qpap cryptA Prophecy? (4Q249p) 4QReworked Pentateuchd (4Q366)

10 147 4 i 7 177

4QpapSa (4Q255) 4QPrayer of Enosh (4Q369)

1:1 86 (n. 24) 2 1 14

4QSb (4Q256) 4QapocrJoshb (4Q379)

9 4 81 12 6 10

4QSd (4Q258) 4QNon-Canonical Psalms B (4Q381)

1 3 81 1011 3 10
8 3 157 (n. 53) 24a+b 2 147
33 811 112
4QSh (4Q262) 46a+b 4 149
1 3 51
4QPseudo-Ezekiela (4Q385)
4QDa (4Q266) 6 8 14
11 5 172 (n. 58)
4QCommunal Confession (4Q393)
4QDb (4Q267) 1 ii 2 7 172
9 iv 6 192193 3 34 169
208 Index Of Ancient Sources

4QMMTa (4Q394) 1 ii 24 39
37 i 15 15 3 2 40 (n. 7)
37 i 19 15
4QShirShabbf (4Q405)
4QMMTb (4Q395) 89 23 38
10 15 89 45 39
1415 i 4 40 (n. 7)
4QMMTc (4Q396) 20 ii 2122 6 910
12 iv 5 15 20 ii22 1 39
12 iv 7 15 23 i 10 16
12 iv 8 15
4QRitPur A (4Q414)
4QMMTd (4Q397) 13 7 51 (n. 36)
23 2 15
4QInstructionb (4Q416)
4QMMTe (4Q398) 2 i 35 160
1417 i 5 9 2 i 4 160 (n. 2)
1417 ii 1 9 2 ii 9 170
1417 ii 2 9, 81 2 ii 14 193194
1417 ii 6 15
4QInstructionc (4Q417)
4QMMT B 2 i 2 87
11 8687 2 i 9 160
66 84 2 i 2122 170
67 87
7678 84 4QInstructiond (4Q418)
78 84 7 b 5 170
8 9 170
4QMMT C 176 3 190191
7 86
28 87 4QInstructione (4Q418a)
16 3 193194
4QShirShabba (4Q400)
1 i 8 38 4QHodayota (4Q427)
1 i 17 38 3 4 171 (n. 54)
1 i 19 38 7 i 16 56
1 i 1920 5253 7 ii 27 18588

4QShirShabbb (4Q401) 4QHodayote (4Q431)

15 3 38 2 2 18588
16 2 40 (n. 7)
4QBarkhi Nafshic (4Q436)
4QShirShabbc (4Q402) 1 i 1 5
9 4 40 (n. 7) 2 i 4 10

4QShirShabbd (4Q403) 4QBarkhi Nafshie (4Q438)

1 i 40 171 (n. 54) 4 ii 4 81
1 ii 19 38
1 ii 20 39 4QLament by a Leader (4Q439)
1 ii 22 39 (n. 5) 1 i 2 14
Index Of Ancient Sources 209

4QPoetic Text A (4Q446) 11QtgJob (11Q10)

1 2 167 36:5 22 (n. 77)

4QApocryphal Psalm and Prayer (4Q448) 11QMelchizedek (11Q13)

1 1 171 (n. 54) 2:910 41

4QNarrative Work and Prayer (4Q460) 11QSefer ha-Milama (11Q14)

9 i 5 173 (n. 65) 1 ii 10 149

4QEschatological Work B (4Q472) 11QShirShabb (11Q17)

2:8 13 3 6 39
1618 3 39
4QpapRitMar (4Q502)
16 3 81 1QNJ ar (11Q18)
8 3 22
4QShirb (4Q511) 9 4 22
2 i 4 153
6364 2 4 10 11QTemplea (11Q19)
16:1113 44
4Qpap RitPur B (4Q512) 17:1213 107
16 5 51 (n. 36) 18:11 87
4244 5 51 (n. 36) 19:11 87
19:1415 94
4QBeatitudes (4Q525) 20:15 44
5 9 11 20:16 11
22:1113 107
4QTJacob(?) ar (4Q537) 27:68 45
1+2+3 2 167 29:910 107
30:910 9697
4QTJud ar (4Q538) 32:12 84
12 6 167 33:1011 110111
2 4 167 (n. 31) 33:1415 44 (n. 16)
33:15 87
4QVisions of Amramd ar (4Q546) 34:1011 44
14 3 162 (n. 8) 45:16 102
46:56 110
4QTestamenta? ar (4Q580) 46:1516 98
4 5 167 47:34 86
47:35 98
6Qpap apocrSam-Kings (6Q9) 48:3 10
45 2 9 53:11 81
53:1415 81
8QMez (8Q4) 53:1920 81
1 16 11 55:6 81
56:14 81
11QPsa (11Q5) 57:11 11
23:4 11
210 Index Of Ancient Sources

59:4 10 (n. 19) Naal David (Wadi Sdeir)

59:15 87 2.67 67 (n. 7)
62:14 81
64:11 81 Naal ever (P. Yadin)
64:14 81 5 1 3 11
65:4 81 7.5 70 (n. 11), 73 (n. 21)
7.56 69 (n. 10)
11QTempleb (11Q20) 7.29 72 (n. 17)
4:15 44 7.3638 69 (n. 10)
8.3 70 (n. 11)
Phyl 3 (XQ3) 8.5 69 (n. 8), 71 (n. 14)
1 24 11 8.67 66 (n. 5)
8.79.6 68
XQ6 8a.89 69 (n. 10)
3 47 9.8 66 (n. 5)
10.6 72 (n. 17)
10.18 72 (n. 17)
IV. Other Judean Desert Documents 13.910 72 (n. 17)
17.40 73 (n. 19)
Beth A
mar 20.4142 73 (n. 19)
46 73 (n. 19) 21.34 73 (n. 21)
1011 67 (n. 7) 42.3 73 (n. 19)
42.9 67 (n. 7)
Murabbaat 44.46 68
1112.1.2 69 44.1015 74
1617 6970 44.1822 71
18.78 67 (n. 7) 44.1924 68
22.3 69 44.24 67
22.4 72 44.26 72
22:1112.23 73 45.67 72
24.5.910 69 46.23 68
25.5 71 (n. 14) 46.3 73
26.68 69 (n. 10) 46.812 68
26.89 73 (n. 21) 47.2.6 69 (n. 8)
26.11 71 (n. 14) 49 71 (n. 16)
26.1415 66 (n. 5) 49.23 70
30.15 144 49.6 67
30.18 144 49.78 71
30.1718 73 49.1011 67
30.22 69 49.1112 72
30.2223 72 50 66 (n. 5), 69 (n. 10), 71
30.2324 66 (n. 14), 73 (n. 21)
42.4 147
42.5 71 Vision of Gabriel
43.3 73 16 14
43.56 70 17 14
174.5 71
Index Of Ancient Sources 211

V. CD Bavli
Erubin 54a 173
3:9 155 (n. 48) Mekhilta Devarim
3:204:4 60 (n. 56) 12:1 148
9:1415 98
10:7 167 Sifra
12:6 155 (n. 48) , 1:1 52
13:710 192193
14:2 10
14:810 94 VII. Other Sources
15:616:1 59
15:10 59 Epigraphical sources
20:12 148 Deir Alla I 67 162 (n. 7)
KAI 13,34 162 (n. 7)
RS 92.2016:8 162 (n. 7)
VI. Rabbinic Literature
Proverbs of Aiqar
Mishna TAD C1.1.130131 170
Abot 5:18 118 TAD C1.1.155 162 (n. 7), 163
Eduyyot 8:7 61
Menaot 4:3 117 Josephus, Jewish War
Nazir 8:1 120 2.137138 59 (n. 54)
Nedarim 9:3 118
Ro Haanah 1:8 74 (n. 23) Quintilian, Institutio oratoria
Tamid 4:2 44 8.6.6267 174 (n. 66)
Terumot 5:6 67 (n. 6)
Yoma 8:9 118 Qurn
4:172 52 (n. 38)
Ketubbot 67 (n. 5)

Demai 23a 6061