is an indispensable publication for biblical scholars, whose interpretations of scriptures must engage the dates when texts were first composed and recorded, and for scholars of language, who will want to read these essays for the latest perspectives on the historical development of Biblical Hebrew.
For Hebraists and linguists interested in the historical development of the Hebrew language, it is an essential collection of studies that address the language’s development during the Iron Age (in its various subdivisions), the Neo-Babylonian and Persian periods, and the Early Hellenistic period.
Written for both “text people” and “language people,” this is the first book to address established Historical Linguistics theory as it applies to the study of Hebrew and to focus on the methodologies most appropriate for Biblical Hebrew and Aramaic.
The book provides exemplary case studies of orthography, lexicography, morphology, syntax, language contact, dialectology, and sociolinguistics and, because of its depth of coverage, has broad implications for the linguistic dating of Biblical texts.
The presentations are rounded out by useful summary histories of linguistic diachrony in Aramaic, Ugaritic, and Akkadian, the three languages related to and considered most crucial for Biblical research.
See Also: Linguistic Dating of Biblical Texts Unhistorical Hebrew Linguistics: A Cautionary Tale A Very Tall “Cautionary Tale”: A Response to Ron Hendel By Martin Ehrensvärd Associate Professor Faculty of Theology University of Copenhagen Robert Rezetko Research Associate Radboud University Nijmegen & University of Sydney Ian Young Associate Professor Department of Hebrew, Biblical and Jewish Studies University of Sydney February 2016 Most ancient Hebrew language scholars probably agree broadly about what scholarship and scholarly method are and should be. Far fewer publications now rely solely on the traditional method, while many (younger) scholars are looking for new ways to take the field forward.
They agree that scholarship entails dialogue, debate, self-criticism, evaluation, correction, and so on. Now, the unfortunate thing is that certain major scholars have started ignoring this recent progress, giving rise to a remarkable and unsettling divide in the study of the Hebrew Bible between old-fashioned linguistic dating and modern-day historical linguistics. Schniedewind, Social History of Hebrew: Its Origins through the Rabbinic Period (AYBRL; New Haven: Yale University Press, 2013) (references to debate: p.
But when it comes down to how this looks in practice, misunderstandings have become abundant and a very unfortunate situation has developed in the field. A case in point is the recently published magnum opus of A. Cohen, The Verbal System in Late Biblical Hebrew (trans. Aronsky; HSS; Winona Lake, IN: Eisenbrauns, 2013) (references to debate: none); W.
The interaction has taken place at conferences, In our opinion, the ongoing outcome of this recent discussion is that within the field of Biblical Hebrew studies a shift is underway from the outlook and method of linguistic dating as formulated by W. In this volume the authors actually state that interaction with different views is pointless: “...[O]ur Lexicon is, by definition, diachronic in nature and thus constitutes part and parcel of the discipline of Historical Linguistics.
This shift is apparent when reviewing conference papers and publications from recent years.
Hurvitz, and so on, with its inherent assumptions and weaknesses, to the more widespread, robust, and descriptive approach of historical linguistics.  For examples of what a methodologically rigorous historical linguistic treatment of features of Biblical Hebrew can look like, see Rezetko and Young, Historical Linguistics and Biblical Hebrew, cited in note 2, and available free of charge at https://
Since its basic methodological principles and philological guidelines are largely rejected by the non-diachronic school of BH, as openly revealed in their publications (see especially Young, Rezetko, and Ehrensvärd 2008), the gulf between the two opposing parties is hardly bridgeable. The intention of this policy of omission certainly seems to be friendly and pragmatic, two qualities that we applaud.
Indeed, no common ground for a potentially meaningful dialogue in this connection seems to be in sight at the moment. But referring to our work as “non-diachronic” reveals a deep misunderstanding of the whole point of it.
Thus, our policy all along was to refrain from futile polemics.... Furthermore, the assertion that their approach is “part and parcel of the discipline of Historical Linguistics” belongs to a different era. Polak (eds.), A Palimpsest: Rhetoric, Ideology, Stylistics and Language Relating to Persian Israel (Perspectives on Hebrew Scriptures and Its Contexts 5; Piscataway, NJ: Gorgias, 2009); F. Mastéy, A Concise Lexicon of Late Biblical Hebrew: Linguistic Innovations in the Writings of the Second Temple Period (VTSup 160; Leiden: Brill, 2014).