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Re: Semitic rhotic questions

From:Isaac Penzev <isaacp@...>
Date:Sunday, November 9, 2003, 9:11
Muke Tever wrote:

> On Fri, 7 Nov 2003 09:33:49 -0500, Paul Bennett wrote: > > > On Thu, 06 Nov 2003 18:36:10 +0200, Isaac Penzev wrote: > > > >>> 1. Does anyone know with any acceptable degree of > >>> certainty what the actual value of the Biblical Hebrew > >>> rhotic was? > >> > >> It is rather possible that Old Hebrew /r/ was [G] or [R] because it is > >> classified as guttural, and its presence in the stem provokes the same > >> kind of phonetic changes, as, e.g. /X\/ or /?\/. > [snip] > > Anyone else got any information to back up either /4/ or /G/~/R/ for > > ancient Hebrew? Steg? Dan? Anyone? > > Etymologically speaking... _Reconstructing Proto-Afroasiatic_ describes > the sound *r as a flap [4], and remaining *r in most of the family (except > Egyptian, where it goes to [n], [?], and [j] depending on environment) > > [Of course there's nothing to say it didnt change _since_ then, as I > gather something hideous happened to the original PS *G in Hebrew from PAA > *G and *G_w...]
Well, I know nothing about these reconstructions, so it was only my supposition / speculation. Arguments in favor of "resh" standing for a guttural in times of, at least, Masorets: 1. It doesn't receive dagesh (doesn't geminate): 2. It provokes compensatory lengthening: _ha:ro:sh_ instead of *harro:sh like _ha:3i:r_ 3. Sometimes it is vocalised with hhatef (ultrashort) vowels, e.g. _'ava:ra(ce:m_ "I will bless them" (Num.6:27). All these features are peculiar to gutturals. But specialists in language history may know better. Blessings, -- Yitzik