Pop-up Hebrew no vowel points

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Posts 406
Danny Parker | Forum Activity | Posted: Thu, Nov 4 2010 8:30 AM

I admit that as I get older things change and I am sometimes slow at recognizing the change. When did the vowel points disappear on the pop-up lemma that appears when you hover over an English language translation word? Was it changed when the interlinears were implemented? Vowel points are missing from the right click lemma as well. I assume there is no way to get them to appear again. I searched but did not see any other discussion of this in the forum. They do appear in the Hebrew translations.

I dislike not having vowel points for the lemma as I have to use the information window or go to the Hebrew translation if I want to be able to vocalize the word.

Posts 67
Jim L. West | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Nov 4 2010 9:19 AM


By definition the lemma of a Hebrew word would not have the vowel points. The lemma is the basic root (or "shoresh", usually three consonants) of the word, without pointing. The pointing is related to, yes vocalizing the word, but that is for the purpose of morphology, to determine the form of the word (i.e. stem, form, person gender, number, etc.)

I hope this was helpful.

Jim W.

Posts 406
Danny Parker | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Nov 4 2010 10:23 AM

I will admit that my Hebrew is a bit rusty and have never been a Hebrew scholar. However, as I recall there is a difference between the Hebrew root consonants and the lemma.

The Hebrew root does consist of the base consonants. However, the root consonants have limited value (at least to the typical bible student who is not deep into linguistics). The lemma is the word with a specific pronunciation and definition.  In fact, the orginal Hebrew words had vowels that distinguished the words (known by the original readers). They just weren't written originally. 

The lemma should point to the dictionary/lexicon entry. In all lexicons the vowel points are included to distinguish between words with the same root as one would expect. In fact, the pop-ups do point to a specific lexicon entry. It seems logical to show the vowel points in the pop-ups that match this lexicon entry. In fact BHS does list the vowel points in the pop-ups (except for verbs). It seems logical to do this as well for the English pop-ups. I believe it use to do that.

Feel free to correct any of my linguistic errors or definitions. However, in practice I still believe it makes most sense to list the vowels as each pop-up does point to a very specific word (my opinion, others may disagree). The pop-up does give morphological data - the word as used at this specific point. Why not give the dictionary form as well?

Perhaps this was changed for technical reasons?

Posts 67
Jim L. West | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Nov 4 2010 10:55 AM

Your right, I responded a little to quickly. The lemma is normally the lexical form of the word. However, in Hebrew that is the Qal perfect stem, 3rd masc., singular. So the vowel pointing will be (with very few exceptions), qamatz with the first and second (unless there are only 2) letters.


Posts 406
Danny Parker | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Nov 4 2010 11:13 AM

True about the Qal perfect pointing. However, because of the interaction with various consonants (if I recall correctly) the actual vowels change fairly often. In practice for the non Hebrew specialist, the vowels cannot be reliably predicted (at least not for me at this point). It would be a great help to be able to pronounce each word reliably (at least in my mind) for memory, associations, communication, etc. I personally see little value in having only the consonants listed.

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