Some Hebrew words are not pronounced as words, just the letters

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This post has 9 Replies | 1 Follower

Posts 18
Jason Hopkins | Forum Activity | Posted: Tue, May 11 2021 10:28 AM

When I have Logos pronounce some Hebrew words it only pronounces each letter. Here are a couple of examples:

נוע

נוד

Both from Gen 4:12 and 14. Also other places where those lemmas appears.

I ran across a couple of others, but I can't seem to find them today. Most of the words work fine.

I'm just wondering if anyone else has this problem. I'm not sure where to post it as a problem. It's almost like a typo - a pronounco?? Any ideas where to report this?

EDIT:
Also <Lemma = lbs/he/קום>

Posts 5430
David Paul | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 12 2021 1:24 AM

I don't use this feature but it certainly ought to be addressed by FL.

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Posts 19
Brian Evans | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 12 2021 5:25 AM

It's pronouncing the lemma not the manuscript (I think this is what you've selected from the context menu?).  Since the lemma for verbs are three letter roots it's reading the letters. Similarly, for other words it's pronouncing the lemma as well such as בָּאָ֔רֶץ where the lemma and thus the pronunciation is אֶ֫רֶץ.

Posts 18
Jason Hopkins | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 12 2021 9:58 AM

I understand it should be pronouncing the lemma, but in the cases I listed it is only saying each letter. For example, in ESV I go to Gen 4:12, highlight the word "fugitive", right click, go to lemma, click on pronounce and instead of pronouncing the lemma it reads the three letters "NUN VAV AYIN" with no attempt and pronouncing the lemma. It happens the same way with the word "wanderer".

When I do it on the word "earth" it pronounces the lemma, not just reading the letters. This is what I expect it to do. I have no real understanding of Hebrew, so maybe the lemmas for fugitive and wanderer are not supposed to be pronounced. It seems like it does it for some words, but not others.

It could be a feature of the language I'm not understanding or a problem with the program, that's why I'm asking. If it's a language thing then all is well, I just need to focus more time on learning Hebrew!

Posts 19
Brian Evans | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 12 2021 11:08 AM

The difference is the words that are giving three letters are verbs, or forms of verbs, in Hebrew.  Hebrew uses conjugated verbs based on three letter roots (lemma).  Prefixes, suffixes, vowel pointing combine to express tense, person, gender, number, etc.



נוד
nwd, v., sway; be aimless, homeless; indicate cooperation by shaking the head, show sympathy


The Lexham Analytical Lexicon of the Hebrew Bible (Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2017).

In Gen 4:12 the word used is וָנָ֖ד which is tagged as verb, Qal, Participle, unmarked person, masculine singular, absolute.

Posts 18
Jason Hopkins | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 12 2021 11:51 AM

Right, I get that. So is the point that without knowing how the verb is to be modified (tense, person, gender...) you cannot know how to pronounce it?

Posts 19
Brian Evans | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 12 2021 1:40 PM

Well yeah, but now I think I see why you're confused.  Most verbs it seems to pronounce as Qal 3ms.  I don't know why it gives the root letters for some.  I played with a couple of patterns but they didn't pan out. 

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LogosEmployee
Andrew Batishko | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, May 12 2021 1:55 PM

If you open the Pronunciation tool, select Hebrew Lemmas, then use the panel menu to access the Information, you'll find at the bottom it has this to say:

Brian Evans:

Verb lexical forms are often indicated only by their consonants. In many cases, there is an appropriate vocalized form that matches the consonants given. But in cases where it is not possible to create a real Hebrew or Aramaic word by simply adding vowels to the lexical form, the names of each letter are read in turn. When this is done, the basic 23 letter names are used; no mention is made of 'final' forms, even though those are used in the writing of the lexical form. Likewise, all beḡaḏkep̄aṯ letters are read using their standard, plosive (with the dāḡēš [ּ]) names. E.g. גוף ["to shut"].

Andrew Batishko | Faithlife software developer

Posts 2511
David Thomas | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, May 13 2021 8:14 AM

Jason Hopkins:

Right, I get that. So is the point that without knowing how the verb is to be modified (tense, person, gender...) you cannot know how to pronounce it?

Maybe an English example would help - think of the verb run: it can either be run or ran depending upon the tense so the lexical entry may be rn. "rn" is not a pronounced word so the audio would be "r" "n"

Same with "sit"; it would simply be "s" "t"

On the other hand "shut" does not change forms when changing tense, it is changed by "helping verbs". In this situation "sh" "t" could lead to wrong conclusions if a person insert an "i" for the "u" Big Smile

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Posts 18
Jason Hopkins | Forum Activity | Replied: Fri, May 14 2021 3:04 PM

OK. I get it now. I was confused by why some would work and others wouldn't. The answers have cleared it up for me.

Thanks!

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