Thursday, January 26, 2017

21st Century Bible Hebrew -- a bit of audio

More about Genesis 1:1.
א בְּרֵאשִׁית בָּרָא אֱלֹהִים אֵת הַשָּׁמַיִם וְאֵת הָאָרֶץ:
Transliteration: B’reshit bara elohim et ha-shamayim v’et ha-arets.
Translation:     At the beginning Gd created the heaven and the earth
Letters in this lesson: בּ, ר, א, שׁ, י, ת, ל, וֹ, ה, ם, שּׁ, מ, ץ
Vocabulary in this lesson:
on, in, at, by (swear by), with (by means of), against
at the beginning
direct object particle
הַ, הָ
Sometimes “and”, sometimes “or”, many other functions
earth, land, world
If you really want to hear this verse pronounced, use the link. It takes about the first 17 seconds of the recording. Play it over and over.
If you know French, you will hear this speaker pronouncing the letter resh somewhat like the French letter – which letter? What sound does resh have?
Now for the most important words in this lesson.
One is ha, and it means “the”. One of these days you will hear it pronounced heh, and that will be because of the sound that follows it. I’ll point it out if we get to one.
Notice that ha is spelled two different ways in this lesson. The vowels sound much alike, although most traditionalists will say the little “t” sort of thing more like “a” in “father” and the other flat one, more like “hat”.
The other word is ve (vav). You are going to see this letter an awful lot at the start of words. Sometimes it will have a schwa e vowel, sometimes the flatter of the two “a”s that I just talked about. When it has a dagesh next to it, it might sound like “oo” but it can also sound like “v”.
The traditional translation of this is “and” when it’s at the start of a word. That’s wrong nearly every time and I’ll point each case out and then summarize at the end.

Now it's time for some 21st century grammar.
© Patricia Jo Heil, 2013-2018 All Rights Reserved

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