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Grammar of Biblical Hebrew


Wolfgang Schneider

Although Wolfgang Schneider’s Grammatik des biblischen Hebräisch: Ein Lehrbuch serves primarily as an introductory textbook to biblical Hebrew, it makes an invaluable contribution to the text-linguistic study of Hebrew Bible. Schneider’s understanding of narrative syntax and discourse linguistics continues to influence such grammarians as Niccacci and Talstra, through whom his work is validated. His discussion of clauses and text syntax remains pertinent to Hebrew students and professors alike. With this English translation, Schneider’s work may now make a worldwide contribution to biblical studies by clarifying for the student the contribution of text grammar to the reading of the biblical text.
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45 Nominal Groups: Construct Connections


45.1 Function

That two (or more) nominals belong closely together is expressed in Hebrew through a construct connection.1


Both words form a unit of speech and unit of meaning. The last word, which is in the status absolutus, carries the full accent and determines the meaning of the whole. The meaning of the opening word, which is in the status constructus, limits it.2 The following are at one’s disposal for the translation of construct connections into German: genitive attributes, compound nominals, and prepositional attributes (in detail → § 45.4).

45.2 Definiteness

The connection is so close that the last word determines the definiteness of or for those that precede as well.


If the nominal in the status absolutus has an article or is otherwise made definite,3 namely through a suffix (b) or as a proper name (c), then with this the nominal in the status constructus is also made definite. ← 149 | 150 →

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