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Grammar of Biblical Hebrew

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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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46 Nominal Groups—Appositions

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46.1 Function

An apposition is the further modifying of one nominal through another, which as a rule follows it and is joined with it neither through a preposition nor by means of a construct connection.

Special Cases

Appositions specify a nominal term (a). Often they further clarify pronominals (b) or suffixes (c). Prepositions (c) or the sign of the accusative אֵת (d) can be repeated before the apposition.

46.2 Concerning Translation

Where an apposition is not possible in German, the appropriate rendering can be found through an individual substantive (a), an adjective (b), or a construction beyond that of the helpful translation “nämlich/und zwar.”

46.3 Adjectival Attributes

Nominals, which denote characteristics and can be expressed in German among other things with adjectives (e.g.: טוֹב = “goodness/goods/good”), function in the text as other nominals. Their distinctive feature is that they have masculine and feminine forms next to one another.1 However, forms of comparison (comparative and superlative) are not given. Biblical Hebrew has only a few such “adjectives.” What in analogy to German or Latin grammar is regarded as an “attributive adjective” is a special form of apposition (→ § 46.1).

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