qatal

zaw

Senior Member
Arabic
Hi

Could you please tell me how one can tell if a word that is of the form qātāl (like דָּבָר meaning word or matter or thing or manner or cause) or qətal (like כְּפָר meaning village) was originally of the form qatal? I mean in Proto-Hebrew.

Are there any other possible origins for such words?

Toda raba
 
  • Ali Smith

    Senior Member
    Urdu - Pakistan
    I believe כְּפָר is the construct form of כָּפָר 'village', just as דְּבַר is the construct form of דָּבָר 'word'. No, wait, it can't be, because כְּפָר does not have a פתח in the final syllable. :confused:
     

    Drink

    Senior Member
    English - New England, Russian - Moscow
    In Biblical Hebrew, the word is only attested in the plural, so there is no way to know what vowel the Biblical singular would have had (aside from comparative linguistics methods).
     

    Ali Smith

    Senior Member
    Urdu - Pakistan
    Well, what else could the singular have been? It could only have been כָּפָר (of the form qatal in proto-Hebrew, because qatal > qātāl).
     

    Drink

    Senior Member
    English - New England, Russian - Moscow
    That's called comparative linguistic methods. You assume from some other comparative evidence that it must have been *qatal-.

    But in fact that's not even the only possibility. Why could it not have been a segolate?
     
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