How do Hebrew Verbs differ? A Flow Chart of Differences

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A strict distinction between semantics and syntax is difficult to maintain since the significance of a sentence is contained in and expressed by the elements occurring in it. In the majority of languages a verb is necessary as the core of the most frequent type of sentence structure. The chosen verb determines the basic structure of the sentence involved, often not so much in the order of elements as in the number and nature of the elements occurring in the sentence. The core lexical meaning of a verb is made visible in the elements with which it occurs; specific satellites modify the significance by reducing or expanding the valence or by adding other types of information. The differences between biblical Hebrew verbs as projected onto syntax are brought together in a flow chart. The presence or absence of specific sentence constituents is charted through a set of choices. In this way differences between verbs are traceable and comparable. It is possible to compare the specific contribution a particular type of sentence constituent makes to the significance of a verb with the contribution of the same constituent to sentences with other verbs. The elements contributing to patterns occurring with different types of verbs, for example, a transitive verb, an intransitive verb, or a verb of movement, are made visible.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationContemporary Examinations of Classical Languages: Valency, Lexicography, Grammar
EditorsT.M. Lewis, A.G. Salveson, B. Turner
Place of PublicationPiscataway
PublisherGorgias Press
Number of pages19
Publication statusPublished - 2016

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