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The Syntax of Volitives in Biblical Hebrew and Amarna Canaanite Prose (LSAWS 9)
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The Syntax of Volitives in Biblical Hebrew and Amarna Canaanite Prose (LSAWS 9)


Eisenbrauns 2014

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Gathering Interest


During the past century, numerous books and articles have appeared on the verbal system of Semitic languages. Thanks to the discovery of Ugaritic texts, Akkadian tablets, Canaanite letters found at Tell el-Amarna in Egypt, Hebrew and Aramaic inscriptions, and the Dead Sea Scrolls, our understanding of the phonology, morphology, and syntax of the Semitic languages has increased substantially.

Hélène Dallaire’s contribution to the Linguistic Studies in Ancient West Semitic series focuses primarily on prose texts in Biblical Hebrew and Amarna Canaanite in which the verbal system (morphemes, syntax) expresses nuances of wishes, desires, requests, and commands. According to her, volitional concepts are found in every language and are expressed through verbal morphemes, syntagmas, intonation, syntax, and other linguistic means.

The Syntax of Volitives in Biblical Hebrew and Amarna Canaanite Prose attempts to answer the following questions:

  • Do volitives function in a similar way in biblical Hebrew and Amarna Canaanite?
  • Where and why is there overlap in morphology and syntax between these two languages?
  • What morphological and syntactical differences exist between the volitional expressions of the languages?
  • In attempting to answer these questions, the author bears in mind the fact that, within each of these two languages, scribes from different areas used specific dialectal and scribal traditions (for example, northern versus southern, peripheral versus central).

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    Get more world-class scholarship on Semitic languages with the Dictionary of North-West Semitic Inscriptions.

    Key Features

    • Provides a comprehensive account of of how Christian theology has deveoped from the Reformation to the twenty-first century.
    • Maximizes pedagogical tools to aid retention, using charts, graphs, tables, and other visual aids
    • Examines how cultural forces influenced theological deveopment
    • Explains key ideas and describes the compelling personalities that drove theological reflection forwardt


    • Introduction
      • Assumptions
      • Methodology
      • Corpus of Texts
      • Definition of Terms
      • Sociolinguistic Issues
      • Modality in Sign Language
      • Three-Person System of Volitives
      • Modality in Semitic Languages
    • Biblical Hebrew
      • Introduction
      • The Imperative
      • The Jussive
      • The Cohortative
      • Additional Verbs with Modal Functions
      • Conclusion
    • Amarna (EA) Canaanite
      • Introduction
      • Proposed Paradigms for the Canaanite Verbal System
      • The Imperative
      • The Jussive
      • The yaqtula
      • Verbal Sequences with Volitives
      • Additional Verbs with Modal Functions
      • Conclusion
    • Conclusion
      • Yaqtul (jussive)
      • Yaqtula
      • Yaqtulan(na)
      • Regular Imperative
      • Imperative with Modal Ending -a
      • Long Imperative with Ending -n(na)
      • The Volitives and Social Dynamics

    Product Details

    About Hélène Dallaire

    Hélène Dallaire is associate professor of Old Testament at Deniver Seminary, and an ordained minister in the Evangelical Church Alliance. She has authored a number of academic papers and books, including the forthcoming Biblical Hebrew: A Living Language. Dallaie has studied at numerous institutions including, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, the Institute for Holy Land Studies in Jerusalem, McMaster University, and Western Pentecostal Bible College in British Columbia.

    Sample Pages from the Print Edition