Biblical Hebrew for Students of Modern Israeli Hebrew


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Marc Zvi Brettler

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This is the first textbook written for the purpose of teaching biblical Hebrew to college-level students who already know some modern, Israeli Hebrew. Marc Brettler provides a clear, comprehensive book with numerous well-constructed exercises to help students either make the transition from modern Israeli Hebrew to biblical Hebrew or deepen their understanding of biblical Hebrew. The book is also ideal for individuals who might like to study independently, and for serious Jewish adult-education programs.

Biblical Hebrew for Students of Modern Israeli Hebrew is unique in its emphasis on phonology, based on the conviction that a strong grounding in phonology makes it possible to learn biblical Hebrew grammar in a much more systematic fashion. This method also allows verbal conjugations to be taught much more quickly and systematically. Although the text is not inductive, it uses authentic biblical texts throughout to illustrate fundamental points, and it contains many biblical texts in the exercises. Students progressing through the book will quickly be encouraged by a sense of accomplishment as they encounter and understand well-known biblical passages.

Marc Zvi Brettler is professor of Hebrew Bible in the Department of Near Eastern and Judaic Studies at Brandeis University and serves as chair of the department.

“A book I would certainly use in courses introducing biblical Hebrew to modern Hebrew students. Brettler has given us a comprehensive textbook that will serve the broadest needs of various teaching styles.”—Bill Schniedewind, Chair, Dept. of Near Eastern Languages & Cultures, UCLA

“Until now there has been no text that helps the student of modern Hebrew make the transition to biblical Hebrew. This book provides an important service to students and teachers alike.”—Christine Hayes, Yale University

“Not only would I use this book as a textbook in the classroom, I would recommend it to my students as a helpful reference book.”—Ehud Ben Zvi, University of Alberta

"A good choice for an intensive semester of Biblical Hebrew instruction at the beginner level, and a brave venture into the beauty and challenge of Hebrew phonology appropriate for this very level."—Esther Raizen, Hebrew Studies

“An excellent Hebrew grammar. . . . Brettler has filled ‘a significant void’ in a long list of Hebrew grammars by producing this volume. Moreover, not only will it fill the void for students of Modern Hebrew; it will prove to be an excellent tool, in particular its use of the summary charts and exercises, for all students of Biblical Hebrew.”—Archie T. Wright, Review of Biblical Literature


"A well-organized and well-written tome. Any linguist aspiring to produce a detailed and absorbing pedagogical grammar of a dead language along traditional lines will surely profit by examining this sound publication."—Alan S. Kaye, Journal of the American Oriental Society


ISBN: 9780300084405
Publication Date: October 11, 2001
368 pages, 8.5 x 11
40 b/w illus. + 5 line drawings
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