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5 Nominal Morphology

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Chapter Summary

Among the many substantives in Hebrew with the qå̄ṭōl pattern, one group that stands out semantically, morphologically, and phonologically is the nominal template qå̄ṭōl for marking the nomen agentis. Morphologically, the plural forms of nouns in this pattern take וֹת- rather than ם ◌ִ-, even in the masculine. The nominal pattern in question is evidently rare in the Dead Sea Scrolls (DSS), but fairly common in Rabbinic Hebrew (RH), where its increased employment is often chalked up to the influence of Aramaic, in some dialects of which the cognate nominal template is a standard means of denoting the nomen agentis. Jeremiah contains a total of six nomen agentis qå̄ṭōl forms accounting for eight occurrences between them. The biblical distribution of the qĕṭå̄l nominal pattern points unambiguously to its status as a linguistic feature especially characteristic of the Second Temple Period.

Keywords: Aramaic; Hebrew; Jeremiah; nomen agentis; qå̄ṭōl pattern; qĕṭå̄l pattern; Second Temple Period



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