'elohi

Is vocalizing the Greek words and sentences important? If so, how should Greek be pronounced (what arguments can be made for one pronunciation over another or others?) How can I write Greek characters clearly and legibly?

'elohi

Postby lmbarre » December 14th, 2012, 3:34 am

How would the Hebrew, 'elohi (aleph, segol, lamed, holem, he, hiriq-yod) be transliterated in Koine Greek?

Can a smooth breathing with an omicron be followed with an omicron with a rough breathing to represent the Hebrew he? Would the two omicrons be elided?

I am asking about the translliteration in Mark 15,eloi. Does it somehow contain the Hebrew letter he.?

An example of such a transliteration would be great.

Thanks for the help?
Lloyd M. Barré
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Re: 'elohi

Postby timothy_p_mcmahon » December 15th, 2012, 12:54 am

ελωι in Mark 13:34 is a transliteration of the Aramaic (not Hebrew) form אלהי. An intervocalic ה in Hebrew/Aramaic is not normally represented in Greek orthography. Breathing marks occur only on the initial letter of a word (with few exceptions).
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Re: 'elohi

Postby RandallButh » December 19th, 2012, 5:01 pm

timothy_p_mcmahon wrote:ελωι in Mark 13:34 is a transliteration of the Aramaic (not Hebrew) form אלהי. An intervocalic ה in Hebrew/Aramaic is not normally represented in Greek orthography. Breathing marks occur only on the initial letter of a word (with few exceptions).


Tim is correct.
Hebrew for this word would have been ελωαει. Note the addition of α. Also, the 'ει' are necessary in Greek for writing in the first century without a diairesis ̈i.
I suspect that the query was caused by the "o" vowel, typically associated with Hebrew "elohai". (Matthew's ηλει or ηλι is Hebrew, not Aramaic as is sometimes alleged.)

lmbarre wrote:Can a smooth breathing with an omicron be followed with an omicron with a rough breathing to represent the Hebrew he? Would the two omicrons be elided?


o-mikron would not be the vowel of choice for transliteration.

Note that the low back vowel, in Aramaic etymologically related to 'a' (probably close to some dialects of English in "awe", IPA ɔ) is transcribed here in Mark with o-mega.
This is correct but is backwards from 99% of what is passed on in US koine Greek classes.

In antiquity, before Alexander and the Koine, the o-mikron was probably a little higher than o-mega, that is, the o-mikron was closer to English "o" and never close to English "a". On the otherhand, in pre-Koine o-mega was lower than o-mikron, less-central, longer in time, and probably close to ɔ in sound. The point is less important for the Koine since o-mega and o-mikron merged into one "o" phoneme before the time of the NT and both symbols covered all the sound between [o] and [̈ɔ].

This may serve as a reminder to students to think a little bit critically of what is given out in first year classes, or sometimes even in advanced classes.
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