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Gesenius' Hebrew Grammar
Wilhelm Gesenius, edited and enlarged by Emil Kautzsch, translated by Arthur Ernest Cowley
Title page
The first edition of Hebräische Grammatik was published in German by Wilhelm Gesenius in Halle in 1813. This edition is the English translation (1910, A. E. Cowley (1861–1931)) of the last significant revision of the work (1909, E. Kautzsch). See the prefaces for more information about the book's earlier editions.

This grammar focuses on Biblical Hebrew only. It mentions Rabbinic Hebrew (calling it NH - "New Hebrew") only occasionally and has almost no information about Modern Israeli Hebrew, which was in its early formative stages when this edition was published. Also, its style of linguistic description is somewhat archaic. For example, it uses many Latin terms for which modern English terms exist. It also tends to describe historical sound change as "corruption", something which is avoided in modern Linguistics. Despite these minor shortcomings, even in the 21st century Gesenius' Hebrew Grammar remains one of the most important scientific sources on the grammar of Hebrew.

For important technical notes about this edition, especially if you plan to edit it yourself, see these pages:

Information about this edition
[ i]
GESENIUS'

HEBREW GRAMMAR

AS EDITED AND ENLARGED BY THE LATE
E. KAUTZSCH
PROFESSOR OF THEOLOGY IN THE UNIVERSITY OF HALLE

SECOND ENGLISH EDITION

REVISED IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE TWENTY-EIGHTH GERMAN EDITION (1909) BY
A. E. COWLEY

WITH A FACSIMILE OF THE SILOAM INSCRIPTION BY J. EUTING, AND
A TABLE OF ALPHABETS BY M. LIDZBARSKI

OXFORD

AT THE CLARENDON PRESS
[ ii]
Oxford University Press, Amen House, London E.C. 4

GLASGOW NEW YORK TORONTO MELBOURNE WELLINGTON BOMBAY CALCUTTA MADRAS KARACHI CAPE TOWN IBADAN

Geoffrey Cumberlege, Publisher to the University

SECOND ENGLISH EDITION 1910

REPRINTED LITHOGRAPHICALLY IN GREAT BRITAIN

AT THE UNIVERSITY PRESS, OXFORD, 1946, 1949, 1952, 1956

FROM CORRECTED SHEETS OF THE SECOND EDITION
[ xi]
CONTENTS

(A note for readers at WikiSource: Clicking on page number will take you to a side-by-side view of the scanned page and the digitized text. Clicking a section name will take you to the full section, without the scanned page view.)

PAGE
Translator's Preface iii
From the German Preface v
Additions and Corrections viii
List of abbreviations x
Table of Early Semitic Alphabets
Siloam inscription ( xviii)
INTRODUCTION
§ 1. The Semitic Languages in General 1
§ 2. Sketch of the History of the Hebrew Language 8
§ 3. Grammatical Treatment of the Hebrew Language 17
§ 4. Division and Arrangement of the Grammar 22
FIRST PART
ELEMENTARY PRINCIPLES, OR THE SOUNDS AND CHARACTERS
Chapter I. The Individual Sounds and Characters
§ 5. The Consonants: their Forms and Names 24
§ 6. Pronunciation and Division of Consonants 31
§ 7. The Vowels in General, Vowel Letters and Vowel Signs 35
§ 8. The Vowel Signs in particular 39
§ 9. Character of the several Vowels 45
§ 10. The Half Vowels and the Syllable Divider (Še) 51
§ 11. Other Signs which affect the Reading 54
§ 12. Dageš in general, and Dageš forte in particular 55
§ 13. Dageš lene 56
§ 14. Mappı̂q and Rāphè 56
§ 15. The Accents 57
§ 16. Of Maqqēph and Mèthĕg 63
§ 17. Of the Qerê and Kethîbh. Masora marginalis and finalis 65
Chapter II. Peculiarities and Changes of Letters: the Syllable and the Tone
§ 18. In general 68
§ 19. Changes of Consonants 68
§ 20. The Strengthening (Sharpening) of Consonants 70


[ xii]

§ 21. The Aspiration of the Tenues 75
§ 22. Peculiarities of the Gutturals 76
§ 23. The Feebleness of the Gutturals א and ה 79
§ 24. Changes of the Weak Letters ו and י 82
§ 25. Unchangeable Vowels 84
§ 26. Syllable-formation and its Influence on the Quantity of Vowels 85
§ 27. The Change of the Vowels, especially as regards Quantity 88
§ 28. The Rise of New Vowels and Syllables 92
§ 29. The Tone, its Changes, and the Pause 94
SECOND PART
ETYMOLOGY, OR THE PARTS OF SPEECH
§ 30. Stems and Roots; Biliteral, Triliteral, and Quadriliteral 99
§ 31. Grammatical Structure 103
Chapter I. The Pronoun
§ 32. The Personal Pronoun. The Separate Pronoun 105
§ 33. Pronominal Suffixes 108
§ 34. The Demonstrative Pronoun 109
§ 35. The Article 110
§ 36. The Relative Pronoun 112
§ 37. The Interrogative and Indefinite Pronouns 113
Chapter II. The Verb
§ 88. General View 114
§ 39. Ground-form and Derived Stems 114
§ 40. Tenses. Moods. Flexion 117
§ 41. Variations from the Ordinary Form of the Strong Verb 118
I. The Strong Verb.
§ 42. In general 118
A. The Pure Stem, or Qal.
§ 48. Its Form and Meaning 118
§ 44. Flexion of the Perfect of Qal 119
§ 45. The Infinitive 122
§ 46. The Imperative 124
§ 47. The Imperfect and its Inflexion 125
§ 48. Shortening and Lengthening of the Imperfect and Imperative. The Jussive and Cohortative 129
§ 49. The Perfect and Imperfect with Wāw Consecutive 132
§ 50. The Participle 136

[ xiii]

B. Verba Derivativa, or Derived Conjugations.
§ 51. Niphʿal 137
§ 52. Piʿēl and Puʿal 139
§ 53. Hiphʿil and Hophʿal 144
§ 54. Hithpaʿēl 149
§ 55. Less Common Conjugations 151
§ 56. Quadriliterals 153
C. Strong Verb with Pronominal Suffixes.
§ 57. In general 154
§ 58. The Pronominal Suffixes of the Verb 155
§ 59. The Perfect with Pronominal Suffixes 158
§ 60. Imperfect with Pronominal Suffixes 160
§ 61. Infinitive, Imperative and Participle with Pronominal Suffixes 162
Verbs with Gutturals.
§ 62. In general 164
§ 63. Verbs First Guttural 165
§ 64. Verbs Middle Guttural 169
§ 65. Verbs Third Guttural 171
II. The Weak Verb.
§ 66. Verbs Primae Radicalis Nûn (פ״ן) 173
§ 67. Verbs ע״ע 175
The Weakest Verbs (Verba Quiescentia).
§ 68. Verbs פ״א 184
§ 69. Verbs פ״י. First Class, or Verbs originally פ״ו 186
§ 70. Verbs פ״י. Second Class, or Verbs properly פ״י 192
§ 71. Verbs פ״י. Third Class, or Verbs with Yôdh assimilated. 193
§ 72. Verbs ע״וּ 194
§ 73. Verbs middle i (vulgo ע״י) 202
§ 74. Verbs ל״א 205
§ 75. Verbs ל״ה 207
§ 76. Verbs Doubly Weak 217
§ 77. Relation of the Weak Verbs to one another 219
§ 78. Verba Defectiva 219
Chapter III. The Noun
§ 79. General View 221
§ 80. The Indication of Gender in Nouns 222
§ 81. Derivation of Nouns 225
§ 82. Primitive Nouns 225

[ xiv]

§ 83. Verbal Nouns in General 226
§ 84a. Nouns derived from the Simple Stem 227
§ 84b. Formation of Nouns from the Intensive Stem 233
§ 85. Nouns with Preformatives and Afformatives 235
§ 86. Denominative Nouns 239
§ 87. Of the Plural 241
§ 88. Of the Dual 244
§ 89. The Genitive and the Construct State 247
§ 90. Real and supposed Remains of Early Case-endings 248
§ 91. The Noun with Pronominal Suffixes 254
§ 92. Vowel Changes in the Noun 260
§ 93. Paradigms of Masculine Nouns 262
§ 94. Formation of Feminine Nouns 275
§ 95. Paradigms of Feminine Nouns 276
§ 96. Nouns of Peculiar Formation 281
§ 97. Numerals. (a) Cardinal Numbers 286
§ 98. Numerals. (b) Ordinal Numbers 292
Chapter IV. The Particles
§ 99. General View 293
§ 100. Adverbs 294
§ 101. Prepositions 297
§ 102. Prefixed Prepositions 298
§ 103. Prepositions with Pronominal Suffixes and in the Plural Form 300
§ 104. Conjunctions 305
§ 105. Interjections 307
THIRD PART
SYNTAX
Chapter I. The Parts of Speech
I. Syntax of the Verb.
A. Use of the Tenses and Moods.
§ 106. Use of the Perfect 309
§ 107. Use of the Imperfect 313
§ 108. Use of the Cohortative 319
§ 109. Use of the Jussive 321
§ 110. The Imperative 324
§ 111. The Imperfect with Wāw Consecutive 326
§ 112. The Perfect with Wāw Consecutive 330

[ xv]

B. The Infinitive and Participle.
§ 113. The Infinitive Absolute 339
§ 114, The Infinitive Construct 347
§ 115. Construction of the Infinitive Construct with Subject and Object 352
§ 116. The Participles 355
C. The Government of the Verb.
§ 117. The Direct Subordination of the Noun to the Verb as Accusative of the Object. The Double Accusative 362
§ 118. The Looser Subordination of the Accusative to the Verb 372
§ 119. The Subordination of Nouns to the Verb by means of Prepositions 377
§ 120. Verbal Ideas under the Government of a Verb. Co-ordination of Complementary Verbal Ideas 385
§ 121. Construction of Passive Verbs 387
II. Syntax of the Noun.
§ 122. Indication of the Gender of the Noun 389
§ 123. The Representation of Plural Ideas by means of Collectives, and by the Repetition of Words 394
§ 124. The Various Uses of the Plural-Form 396
§ 125. Determination of Nouns in general. Determination of Proper Names 401
§ 126. Determination by means of the Article 404
§ 127. The Noun determined by a following Determinate Genitive 410
§ 128. The Indication of the Genitive Relation by means of the Construct State 414
§ 129. Expression of the Genitive by Circumlocution 419
§ 130. Wider Use of the Construct State 421
§ 131. Apposition 423
§ 132. Connexion of the Substantive with the Adjective 427
§ 133. The Comparison of Adjectives. (Periphrastic expression of the Comparative and Superlative) 429
§ 134. Syntax of the Numerals 432
III. Syntax of the Pronoun.
§ 135. The Personal Pronoun 437
§ 136. The Demonstrative Pronoun 442
§ 137. The Interrogative Pronoun 443
§ 138. The Relative Pronoun 444
§ 139. Expression of Pronominal Ideas by means of Substantives 447

[ xvi]

Chapter II. The Sentence
I. The Sentence in General.
§ 140. Noun-clauses, Verbal-clauses, and the Compound Sentence 450
§ 141. The Noun-clause 451
§ 142. The Verbal-clause 455
§ 143. The Compound Sentence 457
§ 144. Peculiarities in the Representation of the Subject (especially in the Verbal-clause) 459
§ 145. Agreement between the Members of a Sentence, especially between Subject and Predicate, in respect of Gender and Number 462
§ 146. Construction of Compound Subjects 467
§ 147. Incomplete Sentences 469
II. Special Kinds of Sentences.
§ 148. Exclamations 471
§ 149. Sentences which express an Oath or Asseveration 471
§ 150. Interrogative Sentences 473
§ 151. Desiderative Sentences 476
§ 152. Negative Sentences 478
§ 153. Restrictive and Intensive Clauses 483
§ 154. Sentences connected by Wāw 484
§ 155. Relative Clauses 485
§ 156. Circumstantial Clauses 489
§ 157. Object-clauses (Oratio Obliqua) 491
§ 158. Causal Clauses 492
§ 159. Conditional Sentences 493
§ 160. Concessive Clauses 498
§ 161. Comparative Clauses 499
§ 162. Disjunctive Sentences 500
§ 163. Adversative and Exceptive Clauses 500
§ 164. Temporal Clauses 501
§ 165. Final Clauses 503
§ 166. Consecutive Clauses 504
§ 167. Aposiopesis, Anacoluthon, Involved Series of Sentences 505
Paradigms 507
Index of Subjects 533
Index of Hebrew Words 544
Index of Passages 565
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