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Tri-literal roots with hireq-yod as second vowel

Paul Hocking

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Sorry to ask what is probably a naive question, but I am relatively new to Accordance, having transferred from Bibleworks.

Can you tell me how to frame a search that gives me words/nouns in Hebrew that have hireq-yod vowel as the second vowel, in the same form as דְּבִיר. As in 1 Kings 6.5 etc?

I am trying to discover if this form of a noun is a common example of a verb. So asking the question, could Debir be a noun from the verb to speak (meaning, say, 'oracle') rather than the Arabic root suggested as 'back' or inner (chamber).



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You can use the character wildcard (that is, the question mark) to represent each consonant, and then add the desired vowel points. Since this is an inflected form, you'll want to enclose it in quotation marks. You'll also need to use an equals sign to indicate that the vowels should be included in the search (Accordance ignores them otherwise). Finally, I would add a grammatical tag to indicate you are looking for nouns.


"=?V?Iy?"@ [NOUN]


Although this search is showing in English characters, you should be able to copy and paste it into the search entry box of a Hebrew search tab and have it work correctly. The capital V after the first ? represents the shewa, and the capital I after the second ? is the hiriq. The lowercase y is the yodh.


Once you've done the search, choose Analysis from the Analytics button to the right of the search box to get a list of the lexical forms that were found.


Hope this helps.

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  • 1 month later...

Thanks David. I forgot that I had asked this question! I just remembered and returned after a month, to find if it had been answered!

Your guidance was spot on.

I found there were over 30 examples where tri-literal root nouns with sheva and hireq-yod for vowels, had their root in a related tri-literal root verb, eg. קְצִיר from קָצַר. 

Now, this may sound obvious, but it seems the lexicons and commentaries do not argue the same for the root of 'debir', meaning innermost sanctuary or holy of holies, and argue it is from Arabic root for 'inner room'.

It seems to me much more likely that debir, only used late and a few times, when used of the holy of holies, comes from the root dbr, referring to the place of God's speaking, so a better sense for debir would be 'oracle', or the place of the oracle.

This weird study has confirmed that such root meanings are common for nouns in this form, so makes the argument much more likely!

Thank you!


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