Lectionary Calendar
Saturday, April 13th, 2024
the Second Week after Easter
StudyLight.org has pledged to help build churches in Uganda. Help us with that pledge and support pastors in the heart of Africa.
Click here to join the effort!

Bible Lexicons

Gesenius Hebrew Grammer

Part 127

§127. The Noun determined by a following Determinate Genitive.
Brockelmann, Grundriss, i. 475.

When a genitive, determined in any way, follows a nomen regens, it also determines the nomen regens, which, according to §89a, is always in the construct state. Moreover, every pronominal suffix attached to a substantive is, according to §33c, to be considered as a genitive determinate by nature. An independent genitive may be determinate—

(a) By its character as a proper name (according to §125a), e.g. דְּבַר יְהֹוָה‎ the word of the Lord.

(b) By having the article, e.g. אִישׁ הַמִּלְחָמָה‎ (prop. the man of the war) the soldier (but אִישׁ מִלְחָמָה‎ Joshua 17:1, a soldier); אַנְשֵׁי הַמִּלְחָמָה‎ Numbers 31:49, the soldiers; דְּבַר הַנָּבִיא‎ the word of the prophet, Jeremiah 28:9 (but e.g., on the other hand, מִצְוַת אֲנָשִׁים מְלֻמָּדָה‎ a commandment of men which hath been taught, Isaiah 29:13; דְּבַר־שָׁ֑קֶר‎ word of falsehood, Proverbs 29:12).

(c) By the addition of a pronominal suffix (see above), e.g. בֵּֽית־אָבִי‎ my father’s house.

(d) By construction with another genitive determined in some way, e.g. Genesis 3:2 מִפְּרִי עֵֽץ־הַגָּן‎ of the fruit of the trees of the garden. Thus in Isaiah 10:12 four, and in 21:17 even five, members of a series are determined by a concluding determinate genitive.

Rem. 1. The above explains also the various meanings of כֹּל‎ (prop. a substantive in the sense of aggregate, whole), according as it is followed by a determinate or indeterminate genitive. In the former case כֹּל‎ has the meaning of the entirety, i.e. all, the whole (like the French tous les hommes, toute la ville), e.g. כָּל־הָאָרֶץ‎ the whole (prop. the entirety of the) earth, כָּל־הָֽאָדָם‎ all men;[1] Exodus 18:22, Numbers 15:13, Jeremiah 4:29, and cases like Numbers 4:23, 47, 21:8 where כָּל‎ is followed by a singular participle with the article. On the other hand, before an indeterminate genitive כֹּל‎ is used in the more indefinite (individualizing) sense of of all kinds, any (cf. tout homme, à tout prix), or distributively each, every, e.g. כָּל־עֵץ‎ every (kind of) tree, Genesis 2:9; cf. 4:22, 24:10, 1 Chronicles 29:2; כָּל־דָּבָר‎ any thing, Judges 19:19; בְּכָל־יוֹם‎ every day, every time, Psalms 7:12.

It is, however, to be observed—

(a) That the article may in this case also (see §126h) be omitted in poetic style, although the substantive is to be regarded as determinate, e.g. כָּל־שֻׁלְחָנוֹת‎ all (the) tables, Isaiah 28:8.

(b) That the meaning every is frequent even before singulars used collectively; afterwards the idea of quisque passes naturally into that of totality, e.g. כָּל־חַי‎ each living thing, i.e. every (not every kind of) living thing; כָּל־בָּשָׂר‎ all flesh, i.e. all men or all living creatures (with the article only in Genesis 7:15 before a relative clause, and in Isaiah 40:6); sometimes also כָּל־עֵץ‎ all trees, כָּל־עוֹף‎ all birds; finally—

(c) That before the names of members of the human body, כָּל־‎ frequently (as being determinate in itself) denotes the entirety, e.g. Isaiah 1:5 the whole head, the whole heart (the sense required by the context, not every head, &c., which the expression in itself might also mean); 9:11, 2 Kings 23:3, Ezekiel 29:7 all (i.e. the whole of) their shoulders... all (the whole of) their loins; 36:5.—On כֹּל‎ with a suffix when it follows a noun in apposition (e.g. Isaiah 9:8 הָעָם כֻּלּוֹ‎ the people, all of it, i.e. the whole nation, more emphatic than כָּל־הָעָם‎, cf. Driver on 2 Samuel 2:9), as well as when it follows absolutely in the genitive (= all men, every one, e.g. Genesis 16:12),[2] see the Lexicon, pp. 481b, 482b.

2. Gentilic names (or patronymics), derived from compound proper names (consisting of a nomen regens and genitive), are determined by inserting the article before the second part of the compound (since it contains the original genitive), e.g. בֶּן־יְמִינִי‎ (see §86h) a Benjamite, בֶּן־הַיְמִינִי‎ Judges 3:15, &c., the Benjamite; בֵּֽית־הַלַּחְמִי‎ the Bethlehemite, 1 Samuel 16:1, &c. (cf., however, 1 Chronicles 27:12 Qe לַבֵּן יְמִינִי‎); בֵּֽית־הַשִּׁמְשִׁי‎ the Beth-shemite, 1 Samuel 6:14; אֲבִי הָֽעֶזְרִי‎ the Abiezrite, Judges 6:11, &c., cf. 1 Kings 16:34.

3. In a few instances the nomen regens appears to be used indefinitely notwithstanding a following determinate genitive; it is not so, however, in Genesis 16:7, where the reference is to a well-known fountain; 21:28, where in the original context there must have been some reason for the seven ewe lambs of the flock; 2 Samuel 12:30 the spoil found in the city; but it often is so before a proper name, as in Exodus 10:9 חַג יְהֹוָה‎ a feast of the Lord (unless it is the spring festival), Deuteronomy 7:25, and frequently תּֽוֹעֲבַת יְהֹוָה‎ an abomination unto the Lord; cf. also Genesis 46:34, Deuteronomy 22:19 a virgin of Israel; 1 Samuel 4:12 a man of Benjamin; Proverbs 25:1, Song of Solomon 2:1, Song of Solomon 3:9; similarly before appellatives with the article (or before a genitive determined by a suffix, as in Leviticus 14:34), 1 Samuel 20:20 three arrows; 2 Samuel 23:11 חֶלְקַת הַשָּׂדֶה‎ a plot of the ground (but see Genesis 33:19, Joshua 24:32); Judges 13:6, Jeremiah 13:4, Jeremiah 41:16, Song of Solomon 1:11, 13 f., 5:13, 7:3, 8:2. On the other hand, שִׁיר הַמַּֽעֲלוֹת‎ in the titles of Psalms 120 to 134 (except 121:1, שִׁיר לַמַּֽעֲלוֹת‎) was most probably originally the title of a collection, in the sense of ‘the pilgrimage-songs’ (according to §124r), and was subsequently added to these Psalms severally.—In Exodus 20:24 בְּכָל־הַמָּקוֹם‎ in all the place, sc. of the sanctuary, is a dogmatic correction of בְּכָל־מָקוֹם‎, in every place, to avoid the difficulty that several holy-places are here authorized, instead of the one central sanctuary. In Genesis 20:13 also כָּל־הַמָּקוֹם‎ (unless it means in the whole place) is remarkable, since elsewhere every place is always (8 times) כָּל־מָקוֹם‎.

4. The deviations mentioned under e, from a fundamental rule of syntax, are in some cases open to suspicion on textual grounds, but much more doubtful are the instances in which the article is found before a noun already determined in some other way, as—

(a) Before a noun which appears to be determined by a following independent determinate genitive. The least questionable are the instances in which the genitive is a proper name, since these may be elliptical forms of expression like the apparent construction of proper names with a genitive, noticed in §125h, e.g. Numbers 21:14 הַנְּחָלִים אַרְנוֹן‎ the valleys, namely the valleys of Arnon; 2 Kings 23:17 הַמִּזְבַּח בֵּית־אֵל‎ the altar, namely the altar of Bethel (i.e. with the suppression of the real nomen regens, מִזְבַּח‎ without the article; by the pointing הַמִּזְבַּח‎ the Masora evidently intends to allow the choice either of reading הַמִּזְבֵּחַ‎ or correcting it to מִזְבַּח‎); הָאֵל בֵּית־אֵל‎ the God of Beth-el[3] (equivalent to הָאֵל אֵל בּ׳‎), Genesis 31:13 (the LXX read הָאֵל הַנִּרְאֶה אֵלֶיךָ כַמָּקוֹם‎ the God who appeared to thee in the holy place); הַמֶּלֶךְ אַשּׁוּר‎ the king of Assyria, Isaiah 36:16 (probably a scribal error due to verse 13; it does not occur in the parallel passage, 2 Kings 18:31), cf. Joshua 13:5, 2 Kings 25:11, Jeremiah 38:6, Ezekiel 47:15; in the vocative, Jeremiah 48:32, Lamentations 2:13. On the other hand, שָׂרָה אִמּוֹ‎ Genesis 24:67 is no doubt only a subsequent insertion; so also יִשְׂרָאֵל‎ Joshua 8:33b (cf. LXX), 2 Samuel 20:23, 2 Kings 7:13, הַמֶּ֫לֶךְ‎ 1 Samuel 26:22 after הַחֲנִיה‎ (simplified by the Masora to חֲנִית‎ Qe); עֲלִיַּת אָחָז‎ 2 Kings 23:12, אַשּׁוּר‎ Isaiah 36:8 (cf. 2 Kings 18:23), הַקֹּדֶשׁ‎ Ezekiel 46:19 (unless the article with לשכות‎ is to be omitted), also הַתָּמִיד‎ Daniel 8:13, and עֹדֵד הַנָּבִיא‎ 2 Chronicles 15:8. In Exodus 9:18 read with the Samaritan לְמִיּוֹם‎; in 2 Samuel 19:25 לֶ֫כֶת‎ might possibly be taken in apposition to לְמִן הַיּוֹם‎; in 2 Kings 10:1 restore אֶת־בְּנֵי‎, with the LXX and Lucian, before אַחְאָב‎; in 2 Kings 25:19 omit the article, as in Jeremiah 52:25, before סֹפֵר‎.

A similar ellipse must also be assumed in 2 Kings 23:17 the sepulchre is the sepulchre of the man of God (but most probably קֶבֶר‎ has dropped out after הַקֶּבֶר‎) and Psalms 123:4 (cf., however, the LXX, and observe that in the parallel member the genitive is paraphrased by לְ‎).—In Joshua 3:14 הַבְּרִית‎ (verse 17 בְּרִית יהוה‎) has been added to the original הָֽאָרוֹן‎ by a redactor; cf. similar syntactically impossible additions in verse 11 (also in 1 Samuel 4:3, &c., where the LXX still had simply אֲרוֹן יהוה‎); in הַיְחַד‎ Judges 16:14 the Masora evidently combines two different readings הַיָּחֵד‎ and יְתַד הָאֶרֶג‎; and similarly in Jeremiah 25:26 (where הָאָ֫רֶץ‎ was only subsequently introduced into the text), the two readings הַמַּמְלָכוֹת‎ and מַמְלְכוֹת הָא׳‎ are combined.—In Joshua 8:11, 1 Kings 14:24, Jeremiah 31:40, Ezekiel 45:16 the article, being usual after כָּל־‎, has been mechanically added, and so also in 2 Chronicles 8:16 after עַד־‎; in 2 Kings 9:4 the second הַנַּ֫עַד‎ (instead of נַ֫עַר‎) is occasioned by the first; in Ezekiel 7:7 מְהוּמָה‎ belongs as a nominative to what follows; in Ezekiel 8:29 the meaning perhaps is in the chambers, in the house of the Lord, or the article is to be omitted; in 1 Chronicles 15:27 the text is manifestly corrupt.

Of another kind are the instances in which a determinate noun is followed by a definition of the material in apposition (hence, not in the genitive; cf. § 131), e.g. Zechariah 4:10 הָאֶ֫בֶן הַבְּדִיל‎ the weight, the lead, i.e. the leaden weight; Exodus 39:17, 2 Kings 16:14 (הַנְּח֫שֶׁת‎, both here and in verse 17, is probably only a later addition, while המסגרות המכנות‎ in verse 17 has arisen from a confusion of two readings, מסגרות המכנות‎ and המסגרות מֵהמכנות‎). In Jeremiah 32:12 also הַמִּקְנָה‎ (unless the article is simply to be omitted) is in apposition to הַסֵּפֶר‎.

(b) Before a noun with a suffix (which likewise represents a determinate genitive; see above, at the beginning of this section). This does not apply to cases in which a verbal (i.e. accusative) suffix is affixed to a participle which has the article, e.g. הַמַּכֵּ֫הוּ‎ Isaiah 9:12, the one smiting him; in Deuteronomy 8:15, Deuteronomy 13:6 also ךָ‎ is a verbal suffix, but hardly the וֹ‎ in הָֽעֹשׂוֹ‎ for הָֽעֹשֵׂ֫הוּ‎ Job 40:19, nor the ־ָהּ‎ in הַיֹּֽלְדָהּ‎ Daniel 11:6; §116g. For הָֽעֶרְכְּךָ‎ Leviticus 27:23, read עֶרְכְּךָ‎ as in verses 2, 3, 5, 7, 13, &c., twelve times (but cf. also the note on §128d).—Of the remaining examples כַּגְּבִרְתָּהּ‎ Isaiah 24:2 (probably an intentional alliteration with the eleven other words beginning with כַּ‍‎), לַמַּֽעֲנֵ֫הוּ‎ Proverbs 16:4, and בֶּֽעָרֵ֫ינוּ‎ (so Baer, following the best authorities) Ezra 10:14, rest only on the authority of the Masoretes, not of the authors. So also in הָאָֽהֳלִי‎ Joshua 7:21, הַֽחֶצְיוֹ‎ Joshua 8:33 (previously חֶצְיוֹ‎), הֶהָֽרוֹתֶ֫יהָ‎ 2 Kings 15:16 (dittography of the ה‎), the article is simply to be omitted as syntactically impossible; the ו‎ of הַדָּבְרוֹ‎ Micah 2:12 is the copula belonging to the next word.

  1. הָֽאָדָם‎ being a collective, cf. כָּל־הָאִישׁ‎ 2 Samuel 15:2, all men, כָּל־הַכֵּן‎ Exodus 1:22 all sons, כָּל־הַבַּת‎ all daughters; in itself כָּל־הָֽאָרָם‎ could also mean the whole man.
  2. In Ezra 10:17 instead of בַּכֹּל אֲנָשִׁים‎ read simply בְּכָל־הָֽאֲנָשִׁים‎.
  3. According to Philippi (st. constr., p. 38) בית־אל‎ is rather a case of ‘sub-position’ in the accusative, as also הַדֶּ֫רֶךְ חֶתְלוֹן‎ Ezekiel 47:15 (for which, however, in 48:1 there is the correct reading דֶּ֫רֶךְ חֶתְלוֹן‎) by the way to Hethlon; and in fact, Ezekiel 47:15 may without difficulty be explained in this way; so שֵׁשׁ‎ Exodus 39:27 as an accusative of the material.
adsFree icon
Ads FreeProfile