Gesenius' Hebrew Grammar/53. Hiphʿîl and Hophʿal

Gesenius' Hebrew Grammar  (1909) 
Wilhelm Gesenius
edited and enlarged by Emil Kautzsch
, translated by Arthur Ernest Cowley
Hiphʿil and Hophʿal

§53. Hiphʿîl and Hophʿal.

a 1. The characteristic of the active (Hiphʿîl) is a prefixed הַ (on its origin see §55i) in the perfect הִ (with the ă attenuated to ĭ, as in Piʿēl), which forms a closed syllable with the first consonant of the stem. The second syllable of the perfect had also originally an ă; cf. the Arabic conj. iv. ’aqtălă, and in Hebrew the return of the Pathaḥ in the 2nd and 1st pers. הִקְטַ֫לְתָּ, &c. After the attenuation of this ă to ĭ, it ought by rule to have been lengthened to ē in the tone-syllable, as in Aramaic אַקְטֵל, beside הַקְטִל in Biblical Aramaic. Instead of this, however, it is always replaced in the strong verb by î,[1]־ִי, but sometimes written defectively ־ִ; cf. §9g. Similarly in the infinitive construct הַקְטִיל, and in the imperfect and participle יַקְטִיל and טַקְטִיל, which are syncopated from יְהַקְטִיל and מְהַקְטִיל; §23k. The corresponding Arabic forms (juqtĭl and muqtĭl) point to an original ĭ in the second syllable of these forms. In Hebrew the regular lengthening of this ĭ to ē appears in the strong verb at least in the jussive and in the imperfect consecutive (see n), as also in the imperative of the 2nd sing. masc. (see m); on הַקְטֵ֫לְנָה, תַּקְטֵ֫לְנָה cf. §26p. On the return of the original ă in the second syllable of the Imperat., Jussive, &c, under the influence of a guttural, cf. §65f.

b In the passive (Hophʿal) the preformative is pronounced with an obscure vowel, whilst the second syllable has ă (in pause ā), as its characteristic, thus:—Perf. הָקְטַל or הֻקְטַל, Imperf. יָקְטַל (syncopated from יְהָקְטַל) or יֻקְטַל, Part. מָקְטָל or מֻקְטָל (from מְהָקְטָל); but the infinitive absolute has the form הָקְטֵל.

Thus the characteristics of both conjugations are the ה preformative in the perfect, imperative, and infinitive; in the imperfect and participle Hiphʿîl, Pathaḥ under the preformatives, in the Hophʿal ŏ or ŭ.

c 2. The meaning of Hiphʿîl is primarily, and even more frequently than in Piʿēl (§52g), causative of Qal, e.g. יָצָא to go forth, Hiph. to bring forth, to lead forth, to draw forth; קָדַשׁ to be holy, Hiph. to sanctify. Under the causative is also included (as in Piʿēl) the declarative sense, e.g. הִצְדִּיק to pronounce just; הִרְשִׁיעַ to make one an evil doer (to pronounce guilty); cf. עקשׁ, in Hiphʿîl, Jb 920, to represent as perverse. If Qal has already a transitive meaning, Hiphʿîl then takes two accusatives (see §117cc). In some verbs, Piʿēl and Hiphʿîl occur side by side in the same sense, e.g. אָבַד periit, Piʿēl and Hiphʿîl, perdidit; as a rule, however, only one of these two conjugations is in use, or else they differ from one another in meaning, e.g. כָּבֵד gravem esse, Piʿēl to honour, Hiphʿîl to bring to honour, also to make heavy. Verbs which are intransitive in Qal simply become transitive in Hiphʿîl, e.g. נָטָה to bow oneself, Hiph. to bow, to bend.

d Among the ideas expressed by the causative and transitive are included, moreover, according to the Hebrew point of view (and that of the Semitic languages in general, especially Arabic), a series of actions and ideas, which we have to express by periphrasis, in order to understand their being represented by the Hiphʿîl-form. To these inwardly transitive or intensive Hiphʿîls belong: (a) Hiphʿîl stems which express the obtaining or receiving of a concrete or abstract quality. (In the following examples the Qal stems are given, for the sake of brevity, with the addition of the meaning which—often together with other meanings—belongs to the Hiphʿîl.) Thus אהל, זהר, יפע, צוץ to be bright, to shine (to give forth brightness); opposed to חשׁךְ to become dark; אמץ, גבר, חזק to be strong (to develop strength), עטף to be weak; ארךְ to be long (to acquire length); גבהּ to be high; הום to be in tumult, זעק to cry out, רוע, רנן to make a noise, to exult; חלף to sprout (to put forth shoots), cf. פרח to bloom, עדף, שׁוק to overflow; חרשׁ, חשׁה, סכת, צמת to be silent (silentium facere, Pliny); מתק to be sweet; צלח to have success; שׁפל to be low; אדם to become red, לבן to become white.

e (b) Stems which express in Hiphʿîl the entering into a certain condition and, further, the being in the same: אמן to become firm, to trust in; באשׁ to become stinking; זוד to become boiling, to boil over; חלה to become ill; הסר to come to want; חרה to become hot; יבשׁ to become dry, to become ashamed; יתר to attain superiority; סכן to become familiar; עור, קוץ to become awake; קשׁה to become hard; רגע, שׁקט to become quiet (to keep quiet); שׁמם to be astonished. The Hiphʿîl forms of some verbs of motion constitute a variety of this class: נגשׁ to draw near; קרב to come near; רחק to withdraw far off (all these three are besides used as causatives); קדם to come before.

f (c) Stems which express action in some particular direction: חטא to err; חלק to flatter (to act smoothly); יטב to act well, to do good; סכל to act foolishly, שׂכל to act wisely; ערם to act craftily; צנע to act submissively; רעע, רשׁע to act wickedly, godlessly; שׁחת, תעב to act corruptly, abominably; שׁלם to act peacefully, to be at peace, to be submissive.

g Further, there are in Hiphʿîl a considerable number of denominatives which express the bringing out, the producing of a thing, and so are properly regarded as causatives,[2] e.g. אצר to set over the treasury, Neh 1313 (unless וָאְַֽצַוֶּה is to be read, as in Neh 72); בכר to bring forth a firstborn; גשׁם to cause to rain; זרע to produce seed; ימן (Hiphʿîl הֵימִין) to go to the right, cf. הִשְׂמְאִיל to go to the left; פרס to get or to have hoofs; קרן to get or to have horns; שׁכל to produce abortion; שׁלג to become snow-white; שׁמן to grow fat; שׁרשׁ to put forth roots, &c.; so also according to the ordinary acceptation הֶֽאֶזְנִ֫יחוּ Is 196, they have become stinking, from אֶזְנָח stinking or stench, with retention of the א prosthetic, §19m (but see below, p). Of a different kind are the denominatives from: אזן (scarcely to prick up the ears, but) to act with the ears, to hear; cf. לשׁן to move the tongue, to slander, and the German äugeln (to make eyes), füsseln, näseln, schwänzeln; שׁבר to sell corn; שׁכם to set out early (to lead the back [of the camel, &c.]?); opposed to הֶֽעֱרִיב.

h 3. The meaning of Hophʿal is (a) primarily that of a passive of Hiphʿîl, e.g. הִשְׁלִיךְ proiecit, הָשְׁלַךְ or הֻשְׁלַךְ proiectus est; (b) sometimes equivalent to a passive of Qal, as נָקַם to avenge, Hoph. to be avenged (but see below, u).

i Rem. 1. The î of the 3rd sing. masc. perf. Hiphʿîl remains, without exception, in the 3rd fem. (in the tone-syllable). That it was, however, only lengthened from a short vowel, and consequently is changeable, is proved by the forms of the imperative and imperfect where ē (or, under the influence of gutturals, ă) takes its place. In an open syllable the î is retained almost throughout; only in very isolated instances has it been weakened to Še (see n and o).

k 2. The infinitive absolute commonly has Ṣere without Yodh, e.g. הַקְדֵּשׁ Ju 173; less frequently it takes ־ֵי, e.g. הַשְׁמֵיד Am 98; cf. Dt 1514, Is 594, Jer 315, 2332, 4425, Jb 3435, Ec 1010. With א instead of ה (probably a mere scribal error, not an Aramaism) we find אַשְׁכֵּים Jer 253. Rare exceptions, where the form with Ṣere stands for the infinitive construct, are, e.g. Dt 328 (Sam; בְּהַנְחִיל; read perhaps בְּהַנְחִל), Jer 4419.25, Pr 252, Jb 133 (?); on the other hand, for לַעְשְׂר Dt 2612 (which looks like an infinitive Hiphʿîl with elision of the ה, for לְהַֽעֲשִׂיר) the right reading is simply לְעַשֵּׂר, since elsewhere the Piʿēl alone occurs with the meaning to tithe; for בַּעְשֵׂר Neh 1039 perhaps the inf. Qal (בַּעְשׂר) was intended, as in 1 S 815.17 (=to take the tithe). At the same time it is doubtful whether the present punctuation does not arise from a conflation of two different readings, the Qal and the Piʿēl.

l Instead of the ordinary form of the infinitive construct הַקְטִיל the form הִקְטִיל sometimes occurs, e.g. הִשְׁמִיד to destroy, Dt 724, 2848; cf. Lv 1446, Jos 1114, Jer 5034, 5133 and הִקְצוֹת for הַקְצוֹת Lv 1443 from קָצָה; scarcely, however, Lv 735 (see §155l), 2 S 221 (ψ 181), 1 K 1116 (after עַד), and in the passages so explained by König (i. 276) where הִשְׁאִיר appears after prepositions[3]; [cf. Driver on Dt 33, 415, 724, 2855].

With ă in the second syllable there occurs הַזְכַּרְכֶם Ez 2129 (cf. the substantival infin. הַפְצַ֑ר 1 S 1523).—In the Aram. manner לְהַשְׁמָעוּת is found in Ez 2426 (as a construct form) for the infinitive Hiphʿîl (cf. the infinitive Hithpa‛el, Dn 1123). On the elision of the ה after prefixes, see q.

m 3. In the imperative the î is retained throughout in the open syllable, according to i, and consequently also before suffixes (see §61g) and ־ָה paragogic, e.g. הַקְשִׁ֫יבָה attend to, הוֹשִׁ֫יעָה נָּא ψ 11825, as in ed. Mant., Jabl;, Baer, not הוֹשִׁיעָ֫ה נָּא as Ginsb. and Kittel; with the tone at the end only הַצְלְיחָה ibid. v.25b. On the other hand, in the 2nd sing. masc. the original ĭ (cf. Arabic ’áqtĭl) is lengthened to ē, e.g. הַשְׁמֵן make fat, and becomes Seeghôl before Maqqeph, e.g. הַסְכֶּן־נָא Jb 2221.—The form הַקְטִיל for הַקְטֵל appears anomalously a few times: ψ 941, Is 438, Jer 1718 (cf. §69v and §72y); elsewhere the Masora has preferred the punctuation הַקְטֵיל, e.g. 2 K 86; cf. ψ 1425.—In La 51 הַבִּ֫יטָה is required by the Qe for הביט. n 4. In the imperfect Hiphʿîl the shorter form with Ṣere prevails for the jussive in the 3rd masc. and fem. and 2nd masc. sing., e.g. אַל־תַּגְדֵּל make not great, Ob 12112; יַכְרֵת let Him cut off! ψ 124; even incorrectly תַּגֵּיד Ex 193 and יַגֵּיד Ec 1020; cf. also יַבְעֶר־ Ex 224, where the jussive form is to be explained according to §109h, and יַֽאֲבֶר Jb 3926 before the principal pause. Similarly, after ו consec., e.g. וַיַּבְדֵּל and He divided, Gn 14. On the other hand, î is almost always retained in the 1st sing., e.g. וָאַֽשְׁמִיד Am 29 (but generally without י, as וָאַֽסְתִּר Ez 3923 f., &c.); cf. §49e and §74l, but also §72aa; in 1st plur. only in Neh 43; in the 3rd sing. ψ 10528. With ă in the principal pause וַתּוֹתַר Ru 214, and in the lesser pause, Gn 494; before a sibilant (see §29q) וַיַּגַּשׁ Ju 619; in the lesser pause וַיַּקַּף La 35. Before Maqqeph the Ṣere becomes Seghôl, e.g. וַיַּֽחֲזֶק־בּוֹ Ju 194. In the plural again, and before suffixes, î remains in the forms יַקְטִ֫ילוּ, תַּקְטִ֫ילוּ, even in the jussive and after ו consecutive, e.g. וַיַּדְבִּ֫יקוּ Ju 1822. The only exceptions, where the î is weakened to Še, are וַיַּדְרְכוּ Jer 92; וַיַּדְבְּקוּ 1 S 1422, 312, 1 Ch 102; יַֽעַבְרוּ Jer 1115; וָֽאוֹצְרָה Neh 1313, if it is Hiphʿîl of אצר, but probably וָֽאֲצַוֶּה is to be read, as in 72; perhaps also תַּהְכְּרוּ Jb 193 (according to others, imperfect Qal). The same weakening occurs also in the imperfect in 3rd and masc. sing. before suffixes, 1 S 1725, 1 K 2033, ψ 6510, and in Jb 920, unless the form be Piʿēl=וַיְעַקְשֵׁנִי, since the Hiphʿîl is not found elsewhere. It is hardly likely that in these isolated examples we have a trace of the ground-form, yaqtĭl, or an Aramaism. More probably they are due partly to a misunderstanding of the defective writing, which is found, by a purely orthographic licence, in numerous other cases (even in 3rd sing. יַשְׁלִ֑ם Is 4428), and partly are intended, as formae mixtae, to combine the forms of Qal and Hiphʿîl. Instead of the firmly closed syllable, the Masora requires in Gn 111 תַּֽדְשֵׁא, with euphonic Ga‛ya (see §16h).

o 5. In the participle, מ֫וֹצֵא ψ 1357 appears to be traceable to the ground-form, maqtĭl; yet the Ṣere may also possibly be explained by the retraction of the tone. The Masora appears to require the weakening of the vowel to Še (see above, n) in מַהְלְכִים Zc 37 (probably, however, מַֽהֲלָכִים should be read), also in מַחְלְמִים Jer 298, מַעְזְרִים 2 Ch 2823 (but as ם precedes, and accordingly dittography may well have taken place, the participle Qal is probably to be read in both places; the reading of the text is perhaps again intended to combine Qal and Hiphʿîl, see above, n), and in the Qe מַחְצְרִים 1 Ch 1524 &c. (where the Kethîbh מַֽחֲצֹֽצְרִים is better).—The fem. is ordinarily pointed as מַזְכֶּ֫רֶת Nu 515, מַשֶּׂגֶת Lv 1421; in pause מַשְׂכָּֽלֶת Pr 1914.

p 6. In the perfect there occur occasionally such forms as הֶכְלַ֫מְנוּ 1 S 257; cf. Gn 4128, 2 K 1711, Jer 291, Mi 63, Jb 167; with the original ă in the first syllable וְהַרְאֵיתִ֫י Na 35.—In אֶגְאָֽלְתִּי[4] I have stained, Is 633, א stands at the beginning instead of ה, cf. above, k, on אַשְׁכֵּים. On the other hand, וְהֶֽאֶזְנִ֫יחוּ Is 196 (see above, g) is a mere error of the scribe, who had the Aramaic form in mind and corrected it by prefixing ה.

q 7. In the imperfect and participle the characteristic ה is regularly elided after the preformatives, thus יַקְמִיל, מַקְמִיל; but it is retained in the infinitive after prepositions, e.g. לְהַקְמִיל. The exceptions are in the imperfect, יְהוֹשִׁיעַ He will save for יוֹשִׁיעַ 1 S 1747, ψ 1166 (in pause); יְהוֹדֶה He will praise for יוֹדֶה Neh 1117, ψ 287, 4518 (cf. the proper name יְהוּכַל Jer 373, for which 381 יוּכַל [and יְהוֹסֵף ψ 816); [יְהֵילִילוּ (§70d) Is 525, יְהָתֵ֫לּוּ Jer 94, תְּהָתֵ֫לּוּ Jb 139] and מְהֻקְצָעוֹת Ez 4622; in the infinitive (where, however, as in Niphʿal, §51l, the infinitive Qal is generally to be read) לַסְתִּר Is 2915 for לְהַסְתִּיר; לַנְפִּל and לַצְבּוֹת Nu 522; לַֽעֲבִיר 2 S 1919; לַֽהֲלִק Jer 3712; לַֽחֲטִיא Ec 55; לַלְבֵּן (doubly anomalous for לְהַלְבִּין) Dn 1135; לַשְׁמִעַ ψ 267; לַֽאֲדִיב 1 S 233; לַשְׁמִד Is 2311; וְלַשְׁבִּית Am 84 (certainly corrupt); בָּעִיר for בְּהָעִיר ψ 7320 (but in the city is probably meant); לָבִיא Jer 397 (2 Ch 3110); לַמְרוֹת Is 38, ψ 7817; לַנְחוֹתָם Ex 1321; כַּנְּלוֹת (see, however, §20h) Is 331; לַרְאֹֽתְכֶם Dt 133: cf. further, from verbs ל״ה, Nu 522, Jer 2720; on Dt 2612 and Neh 1039, see above, k; for לַמְחוֹת Pr 313 read לְמֹחוֹת or לִמְמַחוֹת.

r 8. With regard to the tone it is to be observed that the afformatives וּ and ־ָה in Hiphʿîl have not the tone, even in the perfect with waw consecutive (except in Ex 2633 before ה, Lv 1529 before א, to avoid a hiatus); but the plural ending וּן (see §47m) always has the tone, e.g. תַּקִרִב֫וּן Dt 117.

s 9. The passive (Hophʿal) has ŭ instead of Qameṣ ḥaṭuph in the first syllable (הֻקְטַל), in the strong verb less frequently in the perfect and infinitive, but generally in the participle, through the influence of the initial מ‍ (but cf. מָשְׁחָת Pr 2526); e.g. הֻשְׁכַּב Ez 3232 (beside הָשְׁכְּבָה 3219); הֻשְׁלַךְ impf. יֻשְׁלַךְ, part. מֻשְׁלָךְ 2 S 2021 (beside הָשְׁלַכְתָּ Is 1419) הֻמְלַ֫חַתְּ Ez 164; in the partic. Hoph. without elision of the ה: מְהֻקְצָעוֹת Ez 4622; on the other hand, verbs פּ״ן always have ŭ (in a sharpened syllable): הֻגַּד, יֻגַּד (cf. §9n).

t 10. The infinitive absolute has in Hophʿal (as in Hiphʿîl) Ṣere in the last syllable, e.g. הָחְתֵּל and הָמְלֵחַ Ez 164; הֻגֵּד Jos 924. An infinitive construct does not occur in the strong verb.

11. With regard to the imperative Hophʿal, see above, §46a, note.

u 12. According to Böttcher (Ausführliches Lehrbuch, § 906) and Barth (see above, §52e) a number of supposed imperfects Hophʿal are, in fact, imperfects of the passive of Qal. As in the case of the perfects passive of Qal (see above, §52e) the question is again of verbs of which neither the corresponding causative (i.e. here the Hiphʿîl), nor the other tense of the same conjugation (i.e. here the perfect Hophʿal) is found; so with יֻקַּם (for יֻנְקַם, cf. yuqtălŭ as imperfect Qal in Arabic) and יֻתַּן, from נָקַם and נָתַן; יֻקַּח from לָקַח (cf. §66g); יוּאָר Nu 226 from אָרַר; יֻחַן from חָנַן; יוּשָּׁ֑ד Ho 1014 (cf. Is 331) from שָׁדַד; Barth adds the verbs פ״ן: תֻּתַּשׁ Ez 1912 from נתשׁ; יֻתָּץ Lev 1135 from נתץ; the verbs ע״ע: יֻחָ֫קוּ Jb 1923 from חקק; יֻכַּת &c. from כּתת; the verb ע״וּ: יוּדַשׁ from דּוּשׁ; the verbs ע״י: יוּחָ֫ל, יוּשַׁר, יוּשַׁת from חִיל, שִׁיר and שִׁית. On וַיִּ֫ישֶׂם &c., §73f. In point of fact it would be very strange, especially in the case of יֻתַּן and יֻקַּח, that of these frequently used verbs, amongst all the forms of Hiphʿîl and Hophʿal, only the imperfect Hophʿal should have been preserved. A passive of Qal is also indicated in the Tellel-Amarna letters, according to Knudtzon, by a number of imperfect forms, which are undoubtedly due to Canaanite influence, cf. Beitr. zur Assyriologie, iv. 410.

  1. This î may have been transferred originally from the imperfects of verbs ע״וּ, as a convenient means of distinction between the indicative and jussive, to the imperfect of the strong verb and afterwards to the whole of Hiphʿîl; so Stade, Philippi, Praetorius, ZAW. 1883, p. 52 f.
  2. The same ideas are also paraphrased by the verb עָשָׂה (to make), e.g. to make fat, for, to produce fat upon his body, Jb 1527; to make fruit, to make branches, for, to put forth, to yield, Jb 149, Ho 87, cf. the Lat. corpus, robur, sobolem, divitias facere, and the Ital. far corpo, far forze, far frutto.
  3. As to the doubtfulness, on general grounds, of this form of the Inf. Hiph., see Robertson Smith in the Journ. of Philol., xvi. p. 72 f.
  4. Most probably, however, גֵּאָ֫לְתִּי (perfect Piʿēl) is to be read, and the א is only an indication of the change of the perfect into the imperfect, as also previously, by a change of punctuation, וְאדרכם and וְיֵז (instead of וָֽאֶדְ׳ and וָיֵּז) are made future instead of past. Jewish exegesis applied these Edomoracles to the Roman (i.e. Christian) empire. So G. Moore in Theol. Literaturzeitung, 1887, col. 292.