Page:A Dictionary of the Targumim, the Talmud Babli and Yerushalmi, and the Midrashic Literature, Volume 1 (1903).djvu/9

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IX
PREFACE

flying locks' (Sabbath 57b), i. e. a hair-band worn, as we further learn from the discussion concerning isṭ'ma, under the hair net or cap. To uncover the צמה (Isaiah XLVII, 2) therefore means to throw off the matron's head-cover and appear as a slave. The variant אסט׳ for אצט׳ in these forms is a common phenomenon in Talmudic orthography.

In connection with this noun formation it may not be out of place to note that Ithpaal or Ithpeel nouns sometimes drop the initial Aleph, in which case they may resume the regular order of consonants, which is inverted in the verb. Thus טצדקא (M'naḥoth 41a) is formed from אצטדק, the Ithpaal of צדק, 'to justify one's self (compare Genesis XLIV, 16), and means justification, excuse. Another טצדקא is formed from the root סדק, and means split, breaking through, damage (Baba Kamma 56a). טצהר (Giṭṭin 86a) is an Ithpeel noun of צהר (=זהר), and means a shining white spot, a suspicious symptom of leprosy; and, indeed, Alfasi reads צהר.[1] The Mandaic dialect offers analogies to these formations (see Noeldeke, Mand. Gramm. § 48, sq.).

The enlargement of stems by the prefix ש is well known in the Aramaic Shafel, but evidences of this same process are to be met with also in classical Hebrew. We have קוץ and שקץ, מוץ and שמץ, להב and שלהבת, and many more. More frequent is the use of the prefix ת for the formation of verbal nouns, as תְּ‏פִלָ‏ּ‏ה, תְּ‏רוּ‏מָ‏ה, &c. Such verbal nouns may again become the basis for the formation of nominal verbs, as התפלל, 'to pray', which only by a stretch of the imagination can be explained as a plain Hithpael. So also התְרוֹ‏עֵעַ‏, 'to shout' (Ps. LXV, 14; LX, 10; CVIII, 10), is to be taken as a derivative of תְּ‏רוּ‏עָ‏ה. The Talmudic Hebrew offers these formations in abundance, as הִתְחִיל from תְּ‏חִלָ‏ּ‏ה, תַ‏ּ‏רַ‏ם from תְּ‏רוּ‏מָ‏ה (see Abraham Greiger, Die Sprache der Mischnah, § 7).

On this principle of enlarged stems many words in this Dictionary have been regained from foreign origin for Semitic citizenship, e. g. תריס, 'shield', and its derivatives in Hebrew and Aramaic, שוכתא and שתך (see the Dictionary s. vv.).

The letter ס is an equivalent of ש in the Shafel forms in the later Hebrew as in the Aramaic; hence words like סרב, Piel סֵרֵב from רב; סרהב from רהב; סרגל from רגל; סרק, 'to be empty', from רק, and many more.

A further development of Safel stems consists in formations which for convenience' sake may be defined as 'Ispeel' nouns, of which the aforementioned אספירס and אספירסא may serve as examples.

The same letters, ש, ת, ס, and also ז, are used as intensive suffixes. The Biblical רטפש and פרשז have been explained by some as enlargements of רטף ( = רטב) and פרש respectively. Be this as it may, the Talmudic Hebrew and the Aramaic possess such intensive suffixes. פרכס belongs to פרך, 'to crush, grind, scrape', and the various significations of this enlarged stem and its derivatives can easily be traced back to the fundamental meaning (see Dict. s. v. פרכס I and II). Only to

  1. See Dictionary s. v. טצהר for an explanation of the misinterpretation which the word has suffered at the hands of commentators.