Volume 46 Number 79
                    Produced: Wed Feb  2  5:49:35 EST 2005

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Grammar Question (14)
         [Stephen Phillips, Martin Stern, Mark Symons, Jay F Shachter,
Michael Frankel, Jack Gross, Jeremy Rose, Gershon Dubin, Avi
Heller, Arie, Lawrence Myers, Boruch Merzel, Brian Wiener,
Russell J Hendel]
Masoretic Notes
         [Orrin Tilevitz]
Seudat Purim on Friday
         [Joseph Mosseri]
Tallit query
         [Avi Heller]


From: Stephen Phillips <admin@...>
Date: Tue, 1 Feb 2005 10:50:28 +0000
Subject: Re: Grammar Question

> From: Richard Dine <richard.dine@...>
> For a D'Var Torah I am trying to prepare, are there any examples in the
> Shema (or if not, in some other well known part of the Torah) where
> changing the accent on the word changes the meaning (preferably, where
> changing the accent on the verb changes its tense)?

There are a few well known ones which are often mispronounced. To get
the correct pronunciation one should really "lein" the Shema.


to name but a few. Changing the stress changes the tense.

Stephen Phillips

From: Martin Stern <md.stern@...>
Date: Tue, 01 Feb 2005 12:02:01 +0000
Subject: Re: Grammar Question

There are numerous examples in the in the first paragraph of the Shema:
ve'ahavta, veshinantam, vedibarta, ukeshartam, ukhetavtam, and many more
in the second and third paragraphs as well.

These all involve the vav consecutive, which changes the tense of the
verb by moving the stress. If these words are stressed incorrectly the
vav is copulative and leaves the tense unchanged.

e.g. VeshinanTAM = and you shall repeat them

VeshiNANtam = and you have repeated them

(but VeSHINantam is meaningless since Hebrew can only have the primary
stress on the last syllable (milra) or the penultimate one (mil'el)
never on any previous one)

Martin Stern

From: Mark Symons <msymons@...>
Date: Tue, 1 Feb 2005 21:47:25 +1100
Subject: Grammar Question

One classic example with changing tenses where both forms appear one
after the other is in Vayetse - B'reishit 29:6 - "v'hinei rachel bito
ba-AH (second syllable accented) im hatson" - "and behold Rachel his
daughter IS COMING (PRESENT TENSE) with the sheep". Then 3 verses later
- 29:9 - "v'rachel BA-ah (first syllable accented) im hatson" - "and
Rachel CAME (PAST TENSE) with the sheep". (incidentally this is also one
example where one can use the "context-sensitive expressionist" approach
in leining by singing the word like the noise that a sheep makes - "BA -
a-a-a-a-a" - which the r'via trop also facilitates!)

Another is in Vayishlach where changing the accent would completely
change the meaning because the root of the verb is different - B'reishit
34:29 - "v'et kol tapam v'et n'sheihem sha-VU (second syllable accented)"
 - "and all their children and their wives they CAPTURED". If the word
would be pronounced SHA-vu (first syllable accented) it would mean "they
RETURNED (intransitive)", though which doesn't make sense in this

Mark Symons.

From: Jay F Shachter <jay@...>
Date: Tue, 1 Feb 2005 06:39:17 -0600 (CST)
Subject: Re: Grammar Question

You haven't far to look.  The first word of the second verse of the
Shma` is v'ahavta, with the accent on the last syllable, which means,
"you shall love".  If you accent it incorrectly on the second-to-last
syllable, you are saying "you have loved", which is significantly

	Jay F. ("Yaakov") Shachter
	Chicago IL  60645-4111

From: Michael Frankel <michaeljfrankel@...>
Date: Tue, 01 Feb 2005 10:17:21 -0500
Subject: Re: Grammar Question

sure.  not in sh'ma, but elsewhere in torah consider the word pair
sho'VU vs SHO'vu with completely different meanings determined by the
accent.  somewhat more subtle as it's only a difference in tense - BO'u
vs bo'U.

Mechy Frankel

From: Jack Gross <jbgross@...>
Date: Tue, 1 Feb 2005 10:22:20 -0500
Subject: Grammar Question

In the 2nd pasuk of the second parasha: The tense of v'natatti is
determined by the accent:

v'natatTI (the correct reading, indicated by the location of the t'vir)
is future, yielding: "... then (in response to your love and devotion) I
shall provide ...",

v'naTATti (incorrect) would be past, subjunctive, yielding: "... and
(if, furthermore) I have provided..."

From: Jeremy Rose <jeremy@...>
Date: Tue, 01 Feb 2005 19:40:49 +0000
Subject: Grammar Question

Two come to mind:

*	Rochel Bo'OH (will be coming) and Rochel BO'oh (is coming).
	Vayeitzei 29:6 and 29:9
*	In Megillas Esther 2:7, I,*MOH* - "her mother" (as opposed to
	*I*MOH (mummy)

I'm sure there are other which my more well-approved masters will

Kol tuv, Jeremy

From: Gershon Dubin <gershon.dubin@...>
Date: Tue, 1 Feb 2005 17:47:48 -0500
Subject: Grammar Question

All over the place.  In Shema for example, the first word in the second
pasuk, ve'ahavta, if pronounced properly (accent on tav), is
future/command (tzivui) whereas if pronounced with the accent on the
heh, is past tense.  Many similar examples, vedibarta, venasati,
ve'asafta, etc.  And that's just in Shema.


From: Avi Heller <avi@...>
Date: Tue, 1 Feb 2005 07:56:08 -0500
Subject: RE: Grammar Question

The classic example of the accent changing the meaning of a word is
BA-ah ("she comes" or "she is coming" as in v'rachel BA-ah) and ba-AH
("she came",or "she has come"). There are others and gabbaim should know
them so that they require a ba'al koreh to repeat the mis-accented word.

From: <aliw@...> (Arie)
Date: Tue, 1 Feb 2005 19:51:24 +0200
Subject: Re: Grammar Question

you can stop your search at the first word:
v'aHAVta would mean "and you loved"

v'ahavTA means "and you will love"

but you can also use the 4 l'shonot geula, from Sh'mot 6/6 and 7, famous
from the Haggada shel Pessach, all of which begin with a vav and have
the accent on the last syllable, making them future instead of past.


From: Lawrence Myers <lawrence@...>
Date: Tue, 1 Feb 2005 18:54:17 -0000
Subject: Re: Grammar Question

Many in the Shema:
Veahavta,  not Veahavta
Veachalta, not Veachalta
Venatati, not Venatati.  to quote but three.

In all these cases the verbs are in the future, but accenting them
wrongly would put them in the past.

Lawrence Myers

From: <BoJoM@...> (Boruch Merzel)
Date: Tue, 1 Feb 2005 15:34:27 EST
Subject: Re: Grammar Question

 Certainly so. This is a basic rule of Torah grammar.  Throughout the
Torah a past tense verb is changed to future tense by using the Vav,
with a sh'va under it and shifting the accent to last the syllable ( so
that the Vav is not simply the word "and") This holds true thru' out the
Torah unless the verb is the last word of the sentence (sof pasuk).
Then the future tense is understood (rather than past) by a preceding
word shifting its accent from next to the last syllable to the last

Most common examples, found in the Krias Sh'ma:

V"awchalta ("and you shall eat") accented on last syllable, instead of
penultimate syllable ( which would be "you have eaten"}

"V'saw-vaw-ta" ("and you shall be sated") The accent remains on the
pen-ultimate syllable ("vaw") because it is the final word of the posuk.
Thus instead of meaning "and you have eaten and were sated" we have "
you shall eat and be satisfied" by shifting the accent of a verb in the
past tense.  

Throughout the Krias Shma, and the entire Torah, you will find similar
examples, most notably the very first word of the first paragraph of the
Sh'ma: "V'aw-hav-tah", "And you shall love."  

Boruch Merzel

From: Brian Wiener <brian@...>
Date: Wed, 2 Feb 2005 13:28:14 +1100
Subject: RE: Grammar Question

 Right through the Shema -and right through Humash.

Usually with the addition of the vav ha-hipuch (the conversive vav).

Examples; Ve-dibartA the accent is milra on the last syllable, and the
meaning is "and you SHALL speak", whereas the word dibArta with the
accent mil'el on the penultimate syllable, has the meaning "you spoke".

The Torah is replete with such examples.

Another example of changing the meaning of a verb, depending on its
nikud - pointing. Rachel bito ba-Ah (final syllable accented) - Rachel
IS COMING, and Rachel bA-ah - (penultimate syllable accented) Rachel is
coming. Breshit 29-6/9

Brian Wiener

From: Russell J Hendel <rjhendel@...>
Date: Tue, 1 Feb 2005 22:21:23 -0500
Subject: Grammar Question

Richard Dine, v46n78, asks for places where changing accent changes the
meaning of a word. Actually this is part of a general question of small
differences changing word meanings.

The goal of the Rashi website is to provide lists of such phenomenon.
We present below a brief summary, examples, resources, and a succint
technical explanation.

The following urls on the Rashiyomi website give examples:
(a) The GRAMR series was presented on the RashiYomi calendar at 
http://www.Rashiyomi.com/calendar1.htm during October and November
of 2001. Units 4 and 5 at
give several examples such as Gn46-26a, Gn18-20b, Gn15-17e,
Gm34-29b, Gn29-06a, Gn42-21b.

These examples are all convenienty summarized on the Rashiyomi grammar
page at http://www.Rahsiyomi.com/grammar.htm. Scroll down to CONJUGATION.

One aspect of the theory refers to 1-vav-3 roots. They have the
conjugation 1-3-Hey in both past, with accent on next to last syllable
and present with accent on last syllable. Hence we distinguish between
CAME vs COMING (B-ah vs ba-AH). More theory could be presented since
1-2-Hey roots can also have a 1-2-Hey conjugation (E.g. Shin-Vav-Beth vs
Shin-Beth-Hey ---SIT vs BOOTY). Please see the Rashis and URLS above for
complete clarification.

Russell Jay Hendel; http://www.RashiYomi.com/


From: Orrin Tilevitz <tilevitzo@...>
Date: Tue, 1 Feb 2005 08:01:08 -0800 (PST)
Subject: Masoretic Notes

I am looking for something that discusses specifically the authorship of
the masoretic "simanim" ascribing mnemonic pesukim to numbers of verses.
I haven't found ewxactly what I want in either EJ or Eisenstein.

 The one reference I found on the web is A. Arend, "Ha- Simanim shel
Minyanei ha-Pesukim she-be-Parashot ha-Torah," Sefer ha- Yovel le-Rav
Mordechai Brauer (ed. M. Bar-Asher et al.), Jerusalem 1992, pp.
157-171.  Does anyone have a copy to e-mail me?  Any other accessible

Orrin Tilevitz


From: Joseph Mosseri <joseph.mosseri@...>
Date: Wed, 2 Feb 2005 00:35:42 -0500
Subject: Seudat Purim on Friday

Dear Fellow MJ'rs,

    Purim this year is on Friday March 25th, less than 2 months away.
When Purim falls out on Friday when is the proper time to have seudat
Purim?  Morning? Afternoon? Or closer to Shabbat and combine both meals
into one?

Joseph Mosseri


From: Avi Heller <avi@...>
Date: Tue, 1 Feb 2005 07:54:44 -0500
Subject: Tallit query

Pardon my first post on this list having to do with something rather
mundane, but I could really use some advice on how to keep my tallit on
my shoulders. As someone who frequently speaks in shul before people, I
am often approached with the comment that my constant hitching and
fixing is distracting. In addition, it will sometimes (usually when I am
trying to take the sefer Torah or something similar)slip completely off.
I have tried tallit clips (purchased by a number of concerned friends
and congregants)with poor results. It would still slip off, but I would
then be imprisoned within it until I undid the clips. Someone must know
a way to tame a stubborn tallit. :) 

Avi Heller


End of Volume 46 Issue 79