Hebrew Verbs With Gutturals

Verbs which have a guttural for one of the three radicals differ in their inflexion from the ordinary strong verb. These differences do not affect the consonantal part of the stem, and it is, therefore, more correct to regard the guttural verbs as a subdivision of the strong verb. At the most, only the entire omission of the strengthening in some of the verbs middle guttural (as well as in the imperfect Niph’al of verbs first guttural) can be regarded as a real weakness. On the other hand, some original elements have been preserved in guttural stems, which have degenerated in the ordinary strong verb; e.g. the ă of the initial syllable in the imperfect Qal, as in יַחְמֹד‎, which elsewhere is attenuated to ĭ, יִקְטֹל‎.—In guttural verbs א‎ and ה‎ are only taken into consideration when they are actual consonants, and not vowel-letters like the א‎ in some verbs פ״א‎, in a few ע״א‎, and in most ל״א‎. In all these cases, however, the א‎ was at least originally a full consonant, while the ה‎ in verbs ל״ה‎ was never anything but a vowel letter. The really consonantal ה‎ at the end of the word is marked by Mappîq.—Verbs containing a ר‎, r, share some of the peculiarities of the guttural verbs. For more convenient treatment, the cases will be distinguished, according as the guttural is the first, second, or third radical.

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