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Hebrew Verse: apostrophe and epanalepsis

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  24 December 2009


In the recently published volume of his collected papers Professor S. E. Loewenstamm includes two studies (here amplified) dealing with a feature of Semitic prosody described by him as ‘expanded colon’.His thesis is disarmingly straightforward: non-contiguous and, in some cases, contiguous repetition exhibits under certain conditions the deliberate expansion of a primary poetic structure, called ‘basic formula’ (p. 287), ‘simple basic formula’ (p. 289), ‘basic formulation’ (p. 291), ‘basic colon’ (p. 293). Production of an ‘expanded colon’, in contrast to mere ‘repetitive parallelism’ (p. 283 n. 8), requires (1) a ‘repetitive formula’, (2) an ‘intervening formula’, and (3) a ‘complementary formula’ (pp. 284–5, 293–4). Component (1) must at first utterance be grammatically incomplete; component (2) may consist of a vocative and/or grammatical subject; component (3) must render the ‘repetitive formula’ at second utterance grammatically complete. Thus, CTA 2:IV:8–9

in which the first tow segements (‘ Now your enemy, O Baal/Now your enemy you shall smite’) constitute the ‘expanded colon’, the third (‘Now you shall subdue your oppressor’) being merely parallel.

Copyright © School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London 1982

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1 Loewenstamm, S. E., Comparative studies in Biblical and ancient Oriental literatures, Alter Orient und Altes Testament (AOAT), Bd. 204, Neukirchen-Vluyn, 1980 : see ‘The expanded colon in Ugaritic and Biblical verse’, (281–309), and ‘The expanded colon, reconsidered’ (496–502)Google Scholar

2 See e.g. Kosmala, H., ‘Form and structure in ancient Hebrew Poetry (a new approach)’, Vetus Testamentum (VT), XIV, 1964, 423–45, and XVI, 1966, 152–80CrossRefGoogle Scholar; and B. Margalit, ‘Introduction to Ugaritic prosody’, Ugarit-Forschungen (UF), 7, 1975, 289–313. It may be observed that for neither corpus has the equivalence been satisfactorily demonstrated.

3 Mowinckel, S., ‘Psalm critioism between 1900 and 1935’, VT, V, 1955, 1333;Google Scholar and cf. Loretz, O., Die Psalmen, Teil II: Beitrag der Ugarit-Texte Verständnis von Kolometrie und Textologie der Psalmen (Psalm 90–150) AOAT, Bd. 207/2, Neukirchen-Vluyn, 1979, esp. 112,, 503–6Google Scholar (contra W. F.Albright and M. Dahood).

4 Greenstein, E.L., ‘Two variations of grammatical parallelism in Canaanite poetry and their psycholingustic background’, JANES (Columbia University),6, 1974, 87105;Google Scholar but also the remark of Addenda, Y., ‘Addenda to the expanded colon in Ugaritic and Biblical verse’, UF, 4, 1972, 110 (p. 7 n. 36).Google Scholar

5 O'Connor, M., Hebrew verse structure,Winona Lake, Indiana, 1980, 42–8, 105–6, 159–63.Google Scholar See BSOAS, XLV, 1, 1982, 513.Google Scholar

6 Lausberg, H., Handbuch der Hterarischen Bhetorik, Munich, 1960, paras. 608–54 (epanalepsis), 759–65 (apostrophe), 854–5 (prolepsis)Google Scholar. For the Ugaritic corpus, incidentally, Margalit's distinction (art. cit., p. 291 para. 3.3, pp. 301, 310) between ‘structural’ and ‘stylistic’ is to me anything but clear.

7 See Loretz, op. cit., 428-30 and references; Loewenstamm, 300-1, and 500 (hinnē).

8 Lausberg, op. cit., paras 612^1, 629 (anaphora); see also J. Muilenberg, ‘A study in Hebrew rhetoric: repetition and style’, VT, Suppl. I, 1953, 97–111.

9 See O'Connor, op, cit., 122-9, 401-7 (gapping); but also C. Gordon, Ugaritic textbook, Rome, 1965, paras. 13:105, 116 (ellipsis and ballast variants); J. Gray, The legacy of Canaan Liden, 1965, 295 (suspension); Greenstein, art. cit., 89–96, 101–3 (verb deletion and suspended analysis); Loewenstamm, 499, 501–2 {contra Greenstein).

10 Lausberg, op. cit., paras. 649–56 (synonymity).

11 Avishur, art. cit., 7–10.

12 See Greenstein, art. cit., 93–7 nn. 47–8; Loewenstamin, p. 498 n. 2 and p. 502 n. 7; margalit, art. cit., p. 298 n. 15.

13 Greenstein, art. cit., 101–3; the observation p. 93, n. 30 re 2 Sam. l:23 is only appropriate because Gevirtz, Patterns, 91–2 was seeking to restore a synonym where, to correspond with Massoretic accentuation, acknowledgement of the gapped verb would do.

14 O'Connor, op. cit., 404, and 126 (contra Greenstein; Loewenstamm, 303, 307.

15 Loewenstamm's tacit circumvention of the gapping phenomenon (in this case : rightward) is curiously illustrated in his reference (p. 296, n. 17a) to Luzzatto ad Exod. 15 :11 = mī kāmokhā bā'ēlīm … mī kāmokhā [bā'ēlīm], ‘i.e. in our terminology as an expanded colon in which the repetitive formula has been shortened.’ At the top of the same page Jud. 5 :7 is rendered ‘Until you arose, O Deborah/until you arose …' (italics mine). Note also his dismissal of Greensteinon p. 499.

16 See Saporta, S., ‘The application of linguistics ot the study of poetic language’, and Jakobson, R., ‘Linguistics and poetics’ apud T., Sebeok (ed.), Style in language, Cambridge, mass., 1960, 8293 and 350–77,Google Scholar respectivley.

17 Apud W. G. E. Watson, ‘Verse patterns in Ugaritic, Akkadian and Hebrew Poetry’,U F, 7, 1975, p. 492 n. 54.

18 Avishur, art. cit., 3 bottom (=RS 24:244), in which, incidentally, the third colon exhibits the gapped verb ptħ. (note also Loewenstanmm 501 on this verse, contra Greenstein.) ON p6 ad Ps.129: 1–2, in which all four cola are gremmatically ‘complete’, Avishur employs Loewenstamm's slightly arbitrary concept of protasis-apodosis.

19 For Ugaritic cf. the caveats of Gordon, op. cit., paras. 13:46, 106–7: but see Margalit, art. cit., p. 290, para. 3.2, p. 298, para. B. 1,4.

20 See Curtius, E. R.Europäische Literatur und Lateīnisches MIttelalter, Bern, 1948, 411–6: Excursus II, ‘Devotionsformel und Demut’.Google Scholar

21 Note also O'Connor, op. cit., 236, 403 on gapping over three lines (sic); Greenstein, art. cit., p. 105 n. 80 (=suspended analysis).

22 See, e.g. Richter, W., Exegese als Literaturwissenschaft, Götingen, 1971, 101, 145–8Google Scholar. Loretz, op. cit., 475–7

23 But cf. Loewenstamm 282, where (with reference to Driver) this construction is described as containing a ‘repetitive formula [in which] the order of words has been changed’

24 Lausberg, op. cit., paras. 697–9.

25 ibid., paras. 697–9.

26 ibid., 619–22.

27 Cf. Avishur, art, cit., 9–10, where the cola connected by anadiplosis are defined as ‘the expanded colon with missing intervening formula’.

28 Culley, R., Oral formulaic language in the Biblical Psalms University of Toronto Press, 1967;CrossRefGoogle Scholar cf BSOAS, XXXII, 3, 1969, 601–2.Google Scholar

29 Cf. Culley, op. cit., 36(ps.84:9), 37(Ps.27:7 and 64:2), 38 (Ps. 140:7 and 6:9), 40 (Ps. 30:3), etc. Throughout, expansion of a formula (in the proper sense) to a colon or more is abundantly illustrated, but this is not, I think quite what Loewenstamm Means by ‘expanded colon’.

30 See, for example, Norden, E., Agnostos Theos: Untersuchungen zur Formengeschichte religioser Rede Stuttgart, 1971 (1913), esp. 177–239 (anaklesis, etc.), 355–64 (parallelism).Google Scholar

31 On a different subject (437: re Ugar yšlm lk ilm tġrk tšlmk) Loewenstamm himself observes: ‘ The linguist is not entitled to neglect the stylistic aspect and to aspire to a pure linguistic one [sic], disqualifying literary considerations’. This is encouraging but, in my view, hardley applied to his analysis of the ‘expanded colon’. In his otherwise brilliant rebuttal, Greenstein describes Loewenstamm's criteria as ‘literary’ (contrasted with his own, which are pyscholinguistic): see ‘One more step on the stairease’, UF 9, 1977, 77–86 (i.e.82).

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