Tag Archives: Hebrew

Hebrew Humor for the Holiday (that’s Spring Break for non-UK folks)

I cannot take credit for the following; my MA student (at HBU) ImageBenjamin Summers forwarded these to me months ago. But they *are* enjoyable.

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Q: Why don’t Bible translators ever buy matte paint?

A: Because they’re always looking for a good gloss.

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Q: Which Hebrew letter is nothing to sneeze at?

A: Allergic nun.

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Q: Which Old Testament authors found the most gems and nuggets of wisdom?

A: The miner prophets.

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Q: What kind of machine would Siskel & Ebert use to determine whether a film gets a thumbs-up or a thumbs-down?

A: Their critical apparatus.

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Q: What story did the Hebrew professor tell around the campfire?

A: The tale of the headless relative clause.

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Q: What flavor gum does a rabbi chew?

A: Tar gum.

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Q: How is an exegete different from a submarine captain?

A: One searches through a periscope while the other searches through a pericope.

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Q: If you don’t practice using a lexicon, why will your translation stink?

A: Because not brushing up gives you HALOT-osis.

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Q: The sentence topic that was just here – where did it go?

A: It left dislocation.

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Q: Why couldn’t the overly humble student tell a direct object from an adjunct prepositional phrase?

A: He just didn’t know how to take a complement.

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Q: What moral lesson can we learn from identifying verbless clauses?

A: What’s right isn’t always copular, and what’s copular isn’t always right.

Hebrew: the EASY language?

Just posted this today at the HBU School of Christian Thought blog. Reblogging for those who don’t catch the SCT site regularly.

School of Christian Thought

Hebrew

One of our MA in Biblical Languages students did an undergrad degree in French at the University of Oklahoma.  While on a brief visit to his old alma mater recently, he snapped this picture of one of the bulletin boards in the language department. Especially intriguing is the green flyer. So . . . Hebrew is a fun, EASY language! Who knew?

Of course, my students who are in the middle of learning first-year Hebrew don’t think it’s easy (although I have heard from a number of them that they do think it’s fun).  How easy is Hebrew compared to, say, Greek? Hebrew is simpler than Greek in a number of ways, and often simpler is easier. So here are a few tidbits for the interested reader. In my Koine Greek class, we learn 24 forms of the definite article (the). In Hebrew, we learn one basic form…

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Hebrew & Greek Humor for the Holidays

One of our MABL (Master of Arts in Biblical Languages) students is showing a set of skills I had heretofore not seen in full blossom–he’s very nearly a stand-up comedian! Today he passed along some language jokes that would make any elementary Greek and Hebrew professor very proud, and thankfully, he has permitted me to post them here. Enjoy! And if you don’t smile, then please take it as definitive proof that you *need* to come study Greek and Hebrew here at HBU!  Merry Christmas!

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(1) Q: What kind of poker do Hebrew cowboys play?

A: Texas Cholem.

(2) Q: Where did extremely sick adjective go?

A: The adjectival intensive care unit.  (He himself went, by the way.)

(3) Q: What Hebrew vowel is so rare it only occurs in texts once every 75 years?

A: Halley’s Qamets.

(4) Q: What kind of airplane do Greek pronouns fly in?

A: The Pronominal Concorde, of course.

(5) Q: Which Hebrew vowel has also starred in several extremely violent action movies?

A: Steven Segol.

(6) Q: What’s the best app for studying Greek grammar?

A: Angry Verbs.

(7) Q: Why do so many young Hebrew farmers move to the city after their first crop?

A: How can you keep them on the farm once they’ve seen פְּרִי?

(8) Q: How do you know you’ve been studying Greek too hard?

A: At Christmas you see “‘Tis the season” and start trying to parse the “τις”.

(9) Q: How are many aspiring comedy careers like tsere, qamets, and chireq?

A: They’re not historically long.

Here’s a piece that I just posted on our School of Christian Thought website at Houston Baptist University. I explore briefly what linguistics is, and why it is beneficial to study linguistics.

School of Christian Thought

Here at HBU we have a Biblical Languages program, which includes both an undergraduate degree in biblical languages (just Greek and Hebrew) and an MA in biblical languages (Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic).  One of the requirements that we insist on for both programs is a course in General Linguistics.  As the Director of the MABL program, sometimes I am asked questions like What is linguistics? and Why is it important to study linguistics?  In this post I will attempt to provide some brief answers to those questions.

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