The various traditions of Hebrew are divided as to the original forms of many words with aleph. For instance, in some Hebrew traditions the word ראש still has the consonant aleph. Similarly, in Tiberian Hebrew ראם and רים coexist. Since the aleph in these words was elided in ancient times, most scholars deem the forms with consonantal aleph as artificial. This view is inconsistent with the evidence, since the forms with consonantal aleph are common in all traditions of Hebrew. In Canaanite transcriptions from the second millennium such words are written with or without aleph. The only solution which accounts for all the data is to posit that the elided aleph was compensated for by an ultra-long vowel. Such an ultralong vowel may have been split and a secondary aleph may have been produced between the two vowels. For example, *raʾš > *râš > *rôš > ro-ōš or roʾōš (or rōš).
|Translated title of the contribution||ראש and Similar Words|
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||לשוננו: כתב-עת לחקר הלשון העברית והתחומים הסמוכים לה|
|State||Published - 2003|