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Thread: Transliterating an unpointed sin/shin?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
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    612

    Question Transliterating an unpointed sin/shin?

    I'm now a bit befuddled.

    I know that one should transliterate v with , and f with S.

    How does one transliterate the unpointed X ?

    Typically, when one is working with biblical Hebrew the sin/shin is not ambiguous, but what if one is working with the DSS, where there is no pointing? How would one transliterate the text so that it simply represents the unpointed sin/shin?

    Unfortunately, a regular "s" does not work, because that is used to transliterate a samek (s).

    Neither the SBL Handbook nor the Chicago Manual give an answer. I've looked over an article on Heb. transliteration schemes by Werner Weinberg (HUCA 40-41 [1969-70]:1-32), and that did not help either.

    Any ideas?
    Jim Darlack - Associate Director of Goddard Library /
    Reference Librarian at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary

    Gloucester Assembly of God | Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary
    The 'Unofficial' BibleWorks Blog | Old in the New | Facebook | LibraryThing

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2004
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    307

    Default

    I've been waiting to see if someone else replied, since I am not aware of a transliteration scheme that addresses your issue. Perhaps there is none. Perhaps there's room for yet another scheme.

    Perhaps, then, we could transliterate thus:

    s for ש (ie unpointed)
    ŝ for שׂ
    for שׁ
    ś for ס

    Or some other variation of the above.

    The important thing would be to make clear that the representation is not strictly phonetic (ie a particular "s" would be represented a little differently if using IPA) but rather phonemic, attempting to provide a possible transliteration option when it is necessary to represented the unpointed ש.

    David Kummerow.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    612

    Cool s + ~ = ש ?

    Quote Originally Posted by David Kummerow
    ...snip... Perhaps, then, we could transliterate thus:
    s for ש (ie unpointed)
    ŝ for שׂ
    for שׁ
    ś for ס
    Or some other variation of the above.
    The important thing would be to make clear that the representation is not strictly phonetic (ie a particular "s" would be represented a little differently if using IPA) but rather phonemic, attempting to provide a possible transliteration option when it is necessary to represented the unpointed ש.
    Good point, David, about the phonemic vs. phonetic representation. While I think that your suggestion of using 's' for makes the most sense, it seems that most folks would be a bit confused by switching the diacritical marks around at this juncture. Folks are used to the use of a regular 's' to represent the ס. Right now, my guess would be to retain the traditional use, with perhaps the addition of '̀s', '̃s' or 'ŝ' to represent ש.

    Thinking about it now, I favor using the tilde '~', because it would combine the standard marks used to distinguish שׂ (/) from שׁ (V) by making one mark (/ + V = /V [ś + = ̃s]). Thus it would represent a syllibant with the potential of both sounds.

    Ultimately, I am surprised that there has not been a standard means of representing the letter--especially with the advent of the DSS.
    Jim Darlack - Associate Director of Goddard Library /
    Reference Librarian at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary

    Gloucester Assembly of God | Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary
    The 'Unofficial' BibleWorks Blog | Old in the New | Facebook | LibraryThing

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