This incredible free program has several very powerful features. Firstly, it allows the conjugation of any Hebrew verb by entering root letters. It also highlights forms that appear in Tanach. Most unique and fascinating, is compare two verbs by creating parallel conjugation charts. While this program has a print function the charts aren’t easily copied and pasted.
An absolute gem hidden the program are two PDFs written by a Grammarian named Alan Smith. The first is called “Fundamental Concepts of the Classical Hebrew Verb” and the second is “Semi-Regular Classical Hebrew Verbs.” The first reads like a manifesto of Grammarian in which he pleads with his readers to throw out their old paradigms of verbs and tense and adopt a new system that presents. It’s written in a conversation style that might be abrasive to some, but the information contained within this work is truly worth the read. The second work, “Semi-Regular Classical Hebrew Verbs” is a reference work on verb irregularities. It’s very systematic and comprehensive. The author warns that it’s a reference work and isn’t to be read, however, I couldn’t help myself but read several pages in one sitting. Both of these works are fun, informative, and in English. They alone are worth the download. When I said “hidden gem” I was serious. They’re hidden. Go to the ‘help’ tab, then ‘fundamental concepts’, a window will open where you can launch the PDFs. Additionally, they can be found by searching in the program folder.
Unfortunately, one aggravating feature of the program is that it expires instead of checking for updates. However, it’s ease of use and functionality make returning to the program’s homepage worth the time. With such a great program for free, I’m amazed it’s not more popular.
Go to the program’s site
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Biblical Hebrew: A Student Grammar by John A. Cook and Robert D. Holmstedt is a 244 page grammar available in it’s draft form as free PDF at http://ancienthebrewgrammar.wordpress.com/bh-textbook/
It’s scholarly and approachable, and even though it’s unfinished form it’s fairly comprehensive. If you’re interested in breaking into more Latin based and advanced English grammar terms I highly recommend this text. This text is great if you’d like to become more familiar with concepts and terminology like a-class,i-class, u-class, Quiescent, jussive etc. He uses many English terms but also uses more traditional terms like Dagesh Qal, Dagesh Chazaq etc. If a section on “Predicative and Substantival Participles” (pg. 74) sounds like something you’d enjoy reading over a large cup of cafe au lait and possibly some aspirin, this is the book for you. Also, concepts from Linguistics are brought in, such as grammatical words vs. lexical words, CV (consonant/vowel) patterns, something that I always enjoy. However, he supplies adequate explanations so having a background in Linguistics isn’t a prerequisite. It still surprises me how gently this grammar introduces, explains, and uses new terminology and grammar. Best of all it’s free.
If you’re interested in learning more about the authors and would like to see more of their work, which is too exhaustive to list, you can visit their pages at:
This is a 17 chapter, free PDF for learning Biblical Hebrew that takes you from learning the standard alphabet, cursive, and names to nekudot all the way to common weak verbs and ‘2’ letter roots. The main attraction of this PDF is it’s non-intimating, easy to use, and gradually introduces the student to more advanced concepts. Unlike many Hebrew resources the charts are informative and easy to read. The exercises aren’t always the most complete, some of them mention to just master a concept. Ascetically, one draw back is that the Hebrew words with nekudot are often quite pixelated pictures, instead of Unicode font. All in all, this is a great way to start learning Biblical Hebrew from the beginning.
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