Wednesday, November 30, 2016

More on Proto-Sinaitic as Hebrew

Douglas Petrovich has responded to Christopher Rollston (link here, registration required). I will note a few salient points about this exchange:
  1. Yes, we will have to wait for the book to see the full arguments. That is a fair argument, up to a point. Petrovich's book is not yet available (though it can be pre-ordered here. It is surprisingly expensive given that the publishing costs were underwritten.) The problem is that Petrovich's arguments cannot be checked. He wants us to trust his conclusions, which are public, without the supporting argumentation, which is not.

  2. I am curious to see how Petrovich deals with Zauzich's arguments. Zauzich's book, unlike Petrovich's, is published and available (here, or here, or here).

  3. Petrovich's assertions that certain individual words can only be Hebrew is impossible to judge without seeing the word in context. Without the ability to see the full inscription, we cannot see that the word makes any sense in context. Inscriptions are meaningful messages, not random word salad. We need the book for Petrovich's arguments to make any sense.

  4. The same logic that Petrovich evokes to claim that Rollston's refutation is premature cuts both ways to say that Petrovich's conclusions are premature. Until Petrovich actually publishes his study, his confident assertions of the superiority of his position can convince no one but himself.