Hebrew Grammars

This quarter at Fuller, I have begun learning biblical Hebrew. The Seminary starting this quarter has decided to standardize what grammars are used to teach Hebrew. The person in charge of this decision selected A Grammar for Biblical Hebrew by C. L. Seow. I understand that this grammar is somewhat popular, but as a student going through it I wonder why. Seow seems to repeatedly introduce complex morphological information completely outside of the context of where it will be useful. Early on Seow has forced us to memorize root patterns and changes, but with no mention of how they will be relevant. I am assuming that they will have to do with inflection or some such later on, but the information is essentially useless at this point. It sort of feels like Seow has attempted to squeeze an intermediate and beginner grammar all in one. Has anyone else out there found Seow lacking? What grammar did you use in learning Hebrew and what did you think of it?

  1 comment for “Hebrew Grammars

  1. Adam Couturier
    December 4, 2009 at 4:45 am

    Hello Jeremiah,

    I first cut my teeth on Seow’s grammar, and I would never make another learn using it again. You are correct, it is a very thorough grammar (borderline intermediate level). The crazy thing is that this is actually a simplification of Lambdin’s Hebrew Grammar (which is also thorough, but in my opinion terrible).

    If you are interested in a more inductive method take a peek at Bonnie Kittel’s grammar. I have started to teach with it, and I love it.

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