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Translating Being, Essence and Substance into Hebrew: How did erroneous or difficult translations affect the development of Hebrew metaphysics? Yehuda.

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Presentation on theme: "Translating Being, Essence and Substance into Hebrew: How did erroneous or difficult translations affect the development of Hebrew metaphysics? Yehuda."— Presentation transcript:

1 Translating Being, Essence and Substance into Hebrew: How did erroneous or difficult translations affect the development of Hebrew metaphysics? Yehuda Halper Tulane University

2 Aristotle’s Greek Terms Forms of ε ἶ ναι – “to be” τ ὸ ὄ ν – “being” τ ὸ ὂ ν ᾗ ὂ ν – “being insofar as it is being” τ ὸ τ ί ἦ ν ε ἶ ναι – “what it is for a thing to be” or “essence” ο ὐ σια – “being-ness” or “substance” γ έ νεσις or γ ί γνομαι - usually “becoming,” but sometimes also “being”

3 Being

4 Usṭāth’s Translation of Aristotle’s Metaphysics τ ὸ ὄ ν and τ ὸ ε ἶ ναι  كان and كون γ έ νεσις  كون and تكون BUT also τ ὸ ὄ ν and τ ὸ ε ἶ ναι  هوية, especially when used as a technical term τ ὸ ε ἶ ναι  انية However, Us ṭ āth uses وجود very rarely.

5 Averroes هوية – “being” موجد and وجود – “becoming”

6 The original anonymous Hebrew translator of Aristotle’s Metaphysics with Averroes’ Long Commentary كون  sometimes היות (“being”) and sometimes הוייה (“becoming”) تكون  הוייה or התהוות وجود  מציאות هوية  הוייה

7 Moses b. Solomon of Salon, reviser of the Hebrew translation of Averroes’ Long Commentary on Aristotle’s Metaphysics هوية נמצא or מציאות outside of Book Δ, Chapter 7 and references to Chapter 7 הוייה in Book Δ, Chapter 7 and references to Chapter 7 Averroes’ distinction between “being” and “becoming” is now lost.

8 Qalonimos b. Qalonimos’ Hebrew translation of Averroes’ Middle Commentary on Aristotle’s Metaphysics הוייה and forms of התהווה for “becoming” נמצא for “existence”(most likely) היות for “being” But הוייה for “being” in at least one place

9 Zeraḥyah b. Yiẓḥaq b. Sheʼaltiʼel Ḥen’s Translation of Averroes’ Middle Commentary on Aristotle’s Metaphysics הוייה and forms of התהווה for “becoming” נמצא for “existence”(most likely) ישות for “being” outside of Book Δ, Chapter 7 האלהויה and הואייה and their plural ההואיית for being in Book Δ, Chapter 7

10 Essence

11 Usṭāth’s Translation of Aristotle’s Metaphysics τ ὸ τ ί ἦ ν ε ἶ ναι الذى يدل على انية (Common in Book Δ) الذى يدل على ما كينونة الشى الدالة على ما هى الدال على ما الشىء ما هو بانية (Especially in Book Z) Et cetera

12 Averroes’ Explanations of انية in Usṭāth’s Translation انية Term is frequently ignored or left out. حد, “definition” ماهية, “what-ness” or “quiddity” ما هو بالانية الماهية المعطية وجود الشىء ماهية الشىء

13 Zeraḥyah, Qalonimos and the anonymous original translator of the Long Commentary انية ישות

14 Moses b. Solomon of Salon’s revision of the Hebrew translation of Averroes’ Long Commentary ישות מהות גבול or הגבלה ישות

15 Substance

16 οὐσία  جوهر  עצם

17 Usṭāth’s Translation of Aristotle’s Metaphysics α ὑ τ ό ς  ذات τ ό καθ’ ὅ  الذى بذاته καθ ᾽ α ὑ τ ά  بذاته κατ ὰ συμβεβηκ ό ς (“by accident”)

18 Anonymous original translator of the Long Commentary جوهر  עצם ذات  עצמות عين  עין Moses b. Solomon of Salon جوهر ذات عين עצם

19 Judah b. Solomon of Toledo’s Midrash ha- Ḥokhmah ذات  עצם באלדא"ת جوهر  עצם ג'והר or עצם אלג'והר Shem Tob Falaquera’s De‘ot ha-Filosofim جوهر ذات עצם


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