From: Mark E. Shoulson (email@example.com)
Date: Fri Jul 13 2007 - 11:38:36 CDT
John Hudson wrote:
> re. http://www.tiro.com/John/karaite.jpg
A beautiful picture. I'd seen it in Sirat's book also, but now in color
it's much clearer.
I've actually managed to work out how to read at least a little of it,
working out the conventions they're using and so on. The text is Exodus
chapter 7 (chapter 7 begins after the gold line near the top of the
right-hand page. The line above that is the end of chapter 6, naturally).
> The bleed-through from the reverse of the pages makes this manuscript
> look messier than it is. My guess, based on the positioning, is that
> the red marks were written first. The green ink has fared less well,
> making those marks look older, but they are positioned around the red
> marks, not vice versa. The red marks are exactly where you would
> expect them to be relative to the letters, and are not displaced by
> the green marks.
The red marks are vowels. The green marks (if you can distinguish them
from the ones showing through from the other side of the page) are
cantillations (except for the shadda, which is used where a dagesh would
be used in Hebrew, since they mean the same thing). The cantillations
are in the ordinary notation, making perfect sense in the order given.
And that makes sense with your observations too: vowels are decidedly
higher on the pecking order than cantillations, even in ordinary
typography the cantillations are fit in around the vowels, which are not
normally shifted around much to make room for them.
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