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orion The Divine Nme represented by He
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I have two questions regarding the Divine Nme represented by He:
1. One way of representing the Divine Name was by using the Hebrew
letter He. Is this He an abbreviation of the Tetragrammaton by using its
second (or fourth) letter, or is it an abbreviation of ha.shem?
In the article "Substitutes for the Tetragrammaton" (printed in PAAJR in
1930-1931 and reprinted by Kraus Publishing Co. in 1968), J. Z.
Luaterbach wrote on page 45: "We have thus found that the Jews in
talmudic times, and perhaps even earlier, hesitated to write out the
Tetragrammaton and abbreviated it, according to the method then
prevalent, by using either its initial letter, Yod, its middle or last
letter, He, or its first two letters, Yod He." And in a note on the same
page the writer said regarding the use of He as an abbreviation: "This
He is not an abbreviation of the word hash.Shem, as assumed by S. D.
Luzatto (Grammatica della Lingua Ebraica, 6). For there could have been
no reason to avoid writing the word hash.Shem in full (cf. Franz
Delitzsch in his edition of Aaron ben Elijah’s . . . ["Tree of Life"]
[Leipzig, 1841], p. LXXVI, and Perles, Analekten, pp. 16-17). Besides we
have the express statement in the Otioth de Rabbi Akiba (l.c.) that the
He represents the Tetragrammaton and not the word ha.shem. Likewise in
the Sefer Hasidim 735 (ed. Wistinetzki-Freimann , p. 188) we read,
. . ., which shows that the He was used as an abbreviation for the
Name." So, is there any other evidence that indicates what this
abbreviation stands for?
2. In the Letter to the Hebrews (in Hebrew and Latin), by Sebastian
Münster, Basel, 1557, the Tetragrammaton is abbreviated as He with a
compound shewa (+:) in Hebrews 2:13; 7:21; 8:8, 9, 10, 11; 9:20; 10:16,
30 (twice); 12:6. It is written in full in Hebrews 13:6. So the question
is, Why did he use the compound shewa? Could this vowel pointing
indicate in any way what is behind this abbreviation?
John Albu, New York