The imperative ofis morphologically regular but phonologicaUy irregular. Like all imperatives, it is inflected for gender and number. Like all inflected imperatives, the form participates in a sound change that shifts the accent onto the ultima when that final syllable ends in a monomorphemic, long-vocalic affix.2
He said,“Present the wrap that you are wearing.” (Ru 3: 15aα)
Joseph said,“Give (me) your livestock, and I will give [the food] to
you in exchange for your livestock.” (Gen 47: 16a )
But other verbs lose their penultimate vowel consequent to the accent shift, as in‘take’ ‘take’ (1 Kgs 17: 10; Is 23: 16, 47: 2) and ‘take’ does not. As Ru 3: 15 and Gen 47: 16 indicate, the verb's penultimate, thematic vowel is retained and lengthened instead.3 More-
1 See Hermann Gunkel, Genesis (4th ed.; HKAT I/1; Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1917 ) 94 (= Genesis [trans. Mark E. Biddle; Mercer Library of Biblical Studies; Macon: Mercer University Press, 1997] 96).
2 For this change, see A. Ungnad, “Zum hebräischen Verbalsystem,” BASS 6/3 (1907): 56; Chr. Sarauw, Über Akzent und Silbenbildung in den älteren semitischen Sprachen (Det Kgl. Danske Videnskabernes Selskab, Historisk-filologiske Meddelelser 26/8; Copenhagen: Ejnar Munksgaard, 1939) 25–26; and J. Blau, “Notes on Changes in Accent in Early Hebrew,” in Hayyim (Jefin) Schirmann Jubilee Volume (ed. Shraga Abramson and Aaron Mirsky; Jerusalem: Schocken Institute for Jewish Research, 1970) 37–38 (in Hebrew) (repr. in Studies in Hebrew Linguistics [Jerusalem: Magnes, 1996] 51–52 [in Hebrew]).
3 Sarauw, Über Akzent und Silbenbildung 26 n. 1 (continued from 25); and E. J. Reveil, “Stress Position in Hebrew Verb Forms with Vocalic Affix,” JSS 32 (1987): 269. See also GKC §690; and GKB 2 §26c.