Graduation Semester and Year




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Linguistics



First Advisor

Donald Burquest


The Verbs of Esther: A Discourse Analysis of a Post-Exilic Text seeks to describe the narrative main clause verbs, the quotation formula verbs, and the verbs in quotations found in the text of Esther. These verbs provide key information about the discourse structure of the text. While there are several examples of discourse studies in pre-exilic Biblical Hebrew, there are only a few in post-exilic Biblical Hebrew and none using the text of Esther. The analysis depends on the theoretical backing of Longacre and Miller. While many of their findings and analysis remain true for this post-exilic text, there are several instances where the data departs from their findings. This may be due to several factors including diachronic language change, Aramaic influence, and author preference. For the main clause verbs, Longacre's bands of saliency remain a respectable guide. A new factor considered is the role of transitivity on a verb's saliency. For the quotation formula verbs, the standard formal is the single verb rma amr `say' instead of the pre-exilic rmal lamr `to say' and there are quotation formulas in the narrative that Miller indicates do not exist in Biblical Hebrew. For the verbs in quotations, a saliency schema is proposed to account for the verbs that only exist in quotations based on their notational type.. This dissertation provides a window into the complex world of post-exilic Biblical Hebrew narrative. There is still more research to be done in this understudied field.


Linguistics | Social and Behavioral Sciences


Degree granted by The University of Texas at Arlington

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