Since a semantic field can reflect a specific mind set behind a linguistic situation, it shines light on the ideals of native speakers of the language under study. Here, Semantic fields of length measures in the Hebrew language of the Mishnaic period are investigated and the findings are compared to the facts known from other sources.
On the basis of a semantic field analysis of the measuring units existing in Mishnaic Hebrew, it is clear that the social and cultural life of the Jews in the Land of Israel from the second century B.C.E. through the third century C.E. was re-organized and renewed; connections between different parts of the country were strengthened. This dramatic change was the result of pressure from Greek and Persian cultures. This conclusion fits well with historical data.
P. Collini“Studi sul lessico della metallurgia nell’ebraico biblico e nelle lingue siro-palestinesi del II e I millenio a.C. (II),” in Studi Epigrafici e Linguistici sul Vicino Oriente Antico6 1989 pp. 23–45; M. Cooper Gold Silver Copper and Iron in the Old Testament (Ann Arbor 1980); J.H. Hall A Study of the Terminology of Metals and Metal-Working in the Old Testament (Liverpool 1970); N.E. Heidebrecht A Lexicon of Metal Terminology in the Hebrew Scriptures with Special Reference to the Excavations of the Metal Industry at Tel Dan Israel (University of California Ph.D. dissertation 1993).