Tifcha

Last updated
Tipcha
טִפְחָ֖א֖הָא֖וֹר
cantillation
Sof passuk ׃  paseq ׀
etnachta ֑  segol ֒
shalshelet ֓  zaqef qatan ֔
zaqef gadol ֕  tifcha ֖
rivia ֗  zarqa ֘
pashta ֙  yetiv ֚
tevir ֛  geresh ֜
geresh muqdam ֝  gershayim ֞
qarney para ֟  telisha gedola ֠
pazer ֡  atnah hafukh ֢
munach ֣  mahapakh ֤
merkha ֥  merkha kefula ֦
darga ֧  qadma ֨
telisha qetana ֩  yerah ben yomo ֪
ole ֫  iluy ֬
dehi ֭  zinor ֮

Tifcha (Hebrew : טִפְחָ֖א, also spelled Tifkha, Tipcha and other variant English spellings) is a cantillation mark commonly found in the Torah, Haftarah, and other books that are chanted. In Sephardic and Oriental traditions, it is called Tarcha, meaning "dragging" or "effort".

Hebrew language Semitic language native to Israel

Hebrew is a Northwest Semitic language native to Israel; the modern version of which is spoken by over 9 million people worldwide. Historically, it is regarded as the language of the Israelites and their ancestors, although the language was not referred to by the name Hebrew in the Tanakh. The earliest examples of written Paleo-Hebrew date from the 10th century BCE. Hebrew belongs to the West Semitic branch of the Afroasiatic language family. Hebrew is the only living Canaanite language left, and the only truly successful example of a revived dead language.

Cantillation is the ritual chanting of readings from the Hebrew Bible in synagogue services. The chants are written and notated in accordance with the special signs or marks printed in the Masoretic text of the Hebrew Bible to complement the letters and vowel points.

Torah Jewish religious text

Torah has a range of meanings. It can most specifically mean the first five books (Pentateuch) of the 24 books of the Tanakh, and is usually printed with the rabbinic commentaries. It can mean the continued narrative from the Book of Genesis to the end of the Tanakh (Malachi), and it can even mean the totality of Jewish teaching, culture and practice, whether derived from biblical texts or later rabbinic writings. Common to all these meanings, Torah consists of the origin of Jewish peoplehood: their call into being by God, their trials and tribulations, and their covenant with their God, which involves following a way of life embodied in a set of moral and religious obligations and civil laws.

Contents

The Tifcha is found in both the Etnachta group as the second member of that group, and in the Sof passuk group, though the melody varies slightly in each. While it is a weak sound, it is considered to be stronger than a Tevir [1]

Etnachta is one of the most common cantillation marks in the Torah and Haftarah. It is the anchor for the Etnachta group, which in full consists of four different trope sounds, not all of which are always present. These are Mercha, Tipcha, Munach, and its namesake Etnachta.

The Sof passuk is the cantillation mark that occurs on the last word of every verse in the Tanakh. Some short verses contain only members of the sof passuk group.

Tevir is a cantillation mark commonly found in the Torah, Haftarah, and other Hebrew biblical books. It can be found independently or it can follow any number of other cantillation marks, very commonly a Mercha or Darga.

The Hebrew word טִפְחָ֖א translates into English as diagonal. It is related to the word tefach (טפח, measurement of the palm). The tifcha does not have a separating value of its own, as it is in the middle of a set of words. [2]

Tifcha occurs in the Torah 11,285 times, more than any other trope sound. Tifcha is the only trope sound to appear more than 10,000 times in the Torah. [3]

The first word of the Torah בראשית (Bereshit) is on a Tifcha.

Total occurrences

BookNumber of appearances
Torah 11,285 [3]
    Genesis 2968 [3]
    Exodus 2350 [3]
    Leviticus 1667 [3]
    Numbers 2435 [3]
    Deuteronomy 1865 [3]
Nevi'im 9756 [4]
Ketuvim 6497 [4]

Melodies

Melodies for tifcha, as for all other cantillation marks, is different in different traditions. The diagrams below show the Polish-Lithuanian tradition.

In Ethnachta group

TipchaEtn.jpg

In Sof Passuk group

TipchaSof.jpg

Occurrence rules

In the Etnachta group, the tifcha will always occur, regardless of whether or not there is a Mercha. [5] Before a Sof Passuk, the Tifcha can only occur in conjunction with a Mercha. [6]

Mercha is a cantillation mark commonly found in the Torah, Haftarah, and other books that are chanted.

Related Research Articles

The Munach, translating to English as "to rest," is a common cantillation sound. In Sephardi and Oriental traditions it is often called Shofar holekh. It is marked with a right angle below the corresponding word.

Yerach ben yomo, is a cantillation mark that appears only one time in the entire Torah, and once in the Book of Esther. In these occurrences, it is followed immediately by a Karne parah, another mark that is found only once in the entire Torah. The symbol for this trope is an upside-down Etnachta.

Karne parah is a cantillation mark found only once in the entire Torah, and once in the Book of Esther, immediately following the identically unique Yerach ben yomo.

Zakef Gadol is a cantillation mark that is commonly found in the Torah and Haftarah. It is represented by a vertical line on the left and two dots one on top of the other on the right.

The Rivia is a cantillation mark commonly found in the Torah, Haftarah, and other biblical texts.

The Zakef katan, often referred to simply as "Katan," is a cantillation mark commonly found in the Torah, Haftarah, and other books of the Hebrew Bible. The note is the anchor and final one of the Katon group, which also can include the Mapach, Pashta, Munach, or Yetiv. It is one of the most common cantillation marks. There is no limit to the number of times the Katan group can appear in a verse, and often, multiple Katan groups appear in succession. The most times in succession the group occurs is four.

Darga is a cantillation mark commonly found in the Torah, Haftarah, and other books. The symbol for the Darga resembles a backwards Z.

Mahpach is a common cantillation mark found in the Torah, Haftarah, and other books of the Hebrew Bible. It is part of the Katan group, and it frequently begins the group. The symbol for the Mahpach is <.

Pashta is a common cantillation mark found in the Torah, Haftarah, and other books of the Hebrew Bible. It is part of the Katan group. Its mark symbol is identical to that of the Kadma.

Kadma is a common cantillation mark found in the Torah, Haftarah, and other books of the Hebrew Bible. It can be found by itself preceding certain trope groups, or together with a Geresh, in which case, the pair is known as "Kadma-V'Azla."

Yetiv (יְ֚תִיב) is a cantillation mark found in the Torah, Haftarah, and other books of the Hebrew Bible. It is found in the Katon group in some occurrences in lieu of the more common Mahpach-Pashta clause, generally on one- or two-syllable words.

Telisha is one of two cantillation marks found in the Torah, Haftarah, and other books of the Hebrew Bible. There are two versions of the Telisha: Telisha ketana and Telisha gedola, the latter of which has a longer melody and higher peak. The Telisha trope can occur independently or can follow a Pazer or one of several other trope sounds. The Telisha ketana must be followed by a Kadma.

Zarka or zarqa is a cantillation mark found in the Torah, Haftarah, and other books of the Hebrew Bible. It is usually found together with the Segol, with a Munach preceding either or both. The symbol for a Zarka is a 90 degrees rotated, inverted S. The Hebrew word זַרְקָא֮ translates into English as scatterer, since it is a scattering of notes.

Segol, is a cantillation mark found in the Torah, Haftarah, and other books of the Hebrew Bible. The Segol occurs together with a preceding Zarka, sometimes with a Munach preceding one or both.

Mercha kefula is a rare cantillation mark that occurs 5 times in the Torah and once in the Haftarah

References

  1. Chanting the Hebrew Bible By Joshua R. Jacobson, page 9
  2. Delimitation criticism: a new tool in biblical scholarship By Marjo Christina Annette Korpel, Josef M. Oesch, page 91
  3. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Concordance of the Hebrew accents in the Hebrew Bible: Concordance ..., Volume 1 By James D. Price, page 6
  4. 1 2 Concordance of the Hebrew accents in the Hebrew Bible: Concordance ..., Volume 1 By James D. Price, page 5
  5. An easy, practical Hebrew grammar: with exercises for translation ..., Volume 2 By Ph Mason, Herman Hedwig Bernard, page 239
  6. An easy, practical Hebrew grammar: with exercises for translation ..., Volume 2 By Ph Mason, Herman Hedwig Bernard, page 240