The words אתה and עתה both have "minor" pausal forms אַ֔תָּה and עַ֔תָּה, that occur only at lesser disjunctives: tipḥa x5, zaqef qaton x23, pashta x2, and revi'a x2; and in the poetic books: etnaḥ x4 and revi'a gadol x1. The full pausal forms never appear at these disjunctives.
Why other words do not have a minor pausal form, that I can't tell you....
In his book on Tiberian Hebrew (pp. 135ff), Geoffrey Khan suggests that in fact, the dot in the aleph is to be pronounced as a doubling of the consonant, not simply as a sign that the aleph should be read as a consonant. In other words, he suggests that the dot in the aleph is in fact a dagesh hazak, not a mappik.
His arguments are based on the following ...
I wrote a dvar Torah on this subject for this past Shavuot with some original chidushim, posted here:
It All Started With a Little Dot
By Alan A. Mazurek, MD
First a little grammar lesson (so please bear with me, and don’t fall asleep; it is after all Shavuot night!)
It was several years ago and I went to Larry Schiffman’s dikduk (grammar) class after ...
Rav Aharon Lopiansky, in his amazing siddur called Aliyos Eliyahu, has a section on the bottom called Mesores HaTefillah. There he explains the sources for the parts of the siddur, and variant readings.
On the word למנצח, he writes:
מ' בשווא נח עפ"י כתר ארם צובה וברוו"ה שווא נע
The Mem has a resting sheva, according to the Aleppo Codex. Rav Wolf ...
Short answer (as JoelK noted, see this one for more) -- disagreement among grammarians about cases like this. Listen to your favorite baal kriah read Exodus 7:29, about the frogs:
וּבְכָה וּבְעַמְּךָ, וּבְכָל-עֲבָדֶיךָ
All three of those "vet"s are in that same gray zone.
As it was taught to me -- you can't start a word with two sh'vas, as you'd ...
Yes your Rule 3. is incomplete..
There is some description here
that bachur/levita identified(or came up himself!) with 5 rules but for rule 3, there are ceratin exceptions which i've listed here
first letter of a word.
second of two shvas under consecutive letters.
after a tenua gedolah(long ...