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Avarham Avinu was originally Avram - and Hashem added the letter Hai to his name and changed it to Avraham. Why from all letters was the letter Hai added?

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Not HAI; rather: HEY. As in mi.yodEYa. –  Adam Mosheh May 20 '12 at 4:09
@AdamMosheh Same difference. It's just transliteration. Consider the English word: rain. Is that the sound you were looking for? –  Double AA May 23 '12 at 13:51
@DoubleAA - Thus, we should rename our site as "Mi.Yodaia"? –  Adam Mosheh May 25 '12 at 4:44
@AdamMosheh No. We should keep all different transliterations as they are. –  Double AA May 25 '12 at 6:04
@DoubleAA - Why? Alternatively, we could just avoid this problem if we wrote all Hebrew words in this site in Hebrew. Kind of like how CL&U.SE has many Chinese words written in Chinese. –  Adam Mosheh May 25 '12 at 15:27

4 Answers 4

up vote 7 down vote accepted

The name אברם numerically equals 243. Originally Avram was master of 243 of his 248 body parts: all except his two eyes, two ears, and male organ. [These are usually exposed to improper stimuli, even against a person's will.] However, with the Hei (numerical value of 5) added to his name, Hashem granted him control even over these [so that he no longer could see or hear anything that he shouldn't].

(Nedarim 32b and Tosafos there)

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From some basic Googling found:

Abram = exiled father

Abraham = father of multitudes

Seems the meaning of the words also changed. So that would explain why "Hai."

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The Ham alludes to hamon. So like yydl said, he has become a "father of multitudes" - Av hamon. The reish stays because Hashem wants to add to Avrahams name, not subtract. (Ibn Ezra). Rashi adds that Avram alludes to being the father of just Aram.

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I recall hearing a while back that as Sarai became Sarah - the Yud switched into a Hei. The remaining 5 went to Avraham. I do not recall the source.

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What happened to the Yud? –  Adam Mosheh May 25 '12 at 4:45

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