About the history and origins of words.

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0
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1answer
127 views

Extra yud in Yerushalaim

Why and by whom was there a yud added to make "ירושלים" instead of the original "ירושלם"?
4
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4answers
224 views

Why do we call praying, Davening?

Why do we call praying Davening? What is the source of this word? Where did this originate?
11
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5answers
239 views

Males named מיכל?

Where does the male name מיכל (as in יחיאל מיכל) come from? Is it a diminutive/corruption/translation/elision of מיכאל, derived therefrom in some other way, or simply a false cognate?
4
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2answers
458 views

Etymology of the word “Kvater”

What is the etymology of the word "Kvater"? Kvater is what we call the person that carries the baby boy into a Bris.
4
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1answer
670 views

What do the names Pesil, Pesa, and Pesha mean?

What is the meaning and source of the name Pesil or Pesa or Pesha?
7
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2answers
112 views

When did Ben Teshuva become Baal Teshuva?

Rabbeinu Yonah in Bava Basra 39a talks about someone who does Teshuva and calls him a Ben Teshuva. What is the earliest reference in history to the words Baal Teshuva? And why did it change from Ben ...
5
votes
1answer
81 views

Zmirot vs Pizmoniim

How is it that Ashkenaz and Sfardiim have different names for the same exact thing. Do both Zmira and Pizmon mean the same thing? What are the origination of people calling them either one? I know ...
7
votes
3answers
351 views

Are the names Akiva and Ya'akov related?

Are the names Akiva and Ya'akov related?
5
votes
1answer
128 views

How and when did the word “Kollel” come to mean “an institution for paying scholars to study Torah”?

How and when did the word "Kollel" come to mean "an institution for paying scholars to study Torah"? If I'm not mistaken, the Hebrew word "kollel" means "includes." But today we've all heard of the ...
3
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2answers
130 views

Etymology of “Grager”

What is the Etymology of “Grager”? Grager is the noisemaker we use on Purim during the Megila when Haman's name is read.
7
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1answer
175 views

“Boich sevarah”

There is a common Yiddish phrase used to describe an arbitrary reasoning that is not based on the sources: "Boich sevarah" -- literally, "stomach reasoning." What is the exact meaning of this phrase, ...
6
votes
1answer
200 views

דילמא == Dilemma?

Is there documentation to prove that the Aramaic word "דילמא" is a transliteration or derivation of the Greek word "dilemma"? If so, this fact is informative to G'mara-learning in understanding the ...
7
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4answers
469 views

Etymology of the surname “Katz”

Are there sources for the etymology of the surname Katz being an acronym for Kohen Tzedek? Is that simply a backronym?
3
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3answers
141 views

Is there a single syntactic class “פעיל” in Biblical Hebrew?

Is there a unique class of Biblical Hebrew words of the form "פעיל"?Is the putative class of Biblical Hebrew words strictly a class of nouns or adjectives?If not, is it strictly divisible into two ...
2
votes
1answer
227 views

Are “tzipor” and “tziporen” related?

Are the words ציפור (bird) and ציפורן (finger nail OR a spice [found in k'tores]) etymologically related? I heard that both were connected to the root צ.פ.ר (arise) or to anatomical protuberance but I ...
5
votes
3answers
253 views

What are some examples of Jewish names? [closed]

What are Jewish sounding names that come from various occupations and locations? Please give the "rough" translation and background too.
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Etymology of the Name Feivel

Where does the Jewish name Feivel (or Feivish) come from? What does it actually mean?
5
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1answer
243 views

Are the Aramaic root ק.ב.ל and the Hebrew root ק.ב.ל related?

When the word מקבילות comes up in parashas T'ruma, Rash"i defines it based on the Aramaic root ק.ב.ל, commonly found in the preposition לקבל (against or opposite) to mean physically across ...
5
votes
1answer
353 views

Why is it called Bas Kol

Why is it called Bas Kol versus Ben Kol?
3
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5answers
531 views

Etymology of “Shtiebel”

Is there an etymological connection between the Yiddish word "shtiebel" and the English word "steeple"? They seem to overlap a lot in usage and pronunciation. A cursory search reveals that "shtiebel" ...
2
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2answers
806 views

Etymology of “kimpeturin” [closed]

What is the etymology of the yiddish term "kimpeturin," which refers to a woman who is recovering after childbirth?
2
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3answers
556 views

Where can I find Hebrew etymologies?

In what reliable source can I look up the etymology of English (or other) words stretching all the way back to Semitic languages, especially Hebrew? I often have suspicions that certain words might ...