How or why words are pronounced in certain ways.

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18
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2answers
1k views

Relationship between Samekh and Sin

What is the relationship between the letters samekh and sin? Did they ever have distinct sounds? Why do they exist as separate letters?
1
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3answers
188 views

Pronounciation in MO schools

I am curious about the Hebrew pronunciation taught in many Modern Orthodox schools. It doesn't seem to conform to real Israeli pronunciation, nor is it the "standard Yiddish" or Polish pronunciation ...
10
votes
37answers
2k views

words often mispronounced [closed]

What are some words commonly mispronounced? (Not by elision/reduction (like ה׳‎→אדְני‎) or assimilation (like תזכרו‎→תשׂכרו‎), but rather words that are pronounced wrong ...
7
votes
1answer
255 views

How to pronounce the name of the last letter in the Hebrew alphabet?

I have heard mixed answers as to how to pronounce the letter תּ Is it taf or tav? (I'm referring to the halachic pronunciation not the common street way.) Is there a difference between Ashkenazi or ...
1
vote
1answer
108 views

Evolved minimal Hebrew pronunciation in halacha

Inspired by comments on this question: Say a person travels from place to place where there are certain traditional havarot (pronunciations) such that what were likely originally distinct sounds, are ...
14
votes
1answer
130 views

Why is there a dagesh in second camocha, but not in first?

In "Mi chamocha ba'elim H', Mi camocha nedar bakodesh" (from the Az Yashir song by the sea, but also between the shma and the amidah in the morning, and elsewhere): מִֽי-כָמֹ֤כָה בָּֽאֵלִם֙ ...
5
votes
3answers
209 views

The letter Dalet

The fourth letter of the Hebrew alphabet is "dalet" and not "daled." Why, then, do Ashkenazi Jews not pronounce it as "dales." I have heard an answer that "dales" sounds too much like "dalus", ...
1
vote
1answer
81 views

Wordplay concerning the Ayin and the Aleph in Gemara

I remember hearing about some interesting statements made about those that fail to distinguish pronunciation between the ayin and the aleph. An example was given in gemara about why such a distinction ...
0
votes
2answers
99 views

Why is hebrew, the holy language, so messy?

Something that has always bothered me and I've never really understood is why Hebrew is so messy. If it is the language of G-d, the language in which the world was created and the language in which ...
6
votes
2answers
65 views

Is it Rabbeinu Bachya or Bechaye?

Whether people are referring to רבינו בחיי בן אשר or רבינו בחיי אבן פקודה, you will always find people who pronounce their names as either Bachya or Bechaye (Even Wikipedia uses both!). Is there any ...
4
votes
3answers
162 views

Pronunciation of Ketuba text

Can anyone recommend a source for the text of the Ketuba including nekudot, a transliteration, or a recording that could be used as a guide for pronunciation?
10
votes
1answer
120 views

Pronunciation of God's Name in the Bach

The Bach, writing on the Tur OC 5:1, says that when pronouncing the tetragrammaton (שם הויה) as the שם אדנות, some people say the first vowel as a patach and some as tending toward tseirei. His ...
16
votes
2answers
427 views

Inhaling prayers?

Elsewhere I ask whether it's sufficient to pray in a whisper. See there, please, for a description of whispering and how it differs from speaking quietly. Answers to that question indicate that ...
2
votes
2answers
48 views

Blessing after Haftarah Pronunciation

I am studying for my Bar Mitzvah. My siddur (Mishkan T'filah) says from the Haftarah blessing: יִתְבָּרַךְ שִׁמְךָ בְּפִי כָל חַי, but my practice sheet says יִתְבָּרַךְ שִׁמְךָ בְּפִי כָּל חַי! Do I ...
3
votes
0answers
201 views

Intentionally mispronouncing lashon hakodesh in religious services

With regard to written texts, a Torah is invalidated if the same character is written for what should be distinct letters (e.g. כ and ב). However, with regard to the spoken language and people who are ...
11
votes
4answers
1k views

What is the correct pronunciation of the Tetragrammaton?

I come from Christianity.SE, where I asked almost the same question. Isaac Moses assured me that the question would not be disrespectful and could be asked here. God's name is written as the ...
1
vote
0answers
29 views

Shema pronunciation [duplicate]

I've heard that the proper way to say the Shema Israel is by pronouncing the final daleth (d) sound for a longer time. 1) Is this a real thing? What are the sources? 2)I find it near impossible to ...
16
votes
2answers
598 views

Where did the sing-song chant that Jews often use while contrasting points come from?

I am having a very hard time coming up with a good way to describe the phenomenon that I am thinking of, but many people will recognize it. I am talking about the kind of singing rhythm that people ...
5
votes
2answers
530 views

How do we know how to pronounce God's name?

Surprisingly, I have only just realized that we pronounce the letters Yud-Hey-Vuv-Hey completely differently then how the spelling could possibly sound. I mean the pronunciation used during laning ...
1
vote
1answer
74 views

Origin Of Hasidic Pronounciation [closed]

Does anyone know when and by whom the Hasidic Pronunciation started? I mean "burich" as opposed to "boruch". The same goes for Yiddish.. "vus" as opposed to "vos". I've heard that it was in opposition ...
3
votes
1answer
39 views

Tehillim (Psalms) 27:2 — Is it כָּשְׁלוּ or כָשְׁלוּ?

There seems to be some discrepancy in how to write/pronounce the penultimate word of Tehillim (Psalms) 27:2. According to Chabad.org, it is written: ב. בִּקְרֹב עָלַי | מְרֵעִים לֶאֱכֹל אֶת ...
3
votes
1answer
37 views

Why are SA OC 61:22 and 61:23 in that order?

Shulchan Aruch, Orach Chayim 61:20–1, dicattes that, when reading "Sh'ma", one must put a space between words that are in danger of being run together. In the following paragraph, :22, it says ...
2
votes
1answer
180 views

Shva na after meteg on short vowel

When a long vowel has a meteg, there is a difference of opinion if the shva after it is na or nach. What about a short vowel with a meteg? Is it vayihi chen or vayhi chen? Is it tihiyeh or tihyeh? Is ...
2
votes
3answers
279 views

Kol Nidre vs. Kal Nidre

Is the prayer we recite on Yom Kippur night pronounced "Kal Nidre" (with a kamatz) or "Kol Nidre" (with a חולם)? I've heard in the name of one of the Posekei Hador, Harav Bension Musafi, that it ...
0
votes
1answer
56 views

Correct pronunciation on Jerusalem in Tehillim?

When Jersualem is חסר (no additional 'yud' at the end), in a Tehillim I have (Shai l'Moreh), it has a footnote that it should be pronounced the full way (Ye-RU-Sha-LaY-YIM) on Chapter 79 (and I think ...
10
votes
1answer
127 views

What does it mean to pronounce לו as opposed to לא

Maseches Sofrim 6:5 [4] says that there are 3 places where the word is written as לא but read as לו. This seems to mean that there is a difference in how the word would be pronounced if it were לא as ...
0
votes
1answer
60 views

ב (bet) mi yodeya (the pronunciation)?

What are the correct ways to pronounce the ב (bet)? Are there variant traditions? Is there an academic/linguistic opinion on how it was most likely pronounced from the time of the giving of the Torah ...
1
vote
1answer
110 views

If the prayer leader does not distinguish between Gimmel and Ghimmel for Amida he can't be yotzi for others

I was at a Shabbat table and someone told me that, according to Hacham Ovadia Yosef, the one leading the prayers cannot motzi others (i.e. cannot relieve others' prayer obligations) if he does not ...
2
votes
2answers
165 views

According to Chazal, does Beged Kefet matter?

The Hebrew alphabet has 22 written characters (plus 5 specialized characters for the ends of words - ם, ן, ץ ,ף, ך) generally assumed to be each originally associated with distinct sounds. The ...
0
votes
1answer
83 views

ד mi yodeya (the pronunciation)?

The gemara (Brachoth 13b) records that one is supposed to draw out the ד of "אחד" in the first verse of the Shema: .תניא: סומכוס אומר: כל המאריך באחד מאריכין לו ימיו ושנותיו אמר רב אחא בר ...
1
vote
0answers
61 views

Retraining my davening pronunciation

I received a p'sak from my rav earlier today permitting me to revert my pronunciation from a modern Israeli-American pronunciation that I learned as a child to the old Yekkish Ashkenazis (with the ...
2
votes
0answers
79 views

ג (gimel) mi yodeya (the pronunciation)?

From a halachik perspective, what are the correct ways to pronounce the ג (gimel)? Are there variant traditions? Is there an academic/linguistic opinion on how it was most likely pronounced from the ...
1
vote
0answers
49 views

א mi yodeya (the pronunciation)?

What is the correct way to pronounce the א (aleph)? Are there variant traditions? Is there an academic/linguistic opinion on how it was most likely pronounced from the time of the giving of the Torah ...
1
vote
0answers
74 views

Why are all pronunciations of each letter voiced or voiceless?

There are differing m'soros (religiously significant traditions) about the right way to pronounce various letters of the alphabet when praying or reading the Torah. (There are even more ways that the ...
0
votes
0answers
30 views

What is the origin of the Chassidish pronounciation of hebrew? [duplicate]

If I am not mistaken initially there were Ashkenazic Jews which later on branched off into Chassidim via the leadership of the Baal Shem Tov. Does this mean that prior to the Baal Shem Tov all ...
7
votes
5answers
290 views

רָקִיאַע or רָקִיַע

The מנחת שי at the beginning of בראשית (on "יהי רקיע") cites a מחלוקת whether the word 'רָקִיעַ' (and likewise for other words with a פתח גנובה) is pronounced as רָקִיאַע or as רָקִיַע, that is, with ...
6
votes
1answer
436 views

How do people daven so quickly, and what's the support for it?

I learned that one must clearly enunciate every word of tefila. At the least this would include Shemoneh Esreh and Shema, but one might presume it includes the entire prayer service. This question ...
2
votes
0answers
84 views

Pronunciation of אַשְׁרֵי

אַשְׁרֵי in Psalms 1:1 is pronounced with 3 syllables in Mechon-Mamre's mp3 file t2601. It is pronounced with 2 syllables in the last verse of Psalms 2 in Mechon-Mamre's mp3 file t2602. My question ...
9
votes
1answer
166 views

May one mix-and-match to create their own Hebrew pronunciation?

In the introduction to his siddur (down the bottom of the linked page), Rabbi Yaakov Emden emphasises the strict importance of a proper Hebrew pronunciation when davening. In particular, he ...
13
votes
3answers
567 views

Were our symbols for trope and nekudos created by the Masoretes, or transmitted by them?

It is commonly said in secular sources that the shapes of the trope and nekudos we use today were invented by the Masoretes (7th to 11th Century CE), but I cannot find any source in our mesorah to ...
2
votes
1answer
125 views

Source for the story about the Satmar Rebbe

I remember a story about a maskil who approached the Satmar Rebbe, and who lamented the fact that Hungarian Jews don't differentiate between the samekh (ס), the sin (שׂ) and the sav (ת). The Satmar ...
2
votes
0answers
89 views

Hebrew being Lashon HaKodesh, is the inclusion and exclusion of certain phonemes and sounds in the language significant?

For instance, the English sounds of "J", "W","Th", and "Ch" are for the most part unused in Hebrew. Although as an exception, I've seen a Yemenite Chazan use some of these sounds while reading the ...
1
vote
0answers
43 views

How to pronounce the name שימי

There's an amora (or at least one) in the Bavli named שימי. I think I've always heard this pronounced with an initial letter sin. However, I saw recently that the Koren-Steinsaltz edition has a ...
5
votes
0answers
50 views

Rava and Rabbah? Differentiating between two (?) amoraim

Inspired by this question, I have often heard people pronounce the name רבא as Rava and the name רבה as Rabbah. Is there a basis for this differentiation? Does anybody know where it comes from?
2
votes
0answers
43 views

Are all hiriqs the same or is there a distinction if a yud or other silent letter follows?

For example, what would be the difference in pronunciation of the hiriq in these two words: נִקּוּד and תִּינוֹק? What about רִאשׁוֹן? Is it "Rishon" similar to "pit" or "Reeshon" similar to ...
4
votes
3answers
238 views

Have any of you ever heard anyone pronouncing ayin as “ng”?

I have read historically the letter ayin was pronounced by some Dutch, Portuguese, and Italian Jews as a velar nasal consonant (ng as in sing). Reference to this can be found here, here, and here. I ...
4
votes
2answers
92 views

How do you pronounce numbers 248, 365, and 613 in the siddur?

In the meditations before putting on the tallit and tefillin in the morning, there are three numbers — 248, 365, and three instances of 613. They’re written out in standard Hebrew letter notation in ...
17
votes
6answers
570 views

Silent letter in Yisachar

Why don't we pronounce the second ש in יששכר?
13
votes
4answers
505 views

Yisgadal or Yisgadel?

I've noticed that some people, when reciting kaddish, pronounce the first words as "yisgadal v'yiskadash" with a patach under the dalet of both words, while others say "yisgadel v'yisgadesh" with a ...
3
votes
0answers
82 views

How to pronounce “nechamasa” in kaddish?

In most siddurim I've seen, the word "ונחמתא" in kaddish is written "וְנֶחֱמָתָא," with a סגול ("eh" sound) under the ח. However, someone recently told me that a certain (very trustworthy) rabbi ...