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The Gemoro mentions the concept of chavivus - חביבות - in numerous places.

what would be the most acurate english translation / explanation of chavivus?

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Notwithstanding the fact that the word might possess a slightly different range of meanings in different contexts, the root of the word (חבב) means "love" or "embrace" and the noun (חביבות) is an abstract noun - so, "lovingness", "embracedness", "the act/nature of loving", etc. In English, one might speak of something's or someone's "dearness", perhaps. Since it is often applied in reference to God's loving the Jewish people, "divine favour" is also a translation that one might see, and is in fact one of the translations brought by Jastrow. Others include "love", "attachment" and "privilege".

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