Are there any aggadic, kabbalistic, halachic or other theological teachings related to the grammar or morphology of Hebrew?

I am not referring to the orthography (or anything at all related to specific Hebrew letters) or the vocabulary (like the lack of curse words, etc.), but rather to the mechanics of the language, such as (for example) how Hebrew verbs are conjugated (or not conjugated), the shorashim, the binyanim, or other aspects of grammar or morphology of Hebrew.

I apologize for the vagueness of this question, but it was inspired by a random discussion this past Shabbos, and I'm now curious on the topic.

  • 3
    I am rather certain Eli that there are Kabbalistic answers to your excellent question. In a different post, I suggested Rabbi Munk's Mystery in the Hebrew Alphabet published by Art Scroll. Perhaps it can provide some insight to your query. Shavuah Tov.
    – JJLL
    Jul 6, 2014 at 2:04
  • @user5540 You asked about "morphology"; this is going to be hard to divorce from "letters," especially in Hebrew. Even knowing very very little about this fascinating topic, I can think of tons of examples -- provided we include letters, what they do, and what is done with them. One author, Tzvi Freeman, thinks the entire kabbalah is about letters. Maybe, whereas letters are the stuff of spiritual worlds, "Hebrew grammar"--that is, words--comes into play only where Creation is concerned. +
    – SAH
    Apr 9, 2018 at 1:09
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    @user5540 [...]This maps nicely onto the idea that the grammar of the "revealed" Torah such as the Five Books is absolutely crucial to its interpretation at every level.
    – SAH
    Apr 9, 2018 at 1:09

2 Answers 2


There is discussion in Kabbalistic thought (as well as other sources) about the letter used to make a word feminine being a ה, that the ה is the feminine letter, and is also often related to birth - for example, Avraham and Sarah each had a ה added to their names at the time when they were given the promise that they would have a child. ה is also the letter of this world - אלה תולדות שמים וארץ בהבראם is expounded as ב'ה' בראם - they (heaven and earth) were created with a ה. There is further discussion about ה being the letter of קבלה, of receiving, and the female is the recipient in the fundamental act of creation.

I'm sure there is much, much more to talk about, but that is one example.

  • I've actually heard this before, but I'm specifically looking for questions related to grammar and not about letters of the alef-bet. I've edited the question to make it clear.
    – user5540
    Jul 6, 2014 at 2:42
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    @eliyahu-g This is about grammar. It is about the grammatical process of making a word gender-feminine and the significance of it. Jul 6, 2014 at 2:43
  • I think it is too wrapped up in why ה is feminine, rather than the actual categories of masucline/feminine. The Kabbalah is saying that the reason the final letter of the feminine form of a lot of declensions is ה, and how ה in other spots is wrapped up in this. If it was about strictly the general feminine form longer, or the feminine form in general, that would be different. I realize that it has a grammatical aspect, but I want to stay away from the teachings wrapped up in the nature of Hebrew letters.
    – user5540
    Jul 6, 2014 at 2:49
  • @eliyahu-g I'm not sure what this has to do with the nature of the letter. It's not about the shape of the ה or its pronunciation. The specific letter in question is (for the purposes of my answer) irrelevant. I also am not sure what "feminine form longer" means. Can you explain what that means please. Jul 6, 2014 at 2:58
  • Sure. The idea of ה being a specifically feminine letter (similar to say ב being a humble letter, etc.), is the problem I have. Maybe if you reworked the answer to talk more about נקבה forms?
    – user5540
    Jul 6, 2014 at 4:58

First of all, I've upvoted YEZ's answer, as the idea of relating ה to femininity is not related to the letter itself, but to its grammatical function.

There are several other examples of cases which I believe answer your question, though besides for YEZ's example, I can only think of one right away: the Maharal (Netzach Yisrael ch. 13), in context of explaining why there's no pasuk in Psalm 145 (colloquially known as Ashrei) that begins with the letter נ is because it represents falling - not merely because it is the first letter in the word נפילה, but because of a grammatical rule, that the נ, if beginning a shoresh, is left out in certain verb forms (for example, almost all future tenses of the verb 'fall' don't include the נ of the shoresh - the נ itself 'falls away').

  • Not all.
    – Double AA
    Jul 6, 2014 at 5:16
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    @DoubleAA true, but those are exceptions. The general rule is as above Jul 6, 2014 at 5:33

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