For English (and many other languages) grammatical gender in Hebrew constitute a serious problem: how come that in Hebrew a book (ספר - ספרים) is masculine and a lamp (מנורה - מנורות) is feminine?

Do the interpreters of the Torah explain what was the divine thought behind the fact that the Biblical Hebrew assigns genders to inanimate objects?

For example, the Gemmorah in Kiddushin (2-3) discusses different nouns that appear to be both masculine and feminine in the Torah (דרך, שמש, מחנה), but it does not say why do they have genders, to begin with.

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    Warning: Don't assume that just because a word ends in -im it's masculine or -ot it's feminine. The ending of a word is the worst way to detemine the grammatical gender in Hebrew. – ezra Sep 13 at 14:50
  • @ezra It's not the worst way. Flipping a coin would be worse. – Daniel Sep 13 at 19:10
  • @Daniel That's not even a way – ezra Sep 13 at 22:44
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    In this sense, Hebrew is not different from most other languages. French and Spanish, e.g,. assign genders to all nouns. English is one of few languages that have "neutral" gender. Thus, I'm not quite following why you ask this question focusing on Hebrew. Or, are you just curious why the Hebrew language was designed with no neutral gender? – DanF Sep 14 at 13:38

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