What is the meaning of mappiks in Kaddish.

  • ...יִתְגַּדַּל וְיִתְקַדַּשׁ שְׁמֵהּ

  • ...כִרְעוּתֵהּ...

  • ...מַלְכוּתֵהּ...

Isn't a mappik in the word שְׁמֵהּ (for example) would mean her name. So who is she?


2 Answers 2


In Aramaic, the suffix "ey h" means "his." In this context, the antecedent is God.

  • 2
    I refer to this as "the rule of one increased feminization" from Hebrew to Aramaic. In Hebrew, masculine nouns don't end with a vowel (usually) and feminines end in "a"; in Aramaic, masculines are "a" and feminines are "ta". And so on.
    – Shalom
    Commented Sep 6, 2011 at 18:47
  • @Shalom, that is not correct. In Aramaic, the "a" ending is the definite article, and due to a quirk of language development it came to be appended as standard in many, many words. To return to Isaac's point, the suffix in jutky's question is the masculine singular possessive.
    – Seth J
    Commented Sep 6, 2011 at 19:17
  • Thanks, I suspected that it is a matter of Aramaic but was not sure.
    – jutky
    Commented Sep 6, 2011 at 19:29
  • @SethJ, -a is both the definite article and a feminine ending. Feminine words that end in -a end in -sa when definite. So while Shalom is incorrect, it's only half the picture to say he's completely incorrect.
    – msh210
    Commented Sep 6, 2011 at 19:41
  • @msh210 Feminine words end that way when definite because of the way "a" became a permanent fixture of so many masculine words. It's a quirk of the language, but it's got nothing to do with feminization, and it has nothing to do with the Mappik possessive on the singular masculine. Some people mistakenly think it's a pattern (Shalom may or may not, I don't know); I'm just trying to set the record straight, since we're about learning.
    – Seth J
    Commented Sep 6, 2011 at 19:49

Jutky, see my comment on Isaac's answer. The Mappik Hei closing a Tzereh on the last syllable (ie., "eh" or "eyh", where the 'h' is pronounced as an exhalation through the mouth) is the masculine singular possessive in Aramaic. Although they have many similarities, Hebrew and Aramaic are quite different.

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