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Questions tagged [aleph-bet-letters]

Questions about the Hebrew letters, or aleph-bet.

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2 votes
2 answers
157 views

How Many vav Hahipuchs in each of the 24 books of Tenach

How Many vav Hahipuchs (Conversive vav) are in each of the 24 books of Tenach compared with the number of letters / verses in that book. As far as I know they are only in Tenach rather than Mishna or ...
11 votes
2 answers
1k views

Why shin and sin?

Why does Hebrew use the same letter to represent two different sounds: shin and sin? As far as I know, with the exception of when using a dagesh kal, no other Hebrew letter has this property.
2 votes
2 answers
245 views

Where do we put the taggin on letters besides שעטנ״ז ג״ץ?

There are different traditions as to on which letters to put the taggin (the crowns), but many old traditions include various specific letters that are not in שעטנ״ז ג״ץ (the letters that we generally ...
2 votes
1 answer
192 views

Is learning Aleph-Beis considerd Talmud Torah?

Rema (245:8) codifies the obligation to teach one's child to read the Hebrew Alphabet (Aleph Beis), immediately when the child turns 3 years old. ומכל מקום מיד שיהיה בן ג׳ שנים שלמות מלמדין אותו ...
9 votes
4 answers
581 views

Why are there 7 inverted letter nuns in Tehillim 107?

In the Masoretic text of Tehillim 107 there are 7 pesukim which contain an inverted letter nun (similar to those in Sefer Bamidbar). In my standard edition Mikraot Gedolot none of the commentaries ...
0 votes
1 answer
840 views

Ribono Shel Olam pronunciation

I haven't studied Hebrew in 50 years and cannot read it anymore. I wonder if anyone has any suggestions on how I can get the pronunciation of Rabbi Nachman's phrase "Ribono Shel Olam" both ...
1 vote
0 answers
60 views

Body part associations with letters [duplicate]

I was curious, since I meditate by first focusing on each of my body parts to help calm myself, if there is designated corresponding letters for each part. I figured this would further deepen my ...
3 votes
1 answer
160 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 ...
13 votes
6 answers
2k views

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

I have read that 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....
7 votes
3 answers
727 views

How does one pronounce the sefardi Ayin?

I was taught how to read in an ashekenazi yeshivah where no difference was made between the aleph and ayin. I keep trying to make my ayin gutteral but it never sounds exactly how the sephardim ...
5 votes
2 answers
702 views

Unexpected Dagesh in Reish

I learned that a rule of Dageshim is that gutteral letters (אהחע''ר) reject dageshim. My question is why do we find 17 reishs (1 Samuel 1:6, 1 Samuel 10:24, 1 Samuel 17:25, 2 Kings 6:32, Jeremiah 39:...
4 votes
1 answer
445 views

Using Zephaniah 3:8 as a pangram

Would usage of Zephaniah 3:8 solely as a pangram – it being the only option with both finals and cantillation – constitute shemos, and therefore require genizah? לָכֵ֤ן חַכּוּ־לִי֙ נְאֻם־יְהוָ֔ה ...
0 votes
1 answer
42 views

Amen to a Chazzan with a different pronunciation of Hebrew

It is forbidden for a chazzan to lead a congregation that distinguishes between more letters than he does. Thus, if one is praying at a minyan where the chazzan's pronunciation is less exacting than ...
4 votes
2 answers
52 views

What's with the small heh in Bereshit 2:4?

I was reading the Bible on Sefaria. This is one of my first times in Hebrew, wondering about the weird heh in Bereshit 2:4.
1 vote
1 answer
297 views

The hand tefillin seems to form a lamed

The outline of the tefillin on the hand, to me, seems to form the letter lamed, reversed for a righty and a forwards lamed for a lefty, shown below. Yes, there are traditions of forming shin on the ...
2 votes
2 answers
412 views

Why is the מ in מוֹקְדָ֨ה small?

In Parshat צו, Chapter 6, verse 2 the מ in מוֹקְדָ֨ה is small according to Minchas Shai. Why is the מ in מוֹקְדָ֨ה small?
1 vote
2 answers
174 views

Dagesh in pe lefufah

If you were writing pointed text with a pe lefufah (or doubled/spiral pe, or pe kefulah) for pedagogical purposes, and the pe had a dagesh, would you write the dagesh inside the inner spiral, or ...
0 votes
0 answers
46 views

What is "Hebrew letter form"?

Rabbi Michael L. Munk composed "The Wisdom of the Hebrew in the Hebrew Alphabet". Pg. 44 on Aleph he addresses the 'graphic form' of Aleph. He explains the aleph is a construct of two yuds ...
14 votes
6 answers
2k views

Different Size Letters in the Torah

I've often wondered if someone has compiled anything about the "special letters" in the Torah: All the letters that are either big or small. Together, do they read as something special? One or more ...
5 votes
2 answers
484 views

Is there any symbolism associated with Hebrew being written right to left?

I am interested to know if there is any religious meaning associated with Lashon HaKodesh being written from right to left as opposed to left to right
1 vote
1 answer
840 views

The Yud and Hey in creation (Isaiah 26:4)

Isaiah (26:4) is usually translated: "Trust in G-d forever, for in Y-ah, [who is] G-d, is the everlasting rock." However, the prefix translated here as "in" can also mean "through" or "by"; and the ...
0 votes
0 answers
84 views

Midpoint of each Sefer

I am looking for sources that tell what word, letter and verse is at the midpoint of each Sefer, meaning 5 midpoints if considering the Torah containing 5 books or if you want, 7 as the Talmud states ...
1 vote
1 answer
44 views

Eltzafan or Elitzafan, son of Uziel?

I was wondering why the Torah uses two different spellings - with or without the letter Yod - to talk about the same character. Twice the Torah says Eltzafan: shemot 6:22 and vayikra 10:4 and once ...
6 votes
2 answers
3k views

Interchangeable usage of Hebrew letters (such as Beis and Vav, etc.)

I don't know if there is another post about this issue, but forgive me if there is. Here is my question. I recently read somewhere that there are letters that can be interchanged for various reasons....
1 vote
3 answers
1k views

How many Chapters are in the Mishneh Torah?

This question addresses how many halachos there are in Mishneh Torah. How many chapters are in Mishenh Torah? There is a program to do a chapter of Rambam a day and I am interested to know in how many ...
3 votes
2 answers
389 views

Was the Hebrew Alphabet also given with the Tablets and Law?

My research for my answer to Which alphabet were the original Torah scrolls in? gave me an idea--Since the Early Alphabetic alphabet is also called Sinaitic, and the timing seems about right, maybe ...
1 vote
0 answers
481 views

Where is a free online copy of the Torah with the "correct" number of letters in it?

First off, my intention is to create a pretty decent replica of the Hebrew text close to the formatting of the Sefer Torah or a Tikkun, for personal documentation purposes. My question though is 2-...
-1 votes
1 answer
90 views

What is the first pasuk in the Torah that begins within the letter tes? [closed]

I am wondering if someone knows the first pasuk in the Torah that begins within the letter Tes? Thank you.
1 vote
2 answers
687 views

Is the malachim aleph beis from a non-Jew for the occult or something legitimate from a Jewish source?

Searching online I'm seeing Wikipedia says this was published by Heinrich Cornelius Agrippa in the 16th century and was created for the purpose of the occult using a combination of Greek and Hebrew. ...
2 votes
2 answers
707 views

Articulation of resh with dagesh

It is well known that ר not lend itself to gemination. It never has virtual gemination. As for the full gemination indicated by the dagesh, ר allows it, but only very rarely, and never after the ...
8 votes
2 answers
2k views

Who were the original users of Ktav Ashuri?

According to one opinion found in the Talmud Sanhedrin 22a ktav ashuri was brought up from the first exile, assumedly adopted from Babylonian sources. Who exactly was using this alphabet? Do we have ...
0 votes
0 answers
122 views

What's the connection between the yod's on the letter tzadik, the faces of Adam and chava, and the kruvim

I have heard but I cannot find any sources linking these concepts. The Shulchan Aruch HaRav mentions that the yod's on the letter tzadik are written upside down in ktav arizal; basically not facing ...
12 votes
3 answers
1k views

What is the reason for "stretched" letters in the Torah?

I noticed that in many Sifrei Torah, Sofrim prefer to "stretch" certain letters. It seems that these letters are stretched to end a line if there wouldn't be enough space to start a new word. That's ...
19 votes
3 answers
808 views

Why does almost every pasuk in Megillat Ruth start with a vav?

Every single pasuk except 8 in megillat Ruth starts with the letter vav. Is there any reason for this or is it just a quirk of how it was written? If there is a reason, what about the 8 pesukim which ...
2 votes
1 answer
100 views

Translation of Hebrew letters [closed]

I hope that this is not off-topic for this forum. If so, please let me know and I will delete it. I'm trying to understand the meaning of these letters which I believe are Hebrew. Can someone who is ...
0 votes
1 answer
58 views

Verse with name

Saw a post about this so it reminded me of my question- we say that you say a Torah verse at the end of shemoneh esrei that begins with the first letter of your name and ends in the last letter of ...
1 vote
1 answer
88 views

Verse corresponding to name [duplicate]

I have checked other posts about this topic, but I can't find my answer: I am writing a storyboard for a short film, and the main character is 'Binyamin ben Yosef.' Throughout the film, he memorizes ...
10 votes
5 answers
22k views

Complete list of verses corresponding to people's names?

There is a custom to say a verse corresponding to ones name at the end of the Amidah, as a Segulah not to forget his name on the day of Judgement. There are several sources for this practice, ...
2 votes
3 answers
241 views

Why do some siddurim begin with alef beis?

Some siddurim have a few opening pages of addendums like how to put on tefillin. I noticed that the Nusach Ari siddur has a page of alef-beis and nekudos, plus a page of letters combined with nekudos. ...
6 votes
2 answers
278 views

What is the understanding of this piece from the Vilna Gaon

In Parshas Mishpatim, the Torah tells us of the laws regarding an Eved Nirtzah - A Jewish slave who has finished his term of slavery yet chooses to stay as a slave by his master, as a consequence we ...
2 votes
3 answers
202 views

Small Dalet in Mishlei (Proverbs) 28:17

In Mishlei (Proverbs) 28:17, the letter dalet is small in the word "adam". Why is this?
1 vote
1 answer
307 views

What is this Ktav?

My son sent me this picture of an old voweled text, probably around 10-12 centuries CE. What stands out, is that the letter He is connected and Chet is flat on the left side. Is this a fragment of a ...
0 votes
1 answer
85 views

is there a list of where the letter samech occurs with a degesh in the Chumash

Is there a source that i can link to that shows all the words in the torah with a dagesh in the Samech ?
10 votes
2 answers
713 views

How could the numerals יה and יו be used irreverently?

I was told that in the sequence of numerals with Hebrew letters, the numbers 15 and 16 are rendered with טו and טז instead of יה and יו to prevent the tetragrammaton from being formed irreverently. ...
2 votes
0 answers
93 views

Group symmetry in the letters of Genesis [closed]

Forgive me if this is not the sort of question you like. I'm new here. Several years ago I came across the work of Stan Tenen, available at meru.org, who appears to have made some impressive ...
4 votes
7 answers
568 views

Why was the letter "Hai" added to Avraham's name?

Avarham Avinu was originally Avram - and Hashem added the letter Hai to his name and changed it to Avraham. Why from all letters was the letter Hai added?
0 votes
4 answers
402 views

Looking for Pasuk for my son's name

My son's name is Kolunimus. I can't find a pasuk that starts with Kuf and end with Samech. Please help.
1 vote
1 answer
97 views

Are there words in the Hebrew bible where we find the letter Hei/Yod subsituted for an Alef?

For example, עמק הבכא in Psalams 84:6 is often translated as "Valley of weeping", even though we should expect the word weeping to be בכי, and not at all with an Alef. Do we have more ...
3 votes
0 answers
90 views

Chazal on pronounciation (according to Koren)

In his introduction to the Koren siddur, Eliyahu Koren claims: A window thou shalt make to the ark,” says God to Noah, and our sages took this also to mean that the correct pronunciation of the words ...
2 votes
4 answers
2k views

Is there math in Torah?

I have watched a nice movie back in the day that deals with numbers. In one of the scenes. A Jewish man comes to The Mathematician and tells about how the Hebrew uses the same "letters" as letters ...

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