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Questions tagged [aramaic]

A Semitic language, it is used occasionally in Tanach, and is the primary language of the Talmud.

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Why do we still say sections of davening in aramaic?

I am pretty sure the aramaic sections of davening were written in aramaic because it was considered necessary for people to understand what they were saying. If this is true, why don't we say those ...
14
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7answers
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Plural of “Nafka Minah”

(Inspired by HodofHod's commment here: Four Holy Cities) What is the proper plural for the common Aramaic phrase Nafka Minah נפקא מינה which means something along the line of "practical differences"? ...
14
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3answers
335 views

What does the aramaic “pon” mean?

Once in a while, Onkelos will throw in the word pon (פּוֹן) that doesn't directly translate from the Hebrew. Avimelech to Yitzchak: k'z'eir pon shachiv d'm'yached b'ama (Toldos 26:10) Lavan to Yaakov:...
13
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1answer
331 views

Best way to translate “קא”

In the Aramaic of the Babylonian Talmud, there is a widely used word "קא", like in the sentence והא קא קרי (in Berahot 13:1). What is the best way to translate it to Hebrew or English? Or maybe just ...
12
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2answers
375 views

(Sort of) Writing the Name of God

I'm taking an Aramaic class, and one of the words that came up in the text I'm reading is "yehuweh," meaning "he will become" (in context, "he will become my successor). It is spelled with the exact ...
11
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7answers
5k views

Hard Yeshivish phrases to translate [closed]

Does anyone ever have trouble finding good English translations of certain yeshivish phrases, especially when in conversation with someone who would not understand the original? Post your favorite ...
11
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1answer
326 views

Magid Mesharim: How is it that the angel knew Aramaic?

There is a book called "magid mesharim" written by Maran Bet Yosef in Aramaic through the exact words of an angel. My issue with this is that we learned from some Gemaras (Shabbat 12b is one) that ...
11
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2answers
485 views

Why is Hebrew Called “Jewish” in the Bible?

We see that in most of the Bible, the Jews are called "בני ישראל/Israelites"; only in later books are they called "יהודים/Jews" (e.g. Esther 2:5, Zechariah 8:23), after the loss of the 10 tribes. ...
10
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1answer
228 views

Marcus Jastrow Dictionary Copyright

Is the dictionary that he wrote still in copyright, or has it entered the public domain? If not, who owns the rights to it?
10
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1answer
201 views

Request document Identification (Ancient Scroll?)

Hi I have a document from Tunsia that I can't identify. Can anyone help me with this?
9
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1answer
146 views

Hashta Ba'agala

There have been questions about the use of Aramaic as a language of prayer, in whole or in part, and even a question about the possible appearance of a single Aramaic word in an otherwise Hebrew ...
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6answers
684 views

Why should Bochurim learn Gemara in Aramaic?

Why is there so much emphasis in the Yeshivish world to learn Gemara in Aramaic? Why can't you find an English artscroll shas in most charedi yeshiva? It is not Lashon Hakodesh and it was written in ...
8
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3answers
325 views

Yemenite Sefira

What is the source for the custom that Yemenite Jews people count Sefira in Aramaic? and why do they do it?
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2answers
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Does "Brich Rachamana Malka D'Alma Ma'rei D'Hai Pita' really fullfil the obligation of Birkas Hamazon?

I heard from a friend that, as per the Gemara, saying the following phrase in Aramaic discharges the obligation to recite Bircas Hamazon in its entirety: Brich rachamana malka d'alma ma'rei d'hai ...
8
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2answers
479 views

Good Talmudic Grammar resource for one unfamiliar with grammar in general?

Inspired by: How to say Adonainu Moreinu VeRabeinu in Aramaic I'd like to understand Talmudic/Aramaic Grammar a little better and am looking for a good resource that will break it down for me. ...
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7answers
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Online glossary of Talmudic terms

Is there an online glossary anywhere that explains important Talmudic terms, with similar scope to the Practical Talmud Dictionary? I'm more interested in an Aramaic-English resource, but Aramaic-...
7
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3answers
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Hebrew for ice - and other “new” words

After reading MB OC 301:17:65 (thanks, YDK!) I am baffled by a nagging question regarding Modern Hebrew and Biblical Hebrew. Eliezer Ben-Yehudah is known to have revitalized Hebrew, in part by taking ...
7
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1answer
121 views

How does one read words with a “yud” in Targum?

While doing "Shenayim Mikrah" I encounter many words that have a "yud" as second to last letter. For example the word "cities" is "קִרְוָיךְ". Is the yud pronounced during reading? I.e. is this read ...
7
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1answer
382 views

Why is Jeremiah 10:11 written in Aramaic?

The Aramaic language appears only once in the Book of Jeremiah in the following verse. Jeremiah 10:11 (MT) ִּדְנָה֙ תֵּאמְר֣וּן לְה֔וֹם אֱלָ֣הַיָּ֔א דִּֽי־שְׁמַיָּ֥א וְאַרְקָ֖א לָ֣א עֲבַ֑דוּ ...
7
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4answers
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Why was the Gemara written in Aramaic?

The Gemara (the Bavli and Yerushalmi) are the fundamental texts that we possess of the Oral law. Why were they written in Aramaic? At first glance, Ravina and R' Ashi probably knew that this will be ...
7
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1answer
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Why does Hillel's teachings change to Aramaic in Ethics of the Fathers?

In Ethics of the Fathers chapter 1 (Mishna 11-13) three sayings are said in Hillel's name. Two are in Hebrew while one (Mishna 12) is in Aramaic. The rest of the chapter is all in Hebrew. Why the ...
7
votes
1answer
194 views

Language of a ketubah for marriage

Can I write a ketubah in English or possibly in Hebrew? Or must it be in Aramaic? The problem is that my friends and I do not speak Aramaic any longer. Our Babylonian-Jewish ancestors did, but we ...
6
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1answer
326 views

דילמא == Dilemma?

Is there documentation to prove that the Aramaic word "דילמא" is a transliteration or derivation of the Greek word "dilemma"? If so, this fact is informative to G'mara-learning in understanding the ...
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7answers
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What is “chad gadya” really all about?

Why do we sing "chad gadya" at the pesach seder? What is it supposed to be about? Also, as a side question, is it "d'zabin aba" or "dizvan aba"?
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2answers
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According to Jewish sources: which language came first, Hebrew or Aramaic?

I've heard that Aramaic and Hebrew are similar languages in vocabulary, syntax, and structure. There is, however, some debate about which is the older, or original, base language. After a bit of ...
6
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2answers
728 views

Why is the Haggadah written in Hebrew?

The Haggadah was written during the Talmudic period, so I would expect it to be written in Aramaic. Especially since the entire purpose of the Haggadah is the telling over of the story of yetziat-...
6
votes
1answer
189 views

How holy is Aramaic?

I've always thought that Hebrew is the Lashon HaKodesh, the language G-d speaks, and the language of Judaism. And that Aramaic is also important but somewhat secondary. But based on this answer, it ...
6
votes
0answers
933 views

What determines whether a man's Hebrew name uses “ben” or “bar”?

I have (obviously) heard a lot of Hebrew names of the form "Ploiny ben Almoiny," where Almoiny is Ploiny's father. But occasionally I see names written with the Aramaic "bar", for example Simon bar ...
5
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2answers
274 views

Rabbinic understandings of non-Divine origin of Onqelos

Shavua' tov all, A question from a friend that I thought I would post here regarding the origin of Onqelos. It seems fair to say that the classical rabbinic understanding is that the Aramaic ...
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3answers
495 views

Mima nafshuch? [closed]

How do the words "ממה נפשך" mean what they mean, i.e. "either way"?
5
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1answer
891 views

Different expressions for “permitted” in the gemoro and elsewhere

The Gemara and other sources use different words to say that something is permitted. There are "shari" "muttar" "leis lon boh". Is there any difference in shades of meaning between these and others ...
5
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1answer
392 views

Are the Aramaic root ק.ב.ל and the Hebrew root ק.ב.ל related?

When the word מקבילות comes up in parashas T'ruma, Rash"i defines it based on the Aramaic root ק.ב.ל, commonly found in the preposition לקבל (against or opposite) to mean physically across from/...
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2answers
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When and why does the Gemoro say “vehilchoso”?

Sometimes, after the Talmud records a disagreement, it concludes by saying that the Halacha is like one side of the debate (“vehilchoso”). See e.g. http://hebrewbooks.org/shas.aspx?mesechta=2&daf=...
4
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2answers
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Solitary Aramaic word in 'Al HaNissim

In the standard Ashkenazi Siddur, why is the Aramaic word פורקן used in the otherwise entirely Hebrew prayer of על הנסים?
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3answers
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Are there analogs to “Abba” & “Ima” for in-laws? [closed]

I know that “אבא” and “אמא” are originally Aramaic translations of the Hebrew “אבי” and “אמי” which have become adapted to Hebrew, especially in the accusative case. Are there similar forms in ...
4
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2answers
152 views

Aramaic-gemara lashon- reverse search

Are there any online tools that allow for searching of an english word to produce the gemara/aramaic translation? I dont really mean translate, I mean to search the jastrow dictionary to find the ...
4
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5answers
1k views

What's the most efficient method for learning biblical Hebrew?

I have gone through some basic schooling at a modern yeshiva. For 10 years I haven't touched a Chumash, but would like to get back into it. I have started reading the Artscroll Chumash--reading the ...
4
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0answers
54 views

Source for galuta d'galuta גלותא דגלותא?

I so clearly remember from my days of Talmud study the phrase גלותא דגלותא, meaning a place that was REALLY far away, seriously in exile, "deep diaspora", totally removed from eretz yisrael. Maybe it ...
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0answers
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How to pronounce “nechamasa” in kaddish?

In most siddurim I've seen, the word "ונחמתא" in kaddish is written "וְנֶחֱמָתָא," with a סגול ("eh" sound) under the ח. However, someone recently told me that a certain (very trustworthy) rabbi ...
3
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1answer
262 views

How does the word “Talmud” derive from root LMD? Is the word Aramaic?

I know what "Talmud" means and that it derives from the root Lamed Mem Dalet. But I cannot figure out how the word derives. Is it Aramaic (i.e. not Hebrew) and/or are there any other words that follow ...
3
votes
1answer
169 views

How should the vowel/s represented by “yud yud” be pronounced outside of Yiddish?

אורייתא, ברייתא and היינו are just three common examples of Aramaic words found in Gemara which are commonly pronounced containing the 'ay' (/ai/ei) sound. Of course, this corresponds to Yiddish whose ...
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2answers
309 views

How to say Adonainu Moreinu VeRabeinu in Aramaic [closed]

I have heard people translate "Adoneinu Moreinu VeRabeinu" (please don't ask where) into Aramaic as "Adonana Morana Verabana". I assume that the "a" is an aleph at the end. However, I realized that ...
3
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2answers
280 views

Place to Learn Aramaic Online

I know a bit of Aramaic, but I'd really like to improve my skills. Recently I have been paying more attention to the Aramaic parts of our davening and sections from the Zohar featured in the siddur (...
3
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2answers
163 views

Source for saying Aramaic parts of davening quietly?

I remember reading somewhere that there is a kabbalistic tradition to say the parts of davening that are in Aramaic (e.g. the targum in Uva Letziyon) quietly. What is the source for this?
3
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2answers
162 views

In the גמרא when should I read 'לך' as 'לְךָ' and when should I read it as 'לָךְ'?

When I use an Artscroll gemara with vowels, sometimes it will vocalize the word לך differently. The pattern I notice seems to be that it vocalizes לך as לְךָ for hebrew, i.e. a mishna or braisa, and ...
3
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1answer
269 views

Mappik pronunciation in Aramaic

Inspired by this question, I understand that mappik in Aramaic has a different meaning than in Hebrew. I just wanted to be sure: is mappik in Aramaic pronounced the same way as in Hebrew?
3
votes
1answer
102 views

What are good grammars to help me understand the language of Rabbinic Literature?

I have recently finished my grammar book on Biblical Hebrew, and I would like to get a grammar that would help me start to read rabbinic literature, specifically, the Talmud, and the commentaries of ...
3
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1answer
75 views

What's the difference between אֱדַיִן and בֵּאדַיִן?

I'm studying Daniyel, most of it for the first time, and keep coming across two (Aramaic) words that are troubling me: אֱדַיִן and בֵּאדַיִן. (The latter appears to be, morphologically, the former ...
3
votes
2answers
409 views

Should I say shmei or shmeh?

Some Ashkenazim are medakdek to pronounce their Aramaic "correctly". And they know that there is a mapik heh in Amein Yehei ShemeiH Rabba. Thus, יְהֵא שְׁמֵ*הּ* רַבָּא מְבָרַךְ לְעָלַם וּלְעָלְמֵי ...
3
votes
0answers
77 views

Why does Echad mi Yodeia switch languages in middle?

Why does echad mi yodeia switch from hebrew (eg. אֶחָד מִי יוֹדֵעַ? אֶחָד אֲנִי יוֹדֵעַ: אֶחָד אֱלֹהֵינוּ שֶׁבַּשָּׁמַיִם וּבָאָרֶץ.) to arameic (eg. שִׁבְעָה יְמֵי שַׁבָּתָא), back to hebrew (eg. ...