Questions tagged [grammar-dikduk]

Questions about Hebrew grammar as related to Judaism.

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36 views

When do you say אֶת, and when do you say אֵת? [duplicate]

How can one determine when the word "את" is pronounced with a t'zayray and when it is pronounced with a se'gol?
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1answer
78 views

Why are some Lameds with a flat top?

In many places in the siddur there are Lameds with a flat top, and there are some with a straight top. For example in the last הללוקה the word בצלצלי, the first lamed is with a straight top, and the ...
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1answer
73 views

Leniency in pronunciation while reading the Megillah (Iggeres)

I've heard that we are more lenient in regards to krias haMigglah than to krias haTorah (in regards to pronunciation), since the Migglah refers the itself as an Iggeres (letter). If this so, to what ...
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0answers
36 views

Matanos La'Evyonim or L'Evyonim?

If the grammatically correct way to pronounce the gifts given to the poor on Purim is "Matanos La'Evyonim", why do many refer to the mitzvah as "Matanos L'Evyonim"? [See Artscroll ...
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1answer
68 views

לָ vs. לַ vs. לְ and וָ vs. וַ vs. וְ

What are the differences in meaning between the prefix of the letter ל (lamed), when different vowels are used [i.e. לַ (patach), לָ (kumatz) and לְ (shva)]? What about variants of the usage of the ...
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1answer
49 views

What does “Bechozek Yad Hotzianu” mean?

At the end of Parshas Bo, we see the concept of "BeChozek Yad Hotzianu" 4 times, twice in connection with mitzvas t'fillin. What does "Bechozek Yad Hotzianu" really mean and what ...
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1answer
106 views

Why is the word “youth” בְּחֽוּרֹתֶ֑יךָ in the plural?

Why is the word "youth" בְּחֽוּרֹתֶ֑יךָ in Kohelet 12:1 in the plural, when the first word, the first verb in the sentence, indicates that the speaker is speaking to one person? וּזְכֹר֙ ...
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3answers
393 views

What does שליט"א stand for?

I thought that שליט"א came from the Aramaic word שליט (Ruler). But a Rabbi I told this to, pointed out that שליט"א is always written as with " , in the Middle so each the letters must ...
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2answers
694 views

How to apply the Masoretic note, “2x, once plene and once defectively” to Ruth 1:1?

In Ruth 1:1, there is a Masoretic note on שְׁפֹט which I do not understand: The picture is a little unclear, but the note says (I have highlighted the letters with a dot above them): ב חד מל וחד חס ...
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1answer
92 views

Ambiguity due to lack of punctuation

In Hungarian medieval history there's an interesting episode, when a few high ranking noblemen conspired to kill the queen. They asked the archbishop what to do, but he was hesitant to join either ...
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1answer
122 views

Similarity between atonement in Leviticus 4:20 & cover in Genesis 6:14 in terms of semantics, wording/phrasing, lettering/grammer, pronunciation?

I apologize but I do not know any Old Testament Hebrew so I'll have to rely on the responders to this post when it comes to analyzing the Old Testament Hebrew. Leviticus 4:20 (NASB 1995) 20 He shall ...
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1answer
106 views

Stressed syllable of באה

Yesterday I was looking at the text of how the incense had been prepared. In my ArtScroll book it is written: בֹּרִית כַּרְשִׁינָה לָמָה הִיא בָֽאָה A bit later it says: אַחַת לְשִׁשִּׁים אוֹ ...
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82 views

How do you pronounce this word in Onkelos

This word in Onkelos bereshis 41:50. Is the word pronounced “di y’lidat,” with the second letter of the word taking the sh’va na sound, or is the second letter of the word silent, with the word ...
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What's the purpose of first yod in Eideihen - Avodah Zarah 2a

עידיהן Referred to in Talmud (Avodah Zarah 2a) which is derived from Isaiah 43:9 have twoי (yods) whereas the one in Isaiah 43:9 is without the first yod ( עדיהם).The enlarged letters (witness) in ...
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Why is there no דגש in the כ״ף of הכזונה in פרשת וישלח לד:לא?

I know that the rule of ה״א התימה is that it usually takes a הֲ unless it precedes a שוא, such as here in הַכְזוֹנָה, where it then just takes a הַ and the following letter doesn't have a דגש in order ...
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1answer
175 views

Why are Hebrew cardinal numbers switched to the other gender after the first two?

When counting in Hebrew, the first two cardinal numbers are in the correct gender, but all subsequent numbers seem to be in the opposite gender? For example: Feminine Numbers are: אַחַתֹ-שְתַּיִםֹ-...
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1answer
167 views

Penultimate stress of אתה

By default, the world אַתָּה (you) has a final stress. If I am correct (and the concordance as well), out of 172 occurrences 159 satisfies this rule in the Torah (92%).* However, if this word is in a ...
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5answers
185 views

Letter צד“י or צדי”ק?

One of the letters of the hebrew alphabet is the letter 'צ'. When I was taught the hebrew alphabet, this letter was introduced as 'צד"י'. I believe this to be the generally accepted name of the ...
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1answer
199 views

Why the weird spelling of וַאֲבָרֶכְכָ֛ה in Breisheet 27:7?

Statement: In Breisheet Parashas Toldos, it says הָבִ֨יאָה לִּ֥י ... וַאֲבָרֶכְכָ֛ה לִפְנֵ֥י ה' לִפְנֵ֥י מוֹתִֽי: . Question: Why is the word וַאֲבָרֶכְכָ֛ה spelled in such an unusual manner instead of ...
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0answers
83 views

What is the rationale for only marking certain letters with sheva, when they are the last letter in a word?

In printed and manuscript editions of Tanach, I've noticed that a sheva on the final letter of a word is almost never marked, and is meant to be inferred. The two exceptions I've come across are: A ...
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49 views

What is a systematic guide to dikduk?

What is an accessible but thorough work on Hebrew grammar for people who already know how to read Tanakh and mefarshim, but would like a more systematic understanding of the grammatical discussions? ...
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1answer
31 views

Is it חִסָרון or חֶסרון?

In this Lechem Mishnah on the Rambam in Hilchos Deos says "ונראה לפרש דקצה ראשון הוא החסרון וקצה אחרון התוספת". Is it correct to put the nekudos as חִסָרון or חֶסרון?
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1answer
175 views

Are there any cases in the Tanakh where the form of the word could ambiguously have either the root יָרֵא (fear) or רָאָה (see)?

Abijah originally asked this question in Biblical Hermeneutics (https://hermeneutics.stackexchange.com/questions/52502/translating-forms-of-yirah-as-fear-or-seeing). Abijah stated how the question ...
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34 views

Should one read the story of the cursing of Canaan in a different way?

The verses of Genesis 9: 24-27 are generally believed to be part of a larger context, including the verses 9: 20-23. In other words, that these verses together tell one (a complete) story. But what if ...
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2answers
131 views

Where in the Tanakh, on a peshat level, is “Yetzer HaTov” derived?

Where in the Tanakh, on a peshat level, is "Yetzer HaTov" derived? Rashi seems to derive "Yetzer HaRa" from Genesis 8:21 (because the words "yetzer" and "ra" ...
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1answer
63 views

Final Pay ף ??? - Exists or Not? [duplicate]

Just confirming that there doesn't exist anywhere in Tanach a final Pay (not Fay but rather a ף with a Dagesh). If so, it is a fascinating that it doesn't.
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1answer
28 views

Plural and singular in Shmuel 2:24:14

In Shmuel 2:24:14 it says: "David said to Gad, “I am in great distress. Let us fall into the hands of the LORD, for His compassion is great; and let me not fall into the hands of men.”" ...
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26 views

Isaiah 52:14 what does it say?

I’ve some trouble with translating and understanding Isaiah 52:14. The words me’ish (מאיש) and mi’bnei adam (מבני אדם) to me seem to translate: from/out of man (like in Genesis 2:23 or Psalm 18:49) ...
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1answer
199 views

Does the Hebrew word “Torah” originate from BOTH the words “Hora’ah” (meaning, Teaching) and “Orah” (meaning, Light)?

Does the Hebrew word "Torah" originate from BOTH the words “Hora’ah” (meaning, Teaching) and “Orah” (meaning, Light)? The accurate meaning of “Torah” is twofold. Firstly it comes from the ...
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1answer
103 views

The second yod in Mechiyael

Bereishit 4:18 contains the word: וּמְחִיָּיאֵ֗ל There is no vowel under the second yod, so I assume that it is not pronounced at all. What is its function? Is it a mater lectionis? Is a yod ever ...
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0answers
65 views

Prophecies about past or future events?

Why are some prophecies described as if they already happend, as if they occurred in the past, while at the time/moment the prophecy is spoken it all still has to take place and talks about the future....
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63 views

Was there a traditional Hebrew equivalent of a Sator Square? [duplicate]

It seems a lot of old Latin stuff liked this Sator Square, five five-letter words that form a palindrome: S A T O R A R E P O T E N E T O P E R A R O T A S Was there ever a Hebrew equivalent to this? ...
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23 views

Why does Al Chet not have the definite article, i.e., Al HAchet?

Since the phrase is translated, "for the sin," and it isn't smichut, why is there no definite article?
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136 views

Chirik: the long and short of it

My understanding is that (according to at least some Hebrew grammarians) a chirik is classified as a short vowel if it is part of a closed unstressed syllable, and otherwise it is long. A 'short' ...
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0answers
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Smichut or Noun and adjective in Lashon remiya (Tehilim 120)

In Tehilim 120:2 and 3 we find lashon remiya (לשון רמייה) where lamed has qamets: יְֽהוָ֗ה הַצִּ֣ילָה נַ֭פְשִׁי מִשְּׂפַת־שֶׁ֑קֶר מִלָּשׁ֥וֹן רְמִיָּֽה׃ מַה־יִּתֵּ֣ן לְ֭ךָ וּמַה־יֹּסִ֥יף לָ֗ךְ ...
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1answer
125 views

Isaiah 40:4 — is the word pronounced “geh” or “gay”?

כָּל גֶּיא יִנָּשֵׂא (In Isaiah 40:4, and therefore also the Haftarah for Nachamu, just after Tisha B'Av.) It's a segol under the gimmel so I'd say "geh" ... but then there's a yud, but it's ...
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0answers
29 views

He Hayedyia before the letter Chet. Segol or Patach?

in Achare Mot the verses say: וְהִקְרִ֖יב אֶת־הַשָּׂעִ֥יר הֶחָֽי׃ כא וְסָמַ֨ךְ אַהֲרֹ֜ן אֶת־שְׁתֵּ֣י יָדָ֗ו עַ֣ל רֹ֣אשׁ הַשָּׂעִיר֮ הַחַי֒ The first occurence on the end of a verse is Hechay, and ...
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0answers
70 views

Gendered text for Gomel

related to Bentching Ha-Gommel after a Birth Do women bentch gomel less often? According to some opinions, a woman can say the thanksgiving blessing ("bentch gomel") The text that one says ...
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45 views

Could the trop of מה-פעל אל be a me'ayla?

כִּ֤י לֹא־נַ֙חַשׁ֙ בְּיַעֲקֹ֔ב וְלֹא־קֶ֖סֶם בְּיִשְׂרָאֵ֑ל כָּעֵ֗ת יֵאָמֵ֤ר לְיַעֲקֹב֙ וּלְיִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל מַה־פָּ֖עַל אֵֽל׃ ‏ Bamidbar 23:23 The word פעל is mile'eil (according to R' Breuer's conclusion ...
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1answer
190 views

Reason for different punctuation of the prefix vav?

In the Siddur, the prefix vav is seen with various punctuations (e.g., shva, kamatz, patah, shuruk). When is each of these different punctuations used with a prefix vav and how does each affect the ...
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2answers
183 views

Correct pronunciation of Kaddish

The opening two words of Kaddish begin with the words: יִתְגַּדַּל וְיִתְקַדַּשׁ Both the gimmel and the dalet of 'Yisgadal' carry a dagesh as does the dalet in 'veyiskadash' - normally a function ...
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1answer
139 views

What is the correct translation of Exodus 6:3?

According to BHS, Exodus 6:3 reads: וָאֵרָ֗א אֶל־אַבְרָהָ֛ם אֶל־יִצְחָ֥ק וְאֶֽל־יַעֲקֹ֖ב בְּאֵ֣ל שַׁדָּ֑י וּשְׁמִ֣י יְהוָ֔ה לֹ֥א נוֹדַ֖עְתִּי לָהֶֽם׃ This all almost universally translated as ...
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1answer
246 views

Function of a dagesh

Occasionally Hebrew letters in Tanach have a dagesh mark. I saw one in a khaf sofit, as at the end of the second line of the Priestly Blessing and the 4th line of Ashrei, and it sparked my interest. ...
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3answers
224 views

What are the rabbinic (hebrew) words that could equate to “Anti-Torah”?

What are the rabbinic (hebrew) words that could equate to "Anti-Torah"? I am hoping there is only one. In English, I would say the word "Anti-Torah" equates to "lawless" or "lawlessness". When I ...
3
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1answer
162 views

“Tekhelet” and “Shechelet”?

Might there be some relationship between the words "tekhelet" (תְּכֵלֶת ; the Biblical blue dye) and "shechelet" (שחֵלֶת ; one of the four named ingredients of the holy incense, listed in Exodus 30:34)...
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33 views

Help finding source ונטמתם

There seems to be this teaching (gemarah) in the Talmud (Yoma 39) on Vayikra/Leviticus 11:43 regards the phrase ונטמתם. Because this is written without the expected alef it could be read as v’nitamtem ...
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0answers
45 views

Where can I find how many roots the author needs to compose for each book of the Tenach

For example: I am reading now the book of Joshua in Hebrew. It looks to me quite simple language. The author uses often the same terms. Poetry and wisdom-litterature is much more complex. My ...
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2answers
130 views

Genesis 18:21 then I will know?

I find it strange that Genesis/Bereshit 18:21 seems to imply that G-d has limited knowledge of what's going on in Sodom and Amorah, so I wondered if the word eda'ah (אֵדָעָה) could be translated as: ...
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1answer
47 views

Translating וידבר using BDB Lexicon and Gesenius' Grammar

Context I am practicing my biblical Hebrew by translating the weekly Parshah. As resources, I have the Brown-Driver-Briggs (BDB) Lexicon (coded with Strong's concordance numbers) and Gesenius' ...
5
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1answer
84 views

“Good trees” grammar in the blessing on trees

I see* various versions of the blessing on seeing trees: most seem to refer to good trees as "אילנות טובות", while some refer to them as "אילנות טובים". (Grammatically, as far as I know, "טובים" is ...

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