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Questions pertaining to the Hebrew language, as related to Judaism. See the help center: http://judaism.stackexchange.com/help/on-topic

2
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1answer
Are the words ציפור (bird) and ציפורן (finger nail OR a spice [found in k'tores]) etymologically related? I heard that both were connected to the root צ.פ.ר (arise) or to anatomical protuberance but I …
asked May 22 '11 by WAF
2
votes
3answers
In what reliable source can I look up the etymology of English (or other) words stretching all the way back to Semitic languages, especially Hebrew? I often have suspicions that certain words might … derive from specific Hebrew words (e.g. 'each' from 'איש') but it is very difficult to investigate, confirm or deny my baseless speculation. (The Oxford English Dictionary has great etymology entries, but never goes further back than Greek as far as I can tell.) …
asked Feb 12 '10 by WAF
3
votes
1answer
Considering the emphasis we place on proper pronunciation, particularly for the purposes of b'rachos, declarations, and prayer, how should a heh with a schwa under it be pronounced in an intermediate …
asked May 31 '10 by WAF
1
vote
2answers
(inspired by this question) Does the nominal pronoun in a Hebrew sentence with a conjugated verb i) add information or ii) deserve to be translated? Conversely, exactly how muchi) information does … a stand-alone conjugated Hebrew verb contain andii) of a stand-alone conjugated Hebrew verb deserves to be translated? E.g.: Does "אמרתי" properly mean "I said" or "said" and is it properly translated as "I said" or "said"? …
asked Nov 24 '10 by WAF
3
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For the 4th, 3rd and 2nd words from the end, perhaps חסר יסוד סודו, based on a phrase similar to that found in רמב"ן's commentary on B'reshis 2:7 - "יסודה וסודה" as a description of life, would mean " …
answered Nov 11 '10 by WAF
8
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Sounds like it could be a case of overregularization of the copula+participle pattern found commonly in Chaza"l to express habituals (e.g. הוי מקבל את כל האדם בסבר פנים יפות). I have no historical bas …
answered Mar 27 '11 by WAF
2
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Ibn Ezra explains it in accord with your reference to the JPS translation: והיא מלה אחת, כמו עליונים מגזרת גאה It is one word, like "elyonim" of the group ג-א-ה. Ibn Ezra seems to be basing …
answered Sep 20 '16 by WAF
5
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The first: Bless God, the blessed [one] Here "barchu" is imperative. The second: You are blessed, God. Here, "baruch" is beinoni pa'ul - a type of verb that is so passive and descriptive it may be the closest thing in Hebrew to an adjective without actually being an adjective. …
answered Dec 27 '11 by WAF
9
votes
2answers
What causes the difference in vowelization of the Hebrew word for "what" in the Bible and classical Jewish texts? In some contexts it is מֶה, in others - מָה, and in yet others - מַה. The hypothesis …
asked Jan 16 '11 by WAF
6
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The Tosafos Yom Tov on the last mishna in Y'vamos (16:6) says that the diminishing volume on each register of an echo is tantamount to weakening. The reverberation is thus associated with the fairer s …
answered May 4 '11 by WAF
7
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4answers
There is a well-known statement by Resh Lakish in Gitin (90) that כי" משמש בד' לשונות: אי, דלמא, אלא, דהא" "ki" expresses four meanings... There has been discussion over the ages as to what …
asked May 17 '11 by WAF
3
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an anonymous person suspecting that appears to be treating the finite verb as a redundancy. Is there any other way to convey the idea of "certainty" in Hebrew that wouldn't be seen as redundant …
answered Sep 7 '16 by WAF
1
vote
An Explanation of Synonyms in Tana"ch by Rabbi Sh'lomo Aharon Wertheimer (pp. 240-241) differentiates the 3 terms in the following way: Netzach - continuous existence without change Sela - continual …
answered Jun 18 '18 by WAF
8
votes
3answers
The Hebrew word for the act performed at a circumcision is "לימול". The root appears to be נ.מ.ל. Following the exceptional rules for roots whose first letter is נ, the causative participle and …
asked May 18 '11 by WAF
4
votes
1answer
Every [anonymous] question asked in the responsum Torah Lishmah ends with an address to the answerer and the abbreviation ושכמ"ה (e.g.). The Otzar Rashei Teivos had only one entry for this abbreviatio …
asked May 30 '11 by WAF

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