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35

From the archaeological evidence it is clear that the Hebrew srcipt being used during the First Temple Period was what's known as the Ivri script (a handy conversion chart can be found here) which is very similar to Phoenician, as opposed to our script nowadays which is called Ashuri script. In terms of what script was used at Mount Sinai, there is a 3 way ...


32

As Danny Schoemann says, it's a ketubah. A Ketubah is a Jewish marriage contract. The text in this form matches the standard text presented and translated on this Chabad.org page. People Groom: Yehuda Leib, son of Avraham Noah. He is also a Levi Bride: Toiba Rachel, daughter of Yisrael Arye Witness: Aharon Leib, son of Moshe the Levi Witness: Abba David, ...


24

It certainly doesn't mean electricity! The truth is, we don't really know what it means. And whatever it is, studying it is dangerous! Some of you may recall the story in BT Hagiga 13a, where a child is studying Ezekiel, ponders over the meaning of hashmal, and was consumed by fire. You have been warned... From the context, it appears to be some kind of ...


23

This is a valid way of inserting missing words, as the Shulchan Aruch in Yoreh De'ah in סימן רעו - דין תלית הדלוג Paskens: א: טָעָה וְדִלֵּג תֵּבָה אוֹ יוֹתֵר, יָכוֹל לִתְלוֹתָהּ בֵּין הַשִּׁיטִין אֲבָל לֹא בָּרֶוַח שֶׁבֵּין דַּף לְדַף.‏ If he erred and missed a word or more, he can hang it between the lines, but he may not put it in the space ...


21

The "Modim anachnu lach" in davening is a quotation from Divrei Hayamim I 29:13. "L'cha" becomes "lach" because of the etnachta, which is a pause in the pasuk.


21

The Taamei HaMinhagim, in "הנהגות אדם בבוקר" says: ג טעם שתקנו רז״ל לומר על נט״י בנוסח ברכה זו לשון נטילה, מפני שהוא לשון הגבהה מתרגום "ותשאני רוח" "ונטלתני", וכתיב (ישעיה ס"ג) "וינטלם וינשאם כל ימי עולם" - שצריך שיגביה ידיו למעלה (שלחן ארבע) :‏ ד עוד טעם לפי שצריך ליטול מן הכלי והכלי שמו נטלא בלשון תלמוד. אבודרהם:‏ That is, that ...


20

Likely, it is an acronym for קְהִילָה קְדוֹשָה k'hila k'dosha (lit: holy congregation), a title for Jewish communities whose use dates back to the Talmud (Tamid 27b).


19

"L'chatchila" means "from the outset", meaning that before one did action 'x' the halacha was that it was forbidden. However, if one was not familiar with that halacha and did action 'x' without knowing that there was a problem, then "b'di'eved" ("after the fact") the halacha might be different, meaning the consequences of what was done would change. In ...


18

In Tanach there are only four: Aviv = first month = Nissan (Ex. 13:4, et al) Ziv = second month = Iyar (I Kings 6:1) Eisanim = seventh month = Tishrei (ibid. 8:2) Bul = eighth month = (Mar)cheshvan (ibid. 6:38) In a letter from the era of the first Beis Hamikdash found in Arad, there is mention (according to some reconstructions) of ירח צח, "the month ...


18

When the word stands on its own, with its own trup-mark, it's אֵת, with a tzeireh. When it's attached to the next word with a dash and therefore does not have its own trup-mark, it's אֶת, with a segol. I think I learned this in high school; unfortunately, I don't know a more precise source. I'm not sure what would be the underlying reason behind some ...


18

In the manuscript Parma 3173 there is no "מישראל"; In the manuscript Budapest Kaufman A50 no more; The Mishna of Mechon Mamre, Mishna Sanhedrin 4:5 based on Rambam manuscript idem; לפיכך נברא אדם יחידי בעולם, ללמד שכל המאבד נפש אחת, מעלים עליו כאילו איבד עולם מלא; וכל המקיים נפש אחת, מעלים עליו כאילו קיים עולם מלא. ‏ In Shinuye Nussachaot Shas ...


16

An academic reason would be that indeed Hebrew (and other related languages) don't need vowels for disambiguation as much as, say, English. Most Hebrew words are built out of triliteral consonantal roots, so that words with the same consonants are (usually) related, differing only in how they're inflected for different parts of speech, number, tense and so ...


16

Malbim (to Ps. 69:19) draws the following distinction: גאל means to redeem someone or something because of your relationship. (The cases in Lev. 25 where a person has to sell his property, or even himself into slavery, and is "redeemed" by himself or a close relative, are all described with this root.) פדה means to redeem someone or something because of ...


14

The original siddur did not include a version for women. Changes to the format for women began later on. R. Jacob Emden (in his siddur commentary) suggested emending the morning blessings for women, but didn't recommend it. Chid"a (Avodat haKodesh 2 5 22) allowed the changes, along with Eshel Avraham (the Buchacher, OC 46 4) and Rivvos Efraim (1 37 2) ...


14

From Soncino's intro to Seder Moed: "It might be observed that the designation 'Mo'ed' is in the singular, as distinct from the plural forms used to designate the other Orders, e.g., Nashim, Nezikin, etc. It has been suggested that the singular is here specially used to avoid the confusion that might arise through the employment of the plural Seder Mo'adim (...


14

From what I can tell, either way you accent this word is probably fine. My understanding, based on Biblical grammar My understanding is that the accent in this case goes on the 'mo' syllable1, due to the rule of "nasog achor." This rule says that when multi-syllabic Word A is followed (without disjunctive cantillation) by Word B, and Word B has an accent ...


14

הבוכ"ע is an acronym for הבורא כל עולמים, meaning "the Creator of all worlds." To verify this, note the correlation of the acronym and the expression in this Google search.


13

The following is adapted from Dovid Katz, "The Phonology of Ashkenazic," in Hebrew in Ashkenaz: A Language in Exile, ed. Lewis Glinert (Oxford University Press, 1993), pp. 61-65. Apparently, at least from the 16th century onwards, there was a distinction among (some) Ashkenazim between the sounds of kubbutz and shuruk, with the former being pronounced like ...


13

Rabbeinu Bachye on "lo sechanem" (Vaeschanan, 7:2) gives multiple ways of reading the prohibition based on fiddling with the vowels. He gives this flexibility for multiple versions as the reason for the Torah not including vowels. See R. Bachye also Behaalos'cha 11:15.


13

Another difference is that classical Hebrew generally uses a VSO word order (verb, subject, object), while modern Hebrew is generally SVO. As an example, the common phrase in the Torah, וידבר ה' אל משה, would literally translate as "and He spoke, G-d, to Moses"; a modern Hebrew speaker would probably say something like ה' דיבר אל משה.


13

HaMaor Volume 46 Number 3 Page 26 says that since all the Yomim Tovim are going to be nullified besides Purim when Moshiach comes therefore it is called Moed in singular form as the only Mesechta remaining will be Megila. Otzar Kol Minhagei Yishurin Siman 7 * note says that since the names of the Shisha Sidrei Mishna are based on the Pasuk והיה אמונת עתיך ...


13

The front is the seal of the State of Israel. The Hebrew on the back is a verse from Ruth (Ruth 3:10) which means "You are blessed to G-d, my daughter" which were words that Boaz said to Ruth when she asked him to marry her. It doesn't have an official name; it is a thoughtful trinket.


13

The discussion is in the Talmud Sanhedrin 22a. The background is the disagreement among the Rabbis if the Torah was originally in Ivri or Ashuri. The Talmud says that according to the view that it was in Ivri, Ashuri script was first seen when the Angel wrote it on the wall, thus the Jews were not familiar with it - this is why they couldn't read it. ...


13

The word is אֵת. When the word is "joined" with the next word with a makaf "־" then they become treated as one long word, and there is no longer an accent on that syllable. Unaccented closed syllables (unlike accented closed syllables) take short vowels, so the vowel shifts to its shorter counterpart: tzere -> segol. You can also see this same phenomenon in ...


13

The religious implication of this ketubah is that it may be possible to use it to establish, in a Jewish court, certain facts about the listed bride and groom: That they were Jewish. On this basis, their children would also be Jewish, as would any children of their daughters, of their daughters' daughters, etc. That the man was a Levi. On this basis, he, ...


13

The Mishna in Megillah (2:1) states: והלועז ששמע אשורית יצא A foreigner who heard [it] in Hebrew fulfills his obligation. The Talmud (18a) elaborates: והלועז ששמע אשורית יצא וכו', - והא לא ידע מאי קאמרי? - מידי דהוה אנשים ועמי הארץ. - מתקיף לה רבינא: אטו אנן האחשתרנים בני הרמכים, מי ידעינן? אלא מצות קריאה ופרסומי ניסא - הכא נמי מצות קריאה ...


13

Edits in italics: Balashon blog discusses it at length here, and provides many sources, as well as a look at one example of it by various Rishonim. I have added some content from there during this edit. K-P-R is used throughout the Bible to mean wiped away or covered up, which are similar to what a denial does; it wipes away or covers up a fact. This ...


12

A core belief of Judaism is that there is only one God. This is a bad translation. The Hebrew is: אֲנִי-אָמַרְתִּי, אֱלֹהִים אַתֶּם; וּבְנֵי עֶלְיוֹן כֻּלְּכֶם.‏ The word אֱלֹהִים can mean "God". It can also mean Judge, Idolatrous god/power (note the distinction between God and gods), Important Person. In this context, others translate it as "...


12

Rashi, Radak, ibn Ezra and the M'tzudos all seem to say it means "you have caused me to hear" your command, i.e. informed me of it, though literally, yes, it means "you have dug me ears".


12

The Rambam in Perush Hamishnayos Avos Perek 2:1 says that a Mitzva Kala is learning Loshon Kodesh. Harav Yitzchak Yosef in Yalkut Yosef Hilchos Talmud Torah Seif Koton 78 also says it is a Mitzva.


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