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A thought on the Aramaic language - Yochanan - 02-21-2004

Shlomo akhuy,

I had a thought which I figured would be good to share on this forum...and that is regarding the meaning of individual letters (for those who aren't familiar with pictogram languages such as Hebrew and Aramaic)and the message they contain. Let me build my case for a moment. For example the word "ish" in Hebrew means man...and this word is made up of 3 letters, aleph, youd, and shin. Now the aleph represents power (ancient ox head symbol), the youd represents work (ancient arm with elbow), and finally shin (ancient symbol depicting 2 front teeth) represents eating. Therefore "man" can be broken down in ancient Hebrew as "the power to work and to eat". So then "A man who doesn't work shouldn't eat"...etc

Now the word "esh" has no youd... so it is only "the power to eat or consume". This word means fire in the Hebrew. And this is what fire does! I could go on indefinitely here but my point is in the Aramaic rendering of words. Get this!

Many Hebrew words when translated into Aramaic lose the Hey (which means look or behold)at the end of the word and in it's place an aleph (meaning power)is put there instead. So here's my thought (if you can follow me thus far) the Old Testament things were presented as a picture of things to look...behold! As in a "can you see????" But with the coming of the New Covenant comes the power and the accomplishment..hence the aleph. From hey to aleph or from promise to accomplishment! Try it out and compare some words...there is something to this and quite possibly a clue as to why Yeshua communicated in the Aramaic. This is no coincidence in my understanding. What do others think of this?


some examples - Yochanan - 02-21-2004

I have a few examples to offer. Shamayim (Hebrew for heaven) ends in a mem which is the ancient symbol for water (and mystery or unknown). In Aramaic this word becomes Shmaya... ending in an aleph (for power). Another is Malchout (kingdom). This word ends in a tav which in its original form looks like a cross (crossed sticks) symbolism there, eh? The end of Jesus's mission as a man finished on a tav (cross) This letter signifies a mark or sign. Of course this word-malchoota- in the Aramaic also ends with an aleph. etc.... Shlomo to all!


Re: - Larry Kelsey - 02-22-2004

Shlama Akhi Yochanan,

This is interesting! By the way, I was out walking my miniature Dachshund (or the next size up...they call 'em tweenie-weenies because they're an in-between size <!-- s:biggrin: --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/biggrin.gif" alt=":biggrin:" title="Big Grin" /><!-- s:biggrin: --> )...anyway, the phrase 'enduring strength' came to me when meditating on the meanings of 'aleph.'
Oh well...for what it's worth, I thought I'd share that!

Shlama w'Burkate, Larry Kelsey

- gbausc - 02-22-2004

Akhi Jochanan,

Fascinating stuff on Hebrew and Aramaic ! Is there a source I can go to for the meanings of all the Hebrew letters ?

Dave B

- Yochanan - 02-22-2004

Akhi Dave,

For more info on the ancient Hebrew symbols and their meaning try <!-- w --><a class="postlink" href=""></a><!-- w --> and look on the left where it says alphabet chart. You'll find some slight variations in other charts but all in all the meanings are pretty consistent. Also, there are 22 chapters in the book of Revelation...which corresponds to the Hebrew/Aramaic alephbet. Check out the corresponding letter and chapter number ie; Aleph= chapter 1 etc. This happens more than once in the O.T. (like psalm 119 etc.) Now look at the meaning of the letters with the subject material of the chapter. Unfortunately, the Mem (corresponding to chapter 13) on this chart doesn't include the definitions "mystery" or "unknown" as I've seen on other charts. It's well worth looking into.

Also, could you help me with a link to volume 2 of Jastrow's lexicon. It would be much appreciated.

Burkan BeMaran!


..... - Larry Kelsey - 02-23-2004

Quote:Also, could you help me with a link to volume 2 of Jastrow's lexicon. It would be much appreciated.

If akhan Dave doesn't mind be 'butting in' here is a good link for volume 2....

<!-- m --><a class="postlink" href=""> ... DICv2.html</a><!-- m -->

ETANA has got tons of stuff and ABZU is another related site.


- Dan Gan - 02-23-2004

Thanks for the great link! Is that Jastrow's book the same with
Dictionary of the Targumim, the Talmud Babli and Yerushalmi, and the Midrashic Literature by Marcus Jastrow?
[Image: 1565638603.01._PE30_PI_SCMZZZZZZZ_.jpg]

It is not out yet but going to be published by Hendrickson in April, 2004. It is good news, because usually Hendrickson's books are affordable.

Hardcover: 1760 pages
Publisher: Hendrickson Publishers, Inc.; (April 2004)
ISBN: 1565638603

...... - Larry Kelsey - 02-23-2004

Shlama Akhi Dan Gan,

It looks like the very same material. The online data is from a 1903 edition and has 1,736 pages instead of 1,760 but that could be because of credits, extra pages for preface, introduction, artwork pages, etc. Yeah, anything by Hendrickson should be relatively inexpensive. I have their Vine's Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words and William's Old Testament Word Studies! <!-- sSmile --><img src="{SMILIES_PATH}/smile.gif" alt="Smile" title="Smile" /><!-- sSmile -->

Shlama! Larry Kelsey

- Yochanan - 02-23-2004

Thank you for the link akhi Larry. I will be ordering this book through Hendrickson when it becomes available. Thanks to akhi Dan as well.

Shlama all!