Heblish Lesson: Day 13

Numbers – Part II
Free Heblish Challenge – March 2010 – Training – Day 13:


Day 13 – unlucky for some, but not for us! 😉


In our previous lesson we went shopping and bought a few smalot (dresses), tabaot (rings), ugot (cakes) and other things we like.  We also learned how to use the Hebrew numbers one through twelve, except for the number two and some exceptions, which we are going to talk about today in our Hebrew lesson.

We will also do a short refresher by watching some videos from our past lessons. It’s going to be short and easy, but if you would like to work harder, go back and read lesson 11 and lesson 12 again.

Today’s menu: Number 2, some exceptions & a short refresher

Attention: The underlined letters represent the accent.

In our previous lesson I showed you that when counting nouns in Hebrew, except for the number one (e^ad  / a^at), the numbers come before the noun, just as they do in English.

Here is a short table of the numbers one, two and three:

The number Feminine Masculine
One A^at E^ad
Two Shtaim Shnaim
Three Shalosh Shlosha


Feminine objects Feminine objects Masculine objects Masculine objects
One ring Tabaat a^at One book Sefer e^ad
Two rings Shtey tabaot Two books Shney sfarim
Three rings Shalosh tabaot Three books Shlosha sfarim

Comparing the tables above, you will see that the number two is the only number which changes.

   – Shtaim is the feminine number two, but when we are counting objects we say “shtey tabaot” for two rings.
  – Shnaim is the masculine number two, but when we are counting objects we say “shney sfarim” for two books.

In lesson 11 I placed asterisks by the numbers 4, 8 and 12.

The number Feminine Masculine
Four Arba   * Arbaa  (ar-ba-a)
Eight Shmone * Shmona
Twelve Shteim-esre  ** Shneim-asar  **

In formal Hebrew we read the following numbers as shown below – Pay attention to the accent!

   * The correct accent for the feminine number “four” is arba, but most Israelis say arba.
   * The correct accent for the feminine number “eight” is shmone, but most Israelis say shmone.

Arba and shmone are the common pronunciations f
or these numbers, so don’t try to be different – remember, when in Rome behave like a Roman…

   ** As a point of information, another name for twelve (both feminine and masculine) is treisar, but it is not commonly used.

In lieu of repeating tables from Lesson 12, please listen again and review the videos from our previous lessons. You can click the “Videos” tab on the menu bar, or click here on “Videos” and go through the previous videos one by one. They are very short and will help you sharpen your accent as well as remind you of some rules before we go on to lesson 14.

Lehitraot then, in Lesson 14.

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