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Plowing through History from the Aleph to the Tav

Topics Definition of Modern Hebrew Words

Telephone

By Jeff A. Benner


Due to technological advances there are many modern things that have no Biblical Hebrew word for them. In this event, the Hebrew Language Academy will do one of two things. One, they will create a new word from a Biblical root word that has a meaning related to what the new word represents. Two, they will transliterate a word from another language into Hebrew.

Once such example of the second method is the Hebrew word for "telephone," which is טֶלֶפוֹן (te-le-phon), a transliteration of the word "telephone." A cell phone is טֶלֶפוֹן סֶלוּלָר (te-le-phon se-lu-lar), where סֶלוּלָר (se-lu-lar) is another transliteration, this time from the word cellular.




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