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December 5, 2016 / 5 Kislev, 5777
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In Hebrew: ‘Betrayal’

A daily dose of Hebrew.

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Benedict Arnold.

Benedict Arnold.


To betray is לִבְגּוֹד in Hebrew. לבגוד is an active-simple פָּעַל verb, whose root is ב.ג.ד (b.g.d), the same as that for clothing.

For example:

בְּגִידָה, פֵּרוּשָׁהּ הֲפָרַת אֵמוּן. Betrayal means (its interpretation is) a breach in trust.


הָאִישׁ הַהוּא בָּגַד בְּעַמּוֹ.
That man betrayed his people.

Someone who betrays or commits treason is a בּוֹגֵד if a male or a בּוֹגֶדֶת if a female.

What’s the connection between betrayal and clothing? I’m not sure. Go theorize.

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Ami Steinberger

About the Author: Ami Steinberger is founder and director of Ulpan La-Inyan.

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