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October 9, 2015 / 26 Tishri, 5776
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In Hebrew: ‘Mysterious’

A daily dose of Hebrew.



Yesterday, we saw the Hebrew root ס.ת.ר (s.t.r) in action, in the word for to concealלְהַסְתִּיר. We saw that the Talmud connects the root ס.ת.ר with the name of the biblical heroine of the Purim story, אֶסְתֵּר Esther.

Another application of ס.ת.ר is in the expression for hideout or place or refugeמִסְתּוֹר.

מסתור also conveniently serves as the basis for the Hebrew word for mysteriousמִסְתּוֹרִי in the masculine and מִסְתּוֹרִית in the feminine.

For example:

הֵם נִכְנְסוּ לְיַעַר מִסְתּוֹרִי. They entered a mysterious forest. As for a mystery, the word is מִסְתּוֹרִין, or its synonym,תַּעֲלוּמָה.

Note that the root ס.ת.ר also bears the meaning contradiction. The word itself for contradiction is סְתִירָה.

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

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