Judæo-Aramaic for Hebrew speakers

As those among you who are more familiar with Judaism know, the Talmud and the literature by the Geonim was written not in Hebrew, but in Judæo-Aramaic. A course in the language could help many Jews in Israel, especially those of Iraqi descent, connect with their roots, and learn more about their ancestral religion. I also think it would be a relatively easy course to make, considering the similarities between Hebrew and Aramaic and the amount of Aramaic loanwords in Hebrew, and there is probably a host of Orthodox Jews who could help out. The main problem would be audio, but that should probably be done with a modern Israeli pronunciation.


July 4, 2016


This would be a great addition to Duolingo. Nice idea!

July 4, 2016

That's a terrific idea. For those who are interested in the Talmud and Aramaic, there's the מדריך לתלמוד by הרב עדין שטיינזלץ. It translates all common expressions and gives a lot of background.

July 5, 2016

It would be nice. Although Arabic and Russian for Hebrew speakers may appeal to a bigger audience.

July 5, 2016

Russian for Hebrew speakers sounds great! Arabic, on the other hand, would be a bit problematic if you want to teach Palestinian Arabic, because it has no written standard.

July 5, 2016

Are there any differences between Judeo-Aramaic and modern Aramaic?

Personally, if Duo would create that course, I would prefer it to be the modern version instead of the liturgical version and "for English speaker" instead "for Hebrew speaker". Why? For practical reason and bigger audience appeal. And personally I am interested in Aramaic and don't speak Hebrew, so it would be a problem lol.

On the other hand, it would greatly help the Aramaic revival movement which now scattered in the Levant, and easier audio because Duo could search for modern Arab/Assyrian Aramaic speaker. Kill two birds with one stone.

BUT isn't Aramaic is similar to Arabic in term of each letter connects to each others to form a word? That would be problematic, for they also have similar problem with Arabic.

July 6, 2016

Judæo-Aramaic in the Talmud and the Bible are writen in the Hebrew script. Judæo-Aramaic would be different from the modern Syrian form, but both are related to Arabic and Hebrew. I would like to learn any of the forms, the jewish one especially because we study Talmud in school but we don't study the language itself, rather translating it into Hebrew word by word or term by term.

September 1, 2017

I don’t see how letters connecting should be a problem... But yeah, they do connect, and that’s about where the similarity ends.

If we can have three courses for three ‘languages’ which are ridiculously similar to the point people are questioning whether they’re actually dialects of the same language, Scandinavian, we could have a course for Modern Aramaic and for Jewish Babylonian Aramaic. ;)

July 6, 2016

Letters connecting is a problem because that is what the admin told to the community why they can't have Arabic course, if im not mistaken.

Yeah, that would be lovely! The more the merrier!

July 7, 2016

Really? I always thought the massive diglossia and variation among dialects was the reason.

July 7, 2016

YES!!! I'm absolutely on board with this, as I've wanted to learn it for years.

July 11, 2016

Know anyone who might help? =)

July 11, 2016

That would be amazing.

July 5, 2017

What about Judeo-Aramaic for English speakers? I'd be happy to see that.

February 8, 2018

Would love to learn it! Parts of Daniel and all of Ezra are written in Aramaic. Also there is the Aramaic New Testament but that may be a different dialect. However I learn Aramaic, I am eager to begin!

November 5, 2017

I would love to learn Judæo-Aramaic too for personal study of the siddur and Torah. On a side note, I also want a Yiddish course for English speakers.

January 4, 2019

If this course will be made, I'm pretty sure all the Rabbi's in every Yeshiva will tell their students to study it befor every lesson. This should be funny!

February 11, 2019

It will be fantastic to have an Aramaic course. It will help me a lot in learning more Judaism, although most of the material I study at synagogue is in English and a bit of Hebrew. Also I really want a Yiddish DuoLingo course.

February 12, 2019

There are a dozen Jewish Aramaic languages, though. Even within the Talmud, Bavli is written in a different Aramaic language than Yerushalmi (although many folks try to overlook this, they're about as close as Spanish is to Portuguese).

Modern Aramaic might as well be Chinese in comparison as many Neo-Aramaic languages are mutually unintelligible.

June 24, 2019

What's the closest to Aramaic languages spoken today? Which Aramaics would you learn if you wanted to read the Peshitta?

June 24, 2019

There are roughly 30+ different Neo-Aramaic languages spoken today, and most of them are mutually unintelligible to both classical Aramaic languages and each other (think of what happened to Latin after the fall of Rome). They're also critically endangered.

If you want to read the Peshitta, it's written in Classical Syriac.

June 24, 2019

Ok. That Aramaic is similar to Hebrew, but the scripts are different!

June 24, 2019

I'm not sure one could call Classical Syriac "similar to Hebrew" without equivocating.

June 24, 2019
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