1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Hebrew
  4. >
  5. "סוף סוף יש לי נעליים!"

"סוף סוף יש לי נעליים!"

Translation:Finally I have shoes!

July 16, 2016



Why are there two סוף 's here? Are there other words formed like that?


It's a pharse that means finally.

I can also think of Tov Tov or Hazak Hazak ect. where the double is used to emphasis

תחזיקי חזק חזק שלא תפלי

סגרי את הבקבוק טוב טוב


Thank you. It's interesting that I've already come across reduplication used in a very similar way in Turkish, for example: zaman = time, zaman zaman = from time to time (by the way this zaman should look familiar :)); or yavaş = slow, yavaş yavaş = slowly. It can also be used for emphasis like in your sentences but I can't think of an example.


Good observations!

A family member once asked me if I would like some "coffee" (with the Folgers Instant Coffee sitting on the counter). I replied, "I would like coffee, coffee." Whatever "coffee, coffee" was, Folgers Instant ("coffee") wasn't it. I didn't want Folger's Instant but was looking for the genuine article, the real McCoy, something that took at least a little time to grind, brew, and/or prepare! That's just another example of how using extra repetition and (linguistic-)encoding can be used not only to emphasize and intensify but also to inferentially communicate further conceptual differences (e.g., specifying "coffee, coffee" over just "coffee", in this instance, Folger's Instant).

An incomparably weightier example comes to mind from Isaiah's vision of YHWH/Adonai enthroned: "קדוש קדוש קדוש" (Isa 6:3). The threefold attribution of "holy" conveys basically a superlative idea (cf. good, better, best)!

Verbs can be used in a similar way, for example, in Genesis: "אכל תאכל" ("eating you [may] eat") and "מות תמות" ("dying you will die") (Gen 2:16f). Linguists such as Stephen Levinsohn and Steven Runge identify these as examples of "Overspecification".


Forgive me for asking, but I've always wondered. What do you think is the plain/linguistic meaning (without getting too theological) that is conveyed by phrases such as אכל תאכל or מות תמות?

I understand Mondern Hebrew's סוף סוף, and even Biblical Hebrew's קדוש קדוש קדוש, but as a non native speaker the idea that the two phrases above are trying to convey stumps me.

Does it mean something like "you will know what dying/eating really means?" like a superlative stage of each of those experiences or, "you will die a death that you didn't know before/of all that you eat, you may now eat of that", or is it just a poetic way of simply saying "you may eat/you will die" respectively?

Thanks in advance


לאט לאט (slowly also works in Hebrew

I guess it is mostly with adjectives


In the אשר יצר they also say נקבים נקבים ,חלולים חלולים I've always wondered why they repeat both, but I guess it's to emphasize how many there are?


Is there a reason why "I finally have shoes" isn't accepted? In English it's much more natural to put the subject first. (Reported)


But that wouldn't convey the same level of enthusiasm


Ach, it was so embarrassing having to go to school wearing flippers...


3 years later: sof sof i have socks!


Poor girl, now rich girl!


What's wrong with " I finally have shoes:?


Emphasis. The "finally" is being strongly stressed, as if typed in bold. I would guess that whoever wrote the exercise felt that the way you suggested lacked that intense emphasis the sentence was meant to convey.


Or, more likely, they just didn't think of keying it in at the time. Like a lot of other correct English translations. As of October 2019, it still isn't accepted.


I wrote it exactly as the answer appears, and it was marked wrong! There is no longer the option to report this. What to do?

<h1>cobbler's_kids (because I can't believe no one has made a quip yet).</h1>


Isn't נעליים the dual plural of נעל ?

Then the translation should be "two shoes" or "a pair of shoes", wouldn't it?


Sof sof yeshli na’alaim!

Learn Hebrew in just 5 minutes a day. For free.