"הוא עומד לפניי."

Translation:He stands before me.

July 18, 2016

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what's the difference between this preposition and מול?


It's that מול does not translate to "in front of". It's opposite, across or facing

and לפני is before or in front


The preposition "מול" means opposite to or in front of, "לפניי" means before me.


Say I am standing, and there is someone standing and facing me and I am facing him. Could I use either preposition?


Technically yes. To be more specific, "מול" refers to a situation in which you are facing something/someone (but that something is not necessarily facing you).

While "לפני" just means that something/someone is before you, like in a queue or a race. It can also mean face to face, like in your case.


if מול means facing something/someone that is not necessarily facing you, does לפני mean the same ?


Very close, because if you're facing something it's before you


So לפניי can mean "in front of" & "before" (in position),

but can it also mean "before" as in time ? ( like : He (always) stands (up) before me ? )


Hu omed lefanai.


Is this spacial or temporal? Like, he is standing in front of me vs he stood up 2 seconds prior to me?


Can I perceive the difference between לפני and מול in this way?: LIFNEI has a wider range when it is used in the spatial sense. e.g. 1. I am the second in a queue, and there is only one guy in front of me. So in this case, we are next to each other, both LIFNEI and MUL can be used. 2. I am the fifth in a queue, so when I want to say the first guy is in front of me I can only use LIFNEI since we are not next to each other. MUL is used when describing things or people that are next to each other. Correct me if I am wrong.


Interesting... But I think not precise. I'd like to note first that while both describe some spatial relation, neither is purely spatial.

The word מול stresses the facing. So you wouldn't normally use מול with another person in the queue. Only maybe if you have a reason to stress that you're facing him (while you're in the queue someone on the phone asks you "have you seen Moshe?" and you answer "Yes, as a matter of fact I see him מולי").

Now, לפני, when used spatially rather than temporally, assumes some order. It can be a combination of spatial and temporal, as in the queue. If you say "the municipality building is לפני the post office", it's only because you assume one approaches them from a particular direction, or looks at them from a particular direction. OTOH, if you say "the municipality building is מול the post office", no particular direction or order is assumed. But again, in addition to meaning that they are next to one another, you'd use it to stress that they "face" one another, like you imagine being in one of them and looking at the other. The neutral spatial description would be just ליד.


Thank you very much, that helps.


Is מלפני also מאחורי ?


No, מאחורי is behind me.

[deactivated user]

    I saw another question spell it "לשני". What's up with that?


    What is "it"? These are two different Hebrew words. Surely it was in a translation to a different English word.

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