"Dad is speaking to her."

Translation:אבא מדבר אליה.

August 2, 2016

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Aba medeber eleha.


I get so confused with the letters in English used to convey the sound in the Hebrew. "E" in English makes either a long "ē" which is the sound of the name of the letter E, or a short e sound ("eh"). You do not often see "e" used to make the first vowel sound here which from the audio is more of a sound represented by "a" as in "AA" and then the second vowel I hear as a long "a". I would've written in English "ah-lai-ha" or maybe "ah-lei-ha".


The letter "e" in this case is the same vowel in the IPA, so it's the short vowel, or "eh" as you write. Actually, all vowels in Hebrew are short only. Your suggestions are actually incorrect, because they correspond with עליה which is entirely different word.

עליה - aleha (on her, about her)

אליה - eleha (to her)


I entered אבא מדבר לה and was marked wrong. What's the difference between ל and אל?


It's a bit tricky. A lot of times אל and ל can be used interchangeably; sometimes they can't. I'm not sure if there's a general rule, but I'll try to explain the difference as I see it:

1) In verbs that have a sense of direction or movement towards something/someone, literally or figuratively - you can use either אל or ל, unless you use a pronominal suffix, in which case you have to use אל. Examples - ללכת אל החנות/ללכת לחנות but only ללכת אליו (NOT ללכת לו). Some other verbs - לשחות (swim), להגיע (reach/come), לבוא (come), להתגעגע (to miss), לשים לב (to pay attention/notice), להתקשר (to call) and many others.

2) In verbs that have a sense of giving something to someone, you can only use ל. Examples - לתת לאמא (NOT לתת אל אמא), or להשכיר (rent), להפריע (bother), לשלם (pay), לעזור (help).

In this case: "לדבר" falls into the first category. I think this is because "לדבר אל" is somewhat like saying "talking to your direction", whereas "לדבר עם" is to have a conversation with someone.


It's just the preposition that the verb לדבר takes in this instance.


Would it be wrong to use "omer" עומר instead of "medeber" מדבר?


Yes. אומר means says or tells.

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