"The bird belongs to Abraham."

Translation:הציפור שייכת לאברהם.

August 25, 2016

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So, שייכת is used instead of שייך because ציפור is feminine?


You can't refer to a male bird in the masculine form?


You can't, it's problematic, it's difficult to talk about a bird that is specifically male.


Like female plural ducks (contrary to Duolingo) they don't exist in the language.


Duck is just a masculine word. You can have female ducks. Just the word is masculine, so you would say שייך, and not שייכת . For a bird, it's opposite. Its feminine, and you can still have a male duck, just the word is feminine, so you use שייכת .


Is there a way to talk about a specially female bird? ציפורה?


Actually ציפור is a female bird. ציפורה exists only as a woman's name. As Almog wrote, the masculine is problematic. You'd need to say something like ציפור ממין זכר, but I've also seen זכר ציפור. Maybe a native will come round and give us some more insight.


Ahh okay. I assumed that the standard form was both female and neutral, in the same way that kelev can be either a male dog or a dog of unknown gender.



It is both female and neutral. But there is no way to differentiate between talking about birds in general and talking specifically about female birds.


I'm unclear is to which you attribute the gender? The bird or the person that it belongs to? Thanks.


The bird is the subject of the sentence, so "belongs" would need to be feminine to match bird which is feminine.


Thanks (as always you've responded quickly & with understandable layman responses!)


Ha-tzipor she-akhat l-avraham.


Why is it שייכת instead of של?


Because it is "belongs" not "of" belongs (m) - שייך belongs (m pl) - שייכים belongs (f) - שייכת belongs (f pl) - שייכות


Thanks don't remember learning this one


If you said, הציפור של אברהם, you are saying 'Abraham's bird', not 'The bird belongs to Abraham'. In English, those two phrases are different, and so they are different in Hebrew.


How do you pronounce שייכת?


shai'yeh'khet (sheye'ye'chet--the first syllable is like he is "shy").


I'm surprised to learn that ציפור is a female word. I actually wrongly inferred from the plural ציפורים that it was masculine. I assumed that female plural words were ending with ות instead of ים. Is this an exception or are plurals most often unrelated to gender?


Hebrew has some words that look masculine, but are feminine (e.g. עיר, ביצים, דרכים). There are also some words that look feminine, but are masculine (e.g. אבות). These are all exceptions. The form of verbs or adjectives used with such nouns can help recognize these exceptions. E.g. הביצים שבורות, the verb uses a feminine plural ending since the noun is actually feminine (even though it has an ים ending).


I was speaking with some native Hebrew speakers and asked them the same question and they had to get clarification from someone else!


It's true with native speakers of any language, you've likely never had to think through what the rules and exceptions are as they come naturally to you.


Why is there sometimes a ל to Abraham?


The ל means "to"


What's the root of שייכת, and שייך, etc? What are some related words with the same root?


The root is ש-י-כ. There are two verbs, one in pi'el/pu'al שייך (pi'el: to attribute, pronounced shiyéch) and שויך (pu'al: to be attributed, pronounced shuyách) and another in hitpa'el השתייך (to belong, pronounced hishtayéch).

source: https://www.pealim.com/dict/?r1=%D7%A9&r2=%D7%99&&rf=%D7%9B&num-radicals=3


From where do you know bird is female?


The word is a female word. Normally they end in hey or tav... Most Animals I think usually have both male and female, like cats חתול , חתולה , .. Some look like female but are male words. Look lion, אריה .aryeh Female lion, a lioness is לְבִיאָה leviah. So I guess the word for a general bird is female, & there's no male version. I'm doing the course too so this is only what I understand from what I've read... But I think there are words for male varieties in specific birds.


Practice. I know that is not a satisfying answer. Unfortunately, it is the answer.


I thought a female bird is a Tzipporah? Why do you give girls the name Tzipporah which is a female bird?


Why do we call some women Deborah (bee), Skye, Brooke, Ethel (noble), Blanche (blonde) April, or May? (Note, June and July started off as people's names.) And why do we call some men Caleb (dog), Stein (stone), Björn (bear), or Cooper (barrel maker)? Sometimes it's after attributes the child has when born, sometimes it's for attributes it is hoped they will develop, and sometimes it's just because the parents like the sound of the name. :)


Biblical. Genesis, 35:8, Judges, 4:4. The wet nurse of Rebecca, the wife of Isaac. Deborah was the daughter of Utz, son of Nachor. Nachor was the brother of Avraham. Utz was the brother of Bethuel, son of Nachor. Rebecca was Bethuel's daughter. Hence, Deborah was an older first cousin to Rebecca. Deborah never married. The other and more famous one was Deborah, the judge and prophetess of G‑d. She was the wife of Lapidot, she was wise and G‑d fearing (Judges 4:4). Deborah held court outdoors, in the shade of a palm tree, and people flocked to her for advice and help. The name may have originally been given to a baby girl because her crying may have had a buzzing or humming sound of a bee.



In common Hebrew usage, tsipor is a feminine noun which means bird regardless of the bird’s gender.

Tsipor with an ה at the end is a name for a girl or a woman. In the Bible, the wife of Moses was Zipporah or Tzipora.

[deactivated user]

    Why the double yod?


    How is ציפור feminine?


    For the most part, all words are masculine except words that end with a ה, and words that end with a ת. There are many exceptions that don't really have explanations, but you just have to memorize them. This is an exception.


    The word because of the ending? Some words are feminine or masculine but look the reverse, there's a discussion on it..


    Was wondering the same thing


    Why isn't it שייך and based off of avraham.


    Because that is how שייך works. It is conjugated according to the thing that is being possessed, not according to the one who possesses.

    For example ספר שייך לאברהם - book belongs to Abraham, because book is masculine. But ציפור שייכת לאברהם - bird belongs to Abraham, because bird is feminine.


    I'd look it up or search the discussions to be sure


    Two of the sentences look the same


    If it's not obvious whether a word is masculine or feminine don't make us choose between either option


    That's not a proper way to learn a language. If you make a mistake, it needs to show you that you made it, in order to learn and know better next time. Besides, there aren't that many words like that, so just learn them and you'll be fine.


    We don't know from English if the bird is male or female.


    Bird in Hebrew is always feminine. הציפור שייכת


    So how come את isnt used here before Abraham but in the sentence, "שרה אוהב את אברהם" (Sarah loves Abraham) it is?


    Because the את is only used for a direct object. When there is a preposition, you don't need it.

    In this case the ל is serving as the preposition 'to'

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