Wiktionary:About Hebrew

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  • Hebrew transliterations (that is, romanizations) are not words. Hebrew entries should only be written in the Hebrew script.
  • The headword line of an entry should include romanization, using the tr= parameter of the headword-line template.
  • In some etymology sections, the scholarly romanization may be preferred.
  • When linking under certain circumstances to a Hebrew entry, include romanization, using the tr= or equivalent parameter of the link template (such as {{t}} or {{term}}). This is to be done, for example, for a translation (in an English entry) but not, for example, for an inflected form listed on a headword line.
  • If a romanization is missing, it may be requested using {{rfscript|he}}, which adds the entry to Category:Hebrew terms needing native script.
  • The letters are romanized as follows (in general. In some cases it might be necessary to use a romanization that is based not on Modern Israeli Hebrew but on another form).
letter name romanization scholarly romanization notes
א alef ' or [nothing] ʾ omitted (i.e., represented as [nothing]) when word-initial or unvowelized (as in קוֹרֵאת ‎(korét))
ב bet, vet b or v b or b when with a dagesh (or in the spelling of a triliteral root), v when without a dagesh
ג gimel g g or
ד dalet d d or
ה hey (or he) h h omit word-final ה (i.e., represent it as [nothing]), except when with mapik
ו vav v w see the table of vowels, below, for ו as vowel marker
ז zayin z z
ח chet ch or kh
ט tet t
י yud (or yod) y y but optionally i when the latter part of a diphthong;
see the table of vowels, below, for י as vowel marker
כ‎, ך* kaf, khaf k or ch or kh k or k when with a dagesh (or in the spelling of a triliteral root), ch or kh when without a dagesh
ל lamed l l
מ‎, ם* mem m m
נ‎, ן* nun n n
ס samekh s s
ע 'ayin ' or ` or [nothing] ʿ optionally omitted (i.e., represented as [nothing]) when word-initial or word-final
פ‎, ף* pey (or pe), fey (or fe) p or f p or p when with a dagesh (or in the spelling of a triliteral root), f when without a dagesh
צ‎, ץ* tsadi (or tsade) ts
ק kuf (or kof, quf, or qof) k q (or )
ר resh r r
ש shin, sin s or sh š or ś sh when shin (שׁ), s when sin: (שׂ)
ת tav t t or
ג׳ j j/ǧ
ז׳ zh ž
צ׳ ch č Represents "ch" as in chalk.
* For the letters with two forms, the one on the left is used at the beginning and middle of words, while the one on the right is used at the end of words.


  • Vowels are romanized as follows:
vowel name romanization scholarly romanization notes
בְ shva ' or [nothing] ə or [nothing] an apostrophe when na`, omitted (i.e., represented as [nothing]) when nakh or when adjacent to א or ע which is transliterated other than by [nothing]
בֶ segol e e
בֱ chataf segol ĕ
בֵ tseiri (or tsere) e or ei ē
בַ patach a a
בֲ chataf patach ă
בָ kamats (or qamats) a or o ā or o Represents two different vowels: kamats gadol (a) and kamats katan (o)
בֳ chataf kamats o ŏ
בֹ,‎ בוֹ cholam ō
בִ chirik (or chiriq) i i
בִי ī
בֻ kubuts (or qubuts) u u
בוּ shuruk (or shuruq) ū
  • The position of the stress should be indicated using an acute accent on the main vowel of the stressed (or only) syllable (á, é, í, ó, ú).

Other diacritics[edit]

  • Other diacritics:
diacritic name romanization scholarly romanization notes
בּ dagesh [nothing] [nothing] or [doubled consonant] The dagesh kal (found at the beginning of a word or after a silent shva) changes the phonetic values of ב‎, כ/ך‎, and פ‎ from v, kh, and f to b, k, and p (and in scholarly transcription of ב‎, ג‎, ד‎, כ/ך‎, פ‎, and ת‎ from , , , , , and to b, g, d, k, p, and t). The dagesh chazak (which must be preceded by a vowel) has the previous effect and also indicates the historical doubling of the consonant.
שׁ shin dot sh š Indicates that the letter ש is pronounced "sh".
שׂ sin dot s ś Indicates that the letter ש is pronounced "s".
בֽ meteg [acute accent] [acute accent] Indicates that the syllable after the above consonant is stressed. The diacritic itself is rarely used on Wiktionary due to poor font support for its combinations with other vowels.

To be decided[edit]

  • Where to use k'tiv khaser and where to use k'tiv maleh (e.g. for diber, where דבר, and where דיבר).
  • Where to supply vowel signs.
  • Whether roots warrant separate treatment from the words formed from them, and if so, what this treatment should include.
  • How to supply conjugations of verbs, declensions of nouns and adjectives, and pronoun-including forms of prepositions.

Please discuss on the talk-page (Wiktionary talk:About Hebrew)!

Dialects and languages[edit]

The standard on English Wiktionary is to treat all of Hebrew as one language, including Biblical, Mishnaic, and Modern Hebrew. All have the same categories, all have the same ==Language== headers, etc. The only exception is in Etymology sections, where to indicate derivation from Biblical Hebrew one can use {{etyl|hbo}}, and to indicate derivation from Modern Israeli Hebrew one can use {{etyl|he-IL}}.

In Pronunciation sections, the following can be used and will provide a link to the corresponding Wikipedia article:

Odd binyanim[edit]

The binyan nitpa'el is to be treated as part of the binyan hitpa'el. For the past tense (which is where they differ in form), whichever is more common is to be written as a full entry, and the less common as an entry using {{alternative form of}}. But if the less common one has meanings different from those of the more common one, or if both are equally common, then both should be given full entries.

Binyan pilpel is considered merely a mishkal of pi'el.


The community's decision was to exclude most constructions that are simply one or more proclitics plus a base word; וּבָנוֹת ‎(uvanót), for example, is considered to be covered by the entries for וְ־ ‎(v'-) and בָּנוֹת ‎(banót).

Resources for Hebrew language and Hebrew script[edit]