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The 2nd letter of the Aleph-Beis is the Bet

It has the sound of b when you see a dagesh - a dot - in de middle of the letter. It has the sound of v without the dagesh.

There are two dots under the bet. These are called tseree and represent an ee sound. ֵ

We saw this letter in the previous blog in the letter Peh. The mouth that can bless, and the mouth that can curse. A mouth that can speak good or bad. The Bet represents duality and therefore has the gematria value of two.

The name Bet is related to the word Beit - בַּיִת which means house.

The second letter of the word is the yud - י Under the yud you can see a small dot. ִ That dot is called the chireq and represents an i - sound.

The third letter is the tav and has a t - sound.

That is one of the reasons why the Torah begins with the Bet בְּרֵאשִׁ֖ית -to show that G-d's greatest blessing to us is that He created - a world - a house - for us to live in.

The letter bet consists of three stripes, a roof, a wall and a floor.

He blessed us with a roof. Because of this we do not know what is above our world. With a right wall. Because of this we do not know what was before our world. A solid floor. So that we cannot fall from this world, have a solid foundation.

The left side of our house is open, the future is in our hands.

We make our house a safe house, with a fourth wall for our safety, when we bless G-d forever.

Psalm 89:53 says:

Blessed is G-d forever, amen and amen.

And this we must do with all our hearts Meaning with or evil and good inclination. We see this in the Hebrew word for heart : לֵבָב

אוֹדֶ֣ה יי בְּכׇל־*לִבִּ֑י אֲ֝סַפְּרָ֗ה כׇּל־נִפְלְאוֹתֶֽיךָ

I will praise You, L-RD, with all my heart;

Tehilim - Psalms 9:2

We bless G-d by reading Torah (stripe 1) by praying (stripe 2) and by charity (stripe 3).

When we learn Torah - the commandments, the 7 Noahide laws - we have a part in the world to come. In this we also see the 2: we live in this world and in the world to come.

We are now familiar with the: ב א ל פ (ף) and with the: ִ ּ ֶ ָ ַ

and can now read the following words, among others:

Ester 2:7

וַיְהִ֨י אֹמֵ֜ן אֶת־הֲדַסָּ֗ה הִ֤יא אֶסְתֵּר֙ בַּת־דֹּד֔וֹ כִּ֛י אֵ֥ין לָ֖הּ אָ֣ב וָאֵ֑ם

"He was foster father to Hadassah—that is, Esther—his uncle’s daughter, for she had neither father nor mother."

Exodus 10:1

וַיֹּ֤אמֶר יי אֶל־מֹשֶׁ֔ה בֹּ֖א אֶל־פַּרְעֹ֑ה

"Then G-d said to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh".

Above the aleph you can see a small dot. This is called the cholem and represents an o sound. ֹ

*Tehillim 9:2

אוֹדֶ֣ה יי בְּכׇל־*לִבִּ֑י אֲ֝סַפְּרָ֗ה כׇּל־נִפְלְאוֹתֶֽיךָ

"I will praise You, L-RD, with all my heart;"

We see here in the bet another function of the dagesh. In this case, the dagesh represents a doubling of the letter. So even though we only see one bet, there are actually two.

This dagesh is called a dagesh forte. Unlike the dagesh that we have come to know, which is called a dagesh lene.

Why the tseree - the two dots - under the lamed changes into a chireq - 1 dot - we will learn later.

Learn more about the Bet

Brought By Angelique Sijbolts


Angelique Sijbolts is one of the main writers for the Noahide Academy. She has been an observant Noahide for many years. She studies Torah with Rabbi Perets every week. Angelique invests much of her time in editing video-lectures for the Rabbis of the Academy and contributes in administrating the Academy's website in English and Dutch. She lives in the north of the Netherlands. Married and mother of two sons. She works as a teacher in a school with students with special needs. And is a Hebrew Teacher for the levels beginners and intermediate. She likes to walk, to read and play the piano.



The Wisdom in the Hebrew Alphabet Grammatica vh Bijbels Hebreeuws by E. Lettinga

Grammar For Biblical Hebrew by C. Seow


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