Today I am going to kill two birds with one stone.
In this article you will learn: The days of the week in Hebrew. And as well, how to say in Hebrew: First, Second, Third…
Spoiler Alert: Up until Saturday it’s the same for both
Let’s talk about the days of the week.
Let’s start with Sunday.
Sunday in Hebrew is -יום ראשון
In Hebrew יום׳’ means ‘day’.
For example ‘׳היום means ‘today’
In English Sunday is the last day of the week. (yes I know, formally it is the beginning as well, but I believe in Garfield, not in formality)
In Hebrew it starts the week, therefore it’s
The first day.
and in Hebrew ראשון is first.
it derives (share the same root, I will talk about the root system in Hebrew in a later post) from the word ראש׳’ (head)
Which is the first thing that pops out at birth (The baby’s head)
So – יום ראשון – in which we encounter (head) first literally means the first day (of the week)
Monday is יום שני
The word שני in Hebrew literally means second. It’s derived from the Hebrew word for number two which is ‘שניים או שתיים’
Tuesday is -יום שלישי
Which derives from the number three שלוש׳’.
Wednesday is יום רביעי׳’
Which comes from ‘ארבע’
Which is the Hebrew word for number four.
Thursday- יום חמישי
Which (yes, you guess it right) comes from the word for number five which is ‘חמש’
Friday is -יום שישי
Comes from the word for the number six which is ‘שש’
Up until now, the names of “the days of the week” are in perfect correlation with the way we say in Hebrew: first – ראשון, second – שני, …
But as you all know Saturday is a special day which functions as an exception in this case.
Saturday- יום שבת
The word – שבת
Which comes from the root – ש.ב.ת – signifies the action that came in to a halt, an action that have been seized, stopped…
Maybe you remember, from the Bible, that on the seven-day God stopped from all acts of creation and rested. By the way, the word for strike in Hebrew is “שביתה”
So the word Saturday – שבת- has a root connection to a word that means: to stop a regular action that you do for a while or longer (like your job) which in turn take us to the word strike (Hebrew is poetically beautifull. right:)
But what about the word for number seven?
Well .. In Hebrew, the word for seven is: ‘שבע’ . Which mark’s the word for ‘a week’ -שבוע- . Because it has seven days in it.
So ,for conclusion,
We learned the days of the week.
We learned that except the first and the last day of the week there is a strong root connection between the numbers and the days.
And we also learned to say the first the second…up to sixth.
The word – יום
in Hebrew is in masculine form. For feminine nouns we say the words: ‘first‘ – ראשונה , ‘second‘ – שנייה….
So it’s slightly different.