AramaicEdit

PronounEdit

מה (ma)

  1. Alternative form of מא.
    • Genesis 3:13, Targum Onqelos:
      וַאֲמַר ה' אֱלֹהִים לְאִתְּתָא מַה דָּא עַבְדָת וַאֲמָרַת אִתְּתָא חִוְיָא אַטְעַיָנִי וַאֲכָלִית:‎‎
      And God said to the woman, "What is this you have done?" and the woman said, "The snake deceived me and I ate."

HebrewEdit

EtymologyEdit

Cognate with Arabic مَا().

PronounEdit

מָה (m or f

  1. what
    • Genesis 2:19, with translation of Robert Alter:
      וַיִּצֶר ה' אֱלהִים מִן־הָֽאֲדָמָה כָּל־חַיַּת הַשָּׂדֶה וְאֵת כָּל־עוֹף הַשָּׁמַיִם וַיָּבֵא אֶל־הָ֣אָדָם לִרְאוֹת מַה־יִּקְרָא־לוֹ וְכֹל אֲשֶׁר יִקְרָא־לוֹ הָֽאָדָם נֶפֶשׁ חַיָּה הוּא שְׁמֽוֹ:‎‎
      wa-yiṣer ʾǎḏonay ělohim min-hâ-ʾǎḏâmâ kol-ḥayaṯ hassâḏe we-ʾēṯ kol-ʿof ha-ššâmayim wa-yyâvē ʾel-hâ-ʾâḏâm li-reʾoṯ ma-yyiqrâ-lo we-ḵol ʾǎšer yiqrâ-lo hâ-âḏâm nefeš ḥayâ huʾ šemo
      And the LORD fashioned from the soil each beast of the field and each fowl of the heavens and brought each to the human to see what he would call it, and whatever the human called a living creature, that was its name.
    מה זאת אומרת?‎‎ ― ma zot oméret?What does it mean? [literally What is this saying?]
    מה אתה שואל?‎‎ ― ma atá sho'el?What [are] you asking?
    מה נשמע?‎‎ ― ma nishmá?How are you? [literally What [is] being heard?]
  2. which

Usage notesEdit

  • In traditional Hebrew grammar can also be vocalized as מַה () (with the doubling of the following consonant) or מֶה (). The vowel is determined by the following word and behaves the same way as the vowel in הַ־(). However, the Academy of the Hebrew Language recommends always using the vocalization מָה ().

Derived termsEdit

  • למה(lama, for what, why)

InterjectionEdit

מָה ()

  1. An expression of wonder or amazement.
  2. Response that confirms that the speaker is paying attention (usually said unhappily).

Usage notesEdit

  • In traditional Hebrew grammar can also be vocalized as מַה () (with the doubling of the following consonant) or מֶה (). The vowel is determined by the following word and behaves the same way as the vowel in הַ־(). However, the Academy of the Hebrew Language recommends always using the vocalization מָה ().

AnagramsEdit