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[hee-brey-iz-uh m, -bree-] /ˈhi breɪˌɪz əm, -bri-/

an expression or construction distinctive of the Hebrew language.
the character, spirit, principles, or practices distinctive of the Hebrew people.
a linguistic usage, custom, or other feature borrowed from or particular to the Hebrew language, or to the Jewish people or their culture

1560s, “phrase or construction characteristic of the Hebrew language;” see Hebraic + -ism. Meaning “a quality or characteristic of the (biblical) Hebrew people” is from 1847.


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  • Hebraistic

    [hee-brey-is-tik, -bree-] /ˌhi breɪˈɪs tɪk, -bri-/ adjective 1. of or relating to Hebraists or characterized by Hebraism or Hebraisms.

  • Hebraist

    [hee-brey-ist, -bree-] /ˈhi breɪ ɪst, -bri-/ noun 1. a person versed in the language. 2. a person imbued with the spirit of the people or given to their principles or practices. /ˈhiːbreɪɪst/ noun 1. a person who studies the Hebrew language and culture

  • Hebraize

    [hee-brey-ahyz, -bree-] /ˈhi breɪˌaɪz, -bri-/ verb (used without object), Hebraized, Hebraizing. 1. to use expressions or constructions distinctive of the Hebrew language. verb (used with object), Hebraized, Hebraizing. 2. to make conformable to the spirit, character, principles, or practices of the Hebrew people. /ˈhiːbreɪˌaɪz/ verb 1. to become or cause to become Hebrew or Hebraic

  • Hebrew

    [hee-broo] /ˈhi bru/ noun 1. a member of the Semitic peoples inhabiting ancient Palestine and claiming descent from Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; an Israelite. 2. a Semitic language of the Afroasiatic family, the language of the ancient Hebrews, which, although not in a vernacular use from 100 b.c. to the 20th century, was retained as […]

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