From Textus Receptus
The aleph is in Unicode at U+05D0 א hebrew letter alef (HTML: א).
In phonetics, aleph ˈ|ɑː|l|ɛ|f originally represented the glottal stop (ʔ), often transliterated as U+02BE ʾ modifier letter right half ring (HTML: ʾ), based on the Greek spiritus lenis ʼ, for example, in the transliteration of the letter name itself, ʾāleph.
OriginThe name aleph is derived from the West Semitic word for "ox", and the shape of the letter derives from a Proto-Sinaitic glyph based on a hieroglyph depicting an ox's head,
In Modern Standard Arabic, there is a word أليف /ʔaliːf/ which literally means "tamed" or "coy", derived from the root !ʔ-l-f! from which the past tense verb آلَفَ /ʔaːlafa/ means to "to coy". This has sometimes been connected with the name of alif in folk etymology. In modern Hebrew, the same root t !ʔ-l-f! (alef-lamed-pe) gives "me'ulaf", the passive participle of the verb "le'alef", and means trained (when referring to pets) or tamed (when referring to wild animals); the IDF rank of Aluf, taken from an Edomite title of nobility, is also cognate.
Alif is written in one of the following ways depending on its position in the word: ا
Historically, the Perso-Arabic letter was used to render either a long /aː/, or a glottal stop /ʔ/. This led to orthographical confusion, and to introduction of the additional letter Template:Transl ﺀ. Hamzah is not considered a full letter in Arabic orthography: in most cases it appears on a carrier, either a wāw (ؤ), a dotless yāʾ (ئ, or an alif. The choice of carrier depends on complicated orthographic rules. Alif إ أ is generally the carrier where the only adjacent vowel is fatḥah. It is the only possible carrier where hamzah is the first phoneme of a word. Where alif acts as a carrier for hamzah, hamzah is added above the alif, or, for initial alif kasrah, below it, indicating that the letter so modified does indeed signify a glottal stop, and not a long vowel.
A second type of hamza, hamzat waṣl (همزة وصل, occurs only as the initial phoneme of the definite article and in some related cases. It differs from hamzat qatʿ in that it is elided after a preceding vowel. Again, alif is always the carrier.
The ʾalif maddah is, as it were, a double alif, expressing both a glottal stop and a long vowel: آ (final ـآ)ʾā /ʔaː/, for example in آخر ʾāḫir /ʔaːxir/ "last".
The ʾalif maqṣūrah (ألف مقصورة), or "broken alif;" commonly known in Egypt as ʾalif layyinah (ألف لينة, ˈʔælef læjˈjenæ "flexible alif"). It looks like a dotless yāʾ, ى (final ـى not to be confused with Persian ye). It may only appear at the end of a word. Although it looks different from a regular Alif, it represents the same sound (long /aː/). ʾAlif maqsurah is transliterated as ā in DIN 31635, á in ALA-LC, à in ISO 233-2 and ỳ in ISO 233. ʾAlif maqṣūrah can be confused with a yāʾ because they are both normally written finally as ى in Egypt, Sudan and sometimes other places, but anyway its occurrence in Modern Standard Arabic is not very common. In the case when ى represents final /-aː/, it may also be called, especially in Egypt, ألف لينة Template:Transl ˈʔælef læjˈjenæ and when it represents final /-iː/, it is called je. In Egypt, it is always short [-æ, -ɑ] if used in Egyptian Arabic and most commonly short in Modern Standard Arabic, as well.
Written as א, spelled as אָלֶף and transcribed as Aleph.
In Modern Hebrew the frequency of the usage of alef, out of all the letters, is 4.94%.
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|א||א||א||Image:Hebrew letter Alef handwriting.svg||Image:Hebrew letter Alef Rashi.png|
'Aleph is the subject of a midrash which praises its humility in not demanding to start the Bible. (In Hebrew the Bible begins with the second letter of the alphabet, Bet.) In this folktale, 'Aleph is rewarded by being allowed to start the Ten Commandments. (In Hebrew, the first word is אָנֹכִי, which starts with an aleph.)
Aleph also begins the three words that make up God's mystical name in Exodus, I Am who I Am (in Hebrew, 'Ehyeh 'Asher 'Ehyeh אהיה אשר אהיה), and 'aleph is an important part of mystical amulets and formulas.
Aleph in Jewish mysticism represents the oneness of God. The letter can been seen as being composed of an upper yud, a lower yud, and a vav leaning on a diagonal. The upper yud represents the hidden and ineffible aspects of God while the lower yud represents God's revelation and presence in the world. The vav ("hook") connects the two realms.
Jewish mysticism relates Aleph to the element of air, The Fool (Key 0, value 1) of the major arcana of the tarot deck, and the Scintillating Intelligence (#11) of the path between Kether and Chokmah in the Tree of the Sephiroth.
Hebrew sayings with aleph
From Aleph to Tav describes something from beginning to end; the Hebrew equivalent of the English From A to Z.
One who doesn't know how to make an Aleph is someone who is illiterate.
No...with a big Aleph! (lo b'aleph rabati - לא באלף רבתי) means Absolutely not!.
|Image:Syriac Eastern alap.svg Madnḫaya Alaph|
|Image:Syriac Serta alap.svg Serṭo Alaph|
|Image:Syriac Estrangela alap.svg Esṭrangela Alaph|
In the Syriac alphabet, the first letter is ܐ — ܐܵܠܲܦ — Alaph (in eastern dialects) or Olaf (in western dialects). It is used in word-initial position to mark a word beginning with a vowel — although some words beginning with i or u do not need its help, and sometimes an initial Alaph/Olaf is elided. For example, when the Syriac first-person singular pronoun ܐܵܢܵܐ is in enclitic positions, it is pronounced no/na (again west/east) rather than the full form eno/ana. The letter occurs very regularly at the end of words, where it represents the long final vowels o/a or e. In the middle of the word, the letter represents either a glottal stop between vowels (but West Syriac pronunciation often makes this a palatal approximant), a long i/e (less commonly o/a) or is silent.
As a numeral it Alaph/Olaf stands for the number one. With a dot below, it is the number 1,000, with a line above it, Alaph/Olaf will represent 1,000,000. with a line below it is 10,000 and with two dots below it is 10,000,000.
See Also Transliteration of Ancient Egyptian
The Egyptian "vulture" hieroglyph (Gardiner G1), by convention pronounced [a]) is also referred to as alef, on grounds that it has traditionally been taken to represent a glottal stop, although some recent suggestions tend towards an Template:IPAblink sound instead.
The phoneme is commonly transliterated by a symbol composed of two half-rings, in Unicode (as of version 5.1, in the Latin Extended D range) encoded at U+A722 Ꜣ LATIN CAPITAL LETTER EGYPTOLOGICAL ALEF and U+A723 ꜣ LATIN SMALL LETTER EGYPTOLOGICAL ALEF. A fallback representation is the numeral 3, or the Middle English character ȝ Yogh; neither are to be preferred to the genuine Egyptological characters.
- Aleph is also the shorthand designation for Codex Sinaiticus, a 4th-century manuscript of the Bible