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Posts 246
Gregorio Billikopf | Forum Activity | Posted: Sun, Oct 21 2018 11:00 AM

Hi, someone asked me, beside Elohim used as a majestic plural, what other words in the Hebrew Bible are similar in that they use the plural form but are used in a singular context? 

Does this type of writing have a grammatical name? 

Thanks!

Posts 58
Renan | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Nov 15 2018 5:22 PM

Some nouns can be singular or plural even though they appear in plural form. For example, the term שָׁמַיִם can be translated into English as “heaven” or “heavens”, and the term מַיִם can be translated in English as “water” or waters”, depending on the context. 

You can find more info here: https://uhg.readthedocs.io/en/latest/number_plural.html

Posts 178
Puddin’ | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Feb 3 2019 10:28 PM

Renan:
Some nouns can be singular or plural even though they appear in plural form. For example, the term שָׁמַיִם can be translated into English as “heaven” or “heavens”, and the term מַיִם can be translated in English as “water” or waters”, depending on the context. 

You can find more info here: https://uhg.readthedocs.io/en/latest/number_plural.html

I know this thread is a few months old, but I am currently taking Hebrew I and came across this link provided above.  

All I can say is, “Wow!”  This is a very good site for helping beginning Hebrew students.  One of the best I have seen so far.

As it relates to Elohim, I would take this a singular-plural (if that makes sense)...since radical-uncompromising monotheism is the overarching theme of the Hebraic OT.  

Just wanted to give a shoutout for this excellent link 👍.

Posts 246
Gregorio Billikopf | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Feb 9 2019 5:23 PM

This is a wonderful link Puddin, thanks! Very needed.

Posts 178
Puddin’ | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Feb 9 2019 8:15 PM

Gregorio Billikopf:

This is a wonderful link Puddin, thanks! Very needed.

Also, it’s always important to remember that Elohim is virtually always followed by singular verbs.  Just received an email on this very noun from a linguist at Hebrew Univ. in Jerusalem last night.

Shalom!

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