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Hebrew – An Ancient Language Revived


An English-speaking Canadian speaking about Hebrew in Japanese. What the fuck is up with that? How are you doing today guys? This is a video that I filmed for a different channel. A Japanese channel. It’s a video about the Hebrew language, but it’s in Japanese. So it might be strange to hear me talking about the Hebrew language in Japanese, since I am a native speaker of neither Japanese nor Hebrew, but this was for a Japanese audience on another channel. But rather than recreate this whole video in English, I wanted to just put subtitles on it, so you could check it out. Alright, I hope you like it.

100 Replies to “Hebrew – An Ancient Language Revived”

  • I know this is an older video, but I want to comment nevertheless. It seems very odd that the way to say "native speaker" in Japanese is to just use the English phrase. It's astounding that there's no Japanese term for it.

  • A bit of confused but… in attempt to speak, I wonder when we revive all ancient Caucasian Albanian language? I do wonder. Also your Japanese is awesome but I think not many Japanese care on it

  • I would like to see sanskrit get revived and become the lingua franka of india . We could have two language policy. One regional language(state language) and sanskrit. Thought it is difficult and unnecessarynow, probably in the future we can have that.

  • 素晴らしい
    Tell us how to start learning Japanese.
    I'm really frustrated that I can't find any reliable (and free) sources.

  • Hebrew never dissapeared as a spoken language. It was commonly used as a sort of "middle ground" language for jews when one traveled to a different country. If a jew from one country travelled to another, most commonly to learn under a specific rabbi or in a specific jewish study center, called a "Yeshiva", Hebrew was often the language he would use to communicate untill he learned the native language(Yiddish was used in most Eastern European countries but the Jews in Spain, Italy, France, England, Morocco, Tunisia etc. generally spoke the native tongue). It was so commonly used for this that Pre-War Poland, the center for "Yeshivos" in Europe made Hebrew an official minority language. It is still commonly used in this manner with "Yeshivos" all over world using Hebrew as a common language for classes and student communication.

  • Fascinating! Thank you. Just one (important) point: Christian "New Testament" Bible written in GREEK, not Hebrew as is the "Old Testament. Nikolaos

  • How is it that the phrase "native language" and the word "vocabulary" are rendered in English in Japanese? Wow!

  • Sir, the more of your videos I watch, the more I love you. I love your enthusiasm for Hebrew, it is heart-warming. 🙂 God bless you.

  • There are actually 8+ million native speakers. The Israeli Arabs still speak Hebrew as a native language and learn Hebrew at school, along with Arabic, as does every Israeli child. Therefore the speakers should at least match the Israeli population of 8+ million, not 5 million as suggested. (Plus the tens of thousands of Israelis who don't live in Israel across the world)

  • It is true. Reading Hebrew is quite difficult since its not written with vowels. IAlthough I can read Hebrew (not fluently), it is challenging. I am trying to teach myself the language.

  • Intriguing video, but why did you drop the "F" word? Also, there are many with a basic understanding of Hebrew in the Diaspora and many, many more who can read the Jewish prayers fluently.

  • Hi Langfocus, could you recommend me some good books for self-study of Biblical Hebrew? Thanks and keep up the good work with your channel, the best about languages!

  • A side note , the map used in the video thumbnail represents Israeli and occupied territories , including Golan heighs and the West Bank . It is not acceptable to use such a map when you discuss the language used in the Israeli state

  • As a Hebrew speaker that is learning Japanese, this video is one hell of a finding. Who knew there was a video about Hebrew spoken in Japanese with English subtitles. Thank you for this one, it made my day.

  • you say Hebrew, I say an odd Frankenstein language of German-Yiddish, Hebrew-Aramaic, and bad phonetics training for Semitic languages lol.

  • I'd like to see some form of Celtic brought back. Also, do we know anything about what languages were spoken in Britain before the Celts arrived ca 500BC?

  • Natural Language is generally a thing that can#t really be forced so it's pretty impressive that they pulled this off. Then again Religion can be a strong motivator. If it can get people to fly into buildings and build huge pyramids it can probably get them to speak some old language.

  • Hi Langfocus! As a native Hebrew speaker, could I offer a couple of corrections? To say "my name is…" Hebrew speakers generally say,
    ״קוראים לי…״
    [Literally, "they call me…].
    ״השם שלי״ would be understood, but isn't really the way people speak.
    Also, technically, it's only short vowels that aren't indicated in printed text. Long vowels are still present, as they are indicated with silent letters, including:
    א, ה, ו, י,
    Thanks!

  • I am familiar with Hanzi/Hanja/Kanji. Some characters are very pictographic and symbolic, while most of them are composed of semantic and phonetic parts. There are no vowels or consonants at all in the written language. Korean Hangeul is unique, because it has vowels and consonants. For disambiguation of homophones, Koreans may check out the Hanzi character. The advantage of having a non-phonetic written language is that people can understand each other without talking to each other.

  • Lol im israeli and i dont guess when i read, i remember, because like if i see the word רגל wich is leg, i know its pronounced regel, and not ragal or ragel because there is no word like thatXD and also theres "nikud" That when kids learn to read there those dots and lines under letter that tell if you need to say "na" Or "ne" Or "n" Etc.

  • Thanks fer making these videos, man!
    Wondering what you think about this:

    The Proto-Sinaitic inscriptions of Serabit El-Khadim and Wadi El-Hol and more recently discovered at Timnah.
    These Semitic inscriptions, as maybe you know, were the first alphabet, derived from the Egyptian Hieroglyphic writing in the early-mid 2nd Millenium BCE, when Semitic slaves in Egypt came up with an easier way to communicate in written form.

    This was attributed to Canaanites eventually but more recent attempts at translating them have yielded Hebrew renderings that actually make sense.
    This identification was resisted by academia for a long time for a few reasons, one being that any attempt at identifying evidence for the Israelites in Egypt during the Sojourn/Exodus story in the Bible was dismissed because after looking so long in Ramses II's reign for evidence of the Exodus, nothing came up.

    But many pointed out that Ramses II (c.1200s BCE) lived a couple hundred years after when the Bible dates the Exodus (mid-2nd Millenium BCE) so attempts at identifying him with Moses' time was already a set up for failure.
    So now a few scholars and Egyptologists like David Rohl and Douglas Petrovich have discovered that using the Hebrew language to decipher these inscriptions turned up translations that identifies their authors as Israelite and even refer to specific Exodus-related events and characters.
    This would also push back the antiquity of the Hebrew Language, and it would mean that it was Ancient Israelites not Canaanites who brought back this new and useful writing system to Canaan. It's a curious and conspicuous bias that prevented most scholars from even trying to identify the language of the Proto-Sinaitic inscriptions with Hebrew, and some have remarked that if the precise language can't be identified for the past 150 years beyond a couple words common to several Semitic languages, why COULDN'T it have been Hebrew?
    Also, I always thought it was suggestive that the Alphabet first appears in Canaan right around when the Israelites are supposed to have invaded.

  • For a linguist your use of expletives at the starting is a poor sign of your character. Please remember YouTube is an international service and perception of choice of words could thus vary. From your level, I suppose you thought is was being cute or funny. It robs you of professional creditably and you should consider removing it

  • But if a british jewish learn hebrew and a russian jewish learn hebrew, won't they have different accents? If you go to Israel do they have different accents? Because there weren't native speakers, What about the phonetic?

  • I have been fascinated by languages my entire life and have just recently found your channel. I wish I could communicate with you personally, but can't find any way to do so and can't leave a comment at your site.

    Here's the problem: as much as I love the idea of foreign languages, I'm one of those people who has always believed himself lousy at languages. However, I was able to learn *one* and so far *only one* other language–Biblical Hebrew.

    There are many reasons for this. Textual languages are learned deductively and by sight rather than by sound (I have trouble with those last two). The vocabulary never increases beyond a fixed point. Compare this to a living language whose vocab is infinite and growing, and which must be understood via ear and responded to immediately almost without thought. I also have trouble with written Israeli Hebrew because it is unpointed and looks too different from the letters I learned in Biblical Hebrew.

    My one success gave me false hope that I would learn Israeli Hebrew as well, but I dislike the inductive method and simply could not process the sounds by ear. They say Biblical is harder than Israeli, but my experience has been the opposite.

    Are there any language programs designed especially to teach Israeli Hebrew to people who know Biblical? I know there are courses that do the opposite. But I tell myself if I had access to such a course or such a method I might have some success.

  • no, el antiguo testamento fue escrito en hebreo. el nuevo testamento fue escrito en griego. hablo de los originales. no de las traducciones como la septuaginta, que es una traducción griega del hebreo. o la vulgata, en latín

  • I do respect the Israelites for reviving their language. Similar efforts are needed to revive sanskrit, one of the most beautiful Indian languages.

  • Can someone link me to his Japanese channel? I can't find it. Or are there just a few random videos in Japanese?

  • I miss further information about the way of implementing Hebrew, how the ancient language was adjusted to the new requirements and so on. You should make an entirely new video about that issue.

  • No where Bengali at all ! I think you don't believe that Bengali is the sweetest language. You can Google it . Bengali doesn't lie . ( Bangali mittha bole naa .)

  • Vowels are not ever written in Hebrew because the Hebrew alphabet doesn't contain vowels, they did however devise a vowel pointing system for vowels in modern Hebrew.

  • It's amazing to see that you are interested in my native language. Thank you.
    Yes, my last name is Rodriguez but it's only because my mom, who is an Israeli, got married to a man from Uruguay.
    I really hope you would make a video about the history of the language from a historical viewpoint like you did with the PIE language and also like you did with many other languages and their similarities to other PIE languages.

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