My Jewish Learning

Jewish Languages Quiz

From Hebrew to Aramaic, Ladino, Yiddish, and Judaeo-Arabic--how much do you know about the languages that Jews spoke in the past and continue to speak today?

Question 1. Who developed a vocabulary for modern Hebrew by incorporating words from ancient and medieval Hebrew, in addition to creating new words?
 Mendele Mokher Seforim
 Eliezer ben Yehuda
 Moses Mendelssohn


Question 2. What do the Hebrew letters khaf, mem, nun, pey, and tzade have in common?
 They are all hard to pronounce for non-native Hebrew speakers
 They are all considered late additions to the Hebrew alphabet
 They are all written differently when they are at the end of a word
 They are the most common letters in the Tanakh


Question 3. What language is the Book of Daniel written in?


Question 4. Who designed Israel's official seal and its first postage stamp, as well as the fonts for the first original edition of the Hebrew Bible published in Israel?
 Eliyahu Koren
 Ismar David
 Zvi Narkis
 Daniel Bomberg


Question 5. Where did Yiddish originate?
 The Soviet Union


Question 6. Which of these is NOT mostly Hebrew?
 The Bible
 The Jewish liturgy
 The Mishnah
 The Gemara


Question 7. Which of these Jewish thinkers berates modern Jews for neglecting the Hebrew language and, in so doing, becoming Jewishly illiterate?
 Leon Wieseltier
 Jenna Weissman Joselit
 Joseph Soloveitchik
 Abraham Geiger


Question 8. In the Middle Ages, Hebrew was used primarily for what?
 Day-to-day conversations
 Written correspondence
 Ritual and religious purposes
 None of the above


Question 9. True or false: In the time of the Mishnah, Hebrew was the language for scholarship, but most Jewish people spoke Aramaic.


Question 10. True or false: Ashkenazic and Sephardic Hebrew differ in pronunciation, but are identical in written form.