Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Answer vs. Torture

(כ"ב:כ"ב)
אִם עַנֵּה תְעַנֶּה אתוֹ

(כ"ג:ב)
וְלא תַעֲנֶה עַל רִב לִנְטת

If the two פסוקים above are read without vowels, it appears the same word appears both times. However, they are clearly two separate words. תְעַנֶּה means to torture. תַעֲנֶה means to answer. Keep an ear out for this one - it's easy to miss.

Thanks to ba in the comments, here is a nice list of words in תנ"ך that are the same but different.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Mildly interesting. But there are lots of homonyms In the Bible. As the Fox said the mailman, context, my dear, is everything.

DF

ba said...

There are quite a few of these. The Ibn Ezra (to BeReishis 2:25 and — in our parshah — Shemos 22:5) quotes a few of them. (I have already copied them in this answer on Mi Yodeya. http://judaism.stackexchange.com/a/21917/1569)