Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Jewish Milk

I once saw an article about חלב ישראל and decided to post this. A friend of mine pointed out to me once that the common pronunciation of this term, Cholov Yisroel, is actually incorrect. Due to סמיכות (which I'm not 100% certain of, see comments) it should be chaleiv Yisrael as in לא תבשל גדי בחלב אמו. I've always wanted to try some funny "proper דקדוק" social experiments - like have everyone use that term in public and see what kind of reactions you get, and the one I suggested on another occasion.

13 comments:

Mikeage said...

Is cholov yisroel an attempt at smichut -- cholov shel yisroel, or is it cholov [noun] [missing words indicated supervised by a] yisroel?

After all, it's not really the milk of a Jew... it's cow milk!

Isaac said...

That vowelization is not the only mispronunciation commonly perpetrated on that phrase. Typically, people accent both words on the penultimate syllable instead of on the final one, and they slur the second and third syllables of "Yisroel" into one, yielding "yisRUL," thus eliding the instance of God's name that's embedded in the word.

If you go around in yeshivish circles saying "choLOV yisroEIL," you'll get almost as many funny looks as you would with the fully correct "choLEIV yisroEIL."

Dick Duke said...

A friend of mine once pointed out to me that the greeting commonly used on Shabbos - "Good SHAbbos" - is incorrect. It should be "Good ShaBBOS".
Another friend pointed out that the holiday commonly referred to as "Rosh HaSHAna" is incorrect. It should be "Rosh HashaNA".

Mikeage said...

Almost all speakers of Ashkenozis put the emphasis on the wrong syllable.

If you want to talk about Shabbos, you should consider that Shabbos is correct, but Shabbos Kodesh is not. It's Shabbas Kodesh [with a patach under the bet -- smichut]. It's Shabbas Kodesh, not Shabbos Kadosh [or K'dosha; Shabbos can be both masculine or feminine, but usually feminine]

Shtikler said...

Honestly, I wouldn't get too wrapped about accents in conversational Hebrew. I think mispronunciations are a little more of an issue. (Incidentally, ever notice that one of the words most often mispronounced is pronunciation?) Now Shabbas is one that most people miss, for example, when they're titling a special Shabbos like Shabbas Shuva. Check out this post I wrote about שבת הגדול and with regards to its pronunciation.

Shtikler said...

Oh, and by the way - Dick Duke - love the name!

fabrice said...

From Philippe, a friend of mine :
An other common mistake is the type of restaurant : 'halavi or Bassari (Sorry, I am a sefaradic jew). The voyel under the 'het of 'halavi is cheva-pata'h which is not a real voyel but replace a cheva na' under 'het, 'ain or Aleph (gutural letter). Consequently, the good terme for Bassari is Bessari (with cheva at the beginning of the word)

Michael Koplow said...

Dick Duke, like Shtikler, I like your pseudonym. I'm partial to Ichabod Chrain as well.

I'm not sure I agree with the substance of your remarks, though. These are based on Yiddish pronunciations, not Hebrew. If anything here is definitely being mispronounced, it's "gut."

Having said that, the most annoying pronunciation, to me, is "CHA-nukah." The vowel under the chet is a chataf--in Hebrew not only is it not accented, it can't be accented. The correct Yiddish pronunciation should be accented on the nun. But language doesn't care about my opinion.

ELIE said...

ראיתי מחבר ספר מנוקד על כשרות שהוא מציין בפתיחה לפרק על חלב ישראל שע"פ דקדוק צ"ל חֲלֵב
אבל כיון שמנהג העולם לומר חָלָב כך הוא מדפיס

Dan - Israeli Uncensored News said...

Why is it a smihut?

Anonymous said...

see radak dum naki no smichus dum shehoo nako

mirskym said...

And of course, there's the famous mispronunciation of shiluach haken

meir said...

לֹא־תְבַשֵּל גְּדִי בַּחֲלֵב אִמּוֹ׃