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Dec 11, 2012

how to say "to overcome" in Hebrew

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The Hebrew root ג.ב.ר (g.b.r) means bravery, heroism, strength, manhood.

In the reflexive-intensive הִתְפַּעֵל verb form, this root yields the word לְהִתְגַּבֵּר .

In Biblical and Mishnaic Hebrew, להתגבר means to overwhelm or to overflow, as in:

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רַבִּי אֶלְעָזָר בֶּן עֲרָךְ, מַעְיָן הַמִּתְגַּבֵּר
Rabbi Elazar ben Arakh (is) like an overflowing spring

In Modern Hebrew, we use להתגבר to mean to overcome.

For example:

הִיא תִּתְגַּבֵּר עַל הַמַּחֲלָה.
She will overcome the illness.


הַמַּכַּבִּים הִתְגַּבְּרוּ עַל הַמַּעֲצָמָה הַיְּוָנִית.
The Maccabees overcame the Greek superpower. 

חַג חֲנֻכָּה שָׂמֵחַ!
Happy Hanukkah holiday!

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