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Jul 16, 2013

how to say "to fast" in Hebrew, and how to conjugate it

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Today, many Jews the world over are fasting in observance of תִּשְׁעָה בְּאָב ( listen and repeat)- the Ninth of Av (here's an article with information about the day).

The Hebrew word for to fast is לָצוּם 
( listen and repeat), an active-simple פָּעַל verb of the root צ.ו.מ (ts.w.m). Since ו is a weak letter that tends to drop off in some words, לצום's conjugations follow a special pattern, which you can find here.

Here are a couple examples of the verb in action:

אַתֶּם צָמִים טוֹב בְּדֶרֶךְ כְּלָל?
Do you (plural) fast well, generally?

בַּשָּׁנָה הַבָּאָה גַּם אֲנִי אָצוּם.
Next year I'll also fast.

A fast is a צוֹם ( listen and repeat).

by Ami SteinbergerFounder and Director, Ulpan La-Inyan
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