The Hebrew Language


Hebrew is one of the two official languages of the State of Israel and it is also understood and spoken by many Jewish people scattered throughout the world. For the majority of the last 2,000 years, as Jews dispersed to various parts of the world, Hebrew was primarily used in prayer and as the written language of the Jewish community. Although this kept the Hebrew language in use, spoken Hebrew began to decline as Jewish communities adopted the spoken languages of the locations where they settled.

As Jews began immigrating to Palestine towards the end of the nineteenth century, interest in Hebrew as a spoken language was revived as part of the Zionist movement. Hebrew was updated and adapted for modern use and when the State of Israel was established in 1948, Modern Hebrew was also firmly established as a world language. Perhaps in your people search you have found Jewish ancestors and would like to know more about Hebrew. Or maybe you’re planning to travel to Israel and would like to know of a few phrases of Hebrew or learn the Hebrew alphabet before you go. You can find everything you ever wanted to know about the Hebrew language right here.

The Hebrew Alphabet

The Hebrew Alphabet: an introduction to the basics of the Hebrew alphabet

Hebrew Letters: an interactive way to learn the letters of the Hebrew alphabet

Hear the Hebrew Alphabet: a pronunciation tutorial, simply click on each letter to hear the sound it makes

Ancient Hebrew Resource Center: a step-by-step guide to writing each Hebrew letter

1, 2, 3: Counting and Numbers

Hebrew Numbers: a complete explanation of the Hebrew numbering system

The Hebrew Numbering System: covers the ancient Hebrew numbering system still used in dates

Useful Words

Computer Terminology: a useful page of Hebrew computer terms

Hebrew Question Words: every word you might need to form a question

Verbs and Their Conjugation

Learn Hebrew Verbs: covers the conjugation of 355 common Hebrew verbs

Overview of Hebrew Verbs: explains the structure of Hebrew verbs

Vocabulary, Exercises and Tutorials

Aleph-Bet: 10 lessons covering vocabulary and simple phrases

Hebrew Language Tutorials: beginning and intermediate tutorials and flashcards

Learn Hebrew with Audio and Pictures: an online English-Hebrew picture dictionary

Hebrew Lessons Online: resources for learning useful words for colors, counting and days of the week

Audio Hebrew Vocabulary: an extensive list of Hebrew audio vocabulary files

Hebrew Exercises: entertaining and interactive exercises to help you learn Hebrew

Hebrew Phrases

Hebrew Video Clips: many videos covering helpful phrases the might arise in common situations

Learn Hebrew Phrases: many useful phrases covering months, food and parts of the body

Hebrew Phrase Glossary: a few common Hebrew phrases and expressions with pronunciations

Hebrew and Yiddish Expressions and Greetings: a few common Hebrew and Yiddish expressions for holidays or everyday

Complete Hebrew Courses Online

Online Hebrew Tutorial: a free, extensive online course covering most aspects of Hebrew grammar

FSI Hebrew Course: the complete text and audio files from Foreign Service Institute Hebrew course online