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Hebrew Language/Hebrew words root meaning



There are three Hebrew words used in Genesis 1 that I would like to ask you about if I may. The words are: samayim, erets, and raqiya.

Standard definitions of these words are readily available but that's not what I'm looking for.

I would like to request that your answers remain within specific parameters. The purpose is to understand, as best as possible,  the basic root meaning of each word without the influence of preconceived conclusions.

Therefore, I would like to ask if you could provide the basic root (even abstract) meanings of each word from the perspective that these words are not required to represent physical things, but rather, concepts or even spiritual things.

I understand that samayim probably requires a root meaning that includes (physical) water - and that is fine.

Thank you very much,

Hi Harold,

ארץ is its own root, meaning earth, country, ground. Notice the similarity to Earth.

The root of רקיע is רקע, background, to hammer out, flatten.

As for shamayim, it is the combination of sham (there) and mayim (water).



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What I don't do: NO NAME TRANSLATIONS. For that, try

What I do: I'll help you understand Hebrew phrases or single words, as well as answer questions about Jewish customs and practices.

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I am a columnist for a Hebrew-language newspaper, and a graduate of the Jewish Theological Seminary.

D.Med MBA BA in the US, Grade school and high school in Israel

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