אין

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dcx97

Banned
Hindi - India
Hello,

An Israeli asked me, "מה חדש?" (What's new?)
I replied, "אין חדש." (There is nothing new.)
He said he couldn't understand me. I kept repeating myself, and eventually he figured out what I was trying to say.
He told me the word אין is pronounced "en" and rhymes with כן (yes), and that I was wrong to pronounce it "eyn". However, my textbook says it is pronounced "eyn" and gives no other pronunciation. What do you guys think?

Thanks in advance.
 
  • shalom00

    Senior Member
    English - US
    Yes. When you write "eyn", how do you mean that it is pronounced? I read "eyn" as a long "a" sound, same as אין and כן.
    Am I missing something?
     

    dcx97

    Banned
    Hindi - India
    That's exactly what they're saying. They go on to say that אין should not rhyme with "peine".
     

    shalom00

    Senior Member
    English - US
    I understood the French to say it should not be pronounced neither like veille nor like peine.
    I also think the difference between them is minor.
     

    shalom00

    Senior Member
    English - US
    I really don't think the difference is significant.
    I think the difference between people with different accents or who come from different places is more significant.
     

    dcx97

    Banned
    Hindi - India
    If the difference were not significant I don't think my textbook would have gone out of its way to point it out.
     

    Drink

    Senior Member
    English - New England, Russian - Moscow
    The question is also who is speaking. Roughly speaking, older Ashkenazi speakers will say "eyn", while Sephardi speakers and younger Ashkenazi speakers will say "en".
     

    dcx97

    Banned
    Hindi - India
    I see. I guess the "ey" sound is gradually disappearing, at least in the colloquial language. I remember listening to an old recording of Hebrew speakers where they were pronouncing
    איך אומרים...בעברית?
    as
    "eykh omrim (word) beivrit?"

    Nowadays you'll hardly ever hear anyone pronounce the first word as "eykh". Everyone says "ekh". The same thing has happened to אין, I guess.
     

    ystab

    Senior Member
    Hebrew
    The pronunciation of Tsere Male (םֵי) varies as mentioned above. Yet there are some words that modern pronunciation tends to be "ey", like ביצה, שיבה and in construct: בני ישראל, פני מלאך
     

    Ali Smith

    Senior Member
    Urdu - Pakistan
    Can אין (there is no.../il n'y a de...) be used as a substitute for לא (no)?

    אין הנחתום מעיד על עיסתו

    I would have expected הנחתום לא מעיד על עיסתו.
     

    Drink

    Senior Member
    English - New England, Russian - Moscow
    In traditional grammar, אין is used to negate nominal predicates (including the active participle used as the present tense of a verb), while לא is used to negate finite verbs (i.e. non-participle forms).

    Example:

    אינני יודע, but לא ידעתי
    אין האיש הזה יכול, but האיש הזה לא יוכל

    In Modern Hebrew, there is a tendency to use לא for both of the above.
     

    Ali Smith

    Senior Member
    Urdu - Pakistan
    Oh, I didn't know that. Thank you!
    But why didn't the author place אין between הנחתום and מעיד?
     

    Drink

    Senior Member
    English - New England, Russian - Moscow
    As in my examples, אין must come before the subject, or be suffixed with a pronoun. Both of the following work:

    - אין הנחתום מעיד
    - הנחתום איננו/אינו מעיד
     
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