Definitions

Here are some definitions you may need,  to help you understand what I’m talking about.  If I do not define a word, try here first.  If you still don’t understand, then try posting a note.

    Afatsa
    Gallnuts or Oak galls forms in young oak leaves around gall wasp larvae. The larvae produce a chemical that causes the growth. The gall will provide shelter and food for the wasp larvae. The oak galls are high in tanic acid, and thus perfect for making ink.
    Amud
    a column of text.
    Bayit – בית
    the housing for the tefillin and also the name given the container for the mezuzah. Lit. house (plural. batim).
    Berakha
    a blessing (plural. brakhot)
    Devarim – דברימ
    means “words”, and is one of the first words in the book often called Deuteronomy, this is the fifth book of the Torah.
    D’yo
    - special black ink made from gallnuts and vitriol for use in sofrut.
    Ets Khayim
    means tree of life. We see the phrase used in Genesis, but this word for sofers is applied to the wooden rollers and the spindle of a scroll. The plural is atsey chayim (trees of life). The words of life are wrapped around the tree of life.
    Gassot
    housings of tefillin made from thick leather, usually the neck of the animal.
    Giddin
    threads made from animal sinew from the thigh or foot used for sewing in sofrut.
    Halakhah
    Jewish law, derived from the root ‘to walk’ as it the path one should follow.
    Hefsek
    an interruption between intending to do something (eg reciting a blessing) and carrying out that action.
    Kankatum
    vitriol, used in ink, usually iron or copper sulphate.
    Kesidran
    the requirement for letters and passages to be written in order in teffilin and mezuzot.
    Ketivah tamah
    the requirement for each letter to be formed according to the laws and have its proper shape.
    khok Tochot
    The law requiring every letter to be formed by writing only and not through the act of erasure or scraping out.  Only certain acts of scraping are permissible.
    khol
    unholy, secular or profane.  In sofrut usually used in relation to those words that are the same as one of God’s names but do not mean God (eg they may refer to other things people refer to as gods).
    Kuzo
    kabbalistic writing found upside down on the reverse of a mezuzah.
    L’shem k’dushat
    or the sake of the holiness.  To be expressly verbalised by the scribe before starting work on, eg hareni kotev l’shem kdushat mezuzah (I am writing for the sake of the holiness of the mezuzah)
    L’shem k’dushat Hashem
    for the sake of the holiness of the Name.  To be expressly verbalised before the scribe writes a name of God.
    Lishmah
    the law requiring certain steps of the processes involved in sofrut to be done for the specific purpose of that item.
    Magiah – מגיה
    A Proof Reader
    Magillah – מגילה
    A scroll of parchment containing a biblical story.
    Mezuzah – מזוזה
    Means doorpost, but is used to describe the passage scripture that is placed on the doorpost.  The passage is from Deuteronomy 6:4-9 and Deuteronomy 11:13-21. (plural is mezuzot).
    Mitsvah
    a commandment (plural. mitsvot)
    Mukaf g’vil
    the law requiring each letter to be completely surrounded on all sides by parchment.
    Parsha
    passage from the torah used in tefillin and mezuzot (plural. parshiyot).
    Qlaf
    Parchment, writing surface made from animal skin that has been scraped, treated with lye to remove the hair, stretched, and sanded. The skin is split into two pieces, and the skin or outer side is what is what is recommended.
    Shabbat
    the sabbath, the seventh day of the week, the day יהוה rested, and the day he commanded Israel to rest on. Exodus 20:8-11
    Shemot – שמות
    Exodus, the second book of the Torah. The word Shemot means names. The book starts with a list of names of those who came down to Egypt with Israel their father.
    Shaday – שדי
    one of the names of God on the reverse of a mezuzah and also formed by various parts of the tefillin.
    Shin – שין
    the twenty-first letter of the Hebrew alphabet and a feature on the head tefillin.
    Sid
    lime or limestone solution for removing hair from skins.
    Sirtut
    guidelines ruled onto the parchment with a sargel to enable the scribe to write in straight lines.
    Sefer – סיפר
    Book
    Sofer – סופר
    Scribe. Sofer literally means to count and our modern day word cypher comes from this Hebrew word.  A sofer counts and takes count of the letters to make sure , the copy he is making, is exactly right.
    STAM
    This is an acronym that stands for :

    Tanakh

    This is an acronym (TNK or תנכ) that stands for:

    Teffillin
    - A leather box that contains scriptures that is tied to a persons head during the time of prayer. The use of the Teffallin is based on Deuteronomy 11:18.
    Tefirot
    stitching to join sheets together or close the tefillin housing.
    Tikkun
    Master source for all Sefer Torahs. The Tikkun is also used to practice reading. There are two columns on each screen, the one on the left is just the way the Sefer Torah will look. The one on the Right is the Hebrew text with the Vowel marks
    Torah – תורה
    The five books of Moshe (Moses). Genesis, Exodus, Leveticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. Some Jewish writings would use this term to also include the oral traditions, that where codified in the works know as the Talmud. These instructions are often called the Oral Torah.
    Yirei shamayim
    one who fears heaven.
    Yeriah – יריעה
    a sheet of parchment. The Hebrew word also means curtain.
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