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Count On It

[Reposted from my The Glamour of the Grammar column for the Jerusalem Post]

Numbers pop up in the most amazing places. Today we’ll look at a few. And we’ll start with one of the Hebrew words for “few,” because almost paradoxically it’s the plural of the word for “one.” One way to say “a few words” is milim ahadot, literally, “words ones.” While in the singular, “one” means “one,” in the plural it means “some.” Leave it to Hebrew to have a plural for “one.”

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Categories: Hebrew Grammar
  1. October 22, 2011 at 11:57 pm

    Spanish and Portuguese, too, have a plural for “one” — “unos/unas” in Spanish, “ums/umas” in Portuguese — and, as in Hebrew, it means “some” or “a few.”

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