היה ל‎‎

Sharjeel72

Member
English
Hi again

When היה is followed by the preposition ל does it always mean either to turn into or to belong to?
 
  • Ali Smith

    Senior Member
    Urdu - Pakistan
    No, it can also mean "to serve as". E.g.

    וְאָסַ֣ף ׀ אִ֣ישׁ טָה֗וֹר אֵ֚ת אֵ֣פֶר הַפָּרָ֔ה וְהִנִּ֛יחַ מִח֥וּץ לַֽמַּחֲנֶ֖ה בְּמָק֣וֹם טָה֑וֹר וְ֠הָיְתָ֠ה לַעֲדַ֨ת בְּנֵֽי־יִשְׂרָאֵ֧ל לְמִשְׁמֶ֛רֶת לְמֵ֥י נִדָּ֖ה חַטָּ֥את הִֽוא׃
    (במדבר יט ט)

    And (then) a ceremonially clean man will gather together the ashes of the cow and (then) he will place [the ashes] outside the camp in a ceremonially clean place and then it (the cow) will serve as what is to be held in trust, i.e. waters of impurity for the gathering of the sons of Israel. It (the cow) will be a compensation for the sin.
     

    Drink

    Senior Member
    English - New England, Russian - Moscow
    A more literal translation of that sense would be "to become / come to be" or even just "to be".
     

    Ali Smith

    Senior Member
    Urdu - Pakistan
    Yes, so there are a total of four meanings of היה + ל:

    1. to be for (the literal meaning)
    2. to become/turn into
    3. to belong to
    4. to serve as
     

    Drink

    Senior Member
    English - New England, Russian - Moscow
    What I'm saying is that "serve as" is not really a meaning of this word. It's just an interpretive translation in English.
     

    Ali Smith

    Senior Member
    Urdu - Pakistan
    Yes, the second meaning overlaps.

    Here's an example:

    אֵ֡ת מַחְתּוֹת֩ הַֽחַטָּאִ֨ים הָאֵ֜לֶּה בְּנַפְשֹׁתָ֗ם וְעָשׂ֨וּ אֹתָ֜ם רִקֻּעֵ֤י פַחִים֙ צִפּ֣וּי לַמִּזְבֵּ֔חַ כִּֽי־הִקְרִיבֻ֥ם לִפְנֵֽי־יְהֹוָ֖ה וַיִּקְדָּ֑שׁוּ וְיִֽהְי֥וּ לְא֖וֹת לִבְנֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵֽל׃
    (במדבר יז ג)

    As for the snuff-holders of these men who have sinned at the cost of their lives, may they make them into thin plates of metal for plating of the altar, since they presented them in front of Yahweh and they became holy, and may they become a sign to the sons of Israel.
     

    Abaye

    Senior Member
    Hebrew
    The attempt to assign a specific meaning or meaning-list for a word based on examples is often futile, as the language is flexible and a word can serve different things depending on context, style, etc. And anyway, why not looking in a lexicon? For example, see היה here (not specifically היה ל and yet it demonstrates the concept):
    act (1), administered* (1), allotted (1), am (13), appeared* (1), apply (1), became (85), became his and lived (1), became* (1), become (221), becomes (13), becoming (1), been (90), been done (2), befall (1), befallen (2), being (7), belong (9), belonged (4), belongs (2), brought (1), came (358), came into being (1), came expressly (1), cause (1), caused (1), come (86), come to pass (3), comes (2), comes to pass (1), committed (1), consists (1), continue (6), continued (3), correspond (1), decided* (1), done (4), done* (1), ended* (13), endure (3), event* (1), exhausted (1), existed (3), exists (2), extend (3), extended (3), fall (4), fallen (1), fared (1), fell (1), follow* (1), followed* (1), form (1), gave (1), give (1), go (4), gone (1), grown (1), had (80), had not been (2), had been (1), had belonged (1), had...been (2), happen (11), happened (48), happens (4), has (19), has become (1), has had (1), have (90), have become (6), have...place (1), having (2), held (1), help* (1), indeed (1), keep* (1), lasted (1), lasts (1), lay (2), left (2), lies (1), lived* (1), lives (1), made (3), marry* (4), marrying* (1), numbered (1), occur (7), occurred (3), occurs (3), own (3), placed (1), possessed* (1), present (1), pressed* (1), qualify (2), ran (1), reach (3), reached (1), realized (1), receive (1), received (1), remain (9), remain* (1), remained (6), remained* (1), remains (1), rest (1), rested (1), resulted (1), running (1), seemed* (1), serve (3), show (1), sold (1), surely become (1), surely come (1), surely come to pass (1), sustains (1), take (1), take place (3), taken (1), taken place (1), time (1), took place (4), turn (1), turn* (1), turned (4), use (1), used (3), waited (1), wear (1), went (1).
     

    JAN SHAR

    Senior Member
    pashto
    Abaye, the lexicon gives many meanings but specifically what meanings does haya followed by le have other than to become/turn into? I don't think there are any other meanings.
     
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