כעוגה בלי הפוכה

JLanguage

Senior Member
USA: American English, Learning Hebrew and Spanish
My dictionary translates that as half-baked. I really don't get that expression.

Here's the context:

כי בלעונו זדים כעוגה בלי הפוכה.
(From the Yom Kippur Martyrology.)

Thanks,
-Jonathan.
 
  • amikama

    a mi modo
    עברית
    JLanguage said:
    My dictionary translates that as half-baked. I really don't get that expression.

    Here's the context:

    כי בלעונו זדים כעוגה בלי הפוכה.
    (From the Yom Kippur Martyrology.)

    Thanks,
    -Jonathan.
    עוגה בלי הפוכה = עוגה לא הפוכה = עוגה חצי-אפויה

    כי בלעונו זדים כעוגה בלי הפוכה = הזדים (=הרשעים) בלעו אותנו כמו שבולעים עוגה חצי-אפויה

    In those days one had to turn over a cake to bake its second side. Hence a cake that wasn't turned over had only one side baked = half-baked cake. And eating a half-baked cake is not a great pleasure...

    Hope it's clear now.
     

    JLanguage

    Senior Member
    USA: American English, Learning Hebrew and Spanish
    amikama said:
    עוגה בלי הפוכה = עוגה לא הפוכה = עוגה חצי-אפויה

    כי בלעונו זדים כעוגה בלי הפוכה = הזדים (=הרשעים) בלעו אותנו כמו שבולעים עוגה חצי-אפויה

    In those days one had to turn over a cake to bake its second side. Hence a cake that wasn't turned over had only one side baked = half-baked cake. And eating a half-baked cake is not a great pleasure...

    Hope it's clear now.
    The half-baked cake idiom doesn't really seem to as morose as the rest of the martyrology. They devoured us like a half-baked cake. It seems like it should be - they devoured us mercilessly or something like that.
     

    utopia

    Senior Member
    Israel, Hebrew
    עוגה בלי הפוכה maybe you all meant - עוגה בלתי הפוכה ???
     

    amikama

    a mi modo
    עברית
    utopia said:
    עוגה בלי הפוכה maybe you all meant - עוגה בלתי הפוכה ???
    That is what I thought at first. But I looked it up in my dictionary and surprisingly it said עוגה בלי הפוכה...

    I've just looked it up in the Bible and found this:
    אֶפְרַיִם, בָּעַמִּים הוּא יִתְבּוֹלָל; אֶפְרַיִם הָיָה עֻגָה, בְּלִי הֲפוּכָה.
    (הושע ז,ח)
     

    JLanguage

    Senior Member
    USA: American English, Learning Hebrew and Spanish
    amikama said:
    That is what I thought at first. But I looked it up in my dictionary and surprisingly it said עוגה בלי הפוכה...

    I've just looked it up in the Bible and found this:
    אֶפְרַיִם, בָּעַמִּים הוּא יִתְבּוֹלָל; אֶפְרַיִם הָיָה עֻגָה, בְּלִי הֲפוּכָה.
    (הושע ז,ח)
    Please excuse my ignorance, but why is בלתי better than בלי?
     

    amikama

    a mi modo
    עברית
    JLanguage said:
    Please excuse my ignorance, but why is בלתי better than בלי?
    בלי means "without" and therefore can't be followed by an adjective (at least in modern Hebrew).
    בלתי means "not".
     

    kopo

    Member
    English - U.S., Russian
    After seeing this phrase in Yom Kippur services today, I also started researching it, and came across this excerpt from A Critical Grammar of the Hebrew Language (1842), Vol II, p. 267, about the uses of בלי in Biblical Hebrew:
    b. Or with a passive participle to intimate a lack of the attribute which it denotes, e.g. בלי משיח בשמן one without (being) anointed with oil, i.e. not anointed, 2 Sam. 1 : 21., עגה בלי הפוכה a cake without (being) turned, i.e. not turned, Hos. 7 : 8., בלי נשמע קולם without their voice (being) heard, i.e. where their voice is not heard, Ps. 19 : 4.
    So apparently such usage is not unheard of.
     

    LXNDR

    Senior Member
    Russian
    And it's unfortunate that such use isn't current as it's much more succinct than the modern phraseology.
     
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