Friday, January 5, 2024

The Hebrew noun לחם (leḥem, pronounced LE-ḥem) is the Biblical Hebrew word for "bread," but also carries the basic meaning of solid food. Bread was an essential staple within the ancient diet, providing a significant percentage of daily caloric intake. While you will often see לחם (leḥem) translated simply as "bread" as in Genesis 18:5: "Let me bring a little bread (לחם), that you may refresh yourselves," it is also used more broadly to convey the meaning of "food," as in Genesis 39:6: "He had no concern for anything but the food (לחם) that he ate.” It is also a component in the name of the famous town, Bethlehem (בית לחם) , which in Hebrew literally means "house of bread."