Friday, March 22, 2024

The Hebrew verb ילד (yalad) means "to give birth, to bear," and is sometimes translated as "to beget." The noun form of the same spelling, yeled (ילד), means "boy, male child."

1 Samuel 1:20 provides a good example of the fundamental meaning of ילד (yalad): "In due time Hannah conceived and bore (ותלד) a son. She named him Samuel." However, the use of ילד (yalad) is not restricted just to the act of giving birth. In Genesis 17:17, ילד (yalad) occurs in reference to both Abraham and Sarah’s role in bearing a child: "Then Abraham fell on his face and laughed, and said to himself, 'Can a child be born (יולד) to a man who is a hundred years old? Can Sarah, who is ninety years old, bear a childלד)'?" The verb ילד (yalad) also appears frequently in genealogical lists and in these instances is commonly translated as "became a father to," or "fathered," or simply as "had." An example of this formulaic usage can be seen in Genesis 5:25–26: "When Methuselah had lived one hundred eighty-seven years, he became the fatherיולד) of Lamech. Methuselah lived after the birthולידו) of Lamech seven hundred eighty-two years, and hadיולד) other sons and daughters."