BBC 4, 2009
Welcome to the Self-Access Centre materials database
The SAC is here to provide you with opportunities to study Hebrew outside class time. If you need advice and guidance on what to study, you should talk to your class tutor, who will help you identify your strengths and weaknesses and make recommendations on what to study.
A bit about the language
Hebrew (עִבְרִית) is a Semitic language of the Afro-Asiatic language family. Culturally, it is considered a Jewish language. Hebrew in its modern form is spoken by many of the seven million people in Israel, while Classical Hebrew has been used for prayer or study in Jewish communities around the world for over two thousand years. It is one of the official languages of Israel, along with Arabic. As a foreign language it is studied mostly by Jews and students of Judaism and Israel, archaeologists and linguists specializing in the Middle East and its civilizations, by theologians, and in Christian seminaries.
The core of the Tanakh (the Hebrew Bible) is written in Classical Hebrew, and much of its present form is specifically the dialect of Biblical Hebrew that scholars believe flourished around the 6th century BCE, around the time of the Babylonian exile. For this reason, Hebrew has been referred to by Jews as "The Holy Tongue", since ancient times.