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Abarim Publications' Biblical Dictionary: The Hebrew word: מהר

Source: http://www.abarim-publications.com/Dictionary/m/m-he-r.html

Abarim Publications' online Biblical Hebrew Dictionary

מהר

There are two roots of the form מהר (mahar), which don't seem too related:


מהר I

The verb מהר (mahar I) means to hasten or be quick (in cognate languages it means to be skilled or trained). It's used in pretty much the same way as we use our verb to hasten (Genesis 18:8, 2 Samuel 15:14, Esther 5:5).

Its derivatives are:

  • The adjective מהר (maher), meaning speedy or swift (1 Samuel 23:22, Zephaniah 1:14 only).
  • The identical adverb מהר (maher), meaning quickly. This adverb appears always directly after a verb (Exodus 32:8, Judges 2:17, Proverbs 25:8).
  • The adjective מהיר (mahir), meaning quick or skilled (Ezra 7:6, Isaiah 16:5).
  • The feminine noun מהרה (mehera), meaning haste or speed (Joshua 8:19, 2 Kings 1:11, Jeremiah 27:16).
מהר II

The root מהר (mahar II) isn't used as verb in the Bible but in Assyrian a similar verb occurs with the meaning of to send and a derivative meaning a gift, and in Arabic occurs a comparable verb that means to give a dowry. In the Bible this root is manifested in the following words:

  • The masculine noun מהר (mohar), which denotes the purchasing price of a wife (Genesis 34:12, Exodus 22:16, 1 Samuel 18:25).
  • The denominative verb מהר (mahar), meaning to acquire by paying the purchase price (Psalm 16:4, Exodus 22:15 only).

Associated Biblical names