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Lesson Transcript

Shalom, ani Yana. Hi everybody! I’m Yana.
Welcome to HebrewPod101.com’s “Ivrit be-shalosh dakot”. The fastest, easiest, and most fun way to learn Hebrew.
In the last lesson, we learned how to ask "Where" questions in Hebrew.
This time, we are going to ask questions with the interrogative word "When?".
Let’s go! Bou nathil!
Imagine you want to ask when your roommate is coming back home. You will ask him Matai ata hozer? Or, Matai at hozeret?.
[slowly] Matai ata hozer?
[slowly] Matai at hozeret?
So let’s break down this answer:
First we had:
Matai, which is the basic translation of "When" in Hebrew.
Ata/at- you
Lahzor is the verb "to come back", Hozer in Hebrew is the form for masculine singular. And Hozeret is the same verb in the form of feminine singular.
So, all together it is Matai ata hozer?
Matai at hozeret?
"When will you come back/return?".
So in Hebrew, "When" is generally translated as the word Matai. For example, if you want to ask "When were you born?" It’s Matai noladeta? in masculine form. And
Matai noladet? in feminine form.
Also here, the question word is the first in the sentence.
So let’s have a look at another example:
How can you say "When did you arrive?"
It is really simple since it is exactly the same pattern: Matai higata? in masculine form.
Matai higat? in feminine form.
First we have Matai which is "When"
The verb Higata/higat indicates past tense second person.
By the way, the verb in the previous question for `when were you born` is also in past tense.
Can you notice some patterns on second person past-tense verbs in Hebrew?
Regardless of time- present, future or past, you can use Matai in any tense.
If you want to ask a question about duration as in "Since when have you been teacher?" Then you will have to say Mi-matai ata melamed? Or, Mi-matai at melamedet?
Direct translation of mi-matai- is `from when`.
It is the same Mi-- as Me-eifo- from where.
As in- me-eifo ata? me-eifo at?
Ani mi-america.
Let’s see how to ask "Until when?" in Hebrew. It is very easy as you can translate it directly. It becomes: Ad matai?
So for example, if you want to ask a friend "Until when are you going to stay here?" It will be Ad matai ata nish`ar po? Ad matai at nish`eret po?
You can detect easily by now which one refers to a female speaker and which one to a male.
But of course there are other ways to ask about time. You can even be more specific by asking about the year, the date or the hour.
For example, you can ask:
- "Which year did you start working?" -
Be-eizo shana hithalta laavod?
Be-eizo shana hithalt laavod?
- "Which day is better for you?"
will be
Be-eize yom noah leha?
Be-eize yom noah lah?
- "What hour can we meet?"
Be-eizo shaa nuhal lehipagesh?
Here, `we` can be used both for masculine or feminine.
Now it’s time for Yana’s Insights.
lets try to review all variations of “when” in Hebrew so far;
Matai- “When” Matai ata hozer? matai at hozeret?
Mi-matai- “Since when” Mimatai ata melamed? Mi-matai at melamedet?
Ad Matai- “Until when” Ad matai atem ptuhim?
(Until when are you open? For example, at a shop).
Ok, so in this lesson, we learned how to correctly use the interrogative Hebrew word for "When", Matai- but also its different variations.
Next lesson we’ll learn more about asking questions with "Who" in Hebrew.
I`ll give you a hint! I already introduced it to you couple lessons ago!!
I’ll be waiting for you in the next Ivrit be-shalosh dakot


Please to leave a comment.
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HebrewPod101.com Verified
Friday at 06:30 PM
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Hi listeners! When did you come back home today?

Tuesday at 12:04 PM
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Thanks a lot for your reply Lena!

HebrewPod101.com Verified
Monday at 12:52 PM
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Hello Liz,

Thank you for your question.

Please check the following lessons (Lesson Notes PDF).

Past tense:






Future tense:





Team HebrewPod101.com

Tuesday at 07:58 AM
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Thanks a lot for your reply Roi!

Which lessons are related to past tense and future tense?



HebrewPod101.com Verified
Tuesday at 12:58 AM
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Hello Liz,

Thanks for posting!

Yes - you are correct - it does have something to do with the ending. since the information about the person is already present in the verb, adding "you" (at/ata) will be redundant here, and would sound to Hebrew speakers as if you said "when did you you arrive"

The same happens in the future tense as well - when would you go = מתי תלך (matai telekh)

I hope it's clearer now,



Team HebrewPod101.com

Monday at 08:31 AM
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I noticed that in the past tense questions (e.g. “Matai noladeta/noladet?” or “Matai higata/higat?”) the pronoun (“ata/at”) is not used. Why so? I guess it´s related to the verb ending…

Should I use the pronoun in the ‘past tense answer’?

Thanks a lot!



HebrewPod101.com Verified
Saturday at 12:52 AM
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Hi Fatima,

Thank you for posting!

Generally speaking, you are absolutely right; a more accurate phrasing would have been ?עד מתי תישאר פה. However, in colloquial speech, the common phrasing would be like in English - "until when *are you staying*?". Good observation!

Regarding נוכל, תוכל, תוכלי - right again, they are different forms of יכול/יכולה, which means "can".

נוכל (nukhal) - "can", plural / first person / future tense = [we will] be able

תוכל (tukhal) - "can", either singular/feminine/third person/future tense ([she will] be able), or singular/masculine/second person/future tense ([you will] be able - to a man)

תוכלי (tukh'li) - singular/feminine/second person/future tense = [you will] be able (to a woman)

I hope my answer is clear enough :sweat_smile:



Team HebrewPod101.com

HebrewPod101.com Verified
Saturday at 12:42 AM
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Hi Giada,

Thank you for posting!

אני חזרתי הביתה בשעה אחת עשרה בבוקר

Good job :wink:



Team HebrewPod101.com

Wednesday at 10:07 PM
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In the sentence where it says till when you will be staying here, should it be

עד מתי אתה תשאר פה, instead of נשאר???

The verb is להשאר to stay

Also can you please explain to me נוכל, תוכל, תוכלי are they different forms of יכול יכולה which means can???

תודה רבה לכם

Monday at 11:41 PM
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אני חזרתי בבית בשעה החד עשר בבוקר

I went back home at eleven o'clock in the morning.

HebrewPod101.com Verified
Monday at 09:04 PM
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Hi Juliana Michelle Oliverio,

Thank you for posting!

הלכתי לראות סרט עם חברים והגעתי הביתה בשעה חמש בערב

Good job :wink:



Team HebrewPod101.com