Ayin (ע) Old Testament Hebrew words that start with ayin

Quick reference

Hebrew Name:
English Name:
ah-yin (gutteral)
Speech Sound:
Numerical Value:

Pronunciation guide

The Hebrew letter Ayin is a bit challenging for some to pronounce, as it represents a sound not found in English. It’s a voiced pharyngeal fricative, which means it’s a gutteral sound that comes from deep in the throat. It can be approximated by the sound of the “ha” in “a-ha!” While Ayin itself isn’t a vowel, it often supports vowel sounds written underneath or inside it (niqqud).

Numerical significance

Ayin has a numerical value of 70 in the Hebrew numbering system (Gematria). The number 70 is traditionally considered the number of nations in the world (see Genesis 10), the number of scholars who translated the Hebrew Bible into Greek for Septuagint (LXX), and it’s associated with wisdom and insight, perhaps due to the 70 elders appointed by Moses in the Bible in .

Cultural and symbolic meaning

Historically, the letter Ayin is believed to have originated from a pictogram of an eye in ancient Semitic languages, which is fitting since “ayin” also means “eye” in Hebrew (), symbolizing perception and awareness.