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on 28 June 2008
The thing I like best about Benner's slim volume is that its very logical, and goes quite slowly and methodically, introducing you not only to the characters of the Hebrew alphabet a few at a time, with plenty of exercises to practice reading both consonants and vowel marks, but also gives useful vocab and notes on how words are constructed. The key here is the system of root words, to which suffixes and prefixes are added to make more complex words - I enjoy this approach to language, though it might seem a little cryptic to someone expecting word for word translations and lots of vocab lists.

Its maybe not the only Hebrew book you should buy, but is a fascinating start point, and the fact you have all the words and even the first part of Genesis transliterated makes double-checking you've got the hang of the letters a simple task. With tables of common roots and lists of prefixes and basic grammar notes this is an ideal reference work as well as a friendly road into a fascinating but complex language. Highly recommended.
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on 18 June 2017
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on 3 August 2017
To complicated to understand
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on 18 July 2007
I knew nothing about Hebrew, but this book enabled me to quickly read and understand the start of Genesis 1. Although this book is small it is laid out in such a way that you learn the basics quickly and remain enthusiastic. However, after this great start you will undoubtedly need another book to continue your study.
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on 29 April 2009
Having read Jeff Benner's book, "The Ancient Hebrew Language and Alphabet" and enjoyed it immensely, I looked forward to receiving "Learn to Read Biblical Hebrew", especially after working through some lessons listed on his website,
Lessons 1-7 went well, but in lessons 8-11 I was confused?
At this stage, you meet your first bible verse (great excitement!) but suddenly, the translation of the sentences and the explanation of the grammar etc stops abruptly? I even went to the website to see if a few pages of the book might have been left out?
If you are studying with a teacher, they can, of course, give you the needed information (and correct some of the typos) but as a beginner teaching myself, I found it strange.
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on 19 March 2008
I'm not a language expert and taking on a new language with a new script at the same time left me understandably daunted. Jeff Benner's book promises much and makes a good start. I have worked reasonably hard, learning the vocabulary and trying to learn to recognise words. And it's taken concentration but not genius.

I think a first simple note. If you want to learn, get yourself on an introductory course so there's someone ask if things are going pear-shaped.

However, there seems to be at least one glaring omission in the book. The first being that all the vocabulary you need isn't there. And it changes slightly in context which isn't explained as it happens. Hence i managed to get to the stage of reading bits of Genesis, only to find that vocab i'd never come across before kept leaping onto the page. Which made my stumbling along get even slower.

Another point is that the 'Notes' on the vocab come after the exercises. If you buy the book, remember to read the notes before you try the exercises - if not you'll get stuck. In addition there appear to be a few typing mistakes which, if you're reading a new language in a new script, are never helpful.

I've got myself a new book which i will work through. Thanks Jeff for the start, but i need something which is a bit more logical.
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on 1 August 2005
If you've got an interest in learning Biblical Hebrew, I can't recommend this book highly enough as a beginning. It makes learning the letters of the "alephbeyt" their prounciation so simple. Then you can start building the vocabulary. You really will be reading and understanding sections of scripture in days! I mean there are a couple of typing errors but otherwise the book is perfect and straightforward and the author keeps it a simple as possible. The beauty of the hebrew language shines through from the outset. Following this book I recommend "The Cambridge Biblical Hebrew Workbook." Try them, you'll not believe how simple it is start reading the scriptures in the language God inspired them to be written in!
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on 8 November 2009
I bought this book to go with the Tanakh I had purchased,
It is good, simple to read, and yes I did find I could remember and
recognise simple phrases and words in the Tanakh as a result.

However a book cant replace actually hearing the language spoken

But its a good starting point.
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on 28 November 2013
Of all the Hebrew manuals I have tried, I have found this the most accessible. It takes the beginner through easy stages yet offers an overview which helps make sense of complex things such as verbs. It is not intimidating in length, having only 120 pages, yet leads quickly from basic recognition of letters and sounds to the whole of Genesis chapter 1 in Hebrew and a phonetic transliteration, so a beginner is given the means of reading the whole chapter aloud. This gives an encouraging sense of achievement. There is a lot in this book, it can doubtless be used by a student wishing to grasp the basic concepts of Hebrew swiftly. I prefer taking it in slowly, as there are many levels to be accessed with such an approach. Reading it repeatedly and developing an understanding of what is very different about the way language is used in Hebrew takes time but is enjoyable with this book, it is in no way just a grammar manual..
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on 26 March 2013
I have had this as a library book & wanted my own copy to learn at my own speed. If you want an intro to learning Biblical Hebrew, this is a good book to have on your shelf.
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