Heblish, less frequently Hebglish or Engbrew,[1] portmanteaux combining the words "Hebrew" and "English", is a slang term for a macaronic combination of the two languages, or code-switching between them in the same conversation or writing. This may be as a result of poor knowledge of one language or the other or both, or may be usage for introducing a humorous effect.

Hebglish usually consists of either filling in gaps in one's knowledge of Hebrew with English words, speaking Hebrew in such a manner that (although ostensibly "Hebrew") would be incomprehensible to a Hebrew language speaker who does not also have a working knowledge of English.

It is also used in bilingual songs in Hebrew and English for appealing to audiences not proficient in Hebrew within Israel or internationally.

Other terms are used, some connecting with Yiddish rather than with Hebrew, and code-switching may be for representation of religious or cultural affiliation in speech, rather than language transfer reasons.[2]

See also


  1. Joel Lurie Grishaver 40 things you can do to save the Jewish people Alef Design Group, 1993. ISBN, 1881283046, 9781881283041 p148 "Joel's Nineteenth Law: Said in the name of Rabbi Yosi Gordon: Be an advocate of Hebglish (or if you prefer, Engbrew), the new "Yiddish" which is emerging around English rather than German. Use as many real Hebrew nouns in your English conversation as possible. So let's talk about our version of "Eskimo Snow." While we know that all "Jewish" (Hebrew) words are good because they enhance identity and transmit culture, building a tikkun olam vocabulary is a triple whammy. a. It does all the "cultural uniqueness" stuff. Having a Jewish language.. "
  2. ed. Walt Wolfram, Ben Ward American voices: how dialects differ from coast to coast Walden / Blackwell 9781405121095; 2002, 2006 Page 251 "Yinglish, Yidgin English, Yidlish, Yiddiglish, Ameridish, Anglish, Heblish, Engdish, Engliddish, Engbrew, Englibrew, Jewish English, Jewish Dialect, Frumspeak, Yeshivish, Hebonics: all of these terms have been used to name a variety of English spoken by Jews in the United States. ... those who identify closely with religious and cultural aspects of Jewish life often represent their affiliation in speech."
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