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A conjunctive waw or vav conjunctive (Hebrew: ?' vav hakhivur) is the use of Hebrew vav (letter) as a conjunction to join two parts of speech. It is distinct from waw-consecutive which is a verb construction.

Conjunction of two nouns

Primarily two nouns may be joined by conjunctive vav without equation, for example Moshe v-Aron ("Moses and Aaron"). Conjunctive vav may however indicate hendiadys where two nouns are equated. An example is found in two examples from Leviticus 25 where the nouns ger "stranger," and toshav "sojourner," are joined by conjunctive waw and usually construed as a hendiadys. However, in Numbers 35:15, each noun is accompanied by the repeated prepositional prefix lo- "to," as in "to-the stranger and (vav) to-the sojourner," which indicates two distinct concepts.[1]

Conjunction of two verbs

Waw-conjunctive may also be used or omitted between two verbs. In imperative sentences such as "sit and wait" the use of the waw between the two verbs is particularly common in maskilic literature, but there are no clear cut semantic considerations regulating the use of vav conjunctive.[2]


  1. ^ Jeffrey Stackert Rewriting the Torah: literary revision in Deuteronomy and the Holiness Legislation Mohr Siebeck (9783161492983) 2007 Page 89/90 footnote "152 In these examples from Lev 25, these two nouns are connected by a conjunctive waw and are usually construed as a hendiadys; however, in Num 35:15, each noun is accompanied by the preposition l, suggesting that they are understood as distinct from each other. Toshav also appears in Lev 22: 10; 25:6, 40, 45. Gen 23 attests the unparalled.. "
  2. ^ Lily Kahn The verbal system in late enlightenment Hebrew p271

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