[Avodah] Who knows "eleven"?

Micha Berger micha at aishdas.org
Sun Jul 11 12:12:15 PDT 2021

On Sat, Jul 10, 2021 at 10:52:07PM -0400, Akiva Miller via Avodah wrote:
> Three times (Bereshis 32:23, Bereshis 37:9, Devarim 1:2) it appears as
> "achad asar".
> Three times (Bamidbar 7:72, Bamidbar 29:20, Devarim 1:3) it appears as
> "ashtay asar".

A place to possibly start. "Ashtei asar" most literally refers to the
number after 10. Ashtei is the semitic root that gives us "shtayim". To
the extent that many hold that the sheva in "shtei" is nach, an exception
to the rule for the sheva on the first letter, a legacy of the missing

Knowing that "echad asar" is the usual name for a number, whereas "ashtei
asar" talks about 11 as "the second after ten" would at least allow you
to reframe the question, even if the question seems just as difficult.

I noticed something else in Devarim 1:2-3. "Achad asar yom" is a duration,
"there are 11 days [travel] from Choreiv via the Har Seir route, until
Qadeish Barneia".

But "it was the fortieth year in the elevenTH month..." An ordinal, not
cardinal number. So, maybe "ashtei asar -- after-tenth" is particularly
ordinal? First, second, third ... tenth, after-tenth, twelfth....


Micha Berger                 Zion will be redeemed through justice,
http://www.aishdas.org/asp   and her returnees, through righteousness.
Author: Widen Your Tent
- https://amzn.to/2JRxnDF

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