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did tsade ever have a phonetic value /ts/ 16:31, 12 June 2006 (UTC)

Yes. "In modern Hebrew, tzade is pronounced as a voiceless alveolar affricate (IPA: /ʦ/)" СПУТНИКCCC P 21:18, 12 June 2006 (UTC)

Only in modern Hebrew. This is probably from German, where the letter z is sometimes pronounced as ʦ. But the original pronunciation was the same as it is in Arabic.

Ṣādē is the true pronunciation in Sephardic/Miḍhrahi Hebrew, Aramaic and Arabic.[edit]

Tz is from Yiddish which affected Ashkenazi use of Hebrew.

No proof today's pronunciation is wrong[edit]

It has nothing to so with Yiddish pronunciation. Standard Hebrew is based on the traditional Sephardic dialect spoken in Jerusalem, not on Yiddish, as is implied here. Ashkenazi Hebrew pronunciation is in fact highly divergent from modern standard Hebrew. There is a letter in Russian, coming from old Slavonic, which is based directly on the Hebrew letter Tsade, and has the pronunciation 'ts'. There is no evidence that the Arabic pronunciation of the assumed cognate letter is correct, and the Hebrew one incorrect, and the Yemenite pronunciation could just as easily be an Arabized approximation. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 23:37, 19 December 2006 (UTC).

That is a HIGHLY uneducated assessment. There is no TS phoneme in Semitic languages. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 19:40, 1 March 2007 (UTC).
Guess what, Semitic languages are not all about Yiddish and Hebrew. There certainly is a TS phoneme in Ethiopian Semnitic languages, Arabic, and all other branches of Semitic that never even heard of Yiddish. You might want to educate yourself some more first. ፈቃደ (ውይይት) 20:12, 1 March 2007 (UTC)
Guess what, Yiddish is not a Semitic language so you could use a little education yourself and Ethiopian languages were influenced by non-Semitic languages from Africa that may have or had the phoneme.. 21:41, 2 March 2007 (UTC)
I am quite aware of what family Yiddish is in, thanks... My point was that one cannot claim all Semitic languages were influenced by Yiddish, nor have you explained why there isn't a single Semitic langauge anywhere that doesn't have this sound. ፈቃደ (ውይይት) 22:04, 2 March 2007 (UTC)
Neither Aramaic, Arabic, or ancient Hebrew have the TS phoneme. S
Source? ፈቃደ (ውይይት) 18:24, 12 March 2007 (UTC)

Instead of bickering about the sound, bring some academic sources on the subject. For example: שפת אמת by רב בנציון הכהן (ירושלים, תשמ"ז) על מבטא לשון הקודש כהלכה which states that the ts pronunciation pronounced by the Ashkenazi world, has its roots in distinguishing between 4 s-sounds - the tav (sav) ת-רפה, samekh ס, sin שׂ, and (t)sadi צ. (p. 114.) He goes at great length to explain this ts variant, but its pretty clear that the ts sound is a local adaptation, rather than original. However, the ts sound is so similar to a hard-s sound anyway, someone who has been pronouncing the tsadi will invariably end up with a close approximation. He also brings Ashekanzi sources to support his view that it is closer to the samekh (s) sound rather than a germanic z or tz/ts sound. (pp. 123-4) He brings the Tur (Yoreah Deah 84) that calls chometz in reference to Pesach, in the name of his father, hummus (which is a chickpea spread), which has the samekh sound at the end. (p. 124).

To clarify then, the Tzadi is probably closer to the Samekh sound than a tz or ts sound. However, care must be made not to pronounce it like a Samekh (ס). Which is obviously wrong. (cf. p. 150). Dannyza1981 (talk) 19:31, 29 December 2008 (UTC)

 The belief that the ʦ pronunciation of Hebrew ṣade is Sefaradi in origin because Modern Israeli Hebrew pronunciation is based on a Sefaradi model is erroneous. (“Standard Hebrew is based on the traditional Sephardic dialect spoken in Jerusalem, not on Yiddish, as is implied here. Ashkenazi Hebrew pronunciation is in fact highly divergent from modern standard Hebrew.”) In fact, Modern Israeli Hebrew pronunciation is not purely Sefaradi in character but a blend of Sefaradi and Ashkenazi pronunciation. Eliezer Rieger wrote about Modern Israeli Hebrew pronunciation: “[T]he Sephardic pronunciation was not accepted in its entirety by the majority of speakers. In actuality, most Hebrew speakers continue to use the Polish-Russian form of Hebrew pronunciation and merely substitute Patach for Kamatz (i.e. the vowel a for o) and pronounce undageshed tav as dageshed (i.e. pronounce t instead of s), and accent the last syllable rather than the syllable before the last. … Judging from the majority of Hebrew speakers in Israel, it can be said that in general the Ashkenazic Jews did not take over from the Sephardic Jews the pronunciation of the consonants but only the pronunciation of the vowels and the accentual pattern, and that the synthesis of the original Ashkenazic pronunciation and these particular Sephardic features constitute what we today call the ‘Sephardic’ pronunciation.” —Eliezer Rieger, Modern Hebrew (New York: Philosophical Library, 1953), 50.
 The ʦ sound in both Hebrew and Amharic (represented in each by unrelated letters) is of non-Semitic origin. Elyaqim (talk) 16:22, 14 January 2009 (UTC)

Information to add to article[edit]

The exact pronunciation of this phoneme in the Arabic language needs to be added to the article. Simply including the IPA symbol with no further explanation is inadequate. Badagnani (talk) 21:33, 7 April 2008 (UTC)

Relation to Cyrillic Tse[edit]

I noticed a slight resemblance of both the character, and its sound to that of the Cyrillic letter Ц (Tse)

Is there any relation between the two, or is this merely coincidence? (talk) 15:01, 20 July 2008 (UTC)

This is no coincidence. The "Cyrillic" alphabet was designed by men who were familiar with the historical evolution of the greek alphabet from the pheonician. So, since Cyrillic needed more letters than greek, the designers took advantage of both greek and pheonician forms. For example: Б from the pheonician form of beta, Ц and Ч from pheonician tsad, and Ш from the pheonician form of sigma.-- (talk) 15:17, 14 August 2008 (UTC)

The actual pronunciation in Hebrew[edit]

is more often than not t̪s and not ts (Which is extremely unnatural to pronounce). TFighterPilot (talk) 12:18, 25 August 2011 (UTC)


It should be noted that the incorrect name for the letter most probably comes from its proximity in the Hebrew alphabet to Qof, thus when reciting the alphabet quickly (as children tend to do) you get Tsadiq-Qof, that is, the first consonant of Qof is also assumed to be the Tsadi's last. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:09, 31 December 2012 (UTC)

I don't know if I buy this explanation, the incorrect Hebrew correction could very well derive from Yiddish, given it is tsadik in Yiddish. This seems like a reasonable explanation considering quite a few modern Hebrew speakers were of Ashkenazi descent, thus quite a few of them spoke Yiddish. James (talk) 09:47, 11 December 2013 (UTC)


The usage and primary topic of Sade is under discussion, see talk:Sade Adu -- (talk) 03:56, 27 May 2015 (UTC)


Like most users of WP, I'm not a linguist. I'd still like to know if the pronunciation of this or that letter evolved from being closer to Latin "S", to sounding more like the German "TZ". It's IMPOSSIBLE to get that simple info from this all-too-specialised article. There is no simple list on the pattern of "The sign X sounds like "J" in French "journal" or "like "I" in Italian "io sono idiota". Help? Arminden (talk) 13:37, 13 December 2015 (UTC)ArmindenArminden (talk) 13:37, 13 December 2015 (UTC)