Head and Shoulders Above the Crowd

king SaulEver heard the saying “Head and shoulder above the crowd? Well… this phrase described King Saul, הַמֶּלֶךְ שָׁאוּל, the first king of the Hebrews. In Hebrew, this phrase is translated to מִשִּׁכְמוֹ וַמַעְלָה,  it literally means ” שֶׁכֶם -from the area between his shoulders (under the nape) and above מַעְלָה.” This expression is used today in modern Hebrew to denote one who is way above the rest; one who has remarkable abilities and qualities. It can also be said for a woman מִשִׁכְמָה וַמַעְלָה.

 שָׁאוּל was from the tribe of Binyamin בִּנְיָמִין – son of my right. He had 4 sons and 2 daughters: הָיוּ לוֹ אַרְבָּעָה בָּנִים וּשְׁתֵי בָּנוֹת.  His sons’ names were: Yonatan יוֹנָתָן – God gave, Avinadav אָבִינָדָב – father contributed, Malkisua מַלְכִּשׁוּעַ – king of salvation, Ish-boshet אִישׁ בֹּשֶׁת – a man of shame. His daughter’s names were: Michal מִיכַל – brook (who was King David’s wife), and Merav מֵרַב – maximum, the most of.

I have very deep sentiment to the name Saul שָׁאוּל as that was my father’s name and like King Saul, he was handsome, imposing and majestic. In my memoir, I Hate to Say Goodbye I relive the tragic end of King Saul from a viewpoint of his armor-bearer (but of course this is just a small section of the book…).

The name שָׁאוּל literally means ‘be asked; borrowed’. King Saul הַמֶּלֶךְ שָׁאוּל was asked by the prophet שְׁמוּאֵל, Samuel, (via God) to be king. From a simple life of a shepherd, שָׁאוּל was forced into a life of politics, wars, and intrigues only to satisfy the incessant pleading of the Hebrews to have a king.

From the name שָׁאוּל, we construct the following words:

To ask a question: לִשְׁאוֹל;  a question: שְׁאֵלָה

Examples:  I have a question                    .יֵשׁ לִי שְׁאֵלָה

He asks many questions.               .הוּא שׁוֹאֵל הַרְבֵּה שְׁאֵלוֹת

To borrow: לִשְׁאוֹל

Example:  I don’t have a car. I have to borrow it from a friend.

.אֵין לי מְכוֹנִית. אני צָרִיךְ לִשְׁאוֹל אוֹתָה מֵחָבֵר

To lend or to loan: לְהַשְׁאִיל

Example: My friend does not have a computer. I am lending it to him.

.לְחָבֵר שלי אֵין מַחְשֵׁב. אני מַשְׁאִילָה לוֹ אוֹתוֹ

questionnaire – שְׁאֵלוֹן

If you have learned one new thing, then I have done my job. 🙂

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B’shalom

Ruti Yudovich  ‘רוּתִי יוּדוֹבִיץ

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