The Story of Hebrew explores the extraordinary hold that Hebrew
has had on Jews and Christians, who have invested it with a symbolic power far
beyond that of any other language in history. Preserved by the Jews across two
millennia, Hebrew endured long after it ceased to be a mother tongue, resulting
in one of the most intense textual cultures ever known. Hebrew was a bridge to
Greek and Arab science, and it unlocked the biblical sources for Jerome and the
Reformation. Kabbalists and humanists sought philosophical truth in it, and
Colonial Americans used it to shape their own Israelite political identity.
Today, it is the first language of millions of Israelis. A major work of
scholarship, The Story of Hebrew is an unforgettable account of what one
language has meant and continues to mean.