Kernerman Dictionary News • Number 12 • July 2004

Milon-Kis Ariel

Maya Fruchtman

 Maya Fruchtman studied Hebrew at Tel Aviv University and teaches at Bar Ilan University. Her research interests are Biblical and modern Hebrew syntax, Hebrew lexicology, stylistics and literature, and medieval grammar and poetry. Professor Fruchtman is the editor of the Ariel dictionary and lexicographic works, and has written on the Hebrew language, as well as on poetry and literature.

Milon-Kis Ariel [Ariel Pocket Dictionary] was compiled in response to concerns of teachers and families from the south of Israel, who wanted an up-to-date, learner-friendly Hebrew dictionary, which will be aimed explicitly at present-day young pupils including new immigrants. This need arose because the existing school dictionaries were generally viewed as out-of-date, offering sloppy definitions, using archaic language, and lacking current words and meanings.


To achieve the goal of creating this modern Hebrew learning tool, we established a competent editorial team consisting of experienced educators and linguists as well as professional specialists. In cooperation with a group of teachers, parents and students, we studied the specific requirements from such a dictionary, in relation to what was really necessary for the pupils at school and at home. This school dictionary was conceived as a first step in a larger dictionary project, having its own lexicographic database sources developed in relation to the target audience.


We decided to focus, in particular, on the following subject areas: flora and fauna, youth life, sports, civics and state institutes, communications, computers and technology, geography and history (particularly of Israel), literature, Judaism, loan words, current events and economics. We wanted to include old words besides modern ones, but to define them briefly and clearly, in a modern way.


The dictionary is arranged in straightforward alphabetical order, according to the first letter of the word, no matter what the Hebrew root is. The verbs are presented in the traditional way – based on the model of the past tense masculine singular. The entries include only definitions, not examples of usages, but they are often exemplified by the sub-entires. Vocalized spelling is used, in accordance with the rules of the Academy of the Hebrew Language. There are illustrations, for further emphasis or clarification of certain entries, and in order to make the book more lively and attractive.


The total number of entries includes 14,000 words and 4,000 phrases, of which as many as 3,000 appear for the first time in a Hebrew dictionary, for example: Alzheimer’s (disease), anorexia, Intifada, Eurovision, Druzi [Druse], ħashman [cardinal], divkit [sticker], ħor ba-'ozon [hole in the ozone], duty-free, telemarketing, tampon, home'opatia [homeopathie], alpaka, ħetsion [median], štrudel [the symbol @, officially krukhit].

Milon-Kis Ariel
Maya Fruchtman
Kor'im, Qiryat Gat, 2001
1030 pages
ISBN 965-515-000-3


K Dictionaries Ltd
10 Nahum Street, Tel Aviv 63503 Israel
tel: 972-3-5468102 • fax: 972-3-5468103