Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A Kabbalistic method of interpreting Hebrew words, based on numerical values of letters.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. A cabalistic system of Hebrew Biblical interpretation, consisting in the substitution for a word of any other the numerical values of whose letters gave the same sum.

Etymologies

Aramaic, from Ancient Greek γεωμετρία (geōmetría, "geometry"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Centuries later, Jews would repay the compliment by appropriating the Greek word geometry and creating the word gematria, which is Hebrew for

    mental_floss Blog

  • According to this ancient system of ciphers (called gematria), the meaning of the Hebrew word for "serpent" matches that of another word: "messiah."

    Jeff Greenwald: Romancing the Snake

  • This practice is known as gematria - a way of deciphering information from ancient Hebrew texts based on commonalities in the numerical significance of certain words.

    Sorry, wrong number!

  • According to Jewish tradition, there are 903 kinds of death, as is elicited by a Kabbalistic rule called gematria, from the word outlets (Ps.lxviii. 20); the numeric value of the letters of which word is 903.

    Hebraic Literature; Translations from the Talmud, Midrashim and Kabbala

  • The method of allegorical interpretation here used is that species known as gematria, in which the numerical equivalence of letters composing a word is employed as

    A Source Book for Ancient Church History

  • Elijah applied the biblical analysis technique (still used today) called gematria, where the Hebrew letters are given their appropriate numerical values according to their sequence in the Hebrew alphabet, to the two spellings of the word for "line measure" and found the following.

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  • Siblin cuts back and forth between these three narratives in a kind of dazzling verbal counterpoint, and he manages to touch on almost everything there is to know or say about Bach, ranging from the secret messages that Bach may have encoded into his compositions using the kabbalistic number symbolism called gematria to the improvisations of the Bach Remix Competition in Eugene, Ore., where "Bach's little organ fugue was mixed with hip-hop beats and spoken word by competing turntablists."

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  • (known as gematria), the Baal HaTurim commentary remarks that the numerical value of the letters that spell "shalom" (376 - shin = 300, lamed = 30, vav = six, and mem = 40) is equivalent to the letters of the name "Esau" (376 - ayin = 70, shin/sin = 300, vav = six).

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  • Professor Greg Snyder of Davidson College in the US, one of the leading experts in the study of the ancient practice of number mysticism (known as 'gematria'), says that the number 666 is most likely to refer to Nero Caesar (a Roman emperor who was particularly unpopular with early Christians, thanks to his habit of turning them into candles) because when that name is transliterated into Hebrew and the numerical equivalent of each letter is added up, the total comes to 666.

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  • When his father isn't around, he finds himself searching maniacally for tattoos, the seemingly purposeless combination of numbers and letters, macabre gematria that adds up to nothing.

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  • Gematria (Rabbinic Hebrew גימטריה gēmaṭriy�?, from the Greek γεωμετ�?ία; English since the 17th century) is the numerology of the Hebrew language and Hebrew alphabet, and is used by its proponents to derive meaning or relative relationship. Several forms can be identified: the "revealed" form, which is prevalent in many forms of Rabbinic Judaism, and the "mystical form," a largely Cabbalistic practice. The word itself comes from the Greek word 'geometry' and the concept or system is the same as the Greek isopsephy and the Arabic Ḥis�?b al-Jummal. There is also a gematria of Latin-script languages, dating from the early Middle Ages, and very possibly back into Roman times, too. Recent times have also seen an emergence of new gematrias, though these lack a length of exploration that more ancient versions have seen.

    The most common form of gematria is used occasionally in the Talmud and Midrash and elaborately by many post-Talmudic commentators. It involves reading words and sentences as numbers, assigning numerical instead of phonetic value to each letter of the Hebrew alphabet. When read as numbers, they can be compared and contrasted with other words.

    _Wikipedia

    February 6, 2008