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Transliteration/Translations

Three Divisions of the Tanakh

tanakh
"All things which are written about me in
the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fufilled."

(Luke 24:44)

Traditionally, the Hebrew or “Jewish” Bible has been divided into three sections: the Law, the Prophets, and the Writings.

Christian Bibles have traditionally followed the book order of the ancient Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible called the “Septuagint” or “Translation of the Seventy” (abbreviated: LXX). This was done by Jewish scholars in Alexandria, Egypt, beginning around 250 BC/E.

In the Middle Ages, Jews began to refer to their Bible as “Tanakh.” This is an acronym— TaNaKH—using the initial letters of the three divisions: Torah, Nevi'im, Ketuvim. (At the end of words the “K” is typically pronounced as a guttural letter, Kh). Some sources the spell the word: Tanach or Tanak.

torah-neviin-ketuvim

Below are the three divisions of the Tanakh along with the traditional Hebrew book titles (and their meanings), the Greek/Septuagint book titles, and their common English forms in English Bible translations.

Hebrew Title Hebrew Meaning Greek/LXX Title English Title
Torah Teaching Nomos Law
Breishit In the beginning Genesis Genesis
Shemot Names Exodus
(Way Out)
Exodus
Vayyiqra And he called Leuitikon Leviticus
Bemidbar In the wilderness Arithmoi Numbers
Devarim Words or Deeds Deuteronomion
(Second Law)
Deuteronomy

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Hebrew Title Hebrew Meaning Greek/LXX Title English Title
Nevi'im Prophets (Former) (History) History
Yehoshua The Lord saves Yesous Joshua
Shoftim Judges Kritai Judges
Shmuel Alef, Beit Samuel A (1), B (2) Basileion A, B
(Kings A & B)
1 & 2 Samuel
Melachim Alef, Beit Kings A (1), B (2) Basileon C & D
(Kings)
1 & 2 Kings
Nevi'im Prophets (Latter) Prophetai Prophets
Yeshayah(u) Salvation of the Lord Esaias Isaiah
Yirmeyah(u) Raised up by the Lord Yeremias Jeremiah
Yehezkiel God will strengthen Yezekiel Ezekiel

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Hebrew Title Hebrew Meaning Greek/LXX Title English Title
Nevi'im Prophets
(The Twelve Minor)
Prophetai Prophets
Hoshea He saves Osee Hosea
Yo'el The Lord is God Yoel Joel
Amos Burden bearer Amos Amos
Ovadyah Servant of the Lord Obdias Obadiah
Yonah Dove Yonas Jonah
Micah Who is like [God] Michaias Micah
Nahum Comforter Naum Nahum
Havaqquk Embrace Ambakoum Habakkuk
Tzefanyah Hidden by the Lord Sophonias Zephaniah
Haggai Festive Haggaios Haggai
Zecharyah Remembered by the Lord Zacharias Zechariah
Malachi My messenger Malachias Malachi

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Hebrew Title Hebrew Meaning Greek/LXX Title English Title
Ketuvim Writings Poetry Poetry
Tehellim Praises Psalmoi Psalms
Mishlei Proverbs Paroimiai Proverbs
Iyyov Persecuted Yob Job
Shir haShirim Song of Songs Asma Song of Songs
Rut Friendship Routh Ruth
Eychah How! Threnoi Lamentations
Qohelet Gatherer, Preacher Ekklesiastes Ecclesiastes
Ester Star Esther Esther
Daniel God is judge Daniel Daniel
Ezra Help Esdras Ezra
Nechemyah The Lord comforts Neemias Nehemiah
Divrei A, B Deeds A, B Paraleipomenon A, B 1 & 2 Chronicles

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