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Aramaic: The Language of Jesus


You are listening to the Lord's Prayer in Ancient Aramaic, the language Jesus Christ spoke 2000 years ago  Click here to see the Lord's Prayer written in Aramaic. Click here to hear it again.
Can it Survive?
Jesus ChristThe language is Aramaic, a Semitic language related to Arabic, Berber, and Hebrew as English is related to Dutch and German, and French is related to Spanish and Italian. It was the spoken language in Galilee during the life of Jesus. It has changed over the years, as Latin became Italian. Over the same time period Aramaic has become what some linguists call Syriac or Assyrian today, since it is the modern version of Aramaic. Still, it is the direct descendant of the language spoken by Jesus.
How do we know Jesus spoke Aramaic and not Hebrew? The New Testament was written in Greek since the apostles began their mission by traveling and writing to Greece. However, occasionally the original words of Jesus are included in that text and all these words are in Aramaic. This leaves little room to doubt that Jesus spoke this language.
Cross and BibleThe folks at alphaDictionary have put together this syllabus of links and multimedia features as a starting point for the study of Aramaic. Unfortunately, there are no complete grammars and only one good dictionary of Aramaic on the Web, but we have found some pages that provide an excellent starting point for a shallow or deep study of the language and its times. They include videos, radio programs, and articles that cover the history of this fascinating language, the the people who speak it today, and those who spoke it in the past.

Videos

History of Aramaic

Articles

Aramaic Dictionary