Word of the Day / Zugi זוגי

In Hebrew, even numbers are couple-y, or zugi, an adjective derived from the word for 'couple' or 'pair.'

Shoshana Kordova
Shoshana Kordova
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Shoshana Kordova
Shoshana Kordova

An even number is any number divisible by two. In Hebrew, that means even numbers are couple-y, or zugi (zoo-GHEE), an adjective derived from the word for "couple" or "pair," zug (ZOOG).

"Couple," of course, is another word for "two," so the concept is similar in English but seems more removed from math class than it does in Israel, where you can have a mita zugit (double bed), aruhat boker zugit (couples breakfast) or tipul zugi (couples therapy), as well as a mispar zugi (even number). An odd number is one that is i-zugi (EE zoo-GHEE), literally "non-even."

One member of a twosome who made the news in Israel recently is MK Tzipi Hotovely (Likud), 34, who is reported to have gotten engaged to her ben-zug (romantic partner) after a month of zugiyut (couplehood). Just in case the zug tari (literally "fresh couple") should ever find themselves at odds with each other, they ought to keep in mind the age-old wisdom inspired by the linguistic pairing of partnership with multiples of two: Don't get mad, get even.

This twosome looks awfully couple-y.Credit: Daniel Tchetchik

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