Welcome! Today's Hebrew lesson is a review of the most common vowels.
Vowels in Hebrew are called "Nikud" or "appointing" and are written as dots or dashes above, below, or next to a letter. Some of you may have heard of them before; these are proverbial "Jot nor Tittle".
There are eighteen vowels in total and are divided into Long, Short, Reduced, Silent and Vocal short, and that doesn't even cover the six diphthongs. You seem like nice people, so for now, let's just stick with the basics.
You will never see the nikud used in day-to-day situations (like newspapers) and will just have to learn how to properly pronounce words through lots of experience.
"Nikud" are known as "diacritics" in English, and appear in latin alphabets as accents like é or á.
ת"Tav" was yesterday's Hebrew letter. אֱ אָ אֻ Today; the Hebrew vowels, or "Nikud".
"Ayin" is the sixteenth letter in the Hebrew alphabet. It is an "a" sound voiced from the back of the throat, known an a "voiced pharyngal fricative". She has no English language equivalent letter and is one of the more challenging sounds for the beginner to imitate. Best of Luck.
"Vav" is the sixth letter of the Hebrew alphabet and her English language equivalent is the consonant "V". However, "Vav" can also be the vowels "o" and "uu" depending on the diacritic. In modern Hebrew, two vavs together are transliterated as "W".
There are twenty-two letters in the Hebrew Aleph-bet. Five have a "sofeet" form (used when the letter appears at the end of a word). The vowels, "Nikud" in Hebrew, are written as diacritics. Unlike Arabic, Hebrew uses regular western numerals, which makes it easier to learn.