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2017 Word of the Year

Gabbai

[Sephardic Hebrew gah-bahy; Ashkenazic Hebrew gah-bahy; English guh-bahy] /Sephardic Hebrew gɑˈbaɪ; Ashkenazic Hebrew ˈgɑ baɪ; English gəˈbaɪ/
noun, plural Gabbaim
[Sephardic Hebrew gah-bah-eem; Ashkenazic Hebrew gah-bahy-im] /Sephardic Hebrew gɑ bɑˈim; Ashkenazic Hebrew gɑˈbaɪ ɪm/ (Show IPA).
English, Gabbais. (sometimes lowercase) Hebrew.
1.
a minor official of a synagogue, having limited ceremonial or administrative functions.
2.
(in the early Middle Ages) a government official charged with collecting taxes.
Origin of Gabbai
literally, treasurer
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for Gabbai
Historical Examples
  • He heaved a deep sigh at his own hypocrisy, and the Gabbai sighed in response.

  • Then S. Cohn felt not only Gabbai, but town councillor again.

    Ghetto Comedies

    Israel Zangwill
  • You're the first Gabbai I ever knew who was satisfied with his balance-sheet.

    Ghetto Comedies

    Israel Zangwill
  • There was a burst of laughter, to the Gabbai's great astonishment.

    Ghetto Comedies

    Israel Zangwill
  • Shame on you—you a Gabbai (treasurer) of the Great Synagogue.

    The King of Schnorrers Israel Zangwill

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