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Posh Hebrew Tattoos, David! (Beckhams Inscribe their Love)

4th August 2005

This was in the news yesterday (here, here, and here, among others), but I was too overcome with emotion to post it until today! Jewish soccer star David Beckham and his “posh” wife, Victoria Beckham, got matching Hebrew tattoos on their sixth wedding anniversary. The tattoo is apparently from the Song of Songs 2:16:

דודי לי ו×?× ×™ לו “My Beloved is mine and I am his”

There are actually web pages devoted to Beckhams’ tattoos!

I have mixed emotions about tattoos. I personally have no desire to get one and I sure hope this tattooing craze is spent by the time my kids grow up (OK, I guess they’re not so mixed!). The problem with tattoos is that they are just too permanent. I wouldn’t like to know what I would have tattooed on my body when I was 18! I’ve had students ask me (with increasing frequency) how to write this or that in Hebrew or Greek for a tattoo. I’ve been tempted to spell whatever they ask as נבל (fool!). Perhaps I should just quote Leviticus 19:28 and send them packing: “You shall not… tattoo any marks upon you: I am Yahweh” (I recall seeing this verse actually used as an argument against modern tattoos; I assume that the prohibition was due to some association with cultic practices of Israel’s neighbours rather than tattooing itself).

53 Responses to “Posh Hebrew Tattoos, David! (Beckhams Inscribe their Love)”

  1. Codex: Biblical Studies Blogspot » Blog Archive » Hebrew Tattoos: Buyers Beware! Says:

    [...] Believe it or not, one of the more frequent Google searches by which individuals happen upon my blog is a search for “Hebrew Tattoos.” This search, which appears to happen once every few hundred visits to my site, leads readers to my tongue-in-cheek post “Posh Hebrew Tattoos, David! (Beckhams Inscribe their Love).” I have also had individuals email me asking advice on Hebrew tattoos, primarily wanting verification about the spelling of this or that word. My own students also ask similar questions (the latest being just last week). [...]

  2. Tim Says:

    would like to know if you could translate
    I am my beloved
    My beloved is mine

    into classic hebrew script.

    Thank you for your help.

    Tim

  3. Cynthia Says:

    The post which he posted earlier- is “my beloved is mine, and I am his” but its backwards. Hebrew is read from right to left… I have this tattooed on my back.

  4. Codex: Biblical Studies Blogspot » Blog Archive » David Beckham’s Manly Tattoo Says:

    [...] With the 2006 FIFA World Cup starting today, I figured I should post something related to football (i.e., soccer for those of us in North America). Then I thought, why not profile the Hebrew tattoo on England’s celebrity skipper, David Beckham? I have posted on David Beckham’s Hebrew tattoo before, though I didn’t have a picture of it until recently (An individual from Germany who wanted some advice on a Hebrew tattoo sent it to me). As with many of the tattoos profiled in my previous post on incorrect Hebrew tattoos, David Beckham’s tattoo just doesn’t make sense. Here is a picture of the tattoo: [...]

  5. Yoni Kinory Says:

    Thanks for posting these new examples! But a curse upon your head for making me spill my coffee on the keyboard – I laughed so much (I know, I know: I should have been crying …).
    Cheers,
    Y.

  6. teesh Says:

    is this correct?
    can anyone help? teeshy@bluebottle.com
    thanks!!!!
    דודי לי ו×?× ×™ לו
    “My Beloved is mine and I am his�

  7. Jesper Biel Denmark Says:

    I am my beloved
    And my beloved is mine

  8. Victoria Says:

    I was just wondering if you would be able to find the word PRODIGAL in hebrew for me, I’m getting it as my first tattoo and haven’t been able to find it anywhere and I was just wondering if you could help me.

    Victoria

  9. sara Says:

    hi i was wondering if u could translate sister + translate brother into classic hebrew script it would be really helpful thnxx

  10. Larissa Says:

    i was just wondering if you could show me in hebrew writting what”i am my beloved and my beloved is mine”so i know if im spelling it right

  11. Cati Says:

    Hi
    I asked my friend to translate “What does not kill us makes us stronger”
    She said it was “mah shelo horeg otanu, mechazek otanu”
    is she correct?
    and could you please translate that into Classical Hebrew script
    thank you
    – cati

  12. Kimberley Says:

    Thank you for your article… it was a great read. I am just learning hebrew and it’s quite challenging as an adult. I’ll be sure to do my research if I ever plan on getting a tattoo of this sort… which I don’t really… lol, thanks again!

  13. marie Says:

    would like to know if you could translate
    I am my beloved
    My beloved is mine
    into classic hebrew script.

    thanks marie

  14. travis Says:

    Could you please translate;

    “I am my beloved,
    My beloved is mine”

    into classic hebrew script, spoken as if a man to a woman (my beloved is a woman).

    Thanks Travis

  15. Branden Says:

    hey could you please translate;

    “trouble won’t last always”
    in hebrew script,

    I greatly appreciate it!

    -Branden

  16. Ana Says:

    I know you get a lot of requests for this but I was wondering if I could have the same translation that everyone else is asking for:
    “I am my beloved,
    My beloved is mine�

    into classic hebrew script, spoken as if a man to a woman (my beloved is a woman)
    and also for woman to man.

  17. Stephanie Grinage Says:

    Hello,

    First of all I am happy to have stumbled across this blog, I am considering my first ever tattoo in a foreign language, and I am considering Song of Solomon 7:10 but I am not sure if I have a correct translation, and I do not know anyone personally who adequately reads Hebrew to give input on this one:

    Is this correct Hebrew for Song of Solomon 7:10

    בבוד ×?ירשימל ידודל ךלוה בוטה ןייכ ךכחו

    :×?ינשי יתפש

    “I am my beloved’s and His desire is for me.”

    Honestly I don’t even know if this is the correct verse, I tried to find it in a Hebrew Bible and this si what I came away with, before I even schedule an appointment to have this one done I want to know that is says exactly what I want.

    I would greatly appreciate your input.

    Thanks,
    Stephanie Grinage

  18. Gareth Thain Says:

    im happy i have came across this site, i have paid to get my name ‘gareth’ translated in Gujarati/hindu and was lookin for a second opinion/translation!

    thanks for your help

    gareth

  19. Nathan Says:

    Please could you translate Nathan in hebrew.
    Many thanks.
    Nathan.

  20. DEREK Says:

    PLEASE TRANSLATE MY DAUGHTERS NAME ISABELLA

  21. gabriel Says:

    can you translate argentina for me thanks you very much

  22. gabriel Says:

    as so can you translate this one too Death before defeat

  23. Alex Says:

    I have a applicant trying to get a job with my company and we must research all tattoos prior to them getting the job, could you translate “Abundant life” for me? He says that is what the tattoo means and I just need to verify it. Thanks, Alex

  24. Jamie Says:

    Hey,

    not sure if you’re actually replying to these comments or not, i sent you an e-mail last week and i’m still hoping you got it. I really need the translation for

    “Always Faithful He Is Coming”

    in full nikud hebrew script, my father had the tattoo, but it was on his back and not visible in any photos we have, my mum can’t remember the exact script. It’s the 1st year anniversy of his death May 3rd and i’d really like to get it on that day in rememberance to him and his/our beliefs.

    Thanx,
    Jamie.

  25. Holly Nicholson Says:

    Can you please translate into hebrew,

    “I am my beloved, and my beloved is mine”

    And

    “What goes around comes around”

    Thank you.

    Holly

  26. Chelsea Says:

    I was wondering if you could translate “woman” into classic Hebrew script for me. Before I get a tattoo in another language I double check with a person that speaks and writes in that language to make sure it is correct. However I don’t know anyone that speaks or writes in Hebrew so I was so excited when I found your site! Thank you!
    -Chelsea

  27. ryan Says:

    hi, how are u? my sons name is hebrew. and i was wanting to get it tatooed in hebrew, so i was hoping u could help me out. his name is Jaden, and also i read in a baby name book that the word jaden meant god has spoken. but a friend of mine told me that it meant enlightenment. i was hoping u could clear that up for me. thankyou for your time.

    ryan

  28. Rolando Says:

    Can you please translate the following…

    My Three Sons

    and…

    No Regrets

    I’d like to get a tattoo in classic Hebrew script.

    Thanks!

  29. Mihai Says:

    Can you please translate the following…

    Redemption

    I think the Hebrew word is Geula ( ×’Ö¼Ö°×?וּלָה ) but i want to be sure
    I’d like to get it written in the script like it was first written in the Bible(old Hebrew??).

    Thanks!

  30. Kimberly Says:

    Could you please advise of the correct spelling in Hebrew for the following verse:

    The Song of Solomon – 6:3

    I am my beloved’s, and my beloved is mine

    I dont want the ending part which says “he feedeth amoung the liles”

    THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!!!

  31. ERICA Says:

    I WAS WONDERING IF YOU COULD SHOWME HOW TO SPELL “BEAN” AND “RAEGEN” THE CORRECT WAY IN HEBREW THANK YOU.

  32. Xslf Says:

    Speaking of “×?× ×™ לדודי ודודי לי”, here is a hilarious version found in google images:
    http://www.religioustattoos.net/Other_Tattoos/Jesus/jesus_tattoo_131.php

    What I don’t get- if someone is going to tattoo text on their body, why do it in a language you can’t read?

    And boy, these tattoos sure look silly.

  33. Hope Says:

    Hope is my last namea and I want to know what it looks like in hebrew. I’m thinking of getting a tattoo but I’m not sure yet. Thanks.

  34. Rachel Says:

    I have my name in hebrew tattooed, because I always wanted my name done, but didn’t like the idea of western script. Since my name is hebrew, I decided to go for that and I loved the way it looked. I had no idea that hebrew tattoos are the new thing.

  35. Amy Says:

    Hello,
    can you please translate:

    ‘I am by beloveds, my beloved is mine’ with vowels please.

    Thank you, I greatly appreciate it.

    Amy

  36. Jae Says:

    Hello,

    could you please translate “I am my beloved’s, my beloved is mine” into classic hebrew scrpt. i have been searching everywhere and havent found a right text for a tattoo.

    Thank you, I greatly appreciate it!!!
    Jae

  37. annelies Says:

    Hi,
    Could you translate : ‘ I am my beloved and my beloved is mine ‘ in Hebrew
    and what does this line exaxtly mean, i know that it represents the love from a woman to a man, but i want it more specificly.. can you do that for me pleaze?

    Or can you give the tekst a turn so it means somethin very special?+ translate it in english and hebrew
    Because everyone has this tekst..

    It would mean a lot to me :)
    Thank you verry mutch

    Greetz me X

  38. Rachel Says:

    Hi,
    great website. Very informative. I see you have gotten this question a lot, sorry for the repeat but can you translate
    “I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine” in hebrew.

    Also what would be the appropriate masculine form of this sentence. We want to get this engraved on our wedding bands or possibly tattooed. Not sure yet.

  39. stephanie Says:

    i am going to get two hebrew tattoos one saying grace and the other strength could you translate that for me?

    it would mean a lot…thanks!

  40. Michael Linder Says:

    Can you translate?
    “My Beloved is mine and I am hers”

  41. stina Says:

    Hey..

    Can you translate the names:
    “Stina Ullbrich”
    “Torben Nast”

  42. Samantha Says:

    Hey, I was wondering if you could translate “To whom much has been given, much is expected” into classic Hebrew. I would greatly appreciate it.

  43. adam Says:

    You have givin the correct translation for God into hebrew. I was woundering if you could translate Jesus in to hebrew for me. I’m going to get a tatoo of it but I want to make sure it is correct befor I get this perminant making.
    than you in advance-
    -adam

  44. paula Says:

    is there any chance you could translate the sentance,

    “you hold me in your hands, you won’t let me fall”

    its for my fiance and i would appreciate it so much as i have subscribed to quite alot of things and paid alot of money and got nothing back. it’s for my fiance’s birthday and it’s been promised for over a year now..since the last birthday haha.

    please!! if you could email it to me it would be fantastic!!

    Paula

  45. aisha Says:

    hi, i was wondering if you could translate “no regrets”, “life” and “wales” in hebrew for me please.
    (if you could e-mail it to me that would be fab!!)
    thanks so much!

  46. jenny Says:

    hi
    could you please translate song of songs 4:10 How beautiful is your love, my sister, my spouse! How much better is your love than wine!
    i’ve done some research and have found this
    “מה יפו דדיך ×?חתי כלה מה טבו דדיך מיין וריח שמניך מכל בשמי×?׃”
    would just like a second opinion
    thanks
    jen

  47. Melinda Maxwell Says:

    Hi, I know you’ve been asked this a thousand times but can you translate

    “I am my beloved, my beloved is mine.”

    Into classic hebrew script. Thankyou

  48. Gabby Says:

    I want my daughters name tattooed on me I know every one here has wrote to u
    telling you to translate things to them. I also would like to know how it is writen in Rahi Script thank you (MORIAH) is my daughter name

  49. Rachel Says:

    Ha, I’m a little reluctant to ask, now, seeing your other post on Hebrew tattoos going wrong and how stupid people can be. I’m considering getting my name tattooed – “Rachel” – and everything I’ve found on the internet points to the same translation. I’m pretty sure it’ll be OK, as it’s a Biblical name, but I’d like to make sure, if you’re still up for translating the requests of random ignorant internet users. *grins*

  50. Danielle Says:

    Hi. I have been wanting to get a tatoo of “warrior” in Hebrew for the last 4 years, but i want it done right. Also, is there a way to make this female? Thanks.

  51. Kayla Says:

    Hello,

    Can you translate, “I am my beloveds and my beloved is mine”? Also, “God is with me”?

    Thanks!

  52. Anna Says:

    hi there! could you translate “African and European” into hebrew?

    I’ve noticed that people ask if you can translate some words for theme, so that they avoide mistakes like you have been writing about.

    thank you very much!!

  53. Sarah Says:

    Hello!

    I see that a ton of people have already asked this but could you please tell me the correct verse for:

    I am for my beloved and my beloved is for me

    I would like the correct English translation and then what it looks like in Hebrew with vowels. This would be spoken from a woman about a man.

    Thank you so much!
    Sarah