baal gaavah

Alternative Spellings

baal gaava, ba'al gaava, baal ga'ava, ba'al ga'ava, baal gayva, ba'al gayva, baal gaave, ba'al gaave, baal ga'ave, ba'al ga'ave, baal gayve, ba'al gayve, ba'al gaavah, baal ga'avah, ba'al ga'avah, baal gayvah, ba'al gayvah, baal gaaveh, ba'al gaaveh, baal ga'aveh, ba'al ga'aveh, baal gayveh, ba'al gayveh, bal gaava, bal ga'ava, bal gayva, bal gaave, bal ga'ave, bal gayve, bal gaavah, bal ga'avah, bal gayvah, bal gaaveh, bal ga'aveh, bal gayveh, balgave


  • "Arrogant person" (Glinert)
  • "conceited person" (Steinmetz)

Example Sentences

  • "It is told that someone once asked Rav Elyashiv how can there be Talmid Chochom who is a Baal Gaava? Rav Elyashiv answered him that in fact there is no such thing. 'Either you don't know what a Talmid Chochom is or you don't know what a Baal Gaava is.'" (
  • "The mark of someone who is a ba’al ga’ava, a haughty person, is that he walks with a straight spine, upright, in a way which shows that he feels greater than everyone else. A humble person, however, tends to walk more bent over, in a submissive manner, realizing his lowliness in comparison to his Creator." (
  • "From a superficial understanding, he is a baal gaavah, but it is more than that. A person can be a baal gaavah because he thinks he is to be praised in a certain quality. But when it comes to other areas, he knows that he is weak in those areas, even though he won’t admit it. He only boasts about what he’s good at." (
  • "The ba'al ga'avah feels independent and autonomous , and hence boastful and proud. An anav, by contrast, while appreciating the religious mandate for human effort and initiative, understands that Hashem has endowed him with whatever abilities he possesses, sustains him, provides him with opportunities and crowns his efforts with success." (
  • "You, whom this Torah genius could have walked circles around had his mind been younger and keener, you, who had the audacity to smile when you approached to help him. You're such a ba'al ga'avah."" (
  • "He didn't 'forget' to mention you in the credits, he's just a plain baal gaave!" (Glinert)

Languages of Origin

Textual Hebrew, Yiddish


Hebrew בעל גאוה ba'al ga'ava 'lit. owner of pride', Yiddish בעל־גאווה bal-gave

Who Uses This

Orthodox: Jews who identify as Orthodox and observe halacha (Jewish law)


North America


Yiddish and English: A Century of Yiddish in America, by Sol Steinmetz (Tuscaloosa, 1986).
The Joys of Hebrew, by Lewis Glinert (New York, 1992).

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