Mi lernis ke tohuvabohuo estas Esperanto vorto. Kiu estas la diferenco inter tohuvabohuo kaj ĥaoso?

2 Answers 2


Tohuvabohuo is derived from a word play in Hebrew and is used in the bible to describe the state of the universe before God created everything. It is usually translated in English as 'formless and empty'. Apparently it is difficult to translate so when Zamenhof translated the bible he decided to adopt the word into Esperanto instead.

There is some more information about the concept in Wikipedia.

The word is probably not used much outside of this biblical context. It has no results in Tekstaro.

  • In current usage in German it means something like 'commotion' or 'confusion', so a lot weaker than the original meaning. But I have not come across it for a long time myself. Sep 5, 2016 at 11:37
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    The Bible translation has "senforma kaj dezerta"; the only contexts I've seen "tohuvabohuo" in is in David Jordan's Esperantisma Ludejo and in the song "Tohuvabohuo" by Kajto.
    – kristan
    Sep 6, 2016 at 1:33
  • I am only speculating here (I have no evidence), but I think that in very early days of Christianity when the Bible got translated to other languages than Hebrew, the idea of "formless, empty, void" was hard to understand. Probably the reasoning went that without God there must have been chaos and by time this became the common belief. Zamenhof knew his Hebrew and knew that it was not chaos but a third, undefined state. To express this he invented the word tohuvabohuo. Jan 10, 2021 at 16:31

Tohuvabohuo estas granda ĥaoso: https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/tohuvabohuo

Tohuvabohuo is translated as 'absolute chaos': https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/tohuvabohuo

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