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  1. #1
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    Hebrew Cognates in other Languages

    For years I have noticed many obvious Hebrew cognates on other languages. I am working to write an article on this topic, and thought it would be helpful to have input from others as I do the research.

    The most amazing, profound, and revolutionary aspect of this study is that it offers the first true understanding of the phenomenon of near universal features found in the world's languages. For example, consider the near universal root ma as described in Appendix I of the American Heritage Dictionary:

    Appendix I

    Indo-European Roots
    ENTRY:m-2 DEFINITION:Mother. A linguistic near-universal found in many of the world's languages, often in reduplicated form. 1. mamma2, mammal, mammilla, from Latin mamma, breast. 2. Probably from this root is Greek Maia, 'good mother' (respectful form of address to old women), also nurse: Maia, maieutic; maiasaur. 3. mama, more recently formed in the same way. (Pokorny 3. m 694.)
    The near-universality of this root is discussed in this article from Bill Cassleman's website:

    Mamma is the formal English medical word for breast. Mamma is a reduplication of the much older Proto-Indo-European root *ma, breast or mother. This is not only the first sound uttered by many human infants, it may also be the most widespread word root in the world. *Ma forms the basis of the word for mother in many different and possibly unrelated language families around the world:
    • Latin mater
    • Greek meter
    • French mère
    • German Mutter
    • Russian mate
    • Icelandic modher
    • Sanskrit mata
    • Irish mathair
    • Welsh mam
    • Arabic oum
    • Hebrew em
    • Swahili mama
    • Chinese ma
    • Hawaian makuahine (maka first, beloved < *ma-k Proto-Polynesian, the mother (?) + wahine woman)
    Why so widespread a word? The sounds of m and a are among the easiest to make and among the first sounds acquired by a human infant. The first noise in life associated with deep pleasure may be the sound made by the infant’s mouth sucking milk from the mother’s breast. This sound is frequently some variant of ma-ma. The slight smacking movement of the lips made in uttering an m-sound is similar to the lip movement required to suck a nipple.
    Cassleman asked "Why so widesread a word?" and then gave the standard academic answer which seems little more than an empty speculation. Try making the "smack-smack" sound of a nursing infant and see if you can hear the "ma-ma" sound. I tried it and found nothing. Of course, we can't blame the tradition-bound scholars for presenting such a lame explanation as if it were "obvious," since their assumptions have blinded them to the possibility that Hebrew could be something more than just another language that "evolved" along with the human apes. Isaac Mozeson responded to the traditional academic explanation in his entry under "mama" on page 104 of his very helpful book called "The Word: The Dictionary that Reveals the Hebrew Sources of English":

    Quote Originally Posted by Mozeson
    Pre-verbal children do not cry "ma" any more than they cry "wa," yet there are no "mother" terms named for the "wa" or "ba" of a baby crying to press lips (with B or W pout) to a breast.
    Mozeson went on to note that the ultimate root of these mamma words is the Hebrew Em, "which signifies the 'womb' or 'origin.'" This is exactly what I published in the review of Spoke 13 (Mem) of the Bible Wheel book, reproduced online in the article called From the Waters of Judah:

    Variations on the Hebrew em (mother) are nearly universal throughout the world's languages, such as ma, mama, mom, mum, em, imma, amma. This points to Hebrew as the primordial language of the whole human race because it is only in Hebrew that we see the intrinsic coherence of this mama word with the literal meaning of Mem as water and its grammatical role as the sign of the preposition from. For what is a mother but she from whom we all come? And how do we come but through water? We all floated for nine months in the amniotic sac, and when the water broke, we were born into this world.
    This is what I mean when I say that Hebrew offers a revolutionary understanding of the near-universals found in the language. We do not have to speculate about some hypothetical physical mechanism that "causes" nearly all babies everywhere to say "mama" - we can see that the word mama has intrinsic meaning that is derived from the Divine Language designed by God as the foundation of His Word by which He created all that is.

    I am opening this thread so folks have a place to present any Hebrew cognates they find. I also want to discuss what this all means, and how it relates to the story of Babel, and how the languages could have originally been divided there, and then were transformed further under ordinary "evolution" that so enamors the modern mind.

    I will begin with a few of the more obvious examples. Hebrew consonants will be written as bold capitals. I list with Strongs numbers for convenience:

    ==============================
    Hebrew: 0817 AShaM {aw-shawm'}
    Meaning: 1) guilt, offense, guiltiness

    English: AShaMed: Feeling shame or guilt

    ==============================
    Hebrew 5307 NaPhaL {naw-fal'}
    Meaning: 1) to fall

    English: FaLL

    ==============================
    Hebrew 7919 SaKaL {saw-kal'}
    Meaning: 1) to be prudent, be circumspect, wisely understand, prosper ...
    Usage: AV - understand 12, wise 12, prosper 8, wisely 6, understanding 5, consider 4, instruct 3, prudent 2, skill 2, teach 2, misc 7; 63

    English: SKiLL

    It is interesting that sakal comes through almost as if it were transliterated from the Hebrew, rather than translated, in Daniel 9:22: And he informed me, and talked with me, and said, O Daniel, I am now come forth to give thee skill (sakal) and understanding.

    ======================================
    Here is an example that Mozeson uses on the homepage of his website:

    4376 MaKaR {maw-kar'}
    Meaning: 1) to sell

    English MaRKet (verb, to sell)

    Try pronouncing "mawkar market" a few times and you will hear how similar they are. This example shows how the consonants get scrambled between languages.

    Well, that's sufficient for an introduction to the topic. I look forward to your contributions.

    Richard

  2. #2
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    Talking Hebrew

    You never really think of a lot of our words coming from Hebrew. I remember as a kid phrases my Dad would use - like 'Yehudi did it" or "somebody put the kabosh on that"! Are there were more.

    My Dad was into crossword puzzles - and I followed suit. And then when looking into the Hebrew alef-beyt I would come across words such as 'kabosh' and find out they were actually Hebrew having the 'English' meaning. 'Kabash' (KBSh) is in the concordance actually meaning to bring into subjection or to keep under foot. And of course 'Yehudi' - the Jews - are blamed for everything.

    (When I'm 'more awake' - I'll have to think about other slang words we use that are actually Hebrew.

    Thanks for the post.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by shalag View Post
    You never really think of a lot of our words coming from Hebrew. I remember as a kid phrases my Dad would use - like 'Yehudi did it" or "somebody put the kabosh on that"! Are there were more.

    My Dad was into crossword puzzles - and I followed suit. And then when looking into the Hebrew alef-beyt I would come across words such as 'kabosh' and find out they were actually Hebrew having the 'English' meaning. 'Kabash' (KBSh) is in the concordance actually meaning to bring into subjection or to keep under foot. And of course 'Yehudi' - the Jews - are blamed for everything.

    (When I'm 'more awake' - I'll have to think about other slang words we use that are actually Hebrew.

    Thanks for the post.
    Hi Shalag,

    Yes, there are lot of words that have been directly imported from Hebrew, like the ones you mention. Thanks for mentioning them. But my primary interest is to find Hebrew cognates that are more "fundamental" in the sense that their meanings are connected to the meaning of the letters, and their origin can not be traced to "natural dissemination."

    For example, take a look at the etymology of the word "gallows" - here is how Webster defines this word:
    gal•lows \ˈga-(ˌ)lōz, -ləz, in sense 3 also -ləs\ noun
    plural gallows or gal•lows•es
    [Middle English galwes, plural of galwe, from Old English gealga; akin to Old Norse gelgja pole, stake, Armenian jałk twig]
    (before 12th century)
    1 a : a frame usually of two upright posts and a crossbeam from which criminals are hanged — called also gallows tree
    b : the punishment of hanging
    2 : a structure consisting of an upright frame with a crosspiece
    Christ was crucified on the tree, also called the "gallows". Now look at its etymology as listed by Earnest Klein in his Comprehensive Etymological Dictionary of the English Language:

    Gallows: ME galowes, galwes (pl.) from OE gealga, related to OS., OHG. galgo, ON. galgi, OFris galga, MHG galge, "gallows; cross" G. Galgen, "gallows", Goth galga, "cross", and to ON gelgja "pole, perch"
    Look at all those related words that mean "gallows" or "cross" (of Christ). Note how many follow the pattern GLG which resembles GoLGotha, from the Hebrew GuLGuleth, the Place where Christ was crucified on the "gallows." But now get this, Klein never mentioned the connection to Golgotha! And why not? Because the tradition-bound academics have no "naturalistic mechanism" to account for the correlation. Thus, it must be a "meaningless coincidence." But the idea of "coincidence" seems a little stretched when we return to Klein and consult him again as to the origin of the English word "wheel" which he says came from the OE (Old English) hweogol (note the GL root again) and ultimately from the IE root qwe-qw'los whence the Greek kuklos, all of which follows the fundamental pattern of the Hebrew galgal (GLGL) which is cognate with gulguleth and hence Golgotha and "Gallows" as discussed above. And then it all connects to the CaLvary = skull root in Latin through the C <=> G interchange (third letters of Latin and Hebrew, of similar consonantal value). Cf Gesenius' Hebrew Dictionary for the widespread use of the GLL root in many languages. Here is a snippet:

    The genuine power of this root is expressed by the Germ.rollen, which, like this, is also onomatopoetic. It is one very widely extended, imitating the noise of a globe or other round body rolled forward quickly. It is applied therefore in derivatives. [He then goes on to list many of the related words in Hebrew, Arabic, Latin, Greek, German, Dutch, etc. ... ]

    Just as the real meaning of the mama words can only be understood when we look at the meaning of Mem in Hebrew, so etymological loops like this remain obscure until we understand the meaning of elements GL, GLL, and GLGL in Hebrew. This is just an outline of my basic intuition. There is much more to say, but it takes a lot of work to write it all down, which is why I started this thread. I hope it will "loosen up my fingers" and get the thoughts flowing, and that others will jump in with their own insights, like you did.

    Thanks again,

    Richard

  4. #4
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    money

    The Hebrew word 'maneh' has morphed into English 'money'. Originally, maneh was a weight used for exchange purposes. The verb form is 'mawnah', meaning 'to divide, to number'. Ezekiel 45:12 is a good starting reference.

    Stephen

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stephen View Post
    The Hebrew word 'maneh' has morphed into English 'money'. Originally, maneh was a weight used for exchange purposes. The verb form is 'mawnah', meaning 'to divide, to number'. Ezekiel 45:12 is a good starting reference.

    Stephen
    Excellent find Stephen. It comes right through in the old King James:

    KJV Ezekiel 45:12 And the shekel shall be twenty gerahs: twenty shekels, five and twenty shekels, fifteen shekels, shall be your maneh (= money).

    Here's how New American Standard Hebrew-Aramaic Dictionaries defines it:
    maneh (584b); from 4487; maneh, mina (a measure of weight or money):— maneh(1), minas(4).


    A similar root is found transliterated in the NT:

    Matthew 6:24 &#182; No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.

    Mammun is the modern Hebrew word for money. Klein traces it down to amun (in the sense of a trust, or deposit).

    And that reminds me of another whole class of MN related words based on the Hebrew amen = so be it, firm, steady, trustworth, permanent, remaining, and in Greek menai = abide, remain.

    Thus memory = mnemonics, what remains, etc.

    This is a very rich vein.

    Thanks Stephen!

    Richard

  6. #6
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    As I was reading a post by Stephen on another thread I noticed this....

    In passing, I'm sure you are aware that the wheels spoken of in Ezekiel 1 are referred to in the original tongue as ophanim. The singular is ophan (having the significant value of 137). This word originates from the idea of revolving, and survives today in our language in the word 'open' (think "Open sesame!" and you get the picture). Moreover, ophan survives today as the root in the German word Offenbarung, which is the German name for the Book of Revelation.

    Stephen
    Rose

  7. #7
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    Hey Richard! This is actually one of the things that first got me interested in learning Hebrew. We purchased the original Noah Webster's 1864 (yr?) dictionary that was re-published about 15 years ago I think. Have you ever read the introduction Webster wrote in his original dictionary?...........It is one of the most eye-opening things I have ever read. He would turn over in his grave if he saw today's dictionary versions which carry his name. The intro is about 30 or so pages in VERY small print (in other words, practically a book in itself) where he explains how after beginning his research to write an English language dictionary, he became so convinced of the Hebrew origin of all languages, that he quit and traveled to various countries for 20 years researching that very premise before he wrote the first English dictionary. He then goes on to elaborate on several Semitic roots common to all languages and his proofs that, indeed, all languages are from either Hebrew or its unknown Semitic predecessor, whatever that might be.

    From the semetic roots section: http://www.bartleby.com/61/Sroots.html

    ENTRY: bkr.
    DEFINITION: Common Semitic *bukur-, *bikr-, *bak(u)r-, first-born. albacore, from Arabic al-bakra, the albacore, akin to bikr, first-born, and bakr, young camel.

    I started looking through my strong's and noticed how many words were so similar to the English. Webster was right! I started keeping a list which I don't have with me right now, but a few of the obvious ones I remember are:

    Hebrew for 5766 עול Transliteration`evel Pronunciation eh'•vel (Key) - WICKEDNESS, EVIL

    Hebrew for 5869 עין Transliteration ayin Pronunciation ah'•yin - EYE

    Hebrew for 6561 פרק Transliteration paraq Pronunciation pä•rak' -BREAK

    Hebrew for H1254 ברא Transliteration bara' Pronunciation bä•rä' - to cut out (PARE) - to give birth (BEAR) - to cut down (lay BARE)
    Last edited by yinonyavo; 07-13-2007 at 12:47 PM.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by yinonyavo View Post
    Hey Richard! This is actually one of the things that first got me interested in learning Hebrew. We purchased the original Noah Webster's 1864 (yr?) dictionary that was re-published about 15 years ago I think. Have you ever read the introduction Webster wrote in his original dictionary?...........It is one of the most eye-opening things I have ever read. He would turn over in his grave if he saw today's dictionary versions which carry his name. The intro is about 30 or so pages in VERY small print (in other words, practically a book in itself) where he explains how after beginning his research to write an English language dictionary, he became so convinced of the Hebrew origin of all languages, that he quit and traveled to various countries for 20 years researching that very premise before he wrote the first English dictionary. He then goes on to elaborate on several Semitic roots common to all languages and his proofs that, indeed, all languages are from either Hebrew or its unknown Semitic predecessor, whatever that might be.

    From the semetic roots section: http://www.bartleby.com/61/Sroots.html

    ENTRY: bkr.
    DEFINITION: Common Semitic *bukur-, *bikr-, *bak(u)r-, first-born. albacore, from Arabic al-bakra, the albacore, akin to bikr, first-born, and bakr, young camel.

    I started looking through my strong's and noticed how many words were so similar to the English. Webster was right! I started keeping a list which I don't have with me right now, but a few of the obvious ones I remember are:

    Hebrew for 5766 עול Transliteration`evel Pronunciation eh'•vel (Key) - WICKEDNESS, EVIL

    Hebrew for 5869 עין Transliteration ayin Pronunciation ah'•yin - EYE

    Hebrew for 6561 פרק Transliteration paraq Pronunciation pä•rak' -BREAK

    Hebrew for H1254 ברא Transliteration bara' Pronunciation bä•rä' - to cut out (PARE) - to give birth (BEAR) - to cut down (lay BARE)
    Hey there Yinonyavo!

    Wow! What an excellent post! I heard about Websters dictionary being republished some years ago - it was very big amongst the homeschoolers. And I knew that he had done a lot on Hebrew roots, so I really wanted to get one, but never did. I'm definitely going to get one.

    One of the first clues for me about the Hebrew roots in English was the root damam which means dumb

    1826 damam {daw-man'}
    Meaning: 1) to be silent, be still, wait, be dumb, grow dumb

    It is a fundamental Dalet Keyword, and it first appears in the sequence of Psalms in quite memorably in Psalm 4:4. This root has always been one of my "test cases" that I use to discern the level of anti-Hebrew prejudice (or simple ignorance) when evaluating an etymological dictionary.

    Richard

    PS: Your observation concerning the root PaRaK = BReaK is extremely wide spread. I've written about this in a few places on the site. Here is a snippet from my article on Pey KeyWords found here:

    The Pey-Resh Root
    Noting that the plosives p and b are interchangable, as are the dental/fricatives t,d,z, we behold the universal manifestation of the power of Pey throughout the Western Asiatic languages. Here are some really obvious cognates - the Hebrew Pey + Resh + Dental/Fricative pattern:
    • (S# 6331) Pur = Break, Crush (root of Purim)
    • (S# 6504) Parad = Break through, divide, part, separate
    • (S# 6555) Paratz = Burst
    • (S# 6578) Parat = Rushing forth
    • (S# 6566) Paras = Break, chop in pieces, scatter

  9. #9
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    stones

    Hi folks!

    Some of the Hebrew words used for the breastplate stones at Exodus 28 survive today in English. These are the stone names in question.

    The second breastplate stone is the Hebrew pitedah. This stone is without doubt our modern peridot, pronounced in almost exactly the same way as the ancient Hebrew word for the same stone. Note that the second letter in the Hebrew name is the teth. This letter is named after a rolling or twisting, hence it is often identified as a pictogram of a snake. The rolled 'r' sound often becomes a 't' on many tongues, and vice versa.

    The third breastplate stone is the Hebrew bareqeth. This word comes down to us in English through the etymological chain bareqeth - marakata - maragdos - smaragdos - smaraldus - esmeralde - emerald. This association is well-known.

    The fifth stone is the Hebrew sappir. In Greek, this word becomes sappheiros, the root of our word sapphire. The ancient sappheiros is, however, known today as lapis lazuli. Our modern sapphire was known anciently as huakinthos.

    The ninth breastplate stone is the Hebrew achlamah. I believe this stone to be our modern aquamarine, which word I believe to be derived directly from the Hebrew. The assumption has always been that aquamarine derives from the Latin aqua and mare. This has been traced back no earlier than the 15th century. I believe this latter to be merely a secondary derivation, the Hebrew being the primary etymology.

    Finally, the twelfth breastplate stone is the Hebrew yashepheh, which translates to our modern jasper. The breastplate jasper would have been a yellow or clear form of jasper.

    Stephen

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stephen View Post
    The fifth stone is the Hebrew sappir. In Greek, this word becomes sappheiros, the root of our word sapphire. The ancient sappheiros is, however, known today as lapis lazuli. Our modern sapphire was known anciently as huakinthos.
    Stephen
    Hi Stephen

    Good list! I noticed that one about the saphire a long time ago - to obvious to miss.

    And it just reminded me about the root of "sparrow" ... Remember Zipporah, Moses wife? Well, her name means ZiPoRaH => SiPoRaH => SPaRrow. Here's Strong's entry:

    6833 tsippowr {tsip-pore'} or tsippor {tsip-pore'}
    Meaning: 1) bird, fowl 1a) bird (singular) 1b) birds (coll)
    Origin: from 06852; TWOT - 1959a; n f
    Usage: AV - bird 32, fowl 6, sparrow 2; 40

    And here's an example from the KJV where the translator needed to do little but transliterate:

    Psalm 84:3 Yea, the sparrow (tzippor) hath found an house, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young, even thine altars, O LORD of hosts, my King, and my God.

    Richard

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