Is the theory that Hebrew and Arabic words descend or derive from Greek correct?

By: | Post date: 2016-09-12 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Ancient Greek, Linguistics

Already posted this as a comment:

… The business with Yahuda’s supposedly suppressed book is a longstanding urban legend in Greek nationalist circles (such as Davlos magazine).

An urban legend uninformed by the existence of Worldcat:

Or Amazon:

The nearest copy of the book to me is in the Australian Catholic University. 18 km from my house, and across the road from the Catholic Education Office, where I have routine business. Next time I’m there, I should get a photo…

Strike that: some soul has uploaded the book to Hebrew is Greek : Free Download & Streaming : Internet Archive

Oh, and no book reviews ever? People *do* realise that the academic press is Googlable nowadays, don’t they?

Bible and Interpretation: The Collected Essays of James Barr

with the wonderful summation:

It is, therefore, just as if one were to claim that Milton’s Paradise Lost was a text in Russian. If the reader objected that it looked very like an English poem and not at all like a piece of Russian, he would be shown a set of permutations of vowels, consonants, prefixes and terminations, from which it would emerge that each word of Milton’s text was in fact a Russian word; and, since the Russian words, remarkably, added up to pretty much the same general meaning as the English had had in the first place, it would have been demonstrated that Russian and English are the same language anyway.


For scholarship, then, this book, though learned-looking, full of words in Greek, Hebrew, and Arabic script, attractively printed, extending to nearly 700 pages in length and being correspondingly expensive to buy, is of no importance or interest. The author simply does not know what he is talking about.

And the sample etymologies from Yahuda that George Stamatis supplies—

Cain < Ka-en < Κα ην < Γα ην < Γηινος (‘from the earth’)

Israel < Eis-ra-el < εις (‘powerful’) + ρα (‘king’) + ηλ (‘sun’)

don’t make me dispute James Barr’s conclusion.

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