Saturday, March 18, 2006

Maria! etymology - wow 

The Devine existence of continual indiscriminant ‘loving and ‘giving’ of the River to all living creatures on earth, which explains one of the most fundamental Christian beliefs today.

Mother river, (Ma rika, Ma Rea, Maria) in Classical times Rea, is the continual giver of life sustaining water that gives birth to all Life on Earth.

In Classical times Rea gives birth to Zeus, in Christianity Maria ( Ma Ria ) gives birth to Christ –Jihova that is Life itself on Earth.

Baloney. The author's argument is that the etymology of Maria can be derived by looking at the Slavic tongues; he makes the risible assertion that The vocabulary associated with this magnificent concept of nature is deeply and permanently imbedded in the Languages of all Slavic Nations and to a lesser degree as a ripple effect in the other European Languages.

He's right about a ripple effect, but he's using the wrong source. In reality, the name Maria in languages affected by the Christian religion (which would include the Macedonian and Slavic tongues) comes not from ancient Eastern European paganism, but from a Hellenization of the Hebrew name Maryam. This latter remains common among Jews and less common even among non-Jews, especially when spelled Miriam. See for example this webpage, whose sources have impeccable credentials. Or see this webpage on baby names, or this one, or this dictionary entry, or this consideration of Semitic roots in our language.

It's quite curious that the author never once mentions the Hebrew (i.e., Jewish) origins of the name. It is so commonly known that one wonders how deeply he researched any of this, or whether he just sat around thinking of connections that may or may not have been true.

The bizarre nature of his inquiry is made even more evident by this statement: Now it is very important to indicate here that the Italian and Latin word for River is flumen bearing no resemblance to Regi, Reka, Reki. This makes sense if one accepts his assumption that the Italian and Latin words for "king" derive from the Slavic word for river. Unfortunately, they derive instead from a different Italian and Latin root, which derives in turn from Proto Indo-European; to wit, this etymology of regal indicates that the derivation dates to from PIE base *reg- "move in a straight line," hence, "direct, rule, guide". The PIE base for "flow", on the other hand, is *sreu-.

I tried to post this in your Haloscan comments, but it wasn't working at the time.
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