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Encyclopedia > Semitic

In linguistics and ethnology, Semitic (from the Biblical "Shem", Hebrew: שם, translated as "name", Arabic: سام) was first used to refer to a language family of largely Middle Eastern origin, now called the Semitic languages. This family includes the ancient and modern forms of Amharic, Arabic, Aramaic, Akkadian, Ge'ez, Hebrew, Maltese, Tigrinya, etc. Linguistics is the scientific study of language. ... Ethnology (greek ethnos: (non-greek, barbarian) people) is a genre of anthropological study, involving the systematic comparison of the folklore, beliefs and practices of different societies. ... The word Bible refers to the canonical collections of sacred writings of Judaism and Christianity. ... Shem (שֵׁם renown; prosperity; name, Standard Hebrew Å em, Tiberian Hebrew Å Ä“m; Greek Σημ, SÄ“m; ) was one of the sons of Noah in the Bible who adhered to the Noahide Laws. ... Current distribution of Human Language Families Most languages are known to belong to language families. ... A map showing countries commonly considered to be part of the Middle East The Middle East is a region comprising the lands around the southern and eastern parts of the Mediterranean Sea, a territory that extends from the eastern Mediterranean Sea to the Persian Gulf. ... 14th century BC diplomatic letter in Akkadian, found in Tell Amarna. ... Amharic (አማርኛ) is a Semitic language spoken in Northern Central Ethiopia, where it is the official language. ... The Arabic language ( ), or simply Arabic ( ), is the largest member of the Semitic branch of the Afro-Asiatic language family (classification: South Central Semitic) and is closely related to Hebrew, Amharic and Aramaic. ... Aramaic is a group of Semitic languages with a 3,000-year history. ... Akkadian (lišānum akkadÄ«tum) was a Semitic language (part of the greater Afro-Asiatic language family) spoken in ancient Mesopotamia, particularly by the Assyrians and Babylonians. ... The Geez language (or Giiz language) is an ancient language that developed in the Ethiopian Highlands of the Horn of Africa as the language of the peasantry. ... Hebrew redirects here. ... Tigrigna (or ትግሪኛ) is a Semitic language spoken in Eritrea, where it is the official language, and in parts of Ethiopia and Israel. ...


As language studies are interwoven with cultural studies, the term also came to describe the extended cultures and ethnicities, as well as the history of these varied peoples as associated by close geographic and linguistic distribution. The late 19th century term "anti-Semitism" came to be used in reference specifically to anti-Jewish sentiment, further complicating the understood meaning and boundaries of the term. The word culture, from the Latin colo, -ere, with its root meaning to cultivate, generally refers to patterns of human activity and the symbolic structures that give such activity significance. ... The word culture, from the Latin colo, -ere, with its root meaning to cultivate, generally refers to patterns of human activity and the symbolic structures that give such activity significance. ... This is a list of names of ethnic groups. ... HIStory: Past, Present and Future – Book I (or simply HIStory) is a double-disc album by Michael Jackson released in 1995 by the Epic Records devision of Sony Music. ... The Eternal Jew: 1937 German poster. ... This article describes some ethnic, historic, and cultural aspects of the Jewish identity; for a consideration of the Jewish religion, refer to the article Judaism. ...

Contents

Origin

The term Semite was proposed at first to refer to the languages related to Hebrew by Ludwig Schlözer, in Eichhorn's "Repertorium", vol. VIII (Leipzig, 1781), p. 161. Through Eichhorn the name then came into general usage (cf. his "Einleitung in das Alte Testament" (Leipzig, 1787), I, p. 45. In his "Gesch. der neuen Sprachenkunde", pt. I (Göttingen, 1807) it had already become a fixed technical term. (The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume XIII)


The word "Semitic" is an adjective derived from Shem, one of the three sons of Noah in the Bible (Genesis 5.32, 6.10, 10.21), or more precisely from the Greek form of that name, namely Σημ (Sēm); the noun form referring to a person is Semite. The negative form of the adjective, anti-Semitic, is almost always used as a misnomer to mean "anti-Jewish" specifically. Shem (שֵׁם renown; prosperity; name, Standard Hebrew Å em, Tiberian Hebrew Å Ä“m; Greek Σημ, SÄ“m; ) was one of the sons of Noah in the Bible who adhered to the Noahide Laws. ... This T and O map, which abstracts that societys known world to a cross inscribed within an orb, remakes geography in the service of Christian iconography and identifies the three known continents as populated by descendents of Shem (Sem), Ham (Cham) and Japheth (Iafeth) The Table of Nations is... The word Bible refers to the canonical collections of sacred writings of Judaism and Christianity. ... Genesis (Greek: Γένεσις, having the meanings of birth, creation, cause, beginning, source and origin) is the first book of the Torah, the first book of the Tanakh and also the first book of the Christian Old Testament. ... Wikipedia does not have an article with this exact name. ... An editor has expressed a concern that the topic of this article may be unencyclopedic. ...


The concept of a "Semitic" peoples is derived from Biblical accounts of the origins of the cultures known to the ancient Hebrews. Those closest to them in culture and language were generally deemed to be descended from their forefather Shem. Enemies were often said to be descendants of his cursed brother Ham. In Genesis 10:21-31 Shem is described as the father of Aram, Asshur, and others: the Biblical ancestors of the Aramaeans, Assyrians, Babylonians, Chaldeans, Sabaeans, and Hebrews, etc., all of whose languages are closely related; the language family containing them was therefore named Semitic by linguists. However, the Canaanites and Amorites also spoke a language belonging to this family, and are therefore also termed Semitic in linguistics despite being described in Genesis as sons of Ham (See Sons of Noah). Shem is also described in Genesis as the father of the Elamites and the descendants of Lud, whose languages were not Semitic. Hebrews (or Heberites, Eberites, Hebreians; Hebrew: עברים or עבריים, Standard , Tiberian , ; meaning descendants of biblical Patriarch Eber), were people who lived in Canaan, an area encompassing Israel, both banks of the Jordan River (The West Bank and Jordan), Sinai, Lebanon, and the coastal portions of Syria. ... Ham (חָם, Standard Hebrew , Tiberian Hebrew , , Geez Kam), according to the Genealogies of Genesis, was a son of Noah and the father of Cush, Mizraim, Phut, and Canaan. ... Shem (שֵׁם renown; prosperity; name, Standard Hebrew Šem, Tiberian Hebrew Šēm; Greek Σημ, Sēm; ) was one of the sons of Noah in the Bible who adhered to the Noahide Laws. ... The term Aram can refer to: Aram (אֲרָם or ), the fifth semite grandson of Noah, in the Book of Genesis. ... The word Asshur can mean: Asshur (אַשּׁוּר), son of Shem, the son of Noah. ... The Arameans or Aramaeans (also called Syriacs) were a Semitic, nomadic people who dwelt in Aram-Naharaim or Aram of the two rivers, also known as Mesopotamia a region including modern Syria, Iraq, Jordan, Iran that is mentioned six times in the Hebrew Bible. ... Assyrians are Aramaic-speaking Christians who consider themselves to be indigenous inhabitants of Mesopotamia, and inheritors of the ancient culture of Assyria. ... Babylonia was an ancient state in Iraq), combining the territories of Sumer and Akkad. ... Chaldea, the Chaldees of the KJV Old Testament, was a Hellenistic designation for a part of Babylonia. ... The Sabaeans were a people who lived in what is today Yemen in the final millennium BCE. They may be the same nation as the biblical Sheba. ... Hebrews (or Heberites, Eberites, Hebreians; Hebrew: עברים or עבריים, Standard , Tiberian , ; meaning descendants of biblical Patriarch Eber), were people who lived in Canaan, an area encompassing Israel, both banks of the Jordan River (The West Bank and Jordan), Sinai, Lebanon, and the coastal portions of Syria. ... Current distribution of Human Language Families Most languages are known to belong to language families. ... For other uses, see Canaan (disambiguation). ... Amorite (Hebrew ’emōrî, Egyptian Amar, Akkadian Tidnum or Amurrūm (corresponding to Sumerian MAR.TU or Martu) refers to a Semitic people who occupied the country west of the Euphrates from the second half of the third millennium BC, and also the god they worshipped (see Amurru). ... This T and O map, which abstracts that societys known world to a cross inscribed within an orb, remakes geography in the service of Christian iconography and identifies the three known continents as populated by descendents of Shem (Sem), Ham (Cham) and Japheth (Iafeth) The Table of Nations is... Elam (Persian: ایلام) is one of the most ancient civilizations on record. ... Lud was a Shemite grandson of Noah. ...


The hypothetical Proto-Semitic people, ancestral to the speakers of the historical Semitic languages in the Middle East are thought to have been originally from either the Arabian Peninsula (particularly around Yemen) or the Ethiopian Highlands, but its homeland is still much debated and uncertain. Proto-Semitic is the hypothetical proto-language of the Semitic languages. ... The Arabian Peninsula The Arabian Peninsula (in Arabic: شبه الجزيرة العربية, or جزيرة العرب) is a peninsula in Southwest Asia at the junction of Africa and Asia consisting mainly of desert. ... The Ethiopian Highlands are a rugged mass of mountains in Ethiopia and Eritrea in northeastern Africa. ...


Ancient Semitic peoples

Akkad (or Agade) was a city and its region of northern Iraq) between Assyria to the northwest and Sumer to the south. ... Relief from Assyrian capital of Dur Sharrukin, showing transport of Lebanese cedar (8th c. ... Ebla was an ancient city located in northern Syria, about 55 km southwest of Aleppo. ... The Arameans or Aramaeans (also called Syriacs) were a Semitic, nomadic people who dwelt in Aram-Naharaim or Aram of the two rivers, also known as Mesopotamia a region including modern Syria, Iraq, Jordan, Iran that is mentioned six times in the Hebrew Bible. ... Assyrians are Aramaic-speaking Christians who consider themselves to be indigenous inhabitants of Mesopotamia, and inheritors of the ancient culture of Assyria. ... Entrance to the Palace of Ugarit Ugarit (modern site Ras Shamra رأس شمرة; in Arabic) 35°35´ N; 35°45´E) was an ancient cosmopolitan port city, sited on the Mediterranean coast of northern Syria a few kilometers north of the modern city of Latakia. ... The Canaanite languages are a subfamily of the Semitic languages, spoken by the ancient peoples of the Canaan region, including Canaanites, Hebrews, Phoenicians, and eventually Philistines. ... Amorite (Hebrew ’emōrî, Egyptian Amar, Akkadian Amurrū (corresponding to Sumerian MAR.TU or Martu) refers to a Semitic people who occupied the middle Euphrates area from the second half of the third millennium BC and also appear in the Tanakh. ... Sumer (or Shumer, Egyptian Sangar, Bib. ... For the extinct mollusc see Ammonite. ... Edom (אֱדוֹם, Standard Hebrew Edom, Tiberian Hebrew ʾĔḏôm) sounds like the Biblical Hebrew word for red and is a vividly apposite designation for the red sandstones of Edom. ... In compiling the history of ancient Israel and Judah, there are many available sources. ... Moab (מוֹאָב Seed of father/leader, Standard Hebrew Moʾav, Tiberian Hebrew Môʾāḇ) is the historical name for a mountainous strip of land in Jordan running along the eastern shore of the Dead Sea. ... Phoenicia was an ancient civilization in the north of ancient Canaan, with its heartland along the coastal plain of what is now Lebanon and Syria. ... The Sabaeans were an ancient people speaking a South Semitic language who lived in what is today Yemen and for a time in northern Ethiopia and Eritrea. ... Ethiopian Semitic languages (sometimes Ethiopic) is a language group which together with Old South Arabian forms the Western branch of the South Semitic languages. ... The Arabs (Arabic: عرب ) are an ethnic group found throughout the Middle East and North Africa. ... Petra, the Nabataean capital The Nabataeans were a trading people of ancient Arabia, whose oasis settlements in the time of Josephus gave the name of Nabatene to the borderland between Syria and Arabia, from the Euphrates to the Red Sea. ...

Semitic languages

Main article: Semitic languages

The modern linguistic meaning of "Semitic" is therefore derived from (though not identical to) Biblical usage. In a linguistic context the Semitic languages are a subgroup of the larger Afro-Asiatic language family (according to Joseph Greenberg's widely accepted classification) and include, among others: Akkadian, the ancient language of Babylon; Amharic, the official language of Ethiopia; Tigrinya, a language spoken in Eritrea and in northern Ethiopia; Arabic, the newest in the family of Semitic languages; Aramaic, the mother-tongue of Jesus; Canaanite; Ge'ez, the ancient language of the Ethiopian Orthodox scriptures; Hebrew; Phoenician or Punic; and South Arabian, the ancient language of Sheba/Saba, which today includes Mehri, spoken by only tiny minorities on the southern part of the Arabian Peninsula. 14th century BC diplomatic letter in Akkadian, found in Tell Amarna. ... 14th century BC diplomatic letter in Akkadian, found in Tell Amarna. ... Map showing the distribution of Afro-Asiatic languages The Afro-Asiatic languages are a language family of about 240 languages and 285 million people widespread throughout North Africa, East Africa, the Sahel, and Southwest Asia. ... Joseph Harold Greenberg (May 28, 1915–May 7, 2001) was a prominent and controversial linguist, known for his work in both language classification and typology. ... Akkadian (lišānum akkadītum) was a Semitic language (part of the greater Afro-Asiatic language family) spoken in ancient Mesopotamia, particularly by the Assyrians and Babylonians. ... Amharic (አማርኛ ’amarəñña) is a Semitic language spoken in North Central Ethiopia by the Amhara. ... Tigrinya (also spelt Tigrigna) is a Semitic language spoken by the Tigray people in central Eritrea, where it is one of the main working languages (Eritrea does not have official languages), and in the Tigray Region of Ethiopia, where it also has official status, and among groups of emigrants from... The Arabic language ( ), or simply Arabic ( ), is the largest member of the Semitic branch of the Afro-Asiatic language family (classification: South Central Semitic) and is closely related to Hebrew, Amharic and Aramaic. ... Aramaic is a group of Semitic languages with a 3,000-year history. ... The Canaanite languages are a subfamily of the Semitic languages, spoken by the ancient Canaanite peoples. ... Geez (also transliterated Giiz, , and pronounced IPA: ; ISO 639-2 gez) is an ancient South Semitic language that had developed in the current region of Eritrea and northern Ethiopia in the Horn of Africa, as the language of the peasantry. ... This Ethiopian icon shows St. ... Hebrew redirects here. ... Phoenician was a language originally spoken in the coastal region of what is now Lebanon. ... Punic (from Latin pūnicus) was a Latin version of the term Phoenician. (After the Punic Wars, Romans used this term as an adjective meaning treacherous.) In archaeological and linguistic usage, it refers to the Greco-Roman era culture and dialect of Carthage and its empire as distinct from their... South Arabian is a technical designation within Semitic linguistics for one of two main branches of South Semitic. ... Sheba (from the English transcription of the Hebrew name shva, also Saba, Arabic: سبأ) is a southern kingdom mentioned in the Jewish scriptures (Old Testament) and the Quran. ... Map of the Protectorate of South Arabia Mahra or Al Mahrah (Arabic: المهرة) is a governorate of Yemen in the southern Arabian Peninsula. ...


Wildly successful as second languages far beyond their numbers of contemporary first-language speakers, a few Semitic languages today are the base of the sacred literature of some of the world's great religions, including Islam (Arabic), Judaism (Hebrew and Aramaic), and Orthodox Christianity (Aramaic and Ge'ez). Millions learn these as a second language (or an archaic version of their modern tongues): many Muslims learn to read and recite Classical Arabic, the language of the Qur'an, and Jews all over the world outside of Israel with other first languages speak and study Hebrew, the language of the Torah, Midrash, and other Jewish scriptures. Islam (Arabic:  ) is a monotheistic religion based upon the Quran, its principal scripture, whose followers, known as Muslims (مسلم), believe God (Arabic: الله ) sent through revelations to Muhammad. ... Judaism is the religion of the Jewish people. ... This article is becoming very long. ... A Muslim (Arabic: مسلم, Turkish: Müslüman, Persian and Urdu: مسلمان, Bosnian: Musliman) is an adherent of Islam. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... The Qurān [1] (Arabic: ‎ , literally the recitation; also called The Noble Quran; also transliterated as Quran, Koran, and Al-Quran), is the central religious text of Islam. ... It has been suggested that Pentateuch be merged into this article or section. ... Midrash (Hebrew: מדרש; plural midrashim) is a Hebrew word referring to a method of exegesis of a Biblical text. ...


It should be noted that Berber, Egyptian (including Coptic), Hausa, Somali, and many other related languages within the wider area of Northern Africa and the Middle East do not belong to the Semitic group, but to the larger Afro-Asiatic language family of which the Semitic languages are also a subgroup. Other ancient and modern Middle Eastern languages — Armenian, Kurdish, Persian, Turkish, ancient Sumerian, and Nubian — do not belong to the larger Afro-Asiatic language family. Afro-Asiatic - Berber The Berber languages (or Tamazight) are a group of closely related languages mainly spoken in Morocco and Algeria. ... Coptic is the most recent phase of ancient Egyptian. ... Hausa is the Chadic language with the largest number of speakers, spoken as a first language by about 24 million people, and as a second language by about 15 million more. ... Map showing the distribution of Afro-Asiatic languages The Afro-Asiatic languages are a language family of about 240 languages and 285 million people widespread throughout North Africa, East Africa, the Sahel, and Southwest Asia. ... The Kurdish language is an Iranian language spoken in the region called Kurdistan, including Kurdish populations in parts of Iran, Iraq, Syria and Turkey. ... Persian, (local name: FārsÄ« or PārsÄ«), is an Indo-European language spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and by minorities in Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia, Southern Russia, neighboring countries, and elsewhere. ... The Sumerian language of ancient Sumer was spoken in Southern Mesopotamia from at least the 4th millennium BCE. Sumerian was replaced by Akkadian as a spoken language around 1800 BCE, but continued to be used as a sacred, ceremonial, literary and scientific language in Mesopotamia until the first century AD... The Nubian language group, according to the most recent research by Bechhaus-Gerst comprises the following varieties: Nobiin (previously called Mahas or Fadicca/Fiadicca). ...


For a complete list of Semitic and Afro-Asiatic languages, see the Ethnologue's list.


Geography

Semitic peoples and their languages in modern and ancient historic times have covered a broad area bridging Africa, Western Asia and the Arabian Peninsula. The earliest historic (written) evidences of them are found in the Fertile Crescent, an area encompassing the Babylonian and Assyrian civilizations along the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, extending northwest into southern Asia Minor (modern Turkey) and the Levant along the eastern Mediterranean. (Today this same region is populated by Arabic speakers except for Israel, where modern Hebrew was reintroduced in the 20th century as the national language.) Early traces of Semitic speakers are found, too, in South Arabian inscriptions in Yemen, Eritrea, Northern Ethiopia and later, in Roman times, in Nabataean inscriptions from Petra (modern Jordan) south into Arabia. (Here, too, Arabic has largely won out over the original Semitic tongues.) Semitic languages and peoples are also found in the Horn of Africa, especially Eritrea and Ethiopia, the last great holdout of South Semitic languages. Later expansions of Semitic languages also spread into North Africa at two widely separated periods. The first expansion occurred with the ancient Phoenicians, the name given by the Greeks to the Canaanites, along the southern Mediterranean Sea all the way to the Atlantic Ocean (colonies which included ancient Rome's nemesis Carthage). The second, a millennium later, occurred with the expansion of the Muslim armies and Arabic in the 7th-8th centuries AD, which, at their height, controlled the Hispanic Peninsula and Sicily. Arab Muslim expansion is also responsible for modern Arabic's presence from Mauretania, on the Atlantic coast of West Africa, to the Red Sea in the northeastern corner of Africa, and its reach south along the Nile River through traditionally non-Semitic territory, as far as the northern half of Sudan, where, as the national language, non-Arab Sudanese even farther south must learn it. Semitic languages today are also spoken in Malta (where an Italian-influenced dialect of North African Arabic is spoken) and on the island of Socotra in the Indian Ocean between Yemen and Somalia, where a dying vestige of South Arabian is spoken in the form of Soqotri. The Fertile Crescent is a historical region in the Middle East incorporating Ancient Egypt, the Levant, and Mesopotamia. ... The Tigris River (Arabic: دجلة Dijla, Hebrew: חדקל ḥiddeqel, Kurdish: Dîjle, Pahlavi: Tigr, Old Persian: Tigrā-, Syriac: ܕܩܠܬ Deqlath, Turkish: Dicle, Akkadian: Idiqlat) is the eastern member of the pair of great rivers that define Mesopotamia, along with the Euphrates, which flows from the mountains of Anatolia through Iraq (the name Mesopotamia... The Euphrates (the traditional Greek name, Arabic: الفرات Al-Furat, Armenian: ÔµÖƒÖ€Õ¡Õ¿ Yeá¹—rat, Hebrew: פְּרָת Perath, Kurdish: Ferat, Azeri: FÉ™rat, Old Persian: Ufrat, Syriac: ܦܪܘܬ or ܦܪܬ Frot or Prâth, Turkish: Fırat, Akkadian: Pu-rat-tu) is the westernmost of the two great rivers that define Mesopotamia (the other being the... Anatolia (Greek: ανατολη anatole, rising of the sun or East; compare Orient and Levant, by popular etymology Turkish Anadolu to ana mother and dolu filled), also called by the Latin name of Asia Minor, is a region of Southwest Asia which corresponds today to... The Levant Levant is an imprecise geographical term historically referring to a large area in the Middle East south of the Taurus Mountains, bounded by the Mediterranean Sea on the west, and by the northern Arabian Desert and Upper Mesopotamia to the east. ... The Modern Hebrew language is a Semitic language of the Afro-Asiatic language family. ... Petra, the Nabataean capital The Nabataeans, a people of ancient Arabia, whose settlements in the time of Josephus gave the name of Nabatene to the border-land between Syria and Arabia from the Euphrates to the Red Sea. ... The Treasury at Petra Petra (from petra, rock in Greek; Arabic: البتراء, al-Bitrā) is an archaeological site in Jordan, lying in a basin among the mountains which form the eastern flank of Wadi Araba, the great valley running from the Dead Sea to the Gulf of Aqaba. ... Nations of the Horn of Africa. ...  Northern Africa (UN subregion)  geographic, including above North Africa or Northern Africa is the northernmost region of the African continent. ... Phoenicia was an ancient civilization centered in the north of ancient Canaan, with its heartland along the coastal plains of what is now Lebanon. ... Bold text Carthage Ruins of Roman-era Carthage For other uses, see Carthage (disambiguation). ... topographic map of the Iberian Peninsula The Iberian Peninsula, or Iberia, is located in the extreme southwest of Europe. ... Sicily (Sicilia in Italian and Sicilian, Σικελία in Greek) is an autonomous region of Italy and the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea, with an area of 25,700 km² and 5 million inhabitants. ... Mauretania was a Berber kingdom on the Mediterranean coast of north Africa (named after the Mauri tribe, after whom the Moors were named), corresponding to western Algeria and northern Morocco. ...  Western Africa (UN subregion)  Maghreb West Africa or Western Africa is the westernmost region of the African continent. ... Location of the Red Sea Image:Red Seaimage. ... There is also Nile, a death metal band from South Carolina, USA. The Nile in Egypt Length 6 695 km Elevation of the source 1 134 m Average discharge 2 830 m³/s Area watershed 3 400 000 km² Origin Africa Mouth the Mediterranean Basin countries Uganda - Sudan - Egypt The... Map of the Socotra archipelago Socotra or Soqotra (Arabic سقطرى ; Suquá¹­ra) is a small archipelago of four islands and islets in the Indian Ocean off the coast Somalia some 350 km south of the Arabian peninsula. ... Soqotri is the native language of the island of Socotra off the southern coast of Yemen. ...


Religion

In a religious context, the term Semitic can refer to the religions associated with the speakers of these languages: thus Judaism, Christianity and Islam are often described as "Semitic religions," though the term Abrahamic religions is more commonly used today. A truly comprehensive account of "Semitic" religions would include the polytheistic Ancient Semitic religions (such as the religions of Adad, Hadad) that flourished in the Middle East before the Abrahamic religions. Judaism is the religion of the Jewish people. ... This article is becoming very long. ... Islam (Arabic:  ) is a monotheistic religion based upon the Quran, its principal scripture, whose followers, known as Muslims (مسلم), believe God (Arabic: الله ) sent through revelations to Muhammad. ... map showing the prevalence of Abrahamic (purple) and Dharmic (yellow) religions in each country. ... Polytheism multiple gods or deities. ... Semitic gods refers to the gods or deities of peoples generally classified as speaking a Semitic language. ... Baal () is a Semitic title and honorific meaning lord that is used for various gods, spirits and demons particularly of the Levant. ... Haddad - בעל הדד - حداد (in Ugaritic Haddu) was a very important northwest Semitic storm god and rain god, cognate in name and origin with the Akkadian god Adad. ...


Ethnicity and race

A stylised T and O map, depicting Asia as the home of the descendents of Shem (Sem). Africa is ascribed to Ham and Europe to Japheth
A stylised T and O map, depicting Asia as the home of the descendents of Shem (Sem). Africa is ascribed to Ham and Europe to Japheth

In Medieval Europe, all Asian peoples were thought of as descendents of Shem. By the nineteenth century, the term Semitic was confined to the ethnic groups who have historically spoken Semitic languages. These peoples were often considered to be a distinct race, sometimes misplaced within the "Caucasoid" category by totally ignoring the Ethiopian branches. However, some anti-Semitic racial theorists of the time argued that the Semitic peoples arose from the blurring of distinctions between previously separate races. This supposed process was referred to as Semiticization by the race-theorist Arthur de Gobineau. The notion that Semitic identity was a product of racial "confusion" was later taken up by the Nazi ideologue Alfred Rosenberg. Image File history File links Please see the file description page for further information. ... Image File history File links Please see the file description page for further information. ... earliest printed example of a classical T and O map (by Guntherus Ziner, Augsburg, 1472), illustrating the first page of chapter XIV of the Etymologiae. ... The Middle Ages formed the middle period in a traditional schematic division of European history into three ages: the classical civilization of Antiquity, the Middle Ages, and modern times. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Asian people. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Typical Caucasoid skull Caucasoid is a racial classification usually used as part of a phenotypal system, also including other classifications such as Australoid, Mongoloid, Negroid, and sometimes others such as Capoid. ... Semiticization is a pseudoscientific concept found in the writings of some racial theorists in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. ... Joseph Arthur Comte de Gobineau (July 14, 1816 - October 13, 1882) was a French aristocrat who became famous for advocating White Supremacy and developing the racialist theory of the Aryan master race in his book An Essay on the Inequality of the Human Races (1853-1855). ... Alfred Rosenberg Alfred Rosenberg (January 12, 1893, Reval (Tallinn) Estonia, then part of the Russian Empire–October 16, 1946) was an early and intellectually influential member of the Nazi party, who later held several important posts in the Nazi government. ...


Modern science, in contrast, identifies an ethnic group's common physical descent through genetic research, and analysis of the Semitic peoples suggests that they share a significant common ancestry. Though no significant common mitochondrial results have been yielded, Y-chromosomal links between Near-Eastern peoples like the Arabs, Syrians and Jews have proved fruitful, despite differences contributed from other groups (see Y-chromosomal Aaron). Although population genetics is still a young science, it seems to indicate that a significant proportion of these peoples' ancestry comes from a common Near Eastern population to which (despite the differences with the Biblical genealogy) the term Semitic has been applied. In cell biology, a mitochondrion is an organelle found in the cells of most eukaryotes. ... The human Y chromosome is one of two sex chromosomes, it contains the genes that cause testis development, thus determining maleness. ... The special positioning of fingers and hands during the Priestly Blessing is often placed as a crest or symbol on the gravestones of people to signify they are Kohanim. ... Population genetics is the study of the distribution of and change in allele frequencies under the influence of the four evolutionary forces: natural selection, genetic drift, mutation, and migration. ...


See also

  • Proto-Semitic

Proto-Semitic is the hypothetical proto-language of the Semitic languages. ...

External links

  • Semitic genetics
  • Semitic language family tree included under "Afro-Asiatic" in SIL's Ethnologue.

  Results from FactBites:
 
Semitic - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1181 words)
Semitic is a linguistic term referring to a subdivision of largely Middle Eastern Afro-Asiatic languages, the Semitic languages, as well as their speakers' corresponding cultures, and ethnicities.
The word "Semitic" is an adjective derived from Shem, one of the three sons of Noah in the Bible (Genesis 5.32, 6.10, 10.21), or more precisely from the Greek form of that name, namely Σημ (Sēm); the noun form referring to a person is Semite.
Semitic languages today are also spoken in Malta (where an Italian-influenced dialect of North African Arabic is spoken) and on the island of Socotra in the Indian Ocean between Yemen and Somalia, where a dying vestige of South Arabian is spoken in the form of Soqotri.
Semitic languages - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (2252 words)
Semitic languages were among the earliest to attain a written form, with Akkadian writing beginning in the middle of the third millennium BC.
Modern Ethiopian Semitic languages are SOV, possessor — possessed, and adjective — noun, probably due to Cushitic influence; however, the oldest attested Ethiopian Semitic language, Geez, was VSO, possessed — possessor, and noun — adjective[1].
All Semitic languages exhibit a unique pattern of stems consisting of "triliteral" or consonantal roots (normally consisting of three consonants), from which nouns, adjectives, and verbs are formed by inserting vowels with, potentially, prefixes, suffixes, or infixes (consonants inserted within the original root).
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