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Comments by cohenizzy

  • Latin: Saccharomyces cervisae = Brewer's yeast (an ancient hangover remedy)

    Hebrew pun: Sa3aR MiNSHaKH KeLeV = hair bite dog (compare Gk Cerberus, the 3-headed dog guarding the entrance to Hades)

    English: Take "hair of the dog that bit you" (as a hangover remedy)

    June 18, 2009

  • The expression "to moon" = to expose one's buttocks as a prank or gesture of disrespect.

    This expression seems to be a euphemism based on the fact the Hebrew words for "moon" and "buttocks" are near homonyms. Using KH for the letter khaf and X for the letter khet:

    YeReKH yod-resh-khaf = buttock, haunch, thigh

    YaRa:aX yod-resh-het = moon

    June 18, 2009

  • This seems to be the translation of a Hebrew pun on a Hebrew phrase.

    Hebrew text: PeLeTZ + K'Foo = shiver (compare English palsy) + frozen

    Hebrew pun: P'LiZ + KoF = brass monkey

    Treating P as B in Arabic, P'LiZ KoF => balls (k)off ..., hence

    "cold enough to freeze the balls off a brass monkey."

    June 18, 2009

  • For a little while I forsook you but with vast love I will bring you back. In slight anger (SHeTZeF QeTZeF), for a moment, I hid My face from you but with everlasting kindness I will bring you back in love, said the Lord your Redeemer. (Isaiah 54:7-8)

    SHeTZeF QeTZeF is the origin of the idioms "nose is out of joint", "chip on ... shoulder" and "gets up my nose". Substituting a tof for the tzadi produces the pun SHuToF + KaTeF = joint + shoulder. Even the sound of "iS ouT oF" is a loose transliteration of and pun on SHuToF (joint). "Gets up" is a pun on QeTZeF and @aF is a homonym that means both "nose" and "anger". See "dust up" as a noun meaning "a quarrel".

    June 17, 2009

  • Another example of the aleph losing its sound and moving to the beginning of the Hebrew word produced the homonym @aVaQ aleph-vet-kuf which now means both "dust" and "quarrel, argument, controversy". The original sound for the quarrel-word was ViQoo'aKHt, now spelled vav-kaf-oo-het. Compare the English idiom "dust-up", where the "up" may be a transliteration of @aF = anger; nose.

    June 17, 2009

  • "Does that ring a bell?" means "cause you to remember something" and is probably the translation of German Glock ringen, a transliteration pun on Latin recollectare = to remember.

    June 16, 2009

  • Gossamer is probably a meld of Latin Gossypium = the genus of cotton + mare = the sea, that is, sea-foam.

    June 16, 2009

  • "Count sheep !" to go to sleep is probably the translation of a Hebrew pun S'PoR KeVeS on the Latin phrase *sopor* (sleep, as in soporific) *quies* (quietly, as in quiesent). This idiom now occurs in Israeli Hebrew as LiSPoR K'VaSim = to count sheep (plural).

    June 16, 2009

  • When I was a young kid, all of my friends and I knew the meaning of "escape by the skin of my teeth" and not a single one of us knew it was the translation of B'3or SHinai, a Hebrew pun on the word B'QoSHi (which means "barely, hardly, with difficulty") in the biblical book of Job 19:20. The 3 above represents the Hebrew letter aiyin with an ancient G/K-sound, as in 3aZa = Gaza.

    June 16, 2009

  • The meaning is: a torrent of rain is descending. This expression was first attested as "polecat and dog" where "polecat an_" is cognate with Hebrew maBooL GeSHeM (a torrent of rain) with an ancient T-sound for the shin. Dog, OE docga, is the verb ... cognate with shin-kuf-aiyin (to descend), with a D/T-sound for the shin and an ancient G-sound, as in 3aZa = Gaza, for the aiyin.

    Israel "izzy" Cohen

    June 14, 2009

  • Latin musculus is a homonym meaning both muscle and a small mouse. The same semantics are found in Greek pontiki. But the Greek mouse was derived from "mus Ponticus", mouse from the Pontus region, where Pontus was the biceps on a male anthropomorphic map. The etymology of muscle is unrelated to mouse. It is related to concepts such as weight, mass, and massage. It is probably related to Semitic mem-sin-aleph, lifting up, burden, load at a time when the aleph still had a chs-sound, and to mem-shin-kuf-lamed MiSHKaL weight. If you lift weights, you will develop your muscles. If you have a lot of muscle, you can lift / carry / pull a lot of weight.

    Israel "izzy" Cohen

    June 10, 2009

  • The standard etymology for cabal is from Hebrew kuf-bet-lamed-heh Kabbala, mystic lore, literally received (tradition). This is not correct. It is actually related to Hebrew het-bet-lamed kHaBaL, to plot, scheme.

    Israel "izzy" Cohen

    June 10, 2009

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