from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. An ancient Aramaic language spoken in Syria from the 3rd to the 13th century that survives as the liturgical language of several Eastern Christian churches.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • proper n. An Aramaic language, part of the Semitic language family, specifically:
  • n. A speaker of the Syriac language (see above).
  • n. A member of the Syriac Orthodox Church.
  • adj. Of, pertaining to, or being the Syriac language, its speakers, or their culture.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Of or pertaining to Syria, or its language.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Pertaining to Syria or its language: as, the Syriac Bible.
  • n. The language of Syria, especially the ancient language of that country, differing very little from the Chaldee or Eastern Aramaic, and belonging to the Semitic family of languages.


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Ancient Greek συριακός (suriakós), an adjective pertaining to Συρία (Suría), the Greek name for Aram, and probably based on the name Assyria.



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  • "At Bulayik, a site to the north of Turfan, they excavated Christian manuscripts in Syriac, Sogdian, Middle Persian, modern Persian, and Uighur. ... Syriac was the primary language of worship, but some psalters and hymn collections have Sogdian headings in them. ... The dating of these manuscripts is uncertain; most likely they date to the ninth and tenth centuries, when Turfan was the capital of the Uighur Kaghanate."

    --Valerie Hansen, The Silk Road: A New History (Oxford and New York: Oxford UP, 2012), 108-109

    January 3, 2017