Columbus - way off topic

Søren Holst sh at
Sun Jul 21 12:51:28 EDT 2002

> (the term "Maranno", meaning "swine", is derogatory).
It ain't easy being politically correct these days. I've heard any number of
highly educated jews, Israeli and diaspora, use "Marano" as a perfectly
value neutral technical term meaning "A jew pretending to be a christian in
order to escape persecution at the hands of the Inquisition".

The guys in the linguistics department, I think, tell us that the meaning of
a word is defined by its usage, not its etymology. Do we have to do away
with this one, just because in Spanish it may have a referent different from
the one people intend when using it in talking (in English) about the jews
in Spain in the 1500's?

Soren Holst, Copenhagen

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