raqia encore

Peter Kirk Peter_Kirk at sil.org
Sat Jul 27 13:45:47 EDT 2002

Ian, I remember you saying something recently about the etymological
fallacy. That is the fallacy that just because two words (in the same or
in cognate languages) have the same etymology, there is a relation
between their meaning. That fallacy potentially applies here. Linguists
may not dispute that tehom and tiamat are etymologically related. That
does not imply that there is any relation between their meanings or
referents, especially in two quite remote languages with (as far as we
can tell) many centuries of time difference. I accept that they may be
related in meaning or referent. But a common etymology and a similar
form does not prove that.

Peter Kirk

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Ian Hutchesson [mailto:mc2499 at mclink.it]
> Sent: 27 July 2002 19:06
> To: Biblical Hebrew
> Subject: Re: raqia encore
> >It was just a few
> >months ago that we went around and around over the purported
> >tehom/tiamat cognate, the place of Enuma Elish in the grand
> >scheme of things, and all the rest.
> "purported tehom/tiamat cognate"
> I gather, Dave, that you are disputing that these are
> cognates (despite the fact that most have recognized
> the situation for over a century).
> Why? Is there something in the comparative linguistics
> which is not clear on the matter? Could you be precise
> on your dispute?
> Ian
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