[b-hebrew] b-hebrew Digest, Vol 114, Issue 10

Nir cohen - Prof. Mat. nir at ccet.ufrn.br
Tue Jun 19 17:33:17 EDT 2012

i do not see the word ESAU as a derivative of EC, as suggested by jim,
as from the linguistic point of view the transformation C-->S is not a natural
one, nor does it make good sense textually. but there are
two alternative readings of this name within west semitic.

1. the root ($ or ($$ does exist in hebrew, it means "be dark" or "become
dark" [at the moment i cannot quote the biblical occurrences nor 
necessarily restrict "dark" to "dark red"] referring e.g. to losing 
eyesight. ($ is also used as a moth or dark insect - i dont know 
if also biblically. also PR($ (flea) which is dark. the name ($T for 
certain types of iron may be explained by its dark color [and ($TWNWT or
($TWT may then be explained as secondary, derived from "tough"]. we 
also have ($N (smoke) which is also dark. 

this may suggest that ESAU simply signified: dark-skinned. the association
with the red color in particular may have been a later association of a 
geographic or ethnic nature, added to the text. observe that david was also
described as reddish.

2. alternatively, or in addition, one can conjecture some connection 
between the name (SW and (SB (=grass).

nir cohen

On Tue, 19 Jun 2012 12:00:28 -0400, b-hebrew-request wrote
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