pożyczki pod zastaw piotrkow abis slask pozyczki udziele pożyczki prywatnie warszawa kredyt mieszkaniowy jaki wkład własny pożyczki żnin kara za niezgłoszenie pożyczki pozyczki z funduszu dla zadluzonych wycena pożyczki w walucie obcej na dzień bilansowy kredyt mieszkaniowy dochód umowa pożyczki pieniędzy doc pozyczka na umowe cywilno prawna czestochowa pro domo pożyczki kołobrzeg kredyt bankowy konto kredyty chwilowki kepno gredan pożyczki kody do orange kredyt pożyczki w domu klienta bytom szybkie kredyty gotówkowe pozabankowe umowa pożyczki z przewłaszczeniem nieruchomości kredyty bez bik krd pożyczki pozabankowe dla kogo alex pożyczki kredyt konsolidacyjny w parabankach pozyczka dla bezrobotnego ze splata tygodniowa kredyt bank w przeworsku kredyty konsolidacyjne ze złą historią kredytową bank santander kredyt na komornika bocian pożyczki giżycko banki dające wszystkim kredyt samochodowy kredyt konsolidacyjny credit kasa pożyczki adam nowakowski pożyczki pozyczki bez biku online kredyt studencki jakie warunki bank bph kredyt konsolidacyjny opinie alior bank kredyty studenckie kredyt pozabankowy na zakup mieszkania pożyczki dla małych przedsiębiorstw kredyt bez bik optima umowa pożyczki od obcokrajowca kredyt eurobank online kredyt bank tygrysy europy kredyt bank parkiet forum abis pozyczka głogów numer telefonu polecane pożyczki kredyt mieszkaniowy z wkładem własnym optima pożyczki praca kredyt w raiffeisen bank forum kredyt w eurobank opinie pożyczki chwilówki kalkulator pożyczki alior kredyt samochodowy mbank regulamin pożyczki ekspresowe na dowód skarabeusz pożyczki praca pożyczki chwilówki poznań ul 23 lutego kredyt konsolidacyjny umowa na zastępstwo kredyt w getin banku opinie pożyczki pod zastaw zielona góra kredyt bank ełk ul słowackiego pozyczki bez bik forum kasa branickiego pożyczki kredyt bankowy z bik kredyt bank przelewy wychodzące godziny historia umowy pożyczki kredyt bank garwolin godziny otwarcia pożyczki gotówkowe bez bik i zaświadczeń kredyt bank sokółka telefon ubezpieczenie kredytu w aig bank jak obliczyć odsetki od umowy pożyczki emilion pożyczki kredyt bez biku dla zadłuzonych pożyczki pelikan kredyt bank sa kod swift kredyt bank blonie kredyt bank rozwiązanie umowy pożyczki długoterminowe definicja kredyt bankowy dla małych i średnich przedsiębiorstw zabezpieczenie pożyczki proz wzór umowy pożyczki kwoty pieniężnej kredyt bank oddziały warszawa udzielać pożyczki proz pożyczki kapitał ludzki kredyty bez bik w uk kredyty chwilówki warszawa zwrot pożyczki urząd skarbowy kwota pożyczki zwolniona od podatku kredyt gotówkowy kalkulator porównanie kredyt gotówkowy bez zaświadczeń online korzystne pożyczki gotówkowe kredyt pozabankowy gdynia pożyczki chwilówki w ciechanowie pożyczki na dowód bez zaświadczeń i bik czy sygma bank udziela pozyczek pożyczki bez bik łódz kredyt na samochód bez bik pożyczki fasadowe kredyt konsolidacyjny eurobank kredyty chwilowki srem vivus przedłużenie pożyczki udzielenie nieoprocentowanej pożyczki spółce auto kredyt bez bik witam kredyt bez bik i krd kredyt bank kapitał kredyt konsolidacyjny przy najniższej krajowej kredyt bez biku opinie pożyczki dla zadłużonych online kredyt bank oddział marki godziny otwarcia kredyt mieszkaniowy dla singli 2012 kredyt bank wypowiedzenie rachunku kredyty preferencyjne banki potwierdzenie spłaty pożyczki wzór kredyt bank 24 kursy walut pozyczki z obsługą domową warszawa tylko dobre kredyty bez biku kredyt konsolidacyjny w alior banku pożyczki socjalne w pracy kredyt bank w wieliczce w jakim banku najlepiej brać kredyt mieszkaniowy gdzie wziac kredyt kielce kredyt bank rzgowska pożyczki bez bik nowy sącz lloyds kredyt pod zastaw mieszkania w polsce kredyty bez bik dabrowa gornicza aureus pozyczki kalkulator kredytowy gotówkowy alior bank kredyt bank kondratowicza 35 jaki jest kod na kredyt z orange kredyt bank kurs chf pożyczki chwilówki jak założyć pożyczki darowizny kredyt samochodowy idea bank kredyt mieszkaniowy ltv kredyt bank mickiewicz białystok pozyczka gratka opinie kredyty mieszkaniowe pozabankowe kasa jowisz pożyczki kredyt bez bik bez poreczycieli pożyczki chwilówki sokołów podlaski kredyt bank departamenty kredyt konsolidacyjny oblicz raty potrącenia pożyczki z wynagrodzenia skarabeusz pożyczki chrzanów pożyczki prywatne biała podlaska kredyt bank godziny otwarcia zamość 18lat na dowod kredyty olsztyn pożyczki na rozwój działalności gospodarczej prywatna umowa pożyczki pieniędzy wzór pożyczki panda opole kredyt bank turek pożyczki ratunkowe poznań kredyt mieszkaniowy bez zdolności kredytowej prywatne pozyczki na weksel kredyt w orange jaki kod kredyt konsolidacyjny dla firm najtańsze pożyczki online kredyt bank rakowicka godziny otwarcia kredyt bank ukraine kredyt bank legnica godz otwarcia kredyt bank filia poraj pożyczki pod zastaw jawor kredyt studencki pko kiedy firma kredyty chwilówki opinie kredyt bez bik dębica pożyczki od osób prywatnych warszawa bocian pożyczki nowogard pożyczki bez bik świecie umowa pożyczki a koszty uzyskania przychodu bocian pożyczki nakło nad notecią opty pożyczki koszalin pożyczki udziałowców kredyt w anglii forum pożyczki multika mikropożyczki opole polisa pożyczki kredyt konsolidacyjny w meritum bank kredyt samochodowy bank bph kredyty chwilówki na raty kredyty bez bik i krd lublin kredyt mieszkaniowy dla młodych małżeństw pko kredyty mieszkaniowe alior bank pożyczki do domu optima pożyczki od 20 lat kredyt mieszkaniowy plus gotówka skarabeusz pożyczki głogów pożyczki bolesławiec pożyczki bez oprocentowania kredyt mieszkaniowy rodzina na swoim 2013 pożyczki dla zadłużonych z komornikiem online kredyt samochodowy mbank dokumenty pożyczki gotówkowe jelenia góra pożyczki z obsługą w domu klienta kredyty dla zadłużonych siedlce adresy nr tel oprocentowanie pożyczki mieszkaniowej z zfśs praca w kredyt banku 2012 kredyt samochodowy ranking 2014 pożyczka od 18 lat na dowód pożyczki pozabankowe bez bik online pożyczki prywatne mazowieckie wziecie pozyczki od mafi pożyczki społecznościowe sekrata kredyt bank w skoczowie współpraca pożyczki bez bik skok wisła pożyczki pożyczki pozabankowe białystok pożyczki wierzyciel kredyty mieszkaniowe dla osob pracujacych za granica kredyt konsolidacyjny gotowkowy pożyczki na dowód uk kredyty chwilowki legnica opinie pożyczki gotówkowe długoterminowe gros pożyczki opinie podatek od pożyczki w banku pożyczki katowice 3 maja pożyczki bez bik cały kraj kredyty bez bik sandomierz kredyt bank lublin windykacja kontakt kredyt bez bik do 50 tys poznań kredyt bank wola warszawa kredyt bank tarnów lwowska telefon kredyt konsolidacyjny kalkulator wbk wzór weksla pożyczki kredyty mieszkaniowe tanie kredyty chwilówki łuków duże pożyczki profinet pożyczki opinie spłata pożyczki z funduszu socjalnego kredyty chwilowki nowa sol pożyczki 1000 zł kredyt w jakim banku 2013 kredyt bank warszawa ul fieldorfa prywatne pożyczki gotówkowe prymus pożyczki kredyty bez bik i krd olsztyn pożyczki 10000zł pożyczki takie jak provident kredyty mieszkaniowe w 2012 roku kredyt w banku forum potwierdzenie zapłaty pożyczki warunki uzyskania kredytu w getin banku kredyt w banku bz wbk kredyt bank łochów pożyczki na dowód bez bik krd kredyt samochodowy invest bank umowa pożyczki pomiędzy wspólnikiem a spółką pożyczki na dowód słupsk pożyczki dla ludzi bez pracy pożyczki bocian września nowakka pożyczki online kredyt bank w legionowie kredyt samochodowy bez bik na firme cechy pożyczki jako czynności prawnej skarabeusz pożyczki oświęcim pożyczki w domu klienta wałbrzych umorzenie odsetek od pożyczki przychód pożyczki głogów kredyt mieszkaniowy a małżeństwo pozyczki dla zadluzonych i w bazach kredyty mieszkaniowe rodzina na swoim 2012 pożyczki przez internet bez wychodzenia z domu pożyczki pozabankowe kołobrzeg pożyczki bocian płock kredyt samochodowy na oświadczenie bez bik kredyt studencki pko procent kredyt pozabankowy przez internet forum pilne pożyczki gotówkowe kredyt konsolidacyjny kb umowa pożyczki ważność kredyt konsolidacyjny bez ograniczeń wiekowych pcc od pożyczki udziałowca 2013 pożyczki od ręki wrocław pożyczki chwilówki w lesznie kredyt bank biłgoraj umowa pożyczki na cele mieszkaniowe z zfśs wzór kredyt konsolidacyjny w citibanku kredyty chwilówki strzegom pożyczki chwilówki na dowód katowice pożyczki bez zaświadczeń szczecin kredyt bank otwock kredyt bank busko szybkie pożyczki piła kredyt bank sa bielsk podlaski pożyczki online w 15 minut pożyczki w poznaniu kredyt konsolidacyjny dla jst kredyt bank karty kredytowe infolinia kredyt dla zadłużonych opole brzeg korona pozyczki konin kredyt bez bik erif bocian pożyczki wzór umowy korzystne pożyczki bankowe prawo podatkowe pożyczki kredyt bez bik big bocian pożyczki ostróda kredyt w uk lloyds kredyt idea bank opinie pożyczki pod zastaw gruntu gdzie szybki kredyt bez bik kredyt mieszkaniowy kalkulator rat wbk punkt pozyczek bocian w swiebodzinie kredyty bez bik glogow pożyczki od osób prywatnych radom kredyty bez komornika biku wroclaw pożyczki bankowe ranking pożyczki chwilówki bez opłat kredyt konsolidacyjny dla rencisty kredyt bank w legionowie bocian pożyczki opinia bank pko kredyt rodzina na swoim kredyt w banku slaskim pożyczki kielce kredyt w uk dla polakow getink bank krasnik kredyt dla firm kredyty chwilówki w kielcach pożyczki prywatne racibórz kredyt mieszkaniowy dla singli rodzina na swoim kredyt mieszkaniowy eurobank pożyczki pod zastaw nieruchomości gdynia wrocław pożyczki prywatne kredyty bankowe wzory kredyt bank konto osobiste opinie kredyt bankowy aktywo czy pasywo pożyczka 20000 w lesznie bez bik kredyt studencki pekao dokumenty kredyt w banku polskim udzielenie pożyczki innej firmie księgowanie 24 pożyczki proximus pożyczki prywatne radomsko kredyt bank lubin jana pawła kredyty konsolidacyjne z zajęciem komorniczym opłata za przelew zagraniczny kredyt bank kredyt bank chrobrego wrocław godziny otwarcia sygma bank kredyt online umowa pożyczki podatek od czynności cywilnoprawnych kredyt bez bankowego rejestru szukam pożyczki katowice kredyt na dowód lukas bank prywatne pożyczki inwestycyjne kredyt bank janów lubelski kredyt pod zastaw domu bez bik kredyt bank starogard gdański tel umowa pożyczki jeremie pożyczki do domu optima wysoki kredyt bez bik pożyczki dla msp pożyczki prywatne nowa sól pożyczki bez bik gniezno opodatkowanie odsetek pożyczki kredyt bez bik katowice kredyt bank białystok zwycięstwa 8 c pożyczki bytom szybkie pożyczki chwilówki kredyt bank radomsko kontakt getin bank warunki ubezpieczenia kredytu pożyczki w planie kont kredyt studencki w ktorym banku kredyt konsolidacyjny a krd kredyty w szkocji kredyt bank w biłgoraju kredyty mieszkaniowe sierpień 2012 provident odmowa pożyczki kredyt bank wypowiada umowy na życie bocian pożyczki gotówkowe umowa poręczenia pożyczki kredyt bank bankomaty wbk udzielenie pożyczki spółce przez spółkę pożyczki pozabankowe środa wlkp kredyt bez bik i krd dla firm kredyt dla firm bez zaświadczeń bez bik optima pożyczki oferty pracy kredyt bank szczecin matejki telefon kredyt mieszkaniowy z umową na czas określony umowa pożyczki referat bocian pożyczki bik kredyt bank oddział w białymstoku kredyt bank kasprzaka pożyczki kraków rynek podgórski kredyty bez bik w olsztynie kredyt bank wrocławska warunki przyznania kredytu mieszkaniowego w pko bp kredyt bank kalkulator kredytu mieszkaniowego kredyt bank kłodzko telefon pożyczki bez bik przemyśl pożyczki prywatne szczecin optima pożyczki przez internet kredyt bank krs ekasa pożyczki pożyczki na projekty unijne poręczenie pożyczki kredyt konsolidacyjny bez biku pożyczki bez bik długoterminowe pożyczki bez bik tarnowskie góry kredyt studencki pko sa 2012 kredyt bez bik gdynia kredyt bank kasprzaka 2 pożyczki społecznościowe czy warto inwestować kredyty bez bik warszawa kredyt bank program praktyk wakacyjnych sprzedaż wierzytelności z tytułu pożyczki kredyt refinansowy w banku centralnym najtańszy kredyt konsolidacyjny firma pożyczki chwilówki kredyt bez biku bez zaswiadczen kredyty w idea bank umowa pożyczki od wspólnika spółki cywilnej kasa polska pożyczki pożyczka 40000 zl bez biku pożyczki społecznościowe dla zadłużonych pożyczki bez bik w bydgoszczy kredyt bez bik śrem pożyczki na rozwój firmy kredyt bank wyzwolenia szczecin kredyt samochodowy banki wniosek o kredyt studencki pekao sa kredyty bez bik wodzisław śl spłata pożyczki z amber gold kredyt bez bik na umowe zlecenie firmy udzielające pożyczki bez bik kredyty chwilówki jak założyć pożyczki z zadłużeniem komorniczym kredyty bez bik słupsk nazwa pożyczki udzielonej przez bank kredyt bez bik na dowód kredyt bank wolontariat pracowniczy kredyt bank cennik opłat kredyt bank centrum kart płatniczych kalkulator kredytu gotówkowego alior bank kredyt bank kolobrzeska gdansk kredyty z komornikiem katowice karta kredytowa kredyt bank punkty pożyczki dla podmiotów ekonomii społecznej pozyczki calodobowe uk online kredyt konsolidacyjny fortis bank kredyty mieszkaniowe luty 2013 pożyczki pod zastaw ełk umorzenie pożyczki z wfośigw księgowanie kredyt w boś banku opinie definicja pożyczki pieniężnej kredyt bank zwrot za paliwo pożyczki od gangsterów kredyty chwilówki opinie gowork pożyczki gotówkowe comperia kredyt gotówkowy w banku spółdzielczym kredyt bank nowy sacz kontakt numery telefonu o pozyczke wrzesnia pożyczki gotówkowe kalisz kredyt konsolidacyjny zdunska wola pożyczki gotówkowe suwałki pożyczki bez bik piotrków trybunalski kredyt bank nowy sącz aleje wolności kredyt bank wpłatomaty poznań kredyt mieszkaniowy getin bank opinie kredyty chwilówki brzeg kredyt pod zastaw domu w banku kredyty bez bik koszalin promesa udzielenia pożyczki ranking pożyczki gotówkowe czy warto brać kredyt w getin banku udzielę pożyczki prywatnej na procent kredyt bank bialobrzegi udzielenie pożyczki przez spółkę wspólnikowi kredyt konsolidacyjny ustawa pożyczki pozabankowe w legnicy szybkie pożyczki bez bik nowy sącz kredyt bank cz pożyczki bez bik i krd sosnowiec pożyczki krapkowice pożyczki chwilówki bez bik bydgoszcz kredyt bank nowe konto kredyty chwilówki bocian pożyczki wspólników udzielane spółkom kapitałowym pożyczki osobiste kredyt w banku millennium kredyt bank wroclaw legnicka kredyt bank iii oddział w warszawie potrzebuje pożyczki na dowód pożyczki dla msp pożyczki banki kredyt studencki oprocentowanie pekao pożyczki inwestycyjne kredyt studencki pko bp pożyczki dla młodych przedsiębiorców pożyczki agh pożyczki na weksel kredyt bez bik ełk kredyt bank rzeszów pożyczki bez bik żnin kredyt bank bednarska umowa pożyczki działalność gospodarcza kredyt bez bik starachowice kredyt bank garibaldiego 4 nr tel pożyczki bocian stargard szczeciński kontakt kredyt konsolidacyjny w kredyt bank bezzwrotne pożyczki dla bezrobotnych pożyczki łódzkie kredyt w db bank opinie pro collect pożyczki kredyt bank stalowa wola kontakt kredyt bank charakterystyka wierzyciel pożyczki opinie pożyczki ostrów mazowiecka

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Heavens!

Obscure or Obsolete Words for Heaven:
Namely, Welkin and Firmament

 

 

“Bill Casselman is one of the country’s [Canada's] leading etymologists/ word hounds, as is shown by his numerous books on language, including the celebrated Canadian Sayings.

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Heavens!
Obscure or Obsolete Words for Heaven:
Namely, Welkin and Firmament

To begin, I lodge a mild dissent concerning descriptive adjectives used by most dictionaries when referring to words rare, obscure or obsolete. Our two synonyms for ‘heaven’ under discussion today, firmament and welkin, both suffer from slipshod, uncareful and deficient labelling.

The Firmament Fuss
The Oxford English Dictionary in particular seems loath to even mention satirical or playful or lightly jesting uses of a rare or obsolete word.

Take firmament as example. If you know the Book of Genesis in the KJV, the King James version of The Bible, you will exult in the orotund majesty of firmament, a synonym for heaven reverberant when spoken aloud like the blast of an angel’s trumpet. A place of locative authority and environing certitude, the firmament is, by the very sound of the word, confident of its existence and certain of its divinity. Genesis 1:6 tells the reader “And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.”

Oxford says modern use of firmament is “only” poetic or rhetorical. So wrongly incomplete! I’ve read the word firmament used whimsically, playfully, magnified for comic exaggeration or employed viciously in an anti-religious newspaper column by a militant atheist. Such uses of the word in print have shown up throughout my life. Yet in its many quotations demonstrating various uses of firmament, Oxford shows not one quotation that is sportive or frisky.

Further in the OED’s long entry, the great dictionary states a definition of firmament: “Heaven, as the place where God dwells” Then with dark, excluding authority, Oxford rolls sonorously onward to assert that the word is “obsolete except in Biblical and liturgical phrases.” Poppycock! Twaddle! Illogical Hooey! How about a recent (August 2015) American newspaper columnist describing Donald Trump as “arriving freshly jetted from the firmament.” Satire! The journalist is making fun of Trump’s pseudo-godlike shenanigans, with a reminder to his Bible-knowing readers of God’s dwelling place, namely the firmament. The word’s use is NOT obsolete. Firmament is alive in comic mode. Therefore it behooves the OED, in its monumental, century-long revision, to begin to include such jolly usage in lists of exemplary quotations.

There endeth my rant. Now commenceth my etymology of firmament.

Firmament’s long word history fascinates. Its immediate etymon is classical Latin firmamentum “something that or an object which lends solid support to, holds up, strengthens” from the Latin verb firmare from the old Roman adjective firmus ‘solid.’

Myles Coverdale, early translator of the Bible into English, found it in the fourth-century Latin translation of the Bible by Saint Jerome commonly called The Vulgate, not because it was vulgar but because Saint Jerome’s translation became widely popular and sometime in the 13th century, nine hundred years after Jerome translated, his work was dubbed the versio vulgata Latin ‘the commonly-used edition.’ Saint Jerome also wanted the Bible to be readable by ordinary, literate-in-Latin people (Latin vulgus ‘the people’).

Myles Coverdale made the word firmament popular in his 1535 version of the Bible. But Coverdale had found the word firmament in an earlier William Tyndale Bible, where Tyndale had perhaps Englished the word from its Vulgate Latin form firmamentum. Unlike Coverdale, Tyndale knew the Hebrew of The Old Testament and the Koine or Hellenistic Greek of The New Testament, so his translations were freshly made from Hebrew and Greek texts. He knew that Saint Jerome had selected Latin firmamentum as a translation of a biblical Hebrew word rāqīăʿ which meant the overarching vault of the sky, that is, heaven.

The trilitteral verbal root in Hebrew,rāqaʿ has a neat significance. It was a blacksmith’s verb and meant ‘to pound out metal into a thin sheet.’Thus we have one idea of how very early Hebrew writers thought of heaven. They imagined it was a sheet of metal separating the watery abode of rain and hail above from the rivers and streams and seas below. Now let us return to that line from Genesis quoted above. One may see that, from an ancient Hebrew point of view, the mysterious double mention of water begins to make sense. “And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters (above) from the waters (below).”

I now tiptoe tentatively out on a precarious semantic limb, to make an educated guess about why those ancient Hebrew bible-writers might think of the sky as a sheet of thin metal and thus use the noun rāqīăʿ. I remember being backstage at a commercial theater during a production of Shakespeare’s King Lear. When Lear raves in the storm, the sound of theatrical thunder was provided by a large sheet of thin tin or thin steel suspended backstage on thick wires from the rafters. A stagehand merely shook the thin sheet of metal violently and the most realistic rumbling thunder roared forth and filled the theater. I believe some ancient scribe had watched and listened to a blacksmith pound to flat resonance a sheet of metal in some sooty Judean smithy, then the scribe heard the sheet shaken and recalled the vibrant hollow rumble of booming thunder.

New Testament Greek used στερέωμα stereoma ‘solid thing, firm structure’ to translate the Hebrew rāqīăʿ. It sprang from the Greek verb στερεοῦν stereoun ‘to firm up, to be solid’ and was of course a translation for the Latin firmamentum.

Heavens Above and Below

Through centuries of use in standard and dialectical forms, English spellings of the word heaven were diffuse and manifold. There are dozens of orthographical variants, but consider only the opening line of the Lord’s Prayer in Old English (from perhaps 950 CE).

“Our father who art in heaven”
Fæder ure þu þe eart on heofonum;
Literally: Father our, thou that art in heaven.

When heaven is plural (the heavens,) it is often an English translation of the Biblical Hebrew noun שָׁמַ֫יִם shamayim. To translators not deeply versed in Hebrew cases, shamayim looks like a plural form; in fact it’s a dual. The dual was used in many ancient languages as a special plural for objects that customarily appeared in pairs, in twos. Thus words like eyes, human legs, hands, human arms would appear in the dual case. There are some scholars of Biblical Hebrew who say shamayim is in the dual case because “the waters” in the Hebrew scriptures came in twos, water, abode of rain above the firmament, then the metallic sheet of “heaven” intervening, separating the earth-bound water of streams, rivers, oases and seas below. Hebrew מָ֫יִם mayim means “water or waters.” Hebrew experts today argue still whether shamayim is cognate with mayim.

Do you think all this has little to do with the everyday English you speak and write? Think again! The two little tips of our letter /M/ represent wave tips. See the chart below from Wikipedia:


Egyptian hieroglyph "n"

-Phoenician
Mem

Etruscan M

Greek
Mu

Roman M

“The letter M is derived from the Phoenician Mem, via the Greek Mu (Μ, μ). Semitic Mem probably originally pictured water. It is thought that Semitic people working in Egypt c. 2000 BC borrowed a hieroglyph for "water" that was first used for an alveolar nasal (/n/), because of the Egyptian word for water, n-t. This same symbol became used for /m/ in Semitic, because the word for water began with that sound.”

Returning to heaven, Saint Jerome’s Vulgate Latin was firmamentum and also used was the plural of the Romans’ word for sky, caelum, plural caeli. Modern English contains derivatives like celestial.

The Koine Greek of The New Testament used οὐρανός ouranos ‘sky’ to also mean Christian ‘heaven.’ English like Latin abounds in derivatives of that Greek word. Consider the planet Uranus, ancient Greek Οὐρανός, the name of the husband of Gaia (Earth) and father of Χρόνος Chronos (Time). Chronos in turn was the father of Zeus. As many of the other planets were named after gods and divine mssengers of ancient mythology (e.g. Mars, Jupiter, Mercury, Saturn) so too was Uranus dubbed. I now blush to include a cheap, unsavoury joke from the realm of a famous sci-fi television adventure show. It is not a clean jest and will surely corrupt the lily chastity of youth. Too bad. So sad.

Question: Why is the U.S.S. Enterprise like toilet paper?   

Answer: Because both circle Uranus looking for Klingons.

Another derivative of Greek οὐρανός ouranos ‘heaven’ is uranium, named by its discoverer German chemist Martin Klaproth (1743-1817) who dubbed the element in the late 1780s in honor of the planet Uranus which had been discovered only a few years earlier in 1781.

In Latin, Urania was the ‘heavenly’ muse of astronomy.

 

Welkin: Most Obsolete Heaven Word?

Welkin’s prime meaning in Old English was ‘cloud.’ A totally Germanic root it is; compare the modern German die Wolke ‘the cloud.’

In Old English plural citations, “the welkin” usually means not “the clouds” but “the heavens.” E.g. Old English under wolcnum ‘beneath the sky’ or ‘under heaven.’

By the time of Middle English, after 1100CE, welkin named the dome of heaven, the overarching vault of sky, the biblical firmament.

The word has been obsolete since the sixteenth century, says the all-knowing Oxford English Dictionary. Really? Why then is there a reference in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night that appears to mean welkin is still a current, apt term in 1623 CE? In Act 3, Scene 1, line 57 we read “Who you are, and what you would are out of my welkin, I might say Element, but the word is ouer-worne.”

Minced Oath?
Possibly from the fifteenth century, for several hundred years, welkin was used in exclamations and asseverations, usually, I believe, as what we call in word study, a minced oath. To mince your words means ‘to choose words so as not to offend anyone.’ This particular expression began as a substitute for an outcry of angry condemnation, namely, “by Heaven!” or “by Heavens!”

But the speaker decided that using heaven’s name in this way was blasphemous and therefore substituted something milder, less religiously offensive for the word heaven. Thus “By heaven!” or “By the heavens!” became “by the Welkin.” Consider this Elizabethan passage from 1602CE by Ben Jonson “This villainous poetry will undo you, by the welkin.” And two hundred years later, 1823CE, in Sir Walter Scott’s Peveril “Which, by the welkin and its stars, you would not be slow in avenging.” The reader must keep in mind Scott’s archaizing tendency, his habit of using obsolete words to lend his prose a bygone prospect and a sound of yore.

Another example of a minced oath is Jumping Jesus! turned into Jumpin’ Jehoshaphat! An Elizabethan phrase of shock, horror or surprise was “God’s wounds!” This was a clearly blasphemous reference to the crucifixion. To diminish the impiety, Elizabethans, including Shakespeare, shortened and condensed the phrase to “Zounds!”

Like firmament, welkin may still find use in waggish prose, rhetorical exaggeration and even below in my pseudo-poetical, valedictory claptrap.

Go therefore and let the starry welkin ring with rigorous approvements of an ampler parlance. Cast up celestial nets to snare a firmament of frolic. Let stern obsolescence yield to blithe merriment, to learned whimsy of usage and stoop down betimes to chuck the chin of our nursling, the still young English language.

 

 

 

For a selection from the free archives of my 500 previous spritely word columns, click here

 

 

  

copyright © 2015 William Gordon Casselman

 

French Canadian Translation Services

 

 

 

 

------------------------------------------------------

Read My Latest Essay about the Upcoming Canadian Election in October of 2015.

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2. Hunchback Words

3. Sheriff as a Word

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Any comments, additional word lore or book orders?

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Description of Site Contents Bill Casselman's Canadian Word of the Day™ & Words of the World features thousands of entries about Canadian phrases, words, expressions, and folk sayings. Canadian French expressions, idioms and folk sayings are featured and explained in English. The latest, newest French Canadian slang is deciphered. Québécois joual phrases and jokes are explained in English. My newest, latest, unpublished word stories and studies appear here on this website. Canadian English is the focus but English spoken and written all over the world and throughout the history of the language interests me as well. Words of the World spotlights non-Canadian English words and their origins from languages all over the world and permits me to venture on etymological journeys well beyond the pleasant confines of my native Canada.

Copyright © 1996 -2013 William Gordon Casselman

etymology of Canadian words and phrasesphrases of Canadaword history of CanadaCanadian talkCanadian way of speakingCanadian speechwhere Canadian words come fromfunny Canadian sayingshumorous Canadian expressionsCanadian catchwordsCanadian epigramsCanadian mottoesCanadian stock sayingslearning Canadian Englishlearning Canadian French expressionslearning Quebec folk sayings introduction to etymology Canadian English as ESL slang and Canadian English slang       learn Canadian English Canadian English word power       learn Canadian words Canadian English word lists   . words used by Canadians Canadian lingo Kalan Porter pictures photographs photos Kalan Porter word lore Canadian sayings for ESL  William Gordon Casselman, Canadian author Bill Casselman's books Canadian words folk sayings of Canada Canadian expressions Canadian phrases words used by Canadians Bill Casselman's Canadian Word of the Day archives etymology of Canadian wordsetymology examples of Canadian word origins Canadian English place names of Canada word stories funny Canadian sayings Canadian books books about Canadian words word roots Canadian vocabulary Canadian language Canadian lingo Canadian turn of phrase Canadian way of speaking French-Canadian words French-Canadian words in English Quebec words Quebec French Canadian surnames Canadian last names funny expressions of Canada Canadian word derivations Casselman's Canadian Words Casselmania Canadian Food Words Canadian Garden Words What's in a Canadian Name? Canadian Sayings Canadian Sayings one Canadian Sayings two Canadian Sayings 1 Canadian Sayings 2 Canadian Sayings 3 Canadian Sayings three dictionary of medical derivations etymology of medical terms what medical words mean origin of medical vocabulary medical word stories Canadian food words culinary terms of Canada where food names come from Canadian English words about Canada bill casselman bill casselman books etymology Canadian origins of words Acadian words Acadian food terms Acadian vocabulary Canadian Word of the Day™ word power word lore fun with words where words come from Canadian Word of the Day™ Bill Casselman's Canadian Word of the Day™ Canadian Word of the Day Bill Casselman's Canadian Word of the Day Canadian French as a second language Bill Casselman's Canadian Word of the Day™ Canadian Word of the Day Canadian words words from Canada Canadian English Learn Canadian sayings Learn Canadian English Canadian English as a second language Canadian English study Canadian English as ESL ESL tips with Canadian English expressions Learning English ESL from Canadian English speaking Canadian English learning about Canada through Canadian English  Canadian unique words unique Canadian terms words used in Canada Words that are Canadian phrases terms sayings words original Canadian original Canadian words terms phrases Canadian idioms ESL tips for learning Canadian English Canadian ESL phrase books  funny folk sayings in English Canadian slang Canadian patois patois Canadien ESL sayings ESL funny sayings ESL teaching tips Canadian funny expressions Canadian English words  special phrases in Canadian English words unique to Canada English in Canada Old Canadian Expressions Historical sayings of Canada old sayings in Canada Canadian historical sayings expressions and proverbs of Canada origin of Avril Lavigne's surname words of Canada

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Heavens!

Obscure or Obsolete Words for Heaven:
Namely, Welkin and Firmament

 

 

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Heavens!
Obscure or Obsolete Words for Heaven:
Namely, Welkin and Firmament

To begin, I lodge a mild dissent concerning descriptive adjectives used by most dictionaries when referring to words rare, obscure or obsolete. Our two synonyms for ‘heaven’ under discussion today, firmament and welkin, both suffer from slipshod, uncareful and deficient labelling.

The Firmament Fuss
The Oxford English Dictionary in particular seems loath to even mention satirical or playful or lightly jesting uses of a rare or obsolete word.

Take firmament as example. If you know the Book of Genesis in the KJV, the King James version of The Bible, you will exult in the orotund majesty of firmament, a synonym for heaven reverberant when spoken aloud like the blast of an angel’s trumpet. A place of locative authority and environing certitude, the firmament is, by the very sound of the word, confident of its existence and certain of its divinity. Genesis 1:6 tells the reader “And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters.”

Oxford says modern use of firmament is “only” poetic or rhetorical. So wrongly incomplete! I’ve read the word firmament used whimsically, playfully, magnified for comic exaggeration or employed viciously in an anti-religious newspaper column by a militant atheist. Such uses of the word in print have shown up throughout my life. Yet in its many quotations demonstrating various uses of firmament, Oxford shows not one quotation that is sportive or frisky.

Further in the OED’s long entry, the great dictionary states a definition of firmament: “Heaven, as the place where God dwells” Then with dark, excluding authority, Oxford rolls sonorously onward to assert that the word is “obsolete except in Biblical and liturgical phrases.” Poppycock! Twaddle! Illogical Hooey! How about a recent (August 2015) American newspaper columnist describing Donald Trump as “arriving freshly jetted from the firmament.” Satire! The journalist is making fun of Trump’s pseudo-godlike shenanigans, with a reminder to his Bible-knowing readers of God’s dwelling place, namely the firmament. The word’s use is NOT obsolete. Firmament is alive in comic mode. Therefore it behooves the OED, in its monumental, century-long revision, to begin to include such jolly usage in lists of exemplary quotations.

There endeth my rant. Now commenceth my etymology of firmament.

Firmament’s long word history fascinates. Its immediate etymon is classical Latin firmamentum “something that or an object which lends solid support to, holds up, strengthens” from the Latin verb firmare from the old Roman adjective firmus ‘solid.’

Myles Coverdale, early translator of the Bible into English, found it in the fourth-century Latin translation of the Bible by Saint Jerome commonly called The Vulgate, not because it was vulgar but because Saint Jerome’s translation became widely popular and sometime in the 13th century, nine hundred years after Jerome translated, his work was dubbed the versio vulgata Latin ‘the commonly-used edition.’ Saint Jerome also wanted the Bible to be readable by ordinary, literate-in-Latin people (Latin vulgus ‘the people’).

Myles Coverdale made the word firmament popular in his 1535 version of the Bible. But Coverdale had found the word firmament in an earlier William Tyndale Bible, where Tyndale had perhaps Englished the word from its Vulgate Latin form firmamentum. Unlike Coverdale, Tyndale knew the Hebrew of The Old Testament and the Koine or Hellenistic Greek of The New Testament, so his translations were freshly made from Hebrew and Greek texts. He knew that Saint Jerome had selected Latin firmamentum as a translation of a biblical Hebrew word rāqīăʿ which meant the overarching vault of the sky, that is, heaven.

The trilitteral verbal root in Hebrew,rāqaʿ has a neat significance. It was a blacksmith’s verb and meant ‘to pound out metal into a thin sheet.’Thus we have one idea of how very early Hebrew writers thought of heaven. They imagined it was a sheet of metal separating the watery abode of rain and hail above from the rivers and streams and seas below. Now let us return to that line from Genesis quoted above. One may see that, from an ancient Hebrew point of view, the mysterious double mention of water begins to make sense. “And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of the waters, and let it divide the waters (above) from the waters (below).”

I now tiptoe tentatively out on a precarious semantic limb, to make an educated guess about why those ancient Hebrew bible-writers might think of the sky as a sheet of thin metal and thus use the noun rāqīăʿ. I remember being backstage at a commercial theater during a production of Shakespeare’s King Lear. When Lear raves in the storm, the sound of theatrical thunder was provided by a large sheet of thin tin or thin steel suspended backstage on thick wires from the rafters. A stagehand merely shook the thin sheet of metal violently and the most realistic rumbling thunder roared forth and filled the theater. I believe some ancient scribe had watched and listened to a blacksmith pound to flat resonance a sheet of metal in some sooty Judean smithy, then the scribe heard the sheet shaken and recalled the vibrant hollow rumble of booming thunder.

New Testament Greek used στερέωμα stereoma ‘solid thing, firm structure’ to translate the Hebrew rāqīăʿ. It sprang from the Greek verb στερεοῦν stereoun ‘to firm up, to be solid’ and was of course a translation for the Latin firmamentum.

Heavens Above and Below

Through centuries of use in standard and dialectical forms, English spellings of the word heaven were diffuse and manifold. There are dozens of orthographical variants, but consider only the opening line of the Lord’s Prayer in Old English (from perhaps 950 CE).

“Our father who art in heaven”
Fæder ure þu þe eart on heofonum;
Literally: Father our, thou that art in heaven.

When heaven is plural (the heavens,) it is often an English translation of the Biblical Hebrew noun שָׁמַ֫יִם shamayim. To translators not deeply versed in Hebrew cases, shamayim looks like a plural form; in fact it’s a dual. The dual was used in many ancient languages as a special plural for objects that customarily appeared in pairs, in twos. Thus words like eyes, human legs, hands, human arms would appear in the dual case. There are some scholars of Biblical Hebrew who say shamayim is in the dual case because “the waters” in the Hebrew scriptures came in twos, water, abode of rain above the firmament, then the metallic sheet of “heaven” intervening, separating the earth-bound water of streams, rivers, oases and seas below. Hebrew מָ֫יִם mayim means “water or waters.” Hebrew experts today argue still whether shamayim is cognate with mayim.

Do you think all this has little to do with the everyday English you speak and write? Think again! The two little tips of our letter /M/ represent wave tips. See the chart below from Wikipedia:


Egyptian hieroglyph "n"

-Phoenician
Mem

Etruscan M

Greek
Mu

Roman M

“The letter M is derived from the Phoenician Mem, via the Greek Mu (Μ, μ). Semitic Mem probably originally pictured water. It is thought that Semitic people working in Egypt c. 2000 BC borrowed a hieroglyph for "water" that was first used for an alveolar nasal (/n/), because of the Egyptian word for water, n-t. This same symbol became used for /m/ in Semitic, because the word for water began with that sound.”

Returning to heaven, Saint Jerome’s Vulgate Latin was firmamentum and also used was the plural of the Romans’ word for sky, caelum, plural caeli. Modern English contains derivatives like celestial.

The Koine Greek of The New Testament used οὐρανός ouranos ‘sky’ to also mean Christian ‘heaven.’ English like Latin abounds in derivatives of that Greek word. Consider the planet Uranus, ancient Greek Οὐρανός, the name of the husband of Gaia (Earth) and father of Χρόνος Chronos (Time). Chronos in turn was the father of Zeus. As many of the other planets were named after gods and divine mssengers of ancient mythology (e.g. Mars, Jupiter, Mercury, Saturn) so too was Uranus dubbed. I now blush to include a cheap, unsavoury joke from the realm of a famous sci-fi television adventure show. It is not a clean jest and will surely corrupt the lily chastity of youth. Too bad. So sad.

Question: Why is the U.S.S. Enterprise like toilet paper?   

Answer: Because both circle Uranus looking for Klingons.

Another derivative of Greek οὐρανός ouranos ‘heaven’ is uranium, named by its discoverer German chemist Martin Klaproth (1743-1817) who dubbed the element in the late 1780s in honor of the planet Uranus which had been discovered only a few years earlier in 1781.

In Latin, Urania was the ‘heavenly’ muse of astronomy.

 

Welkin: Most Obsolete Heaven Word?

Welkin’s prime meaning in Old English was ‘cloud.’ A totally Germanic root it is; compare the modern German die Wolke ‘the cloud.’

In Old English plural citations, “the welkin” usually means not “the clouds” but “the heavens.” E.g. Old English under wolcnum ‘beneath the sky’ or ‘under heaven.’

By the time of Middle English, after 1100CE, welkin named the dome of heaven, the overarching vault of sky, the biblical firmament.

The word has been obsolete since the sixteenth century, says the all-knowing Oxford English Dictionary. Really? Why then is there a reference in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night that appears to mean welkin is still a current, apt term in 1623 CE? In Act 3, Scene 1, line 57 we read “Who you are, and what you would are out of my welkin, I might say Element, but the word is ouer-worne.”

Minced Oath?
Possibly from the fifteenth century, for several hundred years, welkin was used in exclamations and asseverations, usually, I believe, as what we call in word study, a minced oath. To mince your words means ‘to choose words so as not to offend anyone.’ This particular expression began as a substitute for an outcry of angry condemnation, namely, “by Heaven!” or “by Heavens!”

But the speaker decided that using heaven’s name in this way was blasphemous and therefore substituted something milder, less religiously offensive for the word heaven. Thus “By heaven!” or “By the heavens!” became “by the Welkin.” Consider this Elizabethan passage from 1602CE by Ben Jonson “This villainous poetry will undo you, by the welkin.” And two hundred years later, 1823CE, in Sir Walter Scott’s Peveril “Which, by the welkin and its stars, you would not be slow in avenging.” The reader must keep in mind Scott’s archaizing tendency, his habit of using obsolete words to lend his prose a bygone prospect and a sound of yore.

Another example of a minced oath is Jumping Jesus! turned into Jumpin’ Jehoshaphat! An Elizabethan phrase of shock, horror or surprise was “God’s wounds!” This was a clearly blasphemous reference to the crucifixion. To diminish the impiety, Elizabethans, including Shakespeare, shortened and condensed the phrase to “Zounds!”

Like firmament, welkin may still find use in waggish prose, rhetorical exaggeration and even below in my pseudo-poetical, valedictory claptrap.

Go therefore and let the starry welkin ring with rigorous approvements of an ampler parlance. Cast up celestial nets to snare a firmament of frolic. Let stern obsolescence yield to blithe merriment, to learned whimsy of usage and stoop down betimes to chuck the chin of our nursling, the still young English language.

 

 

 

For a selection from the free archives of my 500 previous spritely word columns, click here

 

 

  

copyright © 2015 William Gordon Casselman

 

French Canadian Translation Services

 

 

 

 

------------------------------------------------------

Read My Latest Essay about the Upcoming Canadian Election in October of 2015.

Click the Link Below.

 

 

 

 

 

Click to Read My Most Recent Columns

 

1. Alchemy Words like Alembic & Retort

2. Hunchback Words

3. Sheriff as a Word

4. Ubicity?

Any comments, additional word lore or book orders?

Please email me at

lutrine@rogers.com

 

 

 

Hundreds of links to more word essays; click below.

 

 

If you enjoyed this column, please tell your word-loving friends about my site

and ask them to visit it.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

 

Learn Some Quebec French Sayings

 

Quebec French Sayings -1

On Twitter, I am BillCasselman. Check me out!

 

 

Order new or used online from amazon.com

“The book is wonderful!” says a buyer of my Dictionary of Medical Derivations at amazon.com

 

 

If you can't find my books online or in stores,order them directly from the author. Just send me an email

 

wordguy@shaw.ca

 

 

Description of Site Contents Bill Casselman's Canadian Word of the Day™ & Words of the World features thousands of entries about Canadian phrases, words, expressions, and folk sayings. Canadian French expressions, idioms and folk sayings are featured and explained in English. The latest, newest French Canadian slang is deciphered. Québécois joual phrases and jokes are explained in English. My newest, latest, unpublished word stories and studies appear here on this website. Canadian English is the focus but English spoken and written all over the world and throughout the history of the language interests me as well. Words of the World spotlights non-Canadian English words and their origins from languages all over the world and permits me to venture on etymological journeys well beyond the pleasant confines of my native Canada.

Copyright © 1996 -2013 William Gordon Casselman

etymology of Canadian words and phrasesphrases of Canadaword history of CanadaCanadian talkCanadian way of speakingCanadian speechwhere Canadian words come fromfunny Canadian sayingshumorous Canadian expressionsCanadian catchwordsCanadian epigramsCanadian mottoesCanadian stock sayingslearning Canadian Englishlearning Canadian French expressionslearning Quebec folk sayings introduction to etymology Canadian English as ESL slang and Canadian English slang       learn Canadian English Canadian English word power       learn Canadian words Canadian English word lists   . words used by Canadians Canadian lingo Kalan Porter pictures photographs photos Kalan Porter word lore Canadian sayings for ESL  William Gordon Casselman, Canadian author Bill Casselman's books Canadian words folk sayings of Canada Canadian expressions Canadian phrases words used by Canadians Bill Casselman's Canadian Word of the Day archives etymology of Canadian wordsetymology examples of Canadian word origins Canadian English place names of Canada word stories funny Canadian sayings Canadian books books about Canadian words word roots Canadian vocabulary Canadian language Canadian lingo Canadian turn of phrase Canadian way of speaking French-Canadian words French-Canadian words in English Quebec words Quebec French Canadian surnames Canadian last names funny expressions of Canada Canadian word derivations Casselman's Canadian Words Casselmania Canadian Food Words Canadian Garden Words What's in a Canadian Name? Canadian Sayings Canadian Sayings one Canadian Sayings two Canadian Sayings 1 Canadian Sayings 2 Canadian Sayings 3 Canadian Sayings three dictionary of medical derivations etymology of medical terms what medical words mean origin of medical vocabulary medical word stories Canadian food words culinary terms of Canada where food names come from Canadian English words about Canada bill casselman bill casselman books etymology Canadian origins of words Acadian words Acadian food terms Acadian vocabulary Canadian Word of the Day™ word power word lore fun with words where words come from Canadian Word of the Day™ Bill Casselman's Canadian Word of the Day™ Canadian Word of the Day Bill Casselman's Canadian Word of the Day Canadian French as a second language Bill Casselman's Canadian Word of the Day™ Canadian Word of the Day Canadian words words from Canada Canadian English Learn Canadian sayings Learn Canadian English Canadian English as a second language Canadian English study Canadian English as ESL ESL tips with Canadian English expressions Learning English ESL from Canadian English speaking Canadian English learning about Canada through Canadian English  Canadian unique words unique Canadian terms words used in Canada Words that are Canadian phrases terms sayings words original Canadian original Canadian words terms phrases Canadian idioms ESL tips for learning Canadian English Canadian ESL phrase books  funny folk sayings in English Canadian slang Canadian patois patois Canadien ESL sayings ESL funny sayings ESL teaching tips Canadian funny expressions Canadian English words  special phrases in Canadian English words unique to Canada English in Canada Old Canadian Expressions Historical sayings of Canada old sayings in Canada Canadian historical sayings expressions and proverbs of Canada origin of Avril Lavigne's surname words of Canada

..

Canadian termsCanadian languageFrench Canadian sayingsbooks on Canadian Englishbooks teaching Canadian EnglishEnglish in Canada ways of speechCanadian talk in English

.

unique words of Canadaunique Canadian phrasesunique sayings of Canada.word origins Canada unique expressions of Canada

funny sayings

Canadian expressions Canadian French expressionsCanadian French wordsCanadian French idioms explained in EnglishCanadian French sayings explained in EnglishCa.

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