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TorgoX (1933)


"Il est beau comme la retractilité des serres des oiseaux rapaces [...] et surtout, comme la rencontre fortuite sur une table de dissection d'une machine à coudre et d'un parapluie !" -- Lautréamont

Journal of TorgoX (1933)

Saturday February 02, 2002
06:56 PM

Philistia, and new names for old names for new names

[ #2605 ]
Dear Log,

«"[The plan] aims, on the one hand, to isolate the Arab inhabitants of Judea and Samaria [Israel's name for the West Bank] by defensive obstacles, and on the other to pursue the fight against terrorists on the other side of the obstacles,"»
-- Uzi Landau, Israeli public security minister, quoted in the article "Sharon approves plan to cordon off Arab Jerusalem"

You know it's bad when people get touchily innovative about what to call places. What next, referring to Iraq as "Chaldea", and Afghanistan as "Bactria", and seeking auguries on how to smite the wicked foe in Persepolis? (Woe be unto them!)

Actually, sifting thru ancient names would handily give us a term for the combined land of Israel and Palestine: Philistia. And one could thus refer to the present bickering as the "Philistine civil war".

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  • I don't know when or where the name "Egypt" came to pass (Rome? Latinized Greek?), but "Judea and Samaria" (Yehuda v'Shomron) is typical for Israeli naming. Egypt is still called [Eretz] Mitzrayim -- the land of bondage, as if Moses airlifted the entire nation across the Sea of Reeds just last week. The rest of the middle east, FWIR, is as the English named it.[*]

    How did it get this way? Go ask Ehud Ben-Yehuda, the inventor of modern Hebrew. Where ever a biblical term was applicable, it was maintaine

    • Placenames in Mingo [] are mostly the same way: they have a bunch for local (Ohio, WV, PA, NY) things, and then just things here and there, and everything else is copied from English.

      I remember that the word for Florida was interesting, tho -- it was hard to make out whether it meant "There-Are-Alligators-There" or "Things-Deteriorate/Disintegrate There". (It was hard to tell because the word for "alligator" (or was it "crocodile"?) is something like "it-is-leprous", and "leprous" is based on the root that o

    • BTW, Partridge's Origins says English "Egypt" < Latin "Aegyptus" < Greek "Aigyptos", which is apparently from Babylonian "H.ikupta", which is the Babylonian name for the city of Memphis. The Ancient Egyptian name for Memphis was "Atur", so it's not clear how/if you get "H.ikupta" form "Atur".