GR 1127          AKHOS

H 0120            ם ג ע        

Concept of root : sad

Hebrew word


English meanings

ם ג ע,


to be sad

Related English words


Comparison between European words and Hebrew




English meanings

Similarity in roots


ם ג ע      



to be, make sad

׳a g


αχος; αχομαι;


akhos; akhomai


sadness; become, make sad

a kh



Proto-Semitic *‛AGAM --- *AKH(-OS) Greek



The difference is just that between G and KH. which is no obstacle for a supposition of similarity in origin. In fact Hebrew has also another root with "KH" "that means " to disturb, trouble", but also "to afflict, bring to misery": "ע כ ר , ‛akhar".


This is important, as it shows that in Hebrew there can be related roots of which one has a G-sound and the other a K- or KH-sound in the same position. Both verbs have their cousins in other narrowly related Semitic languages .


  • Greek "akhos" is said to be related to German and Dutch "angst", a word that has entered English more recently from Yiddish. But "angst" has nothing to do with "sadness" but with fear, tightness and oppression. See entry E 0036 (Hebrew 0640).


  • Hebrew shows as well a very interesting case in which a concept, "to be sad, grieved" can be expressed by two roots that are nearly identical, differing only in the fact that they have as opening "consonants" respectively the Aleph and the Ayin :"ע ג ם , ‛agem = to be sad" and "א ג ם , 'agem = sad".


  • Hebrew shows us here an example of the adding of a third consonant, here an M, to an existing root, without changing the meaning of it. This supposition is supported by the existence of the afore mentioned root "akhar".


  • Proto-Semitic. We find this root in both Akkadian "agamu" and Aramaic "agam" and we dare suppose two Proto-Semitic sister roots similar to Hebrew : "*ע ג ם" and , with an older Aleph instead of Ayin, "*א ג ם".





Created: Tuesday 6 November 2007 at 22.30.54 Updated: 22/12/2012 at 13.51.50