E 0646 OSTEO -

The prefix "osteo-" is of Greek origin .

H 0206 ם צ ע

Concept of root : bones, strength of body

Hebrew word

pronunciation

English meanings

ם צ ע

‛etsem;

‛otsem

bone, body;

bodystrength

Related English words

osteo-

Comparison between European words and Hebrew

Languages

Words

Pronunciation

English meanings

Similarity in roots

Hebrew

ם צ ע

‛etsem ;

-

‛otsem

bone, body ;

body-strength

‛e ts m

-

‛o ts m

Greek

οστέον

osteon

bone

o st

Latin

os < *ost

ost

bone

o st

English

osteo-

osteo-

o st

 

 

Proto-Semitic *‛ATSEM --- *ĂST- , *ŎST- , Indo-European

 

 

The difference between Hebrew and European is mainly that between TS and ST , which is not necessarily too significant. It might also have been caused by a metathesis between T and S. The third consonant " M " in Hebrew probably is an addition , useful to distinguish between various meanings expressed by roots that have the couple of consonants "Ayin TS ". This has then taken place already in Proto-Semitic.
The root ע צ ם besides meaning " bone " also indicates " body " and " strength, power ".

 

A root " ע צ ל" , says " lazy, hesitant ". Interesting is then that the root " ע ץ indicates a tree (‛ets) and " ע צ ב " to shape ( "‛itsf" ). Clearly a basic meaning of structure is already present in the combination " ע ץ". The bones are the structure of the body . Thus, with the message of " bone " in the various words of this entry, a common origin may be hypothesized .

 

 

Note:
  • English uses "osteo-" in a number of words, such as "osteomyelitis", "osteopathy" and "osteoplasty" .

 

Note:
  • Proto-Semitic. This root is present in sister words in Aramaic and Syriac "ע ט מ א ; ט מ י א, ‛athema ; themiya= thigh; bones" and Akkadian "etsemtu = bone" . If, as is usually believed, this root also carries the meaning of " strength " , Phoenician, Ugaritic and Arabic are to be added. One may safely suppose that Proto-Semitic used the root we see in Hebrew: "*ע צ ם .

 

Note:
  • Indo-European. As so often one finds mostly an initial vowel " A " in "eastern" groups and " O " in "western" groups. An existing hypothesis chooses "*O ST-" or "*O STH-".

     

    Tocharian "āsta = bones"

     

    Hittite "hastai- = bones"

     

    Old Indian asthi = bone"

     

    Avestan "ast-, asti- = bone"

     

    Albanian "asht, ashte = bone"

     

    Greek, besides the mentioned "osteos" also has words with a vowel "A", as "αστραγαλος, astragalos = small bone, nuckle, phalanx, vertebra, ankle".

     

     

    Indo-European. There is little chance of a reliable choice between an initial vowel " A " or an " O ", especially as we see both still used in Greek. It is quite possible that also in Indo-European existed alternatives : "*Ă ST-" and "*Ŏ ST-"

 

 

 

 

 
Created: Tuesday 6 November 2007 at 22.30.54 Updated: 23/12/2012 at 9.36.26