🏷  Bible name Semitic pun · name   —   by Gerry · Dec 2018 · 1317 words

The name Joseph means to add, but that word also has financial meanings like money-lending, debt and interest. The rest of his story is also woven around puns with the letter combination S-P.

Joseph’s puns in a nutshell

Joseph is written יוסף ywsp, from the root sp for “adding”. As usual, all elements of Joseph’s story were cobbled together from words that are written with consonants similar to S-P, like Joseph.

The main secret spook association with the name Joseph is likely צפי ṣpy for “watching” & “spying”, present in the story as “foreseeing” the future in dreams. It’s also similar to צעיף ṣˁyp “veil”, though that doesn’t appear in the story. Another spook association may be זיף zyp, which means “forgery” & “cheating”, which appears in the adulteration scene with his mistress. The main visible pun is יזף yzp for “debt”, present in his granary taxation scheme, and even etymologically related to the Joseph’s official meaning of “adding”.

Joseph from Semitic sp / zp for “adding” & “debt”

The granary part of Joseph’s story in the Bible seems to be a veiled recipe for banksterism. Joseph’s name is confirmation for that.

Joseph is usually written יוסף ywsp in Hebrew, the vowel-less Phoenician variant would be ysp. The basic meaning of the word root יסף ysp is “to add”.

However, the sibilants S, Š, Ṣ, Z are frequently swapped in the written forms of different Semitic dialects. Joseph’s root ysp has such a variant yzp, mostly found in Aramaic. And almost all derivations of that root yzp are about debt. (This is similar to the word rabbi, which also means “enlarging” & “usury”.)

It’s hardly a coincidence that Joseph’s story is about debt, and his name is also about debt. It was written as a spook recipe for creating & utilizing debt.

Hebrew, Aramaic sp, zp = Joseph, adding, increasing

יוסף ywsp : “he increases,” a son of Jacob, also the name of several Israelites — Old Hebrew (Strong)

יסף ysp : add, continue, exceed, increase, longer, more, prolong, repeat — Old Hebrew (Strong)

יזף yzp : to be added — Aramaic (CAL)

Aramaic zp = loan, lend, debt, interest

יזף yzp : to borrow, to lend, to be borrowed, to be lent, to be added — Aramaic (CAL)

אוזפה ˀwzph : loan — Aramaic (CAL)

זוף zwp : to lend — Aramaic (CAL)

זפה zph : loan — Aramaic (CAL)

זפו zpw : loan — Aramaic (CAL)

יזוף yzwp : borrower, borrowing — Aramaic (CAL)

יזיף yzyp : borrowed — Aramaic (CAL)

יזיפו yzypw : indebtedness, borrowing — Aramaic (CAL)

יזף yzp : borrower, loan — Aramaic (CAL)

יזפה yzph : loan — Aramaic (CAL)

מוזפן mwzpn : lender — Aramaic (CAL)

מוזפנו mwzpnw : lending — Aramaic (CAL)

מזפו mzpw : interest — Aramaic (CAL)

מתתוזפן mttwzpn : that which is lent — Aramaic (CAL)

שיזפן šyzpn : minter or exchequer — Aramaic (CAL)

Hebrew zp = borrow, lend, debtor

יזף ; זיף ; זוף yzp; zyp; zwp : to borrow; to lend — Hebrew (Jastrow)

יזפא yzpˀ : debtor — Hebrew (Jastrow)

Semitic zp for “forgery” & “cheating”

As many spook names have to do with deception, it’s also interesting to note that Joseph has a secondary pun with Semitic זיף zyp for “forgery”. It may be that this is even related to the primary meaning of “adding”, here in the sense of adding untrue things to a true thing.

זיף zyp also means “adulteration”. That’s how Joseph’s adulteration scene was inspired.

Hebrew, Aramaic zp = falsehood, forgery, fraud, cheating

זיף zyp : to forge, falsify, counterfeit; forged, falsified, counterfeited, adulterated — Hebrew (Klein)

זיוף zywp : forgery, counterfeiting, adulteration — Hebrew (Klein)

זיף zyp : mold, forgery; falsehood; false copy; fraud, falsehood — Aramaic (CAL)

זאפן zˀpn : false, fraudulent; forger, cheater — Aramaic (CAL)

זאפנו zˀpnw : falsification, forgery — Aramaic (CAL)

זיפן zypn : to behave falsely; to behave in a false manner; to be deceived — Aramaic (CAL)

זיף zyp : D to forge, falsify; to counterfeit, forge; to falsify; to be falsified; to be deceived; to deceive — Aramaic (CAL)

מזיא דזיפא mzyˀ dzypˀ : wig (lit. false hair) — Aramaic (CAL)

Semitic ṣpy for “visions” & “foreseeing”

The ancient spooks made “dream interpretation” the underlying theme for Joseph’s visible story, because Semitic צפי ṣpy means “watching”, and by derivation “having a vision” & “foreseeing the future”. Derived from “that which is watched”, the same word also means “coating” & “overlaying”, which is another important spook concept.

It also means “watchman” & “spy”, and the spelling ṣpy is eerily similar to English spy. We may have a global root, or a Phoenician loanword.

Hebrew ṣp = watching, looking, vision, foreseeing

צפה ṣph : to look, observe, to keep watch, to foresee, expect; look forward to, hop for, expect; lurk, spy — Hebrew (Klein)

צפי ṣpy : to shine; to look; to look into distances of space, time; to foresee; to have a vision; seen, foreseen; bright, perspicuous; to look forward to, wait, hope; to cover with shining plate, to overlay — Hebrew (Jastrow)

צפה ṣph : to look out or about; to lean forward, i.e. to peer into the distance; spy, espy, keep watch, watchman — Old Hebrew (Strong)

Semitic šby for “captivity”

Joseph being sold into slavery, and later being thrown into prison, are derived from his name punning with שבי šby for “captivity” & “prison”. It’s not a very good pun, because B isn’t too similar to P. Still, the letters were interchangeable in some rare cases.

Holding us all “captive” is another major spook theme. There were even figurative usages, meaning “to be swayed”. I assume, English phrases like “capturing the eye” may also have worked, though I haven’st found that attested.

Hebrew šb = captivity, prisoner, prison

שבה šbh : to take captive, take prisoner, capture — Hebrew (Klein)

שבי šby : to capture, carry off; to be captured — Hebrew (Jastrow)

שבי šby : captivity, prison — Hebrew (Jastrow)

שבי šby : captivity; captives — Hebrew (Klein)

שבאי šbˀy : captor — Hebrew (Klein)

שבוי šbwy : captor — Hebrew (Klein)

שבית šbyt : captivity — Hebrew (Klein)

שבייתא šbyytˀ : captivity; captives; booty — Hebrew (Jastrow)

🏷  Bible name Semitic pun · name